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Why do I find it Difficult to Pray..?

Why do I find it Difficult to Pray..?

The First thing to Ask
After Death is As-Salat (Prayers)

Abdul-Salam Abdul-Hameed

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The First thing to Ask after Death
Is As-Salat (Prayers)

:عن أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ رضي الله عنه قَالَ : سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُولُ
إِنَّ أَوَّلَ مَا يُحَاسَبُ بِهِ الْعَبْدُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ مِنْ عَمَلِهِ صَلَاتُهُ فَإِنْ صَلُحَتْ فَقَدْ أَفْلَحَ وَأَنْجَحَ وَإِنْ فَسَدَتْ فَقَدْ خَابَ وَخَسِرَ ، فَإِنْ انْتَقَصَ مِنْ فَرِيضَتِهِ شَيْءٌ قَالَ الرَّبُّ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ : انْظُرُوا هَلْ لِعَبْدِي مِنْ تَطَوُّعٍ فَيُكَمَّلَ بِهَا مَا انْتَقَصَ مِنْ الْفَرِيضَةِ ؟ ثُمَّ يَكُونُ سَائِرُ عَمَلِهِ عَلَى ذَلِكَ

[وصححه الألباني في ” صحيح سنن الترمذي]

ولفظ أبي داود : ( إِنَّ أَوَّلَ مَا يُحَاسَبُ النَّاسُ بِهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ مِنْ أَعْمَالِهِمُ الصَّلَاةُ ) ، قَالَ : ( يَقُولُ رَبُّنَا جَلَّ وَعَزَّ لِمَلَائِكَتِهِ وَهُوَ أَعْلَمُ : انْظُرُوا فِي صَلَاةِ عَبْدِي أَتَمَّهَا أَمْ نَقَصَهَا ؟ فَإِنْ كَانَتْ تَامَّةً كُتِبَتْ لَهُ تَامَّةً ، وَإِنْ كَانَ انْتَقَصَ مِنْهَا شَيْئًا ، قَالَ : انْظُرُوا هَلْ لِعَبْدِي مِنْ تَطَوُّعٍ ؟ فَإِنْ كَانَ لَهُ تَطَوُّعٌ ، قَالَ : أَتِمُّوا لِعَبْدِي فَرِيضَتَهُ مِنْ تَطَوُّعِهِ ، ثُمَّ تُؤْخَذُ الْأَعْمَالُ عَلَى ذَاكُمْ )

It means,

Continue reading “Why do I find it Difficult to Pray..?”

Shortening The Prayer During a Journey – Al-Qasr

How to Pray Salat Al-Qasr

Prayer in Journey | Salat Al-Qasr

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رَبِّ اشْرَحْ لِي صَدْرِي ; وَيَسِّرْ لِي أَمْرِي ; وَاحْلُلْ عُقْدَةً مِنْ لِسَانِي ; يَفْقَهُوا قَوْلِي

In order that the readers may understand the subject clearly (Be-izn-Allah), let us cover this topic under different questions covering different aspects of the topic, and then we will go through the answers of the same to get the facts clarified, Insha’Allah.

Insha’Allah, we will cover the subject in two major parts: The first part deals with the essence of Salat Al-Qasr; whereas, in second part we shall understand the requirements/actions/other categorized things associated with Salat Al-Qasr. So, let us start.

Continue reading “Shortening The Prayer During a Journey – Al-Qasr”

Salat Al-Taraweeh

How to Pray
Salat at-Taraweeh

”All You Want To Know About Salat at-Taraaweeh”

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In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

”Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Messenger of Allah said: “Whoever establishes prayers during the nights of Ramadan faithfully out of sincere faith and hoping to attain Allah’s rewards (not for showing off), all his past sins will be forgiven.” (Al-Bukhari)

Tarawih Prayer is a special Prayer Muslims perform only in the month of Ramadan.

It is a sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him), which means that it was his practice to perform Tarawih and Muslims are encouraged to do likewise, but it is not obligatory.

Tarawih is performed after `Isha’ (Night) Prayer. It can be performed at home, alone or in congregation, or at a mosque.

In many mosques, one juz’ (30th part) of the Quran is recited each night in Tarawih. Thus performing Tarawih in the mosque imparts a special flavor to Ramadan, especially if one is able to do so every night and hear the whole Quran recited during the month.

Note that the Islamic day begins at sunset. Thus the first Tarawih Prayer of Ramadan will be performed the evening before the fast actually begins.

Likewise, after the fast on the 29th day of Ramadan, the Tarawih Prayer is delayed until it is determined whether the new moon has been sighted, marking the end of Ramadan, or whether there will be one more day of fasting. If the new moon is sighted, there is no Tarawih Prayer.

How to Perform Tarawih

Tarawih does not have to be performed immediately after `Isha’. Muslims can postpone it till later, but in a mosque it is performed after the people have prayed two rak`ahs of Sunnah following `Isha’ Prayer.

Tarawih consists of an even number of rak`ahs, performed two by two. The number of rak`ahs is not fixed, but it usually is either 8 or 20. It is recommended to take a short break after every four rak`ahs. In a mosque, there may be a short religious talk or du`aa’ (supplication) or dhikr (remembrance of Allah) at this time. Tarawih may be as long or short as you like, depending on your ability.

Tarawih Prayer is recited aloud. Muslims who are praying alone or leading others and can read Arabic, may hold the Quran in their hands and read aloud from it during Tarawih. (But during the fard [obligatory] Prayers Muslims must recite Quran from memory, although exception is made for new Muslims who are still learning how to pray.) If you cannot read Arabic, you may recite Quran from memory.

Tarawih may be as long or short as you like, depending on your ability to read or recite, and on your energy level. In a mosque, if one juz’ is recited, the Tarawih will last for one and a half or two hours, but some mosques recite less than that. You can inquire how much they recite in each Prayer and how long it takes. If there is more than one mosque in your area, you can choose which one to attend.

After the Tarawih, there is the Witr Prayer of three rak`ahs. In Ramadan, these can be performed in congregation and aloud. In a mosque, short surahs are usually recited during these rak`ahs. After the ruku` (bowing) of the last rak`ah, it is a Sunnah for the imam to supplicate aloud before prostrating. The congregation should answer “ameen” after each line of the du`aa’ (supplication). This supplication after ruku` is known as qunoot.

The Witr should be the last Prayer performed before dawn. So if you are praying Tarawih in congregation and wish to perform additional Tahajjud (optional Late Night) Prayers later, you may skip the Witr in congregation and perform it after Tahajjud.


Taraweeh Prayers in Ramadan

When the month of Ramadan begins, Muslims enter into a period of discipline and worship: fasting during the day, and praying throughout the day and night. During Ramadan, special evening prayers are conducted during which long portions of the Qur’an are recited. These special prayers are known as taraweeh.

The word taraweeh comes from an Arabic word which means to rest and relax. The prayer can be very long (well over an hour), during which one stands upright to read from the Qur’an and performs many cycles of movement (standing, bowing, prostrating, sitting). After each four cycles, one sits for a brief period of rest before continuing — this is where the name taraweeh (“rest prayer”) comes from.

During the standing portions of the prayer, long sections of the Qur’an are read. The Qur’an is divided into equal parts (called juz) for the purpose of reading sections of equal length during each of the Ramadan nights. Thus, 1/30 of the Qur’an is read on successive evenings, so that by the end of the month the entire Qur’an has been completed.

It is recommended that Muslims attend the taraweeh prayers in the mosque (after ‘isha, the last evening prayer), to pray in congregation. This is true for both men and women. However, one may also perform the prayers individually at home. These prayers are voluntary, but are strongly recommended and widely practiced.

There has been some dispute about how long the taraweeh prayer is supposed to be: 8 or 20 raka’at (cycles of prayer). It is without dispute, however, that when praying the taraweeh prayer in congregation, one should start and end with the imam, according to the number that he performs.

Night prayers in Ramadan are a blessing, and one should not argue about this fine point. For more details about the evidence in support of each opinion, please see the articles linked below.
Saudi Arabia television broadcasts the taraweeh prayers live from Mecca, Saudi Arabia, now with simultaneous subtitling of the English translation. See the links below to watch.

Source: Islam about

Everything You Should Know About 

Salat at-Taraweeh: Eight or Twenty Raka’at..?

The Truth In The Light

What Does Taraweeh Mean?

First, we need to understand the meaning of the Arabic word Taraweeh. The word Taraweeh is the plural of the word Tarweeha which literally means ‘to rest’. In the context of Salat Al-Taraweeh, it means to rest between every four raka’at. (Lisan Al-Arab) Looking at this meaning we can understand that if we perform eight raka’at followed by Witr, we get only two rest periods (Tarweehatain).

One rest period we get after the first four raka’at and the second after the next four raka’at. This prayer according to the above definition cannot be called Taraweeh because we must have more than two rest periods for it to be called Taraweeh(according to the Arabic language less than three is not plural). It should also be noted that Salat Al-Taraweeh is not the same as Salat Al-Lail. The latter term is used for the Tahajjud prayer.

How Did Salat Al-Taraweeh Begin?

Once, in the holy month of Ramadan, the Prophet (PBUH) came out of his home and led Salat Al-Taraweeh. The Sahabah (R A) who were present at the time, prayed behind him in congregation. The second and the third nights, a larger number of Sahabah (R A) came and performed Salat Al-Taraweeh behind the Prophet (PBUH).

On the fourth night, an even larger number of Sahabah (R A) showed up in the Masjid expecting to pray this new salat behind the Prophet (PBUH). But, he did not come out to lead Salat Al-Taraweeh that night. The Sahabah (R A) waited all night. When the Prophet (PBUH) finally emerged for the Fajr prayer he told them:

“I knew you were waiting for me, but I did not come out to lead Salat Al-Taraweeh last night because I was afraid it might become an obligation (Fard) on the Ummah which they might find difficult to fulfill.” (Bukhari, h872; Muslim, h1271; Abu Dawood, h1166)

In other words, if it were made obligatory like the rest of the five daily prayers, we would have to perform it even if we were traveling or ill. Since, then, Sahabah started to perform Salat Al-Taraweeh in small congregations in the Masjid or in their homes.

How Many Raka’at Did The Prophet (PBUH) Perform on Those Three Nights?

The great muhaddith, Hafiz Ibn Hajar (Rahmatullah ‘Alay), who is well-known for his interpretation of Sahih Al-Bukhari has reported in his book Al-Talkhees Al-Habeer on the authority of ‘Aisha (Radhiallahu anhaa) that the Prophet (PBUH) performed twenty raka’at Taraweeh on those three nights (Al-Talkhees Al-Habeer, h540).

Imam Ibn Habban (Rahmatullah ‘Alay), on the other hand, has reported a hadith in which it is asserted that the Prophet (PBUH) performed eight raka’at of Taraweeh on those three nights. However, this hadith is extremely weak because one of the people in the chain of narrators is a person named Isa Ibn Jaariyah. Imam Nasa`i (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) and Imam Abu Dawood (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) have strongly questioned the authenticity of this narrator. Consequently, both of these Imams of hadith concluded that ahadith narrated by Isa Ibn Jaariyah must never be accepted.

However, even if the hadith narrated by Isa Ibn Jaariyah was not weak, it would still not be adopted because it goes against a clearly established practice and consensus of Sahabah (R A). As a rule of Islamic jurisprudence, any hadith that goes against the clearly established practices and consensus of Sahabah (R A) will not be adopted for practice.

قال ابوداؤد: اذا تنازع الخبران عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ينظر بما اخذ به اصحابه (ابوداؤد ص263)

قال مالك اذا جاء عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم حديثان مختلفان و بلغنا ان ابابكر و عمر عملا باحد الحديثين و تركا الآخر كان ذلك دليلا ان الحق فيما عملا به (التعليق الممجد ص34)

Imam Abu Dawood (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) asserts that:

”If there were two apparently contradictory ahadith, we would adopt the one that is confirmed by the established practices of Sahabah (R A). (Abu Dawood, p263)

Imam Malik (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) says that:

”If we come across two seemingly contradictory ahadith and if we know that Abu Bakr (R A) and ‘Umar (R A) practiced one of them and left the other, then this would be proof enough for us for its authenticity. (Al-Ta’leeq Al-Mumajjad, p43) 

Nonetheless, keep in mind that the above two ahadith narrated by ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) and Ibn Jaariyah are related only to those three particular nights.

How Many Raka’at Did The Prophet (PBUH) Perform for Salat Al-Taraweeh in the Remainder of the Nights?

عن ابن عباس رضي الله عنه أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم كان يصلي في رمضان عشرين ركعة والوتر (مصنف ابن أبى شيبة صـ394/2 باب كم يصلي في رمضان من ركعة و منتخب مسند عبد بن حميد ح653 و المعجم الأوسط ح802)

عن ابن عباس رضي الله عنه أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم كان يصلي في شهر رمضان في غير جماعة عشرين ركعة والوتر (سنن البيهقي ح12102)

Ibn Abbas (R A) narrated that:

”The Prophet (PBUH) used to pray twenty raka’at followed by Witr in the month of Ramadan. Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah, v2, p394; Muntakhab Musnad ‘Abd bin Humaid, h653; Al-Mua’jam Al-Ausat, h802).

