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The Prophet's Prayer [صلى الله علیه وسلم] Described

Author: Imaam Muhammad Naasir-ud-Deen al-Albaanee

Published: Monday 18th January, 2016


Recitation

Next, he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would seek refuge with Allaah the Exalted, saying:

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"I seek refuge with Allaah from the Evil One, the Rejected, from his madness [1], his arrogance, and his poetry." [2]


Sometimes he would add to this, saying:

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"I seek refuge with Allaah, the all-Hearing, the all-Knowing, from the Evil One" ... [3]


Then he would recite,

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"In the Name of Allaah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy," but not loudly [4].





Recitation Of One Verse At A Time

Next, he would recite Soorah al-Faatihah and divide his recitation, reciting one verse at a time. He would say:

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[Here he would pause, and then say:]

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[Then he would pause, and then say:]

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[Then he would pause, and then say:]

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... and so on, until the end of the Soorah. The rest of his recitation was also like this: stopping at the end of the verse and not joining it with the one after. [5]

Sometimes, he would recite,

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"King of the Day of Judgment"


instead of

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"Master of the Day of Judgment." [6]





The Necessity Of Al-Faatihah, And Its Excellence

He would vehemently emphasise the importance of this Soorah, saying:

"There is no prayer for the one who did not recite [in it] the opening chapter [at least]" [7],


and in another saying:

"That prayer is not sufficient in which a man does not recite the Opening of the Book." [8]


He also said:

"He who performs a prayer in which he does not recite the Opening of the Book, then it (i.e. the prayer) is deficient, it is deficient, it is deficient, incomplete." [9]


He also said:

"Allaah the Blessed and Exalted has said:

"I have divided the prayer [10] between Myself and My servant, into two halves: half of it is for Me and half is for My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for."


Then the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said:

Recite! The servant says "Praise be to Allaah, the Lord of the Worlds"; Allaah the Exalted says

"My servant has praised Me."


The servant says, "The Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy"; Allaah says,

"My servant has extolled Me."


The servant says "Master of the Day of Judgment"; Allaah the Exalted says,

"My servant has glorified Me."


The servant says, "It is You (alone) we worship and it is You (alone) we ask for help"; [He says:],

"This is between Me and My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for."


The servant says, "Guide us to the Straight Path, the Path of those whom You have favoured, not of those who receive Your anger, nor of those who go astray". [He says:],"

All these are for My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for." [11]


He also used to say:

"Allaah did not reveal in the Torah or the Gospel anything like the Mother of the Qur'aan. It is the Seven Oft-Repeated." [12] [and the Grand Recitation which have been bestowed upon me]. [13]


He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) commanded "the one who prayed badly" to recite it in his prayer [14], but said to one who could not remember it, Say:

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"I declare Allaah free from all defects; all Praise be to Allaah; none has the right to be worshipped but Allaah; Allaah is the Greatest; there is no might or power except by Allaah." [15]


He also said to "the one who prayed badly":

"If you know some of the Qur'aan, then recite it, otherwise praise Allaah, declare His Greatness and declare that none has the right to be worshipped but Allaah." [16]





The Abrogation Of Recitation Behind The Imaam In The Loud Prayers

He had given permission for those being led by the Imaam to recite Soorah al-Faatihah in the loud prayers, when once:

"He was praying Fajr and the recitation became difficult for him. When he finished, he said:

"Perhaps you recite behind your imaam."


We said: "Yes, quickly [17], O Messenger of Allaah." He said:

"Do not do so, except for [each of you reciting] the opening chapter of the Book, for the prayer is not valid of the one who does not recite it." [18]


Later, he forbade them from reciting in the loud prayers at all, when:

"He finished a prayer in which he was reciting loudly (in one narration: it was the dawn prayer) and said:

'Were any of you reciting with me just now?!'


A man said: "Yes, I was, O Messenger of Allaah". He said:

'I say, why am I contended with?'


[Abu Hurairah said:] So the people stopped reciting with the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) when he was reciting loudly after hearing that from him [but they recited to themselves quietly when the imaam was not reciting loudly]." [19]


He also made silence during the imaam's recitation part of the completeness of following the imaam, saying:

"The imaam is there to be followed, so when he says takbeer, say takbeer, and when he recites, be silent." [20],


Just as he made listening to the imaam's recitation enough to not have to recite behind him, saying:

"He who has an imaam, then the recitation of the imaam is recitation for him." [21] - this applying in the loud prayers.





The Obligation To Recite In The Quiet Prayers

As for the quiet prayers, he urged them to recite during them; Jaabir said, "We used to recite behind the imaam in Zuhr and 'Asr: Soorah al-Faatihah and another Soorah in the first two rak'ahs, and Soorah al-Fatihah in the last two." [22]

However, he dissuaded them from confusing him with their recitation, when:

"He prayed Zuhr with his Companions and said (afterwards):

"Which of you recited "Glorify the name of your Lord the Most High." (Soorah al-A'laa, 87)?


Someone said: It was I [but I was only intending nothing but good by doing so]. So he said:

"I knew that someone was contending with me by it." [23]


In another hadeeth: "They used to recite behind the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) [loudly], so he said:

"You have mixed up my (recitation of the) Qur'aan." [24]


He also said:

"Truly, the person praying is privately consulting his Lord, so he should be careful about what he consults him with, and you should not recite the Qur'aan loudly over each other." [25]


He also used to say:

"Whoever recited a harf (letter) from the Book of Allaah, it will count for him as one good deed, and a good deed is worth ten times over. I do not mean that "alif laam meem" is a harf, but "alif" is a harf, "laam" is a harf, and "meem" is a harf." [26]





The Aameen, And The Imaam's Saying It Loudly

When he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) finished reciting al- Faatihah, he would say:

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"Aameen" loudly, prolonging his voice. [27]


He also used to order the congregation to say aameen:

"When the imaam says,"

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"Not of those who receive (Your) anger, nor of those who go astray", then say "aameen" [for the angels say "aameen" and the imaam says aameen"] (in another narration: when the imaam says "aameen" say "aameen"), so he whose aameen coincides with the aameen of the angels (in another narration: when one of you says "aameen" in prayer and the angels in the sky say "aameen", and they coincide), his past sins are forgiven." [28]


In another hadeeth: ...

"Then say aameen; Allaah will answer you." [29]


He also used to say:

"The Jews do not envy you over anything as much as they envy you over the salutation and aameen [behind the imaam]." [30]





The Recitation After Al-Faatihah

Next, he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would recite another Soorah after al-Faatihah, making it long sometimes, and on other occasions making it short because of travel, cough, illness or the crying of infants.

Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) made it [i.e. the recitation] short one day in the dawn prayer." (In another hadeeth: he prayed the morning prayer and recited the two shortest Soorahs in the Qur'aan.) So it was said: "O Messenger of Allaah, why did you make it short?" He said:

"I heard the crying of a child, and I supposed that his mother was praying with us, so I wanted to free his mother for him." [31]


He also used to say:

"I enter into prayer intending to lengthen it, but I hear the crying of a child so I shorten my prayer because I know how deeply his mother feels about his crying." [32]


He used to start from the beginnning of a Soorah, completing it most of the time. [33]

He used to say:

"Give every Soorah its share of rukoo' and sujood." [34]


In another narration:

"Every Soorah should have a rak'ah." [35]


Sometimes he would divide the Soorah into two rak'ahs [36] and sometimes he would repeat the whole Soorah in the second rak'ah. [37]

Sometimes he would combine two or more Soorahs in one rak'ah. [38]

One of the Ansaar used to lead them in the mosque of Qubaa', and every time he recited a Soorah [39] for them, he would begin with

"Say: He is Allaah, the One and Only." (Soorah al-Ikhlaas, 112)


until its end, and then recite another Soorah with it, and he would do this in every rak'ah. Because of this, his people spoke to him, saying:

"You begin with this Soorah, and then you do not regard it as enough until you recite another one: you should either recite it (only) or leave it and recite another one.


He said:

"I will not leave it: if you do not mind me leading you with it, I shall carry on, but if you do not like it, I shall leave you."


They knew that he was one of their best, and they did not like to be led by anyone else, so when the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) came to them, they told him the story. He said:

"O so-and-so, what stops you from doing what your people ask you to? What makes you recite this Soorah in every rak'ah?"


He said: "I love this Soorah." He said:

"Your love for it will enter you into the Garden." [40]





Combining Similar Soorahs And Others In One Rak'ah

He used to combine the pairs [41] of the mufassal [42] Soorahs, so he used to recite one of the following pairs of Soorahs in one rak'ah [43]:

  • ar-Rahmaan (55:78) [44] & an-Najm (53:62);
  • al-Qamar (54:55) & al-Haaqqah (69:52);
  • at-Toor (52:49) & Dhaariyaat (51:60);
  • al-Waaqi'ah (56:96) & al-Qalam (68:52);
  • al-Ma'aarij (70:44) & an-Naazi'aat (79:46);
  • al-Mutaffifeen (83:36) & 'Abasa (80:42);
  • al-Muddaththir (74:56 ) & al-Muzzammil (73:20);
  • ad-Dahr (76:31) & al-Qiyaamah (75:40);
  • an-Naba (78:40) & al-Mursalaat (77:50);
  • ad-Dukhaan (44:59) & at-Takweer (81:29).

Sometimes he would combine Soorahs from the seven tiwaal (long Soorahs), such as al-Baqarah, an-Nisaa' and aal-Imraan in one rak'ah during night prayer (below). He used to say:

"The most excellent prayer is one with long standing." [45]


When he recited, "Does He not have the power to give life to the dead?" (Qiyaamah 75:40), he would say,

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"Glory be to You, of course!"


and when he recited, "Glorify the name of your Lord Most High" (A'laa 87:1), he would say,

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"Glorified be my Lord Most High." [46]





The Permissibility Of Reciting Al-Faatihah Only

Mu'aadh ibn Jabal used to pray 'Ishaa' [the last] with the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم), and then return and lead his people in prayer. One night when he returned and prayed with them, a young man [called Sulaim, of the Banu Salamah] from his people prayed, but when it became too long for him, he [went away and] prayed [in the corner of the mosque], then came out, took the reins of his camel and departed. When Mu'aadh had prayed, this was mentioned to him, so he said:

"He surely has some hypocrisy in him! I will surely tell the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) what he has done."


The young man said:

"And I will tell the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) what he has done."


So in the morning they came to the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم), and Mu'aadh informed him of what the young man had done. The young man said:

"O Messenger of Allaah! He stays a long time with you, and then he returns and lengthens it for us."


So the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said:

"Are you one who causes great trouble, Mu'aadh?!"


and he said to the young man [47]:

"What do you do when you pray, son of my brother?"


He said:

"I recite the opening chapter of the Book, then I ask Allaah for the Garden, and seek refuge with Him from the Fire. I know neither your dandanah [48] nor the dandanah of Mu'aadh!"


So the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said:

"I and Mu'aadh are similar in this."


The narrator said: The young man said,

"But Mu'aadh will know (about me) on going to the people when they will have been informed that the enemy has arrived."


The narrator said: So the enemy came, and the young man attained shahaadah (martyrdom). So after that the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said to Mu'aadh,

"What did the one disputing with me and you do?"


He said,

"O Messenger of Allaah, he was true to Allaah, and I spoke falsely - he was martyred." [49]





Quiet And Loud Recitation In The Five Prayers And Others

He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite loudly in the morning prayer and in the first two rak'ahs of Maghrib and 'Ishaa', and quietly in Zuhr, 'Asr, the third rak'ah of Maghrib and the last two rak'ahs of Ishaa'. [50]

They could tell when he was reciting quietly from the movement of his beard [51], and because he would let them hear an aayah or so sometimes. [52]

He also recited loudly in Friday prayer and the two 'Eid prayers [53], in the prayer for rain [54], and in the eclipse prayer. [55]




Quiet And Loud Recitation In The Night Prayer (Tahajjud) [56]

As for night prayer, he would sometimes recite quietly and sometimes loudly [57], and "he used to recite in his house such that he could be heard in the courtyard." [58] "Occasionally he would raise his voice more than that until someone lying in bed could hear him" [59] (i.e. from outside the courtyard).

He ordered Abu Bakr and 'Umar (Allaah be pleased with them) likewise, when:

"He came out at night to find Abu Bakr (Allaah be pleased with him) praying in a low voice, and he passed by 'Umar ibn al-Khattaab (Allaah be pleased with him) who was praying in a loud voice. Later, when they gathered around the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said:

"O Abu Bakr, I passed by you and you were praying in a low voice?"


He said: "I let Him whom I was consulting hear, O Messenger of Allaah." He said to 'Umar:

"I passed by you and you were praying raising your voice?"


So he said: "O Messenger of Allaah, I repel drowsiness and keep the devil away." The Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said:

"O Abu Bakr, raise your voice a little bit and to 'Umar: lower your voice a little bit." [60]


He used to say:

"The one who recites the Qur'aan loudly is like the one who gives charity loudly, and the one who recites the Qur'aan quietly is like the one who gives charity quietly." [61]





What He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) Used To Recite In The Different Prayers

As for which Soorahs and aayaat he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite in prayer, this varied according to the different prayers. The details now follow, beginning with the first of the five prayers:

  1. Fajr Prayer

    He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite the longer mufassal [62] surahs [63], hence "he (sometimes) recited al-Waaqi'ah (56:96) and similar surahs in two rak'ahs." [64]

    He recited from Soorah at-Toor (52:49) during the Farewell Pilgrimage. [65]

    Sometimes "he would recite Soorah Qaaf (50:45) or similar [in the first rak'ah]." [66]

    Sometimes "he would recite the shorter mufassal surahs, such as "When the sun is folded up." (at-Takweer 81:29)." [67]

    Once, he recited "When the Earth is shaken" (Zilzaal 99:8) in both rak'ahs, so that the narrator said, "I do not know whether the Messenger of Allaah forgot or recited it on purpose." [68]

    Once, on a journey, he recited "Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of the Daybreak" (Falaq 113:5) and "Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of Mankind" (Naas 114:6). [69] He also said to 'Uqbah ibn 'Aamir (may Allaah be pleased with him):

    "Recite the mu'awwadhatain [70] in your prayer, for no seeker of refuge has sought refuge by means of anything like them." [71]


    Sometimes he used to recite more than that: "he would recite sixty aayaat or more" [72] - one of the narrators said, "I do not know whether this was in each rak'ah or in total."

