Miscellaneous Issues Regarding Sun or Moon

Question:

When Isha Salah time starts?

Answer:

The time of Isha according to the Hanafi Math-hab begins after the disappearance of the whitish glow after the redness has disappeared in the western horizon. First the redness disappears, then there remains a light (whitish glow). After the disappearance of this whiteness, intense darkness sets in. This is the time when Isha begins. The time will vary in different countries. It is quite possible that this phenomenon occurs an hour after sunset in some places. It is not the same for all places. (2) Isha Salaat before its time is not valid. If the Musjid where Isha is performed in the proper time is not very far, then you should attend that Musjid. If it is far away from your house, then you should perform Isha at home because the Isha in the Musjid before the valid time is not valid.

Question:

In our Musjid we perform Taraaweeh even if the sighting of the moon has not yet been confirmed. The argument is that we should perform Taraaweeh just in case the moon is sighted for Ramadhaan. If the moon is not sighted, there is no harm in having performed the Salaat which would then become Nafl. Performing it early is convenient for the people. Sometimes the news of the sighting reaches us very late. Is our argument valid?

Answer:

Your argument is utterly baseless. Your ‘taraaweeh’ is bid’ah. It is not permissible to commence an ibaadat before its time. The validity of Taraaweeh is dependent on the sighting of the Ramadhaan hilaal (crescent moon). Performance of 20 raka’ts in jamaat as your community is doing is a bid’ah. If the moon is sighted, then although your Taraaweeh will be valid, its commencement without having received confirmation of the sighting is bid’ah. People should exercise some Sabr.