Delaying the Prayer until after its time due to an illness or cold weather ―Shaikh al-Islām Ibn Taymiyyah

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If a person does not have water available or he may be harming himself by using it due to an illness he is suffering from, or because it is cold, or due to other reasons―and he is in a state of minor impurity (after passing wind or urinating etc) or he’s in a state of sexual impurity (janābah), then he must instead perform tayammum with clean earth, and that is the soil of the earth―he wipes his face and hands with it and then prays and he does not delay the Prayer till after its time―this is an affair agreed upon by the scholars. (See Majmoo’ Al-Fatāwa of Shaikhul-Islām Ibn Taymiyyah, 3/429)

When water is not available, then a dry purification (tayammum) is performed, which proves the obligation of purification before Prayer.  It is reported that “The Prophet () struck the soil of the earth with the palms of his hands, then blew off the dust, and wiped his face and rubbed his hands.” (Al-Bukhāri, 343) The earth and its soil are physical and spiritual purifiers.

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