Al-Jazeerah
Al-Haram Mosque in Makkah The Prophet's Mosque in Madinah . Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound in Jerusalem
 

Islam: God's Message of Guidance to Humanity

By Hassan Ali El-Najjar

Table of Contents  

I. Introduction: Basic Information   

1. Islam: A Brief Introduction    

2. Three Levels of Faith: Islam, Iman, and Ihsan    

3. The Scientific Evidence That God Exists and the Holy Qur'an Is His Message to Humanity    

4. Creation and Evolution in the Holy Qur'an   

5. Humans, As God's Caliphs on Earth   

6. Adam's Contest With the Angels, and Getting Out of Paradise  

7. Worshippers By Choice Or Forced Slaves?    

8. The Relationship Between the Spiritual and the Physical Aspects of Islamic Teachings   

9. Mind, Self, Soul, Spirit, and Happiness from an Islamic Perspective  

10. Heart-Mind Relationship in the Holy Qur'an    

II. Islam: The Five Pillars of the Faith Structure  

11. Islamic Proclamation of Faith

12. Performing Islamic Prayers  

13. Giving Zakat, Charity, The Third Islamic Duty  

14. Fasting and Ramadhan, Great Gifts from Allah to Muslims  

15. Haj, Pilgrimage, the Fifth
 Pillar of Islam

III. Iman: Allah, His Angels, Messengers, Messages, Latter Day, and Qadar  

16. Allah, As He Described Himself in the Holy Quran    

17. Angels  

18. Noo'h, Noah, in the Holy Quran   

19. Ibrahim, Abraham, in the Holy Quran

20. Moussa, Moses, in the Holy Quran  

21. 'Eissa, Jesus Christ, in the Holy Quran    

22. Muhammed in the Holy Quran  

23. Prophet Muhammed's Night Journey and Ascent to Heavens, Al-Issra Wal Mi'raj  

24. The Last Day, The Hour, Resurrection, Reckoning, and Judgment

25. God's Precise Measurement and His Just Decree, Al-Qadar Wal Qadha

IV. I'hsan: Watching Allah in What We Say and What We Do  

1.  Introduction to Islamic Law, Shari'a, Part I, Prohibition, Don't Do, and Do Commands in the Holy Quran

2. The La (No) Commands  

3. The Imperative Commands  

***

Articles with Islamic Perspective:

Health Care Crisis in the US: An Islamic Perspective

"Terrorism" & "Islamo-Fascism" Propaganda Campaigns: An Interactive Lecture

Six Questions About Islam, Muslims and Jews

Five Islamic Issues: Predestination and choice, position toward other religions, angels, and the End of Days

Food Islamic Rules and Teachings
 

Are Muslim women second-class citizens  

The French Ban on Islamic Headscarf, an Interview with

Links to Islamic Topics 2007-2010

Links to Islamic Topics 2007

Links to Islamic topics 2006

Links to Islamic topics 2005

Links to Islamic topics 2004

Links to Islamic topics, 2003

2002 Links to Islamic topics

 

 

 

Islam:

A Scientific View of God's Message to Humanity

12

Performing Islamic Prayers

By Hassan Ali El-Najjar

Updated on the 11th of Shawwal, 1400 - 14th of June, 2019

***

1400 - 2019

***

 

 

I seek refuge with Allah from the Stoned Shaytan (Satan)

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

***

 

Introduction

A Muslim is required to perform five prayers every day, following the teachings of the Prophet Muhammed, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him (pbbuh), who received the command for this 'Ibada (way of worship) when he met with Allah (God), praise to Him, above the seventh heaven. Then, the angel Jibreel (Gabriel), peace to him, taught him how to perform these prayers, including both the recitations and the movements. [1]

Before Muslims stand for prayer, they make wudhou' (washing), which includes physical acts but with clear meanings. Five times a day, washing a person's hands, mouth, nose, face, arms, ears, hair, and feet, aims at cleanliness. This is the goal of the wudhou' requirement. Allah, praise to Him, has required these physical acts, not as meaningless rituals, but to lead to a deeper meaning, cleanliness. He wants humans to be clean and healthy. [2]

The five Islamic prayers (at dawn, noon, mid-after-noon, sunset, and dusk), are all physical acts of standing, bowing, kneeling, prostrating, and sitting down on the ground. These prayer movements are performed in a certain way taught to Muslims by the Messenger of Allah, Muhammed, pbbuh, as narrated by his Companions, in Hadiths collected by Islamic scholars and transmitted from one generation to another. [3]

These movements, performed properly five times a day, constitute a physical daily exercise activity, contributing to the welfare and well-being of the human body. Standing moves the blood circulation to various parts of the body, particularly after sleeping, sitting, or relaxation for a long period of time. Bowing down (rukou), for example, benefits the back muscles and the backbone, which are stretched to relieve them from the pressure formed as a result of sitting or standing, for long hours every day. Prostration (sujood) provides the brain with bigger quantities of blood, with more oxygen and nutrients, than otherwise. It also relieves the brain from the electromagnetic waves, which we get from the air and from the electric and electronic devices we use throughout the day. Finally, sitting down allows thigh and leg muscles, ligaments, and tendons to be stretched, thus becoming more flexible and healthier. [4]

At the same time, each one of the prayer movements also involves spiritual aspects, represented by contemplation and thinking about the meaning of the verses of the Holy Quran and the words of praise to Allah, which are recited in each prayer movement. These acts of contemplation and thinking have tremendous benefits in terms of creating and maintaining internal mental peace for the worshipper. More important is that, the five prayers keep the worshippers in a continuous contact with their Creator, which influences their behavior positively, strengthens the human self, and contributes to its well-being.  

 

 

Daily Prayer Times

 

The five prayers are performed at specific times, as mentioned by the Prophet, pbbuh, and in accordance with the continuous daily changes in the relationship between the Earth and the Sun. As a result, there is no disagreement about that the Fajr (dawn) prayer should be performed before the sunrise, and the Maghrib prayer after the sunset. The Dhuhr (noon) prayer should be performed after zawal, which is about nine minutes after the sun reaching the middle of the sky. This is the time when a person starts to see his/her shade. Noon is also measured as the mid-point between the sunrise and the sunset. The Asr (mid-afternoon) prayer starts when the shade of an object becomes twice as its size. [5]

While there is an agreement about the prayer times for the noon, mid-afternoon, and sunset prayer times, there has been a disagreement about the start of the dawn (Fajr) and night (Isha) prayer times. The disagreement has led to the emergence of different methods of calculation about the start of these two prayers in various regions of the world. This disagreement can be demonstrated by comparing the two calendars of Um Al-Qura and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) concerning the dawn and night prayers, using data from the first day of the first months of 2019. [6]  

The dawn (Fajr) prayer time starts 17-20 minutes according to Um Al-Qura calendar, compared to the ISNA calendar. Thus, it is possible for people, who follow Um Al-Qura calendar, to pray the dawn prayer before the right time. Concerning the Isha (night) prayer time, it is 19-25 minutes later according to Um Al-Qura than according to ISNA.

