By His Eminence
SHEIKH ABDUL AZIZ IBN ABDULLAH IBN BAZ
Printed & Published by
PRESIDENCY OF ISLAMIC RESEARCHES IFTA AND PROPAGATION
PRINTING AND TRANSLATION AGENCY RIYADH,
KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA
Wakf (Endowment) Gratif
1413 H, 1992 AD
All praise be to Allah alone, and may His peace and blessings be upon His
messenger and bondsman our Prophet Mohammed, his family and his
The objective of this concise pamphlet is to explain how prophet Mohammed
(Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) used to perform his prayers. I
would like to present this explanation to every male and female Muslim so
that they may strive to take up the Prophet's manner in performing their
prayers as a model for them.
It was narrated by Al Bukhari that Prophet Mohammed (Peace and blessings
of Allah be on him) had said: "Perform your prayers in the same manner you
had seen me doing."
Therefore, here is the explanation for the Prophet's manner of prayer:
(1) To perform completely the ablution, adopting the method
commanded by Allah in the Quran: "O ye who believe, when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces and your hands (and arms) to the elbows, rub your heads(with water) and (wash) your feet to the ankles."(S:6)
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) said: "Prayer without ablution is invalid."
(2) To turn one's face and whole body towards the Ka'aba, The Holy
House at Makkah, intending by heart to perform the prayer which he wants to fulfill, whether it is an obligatory prayer or a supererogatory prayer, the worshipper in all cases, should not pronounce his intention openly, because neither the Prophet nor his companions used to utter the intention for prayer. Thus, pronouncing the intention for prayer in audible voice is a heresy and an illicit action. Whether the individual be an Imam or performs his prayer individually, he should make (A Sutra) i.e. a curtain for his prayer. Directing the face towards the Qibla (The Ka'aba at Makkah) is an imperative condition for every prayer. However, there are few exceptions for this rule explained in authoritative books for whom who wish to refer.
(3) To pronounce "Takbirat Al Ihram" that is to say "Allahu Akbar"
celebrating by that the greatness of Allah and looking meanwhile,
downwards to the place where he will prostrate.
(4) To raise one's hands up to the level of the shoulders or near to the
lobes of his ears, while pronouncing "Takbirat Al- Ihram".
(5) To put one's right hand over his left hand and left wrist, and put them
both over his chest, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon
him) used to do.
(6) It is advisable that the worshipper recite this opening supplication
saying: "Allahumma bald bayni wa bayena khatayaya kama boadta bayena al-mashriki wal maghribi, Allahumma naqqiniy min khatayaya kama yonaqa al thawbo alabyndo min aldans... Allahumma igysilniy min khatayaya bilmai wathalgi walbarad."
This supplication means: "O Allah, separate me from my sins as You have
separated the east and west. O Allah, cleanse me of my sins as the white
rope is cleansed from dirt. O Allah, wash off my sins with water, snow and
hail." Or, may say instead:
"Sobhanaka Allahumma wa bihamdika wa~abaraka Ismoka wata'la
jaddoka wala ilaha ghayroka"
"Praise and glory be to Allah. Blessed be Your Name, exalted be Your
Majesty and Glory. There is no god but You."
Or he may say any other supplications which the Prophet, (peace and
blessings of Allah be on him) used to say in his prayers. It is better to recite these supplications alternately, the first one in the morning prayer "Fajr" the second in the noon prayer "Zuhr", each one by turn, in conformity with what the Prophet used to do.
After reciting the opening supplication, the worshipper says:
"Aouzo billahi min al-shaytani-r-ragim”
Which means: "I seek protection of Allah against the accursed Satan."
Then says "Bism illahi-Rahmani Raheem"
Which means: "In the name of Allah, the All Merciful, the All Compassionate." and recites the Fatiha (The opening Sura of the glorious Quran).
Prophet Mohammed, may peace and blessings be upon him, said: "Prayer
without reciting the Fatiha is invalid".
The worshipper should say "A'meen" after reciting the Fatiha loudly if the
prayer is said loudly, and whisper it in inaudible prayers. To be in
conformity with the traditions of the Prophet, the worshipper-is advised to
recite verses from medium size Suras of the Quran in the Zuhr (noon), Asr (late afternoon), and Isha (night) prayers. As for the Fajr (morning) prayer, the worshipper is advised to recite a passage from the long Suras of the Quran. He has the choice in Maghrib prayer (Evening prayer) either to recite passages from the long Suras or from the short Suras 6 of the Quran.
