www.rasulallah.info

Home
Messenger of Allah
Ash-Shamaa-il Muhammadiyyah
Muhammad - The Most Praised
Prophet's (saw) Genealogy
Light of the Prophet (saw)
Praise of the Prophet (saw)
Miracles of the Prophet (saw)
Living Miracles of the Messenger (SAW)
Sacred Gallery
Descendants of the Prophet (saw)
About us

CHAPTER ON THE WORSHIP AND DEVOTION OF SAYYIDINA RASULULLAH SALLA LAHU ALAYHI WA’ALE HI WASALLAM 

Hazrat Sheikh-ul Hadeeth Maulana Muhammad Zakariyya Kandhelwi (R.A.) explains; 

In this chapter is mentioned how Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam worshipped. Every deed and action of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam is divine worship. Every word and silence is dhikr (remembrance of Allah). As an example and being part of the Shamaa-il, the author has mentioned, a few acts of worship, from where it may be seen that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam, although being sinless and assured of forgiveness and the highest status, which no Wali – friend of Allah can attain, nor any previous Nabi - Prophet has attained; did not stop at that, but gave much importance and attention to voluntary devotions. We, who are called his ummah - followers and claim to follow his Sunnah -blessed path, how much importance do we attach to these acts when we are so sinful and lax. In relation to our sins, and for the mizaan (scale), we are more in need of worship than Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam. Then, our prayers are such, leaving aside the full reward, even if only a minute’s reward is received, it would be considered a blessing and our good fortune. Every deed is rewarded by Allah Ta'aala according to the sincerity attached to it. The more the sincerity, the greater the reward will be.

Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said:
 "When a person completes a. salaah; a tenth (portion) in reward is written for that, for some ninth,, likewise some are rewarded an eighth; seventh; sixth; fifth; quarter; third; half etc, (portion)".-Abu Daawud.  

The tenth portion is mentioned as an example, otherwise the reward may be less than that too. In another hadith it is mentioned that the first question that will be asked on the day of qiyaamah will be regarding salaah - prayer. Allah Ta'aala will command the malaa-ikah (angels):  "See the prayers of my servants, are they fulfilled completely or are they incomplete? If it is complete a full reward must be written. If it is incomplete, then see if there are any voluntary (nawaafil) prayers, if there are, add them to the obligatory prayers and complete them. Then in the same manner, one shall be questioned regarding other deeds like zakaah etc.-Abu Daawud.  

We know well how our obligatory prayers are performed. It is of utmost importance that one performs voluntary acts to safeguard one's salaah, or other acts of sadaqah - charity and devotions be performed in great quantity with care and sincerity. That time shall be difficult when we will have to present ourselves in the court of the Almighty. The two overseers of our deeds are always with us. This is not enough, but every portion of a human’s body will testify as to the good and bad deed committed by man. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has advised us to count the recitation of the Kalimah Tayyibah -(La ilaha illallaah) and the Tasbeehaat (Praises of Allah) on the fingers, for on the day of qiyaamah, the fingers shall also be questioned, and asked to reveal the deeds committed by it. The fingers will be given the power of speech. May my mother and father be sacrificed on Sayyidina 'Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam, for his example of everything is before us.   Twenty four ahaadith are mentioned in this chapter.   


(248) Hadith Number 1  

Hasrat Mughirah bin Shu'bah Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports that Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hiWasallam performed such lengthy nafl prayers, that his mubaarak - blessed legs became swollen. The Sahaabah said : "You undergo such great difficulties, whereas Allah has forgiven you (nor can you commit any sins)."Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam said: "(When Allah Ta'aala has blessed me so much) should I not be a grateful servant?" 


Commentary

Apparently the questioner thought that prayers are for the forgiveness of sins. When Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam is sinless, how could he commit sin? Why should he voluntarily undergo such difficulties? Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam replied the object of worship is not only this, but has several reasons. When Allah Ta'aala has forgiven me already, then the correct and most appropriate thing is that I constantly worship Him and thank Him for His grace and blessings.
Sayyidina 'Ali Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Ibaadah - worship is something performed because the object is Al Jannah - Paradise, so this is a businessman's 'Ibaadah. This Ibaadah is meant for purchasing. The price is paid here and the purchase is obtained there. Sometimes 'Ibaadah is because of fear, so this is a slave's Ibaadah. Ibaadah is performed due to the fear of punishment, as is the custom of the servants. One 'Ibaadah is that which is performed without any future need or fear. It is solely for the gratitude of Allah's (subhan’ hu wa ta’ala) abundant blessings".

It is mentioned in the above hadith that Allah Ta'aala has forgiven Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam. A doubt may arise here, that he may have committed a sin, but Allah Ta'aala forgave him. This is against the belief of Islam and can lead to Kufr – non belief. All the Ambiyaa (Prophets) asalaatu asalaam, have been created sinless, they cannot commit sins. In fact, they are innocent of even any such thoughts. The 'Ulama have given many answers to this question, which are mentioned in their respective places. Especially many answers have been given in tafseer (commentary) of Surah Fath.

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam have been made with complete perfection, yet due to the humility of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam, he would pray for forgiveness and seek even more closeness with Allah (swt). Also Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam had incidents happen, to show others or to demonstrate important points to others. The munafiqeen – hypocrites used these incidents to show fallability in Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, in order to misguide the believers. Unfortunately this practice still continues amongst the deviant sects within Islam. 

(249) Hadith Number 2.

Hasrat Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed so many nawaafil prayers that his blessed legs swelled. Someone said to him, you take so many pains, whereas you have been given the good news that you are forgiven? He replied: "Should I not be grateful servant".   