 

This may become harder on people, who follow Um Al-Qura calendar, as they need to stay awake for a longer period of time, to perform the Isha (night) prayer, particularly during summer, when nights become shorter. Due to these consequences, some scholars, like Ibn Uthaymin, criticized the Um Al-Qura calendar, which warrants a review of its calculation methods. [7]  

 

 

Number of Prayer Units (Rakas):

 

The Islamic prayers are composed of specific body movements accompanying recitations from the Holy Quran and words of praise to Allah (God). Every prayer is composed of a specific number of units (Rakas), each of which includes standing, bowing, prostration, and sitting on the floor. Each of these movements is a unique physical activity, different from what people do in their daily activities. The physical benefit of these movements is attained when they are performed regularly, on daily basis.

The Islamic prayers include a number of required units (Rak'as), a minimum, as well as a number of recommended units, except for 'Asr prayer, which is limited to the required units only. While there are 17 required units in the daily prayers, the additional recommended units are 17 but can be more, according to a persons capabilities and circumstances. The distribution of prayer units is as follows: [8]  

1. Al-Fajr (The Dawn) Prayer: 2 required Rak'as (units) and 2 recommended Rak'as (units), before.

2. Al-Dhuhr (The Noon) Prayer: 4 required Rak'as (units) and 4 recommended Rak'as (units), 2 before & 2 after.

3. Al-'Asr (The Afternoon) Prayer: 4 required Rak'as (units) and 2 recommended Rakas (units), before.

4. Al-Maghrib (The Sunset) Prayer: 3 required Rak'as (units) and 4 recommended Rak'as (units), 2 before & 2 after.

5. Al-'Isha (Late Night, Dusk) Prayer: 4 required Rak'as (units) and 5 recommended Rak'as (units), 2 before, 2 after, and witr (one or three units), to conclude the day prayers. [9]  

 

 

Al-Fajr (Dawn) Prayer, as an Example About Performing Prayer

 

Performing prayers can be divided into the following eleven main stages, which show how the dawn (Fajr) prayer can be performed. The Fajr prayer is used here as an example because it is composed of two required Rakas. Thus, it is the shortest prayer.

 

 

1. Cleanliness before prayers

A Muslim has to be clean, by taking showers regularly, as well as after sexual intercourse. Cleanliness is also performed before every prayer in the form of Wudu' (washing the external body organs with water). This includes washing and cleaning hands, mouth, nose, face, arms, head hair, ears inside and back, and feet. Thus, the Creator, praise to Him, wants people to be healthy by cleaning themselves of dust, sweat, and microbes, five times a day (There are many illustrative videos of how to make Wudu' in the internet).

If water is not available at all (which is a unique case), a Muslim performs Tayamum, which is an emulation of the Wudu' movements. Wudu or Tayamum enable humans to be elevated to a higher spiritual rank, in preparation for addressing his/her creator and standing before him in the best possible condition. [10]  

2. Facing Al-Qibla (Al-Ka'ba)

When Muslims pray, they must face Al-Qibla, which is Al-Ka'ba (The cubic-shaped House of Allah in Makkah). This is an implementation of Gods command, contained in verse 2: 150, as follows:

ۚ ( 2: 150).

From wherever you emerge, turn your face towards the Sacred Mosque, and wherever you are, face towards it (Al-Baqara, 2: 150).

Worshippers should stand on a clean floor. For that purpose, they use a clean, small rug, if they are away from the masjid (mosque). Healthy people must stand for prayers. However, the sick can pray in whatever position suiting them, such as sitting or on their sides. 

It is essential for Muslims to make an effort, to find the exact direction of Al-Qibla, which can easily be found by using smart phones. Many websites also provide the Qibla direction for cities around the world, using a regular compass of 360 degrees. For example, it is 52 degrees north east, for Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

In addition, a Qibla compass of 40 zones can do this when the magnetic needle is made to point to a specific number referring to the location of performing prayers. Then, the arrow refers to the Qibla.

For example, number 34 refers to the southern US states of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, while number 33 refers to the eastern US states of Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, and D.C. several other eastern states in the US are referred to as number 33 (for more information (See the map: http://daltonislamiccenter.org/Files/Finding Al-Ka'aba Direction When Praying). A third method is using the Sundial shadow, as explained and illustrated in the same source.

 

 

3. Adhan (The first call for prayer)

Adhan is an announcement about the start time for a prayer. It is a calling for a group prayer in a Mosque. Therefore, it is done by one person, as mentioned in a Hadith narrated by Malik Bin Al-Huwairith, mAbpwh, who said that the Prophet, pbbuh, said: Go back to your community, reside among your people, teach them, and command them. When the time comes for a prayer, one of you should make the announcement (Adhan), and the eldest among you should lead the prayer (Al-Bukhari: 602, Muslim 674).

The Prophet, pbbuh, approved of the Adhan and Iqama words after hearing them from one of his Companions, Abdullah Bin Zayd Bin Abd Rabbuh, mAbpwh. He him that he was told these words by a man wearing green clothes, in a dream, to be used as a call for prayers, instead of the bell (which is used by Christians). Companion Omar Bin Al-Khattab, mAbpwh, told the Prophet that he also saw that dream. Then, the Prophet asked that Companion Bilal Bin Rabah, mAbpwh, call the Adhan, as he had the most beautiful voice among his Companions. Heres the Adhan: [11]  

 Adhan  (First calling for group prayer in a mosque):

Allahu akbar (God is Greater): 4 times.

Ash hadu alla ilaha illa Allah (I bear witness that there is no other god but Allah): Twice

Ash hadu anna Muhammedan rasoul ullah  (I bear witness that Muhammed is the Messenger of God): Twice

Hayie alas salah (Come to prayer): Twice

Hayie alal fala'h (Come to prosperity): Twice

Allahu akbar (God is Greater): Twice.

La ilaha illa Allah (There is no other god but Allah): Once 

4. Iqama (Announcing the start of prayer: The second call for prayer):

Iqama is the second announcement for prayer, which is called directly before the start of a required prayer, whether performed in a group or individually. It includes the same sentences used in the Adhan but without repetition, and adding Qad Qamat Isala, Qad Qamat Isala (Its time to stand for prayer), as follows: [12]  

Iqama (Calling for the immediate start of prayer)

Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar (God is Greater): Twice.

Ash hadu alla ilaha illa Allah (I bear witness that there is no other god but Allah): Once.

Ash hadu anna Muhammedan rasoul ullah (I bear witness that Muhammed is the Messenger of Allah): Once

Hayie alas salah (Come to prayer): once

Hayie alal fala'h (Come to prosperity): Once

Qad Qamates salah, qad qamates salah (The prayer has been stood for): Twice

Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar (God is Greater): Twice

La ilaha illa Allah (There is no other god but Allah): Once

5. Intention and Takbeer

As a Muslim worshipper stands for prayer, he/she has the intention to perform it, that's why it is unnecessary to say that he/she intends to pray. However, followers of Imam Al-Shafi'ie pronounce the intention. Then, they lift their hands up to the levels of their ears, making the Takbeer (saying Allahu Akbar), which is the start of prayers. Followers of other imams may neither pronounce the intention nor lift their hands up when they say the Takbeer. The Shafiie school of thought requires the prayer leader (imam) to say the Takbeer loudly but other worshippers should say it silently, whether they are praying in a group or individually. The Maliki school of thought allows saying it loudly for all, following what the Prophet, pbbuh, did it in all these different ways, to make it easy on people, by giving them options. [13]   

6. Recitation of Al-Fatiha

While standing up, facing Al-Qibla, a worshipper places his/her right hand over the left hand, above the belly button, and below the chest, or even without that altogether, as this represents politeness with the Creator, praise to Him. He/she starts with Istiadha, saying: Audhu billahi minash shaytanir rajim (I seek refuge with Allah from the Stoned Shaytan (Satan).

