IBADAAT -> Salat - Prayer - Namaz
In the sight of Allah Ta'ala, salaat has a very great distinction. No other act of ibaadah is dearer to Allah than salaat. Allah Ta'ala has made five times salaat compulsory on His servants. There is a great reward in offering salaat and a great sin in omitting it.
It is mentioned in a Hadith that the one who performs his wudu properly and offers his salaat with full concentration; then on the day of resurrection Allah Ta'ala will forgive all his minor sins and grant him paradise. Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is reported to have said: "Salaat is a pillar of Deen. The one who has offered his salaat in a proper manner has upheld Deen, and the one who has demolished this pillar (i.e. did not offer his salaat), has in fact destroyed the Deen." Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam has also said: "The first thing to be reckoned on the day of resurrection will be salaat. The hands, feet, and face of those who used to offer their salaat regularly will shine like the sun on the day of resurrection. As for those who did not offer their salaat, they will be deprived of this blessing." Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam has further stated: "On the day of resurrection, those who used to offer their salaat will rise with the prophets, martyrs, and saints. Those who used to omit their salaat will rise with these notorious disbelievers: Pharaoh, Haamaan, and Qaarun."
It is therefore essential to offer salaat. By not offering salaat, great damage is caused in both this world and in the hereafter. What can be more worse than the person who does not offer his salaat to be raised with the disbelievers. The one who does not offer his salaat has been regarded as equal to a disbeliever. I seek refuge with Allah, How serious it is not to offer salaat!
However, salaat is not wajib on the following persons: a lunatic, a young boy and a young girl who have not reached the age of puberty as yet. As for the rest of the Muslims, it is fard on them. However, the parents have been commanded that when their children reach the age of seven, they should be made to offer their salaat. And when they reach the age of ten, they should be punished and compelled to offer their salaat.
Under no condition is it permissible to discard salaat. As far as possible, salaat should most certainly be offered. However, if a person completely forgot to offer his salaat and only remembered after the time of that salaat had passed or slept away in such a way that his eyes did not open and he missed his salaat; then in such instances there will not be any sin. However, when the person remembers or salaat; then in such instances there will not be any sin. However, when the person remembers or wakes up from his sleep, it will be fard on him to immediately make his wudu and offer his missed salaat. But if it is a makruh time of salaat, he should wait for a little while so that the makruh time passes. Similarly, there is no sin on those salaats that were missed on account of unconsciousness. However, after regaining consciousness, one should immediately offer those salaats that one missed.
- In the sight of Allah Ta'ala, salaat has a very great distinction. No other act of ibaadah is dearer to Allah than salaat. Allah Ta'ala has made five times salaat compulsory on His servants. There is a great reward in offering salaat and a great sin in omitting it.
- THE TIMES OF SALAAT
- Fajr (morning) Salaat
In the last part of the night, at the approach of dawn, some whiteness can be noticed on the length of the horizon towards the east, i.e. from the direct ion in which the sun rises. After a little while, whiteness can be noticed on the breadth of the horizon. This whiteness begins to spread very rapidly. After a little while, it becomes completely bright. From the time that this broad whiteness becomes visible, the time of fajr salaat commences and remains until the rising of the sun. The moment a small portion of the sun appears, the time of fajr salaat ends. However, it is preferable to read it in its early time when it is still dark.
- Zuhr (Mid-day) Salaat
On the declining or descending of the zenith, the time of zuhr salaat commences. An indication that the zenith is declining is that the shadow of long objects begins to decrease from the west towards the north. When it comes exactly to the north and begins to turn towards the east, then one should know that noon has declined. By standing towards the east, the direction on ones left hand is the north. Another easier method of deduction is that as the sun rises, the shadow of everything begins to decrease. Once this decreasing stops, exactly at this time is mid-day or noon. Thereafter, once the shadow begins to increase, it should be understood that noon has declined and from this time, the time of zuhr salaat has commenced. Excluding the extent to which the shadow was at exactly mid-day, till the shadow of everything remains twice its size, the time of zuhr will remain. For example, the shadow of a stick which is one arm in length, was equal to four fingers at mid-day. So as long as its shadow does not spread to two arm-lengths and four fingers, zuhr time will remain. Once it reaches two arm-lengths and four fingers, asr time will commence.
- Asr (afternoon) Salaat
Based on the previous example, once the shadow reaches two arm-lengths and four fingers, asr time will commence. Asr time will remain until sunset. However, it is makruh to offer asr salaat when the colour of the sun changes and the sun's rays change to yellow. If due to some reason one gets delayed, salaat in this makruh time should be offered and not allowed to be missed out. In future it should not be delayed. Apart from this asr salaat, it is not permissible to offer any other salaat in this time. No missed salaats nor any nafl salaat can be offered.
- Maghrib (evening) Salaat
Once the sun sets, maghrib time commences. Maghrib time remains as long as the redness on the western horizon remains. However, maghrib salaat should not be delayed to the extent that many stars begin to appear in the sky. To delay it till such a time is makruh.
- Esha (night) Salaat
Once the redness on the western horizon disappears, esha time commences and remains until dawn. However, after mid-night, esha salaat becomes makruh and the reward is reduced. Therefore, esha salaat should not be delayed till such a time. It is preferable that esha salaat be offered before one third of the night passes.
- Fajr (morning) Salaat
- Rules Related to the Times of Salaat
- In summer, one should not hasten towards reading zuhr salaat. It is mustahab to offer zuhr salaat after the intense heat rays elapse. In winter, it is preferable to offer zuhr salaat at the beginning of zuhr time.
- Asr salaat should be delayed till such a time that if after the entry of asr time one wishes to offer any nafl salaat, he can do so, because it is not permissible to offer any nafl salaat after having offered asr salaat irrespective of whether it is in summer or in winter. However, one should not delay to such an extent that the sun turns yellow and its rays change in colour. It is mustahab to hasten towards offering maghrib salaat and to offer it immediately after sunset.
- The person who is in the habit of waking up for tahajjud salaat in the latter part of the night and has full confidence of definitely waking up; then it is better for him to offer his witr salaat after having offered his tahajjud salaat. But if he is not confident of waking up and fears that he will remain asleep; then he should offer his witr salaat after his esha salaat before going to sleep.
- It is preferable to delay the fajr, zuhr and maghrib salaats on a cloudy day, while it is mustahab to offer asr salaat a bit early.
- No salaat is valid at the times of sunrise, mid-day and sunset. However, if asr salaat has not been offered as yet, then it could be offered even at the time of sunset. In these three times, even sajdah-e-tilaawat is makruh and not permissible.
- It is makruh to offer any nafl salaat after offering fajr salaat until sunrise. However, the offering of any qada salaat and sajdah-e-tilaawat before the sun rises is permissible. But once the sun rises, then as long as some light does not appear, even qada salaat will not be permissible. Similarly, it is not permissible to offer any nafl salaat after the asr salaat. However, qada salaat and sajdah-e-tilaawat is permissible. But once the rays of the sun become weak or faint, then even this is not permissible.
- At fajr time, a person only offered his fard salaat out of fear that the sun will rise very soon. So as long as the sun does not rise considerably and does not get quite bright, the sunnah salaat should not be offered. Once some light appears, sunnah salaat and any other salaat may be offered.
- Once dawn breaks and fajr time enters, then apart from the two rakaats sunnah and two rakaats fard of fajr salaat, it is makruh to offer any other nafl salaat. However, it is permissible to offer any qada salaat and to make sajdah-e-tilaawat.
- If the sun rises while one is offering one's fajr salaat then this salaat will not be valid. When the sun becomes a bit bright, one should make qada. But if the sun sets while one is offering asr salaat, then this salaat will be valid and there will be no need to make qada of it.
- It is makruh to sleep before offering esha salaat. One should offer ones salaat and then sleep. However, if due to some sickness or travelling, one is very tired and tells someone to wake him up at the time of salaat and that person promises to wake him up; then in this case it will be permissible to sleep.
- It is mustahab for men to offer fajr salaat at a time when the light spreads considerably and there is so much of time left that in the salaat itself about forty to fifty verses could be read properly; and after offering the salaat, if for some reason one has to repeat the salaat, then in the same way he could read forty to fifty verses again. It is mustahab for women to offer fajr salaat throughout the year when it is dark. And it is mustahab for men and women who are performing hajj to offer fajr salaat when it is dark when they are in Muzdalifah.
- The time for jumu'ah salaat is the same as the time for zuhr salaat. The only difference is that it is mustahab to delay zuhr salaat in summer irrespective of whether it is hot or not. And it is mustahab to offer zuhr salaat early in winter, while it is sunnah to offer jumu'ah salaat early throughout the year. This is the opinion of all the ulama.
- The time for the eid salaats commences when the sun rises considerably and remains until just before mid-day. The sun rising considerably means that the yellowness of the sun disappears and its light is so bright that one cannot look at it. In establishing this, the jurists have said that it must rise to the extent of one spear. It is mustahab to offer the eid salaats early. However, the salaat of Eid ul-Fitr should be delayed slightly after the time commences.
- When the imam gets up from his place to perform the khutbah of jumu'ah, the eid salaats or for hajj, etc. then it is makruh to offer any salaat in these times. It is also makruh to offer any salaat at the time of the khutbah of nikah or at the time of the completion of the Quran.
- It is also makruh to offer any salaat when the iqaamah for a fard salaat is being called out. However, if one has not offered the sunnah of fajr salaat and one is sure or convinced that one will get one rakaat with the congregation, then it will not be makruh to offer the sunnah of fajr salaat. And the one who has already commenced with any sunnah-e-mu'akkadah, should complete it first.
- It is makruh to offer any nafl salaat prior to the salaats of eid irrespective of whether one offers it at home or at the eid-gah. As for offering it after the eid salaats, it will only be makruh to offer it at the eid-gah.
- ADHAAN - THE CALL TO SALAAT
- If the adhaan is being called out for any salaat, it is necessary that it be given in the time of that salaat. If the adhaan is given before the commencement of the time, it will not be valid. When the time enters, the adhaan will have to be repeated irrespective of whether it was for fajr salaat or any other salaat.
- The adhaan and the iqaamah have to be in Arabic and in exactly the same words as conveyed to us from Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. If the adhaan is given in any other language, or in Arabic but in different words; then this will not be valid even if, upon hearing it, people understand it as adhaan and the purpose of adhaan is fulfilled (i.e. even if people respond to the adhaan by coming to offer their salaat).
- It is necessary for the mu'azzin to be a male. The adhaan of a female is not proper. If a woman gives adhaan, it should be repeated. If salaat is offered without it being repeated, it will be as if salaat was offered without any adhaan.
- It is necessary that the mu'azzin be of sound intellect. If a child who has not reached the age of understanding, a lunatic or an intoxicated person gives adhaan; it will not be considered.
- The sunnah method of calling out adhaan is that the person calling out adhaan should be pure from the major and minor impurities. He should go to an elevated place away from the musjid, face the qiblah, insert his forefingers into both his ears, and say the following words as loud as possible without overstraining himself: Allaho Akbar four times, Ash hadu an la ilaaha illa Allahu twice, Ash hadu anna Muhammadar Rasulullah twice, Hayya alas salaat twice, Hayya alal falaah twice, Allahu Akbar twice again, and La ilaaha illa Allahu once. When saying Hayya alas salaat, he should turn his face towards the right in such a way that his chest and feet do not turn away from the qiblah. When saying Hayya alal falaah, he should turn his face towards the left in such a way that his chest and feet do not turn away from the qiblah.
In the fajr adhaan, after saying Hayya alal falaah, he should add the words as-Salaatu khayrum minan naum two times.
The total phrases of adhaan are therefore fifteen while there are seventeen for the adhaan of fajr.
The words of the adhaan should not be uttered in a singing tune, nor should they be uttered in such a way that some of the words are said loudly while others are said softly.
After saying Allahu Akbar twice, he should wait to the extent that the person who is listening to the adhaan can reply to it. Apart from Allahu Akbar, even for the other words, he should wait for a similar period before continuing with the next words.
- The method of iqaamah is also the same. The difference is that it is preferable to call out the adhaan outside the musjid, while the iqaamah is called out inside. Adhaan is called out in a loud voice while iqaamah is called out in a comparatively softer voice. In iqaamah one does not say as-salaatu khairun minan naum. Instead, for all the five salaats one has to say Qad qaamatis salaat two times. When saying the iqaamah one does not have to insert one's fore-fingers into one's ears. The reason for inserting the fingers into the ears is to raise the voice, and this is not necessary when saying the iqaamah. In the iqaamah, it is not necessary to turn right and left when saying Hayya alas salaat and Hayya alal falaah. However, some jurists are in favour of this.
- Rules Concerning Adhaan and Iqaamah
- For every fard-e-ayn salaat, it is sunnat-e-mu'akkadah for men to call out adhaan once. This is irrespective of whether a person is a traveller or not, whether he is reading in congregation or alone, or whether he is reading a qada salaat or not. For jumu'ah salaat, the adhaan should be called out twice.
- If a salaat was missed for a reason in which all the people were involved, then the adhaan for that salaat should be given aloud. If it was missed for some specific reason, it should be given secretly in a soft voice so that people do not come to know of any missed salaat by hearing the adhaan aloud. The reason for this is that missing a salaat is a sign of negligence and laziness, and to be negligent and lazy in affairs of the Deen is a sin. And it is not good to announce or expose one's sins.
If several salaats were missed and all are being read at one time, it will be sunnah to call out the adhaan for the first salaat only. As for the other salaats, only the iqaamah is sunnah. However, it is mustahab to call out adhaan for each salaat separately.
- If a person is travelling and all his companions are present with him, then it will be mustahab, and not sunnat-e-mu'akkadah, for him to give the adhaan.
- If a person offers his salaat at home, whether alone or in congregation, then both the adhaan and the iqaamah will be mustahab for him on condition that the adhaan and iqaamah of the musjid of that area or town has already been called out. This is so because the adhaan and iqaamah of the area is sufficient for all the residents of that area.
- If a person goes to a musjid in which the adhaan, iqaamah and salaat has already been performed,it will be makruh for him to give adhaan and iqaamah when offering his own salaat. However, if that musjid does not have any appointed imam or mu'azzin, it will not be makruh, but preferable.
