Don’t leave a single prayer…

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

The five obligatory prayers are one of the foundations of Islam and we have all been ordered to safeguard them.

حَافِظُوا عَلَى الصَّلَوَاتِ وَالصَّلَاةِ الْوُسْطَىٰ وَقُومُوا لِلَّـهِ قَانِتِينَ

Guard strictly (five obligatory) As­-Salawaat (the prayers) especially the middle salah (i.e. the best prayer ­ Asr). And stand before Allah with obedience [and do not speak to others during the salah (prayers)]. [Surah Al-Baqarah (2) : 238]

Unfortunately, not everyone follows these instructions.

فَخَلَفَ مِن بَعْدِهِمْ خَلْفٌ أَضَاعُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَاتَّبَعُوا الشَّهَوَاتِ ۖ فَسَوْفَ يَلْقَوْنَ غَيًّا

Then, there has succeeded them a posterity who have given up As-Salah (the prayers) [i.e. made their Salah (prayers) to be lost, either by not offering them or by not offering them perfectly or by not offering them in their proper fixed times, etc.] and have followed lusts. So they will be thrown in Hell. [Surah Maryam (19) : 59]

To all those who don’t pray five times a day, I wish to ask: Don’t you find that scary? Being thrown into the Hell fire, I mean.

It doesn’t have to be that way, you know. Just working on the five daily prayers (i.e. the obligatory ones), and not missing them, is one of the ways of getting to Paradise.

عَنْ جَابِرٍ، أَنَّ رَجُلاً، سَأَلَ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَقَالَ أَرَأَيْتَ إِذَا صَلَّيْتُ الصَّلَوَاتِ الْمَكْتُوبَاتِ وَصُمْتُ رَمَضَانَ وَأَحْلَلْتُ الْحَلاَلَ وَحَرَّمْتُ الْحَرَامَ وَلَمْ أَزِدْ عَلَى ذَلِكَ شَيْئًا أَأَدْخُلُ الْجَنَّةَ قَالَ ‏ “‏ نَعَمْ ‏”‏ ‏.‏ قَالَ وَاللَّهِ لاَ أَزِيدُ عَلَى ذَلِكَ شَيْئًا

It is narrated on the authority of Jaabir (radiallahu anhu) that a man once said to the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam): Shall I enter Paradise in case I say the obligatory prayers, observe the (fasts) of Ramadan and treat that as lawful which has been made permissible (by the Shariah) and deny myself that what is forbidden, and make no addition to it? He (the Prophet) said “Yes”. He (the inquirer) said: By Allah, I would add nothing to it. [Sahih Muslim, Hadeeth No. 17]

This man didn’t want to add any voluntary deeds, he simply wanted to focus on the obligatory deeds, which included the five daily prayers.

To the person struggling to pray just five times a day: Isn’t Paradise worth the struggle?

Also, I’m sure that you are of those who love the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and his Companions (radiallahu anhum).

Well, this is what they had to say about those who left the obligatory prayer:

عَن جَابِر بْنَ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ، يَقُولُ سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏ “‏ بَيْنَ الرَّجُلِ وَبَيْنَ الشِّرْكِ وَالْكُفْرِ تَرْكُ الصَّلاَةِ ‏”

Jaabir ibn Abdullah (radiallahu anhuma) said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (salallahu alaihi wasallam) observing this: Between man and shirk (polytheism) and kufr (disbelief) is the abandonment of salah (prayer). [Sahih Muslim, Hadeeth No. 147]

عَنْ جَابِرٍ، أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ بَيْنَ الْكُفْرِ وَالإِيمَانِ تَرْكُ الصَّلاَةِ ‏”

Narrated Jaabir (radiallahu anhu) that the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: “Between disbelief and faith is abandoning the salah (prayer).” [Jaami At-Tirmidhi, Hadeeth No. 2618. Graded “sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ شَقِيقٍ الْعُقَيْلِيِّ، قَالَ كَانَ أَصْحَابُ مُحَمَّدٍ صلى الله عليه وسلم لاَ يَرَوْنَ شَيْئًا مِنَ الأَعْمَالِ تَرْكُهُ كُفْرٌ غَيْرَ الصَّلاَةِ ‏

Narrated Abdullah ibn Shaqiq Al-Uqayli: The Companions of Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) didn’t consider leaving anything to be disblief except for the salah (prayer). [Jaami At-Tirmidhi, Hadeeth No. 2622. Graded “sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

To those who leave their obligatory prayers: Don’t you feel a pain in your heart when you read this? Don’t you feel sad reading that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and his Companions (radiallahu anhuma) – people whom I’m sure you love dearly – might actually not consider you a Muslim because of what you do?

Now, you might get angry and say: “Hey, I have iman (faith), okay and I love Allah! Leaving the prayer won’t change that.”

Okay, let me give you an example that will make it easier for you to understand why the above statement is a bit problematic. Suppose you have a friend who claims to love you dearly. However, the person’s actions don’t show that at all. Rather than being nice to you, the person ignores you most of the time and only gives you the time of day when they need something.

Would you believe that this friend loves you just because they said so? Or would you doubt what they said due to the way they behaved towards you?

Let’s take another example. Suppose a person keeps claiming to be very honest and trustworthy. Yet, you notice that they keep lying all the time and cheating others. Would you believe what they said about themselves or would you hold their actions as a proof against them?

Now, you might think that I’m judging you and saying that you don’t really have iman (faith) or that you don’t love Allah. No, I’m not doing that. I’m simply asking you to look at your life including your prayers and see if it reflects iman and love of Allah. If it doesn’t, then I think you might need to take corrective action, the first one being praying the obligatory prayers at their appointed time.

The reason that you need to question yourself now is so that you can prepare yourself for the questioning on the Last Day.

And ALL of us will have to go through the “prayer question” first.

عَنْ حُرَيْثِ بْنِ قَبِيصَةَ، قَالَ قَدِمْتُ الْمَدِينَةَ فَقُلْتُ اللَّهُمَّ يَسِّرْ لِي جَلِيسًا صَالِحًا ‏.‏ قَالَ فَجَلَسْتُ إِلَى أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ فَقُلْتُ إِنِّي سَأَلْتُ اللَّهَ أَنْ يَرْزُقَنِي جَلِيسًا صَالِحًا فَحَدِّثْنِي بِحَدِيثٍ سَمِعْتَهُ مِنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لَعَلَّ اللَّهَ أَنْ يَنْفَعَنِي بِهِ فَقَالَ سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏ “‏ إِنَّ أَوَّلَ مَا يُحَاسَبُ بِهِ الْعَبْدُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ مِنْ عَمَلِهِ صَلاَتُهُ فَإِنْ صَلُحَتْ فَقَدْ أَفْلَحَ وَأَنْجَحَ وَإِنْ فَسَدَتْ فَقَدْ خَابَ وَخَسِرَ فَإِنِ انْتَقَصَ مِنْ فَرِيضَتِهِ شَيْءٌ قَالَ الرَّبُّ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ انْظُرُوا هَلْ لِعَبْدِي مِنْ تَطَوُّعٍ فَيُكَمَّلَ بِهَا مَا انْتَقَصَ مِنَ الْفَرِيضَةِ ثُمَّ يَكُونُ سَائِرُ عَمَلِهِ عَلَى ذَلِكَ ‏”