Commentary

A detailed narration has been narrated from Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallhu 'Anha regarding this thanks-giving. Sayyidina 'Ataa Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I once requested 'Aayeshah to relate a surprising incident of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam?. 'She replied: 'Which act of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam was such that it was not surprising'. Thereafter she said: 'One night Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam returned home to sleep and slept with me in my blanket. After a little while, Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam was sleeping suddenly he said: 'Forget it, let me worship my creator'. Saying this he got up, performed wudhu and began to perform salaah. He then began weeping till the tears flowed on to his mubaarak - blessed chest. He then performed ruku', and continued crying in this posture. Then performed sajdah and kept on weeping in this posture too. He stood up from the sajdah and was still crying. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam remained in this state till the morning when Hasrat Bilaal (RA) came to call out the adhaan – Call to Prayer. I said: O Messenger of Allah, why did you cry so much? Allah Ta'aala has forgiven you'. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam replied: 'Should I not be a thankful servant of Allah? Then said: 'Why should I not do so, when these aayaat were revealed to me today, and recite the aayaat of the last ruku' of Sura Aali 'Imran'". 
   
    

(250) Hadith Number 3.

It is also narrated from Hasrat Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu that Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed such a long salaah that his mubaarak - blessed legs became swollen. He was asked: "You perform such long prayers, whereas you have been forgiven?. "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam replied: "Should I not be an appreciative servant?"   


Commentary

Due to its importance Imaan Tirmidhi had mentioned this hadith from three different sources. A question may arise on these narrations that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam had many a time forbidden that one should exert one's self more than one can bear. The fact is that humans have been created solely for the worship of Allah (swt). Allah Ta'aala says in the Qur-aan
 'I created the jinn and mankind only that they might worship Me'.- Surah Dhaariyaat,51,56.  


When this is the sole reason for creating man, then the more importance it is given and the more one worships, the more will it be desirable and praiseworthy. Whenever it was prohibited, it was because of some obstacle and trouble. Where it creates an obstacle or an obstacle exists, there it becomes undesirable. Among such obstacles may be boredom, confusion and perplexity, resulting that it is left altogether. Where the excess of prayer has been prohibited are because of the reasons mentioned already. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said: 'Perform only the amount that can be borne'. Allah Ta'aala does not withhold the granting of ajr (thawaab-reward) till one does not become bored of 'amal (practice). For this reason the 'ulama prohibit one from exerting one's self. It is possible that one will become bored and leave it completely. The attributes and qualities of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam is much higher than this. There was no probability of his becoming bored or tired. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said: 'The coolness of my eyes is in salaah'. Why should it not be, when salaah is a secret link with Allah (swt)? The amount of enjoyment that the best of creation being, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam may experience, cannot be imagined. Only those who are unlucky become bored.
In the same manner the second prohibition that has been mentioned in the ahaadith, is because of negligence in fulfilling the compulsory rights and duties. By exerting one's self, weakness is felt. As a result one becomes negligent in fulfilling the rights of others. This question once again cannot arise for Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam, due to their esteemed and elevated rank, and despite performing such great endeavours and eating so less, could also fulfil the desires of nine wives. SubhanAllah


(251) Hadith Number 4.

Hasrat Aswad bin Yazeed Radiyallahu 'Anhu says he enquired from Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha regarding the salaah of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam at night. She replied: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam slept (after Isha) for the first half portion of the night. He then awakened (and performed the tahajjud prayers) till the time of suhur (sehri), thereafter he performed the witr salaah. He then went to his bed. If he had a desire, he went to his wife. When he heard the adhaan, he got up. If he was in a state of janaabah (requiring ghusl) he performed ghusl. If not, he performed wudu and went for salaah".   

Commentary

The physicians say the best time for intercourse is the last part of the night. At that time the stomach is mild and both parties are fresh with regained strength. In the first part of the night, the stomach is full. In such a state it is detrimental to have intercourse. It is more detrimental when one is hungry. In the last portion of the night the stomach is not too full, nor is it very empty so that one feels hungry. All this is medically speaking. In the shari'ah it is permissible to have intercourse with the wife at other times. This is evident that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam had relations in the first part of the night and at different times of the day. Some mashaa-ikh - scholars have written that if one has intercourse with the wife at the time of salaah, resulting in her falling pregnant, the child from that union will be disobedient to the parents. (Due of the disobedience of the parents in not fulfilling salaah).


(252) Hadith Number 5.

Hasrat Ibn 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports that he once slept at the house of his aunt Maymunah (during his childhood). She slept on the width of the cushion and Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallarn slept on the length of the cushion. (Imam Qaadi 'Iyaad (Rh) and others have translated pillow as a bed. When the original word means pillow and it is possible to use it in such a manner, it is not necessary to translate it as a bed. For instance, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam must have slept on the length of the pillow facing the Qiblah, and Sayyidina Ibn 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu on the breadth of it, putting his head on the
qiblah side). Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam (after having a little conversation with his wife) slept till the middle of the night, or till a little before that. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam then awakened and began wiping off the signs of sleep from his blessed face. He then recited the last ten aayaat of Surah Aali 'Imraan (Inna fi khalqis samaawaati wal ard). (The 'ulama say a little of the Qur-aan should be recited after awakening, as this creates strength and it is mustahab to recite these aayaat).
 Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam got up and went to a leather bag that was hanging and (took water in a utensil from it) performed wudu from it, then commenced his salaah. Hasrat 'Abdullah bin 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: 'I also got up (performed wudu) and stood next to-him (on his left). Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam put his blessed right hand on my head and caught my ear and twisted it (A muqtadi should stand on the right side of an Imaam. The ear was twisted to remind him.
In one narration it is stated that, I began to sleep, so Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam caught my ear. In another narration it is stated he caught my ear and pulled me to his right side, so that I might stand on the right according to the sunnah). He performed two rak'ahs, then two rak'ahs, then two rak'ahs, then two, rak'ahs, then two rak'ahs, then two rak'ahs. Ma'n (a narrator of this hadith) says Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam recited two rak'ahs six times (the total of twelve rak'ahs. Mulla 'Ali Qaari has written that according to the madh-hab of Imaam Aa'zam Abu Hanifah, in tahajjud prayers there are twelve rak'ahs). He then performed the witr salaah and slept. When the mu-adh-dhin (Sayyidina Bilaal Radiyallahu'Anhu) came to him, he got up and recited two short rak'ahs and went for the fajr salaah.


