Taharah means purity; cleanliness. Keeping oneself in the state of Taharah is essential for both men and women. When a Muslim is not clean and unable to perform daily religious obligations, he/she is in the state of nijasa (impure; unclean). It is obligatory for Muslims to become clean as soon as possible.
Types of taharah in islam:
For example, an impure state is ihtilam (when a male ejaculates semen, either in the state of dream or after sexual intercourse). Women become impure after sexual intercourse or haiz (menstruation) or nifas (vaginal bleeding after giving birth). In these situations, ghusl becomes obligatory, to acquire taharah. The proper procedure of ghusl must be learnt by Muslims to acquire taharah.
What is meant by Istihaza?
If any female continues to bleed (in the state of nifas, after giving birth) for over 40 days, then she is no longer in the state of nifas -after ghusl- she is in Istihaza. In Istihaza, a female is not considered impure and ghusl does not become obligatory upon her; although utmost care is required for cleanliness. The proper procedure of ghusl must be learnt by Muslims to acquire taharah.
What is meant by Istinja?
Istinja becomes obligatory upon urinating and/or excreting. Istinja is to wash with water the private parts thoroughly. Without proper Istinja, one cannot be clean and is not permitted to make the required wudhu before performing salah or for any other reason where wudhu is necessary. Thus, do not be careless about istinja and learn how to do wudhu properly for taharah.
What is Wudu and why is it done?
Wudhu (ablution) is a very common practice among Muslims.
Wudhu is to wash ones hands, face and feet as prescribed in sharia to perform the salah. Without doing wudhu properly, performing the salah is prohibited.
What is the meaning of tayammum?
Although it is uncommon these days, especially in the West, to not find water for ghusl or wudhu, Islam permits Muslims to do tayammum, when there is no access to water. Because fulfilling one’s religious obligations is a priority, Islam allows tayammum for taharah.
Tayammum is to clean oneself with the use of clean soil, sand, limestone, brick, coal, clay or stone or anything of similar nature. Tayammum is to touch lightly with both hands such earthly soil and rub on face and hands (arms). Tayammum suffices for both ghusl and wudhu.
A junub is an unclean or impure male or female who is not permitted to perform any religious practice, especially the salah, until they acquire tahara through ghusl. Muslims must come into the state of taharah from the state of junub, as soon as possible.