Huraith bin Qabisah narrated: “I arrived in Al-Madinah and said: ‘O Allah! Facilitate me to be in a righteous gathering.'” He said: “I sat with Abu Hurairah (radiallahu anhu) and said: ‘Indeed I asked Allah to provide me with a righteous gathering. So narrate a hadith to me which you heard from Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) so that perhaps Allah would cause me to benefit from it.’ He said: ‘I heard Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) say: “Indeed the first deed by which a servant will be called to account on the Day of Resurrection is his salah (prayer). If it is complete, he is successful and saved, but if it is defective, he has failed and lost. So if something is deficient in his obligatory (prayers) then the Lord, Mighty and Sublime says: ‘Look! Are there any voluntary (prayers) for my worshipper?’ So with them, what was deficient in his obligatory (prayers) will be completed. Then the rest of his deeds will be treated like that.” [Jaami At-Tirmidhi, Hadeeth No. 413. Graded “sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

To those who get lazy about their prayers: Wouldn’t you want your prayers to be complete, so that you can be saved? After all, the thing that you’re being asked to do is to pray only five times in one day, which isn’t that difficult, especially when you consider that the prayer is the BEST of deeds.

عَنْ ثَوْبَانَ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ ‏ “‏ اسْتَقِيمُوا وَلَنْ تُحْصُوا وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ خَيْرَ أَعْمَالِكُمُ الصَّلاَةُ وَلاَ يُحَافِظُ عَلَى الْوُضُوءِ إِلاَّ مُؤْمِنٌ ‏”

It was narrated that Thawban (radiallahu anhu) said: “The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘Adhere to righteousness even though you will not be able to do all acts of virtue. Know that the best of your deeds is salah (prayer) and that no one maintains his ablution except a believer.'” [Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadeeth No. 277. Graded “sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

Offering these five prayers at their appointed times are deeds that Allah loves.

 عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ قَالَ سَأَلْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَىُّ الْعَمَلِ أَحَبُّ إِلَى اللَّهِ قَالَ ‏”‏ الصَّلاَةُ عَلَى وَقْتِهَا ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالَ ثُمَّ أَىُّ قَالَ ‏”‏ ثُمَّ بِرُّ الْوَالِدَيْنِ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالَ ثُمَّ أَىُّ قَالَ ‏”‏ الْجِهَادُ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالَ حَدَّثَنِي بِهِنَّ وَلَوِ اسْتَزَدْتُهُ لَزَادَنِي‏.‏

Narrated Abdullah (radiallahu anhu) : I asked the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) “Which deed is the dearest to Allah?” He replied, “To offer the prayers at their appointed times.” I asked, “What is the next (in goodness)?” He replied, “To be good and dutiful to your parents” I again asked, “What is the next (in goodness)?” He replied, ‘To participate in Jihad (religious fighting) in Allah’s cause.” Abdullah added, “I asked only that much and if I had asked more, the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) would have told me more.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Hadeeth No. 505]

Leaving even a single prayer is very dangerous – because it means that you no longer have the protection of Allah.

عَنْ أَبِي الدَّرْدَاءِ، قَالَ أَوْصَانِي خَلِيلِي ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ أَنْ ‏ “‏لاَ تُشْرِكْ بِاللَّهِ شَيْئًا وَإِنْ قُطِّعْتَ وَحُرِّقْتَ وَلاَ تَتْرُكْ صَلاَةً مَكْتُوبَةً مُتَعَمِّدًا فَمَنْ تَرَكَهَا مُتَعَمِّدًا فَقَدْ بَرِئَتْ مِنْهُ الذِّمَّةُ وَلاَ تَشْرَبِ الْخَمْرَ فَإِنَّهَا مِفْتَاحُ كُلِّ شَرٍّ”

Abu Dardaa (radiallahu anhu) said: My close friend (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) advised me: “Do not associate anything with Allah, even if you are cut and burned. Do not neglect any prescribed prayer deliberately, for whoever neglects it deliberately no longer has the protection of Allah. And do not drink wine, for it is the key to all evil.” [Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadeeth No. 4034. Graded “hasan” (good) by Al-Albani.]

To the person who struggles to pray on time: Doesn’t losing Allah’s protection worry you? Why not just make a bit of effort to pray each prayer within it’s time? Not only will you retain Allah’s protection but you’ll also remove your sins.

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، أَنَّهُ سَمِعَ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏”‏ أَرَأَيْتُمْ لَوْ أَنَّ نَهَرًا بِبَابِ أَحَدِكُمْ، يَغْتَسِلُ فِيهِ كُلَّ يَوْمٍ خَمْسًا، مَا تَقُولُ ذَلِكَ يُبْقِي مِنْ دَرَنِهِ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالُوا لاَ يُبْقِي مِنْ دَرَنِهِ شَيْئًا‏.‏ قَالَ ‏”‏ فَذَلِكَ مِثْلُ الصَّلَوَاتِ الْخَمْسِ، يَمْحُو اللَّهُ بِهَا الْخَطَايَا ‏”‏‏

Narrated Abu Hurairah (radiallahu anhu): I heard Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) saying, “If there was a river at the door of anyone of you and he took a bath in it five times a day would you notice any dirt on him?” They said, “Not a trace of dirt would be left.” The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) added, “That is the example of the five prayers with which Allah blots out (annuls) evil deeds.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Hadeeth No. 506]

Imagine having a shower five times a day. Wouldn’t you feel so clean? Well, praying regularly makes you feel like that too.

For the brothers, praying five times a day includes praying the Friday prayer because it replaces the Dhuhr of that day.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِذَا نُودِيَ لِلصَّلَاةِ مِن يَوْمِ الْجُمُعَةِ فَاسْعَوْا إِلَىٰ ذِكْرِ اللَّـهِ وَذَرُوا الْبَيْعَ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

O you who believe (Muslims)! When the call is proclaimed for the salah (prayer) on the day of Friday (Jumuah prayer), come to the remembrance of Allah [Jumuah religious talk (Khutbah) and salah (prayer)] and leave off business (and every other thing), that is better for you if you did but know! [Surah Al-Jumuah (62) :9]

عَنْ عبد الله ابْنِ عُمَرَ وأَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ أَنَّهُمَا سَمِعَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ عَلَى أَعْوَادِ مِنْبَرِهِ ‏ “‏ لَيَنْتَهِيَنَّ أَقْوَامٌ عَنْ وَدْعِهِمُ الْجُمُعَاتِ أَوْ لَيَخْتِمَنَّ اللَّهُ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ ثُمَّ لَيَكُونُنَّ مِنَ الْغَافِلِينَ ‏”‏ ‏

