Salat - Prayers

 

 

Ref:         http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salah

                http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/pillars/prayer/albaani/prayer_1.html

                http://www.al-islam.org/encyclopedia/chapter7/6.html

                http://www.suficenter.org/Practices/witr.html

What is Salat

Salat is one of the 5 pillars of Islam. It was prescribed to mankind by Allah.

 

In the Qur'an it is mentioned that:

 

"The true believers are those who feel a fear in their hearts (of the consequences of violating the commands of Allah) when Allah 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." (8:2)

and also:

 

“To those whose hearts when Allah 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” (22:35)

 

Salat is a very important part of the deen. It is one of the keys to Jannah.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 21, Number 250: Narrated Abu Huraira:  At the time of the Fajr prayer the Prophet asked Bilal, "Tell me of the best deed you did after embracing Islam, for I heard your footsteps in front of me in Paradise." Bilal replied, "I did not do anything worth mentioning except that whenever I performed ablution during the day or night, I prayed after that ablution as much as was written for me."

 

 

Where did Salat come from

Salat came from an order that Muhammad (pbuh) received in his Night Ascension.  The journey from the Kaba to the Prophet’s Mosque is defined in the Quran as follows:

 

Sura Al-Isra, 17:1 - Glory to (Allah) Who did take His servant for a Journey by night from the Sacred Mosque to the farthest Mosque, whose precincts We did bless,- in order that We might show him some of Our Signs: for He is the One Who heareth and seeth (all things

 

Sura Al-Isra, 17:60 - Behold! We told thee that thy Lord doth encompass mankind round about: We granted the vision which We showed thee, but as a trial for men

 

Originally Allah commanded us to do 50 prayers in a 24 hour period, but thanks to Muhammad and some nudging from Moses (pbuh), we are only required to do 5. However the blessings are still as if we did 50 prayers in a day.

 

Bukhari Volume 9, Book 93, Number 608:  Narrated Anas bin Malik:  <more to this hadith than this>

Then the Prophet descended till he met Moses, and then Moses stopped him and asked, "O Muhammad ! What did your Lord en join upon you?" The Prophet replied," He enjoined upon me to perform fifty prayers in a day and a night." Moses said, "Your followers cannot do that; Go back so that your Lord may reduce it for you and for them." So the Prophet turned to Gabriel as if he wanted to consult him about that issue. Gabriel told him of his opinion, saying, "Yes, if you wish." So Gabriel ascended with him to the Irresistible and said while he was in his place, "O Lord, please lighten our burden as my followers cannot do that." So Allah deducted for him ten prayers where upon he returned to Moses who stopped him again and kept on sending him back to his Lord till the enjoined prayers were reduced to only five prayers.

 

Then Moses stopped him when the prayers had been reduced to five and said, "O Muhammad! By Allah, I tried to persuade my nation, Bani Israel to do less than this, but they could not do it and gave it up. However, your followers are weaker in body, heart, sight and hearing, so return to your Lord so that He may lighten your burden."

 

The Prophet turned towards Gabriel for advice and Gabriel did not disapprove of that. So he ascended with him for the fifth time. The Prophet said, "O Lord, my followers are weak in their bodies, hearts, hearing and constitution, so lighten our burden." On that the Irresistible said, "O Muhammad!" the Prophet replied, "Labbaik and Sa'daik." Allah said, "The Word that comes from Me does not change, so it will be as I enjoined on you in the Mother of the Book." Allah added, "Every good deed will be rewarded as ten times so it is fifty (prayers) in the Mother of the Book (in reward) but you are to perform only five (in practice)."

 

 

Salat is very important and should not be missed.

 

Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 31, Number 121:  'Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever gives two kinds (of things or property) in charity for Allah's Cause, will be called from the gates of Paradise and will be addressed, 'O slaves of Allah! Here is prosperity.' So, whoever was amongst the people who used to offer their prayers, will be called from the gate of the prayer; and whoever was amongst the people who used to participate in Jihad, will be called from the gate of Jihad; and whoever was amongst those who used to observe fasts, will be called from the gate of Ar-Raiyan; whoever was amongst those who used to give in charity, will be called from the gate of charity." Abu Bakr said, "Let my parents be sacrificed for you, O Allah's Apostle! No distress or need will befall him who will be called from those gates. Will there be any one who will be called from all these gates?" The Prophet replied, "Yes, and I hope you will be one of them."

 

 

Cleanliness and dress

When praying, the clothes that are worn and the place of prayer must be clean. Men and women each are directed to cover their bodies (aurah) in reasonably loose-fitting garments. When in prayer, women must cover their heads. In accordance with tradition, many men choose to wear a kufi cap or other headcovering for prayer which is used also to secure the hair from covering the forehead. During 'sujud' the forehead should be in contact with the floor and not covered by hair.

 

The different schools have differing opinions on whether the feet, hands and face need to be fully covered or can be exposed up to the ankles.

 

The Hanafis believe it is wajib upon a woman to cover the back of her hands and the soles of her feet as well, and upon a man to cover his knees in addition to the area between the navel and the knees.

 

The Shafi'is and Malikis say that it is permissible for a woman to keep her face and both the palms and the back of her hands uncovered during salat.

 

The Hanbalis state that it is not permissible for her to expose any part except the face.

 

The Imamis observe that it is wajib for both men and women to cover only those parts of their body during salat which they are supposed to cover ordinarily in the presence of a 'stranger'. Hence it is permissible for a woman to expose during salat that part of her face which is washed during wudu'; her hands up to the wrists, and her feet up to the ankles both the back as well as the palms of hands and the soles of feet. For a man, it is wajib to cover the rear and the private parts, though better to cover the entire area between the navel and the knees.

 

Ritual ablution

 

Before conducting prayers, a Muslim has to perform wudu.  Wudu consists of washing the hands, mouth, nose, face, arms, forehead and hair, ears and feet three times each in that order. Tayammum can also be performed, if water is not readily available and consists of wiping only the hands and face with sand or dust.

 

Wudu is considered to cleanse a Muslim in a permanent fashion, such that he does not have to re-perform it for each salah (unless he commits an act that breaks his wudu). Tayammum however has to be re-performed before each salat.

 

The major ablution (ghusl) is required when a person has had sexual intercourse, ejected semen, has had menstrual bleeding. Ghusl may also be performed voluntarily especially before Friday prayers.

 

 

Direction of Salat

 

The direction of salat used to be towards Jerusalem until Allah ordered it to be changed to the direction of the Kaba.

 

Quran: 2:143-144 - Thus We have appointed you a middle nation, that ye may be witnesses against mankind, and that the messenger may be a witness against you. And We appointed the qiblah which ye formerly observed only that We might know him who followeth the messenger, from him who turneth on his heels. In truth it was a hard (test) save for those whom Allah guided. But it was not Allah's purpose that your faith should be in vain, for Allah is Full of Pity, Merciful toward mankind. We have seen the turning of thy face to heaven (for guidance, O Muhammad). And now verily We shall make thee turn (in prayer) toward a qiblah which is dear to thee. So turn thy face toward the Inviolable Place of Worship, and ye (O Muslims), wheresoever ye may be, turn your faces (when ye pray) toward it. Lo! Those who have received the Scripture know that (this revelation) is the Truth from their Lord. And Allah is not unaware of what they do.

 

The hadith that explains this ayat is as follows:

 

Bukhari: Volume 9, Book 91, Number 358:   Narrated Al-Bara':   When Allah's Apostle arrived at Medina, he prayed facing Jerusalem for sixteen or seventeen months but he wished that he would be ordered to face the Ka'ba. So Allah revealed: --

'Verily! We have seen the turning of your face towards the heaven; surely we shall turn you to a prayer direction (Qibla) that shall please you.' (2.144) Thus he was directed towards the Ka'ba. A man prayed the 'Asr prayer with the Prophet and then went out, and passing by some people from the Ansar, he said, "I testify. that I have prayed with the Prophet and he (the Prophet) has prayed facing the Ka'ba." Thereupon they, who were bowing in the 'Asr prayer, turned towards the Ka'ba.

 

All fard salat must be done towards the Kaba. When traveling, the supplicant can face the direction of travel or stop and make a sound judgement as to where the salat direction should be.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 199:   Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah, The Prophet used to offer the Nawafil, while riding, facing a direction other than that of the Qibla.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 202: Narrated 'Amir bin Rabi'a,  I saw the Prophet on his Mount praying Nawafil by nodding his head, whatever direction he faced, but Allah's Apostle never did the same in offering the compulsory prayers. Narrated Salim: At night'Abdullah bin 'Umar used to offer the prayer on the back of his animal during the journey and never cared about the direction he faced. Ibn 'Umar said, "Allah's Apostle used to offer the optional prayer on the back of his Mount facing any direction and also used to pray the Witr on it but never offered the compulsory prayer on it."

 

Based on these hadiths, it is allowable to perform non-fard prayers while traveling in a car or other vehicle of transport.  However, the fard must be done while stationary. In such cases, one must ask oneself what to do while traveling on a plane or ship that can not stop for the supplicant to perform the fard.  The situation is even more difficult to discern if there are 2 or more people who feel they know best which direction the Kaba is.  In such cases, it is up to each individual to make every effort to determine their Kaba and pray in that direction, even if it differs from the person next to them.

 

Should the prayer that is done with an estimated Kaba be redone? This answer varies with the different schools.  The final verdict is in our intentions and the mercy of Allah. Most schools say that the prayer does not need to be redone. 

