Intent of Traveling the Shar‘ī Distance and Staying for Ten Days
Q 653: I work in a place which is less than the shar‘ī distance from the nearby city. Since none of the two places is my watan, I make the intent to stay ten days in my place of work in order to perform full prayer and fast there. When I decide to stay in my place of work for ten days, I do not intend to leave for the neighboring city during those ten days or afterwards. What is the shar‘ī rule in the following situations:
i. If I leave for the nearby city in an emergency or for a business before the end of the ten days, and stop there for about two hours before returning to my place of work?
ii. If I leave for the city after the end of the ten days, visiting one of its districts without passing the shar‘ī distance, and stay there for a night before returning to my residence?
iii. If I leave for the city after ten complete days, intending to visit a certain district, but I change my mind after reaching it and decide to go to another point which is at more than the shar‘ī distance from my city of residence?
A: First and second: If one does not have a primary intention to leave the place, after the rule of full prayer is established — though it be by performing at least a single four-rak‘ah prayer — leaving it for a place at less than the shar‘ī distance, in one or more days, does not harm the intention of staying for ten days, whether he leaves it before or after completing the ten days. Therefore, he should perform full prayers and fast until he starts a new journey.
Third: If one intends to stay in a district within a certain city, his travel to another places within the same city will not harm his intention of staying in that city or its rule even though the distance between the district and those places equals the shar‘ī distance. But if he intends to reside in a certain city and then he leaves for another city located at a distance more than the shar‘ī one, this will destroy the intent of residence in the first city and it will be necessary to renew this intention after returning to it again.
Q 654: After leaving his watan, a traveler passes by a place where he can hear the adhān of his watan or see the walls of its houses, will it affect the distance covered?
A: This does not harm the distance covered as long as he does not pass through his watan itself and his journey is not discontinued by it. But the traveler’s rule does not apply to him while he is at this very place.
Q 655: The place where I live presently is not my original watan, and its distance from my original watan exceeds the shar‘ī limit. I did not adopt this place of my work as watan, and I may stay there only for some years. Sometimes I leave it two or three days a month to make a job-related trip. Is it obligatory for me to make the intent to stay for ten days whenever I return to the city of my residence after traveling more than the shar‘ī distance? If so, what is the distance I can cover on the city’s outskirts?
A: Whenever you leave your city of residence and travel the shar‘ī distance, on returning again you should make the intent to stay for ten days. If your intent to stay for ten days is achieved in a valid manner and the rule of full prayer — even by performing at least a single four-rak‘ah prayer — is established, leaving the place of residency for a point within the shar‘ī distance will not harm the rule of staying for ten days. Similarly, the intent to visit the city’s orchards and farms during the ten days does not harm the intention of Iqāmah.
Q 656: A person lives four kilometers far from his watan for several years, visiting home weekly. What is the rule of his prayer if he travels a distance of 25 km. from his watan and 22 km. from a place in which he studied for several years?
A: If he leaves his own watan for the said destination, his prayer should be shortened.
Q 657: A traveler intends to travel to a place at three shar‘ī farsakhs, but his intention, at the beginning, is to travel a shar‘ī farsakh along a side road to accomplish some business and then return to the main road to continue his journey. What rule applies to the prayers and fasting of this traveler?
A: The traveler’s rule does not apply to him. It is not sufficient, in order to complete the shar‘ī distance, to add what he covered [along the side road] from the time he departed the main road to the time he returned to it.
Q 658: According to the Imam one should pray shortened and break the fast when travels a distance of eight shar‘ī farsakhs. If the going distance is less than four shar‘ī farsakhs but for returning one is forced to cover a distance of six shar‘ī farsakhs (due to unavailability of a car or difficulties of the road), should one shorten the prayer and break the fast?
A: If the going distance is less than four farsakhs and the return way alone is not equal to the shar‘ī distance, he should say full prayer and fast.
Q 659: A person travels from the place where he lives to another place within the shar‘ī distance and several times a week goes from the second place to other places so that the total distance exceeds eight shar‘ī farsakhs, what is his duty?
A: If he does not intend to travel the shar‘ī distance when leaving his home, and the distance between his first destination and the subsequent ones is not equal to the shar‘ī distance, the traveler’s rule would not apply to him.
Q 660: If one leaves his town heading towards a certain place, and on getting there goes around here and there, would his going around be added to the distance which he has traveled from his home?
A: Going about within the place of destination is not counted as part of the distance covered.