Abdullah ibn Umar (radiallahu anhuma) and Abu Hurairah (radiallahu anhu) said that they heard Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) say on the planks of his pulpit: People must cease to neglect the Friday prayer or Allah will seal their hearts and then they will be among the negligent. [Sahih Muslim, Hadeeth No. 1882]

عَنْ أَبِي الْجَعْدِ يَعْنِي الضَّمْرِيَّ، وَكَانَتْ، لَهُ صُحْبَةٌ فِيمَا زَعَمَ مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ عَمْرٍو قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ “‏ مَنْ تَرَكَ الْجُمُعَةَ ثَلاَثَ مَرَّاتٍ تَهَاوُنًا بِهَا طَبَعَ اللَّهُ عَلَى قَلْبِهِ ‏”

Abu Al-Jad – meaning Ad-Damri – narrated, and he was a Companion according to the claim of Muhammad bin Amr: “Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘Whoever neglects the Friday prayer three times (in a row) without an excuse, then Allah sets a seal upon his heart.'” [Jaami At-Tirmidhi, Hadeeth No. 500. Graded “hasan sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

To those brothers who leave the Friday prayer without any excuse: Doesn’t the very thought of your heart getting sealed terrify you?

Perhaps you haven’t pondered over what the seal (also known as the stamp) actually means.

Allah uses the same word “taba” (meaning seal or stamp) to describe people that you don’t want to have anything in common with.

فَبِمَا نَقْضِهِم مِّيثَاقَهُمْ وَكُفْرِ‌هِم بِآيَاتِ اللَّـهِ وَقَتْلِهِمُ الْأَنبِيَاءَ بِغَيْرِ‌ حَقٍّ وَقَوْلِهِمْ قُلُوبُنَا غُلْفٌ ۚ بَلْ طَبَعَ اللَّـهُ عَلَيْهَا بِكُفْرِ‌هِمْ فَلَا يُؤْمِنُونَ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا

Because of their breaking the covenant, and of their rejecting the Ayaat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of Allah, and of their killing the Prophets unjustly, and of their saying: “Our hearts are wrapped (with coverings, i.e. we do not understand what the Messengers say)” – nay, Allah has set a seal upon their hearts because of their disbelief, so they believe not but a little. [Surah An-Nisaa (4) : 155]

أَوَلَمْ يَهْدِ لِلَّذِينَ يَرِثُونَ الْأَرْضَ مِن بَعْدِ أَهْلِهَا أَن لَّوْ نَشَاءُ أَصَبْنَاهُم بِذُنُوبِهِمْ ۚ وَنَطْبَعُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمْ فَهُمْ لَا يَسْمَعُونَ

تِلْكَ الْقُرَىٰ نَقُصُّ عَلَيْكَ مِنْ أَنبَائِهَا ۚ وَلَقَدْ جَاءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُهُم بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ فَمَا كَانُوا لِيُؤْمِنُوا بِمَا كَذَّبُوا مِن قَبْلُ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ يَطْبَعُ اللَّـهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِ الْكَافِرِينَ

Is it not clear to those who inherit the earth in succession from its (previous) possessors, that had We willed, We would have punished them for their sins. And We seal up their hearts so that they hear not? Those were the towns whose story We relate unto you (O Muhammad). And there came indeed to them their Messengers with clear proofs, but they were not such as to believe in that which they had rejected before. Thus Allah does seal up the hearts of the disbelievers (from each and every kind of religious guidance). [Surah Al-Araaf (7) : 100-101]

مَن كَفَرَ بِاللَّـهِ مِن بَعْدِ إِيمَانِهِ إِلَّا مَنْ أُكْرِهَ وَقَلْبُهُ مُطْمَئِنٌّ بِالْإِيمَانِ وَلَـٰكِن مَّن شَرَحَ بِالْكُفْرِ صَدْرًا فَعَلَيْهِمْ غَضَبٌ مِّنَ اللَّـهِ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ

ذَٰلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمُ اسْتَحَبُّوا الْحَيَاةَ الدُّنْيَا عَلَى الْآخِرَةِ وَأَنَّ اللَّـهَ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَافِرِينَ

أُولَـٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ طَبَعَ اللَّـهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمْ وَسَمْعِهِمْ وَأَبْصَارِهِمْ ۖ وَأُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ

لَا جَرَمَ أَنَّهُمْ فِي الْآخِرَةِ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ

Whoever disbelieved in Allah after his belief, except him who is forced thereto and whose heart is at rest with Faith but such as open their breasts to disbelief, on them is wrath from Allah, and theirs will be a great torment. That is because they loved and preferred the life of this world over that of the Hereafter. And Allah guides not the people who disbelieve. They are those upon whose hearts, hearing (ears) and sight (eyes) Allah has set a seal. And they are the heedless! No doubt, in the Hereafter, they will be the losers. [Surah An-Nahl (16) : 106-109]

الَّذِينَ يُجَادِلُونَ فِي آيَاتِ اللَّـهِ بِغَيْرِ سُلْطَانٍ أَتَاهُمْ ۖ كَبُرَ مَقْتًا عِندَ اللَّـهِ وَعِندَ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ يَطْبَعُ اللَّـهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ قَلْبِ مُتَكَبِّرٍ جَبَّارٍ

Those who dispute about the Ayaat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of Allah, without any authority that has come to them, it is greatly hateful and disgusting to Allah and to those who believe. Thus does Allah seal up the heart of every arrogant, tyrant. (So they cannot guide themselves to the Right Path). [Surah Ghafir (40) :35]

To those brothers who continually miss their Friday prayers: Do you really want to become like those mentioned above and have your heart sealed? I’m sure you wouldn’t want that at all.

And you don’t have to be like them. You just need to put in a bit of work once a week to ensure that you never miss the Friday prayer.

[Those who wish to understand more about the seal, can refer to the end of this post.]

Another prayer that you never ever want to miss is the Asr prayer.

عَنِ ابْنِ عُمَرَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ الَّذِي تَفُوتُهُ صَلاَةُ الْعَصْرِ كَأَنَّمَا وُتِرَ أَهْلَهُ وَمَالَهُ ‏”‏‏

Narrated Ibn Umar (radiallahu anhuma): Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said, “Whoever misses the Asr prayer (intentionally) then it is as if he lost his family and property.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Hadeeth No. 527]

عَنْ أَبِي الْمَلِيحِ، قَالَ كُنَّا مَعَ بُرَيْدَةَ فِي غَزْوَةٍ فِي يَوْمٍ ذِي غَيْمٍ فَقَالَ بَكِّرُوا بِصَلاَةِ الْعَصْرِ فَإِنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ مَنْ تَرَكَ صَلاَةَ الْعَصْرِ فَقَدْ حَبِطَ عَمَلُهُ ‏”‏‏.‏

Narrated Abu Al-Maleeh: We were with Buraidah (radiallahu anhu) in a battle on a cloudy day and he said, “Offer the Asr prayer early as the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said, “Whoever leaves the Asr prayer, all his (good) deeds will be annulled.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Hadeeth No. 528]

To those that frequently miss their Asr prayer: Imagine losing your family AND your property and having ALL your good deeds cancelled out. That’s what missing Asr does.