 

It should be noted that, if one is able to somehow determine the direction of Kaba to be different AS they are praying, they must immediately change to the new direction while in prayer. This is evident because the supplicants changed direction while praying Asr. (see above hadith)

 

 

Types of salat

 

Salat may be classified into four categories of obligation: fard, wajib, Sunnah and nafl.

 

Fard salat are compulsory and must be performed by all Muslims who are able and sound of mind above the age of puberty.

 

Wajib salat are compulsory; non-performance of which renders one a sinner and the denial of its obligatory nature renders one a 'fasiq' a transgressor whose witness would not be accepted in an Islamic court. There are some who believe that as the 5 prayers are obligatory, it automatically renders all other prayers optional.

 

Sunnah salat are optional and were additional voluntary prayers performed by Muhammad—they are of two types—the 'Sunna Muakaddah', those practiced on a regular basis which if abandoned cause the abandoner to be regarded as sinful by the Hanafi School and the 'Sunnah Ghair Muakkadah' those practiced on a semi-regular practice by Muhammad which all are agreed upon that its abandonment doesn't render one sinful.

 

Nafl salat are optional and regarded as extra prayers which bring more reward.

 

Fard salat

 

The fard salat are the five compulsory daily prayers, the Friday prayer (Jumu'ah) and the funeral prayer (Janazah).

 

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 which 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 salat in congregation (jama'ah), behind an imam when they are able. According to most Islamic scholars, performing salat in congregation is obligatory for men, when they are able, but is neither required nor forbidden for women.

 

Sunnah salat

 

Sunnah salat are those prayers that are performed to emulate the practices of Muhammad. Sunni Muslims also perform Sunnah prayers for extra reward.

 

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 prescribes 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 and from Allah’s commands.

 

 

 


5 Daily Prayers

 

The five prayers are all given certain prescribed times (waqt) in which they must be performed, unless there is a compelling reason for not being able to perform them on time.

 

Quran 4:103/4:104 in some translations - Verily, Prayers are enjoined upon the Believers at times assigned in a written document.

 

Sura Hud - 11: 114  - And establish regular prayers at the two ends of the day and at the approaches of the night.

 

Sura Taha: 20:130 - Therefore, be patient in the face of their utterances, and praise and glorify your Lord before sunrise and before sunset. And during the night glorify Him, as well as at both ends of the day, that you may be happy.

 

Sura Al-Isra 17:78 - Establish regular prayers - at the sun's decline till the darkness of the night, and the morning prayer and reading: for the prayer and reading in the morning carry their testimony. – ie. the reading of the Quran is witnessed in the dawn

 

 

Name

Prescribed time period (waqt)

Voluntary before fard

Fard

Voluntary after fard

Fajr (فجر)

Dawn to sunrise

2 Raka'ah1  Sunnah

2 Raka'ah

-

 

Salat Fajr (صَلَاةِ الْفَجْرِ) (Dawn Prayer), (Sura Al-Nur 24:58).

 

Sura Hud 11:114 - You shall observe the contact prayers at both ends of the daylight, that is, during the adjacent hours of the night".

 

Sura Al-Baqarah 2:187 - The white thread of light becomes distinguishable from the dark thread of night at dawn."

 

52:49 - ..and at dawn as the stars fade away."

 

Sunna of Fajr can be done long before the Fard of the prayer. 

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 21, Number 258: Narrated 'Aisha :  After offering the Sunna of the Fajr prayer, the Prophet used to talk to me, if I happen to be awake; otherwise he would lie down till the Iqama call was proclaimed (for the Fajr prayer).

 

Muhammad (pbuh) emphasized the importance of the Fajr Sunna.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 21, Number 260: Narrated 'Aisha: The Prophet was never more regular and particular in offering any Nawafil than the two Rakat (Sunna) of the Fajr prayer.

 

Dhuhr (ظهر)

After true noon until Asr

2-4 Raka'ah1 Sunnah

4 Raka'ah2

2 Raka'ah1 Sunnah

Asr (عصر)

See footnote3

2-4 Raka'ah Sunnah

4 Raka'ah

-

 

Sura Al-Baqarah 2:238 - Guard strictly your (habit of) prayers, especially the Middle Prayer; and stand before Allah in a devout (frame of mind).

 

Sura Al-Isra 17:78 - Establish regular prayers - at the sun’s decline till the darkness of the night, and the morning prayer and reading: for the prayer and reading in the morning carry their testimony.

 

Sura Al-Isra 17:78 - You shall observe the Salat (Contact Prayer) from when the sun declines from its highest point up till the 'ghasaq al-layl' (the darkness of the night).

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 527:  Narrated Ibn 'Umar:   Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever misses the 'Asr prayer (intentionally) then it is as if he lost his family and property."

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 528:  Narrated Abu Al-Mahh:  We were with Buraida in a battle on a cloudy day and he said, "Offer the 'Asr prayer early as the Prophet said, "Whoever leaves the 'Asr prayer, all his (good) deeds will be annulled."

 

 

Maghrib (مغرب)

After sunset until dusk

2-4 Raka'ah

3 Raka'ah

2 Raka'ah1 Sunnah

Isha'a (عشاء)

Dusk until dawn6

4 Raka'ah

4 Raka'ah

2 Raka'ah
+ 3 Raka'ah Witr
1

 

Sura Al-Nur 24: 58 - O ye who believe! let those whom your right hand possess, and those of you, who have not reached puberty, ask leave of you at three times before coming into your private apartments -before the Morning Prayer (Salat Al-Fajr), and when you lay aside your clothes at noon (in summer) and after the night Prayer (Salat Al-Esha). These are the three times of privacy for you. At other times there is no blame on you nor on them, for some of you have to attend upon others and to move about freely according to need. Thus does Allah make plain to you the Signs; for Allah is All-Knowing, Wise.

 

Isha can be done long after the time that the prayer comes in. It was even desired to be done after the prescribed time. It should be noted that Allah comes down to listen for the prayers of Muslims as the evening progresses.

 

Bukhari: Volume 9, Book 90, Number 345:  Narrated 'Ata:  One night the Prophet delayed the Isha' prayer whereupon 'Umar went to him and said, "The prayer, O Allah's Apostle! The women and children had slept." The Prophet came out with water dropping from his head, and said, "Were I not afraid that it would be hard for my followers (or for the people), I would order them to pray Isha prayer at this time." (Various versions of this Hadith are given by the narrators with slight differences in expression but not in content).

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 544:   Narrated Ibn Shihab from 'Urwa:  'Aisha said, "Once Allah's Apostle delayed the 'Isha' prayer till 'Umar reminded him by saying, "The prayer!" The women and children have slept. Then the Prophet came out and said, 'None amongst the dwellers of the earth has been waiting for it (the prayer) except you." Urwa said, "Nowhere except in Medina the prayer used to be offered (in those days)." He further said, "The Prophet used to offer the 'Isha' prayer in the period between the disappearance of the twilight and the end of the first third of the night."

 

 

1 Prayed daily by Muhammad (pbuh)

2 Replaced b Jummah on Friday

3 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.

 

Performing certain sunna’s in the prayer are preferred.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 21, Number 276: Narrated Aisha:  The Prophet never missed four Rakat before the Zuhr prayer and two Rakat before the Fajr prayer.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 59:  Narrated 'Abdullah bin Umar:   Allah's Apostle used to pray two Rakat before the Zuhr prayer and two Rakat after it. He also used to pray two Rakat after the Maghrib prayer in his house, and two Rakat after the 'Isha' prayer. He never prayed after Jumua prayer till he departed (from the Mosque), and then he would pray two Rakat at home.

 

 

Praying before the Maghrib is Mustahab:

 

Volume 2, Book 21, Number 277, 278:  Narrated 'Abdullah Al-Muzni:  The Prophet said, "Pray before the Maghrib (compulsory) prayer." He (said it thrice) and in the third time, he said, "Whoever wants to offer it can do so." He said so because he did not like the people to take it as a tradition.

 

Pray the Fajr and the Asr even if very little time is left.

 

Volume 1, Book 10, Number 531:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "If anyone of you can get one Rak'a of the 'Asr prayer before sunset, he should complete his prayer. If any of you can get one Rak'a of the Fajr prayer before sunrise, he should complete his prayer."

 

It should be noted that one should not pray during the time between the Fajr Fard until sunrise and the Asr Fard until the sun sets and when it is the hottest part of the day for the Zohor salat. These are makruh times for salat.

 

Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 31, Number 215: Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:   (who fought in twelve Ghazawat in the company of the Prophet). I heard four things from the Prophet and they won my admiration. He said;

1. "No lady should travel on a journey of two days except with her husband or a Dhi-Mahram;

2. "No fasting is permissible on the two days of Id-ul-Fitr and 'Id-ul-Adha;

3. "No prayer (may be offered) after the morning compulsory prayer until the sun rises; and no prayer after the 'Asr prayer till the sun sets;

4. "One should travel only for visiting three Masajid (Mosques): Masjid-ul-Haram (Mecca), Masjid-ul-Aqsa (Jerusalem), and this (my) Mosque (at Medina)."

 

 

 

 

Witr

 

Witr is performed after the salah of isha'a. 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.  Witr after Isha is most commonly offered with three raka'ah. 

 

Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 31, Number 202:  Narrated Abu Huraira:   My friend (the Prophet ) advised me to observe three things:    (1) to fast three days a month;    (2) to pray two Rakat of Duha prayer (fore-noon prayer); and  (3) to pray Witr before sleeping.

