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O you who believe! Seek assistance through patience and prayer, surely Allah is with the patient. Quran 2:45

How to Pray

 

The Islamic prayer, known as Salah, is a fundamental act of worship for Muslims and one of the 5 pillars of Islam. It is a form of communication with Allah and serves as a daily reminder of a Muslim's submission to the will of God. Salah is performed five times a day at specific times, and each prayer consists of a sequence of physical movements and recitations from the Quran. The prayer involves facing the Kaaba in Mecca and includes various postures such as standing, bowing, prostrating, and sitting. Through Salah, Muslims seek spiritual purification, guidance, and connection with Allah, reinforcing their faith and strengthening their relationship with God.

Prerequisites (Conditions) of Prayer (Salah):

 
 
 
 
 
 

Prerequisites are basically some conditions which should be fulfill by people to perform Salah without these conditions our Salah will be invalid. So it is important to fulfill these conditions if you want to perform Salah.

Purity of The Body

This is very important because our body should be free from the impurities to pray Salah (Namaz) that means on our body their should not be any impurity so if we are impure then we have to perform Ghusl (Full Bath).

In addition the purity of the clothes is required when performing prayer. 

Covering the Awrah (Private Parts)

It is necessary to cover your private parts before praying the Salah because without this our prayer will be invalid it is for both Men ( navel to the knees) and Women (her entire body apart from her face and hands). Reference- Sahih al-Bukhari 361, Surah al-Araf Verse 31.

Most of the scholars agree on one point that during the Prayer, it is highly recommended for a man to have his head covered during the prayer but if you dont have any thing to cover your head your prayer will be valid.

Wudu (Ablution)

Wudu is an important part of purification and is in itself a form of worship which is compulsory on every person, without Wudu your prayer will be Invalid. There are ofcource exceptions in the case of one who has no access to water in which case tayammum can be performed (wudu performed with dry sand among other things). Learn how to perform Wudu here.

Purity of Place

It is very important that the spot where you are praying should be clean because without this your prayer will be invalid it is clearly mentioned in the Quran (Surah Al Hajj verse 26) and many authentic hadiths (Sahih al-bukhari 219). 

Time of Prayer

It is very important to note that every Salah has its unique time to be prayed during, if you are praying the Salah before its time then your prayer will be invalid for example if i am going to pray Maghrib Salah and i saw that Sun is about to set or half of the sun is set i.e. Sun is not completely set and at this time if we start praying our Maghrib Salah then it is completely invalid.

This is because for the praying of Maghrib Salah the Sun has to completely set and you can’t pray earlier.

Direction of The Qiblah

As we know that we have to face the Qiblah at the time of praying any Salah.

It is obligatory for those who can see Kabah/Qiblah and face it directly towards it. As for those who cannot see the Kabah/Qiblah (for those who live in different countries all over the world) they have to face its direction to their best ability.

However if the person is in any place where he or she cannot decide the direction of the Qiblah (For example- he or she is in Forest, Deserts etc.) then he or she can pray his or her Salah in any direction where he or she thinks that is the direction of Qiblah.

It is important that the Salah should be started in the direction of Qiblah and it does not matter if the direction changes while praying (For those who are praying in Airplane, Train, Ship etc.)

Steps to Pray

After fulfilling all the prerequisites (Conditions) we are now able to pray our Salah, Follow the steps below to start your prayer.

1. Standing (Qiyam) :-

It is obligatory for a person to pray the Salah in a standing position as this is clearly mentioned in the Quran (Surah al-Baqarah verse 238) and many authentic hadiths (Sahih Bukhari: 6667)

And this is a Pillar of Salah for those who are able to stand if he or she is unable to stand due to a physical disability or any other reason then he or she should pray while sitting if he or she is unable to sit then he or she should pray while lying on one side or any position whom he or she able to capable of praying. and this is mention in many authentic hadiths (Sahih Bukhari: 1117)

2. Intention (an-Niyah) for Prayer

Intention of the Salah is that you have to know what you are doing consciously and to be aware what i am praying i.e. Zuhr, Asr etc. This is also to prepare ourselves mentally to be able to have a prayer with as strong level of concentration as possible.

The Prophet (S.A.W.) never instructed us to audibly or inaudibly state intentions for any act of worship, and the Companions (R.A.) did not do this either. So we should make the intension(Niyyah) of the prayer in our hearts.

