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When Are Makeup Prayers Valid?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: As salam alaykum,

(1) Is my Isha prayer valid if I make it up before the Fajr prayer after dawn?

(2) Should I repeat my prayer if I get the feeling to have let go a wind during prayer but think I didn’t and later on, after the prayer is complete, think I did?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that this message finds you well, insha’Allah.

(1) Yes, the makeup (qada’) prayer is valid when prayed at any time, except after sunrise, before sunset, and when the sun is at its highest point in the sky. [For details, see: Prohibited times for Prayers and Makeup Prayers‏]

(2) Ignore misgivings, and act on the basis of certainty. [see: A Reader on Waswasa (Baseless Misgivings)]

Moreover, you should ensure that you are praying all of your prayers on time. There is rarely an excuse to miss the prayer. [see also: A Reader on Missed Prayers and: Does Neglecting the Prayer Entail Disbelief?

And Allah alone knows best.
wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Free Will and the Divine Decree: A Reader

“And you cannot intend (to do anything) unless it is so willed by Allah, the Lord of all the worlds.” [Quran 81.29]

Destiny and Human Responsibility in Islam

Affirming Free Will and the Divine Decree

Why Does the Qur’an Say Allah Misguides the Disbelievers? The Question of Free Will

Is Iblis Really from the Jinn? Why Is Iblis Blaming Allah for Leading Him Astray?

Do We Have Choice? And Does Allah Prevent That Choice from Being Realized?

How Can Allah Punish Disbelievers If He Is the One Who Veils Them From the Truth?

How Are the Prophets Protected from Error and Sin?

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

Answered by Shaykh Shuaib Ally

Question: Assalam alaykum,

I have missed accumulatively maybe over 15 years of obligatory prayers when younger. Do I have to make up each and every prayer before engaging in the Sunnah prayers? This will take me years to achieve…

Being in the month of Ramadhan, my heart is sorely missing and yearning to participate in the Tarawih prayers.

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

The position of the school is that one needs to immediately devote all of their free time towards making up missed prayers.
Some modern scholars recommend making up one or two prayers alongside each obligatory prayer offered as a means of facilitating making up years of missed prayers.

The Shafi’i position is one of Mercy

While it seems prima facie difficult to do this, as opposed to starting over from scratch, the Shafi’i school considers its position to be one of mercy for two reasons.

Firstly, it doesn’t consider a person who left off their prayers due to sheer laziness to have been an actual disbeliever for this entire period (along with any rulings that would derive from such a classification);

Secondly, it provides a clear manner towards making up for one’s transgression in this regard, which is (at the very least, psychologically) superior to having no way to make up for it. It is an aspect of divine mercy to have a clear way to make up for transgressions in this life.

Should I pray Tarawih or Make Up Obligatory Prayers?

If a person has prayers to make up, choosing to pray the tarawih prayers in Ramadan instead, or other non-obligatory prayers, is impermissible. While their actions are praiseworthy from one perspective – they are engaged in highly recommended prayers – they are blameworthy from another – they are using their available time to pray non-obligatory prayers when they have something obligatory to make up. The school’s position, as mentioned above, is that one should devote all of their free time towards making up their obligatory prayers; they should be more concerned with fulfilling their obligatory obligations prior to non-obligatory ones.

Shuaib Ally

Can I Make up Obligatory Prayers Instead of Praying the Emphasized Sunna Prayers? Can I Have Multiple Intentions When Fasting?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum,

1. I was recently told that when making up missed prayers it is permissible to replace the Sunnah Muakadda with the making-up of the earliest prayer one has missed. Can I do this?

I was also told that one should not be praying Tarawih if one has many Fard qada to be made up.

2. Is it permissible to make multiple intentions for fasting optional fasts?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

I pray this finds you in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.

(1) No, in making up past prayers, you should not miss the current, confirmed sunna prayers. As for the tarawih prayers, there would be some more leeway in this if a person is serious, committed, and it would impact their makeup schedule. However, this would be taken on a case by case basis, and you should consult a righteous scholar before acting.

(2) Yes, you can make multiple intentions in the way you mention, namely between an obligatory fast, and a secondary, voluntary fast, yet not between two obligatory ones– so you could not intend to make up a missed Ramadan fast and a current Ramadan fast at the same time. But fasting a makeup on a Monday, to also fulfil the sunna of fasting on Mondays, would be fine.