 

Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 32, Number 230:  Narrated Abu Salama bin 'Abdur Rahman:  that he asked 'Aisha "How was the prayer of Allah's Apostle in Ramadan?" She replied, "He did not pray more than eleven Rakat in Ramadan or in any other month. He used to pray four Rakat ---- let alone their beauty and length----and then he would pray four ----let alone their beauty and length ----and then he would pray three Rakat (Witr)." She added, "I asked, 'O Allah's Apostle! Do you sleep before praying the Witr?' He replied, 'O 'Aisha! My eyes sleep but my heart does not sleep."

 

Bukhari: Volume 8, Book 75, Number 419:   Narrated Abu Huraira:   Allah has ninety-nine Names, i.e., one hundred minus one, and whoever believes in their meanings and acts accordingly, will enter Paradise; and Allah is Witr (one) and loves 'the Witr' (i.e., odd numbers).

 

Witr can also be done after the Tahajjud prayers as the last prayer for the night.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 4, Number 183:   Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Abbas: that he (Muhammad pbuh) prayed two Rakat then two Rakat and two Rakat and then two Rakat and then two Rakat and then two Rakat (separately six times), and finally one Rak'a (the Witr). Then he lay down again in the bed till the Mu'adhdhin came to him where upon the Prophet got up, offered a two light Rakat prayer and went out and led the Fajr prayer

 

It is preferable to perform Witr in the latter part of the night, but it is much better to perform it at the beginning of the night than not at all.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 8, Number 461:  Narrated Nafi':  Ibn 'Umar said, "While the Prophet was on the pulpit, a man asked him how to offer the night prayers. He replied, 'Pray two Rakat at a time and then two and then two and so on, and if you are afraid of the dawn (the approach of the time of the Fajr prayer) pray one Rak'a and that will be the witr for all the Rakat which you have offered." Ibn 'Umar said, "The last Rakat of the night prayer should be odd for the Prophet ordered it to be so.

 

Dua Qunut

 

ALLÂHUMMA INNA NASTA'ÎNUK

 

WA NASTAGhFIRUKA WA NU'MINU BIK

 

WA NATAWAKKALU ‘ALAYK

 

WA NUThNI ‘ALAYKA-L-KhAYR

 

WA NAShKURUKA WA LÂ NAKFURUK

 

ALLÂHUMMA IYYÂKA NA‘BUD

 

WA LAKA NUSALLÎ WA NASJUD

 

WA ILÂKA NAS'Â WA NAHFID

 

WA NARJU RAHMATAK

 

WA NAKShA ‘ADHÂBAK

 

INNA ‘ADHÂBAKA BI-L-KUFFARI MULHIQ

Oh Allah, we seek Your help

 

and we seek Your forgiveness and in You we believe

 

on You we rely completely

 

and You we praise with every good

 

and we are grateful to You and not ungrateful

 

Oh Allah! You alone do we worship

 

and to You we pray and prostrate,

 

and to You we strive and hasten to obey,

 

hoping for Your mercy

 

and fearing Your chastisement

 

Your chastisement shall overtake those who are ungrateful.

 

 

 

Qada

 

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. These prayers performed after the prescribed waqt are called qada. It is not permissible to deliberately miss performing the salat within its waqt with the intention of performing it afterwards.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 571:  Narrated Anas:   The Prophet said, "If anyone forgets a prayer he should pray that prayer when he remembers it. There is no expiation except to pray the same." Then he recited: "Establish prayer for My (i.e. Allah's) remembrance." (20.14).

 

Qada of Fajr:

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 569: Narrated 'Abdullah bin Abi Qatada:  My father said, "One night we were traveling with the Prophet and some people said, 'We wish that Allah's Apostle would take a rest along with us during the last hours of the night.' He said, 'I am afraid that you will sleep and miss the (Fajr) prayer.' Bilal said, 'I will make you get up.' So all slept and Bilal rested his back against his Rahila and he too was overwhelmed (by sleep) and slept. The Prophet got up when the edge of the sun had risen and said, 'O Bilal! What about your statement?' He replied, 'I have never slept such a sleep.' The Prophet said, 'Allah captured your souls when He wished, and released them when He wished. O Bilal! Get up and pronounce the Adhan for the prayer.' The Prophet performed ablution and when the sun came up and became bright, he stood up and prayed."

 

Bukhari: Volume 9, Book 93, Number 563:   Narrated Abu Qatada:   When the people slept till so late that they did not offer the (morning) prayer, the Prophet said, "Allah captured your souls (made you sleep) when He willed, and returned them (to your bodies) when He willed." So the people got up and went to answer the call of nature, performed ablution, till the sun had risen and it had become white, then the Prophet got up and offered the prayer.

 

 

Qada of Asr:

 

Volume 1, Book 10, Number 570: Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah:  On the day of Al-Khandaq (the battle of trench.) 'Umar bin Al-Khattab came cursing the disbelievers of Quraish after the sun had set and said, "O Allah's Apostle I could not offer the 'Asr prayer till the sun had set." The Prophet said, "By Allah! I, too, have not prayed." So we turned towards Buthan, and the Prophet performed ablution and we too performed ablution and offered the 'Asr prayer after the sun had set, and then he offered the Maghrib prayer.

 

 

Qausar and Jamak – Prayers for the Traveler

 

When travelling over long distances, one may shorten some prayers, a practice known as qausar. Furthermore, several prayer times may be joined, which is referred to as jamak.

 

Qausar involves shortening the obligatory components of the Dhuhr, Asr, and Isha'a prayers to two raka'ah.

 

Jamak 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 Jamak can be applied to the Fajr prayer.

 

There is no reference to Qausar during travel within the Qur'an itself; the Qur'an allows for Qausar only when there is fear of attack.

 

It should be noted that the shortening of the prayer and the combination of prayer during travel and for times when prayers can’t be performed on time, are a blessing from Allah. We should not treat them as cheating or taking a short-cut.

 

Qausar Prayers:

 

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 196:  Narrated 'Aisha:  "When the prayers were first enjoined they were of two Rakat each. Later the prayer in a journey was kept as it was but the prayers for non-travellers were completed." Az-Zuhri said, "I asked 'Urwa what made Aisha pray the full prayers (in journey)." He replied, "She did the same as 'Uthman did."

 

Bukhari: Volume 5, Book 59, Number 593:  Narrated 'Ikrima:  Ibn 'Abbas said, "We stayed for 19 days with Prophet on a journey during which we used to offer shortened prayers." Ibn 'Abbas added, "We offer the Qasr prayer (i.e. shortened prayer) If we stay up to 19 days as travelers, But if we stay longer, we offer complete prayers

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 187:  Narrated Yahya bin Ishaq:  I heard Anas saying, "We travelled with the Prophet from Medina to Mecca and offered two Rakat (for every prayer) till we returned to Medina." I said, "Did you stay for a while in Mecca?" He replied, "We stayed in Mecca for ten days."

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 195:  Narrated Anas bin Malik :   offered four Rakat of Zuhr prayer with the Prophet (p.b.u.h) at Medina and two Rakat at Dhul-Hulaifa. (i.e. shortened the 'Asr prayer).

 

 

Jamak Prayers:

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 206: Narrated Ibn 'Umar :  I accompanied Allah's Apostle and he never offered more than two Rakat during the journey. Abu Bakr, 'Umar and 'Uthman used to do the same.

 

Zuhr and Asr prayers can be offered together when traveling.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 209: Narrated Ibn Abbas: Allah's Apostle used to offer the Zuhr and 'Asr prayers together on journeys, and also used to offer the Maghrib and 'Isha' prayers together.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 213: Narrated Anas bin Malik:  Whenever the Prophet started the journey before noon, he used to delay the Zuhr prayer till the time for the 'Asr prayer and then he would dismount and pray them together; and whenever the sun declined before he started the journey he used to offer the Zuhr prayer and then ride (for the journey).

 

Maghrib can be delayed and done along with Isha prayers.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 197:  Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar:  "I saw Allah's Apostle delaying the Maghrib prayer till he offered it along with the 'Isha' prayer whenever he was in a hurry during the journey." Salim narrated, "Ibn 'Umar used to do the same whenever he was in a hurry during the journey." And Salim added, "Ibn 'Umar used to pray the Maghrib and 'Isha' prayers together in Al-Muzdalifa." Salim said, "Ibn 'Umar delayed the Maghrib prayer because at that time he heard the news of the death of his wife Safiya bint Abi 'Ubaid. I said to him, 'The prayer (is due).' He said, 'Go on.' Again I said, 'The prayer (is due).' He said, 'Go on,' till we covered two or three miles. Then he got down, prayed and said, 'I saw the Prophet praying in this way, whenever he was in a hurry during the journey.' 'Abdullah (bin 'Umar) added, "Whenever the Prophet was in a hurry, he used to delay the Maghrib prayer and then offer three Rakat (of the Maghrib) and perform Taslim, and after waiting for a short while, Iqama used to be pronounced for the 'Isha' prayer when he would offer two Rakat and perform Taslim. He would never offer any optional prayer till the middle of the night (when he used to pray the Tahajjud)."