Commentary

It is stated that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed different amounts of rak'ahs in tahajjud. These are according to different times. If there was time he performed more rak'ahs, otherwise less rak'ahs were performed. There are no specified amount of rak'ahs for tahajjud. Many a time Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed less rak'ahs, although there was time to perform more rak'ahs. He certainly recited lengthy portions from the Qur-aan, as is mentioned in the different ahaadith in this chapter. 


(253) Hadith Number 6.

Hasrat Ibn 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam sometimes performed 13 rak'ahs of tahajjud (including witr)".   


Commentary

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam performed ten rak'ahs of tahajjud and three rak'ahs witr salaah. Some of the 'ulama have included the two sunnahs of fajr salaah too. In that case tahajjud will be eight rak'ahs. 


(254) Hadith Number 7.

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha reports that whenever Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam could not perform the tahajjud because of some reason. He performed twelve rak'ahs in the day (at the time of chaasht-before midday).  


Commentary

As tahajjud was fard on Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam only, then it is apparent that he performed qadaa. Had it not been fard – compulsory, then he performed qadaa because of it being meritorious and full of virtue. In the ‘Sahih Muslim’, Sayyidina 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu relates a saying of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam that 'If a person could not fulfil his wird (daily practices) and ma'mul (regular practices) at night, one should complete them anytime in the morning before noon. It will be just as if he had completed them at night'. The mashaa-ikh of suluk (spiritual guides) take from this that if one cannot get through one's daily and regular practices at night, one should complete them in the morning. Just because of the time passing by, one should not ignore it, otherwise the nafs – carnal desires will become accustomed to it.

(255) Hadith Number 8.

Hasrat Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says that Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam said: "When one awakens at night (for-tahajjud salaah), two short rak'ahs should, be performed at the beginning".   


Commentary

This is so that one may not become tired quickly by beginning to perform lengthy rak'ahs. Some 'ulama have written that these two rak'ahs are that of tahiyyatul wudu – two rak’ahs of entering wudu. It is also preferable to shorten these rak'ahs as we have been commanded to do. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam also shortened the rak'ahs of this prayer. Haafiz Ibn Hajar has written a fine point in his commentary on the Sahih Bukhaari. He says that it is stated in a hadith that when a man sleeps, the shaytaan fastens three knots in the hair like a magician, in which this spell is cast that the night is still very long, keep on sleeping. When one gets up and recites
the name of Allah (swt), i.e. a du'aa etc., the first knot loosens. When wudu is performed the second knot opens. Therefore it has been commanded that two short rak'ahs be performed, so that the third knot also opens. The remaining portion of the salaah will be performed, whilst one is free from the deceits of the shaytaan. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu' Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam was obviously free from the guile of the shaytaan, but as an example for the ummah, he considered their necessities and to teach them, many a time he shortened these rak'ahs as has been mentioned in the narrations.


(256) Hadith Number 9.

Hasrat Zayd bin Khaalid Al-Juhani Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I once made up my mind that today I will closely study how Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed his prayers. I lay down on the threshold of the house or a tent of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam (so that I may have a chance to observe with close attention). Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam first performed two short rak'ahs. After that he performed long, long, long rak'ahs. (Long is mentioned thrice because of the lengthy periods spent in the rak'ahs). Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then performed two rak'ahs shorter than the previous one's. Then performed two rak'ahs shorter than that. And again performed two rak'ahs shorter than the previous one. He again performed two rak'ahs shorter than that. He then performed the witr. All these (amounted to) thirteen rak'ahs".


Commentary

Those who are of the opinion that witr is one rak'ah, say that two rak'ahs nafl were performed six times and one rak'ah witr. The total of which is thirteen. Those who are of the opinion that witr is three rak'ahs, say that a total of fifteen rak'ahs were performed. Thirteen rak'ahs are counted in this manner, that the first two rak'ahs of tahiyyatul wudu are not included in a few narrations. "Then he performed two rak'ahs shorter than the previous one". This instead of being mentioned four times, is only mentioned thrice. In this case besides the two short rak'ahs of tahiyyatul wudu this is mentioned in the beginning, the total amounts to ten nafl rak’ahs. In such a case there is no other way but to accept witr as three rak'ahs. If witr is taken to be one rak'ah, then the total shall not amount to thirteen rak'ahs.
In this hadith it is mentioned that Sayyidina Zayd bin Khaalid AI-Juhani Radiyallahu 'Anhu slept on the threshold of the house or a tent of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam. A narrator of this hadith is in doubt that did the teacher say the threshold of the house or that of a tent. The muhadditheen (scholars of hadith) always took great care to convey the correct wordings. When in a little doubt, they always made this clear. It is evident that this was on the threshold of a tent, as this incident took place on a journey. When Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam was in Madina, he slept at the house of one of his blessed wives, and Sayyidina Zayd bin Khaalid Radiyallahu 'Anhu did not get a chance to observe this here. On a journey Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam may have slept alone in a tent, it is possible that none of his blessed wives were accompanying him. In such an instance this probability is understood. Therefore this is most correct. The majority of the 'ulama say, this incident was at the time of a journey. 


(257) Hadith Number 10.