Please also see: Fasting Six Days of Shawwal – Ruling, Whether Consecutive, Combining Intentions, Wisdoms, and What if Unable to Fast? – Faraz Rabbani

And Allah knows best.

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Can I Pay Money to Make Up for My Fasts?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

I would like to know the amount per day to be paid for missed obligatory fasts that I have not made up.

If there is no stipulated amount is there a way to calculate this rate per fasts missed?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

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

If you have missed fasts in your dues, you need to make these up. There is no expiation for delaying them until the following Ramadan.

Please also see: The Complete Guide to Fasting

And Allah alone gives success.

wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Do We Have Choice? And Does Allah Prevent That Choice from Being Realized?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: As Salaam alaikum,
1. Does Allah create our choices?
2. When we ask Allaah to give someone guidance how does Allah’s help to this person manifest itsef in regard to his free will?
3. When Allaah miraculously saves a Prophet or saves someone from some harm coming from the enemy, is this just Him occasionally stopping the enemy’s free will? Like when the disbelievers didn’t to destroy the spider web on the cave…
4. How do we deal with mentally challenged people? I know they are not responsible in front of God but why do they exist?
Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.
Everybody has choice (ikhtiyar), and therein lies the secret of responsibility (taklif) before the Divine.
But there is no such thing as choice being prevented and the like. It is possible that what people wish to do doesn’t always happen as they intended, yet this doesn’t negate choice as people aren’t running the world– Allah is. With that in mind, don’t overcomplicate such discussions lest you put yourself into some degree of hardship.
(1) Allah is the Creator of absolutely everything. The human being has no power in and of himself, and does not create his own actions, yet is responsible by virtue of his being able to act.
(2) Supplication benefits. [see: Can Supplication Change Destiny?]
(3) They had the choice to break the spider’s web, but they chose not to.
(4) There is wisdom in the creation of everything– sometimes such wisdom is apparent and sometimes it is not. Something we can appreciate from the existence of such people is the magnitude of the Divine Favour upon us.
Please also see: Affirming Free Will and the Divine Decree and: Suffering and Divine Wisdom
Consider taking: Excellence in Faith & Action (from Ghazali’s 40 Foundations of Religion) and: Islamic Beliefs for Seekers: Dardir’s Kharidah Explained
And Allah alone gives success.
Tabraze Azam
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

Dealing With Difficult Decisions – Sidi Yousaf Seyal

It is quite common to find ourselves in situations where we feel we have little or no control over them. We respond in various ways…
Before I proceed, I would like to acknowledge our humanness and understand that God created us weak. We forget, we are emotional, and we sin. God, the Merciful has gifted us with weakness in order to strengthen ourselves for Him, – through remembrance, rationality, and good deeds. This article is not an attempt to change the nature of man himself but to assist him in directing his nature to the One who understands his nature better than himself; God, the Exalted.
I also believe in prophets who have reached a certain level of perfection and saints who are protected by God from sin. Hence, they are human in their physical nature but angelic in their metaphysical state.

Lastly, I speak in the first person (we/our) to relate to those in a similar situation while realizing that I am the weakest of my audience. May God assist us in all of our endeavours, grant us openings that we cannot perceive of, and forgive our shortcomings.
path_field
To Proceed
It is quite common to find ourselves in situations where we feel we have little or no control over them. We respond in various ways. We become emotional, try to come up with solutions, seek counsel from friends, buy ourselves an ice cream (or in my case a new H&M cardigan–retail therapy!), etc… In the worst case, we isolate ourselves, become depressed, complain, and give up; and it is only then that we remember to turn to God, the One who put us in this situation to begin with.

