Jumu’ah Prayer Established in Prisons

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Ever Merciful…

The Standing Committee for Legal Verdicts and Research in Saudi Arabia was asked about a prisoner’s stance on Jumu’ah Prayer when incarcerated. They replied:

إذا أقيمت الجمعة داخل السجن أو في غيره، واستطاع أداءها فتجب عليه، وإذا لم يستطع أداء الجمعة فيصليها ظهرا.

وأما الحرية التي يذكرها الفقهاء شرطًا في وجوب الجمعة فمرادهم الحرية من الرق؛ لأن المملوك لا تجب عليه.

If Jumu’ah Prayer is established inside the prison or elsewhere, and he is capable of performing it, then it is binding (waajib) upon him. If he is unable to pray Jumu’ah Prayer, then he offers (in its place) Thuhr Prayer. As for the condition of freedom which the scholars of Fiqh mention in order for Jumu’ah to be an obligation, the intended meaning was: freedom from slavery, as a slave would not be required (to attend Jumu’ah).

Signed by:
Shaykh ‘Abdullaah ibn Qu’ood
Shaykh ‘Abdullaah ibn Ghudayyaan
Shaykh ‘Abdur-Razzaaq ‘Afeefee
Shaykh ‘Abdul-‘Azeez ibn Baaz

Source: Verdicts of the Standing Committee (8/184-185), as found here.

Translation: Moosaa Richardson

rev.aw.

The Friday Khutbah: Three Neglected Sunnahs for the Imaam

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Beneficent, the Ever Merciful…

The Friday khutbah (sermon) may be the only time to reach many Muslims. With this in mind, it is essential that the khateeb (the one who delivers the khutbah) deliver it in a way that accomplishes the goal of reminding the Muslims about essential matters of Islamic belief and practice, encouraging them towards goodness and warning them from all types of evil.

As the best guidance is the guidance of the Messenger of Allaah (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace), let us extract from his amazing teachings three relatively easy ways a khateeb can significantly improve his delivery of the Friday khutbah and make it as effective as possible, as it relates to the style, level of involvement, and length.

1 – STYLE: The Khutbah Should be a Passionate and Moving Admonition, not an Academic Lesson!

Jaabir ibn ‘Abdillaah (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that when the Messenger of Allaah (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) would deliver a khutbah, his eyes would redden, he would raise his voice, and his anger would intensify, to the point that it was like he was warning of an imminent military invasion! [1]

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have Mercy on him) explained: Continue reading

How Many Rak’ahs Did the Salaf Pray for Taraaweeh?

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Merciful, the Ever-Merciful…

A Great Third-Century Imaam of the Sunnah Gathered the Narrations of the Salaf Regarding How Many Rak’ahs They Prayed or Preferred for the Taraaweeh Prayers of Ramadhaan

The highly celebrated imaam, Shaykh al-Islaam Aboo ‘Abdillaah Muhammad ibn Nasr al-Marwazee [d.294] was one of the greatest of the third-century authorities on the Sunnah. One of the most highly-qualified and knowledgeable imaams of his era, he was recognized by the scholars for his specific expertise in issues that the early Salaf differed over. Great early historians, like Ibn Hibbaan, Aboo Is-haaq ash-Sheeraazee, and al-Khateeb al-Baghdaadee referenced him as one of the leading authorities in detailed Fiqh issues which the Companions and their students (the Taabi’oon) differed over. [1]

The author of al-Muhallaa, Ibn Hazm, remarked that no one since the time of the Companions themselves had been more complete in their knowledge and understanding of the narrations than Muhammad ibn Nasr. [2]

Ath-Thahabee commented, “It is said that he was THE most knowledge of all scholars in entirety about matters of differing.” And he said, “He was from the most knowledgeable of the people in his era about the matters which the Companions and their students differed over. Rarely have people like him ever been seen.” [3]

It was this great early imaam who compiled an amazing book on the topic of the night prayers of Ramadhaan. Scholars who spoke on the topic throughout history have recognized this work as Continue reading

How to Pray in a Chair When Needed [Shaykh Saalih al-Fowzaan]

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Ever Merciful…

View this article in Arabic and English [PDF].

