The Official Website of the Office of His Eminence Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Husseini Al-Sistani

Question & Answer » Fasting - Masturbation

1 Question: I masturbated in Ramadhan and I did not know that masturbation is haram. How should I go about my previous fasts?
Answer: If you knew in the beginning that masturbation is haram and that it invalidates fasting, you should observe qadha and give kaffara. The kaffara is to either feed sixty poor and needy Shia people or fast for sixty days (31 days in a row). If you did not know the hukm (ruling) and masturbated due to inculpable (innocent) ignorance, your fast is in order and qadha is not necessary.
2 Question: Does masturbating during daytime of Ramadhan invalidate the fast, regardless of whether or not it leads to ejaculation? What is the penalty that should be incurred by one who does so? What is the ruling for a woman who engages in masturbation during daytime of Ramadhan, irrespective of whether or not it leads to discharge?
Answer: If a person masturbates with the intention of ejaculating and actually ejaculates, his fast is rendered invalid and he must make it up by way of qadha as well as pay the penalty (kaffara) which is fasting for two successive months or feeding sixty poor people. If he masturbates with the intention of ejaculating but does not ejaculate, he must complete the fast with the intention of pleasing the Almighty and then do it qadha.
If he masturbates without the intention of ejaculating and he does not normally ejaculate, knowing that discharge is probable and it actually happens —he has to do qadha without the penalty. However, if such a person was confident that no discharge would take place and it actually happens — no qadha is required. In all these cases, there is no difference between a man and a woman.
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