- A person is in a place in which all the conditions for jumu'ah salaat are found and jumu'ah is even performed there. Despite this, he offers zuhr salaat instead of jumu'ah salaat. It will therefore be makruh for him to call out adhaan and iqaamah. This is irrespective of whether he offers the zuhr salaat due to some excuse or not, or whether he offers it before the completion of the jumu'ah salaat or after its completion.
- It is makruh for women to call out adhaan and iqaamah irrespective of whether they are offering their salaat in congregation or individually.
- Apart from fard-e-ayn salaat, adhaan for any other salaat is not prescribed - irrespective of whether it is a fard-e-kifaayah salaat, such as janaazah salaat; or a wajib salaat, such as witr salaat, the salaats of eid; or whether it is a nafl salaat.
- It is mustahab on the person who hears the adhaan to reply to it irrespective of whether he is a man or woman, in a state of purity or impurity. Some ulama have even said that it is wajib. But the preferred opinion is that it is mustahab.
Replying to the adhaan means that the words which the mu'azzin says should be repeated. However, when replying to Hayya alas salaat and Hayya alal falaah, he should say La hawla wa la quwwata illa billahil aliyyil azeem. For As-salaato khairun minan naum he should say Sadaqta wa bararta.
After the adhaan he should send salutations to Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and then read the following dua:
- On hearing the adhaan of jumu'ah, it is wajib to leave whatever one may be occupied with, and go for the jumu'ah salaat in a jaame musjid. It is haraam to occupy oneself in any transaction or any other sort of work.
- Replying to the iqaamah is also mustahab and not wajib. In replying to Qad qaamatis salaat, one should say Aqaamahallahu wa adaamaha.
- In eight conditions an answer to the adhaan should not be given: (1) while offering salaat, (2) while listening to a khutbah irrespective of whether it is a khutbah of jumu'ah or any other khutbah, (3,4) when one is in a state of haid or nifaas, i.e. it is not necessary to give an answer, (5) while one is teaching or learning knowledge of the Deen, (6) while one is having sexual intercourse, (7) while one is relieving oneself, (8) while one is eating, i.e. it is not necessary. After having completed these occupations, and much time has not lapsed since hearing the adhaan; one should reply to it, otherwise one should not reply.
- A person forgets to reply to the adhaan or intentionally does not reply to it. On the completion of the adhaan he remembers or decides to reply to it. If much time has not lapsed, he should reply to it, otherwise he should not reply.
- If considerable time has passed after having called out the iqaamah and the congregation has not stood up as yet, the iqaamah should be repeated. But if much time has not passed, it does not have to be repeated. If the iqaamah for fajr salaat has been called out but the imaam has not offered his sunnah salaat of fajr as yet. If he occupies himself in offering his sunnah, then the time that he takes will not be regarded as a long time and it will therefore not be necessary to repeat the iqaamah. However, if one occupies oneself with something that is not a part of salaat, such as eating and drinking, then in this case the iqaamah will have to be repeated.
- While the mu'azzin calls out the adhaan; he dies, falls unconscious, his voice breaks down completely or he forgets and there is no one to correct him, or his wudu breaks and he rushes to repeat it - in all these cases it will be sunnat-e-mu'akkadah to repeat the adhaan.
- If a person's wudu breaks while he is calling out the adhaan or iqaamah, it will be preferable for him to complete the adhaan or iqaamah and thereafter perform his wudu.
- It is makruh for one mu'azzin to call out adhaan in two musjids. He should call out adhaan in the musjid in which he offers his fard salaat.
- It is the right of the person who calls out the adhaan to call out the iqaamah as well. But if after calling out the adhaan he goes away somewhere or permits someone else to call out the iqaamah, then someone else can call out the iqaamah.
- It is permissible for several mu'azzins to call out adhaan at the same time.
- The mua'zzin should complete his iqaamah at the place where he commenced with it.
- Niyyah is not a condition for adhaan and iqaamah. However, one is not rewarded without making an intention. The intention is this that he is calling out this adhaan solely for the pleasure of Allah and for the reward of it, and for no other reason.
- The Sunnats and Mustahabs of Adhaan and Iqaamah
The sunnats of adhaan and iqaamah are of two types. Some are related to the mu'azzin while others are related to the adhaan and iqaamah. We will first mention the sunnats related to the mu'azzin, and then those that are related to the adhaan and iqaamah.
- Sunnats related to the mu'azzin
- The mu'azzin has to be a male. The adhaan and iqaamah of a female is makruh-e-tahrimi. If a woman calls out adhaan, it will have to be repeated, but not the iqaamah. This is so because repetition of the iqaamah is not stipulated as opposed to the repetition of adhaan.
- The mu'azzin has to be of sound mind. The adhaan and iqaamah of a lunatic, intoxicated person or immature child is makruh. Their adhaan will have to be repeated and not their iqaamah.
- The mu'azzin must know the necessary rules applicable to him and he must also know the times of the different salaats. If an ignorant person calls out the adhaan, he will not get the same reward as that of a mu'azzin.
- The mu'azzin must be pious and religiously-minded and he must be aware of the condition of the people - reminding those who do not attend the congregation. He must do this if he has no fear of anyone causing harm to him.
- The mu'azzin must have a loud voice.
- Sunnats related to the adhaan and iqaamah
- The adhaan should be called out at an elevated place outside the musjid. The iqaamah should be called out inside the musjid. To call out the adhaan inside the musjid is makruh-e-tanzihi. However, it is not makruh to call out the second adhaan of jumu'ah inside the musjid in front of the pulpit (mimbar). In fact, this is practised in all Muslim countries.
- The adhaan has to be called out standing. If anyone calls it out while sitting, this will be makruh and it will have to be repeated. However, if a traveller is on his mount or a person gives adhaan for his own salaat, it will not have to be repeated.
- The adhaan has to be called out in a loud voice. However, if a person is calling out adhaan for his own salaat, he has the choice to say it aloud or softly. Even then, there is more reward in saying it aloud.
- It is mustahab to block the holes of ears with fingures at the time of calling out adhan.
- It is sunnat that the words of the adhaan should be said with a pause between them, while the iqaamah should be said quickly. In other words, when saying the takbeers of the adhaan, the mu'azzin should pause after every two takbeers so that those who are listening to the adhaan can repeat the words. Apart from the takbeers, he should pause after every sentence and thereafter continue with the next word. If, due to some reason, he does not pause in this way, it will be mustahab to repeat the adhaan. If the iqaamah was called out by pausing, it is not mustahab to repeat it.
- When calling out adhaan, it is sunnah to turn towards the right and left when saying Hayya alas salaat and Hayya alal falaah respectively. This is irrespective of whether the adhaan is for a salaat or for some other reason. However, his chest and feet should not turn away from the qiblah.
- Adhaan and iqaamah should be called while facing the qiblah as long as he is not riding an animal. It is makruh-e-tanzihi to call out adhaan and iqaamah while one is not facing the qiblah.
- At the time of calling out the adhaan it is necessary for the person to be pure from hadath-e-akbar (major impurity) and mustahab to be pure from both the major and minor impurities. At the time of calling out the iqaamah, it is necessary to be pure from both the impurities. If a person calls out adhaan while in a state of hadath-e-akbar, this will be makruh-e-tahrimi and it will be mustahab to repeat that adhaan. Similarly, if a person calls out iqaamah while in a state of major or minor impurity, this will be makruh-e-tahrimi but it is not mustahab to repeat the iqaamah.
- It is sunnah to say the words of the adhaan and iqaamah in the sequence shown to us. If a person says a latter word first, for example, he says Ash hado anna Muhammadar Rasulullah before Ash hado an la ilaaha illa Allahu, or he says Hayya alal falaah before Hayya alas salaat; then in such a case, just the latter word should be repeated. In the first example, after saying Ash hado an la ilaaha illa Allahu he should repeat Ash hado anna Muhammadan Rasulullah. In the second example, after saying Hayya alas salaat, he should repeat Hayya alal falaah. It is not necessary to repeat the entire adhaan.
- While calling out the adhaan and iqaamah, no other words should be spoken, even if they be a greeting or a reply to a greeting. If a person speaks while calling out adhaan or iqaamah and he spoke considerably, he should repeat the adhaan and not the iqaamah.
- THE PREREQUISITES OF SALAAT
- Before commencing with salaat, several things are wajib. If one does not have wudu, then wudu should be made. If there is a need to have a bath, then a bath should be taken. If there is any impurity on the body or clothes, it should be purified. The place where salaat is being offered should also be pure. Apart from the face, hands and feet, the entire body from head to toe should be well covered. One should face the qiblah. An intention should be made for the salaat which one wishes to offer. The salaat should be offered after the entry of that salaat time. All these are prerequisites or conditions for salaat. If any one of these prerequisites are not found, salaat will not be valid.
- It is not permissible to offer salaat with a very thin, flimsy or lacy scarf.
- If a quarter of a woman's calf, thigh or arm gets exposed while offering salaat and it remains exposed to the extent that she can read Sub'haanallah three times; then her salaat will break and she will have to repeat it. But if she covers that part the moment it is exposed, her salaat will still be valid. In the same way, if a quarter of any part that is supposed to be covered when offering salaat gets exposed, then the salaat will not be valid. For example, if a quarter of the ear, head, hair, stomach, back, neck, bosom, chest, etc. gets exposed; then the salaat will not be valid.
- If the scarf of a girl who has not reached the age of puberty as yet slips off while offering salaat and her head gets exposed, her salaat will still be valid.
- If there is any impurity on the body or clothing but water cannot be found anywhere, then the salaat should be offered with the impurity.
- If the entire clothing is impure, or most of it is impure,i.e. less than a quarter of it is pure and the balance of it is impure, then in such a case one could either offer the salaat while wearing those impure clothes or remove those clothes and offer the salaat while naked. However, it is preferable to offer the salaat with the impure clothes. If a quarter or more of the clothes are pure, it will not be permissible to offer the salaat naked. It will be wajib to offer the salaat in those impure clothes.
- If a person offering salaat is wrapped in a sheet which is so large that its impure section does not move about with the standing and sitting movements of the person, then there is no harm in it. Similarly, the thing which a person offering salaat is carrying also has to be pure. This is on the condition that it does not hold on to the person of its own accord. For example, a person offering salaat is carrying a child and that child did not come onto him out of its own accord, then it is a prerequisite that the child be also pure for the validity of salaat. If that child's clothing or body is impure to an extent which does not permit salaat, then in such a case, that person's salaat will not be valid. But if that child sits on him or clings to him of its own accord, then there is no harm in this because the child sat on him of its own accord and of its own will. So this impurity on the child will be attributed to the child and will not be connected to the person offering salaat.
Similarly, if there is such an impurity on the person offering salaat which is still in its actual place of formation and whose traces have not come outside as yet, then there is no harm in this. For example, a dog comes and sits on the person offering salaat and there is no saliva coming out of its mouth - there is no harm in this. This is so because its saliva is inside its body, and that is where it is formed. It is the same as that impurity which is in the stomach of man and for which purity is not a prerequisite.
Similarly, if there is an egg whose yolk has turned into blood and it is with the person offering salaat, there is no harm in this. This is so because its blood is in that very place from where it was formed and its effect has not come out as yet.
On the contrary, if urine has been filled in a bottle and it is with the person offering salaat, then this is not proper even if the bottle is completely sealed. This is so because this urine is not in its actual place of formation.
- The place on which salaat is being offered has to be pure of all impurities (such as urine, stool, semen, etc.). However, if the impurity is of an excusable amount, there is no harm in this. The "place on which salaat is being offered" refers to that place where the feet are placed and also those places which touch the ground when in sajdah, i.e. wherever the knees, hands, forehead and nose are placed.
- If the place of only one foot is pure and the person lifts his other foot, this will be sufficient.
- If a person is offering salaat on a piece of cloth, even then the same extent as mentioned above will have to be pure. It is not necessary for the entire piece of cloth to be pure. This is irrespective of whether the cloth is big or small.
- If a cloth is spread out over an impure place and salaat is offered on it, then it is also a prerequisite that the cloth must not be so thin that whatever is under it can be clearly seen.
- If the clothing of a person offering salaat touches any impure place which is dry, there is no harm in this.
- If a person has no clothes at all, he should offer his salaat naked. However, the salaat should be offered at such a place where no one can see him. Furthermore, the salaat should not be offered standing, but sitting; and he should make gestures (ishaarah) for the ruku and sajdah. But if he offers his salaat while standing and even goes down for his ruku and sajdah, his salaat will still be valid. However, it is preferable to offer the salaat sitting.
- If a person is excused from wearing clothes because of some reason which has been caused by a human being, he will have to repeat his salaat when this excuse is no more. For example, a person is in prison and the wardens have removed his clothes, an enemy has removed his clothes or an enemy tells him that if you wear your clothes I will kill you - in all the above cases he will have to repeat his salaat. But if it is not because of a human being, he does not have to repeat his salaat. For example, if he has no clothes at all.
- A person has only one piece of cloth and has the choice of either covering himself or spreading it on the floor and offering salaat on it. He should rather cover himself with it and offer salaat on the impure place if no clean place can be found.
- A person is travelling and has so little water that if he had to wash off the impurity he will not have sufficient water for wudu. And if he had to make wudu first, he will not have sufficient water to wash off the impurity. Such a person should utilise the water to wash off the impurity and make tayammum for his wudu.
- A person offered zuhr salaat. On completing his salaat, he realized that the zuhr time had already expired and asr time had already entered. Now to make qada of that salaat is not wajib. The salaat which he had offered will come under the rule of qada and it will be considered to be a qada salaat.
- But if he offered a salaat even before the entry of its time, it will not be valid.
- It is not necessary to make a verbal intention. If a person thinks in his heart that I am reading the fard of zuhr for today, or if it is a sunnah, then I am reading the sunnah of zuhr; then this will be sufficient. All those lengthy intentions which are popular among the people are not necessary at all.