When we finally do turn to Him, we often do not know what to ask Him for. Why? Perhaps it is because at this late stage we begin to look at creation through the lens of the Divine Decree, submitting to God alone, rather than looking at it as the cause and effect itself. In other words, we acknowledge our weakness as being slaves of God and turn to Him for His guidance–we submit to our Creator.
Let us first define the terms ‘Decree and Ordainment — al-Qada wal-Qadar’: according to the Ash’aris and the majority of Sunni Orthodoxy,

1) Qada is the pre-eternal will of God that is linked to all things in accordance with what will be brought into existence in the future, such as God’s pre-eternal will to create a person on the face of the earth, and

2) Qadar is the creating (or bringing into being) of all things according to their specific measure that is determined by His Qada.
Belief in God’s decree and ordainment – its good and its evil – is one of the six pillars of faith that every believer must attest to. The Archangel Gabriel, upon whom be peace, approached the Prophet, may peace and blessings be upon him, one day and asked him: “What is faith?”, and the Prophet replied: “Faith is to believe in God, the Angels, the Books, the Messengers, the Day of Rising, and the Divine Decree of  its good and its evil.”
God, the Exalted’s decree is not a compulsion of what He ordains but it is His knowledge of the future; God’s ordainment is based on His pre-eternal knowledge of His servant’s choice, good or evil. God has given us choice (kasb) and we should honor this by implementing His commandments and always seeking elevation.
Hence, we do not accuse God of imposing upon us to do other than what we choose to do, good or evil. We are simply a living reality of what was written in the Tablet based on the pre-eternal knowledge of God.
Part of believing in the Divine Decree is also staying content with it. Staying content with the Divine Decree is difficult because, as humans, we tend to focus on ends, rather than taking meaningful steps in life.
dua_handsMaking an Investment
For example at school, our concern is not on learning but to find a job; at work, our concern it to secure our old age by investing in a 401K plan; and in marriage, our concern is not nurturing a healthy family but fulfilling a desire (ain’t no problem with marrying a beautiful spouse but that’s not the only point of marriage akhi!).
Thinking of ends is important; hence, we work towards perfecting our ends but we do so by way of focusing on perfecting our present. This is the spiritual state of the saints who direct their inner-eye to the Lord in every moment (shuhud). Unfortunately, this is not the state of many of us and therefore we must return to God by praying to Him (du’a).
This is not to say that saints do not pray to God but they have acquired a state of contentedness where they focus on the Divine Decree itself. They realize that every manifestation of the Divine Decree on their hands is a trust from God that needs to be returned back to Him with excellence (ihsaan).
We, on the other hand, are not at such a level and need to constantly ask God, the Merciful to grant us commitment, consistency, and contentment by seeking His counsel.
Praying for Assistance
The Prophet, may peace and blessings be upon him, prescribed us a prayer called the “Prayer of Assistance” (istikharah) which is a two-unit prayer followed by a du’a, seeking God’s decision through His pre-eternal Knowledge, Power, and Grace, and then concluding it by seeking contentment in the Divine Decree.
The Prayer of Assistance should be followed by another portion of Istisharah which involves seeking the counsel of others, such as friends, elders, and people of knowledge who, God Willing, will direct us to what is best.
God, the Exalted, says:
“And ask the people of remembrance if you do not know. (Quran 21:7)
God has created us as means (not ends) for one another because the human being is naturally a weak creature who finds comfort in others through sympathy, care, and love. The sincere advice of good folk directs us to God in times of difficult decision making.
Seeking the advice of individuals does not conflict with our reliance in God since He has put us in a terrestrial world of means to facilitate us in our celestial expedition to Him. In fact, we would be in a state of contradiction if we did not take the proper means. It would result in neglecting our humanness; our heart should be engaged with God while our limbs should be engaged with creation.
God, the Exalted says:
“Indeed, the believers are siblings to one another, so make peace among your siblings, and be conscious of God, so that you may be granted felicity.” (Quran 49:10)
Every one of us deals with difficult decisions. Dealing with a problem is not the issue itself. The issue is how the problem is handled and directed. If it is not directed to God, the Creator of every situation and means, then who are we directing it to? And if we aren’t turning to Him first, the Sustainer of every moment, then when should we expect Him to turn to us?

It is in this respect that Imam al-Junaid said:

“If a matter saddens you, then the first person you turn to for assistance is your Lord.”
Once again, this is not to neglect taking the means that God has provided for us. It is rather to reflect on how much easier life would be if we made the root of every difficulty God-central. It has been said that every difficulty should be treated like a guest; a guest should be shown appreciation, which requires patience.
Therefore, the etiquette in dealing with a difficult situation requires turning to God by taking the proper means He has provided us with, namely:

1) Contentedness in the Divine Decree,

2) Turning to God through Supplication (Dua), and

3) Returning to creation in Decision Making.
Related video:

Can Supplications Change One’s Destined Life Expectancy?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Can supplications change the one’s life expectancy? If so is there any duaa to ask Allah for a long and good life  filled with obedience and good deeds?

