Nearness to Allah Is on the Top of the Benefits of Prayer

Nearness to Allah Is on the Top of the Benefits of Prayer

Nearness To Allah

It is customary for kings to promise reward and nearness to those whom they are pleased with. The  magicians said to Pharaoh,

“Is there indeed for us a reward if we are predominant?” (Ash-Shu`ara 26: 41)

and he answered that they would be rewarded and be among those near to him, saying:

“Yes, and, [moreover], you will be among those made near [to me].” (Al-A`raf 7: 114)

From The Benefits Of Prayer Is Nearness To Allah

From The Benefits Of Prayer Is Nearness To Allah

The example of the first type is like a man who entered the abode of the king but was unable to gain entrance to him as there was a barrier standing between him and the king, hence he was unable to see him or gain access to this person.

The barrier is an embodiment of his desires and lusts as well as the smoke screen of his hopeful wishes in this life; his heart is sick and his self is wrapped up in what it desires wanting only its immediate share in this life.

It is for these reasons that all the while they pray they are in an unhappy state wherein they are not only unable to obtain any comfort, but are also empty of feelings of fear and hope in Allah, which makes prayer a suffering for them that only ceases when they finish praying, as only then are they able to return to that in which they find their comfort (i.e. worldly affairs and pleasures).

The example of the second type is like a man who entered the house of the king upon which the barrier screening him from the king is removed; thus he is able to find delight in looking at the king and being at his service and in his obedience. In return, the king lavishes upon him every form of grace and brings him near to himself.

For all these reasons, he is unable to bear leaving the house and wishes to remain standing before him to enjoy the sweetness of being close to him, the tranquility that he experiences from it, and being held in esteem by Allah while he basks in His good Words (i.e. Qur’an).

He also enjoys being in such a state of humbleness and humility before Him, for which he invokes Him more and more while he is being showered with His graces from every direction, not to mention the calmness that his soul experiences while his heart and limbs are fully attentive to his Lord. He is pleased and comfortable, worshiping Allah as if he sees Him, for He manifests Himself to him through His Words (i.e. Qur’an).

It should thus come as no surprise that the most distressing thing for him is to have to leave all that (i.e. conclude the Salah). And Allah is the Guide and the Helper.

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Source: The Inner Dimensions of Prayer’s Book.

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Duha Prayer

Duha Prayer

A mosque in Turkey

Salat Ad-Duha is a prized prayer and whoever wishes to earn reward should pray it, while there is no blame upon the one who does not pray it.

The Excellence of the Duha Prayer

Many hadiths describe the excellence of the Duha (Forenoon) prayer as follows:

Abu Dharr (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Charity is required from every part of your body daily. Every saying of ‘Glory be to Allah’ is charity. Every saying of ‘Praise be to Allah’ is charity. Every saying of ‘There is no God but Allah’ is charity. Every saying of ‘Allah is the Greatest’ is charity. Ordering the good is charity. Eradicating the evil is charity. And what suffices for that (as a charity) are the two rak`ahs of Duha. (Ahmad, Muslim, and Abu Dawud)

Buraidah narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “In a human (body) there are 360 joints and man must make a charity for each one.” The people said: “Who can do that, O Messenger of Allah?” He responded: “One may cover the mucus that one finds in the mosque or remove something harmful from the road. If one could not do that, he could pray two rak`ahs of Duha and that will be sufficient for him.” (Ahmad and Abu Dawud)

Talking of the legal import of these hadiths, Ash-Shawkani says: “These two hadiths point to the greatness, excellence, and importance of the Duha prayer, stressing its legality as its two rak`ahs suffice for 360 charities. Something like this should be performed regularly and persistently.

The hadiths also establish the importance of saying ‘Glory be to Allah’, ‘Praise be to Allah’, and ‘There is no God but Allah.’ And [the importance of] ordering the good, eradicating the evil, removing the spittle, removing what is harmful from the path, and such other acts that will fulfill what is required of a person of daily charities.”

An-Nawas ibn Sam`an (may Allah be pleased with him) related that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Allah said: ‘Son of Adam, do not fail in performing four rak`ahs in the early day as it will be sufficient for the latter part of the day.”‘ ( Al-Hakim and At-Tabarani )

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “My friend [the Messenger of Allah] advised me to do three things: fasting three days of every month, praying the Duha prayer, and praying the witr prayer before I sleep.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “During a journey, I saw the Messenger of Allah pray eight rak`ahs in the early day. When he finished, he said: ‘I prayed my prayer wishing and fearing. I asked my Lord for three things and He gave me two and withheld one. I asked Him not to put my Ummah to trial by famine and He granted that request. And I asked that they would not be overtaken by their enemies and He granted that request. And I asked that they not be split into groups and parties and He refused that request.”‘ (Ahmad, An-Nasa’i, and Al-Hakim)

Salat Ad-Duha is a prized prayer

Salat Ad-Duha is a prized prayer and whoever wishes to earn reward should pray it, while there is no blame upon the one who does not pray it.