- If one wants to make a verbal intention, it is sufficient to say this: I am making intention for todays fard of zuhr, or, I am making intention for the sunnah of zuhr. To say: I am reading four rakaats for zuhr salaat, facing the qiblah, etc. is not necessary. If one wishes, he could say so, if not, then he does not have to.
- if a person has the intention of zuhr salaat in heart, but when he utters his intention, he mistakenly says asr salaat instead zuhr. Even then his salaat will be valid.
- If he mistakenly says six rakaats or three rakaats instead of four rakaats, his salaat will still be valid.
- If a person has missed several salaats and decides to make qada of them, he should specify the time of the salaat when making his intention. That is, he should make intention in this way: I am offering the fard of fajr salaat. If it is the qada of zuhr, then he should say: I am offering the fard of zuhr salaat. In the same way, he should make the intention of whichever salaat he wishes to make qada of. If in his intention he merely said: I am offering qada salaat, and did not specify which salaat it is, then this qada will not be valid. It will have to be repeated.
- If salaat of several days has been missed, one should also specify the day and date when making the intention. For example, a person missed the salaats of Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. When making his intention it will not be proper for him to merely say that he is making qada of fajr salaat. Instead he will have to make intention in the following way: I am making qada for the fajr salaat of Saturday. When zuhr time comes, he must say: I am making qada for the zuhr salaat of Saturday. In this way he should continue making intention. Once he completes making the qada of all the salaats of Saturday, he should say: I am making the qada for the fajr salaat of Sunday. In this way he should offer all his qada salaats. If he is making qada for several months or years, he should also specify the month and year and say: I am offering the qada of fajr salaat of a particular day in a particular month and in a particular year. Without saying it in this way, the intention will not be correct.
- If a person does not remember the date, month or year, he should make his intention as follows: Of all the fajr salaats that I have to make qada of, I am making qada of the first one that I had missed, or, of all the zuhr salaats that I have to make qada of, I am making qada of the first one that I had missed. He should make his intention in this way and continue offering his qada salaat. Once the heart is satisfied that qada of all the missed salaats has been made, he can stop offering qada salaat.
- For sunnah, nafl and taraweeh salaats; it will be sufficient to merely say: I am offering salaat. It will be proper even if he does not mention whether it is a sunnah or nafl salaat. However, caution demands that he makes a specific intention for the sunnah of taraweeh salaat.
- RULES RELATED TO FACING THE QIBLAH
- If a person is at a place where he does not know in which direction the qiblah is, nor is there anyone whom he could ask, then he should think in his heart. Whichever direction his heart tells him to face, he should turn in that direction. If he offers his salaat without thinking, his salaat will not be valid. However, if, in this case where he did not think, he later learns (came to know) that the direction in which he had offered his salaat was the correct direction, then his salaat will be valid. If there was a person whom he could ask, but because of hijaab and shyness, he/she did not ask and continued with his/her salaat, it will not be valid. In such cases, one should not feel shy, but should ask and then offer the salaat.
- If there was no one who could show him the direction of qibla and he offered his salaat according to what his heart told him, and later he learnt (knew) that the direction in which he had offered his salaat was wrong; even then his salaat will be valid.
- If a person was offering his salaat in the wrong direction and in his very salaat he learns (know) that this is the wrong direction and that the correct direction is on other side, he should turn towards the qiblah in his very salaat. If after learning the correct direction, he did not turn towards the qiblah, his salaat will not be valid.
- If a person offering salaat inside the Ka'bah has the choice to face whichever direction he wishes.
- Both fard and nafl salaats are permissible in the Ka'bah.
- THE METHOD OF OFFERING FARD SALAAT
After making the intention for salaat, say Allahu Akbar. While saying Allahu Akbar, raise both the hands upto the shoulders. However, one should not take out the hands out of the headgear or scarf (or burqah). Thereafter, the hands should be clasped onto the chest with the palm of the right hand placed on the back of the left hand. Thereafter, the following dua should be read:
- To say Allahu Akbar at the time of making the intention.
- To stand up.
- To recite any verse or Surah from the Quran.
- To make the ruku.
- To make the two sajdahs.
- To sit down at the end of salaat for as long as it takes one to recite the entire at-tahiyyaat.
After reading A'udhu billah and Bismillah, she should recite Surah Faatihah and after Wa lad daalleen, she should say aameen. After reading Bismillah, she should recite some other Surah.
She should then say Allahu Akbar and go into ruku and read:
Translation: Glory to my Lord, the most exalted.
This should be read three, five or seven times. In ruku, the fingers of both hands should be together and placed on the knees. The arms should be well joined to the sides and the ankles of both feet should be together. She should then read:
Translation: Allah has heard the one who has praised Him.
While saying this, she should raise her head.
Once she stands upright, she must say Allahu Akbar and go down for sajdah. First, the knees should touch the ground, thereafter the hands should be placed in line with her ears and the fingers should be close together. Then place the head in-between both the hands. In sajdah, both the forehead and the nose should touch the ground. The fingers and toes should face the qiblah. But the feet should not be upright. Instead, they should be taken out towards the right hand side. She should draw herself closely together and press herself firmly while in sajdah. The stomach should be joined to both the thighs, the arms to the sides, and both arms should be placed on to the ground. In sajdah, she should read the following dua at least three times:
Translation: Glory to my Lord, the Highest.
She should then say Allahu Akbar and sit upright. She should say Allahu Akbar again and go down for sajdah for a second time, and read:
Translation: Glory to my Lord, the Highest.
at least three times. She should then say Allahu Akbar and stand up. When standing up, she should not place her hands on the ground for support.
She should then recite Bismillah, Surah Faatihah and another Surah and thereafter complete her second rakaat in the same way.
On completing the second sajdah, she should sit on her left buttock and take out both her feet towards the right side. She should place her both hands on her thighs and keep her fingers joined together. She should then recite the following dua:
On reaching the kalimah, she should make a circle with the thumb and middle finger of the right hand. When she says La ilaha, she should raise her forefinger, and on saying Illallahu she should drop it. However, the circle should be maintained till the end of the salaat.
If it is a four rakaat salaat, she should not read anything further. Instead, she should immediately say Allahu Akbar and stand up and offer two additional rakaats. In the latter two rakaats of the fard salaat, nothing should be recited after Surah Faatihah. When she sits down for the fourth rakaat, she must recite the following durood after reciting at-tahiyyaat:
Thereafter, she should recite the following dua:
or, the following dua:
Alternatively, she could read any other dua that is found in the Quran or Hadith. Thereafter, she should turn towards the right and say
[As salaamu alaykum wa rahmatullah.]
She should then turn towards the left and say the same thing. At the time of making salaam she should make the intention of making salaam to the angels.
This is the method of offering salaat. If even one of the fard acts of salaat are missed out, the salaat will not be complete (valid), irrespective of whether it was missed out intentionally or unintentionally. There are certain things which are wajib. If they are left out intentionally then the salaat will become worthless and it will have to be repeated. If a person does not repeat it, then although he will be absolved of his fard duty, he will still be committing a sin. But if he leaves out a wajib unintentionally, his salaat will become valid by making sajdah-e-sahw. There are certain things which are sunnah while others are mustahab.
There are six acts which are fard in salaat:
- To recite Surah Faatihah.
- To recite some other Surah with it.
- To execute every fard act at its specific place.
- To stand and recite Surah Faatihah and to recite some Surah with it.
- To go into ruku.
- To go into sajdah.
- To sit down after two rakaats.
- To recite at-tahiyyaat in both the sitting postures.
- To recite dua-e-qunoot in witr salaat.
- To complete the salaat by saying As salaamu alaykum wa rahmatullah.
- To perform all the acts with patience and without rushing.
The Wajib acts of salaat:
- A person does not recite Surah Faatihah but reads some other verse or some other Surah, or he only recites Surah Faatihah and does not read any other verse or Surah, or he does not sit down after the second rakaat but stands up for the third rakaat without sitting down and without reading at-tahiyyaat, or he sat down but did not read at-tahiyyaat - in all these cases, although he will be absolved of his fard duty, his salaat will be worthless. It is wajib on him to repeat his salaat. If he does not repeat his salaat, he will be committing a great sin. However, if he does all these things unintentionally, then by making sajdah-e-sahw, his salaat will become valid.
- At the time of making salaam, the person did not make salaam. Instead he started to speak, or conversed with someone, or got up and went away somewhere, or did something else with which salaat breaks; then the same rule applies over here. That is, although he will be absolved of his fard duty, he will still have to repeat his salaat as it is wajib. If he does not do so, he will be sinful.
- If a person recited a Surah before Surah Faatihah, even then he will have to repeat his salaat. If he did this unintentionally, he should make sajdah-e-sahw.
- After Surah Faatihah, at least three verses should be recited. If only one or two verses are recited and they are such that they equal three verses in length, salaat will still be valid.
- After standing up from ruku, a person did not recite:
or in ruku he did not recite:
or in sajdah he did not recite:
or in the last sitting position he did not recite durood after at-tahiyyaat. Then in all the above cases his salaat will be valid, but it will be contrary to the sunnah. Similarly, if after the durood, he did not read any dua, but made salaam immediately after reciting the durood, then too his salaat will be valid but contrary to the sunnah.
- It is sunnah to raise the hands at the time of commencing the salaat. If one does not raise his hands, it will still be proper but contrary to the sunnah.
- In every rakaat, Bismillah should be read before Surah Faatihah. When the next Surah is read, Bismillah should be read again. This is the preferable method.
- When making sajdah, if one does not place the forehead and nose on the ground, but places the forehead only and does not place the nose, even then the salaat will be valid. But if one does not place the forehead and places the nose only, the salaat will not be valid. However, if a person has a valid excuse, it will be permissible place his nose only.
- If a person did not stand upright after ruku, but merely lifted his head slightly and went straight into sajdah, he will have to repeat his salaat.
- A person did not sit properly in-between the two sajdahs, he merely lifted his head slightly and went down for the second sajdah. If he does this, he has in fact made only one sajdah and did not complete the two sajdahs. His salaat is not valid. But if he lifted his head in such a way that he was near the sitting position, he will be absolved of his duty but it will be worthless. He should therefore repeat his salaat. If he does not do so, he will be sinful.
- If a person makes sajdah on something made out of straw or cotton wool, he should press his head down firmly and make sajdah. He should press it down in such a way that he cannot press any further. If he does not press it down firmly but merely places his head lightly, his sajdah will not be considered.
- If a person adds another Surah after Surah Faatihah in the latter two rakaats of a four rakaat fard salaat, then no harm will come to the salaat. His salaat will be perfectly correct.
- If a person does not read Surah Faatihah in the latter two rakaats but merely reads Sub'haanallah three times, even then his salaat will be proper. However, it is preferable to recite Surah Faatihah. And if he reads nothing at all and merely remains silent, even then there is no harm and the salaat will be proper.
- It is wajib to read a Surah after Surah Faatihah in the first two rakaats. If a person only recites Surah Faatihah in the first two rakaats or does not even read Surah Faatihah but merely reads Sub'haanallah; then in the latter two rakaats he should read a Surah after Surah Faatihah. If he did this intentionally he will have to repeat his salaat. And if he did this unintentionally, he will have to make sajdah-e-sahw.
- In her salaat, a woman must recite Surah Faatihah, another Surah, and all the other duas softly and silently. But she should recite them in such a way that her voice reaches her own ears. If she cannot hear her own voice, her salaat will not be valid.
- One should not set aside or specify a particular Surah for a particular salaat. Instead, one should read whatever one wishes. To set aside a particular surah is makruh.
- In the second rakaat, one should not recite a Surah that is longer than the one that one recited in the first rakaat.
- Women should offer their salaat individually and not in congregation. They should not go to the musjid to offer their salaat in congregation with the men. If a woman offers her salaat in congregation with her husband or any other mahram, she should find out the relevant rules in this regard. This occurs very seldom. We have therefore not gone into details in this regard. However, it should be noted that if such an occasion arises, the woman should not stand in line with the man. She should stand behind him. If not, her salaat and even his salaat will not be valid.
- If one's wudu breaks while offering salaat, one should make wudu and repeat the salaat.
- It is mustahab to fix the eyes on the spot of sajdah when one is standing. In ruku the eyes should be fixed on the feet, in sajdah on the nose, and when making salaam on the shoulders. If one yawns, one should close one's mouth tightly. If it does not stop in any other way, it should be stopped with the back of the hand. If one feels an irritation in the throat, then as far as possible, one should try to stop the cough or subdue it.
Apart from the above acts, all the others are either sunnah or mustahab.
- A few rules related to Fard Salaat
- The "alif" of aameen should be lengthened and read. Thereafter, any Surah of the Quran should be read.
- If a person is travelling or he has some other necessity to fulfil, then after reading Surah Faatihah, he has the choice of reading any other Surah. But if he is not travelling or has no other necessity to fulfil, then in fajr and zuhr salaat, he should recite any Surah from Surah Hujurat till Surah Burooj. The Surah of the first rakaat of fajr should be longer than that of the second rakaat. As for the rest of the salaats, the Surahs of both the rakaats should be more or less equal. If they are longer or shorter by one or two verses, there is no harm in this. In asr and esha salaats, any Surah from Surah Tariq till Surah Lam Yakun could be recited. In maghrib salaat, from Surah Zilzal till the end of the Quran.
- Whilst standing up from ruku, the imam should only say Sami Allahu liman hamidah and the muqtadi should only say Rabbana lakal hamd. The person offering salaat on his own should read both. While saying the takbeer, the person should place his hands on his knees and then go into sajdah. The termination of his takbeer and the beginning of his sajdah should be done simultaneously. In other words, the moment he reaches the sajdah posture, his takbeer should end.
- In the first two rakaats of fajr, maghrib, and esha; the imam should recite Surah Faatihah, any other Surah, Sami Allahu liman hamidah, and all the other takbeers in a loud voice. The one offering salaat on his own has the choice of reciting the Quran aloud or softly while Sami Allahu liman hamidah and all the other takbeers should be read softly.
As for zuhr and asr, the imam should only read Sami Allahu liman hamidah and all the takbeers in a loud voice. The one offering salaat on his own should read everything softly.