    He used to recite Soorah ar-Room (30:60) [73] and sometimes Soorah Yaa Sin (36:83). [74]

    Once, "he prayed the Subh [i.e. Fajr Prayer] in Makkah and started reciting Soorah al-Mu'minoon (23:118) until, when he got to the mention of Moosaa and Haaroon or the mention of 'Isa [75] - one of the narrators was not sure - he started coughing and so made rukoo'." [76]

    Sometimes, "he would lead them in Fajr with as-Saaffaat" (77:182). [77]

    "In Fajr on Friday, he would recite as-Sajdah (32:30) [in the first rak'ah, and, in the second,] ad-Dahr" (76:31). [78]

    He used to make the first rak'ah longer than the second. [79]


    Recitation In The Sunnah Prayer Before Fajr

    His recitation in the two rak'ahs of sunnah in Fajr used to be extremely short [80], so much so that 'Aa'ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) used to say: "Has he recited Soorah al- Faatihah or not ?" [81]

    Sometimes, after al-Faatihah, he would recite the aayah "Say: We believe in Allaah and the revelation given to us..." (Baqarah 2:136) in the first rak'ah; in the second, the aayah "Say: O People of the Book! Come to common terms as between us and you..." (aal-'Imraan 3:64). [82] Occasionally, he would recite instead of the latter, "When 'Isa found unbelief on their part..." (aal-'Imraan 3:52). [83]

    Sometimes he would recite Soorah al-Kaafiroon (109:6) in the first rak'ah, and Soorah al-Ikhlaas (112:4) in the second; [84] also, he used to say:

    "An excellent pair of Soorahs they are! [85]


    He heard a man reciting the former Soorah in the first rak'ah, so he said,

    "This is a slave who believes in his Lord."


    Then the man recited the latter Soorah in the second rak'ah, so he said,

    "This is a slave who knows his Lord." [86]


  2. Zuhr Prayer

    "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite al-Faatihah and two Soorahs in the first two rak'ahs, making the first one longer than the second." [87]

    Sometimes he would make lengthen it to the extent that "the Zuhr prayer would have started, and someone could go to a plain: al-Baqi,' fulfil his need, [come back to his place,] make his ablution, and then come (to the mosque) while the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) was still in the first rak'ah, it was that long." [88] Also, "they used to think that he did it so that the people could catch the first rak'ah." [89]

    "He used to recite in each of these two rak'ah about thirty aayaat, such as al-Faatihah followed by Soorah as-Sajdah (32:30)." [90]

    Sometimes "he would recite "By the Sky and the Night-Visitant" (Taariq, 86:17), "By the Sky, (displaying) the Constellations" (Burooj, 85:22), "By the Night as it conceals" (Layl, 92:21) and similar Soorahs." [91]

    Occasionally, he recited "When the Sky is rent asunder" (Inshiqaaq 84:25) and similar ones. [92]

    "They could tell that he was reciting in Zuhr and 'Asr from the movement of his beard." [93]


    Recitation Of Aayaat After Al-Faatihah In The Last Two Rak'ahs

    "He used to make the last two rak'ahs about half as long as the first two, about fifteen aayaat [94], and sometimes he would recite only al-Faatihah in them." [95]

    Sometimes "he would let them hear an aayah or so." [96]

    "They would hear the tones of his recitation of "Glorify the name of your Lord Most High" (A'laa 87:19) and "Has the story reached you of the Overwhelming?" (Ghaashiyah 88:26)." [97]

    Sometimes "he would recite "By the Sky and the Night-Visitant" (Taariq, 86:17), "By the Sky, (displaying) the Constellations" (Burooj, 85:22), and similar Soorahs." [98]

    Sometimes "he would recite "By the Night as it conceals" (Layl 92:21) and similar Soorahs." [99]

  3. 'Asr Prayer

    "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite al-Faatihah and two (other) Soorahs in the first two rak'ahs, making the first one longer than the second" [100], and "they used to think that he did it so that the people could catch the rak'ah." [101]

    "He used to recite about fifteen aayaat in each of the first two rak'ahs, about half as much as he recited in each of the first two rak'ahs of Zuhr, and he used to make the last two rak'ahs about half as long the first two." [102]

    "He used to recite al-Faatihah in the last two." [103]

    "He would let them hear an aayah or so sometimes." [104]

    He used to recite the surahs mentioned under "Zuhr prayer" above.

  4. Maghrib Prayer

    "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to (sometimes) recite the short mufassal Soorahs" [105], so that "when they had finished praying with him, they could go away and (it was possible to) shoot an arrow and see where it landed." [106] Once, "while on a journey, he recited "By the Fig and the Olive" (Teen 95:8) in the second rak'ah." [107]

    But sometimes he would recite the long or medium mufassal surahs, hence "he would recite "Those who disbelieve and hinder (men) from the Path of Allaah" (Muhammad 47:48);" [108] or Soorah at-Toor (52:49); [109] or Soorah al-Mursalaat (77:50), which he recited in the last prayer he prayed. [110]

    Sometimes "he would recite the longer of the two long surahs [111] (A'raaf 7:206) [in two rak'ahs]." [112] Or he would recite al- Anfaal (8:75) in two rak'ahs. [113]


    Recitation In The Sunnah Prayer After Maghrib

    In this prayer, "he used to recite "Say: O you who reject faith" (Kaafiroon 109:6) and "Say: He is Allaah, the One and Only" (Ikhlaas 112:4)." [114]

  5. 'Ishaa' Prayer

    He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would recite the medium mufassal surahs in the first two rak'ahs [115115], hence "he used to recite "By the Sun and his splendour" (Shams 91:15) and surahs like it." [116]

    Or "he would recite "When the Sky is rent asunder" (Inshiqaaq 84:25) and make sajdah during it." [117] Also, "he once recited "By the Fig and the Olive" (Teen 95:8) [in the first rak'ah] while on a journey." [118]

    He forbade prolonging of recitation in 'Ishaa', and that was when:

    Mu'aadh ibn Jabal led his people in 'Ishaa' prayer, and made it very long for them, so one of the Ansaar left and prayed (alone). When Mu'aadh was informed about this, he said: "He is surely a hypocrite". When the man heard of this, he went to the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) and told him what Mu'aadh had said, so the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said to him:

    "Do you want to be on who causes a lot of trouble, Mu'aadh?! When you lead the people, recite "By the Sun and his splendour" (Shams 91:15) or "Glorify the Name of your Lord Most High" (A'laa 77:19) or "Read in the Name of your Lord" ('Alaq 96:19) or "By the Night as it conceals"[/i] (Layl 92:21) [because the old, the weak and those who have a need to fulfil pray behind you]." [119]


