What Makes Salah So Significant Part 3

Date: 7th August 2015; 21st Shawwāl 1436

For the significance of our existence we need to perform Salah. Allah has singularly granted us with two things- our ruh (soul) and also a body. If a person does not hold onto his/her ruh, then that person is well dead. The body give to us is a temporary vessel for this Dunya.

When the Sahabah (Radi Allahu ‘Anhum) asked the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) regarding the truth behind the ruh of a human being. Allah revealed the following verse in the Quran:

And they ask you (O Muhammad) concerning the Ruh (the Spirit); Say: “The Ruh (the Spirit): it is one of the things, the knowledge of which is only with my Lord. And of knowledge, you (mankind) have been given only a little.”

Surah Al-Isra, Ayah 85 (17:85) Translation: Muhsin Khan

Any amal we want to get granted by Allah, needs to be done keeping the mind and body sincere. When the soul is sincere towards calling the Almighty we term it as having “Ikhlas” while engaging in an amal. Just as the soul is considered to be important to the body for it to function properly, Ikhlas needs to exist while engaging in any Sunnah (Salah, Qurbani, Hajj, Fasting etc.) for it to get accepted by Allah. Anything done overriding the Sunnah, not only bring Allah’s rejection of the deed, we may even get penalized for going against the orders of the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam).

After we raise our hands to begin our Salah, we are required to recite the Thana. The Thana goes like this:

“Subhana Kalla Humma Wa Bee Hamdeeka Wata Baara Kasmooka Wa Ta’ala Jaddoo Ka Wa La ilaha Ghairuka”

Translation: O’Allah! All glory is due to You, I praise You, Your name is the Most Blessed, Your Majesty is highly exalted and there is none worthy of worship You.

After reciting the Thana, one must recite the Surah Fatihah. Now this is considered to be a Farz upon a Salah. Hadith states:

The Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “There is no prayer for the one who does not recite the Opening of the Book [i.e., Surah Al-Fatihah].”

References: Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith 714

The Salah needs to be conducted slowly with ease showing no signs of haste thus reciting the Qirat rhythmically. The Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) has warned us against praying in haste as doing so nullifies the Salah and we need to repeat our Salah once more. One Hadith states:

Narrated from Abu Hurairah (Radi Allahu ‘Anhu), that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) entered the Masjid and a man came in and prayed, then he came and greeted the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) returned the greeting and said: “Go back and pray, for you have not prayed.” The man went back and prayed as he had prayed before, then he came to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) and greeted him, and the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “Wa ‘alayk al-salaam.” Then he said: “Go back and pray, for you have not prayed.” When he had done that three times, the man said: By the One Who sent you with the truth, I cannot do more than that. Teach me. He said: “When you go to pray, say Takbir, then recite whatever you can of the Quran. Then bow until you are at ease in bowing, then rise until you are standing up straight. Then prostrate until you are at ease in prostration, then sit up until you are at ease in sitting. Then do that throughout the entire prayer.”

References: Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith 757 & Sahih Muslim, Hadith 397

There is one particular thing we need to take notice in this Hadith which being the fact that the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) was eager to teach the man the proper way of performing Salah after the man attempted to perform the Salah for the third time. This is because the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) waited for the man to have his curiosity of learning before the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s endeavor to teach him. This is because we get to learn something ideally when we harness the curiosity upon learning that subject.

When we attempt to learn something, we need to be curious over that field. The same principle goes when we want to learn something out from the Jummah Khutbah. Otherwise, plenty of us tend to forget the things the Imams taught us the very second we exit the Masjid. Beware of the fact that Shaitan wants us to remain in the dark shambles of ignorance. Be smart and gain knowledge on a regular basis. One Sunnah of the Ruku position is to keep the spine level straight. Hadith states:

On the authority of Abu Masud Al-Ansari (Radi Allahu ‘Anhu): Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) as saying, “Prayer is of no merit to one who does not keep his back straight in Ruku and Sajdah”.

Reference: Jami At-Tirmidhi, Book of Prayers, Hadith 265.

There is another Sunnah many of us tend to forget when we pray in congregation. As the Imam utters “Sami’ Allahu Liman Hamidah”, the Ma’mumin (those praying behind the Imam) are required to recite, “Rabbana wa lakal-hamd” being in the Qawmah (standing) position. Hadith states:

It was narrated that Abu Hurairah (Radi Allahu ‘Anhu) said: “The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: ‘The Imam has been appointed to be followed, so when he says Allahu Akbar, then say Allahu Akbar, when he recites, then listen attentively; when he says: Not (the way) of those who earned Your anger, nor of those who went astray,[1:7] then say Amin; when he bows then bow; when he says Sami’ Allahu Liman Hamidah (Allah hears those who praise Him), then say Allahumma Rabbana wa lakal-hamd (O Allah, our Lord, to You is the praise);” when he prostrates then prostrate; and if he prays sitting down then all of you pray sitting down.’”