This prayer has been specifically singled out in the Quran as well.

حَافِظُوا عَلَى الصَّلَوَاتِ وَالصَّلَاةِ الْوُسْطَىٰ وَقُومُوا لِلَّـهِ قَانِتِينَ

Guard strictly (five obligatory) As­-Salawaat (the prayers) especially the middle salah (i.e. the best prayer ­ Asr). And stand before Allah with obedience [and do not speak to others during the salah (prayers)]. [Surah Al-Baqarah (2) : 238]

عَنْ سَمُرَةَ بْنِ جُنْدَبٍ، أَنَّ نَبِيَّ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ صَلاَةُ الْوُسْطَى صَلاَةُ الْعَصْرِ ‏”

Narrated Samurah ibn Jundab (radiallahu anhu): “The Prophet of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘The middle salah (prayer) is Salat Al-Asr.'” [Jaami At-Tirmidhi, Hadeeth No. 2983. Graded “sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

Now, some people really do want to pray but they sleep through prayer time. Believe me, that’s not good at all.

عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قَالَ ذُكِرَ عِنْدَ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم رَجُلٌ فَقِيلَ مَا زَالَ نَائِمًا حَتَّى أَصْبَحَ مَا قَامَ إِلَى الصَّلاَةِ‏.‏ فَقَالَ : بَالَ الشَّيْطَانُ فِي أُذُنِهِ ‏

Narrated Abdullah (radiallahu anhu): A person was mentioned before the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and he was told that he had kept on sleeping till morning and had not got up for the prayer. The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said, “Satan urinated in his ears.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 2, Hadeeth No. 245]

To those who constantly sleep through Fajr: Doesn’t the fact that the DEVIL urinated in your ears gross you out? Doesn’t it feel icky?

Unfortunately, there’s more bad news.

عَنِ سَمُرَةُ بْنُ جُنْدَبٍ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فِي الرُّؤْيَا قَالَ ‏ “‏ أَمَّا الَّذِي يُثْلَغُ رَأْسُهُ بِالْحَجَرِ فَإِنَّهُ يَأْخُذُ الْقُرْآنَ فَيَرْفِضُهُ وَيَنَامُ عَنِ الصَّلاَةِ الْمَكْتُوبَةِ ‏

Narrated Samura ibn Jundab (radiallahu anhu): The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said in his narration of a dream that he saw, “He whose head was being crushed with a stone was one who learnt the Quran but never acted on it, and slept ignoring the compulsory prayers.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 2, Hadeeth No. 244]

To those who have the tendency to sleep through prayer time: Can you imagine getting your head crushed by a stone? It feels bad just reading about it. Why don’t you take the steps to ensure that you are NOT going to be from amongst these people?

It’s not that difficult at all. Just set an alarm for the next prayer time so even if you fall asleep, you’ll have something that can alert you.

Remember, just making sure to pray five times a day means you are one step closer to being part of the cream of the crop.

عن عمرو بن مرة الجهني قال :جاء رجلٌ إلى النَّبيِّ صلَّى اللهُ عليه وسلَّم فقال: يا رسولَ اللهِ أرأَيْتَ إنْ شهِدْتُ أنْ لا إلهَ إلَّا اللهُ وأنَّك رسولُ اللهِ وصلَّيْتُ الصَّلواتِ الخمسَ وأدَّيْتُ الزَّكاةَ وصُمْتُ رمضانَ وقُمْتُه فمِمَّن أنا ؟ قال: ( مِن الصِّدِّيقينَ والشُّهداءِ )

ِAmr ibn Muraah Al-Juhani (radiallahu anhu) said: A man came to the Prophet (sallallau alaihi wasallam) and asked, “O Messenger of Allah, what if I testify that none has the right to worshipped but Allah and that you are the Messenger of Allah, and I observe the five daily prayers, and I pay the zakah, and I fast and stand in prayer in Ramadhan, then amongst whom shall I be?” He said: “Amongst the siddiqeen (steadfast affirmers of the truth) and shuhadaa (martyrs).” [Sahih ibn Hibban, Hadeeth No. 3438. Shuaib Al-Arnaut said that its isnaad (chain) was sahih (authentic) upon the conditions of the two Shaikhs (i.e. Al-Bukhari and Muslim).]

Do you know who the siddiqeen and the shuhadaa (martyrs) are?

They are the two levels right below the Prophets (alaihimissalam) and are mentioned in the following ayah (verse):

َمَن يُطِعِ اللَّـهَ وَالرَّ‌سُولَ فَأُولَـٰئِكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمَ اللَّـهُ عَلَيْهِم مِّنَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَالصِّدِّيقِينَ وَالشُّهَدَاءِ وَالصَّالِحِينَ ۚ وَحَسُنَ أُولَـٰئِكَ رَ‌فِيقًا

And whosoever obeys Allah and the Messenger then they will be in the company of those on whom Allah has bestowed His Grace, of the Prophets, the Siddiqeen (those followers of the Prophets who were first and foremost to believe in them, like Abu Bakr As­-Siddiq), the martyrs, and the righteous. And how excellent these companions are!” [Surah An-Nisaa (4) : 69]

Imagine being with such an illustrious group of people. Well, praying five times a day will help get you there.

Unfortunately, not praying five times a day means that you will be accompanying a totally different group of people, those whom you wouldn’t even want to touch with a pole!

عن عبدالله بن عمرو عن رسولِ اللهِ صلَّى اللهُ عليه وسلَّم أنَّه ذكَر الصَّلاةَ يومًا فقال: ( مَن حافَظ عليها كانت له نورًا وبرهانًا ونجاةً يومَ القيامةِ ومَن لم يُحافِظْ عليها لم يكُنْ له برهانٌ ولا نورٌ ولا نجاةٌ وكان يومَ القيامةِ مع قارونَ وهامانَ وفِرعونَ وأُبَيِّ بنِ خلَفٍ )

Abdullah ibn Amr (radiallahu anhuma) narrated that the Prophet (sallalllahu alaihi wasallam) mentioned prayer one day saying: “Whoever observes it (prayer) regularly, it will be light and a proof and salvation for him on the Day of Resurrection, and whoever does not observe it regularly, it will not be a light or a proof or salvation for him, and on the Day of Resurrection he will be with Firaun (Pharaoh), Haman, Qarun, and Ubay ibn Khalaf” [Sahih Ibn Hibban, Hadeeth No. 1467. Shuaib Al-Arnaut said that its isnaad (chain) was “sahih” (authentic).]

Pharoah is the guy who killed little baby boys, remember? And that’s not all he did.