Shaykh Saalih al-Fowzaan (may Allaah preserve him) was asked about how one is to pray in a chair when needed.

The reply: Prayer is the second pillar of Islaam. It is the foundational support-post of Islaam, and it is the first of all deeds a person will be held to account for on the Day of Judgment. If it is accepted [by Allaah], the rest of his deeds will be accepted. If it is rejected, the rest of his deeds will likewise be rejected. It is an obligation that no Muslim is ever excused from so long as he remains of sound mind.[1] A Muslim prays according to his ability.

As Allaah has said, “Fear Allaah to the best of your ability.”[2] And He, the Most High, has said, “Allaah does not burden any soul beyond its scope.”[3] Furthermore, the Prophet, may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace, said, “When I have forbidden you from something, stay away from it [entirely]. When I have ordered you to do something, do as much of it as you are able.”[4]

From this [generality] is prayer. A Muslim is to pray to the best of his ability, the best he can, due to the statement of the Prophet, may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace, “A sick person prays standing. If he is unable, then he may pray sitting. If he is unable, then he may pray [laying] on his side.”[5] In one narration, “If he is unable, then laying back with his feet toward the qiblah.”[6]

Prayer has its required conditions (shuroot), necessary elements (arkaan, lit. pillars), obligations (waajibaat), and recommended manners (sunan). A sick person is to do as much of these things as he is able to. Some things are to be done while standing, while others are done while sitting or in prostration.

What is done standing is the initial Continue reading

Common Acts of Religious Excessiveness (Ghuluww) Regarding “Prayer Rugs”

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Ever Mercilful…

Allaah says, addressing the Jews and Christians with a stern admonition that Muslims are required to also heed and live by:

يا أهل الكتاب لا تغلوا في دينكم
“O people of the Book!  Do not go overboard in your religion!” [1]

His Messenger (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) said:

إياكم والغلو فإنما أهلك من كان قبلكم الغلو
“Be warned against ghuluww (religious excessiveness), since that which destroyed the people who came before you was ghuluww!” [2]

To help fulfill this Prophetic order, this series of brotherly reminders highlights some everyday manifestations of religious excessiveness that Muslims may commonly fall into, so that we can be on guard against them and warn others of them.

Obsession with Prayer Mats, Rugs, and Carpets

The narrations found in Saheeh al-Bukhaaree and elsewhere, describing the Prophet (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) praying on a khumrah [small mat] and a haseer [large mat] show the permissibility of praying on other than the bare ground. A few of the scholars held the opinion that the prayer may only be offered on the bare ground, so these narrations are a proof against their position. They do not provide a proof for the one who takes this action as part of his Religion, since the Companions did not take this as a religious matter. Rather, they understood it to be permissible, and thus prayed on mats, bedding, clothing, etc. whenever it made sense, for example: In the extreme heat to protect oneself from the heat of the ground.

Furthermore, the scholars have stated that it is better for a person to pray directly on the ground if he is able.  Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said:

The ahaadeeth and the aathaar (narrations from the Prophet, may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace, and the Companions) show that they used to prefer placing their foreheads directly on the bare ground if they were able, and when necessary, like in extremely hot weather and the likes, they would pray with something between them and the ground, using something they had with them: a part of their clothing, turban, or cap… [3]

However, if someone still holds that these narrations prove the legislated nature of praying on what people today call “prayer rugs”, then we can look again to Shaykh al-Islaam Continue reading

From the Signs of the Last Day: Long Friday Khutbahs (Sermons) with Short Prayers

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Ever Merciful…

Shaykh Hammood ibn ‘Abdillaah at-Tuwayjiree (d.1413) – may Allaah have Mercy on him – said:

Long Khutbahs (Sermons) with Short Prayers: On this topic, there is the hadeeth of Ibn Mas’ood – may Allaah be pleased with him – who said:

You people are living in a time wherein prayers are made long, khutbahs (sermons) are short, there are many scholars, but few orators. A time will come upon the people when the prayer will be short, the khutbah will be long, a time of many orators but few scholars…

It was collected by at-Tabaraanee, and al-Haythamee said: Its narrators are those of the Saheeh (hadeeth collections of al-Bukhaaree and/or Muslim).

