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 Why are we not able to wakup for Fajr

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Date d'inscription : 16/12/2005

MessageSujet: Why are we not able to wakup for Fajr   Mar 14 Aoû - 15:33:49

Salam 1

Our Prophet Saws is our exemplar who
provided the best example in spending long hours of the night in
prayer and waking in time for Fajr Prayer. This record was
authentically known of him both in his teachings and his living
example as he did not like sleeping before Ishaa [night] Prayer
and discouraged his followers from useless talk after it.

In this he was followed by his companions and all the muslims up to
a time not very far from our own days. They knew the reasons
which cause laziness and lessen motivation to observe prayers in
time (be such prayers Fard [obligatory] or Nafla [optional]) and
warned people against them so much that some of them are
reported to have said: "If you are unable to pray at night, then
that is a clear sign that your sins have shackled you and
deprived you of good deeds". Al-Hasan al-Basri was once asked:
"Why is it that we cannot uphold prayers at night?" He answered:
"You are shackled in your own sins".

Motivation is presently lacking among muslims. Otherwise they
would not have given in to sleep even if they had to stay awake
in the first part of the night. When one of them is required by
his work arrangements or for his own worldly benefit to wake
early at dawn, he would no doubt take the necessary precaution
not to miss his appointment. He will forsake his peace of mind
and have a restless sleep just for fear he might be punished or
have his salary reduced. When it comes to prayer, they have no
excuse especially when in our modern times Allah has provided us
with alarm clocks which would be set at any time we wish. The
problem therefore, is one of laziness. Such people do not know
what they are missing. The Prophet Saws said with respect to those who do not observe Ishaa and Fajr
prayers: "Had one of them known that he would find a wholesome
meal or two good targets, he would have come for Ishaa prayer."

All in all, for him who sincerely wants to purify his soul from
the attributes of the hypocrites, let him steer clear of
laziness, be active, put into practice the action inspiring
instructions laid out in our religion, accustom himself to take
the initiative and realise what he and everybody in his position
are missing in terms of the health of the body and great reward
from Allah. Only then will his performance improve, Allah
willing, and he will make up for what he has missed and follow
the lead of the best of generations.

Allah, the Most High and Exalted, is the Provider of success and
assistance. Peace and Blessings be upon Prophet Muhammed, his
household and followers.

Signed,

Abdullah Ibn Abdur-Rahmaan al-Jibreen.

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MessageSujet: Re: Why are we not able to wakup for Fajr   Mar 14 Aoû - 15:36:00

The Text

Most surely all praise belongs to Allah, we praise Him and we
seek His Aid and Forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allaah from the
evils of our souls and from the evils of our actions. Whomsoever
Allaah guides there is none to misguides and whomsever He
misguides their is none to guide. I send prayers and blessing
upon our leader Muhammed with the best of prayers and the most
complete submission.

To proceed:

One of the ill-seeming phenomena and most serious precedents
boding impending danger and punishment, giving reason to fear
and calling for most urgent consideration on our part requiring
immediate investigation into its causes and treatment of its
symptoms is the fact that a growing number of observers of
prayer deliberately shun Fajr prayer in congregation and only
perform it at times other than its lawful time.

It may be the case that this is due to their wasting away long
hours at night engaged in idle and leisure pursuits. Our
ancestors not very long ago used to make a point of going to bed
early, to lock their doors after Ishaa prayer and to make their
dinner light so as to be able to wake up for Fajr prayer in an
energetic state. That is why they led a happy, peaceful and
healthy life experiencing the real taste of life.

The advent of modern civilisation spoiled both our religious
observances and our worldly arrangements. As a result, we have
fallen into laziness and inertia; our bodies grew fat and
flabby; we move about less frequently whilst showing a greater
readiness to sleep and a marked inability to perform the most
trivial of manual actions.