2. Takbeer-e-Tehrima (Opening Takbeer- saying Allahu akbar) :-

Now we say takbeer i.e. Allahu akbar (Allah is greatest) (Reference- Sahih Bukhari 6251) and raise our both hands up to the level of shoulders or ears and then fold our hands over chest, right hand over the left hand while in the standing position.(Reference- Sahih Bukhari 740, Sahih Muslim 401, ibn khuzaimah 1/243, Abu Dawood 726 and 759)

3. Looking at the Place of Prostration:-

A person who is praying should have attentiveness in his prayer and should avoid everything that may divert his/her attention because we are facing Allah. And as it is ordered by our prophet Mohammad SAW that he or she should look towards the place of his prostration. He or she should not look to the right or the left.(Sahih Bukhari 3291, 750)

4. Read Dua of Istiftah (Opening Dua):-

After, we have to read the dua of Istiftah. There are many dua of istiftah which you can read one of the most popular dua of istiftah is :

How Perfect are You O Allah, and all praise is Yours. Your Name is most blessed, Your majesty is exalted and there is no god worthy of worship except You. (Tirmidhi 243)
سُبْحَانَكَ اللّٰهُمَّ وَبِحَمْدِكَ ، وَتَبَارَكَ اسْمُكَ ، وَتَعَالَىٰ جَدُّكَ ، وَلاَ إِلٰهَ غَيْرُكَ
Subḥānaka Allāhumma wa bi-ḥamdika wa tabāraka-smuka wa taʿālā jadduka wa lā ilāha ghayruk.

5. Taawudh:-

After Reading dua of Istiftah you should recite Taawudh there are a lot of dua for Taawudh some of are following:-

- Audhu billahi mina shaitaan nir rajeem

- A'udhu Bilahi As-Sami'il-Alimi min Ash-Shaitanir-Rajimi, min Hamzihi Wa Nafkhihi wa Nafthihi

6. Tasmiyah:-

After reciting the Taawudh you should recite Tasmiyah: Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim

7. Surah-al-Fatiha:-

After reciting Taawudh and Tasmiyah you should recite Surah-al-Fatiha and it is the pillar of Salah(Namaz) so if you don’t read Your Salah will be invalid.

8. Recite Any Surah or verse:-

After reciting the Surah al-Fatiha you should recite any Surah from the Quran or any verse of the Quran. this is a sunnah from Prophet Mohammad SAW but if you don’t recite any Surah and directly gone to Ruku then Your prayer will be valid.

And The Sunnah is also to make the recitation of the surah in the first Rakaat longer than the recitation in the second Rakaat.

9. Rukoo (The Bowing) :-

After reading the Surah a person offering prayer should raise his hands, in the manner described previously with regard to the initial Takbeer (Raful-yadain) and also say the Takbeer (i.e., Allaahu Akbar)(while moving).

Then a person will perform the Rukoo (bowing) in such a manner that all his joints are settled, and each part of the body is at rest. This is a pillar of Salah.

The Sunnah way of performing Rukoo (bowing), the person should place his hands firmly upon his knees, spread his fingers, as if he were grasping his knees, stretch out one’s back and make it level and then it would settle upon it. The person should neither cause his head to droop lower than his back, nor should he raise it above it. Rather he should make it level with his back. Person should also keep his elbows (straight and) apart from his sides. After that, the person should say, three times, or more, in the Rukoo: Subhaana Rabbiyal-'Adheem

10. Qawmah (Straightening Up from the Rukoo):-

After the above step, the person must raise up and straighten his back from the Rukoo (the standing after Rukoo is Called Qawmah in Arabic). He should say, while raising his back: Sami' Allaahu liman hamidah

Person should raise his hands when he rises up,(Sahih Muslim 390) in the manner that has preceded (Takbeer-e-Tehrima). Then the person should stand straight up and remain still, such that every bone returns to its place and say while standing: Rabbanaa wa lakal-hamd

11. First Prostration (Sajda):-

After the perfect ‘Qawmah’ the person praying should move to perform Sajdah (prostration).

Condition of Prostration–

Narrated Ibn `Abbas: The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “I have been ordered to prostrate on seven bones i.e. on the forehead along with the tip of the nose (1 Bone) and the Prophet (ﷺ) pointed towards his nose, both hands (2 Bones), both knees (2 Bones) and the toes of both feet (2 Bones) and not to gather the clothes or the hair.” (Sahih Bukhari 812)

Way of Prostration–

During prostration, the forehead and the nose both should touch the surface of the place where you are praying with your hand’s fingers should be facing towards the direction of Qiblah(Abu Dawood 732), you can place your palms either next to your shoulders or little bit close to your ears (Sahih Muslim401), your knees should not be so close and your toes (that are bendable) should be facing towards Qiblah (Sahih Bukhari 828), Arms should be wide and spread (should not touch your body) (Sahih Bukhari 390) and your stomach should not touch your thighs (Abu Dawood 735) and your feet should not dangling.

The person should say: “Allah-u-Akbar” while going for the prostration. In the prostration position, person should say (at-least three times): Subhaana Rabbiyal-Alaa. This is also a good time to make lot's of Dua, visit here for a collection of some.