There is no disagreement among the Islamic schools of thought about starting all chapters of the Holy Quran with the Basmallah (mentioning the name of Allah), though its not considered part of each chapter, except for Surat Al-Tawba (Chapter 9), which does not start with it. However, there is a disagreement about whether it is part of the first Chapter (Al-Fatiha), or not.

Despite that disagreement, whether a worshipper is praying with a group or individually, he/she has to start with Istiadha and the Basmallah before reciting Al-Fatha, in the first Raka, and the Basmallah only in other Rakas. However, there is strong evidence of giving a prayer leader (imam) the option of saying them loudly in the Jahri (dawn, sunset, and night) prayers, as education for worshippers, following the practice of the Prophets Companions. [14]   

Then, a Muslim recites Al-Fati'ha (The Opening), in Arabic. This is the first Sura (Chapter) of the Holy Quran, which represents the sixth stage of performing prayers. It is recited in Arabic, like all parts of the prayer. 

Al-Fati'ha

 The Opening (Chapter 1) of the Holy Quran

ٰ ﴿١

﴿٢ ٰ ﴿٣ ﴿٤ ﴿٥ ﴿٦ ﴿٧﴾  ( 1: 1-7).

Bissmilah   irra'hman   irra'heem

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful (1)

 

Al'hamdu   lilahi   rabbil   alameen

 

Praise be to Allah , Lord of the Worlds (2)

 

Arra'hman   arra'heem

 

The Beneficent, the Merciful (3)

 

Maliki  yawm  iddeen

 

Owner of the Day of Judgment (4)

 

Iyaka  nabudu  wa  iyaka  nasstaeen

 

You ( alone ) we worship, You (alone) we ask for help (5)

 

Ihdinas  siratal  musstaqeem

 

Guide us (to) the straight path (6)

 

Sirata ladheena  anamta  alayhim

 

Gharil  maghdhoobi  alayhim

 

Waladh  dhaleen

 

The path of those whom You have blessed, not (the path of) those who earned Your anger, nor of those who went astray (Al-Fati'ha, I: 1-7).

 

Ameen.

7. Reciting Some Verses of the Holy Quran, After Al-Fati'ha  

It is recommended that worshippers recite some verses of the Holy Quran after the recitation of Al-Fatiha, in the first two Rakas. This can be a recitation of a short Sura (Chapter), few verses of a Sura, or longer than that, according to a persons circumstances and ability to memorize. The Prophet, pbbuh, used to lengthen such recitation in the dawn (Fajr) prayer, and to shorten it in the sunset (Maghrib) prayer (See Appendix 2, which includes the last three chapters of the Holy Quran, as examples of short suras).

The best recitation is tarteel, in response to Gods command in verse 73: 4, " " (recite the Quran in slow, measured rhythmic tones). This is achieved by joining letters and words, to slow the recitation for the purpose of allowing enough time to think about the meanings of the recited verses, while enjoying the Quran musical tone. [15]   

8. Rukou' (Bowing down)

After the recitation of Al-Fatiha and some verses from the Holy Quran, a worshipper makes Takbeer (saying Allahu Akbar). This is an indication of transition to the eighth stage of prayer: Rukou (bowing down), with hands over the knees and the back is parallel to the floor. Then, he/she makes Tasbee'h, saying:

(3 ).

Sub'hana rabiyal adheem (Exalted is my Lord, the Most Great): 3 times, at least, while in Rukou (bowing).

This is according to the Companion Uqba Bin Amir, mAbpwh. However, a worshipper may increase the number of times, or add more tasbeeh (words of praise to Allah), as narrated by the Mother of believers, Aisha, mAbpwh. [16]   

9. Standing Upright for Praising Allah ('Hamd)

After bowing down (Rukou'), a Muslim worshipper moves to the ninth stage of prayer, in which an imam or an individual worshipper lifts his/her head, standing calmly and upright, as well as saying: 

Sami'a Allahu liman 'hamidah (Allah listens to whoever praises Him): Once.

Then, all categories of worshippers (imam, a worshipper in a group, or an individual worshipper) say:

rabbana walakal hamd (Our Lord, to You is praise).

This was how the Prophet, pbbuh, practiced this stage of prayer, as we learn from Hadiths narrated to us by his Companions. [17]   

10. Sujoud (Prostration)

After standing upright calmly, saying words of praise to Allah, a worshipper makes takbeer (saying Allahu Akbar), as an indication of the transition to the tenth stage of prayer, prostration (Sujoud), in which he/she goes all the way down to the floor, placing his/her face on the floor. The complete prostration requires eight body parts to touch the floor. These are the forehead, nose, the two hand palms, the two knees, and the tiptoes of the two feet. A minimum prostration is achieved by placing part of each body organ on the floor, as mentioned in a Hadith narrated by Ibn (son of) Abbas, mAbpw them.

Once in prostration on the floor, a Muslim worshipper makes the Sujoud Tasbee'h, saying:

(3 )

Sub'hana rabiyal ala (Exalted is my Lord, the Most High).

This is to be said three times, as mentioned in a Hadith narrated by Companion Uqba Bin Amir, mAbpwh. However, a worshipper has the option of saying more words of praise to Allah, as mentioned in a Hadith narrated by the Mother of believers Aisha, mAbpwh. [18]   

Then, a worshipper lifts his/her head while sitting on the floor, then goes down to perform another Sujoud.

***

By performing the above ten steps, a Muslim worshipper completes one prayer unit (Rak'a).

Then, he/she stands up to perform the second Rak'a, repeating the above ten steps.  

11. Al-Tashahud

After performing the prostration (Sujoud) of the second prayer unit (Rak'a), a Muslim worshipper sits down on the floor, with his/her legs bent beneath him/her, reciting Al-Tashahud (The Proclamation and Bear Witnessing), at the end of which he/she makes greetings to both directions, starting with the right, then the left.

Al-Tashahud (pronounced At Tashahud) is recited fully when a worshipper is praying two Rak'as only, such as in the case of Al-Fajr (Dawn) prayer. However, in the rest of the required prayers, which include more than two Rak'as, Al-Tashahud is recited in two ways. After the first two Rak'a, a worshipper recites only the first part of Al-Tashahud but he/she recites it fully at the end of the last Rak'a (last prayer unit). Like all parts of the prayers, Al-Tashahud is recited in Arabic. Here it is in Arabic first, then transliterated and translated into English. [19]    

***

 

Al-Tashahud (pronounced as: atta shahud)

 

The Proclamation and Bear Witnessing

(To be recited while sitting in prayer)

:

.

:

.

 

  .

:

.