Abu Sa`id Al-Kudhri (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “The (peace be upon him) would pray Duha until we thought he would never abandon it. And he would abandon it to the point that we thought he would no longer perform it.” ( At-Tirmidhi )

Recommended time for the Duha prayer

The time for Duha begins when the sun is about a spear’s length above the horizon and it continues until the sun reaches its meridian. It is preferred to delay it until the sun has risen high and the day has become hot.

Zaid ibn Arqam (may Allah be pleased with him) relates: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) went to the people of Quba’, and they were performing Duha, and he said: ‘The prayer of devotion should be observed when the young weaned camels feel the heat of the sun.’” ( Ahmad, Muslim, and At-Tirmidhi)

Number of rak`ahs for the Duha prayer

The minimum number of rak`ahs to be prayed is two, as was mentioned in the hadith of Abu Dhar. The most that the Prophet (peace be upon him) performed was eight rak`ahs, whereas, the most he mentioned was twelve rak`ahs.

Some people, such as Abu Ja`far At-Tabari, Al-Mulaimi, and Ar-Ruwyani, who subscribes to the Shafi`i school, say there is no maximum limit to the number of rak`ahs that one may perform for Duha.

Al-`lraqi says, in the commentary on Sunan At-Tirmidhi: “None of the companions or followers are known to have restricted it to twelve rak`ahs.” As-Syuti agrees with it.

Sa`id ibn Mansur records that Al-Hassan was asked: “Did the companions perform it?” He answered: “Yes . . . some of them would pray two rak`ahs and some of them would pray four rak`ahs. And some of them would continue until half the [early] day [had passed].”

Ibrahim An-Nakha`i reports that Al-Aswad ibn Yazid was asked: “How many rak`ahs are to be prayed for Duha?” He answered: “As many as you wish .”

`A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with him) reports: “The Prophet (peace be upon him) would pray four rak`ahs for Duha and would add to it whatever Allah willed.” ( Ahmad, Muslim, and ibn Majah)

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Source: Quoted with slight modifications from Sayyid Sabiq’s Fiqh As-Sunnah

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Why Do We Pray 5 Times a Day?

Why Do We Pray 5 Times a Day?

Why Do We Pray 5 Times a Day

Our first precaution against sin is to try our best to shelter ourselves from it, no doubt.

By: Ahmed Rehab

Why Do We Pray 5 Times a Day?

For many reasons, but one simple reason is this: prayer is the sump pump to our sins. Since the sins are invariably guaranteed to keep coming, so must the sump pumps keep working. Groundwater is a consequence of rain, and sin is a consequence of life. Regulated sump pumps protect, and so does regular prayer.

Allah states that when you perform your prayer, it erases all sins accumulated since your last prayer. Kind of like how the sump pump eliminates the dirty water, your sins are erased.

Our first precaution against sin is to try our best to shelter ourselves from it, no doubt. My home’s first line of defense against rain damaging its valuable contents is the roof and walls that provide shelter. I could not have a roof-less, wall-less house and then expect the sump pumps to keep my home nice and dry. That’s just basic logic. I need both strategies. But since even the best of roofs and the sturdiest of walls won’t change the laws of physics, I need the sump pumps if I wish to avoid groundwater accumulating and flooding my foundations.

Regular prayer, which contains istighfar (or repentance) pumps out that harmful, unavoidable seepage which, if left to its own devices, will trickle slowly but surely into a flood that will, in time, leave you struggling to breathe under water.

Life, like rain, is good. You can’t and shouldn’t turn against it. How else will the grass grow? But like rain, life comes with liabilities. It can sustain and purify you, and it can leave you breathing mold toxins, or even drown you. The difference is whether you control it, or you do nothing – and thus be controlled by it.

Sin is the tax of life much like groundwater is the tax of rain. It can threaten your spiritual foundation if left unchecked much like groundwater can threaten your home’s foundation. Your nafs (soul) is the lowest point, the basement. It needs to come armed with prayer, with sump pumps.

Sump pumps must work at regular intervals in order to guarantee a dry basement. Once a week won’t cut it.  Why do you pray at night, they might ask? Well, why do sump pumps work at night? Why do you pray at dawn? Well, why do sump pumps work at dawn? Is my nafs less valuable – less worthy of protection – than my basement?