After performing one/first Prostration perfectly and calmly, the person who is praying should raise his head form Prostration saying “Allah-u-Akbar” bending the left foot and sitting on it while keeping the right foot propped up with its toes pointing towards the Qiblah, the palms of his hands should rest on his thighs and knees, the back should be straight so that the joints go back in place. (Sunan An Nasai 1159)

“The prayer is not valid if a man does not bring his backbone to rest while bowing and prostrating.” (An-Nasai: 1027)

So, it is important to sit as straight as possible during the two prostrations

Jalsah (Sitting between two prostration):- And between two prostration you should say (minimum 1 time): “Rabbighfir li, Rabbighfir li

12. Second Prostration (Sajdah):-

Then the person should perform the second Prostration(Sajdah) saying “Allah-u-Akbar” and repeat what he did in the first Prostration(Sajdah).

13. Jalsah-e-Istarahat (Sitting for Rest):-

After performing both prostration, person should raise his head up saying “Allah-u-Akbar” and sit for a short while as he did in ‘Jalsah’ (stay between prostrations). Person should do this before standing up for the second Rakaat (second unit of Prayer).

14. Second Rakaat (2nd unit of prayer) :-

 After standing up for the second Rakaat, the person should fold his hands over his chest as he did in the first Rakaat and start recitation by reciting “Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim” and Surah Al-Fatiha followed by any surah or a verse of the Holy Quran.” Then he should complete his second Rakaat in the manner of the first one. 

15. Tashahud (sitting for the declaration of Faith):–

When a person offers two, three or four Rakaat Prayer, he/she should sit after two Rakaats for Tashahud. If he/she offering two Rakaat Prayer than this will be his/her first and last Tashahud but if he/she is performing three or four Rakaat Prayer, then this will be his/her first Tashahud and he/she will stand after two Rakaats to complete third (for three Rakaat Prayer) and fourth Rakaat (for four Rakaat Prayer).

So when a person finishes the second Rakaat, he/she sits to perform the Tashahud. He/she sits upon the left foot laid flat, as preceded with regard to the sitting between the two prostrations. However, it is not allowed to sit upon the two heels for this sitting and also not allowed for him/her to sit whilst resting upon his hand, especially the left hand.(Allowed in some cases if you are not comfortable due to injury or anything else)

The person should clench all the fingers of his/her right hand, placing his/her thumb onto his/her middle finger sometimes, he/she may make a circle with his/her thumb and middle finger together. He/She should point his/her forefinger towards the Qibla (Direction of Prayer) and fix his/her gaze upon his/her forefinger (it is Sunnah act to see forefinger while moving or pointing the forefinger in Tashahud). He/She should agitate it(up and down), from the start to the end of the Tashahud.

So after completing two Rakaats, person offering prayer should sit in a position mentioned in the above Hadith and then recite the following: Attahiyyaatu lillaahi wassalawaatu , wattayyibaatu , assalaamu 'alayka 'ayyuhan-Nabiyyu wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu, assalaamu 'alaynaa wa 'alaa 'ibaadillaahis-saaliheen. 'Ash-hadu 'an laa 'ilaaha 'illallaahu wa 'ash-hadu 'anna Muhammadan 'abduhu wa Rasooluhu

When you are performing your last tashahud to end the prayer you should recite in addition: Allaahumma salli 'alaa Muhammadin wa 'alaa 'aali Muhammadin, kamaa sallayta 'alaa 'Ibraaheema wa 'alaa 'aali 'Ibraaheema, 'innaka Hameedun Majeed. Allaahumma baarik 'alaa Muhammadin wa 'alaa 'aali Muhammadin, kamaa baarakta 'alaa 'Ibraaheema wa 'alaa 'aali 'Ibraaheema, 'innaka Hameedun Majeed

16. 3rd and 4th Rakaat:-

If a person is offering three or four Rakaat Payer, then he/she will stand-up after first Tashahud (after reciting ‘Attahiyyaat’ only, without supplicate for blessing upon the Prophet (S.A.W.) and supplication after Tashahud). The person will Say “Allah-u-Akbar” while standing for the third Rakaat. Then he/she should complete his third and fourth Rakaat in the manner of the first and second one.

17. The Salutation (Tasleem) (Ending The Prayer):-

After completing the ‘Final Tashahud’, person should give salutations to his right side, turning his face such that the whiteness of his right cheek can be seen, by saying: Assalam-u-alaykum wa raḥmatulllah

Then he/she will give salutations to his left side, turning his face such that the whiteness of his left cheek can be seen, by saying: Assalam-u-alaykum wa raḥmatulllah 

Congratulations you have finished your the prayer! 

Dhikr & Dua for after prayers

 
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