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 210: Narrated Az-Zuhri:  Salim told me, "'Abdullah bin 'Umar said, 'I saw Allah's Apostle delaying the Maghrib prayer till he offered it along with the Isha prayer whenever he was in a hurry during the journey.' " Salim said, "Abdullah bin Umar used to do the same whenever he was in a hurry during the journey. After making the call for Iqama, for the Maghrib prayer he used to offer three Rakat and then perform Tasllm. After waiting for a short while, he would pronounce the Iqama for the 'Isha' prayer and offer two Rakat and perform Taslim. He never prayed any Nawafil in between the two prayers or after the 'Isha' prayers till he got up in the middle of the night (for Tahajjud prayer)."

 

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 209: Narrated Salim's father:  The Prophet used to offer the Maghrib and Isha' prayers together whenever he was in a hurry on a journey.     Narrated Anas bin Malik: The Prophet used to offer the Maghrib and the 'Isha' prayers together on journeys.

 

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 musallees 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.

 

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).

 

Our Prophet mentioned that the prayers done in congregation, for standing in the front line of the jama’t and pronouncing the adhan are filled with blessings.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 589:  Narrated Abu Huraira:   Allah's Apostle said, "If the people knew the reward for pronouncing the Adhan and for standing in the first row (in congregational prayers) and found no other way to get that except by drawing lots they would draw lots, and if they knew the reward of the Zuhr prayer (in the early moments of its stated time) they would race for it (go early) and if they knew the reward of 'Isha' and Fajr (morning) prayers in congregation, they would come to offer them even if they had to crawl."

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 624:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "While a man was going on a way, he saw a thorny branch and removed it from the way and Allah became pleased by his action and forgave him for that." Then the Prophet said, "Five are martyrs: One who dies of plague, one who dies of an abdominal disease, one who dies of drowning, one who is buried alive (and) dies and one who is killed in Allah's cause." (The Prophet further said, "If the people knew the reward for pronouncing the Adhan and for standing in the first row (in the congregational prayer) and found no other way to get it except by drawing lots they would do so, and if they knew the reward of offering the Zuhr prayer early (in its stated time), they would race for it and they knew the reward for 'Isha' and Fajr prayers in congregation, they would attend them even if they were to crawl')

 

 

The blessings of doing prayers in congregation are 25 times greater than prayer alone.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 621:   Narrated Abu Salama bin 'Abdur Rahman:  Abu Huraira said, "I heard Allah's Apostle saying, 'The reward of a prayer in congregation is twenty five times greater than that of a prayer offered by a person alone. The angels of the night and the angels of the day gather at the time of Fajr prayer.' “Abu Huraira then added, "Recite the Holy Book if you wish, for "Indeed, the recitation of the Qur'an in the early dawn (Fajr prayer) is ever witnessed." (17.18).

Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar: The reward of the congregational prayer is twenty seven times greater (than that of the prayer offered by a person alone).

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 620:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "The reward of the prayer offered by a person in congregation is twenty five times greater than that of the prayer offered in one's house or in the market (alone). And this is because if he performs ablution and does it perfectly and then proceeds to the mosque with the sole intention of praying, then for every step he takes towards the mosque, he is upgraded one degree in reward and his one sin is taken off (crossed out) from his accounts (of deeds). When he offers his prayer, the angels keep on asking Allah's Blessings and Allah's forgiveness for him as long as he is (staying) at his Musalla. They say, 'O Allah! Bestow Your blessings upon him, be Merciful and kind to him.' And one is regarded in prayer as long as one is waiting for the prayer."

 

Rows should be straight and close when praying in congregation.

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 685: Narrated An-Nu'man bin 'Bashir:  The Prophet said, "Straighten your rows or Allah will alter your faces."

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 687:  Narrated Anas bin Malik:  Once the Iqama was pronounced and Allah's Apostle faced us and said, "Straighten your rows and stand closer together, for I see you from behind my back.'

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 690: Narrated Anas bin Malik:  The Prophet said, "Straighten your rows as the straightening of rows is essential for a perfect and correct prayer.”

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 692: Narrated Anas bin Malik:  The Prophet said, "Straighten your rows for I see you from behind my back." Anas added, "Everyone of us used to put his shoulder with the shoulder of his companion and his foot with the foot of his companion."

 

One person can also form a row.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 694: Narrated Anas bin Malik:  One night an orphan and I offered the prayers behind the Prophet in my house and my mother (Um Sulaim) was standing behind us (by herself forming a row).

 

When there are two people praying, one should act as the imam and the second person should stand to the right of the imam.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 695: Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:  One night I stood to the left of the Prophet in the prayer but he caught hold of me by the hand or by the shoulder (arm) till he made me stand on his right and beckoned with his hand (for me) to go from behind (him). (Al-Kashmaihani-Fateh al-Bari).

 

What blessings the imam gets in an congregational prayer, the supplicants will also get. If he makes mistakes, the sin is on him but you get the reward for the prayer.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 663:   Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "If the Imam leads the prayer correctly then he and you will receive the rewards but if he makes a mistake (in the prayer) then you will receive the reward for the prayer and the sin will be his."

 

When the adhan is being said, one should repeat after the mu’adhin. The only exception is to say  "La hawla wala quwata illa billah” when the imam says  “Haiya alas-sala”

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 585:  Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:  Allah's Apostle said, "Whenever you hear the Adhan, say what the Mu'adhdhin is saying.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 587:  Narrated Yahya as above (586) and added:  "Some of my companions told me that Hisham had said, "When the Mu'adhdhin said, "Haiya alas-sala(t) (come for the prayer)." Muawiya said, "La hawla wala quwata illa billah (There is neither might nor any power except with Allah)" and added, "We heard your Prophet saying the same."

 

Then after the adhan, one should make the following dua to receive our Prophet’s intercession on the Day of Judgement.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 588:  Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah:  Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever after listening to the Adhan says, 'Allahumma Rabba hadhihi-d-da' watit-tammati was-salatil qa'imati, ati Muhammadan al-wasilata wal-fadilata, wab' athhu maqaman mahmudan-il-ladhi wa' adtahu (O Allah! Lord of this perfect call (of not ascribing partners to You) and of the regular prayer which is going to be established! Kindly give Muhammad the right of intercession and superiority and send him (on the Day of Judgment) to the best and the highest place in Paradise which You promised him)', then intercession for me will be permitted for him on the Day of Resurrection").

 

 

Recite Ameen when the Imam says Ameen after the recital of Sura Fateha.

 

Bukhari: Volume 6, Book 60, Number 2:   Narrated Abu Huraira:   Allah's Apostle said, "When the Imam says: 'Ghair-il-Maghdubi 'Alaihim Walad-Dallin (i.e. not the path of those who earn Your Anger, nor the path of those who went astray (1.7)), then you must say, 'Ameen', for if one's utterance of 'Ameen' coincides with that of the angels, then his past sins will be forgiven."

 

Never make a person get up from their seat when in Jamat.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 34:   Narrated Ibn Juraij:   I heard Nazi' saying, "Ibn Umar, said, 'The Prophet forbade that a man should make another man to get up to sit in his place' ". I said to Nafi', 'Is it for Jumua prayer only?' He replied, "For Jumua prayer and any other (prayer)."

 

 

Follow the imam in whatever he does.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 215:  Narrated Anas bin Malik:  Allah's Apostle (p.b.u.h) fell down from a horse and his right side was either injured or scratched, so we went to inquire about his health. The time for the prayer became due and he offered the prayer while sitting and we prayed while standing. He said, "The Imam is to be followed; so if he says Takbir, you should also say Takbir, and if he bows you should also bow; and when he lifts his head you should also do the same and if he says: Sami'a-l-lahu Liman Hamidah (Allah hears whoever sends his praises to Him) you should say: Rabbana walakal-Hamd (O our Lord! All the praises are for You.") (See Hadith No. 656 Vol. 1).

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 689:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  The Prophet said, "The Imam is (appointed) to be followed. So do not differ from him, bow when he bows, and say, "Rabbana-lakal hamd" if he says "Sami'a-l-lahu Liman hamida"; and if he prostrates, prostrate (after him), and if he prays sitting, pray sitting all together, and straighten the rows for the prayer, as the straightening of the rows is amongst those things which make your prayer a correct and perfect one. (See Hadith No. 657).

 

Do all actions AFTER the imam has done the action.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 658:   Narrated Al-Bara:   (and he was not a liar) When Allah's Apostle said, "Sami a-l-lahu Liman hamida " none of us bent his back (for prostrations) till the Prophet prostrated and then we would prostrate after him.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 660: Narrated Abu Huraira:  The Prophet said, "Isn't he who raises his head before the Imam afraid that Allah may transform his head into that of a donkey or his figure (face) into that of a donkey?"

 

Prayers in congregation should be kept short and simple so as to make it easier on the supplicants.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 673: Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah Al-Ansari:

Once a man was driving two Nadihas (camels used for agricultural purposes) and night had fallen. He found Mu'adh praying so he made his camel kneel and joined Mu'adh in the prayer. The latter recited Surat 'AlBaqara" or Surat "An-Nisa", (so) the man left the prayer and went away. When he came to know that Mu'adh had criticized him, he went to the Prophet, and complained against Mu'adh. The Prophet said thrice, "O Mu'adh ! Are you putting the people to trial?" It would have been better if you had recited "Sabbih Isma Rabbika-l-a-la (87)", Wash-Shamsi wadu-haha (91)", or "Wal-laili Idha yaghsha (92)", for the old, the weak and the needy pray behind you." Jabir said that Mu'adh recited Sura Al-Baqara in the 'Isha' prayer.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 674: Narrated Anas:   The Prophet used to pray a short prayer (in congregation) but used to offer it in a perfect manner.