Transliteration of Al-Tashahud:

Part I:

At ta'hiyatu, al mubarakatu, wassala watu at tayibatu, lilah

Assalamu 'alayka ayuha anabiyu wa ra'hmatul lahi wa barakatuh

Assalamu 'alayna wa 'ala 'ibadil lahis sali'heen

Ash hadu alla ilaha illal lah

Wa ash hadu anna muhammadan rassoulul lah

***

Part II:

Allahumma salli 'ala muhammadin, wa 'ala aali muhammad

Kama salayta 'ala ibrahima, wa 'ala aali ibrahim

Wa barik 'ala muhammadin, wa 'ala aali muhammad

Kama barakta 'ala ibrahima, wa 'ala aali ibrahim

Fil 'aalamina

Innaka 'hameedun majeed

End Greetings:

Ending prayer with greetings to the right, then to the left saying:

Assalamu 'alaykum wa ra'hmatul lahi wabarakatuh

 

English translation:

Part I:

Blessed greetings and good prayers to Allah

Peace to you, O You Prophet, and mercy of Allah, and His blessings

Peace be upon us and upon the good worshippers of Allah

I bear witness that there is no other God but Allah (while raising the pointer finger of the right hand)

And I bear witness that Muhammed is the Messenger of Allah (while raising the pointer finger of the right hand)

Part II:

O Allah! Pray for Muhammed and for the family of Muhammed

As You prayed for Ibrahim and for the family of Ibrahim

And bless Muhammed and the family of Muhammed

As You blessed Ibrahim and the family of Ibrahim

Amongst the worlds

You are the Praise-Worthy, You are the Glorious

End Greetings:

Then, the prayer is completed by saying the Islamic greetings to those on the right and to those on the left:

Peace of Allah be upon you, His mercy, and His blessings (to the right side)

Peace of Allah be upon you, His mercy, and His blessings (to the the left side)

End of Al-Fajr (Dawn) Prayer.

***

Tasbee'h (Words of Praise to Allah, After Prayer)

There are several Hadiths which recommend Tasbee'h (Saying words of Praise to Allah) after each prayer. Here is the most common practice, on the basis of a Hadith narrated by Companion Abu Hurayra, mAbpwh, as follows:

:

(33 )

Tasbee'h (words of praise to God, to be said after prayers):

Sub'hana Allah  (Praise to Allah): 33 times

Al'hamdu lilah    (Thanks to Allah): 33 times

Allahu akbar   (Allah is Greater): 33 times

Then, Tasbeeh is closed with one sentence, said once, as follows:

.

La ilaha illallah, wahdahu la shareeka lahu, lahul mulku wa lahul hamdu, wahua ala kulli shay-in qadeer.

There is no other god than (but) Allah, One Who has no partners, to Him is dominion and praise, and He is capable of (doing) everything.

***

The number of times each Tasbee'h can be said is dependent on a person's time and circumstances. It can be more than the recommended number of 33, mentioned above, or less than that. [20]   

============================================================================================================================

Notes

[1] Prayers were ordained on Muslims during "Prophet Muhammed's Night Journey and Ascent to Heavens, Al-Issra Wal Mi'raj," which is the topic of Chapter 23 of this book.

Gods command for Muslims to perform the daily prayers is mentioned 17 times in the Holy Quran, five of which are in the singular masculine form aqim al-salata (pronounced: aqim assalata), in verses 11: 14, 17: 78, 20: 14, 29: 45, and 31: 17. The command is mentioned once in the plural feminine form aqimna al-salata, in verse 33: 33, and is mentioned eleven times in the plural masculin form aqimo al-salata (which addresses both men and women), in verses 2: 43, 2: 83, 2: 110, 4: 77, 4: 103, 10: 87, 22: 78, 24: 56, 30: 31, 58: 13, and 73: 20.

Performing prayers is also mentioned in the Holy Quran 17 more times, as a characteristic of the believers, in verses 2: 177, 2: 277, 4: 162, 5: 9, 5: 12, 5: 55, 9: 11, 9: 18, 9: 71, 19: 31, 19: 55, 21: 73, 22: 41, 24: 37, 27: 3, 31: 4, and 98: 5.

[2] Gods command of wudou is mentioned in verse 5: 6 of the Holy Quran, which also included Tayamum, in lieu of Wudou, in the cases of sickness, travel, or absence of water, as follows:

ۚ ۚ ٰ ٰ ۚ ٰ ( 5: 6).

O you who believe! Before you perform the prayer, wash your faces and your hands up to the elbows, rub (by passing wet hands over) your heads, and (wash) your feet up to ankles. If you are in a state of Janaba (i.e. had a sexual discharge), purify yourself (bathe your whole body). If you are ill or on a journey or any of you comes out of the restroom, or you have been in contact with women (i.e. sexual intercourse) and you find no water, then perform Tayamum with clean earth and rub therewith your faces and hands. Allah does not want to place you in difficulty, but He wants to purify you, and to complete His Favour on you, that you may be thankful (Al-Ma-ida, 5: 6).

Among some of the Hadiths mentioning benefits of prayers, and indirectly health benefits of wudou, is the one narrated by Companion Abu Hurayra, may Allah be pleased with him (mAbpwh), who said that he heard the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, saying to his Companions:

If one of you has a river in front of his home, where he takes a bath in it five times a day, would that leave any dirt on his body? They said: No, nothing would stay on his body. He said: That is the similitude of the five prayers, which erase sins (Al-Bukhari: 528, Muslim; 670).

[3] The five prayers (dawn, noon, mid-afternoon, sunset, and dusk) were mentioned in several verses in the Holy Quran, particularly 11: 114, 17: 78, 2: 238, and 30: 17-18, as follows:

ٰ ( 2: 238).

ۚ ۚ ٰ ٰ ( 11: 114).

ٰ ۖ ( 17: 78).

﴿١٧﴾ ﴿١٨﴾ ( 30: 17-18).

Maintain the (five) prayers, and (especially) the middle prayer. And stand before Allah with full attention (Al-Baqara, 2: 238).

And establish prayer at the two ends of the day and at parts of the night. Indeed, good deeds do away with misdeeds. That is a reminder for those who remember (Hood, 11: 114).

Establish prayer at the movement of the sun (from its meridian) until the darkness of the night; and (recite) the Quran of dawn. Indeed, the recitation of dawn is ever witnessed (Al-Issra, 17: 78).

So exalted is Allah when you reach the evening and when you reach the morning. (17) And to Him is (due all) praise throughout the heavens and the earth. And (exalted is He) at mid-afternoon and when you are at noon. (18) (Al-Room, 30: 17-18).

Ibn Katheers Interpretation

In his interpretation of verse 2: 238, Ibn Katheer mentioned that it is agreed upon among the students of the Companions (tabiin) that the middle prayer is a reference to the mid-afternoon (Asr) prayer, as it is in the middle between two prayers before (dawn and noon) and two prayers after (sunset and dusk). He also mentioned a Hadith narrated by Ali Bin Abi Talib, mAbpwh, that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him (pbbuh), said on the Day of Ahzab: They distracted us from the middle prayer, mid-afternoon (Asr) prayer. Companions Abu Hurayra and Ibn Massaud also narrated that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, said: the middle prayer is the mid-afternoon (Asr) prayer.

In his interpretation of verse 11: 114, Ibn Katheer included interpretations of the Prophets Companions, may Allah be pleased with them. He mentioned that the two ends of the day is a reference to the dawn prayer (Fajr) at one end of the day and the noon (Dhuhr) and afternoon (Asr) prayers at the other end. Further, parts of the night is a reference to the sunset (Maghrib) and dusk prayers (Isha).