Haman is Pharoah’s minister, which tells you all you need to know about him.

Qarun is the ultra-wealthy guy who got swallowed up by the earth.

Ubay ibn Khalaf is one of the nastiest people from Quraish.

Now, you might be thinking: Why are these four people mentioned?

Shaikh Ibn Baz (rahimahullah) explains:

“Commenting on the above Hadith, some scholars said: “On the Day of Resurrection one who abandons Salah will join the company of Pharaoh, Haman, Qarun, and Ubayy ibn Khalaf on account of his imitating them. The reason is that if he abandons it for the sake of holding a prestigious position, he will be behaving like Firaun (Pharaoh) who, being an enemy to Musa (Moses, peace be upon him), transgressed and behaved arrogantly taking advantage of his royal position. The same is true with Haman, Pharaoh’s minister, who, taking advantage of his position, behaved arrogantly and refused to follow Musa (Moses, peace be upon him). Therefore, one will dwell in Hellfire with Haman, Pharaoh’s minister, because of being occupied with his prestigious position and getting distracted from obeying Allah. One who abandons it for the sake of collecting wealth will join the company of Qarun (Korah) who was addicted to the collection of wealth and lusting after his desires. He behaved arrogantly and disobeyed Prophet Musa. Thus, Allah caused the earth to swallow him up together with his dwelling. He was destined to enter Hellfire. Those who behave after the manner of Qarun will enter Hellfire with him. We seek refuge in Allah from this. One who abandons Salah on account of being busy, conducting buying and selling transactions will be behaving after the manner of Ubay ibn Khalaf, the Makkan merchant, and will thus join his company in Hellfire. We seek refuge in Allah.”

He also said:

This Hadith points out that the person who abandons Salah commits a heinous crime and is a Kafir (disbeliever) who will be gathered with Firaun (Pharaoh) Haman, Qarun and Ubay ibn Khalaf. These people were the valiant leaders of Kufr (disbelief), and those who abandon Salah will deserve to be gathered with them. Therefore, if one abandons it because of presidency and kingdom, he will be like Firaun (Pharaoh) because his kingdom and arrogance kept him away from following the truth. On the other hand, if he gets busy with his ministry and position and neglects Salah, then he will be like Haman, the minister of Firaun (Pharaoh) and therefore, he will be gathered with him on the Day of Resurrection – we ask Allah for protection. If one get busy with his property and desires and abandons Salah, then he will be like Qarun (Korah) whom Allah (Exalted be He) caused the earth to swallow along with his house because of his arrogance and because he was always busy with his property which kept him away from obeying Allah (Exalted be He) and His Messenger (peace be upon him). If a person gets busy with his trade, selling and buying, and neglects Salah, then he will be like Ubay ibn Khalaf, the Makkah merchant and one of the Kafirs who was killed on the day of Uhud by the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself.”

To those who don’t pray five times a day: Do you REALLY want to be with this bunch of losers on the Day of Judgement????

Ask yourself this question: What is keeping you from praying five times a day? Is it work? Children? Studies?

Are any of them worth going to Hell over? I don’t think so, especially when you consider what prayer really is: a conversation between you and Allah.

عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ “‏ إِذَا كَانَ أَحَدُكُمْ فِي الصَّلاَةِ فَإِنَّهُ يُنَاجِي رَبَّهُ فَلاَ يَبْزُقَنَّ بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَلاَ عَنْ يَمِينِهِ وَلَكِنْ عَنْ شِمَالِهِ تَحْتَ قَدَمِهِ ‏”

Anas ibn Malik (radiallahu anhu) reported: The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: When any one of you is engaged in prayer, he is holding intimate conversation with his Lord, so none of you must spit in front of him, or towards his right side, but towards his left side under his foot. [Sahih Muslim, Hadeeth No. 1123]

Missing a prayer means that you missed out on a private conversation with the Lord of the Worlds, the Most Merciful, the One gave you everything that you have right now.

To those that keep missing prayers: Doesn’t it seem rude that you can’t be bothered to make time for Him?

You need to make sure that nothing comes between you and the obligatory prayers.

عَنِ ابْنِ مُحَيْرِيزٍ، أَنَّ رَجُلاً، مِنْ بَنِي كِنَانَةَ يُدْعَى الْمُخْدَجِيَّ سَمِعَ رَجُلاً، بِالشَّامِ يُدْعَى أَبَا مُحَمَّدٍ يَقُولُ إِنَّ الْوِتْرَ وَاجِبٌ ‏.‏ قَالَ الْمُخْدَجِيُّ فَرُحْتُ إِلَى عُبَادَةَ بْنِ الصَّامِتِ فَأَخْبَرْتُهُ فَقَالَ عُبَادَةُ كَذَبَ أَبُو مُحَمَّدٍ سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏ “‏ خَمْسُ صَلَوَاتٍ كَتَبَهُنَّ اللَّهُ عَلَى الْعِبَادِ فَمَنْ جَاءَ بِهِنَّ لَمْ يُضَيِّعْ مِنْهُنَّ شَيْئًا اسْتِخْفَافًا بِحَقِّهِنَّ كَانَ لَهُ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ عَهْدٌ أَنْ يُدْخِلَهُ الْجَنَّةَ وَمَنْ لَمْ يَأْتِ بِهِنَّ فَلَيْسَ لَهُ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ عَهْدٌ إِنْ شَاءَ عَذَّبَهُ وَإِنْ شَاءَ أَدْخَلَهُ الْجَنَّةَ ‏”‏ ‏

Ibn Muhayriz said: A man from Banu Kinanah, named al-Makhdaji, heard a person called Abu Muhammad in Syria, saying: The witr is a duty (wajib). Al-Makhdaji said: So I went to Ubadah ibn as-Samit and informed him. Ubadah (radiallahu anhu) said: Abu Muhammad told a lie. I heard the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasalllam) say: There are five prayers which Allah has prescribed on His servants. If anyone offers them, not losing any of them, and not treating them lightly, Allah guarantees that He will admit him to Paradise. If anyone does not offer them, Allah does not take any responsibility for such a person. He may either punish him or admit him to Paradise. [Sunan Abee Dawood, Hadeeth No. 1420. Graded “sahih” (authentic) by Al-Albani.]

Imagine that. Just praying fives a day is a guarantee into Paradise!!!

You know what I think the problem is? I think you haven’t envisioned Paradise. That’s why you’re letting the world come between you and your prayers.

There’s a beautiful description of Paradise in Surah Al-Insan. That, along with Imam Ibn Kathir’s (rahimahullah) explanation of it, will really help you imagine all the good things that will be in store for you after you start praying five times a day.

Read it slowly and imagine being one of these people. Remember what is mentioned is not a fantasy, but rather a reality that will occur. If you do your part (i.e. not missing the obligatory prayers), you can be a part of this magnificent reality i.e. Paradise.

Allah says:

إِنَّ الْأَبْرَارَ يَشْرَبُونَ مِن كَأْسٍ كَانَ مِزَاجُهَا كَافُورًا

Verily, the Abrar (pious, who fear Allah and avoid evil), shall drink a cup (of wine) mixed with water from a spring in Paradise called Kafur. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 5]

Ibn Kathir says:

“The properties of the Kafur (camphor) are well known; cooling, having a nice fragrance and in addition to this its taste will be delicious in Paradise. Al-Hasan said, “The coolness of the camphor will be in the pleasantness of ginger.” Thus Allah said,

عَيْنًا يَشْرَبُ بِهَا عِبَادُ اللَّـهِ يُفَجِّرُونَهَا تَفْجِيرًا

A spring wherefrom the slaves of Allah will drink, causing it to gush forth abundantly. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 6]

meaning, this (drink) that will be mixed for these righteous people will be taken from Kafur, which is a spring that Allah’s close servants will drink directly from, without it being mixed with anything, and they will drink to their fill from it. The word Yashrabu (to drink) includes the meaning of Yarwa (to quench one’s thirst). Allah then says,

﴿يُفَجِّرُونَهَا تَفْجِيراً﴾

(causing it to gush forth abundantly (Tafjir).) meaning, they will have control of it however and wherever they wish. They will have access to it from their castles, their homes, their sitting rooms and their residences.” 

يُوفُونَ بِالنَّذْرِ وَيَخَافُونَ يَوْمًا كَانَ شَرُّهُ مُسْتَطِيرًا

وَيُطْعِمُونَ الطَّعَامَ عَلَىٰ حُبِّهِ مِسْكِينًا وَيَتِيمًا وَأَسِيرًا

إِنَّمَا نُطْعِمُكُمْ لِوَجْهِ اللَّـهِ لَا نُرِيدُ مِنكُمْ جَزَاءً وَلَا شُكُورًا

إِنَّا نَخَافُ مِن رَّبِّنَا يَوْمًا عَبُوسًا قَمْطَرِيرًا

They (are those who) fulfill (their) vows, and they fear a Day whose evil will be wide-spreading. And they give food, inspite of their love for it (or for the love of Him), to Miskin (poor), the orphan, and the captive, (Saying): “We feed you seeking Allah’s Countenance only. We wish for no reward, nor thanks from you. “Verily, We fear from our Lord a Day, hard and distressful, that will make the faces look horrible (from extreme dislikeness to it).” [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 7-10]

فَوَقَاهُمُ اللَّـهُ شَرَّ ذَٰلِكَ الْيَوْمِ وَلَقَّاهُمْ نَضْرَةً وَسُرُورًا

So Allah saved them from the evil of that Day, and gave them Nadratan (a light of beauty) and joy. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 11]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿وَلَقَّـهُمْ نَضْرَةً﴾

“(and gave them Nadrah (a light of beauty)) meaning, in their faces.

﴿وَسُرُوراً﴾

(And joy) in their hearts.”

وَجَزَاهُم بِمَا صَبَرُوا جَنَّةً وَحَرِيرًا

And their recompense shall be Paradise, and silken garments, because they were patient. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 12]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿وَجَزَاهُمْ بِمَا صَبَرُواْ﴾

“(And their recompense because they were patient) meaning, due to their patience He will give them, bestow upon them and accommodate them with Paradise and silken garments. This means a home that is spacious, a delightful life and fine clothing.”

مُّتَّكِئِينَ فِيهَا عَلَى الْأَرَائِكِ ۖ لَا يَرَوْنَ فِيهَا شَمْسًا وَلَا زَمْهَرِيرًا

Reclining therein on raised thrones, they will see there neither the excessive heat of the sun, nor the excessive bitter cold, (as in Paradise there is no sun and no moon). [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 13]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿لاَ يَرَوْنَ فِيهَا شَمْساً وَلاَ زَمْهَرِيراً﴾

“(they will see there neither the excessive heat, nor the excessive bitter cold.) meaning, there will be no disturbing heat with them, nor any painful cold, rather there will only be one climate that will be always and eternal and they will not want it to be changed.”

وَدَانِيَةً عَلَيْهِمْ ظِلَالُهَا وَذُلِّلَتْ قُطُوفُهَا تَذْلِيلًا

And the shade thereof is close upon them, and the bunches of fruit thereof will hang low within their reach. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 14]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿وَدَانِيَةً عَلَيْهِمْ ظِلَـلُهَا﴾

“(And the shade thereof is close upon them.) meaning, the branches will be close to them.

﴿وَذُلِّلَتْ قُطُوفُهَا تَذْلِيلاً﴾

(And the bunches of fruit thereof will hang low within their reach.) meaning, whenever he attempts to get any fruit, it will come nearer to him and come down from its highest branch as if it hears and obeys.”

And he says:

“Mujahid said,

﴿وَذُلِّلَتْ قُطُوفُهَا تَذْلِيلاً﴾

(And the bunches of fruit thereof will hang low within their reach.) “If he stands it will rise with him an equal amount, if he sits it will lower itself for him so that he can reach it and if he lies down it will lower itself for him more so that he can reach it.”

وَيُطَافُ عَلَيْهِم بِآنِيَةٍ مِّن فِضَّةٍ وَأَكْوَابٍ كَانَتْ قَوَارِيرَا

قَوَارِيرَ مِن فِضَّةٍ قَدَّرُوهَا تَقْدِيرًا

And amongst them will be passed round vessels of silver and cups of crystal. Crystal-clear, made of silver. They will determine the measure thereof according to their wishes.  [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 15-16]

Ibn Kathir says:

(وَيُطَافُ عَلَيْهِمْ بِـَانِيَةٍ مِّن فِضَّةٍ وَأَكْوابٍ)

(And among them will be passed round vessels of silver and cups of crystal) meaning, servants will go around them with containers of food made of silver and cups of drink. These are drinking vessels that do not have handles or spouts.

﴿قَوَارِيرَاْ قَوَارِيرَاْ مِن فِضَّةٍ﴾

((Qawarir) Crystal-clear, made of silver.) Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Al-Hasan Al-Basri and others have all said, “It (Qawarir) is the whiteness of silver in the transparency of glass.” Qawarir is only made of glass. So these cups are made of silver, but due to their fine thinness, what is inside of them will be visible from outside of them (as if they are glass). This is among the things of which there is nothing like in this world. Allah said,

﴿قَدَّرُوهَا تَقْدِيراً﴾

(They will determine the measure thereof.) meaning, according to the amount that will quench their thirst. It will not be more than that nor less than it, rather it will be prepared in an amount that is suitable for quenching the thirst of their drinkers.”

وَيُسْقَوْنَ فِيهَا كَأْسًا كَانَ مِزَاجُهَا زَنجَبِيلًا

And they will be given to drink there a cup (of wine) mixed with Zanjabil (ginger, etc.). [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 17]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿كَأْساً﴾

(a cup) meaning, a drink of wine.

