All the Ahadith saying to wipe the neck in Wudu are either Da'if (Weak) or Maudoo' (Fabricated).

So, would wiping the backside of the neck in Wudu' be considered Makrooh as all the Madhahib say except for the Hanafiyah, or would it be considered Bid'ah because the Prophet (May Allah's Peace and blessings be upon Him) never was described doing such in authentic Ahadith? And because it has no strong foundation, would it be considered Bid'ah?

What have the scholars said on this?

  • Okay, It is highly disputed among Hanafiyah themselves. Would be nice to see some answers.
    – Abdullah
    Commented Dec 28, 2012 at 20:25
  • 1
    The core question here, in a more generic form, could be: "Is it makrooh, bid'ah or haram to do an action that has only been prescribed in weak or fabricated Hadiths?" The instance you're describing is an example of such a case.
    – Hosam Aly
    Commented Dec 29, 2012 at 5:52
  • I haven't heard regarding wiping the neck during the Wudu in any authentic source. Commented May 1, 2014 at 8:38

3 Answers 3


When a number of Daeef (weak) hadiths are transmitted from multiple Companions, the hadith may reach the status of Hasan, and Hasan hadiths can be acted upon.

Even when there are a number of daeef hadiths from a few sources, it indicates that it may be an act the Prophet (Saw) did, in which case it would be classed as mubah or mustahabb (allowed, or good actions that could possibly be a source of reward).

Thus, wiping the back of the neck cannot be called bid'ah - maybe mubah or mustahabb at best, and at worst, makrooh, but not bid'ah, because there is some sort of hadith sources behind it, even if those sources are weak.

  • what does this mean? When a number of Daeef hadiths are transmitted from multiple Companions, the hadith may reach the status of Hasan?? Commented Mar 18, 2015 at 13:25
  • I have learnt that Daeef hadiths can only strengthen what has been transmitted through an acceptable chain, and do not raise the status of each other to become acceptable. How do you support your claim? Commented May 22, 2015 at 3:25

As far as I searched, I did not find any authentic matter concerning this issue. Therefore, logically and also as a rule it could be termed Bid’ah. As a result we cannot term it Makruh (Makruh means it is better not to do, albeit is not haram), then it could be named Haram (forbidden), Since as far as I know, all sects of Islam believe that Bidah is considered as a Haram practice. Let’s see what precisely Bid’ah is.

Bid’ah or (البدعه) literally is related to the innovation and actually, something new, and in Islamic terms, means to relate something to religion which it has in no way asserted and likewise in no way complies with any of its guidelines and sayings.

In accordance with this description, many of the Muslims’ practices aren’t considered bid’ah, given that they don’t relate what they are doing to religion, or even what those Muslims do doesn’t go under one of the general categories which is related to the religion.

Eventually wiping the neck in wudu could be termed Bid’ah. Of course you ought to pay attention that in a case you cannot term it Bid’ah(or even Makruh), and that is when you do it solely with the intention of cleaning. Actually you must be aware that is it not considered as an Islamic act and solely you do it as you like do it.




There are 2 parts to the neck - رقبة / قفی which is the back of the neck, and the حلقوم which is the front.

Wiping the front is bid'ah - the Prophet (Saw) never did this

Wiping the back WAS done by the Prophet (Saw), and the regularity is what is disputed.

Those ulema who say the Prophet (Saw) did it reguarly, call it Sunnah (an act worthy of reward.).

Those ulema who say the Prophet (Saw) did it occasionally, call it mustahabb or adab. (a good thing to do)

Those ulema who say it is not established from strong hadiths call it mubah (allowed).

NOBODY i know of calls wiping the back of the neck a bidah.

Al kasani - the author of the Hanafi fiqh book Badaius sanaai, (died 587hijri) says:

الْفَرْقُ بَيْنَ السُّنَّةِ، وَالْأَدَبِ أَنَّ السُّنَّةَ مَا، وَاظَبَ عَلَيْهِ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ - صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ - وَلَمْ يَتْرُكْهُ إلَّا مَرَّةً، أَوْ مَرَّتَيْنِ لِمَعْنًى مِنْ الْمَعَانِي،، وَالْأَدَبُ مَا فَعَلَهُ مَرَّةً، أَوْ مَرَّتَيْنِ، وَلَمْ يُوَاظِبْ عَلَيْهِ

the difference between a sunnah and an adab (which includes mustahabb and mubah) is that the actions the Prophet (Saw) did regualrly, and left out only once or twice due to a particular reason, are called SUNNAH. As for an ADAB, this is what the Prophet (Saw) did maybe once or twice, and didnt keep on regularly doing it.