  6. Night Prayer (Tahajjud)

    He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would sometimes recite loudly in it and sometimes quietly, [120] He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would shorten his recitation in this sometimes and lengthen it sometimes, occasionally making it so exceedingly long that 'Abdullaah ibn Mas'ood (رضي الله عنه‎) once said: "I prayed with the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) one night, and he carried on standing for so long that I was struck by a wrong idea." He was asked, "What was this idea?" He said: "I thought I would sit down and leave the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم)!" [121]

    Also Hudhaifah ibn al-Yamaan said:

    "I prayed with the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) that night when he started Soorah al-Baqarah (2:286). So I said (to myself), "He will make rukoo' after one hundred aayaat". But he carried on after that, so I thought, "He will finish it (the Soorah) in two rak'ahs". But he carried on, so I thought, "He will make rukoo' when he has finished it." Then he started Soorah an-Nisaa' (4:176) and recited it all, then he started Soorah aal-'Imraan (3:200) [122] and recited it all. He was reciting slowly; when he came to an aayah in which there was glorification of Allaah, he glorified Allaah; at an aayah which had something to be asked for, he asked for it; at mention of seeking refuge, he sought refuge (with Allaah). Then he made rukoo' ... " to the end of the hadeeth. [123]


    Also, "one night when he was ill he recited the Seven Long surahs." [124]

    Also, "he would (sometimes) recite one of these surahs in each rak'ah." [125]

    "It was [totally] unknown for him to recite the whole Qur'aan in one night." [126] In fact, he did not recommend it for 'Abdullaah ibn 'Amr (may Allaah be pleased with him) when he said to him:

    "Recite the whole Qur'aan in each month."


    I said: "I have the power (to do more than that)." He said:

    "Recite it in twenty nights."


    I said: "I have the power to do more". He said:

    "Then recite it in seven days and do not go beyond that." [127]


    Then "he allowed him to recite it in five days." [128] Then "he allowed him to recite it in three days." [129] Further, he forbade him from reciting it in less time than that [130], and he gave a reason for that by saying to him:

    "Whoever recites the Qur'aan in less than three days does not understand it." [131]


    In another version:

    "He does not understand, the one who recites the Qur'aan in less than three days."[ [132]


    Also when he said to him:

    For every worshipper has a (period of) keenness [133] and every (period of) keenness has a lapse [134], either towards a sunnah or towards a bid'ah (innovation); so he whose lapse is towards a sunnah has found guidance, and he whose lapse is towards other than that has been destroyed." [135]


    For this reason, "he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would not recite the whole Qur'aan in less than three days." [136]

    He used to say:

    "Whoever prays at night reciting two hundred aayaat will be written down as one of the sincere devotees." [137]


    Also, "he used to recite Soorah Bani Israa'eel (17:111) and Soorah az-Zumar (39:75) every night." [138] He also used to say:

    "Whoever prays at night reciting a hundred aayaat will not be written down as one of the heedless." [139]


    Sometimes "he would recite about fifty aayaat or more in each rak'ah" [140], or he "would recite about as much as Soorah al-Muzzammil (73:20)." [141]

    "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would not pray all through the night" [142] except rarely, for once:

    " 'Abdullaah ibn Khabbaab ibn al-Arat - who was present at (the Battle of) Badr with the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) - stayed up the whole night with the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) (in another version: a night when he prayed throughout it) until it was dawn. So when he finished his prayer, Khabbaab said to him: "O Messenger of Allaah, may my father and mother be sacrificed for you! Tonight, you have prayed a prayer the like of which I have never seen?" He said:

    "Yes, it was a prayer of hope and fear; [indeed] I asked my Lord, Mighty and Sublime, three things; He granted me two, but refused me one. I asked my Lord that He would not destroy us the way the nations before us were (in another version: that He would not destroy my ummah with famine) and He granted me this; I asked my Lord, Mighty and Sublime, that He would not impose on us an enemy from outside us, and He granted me this; and I asked my Lord not to cover us with confusion in party strife, but He refused me this." " [143]


    Also, one night he stood (in prayer) repeating one aayah until it was dawn:

    "If You do punish them, they are Your servants; if You do forgive them, You are indeed the Exalted in Power, the Wise." (Maa'idah 5:121) [with it he bowed, with it he prostrated, and with it he supplicated], [so in the morning Abu Dharr (رضي الله عنه‎) said to him: "O Messenger of Allaah, you did not stop reciting this aayah until it was morning; you bowed with it and you prostrated with it] [and you supplicated with it,] [whereas Allaah has taught you the whole Qur'aan;] [if one of us were to do this, we would be stern with him?] He said:

    "Indeed I asked my Lord, the Mighty and Sublime, for intercession for my ummah: He granted me it, and it will be possible if Allaah wills for whoever does not associate any partners with Allaah. [144]


    A man said to him: "O Messenger of Allaah, I have a neighbour who stands (in prayer) at night and does not recite anything except "Say: He is Allaah the One and Only" (Ikhlaas 112:4), [repeating it,] [not adding anything else,] as if he considers it little." So the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said:

    "By Him in Whose Hand is my soul, it is worth a third of the Qur'aan." [145]


  7. Witr Prayer

    "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite "Glorify the Name of Your Lord Most High" (al-A'laa 87:19) in the first rak'ah, "Say: O you who disbelieve" (Kaafiroon 109:6) in the second, and "Say: He is Allaah the One and Only" (Ikhlaas 112:4) in the third. [146146] Sometimes he would add on to the last one "Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of Daybreak" (Falaq 113:5) and "Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of Mankind" (Naas 114:6). [147] Once, "he recited a hundred aayaat from Soorah an-Nisaa' (4:176) in the third rak'ah." [148]

    As for the two rak'ahs after witr [149], he used to recite "When the earth is shaken" (Zalzalah 99:8) and "Say: O you who disbelieve" (Kaafiroon 109:6) in them. [150]

  8. Friday Prayer

    He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would sometimes recite Soorah al-Jumu'ah (62:11) in the first rak'ah and "When the hypocrites come to you" (Munaafiqoon 63:11) [151] in the second, sometimes reciting "Has the story reached you of the Overwhelming?" (Ghaashiyah 88:26) instead of the latter. [152] Or sometimes "he would recite "Glorify the Name of your Lord Most High" (A'laa 87:19) in the first rak'ah and "Has the story reached you" (Ghaashiyah 88:26) in the second." [153]

  9. 'Eid Prayer

    "He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would (sometimes) recite "Glorify the Name of your Lord Most High" (A'laa 87:19) in the first rak'ah and "Has the story reached you" (Ghaashiyah 88:26) in the second." [154] Or sometimes "he would recite in them "Qaaaaf. By the Glorious Qur'aan." (Qaaf 50:45) and "The Hour has drawn near" (Qamar 54:55)." [155]

  10. Funeral Prayer

    "The Sunnah is to recite al-Faatihah [156156] [and another Soorah] in it." [157]

    Also, "he would be silent for a while, after the first takbeer." [158]




Tarteel (Recitation In Slow, Rhythmic Tones), & Making The Voice Beautiful When Reciting

He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to recite the Qur'aan in slow, measured rythmic tones as Allaah had instructed him, not racing or hurrying; rather, his was "a recitation clearly- distinguishing each letter" [159], so much so that "he would recite a Soorah in such slow rhythmic tones that it would be longer than would seem possible." [160]

He also used to say:

"It will be said to the reciter of the Qur'aan (on the Day of Judgment), 'Recite and ascend; recite slowly and rhythmically as you used to do in the previous world; your place will be at the last aayah you recite." [161]


He "used to prolong his recitation (at a letter which can be prolonged), such as at bismil-laah, at ar-rahmaan, and at ar- raheem" [162], and at "nadeed" (Qaaf 50:10) [163] & their like.

