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Diff between prayers of men and women.

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

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

 

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Assalamu alaikum warahmathullahi wabarakhathuhu,

Dear brother Burhan,

 

Alhamdulillah, Jazakhallah Khair for you emails, May Allah SWT reward you amptly for you dawa Dear brother, can you please enlighten about the number of Rakhats in our Salah, I mean the Farz, Sunna muwakkadah, Sunna na muwakkadah, Nafl, Wajib, Witr in our daily Salah and no. of Rakhats for Jum'a for men and women (should women join the congregation, or should she pray in her house). And Wajib salah for Idul-Fitra and Idul-Alha for men and women, should women join the congregation, or should she pray in her house Is there a difference prescibed for men and women while performing Salah?  What I have heard and learnt is that for a women while praying Her feets need to be very close without any gap in between. She should not raise her hands above her shoulders while saying takbeer After Rukoo, while standing, she should not raise her hands up while saying takbeer, is this correct??

 

While going for sujood, she should lie on her thighs and place her head very much near her knees

Should the elbows be placed on the ground or should it be elevated from touching the ground During tashahhud, she should cross her legs at the backunlike men who should sit on their left leg and should keep their right foot in their vertical position, the toes facing the Qibla During tashahhud lifting the index finger and putting it down on and off, I mean lifting and putting it down, lifting it again and putting it down, continue doing it untill the prayer is complete Is this correct? Or is this permissable?

 

Can you also advise how men need to perform Salah if feasible please advise all steps where he needs to be cautious and cannot be otherwise For example, while standing in prayer, should he place his hands on the navel or chest or on the stomach Please advise in great detail

 

I am stressing much because, there are many books available which are carrying different steps and methods. We would like to know the correct method of performing Salah as per Sunnah of Rasulullah SAWSalah being our 2 Piller of Islam, would like to perfoming to the best of our ability, Insha Allah So please help brother...

 

I would be much thankful to Allah SWT if he would remove my doubts concering Salah, and if you could provide me a detailed explanation performing Salah, please answer all my questions and like a very detailed answer to the questions.  Please respond as early as possible. 

 

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Answer:

 

Diff between prayers of men and women

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 none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.

 

Your Question: ..can you please enlighten about the number of Rakhats in our Salah, I mean the Farz, Sunna muwakkadah, Sunna na muwakkadah, Nafl, Wajib, Witr in our daily Salah

Firstly, please allow us to clarify the difference between Fard, Sunnah and Nafl prayers.

 

Fard prayers: These are the five obligatory prayers at their appointed times of the day. If one prays them, he will earn a huge reward from Allah Subhanah; and if one does not pray them, there will be a severe accounting and punishment.

 

Nafl prayers: These are the voluntary or non-obligatory prayers. If one prays them, he will earn a huge reward from Allah Subhanah; and if one does not pray them, there is no sin.

 

Sunnah prayers: These are the Nafl or voluntary prayers which were prayed by the Messenger of Allah (saws), and thus they become his (saws) Sunnah for us. If one prays them, he will earn a huge reward from Allah Subhanah; and if one does not pray them, there is no sin. The most that can be said of one who does not pray the Sunnah prayers is that he lost a great opportunity to earn huge rewards from Allah Subhanah.

 

The number of rakahs of the five fard or absolutely obligatory prayers are:

  1. Fajr two rakahs.
  2. Dhuhr four rakahs.
  3. Asr four rakahs.
  4. Magrib three rakahs.
  5. Isha four rakahs.

 

All the other Sunnah or Nafl prayers are best offered in a two-rakah combination, with the only exception being the witr prayers which should be offered in an odd-number of rakahs (1, 3, 5, 7, etc.).

 

Amongst the Sunnah prayers offered by the Prophet (saws), the scholars of Jurisprudence have divided them into two categories:

  1. Sunnah Muaqqeda
  2. Sunnah Ghayr-Muaqqeda

 

Ref: Sunnah Muaqqeda: The term Muaqqeda itself means something which is stressed or emphasized. The non-obligatory prayers which were constantly stressed and emphasized by the Messenger of Allah (saws) by his acts or his words like the two rakahs before Fajr, four rakahs before and two rakahs after Dhuhr, two rakahs after Magrib, two rakahs after Isha, the witr prayers, etc. are known as Sunnah Muaqqeda or non-obligatory prayers which were almost always offered by the Prophet (saws).