(7) Then, the worshipper bows in "Ruku" raising his hands up to the level
of his shoulders or ears while saying "Allahu Akbar" "Allah is Great" then
bends down, making his head and back on one level and putting his hands
with the fingers spread on his knees.
The worshipper should feel serenity and tranquillity while bowing, he should say thrice at least: "Subhana Rabbiayl A'zim"
Which means: "Glory be to my Lord, the Almighty."
It is advisable to say while bowing in addition to that:
"Subhanak-Allahumma Rabbana wa bi hamdika, Allahumma Ighfir liy"
Which means: "Glory be to Thee, O Allah, and I praise Thee, forgive me my sins."
(8) To raise one's head up from bowing, raising one's hands to the level of
his shoulders or ears, saying, in case of being Imam or praying alone:
"Sami'a Allahu liman hamidah"
Which means: "Allah listens to him who praises Him"
While resuming the standing position, he should say:
"Rabbana wa laka al hamdu hamdan katheera'n tayyiban mobarakan feehiy mil'a ssamawati wa mila alardhi wa mil'a ma baynahoma wa mil'a ma Shitamin shiyin ba'ad" This supplication means:
"Our Lord, praise be fore Thee only, praises plentiful and blessed as to fill
the heavens, the earth, what in between, and fill that which will please
Thee besides them."
But if the worshipper is a follower, and led in his prayer by the Imam he
should say when rising up “Rabbana wa lake alhamd...” etc.
It is advisable for the Imam, the follower, or who prays alone to add also:
"You Allah who deserve all praises and all glory, your praising is the best and most true of whatever Your servant can say, we all are Your servants, Our Lord, no one can ever deprive aught of what You have bestowed and no one can ever give aught of what You have deprived."
The worshipper is advised to put his hands on his chest, as he had done
before he bowed. Both Wa'il Ibn Haggar and Sahl Ibn Sai'yd reported that
this was the manner of the Prophet when he used to raise his head up after bowing.
(9) To prostrate saying "Allahu Akbar" "Allah is Great". He should touch
the ground with his knees before touching it with his hands, if that is
possible to him. If not, he is permitted to touch the ground by his hand
before his knees. His fingers and toes should be directed towards the Qibla Makkah, and his hands should be stretched, and the fingers close together and not separated. In prostration, the worshipper should use these seven organs: The forehead, the nose, both hands, both knees and the internal mparts of the toes.
These seven organs should touch the ground. Then the worshipper should
say thrice or more: "Subhana Rabbiyal A'ala"
"Glorified is my Lord, the Exalted."
It is advisable to say:
"Subhanaka Allahuma Rabbana wa bi hamdika, Allahuma Ighfir- liy."
"Glory be to Thee, Our Lord, and I praise Thee. Our Lord, forgive me my
It is recommendable for the worshipper to exceed more and more in
supplications and ask for more from his Lord, because the Prophet, may
peace and blessings of Allah be on him, said (which means):
"As for bowing "Ruku" you should glorify your Lord during performing it, as for prostration, you should do your best to supplicate and ask for more from Him, because your supplications during prostration are more worthy to be accepted."
The worshipper should ask his Lord for prosperity both in this worldly life
and in the Hereafter. Whether it is an obligatory prayer or an optional
prayer, the worshipper, while prostrating, should neither bring his hands
close to his sides, nor stick his abdomen to his thighs, or his thighs to his
legs. The worshipper's arms should be raised up from the ground because
the Prophet, may peace and blessings of Allah be on him, prohibited putting the arms and stretching them on the ground, ordering that "adjust your prostration, keep straight in it, and stretch not your hands on the ground as dogs do."
(10) He should raise his head from prostration saying: "Allahu Akbar" and
lays his left foot flat on the ground and sits upon it, keeping his right foot
erected, his hands on his thighs and knees, and says:
"O my Lord, forgive me, have mercy on me, guide me, provide me with your blessings and console me."
The worshipper should feel tranquillity during this pause.