As for the muqtadi, he should always say the takbeers, etc. softly - irrespective of what salaat it is.
- On completing the salaat, both the hands should be raised upto the chest and dua to Allah Ta'ala should be made for oneself. And if he is an imam, he should make dua for all those following him as well. On completing the dua, both hands should be passed over the face. The muqtadis could make their individual duas or, if they can hear the dua of the imam, they could say aameen to it.
- One should not make very lengthy duas after those salaats that are followed by sunnah salaats, eg. zuhr, maghrib and esha. The person should make a brief dua and occupy himself with the sunnah salaats. One could lengthen the duas for as long as one wishes for those salaats that are not followed by sunnah salaats, such as the fajr and asr salaats. If the person is the imam, he should turn towards his right or left, facing the muqtadis. Thereafter, he should make the dua on condition that there is no masbuq facing him.
- It is preferable to read the following after the fard salaat:
three times. Aayatul kursi, Surah Ikhlaas, Surah al-Falaq, Surah an-Naas one time. 33 times Sub'haanallah, 33 times Alhamdolillah, and 34 times Allahu Akbar. All this is on the condition that there is no sunnah after the fard salaat. If there is, then it will be mustahab to recite these duas after the sunnah salaat.
- Difference in Salaat between Men and Women
There are a few differences with regards to the postures adopted by men and women when offering salaat. They are as follows:
- If a man is covered with a sheet or shawl, then at the time of saying takbeer-e-tahreemah he has to take out his hands from under the shawl and raise them upto his ears if there is no need to keep them inside (For example, if it is cold).As for women, under all conditions they have to keep their hands inside and raise them upto their shoulders.
- After saying the takbeer-e-tahreemah, men have to clasp their hands below the navel while women have to clasp them on their chests.
- When clasping the hands, men have to place the right hand over the left hand in such a way that the thumb and little finger encircles the left wrist with the remaining three fingers extended along the left arm. A woman has to place her right palm over the back of her left hand and she should not form a circle with the right hand, nor should she encircle/clasp her left hand wrist.
- In ruku men have to bow down quite low, to the extent that their heads, hips, and backs are in line. Women should not go so low down. Instead, they should only bow down to the extent that their hands touch their knees.
- In ruku, men should spread out their fingers and place them on their knees while women should not do this. Instead, they should keep their fingers together when placing them on their knees.
- In ruku, men should keep their elbows away from their sides while women should keep them close to their sides.
- In sajdah, men should keep their stomachs away from their thighs and their arms away from their sides while women have to keep all these parts close together.
- In sajdah, men should raise their elbows above the ground while women should place them on the ground.
- Women do not have the choice of offering their salaat aloud under any circumstances. They should always offer all their salaats in a soft voice.
- Rules Concerning Recitation of the Quran
- It is wajib to recite the Quran correctly. Every letter should be pronounced correctly. Just as there are differences in pronouncing the "ain" and "hamza", there are similar differences in pronouncing the following letters:
ح ہ ذ ظ زض س ص ث
All these have to be pronounced correctly and no letter should be pronounced in place of another.
- If a person is unable to pronounce a particular letter correctly, it is incumbent on him to practise pronouncing it correctly. If he does not make an effort to pronounce it correctly, he will be a sinner and no salaat of his will be correct. However, even if he is unable to correct himself after making concerted efforts, then there is no compulsion.
- If the letters can be pronounced correctly, but due to negligence and complacency they are uttered incorrectly, then the person will be a sinner and his salaat will not be correct.
- There is no harm in reciting the Surah that had been recited in the first rakaat, in the second rakaat as well. But to do this unnecessarily is not good.
- In salaat, the Surahs should be recited in the same order as that of the Quran. For example, if a particular Surah is recited in the first rakaat, then in the second rakaat a Surah which comes after it in the Quran should be recited and not one that comes before it. For example, a person reads Surah al-Kafirun in the first rakaat. So in the second rakaat he should read: Surah an-Nasr, Surah Ikhlaas, Surah al-Falaq or Surah an-Naas. He should not recite any Surah that comes before it, such as Surah al-Fil or Surah Quraysh. To do so is makruh. But if one does this forgetfully or unintentionally, it will not be makruh.
- Once a person commences with a Surah, it is makruh for him to leave it and start with a new Surah unnecessarily.
- If a person does not know how to offer salaat at all, or has just accepted Islam, he should continue reading Sub'haanallah in his salaat. In doing so his fard duty will be completed. However, he should continue learning the method of offering salaat properly. If he displays any laziness in this regard, he will be extremely sinful.
- It is wajib to recite the Quran correctly. Every letter should be pronounced correctly. Just as there are differences in pronouncing the "ain" and "hamza", there are similar differences in pronouncing the following letters:
- SALAAT WITH JAMA'AT (CONGREGATION)
- Offering salaat with jama'at is wajib according to some ulama, and sunnat-e-mu'akkadah according to others. This will be discussed in more detail, Insha Allah.
- To offer salaat with jama'at means that at least two people must get together and offer their salaat in such a way that one person leads the salaat and the other person follows him. The person who leads the salaat is called the imam, and the person who follows him is called the muqtadi.
- If even one person joins the imam, jama'at becomes valid. This is irrespective of whether the person is a man, woman, slave, free person, mature person or a child who has reached the age of understanding. However, for the jumu'ah and eid salaats, there has to be at least three persons apart from the imam.
- In order for the jama'at to be valid, it is not necessary for the salaat to be a fard salaat. Even if it is a nafl salaat and two people get together and offer it with jama'at, it will be valid. This is irrespective of whether both the imam and the muqtadi are offering nafl salaat, or only the muqtadi is offering nafl salaat. However, it is makruh to make a habit of offering nafl salaat with jama'at or for more than three people to offer nafl salaat with jama'at.
- The Virtues and Importance of Jama'at
So many Sahih Ahadith have been narrated with regards to the virtues and importance of jama'at that if all of them had to be collected at one place, a large voluminous book would get filled. After examining all these Ahadith, one aspect is very apparent, i.e. jama'at is a very important prerequisite for the perfection of salaat. Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam never ever discarded jama'at. So much so that when he fell ill and did not have the strength to walk on his own, he came to the musjid with the assistance of two people and offered his salaat with jama'at. He used to become extremely angry on the person who did not offer his salaat with jama'at and desired to mete out severe punishment on the abandoning of jama'at. Without doubt, very great importance has been attached to offering salaat with jama'at in the Shariah of Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. And it ought to have been like this. The high status of salaat demanded that whatever was going to complement it should also be given full importance.
We will now quote a verse which some commentators and jurists have used as a proof on the establishment of jama'at. Thereafter, we shall quote a few Ahadith. The verse reads as follows
Translation:"And bow down (in prayer) with those who bow down." (i.e. with jama'at).
There is an explicit order to offer salaat with jama'at in this verse. But because a few commentators have taken "bow down" (ruku) to mean "humility" (khudu), therefore the fardiyyat (compulsion) of salaat with jama'at cannot be established (from this verse).
- Ahadith on the Virtues and Importance of Jama'at
- Ibn Umar radiallahu anhu narrates from Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam on the virtue of offering salaat with jama'at as being 27 times more rewarding than offering it alone.
- Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "It is better to offer salaat with another person than to offer it alone. And it is even better to offer it with two people. And the bigger the jama'at, the more beloved it is in the sight of Allah."
- Anas bin Maalik radiallahu anhu narrates that the Banui Salimah who used to live quite far from the Musjid un-Nabawi decided to shift from their original place and come and settle down somewhere near Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. On hearing about this, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam asked them saying: "What! Don't you regard your footsteps which touch the ground as being worthy of reward?" From this we can deduce that the further one lives from the musjid, and still comes walking to it, the more reward he will receive.
- Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "Whatever time that is spent waiting for salaat will be regarded as though the person was actually in salaat."
- One night Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam addressed those companions of his who were present for the esha jama'at saying: "People are offering their salaat and going away to sleep, while whatever time you are spending in waiting for salaat is being calculated as if you are already in salaat."
- Buraydah Aslami radiallahu anhu narrates that once Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "Glad tidings to those who go to the musjids in the dark of the night in order to attend the jama'at, that they will be bestowed with full light on the day of resurrection."
- Uthmaan radiallahu anhu narrates that Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "The person who offers esha salaat with jama'at will get the reward of spending half the night in ibaadah. And the one who offers the esha and fajr salaats with jama'at will get the reward of spending the whole night in ibaadah."
- Abu Hurayrah radiallahu anhu reports that once Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "It crossed my mind that I order someone to gather some firewood, thereafter the adhaan be called out and I order someone to perform the salaat while I go to the houses of those people who do not attend the jama'at and I set fire to their houses."
- Another narration reads as follows: "Were it not for the little children and women, I would have occupied myself with the esha salaat and ordered the servants to go to the houses and set them alight together with them and their possessions." (Muslim)
The wisdom behind mentioning esha salaat is that it is the time for sleeping and generally most of the people are at home at that time. After quoting this Hadith, Imam Tirmidhi rahmatullahi alayh says that a similar Hadith has been narrated by Ibn Mas'ud, Abu Darda, Ibn Abbas, and Jaabir radiallahu anhum. All these people were among the respected companions of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam.
- Abu Darda radiallahu anhu reports that Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "Even if there are only three persons in a particular locality or jungle and they do not offer salaat with jama'at, then shaytaan will most certainly overpower them. O Abu Darda! Regard jama'at as being incumbent upon you.Remember, the wolves attack that sheep which has strayed away from the main flock."
- Ibn Abbas radiallahu anhu narrates that Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "The person who hears the adhaan and still does not attend the jama'at without any valid excuse, then the salaat which he offers alone is not accepted." The Sahabah asked as to what that excuse was, upon which Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam replied that it was fear or sickness. In this Hadith fear and sickness have not been explained. In other Ahadith some explanation of fear and sickness has been given.
- Mihjan radiallahu anhu narrates: "Once I was with Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam when we heard the adhaan. Rasulullah sallallhu alayhi wa sallam commenced with his salaat while I went and sat down in my place. After completing his salaat, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam asked me: "O Mihjan! Why didn't you offer your salaat with jama'at? Are you not a Muslim?" I replied saying: "O Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam! I am indeed a Muslim, but I had already offered my salaat at home." Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "When you come to the musjid and see that the jama'at has commenced, join the people and offer your salaat even if you have already offered your salaat."
Ponder over this Hadith and see how Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam reprimanded his selected companion, Mihjan radiallahu anhu, and asked him: "Are you not a Muslim?"
- Sayings of the Sahabah on the Virtues and Importance of Jama'at
A few Ahadith have been mentioned to serve as an example. We will now mention the sayings of the companions of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam in order to illustrate the importance they attached to the offering of salaat with jama'at, and how they regarded the abandoning of jama'at. Why should they not regard it like this? Who can be more cautious in obeying and seeking the pleasure of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam than them?
- Aswad says that once he was in the company of Hadrat A'ishah radiallahu anha when the discussion turned towards the virtues and importance of salaat. In order to substantiate what she was saying, she quoted an incident from the marad ul-maut (the last sickness before death) of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. One day, the time of salaat entered and the adhaan was called out. Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said that Abu Bakr radiallahu anhu should be told to perform the salaat. I said to him that Abu Bakr is a very soft-hearted person. When he stands to perform the salaat in your place, he will become incapable and will not be able to perform the salaat. However, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam repeated the same command, so I gave him the same reply. Upon this, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: "You are saying the same things which the women of Egypt used to say to Hadrat Yusuf alayhis salaam. Tell Abu Bakr that he should perform the salaat." Anyway, Abu Bakr went out to perform the salaat. In the meantime, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam felt some relief from his sickness, so he went towards the musjid with the assistance of two people. I can still picture the scene when Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was going with his feet dragging on the floor. That is, he did not even have the strength to lift his feet. Abu Bakr had already commenced performing the salaat and wanted to move back. But Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam stopped him and made him perform the salaat.
- Once Hadrat Umar radiallahu anhu noticed that Sulayman bin Abi Haythama was not present for the fajr salaat. So he went to his house and asked his mother as to why he did not see Sulayman for fajr today. She replied that he had been offering salaat throughout the night and fell asleep at the time of fajr. Upon hearing this, Hadrat Umar radiallahu anhu replied: "I prefer offering fajr salaat with jama'at than spending the entire night in ibaadah. (Muwatta Imam Malik) Shaikh Abdul Haqq Muhaddith Dehlawi rahmatullahi alayhi has written that it is clear from this Hadith that there is more reward in offering fajr salaat with jama'at than tahajjud salaat. It is for this reason that the ulama have written that if spending the night in ibaadah will cause some harm or shortcoming in the fajr salaat, it will be preferable to leave out spending the night in ibaadah. (Ash'atul Lama'aat)
- Hadrat Ibn Mas'ud radiallahu anhu says: "We witnessed ourselves - the Sahabah - that none would leave out offering salaat with jama'at except an open hypocrite or that person who is sick. But even the sick used to come for jama'at with the assistance of two people. Without doubt, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam showed us the different paths of guidance. And among them is the offering of salaat in those musjids where the adhaan is called out, i.e. where salaat is offered with jama'at. Another advice that he gave us is that whoever wishes to meet Allah Ta'ala on the day of resurrection as a Muslim should make a duty of offering his five times salaat regularly in those places where adhaan is called out, i.e. in those places where salaat is offered with jama'at. Without doubt, Allah Ta'ala has shown the different paths of guidance to your prophet. And this salaat is also among these paths. If you offer your salaat in your homes, as is the habit of the hypocrites, you will most certainly be missing out on the Sunnah of your prophet. And if you leave out the Sunnah of your prophet, you will most certainly be led astray. When a person makes a complete wudu and leaves his home for the musjid, then for every step that he takes he gets one reward, his rank is elevated, and one sin is forgiven. We have noticed that no one except the hypocrite stays away from the jama'at. Our state was such that when we used to fall ill, we used to be taken to attend the jama'at with the assistance of two people and made to stand in the saff" (line in which every one stands to offer salaat).
