Ruling on wiping over socks with holes in them

Question:

Is it permissible to wipe over socks that have holes in them [when making wudoo’]?
 
Answer:

Praise be to Allah.

The correct view is that it is permissible to wipe over khuff (leather slippers which cover the foot and ankle) or socks that have holes in them. The Prophet ﷺ allowed wiping over khuff and he did not stipulate any condition that they should be whole and free of holes or tears, especially since the khuff of his companions were not free of holes or tears. If this had any effect on whether one could wipe over them, the Prophet ﷺ would have stated that clearly, for one of the basic principles of usool al-fiqh is that it is not permitted to delay explaining something when it is needed.

Imam Sufyaan al-Thawri, may Allah have mercy on him, said:

قال الإمام سفيان الثوري رحمه الله: “امسح عليها ما تعلقت به رجلك وهل كانت خفاف المهاجرين والأنصار إلا مخرقة مشققة مرقعة.” رواه عبد الرزاق في المصنف 1 / 194

“One may wipe over the khuff so long as it is still clinging to the feet. Were the khuff of the Muhaajireen and Ansaar anything but full of holes and tears?” [Narrated by ‘Abd al-Razzaaq in al-Musanaaf, 1/194]

Sheikh al-Islam ibn Taymiyah, may Allaah have mercy on him, said:

قال شيخ الإسلام ابن تيمية رحمه الله: “فلما أطلق الرسول صلى الله عليه وسلم الأمر بالمسح على الخفاف مع علمه بما هي عليه في العادة ولم يشترط أن تكون سليمة من العيوب وجب حمل أمره على الإطلاق ولم يجز أن يقيد كلامه إلا بدليل شرعي . وكان مقتضى لفظه أن كل خف يلبسه الناس ويمشون فيه فلهم أن يمسحوا عليه وإن كان مفتوقاً أو مخروقاً من غير تَحديد لمقدار ذلك فإن التحديد لا بدّ له من دليل.” الفتاوى 21 / 174

“When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) gave the command to wipe over the khuff, he knew what the normal state of affairs was, and he did not stipulate the condition that the socks should be whole and free of any faults. His command should be taken as general in meaning and it should not be restricted unless there is any shar’i evidence for doing so. What is implied by the wording is that any khuff that people wear and walk about in may be wiped over, even if they have holes or are worn out, without defining the acceptable extent for these holes and tears, because even such a definition would require evidence.” [Majmoo’ al-Fataawa 21/174]

This is also the view of Ishaaq, Ibn al-Mubaarak, Sufyan Ibn ‘Uyaynah and Abu Thawr may Allah be pleased with them all.

Imam al-Shaafa’i and Ahmad – according to the well-known views narrated from them – said that it is not permissible to wipe over the khuff or socks so long as there are any holes or tears in the place where it is obligatory to do wudoo’. Abu Hanifah and Maalik differentiated between small holes and large holes.

But the correct view is the first view quoted above, which is that it is permissible to wipe over the khuff or socks so long as they are still clinging to the feet and it is still possible to walk in them.

It is also correct to wipe over socks through which the skin can be seen, because the permission to wipe over socks is general and no report of any restriction has been narrated. This implies that any socks which people wear may be wiped over. This is what is implied by those who say that it is permissible to wipe over khuff that are worn out, so long as it is still possible to walk in them.

Imam an-Nawawi, may Allah have mercy on him, mentioned in al-Majmoo’ (1/502) that even if a person were to wear khuff made of glass, if it were possible to walk in them then it would be permissible to wipe over them, even though the skin beneath them would be visible.

And Allah knows best.

Sheikh Sulaymaan bin Naasir al-‘Alwaan

Original Source

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