Fasting has three levels:
- General fasting
- Specific fasting
- Specified specific fasting
General fasting - is by preventing the stomach and the private parts from attaining their desires.
Specific fasting - is preventing the eyes, the tongue, the hands, the feet, the ears as well as the rest of the limbs from sinning.
Specified, specific fasting - is the fasting of the heart from lowly concerns and thoughts that distance one from Allah the Elevated, and preventing the heart from anything other than Allah in totality. This type of fasting has its own explanation which will be described elsewhere.
Amongst the mannerisms of specific fasting;
Lowering the gaze, preserving the tongue from offensive, impermissible or disliked speech, or speech that is of no benefit, and likewise protecting the rest of the limbs.
In the Hadeeth that was collected by al-Bukharee, that the Prophet – صلى الله عليه وسلم - said:
"Whoever does not forsake vain speech and acting according to it, then Allah has no need for him to forsake his food and drink."
Also from the etiquette [of fasting]; is that one does not fill his stomach at night, rather one should eat only what is sufficient, for indeed the child of Adam has not filled a vessel that is worse than his stomach. When a person feels full in the beginning of the night, he would not benefit himself for the rest of the night, likewise when one is full at the time of Sahoor, he would not be able to benefit himself until right before Dhuhr. This is because eating excessively induces laziness and fatigue. Furthermore, the objective of fasting is squandered by excessively eating, because what is intended is for the person to experience hunger and to forsake desire.