Ibn Abbas (R A) narrated that:

The Prophet (PBUH) used to pray twenty raka’at by himself followed byWitr (every night) in the month of Ramadan. (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, h12102)

These ahadith very clearly prove that even though the Prophet (PBUH) did not continue to perform Salat Al-Taraweeh with the congregation because of the fear that it might become Fard on the Ummah. He regularly performed twenty raka’at of Salat Al-Taraweeh every night during the month of Ramadan. Sahabah (R A) also followed this practice in small congregations until the reign of ‘Umar (R A).

Consensus (Ijma’) of Sahabah (R A) on Twenty Raka’at

During his reign, ‘Umar (R A) once went to the masjid in the month of Ramadan and noticed that people were performing Salat (Al-Taraweeh) in small congregations. He said to the Sahabah (R A), “Now that we do not have the fear that Salat Al-Taraweeh will become Fard on us, we can start performing it in congregation.” He then asked Ubaiy Ibn Ka’ab (R A) to lead Salat Al-Taraweeh – twenty raka’at followed by three raka’at Witr(Sahih Bukhari).

Sahabah (R A) welcomed ‘Umar’s (R A)direction and none of them objected to this move. From then on they used to perform twenty-three raka’at Salat Al-Taraweeh; including the Witr every night in congregation during the month of Ramadan. All of the Sahabah (R A) including ‘Uthman (R A), ‘Ali (R A), and even Ummahatul Mu’mineen ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa), Umm Salmah (Raadhiallahu anhaa), and Safiyyah (Radhiallahuanhaa) agreed with ‘Umar (R A).

All of them used to perform these twenty three raka’at every night during the month of Ramadan in the masjid of the Prophet (PBUH). This clearly proves that indeed this is the sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH); otherwise, Sahabah (R A) would have never agreed to it.

It is narrated in Kanz Al-‘Ummal, a well-known book of hadith:

عن أبي بن كعب أن عمر بن الخطاب أمره أن يصلي بالليل في رمضان فصلى بهم عشرين ركعة (كنـز العمال ص284/2)

عن السائب بن يزيد قال كنا نقوم في زمن عمر بن الخطاب بعشرين ركعة والوتر (سنن البيهقي ص296/1) (قال النووي إسناده صحيح شرح المهذب ص32/4 وصححه السبكي و السيوطيوعلي القاري)

عن السائب بن يزيد قال كانوا يقومون على عهد عمر بن الخطاب في شهر رمضان بعشرين ركعة وفي عهد عثمان (سنن البيهقي ص496/2)

Ubai bin Ka’ab (R A) narrated that:

”Umar (R A) ordered him to lead Salat (Al-Taraweeh) during the nights of Ramadan; so, I led people (Sahabah and Tabi’een) in praying twenty raka’at. (Kanz Al-‘Ummal, v2, p284)

Al-Saaib bin Yazeed (R A) narrated that:

”We used to offer twenty raka’at followed by Witr in the reign of ‘Umar (R A). (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, v1, p296) Imam Nawawi(Rahmatullah ‘Alay) has confirmed the authenticity of thishadith in his book “Sharh Al-Muhazzab, v4, p32”, as well as Imam Subki in his Sahih)

Al-Saaib bin Yazeed (R A) narrated that:

”We used to offer twenty raka’at followed by Witr in the reign of ‘Umar (R A) and ‘Uthman (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, v2, p496)

Is it even remotely imaginable that all of the Sahabah (R A) including ‘Uthman (R A), ‘Ali (R A), and even Ummahatul Mu’mineen ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa), Umm Salmah (Radiallahu anhaa), and Safiyyah (Radiallahuanhaa) could have all together agreed to perform a bid‘ah? Na‘uzu Billah! If they did not object to ‘Umar (R A); how are we to object now, 1400 years later and on what grounds?

A great number of Islamic scholars have confirmed the Sahabah’s (R A) consensus of Salat Al-Taraweeh being twenty raka’at. The following are a few examples of their writings:

قال ابن تيمية: فانه قد ثبت ان ابي بن كعب كان يقوم بالناس بعشرين ركعة في رمضان و يوتر بثلاث (فتاوى ابن تيميه ص191/1)

Imam Ibn Taimiyah (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) reported that:

It has been confirmed that Ubai bin Ka’ab (R A) used to lead people in offering twenty raka’at of Salat (Al-Taraweeh) followed by three raka’at Witr in the month of Ramadan. (Fataawa Ibn Taimiyah, v1, p191)

In the famous book of Hanbali Fiqh, Raudh Al-Riyadh, it has been mentioned that:

والتراويح سنة مؤكدة عشرون ركعة بما روى ابوبكر عبد العزيز الشافعي عن ابن عباس أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم كان يصلي في شهر رمضان عشرين ركعة(روض الرياض)

قال الغزالي: التراويح و هي عشرون ركعة و كيفيتها مشهورة وهي سنة مؤكدة (احياء العلوم ص208/1)

Salat Al-Taraweeh is Sunnah Muakkadah and consists of twenty raka’at; based on the hadith narrated by Abdullah IbnAbbas (R A) that the Prophet (PBUH) used to offer twentyraka’at during the month of Ramadan. (Raudh Al-Riyadh)

Imam Ghazzali (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) has also confirmed thatSalat Al-Taraweeh is Sunnah Muakkadah and consists of twenty raka’at and the method of offering (this Salat) is well known. (IhyaAl-Uloom v1, p208)

The Importance of Following Khulafa Al-Rashideen

The Prophet (PBUH) on many occasions has reminded us to follow the Khulafa Al-Rashideen (R A). He stated with great advice and warning to the Ummah that:

انه من يعش منكم بعدي فسيرى اختلافا كثيرا فعليكم بسنتي وسنة الخلفاء الراشدين المهدين تمسكوا بها وعضوا عليها بالنواجذ (ابوداؤد ح3991 ، ترمذي ح2676 ، ابن ماجه ح42 ، مسند احمد ح16521 ، دارمي ح95)

عن عبد الله بن عمروبن العاص قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ان بني اسرائيل تفرقت على ثنتين و سبعين ملة و تفترق امتي على ثلاث و سبعين ملة كلهم في النار الا ملة واحدة قالوا ومن هي يارسول الله قال : ما انا عليه واصحابي (الترمذي ح2641)

عن حذيفة قال كنا جلوسا عند النبي الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فقال: اني لا ادري ما بقائي فيكم فاقتدوا بالذين من بعدي واشار الى ابي بكر و عمر (ترمذي ح3663 ، ابن ماجه ح94)

“Whoever will live after me will see a lot of differences of opinions, so people should hold strongly to my sunnah and thesunnah of Khulafa Al-Rashideen who are on the straight path.” Then, he emphasized it again by repeating himself, “Hold strongly to it. Don’t let it go.” (Abu Dawood, h3991; Tirmidhi, h2676; Ibn Majah, h42; Musnad Ahmad, h16521; and Daarami, h95)

Abdullah bin A’mr bin A’as (R A) narrated that:

”The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Bani Isra`il were divided into 72 sects and my Ummah will be divided into 73; all of them would belong to the hell-fire except one.” The Sahabah (R A) asked him, “Which one, O Prophet of Allah?” He responded, “The one who would follow me and mySahabah (R A).” (Tirmidhi, h2641)

Huzaifa (R A) narrated that:

”We were once sitting with the Prophet (PBUH). He said, “I don’t know how long would I be with you. After me, follow those who survive me.” And he pointed towards Abu Bakr (R A) and ‘Umar (R A). (Tirmidhi, h3663; Ibn Majah, h94)

Notice that the Prophet (PBUH) has very clearly told us to hold strongly to the ways of Khulafa Al-Rashideen (R A) when there is a difference of opinion in the matters of Deen. Following his Sunnah and that of KhulafaAl-Rashideen (R A) was also made the sign of the one sect which would continue to be on the right path.

As for Salat Al-Taraweeh, we know now for sure that three of the four Khulafa Al-Rashideen – ‘Umar (R A), ‘Uthman (R A), and ‘Ali (R A) performed twenty raka’at with the congregation in the masjid of the Prophet (PBUH) and in the presence of all of the other Sahabah (R A). We, therefore, no longer need any other proof in the matter.

Consensus of the Four Great Imams of Fiqh

This is the reason that all four Imams; Imam Abu Hanifah, Imam Shaf‘i, Imam Malik, and Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) have asserted that Salat Al-Taraweeh consists of twenty raka’at. In fact, ImamMalik (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) insisted on thirty-six raka’at. He suggested to the people of Madinah to pray four extra raka’at individually during each Tarweeha (i.e. during the rest period between each of the four raka’at) to make up for the Tawaaf that people of Makkah used to perform during this rest periods. (Al-‘Urf Al-Shadhi, v1, p229)

It is also reported in Tirmidhi, one of the six most authentic books of hadith, that Imam Shaf‘i had always seen people in Makkah performing twenty raka’at in Salat Al-Taraweeh. From the time of ‘Umar (R A) to this day, people have always prayed twenty raka’at in Taraweeh both in the Haram of Makkah and Madinah.

عن السائب بن يزيد قال كانوا يقومون على عهد عمر بن الخطاب في شهر رمضان بعشرين ركعة وفي عهد عثمان )سنن البيهقي ص496/2)

عن أبي عبد الرحمن السلمي أن عليا دعا القراء في رمضان فأمر رجلا أن يصلي بالناس عشرين ركعة وكان علي يوتر بهم (معرفة السنة للبيهقي ح 4396و السنن الكبرى للبيهقي ص496/2(

قال الشافعي هكذا أدركت ببلدنا مكة يصلون عشرين ركعة (ترمذي تحت ح806)

عن أبى الحسناء أن عليا أمر رجلا أن يصلي بهم في رمضان عشرين ركعة (مصنف ابن أبي شيبة ص393 2/ والسنن الكبرى للبيهقي ص (2/496

عن اعمش أن عبد الله بن مسعود كان يصلي عشرين ركعة و يوتر بثلاث (عمدة القاري شرح صحيح البخاري ص 127/1)

عن نافع قال كان ابن أبي مليكة يصلي بنا في رمضان عشرين ركعة (مصنف ابن أبي شيبة ص393/2)

عن ابي الخصيب قال كان سويد بن غفلة يؤمنا في رمضان عشرين ركعة (الكنى للبخاري ص28 ح234)

Al-Saaib bin Yazeed (R A) narrated that:

”We used to offer twentyraka’at followed by Witr in the reign of ‘Umar (R A) and ‘Uthman(R A). (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, v2, p496)

Abi ‘Abdul Rahman Al-Salami (R A) narrated that:

” ‘Ali (R A) called for the Huffaz Al-Qur’an in the month of Ramadan and asked one of them to lead people in offering twenty raka’at Salat (Al-Taraweeh) while he himself used to lead the Witr prayer.” (Ma’rifat Al-Sunnahby Baihaqi, h4396; Sunan Al-Baihaqi, v2, p496)

Imam Shaf‘i (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) said that:

”I have always found people in Makkah offering twenty raka’at.” (Tirmidhi, under h806)

Abi Al-Hasana’ narrated that:

‘Umar (R A) ordered a person to lead twenty raka’at Salat (Al-Taraweeh) in the month of Ramadan. (Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah, v2, p393, Sunan Al-Baihaqi, v2, p496)

A‘amash (R A) narrated that:

”Abdullah Bin Mas’ud (R A) used to offer twenty raka’at Salat (Al-Taraweeh) followed by three raka’atof Witr. (Umdat Al-Qari, v1, p127)

Nafi’ (R A) narrated that:

”Ibn Abi Mulaikah (R A) used to lead people in offering twenty raka’at Salat (Al-Taraweeh) in the month of Ramadan.” (Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah, v2, p393)

Abu Al-Khusaib (R A) narrated that:

”Suwaid bin Ghafalah (R A) always led us in offering twenty raka’at Salat (Al-Taraweeh) in the month of Ramadan.” (Al-Kuna by Imam Bukhari, h234)

Ata bin Abi Rubah (Rahmatullah ‘Alay) who was a great Tabi’ee living in Makkah Mukkaramah said:

أدركت الناس وهم يصلون ثلاثا و عشرين ركعة بالوتر) مصنف ابن ابي شيبة ص3942/ فتح الباري ص4/219)

”I always found people offering twenty-three raka’at including Witr.” (Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah, v2, p394; Fath Al-Bari, v4, p219)

Then where does the misunderstanding come from?

The confusion about the number of raka’at in the Salat Al-Traweeh resulted from misunderstanding a hadith reported in Bukhari. The hadith reads as follows:

Abu Salamah bin Abdul Rahman (R A) says,

“That he asked ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) how was the prayer of the Prophet (PBUH) during Ramadan?” ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) replied, “The Prophet (PBUH) never performed more than eleven raka’at, whether in the month of Ramadan or any other time of the year. First, he used to perform four raka’at and don’t ask me how long and beautiful they used to be. Then he performed another four raka’at and don’t ask me how very long and very beautiful they were. Then he would perform three raka’at (Salat Al-Witr).”

Some people have erroneously interpreted Salat Al-Lail as Salat Al-Taraweeh and thus wrongfully concluded that the Prophet (PBUH) prayed only eight raka’at in Salat Al-Taraweeh. A correct understanding of this hadithshould clear up all confusion and controversy about this issue.
Consider the following points to properly understand this hadith:

1. Both ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) and Salamah bin Abdul Rahman (Radiallahu anhaa) were alive during the reign of ‘Umar (R A), ‘Uthman (R A) and ‘Ali (R A). If ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) and other Sahabah (R A) knew this hadith to be about Salat Al-Taraweeh; why did they not correct ‘Umar (R A) about it when he established twenty raka’at in congregation during his reign?