Hasrat Abi Salamah bin 'Abdurrahmaan Radiyallahu 'Anhu says he asked Sayyidina 'Aayesha Radiyallahu 'Anha "How was the salaah (how many rak'ah tahajjud was performed) of Rasulullah Salla lahu Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam in Ramadaan? "She replied: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam did not perform more than eleven rak'ahs during Ramadhaan or after Ramadhaan. (Eight rak'ahs tahajjud and three rak'ahs witr). He performed four rak'ahs. Do not ask of its length or how wonderfully (i.e. with humbleness and concentration) it was performed. In the same manner he performed four more rak'ahs. In the same manner he again performed four rak'ahs, and do not ask of its length or how wonderfully it was performed. After that he performed three rakahs witr". Sayyidina Aayesha Radiyallahu 'Anha says: "I said: "O Messenger of Allah. Do you sleep before you perform witr?" He repiled: "O Aayeshah, my eyes sleep, but my heart remains awake". (This is a special gift to the Ambiyah (Prophets) asalaatu asalaam, that their hearts remain awake at all times)  


Commentary

There are very few important points in this hadith, of which two have been discussed already. Firstly, that Sayyidina Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says that Sayyidina Rasullullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam did not perform more than eleven ra'kahs in tahajjud in Ramadhaan or out of Ramadhaan. Whereas in the narration of Sayyidina ibn Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu, Sayyidina Zayd bin Khaalid Radiyallahu 'Anhu and other Sahaabah Radiyallahu 'Anhum, it s stated that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed thirteen ra'kahs. In a narration mentioned in Abu Daawud, Sayyiditina Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha in reply to a question from Sayyidina 'Abdullah bin Abi Qays Radiyallahu 'Anhu, herself counted the rak'ahs of tahajjud as follows: that four and two is six, and two equals eight, and two ten, plus three is thirteen. It is even narrated by Sayyiditina Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha herself that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed thirteen rak'ahs. Abu Daawud (Rh) informs us in a narration that it is reported from Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha that: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam did not perform (tahajjud) less than seven rak'ahs, or more than thirteen rak'ahs". In the Muwatta Imaam Maalik, it is narrated that Sayyiditina Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha said: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed thirteen rak'ahs at night. Then performed two short rak'ahs after the adhaan for the morning prayers were heard". Some'ulama, after having seen the various ahaadith on this subject said the ahaadith of Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha on this subject is confusing, which means it is weak. There is no necessity to say they are confusing. What perplexity can there be if eleven rak'ahs were performed generally? Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam may have at times performed more, or less rak'ahs than these, as is evident from a few ahaadith.
The second discussion is that a few people derive the mas'alah from this hadith, that taraweeh is eight rak'ahs. Whereas from this narration it also cannot be said that tahajjud is only eight rak'ahs, as has been mentioned previously. This hadith has nothing to do with Taraweeh. The literal meaning of salaatul layl is the ‘prayers of the night’. By it nothing besides tahajjud is meant. If every prayer of the night is intended, then with the taraweeh, the faraa-id and sunnan of maghrib and 'eshaa, all will be included, of which no solution can be found. In this only the tahajjud is mentioned, and the question is only intended for this salaah, which Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha kindly replied. The reason for asking is clear, that did Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam perform more acts of worship in Ramadaan than at normal times, as has been mentioned in several narrations. Therefore Sayyidina Abu Salamah Radiyallahu 'Anhu thought that it might be possible that more rak'ahs of tahajjud were performed. Upon inquiring, Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha replied in the negative. Otherwise it was also not the intention of Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha to leave aside the taraweeh. The rak'ahs of tahajjud were never more than eleven rak'ahs. The performing of thirteen rak'ahs has been confirmed Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha herself. On the subject of taraweeh, Maulana-Rashid-Ahmad Gangohi has written a detailed booklet 'Ar Ra'y an Najeeh’ in Urdu. Those who wish may refer to it. Briefly, in the ahaadith tahajjud is termed as salaatul layl (The prayer of the night), and taraweeh as Qiyaami Ramadhaan (The standing-in prayer-of Ramadhaan). These are two separate prayers. The consensus of many 'ulama is that by Qiyaami Ramadhaan, taraweeh is meant. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam paid much importance to the Qiyaam of Ramadhaan. In many ahaadith the importance of it has been stressed and practised also. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said: "The one that stands in prayer in Ramadhaan with sincere faith and hope, all his sins are forgiven".
( The ulama say by sins only the minor ones are intended). Sayyidina Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam did not enforce a command that qiyaam should be made in Ramadhaan, but rather persuaded or commanded one to do so. Sometimes Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed this salaah (Taraweeh) with a large congregation, and excused himself for not performing it continously, saying that it may then become fard. There are many reasons for it possibly becoming fard – compulsory by Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performing it regulary. Certainly the Sahaabah Radiyallahu Anhum, some individually and some in congregation performed this salaah till about the middle of the night, and at times a little longer. Sayyidina Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu instructed the people in the time of his khilaafah - leadership to perform taraweeh with jamaa'ah (congregation) and not individually to avoid confusion. Sayyidina Saa-ib Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "The Imaam generally recited those surahs that consists of a hundred aayaat. We use to lean on something because of the standing for lengthy period and the tiredness that resulted. This salaah ended before suhur (sehri)".  Many 'ulama have written the consensus of the Ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa'ah that taraweeh is sunnah. From among the Ahlul-Qiblah (The people of the Qibila) none besides the Rawaafid (Shi'ah) deny this. The four Imaams; Imaam Abu Hanifa RA, Imaam Shaafi'ee RA, Imaam Maalik RA, Imaam Humbal RA, all have mentioned this in their books of Fiqh (jurisprudence), that taraweeh is twenty rak'ahs sunnah mu-akkidah. According to Imaam Maalik RA, a famous saying of his is that taraweeh is thirty six rak'ahs. In the 'Mughni' a famous book of Hambali fiqh, it is stated that the view of Ahmed bin Humbal RA is, that the most accepted saying is that taraweeh is twenty rak'ahs. This is also the madh-hab of Sufyaan Thaury RA, Imaam Abu Hanifa RA, and Imaam Shafi'ee RA. The madh-hab of Imaam Malik RA, is that it is thirty six rak'ahs. Imaam Malik RA said: "An envoy of the king came to me, that a concession be given in the rak'ahs of taraweeh. I rejected this ". A student of Imaam Maalik RA says : "Thirty nine rak'ahs were performed in Madinah. i.e. Thirty six for taraweeh, and three witr". This subject has been discussed in detail in the book 'Awjaz'. My respected tutors said: 'The thirty six rak'ahs that were performed in Madina, of those, twenty were of taraweeh, between every taraweeh (stop after every four rak'ahs) it is mustahab – preferable to rest the time it took to complete the four rak'ahs. Therefore the people performed four rak'ahs nafl in the Taraweeh. Hence the sixteen rak'ahs performed in the four taraweehs become extra. Anyhow, this is the madh-hab of the Maaliki's. The most accepted madh-hab of the remaining three Imaams are that it is twenty rak'ahs. 