 

Bukhari:  Volume 1, Book 11, Number 676: Narrated Anas bin Malik:  I never prayed behind any Imam a prayer lighter and more perfect than that behind the Prophet and he used to cut short the prayer whenever he heard the cries of a child lest he should put the child's mother to trial.

 

Never hurry to catch a jama’t.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 608:  Narrated 'Abdullah bin Abi Qatada:  My father said, "While we were praying with the Prophet he heard the noise of some people. After the prayer he said, 'What is the matter?' They replied 'We were hurrying for the prayer.' He said, 'Do not make haste for the prayer, and whenever you come for the prayer, you should come with calmness, and pray whatever you get (with the people) and complete the rest which you have missed."

 


Performance

Salat must be performed with ease and not in a rush.

 

Bukhari: Volume 8, Book 78, Number 660: Narrated Abu Huraira:  A man entered the mosque and started praying while Allah's Apostle was sitting somewhere in the mosque. Then (after finishing the prayer) the man came to the Prophet and greeted him. The Prophet said to him, "Go back and pray, for you have not prayed. The man went back, and having prayed, he came and greeted the Prophet. The Prophet after returning his greetings said, "Go back and pray, for you did not pray." On the third time the man said, "(O Allah's Apostle!) teach me (how to pray)." The Prophet said, "When you get up for the prayer, perform the ablution properly and then face the Qibla and say Takbir (Allahu Akbar), and then recite of what you know of the Quran, and then bow, and remain in this state till you feel at rest in bowing, and then raise your head and stand straight; and then prostrate till you feel at rest in prostration, and then sit up till you feel at rest while sitting; and then prostrate again till you feel at rest in prostration; and then get up and stand straight, and do all this in all your prayers."

 

One should not look all around while praying.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 718:  Narrated 'Aisha:  I asked Allah's Apostle about looking hither and thither in prayer. He replied, "It is a way of stealing by which Satan takes away (a portion) from the prayer of a person."

 

Salat is performed in "units" of prayer called raka'ah. One raka'ah consists of a series of positions (and movements from one position to the next), along with specific supplications and verses from the Qur'an which are read in each position. A raka'ah begins in a standing position called qiyaam and ends with the musallee in a prostrate position called sujood. Different salat have different numbers of prescribed raka'at.

 

The salat must be performed with sincere devotion (khushoo), otherwise it is considered invalid. Salat is performed facing the direction of qibla (i.e. towards the Kaaba in Mecca), to the best estimation of the musallee if there is no certain way to determine the correct direction.

 

The musallee begins the prayer by standing in qiyaam, facing qibla and reciting the niyyah (intention to pray) for the specific salat he is about to make. He then raises his hands and speaks aloud the takbir.

 

For fard salat, the first raka'ah commences with the recital of the Qur'anic verse "Innee wajjahtu..." followed by the first chapter of the Qur'an, al-Fatihah. For subsequent raka'at and other types of salat, each raka'ah commences with al-Fatihah. During the first two raka'ah, following the recitation of al-Fatihah any other chapter or several verses of the Qur'an are additionally recited (qirat) while in the standing position before the musallee moves into the bowing position (rukoo).

 

Sura Fateha must be recited in all rakats or the salat will be invalid.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 723:  Narrated 'Ubada bin As-Samit:  Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever does not recite Al-Fatiha in his prayer, his prayer is invalid."

 

 

 

Bukhari: Volume 8, Book 78, Number 639:  Narrated Anas bin Malik:  I heard the Prophet saying, "Perform the bowing and the prostration properly (with peace of mind), for, by Him in Whose Hand my soul is, I see you from behind my back when you bow and when you prostrate."

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 776:  Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:  The Prophet said, "I have been ordered to prostrate on seven bones i.e. on the forehead along with the tip of the nose and the Prophet pointed towards his nose, both hands, both knees and the toes of both feet and not to gather the clothes or the hair."

 

After one raka'ah is complete (and on every subsequent odd raka'ah), the musallee returns from the prostrate position (sujood) back to the standing position to begin another raka'ah.

 

It is permissible to read dhikr between the rukoo and the sujoods.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 781:  Narrated 'Aisha:  The Prophet used to say frequently in his bowing and prostrations "Subhanaka-Allahumma Rabbana Wabihamdika, Allahumma Ighfir-li" (I honor Allah from all what (unsuitable things) is ascribed to Him, O Allah! Our Lord! All praises are for You. O Allah! Forgive me). In this way he was acting on what was explained to him in the Holy Qur'an.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 786:  Narrated Malik bin Huwairith Al-Laithi:  I saw the Prophet praying and in the odd Rakat, he used to sit for a moment before getting up.

 

One should also raise the hands before entering ruku, and upon coming out of ruku.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 702:  Narrated Salim bin 'Abdullah:  My father said, "Allah's Apostle used to raise both his hands up to the level of his shoulders when opening the prayer; and on saying the Takbir for bowing. And on raising his head from bowing he used to do the same and then say "Sami a-l-lahu Liman hamida, Rabbana walaka-l-hamd." And he did not do that (i.e. raising his hands) in prostrations.

 

It is important that a prayer does not let their elbows touch the floor or spit in the way of another supplicant.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 509: Narrated Anas:   The Prophet said, "Do the prostration properly and do not put your fore-arms flat with elbows touching the ground like a dog. And if you want to spit, do not spit in front, nor to the right for the person in prayer is speaking in private to his Lord."

 

On every second raka'ah, he first moves from sujood to an upright sitting position (jalsa) and recites the first portion of a supplication known as the tashahhud, before returning to the standing position to begin the next raka'ah.

 

Volume 9, Book 93, Number 478:  Narrated 'Abdullah:  We used to pray behind the Prophet and used to say: "As-Salamu 'Al-Allah. The Prophet said, "Allah himself is As-Salam (Name of Allah), so you should say: 'At-Tahiyatu lil-laihi was- sala-watu wat-taiyibatu, as-sallamu 'Alayka aiyuha-n-nabiyyu wa rahrmatu-l-lahi wa barak-atuhu, As-salamu 'alaina wa 'ala 'ibaldi-l-lahi as-salihin. Ashhadu an la ilaha il-lallah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan 'abduhu wa rasuluhu."'

 

Volume 8, Book 74, Number 281:  Narrated Ibn Mas'ud:   Allah's Apostle taught me the Tashah-hud as he taught me a Sura from the Quran, while my hand was between his hands. (Tashah-hud was) all the best compliments and the prayers and the good things are for Allah. Peace and Allah's Mercy and Blessings be on you, O Prophet! Peace be on us and on the pious slaves of Allah, I testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah, and I also testify that Muhammad is Allah's slave and His Apostle. (We used to recite this in the prayer) during the lifetime of the Prophet , but when he had died, we used to say, "Peace be on the Prophet."

 

On the final raka'ah the musallee moves to the jalsa from the sujood position and recites the complete tashahhud. Sunni Muslims then conclude the prayer by turning their face toward the right shoulder and then toward the left shoulder, each time saying a salutation (taslim) to the angels that take note of your good (right shoulder) and evil (left shoulder) deeds.

 

If a mistake was made during the salat, one should perform the taslim, offer two sujoods and the taslim again.

 

Bukhari: Volume 8, Book 78, Number 664:  Narrated Ibn Mas'ud:  that Allah's Prophet led them in the Zuhr prayer and he offered either more or less Rakat, and it was said to him, "O Allah's Apostle ! Has the prayer been reduced, or have you forgotten?" He asked, "What is that?" They said, "You have prayed so many Rak'at." So he performed with them two more prostrations and said, "These two prostrations are to be performed by the person who does not know whether he has prayed more or less (Rakat) in which case he should seek to follow what is right. And then complete the rest (of the prayer) and perform two extra prostrations."

 


Dua and Dhikr after Salat.

After the salat is completed it is common (but not compulsory) for Muslims to offer a supplication (du'a) to God. This supplication, which essentially gives Muslims an opportunity to ask God for forgiveness and blessings, can be offered in any language.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 54: Narrated Anas:  While the Prophet was delivering the Khutba on a Friday, a man stood up and said, "O, Allah's Apostle! The livestock and the sheep are dying, so pray to Allah for rain." So he (the Prophet) raised both his hands and invoked Allah (for it).

 

There are many duas mentioned in Quran and the Sunnah that we can recite. Some are given more precedence over others.

 

Bukhari: Volume 4, Book 52, Number 76:  Narrated 'Amr bin Maimun Al-Audi:  Sad used to teach his sons the following words as a teacher teaches his students the skill of writing and used to say that Allah's Apostle used to seek Refuge with Allah from them (i.e. the evils) at the end of every prayer. The words are:

 

'O Allah! I seek refuge with You from cowardice, and seek refuge with You from being brought back to a bad stage of old life and seek refuge with You from the afflictions of the world, and seek refuge with You from the punishments in the grave.'

 

 

Jummah

Salat al-Jumu'ah is a congregational prayer performed 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. Giving a khutba is a task assigned specifically to men, and women cannot perform this task. This does not imply superiority of men to women, but it is done in compliance with what Muslims have been commanded to do by God.