2. All of them continued to perform Salat Al-Taraweeh in this way including ‘Umar (R A), ‘Uthman (R A), ‘Ali (R A) and even ‘Aisha radhiallahu anhaa. But, there is no recorded protest by ‘Aisha radiallahu anhaa or any other Sahabah (R A) in the books of ahadith or Islamic history about it. Never did she nor any of the other Sahabah (R A) stopped people from it or warned them about this being a bid‘ah.

3. Certainly, no Muslim will believe that ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) and others did not oppose Umar (R A) for the fear of reprisal; nor can we believe that the narrator of the hadith, ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa), herself and others did not properly understand the meaning of this hadith. Most certainly ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) knew that this hadith did not pertain to Salat Al-Taraweeh. She knew that this hadith was related to Salat Al-Tahajjudwhich is also called Salat Al-Lail. This is why she or any of the others did not oppose ‘Umar (R A).

4. In this hadith, ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) was talking about a prayer that the Prophet (PBUH) performed throughout the year. Notice her words, “The Prophet (PBUH) never performed more than eleven raka’at in the month of Rmadan or any other time of the year.” Everyone knows that Salat Al-Taraweeh is not performed any other time of the year except in Ramadan. What she meant was that the Prophet (PBUH) performed the eight raka’at of Salat Al-Tahajjud followed by three raka’at Witr even in the month of Ramadan in addition to Salat Al-Taraweeh.

5. Here is further proof for the above conclusion. When we look at the complete hadith, we notice that ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) explained how the Prophet(PBUH) used to perform these eleven raka’at. The hadith says that he used to perform four raka’at, then four raka’at, then three raka’at (the Prophet (PBUH) used to perform Tahajjud prayer by four raka’at as well) and throughout the year.

Everyone knows that Salat Al-Taraweeh is performed in two and not four raka’at at a time. Often, the proponents of eight raka’at for Taraweeh do not mention the full hadith which then creates confusion and misunderstanding in the minds of common Muslims. If we were to apply this hadith to Salat Al-Taraweeh, then we would have to perform Salat Al-Taraweeh throughout the year and perform it in four, four, and threeraka’at. If we did otherwise, we would be opposing this hadith that has been used to prove that Salat Al-Taraweeh consists of only eight raka’at.


From looking at the hadith, the practice of Sahaba, Tabieen, and the consensus of the four great Imams, it should now be very clear that:

1. It is the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH) to perform twenty raka’at Salah Al-Taraweeh.

2. Sahabah (R A) followed this practice throughout their lives in Masjid Al-Nabawi.

3. None of the Sahabah (R A) including ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) opposed ‘Umar (R A) in the establishment of twenty raka’at of Salat Al-Taraweeh in congregation.

4. The hadith in Bukhari narrated by ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) is about Salat al-Tahajjud and not Salat Al-Taraweeh.

5. All four Imams have declared that Salat Al-Taraweeh consists of twenty raka’at.

6. Throughout the history, in the Haram of Makkah and Madinah, Taraweeh has never been performed less than twenty raka’at.

7. All of the great scholars used to perform twenty raka’at for Salat Al-Taraweeh. The hadith narrated by ‘Aisha (Radiallahu anhaa) has never been applied to Salat Al-Taraweeh by any of the great scholars in the history of Islam.

8. Never in the history of Islam for 1400 years was there a disagreement among scholars about the number of raka’at in Salat Al-Taraweeh.

9. The assertion about the eight raka’at has begun by some in the last one hundred years only.

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R A M A D A N   K A R I I M
السبت 3 رمضان, 1436
Saturday 20 June, 2015

Notes by: Muslim-word


The Late Night Prayer, Tahajjud (qiyam al-Layil)

Tahajjud (Qiyam al-Layil)
The Late Night Prayer


Its excellence and merit from the Qur’an:
Allah ordered his Messenger to perform salatul tahajjud.
Continue reading “The Late Night Prayer, Tahajjud (qiyam al-Layil)”

40 Common Mistakes in Salaat

40 Commmon Mistakes in Salaat (Big)

A Excerpt Dealing with 40
Common Mistakes in Salaat

The Magnifying Glass On Clarifying Many Common Errors Al-Minthaar Fee Katheer Min Al-Akhtaa’ Ash-Shaai’ah

Saalih Ibn Abdul-Azeez Ibn Muhammad
Aalish-Shaykh (Hafithahullah)

Translator: Abdul-Qaadir Abdul-Khaaliq
Download: printable version

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Mistakes of Salaah

1.| Leaving the Salaah altogether

Leaving the salaah altogether. This is indeed kufr (disbelief) and the evidence is found within the Qur’aan the authentic sunnah and the consensus of the ummah. Allah ta’aala states:

If they repent and establish the salaah and give the zakaah, they are you brothers in faith (deen).” [Al-Qur’aan 9:11]

And Allah ta’aala says:

What landed you in As-Saqar (Hell)? They said: We were not of those who made salaah (almusalleen)…” [Al-Qur’aan 76:42-43]

and so on. As far as the sunnah: The hadeeth of Jaabir that the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

Between a man and shirk (what protects him from shirk) is the abandonment of salaah.” [Muslim]

It is narrated by Abu Dawood, An-Nisaa’i, Ibn Maajah, and At-Tirmidhi on the authority of Buraidah Ibn Al-Husaib from the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) who said:

The covenant between us and them (i.e. the Prophet – and/or his successors -and those who claim to be Muslims) is the salaah so whosoever abandons it has disbelieved.” [Ahmad and others and it is saheeh]

As far as consensus (al-ijmaa’): Abdullah Ibn Shaqeeq (radiallahu ‘anhu) stated: The Companions of Muhammad (radiallahu ‘anhum) did not view the abandonment of any other deed as kufr other than (abandoning) salaah. [At-Tirmidhi and others with an authentic chain]

2.| Delaying the Salaah from its appointed time

Delaying the salaah from its appointed time. This is a violation according to the word of Allah ta’aala:

Verily the salaah has been appointed for the believers at specific times (mawqoot).” [Al-Qur’aan 4:103]

Al-Mawqoot indicates a specific appointed time and the postponement of sallah beyond the obligatory time (fardh) is a major sin and Allah is the one upon Whom we depend. On the authority of Anas who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying:

This is the salaat of the hypocrite (munaafiq); when he sits observing the sun until it is between the horns of Shaitaan, then he stands to perform four (rak’ah) remembering Allah little.” [Muslim]

If this is the salaah of the hypocrite then what of the salaah of someone who postpones the prayer until the complete period of the salaat has passed without any excuse?

3.| Abandonment of the congregational prayer in the masjid by able men either regularly or on occasion.

Abandonment of the congregational prayer in the masjid by able men either regularly or on occasion. The commandment has been given to perform the salaah in congregation in the masaajid. Congregational (al-jamaa’ah) salaah is a duty except for those who have a valid excuse according to the sharia’h.

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

”Whoever hears the call (al-adhaan) and thereafter does not answer it (i.e. attend the congregational salaah) there is no salaah for him except for a valid excuse.” 

[Reported by Ibn Maajah and others with a strong chain (isnaad) and Al-Haafith Ibn Hajar said “Its chain is according to the conditions of Muslim”].

Allah ta’aala also says:

And bow down with those who bow down.” {Al-Qur’aan 2:43]

In a hadeeth in Al-Bukhaari and Muslim (mutafaqun ‘alaih):

…I would then leave (after tbe salaah has begun) and go to those men who do not attend the salaah and burn their houses down over them.”

4.| Lack of tranquility (at-tama’neenah) within the salaat.

Lack of tranquility (at-tama’neenah) within the salaat. This is generally done out of ignorance and it is an open sin because tranquility is a pillar (rukn) of the salaah without which the salaah is incorrect. The hadeeth about the man who performed his salaah badly is a clear evidence for this.

The meaning of tama’neenah (tranquility) is that the one praying is tranquil in the rukoo’ (bending), standing (‘itidaal), prostration (sujood), and sitting between the two prostrations (juloos), and he should get in position where every bone settles into place, he should not hasten between portions of the prayer until he has attained tranquility in it and gives each its due time.

The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said to the one who was rushing through his salaah without observing the proper tranquility:

Go back and make salaah because you have not made the salaah.”

And in the hadeeth of Rifaa’ah on the story of the one who prayed badly it goes on:

”Then he makes takbeer and bows and puts his hands on his knees until each joint is settled and relaxed. Then he says ‘sami’allahu liman hamida’ (Allah hears the one who praises Him) then stands up straight until each bone is in its place.”

5.| Lack of proper reverence and humility (khushoo’) in the salaat and excess movement therein.

Lack of proper reverence and humility (khushoo’) in the salaat and excess movement therein. The place of khushoo’ is in the heart and it is evident in the tranquility of the limbs and humility before Allah. Allah has indeed praised His slave by His statement:

Those who offer their salaah with all solemnity and full submissiveness.” [Al-Qur’aan 23:2]

As well [He has praised] the prophets by his statement:

Verily they used to hasten on to do good deeds and they used to call upon Us with hope and fear, and used to humble themselves before Us.” [Al-Qur’aan 21:90]

It is incumbent. The limbs of the slave in prayer should be still and his heart should be solemn until he may be rewarded for his salaah. It is narrated on the authority of ‘Ammaar Ibn Yaasir (radiallahu ‘anhu) he said: I heard the messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying:

Verily a man leaves after completing his prayer and nothing has been written for him except a tenth of his salaah, a ninth, an eighth, a sixth, a fifth, a fourth, a third, or half of it.”

[Abu Dawood, An-Nisaa’i, and others and it is an authentic hadeeth] The reason for the shortcoming in its reward is the lack of khushoo’ in the heart of the one who prays or in the limbs.

6.| Intentionally preceding the imaam in the movements of the prayer or not following his movements.

Intentionally preceding the imaam in the movements of the prayer or not following his movements. This nullifies the salaah or rak’ah for whoever bows before his imaam ruins his own rak’ah unless he follows it later with another bowing. Such is likewise with the rest of the arkaan (pillars) of the salaah.

It is obligatory for the praying person to follow the imaam completely without preceding him or lagging behind him in any rukn (pillar) or more. Abu Dawood and others transmit with an authentic chain from Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

Verily the imaam is to be completely followed, so if he makes takbeer then you make takbeer and don’t make takbeer until he does so, and if he bows then bow and don’t bow until he does so…

Its origin is in the two saheehs and Al-Bukhaari has another like it narrated by Anas. The one who forgets or the one who is ignorant is excused.

7.| Standing to complete a missed rak’ah

Standing to complete a missed rak’ah before the imaam has completely finished making the second tasleem (i.e closing the prayer by saying ‘As-salaamu ‘alaikum wa

rahmatullahi to the right and left). It is reported in Saheeh Muslim that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

”Do not precede me in the rukoo’ (bowing) not in the sujood (prostration) nor in going out of the prayer (al-insiraaf).”

The scholars have said that the meaning of al-insiraaf is at-tasleem and it is named such because the praying person may leave afterwards and he leaves only after the second tasleem. The one who precedes the imaam should stay in his place until the imaam has completed his salaah, then he should stand and complete whatever he missed, and Allah knows best.

8.| Making the intention for prayer aloud.

Making the intention for prayer aloud. This is a bid’ah (innovation), and we have previously mention the prohibition against bid’ah.

The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) never made the intention for salaah aloud. Ibn Al-Qayyim, rahimahullah, stated in “Zaad Al-Ma’aad” or in “Al-Hudaa An-Nabawiyy”:

“When the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) would stand for salaah he said: ‘Allahu Akbar’ and said nothing else before it nor did he pronounce his intention aloud. Nor did he say: ‘I will pray for Allah salaah such and such while facing the Qiblah four raka’aat as imaam or follower’.

Nor did he say: ‘Fulfilling it on time, not making it up, nor the time of fardh’ all ten of which are bid’ah for which no one has reported that he did with an authentic chain, nor even a weak one, nor musnad, nor mursal, nor a single word. Indeed not one narration of the sahaabah or the best of the following generation (taabi’een), nor the four imaams.”

9.| Not reciting Al-Faatihah in the salaah

Not reciting Al-Faatihah in the salaah; The recitation of Al-Faatihah is a pillar (rukn) and the salaah of whoever does not recite it is void. This is according to the Prophet’s (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying:

Whoever makes a salaah wherein Al-Faatihah is not recited then it is khidaaj (miscarried).”’

…. and he repeated it three times incomplete. [Muslim from Abu Hurairah]

Also reported in the two saheehs is the hadeeth from ‘Ubaadah Ibn Saamit (radiallahu ‘anhu) marfoo’an (attributable to the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam):

The salaah is null for whoever has not recited the Opening of the Book.”

In another wording from ‘Ubaadah:

Could it be that you recite behind your imaam? We said: Yes. He said: Don’t do so except with the Opening of the Book (Al-Faatihah) for the salaah is null of whoever does not recite it.” [Ahmed, Abu Dawood, At-Tirmidhi, Ibn Hibbaan.

This is evidence of its obligation for the follower.

Recitation of the follower is absolute or in the aloud prayers as opposed to what is long known. Whether the recitation of Al-Faatihah is absolute or just in the prayers recited aloud is an old difference of opinion among the scholars.

Is it waajib or dropped? The majority of scholars (al-jumhoor) say it is dropped however doing so is more clear from possible error and more precaution for deen. Most of those who have the opinion of it being dropped say that it is nevertheless desirable to recite it.

