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Hazrat Ali (R.A) relates that the Sunnah of Rasoolullah (sallal laho alaihi wassallam) is to place one hand over the other below the navel. (Abu Daud H- 756) The above-mentioned method of tying the hands is also related by Hazrat Anas (R.A)

Covering of the head during salaah

Ibn Umar (R.A.) narrates that Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam wore a white hat.(Tabrani-Allama suyuti has classified this Hadith as highly authentic. See Sirajul Muneer v4 pg112.) It is written in Fatawaa Thanaiyyya (v1 pg 525) and in the fatawaa of Ahle Hadith scholars (v4 pg291) that Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam always used to keep his Mubarak head covered during salaah. In the same book it is also mentioned that to intentionally remove the headgear and perform the salaah bareheaded is contrary to the Sunnah. (v1 pg 523.)

To raise the hands till the earlobes

Hazrat Qatadah (R.A.) relates that he saw Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam performing his salaah. He relates that Rasool sallalaho alaihi wasallam used to lift his hands until they were in line with his earlobes. (Sahih Muslim pg 168 H-391)

To tie the hands beneath the naval

Hazrat Ali (R.A) relates that the Sunnah of Rasoolullah (sallal laho alaihi wassallam) is to place one hand over the other below the navel. (Abu Daud H- 756) The above-mentioned method of tying the hands is also related by Hazrat Anas (R.A)

Reciting Bismillah softly

Hazrat Anas (R.A.) states: ‘I have performed congregational salaah behind Rasullullah sallal laho alaihi wasallam, Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthmaan (RA) and I did not hear any one of them recite Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim’ (Sahih Muslim H-399)

The Muqtadi should listen and remain silent

Allah Ta’laa says: ‘When the Qur’aan is being recited, listen attentively and remain silent so that mercy may be showered upon you’.
Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood, Abu Hurrairah, Abdullah Ibn Abbas and Abdullah Ibn Mughaffal (radhiyal laho anhum) state that this verse was revealed with regards to the khutba of Jumu’ah and with regards to salaah.
It is reported from Hazrat Ataa Ibn Yaasir (R.A.) that he questioned Hazrat Zaid Ibn Thaabit (R.A) concerning reciting Qiraat with the Imam.Hazrat Zaid (R.A.) replied: ‘there is no Qiraat behind the Imam in any salaah’. (Sahih Muslim H-577)
Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Umar (R.A.) used to repeatedly say: “Whoever performs salaah behind the Imam, the Imam’s qiraat suffices for him”. (Sunan Baihiqi; chapter on not reciting qiraat behind the Imam-Imam Baihiqi ( R.A) has stated that this Hadith is Sahih.

The person performing salaah individually must recite surah fatiha, not the muqtadi

Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Umar (R.A.) was asked: ‘Must the Muqtadi recite behind the Imam?’ He replied that the Qiraat of the Imam is sufficient for the Muqtadi but if he performs Salaah individually, then he must recite Qiraat. It was the practice of Abdullah Ibn Umar (R.A) also that he would not recite surah Fatiha behind the Imam (In Aathaarus Sunan Vol 1 pg 89 this Hadith has been classified as Sahih.)
Hazrat Jaabir (R.A) narrates that the one who does not recite surah Fatiha even in one rakaah, his salaah is not valid. However, if he is behind an Imam he must not recite Surah Fatiha. It is on the basis of this Hadith that Imam Tirmidhi (R.A) has narrated from Imam Ahmad Bin Hambal (R.A) [who was the teacher of the ustaad of Imam Bukhari (R.A)] that the narration: ‘Whoever does not recite surah Fatiha his salaah is not complete’ refers to one who performs his salaah alone . It does not include the Muqtadi (Jami Tirmidhi, Ibid). In the above Hadith it is very clearly mentioned that the muqtadi must not recite surah Fatiha.

