Monday, 30 May 2011

Commmon Mistakes in Salaat

Mistakes of Salaah
1. Leaving the salaah altogether.
 This is indeed kufr (disbelief) and the evidence is found
within the Qur’aan the authentic sunnah and the consensus of the ummah. Allah ta’aala
states: If they repent and establish the salaah and give the zakaah, they are you
brothers in faith (deen). [Al-Qur’aan 9:11] And Allah ta’aala says: What landed you in
As-Saqar (Hell)? They said: We were not of those who made salaah (almusalleen)…[
Al-Qur’aan 76:42-43] and so on. As far as the sunnah: The hadeeth of
Jaabir that the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Between a man and shirk
(what protects him from shirk) is the abandonment of salaah. [Muslim] It is narrated
by Abu Dawood, An-Nisaa’i, Ibn Maajah, and At-Tirmidhi on the authority of Buraidah Ibn
Al-Husaib from the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) who said: The covenant
between us and them (i.e. the Prophet – and/or his successors -and those who
claim to be Muslims) is the salaah so whosoever abandons it has disbelieved. [
Ahmad and others and it is saheeh] As far as consensus (al-ijmaa’): Abdullah Ibn
Shaqeeq (radiallahu ‘anhu) stated: The Companions of Muhammad (radiallahu ‘anhum)
did not view the abandonment of any other deed as kufr other than (abandoning) salaah.
[At-Tirmidhi and others with an authentic chain]

2. Delaying the salaah from its appointed time. This is a violation according to the word of
Allah ta’aala: Verily the salaah has been appointed for the believers at specific times
(mawqoot). [Al-Qur’aan 4:103] Al-Mawqoot indicates a specific appointed time and the
postponement of sallah beyond the obligatory time (fardh) is a major sin and Allah is the
one upon Whom we depend. On the authority of Anas who said: I heard the Messenger
of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying: This is the salaat of the hypocrite
(munaafiq); when he sits observing the sun until it is between the horns of
Shaitaan, then he stands to perform four (rak’ah) remembering Allah little. [Muslim]
If this is the salaah of the hypocrite then what of the salaah of someone who postpones
the prayer until the complete period of the salaat has passed without any excuse?

3. Abandonment of the congregational prayer in the masjid by able men either regularly or
on occasion. The commandment has been given to perform the salaah in congregation in
the masaajid. Congregational (al-jamaa’ah) salaah is a duty except for those who have a
valid excuse according to the sharia’h. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa
sallam) said: Whoever hears the call (al-adhaan) and thereafter does not answer it
(i.e. attend the congregational salaah) there is no salaah for him except for a valid
excuse. [Reported by Ibn Maajah and others with a strong chain (isnaad) and Al-Haafith
Ibn Hajar said “Its chain is according to the conditions of Muslim”]. Allah ta’aala also says:
And bow down with those who bow down. {Al-Qur’aan 2:43] In a hadeeth in Al-
Bukhaari and Muslim (mutafaqun ‘alaih): …I would then leave (after tbe salaah has
begun) and go to those men who do not attend the salaah and burn their houses
down over them.

4. Lack of tranquility (at-tama’neenah) within the salaat. This is generally done out of
ignorance and it is an open sin because tranquility is a pillar (rukn) of the salaah without
which the salaah is incorrect. The hadeeth about the man who performed his salaah
badly is a clear evidence for this. The meaning of tama’neenah (tranquility) is that the one
praying is tranquil in the rukoo’ (bending), standing (‘itidaal), prostration (sujood), and
sitting between the two prostrations (juloos), and he should get in position where every
bone settles into place, he should not hasten between portions of the prayer until he has
attained tranquility in it and gives each its due time. The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa
sallam) said to the one who was rushing through his salaah without observing the proper
tranquility: Go back and make salaah because you have not made the salaah. And in
the hadeeth of Rifaa’ah on the story of the one who prayed badly it goes on: Then he
makes takbeer and bows and puts his hands on his knees until each joint is settled
and relaxed. Then he says ‘sami’allahu liman hamida’ (Allah hears the one who
praises Him) then stands up straight until each bone is in its place.

5. Lack of proper reverence and humility (khushoo’) in the salaat and excess movement
therein. The place of khushoo’ is in the heart and it is evident in the tranquility of the limbs
and humility before Allah. Allah has indeed praised His slave by His statement: Those
who offer their salaah with all solemnity and full submissiveness. [Al-Qur’aan 23:2]
As well [He has praised] the prophets by his statement: Verily they used to hasten on
to do good deeds and they used to call upon Us with hope and fear, and used tohumble themselves before Us. [Al-Qur’aan 21:90] It is incumbent. The limbs of the
slave in prayer should be still and his heart should be solemn until he may be rewarded
for his salaah. It is narrated on the authority of ‘Ammaar Ibn Yaasir (radiallahu ‘anhu) he
said: I heard the messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying: Verily a man
leaves after completing his prayer and nothing has been written for him except a tenth of
his salaah, a ninth, an eighth, a sixth, a fifth, a fourth, a third, or half of it. [Abu Dawood,
An-Nisaa’i, and others and it is an authentic hadeeth] The reason for the shortcoming in
its reward is the lack of khushoo’ in the heart of the one who prays or in the limbs.
6. Intentionally preceding the imaam in the movements of the prayer or not following his
movements. This nullifies the salaah or rak’ah for whoever bows before his imaam ruins
his own rak’ah unless he follows it later with another bowing. Such is likewise with the
rest of the arkaan (pillars) of the salaah. It is obligatory for the praying person to follow the
imaam completely without preceding him or lagging behind him in any rukn (pillar) or
more. Abu Dawood and others transmit with an authentic chain from Abu Hurairah that
the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Verily the imaam is to be
completely followed, so if he makes takbeer then you make takbeer and don’t make
takbeer until he does so, and if he bows then bow and don’t bow until he does so…
Its origin is in the two saheehs and Al-Bukhaari has another like it narrated by Anas. The
one who forgets or the one who is ignorant is excused.

7. Standing to complete a missed rak’ah before the imaam has completely finished making
the second tasleem (i.e closing the prayer by saying ‘As-salaamu ‘alaikum wa
rahmatullahi to the right and left). It is reported in Saheeh Muslim that the Messenger of
Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Do not precede me in the rukoo’ (bowing) not in
the sujood (prostration) nor in going out of the prayer (al-insiraaf). The scholars have said
that the meaning of al-insiraaf is at-tasleem and it is named such because the praying
person may leave afterwards and he leaves only after the second tasleem. The one who
precedes the imaam should stay in his place until the imaam has completed his salaah,
then he should stand and complete whatever he missed, and Allah knows best.

8. Making the intention for prayer aloud. This is a bid’ah (innovation), and we have
previously mention the prohibition against bid’ah. The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa
sallam) never made the intention for salaah aloud. Ibn Al-Qayyim, rahimahullah, stated in
“Zaad Al-Ma’aad” or in “Al-Hudaa An-Nabawiyy”: “When the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa
sallam) would stand for salaah he said: ‘Allahu Akbar’ and said nothing else before it nor
did he pronounce his intention aloud. Nor did he say: ‘I will pray for Allah salaah such and
such while facing the Qiblah four raka’aat as imaam or follower’. Nor did he say: ‘Fulfilling
it on time, not making it up, nor the time of fardh’ all ten of which are bid’ah for which no
one has reported that he did with an authentic chain, nor even a weak one, nor musnad,
nor mursal, nor a single word. Indeed not one narration of the sahaabah or the best of the
following generation (taabi’een), nor the four imaams.”

9. Not reciting Al-Faatihah in the salaah; The recitation of Al-Faatihah is a pillar (rukn) and
the salaah of whoever does not recite it is void. This is according to the Prophet’s
(sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying: Whoever makes a salaah wherein Al-Faatihah is
not recited then it is khidaaj (miscarried) - and he repeated it three times –
incomplete. [Muslim from Abu Hurairah] Also reported in the two saheehs is the hadeeth
from ‘Ubaadah Ibn Saamit (radiallahu ‘anhu) marfoo’an (attributable to the Prophet,
sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam): The salaah is null for whoever has not recited the
Opening of the Book. In another wording from ‘Ubaadah: Could it be that you recite
behind your imaam? We said: Yes. He said: Don’t do so except with the Opening of
the Book (Al-Faatihah) for the salaah is null of whoever does not recite it. [Ahmed,
Abu Dawood, At-Tirmidhi, Ibn Hibbaan. This is evidence of its obligation for the follower.
Recitation of the follower is absolute or in the aloud prayers as opposed to what is long
known. Whether the recitation of Al-Faatihah is absolute or just in the prayers recited
aloud is an old difference of opinion among the scholars. Is it waajib or dropped? The
majority of scholars (al-jumhoor) say it is dropped however doing so is more clear from
possible error and more precaution for deen. Most of those who have the opinion of it
being dropped say that it is nevertheless desirable to recite it.
10. Recitation of the Qur’aan in rukoo’ (bowing position) or during sujood (prostration). This is
prohibited based on a narration from ibn Abbaas (radiallahu ‘anhu) that the Prophet
(sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: I have been prevented from reciting the Qur’aan
whilewhile bowing or in prostration… [Muslim] Ali (radiallahu ‘anu) narrates he said: The
Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam prevented me from reciting the
Qur’aan while bowing or prostrating. [Muslim and others]

11. Raising the eyes to the sky during salaat or looking to the right and left without due
cause. As far as raising the eyes, it is forbidden and bears the threat of punishment. It is
narrated by Jabir Ibn Samurah (radiallahu ‘anhu) who said: The Messenger of allah
(sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Let the people stop raising their eyes to the sky in the
salaah or let their sight not return to them. [Muslim]


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