Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Am I a hypocrite if I never do isha and fajr in the masjid? Its not like I don’t want to to, its just I can’t drive, my parents usually don’t want to take me, and the masjid is a 20 minute drive from my house.

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I hope you are in the best of health and spirits, insha’Allah.

No, you are not a hypocrite.

The Narration

‘No prayer (salat) is more burdensome upon the hypocrites than the dawn (fajr) prayer and the night (`isha) prayer’ [Bukhari]

There is much virtue in attending these prayers due to the difficulty imposed upon the lower-self (nafs) in doing so and it is a huge encouragement, from the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace), for attending the congregational prayer in the mosque – though, by not attending, it certainly does not make one a hypocrite.

Praying in Congregation

According to the Hanafi school, praying in congregation is a highly emphasized sunnah (sunnah mu’akkadah). It would be optimally, though not only, fulfilled by praying in a mosque.

Moreover, if there is genuine hardship in reaching the mosque, such as its being far away, the initial blameworthiness, of missing the congregation, would be lifted.

[Ibn `Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar; Shurunbulali, Imdad al-Fattah]

When you get a chance to pray in the mosque, strive to do so. Otherwise, ‘In the bounty of God, and His mercy — in that let them rejoice’ [10:58] And actions are only by intentions. Make your intention for Allah, rely upon Him and realize that the paths to Him are many.

And Allah alone gives success.

Wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

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