Shaykh Tabraze Azam answers a question related to performing the Asr prayer at an earlier time due to work commitments, according to the Hanafi school of thought.
Question:Assalaam AlaykumRespected shaykh(s), I have an issue in that I find it difficult to pray Asr at the later (predominant) Hanafi time due to work commitments (there is slight danger I could miss it altogether). May I therefore pray Asr at the earlier start time according to the fatwa of the Imam Abu Yusuf and Imam Muhammed Shaybani (as well as 3 great mujtahids of the other schools)? I would pray on my own and not in jamat unfortunately.Also may I resort back to normal Hanafi Asr start times on days off or whenever it becomes easier to do so?
Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,
Yes, you may pray the mid-afternoon prayer (‘asr) at the earlier time. Deeming the prayer time to have entered at this earlier point is a sound and follow-able position in the Hanafi school.
Usually, it would be proper to follow the practice of your local community’s congregation. Failing that, you should try to pray at the later time as doing so is more religiously precautionary.
When neither is a reasonable option, you may pray at the earlier time. But you should be wary of using both times interchangeably as you can fall into laxity, and also lose something of the sanctity of the prayer time.
Nevertheless, even if you don’t make the early position your regular and consistent practice, it would be acceptable to follow it on occasions in which there is a need or benefit in doing so.
Please also see:https://seekersguidance.org/answers/hanafi-fiqh/can-pray-asr-isha-earlier-time-country-times-followed/ and: https://seekersguidance.org/answers/hanafi-fiqh/when-should-i-pray-asr-when-my-local-mosque-is-following-the-earlier-time/
And Allah Most High knows best.
Wassalam, Tabraze Azam
Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani