Some Details Regarding Silent Prayers and Recitation

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: I have a few questions concerning regarding reciting silently in prayer.

1. Must the person offering salah be absolutely silent during these rakat? If not, what is the threshold between reciting silently and out-loud?

2. Should the person offering salah still say the Takbir out-loud when moving from one posture to the next?

3. Are there any/other elements of the salah that should be said out loud during those silent rakat?

4. As a request, would you be so kind as to offer some citations that I may read and increase my own understanding Inshallah.

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

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

First of all, reciting ‘silently’ actually means ‘quietly’ with regards to the prayer.

[1] The minimum threshold for reciting as such is that one’s tongue and lips move, even if no sound is produced. The same applies to all invocations and supplications within the prayer.

[2] One would only say the takbir aloud if one was leading a congregation. Otherwise, one would also say this quietly.

Please consider: [a] reading The Absolute Essentials of Islam: A Basic Hanafi Manual of Faith, Prayer, and the Path of Salvation [b] and taking this: Absolute Essentials of Islam: Beliefs & Worship

And Allah alone gives success.


Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Related Answers:

Loud and Quiet Recitation in Prayer and Qur’anic Recitation

Reciting Aloud in Quiet Prayers

Loud and Quiet Recitation in Prayer and Qur’anic Recitation

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question: From what little I know, Fajr, Maghrib, and Isha are recited aloud, whereas Zuhr and Asr are recited silently. (Assuming I was praying on my own,) I’ve heard from a Shafi’i Scholar that reading loudly means with a voice that someone close to you can hear, whereas reading silently refers to reading in a voice that you can hear yourself. I was also told that for any salat, it is not enough to simply move your tongue and lips, but you must also recite loud enough for yourself to hear. I was wondering does this apply in the Hanafi School too? Also, what’s the minimum level your voice should be when reading Qur’an or other dua?

Answer: Walaikum assalam,

If praying alone, one has a choice whether to recite aloud or silently in loud prayers, though the former is better for men.

Reciting silently and aloud are the same in the Hanafi school as the definitions you mentioned above, though there is another valid, though less sound opinion that simply moving one’s tongue and lips is enough. This opinion is strong enough to use to avoid making up past performances. It is better, though, to stick to the stronger opinion for current performances.

The minimum recitation for Qur’an, invocations, etc, is the same as the minimum quiet recitation in prayer: You need to be normally able to hear yourself.


Faraz Rabbani