Verse 17: 78 mentioned three prayers: the noon (Dhuhr), the dusk (Isha), and dawn (Fajr) prayers.

Companion Ibn Abbas, mAbpwh, mentioned that verse 30: 17 referred to two prayers in the evening: sunset (Maghrib) and dusk (Isha) as well as one prayer in the morning: dawn (Fajr). He added that verse 30: 18 referred to two prayers: the noon (Dhuhr) and afternoon (Asr) prayers.

Moreover, the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, mentioned the five prayers in several Hadiths, one of which was narrated by Companion Abdullah Bin Omar, mAbpwh and his father, which is stated in Endnote # 5 below.

[4] One of the most important conditions of the proper prayer is calmness and taking the needed time to perform its movements and recitations, without rushing any of them. We learn that from a Hadith narrated by Companion Abu Hurayra, mAbpwh, who said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, entered the masjid (mosque) one day, then a man also entered and prayed. He came to greet the Prophet, who told him Go back and pray because you did not pray. The man performed the prayer three times but got the same answer from the Prophet. Then, the man asked the Prophet to teach him how to pray because he did not know any different way to do it. The Prophet told him: When you stand for prayer, say Allahu Akbar (Allah is greater than anybody), then recite some of what you know of the Quran. Then, bow down (making rukou) calmly and taking your time. Then, lift your head standing upright. Then, prostrate (make sujoud) calmly and taking your time. Then, lift your head and sit down calmly and taking your time. Do this in all of your prayers (Al-Bukhari: 793, Muslim: 45-397).

For more information about conditions and rules of the proper prayer, see the following article:

 https://www.facebook.com/FdyltAlshykhbdalzyzAbnBazRhmhAllhTaly/posts/916902398423957/

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/65847/---

https://www.ahlalhdeeth.com/vb/showthread.php?t=341250

There are many articles and research papers about the physical benefits of performing prayers, such as the one by Qistas Ibrahim Al-Nuaymi, titled The miracle of prayer, which was published on January 27, 2013, at:

http://www.jameataleman.org/main/articles.aspx?article_no=1794

Heres another article by Majid Bin Khinjar Al-Bankani, titled Benefits and fruits of prayer, which was published on May 15, 2017. He mentioned the prayer conditions and rules and listed 52 benefits and fruits of preforming prayers properly. It can be accessed at:

https://saaid.net/Doat/majed-eslam/24.htm

[5] Text of the Hadith about the five prayer times:

: " . . " (: 972).

Abdullah Bin Amr, mAbpwh, said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, said:

The time for Dhuhr (noon ) prayer is when the sun moves from the middle of the sky, when a mans shade is equal to his height, and continues until Asr (mid-afternoon). Then, Asr (mid-afternoon) prayer time extends until the sun becomes yellow. The Maghrib (sunset) prayer extends until the twilight disappears. The Isha (dusk, night) prayer time extends until mid-night. The morning (Fajr) prayer extends from dawn (Fajr) until before the sunrise. Do not pray when the sun is rising (Muslim: 972). 

Note: The apostrophe used in Asr and the underline used in Dhuhr and Maghrib indicate the presence of Arabic sounds, which does not exist in English. See the Appendix for more information about the transliteration of Arabic sounds.

[6] The following table includes a comparison between Fajr (dawn) and Isha (dusk, night) prayer times, according to the two calendars of Um Al-Qura and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), marking the first day of the first five months of 2019. The information about the two calendars is from the same site:

https://www.muslimpro.com/Prayer-times-Atlanta-GA-GA-United-States-4180439  

A comparison between Fajr (dawn) and Isha (dusk, night) prayer times,

according to the two calendars of Um Al-Qura and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)

Difference in Minutes

Um Al-Qura

ISNA

First Day of 2019 Months

Prayers

17

17

17

18

20

***

19

22

25

24

19

6:11   

6:06

5:41

5:58

5:14

***

19:13

19:41

20:07

21:31

21:54

6:28

6:23

5:58

6:16

5:34

***

18:54

19:19

19:42

21:07

21:35

1/1/2019

2/1/2019

3/1/2019

4/1/2019

5/1/2019

***

1/1/2019

2/1/2019

3/1/2019

4/1/2019

5/1/2019

 

 

Fajr

(Dawn)

 

***

 

Isha

(Night)

 

 

 

[7] The start of dawn (fajr) is defined by our ability to distinguish between white and black threads, as stated in Verse 2: 187:

ٰ ( 2: 187).

And eat and drink until the white thread becomes distinct to you from the black thread, of the dawn (Al-Baqara, 2: 187).

The Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, pointed that we need to distinguish between the false dawn and the true dawn, in several 'Hadiths, two of which are as follows:

  : ﷺ: " : " ( : 1927 ѡ : 687 : 8260 216\4 ). 

Ibn Abbas, mAbpwt both, said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, said: "There are two dawns: The first does not allow (dawn) prayer but does not prohibit food (eating the pre-dawn meal in Ramadhan: su'hour). However, the second prohibits food (ends the pre-dawn meal) but allows (the dawn) prayer (Ibn Khuzaymah: 1927, Al-'Hakim: 697, and Al-Bayhaqi: 8260, 216/4).

: " . . " ( : 4278 ).

Jabir Bin Abdullah, mAbpwt, said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, said: "There are two dawns. One (with light which) looks like a wolf tail (vertical and rectangular in shape), which does not allow the (dawn) prayer but does not prohibit food (eating the pre-dawn meal: su'hour). The other (dawn light), which is rectangular on the horizon, allows prayer and prohibits food (Sa'hi'h Al-Jami': 4278, authenticated by Al-Albani).

: . . .

There are three main differences between the true dawn and the false dawn. First, while the false dawn is vertically rectangular in the sky, the true dawn is horizontally recatangular in shape. Second, while the false dawn (light) is followed by darkness, the light of the true dawn increases, without darkness. Third, while the false dawn (light) has darkness above it, the true dawn light reaches the sky, connecting with the horizon. 

Source: https://dorar.net/hadith/sharh/92342 

*** 

See, for example, an explanation of the Hadith, to determine the prayer times, including the difference between the two types of dawn, at the following link:

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/9940/--

Ibn Uthaymins explanation of prayer times can be found at the following link:

https://ar.islamway.net/fatwa/12787/---

 Ibn Uthaymins criticism of the Um Al-Qura calendar, particularly how it precedes the astronomical calculations by five minutes, in the case of Makkah city, can be found at the following link:

https://ar.islamway.net/fatwa/12786  /----

[8] The Holy Quran did not specify the number of prayer units (Rakas), which was left to the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, to tell Muslims about. He said, Pray as you saw me praying (Al-Bukhari: 6008). He also mentioned that the morning (dawn) prayer is two units (Rakas). This was in a Hadith narrated by Abu Dawood, mAbpwh, who said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, saw a man praying after the required morning prayer. He said: The morning prayer is two Rakas. The man said: I did not pray the (recommended) two Rakas before. So, Im praying them now. The Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, did not say anything (This is a correct Hadith, on the authority of Al-Albani: 1267).