It was also collected by Imaam Maalik in his Muwatta’, with a similar wording:

…And the people shall encounter a time when the scholars of fiqh are few, but the reciters are many, the letters of the Qur’aan will be memorized, but the rulings will be lost, many shall be asked questions (about Islaam), few will be able to benefit anyone, they shall prolong khutbahs (sermons), and shorten the prayers. Their whims will become evident even before their actions.

…He (Ibn Mas’ood) – may Allaah be pleased with him – also narrated from the Prophet (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) that he said:

إن قصر الخطبة وطول الصلاة مئنة من فقه الرجل، فأطيلوا الصلاة، واقصروا الخطبة، فإن من البيان سحرًا، وإنه سيأتي بعدكم قوم يطيلون الخطب ويقصرون الصلاة

“Verily, a short khutbah and a long prayer is a sign of a man’s fiqh (religious understanding), so lengthen the prayer and shorten the khutbah, as surely some types of speech are magical. People will come after you who prolong the khutbahs and shorten the prayers.”

It was collected by al-Bazzaar, and part of it was Continue reading

Q&A: Hadeeth about not Sleeping Alone?

In the Name of Allaah…

QUESTION: Is there a hadeeth in which sleeping alone has been prohibited and, if so, what is the proper understanding of this hadeeth? Someone read that on a website providing tips on how not to miss Fajr, and one of those tips was not to sleep alone. It said al-Albaanee authenticated the hadeeth in as-Silsilatus-Saheehah.

ANSWER: There does exist a hadeeth in the Musnad of Ahmad (2/91) which alledgedly states that the Messenger of Allaah (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) prohibited people from sleeping alone:

نهى عن الوحدة أن يبيت الرجل وحده أو يسافر وحده

He forbade (us) from seclusion: that a man sleeps alone or travels alone.

The chain appears to be authentic at first glance, since all of the narrators are from the narrators used in the two Saheeh collections of al-Bukhaaree and Muslim, except for one who was not used in Saheeh Muslim, Aboo ‘Ubayd ‘Abdul-Waahid ibn Waasil al-Haddaad.  At face value, scholars have graded its chain to be saheeh (authentic), one of them being the great scholar of Hadeeth and its sciences, Muhammad Naasir ad-Deen al-Albaanee in his Silsilah Saheehah (#60), as mentioned in the question.

Al-Haythamee said about this hadeeth in Majma’ az-Zawaa’id (8/104), “Its narrators are from the narrators of the Saheeh (collections of al-Bukhaaree and/or Muslim).”  I learned a very important thing about this kind of statement from al-Haythamee, when he refrains from calling the chain or the hadeeth saheeh, and suffices with profiling the narrators as reliable – that this is not sufficient as authentication, as other factors are involved in declaring a hadeeth authentic beyond the reliability of its narrators, like the connectivity of the chain and the absence of any hidden defects. In fact, when al-Haythamee refrains from calling the hadeeth or its chain saheeh, there is often a hidden defect somewhere in the chain, a very fine point of hadeeth criticism I learned from al-Albaanee himself, from his highly beneficial hadeeth commentary in his two massive works – as-Saheehah and adh-Dha’eefah.

Furthermore, referring to the narrators as being from those used in the Saheeh collections of al-Bukhaaree and Muslim is insufficient by itself to establish their reliability in a general sense for a number of reasons, the easiest of which to explain in English would be that sometimes al-Bukhaaree and Muslim only relied on a narrator when he was maqroon, or paired with someone else relaying the same narration – meaning they would not rely on his narration independently.  This connects us directly to this hadeeth…

The narrator, Aboo ‘Ubayd al-Haddaad, was from those used by al-Bukhaaree, when paired with another narrator, not independently, as mentioned by ath-Thahabee in al-Meezaan.  This helps us understand the criticism levelled against him regarding his precision as a narrator, while he was from those used in Saheeh al-Bukhaaree, the most authentic source book of Hadeeth available.

Furthermore, Aboo ‘Ubayd al-Haddaad has narrated this hadeeth from his shaykh, ‘Aasim ibn Muhammad, as eight or nine other reliable students did, except that none of them mentioned sleeping alone, their narrations only mention travelling!