10.| Recitation of the Qur’aan in rukoo’ (bowing position) or during sujood (prostration) 

Recitation of the Qur’aan in rukoo’ (bowing position) or during sujood (prostration). This is prohibited based on a narration from ibn Abbaas (radiallahu ‘anhu) that the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

I have been prevented from reciting the Qur’aan while bowing or in prostration… [Muslim] Ali (radiallahu ‘anu) narrates he said: The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam prevented me from reciting the Qur’aan while bowing or prostrating.” [Muslim and others]

11.| Raising the eyes to the sky during salaat or looking to the right and left without due cause.

Raising the eyes to the sky during salaat or looking to the right and left without due cause. As far as raising the eyes, it is forbidden and bears the threat of punishment. It is narrated by Jabir Ibn Samurah (radiallahu ‘anhu) who said: The Messenger of allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Let the people stop raising their eyes to the sky in the salaah or let their sight not return to them. [Muslim]

12.| As far as looking around unnecessarily

As far as looking around unnecessarily, it is a deficiency in the salaah of the worshipper as long as he has not turned his entire body in another direction [i.e. away from the Qiblah].

If however the entire body is turned then the salaah is invalidated. It is narrated by ‘Aisha (radiallahu ‘anhaa) who said: I asked the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) about looking around in the salaah. He said:

”It is misappropriation pilfered by Shaitaan from the salaah of the worshipper.” [Al-Bukhaari]. At-Tirmidhi also collected an authentic hadeeth:

Be warned of turning or looking around in the salaah because it is destruction.”

And there are other ahadeeth on looking around in the salaah.

13.| Sitting on one’s haunches (Al-Iq’aa) during the salaah and prostrating with the elbows (Al-Iftiraash) on the ground.

Sitting on one’s haunches (Al-Iq’aa) during the salaah and prostrating with the elbows (Al-Iftiraash) on the ground. Al-Iqaa’ is forbidden as related by Abu Hurairah (radiallahu ‘anhu) who said: My dear friend forbade me three things:

He forbade me from pecking like a rooster [just touching the head in prostration – trans], sitting on the haunches like a dog, and looking around like a fox.”

Transmitted by Ahmed and others and its isnaad (chain) has by graded hasan (good) by Al-Mundhiri and Al-Haithami. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) forbade a man from spreading his arms on the ground like a beast of prey. Summarizing a hadeeth collected by Muslim from ‘Aisha (radiallahu ‘anhaa) as well as by At-Tirmidhi, Ahmed and others from Jaabir (radiallahu ‘anhu) marfoo’an (attributable to the Prophet):

If any of you prostrates (sajdah) then keep straight and not spread his arms like the sitting of a dog.”

14.| Wearing a thin (see-through) garment that does not sufficiently cover the ‘auwrah (private area).

Wearing a thin (see-through) garment that does not sufficiently cover the ‘auwrah (private area). This is an invalidator of the salaah because covering one’s ‘auwrah is a condition for a sound salaah. The man’s ‘aurah is – according to what is most authentic – from the navel to the knee. Likewise he must cover his shoulders or one of them1 in accordance with the statement of Allah:

O children of Aadam wear you adornments to every masjid.” [Al-‘Araaf 31]

It is sufficient to wear a single garment to cover the ‘auwrah according to what is narrated from ‘Umar Ibn Salamah (radiallahu ‘anhu): He saw the Messenger of allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam praying in a single garment (thowub) in the house of Umm Salamah, he had cast both ends over himself. [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

Ibn Qudaamah (rahimahullah) stated: It is obligatory to cover sufficiently to hide the color of the skin, for if it is thin enough that the color of the skin may be seen from behind to the extent that the whiteness or redness of the skin is percieved thane salaah in it is not allowed in that covering has not been achieved.

15.| A woman not covering her head with the khimaar in salaah and not covering her feet.

A woman not covering her head with the khimaar in salaah and not covering her feet. The ‘aurah of the swoman in the sallah is her entire body with the exception of her face. Nor is there any harm if she covers her face due to the passing by of men or the like. It is obligatory for her to wear a khimaar which is a head covering that also covers the bosom.

This according to his (slallahu ‘aliahi wa sallam) statement:

Allah does not accept the salaah of the menstruating female unless she is wearing a khimaar.”

[Collected by Ahmed and the collectors of the six most authentic books except An-Nisaa’i and it has be authenticated by Ibn Khuzaimah and others. It is also obligatory that she cover the tops of her feet in compliance with the hadeeth;

“The entire woman is ‘auwrah”

Collected by At-Tirmidhee with an authentic isnaad. Along this same meaning is what is transmitted by Malik and abu Dawood and others from Muhammad Ibn Said Inb Qunfudh from his mother who asked Umm Salamah (radiallahu ‘anhaa), the wife of the Prophet (sallallahu‘alaihi wa sallam), about what garment a woman should pray in.

She answered: She 1 The evidence for covering the shoulders is found in an authentic hadeeth in the collection of Abu Dawood, however we were unable to determine why the shaykh exempts one shoulder.

Should pray in a khimaar and a full, loose-fitting chemise that conceals the tops of her feet.”

Also with this meaning is the hadeeth of Umm Salamah:

Lower it by an arms length.”

16.| Walking in front of the praying person

Walking in front of the praying person whether they be the imaam or praying alone and stepping over the people during the Jumua’h khutbah. It is a sin upon the person who passes in front of someone who is praying. If the one praying has no sutrah then it shold be estimated to be at the place of prostration so the passerby should can pass beyond that point. As narrated in the collections of al-Bukhari and Muslim by Abu Juhaim Ibn Haarith (radiallahu ‘anhu), who said: The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

If the one who passes in front of the praying person knew how serious a sin it was for him to do so it would have been better for him to wait for forty than walk in front of him.”

[Forty may refer to forty days, months or years, and Allah knows best – Trans.]

The one who pushes between the people during the Jumua’h khutbah harms people through his being late for the salaah according to the statement of Al-Mustafah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam):

Sit for you have caused harm and come late.” [Ahmed and others].

Cutting between the people is forbidden. One who enters the masjid should sit where there is space unless he sees a genuinely open area where he should then go to it and sit.

17.| Not saying the takbeeratul-ihraam (opening takbeer)

Not saying the takbeeratul-ihraam (opening takbeer) when entering upon the congregation while the imaam is in rukoo’. This is a major mistake in that the takbeeratul-ihraam is a pillar (rukn) of the salaah that must be done by the one praying when standing for the salaah and then afterwards join the imam in the bowing position (rukoo’).

To make the takbeer (al-ihraam) and then another takbeer before giong into rukoo’ is more complete and thorough. Abu Hurairah (radiallahu ‘anhu) narrated:

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) would make takbeer when he stood for the sallah and would then make takbeer upon bowing.”

18.| Not following the imam

Not following the imaam (by getting in the same position) when coming late and the imaam is sitting or in sujood (prostrating). It is most preferred and most sure for the one who enters the masjid that he join the imaam in whatever position he may be in, whether he be in sajdah or otherwise.

It is reported by abu Dawood and others with a saheeh isnaad that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

If you come to the salaah and we are making sujood then you also make sujood.”

For a worshipper to delay making sajdah is to have in effect prevented himself from an act of worship which Allah loves. Ali Ibn Abi Talib and Mua’dh ibn Jabal (radiallahu ‘anhumaa) both stated: The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

If one of you comes to the salaah and the imaam is in a position then do what the imaam is doing.”

This is collected by At-Tirmidhi with a weak isnaad however it is in agreement with the preceeding hadeeth. It is also strengthened by a narration collected by Abu Dawood from Mua’dh (radiallahu ‘anhu): I never saw him (the imaam) in a position except I was also upon it. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

Verily Mua’dh has performed an act that is good for you too, so do likewise.”

19.| Busying oneself with matters that take one away from the salaah.

This is evidence of preference of the wordly life over that of the Hereafter, following vain desires and being too busy to obey Allah. This is indeed ruination and of evil consequence to whoever does it.

Allah ta’aala says:

‘’O you who believe, let not yuor wealth or your children divert you from the remembrance of Allah for whyosoever does that will be among the losers.’’ [Al-Munafiqoon 9]

And He says in praise of the believers: 

Men who are not diverted by business or trade from the remembrance of Allah and performance of salaah.” [An-Noor 37]

Preoccupation with any act over the salaah or that leads to being negligant or lazy toward it such as staying up too lateand the like, is not permissible. This is because anything that leads to what is haraam is itself haraam, and Allah is the One who guides to the right path.

20.| Playing with one’s clothing or watch or the like.

This is an act that negates khushoo’. The evidence for khushoo’ has been presented previously in point 5 [see August Issue – Ed.]. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) forbade rubbing pebbles during the salaah due to its negative effect on khushoo’ when he said:

If any of you performs the prayer let him not rub pebbles for mercy is turned towards him.”

[Ahmed and the six collections of hadeeth with an authentic isnaad] A person might increase playing around to the point of excessive movement that is outside of the salaah and thereby nullify it.

21.| Closing the eyes for no reason

This is a objectionable act (makrooh) as Ibn Al-Qayyim (rahimahullah) mentioned: “Closing the eyes was not from the guidance of the Rasool (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam).” He also said: “The scholars of fiqh have differed on its detestability. Imam Ahmed and others deemed it detestable and they said that it was of the habits of the Jews. However a group of them ruled it allowable without any detestablility and they said that it may indeed be a closer means of achieving khushoo’ which is the spirit of the salaah, its heart and its aim.”

“Most correct is that if keeping the eyes open has no detrimental effect upon khushoo’

then it is preferable to do it. If decorations, adornments or the like are around the

worshipper or between him and the qiblah to the point of distraction, then there is absolutely no objection to closing the eyes. Indeed the statement that to do so is desirable (mustahabb) in this case is closer to the spirit of the law and its aims than the statement that it is objectionable. And Allah knows best.”

22.| Eating or drinking or laughing in the salaah thus nullifying it.

As far as eating and drinking there is consensus with regards to the fardh. Ibn Al-Mundhir stated: “The scholars (Ahlul-‘Ilm) are in consensus agreement that the one praying is forbidden from eating and drinking. There is also consensus among them that to do so intentionally necessitates repetition of the salaah.” Ibn Al-Mundhir also transmits that there is consensus that the salaah is nullified by laughing.

23.| Raising the voice in recitation to the point of distracting those around.

It is recommended (mustahabb) that one hears himself, not to the point that it interrupts anyone who is reciting the Qur’aan or making salaah. Al-Bukhaari and Muslim both transmit from ‘Umraan Ibn Husain (radiallahu ‘anhu) that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) prayed Dhuhr and there was a man behind him reciting ‘sabbihisma rabbikal-‘alaa’ , so when he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) finished he said:

Who among you was reciting or who was the reciter? The man said, “Me.” So he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: I thought that some of you were disputing with me in it.”

The scholars state:

The meaning of his words is a disapproval of the act.

Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah) stated:

Whoever is reciting the Qur’aan and the people are praying additional prayer then it is not correct for him to recite aloud thus disturbing them because the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) left some of his companions while they were praying As-Sahr (before dawn) and he said: O people, each of you is seeking salvation from his Rabb therefore do not overpower one another with your recitation.

24.| Crowding in on those who are praying.

This is a type of forbidden inflicting of harm. It is upon the praying person to pray in a place where the space ends unless he sees an opening sufficient for him to pass and then there is no harm. However, to cause harm, especially on Yaum Al-Jumu’ah (Friday), is generally forbidden. The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said about those who cut the prayer line: Sit, for you have harmed and come late.

25.| Not making the lines straight.

Allah has ordered the proper performance of salaah saying “And establish (aqeemu) the salaah”. The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) has likewise stated: Straighten your lines for verily straightening of the lines is a part of correct performance of salaah (iqaamis-salaah). Al-Bukhaari and Muslim from Anas.

Also Al-Bukhaari narrates from An-Nu’maan Ibn Basheer (radiallahu ‘anhu): Straighten your lines or Allah will cause opposition between your hearts. The order to straighten the lines and taking care to do so is mentioned in a number of hadeeth. (It should also be mention that this includes not leaving any gaps in the lines as is all too commonly neglected – Ed.)

26.| Raising the feet from the ground in sujood.

This is against what is commanded as it is confirmed in the two saheehs from Ibn Abbaas (radiallahu ‘anhu): The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was ordered to prostrate upon seven limbs and not to tuck up the hair or the clothes: the forehead (including the nose), the (palms of the) two hands, the knees and the two feet.

So the one praying is commanded to pray with the two feet touching the ground and the complete form of this is to have the toes pointing toward the Qiblah. Part of each foot should touch the ground and if one raises either of them his sajdah (prostration) is incorrect if he continues to do so throughout the prostration.

27.| Putting the right hand upon the left and raising them to the neck.

This is in contradiction to the sunnah because the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) used to put his right hand over his left upon his chest. This is in a hadeeth of Hasan from several weak transmissions in themselves but that in conjunction strengthen themselves. The sunnah is also to place the hands on the middle of the chest or upon the heart because the heart is in the chest as Allah ta’aala states: It is the hearts within the breasts that are blind.