Aameen must be said softly

Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam is reported to have said: ‘Do not hasten before the Imam! When he says the takbeer, then you should do the same. When he recites ‘Walad daal leen’, then you should say Aameen. When he makes Ruku’ then you should make Ruku’. And when he says Sami-Allahu liman hamida then you should say Rabbana Walakal Hamd’ (Sahih Muslim H-415)
With regards to the saying of Aameen this narration is very clear and explicit like in the case where the Imam says ‘Allahu Akbar’ and ‘Sami-Allahu liman hamida’ aloud, but all the followers say ‘Allahu Akbar’ and ‘Rabbana Walakal Hamd’ softly. In the same manner when the Imam recites ‘Walad daal leen’ aloud, the followers should say Aameen softly.
It is also reported from Abu Ma’mar that umar (radhiallahu anhu) used to say: “The Imam will recite four things softly - Ta’awwuz, Bismillah, Aameen and Rabbana Walakal Hamd” (Aini Vol 1 pg.620)
Hazrat Waa’il Ibn Hajar (R.A.)says ,The Prophet sallalaho alaihi wasallam led us in salaah,when he recited ‘GHAIRIL MAGDHOOBE ALAIHIM…’HE SAID Ameen silently. (Abu Dawood Tayalisi H-1024, Tirmidhi H-248, Hakim H-2913and Baihiqi H-2447. Hakim declared it saheeh and Dhahabi agreed.)

Raising the hands (till the shoulders) during Salaah

Hazrat Jaabir Ibn Samurah (RA) relates that once Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam came out of his house towards us and said: ‘Why is it that I see you all raising your hands as they are the tails of stubborn horses. Be tranquil in Salaah.’ (Sahih Muslim H-4:30)
This Hadith alone makes it clear that those narrations which mention the raising of the hands, during the Salaah, were narrated prior to the prohibition of this practice.
Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (R.A.) said “should I not inform you of the salaah of Prophet sallalaho alaihi wasallam?”He then stood up and raised his hands once in the beginning, and did not raise them again.Nisai H-1026.Allama Zafar Ahmad Uthmani says that its narrators are those of Bukhari and Muslim except Suwaid who is thiqah (authentic)and Asim who is a thiqah narrator of Muslim.
Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (R.A) said; “Shall I not show you the manner in which Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam performed his salaah?” Thereafter he performed the Salaah but he did not raise his hands except at the beginning of his salaah (Tirmidhi H 257).
This Hadith is classified Hasan. Ibn Azam (R.A) has declared it as Sahih. Ahmed Shakir (R.A) has also declared it as Sahih.

Proof from the practice of the Sahaba (RA)

It is related that Hazrat Ali (RA) used to raise his hands at the time of the first takbeer (during his Salaah). Thereafter he did not raise them. (Sunanal Bayhaqi)
(The commentator of Bukhari Shareef, Allaama Zayla’ie and Allaama ‘Aini (RL) have said that this narration and its chain of narrators Sahih)
One should take note of the fact that the practice of Hazrat Umar, the remaining Khulafa-e-Raashideen, Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood and many more Sahaba’s (RA) was the same: that they only raised their hands at the time of the first takbeer.

Sitting briefly after the second sajdah of the first or third rakaah

In a narration from the son of Sahl (RA), it is mentioned that Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam said the takbeer and simultaneously went into sajdah. Then he said the takbeer and simultaneously stood up erect without sitting. (Abu Daud H-966)
Imam Bayhaqi (RA) has recorded in his Sunan that this was the practice of Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (RA).
Allama Zaylaie (RA) has recorded in Nasabur Raayah that the same procedure was the practice of Hazrat Umar, Ali, Abdullah Ibn Zubeir and Abdullah Ibn Abbaas (RA).

Raising the index finger during tashahhud

It is narrated that when Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam used to sit down to supplicate (to recite tashahhud) he used to place his right hand on his right thigh and his left hand on his left thigh. He would indicate at the time of reciting the shahaadah by raising his index finger. He would also join the ends of his thumb and middle finger, thereby forming a circle.
(Sahih Muslim, chapter on the description of sitting H-579)

Raising both the hands and making dua

It is narrated that Abdullah Ibn Zubair (RA) saw a man rasing his hands and making dua before completing his salaah. Hazrat Abdullah (RA) went up to him and said: ‘Verily, Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam used only to raise his hands and make dua after completing his salaah’(Majmauz Zawaaid, v.1, pg.169)
In the light of the Shariah, the dua after salaah is an authentically established practice and it is mustahab to do so.