From this, we can understand clearly that the mention of sleeping alone in this narration was a mistake added by Aboo ‘Ubayd, and thus is not authentic as a hadeeth of the Messenger (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace).

This very fine of point of criticism of this hadeeth can only be detected when gathering the chains together and inspecting them very closely, as done by a number of scholars and hadeeth researchers who have come to this same conclusion.  The one most worthy of mention was the great scholar of Hadeeth criticism of Yemen, Muqbil ibn Haadee al-Waadi’ee (may Allaah have mercy on him), in his book, Ahaadeeth Mu’allah Thaahiruhas-Sihhah (#269).

In conclusion, the part of the hadeeth mentioning the prohibition of sleeping alone is not authentic.

Even without this hadeeth, however, it is still an acceptable point to say that one way to wake up for Fajr prayer on time is to sleep with or around others who can help each other to wake up together at the right time.  And Allaah knows best.

Written by: Moosaa Richardson

Shaykh Saalih al-Fowzaan: Applauding (Clapping) is Imitating the Non-Muslims

In the Name of Allaah…

Shaykh Saalih al-Fowzaan (may Allaah preserve him) said:

From the aspects of the pre-Islaamic period of ignorance (jaahiliyyah) that the Messenger of Allaah (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) opposed them in was their attempt to draw near to Allaah in worship by whistling and clapping.  Allaah, the Most High, has said:

( وما كان صلاتهم عند البيت إلا مكاء وتصدية )

( Their prayer at the House (the Ka’bah) was but whistling and clapping ) [8:35]

This means that the polytheists would only try to draw near to Allaah at the prestigious Ka’bah by whistling and clapping…

…They would do this at the House (the Ka’bah), calling it “prayer”, thinking to draw near to Allaah, the Exalted and Most High.  It was just one of the ways the devils of mankind and Jinn had beautified for them.

We know this because Continue reading

Easy Phrases of Thikr (Remembrance) for After the Prayer

Here are some easy phrases of thikr (remembrance) for after the prayer, especially for children who are learning to pray:

1 – Saying: Subhaan Allaah (10x), al-Hamdulillaah (10x), Allaahu akbar (10x) after the prayer.

سُبْحَانَ اللهِ – الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ – اللهُ أَكْبَرُ

This is something very easy that few people do that would wipe away 2,500 sins a day (combined with one other act)!

On the authority of ‘Abdullaah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas (may Allaah be pleased with him and his father), the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) said Continue reading

Catching the Rak’ah of Congregational Prayer

QUESTION

If someone joins the congregation while the imaam is making rukoo’, has he caught that rak’ah? And what do you know about the position of those who say that he has not caught that rak’ah and it must be repeated?

ANSWER by Shaykh Muhammad ‘Umar Baazmool, Instructor at Umm Al-Quraa University in Makkah

This is an old issue, an issue of great differing amongst the scholars: Does the person who reaches the congregation during the rukoo’ get credit for that rak’ah or not?

The majority of the scholars Continue reading

If Someone Stops His Prayer Because of the Iqaamah, Does He Make Tasleem (Give Salaams) or Just Stop Praying?

In the Name of Allaah, the All-Merciful…

The following question was posed to the Permanent Committee of Scholars in Saudi Arabia:

If the iqaamah is called, and a person was praying two rak’ahs of Sunnah prayer or tahiyyat al-masjid, does he stop praying this prayer to join the congregational prayer?  If the answer is yes, then does he give salaams (tasleem) when leaving the prayer or does he simply stop praying without salaams?

They replied:

What is correct from the two positions held by the scholars is that he stops praying, and Continue reading

Don’t Just Stand There!

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Merciful…

Since the latecomer to the congregational prayer does not count the rak’ah unless he has joined during the rukoo’, some people believe that if they come after the rukoo’ there is no point in joining the prayer until the imaam stands back up for the next rak’ah, even if it means standing there looking around for a long time while the congregation makes tashah-hud!

Here’s why this is forbidden from a four-fold textual standpoint:

1) The generality of the hadeeth which is found in al-Bukhaaree and Muslim Continue reading

Shaykh Ibn Baaz on Salaat al-Ghaa’ib (Janaazah Prayer in Absentia) for Relatives in Other Lands

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Compassionate, the Ever-Merciful…

Shaykh ‘Abdul-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (d.1420 – may Allaah have Mercy on him) was asked the following question about Janaazah (Funeral) Prayer in absentia:

If someone learns of a relative who passed away in another land, should he perform Janaazah Prayer for that person (in absentia)?

No, rather he should ask Allaah for Forgiveness (for the deceased), since the Prophet (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) did not use to pray (Janaazah) over the deceased from other lands, except for special cases.  An example of this Continue reading

Praying at Night

[ Part Seven of a series of inspiring articles from a recorded lecture entitled, “Min Ma’een al-Imaam Ahmad” (“Benefits from the Life and Works of Imam Ahmad”) by Shaykh Saalih Aal ash-Shaykh (may Allaah preserve him) ]

Praying at Night

One of Imaam Ahmad’s students, ‘Abdus-Samad ibn Sulaymaan, said something that I mentioned earlier in this lecture, “I stayed with Ahmad ibn Hambal. He left for me a container of water. In the morning he found that I had not used it. He said, ‘A companion of the narrations, and he has no activity in the night?!’ I told him, ‘I am a traveler.’ He replied, ‘Even as a traveler!'”

This is an outstanding lesson from Imaam Ahmad! The student of knowledge must keep himself upon some rites of worship, he must have an eagerness to get close to Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. Continue reading

Regarding Prayer Interrupted by the Iqaamah in the Masjid

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Merciful…

Shaykh ‘Abdur-Rahmaan ibn Naasir as-Sa’dee (d.1376), may Allaah have Mercy on him, was asked about the proper application of the authentic hadeeth that means, “Once the prayer is established there is no prayer other than the obligatory one.”

He replied: Continue reading

When is the Time of ‘Eshaa’ Prayer Over?

In the Name of Allaah, the Merciful, may His Complete Salaah and Salaam be upon the finest of His Creation, His last Messenger Muhammad, and upon all his family members and companions, to proceed…

The great scholar, Shaykh Muhammad Naasir ad-Deen al-Albaanee (d.1420), may Allaah have Mercy on him, wrote in his exemplary book, Tamaam al-Minnah (pp.140-142):

As for his (Sayyid Saabiq’s [1]) statement:

“…And as for the time of ‘Eshaa’ Prayer then it extends until the time of Fajr, and this is understood from the hadeeth of Aboo Qataadah who said that the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) said: Continue reading

Praying an Optional Prayer to Lead the People in an Obligatory Prayer

[ This is Part Three of the article, Splitting into Groups and Parties, by Shaykh Muhammad Naasir ad-Deen al-Albaanee (d.1420) – may Allaah have Mercy on him.  Here, the shaykh elaborates on a specific example of classic differing. ]

…From here let us move on to refer to some of the issues that have been the source of differing for a long time, issues related to some fiqh rulings between the Hanafees and Shaafi’ees. One side would bring a proof regarding something that happened in the time of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam). The other side would refute that, saying that there is no clear indication in the report that what happened was made known to the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam), it does not say that he was informed about it and approved of it. This reply that some of the people of the math-habs gave is refuted by that which has preceded in our discussion. Continue reading

A Sign of the Saved Sect: Following the Companions

 [ This is Part Two of the article, Splitting into Groups and Parties, by Shaykh Muhammad Naasir ad-Deen al-Albaanee (d.1420) – may Allaah have Mercy on him.  Here, the shaykh stresses the importance of applying the understanding of the Companions in an issue of fiqh, and how that will unify the people. ]

…One sign of the saved sect, one that the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) described clearly when he was asked about it, is found in his statement:

“It is what I and my Companions are upon this day.” [1] Continue reading

Ibn Taymiyyah on Night Prayers in Ramadhan – 11 or 20 Rak’ahs?

 Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (may Allaah have Mercy on him) said:

“…The night prayers of Ramadhan have not been limited to a specific number (of rak’ahs).  He (the Prophet) himself (may Allaah raise his rank and grant him peace) used to pray no more than 13 rak’ahs in Ramadhan or any other time.  However, he used to pray with long rak’ahs. Continue reading