My question is about remnants of semen stain that can be clearly seen even after thoroughly washing the garment. There are many times when the semen stains are still visible after washing the garment thoroughly. Are these kinds of garment pure or impure and is it permissible to offer Salah or perform religious duties while wearing such garments?
Some common mistakes on the topic of taharah/najasah
Many people seem to exaggerate and misinterpret on the topic of purification of najasah, this often comes from a false understanding of the term, najasah in Islam is not dirth or uncleanness by default. Najasah is fixed to specific items among them are alcohol, excrement, urine etc. some of which are quoted in What items are considered najis in fiqh?.
Another misunderstanding is the transfer (or contamination) of najasah for which there's a rule of thomb for the case of dried najasah: How to purify a carpet if I don't remember were the impurity is?
What is necessarily to achieve the task of taharah and get things (ritually) pure
Please note taharah or purification means doing all necessary efforts to remove najasah (it's color, odor and taste from the najis object) with water, once you have done this it is fine. Neither our prophet () nor his shabah had a washing machine, so once your clothes are washed this way this requirement is fulfilled. The sahabah and the prophet () only used water at least once for this purpose, why should we need multiple washings?
Further note that the impurity (najasah) of semen has no scholarly consensus. Consequently there's a difference in whether and how one should remove semen based on the state, is it "dry" -> "scratch out" or still "liquid" -> "wash (out)" are the most recommended ways.
Nevertheless as water is regard as pure purifier and the main tool to achieve taharah once washed an object is regarded as pure.
Stains are not neceassirly an evidence for a remaining najasah
Further little of najasah is equal to no najasah and this would apply to traces or staines of a former najasah too (See for example is pus and blood najis)
As you see if you washed some garments with water or a washing machine, but found some stains of the impurity on them you have two options:
- Either try to remove these stains by another (final) attempt to remove the impurity (more safe option, but do not let it lead to 3rd, 4th etc. attempt) or
- accept that this is no more an impurity on them as you did your best to remove the impurity (this is the option of choice if you don't count among the many people who have waswasa issues posting on our site, as if you did your best, you've done your duty and can reagrd the impurity as removed).
And note that stains don't necessarily must be related to an impurity, they could have other origins (quality or colour change of the garment etc.).
Conditions for validity of the prayer from the taharah perspective
In order to pray you ensure that you are in a tahir state: depending on the najasah you must either perform wudu' or ghusl prior to praying.
Further you must ensure that you, what you wear and the piece of earth on which you are praying has no visible, snifflable or tastable impurity on it: This means your body (by ghusl/wudu'), your clothes (being washed) and the piece of earth or carpet you pray on must be clean from any najasah.
If this is satisfied the tahrah conditions for a valid prayer are fulfilled.
Also somewhat relevant: