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Missed Necessary Actions and Makeup Prayers

Ustadh Tabraze Azam answers a question regarding necessary (wajib) actions in the Hanafi prayer and whether prayers without them are valid.

Question:

I’m 20 years old and sometimes I pray Fajr on time, but mostly as a qada. I never used to recite any other sura after sura Fatiha. I’m not sure who told me to do this but I prayed that way for 2 to 3 years.

Do I need to start making those Fajr prayers again?

Answer:

Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmat Allah wa barakatuh.

I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha Allah.

Your Fajr prayers are considered valid and you will be rewarded for them, insha Allah. Therefore, you do not need to repeat them.

According to the Hanafi school, it is necessary (wajib) to recite the extent of three verses or their equivalent after the Fatiha during the first two cycles (rak‘ats) of the prayer (which is another necessary action). (Shurunbulali, Maraqi al Falah; Ala al Din Abidin, Al Hadiyya al Ala’iyya)

And Allah alone gives success.

Wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.


How Make up My Missed Prayers from Travel?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

I’ve a lot of prayers to make up. I also travel quite a bit as well. I do not know how many traveler’s prayers I missed, but I know how many prayers I have to catch up on. Can I pray all my prayers at full length?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

No, you need to make up your missed prayers from travel shortened (i.e. the four cycle prayers are to be shortened to two cycles). The basis is that prayers are to be made up as they are missed. Hence, if you missed the prayer whilst travelling, you would make it up as such. If you aren’t sure how many prayers this relates to, you should make a reasonable estimate.

[Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah, with Tahtawi’s Gloss (2.17)]

Please also see this answer.

And Allah Most High knows best.

wassalam,

[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

Is It Sinful to Pray Less Than Two Days’ Worth of Missed Prayers Daily?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

I’ve missed 6 years of prayers. I read that if you are not making up at least 2 days worth of prayers every day, you would be considered negligent. But sometimes, on days when I am really tired or sleepy, I only pray 1 day’s worth of makeup prayers. Am I sinning?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

No, it is not sinful to pray less than two days’ worth of missed prayers (qada’) daily.

The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Anyone who forgets a prayer should pray it when he remembers it and that is the only expiation he has to do for it. ‘Establish the prayer for My remembrance.'” [Bukhari]

Generally, there are two positions regarding the obligation of making up missed prayers: (1) they must be performed as soon as possible, and (2) their performance may be delayed. The former is what most jurists relied upon as the soundest position, yet they permitted delay in the case of legitimate excuses.

It is possible that some scholars may suggest two days’ worth of prayers, for instance, by way of encouragement, setting a standard, and as a particular manner of acting upon the general duty to make up prayers as soon as reasonably possible.

Nevertheless, it is important to be aware that you must strive to complete all missed prayers, including the Witr, during your lifetime. As a consequence, you need to keep track of what you owe so that it can be taken care of by your inheritors in the case of death before completion.

Please note that maintaining the order (tartib) between the makeup prayers is only a condition in the case a person has less than six prayers in their dues. Otherwise, makeup prayers may be made up in any order, even in reverse.

[Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah with Tahtawi’s Gloss (2.34); Ibn `Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar `ala al-Durr al-Mukhtar (1.493)]

Please also see: Sickness and Expiation (Fidya) for Missed Prayers and: A Reader on Missed Prayers and: Do You Have to Pray Make Up Prayers in Order? and: How to Make up Years of Missed Prayers? (Shafi’i)

And Allah Most High alone knows best.

wassalam,
[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

Should I Make up Missed Witr Prayers?

Answered by Ustadh Salman Younas

Question: Assalam aleykum

I have missed a lot of prayers in the past, and i am slowly making them up. I have read that the opinion of Imam Muhammad and Abu Yusuf is that the witr prayer is not wajib. Can I take this opinion and not make them up?

Answer: assalamu alaykum

The position of Abu Yusuf and Muhammad is that witr is a sunna and not wajib. Despite this, the position famously narrated from them is that one has to make-up the witr prayer if it is missed.

The reason for this is the prophetic statement, “Whoever misses witr due to sleep or forgetfulness should perform it when he recalls it.” [Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud] Therefore, although the basis was that witr as a sunna did not have to be made up when missed, both Abu Yusuf and Muhammad left this line of reasoning due to the prophetic tradition.

As such, you should try your best to make-up the witr prayers that you missed.

[al-Muhit al-Burhani (2:267); Tuhfa al-Muluk (90); Durr al-Mukhtar (90)]

[Ustadh] Salman Younas

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Salman Younas graduated from Stony Brook University with a degree in Political Science and Religious Studies. After studying the Islamic sciences online and with local scholars in New York, Ustadh Salman moved to Amman. There he studies Islamic law, legal methodology, belief, hadith methodology, logic, Arabic, and tafsir.

What Is the Nature of Destiny? [Video]

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question: Assalamu alaykum

What is the nature of destiny?

Answer:  Wa’leykum Salam,

Here is a video answer by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani to this question:

Shaykh Faraz Rabbani is a scholar and researcher of Islamic law and Executive Director of SeekersHub Global After ten years overseas, Shaykh Faraz returned to Canada in the Summer of 2007. In May 2008 he founded SeekersHub Global to deal with the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge—both online and on the ground—in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner. He has been repeatedly listed as one of the world’s 500 most influential Muslims (The Muslim500).

Should I Make up Prayers Missed Because of Religious Ignorance?

Answered by Ustadh Salman Younas

Question: I am 20 years old and I started prayer when I was 16. I should’ve started when I was 13. My parents never really taught us to pray and I wasn’t really religious at that time. When I was 16 I started to look into Islam myself and that’s when faith really entered my heart. So I didn’t miss my prayer out of laziness but because of ignorance. Do I still need to make up the years of missed prayers?

Answer: assalamu alaykum

You would have to make up any obligatory prayers you missed after attaining puberty even if they were missed due to ignorance.

Ignorance was deemed an excuse by some scholars for those who were newly converted to Islam in non-Muslim lands who did not perform the obligatory prayers due to lacking knowledge of its obligation. This related back to the notion that moral obligation to the divine law depends upon it reaching one (bulugh), namely the knowledge of the obligation of specific acts. However, what is of consideration is not actually possessing knowledge of an act being obligatory but the possibility of attaining this knowledge. In Islamic lands, this possibility is assumed to exist, while in non-Muslim lands it is not or is deemed insufficiently present.

In addition to the fact that this ruling would likely be difficult to apply to one born in a Muslim household, the reality of non-Muslim lands today is not the same as conceived by classical jurists. Indeed, Muslims are well-established and settled in these lands; many of them are indigenous peoples. There are mosques, religious institutions, and easier access to knowledge as well. All of this could effect the original ruling mentioned in the classical texts.

My advice to you would be to make an estimate of the obligatory prayers you missed and make them up gradually. It is not important for you to think about the number and duration it will take to complete these prayers but to simply begin performing them seeking the pleasure of God through the fulfillment of what He has obligated on us. Keep in mind the words of the Prophet (God bless him) that the most beloved of actions are those that are consistent even if small in number. So, take on a reasonable load and make these extra prayers a means to draw closer to God.

Wassalam,
[Ustadh] Salman Younas

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Salman Younas graduated from Stony Brook University with a degree in Political Science and Religious Studies. After studying the Islamic sciences online and with local scholars in New York, Ustadh Salman moved to Amman. There he studies Islamic law, legal methodology, belief, hadith methodology, logic, Arabic, and tafsir.

Do I Have to Make up the Confirmed Sunna Prayers?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question: Assalam alaykum,

Do I have to make up the confirmed sunna prayers?

Answer: Wa alaykum assalam,

I hope you’re doing well, insha’Allah..

No, confirmed sunnas are not made up after their time. [Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah; Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

No Make Ups for Missed Sunnas—But the Sunna of Not Losing Out

However, it is a general sunna to perform an equivalent amount of voluntary sunnas to “make up for” the lost reward of recently missed sunnas.

