I was looking at the section on discharge, and it said that any vaginal discharge is both impure and breaks wudu. This makes me wonder: I have some sort of clear or white discharge nearly every single day outside my period. I have discussed this with other women, and nearly every woman I have asked has said that she has discharge nearly all of the time. It seems that the abnormal thing is to not have discharge. But if the ruling is that discharge breaks wudu, doesn’t it make it extremely difficult for the majority of women in the world to have to repeat their wudu every time they have discharge (several times throughout the day), or before every salah? And if it impure, wouldn’t it similarly be a great hardship on them? If discharge is the normal and healthy state, doesn’t this ruling imply that being female and healthy and normal is a state of abnormality? Please help me understand.
In the name of Allah, the Inspirer of truth
When sacred rulings (Shari’a) classify something as impure, it is not equated with being abnormal. There are many bodily functions people experience in varying degrees, based on age, body type, family history, general health and hormones, that are ruled as impure. For example, gas and urine droplets are both impure and they occur frequently for some individuals. The Shar’ia recognises these situations can pose hardship and hence, the allowance for the excused person (ma’dhur).
In classical books of Fiqh, vaginal discharge was not considered abnormal; rather it was recognised as a normal bodily function. However, the discussion in these texts centered on the question of purity. It is important not to conflate a ruling of impurity with that of abnormality.
There is a difference of opinion in the Hanafi school on the ruling of clear/white vaginal discharge. According to Imam Abu Yusuf and Imam Muhammad, vaginal discharge is considered impure (najis) and invalidates ablution (wudu). However, according to others, it will not invalidate wudu.
For now, we have adopted the more cautious approach and consider it to nullify wudu. However, as this is an area of concern for many women, we plan to further research and study the issue.
Women who have chronic discharge may wish to use an interlabial pad or kursuf to block the flow in order to maintain purity during prayer. Please refer to the article on ‘Using a Kursuf’ for more detail.
And Allah knows best.