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Shaikh Uthaimeen, may Allaah have mercy on him, was asked about the statement of some scholars that the significance of a person’s saying, “[I ask You for] Your Forgiveness [غُفْرَانَكَ],” upon leaving the toilet is due to the fact that since he had been prevented from remembering Allaah at that time it is befitting for him to seek Allaah’s Forgiveness [for that upon leaving], is that correct?
He replied, “That is debatable, because the person [in question] has only been prevented from remembering Allaah due to an order from Allaah, and if it is due to Allaah’s order then he has not exposed himself to punishment, in fact [by doing so] he has put himself forward for a reward, that is why a menstruating woman does not pray or fast: when she then becomes clean is it a part of the Sunnah for her to seek Allaah’s forgiveness for not having prayed and fasted during her menstrual days? Absolutely not, no-one has ever said that.
Based upon this, it becomes clear that the significance [of saying, “[I ask You for] Your Forgiveness [غُفْرَانَكَ],” upon leaving the toilet] is that when a person has unburdened himself from something harmful to the body he calls to mind the harm of sinning, and so asks Allaah to lighten the harm done by sinning just as He has favoured him by lightening the harm to the body, and this is a meaning which is appropriate in terms of remembering a certain thing through another.”

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