Concerning the required Rakas of the noon and mid-afternoon prayers, we learn about them from a Hadith narrated by Abu Said Al-Khudri, mAbpwh. He said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, used to recite about thirty verses in each of the first two Rakas of the Dhuhr (noon) prayer, and half of that in the other two Rakas. Concerning the mid-afternoon (Asr) prayer, he used to recite about fifteen verses in each of the first two Rakas, and half of that in the other two Rakas (Muslim: 452, authenticated as a correct Hadith by Al-Ayni: 21/4).

The mother of the believers, Aisha, mAbpwh, mentioned that there are three Rakas in the sunset (Maghrib) prayer and four in the night (Isha) prayer. This was in her Hadith, in which she said that, at the beginning, the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, was decreed to pray two Rakas in all prayers, except the sunset (Maghrib), which was three Rakas. Then, Allah, praise to him, decreed (to His Messenger) that the noon, mid-afternoon, and night prayers to be four Rakas each. In the case of travel, the four Rakas can be decreased to two (Musnad Ahmed: 25806).

https://www.ahlalhdeeth.com/vb/showthread.php?t=122679

https://mawdoo3.com/____

In his book (Al-Awsat fis Sunan wal Ijma), Ibn Al-Monthir mentioned that there is a consensus among Muslim scholars that the required noon, mid-afternoon, and night prayers are four Rakas each. The sunset prayer is three Rakas and the dawn (morning) prayer is two Rakas.

In his book (Badai Isanai), Al-Kasani mentioned that there are 17 required Rakas, in the five prayers. These are two, four, four, three, and four, respectively. We knew that from the Prophets actions and words, as he said: Pray as you saw me praying (Al-Bukhari: 6008). Because Gods Book does not include details about the number of Rakas, we learned that from the Prophet, pbbuh, who clarified that to us in words and actions, as he did about charity amounts and pilgrimage actions.

https://fatwa.islamweb.net/fatwa/index.php?page=showfatwa&Option=FatwaId&Id=128245 

[9] There are ten basic recommended Rakas. In addition, there are six Rakas, which precede the mid-afternoon, sunset, and night prayers. Finally, an odd number of Rakas is recommended, as a close of prayer, before going to bed, one at least. Thus, there is a minimum of 17 recommended Rakas, as mentioned in the following four Hadiths: 

Abdullah, the son of Omar, mAbpw them, said that he learned from the Prophet, pbbuh, to perform ten Rakas: Two before the required noon (Dhur) prayer and two after it, two Rakas after the sunset (Maghrib) prayer at his home, two Rakas after the night (Isha) prayer at his home, and two Rakas before the morning prayer (Al-Bukhari: 1180, Muslim: 729).

ѡ : " : " (: 1180 : 729).

Abdullah Bin Mughfil, mAbpwh, said that the Prophet, pbbuh, said: Between every two calls for prayer (Adhan and Iqama), there is a (recommended) prayer. He repeated that twice. Then, he said in the third time: to whoever wants (Al-Bukhari: 601/627, Muslim: 838).

: " " : " " (: 601 \ 627 : 838).

Abu Basra Al-Ghifari, mAbpwh, said that the Prophet, pbbuh, said: Allah has added the odd (witr) prayer for you, which can be performed from after the night (Isha ) prayer until before the dawn (Fajr) prayer (Ahmed: 6/7, Tabarani: 1/100/1, authenticated as correct by Al-Albani: 108).

: " ( : 6 / 7 " : 1 / 100 / 1 : 108).

Abu Ayyoub Al-Ansari, mAbpwh, said that the Prophet, pbbuh, said: The Witr (odd) prayer is mandatory on every Muslim. Whoever likes to perform it as five Rakas, let him do it. Whoever likes to perform it as three Rakas, let him do it. Whoever likes to perform it as one Raka, let him do it (Abu Dawood, Al-Nissa-i, Ibn Maja, and others).

: : "   ( ).

[10] The wudu command is mentioned in verse 5: 6 of the Holy Quran, which was mentioned in the second Endnote above. The Companion Ammar Bin Yassir, mAbpw them, narrated that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, explained how to make Tayamum, saying: Its enough for you to do this with your hands. Then, he hit the floor with his hands once. Then, he touched the right hand with the left. Then, he touched the back of each hand with the other hand, and he touched his face with his hands (Al-Bukhari: 343, Muslim: 587). In Al-Bukharis version: He hit the floor with his palms, and he blue (the dust) from them. Then, he touched his face and the back of his hands.

: " ." (: 343 : 587).

: " ."

[11] The Hadith narrated by Companion Abdullah Bin Zayd Bin Abd Rabbuh about the Prophets approval of the Adhan and the Iqama was recorded by Ahmed: 15881, Abu Dawood: 499, and authenticated as correct by Al-Albani: 469.

[12] There are two different versions for the Iqama, both approved by the Prophet, pbbuh. The first version is composed of eleven sentences, which is used in this Chapter. It is the one mentioned in the Hadith narrated by Companion Abdullah Bin Zayd Bin Abd Rabbuh.

The second version of the Iqama is composed of seventeen sentences, by repeating the same sentences of the first version, several times, as mentioned in another Hadith by Companion Abu Mahthoura, mAbpwh. The first sentence is repeated four times, instead of two. Then, all other sentences are repeated twice, instead of once, except the last sentence, which is called once. This Hadith was recorded by Al-Tirmidhi: 192, Abu Dawood: 502, Al-Nissa-i: 632, Ibn Maja: 709, and authenticated by Al-Albani: 474.

[13] For more information about the intention and Takbeer in prayer, as well as the Shafiie opinion, as expressed by Al-Nawawi, see the following article:

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/204511/------

Abdulllah, the son of Omar, mAbpw them, said: When the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, used to stand for prayer, I saw him lifting his hands up to his shoulders. He also did that when he would make takbeer before bowing (ruku), and when he would lift his head after bowing (ruku). Then, he would say: sami allahu liman hamida (Allah hears those who praise Him). However, he did not do that in prostration (sujood) (Al-Bukhari: 736, Muslim: 390).

: " : " (: 736 : 390).

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/298825/----------

[14] Saying the Istiadha is in response to Gods command in verse 19: 98, which states:

" " ( 16: 98).

When you recite the Quran, seek refuge in Allah from the stoned Shaytan (Satan) (Al-Nahl, 16: 98).

Shaikh Abdul Aziz Bin Baz said that when a worshipper is praying individually or following an imam, he/she needs to say the Istiadha and the Basmalla silently, before the recitation of Al-Fatiha. However, the imam has the option of saying them loudly, as education to the people following him, as this was the practice of the Prophets Companions, including Abu Hurayra, may Allah be pleased with all of them. The Bin Baz opinion can be accessed at:

https://binbaz.org.sa/fatwas/8510/----

Before the recitation of Al-Fatiha, a worshipper needs to place his right hand over the left hand, above the belly button, and below the chest, according to the Shafi-i school of thought. Followers of the Hanafi and Hanbali schools of thought, also, place their right hands over the left hands, but below the belly button. However, followers of Imam Malik keep their hands to their sides. In of these cases, the objective is to show politeness when addressing Allah, praise to Him, as mentioned by Imam Nawawi, in his explanation of Muslim, which posted on Islam web, at the following two links:

https://fatwa.islamweb.net/ar/fatwa/74043/ and https://www.islamweb.net/ar/fatwa/4749/   

[15] Companion Abu Hurayra. mAbpwh, said: I have never followed (an imam) who is closest to the Messenger of Allah, pbbun, in performing prayer, than so and so (the name of that person was not mentioned). He would lengthen the first two Rakas of the noon (Dhuhr) prayer and shorten the other two Rakas. He would also shorten the mid-afternoon (Asr) prayer. He would recite short chapters (Suras) in the sunset (Maghrib) prayer, middle-long chapters in the night (Isha) prayer, and long chapters in the dawn (Fajr) prayer (Al-Nissa-i: Section Jeem, 2, page 167).

