The Prescribed Prayer: Chapter Two (cont.)

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Qiyaamul Lail, or Tahajjud as it is also known, is a Sunnah prayer one observes at night. The word Tahajjud implies that one should rise for it after sleeping part of the night and this is confirmed by the practice of the Prophet (s.'a.s.).

Although Al-Quran enjoined this prayer on the Prophet, the Muslims, being his followers, are obligated to observe it. Allahu ta'aala says:

"And pray in the small watches of the morning (it would be) an additional prayer (or spiritual profit) for thee soon will thy Lord raise thee to a station of praise and glory." (Al-Quran, 17:79)

Allahu Ta'aala has praised those who observe the Tahajjud and describes them with praise-worthy qualities. He calls them muhsineen, righteous, and muttaqeen, Allah fearing ones. Allah emphasizes that they will not be equal, those who observe it and those who don't He says:

"Is one who worships devoutly during the hours of the night prostrating himself or standing (in addition), who takes heed of the Hereafter, and who places his hope in the mercy of his Lord (like one who does not)? Say: are those equal, those who know and those who do not know? It is those who are endowed with understanding that receive admonition." (Al-Quran, 39:9)


  1. It is Sunnah that whoever intends to observe Tahajjud to make niyyah that he will wake up before going to bed. Abudardaa related the Prophet said:

  2. "Whoever goes to bed with niyyah to wake up at night for Salaah and he is unable to wake up until morning, Allah will reward him according to his niyyah and his sleep becomes sadaqh (charity) from his Lord." (Nasaaee)

  3. It is also recommended that one rubs one's eyes when one wakes up uses miswaak, brush, and looks up to the samaa'a, heaven and seeks Allah's aid with the following Du'aa related from the Prophet (s.'a.s.):
  4. Laailaaha illaa anta sub- There is no deity but Allah, Glorified
    haanaka as taghfiruka li is Your Name, I seek Your forgive-
    dhanbee wa as aluka min ness for my sins and I ask You Your
    rahmatika, Mercy,
    Allaahumma zibnee 'elman 0 Allah, increase me in knowledge,
    walaa tazigh qalbee ba'ada do not turn my heart (from Al-Islam)
    idh hadaitanee wa hablee after You have guided me, grant me
    min ladunka rahmah innaka from You mercy, indeed, You are the
    antal wahhaab, bestower of mercy,
    Alhamdu lillaahilladhee Praise be to Allah who has resurrected
    ahyaanaa ba'ada maa amaa us after He has caused us to death,
    tanaa wa ilaihinnushuur. and to Him is our return.

    As one finishes reciting this Du'aa, one recites ten verses towards the end of Suurah Aali 'Emraan, chapter 3, verse 190, to the end of the Suurah, beginning from:

    "Behold in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day there are indeed signs for men of understanding." (Al-Quran, 3:190) to the end of the Suurah. This is followed by:
    Allaahumma lakal hamd 0 Allah, to You is due all praise,
    anta nuurus samaawaati wal You are the Light of the Heavens and
    ard wa man feehinna wa the earth and what is in them,
    Lakal hamd anta qayyimus Praise be to You, You are the
    samaawaati wal ard wa man Custodian of the Heavens and the
    feehinna, earth and what is in them.
    Wa Lakal hamd antal Haqq Praise be to You (Allah), You are
    wa wa'adukal Haqq wa li the Truth, Your Promise is the Truth,
    qaauka aqqun wal jannatu Your encounter is the Truth, the
    haqqun wan Naaru haqqun Paradise is true, the Hell is true, the
    wan nabiyyuna haqqun wa Apostles are true, Muhammad is true,
    Muhammad haqqun was sa'a the Resurrection is true,
    atu haqqun.
    Allaahumma laka aslamtu 0 Allah, to You I surrender, In You
    wa bika aamantu wa 'alaika I believe, on You I depend, to You I
    tawakkaltu wa ilaika anabtu repent, I fight for Your sake and for
    wa bika khaasamtu wa ilaika
    You I pass a verdict,
    Fagh fir lee maa qaddamtu Forgive me what I have done in the
    wa maa akhkhartu wa maa past and what I may do in the future,
    asrartu wamaa a'alantu what I hide and what I made manifest.
    antallaahu laa ilaaha illaa You are the Creator, there is no deity
    ant. but You.

  5. The Sunnah also recommended that one should begin the prayer with two light raka'aats after which one prays as much as one pleases. However, as mentioned earlier, eleven raka'aats is the best, according to Hadeeth, related by 'Aaishah (r.'a.)
  6. One should wake up his family to join him in the prayer.
  7. One should stop praying if one feels sleepy and go to bed for one should not do more than one can bear. In Hadeeth, reported by 'Aaishah, the Prophet said:

  8. "If any one of you stood up for Tahajjud and the recitation of Al-Quran becomes heavy on his tongue, and he does not know what he is saying, he should lay down." (Muslim)

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