The Prescribed Prayer: Chapter Two (cont.)

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Allah in His mercy on the Muslims has allowed the traveller to shorten his prayer by offering two raka'aats of Fard instead of the regular four raka'aats in the case of Zuhr, 'Asr and 'Ishaa prayers. There is no shortening of Salaah for Subh and Maghrib prayers. Al-Quran declares:

"When you go on a journey, there is no harm if you shorten Salaah." (Al-Quran, 3:101)


According to the verse above and many Hadeeths from the Prophet, there is nothing which specifies the length of the journey during which the traveller may shorten the prayer. Therefore, a journey from one's own town, whether it is long or short, suffices for a Qasr. One thus starts shortening the prayer the moment one sets out for a journey. Anas Bin Maalik has been reported as saying:

"I prayed Zuhr with the Prophet in Medina four raka'aats and two raka'aats at Dhul Hulaifah."

The point in this Hadeeth is that the Prophet started shortening his prayer from Dhul Hulaifah, which is about half a mile from the city of Medina.

The Salaah is completed as soon as one returns to his town. If one misses a prayer during a journey, and one is back to his residence, one should offer two raka'aats, a shortened prayer.

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