These three categories of chapters (suras) form the last section of the Holy Quran, which is referred to in the above Hadith as Al-Mufassal. It is composed of most of the last four parts of the Holy Quran, starting from Surat Qaf (Chapter 50). There is an agreement that short chapters (suras) start from Al-Dhua (93) to Al-Nas (114). Followers of Imam Shafi-i and Imam Malik agree that Al-Hujurat (49) is the first of the long chapters but they disagreed about the last. While Shafi-is consider Al-Naba (78) as the last of the long chapters, Malikis consider Al-Naziat (79) as the last long chapter. Followers of Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal consider Qaf (50), as the first of the long chapters (suras), and consider Al-Naba (78) as the last in this category. The middle-long chapters are the ones left in between the long and the short chapters. For more information about Fiqh (explanation) according to the four schools of thought, see the article published at the following link:

 http://shamela.ws/browse.php/book-9849/page-231

See also the following article concerning an explanation to the meaning of Al-Mufassal (dividing the last section of the Holy Quran into long, middle-long, and short chapters) at:

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/143301/----- 

[16] Companion Uqba Bin Amir, mAbpwh said that when verse 56: 74 was revealed, the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, told us: Use it in your bowing down (rukou). Then, when verse 87: 1 was revealed, the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, told us: Use it in your prostration (sujoud) (Al-Tirmidhi: 261, Ahmed, Abu Dawood, and Ibn Maja).

( 56: 74).

( 87: 1).

So exalt the name of your Lord, the Most Great (Al-Waqia, 56: 74). 

Exalt the name of your Lord, the Most High (Al-Aala, 87: 1).

: " " : " ." " " : " " (: 261 ).

Companion Jubayr Bin Mutim, mAbpwh said that the Prophet, pbbuh, used to say in his bowing down (rukou): subhana rabiyal adheem (Exalted is my Lord, the Most Great), three times. In his prostration (sujoud), he used to say: subhana rabiyal aala (Exalted is my Lord, the Most High), three times (Al-Tirmidhi: Page 106, Al-Bazzaz, Al-Tabarani).

: " : " (: 106 ).

https://library.islamweb.net/newlibrary/display_book.php?flag=1&bk_no=56&ID=479

The Mother of believers, Aisha, mAbpwh, said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, used to say in his bowing down (rukou): subooh, quddoos, rabil mala-ikati warrouh (Exalted, Holy, is the Lord of the Angels and the Spirit) (Muslim: 487).

: " " (: 487).

The Mother of believers, Aisha, mAbpwh, also said that the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, used to make takbeer and say in his prostration (sujoud): subhanak allahuma rabana wa bihamdika, allahuma ighfir lee (Exalted You are, O Allah, our Lord, and praise to You, O Allah, forgive me) (Al-Bukhari: 761, Muslim: 484).

  : : " " (: 761 : 484).

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/39677/--------

[17] Lifting the head after Rukou and standing upright calmly came in a Hadith narrated by Companion Abu Hurayra, mAbpwh, and was recorded by Al-Bukhari (757). The two sentences of praise to Allah, which are said in this ninth stage of prayer, were also mentioned in a Hadith narrated by Companion Abu Hurayra, mAbpwh, and was recorded by Al-Bukhari (789) and Muslim (392).

Companion Anas, mAbpwh, narrated the Hadith which mentions that which an imam says: Sami'a Allahu liman 'hamidah (Allah listens to whoever praises Him) and what worshippers say in response: rabbana walakal hamd (Our Lord, to You is praise). This Hadith was recorded Al-Bukhari (733) and Muslim (411).

[18] Companion Ibn (son of) Abbas, mAbpw them, narrated the Hadith which mentions how the complete prostration (sujoud) is achieved. He said that the Prophet, pbbuh, said: I was commanded to make prostration on seven bones: on the forehead, (then he pointed with his hand to his) nose, palms, knees, toe tips (Al-Bukhari: 776 and 812, Muslim: 490).

See Footnote 16 above for the texts of the Hadiths, which specify that which is said in Ruku (bowing down) and Sujoud (prostration).

[19] Al-Tashahud (pronounced atta shahud) is composed of words mentioned by the Prophet, pbbuh, which we have received through Hadiths narrated by his Companions, such as Omar, Ibn Abbas, and Ibn Massaud, mAbpw them. As a result, there are slight differences between one narration and another but all of them are correct.

For example, in Ibn Massauds version of the Hadith, the name of Allah is mentioned at the beginning of the first sentence: " " (Greetings to Allah, and good prayers). However, Ibn Abbas mentioned it at the end: " (Blessed greetings and good prayers to Allah). Finally, in Omars version, the name of Allah is mentioned four times and the adjective blessed is replaced with pure: " " (Greetings to Allah, pure (characteristics) to Allah, good (characteristics) to Allah, and good prayers to Allah). All these versions of the Hadith were correctly authenticated and recorded in Muslim (402 and 405) and Al-Bukhari (3370 and 6265), as mentioned in the following articles by Al-Munajid and Ibn Baz:

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/98031/--------

https://binbaz.org.sa/fatwas/12789/--

[20] Tasbeeh after every prayer is a sunna (recommended, not mandatory), whether it is done in 33 times each, more than that or less, dependent on a persons circumstances. Here is the text of the mentioned Hadith:

: " . : " " " (: 820   : 597).

Companion Abu Hurayra, mAbpwh, said that the Prophet, pbbuh, said: Whoever exalts Allah after every prayer thirty-three (times), praises Allah thirty-three (times), and makes takbeer thirty-three (times), then these total ninety-nine. The completion of one hundred is saying There is no other god than (but) Allah, One Who has no partners, to Him is dominion and praise, and He is capable of (doing) everything. Whoever says these (words of praise to Allah), his sins will be forgiven even if they are as much as the sea foam (Al-Bukhari: 820, Muslim: 597).

For more information about various versions of the Hadith, see Al-Munajids article at:

https://islamqa.info/ar/answers/228520/-------

============================================================================================================================

Appendix 1

Note About the transliteration of Arabic sounds:

There are three Arabic vowels and their three strong forms (Tanween, i.e. adding "N"). The first is the Fat'ha, which maybe expressed in English by the sound / a /, with its strong form of / an /. The second is the Kassra, which maybe expressed by the sound / i /, with its strong form of / in /. The third Arabic vowel is the Dhamma, which maybe expressed by the sound / u /, with its strong form of / un /.

Thus, following Arabic grammatical rules, the six vowel forms maybe illustrated in how a common noun, such as bab (door), maybe written and pronounced as baba, baban, babi, babin, babu, and babun.

 While all these six vowel forms are written in the Arabic text of the Holy Quran, not all of them are pronounced in recitation, particularly at the end of each verse. However, they maybe pronounced when several verses are continuously recited.

