05-30-2005, 05:31 PM
Asalam alykum warahmtullahi wabarakhatuhReply
This article, is a discussion of Thuhr and `Asr and,in accordance with the previous articles, it will begin with the related verses:
« Establish the prayer at the dulook of the sun until the darkness of night, and the recitation of fajr, indeed the recitation of fajr is ever witnessed. » [ al-Israa:78 ]
Ibn Katheer has mentioned in his tafseer about this ayah:
Hushaym has reported on the authority of Mugheerah on the authority of ash-Sha'bi on the authority of ibn `Abbaas that he said: its dulook: is its shifting from the zenith. And it is reported by Naafi' on the authority of ibn `Umar. And Maalik reported it in his tafseer on the authority of az-Zuhri on the authority of ibn `Umar. And Abu Barazah al-Aslami and Mujaahid said the same. And al-Hasan, adh-Dhahak, Ja'far al-Baaqir, and Qataadah also say this. And from that which supports this is what is reported by ibn Jareer on the authority of Jaabir bin 'Abdullaah that he said: I sent an invitation to the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلمand whoever wished from his companions, so they ate with me then they left upon the sun's shifting from its zenith. So the Prophet صلى الله عليه و departed and said: "Depart Oh Abu Bakr! Because this is the dulook of the sun." 
And of course the Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم has informed us in the noble hadeeths about the exact time for this prayer.
In the hadeeth in which Jibreel عليه السلامed the Prophetو Sallallahu alyhi wasallam in prayer we find the following description:
The Prohet sallallhu alyhi wasalam was approached by Jibreel (عليه السلامand he said to him: Stand and pray, so he prayed Thuhr when the sun had shifted from its zenith...then he came to him the next day at Thuhr and said: stand and pray, so he prayed Thuhr when the shadow of a thing was its length"
And in another hadeeth on the authority of Abdullaah bin 'Amr, the Prophet صل الله عليه و سلم said:
"The time for Thuhr is from when the sun shifts from its zenith, and the shadow of a man is equal to his length, as long as the time for 'Asr doesn't come in. [ Muslim (612) ]
This is quite clear walhamdulilaah. However there is some confusion that may arise when determining the actual time of the sun's zenith. This is due to the range of difference in the lengths of shadows in the different places around the world.
Al-Mubaarakpuri has a comment in Vol. 1 on page 140 of his sharh of at-Tirmidhi, 'Tuhfah al-Awadhi', beneath the hadeeth of ibn `Abbaas which states: "Jibreel led me in prayer twice at the House (the Ka'bah), so he prayed Thuhr the first time when the shadow (al-Mubaarakpuri says: which is the length of the shadow after the zenith) was likened to a sandal strap".
Al-Mubaarakpuri says: "In a narration from Abu Dawood (the wording is) "when the sun had shifted from the zenith and it was the length of a sandal strap" ibn al-Atheer said: "Its length here is not meant as a limitation but rather the sun's zenith is not made clear except by the shortest shadow that can be seen, and at that time, in Makkah, it was this length, and the shadow will differ as the times and places differ, and this is only seen in the different countries like Makkah in which the shadow is small, so when the days are the longest, and the sun is above the Ka'bah, no shadow is seen to its sides. So every country that is close to the equator will have smaller shadows and the further they are from it to the north, the longer the shadows will be."
The description of this is also mentioned in al-Mughni in volume 2 on page 10:
"So whoever seeks to see this (meaning: the suns shifting from the zenith) then he should measure the shadow of someone, then wait a bit, then measure it again. So if he sees that it is smaller than the first, then the sun has not shifted, and if it has increased or at least it hasn't decreased then the sun has shifted."
And on page 12:
"And comming to know about this (meaning: the end of the time for Thuhr) is by finding the length [of the shadows] upon which the sun shifted from the zenith, then by looking to what is additional to that, so if it has reached the length of the person then the time for Thuhr is over."
So depending on the seasons and the locations we will see the sun's zenith from different perspectives. For example, here in Mobile, Alabama, during the winter, we see the sun towards the south and therefore the sun does not pass over our heads at the time of its zenith. So we look at the shadows and determine the time in which they are at the shortest length, which is about the size of the thing we are taking the shadow of. Then we measure it again to find `Asr by adding the length of thing, we are taking the shadow of, to the length of its original shadow, at the time of the sun's zenith. So `Asr comes in roughly whenever the shadow of something is twice its size.