 

62: 9-10 - O you who believe, when the Salat is announced on Friday, you shall hasten to the commemoration of God, and drop all business. This is better for you, if you only knew. Once the prayer is completed, you may spread through the land to seek God's bounties, and continue to remember God frequently, that you may succeed.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 51:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  The Prophet said, "When it is a Friday, the angels stand at the gate of the mosque and keep on writing the names of the persons coming to the mosque in succession according to their arrivals. The example of the one who enters the mosque in the earliest hour is that of one offering a camel (in sacrifice). The one coming next is like one offering a cow and then a ram and then a chicken and then an egg respectively. When the Imam comes out (for Jumua prayer) they (i.e. angels) fold their papers and listen to the Khutba."

 

Performing the Jummah from one Friday to another carries the reward of Allah’s forgiveness.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 8: Narrated Salman-Al-Farsi:   The Prophet (p.b.u.h) said, "Whoever takes a bath on Friday, purifies himself as much as he can, then uses his (hair) oil or perfumes himself with the scent of his house, then proceeds (for the Jumua prayer) and does not separate two persons sitting together (in the mosque), then prays as much as (Allah has) written for him and then remains silent while the Imam is delivering the Khutba, his sins in-between the present and the last Friday would be forgiven."

 

There is a very short time on Friday that if you are in the midst of prayer and you supplicate, Allah listens and answers the supplicant his/her need.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 57:  Narrated Abu Huraira:   Allah's Apostle (p.b.u.h) talked about Friday and said, "There is an hour (opportune time) on Friday and if a Muslim gets it while praying and asks something from Allah, then Allah will definitely meet his demand." And he (the Prophet) pointed out the shortness of that time with his hands.

 

Bukhari: Volume 7, Book 63, Number 216:   Narrated Abu Huraira:  Abul Qasim (the Prophet ) said, "There is an hour (or a moment) of particular significance on Friday. If it happens that a Muslim is offering a prayer and invoking Allah for some good at that very moment, Allah will grant him his request." (The sub-narrator placed the top of his finger on the palm of the other hand between the middle finger and the little one.)

 

One should perform full ghusl and optionally apply perfume before attending the Jummah prayers. It is also preferable to use the siwak to clean ones teeth before the prayer.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 42:  Narrated Salim:  My father said , "I heard the Prophet delivering the Khutba on the pulpit and he said, 'Whoever comes for the Jumua prayer should take a bath (before coming).' "

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 12:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "If I had not found it hard for my followers or the people, I would have ordered them to clean their teeth with Siwak for every prayer."

 

When enters the masjid for the Jummah, they should perform two rakats nawafil, even if the Khutba is in progress.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 52:  Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah:  A person entered the mosque while the Prophet was delivering the Khutba on a Friday. The Prophet said to him, "Have you prayed?" The man replied in the negative. The Prophet said, "Get up and pray two Rakat."

 

One should not talk while the Khutba is going on.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 56:   Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle (p.b.u.h) said, "When the Imam is delivering the Khutba, and you ask your companion to keep quiet and listen, then no doubt you have done an evil act."

 

It is preferable to nap and eat after the Jummah prayers.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 13, Number 61:  Narrated Sahl:  As above with the addition: We never had an afternoon nap nor meals except after offering the Jumua prayer.

 

 

 

 

Janazah

 

Salat al-Janazah is a prayer performed at a Muslim funeral. It is classed as fard al-kifayah. It does not follow the pattern of other salat in that there are no raka'ah. Instead it consists of four takbirs performed in the standing position, with various Qur'anic verses and supplications read between each.

 

 

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), though some Islamic scholars argue it is only a collective obligation (fard al-kifayah).  It consists of two raka'ah, with seven takbirs offered before the start of the first raka'ah and five 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.

 

 

 

 

Etiquettes in Prayer  (MORE WILL BE ADDED IN THE COURSE OF TIME)

 

1) Saying your prayers just loud enough for the congregation to hear.

 

Al Isra – 17:110 - And neither speak thy Prayer aloud nor speak it in a low tone but seek a middle course between.

 

Bukhari: Volume 9, Book 93, Number 582:  Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:  (regarding the Verse):-- 'Neither say your prayer aloud, nor say it in a low tone.' (17.110) This Verse was revealed while Allah's Apostle was hiding himself in Mecca, and when he raised his voice while reciting the Qur'an, the pagans would hear him and abuse the Qur'an and its Revealer and to the one who brought it. So Allah said:--

 

'Neither say your prayer aloud, nor say it in a low tone.' (17.110) That is, 'Do not say your prayer so loudly that the pagans can hear you, nor say it in such a low tone that your companions do not hear you.' But seek a middle course between those (extremes), i.e., let your companions hear, but do not relate the Qur'an loudly, so that they may learn it from you.

 

One should not speak while in Salat.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 22, Number 292:  Narrated Zaid bin Arqam:   In the life-time of the Prophet we used to speak while praying, and one of us would tell his needs to his companions, till the verse, 'Guard strictly your prayers (2.238) was revealed. After that we were ordered to remain silent while praying.

 

 

2) Recite the quran during Zuhur and Asr prayers although they are not recited out loud.

 

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 12, Number 727 – Narrated Abu Ma'mar: I asked Khabbab whether the Prophet used to recite the Qur'an in the Zuhr and the 'Asr prayers. He replied in the affirmative. We said, "How did you come to know that?" He said, "From the movement of his beard."

 

3) Moving the index finger during the Attahiayat.

 

There are various ways supported by the sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh): moving the index finger up and down, pointing towards the Imam from the beginning to the end of the Attahyatu and the moving the index finger in a circle. They are approved by the majority of the Ulamah.  <SUPPORTING DATA TBD>

 

4) Saying dua during prostrations and after sujood.

 

Volume 6, Book 60, Number 492:  Narrated Aisha:  Allah's Apostle used to say very often in bowing and prostration (during his prayers), Subhanka Allahumma Rabbana wa bihamdika; Allahumma ighfirli," according to the order of the Qur'an.

 

5) Do not pray if you are too tired to pray.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 4, Number 211:  Narrated 'Aisha:  Allah's Apostle said, "If anyone of you feels drowsy while praying he should go to bed (sleep) till his slumber is over because in praying while drowsy one does not know whether one is asking for forgiveness or for a bad thing for oneself."

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 21, Number 251r:  Narrated Anas bin Malik, Once the Prophet (p.b.u.h) entered the Mosque and saw a rope hanging in between its two pillars. He said, "What is this rope?" The people said, "This rope is for Zainab who, when she feels tired, holds it (to keep standing for the prayer.)" The Prophet said, "Don't use it. Remove the rope. You should pray as long as you feel active, and when you get tired, sit down."

 

 

6) Do not pray at the hottest part of the day or on the coldest part of the day.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 10, Number 512, 510:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  The Prophet said, "In very hot weather delay the Zuhr prayer till it becomes (a bit) cooler because the severity of heat is from the raging of Hell-fire. The Hell-fire of Hell complained to its Lord saying: O Lord! My parts are eating (destroying) one another. So Allah allowed it to take two breaths, one in the winter and the other in the summer. The breath in the summer is at the time when you feel the severest heat and the breath in the winter is at the time when you feel the severest cold."

 

7) During a women’s monthly menstruation, she is not required to pray nor is it required that she do Qada for the prayers.  Menstruation is a blessing from Allah and should not be treated as a disliked thing nor should the women be treated as if she were untouchable. 

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 9, Number 497:  Narrated Maimuna:  The Prophet used to pray while I used to sleep beside him during my periods (menses) and in prostrations his garment used to touch me.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 9, Number 492:  Narrated 'Aisha:  The wife of the Prophet, "I used to sleep in front of Allah's Apostle with my legs opposite his Qibla (facing him); and whenever he prostrated, he pushed my feet and I withdrew them and whenever he stood, I stretched them." 'Aisha added, "In those days there were no lamps in the houses."

 

Prayers missed during the period do not need to be re-done.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 6, Number 318:  Narrated Mu'adha:  A woman asked 'Aisha, "Should I offer the prayers that which I did not offer because of menses" 'Aisha said, "Are you from the Huraura' (a town in Iraq?) We were with the Prophet and used to get our periods but he never ordered us to offer them (the Prayers missed during menses)." 'Aisha perhaps said, "We did not offer them."

 

Menstruating women can go to the religious gatherings. They should just stay away from the actual prayer area.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 15, Number 97:  Narrated Um-'Atiya:  We were ordered to go out (for 'Id) and also to take along with us the menstruating women, mature girls and virgins staying in seclusion. (Ibn 'Aun said, "Or mature virgins staying in seclusion)." The menstruating women could present themselves at the religious gathering and invocation of Muslims but should keep away from their Musalla.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 6, Number 329:  Narrated Maimuna:  (the wife of the Prophet) During my menses, I never prayed, but used to sit on the mat beside the mosque of Allah's Apostle. He used to offer the prayer on his sheet and in prostration some of his clothes used to touch me."

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 15, Number 88:  Narrated Um 'Atiya:  We used to be ordered to come out on the Day of 'Id and even bring out the virgin girls from their houses and menstruating women so that they might stand behind the men and say Takbir along with them and invoke Allah along with them and hope for the blessings of that day and for purification from sins.

 

Muslim: Book 002, Number 0573:  Asma (daughter of Abu Bakr) reported: A woman came to the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) and said: What should one do if the blood of menses smears the garment of one amongst us? He (the Holy Prophet) replied: She should scrape it, then rub it with water, then pour water over it and then offer prayer in it.

