Moon Sighting

All of the Moon Sighting News and Resources You Need

Home Introduction Calendars Slideshow Eid al-Adha Moonsighting FAQ Hilal Pictures Articles Why Confusion Updates Volunteers Links Archive

Witnesses

 

 

Home
Up

Slideshow

 

Get all of your town's daily sun & moon information:

 

Home
Introduction
Calendars
Slideshow
Eid al-Adha
Moonsighting FAQ
Hilal Pictures
Articles
Why Confusion
Updates
Volunteers
Links
Archive


Why do we Need a Large Number of Witnesses from a Town?

In old days, Muslim Qadis from Morocco to Yemen and Central Asia and Afghanistan to Bangladesh had to announce "official" dates. They determined the 'reasonable' number of witnesses to establish the beginning of Ramadan and for Eidain dates. Please keep in mind that the number of witnesses was for each town or city, as the means of communications were not available to find out what was going on a few miles away.

  1. Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Malik and Imam Ahmad required a large number of witnesses (for a town, not a whole continent) when the sky was clear. (Bidayatul-Mujtahid v.1, Hidayah, Radd al-Muhtar, etc.)

  2. Imam Shafi’ accepted two witness for Ramadan and Eidain

  3. Hadrat Ali

  4. Imam Abu Yusuf required 50+ in Baghdad (He was the Qadi).

  5. Imam Abu Yusuf and Imam Muhammad required a group from each mosque in town. (Such a large number that could not be discredit)

  6. Imam Khalf b. Ayyub asked for a minimum of 150, later raising the number to five hundred in Balkh. (Bahr Al-Raiq)

Hadrat Umar (R) as the Khalifa did not accept the claim of a sighting by someone if the moon was not visible to others, including him, from the same spot.

Imam Shafi'i restricts Matl'a to the distance of travel for making "Qasr". Others extend it to 400 miles, the distance between Medina and Damascus (Syria). Ibn Abbas (R) did not accept Kuraib's sighting report in Syria 30 days ago as the moon was NOT SEEN in Medina on 29th evening. Ikrama (a Tabi'i) did not accept sighting in "Astara", some 20 miles away from Medina as valid for Medina (Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah).

Witnesses should be extremely sure to claim that they did really see a crescent moon and not a cloud, or a jet trail on the lower horizon.