Raising the hands (making takbeer) when going into sujood or when rising out of it. It is an error to lift the hands to the neck and this opposes the sunnah. What is attributed to Ali (radiallahu ‘anhu) in the explanation of the verse:

So therefore pray to your Rabb and sacrifice (wanhar – in which the verb is construed as referring to the neck [an-nahr] –Ed.) is weak and does not constitute a proof. (Also incorrect is the incorrect practice of holding one’s hands upon or below the navel as there is no substantiated proof from the authenticated sunnah for this practice – Ed)

28.| Raising the hands at the time of sujood or when rising out of sujood.

This is in opposition to the well-known sunnah that has been transmitted by most of the companions who narrated about raising the hands. The student of (sharee’ah) knowledge should stick with the well-known sunnah unless in privacy though he may believe a deed to be more correct from the sunnah that nonetheless contradicts the practice of the generality of the scholars.

The imaam of the people should do what is known, for what is commonly and well-known to be the sunnah upon which the majority of the scholars’ practice, is sufficient and satisfactory.

(The wisdom here is that for a student to insist upon public practice of that which is not regarded by the scholars generally as the sunnah may lead to harm and confusion which would amount to forsaking a fardh, i.e. the prevention of harm, for the sake of a establishing a sunnah – and one which is not totally agreed upon at that – and would thus fall into error.

The scholars do not generally unite upon any practice without evidence, although the qualified student may disagree a given ruling or conclusion based upon his understanding of the texts and after sincere and thorough study and reaching a state of being personally satisfied with its outcome. – Ed.)

28.| Hastiness of some imaams in the salaah and lack of tranquility within it.

Hastiness of some imaams in the salaah and lack of tranquility within it, thus not allowing time for the followers to be tranquil in their salaah or time to recite Al-Faatihah, especially in the last rak’ah. The imam is responsible for making the quality of the salaah good because he is being followed.

It is therefore his duty to take care of following the Sunnah, and tranquility is a pillar (rukn) that the imam is more obliged to take care of due to his being followed. Likewise, the recitation of Al-Faatihah is a rukn that the followers in the salaah must be given enough time to fulfill. We have already presented the evidence for the obligation of maintaining tranquility (tama’neenah) and reciting Al-Faatihah.

29.| Not taking care to make sujood upon the seven ‘limbs’ (i.e. the forehead along with the nose, the palms of both hands, both knees, and the toes of both feet).

Not taking care to make sujood upon the seven ‘limbs’ (i.e. the forehead along with the nose, the palms of both hands, both knees, and the toes of both feet). Abbaas Ibn Abul-Muttalib (radiallahu ‘anhu) reported that he heard the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying:

If the slave prostrates, then seven body parts should prostrate with him: His face, hands, two knees, and his two feet. Related by Muslim, also attributed to Al-Majd in “Al-Muntaqaa”, Al-Muzzee and related by others. Ibn Abbaas (radiallahu ‘anhumaa) narrated:

The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: I have been ordered to prostrate upon seven “bones” (i.e. body parts): Upon the forehead –and he pointed to his nose – both hands, both knees and both feet.

There are some people who do not prostrate upon both the forehead and the nose or who raise their feet or who do not touch the palms of their hands on the ground, all of which is in opposition to what is commanded.

30.| Not caring to learn the rules of salaah.

This is other than what any Muslim should do. No doubt salaah is the greatest of the Islamic pillars requiring bodily action. Allah commands its performance – “Aqimis-Salaah” (Perform the salaah) – in more than seventy ayaat. It is not possible to perform it without having knowledge of its fundamentals or knowing how the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) did the salaah.

There is no room for ignorance of the rules of salaah, knowing its prerequisites or its essential parts, obligations, the rules for following or making up for errors and the like. It is fardh to know these matters and the absence of knowledge of these matters is a cause of a Muslim being unaware of what nullifies or spoils his salaah, and Allah is the Guide and Provider of Success.

31/34.| Carelessness in reciting Al-Faatihah

Carelessness in reciting Al-Faatihah and with proper pronunciation such as saying al-‘Aalimeen instead of al-‘Aalameen, ahdinaa instead of ihdinaa, an’amtu instead of an’amta, and so on.

All of these and similar errors are the type of linguistic errors that must be avoided and no one who leads the salaat should commit them. Some may contain impossible meanings such as when one pronounces the “t” (taa’) in “an’amta” as “da” (daad) and thus the salaat would be spoiled.

35.| Cracking the knuckles in salaah.

This is from the detested actions in the salaah and is thus forbidden. As far as cracking the knuckles in general, Ibn Abi Shaibah narrates in a statement with good isnaad, from Shu’bah Mawlaa ibn Abbaas as stating: I prayed next to Ibn Abbaas and I cracked my knuckles so when I finished my salaah he said,

May you lose your mother! You crack your knuckles while you are in salaah?” Forbiddance of cracking the knuckles is transmitted in a marfoo’ hadeeth from Ali in the collection of Ibn Maajah, however, it is weak (da’eef)and not sufficient in an of itself (ghairu munjabir).”

36.| Intertwining the fingers (at-tashbeek) during and before the salaah.

This is also among the detestable matters. Ka’ab Ibn ‘Ujrah (radiallahu ‘anhu) narrates:

I heard the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying: If one of you makes wudhoo then goes to the masjid for salaah, let him not clasp his hands together for indeed he is in the salaah.” Ahmed, Abu Dawood, At-Tirmidhi.

With some difference regarding its chain, Ad-Daarimi, Al-Haakim and others transmit from Abu Hurairah in a marfoo’ hadeeth:

If one of you makes wudhoo in his house then comes to the masjid, he is in salaah until he returns. Therefore do not do not do like this – and he clasped his fingers together.”

There are other mutually supporting hadeeths on this matter of tashbeek.

37.| Putting forward someone to lead the Salaah as Imaam when it is not his place to do so and there are others more deserving present.

Putting forward someone to lead the Salaah as Imaam when it is not his place to do so and there are others more deserving present. This contradicts the intended purpose of having an imaam (al-imaamah), which is to be an example to follow (al-iqditaa’). It is necessary that the imaam have understanding of the deen and is able to correctly recite the Qur’aan according to the satatement of the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam):

The imaam of a people should be the one who best recites the Qur’aan…) Transmitted by Muslim from Abu Mas’ood Al-Ansaari (radiallahu ‘anhu). The scholars have ruled that one should not be put forward as imaam whose recitation is not good, or who openly displays sinfulness, or who has an undignified appearance, or who is an innovator, or who is corrupt or like them. If however, such people are put forward, the salaah of the followers is correct.

38.| Improper recitation of the Qur’aan.

This is an open deficiency and the right of the Qur’aan is that it be read correctly without aberration and that the Muslim strives to improve and excel in its recitation. Allah ta’alaa states:

Recite the Qur’aan with tarteel..” [correct measured tone] and

When we teach you the Qur’aan, follow its recitation.”

Meaning, recitation as is proper according to the Arabic language, with clarity and free from distortion. On this same line is the superiority of the one who purifies his intention as is narrated by ‘Kaisha (radiallahu ‘anhaa) who said: The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said;

The one who is proficient with the Qur’aan will be with the scribes (angels) honorable and obedient. While the one who recites the Qur’aan haltingly and finds difficulty (while striving to recite it properly) gets a double reward.” [matafaqun ‘alaih]

39.| Some men praying behind women in the Haram (The Grand Masjid) of Makkah.

Doing so there or elsewhere is a detestable action in the salaah. It is from the sunnah that the rows of the women are behind those of the men. The salaah of a man behind a women may be a cause of him losing all khushoo’ and a disturbance in the salaat through his looking (at the woman) or otherwise. A man should therefore never line up for salaah behind a woman.

This is not detestable if due to necessity such as not missing the ‘Eid salaah, or Salaatul-Jumu’ah, or the congregational salaah and other similar situations (i.e. that make it impossible to join the front rows with the men – Trans.). A group of scholars have stated: “The Haram of Makkah is an exception.” Shaykh Abdul-Aziz Ibn Baz (may Allah preserve him) is of this opinion.

40.| Women coming to the masjid beautified or made-up and perfumed.

This is one of the open and witnessed evils that become apparent during Ramadhan and outside it. The woman is coming out to worship her Master, not to show off the beauty of her clothing! Perhaps men may see her and she would then be sinful and she would suffer a loss of reward for her deed.

The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) stated:

Let not any woman who is scented attend the ‘Ishaa with us.”

[Muslim] Imam Ahmed transmits along with Abu Dawood with an authentic chain from Abu Hurairah (radiallahu ‘anhu) that the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

Do not forbid the bondwomen of Allah from the houses of Allah, and let them go out tafilaat.”

The meaning of the word “tafilaat” is: Not beautified with adornments or perfumed.

Salat al-Duha – Virtues of Salat al-Duha

Virtues of Salat al-Duha 
Salat al-Duha  صلاة الضحى

The Supererogatory Morning Prayer

by Hajj Gibril Dr. GF Haddad

Decorative Lines Continue reading “Salat al-Duha – Virtues of Salat al-Duha”

Sunnah Prayers Explained: Learn All Sunnah Prayers

Learn All Sunnah Prayers:
Sunnah Prayers Associated
With Fardh Prayers

Article: Sunnah Prayers Explained
By Sheikh: Bin Baz (rahimahullaah)

Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah bin Baz

Continue reading “Sunnah Prayers Explained: Learn All Sunnah Prayers”

Wudu – الوضوء – Ablution: Purification


Wudu – الوضوء| Ablution: Purification

Ablution: Purification before the prayers (As-Salah)


Wudu (Arabic: الوضوء‎ al-wuduʼ; Hindi: वुज़ू; Persian: آبدست‎ ābdast; Urdu: وضو‎ vazu; Turkish: abdest; Pashto: ‎ awdas; Bengali: ওযু Ojoo; Indonesian: wudhu; Chechen: Lamaz etsar; Bosnian: abdest; Kurdish: destniwej; Somali: weeso.) is the Islamic procedure for washing parts of the body using water, typically in preparation for formal prayers (salah).

The Qur’an says “For Allah loves those who turn to Him constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean.”

Muslims are also required to be clean when handling and reading the Qur’an. The Qur’an says “Which none shall touch but those who are clean.” Purification of the body and clothes is called taharah. The Islamic prophet Muhammad said that “Cleanliness is half of faith”. To have taharah for the body, one should do either ghusl or wudu. Wudu is often translated as “partial ablution”, as opposed to ghusl, or “full ablution”.

Muslims often recite the Durood (or AS-Salatu alan-nabi: الصلاة على النبي‎) and Ayatul Kursi after ablution.

Sheikh Zayed Mosque (Wudu' place)

Water requirements

Permitted water types:

  • Rain water
  • Spring, sea or river water
  • Water of melting snow or hail
  • Water of a big tank or pond
  • Well water

Prohibited water types

  • Unclean or impure water
  • Water extracted from fruit and trees
  • Water that has changed its colour, taste and smell and becomes thick because something was soaked in it
  • Small quantity of water in which something unclean has fallen, e.g. urine, blood, stool or wine or some animal had died after falling into it
  • Water left over after drinking by haraam animals, e.g. pigs or predatory animals.
  • Used water of wudu or ghusl (according to the opinion of the Hanbali School)

The acts of wudu

There are four fard (obligatory) acts. If one of these acts is omitted, it must be returned to and then completion of the successive acts are to be performed.

There are other acts that are performed during wudu (coming from the sunnah of Islamic prophet Muhammad and Sunni Islamic scholars) and the detailed acts of the wudu can be classed into 3 types:

Farā’id according to Sunni Muslims

According to Sunni Muslims the Qur’anic mandate for wudu comes in the sixth ayat of sura 5. The ayat has been translated by Muhammad Muhsin Khan, Rashad Khalifa, Abdullah Yusuf Ali, Pickthal and Maulana Muhammad Ali as follows. Note these scholars translation refers to washing the feet.

Surat Al-Maidah 6

O ye who believe! when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces, and your hands (and arms) to the elbows; Rub your heads (with water); and (wash) your feet to the ankles. If ye are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body. But if ye are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands, Allah doth not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean, and to complete his favour to you, that ye may be grateful. [Al-Ma’ida, Sura 5, Ayah 6]

  • Washing the face once.
  • Washing both the arms including the elbows once.
  • Performing masah of one-fourth of the head.
  • Washing both the feet once up to and including the ankles. It’s not sufficient for one to pass wet hand over the feet or shoes. Under certain conditions masah can be done over leather socks known as khuffs.


  1. Narrated by Abd-Allah ibn Amr: “…we were just passing wet hands over our feet (not washing them thoroughly) so he addressed us in a loud voice saying twice or thrice, ‘Save your heels from the fire.’.”
  2. Narrated by ‘Ubaid Ibn Juraij: “…and he used to perform ablution while wearing the shoes (i.e. wash his feet and then put on the shoes).”
  3. Narrated by Yahya Al-Mazini: ” ‘Can you show me how Allah’s Apostle used to perform ablution?’ …and washed his feet (up to the ankles).”
  4. Narrated by ‘Amr: “…and then he washed his feet up to the ankles.”
  5. Narrated by Humran: “…and washed his feet up to the ankles…”
  6. Narrated by ‘Amr bin Yahya: “…and washed his feet up to the ankles…”
  7. Narrated by ‘Abdullah bin Zaid: “…and washed his feet (up to the ankles).”

Farā’id according to Shia Muslims

According to Shia Muslims the Qur’anic mandate for wudu comes in the sixth ayat of sura 5. The ayat has been translated by Muhammad Habib Shakir as follows. Note this scholars translation refers to wiping the feet.

