Q: The famous circulated Hadith “The first part of Ramadan is a Mercy, the center (part) is a Forgiveness and the last (part) is a salvation from hellfire”, is it authentic?
A: Alhamdulillah. The chain of this Hadith is in fact a weak chain, we cannot attribute it to the Apostle of Allah peace be upon him [pbuh]. The believer should always resort to the authentic narrations and stay away from those that are weak or fabricated. But because it was widely circulated, many people took it for granted to be an authentic Hadith when it is not. There are in fact plenty of Hadith narrations that are authentic referring to the virtues of Ramadan, such as: “Whoever consumes (the nights of) Ramadan (in acts of worship) in true faith and beseeching the reward from Allah, the past sins of his are all forgiven” and “Whoever fasts Ramadan in true faith and beseeching the reward from Allah, the past sins of his are all forgiven”. These authentic narrations and the like clearly indicate the great virtues of Ramadan, and should be sufficient for circulation instead of the weak or fabricated Hadith.
Q: Is it fine for non-Muslims to publicly consume food (and/or water) before the Muslims during (fasting hours) in Ramadan?
A: Alhamdulillah. A non-Muslim has no right to publicly eat or drink before the Muslims if he is living in a Muslim state. The law and regulations states clearly that non-Muslims living who are living amongst the Muslims should not publicly display what constitutes a violation of their beliefs, rites and/or rituals. Likewise, for the Muslim who is excused for not fasting, such as the ill or the traveler, or the woman during her ministration, none of them has the right to publicly display their case.
Q: What is the traveling distance which permits the traveler to break the fasting?
A: Alhamdulillah. When we talk about traveling, we mean the travel in which the person leaves his hometown’s structure with the intention of travel. To regulate or associate travel with a certain number of miles or kilometers has in fact no basis to it other than a scholastic deduction or opinion. It is important to note though, that the “intention” plays a major role. Thus, if a person passed the structures or borders of his hometown or country for the purpose of hunting, he is no traveler, regardless of the distance he drove.
Q: Is it permissible during fasting to use eye-drops or ear-drops?
A: Alhamdulillah. It is permissible for the fasting person to use eye-drops or ear-drops, because they do not go through the throat, unlike the nose drops which may lead the medicine go through the throat and spoil the fasting.
Q: Is it permissible for those whose vocations require them to always be on travel, not to observe fasting?
A: Alhamdulillah. Those whose profession mandate their continuous travel, such as pilots, air crew, seafarers or wayfarers, are not permitted to break the fast unless fasting constitutes a real hardship on them, in such a case they break the fast and make up those days at a later time, and Allah knows best.
Q: A woman had her monthly period minutes prior to sunset, is her fasting spoiled?
A: Alhamdulillah. Yes, in such a case she must break her fasting and make up the missed days after Ramadan, because ministration spoils fasting, and the woman in such a time is not required to fast.
Q: Is it permissible for the woman to taste the food while fasting?
A: Alhamdulillah. Yes, she may do so provided the tasting is done by the tip of the tongue and not to be swallowed. If she’s cooking a meal, she may take a taste by the tip of her tongue and spit it out afterward, and Allah knows best.