Wudhu is an act of physical and spiritual purification, and the first essential step in the preparation for Salah (prayer) or reading the Qur’an. (Whilst not all parts are compulsory, it’s important to get into the habit of completing all steps.)

The beauty of wudhu is that, whilst you’re performing this blessed act, your sins are being washed away.

Abu Umamah reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “When a Muslim man performs ablution, his sins are removed from his hearing, his sight, his hands, and his legs. If he sits down, he will sit down forgiven.” (Musnad Ahmad 21680) 

Wudhu is usually performed with clean, flowing water, but if clean, flowing water is not available, it can be performed with clean mud. It is also important to remember to be efficient with the amount of water you use.

Many people to struggle to even have enough clean water to perform wudhu. As clean water is scarce and difficult to retrieve, many people across Pakistan and other affected areas are forced to use dirty, unsafe water or contaminated mud to complete their wudhu. This is because they need to save water for drinking, cooking, etc. 

That’s why at Hope Welfare Trust, we are working to bring water wells closer to communities, giving hundreds of people the delicious taste of clean, safe water for wudhu and more. Learn more about what we are doing: https://www.hopewelfaretrust.org/ 

Firstly follow our easy-to-follow guide to complete wudhu:

  1. Begin with making sincere intention, that this act is done with the intention of pleasing Allah. This doesn’t have to be done aloud, but it is about becoming more mindful that you are about to perform wudhu. 
  2. Say ‘Bismillah’ (In the Name of Allah)
  3. Wash both of your hands up to the wrists three times. When washing, remember not to miss any parts out – wash between the fingers and thumbs too.
  4. Rinse your mouth three times, swirling the water around to ensure it reaches all parts of the mouth.
  5. Rinse your nose three times. Cup water into your hand, partly inhale the water to ensure it goes into your nostrils, and then blow out. Use your left hand to remove the water from your nose if needed.
  6. Wash your entire face three times, from the hairline to the chin, and from ear to ear. Ensure all parts of the face are washed, including eyebrows, under the nose and your lips. For men, you should wash the hair of your beard, by running your fingers through it.
  7. Now onto your arms. Begin with the right arm, ensuring you wash from the tips of your fingers to just above your elbow. Each arm must be washed three times.
  8. It is important that you remove anything that could prevent the water from reaching the skin such as paint, nail polish or make-up.
  9. Wet your hands and place your palms flat on top of your head (from your hairline), and wipe all the way to the back of your head, and then back to the front again. For women, they should wipe from the front of the head to the roots of the hair at the nape of the neck. This is called the act of Masah.
  10. Wipe your ears by putting your index fingers in your ears and wiping the back with your thumbs. This only needs to be completed once.
  11. Wash the feet three times up to the ankles, with the right foot first. Make sure to wipe in between all your toes with your little finger. Don’t forget your heels! 

The Fardh Acts of Wudhu 

There are five compulsory or obligatory acts in Wudhu, which must be completed in order for the ablution to be valid. These five acts are:

  1. Making Niyyah (intention) to perform the Wudhu
  2. Washing the entirety of the face once
  3. Washing both hands and arms up to the elbows once
  4. Masa’ (passing wet hands) over a quarter of the head once 
  5. Washing both feet up to the ankles once

What Invalidates your Wudhu

There are certain things which nullify your Wudhu, and after which you are required to complete the ablution again in order to pray. These are: 

  • Discharge of bodily fluid from the private areas; including passing of urine, discharge, stool, feces, or wind
  • Flow of blood or pus from a wound, which falls away from its opening
  • A mouthful of vomit 
  • Sleeping where you lose control of yourself i.e. a deep sleep, can no longer hear other people around you or if you were leaning on something, if that was removed and you did not notice
  • Menstruation cycle
  • Sexual intercourse 
  • Lose consciousness i.e. faint
  • Loud laughter whilst praying 

When performing either wudhu or ghusl, any substance, which prevents water from reaching the parts to be washed, must be removed. This includes nail polish, mascara and make-up. 

We hope you find our guide to performing wudhu helpful. Learn more about how we are bringing safe water to Pakistan: https://www.hopewelfaretrust.org/

May Allah accept our acts of worship, Ameen.