The Conditions for the Prayer

  بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ

The conditions for the prayer are nine:

1) Islam (إسلام): Its opposite is Kufr and the actions of a disbeliever are not accepted (by Allah), no matter what good deed he may perform. The proofs for this are the following sayings of Allah:

And We shall turn whatever good deeds they (polytheists) did and make such deeds as scattered floating particles of dust.” [Surat al-Furqan (25):23]

It is not for the polytheists to maintain the mosques of Allah while they witness against their own selves with disbelief. The works of such are in vain and in Hell will they abide forever.” [Surat at-Tawba (9):17]


2) Sanity (عقل -’Aql): Its opposite is insanity (junoon). As for the insane person, the pen (that records his deeds) is lifted from him until he regains sanity. The proof is the following hadith:

The pen is lifted from three people: A person sleeping until he wakes up; an insane person until he regains sanity; and a child until he reaches the age of puberty.” [Reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, An-Nasa’i, & Ibn Majah]


3) Reaching the age of Maturity (تمييز - Tamyeez): Its opposite is childhood (sughr). Its extent is the age of seven years, then he is to be commanded to pray. The proof of this is the Messenger of Allah’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) saying:

”Command your children to pray by (the age of) seven. And beat them to do it by (the age of) ten. And separate them from their beds.” [A sahih hadith reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and al-Haakim]


4) Lack of/Uplifting Ritual Impurity (رَفعُ الحَدَث - Raf-ul-Hadath): This refers to the ablution (wudu) that is well known. Hadath (ritual impurities) make ablution mandatory. Ablution has ten conditions, six obligations, and eight nullifiers.

5) Removal of Filth (إِزالةُ النَّجاسة - Izaalat-un-Najaasah): This requires removing it from three things: From one’s body, from one’s garments, and from the area (you are praying in). The proof of this is Allah’s saying:

And purify your garments.” [Surat al-Muddaththir (74):4]


6) Covering the ‘Awrah (ستر العورة - Sitr-ul-’Awrah): The People of Knowledge have unanimously agreed that the prayer of one who prays naked while having the ability (to clothe himself) is invalid. The proof of this is Allah’s saying:

O Children of Adam, take your adornment at every masjid (by covering yourselves with clean clothes when praying)…” [Surat al-A’raaf (7):31]

The boundaries of the ‘awrah for the men are from his navel to his knees (A man must cover his shoulders in prayer as well, based on the hadith of Abu Hurayrah in which the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “ None of you should pray in a single garment with no part of it being over his shoulders. [Bukhari & Muslim]) As for a free woman, all of her body is ‘awrah except for her face. (In prayer, a woman must cover her whole body except for her face, hands, and feet. And her dress must also be wide enough to cover the upper part of her feet.)

7) Entrance of the Proper Time (دخول الوقت - Dukhool-ul-Waqt): The proof for this from the Sunnah is the hadith of Jibril (عليه سلم) when he lead the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) in one prayer during the initial times for it and during the last part of the hour of it, saying to him afterward: “O Muhammad, the prayer is between these two times.” [Reported by Ahmad, An-Nasa’i, At-Tirmidhi, & Ibn Hibbaan]

And also Allah’s statement: “…Verily, the prayer is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours. [Surat an-Nisa’ (4):103]

The proof that prayers are in fixed times is Allah’s saying:

Establish the prayer from midday till the darkness of the night (i.e. Dhuhr, ‘Asr, Maghrib, and ‘Ishaa), and recite the Qur’an in the early dawn (i.e. Fajr). Verily, the recitation of the Qur’an in the early dawn is ever witnessed (by the Angels).” [Surat al-Israa (17):78]

8) Facing the Qiblah (استقبال القبلة - Istiqbaal-ul-Qiblah): The proof for this is Allah’s statement:

Verily, We have seen the turning of your face (O Muhammad) towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qiblah (proper direction) that will please you. So turn your face to the direction of Al-Masjid al-Haraam…” [Surat al-Baqarah (2):144]

9) The Intention (النِّيَّة - An-Niyyah): Its place is in the heart, and as for vocalizing it, then this is an innovation. The proof for this is the hadith:

Verily, actions are based on intentions, and verily every man will have what he intends.” [Bukhari & Muslim]

Reference: متن شروط الصلاة و أركانها و واجبات | The Conditions, Pillars, and Requirements of the Prayer

6

قُلْ إِنَّ صَلاَتِي وَنُسُكِي وَمَحْيَايَ وَمَمَاتِي لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

Deki: “Şüphesiz benim namazım, ibadetlerim hayatım ve ölümüm âlemlerin Rabbi olan Allah içindir.”

Enam, 162

If you find it hard waking up for Fajr salah then recite Sūrat al-Ikhlās (Qul huwa Allāhu ahad) 3 times and then hold a clear intention of waking up in your heart. An angel will be appointed by Allāh (Subhānahu wa ta'āla) who will wake you up just before Fajr salah. I’ve tried it many times and it has worked all the time. Subhan'Allāh.

Things about prayer that I should have learnt a long time ago: 

1. God doesn’t need your prayers. The prayers are for you. Why? Because praying five times a day isn’t merely a pointless ritual; it establishes a routine, a sort of rhythm to your life. It is the one part of your to-do list that you get to check off, even if the rest of your work is unfinished. 

2. Don’t expect some sort of enlightening experience when you pray after a long time. I think that’s what I found most disheartening about prayer, that I didn’t feel a ray of light enter my heart, that I didn’t feel cleansed when I prayed after a long time. Prayer does feel nice, but the “cleansing” the “enlightening” comes after a while and it comes from within. It comes with the stuff you do along with prayer. It comes from the effort you put in to becoming a good person and into becoming conscious of God. 

3. Beating yourself up about missing prayer disheartens you more. Beating yourself up in general is disheartening. Take it easy on yourself. 

4. You’ll never expect it, but one day you’ll be crying in sujood and it isn’t because you’re weak it’s because you’re taking a step towards being stronger. Don’t be afraid to cry in prayer. It’s nice to feel yourself humbled towards God. You don’t have to cry in front of anyone else, but you can sob your heart out in front of God and that’s perfectly okay. 

5. That discomfort you feel about having missed a prayer, is something that you should address. Don’t brush it off. If you brush it off once, you’ll do it again. Go pray. It really is good for you. 

Trust that there is benefit in the matter according to the perfect knowledge of Allah. The Prophet (sallAllahu alyhi wasallam) had to leave his beloved city of Makkah; nonetheless it was for a great benefit. When we believe in Allah’s justice and wisdom we know for certain that He does not decree except what is good.

Appreciation of blessings is complementary to patience. One can appreciate his own condition more when comparing it with others whose afflictions are greater than his own. The believer praises Allah that his affliction was not greater than it was and for whatever is left to him that could have been taken away.

He acknowledges that the remaining blessings are far greater than what he lost. Undoubtedly, this attitude is the source of much forbearance and peace of mind.

Allah has blessed man in countless ways that cannot compare to the limited problems he faces. These blessings are sufficient to instill in a believer gratitude to Allah, acceptance of His decree and patience to endure it.

The Prophet (sallAllahu alyhi wasallam) taught this du‘aa’: “O Allah, make not our affliction in our religion and make not the world our greatest concern or the sum of our knowledge.” (At-Tirmidhi)

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