 

Some women sometimes experience bleeding between their normal periods. In such cases, it is possible for the women to pray during the time that the period is not normally due.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 6, Number 322:  Narrated 'Aisha:  Fatima bint Abi Hubaish asked the Prophet, "I got persistent bleeding (in between the periods) and do not become clean. Shall I give up prayers?" He replied, "No, this is from a blood vessel. Give up the prayers only for the days on which you usually get the menses and then take a bath and offer your prayers."

 

The yellow discharge is not of importance either. Women are allowed to pray because this is not considered as something that makes the woman junub.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 6, Number 307:  Narrated 'Aisha:  "One of the wives of Allah's Apostle joined him in l'tikaf and she noticed blood and yellowish discharge (from her private parts) and put a dish under her when she prayed."

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 6, Number 323:  Narrated Um 'Atiya:  We never considered yellowish discharge as a thing of importance (as menses).

 

Interesting Point:  The defect in a women is that she can not pray or fast while menstruating.

 

Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 31, Number 172:  Narrated Abu Said:  The Prophet said, "Isn't it true that a woman does not pray and does not fast on menstruating? And that is the defect (a loss) in her religion."

 

 

8) Favoring some surah’s over others based on the Sunnah.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 745:   Narrated 'Abdullah bin Abi Qatada:  My father said, "The Prophet used to recite Al-Fatiha along with another Sura in the first two Rakat of the Zuhr and 'Asr prayers. A verse or so was audible at times and he used to prolong the first Rak'a."

 

9) Errors in prayer should be corrected as soon as possible.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 11, Number 682:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  Once Allah's Apostle prayed two Rakat (instead of four) and finished his prayer. Dhu-l-yadain asked him whether the prayer had been reduced or whether he had forgotten. Allah's Apostle asked the people whether Dhu-l-yadain was telling the truth. The people replied in the affirmative. Then Allah's Apostle stood up, offered the remaining two Rakat and then finished his prayer with Taslim and then said, "Allahu Akbar." He followed it with two prostrations like ordinary prostrations or a bit longer.

 

10) Prayers can be done while standing, while sitting, and even while lying down if it is necessary.

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 216: Narrated 'Imran bin Husain:  (who had piles) I asked Allah's Apostle about the praying of a man while sitting. He said, "If he prays while standing it is better and he who prays while sitting gets half the reward of that who prays standing; and whoever prays while Lying gets half the reward of that who prays while sitting."

 

Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 20, Number 218:  Narrated 'Imran bin Husain:  I had piles, so I asked the Prophet about the prayer. He said, "Pray while standing and if you can't, pray while sitting and if you cannot do even that, then pray Lying on your side."

 

11) Use of a sutra in the prayer should be used to prevent sin on the person crossing the supplicant’s path.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 9, Number 489: Narrated Busr bin Said:  that Zaid bin Khalid sent him to Abi Juhaim to ask him what he had heard from Allah's Apostle about a person passing in front of another person who was praying. Abu Juhaim replied, "Allah's Apostle said, 'If the person who passes in front of another person in prayer knew the magnitude of his sin he would prefer to wait for 40 (days, months or years) rather than to pass in front of him." Abu An-Nadr said, "I do not remember exactly whether he said 40 days, months or years."

 

Bukhari: Volume 4, Book 54, Number 495:  Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:   The Prophet said, "If while you are praying, somebody intends to pass in front of you, prevent him; and should he insist, prevent him again; and if he insists again, fight with him (i.e. prevent him violently e.g. pushing him violently), because such a person is (like) a devil."

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 9, Number 485:  Narrated Nafi:  "The Prophet used to make his she-camel sit across and he would pray facing it (as a Sutra)." I asked, "What would the Prophet do if the she-camel was provoked and moved?" He said, "He would take its camel-saddle and put it in front of him and pray facing its back part (as a Sutra). And Ibn 'Umar used to do the same." (This indicates that one should not pray except behind a Sutra)

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 9, Number 474: Narrated 'Aun bin Abi Juhaifa: I heard my father saying, "The Prophet led us, and prayed a two-Rak'at Zuhr prayer and then a two-Rak'at 'Asr prayer at Al-Batha' with an 'Anza (planted) in front of him (as a Sutra) while women and donkeys were passing in front of him (beyond that 'Anza)."

 

The imam’s sutrah is the people’s sutra while in congregational prayer.

 

Bukhari: Volume 5, Book 59, Number 696:  Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Abbas:  That he came riding a donkey when Allah 's Apostle was standing at Mina during Hajjat-ul-Wada', leading the people in prayer. The donkey passed in front of a part of the row (of the people offering the prayer). Then he dismounted from it and took his position in the row with the people.

 

The sutra should not be too far from the supplicant.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 9, Number 475: Narrated Sahl (bin Sa'd):  The distance between the Musalla of Allah's Apostle and the wall was just sufficient for a sheep to pass through.

 

12) Rasing of the hands before and after the Ruku.

 

Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 702, 703, 705: Narrated Salim bin 'Abdullah:  My father said, "Allah's Apostle used to raise both his hands up to the level of his shoulders when opening the prayer; and on saying the Takbir for bowing. And on raising his head from bowing he used to do the same and then say "Sami a-l-lahu Liman hamida, Rabbana walaka-l-hamd." And he did not do that (i.e. raising his hands) in prostrations.

 

 

 

 

 


Prayer Details Defined

 

(http://darulislam.info/mod-ContentExpress-print-ceid-2.html)

 

Introduction
Salah is a pillar of Din. Doing it just right in accordance with Sunnah is the responsibility of every Muslim. Unfortunately, we go about performing the cardinal dictates of Salah in a carefree manner following our whims, hardly caring to see that those dictates have to be carried out in the manner they were passed on to us by the Holy Prophet


Before you begin the Salah
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Check the following and be sure that you are doing things the way they should be done

1. It is necessary that you face the Qiblah.

2. You should stand upright and your eyes should be focused on the spot where you make your Sajdah. Bending your neck and resting your chin on the chest is makruh (reprehensible). Similarly, standing in Salah while your chest is bent down is also not correct. Stand upright in a way that your eyes keep looking at the spot where you make your Sajdah.

3. Note that the direction of the fingers on your feet is towards the Qiblah and that your feet also have the same straight stance facing Qiblah. (Placing feet tilting to the right or left is contrary to Sunnah). Both feet should be in the direction of the Qiblah.

4. In between both feet, there should be a minimum span of four fingers of the hands as ready measure.

5. If you are making your Salah with jama'ah (congregation), make sure the line you are standing in is straight. The best method to make sure that the line is straight is that each person position the farthest ends of both his heels at the farthest end of the prayer-rug or at lines that mark out on rug from the other.

6. While in jama'ah, satisfy yourself by making certain that your arms are close to the arms of those who are standing on your right and left and that there is no gap in between.

7. It is impermissible, under all conditions, to let the lower portion of your ankles. It is obvious that its repugnance while standing for Salah increase much more. Therefore, be sure that the dress you are wearing is higher then your ankles.

8. Sleeves should be full, covering the whole arm. Only hands remain uncovered. Some people make their Salah with sleeves rolled up. This method is not correct.

9. It is makruh to stand for Salah while wearing clothes which one would not normally wear in public.

When you begin the Salah (
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1. Make niyyah or intention in your heart to the effect you are offering such and such Salah. It is not necessary to say the words of the niyyah verbally.

2. Raise your hands upto your ears in a way that palms face Qiblah and the end of the thumbs either touch the lobes of the ears or come parallel to them. The rest of the fingers stay straight, pointing upwards. There are some who would tend to turn the direction of their palms towards their ears rather then having them face the Qiblah. There are some others who almost cover their ears with their hands. There are still others who would make a faint symbolic gesture without raising their hands fully upto the ears. Some others grip the lobes of their ears with their hands. All these practices are incorrect and contrary to Sunnah. These should be abandoned.
3. While raising your hands in the manner stated above, say : 
Allahu-Akbar. Then,using the thumb and the little finger of your right hand, make a circle round the wrist of your left hand and hold it. You should then spread out the three remaining fingers of our right hand on the back of your left hand so that these three fingers face the elbow.

4. Placing both hands slightly below the navel, fold them as explained above.

When you are standing

1. If you are making your Salah alone, or leading it as Imam, you first recite Thana' : then Surah al-Fatihah, then some other Surah. If you are behind an Imam, you only recite Thana' : and then stand silent listening attentively to the recitation of the Imam. If the Imam's recitation is not loud enough for you to hear, you should be thinking of Surah al-Fatihah using you heart and mind without moving your tongue.

2. When you are reciting yourself, it is better that you, While reciting Surah al-Fatihah, stop at every verse and break your breath. Recite the next verse with fresh breath. Do not recite more then one verse in a single breath. For example, break your breath at

 then on

 then on

Recite the whole Surah al-Fatihah in this manner. But, there is no harm if, during recitation that follows, more then one verse has been recited in a single breath.

3. Do not move any part of your body without the need. Stand in peace - the more, the better. If you have to scratch or do something else like that, use only one hand and that too, under very serious compulsion using the least time and effort.

4. Transferring all the weight of the body on to one leg and leaving the other weightlessly loose to the limit that it shows a certain bend is against the etiquette of Salah. Abstain from it. Either you transfer your body weight equally on both legs or if you must channel your body weight on one leg, you have to do it in a way that the other leg shows no bend or curve.

5. If you feel like yawning, try your best to stop it.

6. When standing for Salat, keep you eyes looking at the spot where you make your Sajdah. Abstain from looking to your right and left, or front.