- Once a person walked out of the musjid without offering his salaat after the adhaan had been called out. Upon this, Hadrat Abu Hurayrah radiallahu anhu said: "This person has disobeyed Abul Qasim (Muhammad) sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and disregarded his noble order." (Sahih Muslim) Just ponder over what Hadrat Abu Hurayrah radiallahu anhu said in regard to the person who abandoned the jama'at. After hearing this, can any Muslim still have the audacity of leaving the jama'at without any valid excuse? Can any believing person bear disobeying Hadrat Abul Qasim (Muhammad) sallallahu alayhi wa sallam?
- Hadrat Umme Darda radiallahu anha says: "Once Hadrat Abu Darda radiallahu anhu came to me in an extremely angry state. So I asked him: 'Why are you so angry today?' He replied: "I swear by Allah that I do not see anything wrong in the ummah of Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam except that they should offer their salaat with jama'at.' In other words, they have even started leaving this out."
- Many companions of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam report that he said: "The person who hears the adhaan and yet does not attend the jama'at, his salaat will not be accepted." After quoting this Hadith, Imam Tirmidhi says that some ulama have stated that this ruling is for emphasis. The purpose of this is that it is not permissible to leave out the jama'at without any valid excuse.
- Once, Mujahid asked to Ibn Abbas radiallahu anhu: "What do you have to say in regard to that person who fasts the entire day and offers salaat throughout the night but does not attend jumu'ah nor the jama'at?" He replied: "He will go to hell." (Tirmidhi) In explaining this Hadith, Imam Tirmidhi says that this rule will apply if a person leaves out jumu'ah and jama'at out of total disregard for them. But if we regard the entry into hell for a few days, then the above explanation will not be necessary.
- It was the practice of our pious predecessors that if anyone did not come for the jama'at, they used to boycott him for seven days. (Ihya ul-Uloom)
- Opinions of the Ulama with regard to the Importance of Jama'at
We have quoted a few sayings of the Sahabah, which in reality portray the words of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. Now let us look at the ulama and mujtahideen and see what they have to say in regard to jama'at and how they understood these Ahadith.
- The Zaahiriyyah and a few followers of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal rahmatullahi alayh say that jama'at is a prerequisite in order for the salaat to be valid. Without jama'at, the salaat is not valid.
- The correct opinion of Imam Ahmad is that jama'at is fard-e-ayn even though it is not a prerequisite for salaat. This is also the opinion of a few followers of Imam Shafi'i rahmatullahi alayh.
- Some of the followers of Imam Shafi'i have the opinion that jama'at is fard-e-kifaayah. This is also the opinion of Imam Tahaawi rahamatullahi alayhi, a high ranking jurist and muhaddith of the Hanafis.
- Most of the Hanafi scholars have the opinion that jama'at is wajib. Ibn Humaam, Halabi, the author of Bahrur Raa'iq, and others are also of this opinion.
- Some Hanafi scholars say that jama'at is sunnat-e-mu'akkadah but it falls under wajib. So, in reality, there is no contradiction between these two opinions of the Hanafis.
- Our jurists have written that if the people of a city abandon jama'at and do not establish this noble institution even after instructing them to do so, it will be permissible to wage war against them.
- It is written in Quniyah and other books that it is wajib on the imam of the time to punish the person who leaves out jama'at without any valid excuse, and that his neighbour will be sinful if he does not reprimand him on this action of his.
- If a person delays his going to the musjid until the commencement of the iqaamah, he will be committing a sin. This is so because if he is going to go to the musjid only after hearing the iqaamah, there is the danger of him missing a few rakaats or the entire salaat. It has been reported from Imam Muhammad rahamutallahi alayh that it is permissible to rush to the musjid in order to get the jumu'ah salaat and the jama'at. This is on condition that he will not be overburdened.
- The one who leaves out the jama'at is most certainly committing a sin and his testimony (in an Islamic court) will not be accepted. This is on condition that he left it out without any valid excuse, and due to sheer laziness.
- If a person is fully occupied in learning or teaching matters of the Deen and does not attend the jama'at, this will not be regarded as a valid excuse and his testimony (in an Islamic court) will not be accepted.
- The Benefits and Wisdom of Jama'at
- The ulama have written considerably on this subject. But as far as I know, there isn't a more comprehensive and eloquent article than that which has been written by Hadrat Maulana Shah Wali Ullah rahmatullahi alayh. Although it would have been preferable for me to quote his article word for word, for the sake of brevity, I will merely give a summary of what he has written.
- There is nothing more beneficial or profitable than making a particular form of ibaadah into a second nature to the extent that that ibaadah becomes a necessity and it becomes impossible to leave it just as it is almost impossible to give up a particular habit. And there is no form of ibaadah greater than salaat which could be accorded such importance.
- In matters of religion, we find all sorts of people - the learned as well as the ignorant. There is therefore great wisdom in this that everyone gets together and fulfils this ibaadah in the presence of each other. If someone makes a particular mistake, another person is there to correct him. It is as if this ibaadah of Allah Ta'ala is a jewel and all the inspectors are examining it: if there is any defect in it, they point it out, and if there is any merit or excellence in it, they appreciate it. So this is an excellent mean for the perfection of salaat.
- The position of those who do not offer their salaat will also come into the open. In this way, one has the opportunity of advising them.
- The gathering of a few Muslims who render an ibaadah to Allah Ta'ala and beseech Him has a special effect for the descending of mercy and acceptance in the sight of Allah.
- The aim and object of Allah Ta'ala with regards to this ummah is that the kalimah must supercede everything and that kufr must be subdued, and that no religion must be able to overpower Islam. This can only be possible if certain steps are adopted whereby all the Muslims - the masses, the learned, the travellers, the inhabitants of places, the young, and the old - get together for a particular ibaadah which is great and famous, thereby exhibiting the grandeur and power of Islam. Because of all these merits and qualities, the entire attention of the Shariah directed itself towards the jama'at, encouraged it, and laid down strict prohibitions on discarding it.
- Another benefit of the jama'at is that all the Muslims will be fully aware of each others conditions and circumstances, and will be able to share each others difficulties and problems. In this way, religious brotherhood and love which is based on Imaan will be fully exhibited and consolidated. This is one of the great objects of the Shariah and its significance and virtue has been mentioned repeatedly in the Quran and Hadith. It is indeed sad that the discarding of jama'at has become a norm in our
- times. Let alone the ignorant masses, many learned people are also caught in this evil web. It is extremely sad that these people read the Ahadith and even understand their meanings, but the importance of jama'at does not have any effect on their hearts which are harder than stone. What answer will these people give when they will stand in front of Allah Ta'ala and all the appeals with regards to salaat will be presented before everything else, and investigations will commence with those who discarded salaat entirely or partly?
- Conditions which make Jama'at Wajib
- To be a male - jama'at is not wajib on women.
- To be mature - jama'at is not wajib on children who have not reached the age of puberty.
- To be a free person - jama'at is not wajib on a slave.
- One must be in one's senses - jama'at is not wajib on a person who is intoxicated, unconscious, or a lunatic.
- To be free from all excuses - in the presence of these excuses, jama'at is not wajib. However, it will be better if he offers his salaat with jama'at despite having an excuse. If he does not offer with jama'at, he will be deprived of the reward.
- The excuses for leaving out jama'at are fourteen:
- The absence of sufficient clothing with which one could cover one's aurah (private area).
- An abundance of mud on the road leading to the musjid which would make walking extremely difficult.. Once Imam Abu Yusuf rahmatullahi alayh asked Imam Abu Hanifah rahmatullahi alayh on his view regarding attending jama'at if there is a lot of mud, etc. on the road. He replied that he does not like the idea of abandoning the jama'at.
- At the time of a heavy downpour. Imam Muhammad rahmatullahi alayh has written in his Muwatta that although it is permissible not to attend the jama'at in such a case, it will be preferable to go and offer the salaat with jama'at.
- When it is extremely cold and one fears that by going out towards the musjid, one will fall ill or that the sickness will worsen.
- There is a fear of his wealth and possessions getting stolen by going to the musjid.
- There is a fear of meeting an enemy by going to the musjid.
- By going to the musjid there is a fear of meeting his creditor and he fears some harm from him. This is on the condition that he is unable to fulfil his debt. If he is able to fulfil his debt, he will be regarded as an oppressor and it will not be permissible for him to discard the jama'at.
- The night is very dark and the road cannot be seen. However, if Allah Ta'ala has blessed him with those things with which he could see the road, he should not leave out the jama'at.
- It is the time of night and there is a very severe storm.
- He is taking care of a sick person and fears that if he goes for the jama'at, some harm may befall the sick person or that he might feel uneasy.
- The food has been prepared or is on the verge of being prepared and he is so hungry that he fears that he will not be able to concentrate in his salaat.
- He has an urgent need to go and relieve himself.
- He intends to embark on a journey and fears that if he goes to offer his salaat with jama'at, he will get delayed and that the caravan will leave him. Travelling by train can also be based on this mas'ala with the exception that when one caravan departs, the following one leaves after many days. While several trains depart in one day - if a person misses one train he can always take the next one. However, if there is an urgency, then there will be no harm in taking the first train. Urgency or any other valid reason is excusable in our Shariah.
- He is afflicted with such a sickness whereby he cannot walk, or he is blind, crippled or one of his legs have been amputated. However, the blind person who can walk to the musjid without any difficulty should not leave out the jama'at.
- Prerequisites for the Validity of Jama'at
- Islam - the jama'at of a kaafir is not valid.
- To be in one's senses - the jama'at of an intoxicated, unconscious or lunatic person is not valid.
- In addition to making the intention of salaat, the muqtadi must also make the intention of following the imam. In other words, he must have this intention in his heart that he is offering a particular salaat behind this imam. The masaa'il related to intention have already been mentioned.
- The place of the imam and the muqtadi must be the same. This is irrespective of whether being in one place is in reality, such as offering salaat together in one musjid or in one house; or in principle. For example, the imam stands on one end of a bridge over a river and the muqtadis stand behind him with the saffs reaching the opposite end going beyond the bridge. Although there is a river intervening between the muqtadis of the opposite end and the imam, resulting in the place not being the same in reality, but because the saffs inbetween are continuous, therefore their (the imam's and the muqtadis of the opposite end) places will therefor be regarded as the same in principle and the jama'at will be valid.
Masaa'il related to number 4
- If the muqtadi is standing on the roof of the musjid and the imam is standing inside the musjid, this will be permissible. This is because the roof of the musjid is considered to be part of the musjid and both places will be regarded as one. Similarly, if someone's roof is attached to the musjid and there is no barrier between the two, then that place will also be regarded as being part of the musjid. It will be permissible to stand on that roof and follow the imam who is in that musjid.
- If a musjid or house is extremely large or one is in a jungle and there is such an open space between the imam and muqtadi wherein two saffs could stand - then both these places, i.e. where the imam is and where the muqtadi is standing, will be regarded as two separate places and it will not be permissible to follow the imam.
- Similarly, if there is a river between the imam and the muqtadi and it is so large that a ship can sail on it, or there is such a large pond which the Shariah has ruled as being pure , or there is a public road on which an ox-wagon could pass - and there are no saffs in between, then these places will not be regarded as one and it will not be permissible to follow the imam.
- Similarly, if there is such a river or such a road between two saffs, it will not be permissible for that saff which is on the other side to follow the imam.
- It is not permissible for the padestrian to follow the rider. Nor is it permissible for a rider to follow another rider. This is so because both their places are not the same. However, if both of them riding one animal, jama'at will be permissible.
- The salaat of the imam and the muqtadi must be the same. If the salaat of the muqtadi is different from the salaat of the imam, it will not be permissible for him to follow the imam. For example, the imam is performing zuhr salaat and the muqtadi makes intention for asr salaat. Alternatively, the imam is performing qada for the zuhr of yesterday and the muqtadi makes intention for the zuhr of today. However, it will be permissible if both make the intention of qada for the zuhr of yesterday or both make the intention of qada for the zuhr of today. If the imam is performing a fard salaat and the muqtadi makes intention for nafl salaat, his following the imam will be valid because the salaat of the imam is "stronger". If the muqtadi wishes to offer taraweeh salaat and the imam is offering nafl salaat, it will not be permissible to follow him because the imam's salaat is "weaker".
- The salaat of the imam has to be valid. If the salaat of the imam becomes invalid, the salaat of all the muqtadis will also become invalid. This is irrespective of whether the invalidity is known during the salaat or after the completion of the salaat. An example of this is that there was najaasat-e-ghaleezah on the imam's clothing which was in excess of a fifty-cent coin (Darham) and he came to know of this after completing his salaat or during salaat. Another example is that the imam did not have wudu and he only realized this after completing his salaat or during salaat.
If the salaat of the imam becomes invalid due to some reason and the muqtadis do know about it, it is necessary on the imam that as far as possible he should inform the muqtadis so that they could repeat their salaat. This is irrespective of whether he informs them by sending a message to them or by writing letters to them.
- The muqtadi should not stand in front of the imam. He could stand in line with the imam or behind him. If the muqtadi stands in front of the imam, his following the imam will not be correct. Standing in front of the imam will be considered when the heels of the muqtadi are ahead of the heels of the imam. If the heels are not ahead, but the toes are ahead due to the muqtadi's feet being bigger or his toes being longer, then this will not be regarded as being in front of the imam. In this case, his following the imam will be correct.
- The muqtadi must have a knowledge of the movements of the imam. Movements such as the bowing, standing, prostrating and sitting postures. This knowledge could either be based on looking at the imam, listening to his voice or the voice of a mukabbir (person who conveys the takbirs of the imam when the congregation is generally very large and there is no mike system) or by looking at another muqtadi. If the muqtadi does not have knowledge of the movements of the imam, either because of a barrier between them or for some other reason, then his following the imam will not be correct. However, if there is a barrier such as a curtain or wall, but the muqtadi has knowledge of the movements of the imam, then following the imam will be correct.
