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Prayer while traveling and sunnah

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)

 

One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

How should one pray namaz when he is travelling ? Since i did not knew how to pray namaz while travelling i just prayed namaz thinking ( i mean in mind) should i pray these namaz again. 2nd question is how to know sunnat namaz which one should pray because i am really confused 1st our family call themselves shahfi and they pray according to it, then there are hanafi and i have a friend who is ahle hadis he has a diffrent sunnat`s to which i pray now i am really confused by it all and my wife who converted in islam also finds everyone telling her diffrent sunnat namaz like someone tell 4 rakat sunnat before isha and someone tells 2. I need to know how many sunnats are there according to HADIS and is it wrong if i pray by shafi or hannafi or ahle hadis ??

 

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Answer:

 

Prayer while traveling and sunnah

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad(saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.

 

Q-1: How should one pray namaz when he is travelling ? Since i did not knew how to pray namaz while travelling i just prayed namaz thinking ( i mean in mind) should i pray these namaz again.

The commandment of the qasr or shortening of prayer is from the following aayah of the Glorious Quran:

Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisa verse 101: When you go on a journey, there is no harm, if you shorten your salaat, (especially) when you fear that the disbelievers might harass you, for the disbelievers are openly bent upon enmity against you.

 

We must also try and comprehend how did the Messenger of Allah (saws) understand the above aayah and how did he follow the commandment of Allah in the Quran.

 

This is obviously a long subject and various scholars have given various opinions about the qasr prayers, each giving evidence from the tradition of the Messenger of Allah (saws). We will try and break it down into sections for easy reference, Insha Allah.

Which prayers have to be shortened.

Minimum distance to start praying the qasr prayers.

How much time one needs to stay in one place to pray qasr.

Do we have to pray qasr or can we pray full prayers.

 

Ref: Which prayers have to be shortened.


The Fajr (2 rakahs) and Magrib (3 rakahs) will NOT be shortened. They are always prayed in full.

The Zuhr, Asr and Isha prayers, when prayed qasr or shortened, will be reduced to two rakahs from four rakahs each.

 

Ref: Minimum distance to start praying the qasr prayers.

The majority of the scholars are of the opinion that it is permissible to shorten ones salaah when one leaves ones residence and is outside ones city. Some of the scholars are also of the opinion that the minimum distance must be 89 kilometers, and the evidence they give is that some of the companions of the Messenger of Allah (saws) used to pray shortened prayers if the distance they were travelling was the distance of a camel travel for 3-days and 3-nights, and that has been calculated to about 89 kilometers.

 

Ref: How much time one needs to stay in one place to pray qasr.

The scholars are of the opinion that if a person intends to stay at one place for more than fifteen days, then he must offer full prayers. If his intention is to stay less than fifteen days, then the prayers must be shortened.

 

Ref: Do we have to pray qasr or can we pray full prayers.

It is preferred that one offers qasr prayers when travelling for a distance of more than 89 kilometers or another city, or for a time period of less than fifteen days.

One of the closest companions of the Messenger of Allah (saws) asked the Prophet (saws): Why should we offer qasr prayers, when we are strong and not afraid of the disbelievers attacking us, and we are easily able to offer full prayers?. The Messenger of Allah (saws) replied: Allah Subhanah has given his slaves this gift, thus he should accept the gift from Allah.

 

From the above narration, the scholars are of the opinion, that Allah has been merciful and allowed His slaves the easiness to shorten his prayers. Thus, a believer should accept this Mercy from Allah, and shorten his prayers whenever he is eligible to do so.

But if the traveler goes to a mosque or joins a prayer which is led in congregation, then it is better that he prays the full prayer behind the resident imam.

 

Q-2: 2nd question is how to know sunnat namaz which one should pray because i am really confused 1st our family call themselves shahfi and they pray according to it, then there are hanafi and i have a friend who is ahle hadis he has a diffrent sunnat`s to which i pray now i am really confused by it all and my wife who converted in islam also finds everyone telling her diffrent sunnat namaz like someone tell 4 rakat sunnat before isha and someone tells 2. I need to know how many sunnats are there according to HADIS and is it wrong if i pray by shafi or hannafi or ahle hadis ??

Allah Subhanah commanded and made five prayers obligatory (fard) for the believers, which if the believers do not pray, it is a major sin. All the other prayers are voluntary (nafl); if one prays them, they will get a huge reward from Allah Subhanah, and if one does not pray them, there is no sin. The voluntary (nafl) prayers which the Prophet (saws) prayed become his Sunnah for the believers; and those voluntary (nafl) prayers which the Prophet (saws) prayed regularly are known as the Sunnah Muakkedah.

 

The Messenger of Allah (saws) regularly prayed a total of 12 rakahs voluntary prayers before or after the obligatory prayers as follows:

 

2 before

FAJR

+0 after

4 before

DHUHR

+2 after

0 before

ASR

+0 after

0 before

MAGHRIB

+2 after

0 before

ISHA

+2 after

 

Thus these twelve rakahs are known as Sunnah Muakkedah, and the believers who strive to observe these voluntary prayers will, Insha Allah, receive a huge reward in the Presence of their Merciful Lord.

 

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

 

Your Brother in Islam,

 

 

Burhan

 


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