(258) Hadith Number 11

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha say "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed eleven rak'ahs at night, of which one was a rak'ah of witr. When he completed this he slept on the right side".  


Commentary

This hadith contradicts the previous one, in which eight rak'ahs have been mentioned. For this reason some 'ulama have commented on the ahaadith of Sayyiditina 'Aayesha Radiyallahu 'Anha on this subject, which has already been discussed in the previous hadith. As a further explanation, this could also be said that this happened at different occasions. At times Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed eight rak'ahs and at times more or less. The second question is about witr been mentioned as one rak'ah. There exists some differences regarding this salaah, the first is in its ordinance. The Hanafis say it is waajib and some Imaams say it is mustahab. As the hadith does not mention this, this question is omitted. Another difference is regarding the rak'ahs of witr. The madh-hab of Imaam Abu Hanifa RA is that witr consists of three collective rak'ahs with one salaam. Other Imaams are of the opinion that it is performed in a single rak'ah. A difference of opinion exists on this too. Some say it is only one single rak’ah. Some say it is one rak'ah with two separate wajib rak'ahs and a salaam before it. Various narrations have been mentioned regarding this. The difference among the a-immah are, on which of these is preferable. The Hanafis support their view with a few ahaadith:

1. The narration of Sayyidina 'Abdullah bin Abi Qays Radiyallahu 'Anhu that has been mentioned by Abu Daawud and others, which has been discussed already in the previous hadith, where Sayyiditina 'Aayesha Radiyallahu 'Anha has mentioned that the salaah of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam consisted of four and three, six and three, eight and three and ten and three. To mention this with such trouble and at every place mention three without increasing or decreasing the number of witr rak'ahs, is a clear proof that in this salaah there is no increase or decrease and remains three rak'ahs. Otherwise Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha would have said seven, nine, eleven, and not six and three etc.

2. Mulla'Ali Qaari has written that the proof of the Hanafiyyah is that there is a consensus among the Sahaabah Radiyallahu 'Anhum that it is jaa-iz (permissible) and preferable that witr is three rak'ahs and there is a difference of opinion in rak'ahs less than this. Some say one rak'ah is also jaa-iz, others say it is altogether not jaa-iz. It is apparent that the consensus of the Sahaabah Radiyallahu 'Anhum is stronger and better than the one wherein there exist discordant views. Sayyidina Hasan Basri Radiyallahu 'Anhu, a famous muhaddith and one of the great sufis, say that there is a consensus among the Muslims that witr consists of three rak'ahs. Umar bin 'Abdul'aziz RA. - the second 'Umar- passed a law after consulting the 'ulama of Madinah, that witr must be performed in three rak'ahs. Hasan RA. was asked a question that 'Abdullah bin 'Umar performed three rak'ahs of witr with a salaam at the end of the second rak'ah and performed the third rak'ah separately? He replied: "His father 'Umar performed the three rak'ahs of witr with one salaam, and he (Sayyidina'Umar Radiyallahu'Anhu) was more learned".

3. It has been prohibited in the ahaadith to perform only a single rak'ah. Sayyidina 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud Radiyallahu 'Anhu was informed that Sayyidina Sa'd Radiyallahu 'Anhu performed only a single rak'ah of witr. He said: "A single rak'ah is not valid in salaah". The Hanafis put forth many proofs from different sources. The 'ulama have written many books on it. In this chapter the fiqhi angle has not been discussed. It is briefly and sufficiently highlighted.


(259) Hadith Number 12.

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha reports that: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed nine rak'ahs at night". 
 


Commentary

In the madh-hab of the Hanafis this is six rak'ahs tahajjud and three rak'ahs witr. In a narration from Sayyidina 'Abdullah bin Abi Qays Radiyallahu 'Anhu, Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha herself has said the words: 'Six and three'.


(260) Hadith Number 13. 
 

Hasrat Hudhayfah bin Al Yamaan Radiyallahu 'Anhu says he performed salaah with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam one night. (It has been reported in a few narrations that this incident took place during a night of Ramadaan. It is possible that this was tahajjud or Taraweeh salaah). After commencing the salaah he recited: 
 

Allahu Akbar, dhul malakuti wal jabaruti wal kibri-yaa-i wal a-za-mati


Translation: Allah is supreme! Lord of Dominion, Power, Majesty, and Magnificence. 
 

Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then recited (after the Faatihah) Surah Baqarah, and performed ruku'. The length of the ruku' was as long as the qiyaam (standing posture). (The 'ulama give two meanings to this and both are possible. The first is that the ruku' was as long as the qiyaam. For example, if the qiyaam was for one hour, the ruku' was also for about one hour. Accordingly, this mas-alah is established, that if the ruku' and sajdah are longer than normal, the salaah will be valid. The second is that the qiyaam was longer than normal. In this instance if the qiyaam was for an hour, and the ruku' for fifteen minutes, then too it will be truly explaining this hadith. According to this saying the salaah remains in the normal manner. i.e. a fundamental action of salaah that was long, like qiyaam, remained long. Those that were short, like ruku' or sajdah, remained short. However every fundamental action was longer than normal).  Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam repeated:

Subhaana rabbiyal azimi-Subhaana rabbiyal azimi

Translation: Glory be to my Lord the Magnificient. 
 

Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam lifted his blessed head from the ruku' and stood. This standing was also long like that of the ruku'. At this moment he repeated:  

Li rabbiyal hamdu-Li rabbiyal hamdu.

Translation: All praises are for my Lord. All praises are for my Lord.

Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then performed the sajdah. The sajdah was as long as the qawmah (standing in between the ruku' and sajdah). and recited:  

Subhaana rabbiyal aa'laa-Subhaana rabbiyal aa'laa


Translation: Glory be to my Lord the Exalted. Glory be to my Lord the Exalted. 
 

Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then sat up from the sajdah. This sitting was also long as that of the sajdah. Here he repeated:  

Rabbigh-fir lee-Rabbig-fir lee

Translation: O Lord forgive me. O Lord forgive me. 
 

Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam recited in this salaah; Surah Baqarah, Surah Aali 'Imraan, Surah Nisaa, Surah Maa-idah or Surah An'aam. The narrator (Sayyidina Shu'ba Radiyallahu'Anhu) is in doubt regarding the last two surahs, whether is it Maa-idah or An'aam.  

Commentary

This hadith apparently indicates that these four surahs were recited in four rak'ahs. The narration of Abu Daawud (Rh) is more detailed and it is stated therein that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed four rak'ahs wherein he recited these four surahs. However in a narration of Sahih Muslim and others it is mentioned that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi  Wasallam recited Surah Baqarah, Surah Nisaa and Surah Aali 'Imraan, all three in one rak'ah. The narration of Abu Daawud and Imam Muslim apparently seem to be on different occasions. Although it may also be possible that this is the same event and an error may have occurred in transmission. It is not necessary to suppose it is an error in transmission, as Sayyidina. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam daily performed lengthy prayers. There could be no perplexity if four surah' were recited in four rak'ahs once, and three surahs in one rak'ah at another time. 
 


(261) Hadith Number 14.

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says: "Once at night (tahajjud salaah time), Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam kept on repeating one aayah."    

Commentary

The aayah is the last aayah of Surah Maa-idah:
 In tu-adh-dhib-hum fa-innahum 'ibaaduk. Wa in tagh-fir lahum fa-innaka antal azizul hakim
Translation.. "If Thou punish them, lo! they are Thy slaves, and if Thou forgive them, (lo! they are Thy slaves).Lo! Thou, only Thou, art Mighty, the Wise".
 Surah Maa-idah, 118.

The Being that possesses great power, if He wills, He may forgive the criminal. The One that is all Wise, there is Wisdom and benefit in every act of His. The reason for Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam reciting this aayah while standing and also in the ruku and sajdah, and repeating it many times, is to bring to mind the two attributes of Allah, namely the attributes of justice and forgiveness. The balance on the day of qiyaamah will be of these two things. It is stated that Imaam Aa'zam Abu Hanifah RA. also recited the following aayah the whole night:
Wamtaazul yauma ayyuhal mujrimun

Translation. "But avaunt ye, O ye guilty, this day!" SurahYaseen, 58
 

In this aayah too the day of qiyaamah is portrayed. That is the day the sinners should separate and distinguish themselves. What a severe and nerve-chilling command this is. Today they are together with the pious and holy people and benefiting from the barakaat (blessings) they receive, but at this moment the sinners will be separated from them. May the Most Merciful Allah with His Grace keep those pious souls under His shadow, otherwise it is really a time for great trials. May we be amongst the pious on that day. Ameen    


(262) Hadith Number 15.  

Hasrat 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports: "Once at night I performed salaah with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam stood for such a long time that I intended to commit an evil deed". Someone asked him what deed did you intend to commit? He replied. "To sit down and leave Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam alone".  


Commentary

This may have two meanings. If I sit and perform salaah, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam will remain standing alone. This was said to be a bad action and a sign of disrespect. There is a possibility that by saying 'sit down’, he meant ending his prayer. It is clear that this is rude, bad and shows disrespect and carelessness, that while performing salaah with Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam, to end the niyyah - intention and sit down. While standing he became tired, then this type of thoughts entered his mind. 
  

(263) Hadith Number 16

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed salaah (in old age) in a sitting posture (due to reciting lengthy portions) When about thirty or forty aayaat were left he stood up and recited (completed) these. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then performed the ruku' and sajdah. This was repeated in the second rak'ah".   


Commentary

A group among the 'Ulama have stated that it is not jaa-iz for a person performing salaah in a sitting posture to stand up - then perform the ruku' and sajdah. The majority of the 'ulama including the four a-immah say it is jaa-iz (permissible) to do so. Likewise it is also jaa-iz to stand and perform these. This applies only to nafl salaah. It is not permissible for the able-bodied who can stand, to sit and perform the fard salaah.

(264) Hadith Number 17

Hasrat 'Abdullah bin Shaqeeq Radiyallahu' 'Anhu reports that he asked Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha regarding the nawaafil prayers. She replied: "Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed nawaafil in the long part of the night whilst standing, and performed nawaafil in the long part of the night whilst sitting. His noble habit was that if he stood and recited (the Qur-aan) he performed ruku' and sajdah in a standing posture. If he recited whilst sitting, he performed the ruku' and sajdah in a sitting posture".  