﴿كَانَ مِزَاجُهَا زَنجَبِيلاً﴾

(mixed with Zanjabil (ginger),) So on one occasion they will be given a drink that is mixed with camphor, and it is cool. Then on another occasion they will be given a drink mixed with ginger, and it is hot. This is so that their affair will be balanced. However, those who are nearest to Allah, they will drink from all of it however they wish, as Qatadah and others have said.”

عَيْنًا فِيهَا تُسَمَّىٰ سَلْسَبِيلًا

A spring there, called Salsabil. [Surah Al-Insan (76):18]

Ibn Kathir says:

“Ikrimah said, “It (Salsabil) is the name of a spring in Paradise.” Mujahid said, “It is called this due to its continuous flowing and the severity of its current.””

وَيَطُوفُ عَلَيْهِمْ وِلْدَانٌ مُّخَلَّدُونَ إِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ حَسِبْتَهُمْ لُؤْلُؤًا مَّنثُورًا

And round about them will (serve) boys of everlasting youth. If you see them, you would think them scattered pearls. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 19]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿وَيَطُوفُ عَلَيْهِمْ وِلْدَنٌ مُّخَلَّدُونَ إِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ حَسِبْتَهُمْ لُؤْلُؤاً مَّنثُوراً ﴾

(And round about them will (serve) boys of everlasting youth. If you see them, you would think them scattered pearls.) meaning, young boys from the boys of Paradise will go around serving the people of Paradise.

﴿مُّخَلَّدُونَ﴾

(everlasting youth.) meaning, in one state forever which they will be never changing from, they will not increase in age.”

And he says:

﴿إِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ حَسِبْتَهُمْ لُؤْلُؤاً مَّنثُوراً﴾

(If you see them, you would think them scattered pearls.) meaning, when you see them dispersing to fulfill the needs of their masters, their great number, their beautiful faces, handsome colors, fine clothing and ornaments, you would think that they were scattered pearls. There is no better quality than this, nor is there anything nicer to look at than scattered pearls in a beautiful place.”

وَإِذَا رَأَيْتَ ثَمَّ رَأَيْتَ نَعِيمًا وَمُلْكًا كَبِيرًا

And when you look there (in Paradise), you will see a delight (that cannot be imagined), and a great dominion. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 20]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿وَإِذَا رَأَيْتَ﴾

(And when you look) meaning, `when you see it, O Muhammad.’

﴿ثُمَّ﴾

(there) meaning, there. This refers to Paradise and its beauty, its vastness, its loftiness and the joy and happiness it contains.

﴿رَأَيْتَ نَعِيماً وَمُلْكاً كَبِيراً﴾

(You will see a delight, and a great dominion.) meaning, there will be a great kingdom that belongs to Allah and a dazzling, splendid dominion. It has been confirmed in the Sahih that Allah will say to the last of the people of the Fire to be taken out of it, and the last of the people to enter into Paradise,

«إِنَّ لَكَ مِثْلَ الدُّنْيَا وَعَشَرَةَ أَمْثَالِهَا»

(verily, you will have similar to the world and ten worlds like it (in addition to it).”) If this is what He will give to the least of those who will be in Paradise, then what do you think about the one who will have a higher status and will be favored even more by Allah?”

عَالِيَهُمْ ثِيَابُ سُندُسٍ خُضْرٌ وَإِسْتَبْرَقٌ ۖ وَحُلُّوا أَسَاوِرَ مِن فِضَّةٍ وَسَقَاهُمْ رَبُّهُمْ شَرَابًا طَهُورًا

Their garments will be of fine green silk, and gold embroidery. They will be adorned with bracelets of silver, and their Lord will give them a pure drink. [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 21]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿عَـلِيَهُمْ ثِيَابُ سُندُسٍ خُضْرٌ وَإِسْتَبْرَقٌ﴾

“(Their garments will be of fine green silk, and Istabraq.) meaning, among the garments of the people of Paradise is silk and Sundus, which is a high quality silk. These garments will be shirts and similar clothing from the undergarments. Concerning Istabraq (velvet), from it there is that which has a glitter and shimmer to it, and it is that which is worn as outer clothes, just as is well-known in clothing.

﴿وَحُلُّواْ أَسَاوِرَ مِن فِضَّةٍ﴾

(They will be adorned with bracelets of silver,) This is a description of the righteous.”

And he says:

﴿وَسَقَـهُمْ رَبُّهُمْ شَرَاباً طَهُوراً﴾

“(and their Lord will give them a purifying drink.) meaning, it will purify their insides of envy, despise, hatred, harm and the other reprehensible character traits. This is just as we have recorded from the Commander of the believers, Ali bin Abi Talib, that he said, “When the people of Paradise come to the Gate of Paradise, they will find two springs there. Then it will be as if they were inspired with what to do, so they will drink from one of them and Allah will remove whatever harmfulness there may be within them. Then they will bathe in the other spring and a glow of delight will run all over them. Thus, Allah informs of their outward condition and their inner beauty.”

إِنَّ هَـٰذَا كَانَ لَكُمْ جَزَاءً وَكَانَ سَعْيُكُم مَّشْكُورًا

(And it will be said to them): “Verily, this is a reward for you, and your endeavour has been accepted.” [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 22]

Ibn Kathir says:

﴿وَكَانَ سَعْيُكُم مَّشْكُوراً﴾

“(and your endeavor has been accepted) meaning, ‘Allah the Exalted will reward you for a small amount (of deeds) with a large amount (of reward).'”

Magnificent, isn’t it?

In the next set of ayaat (verses), Allah mentions some things we need to be sure to do.

إِنَّا نَحْنُ نَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْقُرْآنَ تَنزِيلًا

فَاصْبِرْ لِحُكْمِ رَبِّكَ وَلَا تُطِعْ مِنْهُمْ آثِمًا أَوْ كَفُورًا

وَاذْكُرِ اسْمَ رَبِّكَ بُكْرَةً وَأَصِيلًا

وَمِنَ اللَّيْلِ فَاسْجُدْ لَهُ وَسَبِّحْهُ لَيْلًا طَوِيلًا

Verily! It is We Who have sent down the Quran to you (O Muhammad) by stages. Therefore be patient (O Muhammad) and submit to the Command of your Lord (Allah, by doing your duty to Him and by conveying His Message to mankind), and obey neither a sinner nor a disbeliever among them. And remember the Name of your Lord every morning and afternoon [i.e. offering of the Morning (Fajr), Zuhr, and Asr prayers]. And during night, prostrate yourself to Him (i.e. the offering of Maghrib and Isha prayers), and glorify Him a long night through (i.e. Tahajjud prayer). [Surah Al-Insan (76) : 23-26]

Yep, the five prayers. If you want to go to Paradise, you have to do those. There’s no getting around it.

See, it doesn’t matter who you are. You could be the richest, most accomplished, most good-looking, most powerful, most intelligent, most generous person on this planet. However, even after all that, you would still need to apply tawheed (single out Allah for worship) and pray in order to enter Paradise. Why? Because those are the laws of Allah and they are not bent for anybody. It’s as simple as that.