As for all the hadiths being weak, this is wrong. Imam Muslim narrates a hadith about wiping the back of the neck:

وَحَدَّثَنِي إِسْحَاقُ بْنُ مُوسَى الأَنْصَارِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا مَعْنٌ، حَدَّثَنَا مَالِكُ بْنُ أَنَسٍ، عَنْ عَمْرِو بْنِ يَحْيَى، بِهَذَا الإِسْنَادِ وَقَالَ مَضْمَضَ وَاسْتَنْثَرَ ثَلاَثًا ‏.‏ وَلَمْ يَقُلْ مِنْ كَفٍّ وَاحِدَةٍ ‏.‏ وَزَادَ بَعْدَ قَوْلِهِ فَأَقْبَلَ بِهِمَا وَأَدْبَرَ بَدَأَ بِمُقَدَّمِ رَأْسِهِ ثُمَّ ذَهَبَ بِهِمَا إِلَى قَفَاهُ ثُمَّ رَدَّهُمَا حَتَّى رَجَعَ إِلَى الْمَكَانِ الَّذِي بَدَأَ مِنْهُ وَغَسَلَ رِجْلَيْهِ ‏.‏ Malik b. Anas narrated it from 'Amr b. Yahya with the same chain of transmitters, transmitters and mentioned the rinsing (of mouth) and snuffing (of water into the nostrils) three times, but he did not mention" from one palm," and made this addition: He moved them (his hands) for wiping to the front of his head and then the nape of his neck, then bringing them back till he reached the place from which he had begun, after which he washed his feet.

it is also mentioned in Tirmidhi.

حَدَّثَنَا إِسْحَاقُ بْنُ مُوسَى الأَنْصَارِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا مَعْنُ بْنُ عِيسَى الْقَزَّازُ، حَدَّثَنَا مَالِكُ بْنُ أَنَسٍ، عَنْ عَمْرِو بْنِ يَحْيَى، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ زَيْدٍ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ رَأْسَهُ بِيَدَيْهِ فَأَقْبَلَ بِهِمَا وَأَدْبَرَ بَدَأَ بِمُقَدَّمِ رَأْسِهِ ثُمَّ ذَهَبَ بِهِمَا إِلَى قَفَاهُ ثُمَّ رَدَّهُمَا حَتَّى رَجَعَ إِلَى الْمَكَانِ الَّذِي بَدَأَ مِنْهُ ثُمَّ غَسَلَ رِجْلَيْهِ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى وَفِي الْبَابِ عَنْ مُعَاوِيَةَ وَالْمِقْدَامِ بْنِ مَعْدِيكَرِبَ وَعَائِشَةَ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى حَدِيثُ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ زَيْدٍ أَصَحُّ شَيْءٍ فِي هَذَا الْبَابِ وَأَحْسَنُ وَبِهِ يَقُولُ الشَّافِعِيُّ وَأَحْمَدُ وَإِسْحَاقُ ‏.‏

Abdullah bin Zaid narrated that: "Allah's Messenger wiped over his head with his hands, going over the front with them and the rear. He began with the front of his head until they went to the nape of his neck. Then he brought them back again to the place where he began. Then he washed his feet." Abu Isa (Imam Tirmdhi) said: there are hadiths like this narrated from muawaiya, miqdaam, and aisha (ra). This hadith from Abdullah ibn Zayd is the most authentic on this topic, and Imam Shafi, Ahmed and Ishaq (ibn Rahwayh) are all of the opinion that the neck should be wiped in Wudhu.

  • One can argue that the above mentioned hadiths do not relate anything about wiping of the neck, but show only the method of wiping one's head, beginning from the forehead to the nape of the neck and reverse, which clearly does not include wiping the neck separately or wiping on it in a horizontal fashion, as is thought to be the method of its doing. Commented May 22, 2015 at 4:10

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