He used to stop at the end of an aayah, as has already been explained. [164]

Sometimes "he would recite in an attractive vibrating tone [165], as he did on the Day of the Conquest of Makkah, when, while on his she-camel, he recited Soorah al-Fath (48:29) [very softly] [166], and 'Abdullaah ibn Mughaffal narrated this attractive tone thus : aaa." [167]

He used to command making one's voice beautiful when reciting the Qur'aan, saying

"Beautify the Qur'aan with your voices [for a fine voice increases the Qur'aan in beauty]" [168]


and

"Truly, the one who has one of the finest voices among the people for reciting the Qur'aan is the one whom you think fears Allaah when you hear him recite." [169]


He also used to command recitation of the Qur'aan in a pleasant tone, saying:

"Study the Book of Allaah; recite it repeatedly; acquire (memorise) it; and recite it in a melodious tone, for by Him in whose Hand is my soul, it runs away quicker than camels from their tying ropes." [170]


He also used to say,

"He who does not recite the Qur'aan in a pleasant tone is not of us" [171]


and

"Allaah does not listen to anything as he listens (in some versions: as he is listening) to a prophet [with a nice voice, and in one version: with a nice melody] who recites the Qur'aan in a pleasant tone [172] [loudly]." [173]


He said to Abu Moosaa al-Ash'ari (رضي الله عنه‎),

"Had you seen me while I was listening to your recitation yesterday! You have surely been given one of the musical wind-instruments" [174] of the family of Daawood!


[So Abu Moosaa said: "Had I known you were there, I would have made my voice more pleasant and emotional for you]." [175]




Correcting The Imaam

He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) set the example of correcting the imaam when his recitation becomes mixed up, when once "he prayed, reciting loudly, and his recitation became mixed up, so when he finished, he said to Ubayy:

"Did you pray with us?"


He replied, 'Yes.' He said,

"So what prevented you [from correcting me]?" "[176]





Seeking Refuge & Spitting Lightly During Prayer In Order To Repel Temptation

'Uthmaan ibn Abi l-'Aas (رضي الله عنه‎) said to him, "O Messenger of Allaah! The devil comes between me and my prayer and confuses me in my recitation!" So the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said,

"That is a devil called Khinzab, so when you detect him, seek refuge with Allaah from him, and spit lightly [177] on your left three times.


He said, "So when I did that, Allaah caused him to go away from me." [178]




Footnotes

[1] The three `Arabic words hamz, nafkh, and nafth, were interpreted such by the narrator; all three interpretations are also traced back to the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) with a saheeh mursal isnaad. By "poetry" here is meant the vain kind, for the Prophet (on whom be peace and blessings) said:

"Truly, some poetry is wisdom." (Bukhaari)


[2] Abu Daawood, Ibn Maajah, Daaraqutni & Haakim who, along with Ibn Hibbaan and Dhahabi, declared it saheeh. It is given along with the next one in Irwaa' al-Ghaleel (342).

[3] Abu Daawood & Tirmidhi with a hasan isnaad. Ahmad endorsed it (Masaa'il of Ibn Haani 1/50).

[4] Bukhaari , Muslim, Abu `Awaanah, Tahaawi & Ahmad.

[5] Abu Daawood & Sahmi (64 -65); Haakim declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed. It is given in Irwaa' (343). Abu `Amr ad-Daani transmitted it al-Muktafaa (5/2) and said:

"This hadeeth has many routes, and it is what is depended upon in this regard, and several of the past imaams and reciters preferred to stop at every verse, even if some were connected (in meaning) to the one after."


I say: This is a sunnah which has been neglected by the majority of the reciters of this age, let alone others.

[6] Tammaam ar-Raazi in al-Fawaa'id, Ibn Abi Dawood in al-Masaahif (7/2), Abu Nu`aim in Akhbaar Isbahaan (1/104) & Haakim who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed. Both of these recitations are mutawaatir.

[7] Bukhaari, Muslim, Abu `Awaanah & Baihaqi. It is given in Irwaa' (302).

[8] Daaraqutni, who declared it saheeh, and Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh. It is also in Irwaa' (302).

[9] Muslim & Abu `Awaanah.

[10] i.e. Soorah al-Fatihah. It is an example of the wording including the whole prayer but intending only a part, as a way of emphasis on that part.

[11] Muslim, Abu `Awaanah & Maalik, and Sahmi has a supporting hadeeth of Jaabir in Taareekh Jurjaan (144)

[12] Baaji said:

"He is referring to the saying of the Exalted

"And We have bestowed upon you seven of the Oft-Repeated and the Grand Recitation." (Hijr 15:87)


It is named the "seven" because it has seven verses, and "oft-repeated" because it is repeated again and again in prayer. It has been called "the grand recitation" to specify this name for it, even though every part of the Qur'aan is a grand recitation; similarly, the Ka`bah is "the House of Allaah" even though all houses belong to Allaah; this is by way of specifying it and emphasising its importance."


[13] Nasaa'i & Haakim, who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.

[14] Bukhaari in his article on "Recitation behind the Imaam" with a saheeh isnaad.

[15] Abu Daawood, Ibn Khuzaimah (1/80/2), Haakim, Tabaraani & Ibn Hibbaan who, along with Haakim, declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed. It is in Irwaa' (303).

[16] Abu Daawood & Tirmidhi, who declared it hasan; its isnaad is saheeh. (Saheeh Abi Dawood no. 807)

[17] hadhdhan: reciting quickly, implying racing or hurrying.

[18] Bukhaari in his pamphlet, Abu Daawood & Ahmad. Tirmidhi & Daaraqutni declared it hasan.

[19] Maalik, Humaidi, Bukhaari in his pamphlet, Abu Daawood & Mahaamali (6/139/1). Tirmidhi declared it hasan; Abu Haatim ar-Raazi, Ibn Hibbaan & Ibn Qayyim declared it saheeh.

[20] Ibn Abi Shaibah (1/97/1), Abu Daawood, Muslim, Abu `Awaanah & Ruwayaani in his musnad (24/119/1). It is given in Irwaa' (332, 394).