 

Ref: Sunnah Ghayr-Muaqqeda: The non-obligatory prayers which were sometimes offered by the Prophet (saws) like two rakahs before Asr, or two rakahs before Magrib, etc. are termed as Sunnah Ghayr-Muaqqeda.

 

Your Question: .and no. of Rakhats for Jum'a for men and women (should women join the congregation, or should she pray in her house).

Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 2.131a

Topic: Who are exempted from the obligatory Friday mid-day prayers.

Salatul Jumuah is an obligation upon every free, adult, sane, resident male believer who has the ability to attend the salah and does not have a valid excuse to miss it. Salatul Jumuah however, is not obligatory on the following:

  1. Women.
  2. Children.
  3. The person who is ill and faces hardship if he goes to the mosque, or who fears that his illness will be increased by going to the mosque, or whose recovery will be delayed. This also includes the person who is nursing a very ill person, if especially, the ill person cannot manage in the absence of the nursing person.
  4. For the traveler. This is based on the fact that the Prophet (saws) traveled and did not perform the Salatul Jumuah but only prayed the dhuhr and 'asr together during the time of the dhuhr prayers.
  5. Environmental restraints like extreme rain or cold, etc.

 


All of the above listed people are not obliged to attend the Salatul Jumuah, but they would be obliged to pray the dhuhr prayers.

 

The Jumuah or Friday mid-day sermon and prayer in congregation is absolutely obligatory upon every free, sane, resident male believer who has the ability to attend the salah and does not have an extremely valid reason to miss it.

 

The Jumuah prayer in congregation is not obligatory upon the believing woman, for her prayer offered at home are better and more meritorious in the Sight of the Lord than her prayers in congregation in the masjids..but if the believing woman wishes to occasionally attend the congregational prayers in the masjids, she is well within her rights to do so.

 

Abu Hurairah relates that the Prophet (saws) said: "Do not keep the slave girls of Allah (believing women) from going to the Masjids of Allah. And they are to go out unperfumed."

 

Ibn 'Umar reports that the Prophet (saws) said: "Do not prevent the women from going to the Masjids, although their (own) houses are better for them."

Related by Ahmad and Abu Dawud.

 

Umm Humaid as-Sa'diyah (r.a.) came to the Messenger of Allah(saws) and said: "O Messenger of Allah (saws), I love to pray with you (in congregation in the Masjid)." The Prophet (saws) said: "I am aware of that, but your salah in your residence is better for you than your salah in your people's masjid. And your salah in your people's masjid is better than your salah in the [larger] congregational Masjids."

Related by Ahmad and at-Tabarani

 

If one, regardless whether male or female, attends the Jumuah sermon and prayer in congregation in the masjids, then they are to offer only the two-rakah prayer with the imaam; and if one, regardless of whether male or female, happens or chooses not to attend the Jumuah sermon and prayer in the masjid, should offer a normal four-rakah dhuhr prayer.

 

Your Question: .And Wajib salah for Idul-Fitra and Idul-Alha for men and women, should women join the congregation, or should she pray in her house

Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 2.147

The prayers of the two Eids was prescribed in the first year after the migration. The Messenger of Allah (saws) ordered the believing men and women to go out to attend them.

 

Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 2.148a

The Messenger of Allah (saws) guided women and children to go out and attend the two Eid prayers alond with the men. This includes married, single, young, old, or menstruating women.

Umm 'Atiyah reports: "We were ordered to go out with the single and menstruating women to the two Eids in order to witness the good and the supplications of the Muslims. The menstruating women would be separate from the others."

Related by al-Bukhari and Muslim.

 

Ibn Abbas says that the Prophet (saws) would take his wives and daughters to the two Eids.

Related by Ibn-Majah and al-Baihaqi.

 

Ibn 'Abbas reports: "I went out with the Prophet (saws) on the day of breaking the fast (Eidul-Fitr) or of the sacrifice (Eidul-Adha), and he (saws) prayed and gave a sermon, and then he (saws) went to the women and admonished them, reminded them of Allah, and ordered them to give charity."

Related by al-Bukhari.

 

The Messenger of Allah (saws) guided and commanded the believing men, women and children to attend the Eid prayers in congregation, including women who were married, single, young, or old, menstruating or non-menstruating. The non-menstruating women should offer the Eid prayers in congregation and listen to the sermon proceeding it, while the non-menstruating women should obviously abstain from offering the Eid prayer, but listen to the Eid sermon proceeding the prayer.