If it is not known as to whether the imam is a musafir or not, but due to certain indications the muqtadi feels that he is not a musafir - on condition that he is in the city or town and he offers his salaat as a musafir, i.e. if it is a four rakaat salaat, he makes salaam after two rakaats, and the muqtadi suspects that this salaam of the imam is for sahw - then in this case, this muqtadi must complete his four rakaats and thereafter it will be wajib on him to find out about the state of the imam as to whether he made salaam because of sahw or because he was a musafir. If after finding out, he learnt that he was a musafir, his salaat will be valid. But if it was for sahw, the muqtadi will have to repeat his salaat. If the muqtadi did not make any inquiries but offered his salaat in that doubt and went away, then even in this case he will have to repeat his salaat.
If the muqtadi feels that the imam is not a musafir, and he is not performing his salaat in the city or town but out of it, and he performs the four rakaat salaat as a musafir - and the muqtadi suspects that the imam made salaam for sahw, then even in this case muqtadi should offer his full four rakaats and it will be better for him to inquire about the state of the imam. If he does not make any inquiries, his salaat will not become invalid. This is because of the fact that the imam is outside the city or town shows that he is obviously a musafir. As for the muqtadi's suspicion that he made salaam for sahw, this is not something that is obvious or apparent. Therefore, in this case it will not be necessary to make any inquiries.
Similarly, if the imam performs a four rakaat salaat in the city, town or in any jungle, etc. and the muqtadi suspects that he is a musafir - but the imam performs the full four rakaats, it will not be wajib on the muqtadi to make any inquiries. As for the fajr and maghrib salaats, under no circumstances will it be necessary to inquire as to whether the imam is a musafir or not. This is because the musafir and the muqeem are equal for these two salaats.
To put it briefly, it will only be necessary to make inquiries in one instance. That is, when the imam is in the city, town or some other place, and performs only two rakaats for a four rakaat salaat and the muqtadi suspects that he made salaam for sahw.
- The muqtadi has to be with the imam in all the postures except the qira'at. This is irrespective of whether he carries them out with the imam, after the imam or before the imam - as long as the imam is with him till the end of that posture. Example of the first instance: he makes ruku, sajdah, etc. with the imam. Example of the second instance: the imam makes ruku and stands up. Thereafter the muqtadi makes ruku. Example of the third instance: he goes into ruku before the imam, but stays for so long in ruku that he even gets the ruku of the imam.
If the muqtadi is not with the imam in any particular posture, for example, the imam makes ruku and the muqtadi does not make, or the imam makes two sajdahs and the muqtadi only makes one, or he goes into a particular posture before the imam and does not get the imam till the end of that posture - for example, he goes into ruku before the imam and stands up before the imam can even go into ruku - then in all these cases, his following the imam will not be valid.
- The state of the muqtadi must be inferior or equal to that of the imam.
Examples are as follows:
- The one who is able to stand can follow the person who is unable to stand and offer his salaat. In the Shariah, the sitting of one who is excused is equal to standing.
- The one who has made wudu or ghusl can follow the one who has made tayammum irrespective of whether this tayammum was made for wudu or for ghusl. This is because the rule concerning tayammum, wudu, and ghusl is equal in tahaarat. One is not inferior or superior to the other.
- The one who has washed his limbs can follow the one who has made masah irrespective of whether he made masah on his leather socks or on his bandage. This is because the one who washes and the one who makes masah are equal in purity. No one is higher than the other.
- The one who is a ma'zur can follow another person who is also a ma'zur on the condition that both are ma'zur for the same reason. For example, both have the sickness of continuous dripping of urine or both have the sickness of continuous passing of smells.
- An ummi can follow another person who is also an ummi on condition that there is no one who is a qari among the muqtadis.
- Women and immature children can follow an imam who is mature and a male.
- A woman can offer salaat behind another woman.
- An immature male or immature female can follow an immature male.
- A person who offers a nafl salaat can read behind one who is offering a wajib salaat. For example, a person has already offered his zuhr salaat and he goes and follows another person who is offering his zuhr salaat. Or, for example, a person has already offered his eid salaat and he goes and joins the jama'at again.
- It is permissible for a person offering nafl salaat to follow another person who is also offering a nafl salaat.
- A person who is offering a salaat of qasm (oath) can also follow one who is offering a nafl salaat. This is because the salaat of qasm is also regarded as a nafl salaat. For example, a person takes an oath that he will offer two rakaats of salaat and thereafter he goes and offers two rakaats of salaat behind a person who is offering a nafl salaat. His salaat will be valid and he would have fulfilled his oath.
- It is permissible for the person who is offering the salaat of nazr (vow) to follow another person who is also offering the salaat of nazr on condition that the nazr of both is the same. For example, a person made a nazr and another person says that he is making the same nazr that the other person made. But if this is not the case and one person made a separate nazr for two rakaats for example, and the other person made some other nazr, then none of them can follow the other.
In brief, if the muqtadi is "inferior" or equal to the imam, his following the imam will be valid. We will now mention those instances when the muqtadi is "superior" to the imam, either with certainty or on the possibility that he is "superior" - whereby his following the imam will not be valid.
- The state of the muqtadi superior than that of the imam.
Examples are as follows:
- It is not permissible to follow an immature person irrespective of whether the person following is a male or a female.
- It is not permissible to follow a female irrespective of whether the person following is a mature or immature male.
- A hermaphrodite cannot offer salaat behind another hermaphrodite. A hermaphrodite is one in whom the male and female characteristics are so conflicting that it is difficult to say with certainty whether he is a man or a woman. This type of creation is very rare and infrequent.
- A woman who does not remember the period of her haid cannot follow another woman who is like her. In both these instances, there is the possibility that the muqtadi is "superior" to the imam. It will therefore not be permissible to follow them. In the first instance, it is possible that the imam who is a hermaphrodite could be a female; and the hermaphrodite who is the muqtadi could be a male. Similarly, in the second case, it is possible that the woman who is the imam is in her period of haid while the one who is the muqtadi could be in her period of purity.
- A hermaphrodite cannot follow a woman because there is a possibility of the hermaphrodite being a man.
- A person who is conscious and in his senses cannot follow the person who is a lunatic, intoxicated, unconscious or mentally deranged.
- A person who is taahir cannot follow one who is a ma'zur, eg. the person who has the sickness of continuous dripping of urine, etc.
- A person who is ma'zur on account of one sickness cannot follow the one who is ma'zur on account of two sicknesses. For example, a person who passes smells continuously cannot follow the person who passes smells continuously and also has the sickness of continuous dripping of urine.
- A person who is ma'zur because of a particular type of sickness cannot follow the one who is ma'zur because of another type of sickness. For example, a person who has the sickness of continuous dripping of urine cannot follow one who has the sickness of continuous bleeding of the nose.
- A qari cannot follow an ummi. In this context, a qari refers to that person who had learned by heart a certain amount of the Quran whereby salaat will be regarded as valid, and an ummi is one who cannot even do this.
- It is not permissible for an ummi to follow another person who is also an ummi while there is another muqtadi who is a qari. This is because the salaat of the ummi imam will become invalid, since it was possible to make that qari the imam and his recitation would have been sufficient for all the muqtadis. But now that the ummi imam's salaat has become invalid, all the other muqtadis salaat will also become invalid and among them was that ummi muqtadi as well.
- It is not permissible for an ummi to follow a person who is dumb. This is because although the ummi cannot recite, he can still get the opportunity to learn while the dumb person does not have the power to even do this.
- A person who has covered the necessary portions of his body cannot follow one who is naked.
- A person who is able to go into ruku and sajdah cannot follow one who cannot execute these postures. It is also not permissible to follow one who cannot go into sajdah only.
- It is not permissible for the one who is offering a fard salaat to follow the person who is offering a nafl salaat.
- A person who is offering a salaat of nazr cannot follow the person who is offering a nafl salaat. This is because the nazr salaat is wajib.
- A person who is offering a salaat of nazr cannot follow the person who is offering a salaat of qasm. For example, if a person takes a qasm that he will offer four rakaats of salaat today and another person had made a nazr for four rakaats. If the person who made the nazr follows this person, his salaat will not be valid because the salaat of nazr is wajib while that of qasm is nafl. This is because it is not wajib to fulfil the qasm. It is also possible for him to give kaffarah and not offer the salaat.
- A person who can pronounce the letters clearly and correctly cannot follow the person who cannot pronounce the letters clearly. For example, he pronounces the "seen" as "thaa" or the "raa" as "ghayn" or any other similar mispronunciation. However, if he mispronounces one or two words in the entire recitation, it will be permissible to follow him.
- The imam must not be a munfarid as a compulsion (wajibul infiraad). In other words, it is not permissible to follow a person who has to be a munfarid at that particular time. For example, the person who misses one or two rakaats of the congregation has to stand up and complete the rakaats which he missed. It is necessary for him to do this alone. So if another person goes and follows this person, his following him will not be valid.
- The imam must not be a muqtadi of another person. In other words, a person who is a muqtadi himself should not be made an imam. This is irrespective of whether he is a muqtadi in reality, such as a mudrik; or he is a muqtadi in principle, such as a laahiq. The laahiq is regarded as a muqtadi in those rakaats which he did not offer with the imam. Therefore, if anyone follows a mudrik or laahiq, his following will not be permissible. Similarly, it will not be permissible for a masbuq to follow a laahiq or vice versa.
If any of these twelve conditions are not found in a muqtadi, then his following will not be permissible. And when the muqtadi's following is not valid, then the salaat in which he followed someone will also not be valid.
- The Rules of Jama'at
- Jama'at is a prerequisite for the salaats of jumu'ah and the two eids. In other words, these salaats are not valid when offered alone.
- Jama'at is wajib for the five daily salaats as long as there is no valid excuse. It is sunnat-e-mu'akkadah for the taraweeh salaat even if one complete Quran has already been recited with jama'at. It is mustahab for the witr salaat in Ramadaan. Apart from Ramadaan, witr salaat with jama'at is makruh-e-tanzihi at any other time. That is if it is offered regularly. If it is not offered regularly and occasionally a few persons get together and offer it with jama'at, then it will not be makruh. If salaat-e-kusuf and all the other nafl salaats are offered with the importance that is given to the jama'at of the fard salaats, i.e. by giving adhaan, iqaamah or by gathering the people through any other way - then it will be makruh-e-tahrimi. However, if a two or three people get together and offer a nafl salaat in jama'at without giving adhaan or iqaamah and without calling the people, then there will be no harm in this. But even then, this should not be done regularly.
- In the same way, it is also makruh-e-tahrimi to make a second jama'at for the fard salaats with these four conditions:
- The musjid is a mahalli musjid and it is not on the main road. A mahalli musjid is a musjid in which the imam and musallis are appointed.
- The first jama'at was offered with a loud adhaan and iqaamah.
- The first jama'at was offered by those people who stay in that residential area and who have some influence over the day to day affairs of that musjid.
- The second jama'at is offered in the same position and with the same care and attention as the first jama'at was offered.
This fourth condition is according to Imam Abu Yusuf rahmatullahi alayh. According to Imam Abu Hanifah rahmatullahi alayh, it will remain makruh even if the position was changed.
- If the second jama'at is not offered in the musjid but in a house, it will not be makruh. Similarly, if any of these four conditions are not found, it will not be makruh. For example, if the musjid is on the main road and not a mahalli musjid, as has been explained above, then not only a second jama'at, but even a third or fourth jama'at will not be makruh. Or, if the first jama'at was not offered after saying the adhaan and iqaamah with a loud voice, the second jama'at will not be makruh. Or, if the first jama'at was offered by those who do not live in that residential area, nor do they have any influence over the day to day affairs of that musjid, then the second jama'at will not be makruh. Or, according to Imam Abu Yusuf rahamatullahi alayh, if the position of the second jama'at was not the same as the first jama'at whereby that place where the imam of the first jama'at had stood, the imam of the second jama'at moved away from that place and performed the salaat on another spot, then the position will be regarded as being changed, and according to Imam Abu Yusuf rahmatullahi alayh, the jama'at will not be makruh.
Note:Although the practice of the people is on the opinion of Imam Abu Yusuf rahamatullahi alayh, the opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah rahmatullahi alayh is also based on a strong proof. The laxity and laziness in Deeni matters, especially in regards to the jama'at, also demands that a fatwa be passed making the second jama'at makruh even after changing the position of the second jama'at. If this is not done, people will intentionally miss out the first jama'at and say that they can always make a second jama'at.
- Masa'il Connected to the Imam and Muqtadi
- It is the duty of the muqtadis to choose the person who possesses the best characteristics from among all those who are present and to appoint him as the imam. If there are several people who are worthy of imaamat and they are all equal, then they should act according to the decision of the majority. That is, they should choose the person whom the majority of the people prefer. If they choose someone who is less capable despite there being a person who is more capable, they will be guilty of abandoning the sunnah.
- The person who is most worthy of imaamat is that person who has a thorough knowledge of the masa'il of salaat as long as he does not have any outward characteristics of fisq (immorality), he knows the specified number of verses for recitation, and recites the Quran correctly. After him, the person who recites the Quran according to the rules that have been laid down. Thereafter, the person who is the most pious. Thereafter, the person who is the most senior in age. Thereafter, the person who is most courteous. Thereafter, the person who is the most handsome. Thereafter, the person who is the most noble. Thereafer, the person who has the best voice. Thereafter, the person who is the most well-dressed. Thereafer, the person who has the largest head as long as it is in proportion to his body. Thereafter, preference is given to the muqeem over the musafir. Thereafter, the person who was born as a free person. Thereafter, the person who made tayammum for hadath-e-asghar is given preference over the person who made tayammum for hadath-e-akbar. But according to some, the person who made tayammum for hadath-e-akbar is given preference.
The person in whom two qualities are found is given preference over the person in whom only one quality is found. For example, the person who knows the masa'il of salaat and also recites the Quran correctly has preference over the person who only knows the masa'il of salaat and cannot read the Quran correctly.
- If jama'at is made in a house, the person whose house it is has more right of imaamat over the others. Thereafter, the person whom he appoints as an imam. However, if the owner of the house is a jaahil, and the other persons have knowledge of the masa'il, they will have the right of imaamat.
- If there is an imam who is appointed in a particular musjid, then in his presence no one else has the right of imaamat. However, if he appoints anyone else as the imam, there will be no harm in this.
- In the presence of the Qadi, i.e. the ruler of the Islamic state, no one else has the right of imaamat.
