Monday, 7 November 2011
The pre-eminence of Salaah in jama'ath
The Pre-eminence of Salaah
Performed in Jama’ath (Congregation)
It is best to perform all the Far’d Salaah’s in the Masjid.
Exalted indeed is the status of Prayer in Congregation.
Allah, Our Lord, has commanded us in the Holy Qur'an:
VA'RKA'OO MA'AR RAAKIYEEN
("Perform Salaah with those who are also performing Salaah").
Hadith (Sahih Bukhari) confirms that the reward for Salaah performed in Jama’ath (congregation) is 27 (twentyseven) times more than the reward for Salaah performed by oneself anywhere.
Better than praying alone is to pray with another person. It is still better if there are more than two persons praying with you. The larger the congregation, the greater is the reward from Allah.
The timings of each prayer are prominently displayed in every Masjid. We must take note of them and abide by them.
If we are residing miles away from any Masjid and we do not have the means to reach the Masjid for Salaah by affordable transport, we may perform that Salaah at home. This must be a rare exception, and not become the usual practice.
Community leaders, especially in developing neigborhoods, need to focus on this issue. They may meet and plan to form car pools and/or provide transportation at reasonable rates to Muslims living in distant localities and enable them to come for, and return home from, Salaah’s.
If it proves difficult to make such an arrangement on a daily basis, special efforts may be made for the Salaath al Juma'a. Success in this venture will bring the leaders great sawaab, rewards, from Allahu Subhanahu va tha Aalaa and also the gratitude of the musalliyeen (Muslims coming for Salaah).
The Sunnah and Naf’l prayers are best performed at home. These are prayers offered prior to, or after, the Far’d prayers. The Holy Prophet S.A.W.S. performed them regularly. There were no limitations to his Salaah’s.
Mother Aayesha R.A.A. (R.A.A.) has said that whenever she woke from sleep at night, she found the Prophet S.A.W.S. praying to Allah.
However, he did not want us to take on more strain than we could bear.
He said that whatever Salaah’s, recitation of Holy Qur'an and Duaa’yaen (prayers) he performed, were easy for him as Allah had endowed on him the strength equal to thirty men's.
Jum'aa (Friday) prayers can only be peformed in the Masjid by joining the congregation a little after the sun has declined from its zenith.
The Salaath al Jum'aa is preceded by the Imam's sermon. It is obligatory on us to be in the Masjid on time and listen to the sermon in silence and devotion.
If we are able to be in the Masjid and listen with reverence to the sermon and participate with true devotion in the Salaath al Juma'a, and our devotion pleases Allah, we are assured of His help and protection through the week right upto the next Friday.
In the Surath al Jum'aa in the Holy Qur'an, Allahu Sub’hanahu va tha Aalaa calls upon us to dedicate the Friday forenoon to Him.
On the morning of this most glorious day of the week, we earn His Grace and His Approval when we have a thorough bath, perform numerous Naf’l Salaah’s, recite one or more Surah’s of the Holy Qur'an, and engage in Zik’r and other good deeds like helping those in need.
Once the Juma'a prayers are completed, we may revert to worldly concerns like our business and related activity with undivided attention.
A good Muslim aims at both economic and spiritual advancement.
It is our duty to earn more and still more wealth by proper and lawful means.
Only thus can we and our families and our nations enjoy higher standards of living and rise to glory.
A society that is wealthy can practice Islami philanthropy at its best and relieve social inequality and economic distress.