Sunnats before Zuhr salaah

Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam has said: ‘Whoever performs for rakaats before the fardh of Zuhr and four rakaats after it, Allah Ta’laa will make him haraam upon the fire of Jahannam’ (Tirmidhi H-428)

Sunnats before Asr salaah

Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam has said: ‘May Allah show mercy upon that person who performs four rakaats before the fardh of Asr’ (Tirmidhi, chapter on the narrations regarding the four rakaats, H-430)

Sunnats of Maghrib Salaah

Hazrat Abu Ma’mar (RA) has said that the Sahaba (RA) used to consider 4 rakaats after the fardh of Maghrib to be mustahab. (Qiyaamul-Layl of Marwazie pg 58)
4 Rakaats before Esha salaah
Hazrat Sa’eed Ibn Jubair (RA) narrates that the Sahaba (RA) used to regard the performing of four rakaats before the fardh of Esha as mustahab. (Qiyaamul-Layl of Marwazie pg 58)

Three Rakaats of Witr

Hazrat Ayesha (RA) is reported to have said (with regards to the tahajjud salaah of Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam), “He (Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam) never used to perform more than eleven rakaats, whether in Ramadan or out of Ramadan. Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam would perform long Rakaats in two units of four rakaats each with such excellence and devotion which cannot be described. Thereafter he would perform three rakaats of Witr salaah.

Reciting qunoot before Ruku

Hazrat Aasim (RA) narrates, “I inquired from Hazrat Anas Ibn Malik (RA) concerning the qunoot of Witr. He affirmed its occurrence in the Witr salaah. Then I asked whether it should be recited before the Ruku or after it. He replied: “It should be recited before the Ruku”. I then informed him of a certain person who had heard him (Hazrat Anas (RA)) saying that it should be recited after Ruku. Hazrat Anas (RA) most vehemently denied this”. Furthermore he said: “Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam recited the Qunoot after the Ruku for only one month”. (Sahih Bukhari)
Allama Ibn Hajar (R.A) writes in his commentary on ‘Bukhari, Fathul Baari’ that after analysing all these narrations we learn that it was the normal practice to recite the Qunoot before Ruku.
However on certain occasions (such as the befalling of a calamity, etc.) the Qunoot would be recited after Ruku. (Vol 1, pg 291)

Salaam should be made at the end of Witr Salaah

Hazrat Ayesha (RA) narrates that Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam used to perform three Rakaats Witr without making salaam in between (Zadul Ma’aad Pg 110)
Allama Ibn Hajar (R.A) writes in Fathul Baari, the commentary on Sahih Bukhari that Hazrat Ubay Ibn K’ab, Hazrat Umar, Abdullah Ibn Masood and Anas Ibn Malik ( RA) used to make Salaam at the end of three rakaats Witr, not in between. (Vol 1 Pg 291)

Two Rakaats Sunnah of Fajr

It is narrated that once Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (RA) reached the masjid whilst the Imam was leading the Salaah of Fajr with the congregation. Hence, since he had not as yet performed the two Rakaats Sunnah of Fajr, he stood behind one of the pillars of the Masjid and performed it while the Salaah was going on. Thereafter he joined the Jamat. (Majmauz-Zawaid, Vol 1 pg 75) This was also the practice of Abdullah Ibn Abbas, Abu Dardaa and Uthmaan (RA)

Qadha of the two Rakaats Sunnah of Fajr

Rasoolullah sallalaho alaihi wasallam is reported to have said: “Whoever did not perform the Sunnah of Fajr should perform it after the sun rises”. (Tirmidhi H-423)
In the Muatta of Imaam Maalik (RA) it is narrated that this was also the practice of Abdullah Ibn Umar (RA.)

Sunnah before and after Jumma.

It is narrated by Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Abbas (R.A.) that the prophet sallalaho alaihi wassalam used to perform four rakaats before the Friday prayer and four rakaats after it.(Tabrani)
Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (R.A.) used to perform four rakaats (Sunnah) before Jumma (Farz)and four rakaats (Sunnah)after.(Tirmidhi v1 Pg95)
It is is narrated by Abu AbdurRahman in Muajam Tabrani Kabeer that Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (R.A.)taught us to read four rakaats after jumma until he heard the view of Hazrat Ali (R.A.).Abu AbdurRahman states then we performed six (after jumma.) (Majma Uz Zawaaid v2 Pg195).

Further information regarding Salaah in accordance with the Qur’aan and Sunnah in English can be obtained from the following books (1)The salaah of a believer in the Qur’aan and Sunnah by Sheikh Abu Yusuf Riyadh ul Haq and (2)Fiqhul Imam by sheikh Abdur Rahman Ibn Yusuf available at all good Islamic bookshops.

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