The present paper attempts therefore to suggest ways which may
be of help in inducing us to wake up for Fajr Prayer; for
instance:

ONE:

To make sure to go to bed early as the Prophet
Saws used to discourage sleep before
performing Ishaa prayer and especially engaging in conversation
after it. Certain cases were excepted, some of which are
enumerated by Imam Nawawi in his explanation of Muslim's
account. Nawawi, may Allaah have mercy upon him says:

The reason why converation after it is discouraged is the fear
lest it leads to staying awake for long , which might induce
drowsiness and difficulty with observing night prayers or Subh
[dawn] prayer in their permitted, preferred or best times. The
topics covered by this restriction are all fulfilling no good
useful purpose. However, as to useful verbal activities, such as
the pursuit of knowledge, listening to the wise tales of
righteous people, talking to one's guest or bride, or members of
one's family for the sake of company, interacting with
travellers with a view to protect themselves and their goods,
embarking on talks designed to conciliate between people or
intercede before them in a good cause or to enjoin good and
forbid evil and admonish people by pointing to a beneficial
course of action to follow etc... there are no such
restrictions.

TWO:

To be assiduous in observing the Aadaab [good manners
prescribed in Islam] as to what to do before sleep such as
making Du'aa [supplication], bringing one's palms together, very
mildly spitting into them and reciting the last three soorah's
of the Qur'aan into them and them wiping them over one's face,
head and body, being physically and religiously pure and
performing a two rakah voluntary prayer after wudhoo [ablution].
A muslim has to ask his wife, parents, relatives or neighbours
to help waking him up. Once waken up, he should not linger
lazily for long in bed, lest he acquires the vices of the
hypocrites who come to prayer showing ample signs of laziness
and lack of enthusiasm.

THREE:

To fill one's heart with faith and good deeds. Once faith
is alive in the heart, it induces the person to do good deeds
and strive unremittingly hard. Faith is like a tree which only
yields good fruit when irrigated from the streamlets of good
deeds, thus bringing about an improvement both in personal
conduct and at the interactional level with society at large.
The lack of such streamlets or water supplies proportionately
causes faith to wither and wilt. The heart is highly sensitive
to external hardening stimuli, such as excess food or drink or
aberrations in watching or listening (letting your eyes and ears
loose to what is unlawful for them). You should therefore
protect your heart from such external allurements.

FOUR:

To keep away from Ma'aasi [acts of disobedience to Allah]
by protecting the eyes, the tongue, the hearing and all the
senses from indulging in the perception of objects that Allah
has made unlawful for us. As an alternative, one should concern
himself with matters pertaining to the worship of Allaah, such
as devoting one's sight to the reading of Allaah's Book,
meditating over the creatures that Allaah has created in this
universe, reading books of knowledge etc. One member of the
rightly guided early generations was asked about the reason why
people found it difficult to uphold voluntary prayers at night.
He answered: "Your sins have shackled you". No doubt sins can be
a major cause for a persons inability to enjoy the blessings of
piety. As Imaam Ibn ul-Qayyim said, sins are wounds and some
wounds can be fatal.

FIVE:

To bear in mind the great reward for attending Fajr prayer
in congregation on time, and the strong rebuke for him to fails
to observe it and to satisfy its conditions. Uthmaan ibn 'Affaan
related:

I heard Allah's Messenger Saws say: "He
who prays Ishaa in Jamaa'ah [congregation] is as if he has
prayed for half the night . As to him who (also) prays Fajr in
congregation, it is as if he has prayed all night." [narrated by
Maalik and the wording is that of Muslim who also reported it]

Similarly, Bukhaaaree and Muslim and An-Nasaaee related on the
authority of Ibn Mas'ud (radiallaahu-anhu) that he said:

The case of a man who slept all the night up to sunrise (without
waking up for Fajr) was related to the Prophet
(sallallaahu-alaihi-wasallam) whereupon he said: "That was a man
in whose ear Shaytaan has urinated", or he said "in both his
ears".

The urinating is literally true, as Imaam Qurtubi says, since
Shaytaan urinates and has sexual intercourse and procreates in a
manner that Allah alone knows (1). To ascertain for yourself the
truth of this assertion, look at the faces of those who come to
deal in their daily business without having prayed Fajr in
congregation at due time; look at their faces at working hours.
You will surely ask Allaah for refuge from a lot as miserable as
theirs. But, after all what do you expect from a person in whose
heart Shaytaan has urinated!!!