[21] Ibn Abi Shaibah (1/97/1), Daaraqutni, Ibn Maajah, Tahaawi & Ahmad from numerous routes, musnad and mursal. Shaykh-ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah declared it strong, as in al-Furoo` of Ibn `Abdul Haadi (48/2). Boosayri declared some of its isnaads saheeh. I have discussed it in detail and investigated its routes of narration inthe manuscript version and then in Irwaa' al-Ghaleel (no. 500)

[22] Ibn Maajah with a saheeh isnaad. It is given in Irwaa' (506)

[23] Muslim, Abu `Awaanah & Siraaj.

[24] Bukhaari in his article, Ahmad & Siraaj with a hasan isnaad.

[25] Maalik & Bukhaari in Af`aal al-`Ibaad with a saheeh isnaad.

NOTE: The view of the validity of recitation behind the imaam in quiet but not loud prayers was taken by Imaam Shaafi`i initially, and by Muhammad the student of Abu Haneefah in a narration from him which was preferred by Shaykh `Ali al-Qaari and other shaykhs of the madhhab; it was also the position of, among others, the Imaams Zuhri, Maalik, Ibn al-Mubaarak, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, several of the muhadditheen, and it is the preference of Shaykh-ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah.

[26] Tirmidhi & Ibn Maajah with a saheeh isnaad. Transmitted also by Aajuri in Aadaab Haml al-Qur'aan. As for the hadeeth, "He who recites behind the imaam, his mouth is filled with fire", it is fabricated (mawdoo`) and this is explained in Silsilat al-Ahaadeeth al-Da`eefah (no. 569) - see Appendix 5.

[27] Bukhaari in Juz' al-Qiraa'ah & Abu Daawood with a saheeh isnaad.

[28] Bukhaari , Muslim, Nasaa'i, & Daarimi; the additional wordings are reported by the latter two, and prove that this hadeeth cannot justify that the imaam does not say aameen, as reported from Maalik; hence, Ibn Hajar says in Fath al-Baari, "It clearly shows that the imaam says aameen." Ibn `Abdul Barr says in Tamheed (7/13), "It is the view of the majority of the Muslims, including Maalik as the people of Madeenah report from him, for it is authentic from Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) through the ahaadeeth of Abu Hurairah (i.e. this one) and that of Waa'il ibn Hujr (i.e. the previous one)."

[29] Muslim & Abu `Awaanah.

[30] Bukhaari in al-Adab al-Mufrad, Ibn Maajah, Ibn Khuzaimah, Ahmad & Siraaj with two saheeh isnaads.

NOTE: The aameen of the congregation behind the imaam should be done loudly and simultaneously with the imaam, not before him as the majority of worshippers do, nor after him. This is what I finally find most convincing, as I have explained in some of my works, among them Silsilat al-ahaadeeth ad-da`eefah (no. 952, vol. 2) which has been printed and published by the grace of Allaah, and Saheeh at-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (1/205). See Appendix 6.

[31] Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad; the other hadeeth was transmitted by Ibn Abi Dawood in al-Masaahif (4/14/2). This and other similar hadeeths contain permission for infants to enter the mosque. As for the hadeeth on many lips: "Keep your small children away from your mosques...", it is da`eef and cannot be used for proof at all; among those who have declared it da`eef are Ibn al-Jawzi, Mundhiri, Haitami, Ibn Hajar al-Asqalaani and Boosayri. `Abdul Haqq al-Ishbeeli said, "It is baseless".

[32] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[33] There are many ahadeeth mentioned further on which prove this.

[34] Ibn Abi Shaibah (1/100/1), Ahmad & `Abdul Ghani al-Maqdisi in his Sunan (9/2) with a saheeh isnaad.

[35] Ibn Nasr & Tahaawi with a saheeh isnaad; I take the meaning of the hadeeth as: Make every rak`ah have a complete Soorah. The order is one of preference, not compulsion, from the evidence which follows.

[36] Ahmad & Abu Ya`laa from two routes. Also see "Recitation in Fajr prayer".

[37] As he did in Fajr, as will follow.

[38] Details and sources will follow shortly.

[39] i.e. a Soorah after al-Fatihah.

[40] Bukhaari as ta`leeq & Tirmidhi as mawsool, and he declared it saheeh.

[41] nazaa'ir: Soorahs which are similar in meaning, e.g. they both contain advice, commandments, or stories.

[42] These are agreed to end at the end of the Qur'aan; the soundest view is that they begin with Soorah Qaaf (no. 50).

[43] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[44] The first number is that of the Soorah, while the second is the number of aayaat in the Soorah. By inspecting the first of the two numbers in each case, it is easy to see that in many of these combinations, he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) did not stick to the Qur'aanic order of the Soorahs, so this is evidence for the permissibility of doing this, even though it is better to follow the sequence of the Qur'aan. A similar case is to be found later under "Night prayer".

[45] Muslim & Tahaawi.

[46] Abu Daawood & Baihaqi with a saheeh isnaad. This hadeeth is general, so it applies to both recitation during prayer, whether voluntary or obligatory, and outside it. Ibn Abi Shaibah (2/132/2) has transmitted from Abu Moosa al-Ash`ari and Mugheerah ibn Shu`bah that they used to say this in obligatory prayers, and from `Umar and `Ali without such specification.

[47] In the original, "the young man said".

[48] dandanah: when someone speaks some words such that their intonation is audible but they cannot be understood; it is a little bit more than murmuring. (Nihaayah)

[49] Ibn Khuzaimah in his saheeh (1634) & Baihaqi with a saheeh isnaad. It has a supporting narration in Abu Daawood (no. 758, Saheeh Abi Dawood) and the basic story is in Bukhaari and Muslim. The first addition is in one narration of Muslim, the second in Ahmad (5/74), and the third and fourth in Bukhaari . Also under this heading is the hadeeth on the authority of Ibn `Abbaas: "that the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) prayed two rak`ahs in which he recited only al-Fatihah", transmitted by Ahmad (1/282), Haarith ibn Abi Usaamah in his musnad (p.38 of its zawaaid) and Baihaqi (2/62) with a da`eef isnaad. I used to declare this hadeeth hasan in previous works, until I realised that I had been mistaken, because this hadeeth depends on Hanzalah al-Dawsi, who is da`eef, and I do not know how this was unknown to me; maybe I thought he was someone else. Anyway, praise is due to Allaah who guided me to recognise my mistake, and that is why I hurried to correct it in print. Then Allaah compensated me with this better hadeeth of Mu`aadh which relates to what the hadeeth of Ibn `Abbaas indicated. Praise be to Allaah by whose Grace good actions are completed.

[50] There is Ijmaa` (consensus of opinion) of the Muslims on this, with successors passing it on from the predecessors, along with authentic hadeeths which establish this, as Nawawi has said, and some of them follow. See also Irwaa' (345).

[51] Bukhaari & Abu Daawood.

[52] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[53] see the sections on his recitation in Friday prayer and the two `Eid prayers.

[54] Bukhaari & Abu Daawood.