 


When in Ruku
When you bend for Ruku', watch out for the following:

1. Bend the upper part of your body upto a point where the neck and back nearly level up. Do not bend any more or less then that.

2. While in Ruku', do not bend the neck to the limit that the chin starts touching the chest, nor raise it is high that the neck goes higher than the waist level. Instead, the neck and the waist should be in one level.

3. In Ruku', keep feet straight. Do not place them with an outward or inward slant.

4. Place both hands on your knees in a way that fingers on both hands stay open. In other words, there should be space between every two fingers when you thus go on to hold the right knee with your right hand and the left knee with your left hand.

5. In the state of Ruku', wrists and arms should remain stretched straight. They should not bend, curve or sag.

6. Stay in Ruku', at least for a time during which could be said
three times calmly and comfortably.

7. In the state of Ruku', the eyes should be looking towards the feet.

8. Body weight should be evenly distributed on both feet and both knees should be parallel to each other.

Returning to the standing position from Ruku
1. While returning from Ruku', back to the standing position, see that you stand straight leaving no sag or droop in the body.

2. In this position as well, eyes should be fixed on the spot where you do your Sajdah.

3. Three are those who simply make a ‘gesture' of rising from the Ruku' instead of rising fully and standing upright when it is time to do so and who, in that every state, when their body is still bent downwards, go on to do their Sajdah - for them it becomes obligatory that they make their Salah all over again. Therefore, abstain from it very firmly. Unless you make sure about having become perfectly straight in your standing position, do not go for Sajdah.

When going down for Sajdah

Remember the following method when going down for Sajdah:

1. Bending the knees first of all, take them towards the prayer floor in a way that the chest does not lean forward. When the knees have already been rested on the floor, the chest should then be lowered down.

2. Until such time that the knees have come to rest against the floor, abstain, as far as possible, from bending or lowering the upper part of the body. These days negligence in observing this particular rule of etiquette while getting ready to go for Sajdah has become very common. Many people would lower down their chest right from the start and go on to do their Sajdah. But, the correct method is what has been stated in #1 and #2 above. Unless it be for a valid reason, this method should not be bypassed.

3. After having rested your knees on the floor, place your hands first, then the tip of the nose, then the forehead.

In Sajdah


1. While in Sajdah, keep your head in between your two hands in a way that the ends of the two thumbs come parallel to the ear-lobes.

2. In Sajdah, fingers on both hands should remain close together, that is, the fingers should be adjacent to each other leaving no space in between them.

3. The direction of the fingers should be towards the Qiblah.

4. The elbows should stay raised off the floor. It is not correct to rest the elbows on the floor.

5. Both arms should stay apart from armpits and sides. Never keep them tucked in.

6. Do not, at the same time, poke your elbows far out to your right and left causing discomfort to those making Salah next to you.

7. The thighs should not come in contact with the stomach-wall. The stomach and the thighs should stay apart.

8. During the entire Sajdah, the nose-tip should continue to rest on the floor.

9. Both feet should be placed upright on the floor with heels showing on top and all fingers turned flat on the floor in the direction of the Qiblah. Those who cannot turn all their fingers because of the physical formation of their feet, they will still do well to turn them as much as they can. It is not correct to place the fingers vertically on the floor just for no valid reason.

10. Be careful that your feet do not lift off the floor during Sajdah. Some people do their Sajdah while none of the fingers on their feet come to rest on the floor even for a moment. This way the obligation of Sajdah is not liquidated at all, as a result, the Salah too becomes invalid. Be very particular in abstaining from this error.


11. In the state of Sajdah, the least time you can give yourself should be sufficient enough to say three times, calmly and comfortably. Raising the forehead immediately after having rested it on the floor is prohibited.

In between the two Sajdahs

1. Rising from the first Sajdah, sit up straight, on the hams, calmly and comfortably. Then go for the second Sajdah. Doing the second Sajdah after raising the head just a little bit and without becoming straight is a sin. If one does it like that, it becomes obligatory that the Salah be made all over again.

2. Spread out the left foot (like the blade of a hockey stick) and sit on it. Let the right foot stand vertically with fingers turned towards the Qiblah. Some people let both feet remain in upright position and sit on the heels. This method is not correct.

3. While sitting, both hands should be placed on the thighs and fingers should not taper down onto or over the knees, instead, the far ends of the finger tips should reach only as far as the beginning edge of the knee.

4. While sitting, let your eyes be on the lap.

5. Sit for a time during which could be said at least once and if you can sit for a time during could be recited, it is better. But, reciting this during Fard (obligatory) Salah is not necessary. It is better to do so in Nafl Salah.

The second Sajdah and rising from it

1. Go on to do your second Sajdah in the same manner by first placing both hands on the floor, then the nose-tip, then the forehead.

2. The complete form of Sajdah should be the same as mentioned in connection with the first Sajdah.

3. When rising from Sajdah, first raise the forehead off the floor, then the nose-tip, then the hands, and then the knees.

4. While rising, it is better not to learn for support off the floor, however, should it be difficult to get up from the floor because of body-weight, sickness or old age, making use of the floor for support is also permissible.

5. After you have risen back to your standing position, recite before Surah al-Fatihah in the begining of each raka'ah.

In Qa'dah
1. The method of sitting in Qa'dah shall be the same as mentioned in connection with the method of sitting between Sajdahs.

2. When you reach while reciting raise the shahadah finger (the fore-finger or the index finger) with a pointing motion and let it fall back at

3. The method of making a pointing motion is that you make a circle by joining your middle finger and the thumb, close the little finger and the ringfinger (the one next to it), then raise the shahadah finger in a way that it is tapered towards the Qiblah. It should not be raised up straight in the direction of the sky.

4. However, lower the shahadah finger while saying but retain, right through the end, the initial formation of the rest of the fingers you already had when making the pointing motion.

When turning for Salam (
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1. When turning for Salam on both sides, you should turn your neck just enough that your cheeks become visible to the person sitting behind you.

2. When turning for Salam, eyes should be towards the shoulders.

3. When turning your neck to the right to say make an intention that you are offering your Salam greetings to all human beings and angels on your right. Similarly, while turning for Salam to the left, have the intention of offering your Salam greeting to all human beings and angels present on your left.

The method of Du'a

1. The method of Du'a is that both hands be raised high enough so that they come in front of the chest. Let there be some space between the two hands. Do not bring the hands close together nor keep them far apart.

2. When making Du'a, keep the inner side of the hands turned towards your face.


The Masjid Some Essential Rules Of Conduct (
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1. While entering the Masjid, recite the following Du'a:
       
( I enter with the name of Allah and with the prayer that Allah bless His Messenger and bestow upon him. O Allah, open for me the doors of Thy mercy.)

2. Immediately on entering the Masjid, make an intention that ‘I shall be in I'tikaf for whatever time I stay in the Masjid: By doing so, Insha'-Allah, the spiritual reward of I'tikaf can also be hoped for.

3. Following entry into the Masjid, it is better to sit in the front row. But, in case space in the front has already been taken up, sit wherever you find an opening. Advancing forward by leap-frogging people's necks is not permissible.

4. Salam greeting should not be offered to those already sitting in the Masjid and busy in Dhikr or recitation of the Qu'ran. However, should one of them be not so engaged and looking at you on his own, there is no harm in offering such Salam greeting to him.

5. If you have to offer Sunnah or Nafl Salah in the Masjid, select a spot where there is the least likelihood of people crossing in front of you. Some people start up their Salah in the back rows while ample space remains open in the front. Because of this act of theirs, it becomes difficult for other to cross over and they have to make a long detour to reach open sitting spots. Offering Salah in this manner is a sin in itself, and should a person happen to cross in front of the person making his Salah, then this sin of his crossing over in that manner will also rest on the shoulders of the person making such a Salah.

6. After entering the Masjid, if you find that you are there a little ahead of the Salah timing, then, before you sit down, make two raka'ahs with the intention of Tahiyyah al-Masjid. This has great merit. If there is not time for that, you can combine the intention of Tahiyyah al-Masjid within the Sunnah Salah. And if, you do not have the time even to make your Sunnah Salah and the jama'ah is ready, this intention could also be combine with that of the Fard Salah.

7. As long as you sit in the Masjid, keep doing Dhikr. Specially, keep reciting the following Kalimah devotedly:
                              
            Sanctified is Allah and for Allah is all praise and there is no god but Allah is great.

8. Do not engage yourself in unnecessary conversation while sitting in the nothing else that may disturb those devoting to their ‘Ibadah of Salah or Dhikr.

9. If the jama'ah is ready, fill in the front rows first. If space is open in the front row, it is not permissible to stand in the back row.

10. From the time when the Iman takes his place on the Mimber to deliver the Friday Khutbah right through the end of the Salah, it is not permissible for anyone to talk, make Salah or to offer Salam to anyone or to answer Salam offered. However, should anyone start talking during this time, it is also not permissible that he be asked to keep quiet.

11. Sit during the Khutbah as you sit in Qa'dah when reciting at-Tahiyyat. Some people sit hand folded during the first part of the Khutbah and then place their hands on the things during the second. This method is baseless. One should sit with hands on the thighs during both.

12. Abstain from everything that may spread filth or smell in the Masjid or cause pain to anyone.

13. When you see anyone doing something wrong, ask him not to do so, quietly and softly. Totally avoid insulting him openly, or rebuking him, or quarrelling with him