My brothers: Allah (subhanahu wa taala) says, “so now associate with them, and seek what Allah Hath ordained for you, and eat and drink, until the white thread of dawn appear to you distinct from its black thread; then complete your fast Till the night appears.” Allah tells us in these noble verses the ways to invalidate the fast as well as the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) in the Sunnah.
There are seven ways to invalidate the fast.
The First: Having relations with your wife. And this is from the biggest and greatest sins, the person’s fast is invalid whether it be obligatory fast or voluntary. If they are in the day of Ramadhan then they have to free a believing slave, if they do not have one, they have to fast two consecutive months, which they cannot miss a day except with a valid excuse. Which would be the days of Eid, or sickness, or traveling. If they miss a day without an excuse, even if it is just one day, they have to restart the two months all over again. This is because they have to be two consecutive months. If they are not able to fast for two months, then they must feed sixty poor people, to every person half a kilo. It is narrated in Saheeh Muslim that a person had relations with his wife during Ramadhan, so he asked the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) about it and the Prophet asked, “Do you have a slave?” he said, “No.” He asked, “Are you able to fast two months?” He replied “No.” “So feed sixty poor people.”
The Second: The release of sperm from kissing, touching, etc… This is from the desires that the fasting person should avoid. As is stated in the Hadeeth Qudsi, “He leaves his food, drink, and desires for My sake.” (Bukhari) As for kissing and touching without ejaculation, then it does not invalidate the fast. As is in the saheehayn on Aisha (radiallaahu `anhu) that the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) used to kiss and embrace his wives while fasting for he had the most control of all of you over his desires.” In Saheeh Muslim it is narrated that the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) was asked by Umr bin Abi Salama, “Should one observing fast kiss (his wife)? The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said to him: Ask her (Ummu Salamah). She informed him that the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam)did that, whereupon he said: Messenger of Allah, Allah pardoned you all your sins, the previous and the later ones. Upon this the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said: By Allah, I am the most God-conscious among you and I fear Him most among you.” But if a person fears that they will not be able to control their desires and release sperm or have intimate relations, then they should use all of their power to avoid this desire. As for ejaculation from a dream or from thinking about something then these do not break the fast, because the dream is something that one cannot control. And as for thinking about something then this is forgiven as the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said, “Allah will not hold responsible those in my ummah who think about something but do not do or say it.” (Agreed upon)
The Third: Food and drink. This can be from either the mouth or the nose. As the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said, “Exaggerate in istinshaq (water in the nose during ablution), except when you are fasting.” (Narrated by the five, graded saheeh by Tirmidhee) As for smelling something, then that does not invalidate the fast because it doesn’t enter the stomach.
The Fourth: There are two things outside the category of food and drink, but are similar.
1). The injection needle of blood, this invalidates the fast.
2). The needle that feeds, for example an IV. Even if it isn’t real food, but this is what is meant by it, or it acts in the place of food. As for the injection that is not food, nor is not meant to be food, then it does not break the fast. Regardless if it is injected in the muscle or nerve. It is not food, so the ruling is not the same as it is for food.
The Fifth: Drawing blood through cupping. As the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said, “The one doing the cupping and the one receiving the cupping both have their fasts invalidated.” (Ahmed, Abu Dawood) This is from the madhab of Imam Ahmed and the majority of Hadeeth scholars. From these we conclude that it is not permissible for the fasting person to donate blood. If there is a necessity then it is allowed for them to donate the blood, they can eat that day, and make it up later. As for minor scrapes, cuts, and the like, these do not count because the amount of blood taken is not the same as in cupping, and it doesn’t affect the body as much.
The Sixth: Food leaving the stomach and escaping from the mouth, or throwing up. The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallaam) said, “Whoever throws up by accident, then they don’t have to make the day up, whoever throws up on purpose then they must make it up.” (Narrated by the five except Nisaae, and graded Saheeh by Al-Hakim) Intentionally throwing up is by putting pressure on the stomach, or sticking something in the throat, or by smelling something foul, or seeing something foul, these will all invalidate the fast. As for throwing up without a reason then this is okay.
The Seventh: The blood of a woman i.e. menstruation. Whenener she sees blood, the fast is invalidated regardless if it is in the beginning of the day or the end of the day. Even if it be before the setting of the sun by a moment. If she feels that blood is going to be released but it doesn’t happen until after sunset, then her fast is valid.
It is not permissible for a person to invalidate their fasts in one of these ways if it is an obligatory fast like Ramadhan or for expiation. Only if a person has a legitimate excuse like traveling, or sickness. These days have to be made up at a later time. If a person is doing a voluntary fast then it is permissible for them to break the fast without a valid excuse.
My brothers: Take great care of the acts of worship. And leave the disobedience and the unlawful acts.