SIX:

To realise the bad effects resulting from one's failure to
pray Fajr, such as the melancholic and depressive state of mind
and the loss of many religious and worldly benefits, and the
good effects resulting from managing to perform it. In this
respect the Prophet (sallallaahu-alaihi-wasallam) said:

"Shaytaan ties three knots on the crown of any one of you in
your sleep. He says upon each knot that he ties: "You have a
long night before you, therefore sleep". But if you wake up and
mention Allah, Most Exalted in remembrance one knot will be
untied. If you then make ablution another knot will be undone.
If you then proceed to pray the last knot will be disentangled.
Thus, you will feel in the morning energetic and in good
spirits. Otherwise you will feel in a despicable state, lazy".
[narrated by Maalik, Bukhaaree, Muslim and Abu Dawood]

The time following Fajr prayer is full of goodness and
blessings. At-Tirmidhee narrated upon the authority of Al
Ghamdi that the Prophet (sallallaahu-alaihi-wasallam) said: "O
Allah bless my Ummah in its early rising!" and whenever he
dispatched an expedition or army he sent them early at the
beginning of the day. Sakhr was a merchant who always sent his
merchandise early in morning thus, becoming wealthy (3). That is
why we find the craftsmen and traders are particular about
making good use of this time. Those who sleep up to the late
morning have denied themselves the blessings of this early
hour.

There are many benefits to the health derived from waking up for
Fajr prayer. For instance, the highest proportion of ozone gas
(O3) in the atmosphere is registered at dawn. It then gradually
fades away until comlplete disappearance by sunrise. This gas
has a very beneficial effect on the nervous system as it
vivifies the brain and energises the muscles such that when a
person inhales the beautiful breeze of the dawn, known as the
SABAA wind, he will experience a pleasure that is unparalleled
at any other time of the day or night (4).

SEVEN:

To lose no time to categorically clear yourself from the
stigma of hypocrisy. Because of the difficulty of waking for
this time, praying Fajr in congregation provides evidence that a
person has firm faith and is free from hypocrisy. That is why in
a hadeeth narrated by Bukhaaree and Muslim, the Prophet
(sallallaahu-alaihi-wasallam) said:

"Indeed, the most difficult of prayers to bear, for the
hypocrites, are Ishaa [night] and Fajr prayers. If only they
knew what they are missing , they would sooner come, even if
crawling on their knees".

The most worthy companion, Abdullaah and Ibn Mas'ood
(radiallaahu-anhu) asserts "The only one indeed who misses them
[i.e. Ishaa and Fajr prayers] is a confirmed hypocrite" (5). Ibn
Umar (radiallaahu-anhu) said "When we find a man missing from
the Ishaa and Fajr prayers we nurture suspicions about him"
(6).

If you want a criterion for evaluating a person's degree of
faith and truthfulness monitor his observance of Fajr prayer. If
he passes the test, that should be taken as a sign indicating
the strength of his Eeman [belief, faith]. Let us then testify
to his truthfulness since he managed to achieve the greatest
victory over himself and to be superior to the pleasure of
sleeping in bed. If he fails the test, this is an index to his
weakness in faith, a hardness in his heart, an indulgence in
self-gratification and a defeat against his own whims.

How is it then that he who indulges in sleep and misses prayer
should conceivably feel comfortable while people are delighting
in the mosques in the company of the Qur'aan, listening
raptuously to Allaah's message, and basking happily in His
gardens. He who prefers the pleasures of the bed to the pleasure
of the communion with Allaah is the real loser.

These are a few suggestions to help you wake up for Fajr prayer.
May Allah make them useful. Glory be to Allah, Most Exalted over
any false attributions and thanks be to Allah, the Lord of all
Beings.

Written by an anonymous student of Islamic knowlege with an
introduction by Sheik Abdullah Ibn Jibreen

_________________
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