Fatwā concerning the legality, based on their interpretation of Islamic law, of fulfilling the Friday prayer (Jumuʿa) at home, instead of at a mosque (masjid) or public prayer venue. The answer provided by the Mufti of Australia and The Australian Fatwa Council, dated 18 March 2020, is that their interpretation of Islamic law permits for a Muslim, in the event of a pandemic that threatens one’s life, such as COVID-19, which is spread through close social interaction, to not have to attend the daily congregational prayers and Friday prayer.
The Muwaṭṭaʾis the first extant treatise on Islamic law, written by the eighth-century Medinan jurist Mālik b. Anas (d. 179/795). It provides an unparalleled window into the life of the early Muslim community of Medina—where the Prophet Muḥammad lived and died after immigrating from Mecca—as well as the rituals, laws, and customs that its members upheld years after his death. Harvard’s Program in Islamic Law, in conjunction with Harvard University Press, published an English translation of the Muwaṭṭaʾin 2019, edited and translated by well-known Islamic law scholars Professors Mohammad Fadel and Connell Monette. This translation is based on the recently published critical edition of the Muwaṭṭaʾ, The Royal Moroccan Edition (Rabat: Ministry of Endowments, 2013). With its extensive notes, the English edition is intended to make this important early legal text widely accessible to a broad spectrum of readers, including those interested in both legal history and Islamic Studies. This Online Companionto the Muwaṭṭaʾmakes the full texts of both the original Arabic edition and its English translation freely available online. We gratefully acknowledge the Moroccan Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs for permissions to make the full Arabic text available online.
This source is part of the Online Companion to the print edition al-Muwaṭṭaʾ, the Royal Moroccan Edition: The Recension of Yaḥyā Ibn Yaḥyā al-Laythī (Harvard Series in Islamic Law), edited and translated by Mohammad Fadel and Connell Monette (PIL/HUP, 2019).
Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Hajj and Umrah made the decision, dated 22 June 2020, to impose strict limitations on this year’s Hajj (1441H/2020AD) in light of the continued risks of the COVID-19 pandemic. Rather than cancelling the event altogether, these limitations will only allow Saudi pilgrims and those from other countries already inside the Kingdom to partake in this year’s Hajj.