Sometimes when it rains, it pours. At such times of higher risk, sump pumps are triggered to work extra hard to keep up with the need. And so, while we have the regular prayers 5 times a day, we also have the nawafel, or voluntary prayers, as a tool for us to trigger as needed.

But remember, you can have sump pumps, and still get flooded — as I did. Until you realize that low horsepower plastic sump pumps offer a false sense of protection. Such is the case with distracted, mindless prayer that might as well be aerobics. Make sure your sump pumps are cast iron and of a high horsepower: that is, keep your prayers sincere, focused, meditative, and contemplative.

Stay dry my friends.

“Recite, [O Muhammad], what has been revealed to you of the Book and establish prayer. Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing, and the remembrance of Allah is greater. And Allah knows that which you do.” (Al-`Ankabut 29:45)

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Source: muslimmatters.org.

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Actions for Which Ghusl is Preferred

Actions for Which Ghusl is Preferred

Someone pours water on his hands.

Muslims are encouraged to perform ghusl before they gather for the Friday (Jumu`ah) Prayer.

There are some cases in which a Muslim must perform ghusl (ritual bath) such as release of semen either in sleep or awake, sexual intercourse even if there is no release of semen, and other cases.

On the other hand, there are some situations in which ghusl is preferred as follows:

1- Before the Friday Prayer

Muslims are encouraged to perform ghusl before they gather for the Friday (Jumu`ah) Prayer. In fact, the Shari`ah (Islamic Law) even goes to the extent of ordering one to perform ghusl at this time as part of the overall cleanliness and hygiene of the Muslim society. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (may Allah be pleased with him)narrated that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “The taking of a bath on Friday is compulsory for every male (Muslim) who has attained the age of puberty.” (Al-Bukhari)

The obligation here means that it is highly recommended. Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever makes the ablution and perfects it and then goes to the Friday Prayer and listens attentively, will have forgiveness during (the period) between the Friday and the next (Friday), and an additional three days.” (Muslim)

Al-Qurtubi says that this hadith shows that ghusl is preferred. The mention of ablution, the reward and acceptability points to the fact that ablution alone is sufficient.”

The time for the Friday ghusl is between dawn and the time of the Friday Prayer. It is preferable to do it at the time of departure (to the mosque). If one loses his ablution after that, it is sufficient for him just to make a new ablution (he does not have to repeat the ghusl).

2- Before the `Eid Prayer

Scholars also encourage Muslims to perform ghusl for the `Eid Prayer, even though there is no authentic hadith to support this opinion.

3- Ghusl for Washing a Corpse:

According to many scholars, performing ghusl is also preferred for one who has washed a corpse. Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever has washed a corpse must perform ghusl, and whoever carried him must perform ablution.” (Ahmad, Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi)

The order in the hadith implies preference, based on what has been related by `Umar ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) who said, “We used to wash the dead. Some of us would perform ghusl and some would not.” (Al-Khatib)

4- Performing Ghusl for Hajj:  

It is preferable for one who is undertaking the pilgrimage or `Umrah to perform ghusl. Zayd ibn Thabit (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that ewhen the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him)intended to perform hajj he perform ghusl.” (Ad-Daraqutni)

5- Making Ghusl upon Entering Makkah:  

It is preferable for whoever wants to enter Makkah to perform ghusl. It is reported that that Ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) when going to Makkah, would spend the night in Tuwa, and would enter Makkah during the day. He mentioned that the Prophet (peace be upun him) also used to do this. (Al-Bukhari)

6- Making Ghusl at Mount `Arafah:  

Such act is preferred while one stops there during hajj. Malik ibn Nafi` reported that Ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) used to do so before embarking upon hajj, upon entering Makkah, and while stopping at `Arafah.

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Quoted with slight modifications  from Sayyid Sabiq’s Fiqh As-Sunnah.    

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The Eclipse Prayer

The Eclipse Prayer

The Eclipse Prayer

During the lifetime of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), it happens that there was a solar eclipse on the day of his son’s (Ibrahim) death. Some people claimed that the solar eclipse happened due to the child’s death and the deep sadness of the Prophet (peace be upon him).

Al-Mughirah ibn Shu`bah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that, “The sun eclipsed in the lifetime of Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) on the day when (his son) Ibrahim died. So the people said that the sun had eclipsed because of the death of Ibrahim. Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “The sun and the moon do not eclipse because of the death or life (i.e. birth) of someone. When you see the eclipse pray and invoke Allah.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

In such circumstances, the prayer should be offered from the beginning of the eclipse until it is over as the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “If you see anything of that, then offer prayer until it passes.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Enjoy watching this interesting talk with Dr. Ahmad Saqr to know more rulings about the eclipse prayer.


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Source: Myhuda.com  

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