Commentary

The 'ulama give two meanings of the phrase 'long part of the night'. One is that a long portion was recited whilst standing and a long portion whilst sitting. The second is that this is the description of different nights. On some nights he recited lengthy sections whilst standing and on some nights he recited lengthy sections whilst sitting. The second explanation is more appropriate, which means it was the practice of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam always to recite lengthy sections in the rak'ahs of tahajjud. If he sometimes felt weak he sat and performed the tahajjud, otherwise he stood and performed it.
The last section of this hadith seems to contradict the previous one. The 'ulama have mentioned that both incidents are on separate occasions. The stipulation of nawaafil is on strength, willingness and happiness. Whatever strength and temperament was experienced at the time, salaah was performed accordingly. Besides, many acts of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam were meant to educate. He performed many deeds to let the people know that certain deeds could be performed in a particular manner. This is known as bayan jawaaz (sign of permissibility). Therefore Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam received the full reward for performing salaah in a sitting posture. Others will receive full reward for performing salaah in a standing posture and only half for sitting and performing salaah. The reason being that by Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam sitting and performing salaah, he was fulfilling an object of the nubuwwah (Prophethood). The aim and mission of a Nabi – Prophet, is to give a practical demonstration on how deeds are to be performed.

(265) Hadith Number 18.
 

Sayyidina Hafsah Radiyallahu 'Anha, the wife of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam reports: " Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed salaah while sitting. He recited surah in it, and recited with such tarteel (distinct and clear intonation), that the surah became longer than one that is lengthier".    

Commentary

A small surah recited with tarteel and qira-ah, can take the same time as it takes to recite a longer surah (if recited in an ordinary manner). Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam recited the Qur-aan with calmness and little by little. He did not recite with haste. The time it took him to recite a small surah, takes another person the same time to recite a long surah. The reason his blessed feet swelled, was due to standing for long periods.

(266) Hadith Number 19.

Sayyidina Aayesha Radiyallahu 'Anha reports: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed most of his (nafl) salaah in a sitting posture before he passed away".   


Commentary

This was the period when Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam had become weak and he recited lengthy portions of the Qur-aan, as has been mentioned previously. He performed the major part of the nafl salaah whilst sitting for this reason. The ajr (thawaab- reward) for sitting and performing salaah is half that of performing salaah in a standing posture. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam is exempted from this rule. For Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam to sit and perform salaah, is the same in reward as that of standing and performing salaah as mentioned above. A narration has been mentioned in the Abu Daawud and other books that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said: "I am not like you in this manner. I receive the same amount of ajr (thawaab-reward) when sitting and performing salaah".


(267) Hadith Number 20.

Hasrat Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports: "I performed two rak'ahs before and after Zuhr, and two rak'ahs after Maghrib with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam in his house, and (also) two rak'ahs after 'Ishaa in his house".   

Commentary

The sunnah prayers are mentioned in this hadith. The importance of sunnah mu-akkidah according to the Hanafis are the same as that mentioned in the hadith of Sayyidina Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu. The sunnah of Zuhr are four instead of two according to the Hanafis. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said in many ahaadith: "The one that continually and habitually performs twelve rak'ahs every day and night, Allah Ta'aala creates for him a house in Jannah". The. details of the twelve rak'ahs have been mentioned in many ahaadith from Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallah 'Anha and Sayyiditina Umm Habibah Radiyallahu' Anha, in which the same view is mentioned as the one narrated by Sayyidina Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu. 'Anhu. Certainly in these narrations it is stated that four rak'ahs were performed before the Zuhr fard. It is reported in a hadith: "The one that performs four rak'ahs with one salaam before zuhr, the doors of the heavens open up for that person", which means it is quickly accepted.
Bukhaari and Muslim narrate a hadith that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam never omitted the four rak'ahs before Zuhr. Musnad Ahmad, Abu Daawud and others have written a hadith of Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha that: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed four rak'ahs in the house before going for salaah". Apparently it seems Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed the sunnan at home, then went into the masjid, as mentioned by Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha and others. A detailed narration of Sayyiditina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha is mentioned in the Abu Daawud, wherein she states: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed four rak'ahs in my house, then went to the masjid and led the fard salaah. Thereafter he returned to the house and performed two rak'ahs '. He came to my house after maghrib salaah and performed two rak'ahs. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam also came after the 'Ishaa salaah and performed two rak'ahs, and after the subh saadiq performed two rak'ahs, then went for (the fajr) salaah". From this detailed hadith we find that the sunnan were often performed at home. When Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam did come to the masjid, it is probable that the tahiyyatul masjid (two rak’aats nafl performed upon entering the masjid) was performed. Sayyidina Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports, and this may be possible, that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam some- times because of necessity may have performed only two rak'ahs sunnan. Sayyidina Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu saying in the hadith under discussion: "That he performed salaah with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam", does not mean that he performed them with jamaa'ah (in congregation). Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed his sunnan and I (Sayyidina Ibn'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu) also performed my sunnan. It has not been ascertained that sunnan prayers were performed with jamaa'ah (besides the taraweeh in Ramadaan).  

(268) Hadith Number 21.  

Hasrat Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports.. "Hafsah (my sister, Ummul Mu-mineen) related to me that when the time of fajr began (subh saadiq), and the mu-adh-dhin called out the adhaan, Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed two short rak-'ahs".   