‘’O ye who believe! when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces, and your hands (and arms) to the elbows; Rub your heads (with water); and your feet to the ankles. If ye are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body. But if ye are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands, Allah doth not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean, and to complete his favour to you, that ye may be grateful.’’ [Al-Ma’ida, Sura 5, Ayah 6]

  • Washing the face once.
  • Washing both the arms including the elbows once.
  • Wiping one fourth of the head.
  • Wiping both the feet once up to and including the ankles


Sunnah (optional – practised by Muhammad and according to Sunni Hadiths) acts.

  • Reciting bismillah.
  • Intention of performing wudu.
  • Washing both the hands up to the wrists.
  • Rinsing the inner mouth.
  • Sniffing water and blowing it out
  • Passing of wet fingers between the fingers of the hand and feet.
  • Passing of wet fingers into the beard.
  • Brushing the teeth, preferably with a miswak.
  • Wudu is done systematically.
  • Washing of each part one after the other without pause, so no part dries up before wudu is completed.
  • Washing each limb thrice.
  • Performing wudu towards the Qiblah
  • Mustahabbāt (recommended acts)

A handful of mustahabb (recommended) acts that are considered to make the wudu better. If one of these acts is omitted, the wudu is still considered valid.

  • Reciting the shahadah after the ablution.
  • During wudu one should not engage in worldly talk.
  • Choosing a clean place for ablution.
  • Not wasting water in ablution.
  • Starting from the right side and then the left.

Performance| According to Sunni Muslims

Sunni Muslims perform the following:

  • Start by making niyyah (intention) to perform wudu and cleanse the self of impurities.
  • Say bismillah.
  • Wash the right hand up to the wrist (and between the fingers) three times, then similarly for the left hand.
  • Rinse the mouth and spit out the water three times and rub the teeth with a miswak. If a miswak is not available then one should use the finger.
  • Gently put water into the nostrils with the right hand, pinch the top of the nose with the left hand to exhale the water. This is performed three times.
  • Wash the face (from the hairline on the forehead to where facial hair begins and ear to ear). This is to be performed three times.
  • Wash the entire right arm, including the hand, up to and including the elbow three times; then the left arm three times. Pass fingers of one hand between the fingers of the other hand. If wearing a ring it should be moved freely to allow water to pass under it.
  • Then perform masah. Wet hands should be passed all over the head; then the first finger of the right and left hand should be moved in the right and left ears respectively and in the same operation thumbs should be passed around the ears; then pass the backs of the hands over the hind part of the neck only. Hands should not be passed around the fore-neck as it is prohibited. This is only done once. One may not make masah over a Muslim head cap. Fresh water need not be taken for performing the masah of the ears.
  • Starting with the right foot, wash both feet from the toes up to and including the ankles thrice. The little finger of the left hand should be passed between the toes of both the feet beginning from the little toe of the right foot and ending with the little toe of the left foot.
  • Recite the shahadah.
  • Offer two-rak’at prayer.

According to Shia Muslims

Shia Muslims perform the following:

  • Make the intention to perform wudu in the heart.
  • Shape the right hand like a cup and take water into it. Then pour the water on the top of the forehead and wipe down with the right hand. It is obligatory to begin washing from the area where the hair of the head normally grows, then all the way to the chin.
  • Shape the left hand like a cup and take water into it. Afterwards, pour this water onto your right forearm and wash your right forearm (covering the right forearm in water, leaving no spot dry). Wipe from the elbow to the fingers, and not from the fingers to the elbow.
  • Repeat this process except with the left forearm.
  • Without taking more water, wipe your hair from the middle down to the forehead, or vice versa, using the index finger of your right hand; it is mustahab to use three fingers. If you are balding, you would wash your hair as if it were growing when you had a full head of hair. It is not permissible to wipe the hair over an obstacle (such as wiping a hat or a turban instead of the hair/skin). It is not obligatory to wipe the actual skin on the head. If, however, the hair isn’t growing from the area you are wiping (such as if you have a comb over), then you must move the hair to where it belongs and wipe the skin.
  • Without taking more water, wipe the top of your right foot with your right hand. You only wipe once and with a swiping motion. It is not permissible to wipe the shoe, sock, etc. You must always wipe the skin of the feet unless there is an extreme reason.
  • Do the same thing, except using your left hand and wiping your left foot.
  • Imam Ali and the other imams have stated that there are mustahab, or recommended actions to wudu along with the above mentioned method. These acts are recommended:
  • Washing the hands twice.
  • Gargling the mouth three times.
  • Rinsing the nose three times.
  • Washing the face twice and the arms twice. It is not permissible to wipe the head and the feet twice (unless it is because one missed a spot) and that it is not permissible to wash the face and the arms three times.


Theoretically, one can perform one wudu for salaat and this wudu would be considered valid for the rest of the day. However, traditionally Muslims believe that certain acts invalidate the wudu (often referred to as “breaking wudu” and “losing wudu”) and these can be stated generically thus, although the Quran does not explain most of these:

  • Defecation, passing gas or urination
  • Emission of semen (ghusl is required)
  • Sleep while reclining
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of senses
  • Fainting
  • Laughing aloud whilst in Salah
  • Sexual contact with another person (ghusl is required)
  • Touching the private parts with the bare hands (not according to Hanafi Madhhab)
  • Blood or pus leaving the body so that it leaves the point of exit (however if the blood or pus exits from the private parts then any amount breaks wudu). Note that bleeding except from private parts does not invalidate wudu according to Shafi’i Madhhab.


Under most interpretations of Islam, smoking does not break Wudu. However, it is advisable that before saying your prayers, especially with Jama’at, you rinse your mouth with water and wash your hands with soap, so that the smell of the cigarette doesn’t cause disturbance for other people who are saying their prayers with you.


Stone of Tayammum

Tayammum is a “dry ablution” using clean soil or dust, to be performed when water is not readily available to perform ablution or when one is defiled (on janabah) and could not perform ghusl, and is authorised under specific circumstances.

Wudu description in Hadith

Wudu in Hadith Abu Hurayra, in reference to the Day of Resurrection, reported that Muhammad, when asked if he would be able to recognise Muslims, said, “Yes, you would have a mark which other people will not have. You would come to me with a white blaze on your foreheads and white marks on your feet because of the traces of ablution.”

Abu Hurayra said, “I have heard my Friend (may peace be upon him) say. In a believer adornment would reach the places where ablution reaches.”

Uthman ibn Affan stated that Muhammad, said, “He who performed ablution well, his sins would come out from his body, even coming out from under his nails.”

‘Umar ibn al-Khattab reported that Muhammad said, “No one among you does wudu and does wudu thoroughly – or adequately – and then testifies, ‘There is no god but Allah Alone with no partner and I testify that Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger’, without the eight doors of the Garden being opened to him so that he can enter by whichever of them he wishes.”

Basic Salat: Prayers

How To Perform |As-Salat

Clic Here: In Somali
Salah (Arabic: صلاة ṣalāh or ṣalāt; pl. صلوات ṣalawāt)…….!
Is the practice of formal worship in Islam.

Decorative Lines

Salat| Prayer

Salah (Arabic: صلاة ṣalāh or ṣalāt; pl. صلوات ) is the practice of formal worship in Islam. Its importance for Muslims is indicated by its status as one of the Five Pillars of Islam, with a few dispensations for those for whom it would be difficult.

People who find it physically difficult can perform Salah in a way suitable for them. To perform valid Salah, Muslims must be in a state of ritual purity, which is mainly achieved by ritual ablution, (wuduʾ), according to prescribed procedures. To perform valid Salah, Muslims must be in a state of ritual purity, which is mainly achieved by ritual ablution, (wuduʾ), according to prescribed procedures.

Under the Hanbali School of thought, a person who doesn’t pray 5 times a day is a disbeliever. The other 3 schools of thought say that the person who doesn’t pray 5 times a day is just a sinner. Prayer is regarded as a dividing line between a believer and a non-believer (according to Sahih Muslim).

Salah consists of the repetition of a unit called a rak’ah (pl. raka’at) consisting of prescribed actions and words. The number of obligatory (fard) rakaʿāt varies from two to four according to the time of day or other circumstances (such as Friday congregational worship, which has two raka’at). The minimal, obligatory raka’at may be supplemented with acts that are optional but are considered meritorious.

For Muslims of the Sunni, Shi’i, and Ismaili Mustaʿlī persuasions, obligatory salah is prescribed at five periods of the day. These are measured according to the movement of the sun. These are: near dawn (fajr), after midday has passed and the sun starts to tilt downwards / Noon (dhuhr or ẓuhr), in the afternoon (asr), just after sunset (maghrib) and around nightfall (‘isha’).

Under some circumstances ritual worship can be shortened or combined (according to prescribed procedures). In case a ritual worship is not performed at the right time, it must be performed later. Muslim doctrine permits ẓuhr (ظهر, “noon”) and ʿaṣr (عصر, “afternoon”) prayers to be performed in succession.


“Salah” (ṣalāh)is an Arabic word whose basic meaning is “bowing, homage, worship. prayer”. In its English usage the reference of the word is almost always confined to the Muslim formal, obligatory worship described in this article.

Translating salah as “prayer” is not usually considered precise enough, as “prayer” can indicate several different ways of relating to God; personal prayer or supplicatuon is called duʿāʾ (literally “call”) in Islamic usage.

Muslims themselves use several terms to refer to salah depending on their language or culture. In many parts of the world, including many non-Arab countries such as Indonesia, the Arabic term salah is used. The other major term is the Persian word namāz (نماز), used by speakers of the Indo-Iranian languages (e.g., Persian) Turkish and Bosnian.

Purpose and importance

The chief purpose of Salah in Islam is to act as a person’s communication with and remembrance of God. By reciting “The Opening”, the first Surah (chapter) of the Qur’an, as required in all daily worship, the worshipper can stand before God, thank and praise Him, and to ask for guidance along the Straight Path. In addition, daily worship remind Muslims to give thanks for God’s blessings and that submission to God takes precedence over all other concerns, thereby revolving their life around God and submitting to His will. Worship also serves as a formal method of remembering Allah, or dhikr.

In the Qur’an, it is written that:

“The true believers are those who feel fear in their hearts when God is mentioned. And when His Revelations are recited to them, they find their faith strengthened. They do their best and then put their trust in their Lord.”

“To those whose hearts, when God is mentioned, are filled with fear, who show patient perseverance over their afflictions, keep up regular prayer, and spend (in charity) out of what we have bestowed upon them.”

Salah is also cited as a means of restraining a believer from social wrongs and moral deviancy. According to a hadith in the collection Sahih Bukhari, Muhammad considered salah “the best deed”.

The Ahadith provide further details; as for example, when the Qur’an refers to three daily prayers (suras 11:114; 17:78–79; 30:17–18 and possibly 24:58), while the five daily prayers stipulated by the later Ahadith have been adopted by Muslims. [not in citation given]

Abu Huraira radiyallahu ʿanhu narrates that I heard Allah’s Apostle saying:

“If there was a river at the door of anyone of you and he took a bath in it five times a day would you notice any dirt on him?” They said, “Not a trace of dirt would be left.” The Prophet added, “That is the example of the five prayers with which Allah blots out (annuls) evil deeds.” [Sahih al-Bukhari, 1:10:506]

Abu Umamah narrates that the Prophet Muhammad said,

“Allah does not Listen to anything from His servant as He does to the two rakahs (of prayer) that he offers. Mercy descends over the servant’s head as long as he remains in prayer.” (Tirmidhi and Ahmad) As-Suyuti considers it sahih.”

In Al-Muwatta, Imam Malik ibn Anas says:

“It reached me that the Prophet said: ‘(Try to) keep to the straight path although you won’t be able to do so completely; and know that the best of your deeds is salah, and only a (true) believer preserves his wudhu.'”

Abu Dharr (radiyallahu ʿanhu) narrates that once Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) came out of his house. It was autumn and the leaves were falling off the trees. He caught a branch of a tree and its leaves began to drop in large number.

At this he remarked,

‘O, Abu Dharr! when a Muslim offers his salat to please Allah, his sins are shed away from him just as these leaves are falling off this tree.’ (Ahmad)

Sabrah ibn Ma’bad Al-Juhani reported:

Muhammad said, “Teach a boy Salat when he attains the age of seven years, and punish him (if he does not offer it) at ten.” [Sunnan Abu Dawud, 2:0494]

Abu Huraira narrated: Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) said:

“The angels keep on asking Allah’s forgiveness for anyone of you, as long as he is at his Mu, salla (praying place) and he does not pass wind (Hadath). They say, ‘O Allah! Forgive him, O Allah! be Merciful to him.” Sahih al-Bukhari, 1:8:436

Hasan ibn Ali narrates that Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) stated:

“He who recites Ayatul Kursi after obligatory salat, is in the protection of Allah till the next salat.” (from al-Tabarani, and Majmaʿ az-Zawaʾid.)