Arabic written words are mainly composed of consonants, vowels are added as symbols over or under a letter, as in the case of the text of the Holy Quran. However, in books and written media, only basic consonants and essential vowels are written as letters. No vowel symbols are added, as it is expected from an average educated Arabic speaker to know how to pronounce the words without vowel symbols.

Underlined letters in the above Quran transliteration

Some Arabic letters and sounds have no counterparts in the English alphabet and the English phonetic transcription. There are nine Arabic sounds which have no equivalence in the English alphabet. These are ( ). Some translators underline the closest English letters to these Arabic letters, in order to tell readers that these are pronounced differently in Arabic. The closest sounds expressing the Arabic letters in parentheses, from right to left, are ( h, kh, s, dh, t, tdh, a, gh, q ). However, underlining them as ( h, kh, s, dh, t, tdh, a, gh, q ) conveys the message that these are different from the English sounds expressed by the letters of the English alphabet.

The Arabic letter and sound of Tha ( ) does not have an equivalent letter and sound in English. Therefore, it is transliterated by the two underlined English letters "th" to indicate that this is just one Arabic letter and sound. This is the case of the sound pronounced at the beginning of the English word "three." 

Another examples is that of the Arabic letter and sound of Dhal ( ), is transliterated by the two underlined English letters / dh / to indicate tht this is just one Arabic letter and sound. This is the case of the sound pronounced at the beginning of the English word "that."

This author uses this same method of underlining these letters, with the exception of the two Arabic letters expressed by the / h / and / a / sounds. Instead of underlining them, he adds an apostrophe before the letter to become / 'h / and / 'a / respectively. Using an apostrophe instead of underling a letter is for practical reasons only. First, these two letters are more frequently used than the other letters in the list. Second, it is easier to use the apostrophe on keyboards than adding underlining after writing.

As an example, an apostrophe is used before the English letter / a / to express the eighteenth letter of the Arabic alphabet / 'ayn /, as in the case of the transliteration of the Good Name of God, Al-'Azeez, the tenth on the list.

An apostrophe is also used before the English letter / h / to express the sixth letter of the Arabic alphabet / 'ha /, as in the case of translating the Good Name of God, Al-A'had,

The above usage of an apostrophe to help express the Arabic sound / 'a / may not be enough if the sound occurs at the end of a word, such as in the case of the Good Name of God, number 30, "Al-Samee'u." This Good Name of God is pronounced as "Al-Samee' " without conjugation. However, because the sound / 'a / occurs at the end of the word, the pronunciation may become distorted as / as-samee'a / instead of / as-samee ' /. As a solution, this author is using the conjugated form of the noun as a subject to become / as-samee'u /, the closest to the Arabic pronunciation.

========================================================================================================================

Appendix 2

Some Short Suras, Which May Be Recited After Al-Fati'ha in Prayer

Translated and transcribed By Hassan Ali El-Najjar

ۡ ٕ

ۡ ٱ ٱٰۡ ٱ


ۡ ٱ (١)

 ٱ ٱ (٢)

 ۡ ۡ ۡ ۡ (٣)

 ۡ  ۥ ڪ ۢ (٤)    ( 112: 1-4).

Surat Al-Ikhlas

Bismila hir ra'hma nir ra'heem *

1. Qul  hu allahu  ahad

2. Allahus  Samad

3. Lam  yalid  wa  lam  youlad

4. Wa  lam  yakun  lahu  kufwan  ahad

 

Surat Al-Ikhlas


In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful


Say: Allah (is) He, (the) One; (1)

Allah (is) the Eternal; (2)

He did not beget (give birth) and He was not begotten (given birth to); (3)

And there has never been anyone equal to Him. (4)  (Al-Ikhlas, 112: 1-4).

ۡ

ۡ ٱ ٱٰۡ ٱ

ۡ ٱۡ (١)

  (٢)

(٣)

ٱٰٰ ٱۡ (٤)

(٥)   ( 113: 105).

Surat Al-Falaq

Bismila hir ra'hma nir raheem

1. Qul  aa-oudhu  birabil  falaq

2. Min  sharri  ma  khalaq

3. Wa  min  sharri  ghasiqin  idha  waqab

4. Wa  min  sharrin  nafathati  fil  uqad

5. Wa  min  sharri  hasidin  idha  hasad

Surat Al-Falaq

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of the dawn (daybreak), (1)

From the evil done by those He created; (2)

And from the evil of night darkness as it overspreads; (3)

And from the evil of tied knots (of witchcraft or plots); (4)

And from the evil of the envious when he envies. (5) (Al-Falaq, 113: 1-5).

 

ۡ
ۡ ٱ ٱٰۡ ٱ

ۡ ٱ (١)

ٱ (٢)

ٰ ٱ (٣)

ٱۡۡ ٱۡ (٤)

ٱ ۡ ٱ (٥)

ٱۡ ٱ (٦)   ( 114: 1-6).

Surat An-Nas (Al-Nas)

Bismila hir ra'hma nir ra'heem

1. Qul  a-oudhu  birabin  nas

2. Malikin  nas

3. Ilahin  nas

4. Min  sharril  waswasil  khannas

5. Alladhi  yuwas  wisu  fi  sudourin  nas

6. Minal  jinnati  wannas

Surat An-Nas (Al-Nas)

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of the people (humankind), (1)

King of the people (humankind), (2)

God of the people (humankind), (3)

From the evil of the whisperer (the devil), the silent (who shuts up when people remember God by reciting these verses and others from the Holy Quran) (4)

Who whispers into the hearts of the people (5)

(Both) the Jinns and the humans. (6)  (Al-Nas, 114: 1-6).

Note: Jinns are invisible non-human creatures.

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Illustrative Sources: 

There are many illustrations in the internet about how to perform the Islamic prayers. The following videos, illustrations, and animations are just examples of such illustrations:

Videos:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoNPSEWn6aY

http://www.hilalplaza.com/islamic-pray-prayers-salat/index.html

http://www.islam.com/salat/salatfinal.html (animation with full texts in Arabic, pronunciation, and English translation).

Illustrations:

More sources for illustrations about how to perform prayers:

http://www.alsunna.org/salat/salat.htm

http://muslim-canada.org/salaat.html

http://www.ehow.com/how_5023330_perform-muslim-prayer.html

http://forum.moe.gov.om/~moeoman/vb/showthread.php?p=1667934

http://www.wikihow.com/Perform-Salah  

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About the Author and the Book:

* The author of this book has a Ph.D. in Sociology and a Masters degree in Cultural Anthropology. He was born in Gaza, Palestine in 1369 Hijriya (1950) but he has been living in the United States since 1986.

The authentic Quran Arabic text is used as a reference for the translation of the meanings of the Quran verses, particularly from www.tanzil.net.

The works of the three renowned Islamic scholars Al-Tabari, Al-Qurtubi, and Ibn Katheer, have been used throughout the chapters of this book, as these are the most credited interpretations of the Holy Quran, for their use of 'Hadith, companions' interpretations, and their thorough knowledge of the Arabic language.

  ( 61: 8).  

They want to extinguish the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah will perfect His light, although the disbelievers dislike it (Al-Saff, 61: 8).

 

Opinions expressed in various sections are the sole responsibility of their authors and they may not represent ccun.org.

editor@ccun.org