Commentary

Regarding the sunnan of fajr salah, it has been stated in most of the narrations that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam shortened its rak'ahs. To the extent that some 'ulama say, only the Surah Faatiha (Alhamdu lillah hi) should be recited and it is not necessary to add a surah to it. The fact is, that it has been ascertained that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam recited a surah therein. Certainly it is better to recite a short surah. A narration in the Sahih Muslim is mentioned that Sayyidina Rasullullah Salla lahu 'Alayh wa’ale hi Wasallam recited the surahs of Kaafirun and AI-Ikhlaas in this sunnan. Other surahs have also been reported in the ahaadith. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam has said. "How wonderful these two surahs are, that they are recited in the sunnahs of the fajr salaah".


(269) Hadith Number 22.

Hasrat Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I memorised from Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam eight raka-aat; two before zuhr and two after zuhr; two rak'ahs after maghrib and two after 'Ishaa". Hasrat Ibn 'Urnar Radiyallahu'Anhu said.. "Hafsah related to me about the two rak'ahs of the morning, which I did not observe from Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam".   


Commentary

Since these two rak'ahs were almost always performed in the house and mostly at the time of fajr, the mind is not attentive. Therefore, it is not impossible for Sayyidina Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu to say this. Some 'ulama are of the opinion that the meaning of 'not observing it', is that he had not seen it at the time Sayyiditina Hafsah Radiyallahu 'Anha had seen it. He had the opportunity of observing it later as we find in a few narrations, where Sayyidina Ibn'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu describes his observance of these sunnan. Of all the sunnan units of prayer, the one of the fajr is the most emphasised. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam many a time emphasised its importance. For this reason the ulama have declared it waajib. Particular importance should therefore be attached to it.

(270) Hadith Number 23.  

Hasrat 'Abdullah bin Shaqeeq Radiyallahu'Anhu reports: "I asked Sayyidina 'Aayeshah about the (nawaafil) prayers of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam?". She replied: "Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam used to perform two rak'ahs before and two after zuhr. Two after maghrib and two after 'Ishaa, and two before fajr". 
  

Commentary

Besides the two rak'ahs before the Zuhr, the rak'ahs mentioned are the same as that of the Hanafi madh-hab. The view of the Hanafis is that the sunnan before Zuhr consists of four rak'ahs. This has been mentioned previously in the commentary of the hadith narrated by Sayyidina Ibn 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu. A hadith of Sayyiditina, 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha is mentioned in the Sahih Bukhaari that: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam did not neglect the performing of four rak'ahs before Zuhr, and two rak'ahs before Fajr". Meaning he performed them regularly. Therefore, it shall be said that this (performing of only two rak'ahs before Zuhr) was because of some necessity.

(271) Hadith Number 24.

Hasrat 'Aa-sim bin Damrah Radiyallahu'Anhu says: "We asked' Sayyidina Ali ‘Radiyallahu'Anhu about the nawaafil that Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed in the day". (He must have known already about the nawaafil of the night i.e. tahajjud etc. Many well known narrations have been narrated regarding the tahajiud) 'Sayyidina Ali Radiyallahu 'Anhu replied: "You do not have the strength to perform these." (i.e. The importance, punctuality, humility and humbleness Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam attached to performing these prayers, cannot be fulfilled. The reason for saying this was to admonish, as what benefit is there simply by asking and investigating, until an effort is not made to practise these) We replied: "The one amongst us who has the strength, will perform it"., (Those who do not possess the strength, will learn so that others could be guided and an effort will be made to practise). 'Sayyidina Ali Radiyallahu 'Anhu said: "In the morning when the sun rises to the height of that, the same as it is at the time for 'Asr. At that time Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam performed two rak'ahs (Salaatul ish-raaq). When the sun rose in the east to the height, where it is in the west at the time of Zuhr salaah, Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam performed four rak'ahs (salaatut duha), explained in the ensuing chapter. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam performed four rak'ahs before the salaah of Zuhr, and two after (These six rak'ahs are sunnah mu-akkidah). Four rak'ahs were performed before 'Asr (These four rak’ahs are sunnan ghair mu-akkidah). In between the four rak'ahs he sat and sent salutations on the malaa-ikah.muqarrabeen, the ammbiyaa and the mu-mineen". 
  


Commentary

The tashahhud (At-tahiyyaat) may be referred to here, as in it the words "Assalamu'al'ayka ayyuhan nabiyu…… are mentioned. In this case where four rak'ahs are mentioned, all are included herein. This may also be possible that it means salaam was made after two rak'ahs. The aim will then be that in the four rak'ahs before 'Asr salaat, two salaams were made. It has been ascertained that both types, two and four rak'ahs were performed before 'Asr salaat. Sayyidina 'Ali Radiyallahu 'Anhu has himself also narrated both hadith.
 

Studying Ash-Shaam-il  

The worship and devotion of Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam)  

Pray as you have seen me pray 

Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) is the greatest worshipper. He prayed so long that his blessed legs would become swollen. 

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, divided the night into six parts. Four out of the first five parts would pray, in the sixth and final part would sleep.

Hasrat Abdullah ibn Masud (ra) stayed at Rasulullah’s salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam house and witnessed his prayer. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam woke up and recited last ten verses of Surah Ali’Imran. Prayed thirteen rak’ahs tahujjud, in the night. The first rak’aah should be short. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam would pray two short rak’aah then two long rak’aah.

In Ramadan, Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam prayed no more than 11 rak’aah.
 Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam did qadaa, of nafl worship. This demonstrated if you miss your ‘wird’, you should make it up the following day. We should not become heedless because when you begin to miss your nawaafil Ibaadat, Shaytaan is happy because then you will start to miss your Sunnah, then eventually the Farz. 

The Witr salaah, is Sunnah and this is prayed in odd number. Maghrib salaah, is the witr of the day. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam prayed nafl sitting, then did Ruku standing. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam would recite ‘If Thou punish them, lo! they are Thy slaves, and if Thou forgive them, (lo! they are Thy slaves).Lo! Thou, only Thou, art Mighty, the Wise".