Umm Farwah narrates that Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) asked which is the best of the good deeds. He said“To offer Salat at the beginning of its prescribed time.” [From Abu Dawood]

Abu Huraira said:

The best rows for men are the first rows, and the worst ones the last ones, and the best rows for women are the last ones and the worst ones for them are the first ones. Sunnan Abu Dawud, 004:0881

Uthman bin Affan narrates that Muhammad said;

“He who performed wudhu for salat and performed it properly and then went on foot to offer the obligatory salat and offered it along with the people or in congregation or in the masjid, Allah would forgive his sins.” [Sahih Muslim, 002:0447]

Abu Darda narrates that Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) said,

“If three persons in a village or a forest do not offer the congregational salat, then shaitan fully overpowers them. So make it obligatory on yourself to offer salat in congregation. For undoubtedly the wolf eats only the stray goat.” Sunnan Abu Dawud, 2:0547

Differences in practice

The Islamic worship (salat) practiced by one Muslim may differ from another’s in minor details, which can affect the precise actions and words involved. Differences arise because of different interpretations of the Islamic legal sources by the different schools of law (madhhabs) in Sunni Islam, and by different legal traditions within Shia’ism. In the case of ritual worship these differences are generally minor, and do not necessarily cause dispute. It is important to note the reason why Sunni Muslims have a basic agreement on the necessary part of the Salah.

Muslims believe that the Prophet Muhammad practiced, taught, and disseminated the worship ritual in the whole community of Muslims and made it part of their life. The practice has, therefore, been concurrently and perpetually practiced by the community in each of the generations. The authority for the basic forms of the Salah is neither the hadiths nor the Qur’an, but rather the consensus of Muslims. Differences also occur due to optional (recommended rather than obligatory) articles of prayer procedure, for example, which verses of the Qur’an to recite.


This compulsory act of worship is obligatory for those who meet these three conditions:

  1. Are Muslim
  2. Are of sound mind
  3. Have reached the age of 10 (beginning at age seven is recommended).

There are five elements that make Salah valid

Confidence of the time of worship.

  1. Facing the qibla, with the chest facing the direction of the Ka’ba. The ill and the old are allowed leniency with posture.
  2. Covering the awrah
  3. Clean clothes, body, place of prostration.
  4. Ritual purity (wudu, tayammum, ghusl)
  5. Praying in front of a sutrah is recommended.

The place of worship should be clean. In a few cases where blood is leaving the body, Salah is forbidden until a later time. Women are not allowed to pray during their menses nor for a period after childbirth, and this gave rise to a quote of Muhammad’s “Isn’t it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?”

Preparation| Cleanliness and dress

Islam advises that Salah be performed in a ritually clean environment. When worshipping, the clothes that are worn and the place of prayer must be clean. Both men and women are required to cover their bodies (awrah) in reasonably loose-fitting garments. The well-known adage or hadith by al-Nawawi that “purity is half the faith” illustrates how Islam has incorporated and modified existing rules of purity in its religious system.

Ritual ablution

  • Wudu,
  • Tayammum,
  • Ghusl.

Before conducting Salah, a Muslim has to perform a ritual ablution.

The minor ablution is performed using water (wudhu), or sand (tayammum) when water is unavailable or not advisable to use for reasons such as illness.

Wudhu is performed by Muslims according to the instructions of God given in the Qur’an:

O you who believe! when you rise up to prayer, wash your faces and your hands as far as the elbows, and wipe your heads and your feet to the ankles; and if you are under an obligation to perform a total ablution, then wash (yourselves) and if you are sick or on a journey, or one of you come from the privy, or you have touched the women, and you cannot find water, betake yourselves to pure earth and wipe your faces and your hands therewith, Allah does not desire to put on you any difficulty, but He wishes to purify you and that He may complete His favor on you, so that you may be grateful.” [Qur’an, sura 5 (Al-Ma’ida), ayat 6]

More specifically wudhu is performed by Muslims by washing the hands, mouth, nose, arms, face, hair, ears,(often washing the hair is merely drawing the already wet hands from the fringe to the nape of the neck) and feet three times each in that order. (It is not obligatory to wash the hair three times, once is sufficient, and men must also wash their beards and mustaches when washing the face).

Intention| Niyyah

The person should be conscious and aware of the particular Salah that is being offered, whether it is obligatory, if it is a missed (qadha) worship, performed individually or among the congregation, a shortened traveller’s worship etc. The explicit verbalization of this intention is not required, though it can be helpful. The person should think his worship to be the Last Worship so that he may perform the best he can.

How To Conduct Salah| Raka’ah

Each Salah is made up of a repeating unit or cycle called a raka’ah. The number of raka’ahs for the five daily worship can be found below. A basic raka’ah is made up of these parts.


If this is the first raka’ah, the prayer is commenced by the saying of the takbir, which is:

الله أَكْبَر

Transliteration: “allāhu ‘akbar”,

meaning God is Greater). The hands are raised level with shoulders or level with top of the ears, with fingers apart and not spaced out or together. This is done before, with or after the takbir. Both arms are placed over the chest, with the right arm over the left.

If this is the first raka’ah, a supplication praising Allah (God) is said such as:

سُبحَانَکَ اللّٰھُمَّ وَ بِحَمدِکَ وَ تَبَارَکَ اسمُکَ وَ تَعَالٰی جَدُّکَ وَ لَا ِالٰہَ غَیرُک

”Subhaanak-Allaahumma, wa bihamdika, wa tabaarakasmuka, wa ta’aalaa jadduka, wa laa ilaaha ghayruka.”

Muslims then ask refuge from Allah (God) from such as:

”acūdhu bi-llāhi min ash-shayṭāni r-rajīm”.

The recitation of the Quran begins with:

”b-ism illāhi r-raḥmāni r-raḥīm”). Surah Al-Fatiha is recited.

If this is the first or second raka’ah, the recitation of Al-Fatiha is followed with a recitation from any other section from the Quran of choice. The takbeer is said again and the hands are raised as previously described and the next position, ruku’, begins.


The palms are placed on the knees, with finger spaced out. The back is erected at an angle at which poured water may not fall from it. Some of many types of remembrances of God are recited for this situation such as:

سبحان ربى العظيم


Subḥāna rabbī al-Aẓīm, meaning “Glory to my Lord, the Most Magnificent”) three times or more.

I’tidal and stopping

I’tidal is the standing again after ruku’. The back is straightened and the hands are raised as in takbir as mentioned before but saying:

سمع الله لمن حمده

Transliteration: ”samica allāhu li-man ḥamidah”,

Meaning “Allah listens and responds to the one who praises him”.

Some of many praises to God are said for this situation such as:

ربنا لك الحمد

Transliteration: ”rabbanā wa-laka al-ḥamd”.

Meaning “O our Lord! And all praise is for You”).

The takbir is said and the hands are either raised or do not raised as mentioned before as the next position, prostration, begins with hands on the ground before knees.

Prostration| Sajdah

As much of the ground must be felt by the nose as the forehead. The elbows are raised and the palms are on level with either the shoulders or the ears, with fingers together.

Some of many types of remembrances of God are recited for this situation such as:

سبحان ربى الأعلى وبحمده

Transliteration: ”subḥāna rabbī al-‘aclā wa-bi-ḥamdih”

Meaning “Glory to my Lord, the Most High Most Praiseworthy”) three times or more. The takbir is said again and the hands are either raised or not raised as mentioned before while the next position, kneeling, begins.

Sitting in salah

While sitting, either the left foot is placed along the ground with the right foot upright or both feet are kept upright. Some of many types of remembrances are recited for this situation such as:

”rabb ‘ighfir lī, rabb ‘ighfir lī”

(meaning “O my Lord, forgive me! O my Lord, forgive me!”).  The takbir is said again and the hands are either raised or not raised as mentioned before as the second prostration begins.

Second prostrations are done exactly as the first time

The head is raised and the takbir is said again and the hands either raised or not raised as mentioned before. If this is either the second or last raka’ah, the sitting position begins again. Otherwise, the standing position begins again with the start of a new raka’ah.

Second sitting

If this is the second raka’ah, sitting is done as before. If this is not the second raka’ah, the left thigh is placed on the ground and both feet are protruding from the right side with the right foot either upright or along the ground. The left palm leans on the left knee.

The index finger is pointed towards the qibla.

The tashahhud is recited, which is:

التحياتُ لله والصلواتُ والطيباتُ، السلامُ عليكَ أيها النبيّ ورحمةُ الله وبركاتُهُ،
السلامُ علينا وعلى عبادِ الله الصالحين، أشهدُ أنْ لا إله إلا الله، وأشهدُ أنَ محمداً عبدُهُ ورسولُه

  • At-taḥīyyātu li-llāhi
  • waṣ-ṣalawātu waṭ-ṭayyibātu,
  • as-salāmu calayka ‘ayyuhā an-nabīyyu wa-raḥmatu llāhi wa-barakātu,
  • as-salāmu calaynā wa-calā cibādi llāhi ṣ-ṣāliḥīna,
  • ‘ashhadu ‘anna lā ‘ilāha ‘illā allāha wa-‘ashhadu ‘anna muḥammadan cabduhu wa-rasūluhu.”)

(”The tashahhud can also be recited as at-tahiyyatul mubarakatu assalawatu tayyibatu lillah, assalamu alaika ayyuhan nabiyu wa rahmatul-lahi wa barakatuhu, assalamu alaina wa ‘ala ‘ibad allahi assaliheen, ash-hadu ana la ilaha illa Allah wa ash-hadu anna muhammadan rasoolu-llah”). Both versions are authentic.

Greetings for the Prophet Muhammad are recited, such as:

اللهم صلى على محمد وعلى آل محمد كما صليت على إبراهيم وعلى آل إبراهيم
وبارك على محمد وعلى آل محمد كما باركت على إبراهيم وعلى آل إبراهيم
فى العالمين إنك حميد مجيد


Allaahumma salli ‘alaa Muhammadin wa ‘alaa ali Muhammadin Kamaa sallaita ‘alaa Ibraaheem wa ‘alaa ali Ibraaheem Innaka hameedun Majeed Alaahumma baarik ‘ala Muhammadin wa ‘alaa ali Muhammadin Kamaa baarakta ‘alaa Ibraaheem wa ‘alaa ali Ibraaheem fil ‘alameen Innaka hameedun Majeed,”)

Which translates to: 

O Allah, bless our master Muhammad and the people of our master Muhammad as you have blessed our master Abraham and the people of our master Abraham. O Allah, be gracious unto our master Muhammad and the people of our master Muhammad As you were gracious unto our master Abraham and the people of our master Abraham, among the nations. Surely you are the Most Praiseworthy, the Most Glorious.”

If this is not the last raka’ah(unit of prayer), a new raka’ah with standing up with the takbir and the hands are either raised or not raised as mentioned before.

If this is the last raka’ah, the greetings of salam are said to the right such as:

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله

Transliteration: “As-Salaamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullaah,”

Meaning “May Allaah grant you peace and security, and may His Mercy be upon you”) and then similarly to the left.

Shia version:

Tashahhud Rule 1109 by Ayatullah Sistani, In the second unit of all obligatory prayers, and in the third unit of Maghrib prayers and in the fourth unit of Zuhr, Asr and Isha prayers, one should sit after the second prostration with a tranquil body, and recite tashahhud thus: “Ash hadu an la ilaha illal lahu wahdahu la sharika lah, wa ash hadu anna Muhammadan ‘Abduhu wa Rasuluh, Alla humma salli ‘ala Muhammadin wa Ali Muhammad”.

And it will be sufficient if one recited the tashahhud this way: Ash hadu an la ilaha illal lahu was ash hadu anna Muhammadan Sallal lahu Alayhi Wa Aalihi Abduhu Wa rasuluh. It is also necessary to recite tashahhud while offering Witr (in Namaz-e-Shab) prayers. Salam in the prayers

Then he should say: Assalamu Alaykum and as a recommended precaution add to it Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh. Alternatively, he can say: Assalamu Alayna Wa Ala Ibadi llahis Salihin. But if he recites this Salam, then as per obligatory precaution, he must follow it up with saying:

Assalamu Alaykum. Translation of Tashahhud and Salam.

Prayer in congregation

Prayer in congregation (jama’ah) is considered to have more social and spiritual benefit than praying by oneself. When praying in congregation, the people stand in straight parallel rows behind the chosen imam, facing qibla. The imam, who leads the congregation in salat, is usually chosen to be a scholar or the one who has the best knowledge of the Qur’an, preferably someone who has memorised it (a hafiz).

In the first row behind the imam, if available, would be another hafiz to correct the imam in case a mistake is made during the performance of the salat. The prayer is performed as normal, with the congregation following the actions and movements of the imam as he performs the salat.

Upon entering the mosque, “Tahiyyatul masjid” may be performed; this is to pay respects to the mosque. Every Muslim entering the mosque is encouraged to perform these two rakats. When the worshippers consist of men and women combined, a man is chosen as the imam. In this situation, women are typically forbidden from performing this role.

This point, though unanimously agreed on by the major schools of Islam, is disputed by some groups, based partly on a hadith whose interpretation is controversial. When the congregation consists entirely of women and pre-pubescent children, one woman is chosen as imam.

When men, women, and children are praying, the children’s rows are usually between the men’s and women’s rows, with the men at the front and women at the back. Another configuration is where the men’s and women’s rows are side by side, separated by a curtain or other barrier, with the primary intention being for there to be no direct line of sight between male and female worshippers, following a Qur’anic injunction toward men and women each lowering their gazes (Qur’an 24:30–31).

Types of prayers

Prayers may be classified into four categories of obligation:

  • Fard,
  • Wajib,
  • Sunnah, and
  • Nafl

Fard As-salat:

The fard as-salat are the five compulsory daily prayers, the Friday prayer (jumu’ah), and the funeral prayer (janazah). Nonperformance of fard as-salat renders one a non-Muslim according to the Hanbali Sunni School, while for the other Sunni schools it renders one a sinner. The denial of its compulsory status, however, is agreed upon by all Sunni schools to render the denier outside the fold of Islam.