 

Your Question: Is there a difference prescibed for men and women while performing Salah? 

The Messenger of Allah (saws) said: Pray as you have seen me pray.

Related by Al-Bukhari.

 

Regardless of whether one is a male or a female, there is only one way to perform the rite of prayer.and that way is the one that was offered by the Noble Messenger of Allah (saws) who guided the believers, men and women alike, to Pray as you have seen me pray.

 

There is a mention of some companions like Hadrat Abdullah ibn Umar (r.a.) who asked his women to crouch close to their bodies when performing the rukoo and sujood while praying in public, so that they would be able to honor their satr in a better manner, and thus their curves while bending would not be very obvious to the non-mehram men, if they were around. But that guidance from the scholar and companion of the stature of Hadrat Abdullah ibn Umar (r.a.) would not in any way effect or contradict the guidance of the Messenger of Allah (saws) for the believing men and women alike: Pray as you have seen me pray.

 

Your Question: .Her feets need to be very close without any gap in between.

The Sunnah when standing in the qiyaam in prayers, regardless of whether one is a male or a female, is to stand in a natural posture with a little space between ones legs.

 

Your Question: .She should not raise her hands above her shoulders while saying takbeer

To raise ones hands when declaring the takbeer at the start of ones prayers, regardless of whether one is a male or a female, is a Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saws) and a wajib rite of prayer.

 

Your Question: After Rukoo, while standing, she should not raise her hands up while saying takbeer, is this correct??

There is a difference of opinion amongst the scholars whether or not the Messenger of Allah (saws) raised his hands when declaring the takbeer when going to and standing up from the ruku posture.and the truth is that there is evidence in the authentic and established Sunnah for both: raising the hands, and not raising the hands.

 

Reported Ibn 'Umar, "When the Prophet (saws) stood to pray, he would raise his hands until they were the same height as his shoulders and then he would make the takbir. When he wanted to bow, he would again raise his hands in a similar fashion. When he raised his head from the bowing, he did the same and said, 'Allah hears him who praises Him.' (Related by al-Bukhari, Muslim and al-Baihaqi.)

 

Reported bn Mas'ud : "I prayed with the Prophet (saws) and he raised his hands only once (at the beginning of prayer)."

Related by At-Tirmidhi.

 

Thus if a believer, regardless of whether male or female, today gives weight to the narration reported by Hadrat Ibn Umar (r.a.) and practices Rafayadain (raising ones hands) in the beginning of prayer as well in their movements, their intention being to follow the Sunnah of the Prophet (saws), it is fine. And if a believer giving weight to the narration reported by Hadrat Ibn Masud (r.a.), prays by practicing Rafayadain only at the beginning of prayer, their intention also being to follow the Sunnah of the Prophet (saws), that too is fine and acceptable..for there is evidence for both in the authentic and established Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saws).

 

Your Question: .While going for sujood, she should lie on her thighs and place her head very much near her knees

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.773 Narrated by Abdullah Ibn Abbas

The Prophet said: I have been ordered (by Allah) to prostrate on seven parts; they are: the forehead, (the tip of) the nose, both hands, both knees, and (toes of) both feet.

 

Provided all the seven parts of the body touch the ground during the prostration, if the believing woman fears the presence of non-mehram men around her and places her forehead closer to her knees in prostration to better protect and honor her satr, there is absolutely no harm.

 

Your Question: Should the elbows be placed on the ground or should it be elevated from touching the ground

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.509 Narrated by Anas

The Prophet (saws) said, "Do the prostration properly, and do not put your forearms flat with elbows touching the ground like a dog.

 

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.785 Narrated byAnas bin Malik

The Prophet (saws) said, "Be straight in the prostrations and none of you should put his forearms on the ground (in the prostration) like a dog."

 

What is specifically and categorically prohibited is placing the forearms flat with elbows touching the ground while performing the prostration; and the Sunnah or practice of the Messenger of Allah (saws) would be to place his palms on the ground with his elbows jutting outwards when performing the prostration.

 

Your Question: During tashahhud, she should cross her legs at the backunlike men who should sit on their left leg and should keep their right foot in their vertical position, the toes facing the Qibla

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.791 Narrated by Muhammad bin Amr bin Ata

I was sitting with some of the companions of Allah's Messenger (saws) and we were discussing about the way of praying of the Prophet (saws). Abu Humaid As-Saidi said, "I remember the prayer of Allah's Messenger (saws) better than any one of you. I saw him raising both his hands up to the level of the shoulders on saying the Takbir; and on bowing he placed his hands on both knees and bent his back straight, then he stood up straight from bowing till all the vertebrae took their normal positions. In prostrations, he placed both his hands on the ground with the forearms away from the ground and away from his body, and his toes were facing the Qibla. On sitting after the second Rak'a he sat on his left foot and propped up the right one; and in the last Rak'a he pushed his left foot forward and kept the other foot propped up and sat over the buttocks."

 

To the best of our knowledge there is no specific guidance in the authentic and established Sunnah for the believing woman to sit for their tashahud in prayer any different than the believing men.

 

Your Question: During tashahhud lifting the index finger and putting it down on and off, I mean lifting and putting it down, lifting it again and putting it down, continue doing it untill the prayer is complete Is this correct? Or is this permissable?

Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 1.157

Ibn 'Umar reported that when the Prophet (saws) sat for the tashahud, he (saws) would place his left hand on his left knee and his right hand upon his right knee, and he would form a ring like (fifty-three) and point with his index finger. In another narration it is reported, "He would close his hand and point with his index finger." (Related by Muslim.)

 

Wa'il ibn Hajr reported that the Prophet (saws) would place his left palm on his left thigh and knee. He would place the end of his right elbow upon his right thigh and would then close his right hand, forming a circle. When reciting the shahaadah, he (saws) would make a circle with his middle finger and thumb and point with his index finger.

(Related by Ahmad.)

 

Reported az-Zubair, "When the Prophet (saws) sat for tashahud, he would place his right hand on his right thigh and his left hand on his left thigh. He would point with his index finger, and would not look beyond his pointing."

(Related by Ahmad, Muslim and anNasa'i.)

 

The raising of the index finger when reciting the shahaadah in the tashahud in prayer is a Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saws).

 

Your Question: For example, while standing in prayer, should he place his hands on the navel or chest or on the stomach

Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 1.131

Said Sahl ibn Sa'd, "The people were ordered to place their right hand on their left forearm during prayers." (Related by Bukhari and Muslim)

Al-Hafez related that the Prophet (saws) said, "All prophets have been ordered to hasten the breaking of the fast and to delay the (pre-fast dawn) meal, and to place our right hands on our left during prayer."

Jabir narrated that "The Prophet (saws) passed by a man praying with his left hand over his right, and (the Prophet (saws)) pulled them away and put his right over his left." (Related by Ahmad.)

 

Thus, in light of the above guidance what is absolutely certain is that the Messenger of Allah (saws) would hold his hands while in the state of qiyaam in prayer.

 

Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 1.132

Sunnah acts of prayer, The Position of the Hands

Al-Kamal ibn al-Hamam is of the opinion, "There is no authentic hadith stating that one must place the hands under the chest or below the navel. According to the Hanifiyyah school of thought, the hands are to be placed below the navel, and according to the Shafiyyah school of thought below the chest. Ahmad has two narrations corresponding to these two opinions. The correct position is somewhere in the middle - to be equal."

Observes at-Tirmidhi, "Knowledgeable companions, their followers and those that came after them believed that one should put his right hand over the left during prayer, while some say above the navel and others say below the navel..." Nevertheless, there do exist hadith that the Prophet (saws) placed his hands on his chest. Reported Hulb at-Ta'i, "I saw the Prophet (saws) praying with his right hand over his left upon his chest above the elbow." This is related by Ahmad and at-Tirmidhi, who grades it as hassan.

Reported Wa'il ibn Hajr, "Once when I prayed with the Prophet (saws) and he placed his right hand over his left upon his chest." The report is recorded by Ibn Khuzaimah, who considers it as sahih, and by Abu Dawud and an-Nasa'i with the wording, "Then he put his right hand over the back of his left wrist and forearm."

 

Depending on which narration one wishes to give weight to, there is indeed a difference of opinion amongst the scholars and the major schools of thought regarding where exactly did the Prophet (saws) placed his hands when in the state of qiyaam in prayer. In light of the above guidance and opinion of the eminent scholars, if one holds ones hands anywhere between ones navel and ones chest, it would be acceptable and in accordance with the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saws). And Allah Alone Knows Best.

 

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

 

Your brother and well wisher in Islam,

 

 

Burhan

 

 


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