Q 661: When one intends to be in a place for ten days, is it permissible to have in mind to leave it for another place of less than shar‘ī distance?
A: If it does not contradict the intention of staying there for ten days — e.g., one leaves it once or several times only a few hours, during the day or night, so that the whole period does not exceed six-seven hours — the intention of leaving does not harm the intention of staying for ten days.
Q 662: One who travels to and fro between his place of residence and work — they are far from each other by more than 24 km — must perform prayers in full. Will his prayers remain full-length if he leaves the city of work and travels less than the shar‘ī distance, whether to another city or not, and then returns to his place of work before or after noontime?
A: The rule of one’s prayers and fasting in the place of work does not change simply on leaving it for a place within the shar‘ī distance, even for a purpose not related to the daily work, regardless of whether one returns to the place of work before or after the noon.
Q 663: I am from Esfahan and for some time I have been working at a university in the satellite town of Shahinshahr. The distance between Esfahan and Shahinshahr is less than the shar‘ī distance (about 20 km) but the distance to the university, which is located on the city’s outskirts, is more than the shar‘ī distance (about 25 km). Taking into account that the university is located in Shahinshahr and my real destination is the university, though I go through the middle of the city, am I considered a traveler?
A: If the distance between the two cities is less than four shar‘ī farsakhs, the traveler’s rule does not apply.
Q 664: I travel every week to the city of Qom on a visit to Holy Ma‘sumah’s (a.) shrine and also in order to perform the rites of the Jamkaran Masjid. Should I offer full prayers or do shortened prayers during these journeys?
A: Your rule during such a journey is similar to that of other travelers and you shorten the prayer.
Q 665: I was born in Kashmar but lived in Tehran from 1966 to 1990. Three years ago, I came with my family to Bandar ‘Abbas on an official job, and within a year I will return to my watan, Tehran. During the period that I am at the port, I might have to go any time to the nearby towns on an assignment and stay there for a while, without being able to predict how long the official assignment will take.
Please, firstly clarify the rule which applies to me concerning prayers and fasting.
Secondly, taking into consideration that most of the times, or in certain months of the year, I leave on assignments lasting several days, am I considered a frequent traveler?
Thirdly, what is the shar‘ī rule concerning the prayers and fasting of my wife who is a housewife born in Tehran and who came to the port of ‘Abbas to live here with me?
A: The rule of your prayers and fasting in your current place of work, which is not your watan, is that of the prayers and fasting of a traveler, namely, shortened prayers and invalidity of fasting unless you make the intention to stay there for ten days or if you travel for work at least once every ten days. As for your wife who accompanies you in your place of work, if she makes the intention to stay there for ten days, she will have to say full prayers and fast; otherwise she shortens the prayers and cannot fast there.
Q 666: Someone makes the intention to stay for ten days, either because he knows that he would stay for ten days or decides to do so. Then, after the rule of full prayer applies to him through performing a four-rak‘ah prayer, he decides to travel. May he do so, if this travel is not a necessary one?
A: There is no problem in his traveling, even though it is not necessary.
Q 667: Someone travels to visit the shrine of Imam Ridā (a.). Despite knowing that he will stay there for less than ten days, he makes intention to stay for ten days in order to perform his prayer in full. What rule applies to him?
A: If he knows that he will not stay for ten days, it does not make sense to make an intention to stay for ten days, this intention would be of no effect, and he should shorten the prayers there.
Q 668: Some employees travel less than the shar‘ī distance to reach their work place. They never stay there for ten days. Should they shorten their prayers?
A: If the distance between their watan and their place of work is less than the shar‘ī distance, even after considering the to and fro journey, the rules of a traveler do not apply to them. As for one whose place of work is at a shar‘ī distance from his watan and he travels between them at least once every ten days, it will be obligatory for him to pray the full prayer from the third trip on. Later, if he stays ten days in his watan or his place of work, he should offer the shortened prayer during [only] the next trip.
Q 669: Someone travels to a place without knowing whether they are going to stay there for ten days or less, how should they say the prayers?
A: They should shorten their prayers for thirty days then pray in full even if they want to leave on the same day.
Q 670: What rule applies to the prayer and fasting of someone who is propagating Islam in two locations and intends to stay in that area for ten days?
A: If they are considered as two locations according to the common view, it will not be correct for him to make the intention of staying for ten days in both of them, or in one of them as long as he intends to go back and forth between the two during the ten days.
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