Question: I was praying behind someone (not a scholar or imam, a family member). They had said bismillah, and I believe they paused for more than three seconds. Then, they recited Fatiha. They were unaware of the ruling. In that case, would I need to repeat that prayer?
In the Name of Allah, the Merciful and Compassionate,
I hope you are doing well, insha’Allah.
The pause that entails delaying the necessary (wajib) acts of prayer is one that is (a) the extent of three unhurried tasbih (saying ‘Subhan Allah’) and (b) is without engaging in the actions of the prayer. [Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar] The actions of prayer include breathing; gathering one’s thoughts; etc.
Assume the pause in question was brief, and assume validity.
And Allah is the giver of success and facilitation.
Shaykh Faraz Rabbani spent ten years studying with some of the leading scholars of recent times, first in Damascus, and then in Amman, Jordan. His teachers include the foremost theologian of recent times in Damascus, the late Shaykh Adib al-Kallas (may Allah have mercy on him), as well as his student Shaykh Hassan al-Hindi, one of the leading Hanafi fuqaha of the present age. He returned to Canada in 2007, where he founded SeekersGuidance in order to meet the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge–both online and on the ground–in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner. He is the author of: Absolute Essentials of Islam: Faith, Prayer, and the Path of Salvation According to the Hanafi School (White Thread Press, 2004.) Since 2011, Shaykh Faraz has been named one of the 500 most influential Muslims by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center.