Reference: Sunan Ibn Majah. The Hadith has been graded Sahih.

Hadiths taught us that the most favorite position of Salah to the Almighty is during Sujood.

Abu Hurairah (Radi Allahu ‘Anhu) reported: The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: The nearest a servant comes to his Lord is when he is prostrating himself, so make supplication (in this state).

Reference: Sahih Muslim, Book 4, Hadith Number 979.

Therefore, we need to learn how to perform Sujood in the most eloquent manner in order for us to please our Lord. Few important Hadiths on how to perform Sujood properly are as follows:

Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas (Radi Allahu ‘Anhu): The Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “I have been ordered to prostrate on seven bones i.e. on the forehead along with the tip of the nose and the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) pointed towards his nose, both hands, both knees and the toes of both feet and not to gather the clothes or the hair.”

References: Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith 812 & Sahih Muslim, Hadith 490.

The Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) was heard to have said in one narration, “When you prostrate, put your face and hands down firmly, until all of your bones are relaxed in their proper places.”

Reference: Ibn Khuzaimah (1/10/1) having a Hasan Isnaad.

The Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) used to say: “Do not spread your arms [the way a beast of prey does]; rest on your palms and keep your upper arms apart, for when you do all that, every one of your limbs prostrates with you.”

References: Ibn Khuzaimah, al-Maqdisi & al-Hakim. This Hadiths has been authenticated by Shaykh al-Albani (Rahmatullah Allaih).

Compiling several Hadiths it has been deduced the following Surahs are considered mustahab during Farz Salahs:

  • For Fajr and Dhuhr: It’s mustahab to read from (some of) the long-Mufassal surahs, they are the surahs starting with Al-Hujurah to Al-Buruj. That’s because there are plenty of time in Fajr and Dhuhr.
  • For Asr and Ishaa: It’s mustahab to read from (some of) the medium-Mufassal surahs, they are surahs starting with Al-Buruj to Al-Bayyinah. That’s because it’s mustahab to delay Asr and Ishaa (not too much, of course), so there may be no much time for a long reading, hence medium Mufassal are mustahab.
  • For Maghrib: It’s mustahab to read from (some of) the short-Mufassal surahs, they are surahs starting with Al-Bayyinah to An-Nas (end of Quran). That’s because Maghrib time is too short, so short readings are mustahab.

If case if you did not know the definition of Mufassal Surahs: They are surahs from Al-Hujurat to the end of Quran. They’re called so because they are relatively short compared to the surahs before them. So when reading them we say Bismillah too often because surahs are short and finish quickly (so when starting the next one we say Bismillah).

This information is taken from It came from a letter that Khalifah Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (Radi Allahu Anhu) sent to Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari (Radi Allahu Anhu) where it said:

“Read in Fajr and Dhuhr [some of] long-Mufassal, and in Asr and Ishaa medium-Mufassal, and in Maghrib short-Mufassal.”

Let’s all make an attempt to learn long Surah so that we can follow this instruction recommended to us by Khalifah Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (Radi Allahu Anhu).

It is forbidden to recite any verse of the Quran being in the position of a Ruko or Sujood during any obligatory prayer. Hadith states:

Narrated by Ibn ‘Abbas (Radi Allahu Anhu) in which the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “Indeed I have been told not to recite Qur’an in Rukoo’ and Sujood.”

Reference: Sahih Muslim, Hadith 738.

In the Hanafi fiqh, the Ma’mumin is not expected to recite any verse of the Quran when the Imam is reciting. Other fiqhs may have their own opinion but as far one Hadith goes, Imam Abu Hanifa (Rahmatullah Allaih) has ruled us to remain silent while the Qirat is going on.

One Hadith narrated states the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) having said, “Remain silent when the Imam is reading.”

Reference: Sahih Muslim, Volume 1.

According to Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (Rahmatullah Allaih) it is not Wajib (compulsory) to recite neither Surah Fatihah nor any other Surah in Salah while following an Imam.

According to the old ruling of Imam Shafi (Rahmatullah Allaih), it will be Wajib for a person to recite form the Quran behind the Imam in such a Salah wherein the recitation is silent (sirri).  However, in the audible Salahs (jahri), recitation will not be Wajib.  According to his revised opinion, it will be Wajib to recite in both types of Salah (jahri and sirri).

Imam Malik (Rahmatullah Allaih) and Imam Ahamad (Rahmatullah Allaih) maintain that recitation of the Ma’mumin is not Farz, but in certain situations, it will be optional.

Having clarified this issue, that is all for this week’s Khutbah. May Allah grant us with the required knowledge for us to perform our Salahs in the most authentic manner, Ameen.

Please support us by purchasing our Weekly Khutbah series. (Links are given below)
May Allah reward us for our dedication towards Islam, Ameen. Let’s all be a part of a well-refined Muslim Ummah!

Weekly Khutbah, Volume 1: https://www.amazon.com/Weekly-Khutbah-2013-2014/dp/1532939736

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