- It is makruh-e-tahrimi to make imaamat without the happiness of the people. However, if that person is the most qualified person for imaamat, i.e. no one else has the qualities of imaamat as he possesses, then it will not be makruh for him. Instead, whoever is unhappy with his imaamat will be in the wrong.
- It is makruh-e-tahrimi to appoint a faasiq or a bid'atee as an imam. However, if (Allah forbid) there is no one else apart from these people, then it will not be makruh. In the same way, if the bid'atee or the faasiq is a powerful person and they are unable to remove him, or there is a fear of great discord or dissension, even then it will not be makruh on the muqtadis.
- It is makruh-e-tanzihi to appoint the following persons as an imam: (a) a slave who is regarded as a slave in Islamic jurisprudence and not the one who is bought at the time of a famine,etc. even if he has been freed, (b) a villager, (c) a blind person who is not conscious of the laws of purity and impurity, (d) a person who cannot see well at night, (e) a waladuz zina, i.e. a person who was born out of an illicit relationship. However, if all these persons are possessors of knowledge and virtue, and people do not mind appointing them as imams, then it will not be makruh. It is also makruh-e-tanzihi to appoint a handsome youngster whose beard has not appeared as yet, and also a person who has no intellect.
- It is wajib on all the muqtadis to be in conformity with the imam in all the fara'id and wajibaat of salaat. However, it is not wajib to be in conformity with him in the sunnats. Based on this, if the imam is a follower of the Shafi'i school of thought and he raises his hands at the time of going into ruku and coming up from ruku, then it is not necessary for the Hanafee muqtadis to raise their hands. This is because the raising of the hands is sunnah even according to them. Similarly, if the Shafi'i imam reads the qunut in the fajr salaat, it is not necessary for the Hanafee muqtadis to do the same. However, since qunut is wajib in witr salaat, and the Shafi'i imam will read it after standing up from ruku, the Hanafee muqtadis should also read it after the ruku.
- It is makruh-e-tahrimi for the imam to recite very long Surahs which are more than the recommended amount, or to stay for very long periods in the ruku and sajdah postures. Instead, the imam should take into consideration the need, necessities, and weakness of the muqtadis. He should make his qira'ah after taking into consideration the condition of the person who is the weakest of all of them. In fact, if there is a great urgency, it will be preferable for him to make his recitation even shorter than the recommended amount. This is so that people do not find any difficulty which could be a cause for a decrease in the jama'at.
- If there is only one muqtadi who is a male or an immature boy, he should stand in line with or slightly behind the imam to the right of the imam. It is makruh to stand on the left hand side of the imam.
- If there are more than one muqtadi, they should stand behind the imam. If there are two muqtadis, it would be makruh-e-tanzihi for them to stand on either side of the imam. And if there are more than two muqtadis, it would be makruh-e-tahrimi to do so. This is because when there are more than two muqtadis, it is wajib for the imam to stand in front.
- If at the time of commencing the jama'at there was only one muqtadi and he stood to the right of the imam. Thereafter, more muqtadis joined the jama'at. The first muqtadi should step back so that all the muqtadis could get together and stand behind the imam. If he does not move back, the other muqtadis should pull him back. But if the muqtadis unintentionally stand to the right and left of the imam and do not pull the first muqtadi back, then in this case the imam should step forward so that all the muqtadis could get together and stand behind him. Similarly, if there is no place to move backwards, it will be the duty of the imam to step forward. But if the muqtadi is unaware of the masa'il, as is generally the case now a days, then it will not be advisable to move him because it is possible that he may do something which may break his salaat.
- If the muqtadi is a woman or an immature girl, she should stand behind the imam irrespective of whether there is only one woman or several women.
- If there are different types of muqtadis, i.e. a few men, a few women and a few children, then it is the duty of the imam to arrange their saffs in the following order: firstly he should arrange the saffs of the men, thereafter the saffs of the immature boys, thereafter the saffs of the women, and lastly the saffs of the immature girls.
- It is the duty of the imam to straighten the saffs. That is, he should stop the people from standing unevenly, and he should order them to stand straight. They should stand next to each other and should not leave any gaps among themselves.
- It is makruh for a person to stand alone in a saff. Instead, in such a case, he should pull a person back who is standing in the saff in front of him and make him stand in line with him. But if there is the possibility that the person will disrupt his salaat or take this unkindly, then he should not do this.
- It is makruh to stand in a new saff if there is place in the first saff. Once the saff is complete, then only should one stand in a new saff.
- It is makruh-e-tahrimi for a man to make imamat of women in a place where there is no other man or where there is no mahram female such as his wife, mother, sister, etc. If there is another man or mahram female, it will not be makruh.
- A person is offering the fard of fajr, maghrib or esha salaat alone and he is offering his salaat silently. If a person joins him and follows him as the imam while he is in this salaat, then there are two alternatives in this: (i) this person makes this intention in his heart that he is now becoming the imam so that his salaat may be offered with jama'at, (ii) he does not make this intention but continues thinking to himself that although this person has come and stood behind me, I am still offering my salaat alone. In the first case, the moment he makes his intention, it will be wajib for him to start reciting in a loud voice. If he had already recited a part of Surah Faatihah or any other Surah silently, he should start reciting them aloud the moment he makes his intention. This is because it is wajib on the imam to make the qira'at in a loud voice for the fajr, maghrib and esha salaats. As for the second case, it is not wajib to make the qira'at in a loud voice and even the salaat of that muqtadi will remain valid. This is because it is not necessary for the validity of muqtadi prayer that imam has made an intention for imamat or not.
- If the imam or the munfarid is offering his salaat at home or in an open field, it is mustahab for him to place an object which is equal to one arm or more in length and equal to one finger or more in thickness in front of him either on his right or left side. This object is called a sutra. However, if he is offering his salaat in a musjid or in a place where people will not pass in front of him, then there is no need to do this. The sutra of the imam will suffice for all the muqtadis. Once the sutra has been placed, there is no sin in walking beyond the sutra. But if someone walks within the sutra, he will be committing a sin.
- A laahiq is that muqtadi who misses a few or all his rakaats after having joined the jama'at, irrespective of whether he has an excuse or not.
Example where he has an excuse: he falls asleep in his salaat and thereby misses a few rakaats, or he is unable to make ruku and sajdah because of the large number of people, or his wudu breaks and while he is gone to make his wudu he misses a few rakaats. (In salaatul khauf, the first group is regarded as the laahiq. Similarly, the muqeem who follows an imam who is a musafir and who is making qasr, is regarded as a laahiq after the completion of the salaat of the imam).
Example where he has no excuse: he goes into ruku or sajdah before the imam and even comes up before him, on account of which his rakaat is not considered to be valid. With regard to that rakaat, he will be regarded as a laahiq. It is wajib on the laahiq to complete the rakaats which he had missed first. After completing them, he should join the jama'at if it is still in progress, if not, he should offer the remaining salaat as well.
- The laahiq will also be regarded as a muqtadi for the rakaats which he had missed. That is, just as a muqtadi does not make qira'at but merely stands silently, the laahiq will also do this. And just as the muqtadi does not make sajdah-e-sahw when he makes any mistake, so is the case with the laahiq.
- The masbuq, i.e. the one who has missed a few rakaats, should join the imam and offer whatever is left of his salaat with the jama'at. Once the imam completes his salaat, the masbuq should stand up and complete the rakaats which he had missed.
- The masbuq has to offer his missed rakaats as a munfarid with qira'at. And if he makes any mistake in these rakaats, it is also necessary for him to make sajdah-e-sahw.
- The masbuq should offer his missed rakaats in the following order: he should first offer those rakaats in which there is qira'at and then those which have no qira'at. As for the rakaats which he has offered with the imam, he should sit for them accordingly. That is, after counting the rakaats, he should make his first qa'dah after the second rakaat. He should make his last qa 'dah after his third rakaat if the salaat is a three rakaat salaat (such as maghrib). Examples: a person joined the jama'at for zuhr salaat when three rakaats had already been completed. When the imam makes salaam at the end of the salaat, this person should stand up and offer the three rakaats which he missed in the following manner: in the first rakaat he should recite Surah Faatihah, another Surah, make his ruku and sajdahs and then sit down for his first qa'dah. He has to sit down because this rakaat is regarded as his second rakaat after combining it with the rakaat that he had offered with the imam. Thereafter, he should offer his second rakaat and recite Surah Faatihah and another Surah in it as well. After this second rakaat he should not sit down because this rakaat is regarded as his third rakaat after joining it to the previous two. Thereafter, he should offer his third rakaat without reciting another Surah after having recited Surah Faatihah because this rakaat was not a rakaat of qira'at. After this rakaat, he should sit down because this is his last qa'dah.
- A person is a laahiq and a masbuq as well. Example, he joined the jama'at after a few rakaats and after joining in, he also misses some rakaats. He should first offer those rakaats which he missed after joining, i.e. in which he was a laahiq. However, he should offer these as if he is following the imam, i.e. he should not make qira'at and he should offer his salaat in the same order as that of the imam. Thereafter, if the jama'at is still in progress, he should join it. If not, he should also offer the balance of his salaat after having read those rakaats in which he was a masbuq. Example: a person joined the asr salaat after one rakaat. Upon joining the jama'at, his wudu broke so he went to repeat his wudu. In the meantime, the salaat ended. He should first offer those three rakaats which he missed out after having joined the jama'at. Thereafter, he should offer the one rakaat which he had missed before joining the jama'at. He should offer those three rakaats as a muqtadi, i.e. he should not make qira'at and he should sit down after the first of those three rakaats. This is because this is the second rakaat of the imam and he (imam) had sat in this rakaat. Thereafter, he should not sit in the second rakaat because this is actually the third rakaat of the imam. Thereafter, he should sit down in the third rakaat because this is actually the fourth rakaat of the imam and he had sat in this rakaat. Thereafter, he should offer that rakaat which he had missed before joining the jama'at, and he should also sit in this rakaat because it is his fourth rakaat. He also has to make qira'at in this rakaat because he is a masbuq in this rakaat and a masbuq is regarded as a munfarid in the rakaats which he missed.
- It is sunnah for the muqtadis to follow the imam in all the postures without any delay. The takbeer-e-tahreemah, ruku, standing after ruku, sajdahs - all have to be carried out with the imam. In other words, every act has to be carried out simultaneously with every act of the imam. However, if the imam stands up from the first qa'dah before the muqtadis could complete their at-tahiyyaat, the muqtadis should complete their at-tahiyyaat first and then stand up. Similarly, if the imam makes salaam in the last qa'dah before the muqtadis could complete their at-tahiyyaat, they should complete their at-tahiyyaat first and then make salaam. However, if the muqtadis have not read their tasbeehs in the ruku and sajdahs, they should still stand up with the imam.
- A few Masa'il Related to Fard and Wajib Salaats
- The mudrik does not have to make any qira'at. The qira'at of the imam is sufficient for all the muqtadis. According to the Hanafee school of thought, it is makruh for the muqtadis to make qira'at behind the imam.
- It is fard on the masbuq to make qira'at in one or two rakaats which he missed.
- In other words, the muqtadi should not make qira'at in the presence of the imam. However, the masbuq has to make qira'at because the imam is not present for the rakaats which he missed.
- The spot on which sajdah will be made should not be higher than half yard than the spot at which the feet are placed. If sajdah is made at a spot that is higher than half yard, this will not be permissible. However, if there is a need to do this, it will be permissible. For example, the congregation is very large and the people are standing so close to each other that it is not possible to make sajdah on the ground. It will be permissible to make sajdah on the backs of those offering salaat. This is on condition that the person on whose back sajdah is being made is also offering the same salaat as the person making the sajdah.
- It is wajib to offer six extra takbeers apart from the normal takbeers in the eid salaats.
- It is wajib for the imam to make qira'at in a loud voice in the following salaats: both the rakaats of fajr, the first two rakaats of maghrib and esha irrespective of whether it is a qada or an adaa salaat, jumu'ah, eid, taraweeh, and the witr of Ramadaan.
- The munfarid has the choice of reciting the two rakaats of fajr and the first two rakaats of maghrib and esha, in a loud or soft voice. In order to differentiate between loud and soft, the jurists have written that "loud" will mean that someone else can hear the recitation, and "soft" will mean that only the person reciting can hear his own voice.
- It is wajib on the imam and the munfarid to make the qira'at softly in all the rakaats of zuhr and asr, and the latter rakaats of maghrib and esha.
- The nafl salaats that are offered during the day should be offered softly. As for those at night, one has a choice between reciting loudly or softly.
- If a munfarid offers qada salaat of fajr, maghrib, and esha during the day, it will also be wajib to make the qira'at softly in them. But if he makes qada of them at night, he has a choice.
- If a person forgets to recite another Surah after the Surah Faatihah in the first two rakaats of maghrib or esha, he will have to recite it in the third and fourth rakaats after Surah Faatihah. It will be wajib to make the qira'at loudly in these rakaats as well. At the end of the salaat, sajdah-e-sahw will also be wajib.
- Masa'il Related to Joining and Not Joining the Jama'at
- If a person reaches the musjid of his area or the musjid nearest to his home at a time when the jama'at is over, then it is mustahab for him to go to another musjid with the intention of getting the jama'at over there. He also has the choice of returning home, getting his house-folk together and making jama'at with them.
- If a person has already offered his fard salaat alone at home and then see that the same fard salaat is being offered with jama'at, he should go and join that jama'at. This is on condition that it is the time of zuhr or esha. He should not join the jama'at if it is the time of fajr, asr or maghrib. This is because it is makruh to offer nafl salaat after fajr and asr salaat. And as for maghrib salaat, it is makruh because it will be considered to be a nafl salaat and we do not get a nafl salaat of three rakaats.
