Was My Prayer Invalid Because I Pronounced an ’Ayn Instead of Alif?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I was praying Isha and in the third rak’a, I suddenly doubted whether it was ’Iyyāka with alif or ’Iyyāka with ’ayn. I decided to go with ’ayn. Then in the fourth rak’a, I said ’Iyyāka with an alif, reasoning that I am accustomed to that, so it must be right. I checked a book afterward and saw it is an alif. Also, I am suffering from viral fever and a sore throat, so sometimes the words come out raspy. What can I do about that?

Answer

Thank you for your question.

’Ayn and Alif

Your prayer needs to be repeated. My teacher recommended that you focus on the pronunciation outside of the prayer, and focus on the meaning inside the prayer. He said the prayer shouldn’t be a philological exam, it is something that anyone can do, and do with focus and meaning.

Raspy Voice

If your voice is raspy because of a cold, it has no effect on the validity of your prayers, as long as you are still pronouncing your letters from their correct points of articulation (Makhārij).

Please see more details here:
Mispronunciation of the Fatiha
Invalidation of Prayer by Inaccurate Pronunciation
Validity of Prayer

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.