[55] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[56] `Abdul Haqq said in Tahajjud (90/1):

"As for voluntary prayers during the day, there is nothing authentic from him (صلى الله علیه وسلم) regarding either quiet or loud recitation, but it would seem that he used to recite quietly during them. It is reported from him (صلى الله علیه وسلم) that once, during the daytime, he passed by `Abdullaah ibn Hudhaafah who was praying and reciting loudly, so he said to him: O `Abdullaah, let Allaah hear, not us. But this hadeeth is not strong."


[57] Muslim & Bukhaari in Af`aal al-`Ibaad.

[58] Abu Daawood & Tirmidhi in Shamaa'il with a hasan isnaad. The hadeeth means that he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to moderate between quietness and loudness.

[59] Nasaa'i, Tirmidhi in Shamaa'il & Baihaqi in Dalaa'il with a hasan isnaad.

[60] Abu Daawood & Haakim , who declared it saheeh, and Dhahabi agreed.

[61] ibid.

[62] The last seventh of the Qur'aan, beginning with Soorah Qaaf (no. 50) according to the soundest view, as before.

[63] Nasaa'i & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[64] Ahmad, Ibn Khuzaimah (1/69/1) & Haakim who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreeed.

[65] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[66] Muslim & Tirmidhi. It is given along with the next one in Irwaa' (345).

[67] Muslim & Abu Daawood.

[68] Abu Daawood & Baihaqi with a saheeh isnaad. And what is apparent is that he (عليه السلام) did it on purpose to establish its validity.

[69] Abu Daawood, Ibn Khuzaimah (1/76/1), Ibn Bushraan in al-Amaali & Ibn Abi Shaibah (12/176/1); Haakim declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.

[70] lit. "the two by means of which refuge is sought", i.e. the last two surahs of the Qur'aan, both beginning "Say: I seek refuge ... "

[71] Abu Daawood & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[72] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[73] Nasaa'i, Ahmad & Bazzaar with a good isnaad.

[74] Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[75] Moosaa (عليه السلام) is mentioned in aayah 45:

"Then We sent Moosaa and his brother Haaroon, with our signs and manifest authority."


`Isa (عليه السلام) is mentioned soon after in aayah 50:

"And We made the son of Maryam and his mother as a sign - we gave them both shelter on high ground, affording rest and security and furnished with springs."


[76] Muslim, & Bukhaari in ta`leeq.form. It is given in Irwaa' (397).

[77] Ahmad & Abu Ya`laa in their musnads, and Maqdisi in al-Mukhtaarah.

[78] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[79] ibid.

[80] Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[81] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[82] Muslim, Ibn Khuzaimah & Haakim.

[83] Muslim & Abu Daawood.

[84] ibid.

[85] Ibn Maajah & Ibn Khuzaimah.

[86] Tahaawi, Ibn Hibbaan in his saheeh & Ibn Bushraan; Ibn Haajar declared it hasan in al-Ahaadeeth al-`Aaliyaat (no. 16).

[87] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[88] Muslim, & Bukhaari in Juz' al-Qiraa'ah (Article on Recitation).

[89] Abu Daawood with a saheeh isnaad & Ibn Khuzaimah (1/165/1).

[90] Ahmad & Muslim.

[91] Abu Daawood, Tirmidhee & Ibn Khuzaimah (1/67/2); the latter two declared it saheeh.

[92] Ibn Khuzaimah in his saheeh (1/67/2).

[93] Bukhaari & Abu Daawood.

[94] Ahmad & Muslim. The hadeeth contains evidence that reciting more than al-Faatihah in the last two rak`ahs is a sunnah, and many Companions did so, among them Abu Bakr Siddeeq (may Allaah be pleased with him). It is also the view of Imaam Shaafi`i, whether in Zuhr or others, and of our later scholars, Abul Hasanaat al-Lucknowi took it in Notes on Muhammad's al-Muwatta' (p. 102) and said:

"Some of our companions take hold a very strange view in obligating a sajdah sahw (prostration for forgetfulness) for the recitation of a Soorah in the last two rak`ahs, but the commentators on al-Maniyyah, Ibraaheem al-Halabi, Ibn Ameer Haajj and others, have refuted this view extremely well. There is no doubt that those who said this were unaware of the hadeeth, and had it reached them they would not have said so."


[95] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[96] Ibn Khuzaimah in his saheeh (1/67/2) & Diyaa' al-Maqdisi in al-Mukhtaarah with a saheeh isnaad.

[97] Bukhaari in Article on Recitation & Tirmidhi, who declared it saheeh.

[98] Muslim & Tayaalisi.

[99] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[100] ibid.

[101] Abu Daawood with a saheeh isnaad & Ibn Khuzaimah.

[102] Ahmad & Muslim.

[103] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[104] ibid.

[105] ibid (Bukhaari & Muslim).

[106] Nasaa'i & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[107] Tayaalisi & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[108] Ibn Khuzaimah (1/166/2), Tabaraani & Maqdisi with a saheeh isnaad.

[109] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[110] ibid.

[111] called "at-toolayain": A`raaf (7) is agreed to be one; An`aam (6) is the other, according to the most correct saying, as in Fath al-Baari.

[112] Bukhaari, Abu Daawood, Ibn Khuzaimah (1/68/1), Ahmad, Siraaj & Mukhlis.

[113] Tabaraani in Mu`jam al-Kabeer with a saheeh isnaad.

[114] Ahmad, Maqdisi, Nasaa'ee Ibn Nasr & Tabaraani.

[115] Nasaa'i & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[116] Ahmad & Tirmidhi, who declared it hasan.

[117] Bukhaari, Muslim & Nasaai.

[118] ibid.

[119] ibid. It is also given in Irwaa' (295)

[120] Nasaai with Saheeh isnaad.

[121] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[122] The narration is like this, with Nisaa' (4) before aal-`Imraan (3), and thus it is evidence for (the permissibility of) departing from the order of surahs found in the `Uthmaani copy of the Qur'aan in recitation. An example of this has already been seen.

[123] Muslim & Nasaa'i.

[124] Abu Ya`laa & Haakim, who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed. Ibn al-Atheer says:

"... the Seven Long surahs are Baqarah (2), aal-`Imraan (3), Nisaa' (4), Maa'idah (5), An`aam (6), A`raaf (7) and Tawbah (9)."


[125] Abu Daawood & Nasaa'i with a saheeh isnaad.

[126] Muslim & Abu Daawood.

[127] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[128] Nasaa'i & Tirmidhi, who declared it saheeh.

[129] Bukhaari & Ahmad.

[130] Daarimi & Sa`eed ibn Mansoor in his sunan with a saheeh isnaad.

[131] Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[132] Daarimi & Tirmidhi, who declared it saheeh.

[133] Ar. shirrah: excitement, enthusiasm, keenness, energy. The shirrah of youth is his its beginning and its fervour/zeal. Imaam Tahaawi says:

"This is the zeal/fervour of the Muslims in their actions which bring them nearer to their Lord. However they are bound to fall short and leave some actions (which they began due to this zeal) so the most beloved of their actions to Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) were those done otherwise (and kept up), so he ordered them to carry out righteous deeds which they are able to do continually and keep to until they meet their Lord-the Mighty and Majestic. It is narrated from him (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to clarify this that he said:

"The actions most loved by Allaah are those which are the most regular, even if they are little."