Fard prayers:

(as with all fard actions) are further classed as fard al-ayn (obligation of the self) and fard al-kifayah (obligation of sufficiency). Fard al-ayn are those actions that are obligatory on each individual; he or she will be held to account if the actions are not performed. Fard al-kifayah are actions obligatory on the Muslim community at large, so that if some people within the community carry it out no Muslim is considered blameworthy, but if no one carries it out all incur a collective punishment.

Men are required to perform the fard salah in congregation (jama’ah), behind an imam when they are able. According to most Islamic scholars, performing prayers in congregation is mustahabb(recommended) for men, when they are able, but is neither required nor forbidden for women.

The five daily prayers

1 Fajr | 2 Dhuhr | 3 Asr | 4 Maghrib | 5 Isha’a.

Muslims are commanded to perform prayers five times a day. These prayers are obligatory on every Muslim who have reached the age of puberty, with the exception being those who are mentally ill, too physically ill for it to be possible, menstruating, or experiencing postnatal bleeding.

Those who are ill or otherwise physically unable to offer their prayers in the traditional form are permitted to offer their prayers while sitting or lying, as they are able. The five prayers are each assigned to certain prescribed times (al waqt) at which they must be performed, unless there is a compelling reason for not being able to perform them on time.

Some Muslims offer voluntary prayers (sunna rawatib) immediately before and after the prescribed fard prayers. Sunni Muslims classify these prayers as sunnah, while Shi’ah consider them nafil. The number of raka’ah for each of the five obligatory prayers as well as the voluntary prayers (before and after) are listed below:

Salat and Sunnah


Sunni Muslims also perform two raka’ah nafl (voluntary) after the Dhuhr and Maghrib prayers. During the Isha’a prayer, they perform the two raka’ah nafl after the two Sunnat-Mu’akkadah and after the witr prayer.

  1. According to Shia Muslims, these are to be performed in sets of two raka’ah each, This is not the case for Sunni muslims.
  2. According to Sunni Muslims, for the Sunnat Raka’ah there is a difference between Sunnat-Mu’akkadah (obligatory) and Sunnat-Ghair-Mu’akkadah (voluntary). The Sunnat-Mu’akkadah was prayed by Muhammed daily. This was not the case for the Sunnat-Ghair-Mu’akkadah.
  3. Mustahab (praiseworthy) to do everyday. (Shias)
  4. Replaced by Jumu’ah on Fridays, which consists of two raka’ah.
  5. According to Imam Abu Hanifa, “Asr starts when the shadow of an object becomes twice its height (plus the length of its shadow at the start time of Dhuhr).” For the rest of Imams, “Asr starts when the shadow of an object becomes equal to its length (plus the length of its shadow at the start time of Dhuhr).” Asr ends as the sun begins to set.
  6. According to Shia Muslims, ‘Asr prayer and ‘Ishaa prayer have no set times but are performed from mid-day. Zuhr and ‘Asr prayers must be performed before sunset, and the time for ‘Asr prayer starts after Zuhr has been performed. Maghrib and ‘Ishaa prayers must be performed before midnight, and the time for ‘Ishaa prayer can start after Maghrib has been performed, as long as no more light remains in the western sky signifying the arrival of the true night.
  7. According to Shia Muslims, this prayer is termed nawafil.
  8. Further information on the usage of the word “Isha” (evening)


Salat al-Jumu’ah is a congregational prayer on Friday which replaces the dhuhr prayer. It is compulsory upon men to perform it in congregation, while women may perform it so or may perform dhuhr salat instead. Salat al-Jumu’ah consists of a sermon (khutba) given by the speaker (khatib) after which two raka’ah are performed. There is no Salat al-Jumu’ah without a khutba.

Wajib salat

Wajib As-salat are compulsory, non-performance of which renders one a sinner. However, the evidence of the obligation is open to interpretation, with some of the madhab saying it is obligatory while others saying it is optional. To deny that a fard salah is obligatory is an act of disbelief while denying the obligation of a wajib salah is not disbelief. There are some who believe that as the 5 prayers are obligatory, it automatically renders all other prayers optional.

Sunnah salat

Sun’nah sal’ah are optional and were additional voluntary prayers performed by Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) — they are of two types the Sun’nah Mukkaddah, those practiced on a regular basis, which if abandoned cause the abandoner to be regarded as sinful by the Hanafi School and the Sun’nah Ghair Mukkaddah, those practiced on a semi-regular practice by Prophet Muhammad about which all are agreed that their abandonment doesn’t render one sinful.

Certain sunnah prayers have prescribed waqts associated with them. Those ordained for before each of the fard prayers must be performed between the first call to prayer (adhan) and the second call (iqama) which signifies the start of the fard prayer. Those sunnah ordained for after the fard prayers can be performed any time between the end of the fard prayers and the end of the current prayer’s waqt. Any amount of extra raka’ah may be offered, but most madha’ib prescribe a certain number of raka’ah for each sunnah salah.

Nafl salat

Nafl salat (supererogatory prayers) are voluntary, and one may offer as many as he or she likes almost any time. There are many specific conditions or situations when one may wish to offer nafl prayers. They cannot be offered at sunrise, true noon, or sunset. The prohibition against salat at these times is to prevent the practice of sun worship.


Witr is performed after the salah of isha’a (dusk). Some Muslims consider witr wajib while others consider it optional. It may contain any odd number of raka’ah from one to eleven according to the different schools of jurisprudence. However, Witr is most commonly offered with three raka’ah.

To end prayers for the night after isha’a, the odd numbered raka’ah must have the niyyah of (“wajib-ul-Lail”), which is mandatory to “close” one’s salat for that day.

Shi’ahs offer this as a one raka’ah salah at the end of salatul layl (the night prayer), which is an optional prayer according to some shi’ah scholars, and a wajib (obligatory) prayer according to others. This is to be prayed any time after Isha, up until fajr. The best time to pray it is the last third of the night (the night being divided into three, between maghrib and fajr of that night). It is considered highly meritorious by all shi’ah Muslims, and is said to bring numerous benefits to the believer, mainly gaining proximity to Allah.

There are various methods of salatul-layl’s performance, including shorter and longer versions, in the longer version the believer must perform 8 nawafil salat, in sets of 2 raka’ah each, then they must pray a 2 raka’ah salah called ‘salatul shafa’ah’ this is to include surah nas after surah fatihah in the first raka’ah and surah falaq after surah fatihah in the secound raka’ah, and unusually no qunut (a du’ah recited before going into ruku’ of the secound raka’ah of most prayers performed by shi’ahs).

It is after this that the believer performs salatul witr, it’s long method being – Starting with takbiratul ehram, then surah fatihah, then surah ikhlas, then surah falaq, then surah nas, then the hands are raised to recite qunut, upon which the believer can recite any du’a, however there are many recommended du’as for this purpose. Within qunut, the believer must pray for the forgiveness of 40 believers, then further prayers are read where the believer asks for forgiveness for himself a certain number of times using specified phrases and amounts of times to repeat those phrases.

The believer then completes the salah in the usual way, by completing his qunut, reciting takbir whilst rasing his hands, going into ruku’ and reciting the usual phrase for that, then returning up right and reciting takbir whilst doing so and upon being upright recites ‘sami allahu liman hamida’ (verily Allah has heard the one who has praised him) thereupon the believer recites takbir whilst raising his hands and goes into sajda.

He recites the proscribed phrase in sajda rises, recites takbir whilst rising and then again whilst returnin to sajdah, then rises with takbir again and recites tashahud and salam, thus ending this prayer. It is then optional to recite certain other du’as and dhikr (remembrance of Allah through certain phrases and some of his names being repeated) It is then recommended to perform and sajdah ash-shukr (prostration of thanks) and to then recite ayatul kursi (verse of the throne) and then perform another sajdah ash-shukr.

Salat al Eid

Eid salat is performed on the morning of Eid ul-Fitr and Eid ul-Adha.

The Eid prayer is most likely an individual obligation (fard al-ayn) and Niyyah for both Eid salat is made as Wajib, though some Islamic scholars argue it is only a collective obligation ”fard al-kifayah”.

It consists of two raka’at, with seven (or three for the followers Imam Hanafi) takbirs offered before the start of the first raka’ah and five (or three for the followers of Imam Hanafi) before the second. After the salat is completed, a sermon (khutbah) is offered. However, the khutbah is not an integral part of the Eid salat. The Eid salat must be offered between sunrise and true noon i.e. between the time periods for Fajr and Dhuhr.


Salat al-Istikhaarah is a prayer performed when a Muslim needs guidance on a particular matter, such as whether they should marry a certain person. In order to perform this salah one should perform a normal two raka’at salah to completion. After completion one should say a du’a called the Istikhaarah du’a. The intention for the salah should be in one’s heart to perform two raka’at of salah followed by Istikhaarah. The salah can be performed at any of the times where salah is not forbidden.

The salah must be performed in the Arabic language.


In certain circumstances one may be unable to perform one’s prayer within the prescribed time period (waqt). In this case, the prayer must be performed as soon as one is able to do so. Several Ahadith narrate that Muhammad stated that permissible reasons to perform Qada Salah are forgetfulness and accidentally sleeping through the prescribed time. However, knowingly sleeping through the prescribed time for Salah is deemed impermissible.

Qasr and Jam’ bayn as-Salaatayn

When travelling over long distances, one may shorten some prayers, a practice known as qasr. Furthermore, several prayer times may be joined, which is referred to as Jam’ bayn as-Salaatayn. Qasr involves shortening the obligatory components of the Dhuhr, Asr, and Isha’a prayers to two raka’ah. Jam’ bayn as-Salaatayn combines the Dhuhr and Asr prayers into one prayer offered between noon and sunset, and the Maghrib and Isha’a prayers into one between sunset and Fajr. Neither Qasr nor Jam’ bayn as-Salaatayn can be applied to the Fajr prayer.

There is no reference to Qasr during travel within the Qur’an itself; the Qur’an allows for Qasr when there is fear of attack, but does not forbid it for travel in non-hostile circumstances.

Sajdah of forgetfulness

During the ritual salah prayer, if a person forgets to do one of the actions of prayer he can make up for certain actions by performing two sujud at the end of the prayer. This can only be done if specific types of actions are forgotten by the person praying.

Quranist Salat

The concept of Quranist Salat Timings has been discussed in Hujjat Allah Al-Baligha (Arabic/Urdu) by Shah Waliullah. He said that there are 3 Salat timings (prayers) instead of the 5 Salats (prayers).

The numbers of regular Salat mentioned by their respective names in Arabic in the Qur’an are three as follows:

  1. Ṣalāt Fajr (Dawn Prayer)
  2. Aṣ-Ṣalāt al-Wusṭā ( The Middle Prayer)
  3. Ṣalāt cIshā’ (Night Prayer)

Salat timings according to Quranists and other minorities

Salat Timings of Qur’an are mentioned, in particular three salat times are described and that they are recorded in a written document. The Qur’an states that you should interrupt any activity you were previously doing to pray, as this betters the individual.[58] Also noted is the volume at which the salat should be uttered, somewhere in between spoken aloud and spoken in a low tone.

The time for performing Fajr (Dawn) Prayer starts when the first thin ray of light is observed in the sky and ends at the first “taraf” (terminal) of the day, or sunrise.

The time for performing middle or Salat Al-Wusta can be observed from the moment the sun begins its descend from its highest point in the sky (duluk al shams) until sunset but before the darkness of the night (ghasaq al-layl) starts to set in.

Duluk ash-shams

Can also mean ‘sunset.’ It literally means ‘the rubbing of the sun.’ The most accepted meaning is that this means the apparent rubbing of the sun with the horizon at sunset. Although, the meaning of a declining noon sun can also be found in Classical Arabic sources. Literally, it can imply a meaning of both sunset and dawn in its meaning of a sun making apparent contact i.e. ‘rubbing’ with the horizon.

The Qur’an, if we take the understanding of ‘a declining noon sun’ implies that the time of the Middle prayer ends with sunset. Some Quranists however believe that there are only two Salat, dawn and dusk including the times of night close to these two periods.

Some groups like Ahl Al-Quran ( and The Submitters believe that the 5 Salat as they are practiced by Muslims today were passed down from Abraham generationally through the Arabs and the Children of Israel, to then be inherited by those who adopted the Quran (and rejected by most Jews and Christians), as a ritual of the religion of Abraham.

Some extreme elements totally disavow prayer altogether through different interpretations of the word salat. In one reportedly obscure source, claimed to be a Slavic/Arabic dictionary (source of the report is from the word is reported to mean ‘Obligation.’ Some see the word salat as a derivation of the root ‘wasala’ (defined as to connect/arrive) and one of its corresponding nouns ‘silah’, meaning connection.

The word does have a meaning of ‘to follow close behind’ (See Lane’s Lexicon) but other meanings not based on Classical Arabic dictionaries, which stray from the concept of prayer, have been proposed for the word within Quranist circles.

However, the Quran itself was most definitely not composed by Muhammad in pure classical Arabic, but shows many borrowings and calques from the Aramaic, and, especially, Syriac languages and Jewish and Christian holy materials written in those languages, so, with recourse only to classical Arabic vocabulary, an understanding of the infamously dense, and in places incomprehensible—according to the rules of classical Arabic—Quran will invariably fall short or be incorrect.

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