- If a person has already commenced with offering his fard salaat and the jama'at also commences with the same fard salaat, then the following rules will apply: if that fard salaat is a two rakaat salaat, such as fajr salaat, then the rule is that he should break his salaat and join the jama'at if he has not made the sajdah for the first rakaat as yet. If he has made the sajdah for the first rakaat and has not made the sajdah for the second rakaat as yet, he should still break his salaat and join the jama'at. And if he has already made the sajdahs for the second rakaat, he should complete both the rakaats. If it is a three rakaat salaat, such as maghrib salaat, then the rule is that if he has not made the sajdah for the second rakaat as yet, he should break his salaat. If he has already made the sajdah for the second rakaat, he should complete his salaat and should not join the jama'at because it is not permissible to offer a nafl salaat of three rakaats.
If it is a four rakaat salaat, such as zuhr, asr, and esha, then the rule is that if he has not made the sajdah for the first rakaat, he should break his salaat. If he has made the sajdah, he should sit down after the second rakaat, read the at-tahiyyaat, make salaam, and join the jama'at. And if he has commenced with his third rakaat, but has not made the sajdah for it as yet, he should break his salaat. If he has made the sajdah, he should complete his salaat.
In those instances where he completed his salaat, he should not join the jama'at if it is a fajr, asr or maghrib salaat. For zuhr and esha salaats he should join the jama'at. In those instances where he has to break the salaat, he should make one salaam while standing.
- If a person has already commenced with a nafl salaat and the jama'at of fard prayer is about to start, he should not break his salaat. Instead, he should make salaam after the second rakaat even if he has made an intention for four rakaats.
- If a person has already commenced with the sunnat-e-mu'akkadah of zuhr or jumu'ah, and the jama'at commences, then the zaahir-e-madh'hab is that he should make salaam after two rakaats and join the jama'at. But the majority of the jurists feel that it is better to complete the four rakaats. And if he has already commenced with the third rakaat, then it is necessary to complete the full four rakaats.
- If the jama'at for fard salaat has already commenced, a person should not commence with any sunnah salaat provided that he fears that he will miss a rakaat. However, if he is certain or confident of not missing any rakaat, then he should offer the sunnah salaat. For example, the fard salaat of zuhr commences and he fears that if he had to occupy himself with the sunnah salaat he would miss a rakaat of the fard salaat. He should therefore leave out the sunnah-e-mu'akkadah before the fard salaat. After offering the fard of zuhr and jumu'ah, it will be better for him to offer the sunnah-e-mu'akkadah that is normally offered after these two salaats first, and then to offer those that are normally read before these two salaats.
As for the sunnahs of fajr salaat, since they are more important, the rule in regard to them is that even if the fard salaat has commenced, he should offer the sunnah salaat first. This is on condition that he has the hope of getting at least one rakaat of the fard salaat. But if he has no hope of getting at least one rakaat, he should not offer the sunnah salaat. If he wishes, he could offer it after sunrise.
- A person offering the sunnah of fajr salaat fears that if he had to offer this salaat with full consideration of all the sunnahs and mustahabs of salaat, he will not get the jama'at, he should suffice with the fard and wajib acts of salaat and leave out the sunnahs and mustahabs.
- The sunnah salaats that are being offered while the fard salaat is in progress should be offered at a place that is separate from the musjid irrespective of whether they are the sunnahs of fajr or of any other salaat,. This is because it is makruh-e-tahrimi to offer any other salaat at the place where a fard salaat is being offered. If there is no such place, it should be offered in the musjid but in some corner away from the saff.
- If a person gets the last qa'dah of the jama'at and does not get any of the rakaats, he will still receive the reward of the jama'at.
- If a person gets the ruku of any of the rakaats with the imam, it will be regarded as if he got that rakaat. And if he does not get that ruku, it will be regarded as though he did not get that rakaat.
- Acts which Invalidate Salaat
- To give luqmah to anyone other than the imam while one is in salaat makes that salaat invalid. To give luqmah means to correct someone who has made a mistake in reciting the Quran. Note: Since there is a difference of opinion among the jurists with regard to the masa'il of luqmah, some ulama have written special books on this subject. We are therefore mentioning a few details of it over here.
- If the muqtadi gives a luqmah to his imam, his salaat will not become invalid. This is irrespective of whether the imam has recited the specified amount or not. The "specified amount" in this context refers to that amount of qira'at which is the recommended amount (i.e masnoon/sunnah). But in this case, it will be better for the imam to go into ruku, as will be mentioned in the next mas'ala.
- If the imam has recited the specified amount, he should go into ruku and should not force the muqtadis to give him luqmah. (To do so is makruh) The muqtadis should also note that as long as there is no genuine need, they should not give luqmah to the imam. (To do so is also makruh) Here "genuine need" means that the imam wishes to continue forward despite making a mistake, or that he does not go into ruku, or that he keeps silent and remain standing. Even if they correct him without any "genuine need", the salaat will not become invalid - as has been mentioned in the previous mas'alas.
- If a person gives luqmah to another person who is in salaat and the person who gave the luqmah was not his muqtadi - irrespective of whether he was offering any salaat or not - then if the person accepts the luqmah then his salaat will become invalid. However, if the person remembers on his own, either at the same time when the luqmah was given or prior to that, or he was not influenced by the luqmah from the back, but reads from his memory, then the salaat of the one to whom luqmah was given will not become invalid.
- If a person who is offering salaat gives luqmah to someone else who is not his imam, irrespective of whether he is offering salaat or not, then the salaat of person who gave luqma will become invalid.
- If the muqtadi gives luqmah to the imam by hearing the recitation of someone else or by looking at the Quran, his salaat will become invalid. And if the imam accepts this luqmah, his salaat will also become invalid. If after looking at the Quran or by hearing the recitation of someone else, the muqtadi remembers the verse and gives the luqmah based on his memory, then the salaat will not become invalid.
- Similarly, if a person is offering his salaat and recites one verse by looking at the Quran (i.e he did not have this verse in his memory), his salaat will still become invalid. And if he already had known this verse which he recited by looking at Quran, his salaat will not become invalid. Alternatively, he did not remember this verse previously, but looked at less than the complete verse, then too his salaat will not become invalid.
- If a woman stands near a man in such a way that any part of her body comes in line with any part of the body of the man, then the salaat will become invalid. So much so that when she goes into sajdah and her head comes in line with his feet, even then the salaat will become invalid. However, for the salaat to become invalid, the following conditions have to be found:
- The woman is mature (irrespective of whether she is young or old), or she is immature but old enough for sexual intercourse. If a very young immature girl is in line with a man in salaat, the salaat will not become invalid.
- Both, man and woman, have to be in salaat. If any one of them is not in salaat and they come in line, the salaat will not become invalid.
- There must be no barrier between the two. If there is a curtain between the two, a sutra, or there is such a gap between the two that one person can stand there without any difficulty, the salaat will not become invalid.
- All the prerequisites for the salaat to be valid have to be found in the woman. If a woman is a lunatic, in the state of menstruation or nifaas, then her coming in line with the man will not make the salaat invalid because she herself will not be considered to be in salaat.
- The salaat must not be a janaazah salaat. Being in line with a man in janaazah salaat will not invalidate the salaat.
- Being in line has to be to the extent of one rukn of salaat. If it is any less, the salaat will not become invalid. For example, they stand in line for such a short period of time that the ruku or anything else cannot be made, and thereafter she goes away. This little while will not invalidate the salaat.
- The takbeer-e-tahreemah of both is the same. That is, this woman is a muqtadi of that man, or this man and woman are the muqtadis of a third person.
- At the time of commencing the salaat, the imam had made the intention of imamat for the woman or made this intention in the midst of his salaat when she joined the jama'at. If the imam did not make an intention of imamat for her, the salaat will not become invalid. Instead, only her salaat will not be valid.
- If the imam's wudu breaks and he leaves the musjid without appointing anyone as his deputy, the salaat of all the muqtadis will become invalid.
- The imam appointed such a person as his deputy who does not possess the requirements to be an imam. For example, he appointed a lunatic, an immature child or a woman. In this case, everyone's salaat will become invalid.
- If a woman kisses her husband while he is in salaat then his salaat will not become invalid. However, if at the time of being kissed, the man is overtaken by passion, then his salaat will become invalid. If a woman is in her salaat and a man kisses her, then her salaat will become invalid irrespective of whether he kissed her with desire or not, and irrespective of whether she was overcome by passion or not.
- If a person tries to pass in front of a musalli, it is permissible for the musalli to push him aside or to stop him from this act. This is on condition that this act of stopping him does not involve a lot of movement. If it involves a lot of movement, his salaat will become invalid.
- The Experiencing of Impurity in Salaat
- If a person experiences hadath in his salaat, if he experienced hadath-e-akbar, whereby ghusl becomes wajib his salaat will become invalid. If he experiences hadath-e-asghar, it will either be two things: this hadath-e-asghar will either be ikhtiyaari or ghair ikhtiyaari. Ikhtiyaari means it was caused or brought about by the will of man. Ghayr ikhtiyaari means that it was not caused or not brought about by the will of man.
If it is ikhtiyaari, the salaat will become invalid. For example, a person laughs loudly in his salaat or he hurts his body and thereby draws out blood or he forces himself to pass smell, a person walks on the roof and by walking there a stone or anything else falls down on the head of a musalli and he starts to bleed - in all these cases the salaat will become invalid. This is because all these actions are carried out through the will of man.
If it is ghayr ikhtiyaari, then there are two conditions in this. It is either something that occurs very rarely, such as madness, unconsciousness or the death of the imam,or something that occurs often, such as passing of smell, urinating, passing stool or the emission of pre-coital fluid, etc. If it is something that occurs very rarely, the salaat will become invalid. And if it is something that occurs often, the salaat will not be invalidated. Instead, after having made his wudu, the person has the choice and the permission to either continue his salaat from where his wudu had broken or to repeat the entire salaat. However, it is better to repeat the entire salaat. There are certain prerequisites in the case where he wishes to continue his salaat from where his wudu had broken:
- he should not offer any rukn in the state of hadath.
- he should not offer any rukn while walking, for example, while he is going towards or returning from wudu, he should not recite the Quran because recitation of the Quran is a rukn of salaat.
- he should not do any act which negates salaat nor should he do anything which is possible to refrain from.
- once he experiences any hadath, he should not delay in sping any rukn without any valid excuse. Instead he should immediately go to make his wudu. However, if there is a valid excuse, there is no harm in delaying. For example, there are many saffs and he is standing in the first saff and it is difficult to break through the saffs.
- If a munfarid experiences hadath, it is permissible for him to make wudu immediately, and he should complete his wudu as quickly as possible. But this should be done with due consideration to all the sunnahs and mustahabs of wudu. In the meanwhile, he should not engage in any conversation. If water is available nearby, he should not go to any place that is further away. In short, he should not do anything more than what is necessary. On completing his wudu, he could continue with his salaat at that very place of wudu, and this is preferable; or he could go back to his original place. It is preferable to break his first salaat by making salaam for it, and after completing his wudu, to repeat his entire salaat.
- If the imam experiences hadath, he should immediately go to make his wudu even if he is in the last qa'dah. It is preferable for him to choose the one whom he feels to be most suitable for imamat among the muqtadis. It is better to make the mudrik his deputy. It is also permissible to make the masbuq his deputy. He should indicate to the masbuq as to the number of rakaats he still has to perform. He should do this by means of his fingers: if he has one rakaat left, he should lift one finger, and if two rakaats, two fingers. If he has to make a ruku, he should place his hand on his knees. If he has to make a sajdah, he should place his hand on his forehead. If it is qira'at, he should place his hand on his mouth. If it is sajdah-e-tilaawat, he should place his hand on his forehead and mouth. If it is sajdah-e-sahw, then on his chest. All this is if the masbuq understands. If he does not understand, he should not make him his deputy. Once the imam has repeated his wudu, he should join the jama'at and become a follower of his deputy, that is if the jama'at is still in progress. If he did not go and join the jama'at, but instead stood and followed his deputy from the very place where he made his wudu, then this will only be permissible if there is no barrier between them, or if he is not very far away from the jama'at. If this is not the case, it will not be permissible to follow his deputy from the place of wudu. However, if the jama'at is already over, he can complete his salaat wherever he wishes; either at the place of wudu or at his original place.
- Once a person appoints a deputy, he no more remains an imam but becomes a muqtadi of his deputy. Therefore, if the jama'at is over, the imam should complete his salaat as a laahiq. If the imam does not appoint anyone as his deputy, but the muqtadis appoint someone from among them or one of the muqtadis steps forward of his own accord and goes and stands in the place of the imam and makes the intention of imamat, then all this is permissible on condition that the original imam has not gone out of the musjid as yet. And if the salaat is not performed in the musjid, then on condition that he has not stepped beyond the saffs or beyond the sutra. If he has already stepped out of these boundaries, the salaat will become invalid. Now, another person cannot become an imam.
- If a muqtadi experiences hadath, he should also immediately go to repeat his wudu. On completing his wudu, he should join the jama'at if it is still in progress. If not, he should complete his salaat on his own. If the jama'at is still in progress, he should go and stand in his original place. However, if there is nothing between him and the imam which can prevent him from following the imam, then it will also be permissible for him to stand at the place of wudu and follow the imam from there. If the jama'at is over, he has the choice of going to his original place and offering his salaat, or of offering it at the place of wudu. This latter option is preferable.
- If the imam appointed a masbuq as his deputy, he should perform the balance of the rakaats for the imam and thereafter appoint a mudrik so that this mudrik could make the salaam and the masbuq could offer the rakaats which he had missed.
- If a person becomes a lunatic, experiences hadath-e-akbar, experiences hadath-e-asghar unintentionally or becomes unconscious; and any of the above occurs after having sat in the last qa'dah to the extent of at-tahiyyaat - then his salaat will become invalid and he will have to repeat his salaat.
- Because these masa'il are complicated, and because of a lack of knowledge - the possibility of mistakes is inevitable. It is therefore better not to continue the salaat. Instead, one should break the salaat by making salaam and repeat the entire salaat.
- If a person experiences hadath in his salaat, if he experienced hadath-e-akbar, whereby ghusl becomes wajib his salaat will become invalid. If he experiences hadath-e-asghar, it will either be two things: this hadath-e-asghar will either be ikhtiyaari or ghair ikhtiyaari. Ikhtiyaari means it was caused or brought about by the will of man. Ghayr ikhtiyaari means that it was not caused or not brought about by the will of man.