To all those who struggle to pray: Isn’t it time to change? If not today, then when?

And it’s not difficult. You just need to take one prayer at a time. Start with the current prayer that is due. If you haven’t prayed that, then do so NOW.

If nothing is due, then set a reminder for the next prayer and make sure you do that. Remember, it doesn’t have to be a long prayer. For now, a short prayer will work. Just focus on DOING the prayer within its time.

And remember, you are only focusing on the five prayers i.e the obligatory ones. Some people seem to think that praying “five times a day” includes the voluntary prayers as well like the two rakaahs (units) before Fajr, but no, that’s not what it means. It refers to the 2 rakaahs of Fajr, the 4 rakaahs of both Dhuhr and Asr, the 3 rakaahs of Maghrib and the 4 rakaahs of Isha. That’s it.

The rest are all voluntary prayers. Yes, it’s very good to do all of them but if you don’t even pray the obligatory ones, you need to focus on that first, and stop thinking about the voluntary prayers for now.

Trust me, when you start praying five times a day, you’ll feel the difference. See, not praying makes one feel empty. The person only recognises this fact after he or she starts praying and starts feeling contentment and joy in their hearts.

And remember, you cannot pray them all together at night as “makeup”. Sorry, that’s not going to work because each prayer has a fixed time.

إِنَّ الصَّلَاةَ كَانَتْ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ كِتَابًا مَّوْقُوتًا

Verily, the prayer is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours. [Surah An-Nisa (4) : 103]

Illness, crying children, a horrible boss, etc are not excuses to miss the prayer. In fact, there is no excuse to miss any prayer.

Remember this ayah (verse)?

حَافِظُوا عَلَى الصَّلَوَاتِ وَالصَّلَاةِ الْوُسْطَىٰ وَقُومُوا لِلَّـهِ قَانِتِينَ

Guard strictly (five obligatory) As­-Salawaat (the prayers) especially the middle salah (i.e. the best prayer ­ Asr). And stand before Allah with obedience [and do not speak to others during the salah (prayers)]. [Surah Al-Baqarah (2) : 238]

Well, right after it, Allah says:

فَإِنْ خِفْتُمْ فَرِجَالًا أَوْ رُكْبَانًا

And if you fear (an enemy), perfrom salah (pray) on foot or riding. [Surah Al-Baqarah (2) : 239]

So, even if you fear an enemy, you still need to pray!

Now, what if you’re stuck in an elevator, for example, during prayer time and you cannot do wudhu (ablution) and you don’t know where the Qiblah is nor are you dressed appropriately for prayer?

Guess what? You pray as you are because prayer at its appointed time is more important than the other things like wudhu (ablution), qiblah (direction of prayer), etc!!!

Remember: Don’t leave a single prayer.

If you keep having trouble praying on time, then that means that something is terribly wrong and you need to do lots of istighfar (seeking forgiveness) and taubah (repentance), and you need to beg Allah to guide you aright.

I ask Allah to make it easy for you and make us from amongst those about whom He says:

قَدْ أَفْلَحَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ

Successful indeed are the believers.

الَّذِينَ هُمْ فِي صَلَاتِهِمْ خَاشِعُونَ

Those who offer their salat (prayers) with all solemnity and full submissiveness.

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ عَنِ اللَّغْوِ مُعْرِضُونَ

And those who turn away from Al-Laghw (dirty, false, evil vain talk, falsehood, and all that Allah has forbidden).

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِلزَّكَاةِ فَاعِلُونَ

And those who pay the Zakah.

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَافِظُونَ

And those who guard their chastity (i.e. private parts, from illegal sexual acts)

إِلَّا عَلَىٰ أَزْوَاجِهِمْ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ غَيْرُ مَلُومِينَ

Except from their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess, for then, they are free from blame;

فَمَنِ ابْتَغَىٰ وَرَاءَ ذَٰلِكَ فَأُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْعَادُونَ

But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors;

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِأَمَانَاتِهِمْ وَعَهْدِهِمْ رَاعُونَ

Those who are faithfully true to their Amanaat (all the duties which Allâh has ordained, honesty, moral responsibility and trusts etc.) and to their covenants;

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ عَلَىٰ صَلَوَاتِهِمْ يُحَافِظُونَ

And those who strictly guard their (five compulsory congregational) Salawaat (prayers) (at their fixed stated hours).

أُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْوَارِثُونَ

These are indeed the inheritors.

الَّذِينَ يَرِثُونَ الْفِرْدَوْسَ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

Who shall inherit the Firdaus (Paradise). They shall dwell therein forever.

 [Surah Al-Muminun (23) : 1-11]

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3 thoughts on “Don’t leave a single prayer…”

  1. Jazakillah Khayr sister for this amazing post!
    May I please ask you a concern? I wanted to ask you regarding a person who misses Fajr consistently due to being a heavy sleeper, (despite preparing for it the night before), and then makes it up with zuhr prayer ( that’s the only time she has to make it up due to having work/class in the morning). Is this something that is excused?

    1. Assalamu Alaikum Sister.

      How are you?

      Jazakillahu kheira.

      I haven’t forgotten to answer the question. Please give me a few days to answer because I need to check something that I once read.

      Although I should point out that I cannot answer whether she is “excused” or not because this is something that needs to be referred to a person of knowledge.

      1. Assalamu Alaikum Sister.

        Okay, with regards to your question, I would offer the following suggestions:

        1) With regards to being a heavy sleeper, perhaps she should make sure that there are no medical reasons for this.
        2) With regards to preparation the night before, does it include giving herself enough time to sleep? For example, if she needs 7 hours of deep sleep and Fajr is at 5 am, then she should sleep no later than say 10 or 10:30 pm so that she can make it in time for Fajr. If she sleeps late knowing that she oversleeps Fajr, then this is not correct.
        3) Is there no one to wake her up? Family? A neighbour?
        4) She should do lots of dua to Allah asking Him to aid her in this issue and cure her of this problem.
        5) If she oversleeps despite having done everything to wake up on time, she needs to pray as soon as she gets up. I’m not sure why she can only make it up at Dhuhr? Prayer is the first priority not other things. If she is busy with preparations like breakfast and ironing her clothes, let her try to do this the night before. [She then needs to just heat the breakfast.]
        Also, if she needs to rush to a bus to go to work/class, she can make it up on the bus itself. Recently, I heard a teacher pointing out that she checked about some women who boarded a bus before the adhan of Fajr and got off after the time of Fajr. She said that the fatwas said that these people could pray on the bus due to necessity. If they could not stand, they could just pray sitting. If this is Fajr, then making up Fajr might have the same ruling. Allah knows Betters.
        If she can’t pray on the bus, maybe she could come to class 5 mins late so that she gets to pray.

        Just a few thoughts from my side.
        Sorry for the delay in replying to this issue.

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