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The Manners of Yawning in Islam

March 15, 2011

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
When one feels the need to yawn, he should try to suppress it, for it is from the Shaitaan (the Devil). Abu Hurairah (رضي الله عنه) that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said:

… اما التثاؤب فانما هو من الشيطان …

… as for yawning, then it is from the Shaytaan only …“[al-Bukharee 2626]
An-Nawawee said, “Yawning usually occurs when the body is heavy, full, relaxed, and inclined towards laziness. It is ascribed to the Shaitaan because he is the one who invites people to follow lusts. [Another] intended meaning here is a warning against doing that act which results in yawning: eating too much and too frequently.”
As for suppressing a yawn, doing so is recommended, Abu Hurairah (رضي الله عنه) reported that the Messenger of Allah (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said,

التثاؤب من الشيطان فإذا تثاءب أحدكم فليرده ما استطاع ، فإن أحدكم إذا تثاءب ضحك الشيطان

“Yawning is from the Shaitaan (the Devil), so if one of you yawns, then let him hold it back as much as he can; for indeed, when one of you says, “Haa (in the act of yawning), the Shaitaan laughs.”

Ahmad related it with this working: “Then let him hold it back as much as he can, and let him not say, “Ahh Ahh,’ for indeed,k when one of you opens his mouth, the Shaitaan laughs at him [laughs] because of him.” [Related by Bukhaaree(3289), Muslim (2994), Ahmad (9246), At-Tirmidhee (370), and Abu Dawood (5028)]
Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudree (رضي الله عنه) reported that the Messenger of Allah (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said,

إذا تثاءب أحدكم فليمسك بيده على فيه. فإن الشيطان يدخل

“When one of you yawns, then let him hold his hand over his mouth, for indeed, the Shaitaan [otherwise] enters.”

Ahmad related the Hadeeth thus: “When one of you yawns during prayer, then let him place his hands over his mouth, for verily, the Shaitaan enters with a yawn.” [Related by Muslim(2995), Ahmad (10930), Abu Daawood (5026), and Ad-Daarimee (1382)]
One can suppress a yawn by controlling one’s mouth, making an effort not to allow it to open; by putting pressure on one’s lip with one’s teeth; by placing one’s hand or garment over one’s mouth; or by doing something similar to achieve the same effect.

Related Issue:Some people report to seeking refuge from the Shaitaan (the Devil) when they yawn; this practice is wrong from two angles: first, a person who does so has innovated by introducing the saying of an invocation which the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) did not legislate it for that occasion). Second, he forsakes a Sunnah practice that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) commanded every Muslim to perform upon yawning; that practice is to suppress the yawn as much as one can, with one’s garment or hand, or through the use of any other means.

Source: The Book of Manners P. 421-423

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13 Comments
  1. Umm Salaahuddin permalink

    Some people say Allahu Akbar when yawning, is this Bid3aah? If not please can I have evidence for this in shaa Allah. JazakAllaahu Kheyran.

    • The hadeeth is clear regarding this matter, there is no mentioning of anything no Allahu akbar, no Aoodubillah. If you read the last part of this post, you will see the related topic.
      The Messenger of Allah(صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said,

      التثاؤب من الشيطان فإذا تثاءب أحدكم فليرده ما استطاع ، فإن أحدكم إذا تثاءب ضحك الشيطان
      “Yawning is from the Shaitaan (the Devil), so if one of you yawns, then let him hold it back as much as he can; for indeed, when one of you says, “Haa (in the act of yawning), the Shaitaan laughs.”

  2. Umm Salaahuddin permalink

    JazakAllah.

    • Neha Javed permalink

      i found that some say “yar hamu kalallahu”? is that correct?
      Jazzakallah

      • I don’t think so. The ruling is that we should suppress the yawn or put our hand over the mouth and Allah knows best.

  3. ramin permalink

    Jazakallah khai ya akhi

  4. Fulani Filot permalink

    I would also like to know if it is true that when one wishes to suppress a yawn using the right hand that the palm of that hand should cover the mouth. And that if the left hand is being used, the back of it should be used to cover the mouth.
    Is this true (part if the Sunnah), or did I get it wrong somehow/somewhere?

  5. adel permalink

    When we yawn we should say ” aoudou billeh mena chaitan arrajim “

    • Aslmaualikum,
      The sunnah is to say nothing when you are yawning. Instead, you should either hold you mouth tight or put you hands or a piece of cloth over your mouth to suppress it and Allah knows best.

      barakAllahu feekum,
      Abu Musa

  6. Rashida Anwar permalink

    I have known sice childhood to suppress a yawn by keeping our hand over our mouth and also to say”astaghfirullah”!
    Is this wrong.

  7. Baisanah N. Batugan permalink

    Assalamu alaycum.. If I cannot resist to yawn, then how do I cover my mouth when I yawn when standing, in rukoo, & in sujood during salah. Shukran.

  8. I would also like to know if it is true that when one wishes to suppress a yawn using the right hand that the palm of that hand should cover the mouth. And that if the left hand is being used, the back of it should be used to cover the mouth.
    Is this true (part if the Sunnah), or did I get it wrong somehow/somewhere?
    Jazakallahu khairan.

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