I say: this hadeeth which he prefixes with the words "it is narrated" is saheeh, agreed upon by Bukhaari & Muslim from the narration of `Aa'ishah (رضي الله عنها).

[134] Ar. fatrah: interval, break, lapse; referring here to a period of reduced enthusiasm.

[135] Ahmad & Ibn Hibbaan in his saheeh.

[136] Ibn Sa`ad (1/376) & Abu ash-Shaykh in `Akhlaaq Nabi (281).

[137] Daarimi & Haakim , who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.

[138] ibid.

[139] Ahmad & Ibn Nasr with a saheeh isnaad.

[140] Bukhaari & Abu Daawood.

[141] Ahmad & Abu Daawood with a saheeh isnaad.

[142] Muslim & Abu Daawood. This hadeeth and others make it disliked (makrooh) to stay awake the whole night, whether always or regularly, for it is against the example of the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم); for if staying up the whole night were better, he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) would have done so, and the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad. So do not be deceived by what is narrated from Abu Haneefah - (رحمه الله) - that he prayed Fajr with the ablution of `Ishaa' for forty years!! (translator's note: see Tablighi Nisab: Virtues of Salaat by Maulana Zakariyya Kandhalvi for examples of this type of claim) For this narration from him is totally baseless; in fact `Allaamah al-Fairoozaabaadi says in Ar-Radd `alaa al-Mu`tarid ((44/1):

"This narration is a clear lie and cannot be attributed to the Imaam, for there is nothing excellent about it, whereas it was the nature of the likes of the Imaam to do the better thing; there is no doubt that the renewal of purification for each prayer is more excellent, most complete, and best. This is even if it is correct that he stayed awake the length of the night for forty consecutive years! This story seems more like a fairy tale, and is an invention of some of the extremely ignorant fanatics, who say it about Abu Haneefah and others, and all of it is lies."


[143] Nasaa'i, Ahmad & Tabaraani (1/187/2); Tirmidhi declared it saheeh.

[144] Nasaa'i, Ibn Khuzaimah (1/70/1), Ahmad, Ibn Nasr & Haakim, who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.

[145] Ahmad & Bukhaari.

[146] Nasaa'i & Haakim, who declared it saheeh.

[147] Tirmidhi, Abul `Abbaas al-Asamm in his al-Hadeeth (vol 2 no. 117) & Haakim, who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.

[148] Nasaa'i & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[149] The evidence for these two rak`ahs is found in Saheeh Muslim and others as a practice of the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم), but they oppose his saying: Make the last of your prayer at night odd (witr) transmitted by Bukhaari and Muslim. The scholars have differed in reconciling these two hadeeth, none of them being convincing to me, so the most cautious thing is to leave the two rak`ahs in compliance with the command of the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم). Allaah knows best.

Later I came across an authentic hadeeth which had a command for two rak`ahs after witr, so the order of the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) agrees with his action, and the two rak`ahs are validated for everyone; the first command is thus one of recommendation, not negating the two rak`ahs. The latter hadeeth is given in Silsilat al-Ahaadeeth as-Saheehah (1993) - see Appendix 7.

[150] Ahmad & Ibn Nasr and Tahaawi (1/202) and Ibn Khuzaimah & Ibn Hibbaan with a hasan saheeh isnaad.

[151] Muslim & Abu Daawood. It is given in Irwaa' (345).

[152] ibid.

[153] Muslim & Abu Daawood.

[154] ibid.

[155] ibid.

[156] This is the saying of Imaam Shaafi`i, Ahmad and Ishaaq, and some of the later Hanafis who researched took this view. As for the recitation of a Soorah after it, this is the view of some of the Shaafi`ees and it is the correct view.

[157] Bukhaari , Abu Daawood, Nasaa'i & Ibn al-Jaarood. The addition is not shaadhdh (odd) as Tuwaijiri thinks.

[158] Nasaa'i & Tahaawi with a saheeh isnaad.

[159] Ibn al-Mubaarak in az-Zuhd (162/1 from al-Kawaakib 575), Abu Daawood & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[160] Muslim & Maalik.

[161] Abu Daawood & Tirmidhi, who declared it saheeh.

[162] Bukhaari & Abu Daawood.

[163] Bukhaari in Af`aal al-`Ibaad with a saheeh isnaad.

[164] In the section on "Recitation of one verse at a time".

[165] Tarjee` -explained as a vibrating tone by Ibn Hajar; Manaawi said:

"It arises from a feeling of joy & happiness, which he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) felt a good deal on the day of the conquest of Makkah."


[166] Bukhaari & Muslim.

[167] ibid. Ibn Hajar said in his commentary on "aaa (| | |)",

"This is a hamzah with a fathah, followed by a silent alif, followed by another hamzah."


Shaykh `Ali al-Qaari quoted likewise from others and then said:

"It is obvious that this is three prolonged alifs."


[168] Bukhaari as ta`leeq, Abu Daawood, Darimi, Haakim and Tammaam al-Raazi with two saheeh isnaads.

NOTE: This hadeeth was turned round by one of the narrators, who narrated it as "beautify your voices with the Qur'aan". This is a mistake in narration and understanding, and whoever declared it saheeh is submerged in error, for it contradicts the authentic explanatory narrations in this section. In fact, it is a prime example of a maqloob hadeeth, and the details of this brief note are in Silsilah al-Ahaadeeth ad-Da`eefah (no. 5328).

[169] A saheeh hadeeth transmitted by Ibn al Mubarak in az-Zuhd (162/1 from al-Kawaakib 575), Daarimi, Ibn Nasr, Tabaraani, Abu Nu`aim in Akhbaar Isbahaan and Diyaa' in al-Mukhtaarah.

[170] Daarimi & Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad.

[171] Abu Daawood and Haakim who declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.

[172] Mundhiri said,

"Taghannnaa does mean to recite in a pleasant voice; Sufyaan bin `Uyainah and others took the the view that it is to do with istighnaa (i.e. letting the Qur'aan make one dispense with worldly pleasures), but this is rejected."


[173] Bukhaari, Muslim, Tahaawi & Ibn Mandah in Tawheed (81/1).

[174] The scholars have said that musical instruments here means a beautiful voice and that the family of Daawood (عليه السلام) refers to Daawood (عليه السلام) himself; the family of so-and-so can be specifically for so-and-so only; Daawood (عليه السلام) had an extremely beautiful voice. This is mentioned by Nawawi in his commentary on Saheeh Muslim.

[175] `Abdur Razzaaq in al-Amaali (2/44/1), Bukhaari, Muslim, Ibn Nasr and Haakim.

[176] Abu Daawood, Ibn Hibbaan, Tabaraani, Ibn `Asaakir (2/296/2) & Diyaa' in al-Mukhtaarah with a saheeh isnaad.

[177] Ar. tafl: to blow with a minimum amount of saliva - Nihaayah.

[178] Muslim & Ahmad. Nawawi - (رحمه الله) - says,

"This hadeeth contains a recommendation to seek refuge from the devil when he tempts, along with spitting to the left three times."