This also has the benefit of

(1) not breaking one’s spiritual routines completely—as routines are the key to attainment;
(2) making one’s wayward self (nafs) uphold discipline, in order to restrain it; and
(3) not to lose out on the opportunity for reward and going good—in affirmation of our commitment to seek Allah, to love Allah, and to always seek His closeness and presence in our life.

While this is not expected—nor considered a substitute nor actual make up (qada’) for missed sunnas—it is understood from the Prophet’s personal habit (peace and blessings be upon him). Umar ibn al-Khattab (Allah be pleased with him) related that the Beloved Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him and his folk) said, “Whoever sleeps through their routine (hizb) of night worship—or any part of it—and performs it between Fajr prayer and Zuhr prayer shall have it recorded as if they actually performed it at night.” [Related by Muslim]

And Allah is the giver of success and facilitation.

[Shaykh] Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Faraz Rabbani is a scholar and researcher of Islamic law and translator of several Arabic works to the English language. After ten years overseas, Shaykh Faraz returned to Canada in the Summer of 2007. In May 2008 he founded SeekersGuidance to deal with the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge—both online and on the ground—in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner.

What Should I Do in Regard to My Prayers When I Am Confused About the Beginning and Ending of My Period?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question:Assalam alaykum,

1. I went to sleep without having my period. When I woke before sunrise but after the Fajr prayer time has entered I was menstruating. Should I make up this Fajr prayer?

2. Once my period ended, I was unsure whether or not it ended before or after the time for Dhuhr prayer. Should I pray it just in case?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

(1) No, you do not need to make up the prayer in which the menstrual period began. The basis is that if you are menstruating at the end of the prayer time, you do not need to make up that prayer.

(2) You should use a kursuf to determine the end of your menstrual period. [see: White Discharge and Preventing Discharge from Breaking Wudu]

[Ibn `Abidin, Manhal al-Waridin min Bihar al-Fayd `ala Dhukhr al-Muta’ahhilin fi Masa’il al-Hayd (268)]

And please also see: Discolored Menstrual Blood & When To Stop Praying

And Allah Most High alone knows best.

wassalam,
Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Am I Considered to Have Missed the Obligatory Prayer If I Am Still Praying While the Time of the Prayer Exits?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: As salam alaykum,

Am I considered to have missed the obligatory prayer if I am still praying while the time of the prayer exits?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

I pray this finds you well, insha’Allah.

The only prayer which is invalidated by the ending of the specified time is Fajr. If sunrise occurs during the prayer, it would invalidate your prayer, and you would need to repeat the prayer after sunrise, some fifteen to twenty minutes or so later.

Please see: Is My Prayer Valid if I Finish Praying Outside its Respective Prayer Time?

And Allah knows best.

wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Can I Pray Sunnah Prayers Before Making up Obligatory Prayers? (Shafi’i)

Answered by Shaykh Shuaib Ally

Question: Assalam alaykum,

Is it permissible to pray tarawih, tahajjud, and the other sunnah prayers and then proceed to make up missed obligatory prayers?

What are the sunnah prayers according to the Shafi’i school?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

Making up Missed Prayers

In the Shafi’i school, one must immediately make up missed obligatory prayers to the extent of one’s ability. This means that it is not permissible for a person to spend their available time on non-obligatory prayers in its stead.

It is permissible to perform the Witr prayer as one rak’at, although continuously doing so is disliked.

Please see: How to Make up Years of Missed Prayers? (Shafi’i)

The Number of Sunnah Prayers

There are ten emphasized rak’ahs of Sunnah prayers:

-2 before Fajr
-2 before Dhuhr/Jumu’ah
-2 after Dhuhr/Jumu’ah
-2 after Maghrib
-2 after ‘Isha

In addition, the following are non-emphasized Sunnah prayers:

-2 before Dhuhr/Jumu’ah
-2 after Dhuhr/Jumu’ah
-4 before ‘Asr
-2 before Maghrib
-2 before ‘Isha

Shuaib Ally