 

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that you are well, insha’Allah.

No, supplications cannot “change” one’s life expectancy.

One will only live as long as Allah willed one to live. This is decree (qada’). However, our supplications may alter the way things seem to be unfolding, which is destiny (qadr) as we see it.

Though, we understand that such changes were decreed in eternity by Allah, and not something new, and ‘different’ to what was ‘supposed’ to happen.

Ask Allah, with heartfelt sincerity, for success, well-being, forgiveness, righteousness, and all pious traits. Strive to live the sunna, and become of those who are ever turning to Allah.

Please see: Can Supplication Change Destiny?

And Allah alone gives success.

Wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Related Answer:

Destiny and Human Responsibility in Islam

Affirming Free Will and the Divine Decree

Answered by Shaykh Faraz A. Khan

Question: I’ve been having strong doubts about Islam due to difficulty accepting the belief in Qadr.

This verse from Imam al-Tahawi’s creed strongly bothers me, for example.

83. The Garden and the Fire are created things that never come to an end and we believe that Allah created them before the rest of creation and then created people to inhabit each of them. Whoever He wills goes to the Garden out of His bounty and whoever He wills goes to the Fire through His justice. Everybody acts in accordance with what is destined for him and goes towards what he has been created for.

Also this: 44. The same applies to all actions done by people, which are done exactly as Allah knew they would be done. Everyone is eased towards what he was created for and it is the action with which a man’s life is sealed which dictates his fate. Those who are fortunate are fortunate by the decree of Allah, and those who are wretched are wretched by the decree of Allah.

I used to believe that Allah loves and wants the best for all his creation. But now I have to believe that he tests the non-Muslims to justify damning them to perdition. How is this fitting for a kind and loving God? This belief is causing me distress in religion and life. Also doesn’t this mean that Firoun and Shaytan etc. were only fulfilling their purpose of creation?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

I pray this finds you in the best of health and states.

I believe you have a misunderstanding of this issue. Allah’s preeternal will coincides with His preeternal knowledge, and this by no means negates the free will of man and jinn.

That is to say, Allah in preeternity knew and, based on His knowledge, willed that Firown would be the way he would. Allah decreed the actions of Firown as per His preeternal knowledge of Firown’s choices. Of course, there is no implication of time sequence in this (see below on Allah’s timelessness).

But in his own lifetime, Firown chose to act the way he acted, and was not forced by any means. The two realities are not mutually exclusive. We affirm human free will, and we also affirm divine knowledge, will and power.

This issue is a complex one that is difficult for the mind to grasp at even an elementary level. Indeed, at the root of our difficulty is that we cannot fathom the divine attribute of ‘timelessness.’ He Most High is the First and the Last, without beginning and without end. He is not bound by time, since time itself is His creation. As our Master Ibn Ata’illah states, “Allah existed, and there was nothing besides Him. And He is now just as He was.”

So all of creation, and all moments of creation, are “laid out” in front of the Divine, as it were. There is no ‘before/now/after’ with respect to Allah. So from the divine vantage point, Firown’s place in the Fire is not ‘after’ Firown’s birth… Divine knowledge of Firown did not increase one iota after Firown. This is essential to understand. It was already done, in a sense.

“They did not estimate Allah His rightful estimation; indeed, Allah is strong, mighty.” (22:74)

I would advise you to study creed under qualified scholarship. You may want to take the following course for example: Islamic Beliefs for Seekers: Dardir’s Kharidah Explained

And Allah knows best.

wassalam

Faraz

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Related Answers:

Destiny and Human Responsibility in Islam

Divine Decree, Contentment, and Lessons From the Prophet’s Life

Can Supplication Change Destiny?

Is it Permitted to Pray `Isha after Midnight

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: I have heard from a maulana that in canada time for isha namaz is until 12pm at night and if you read after that its qaza namaz.

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that you are well, insha’Allah.

It would be somewhat disliked to delay the `Isha prayer beyond the halfway point of the night (which is half way between Maghrib and Fajr). [Ibn `Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

It would only be prayed as a makeup (qada) if one prayed it after its time had exited.

And Allah alone gives success.

Wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani