I have a question. I’m travelling overseas in Ramadhan. As usual, when I’m away from my wife I would miss her. Thus, I call her every day to talk to her through video call. Suddenly, a question came to my mind, is it permissible for me to look at my wife during the day in Ramadhan through video call? Will it invalidate my fast? Hope for an explanation.
Waalaikumussalam wrt, wbt.,
Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.
There are 8 matters which will invalidate a person’s fast, they are:
- Intentionally eating and drinking
- Inserting something into the body open cavities
- Intentionally vomiting (induce vomiting)
- Having intercourse
- Masturbate until one ejaculate
- Menstruation and post-natal bleeding
- Insanity or intoxicated for a whole day (loss of sanity/consciousness)
If a person commits or experiences any of these eight matters, then his fast is invalid and it is wajib for him to replace his fast.
Coming back to the question presented, it is permissible to look at one’s wife through video call. The reason is it is not included as matters which invalidates the fast. However, if a person looks at his wife with desires and this could lead to matters that invalidate his fast such as masturbation, then it is makruh (undesirable) for him to look at his wife. This is according to a hadith narrated by Umar bin al-Khattab:
يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَنَعْتُ الْيَوْمَ أَمْرًا عَظِيمًا قَبَّلْتُ وَأَنَا صَائِمٌ قَالَ أَرَأَيْتَ لَوْ مَضْمَضْتَ مِنَ الْمَاءِ وَأَنْتَ صَائِمٌ
“Messenger of Allah, I have done a big deed; I kissed while I was fasting. He said: What do you think if you rinse your mouth with water while you are fasting.”
Sunan Abu Daud (2385)
Syeikh Abdul Muhsin al-Abbad when commenting on this hadith said, the Prophet PBUH analogically deduced the act of kissing during the day in Ramadan with gargling. Gargling is the start of drinking while kissing is the beginning of intercourse. However, both do not invalidate the fast as long as the water is not swallowed and the kissing does not end with intercourse. (Refer Syarh Sunan Abi Daud,275/24)
Imam al-Nawawi said the Prophet PBUH similize the act of kissing with gargling. And it is sabit that a person who gargles and the water reaches his cavity, then it invalidates his fast. If the water does not reach the cavity, then it does not invalidate it. The same for kissing. (Refer Al-Majmu’ Syarh Al-Muhazzab, 6/321)
Thus, we can understand through the hadith that if the kiss could lead to matters that invalidate fast, then it is makruh (undesirable). Likewise, for the act of looking at one’s wife for it is a lighter act than kissing. The same ruling for kissing during the day in Ramadhan is applicable to it.
To conclude, it is permissible to look at one’s wife through video call. The reason is it is not concluded as matters which invalidate fast. However, if it could lead to the excitement of desire and subsequently lead to matters which invalidate fast, then it is makruh.