General Guidelines for i’tikāf
- I’tikāf is to stay in seclusion, worshipping Allah away from worldly affairs.
- It is a very virtuous action which brings one closer to Allah and was a regular habit of the prophet (ﷺ).
- There are different types of i’tikāf, the recommended being the Sunnah i’tikāf in the last ten nights of Ramadān.
- This is an emphatically joined Sunnah upon the Muslim community.
- The Sunnah i’tikāf is an ideal opportunity to seek out the Night of Power & Decree (Laylatul Qadr) the reward of which is equivalent to a thousand months.
Times of i’tikāf
- A nafl i’tikāf can be done for any period of time, but it should be at least a full complete day starting before sunset and ending after sunset of the following day.
- The Sunnah i’tikāf starts before sunset of the twentieth night and ends after sunset when the declaration of the sighting of the moon for Eid is made. (The night begins before the day).
- As it is an act of worship to Allah, it is necessary that the person undertaking it should be a Muslim.
- It can only be performed by those who are at the age of discernment and is therefore not applicable for children.
- It can only be completed in a Mosque in which the five daily prayers as well as the communal Jumu’ah prayer is performed.
- The one undertaking i’tikāf is required to make an intention, as is required from acts of worship, before they are performed.
- It is also necessary that the person undertaking i’tikāf be in a state of ritual purity while performing it.
- I’tikāf is invalidated by any sexual relations or acts. Accidental emissions do not nullify it but purity must be attained immediately.
- Leaving the Mosque area invalidates the i’tikāf unless it is for a necessity such as answering the call of nature or performing an obligatory bath. This means remaining in the Mosque prayer area and not venturing into outer areas such as the corridors or courtyard.
- Apostasy also invalidates i’tikāf.
- When in i’tikāf one should not speak anything except good.
- One should recite the Qur’ān. It is recommended to recite it in a low voice, but one that does not disturb others.
- Making Dhikr (Rememberance of Allah). The Dhikr that is best is to say: ‘Subhān Allah’ (Allah be exalted), ‘Al-hamdu Lillāh’ (All Praise is for Allah), ‘Allāhu akbar’ (Allah is the Greatest), and ‘Lā ilāha ill-Allāh’ (There is no deity worthy of worship except Allah).
- One should perform as many optional prayers as one can.
- One should engage in learning by memorising the Qur’ān, du’ās, or learning about aspects of the religion of Islam.
- It is permitted for visitors to visit or to bring food, but it is preferred for women not to enter the i’tikāf quarters.
- Visitors should be brief and not disturb others.
Terms & Conditions for i’tikāf at Islamic Centre Edgware
Islamic Centre Edgware (ICE) can only offer I’tikāf in the last ten nights of Ramadan
- Application forms will be available online from the Mosque Office from 10th Ramadan.
- Completed applications must be returned by 15th Ramadan. Incomplete or illegible forms will not be accepted.
- Applicants wishing to perform nawāfil i’tikāf (optional i’tikāf on any night) must also apply through the normal procedure and will only be accepted if places are still available after the full ten day i’tikāf spaces have been allocated.
- Applicants must be over 16 on the date of application.
- Applications have to be made in person with necessary proofs of photographic ID and address.
- In the event of oversubscription, there will be a random draw to allocate places.
- The ICE Management reserves the right to reject any application.
- There are no costs to pay during the i’tikāf.
- There are no car parking arrangements. Worshippers must either use public transport or arrange to be dropped off and picked up.
- Sleeping arrangements are only in the designated area on the top floor of the Centre.
- You need to bring your own sleeping bags, pillows and blankets, as these will not be provided.
- No heaters or cookers are permitted due to health & safety reasons.
- All bedding must be folded and any personal belongings packed and stored before prayer times, or as per the instructions of our staff.
- Please note that the food served will be dependent upon whatever is donated. We are not able to offer any specific food. Those with allergies or specific dietary requirements are requested to make their own arrangements.
- Food is only to be consumed in designated areas of kitchen and common room.
- Those in i’tikāf are expected to tidy up after meals and not be wasteful.
- Smoking is strictly prohibited on any part of the premises.
- ICE can not provide any additional security and so you are requested not to bring any valuables, including laptops, mobile phones, credit cards and large sums of money.
- You are responsible for your belongings at all times and ICE does not take any responsibility for items that may be lost or stolen.
- Mobile phones will only be allowed for emergency use but must be off or on silent mode throughout the duration of i’tikāf.
- The Centre has bathing facilities. Those in i’tikāf should bring their own toiletries.
- The Mosque area is determined as the Main Prayer Hall and the Mezzanine Floor only.
- The decision of the ICE Management is final in all disputes.