There is a beneficial issue related to Thuhr that deserves mention here and that is delaying the prayer due to extreme heat. Bukhaari has mentioned in his chapter headings: "Chapter: Waiting to cool off for Thuhr during extreme heat" and another with the wording: "Chapter: Waiting to cool off for Thuhr during traveling."
One of the hadeeths from the former chapter is on the authority of ibn `Umar that the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و said:
"If it is very hot, then offer the Thuhr prayer when it becomes a bit cooler, as the severity of the heat is from the raging of the Hell-fire."[ Bukhaari (533) ]
So once it is known that the Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم delayed Thuhr as a mercy due to the heat, then the following hadeeth is understood without difficulty: In the hadeeth of Abu Barazah he mentioned that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)
"Used to offer the Thuhr prayer as soon as the sun declined..." [ Bukhaari (541) ]
And it is also reconciled with the hadeeth:
"Prayer is in the beginning of its time." [ at-Tirmidhi (170) and its like is in Bukhaari and Muslim ]
So the best time for Thuhr is as soon as it comes in, unless there is extreme heat, in which case it is best to delay it. And this has nothing to do with whether or not someone is praying alone or in a group or any of the other issues brought up by the different scholars of fiqh. Rather the intent behind delaying the prayer is a mercy and it is preferred. And a discussion similar to this is found in "as-Saheehah" under hadeeth number (949).
The next prayer after Thuhr is `Asr.
Allaah the Exalted has said:
« And glorify the praises of your Lord before the sun's rise and before its setting. » [ 50: 39 ]
And the explaination of this verse is in the hadeeth narrated on the authority of Jareer that he said that the Prophet Sallallahu alyhi wasallam said:
"...so if you can avoid missing the prayer before the sunrise and the prayer before its sunset then do so, then he recited the statement of Allaah:
« And glorify the praises of your Lord before the sun's rise and before its setting. »
" [ Bukhaari (554) ]
So this is from the virtues of the `Asr prayer because it is singled out here, in this hadeeth, from the other prayers. Similarly it is singled out as a means for incurring a weighty punishment for the one who misses it.
On the authority of Ibn `Umar that the Messenger of Allaah Sallallahu alyhi wasallam said:
"Whoever misses the `Asr prayer, it is as if he lost his family and property." [ Bukhaar (552) ]
And on the authority of Abu Maleeh that he said: we were with Buraydah in a battle on a cloudy day and he said: "Offer the `Asr prayer early because the Prophet sallallahu alyhi wasalam said:
"Whoever omits the `Asr prayer then all of his good deeds will be lost." [ Bukhaari (553) ]
And now we will see the hadeeths which clarify the time for `Asr so that we may be of those who attain the reward of praying it on time and avoid the punishment for missing it.
In the hadeeth of Jaabir (رضي الله عنه), in which Jibreel (عليه السلام) prayed with the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلمthe time for `Asr is clearly defined for us:
"...then he came to him at `Asr and said: stand and pray, so he prayed `Asr when the shadow of everything was like unto it....then he came to him at `Asr (of the next day) and said: stand and pray, so he prayed `Asr when the shadow of everything was twice its size..." [ graded Saheeh by al-Albaani in Irwaa' (250) ]
Furthermore, another hadeeth has come regarding this which explains that the time is actually broader than this:
It has been reported on the authority of `Abdullaah bin `Amr that
"The time for `Asr is as long as the sun does not redden." [Muslim (612) ]
And there is no contradiction here becuase the statement of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) in the hadeeth of Jaabir:
"what is between these two times is the time,"
does not negate that the time could be longer and actually extend until the reddening of the sun as is in this hadeeth.
And yet despite this clarity, scholars have differed over the issue of the time for `Asr. Therefore, for maximum benefit, we will mention some of the argument and explain the truth of the matter.
First, an important point must be stated: the correct way to understand the hadeeths for any matter of the religion is to take them upon their apparent meanings, refer them to other hadeeths, and try to resolve any conflicts in such a way that the greatest possible number of hadeeths are acted upon.
Keeping this in mind, the first hadeeth related to this issue is in Saheeh Bukhaari no. (549):
Abu Umaamah said: We offered the Thuhr prayer with `Umar bin `Abdul `Azeez and then went to Anas bin Maalik and found him offering the `Asr prayer. I asked him, "O uncle! Which prayer have you offered?" He said, "The `Asr prayer, and this is the likeness of the prayer of the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) which we used to offer with him."
And the following hadeeth is on the authority of Anas bin Maalik that:
"Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم used to offer the `Asr prayer at a time when the sun was still hot and high, and if a person went to al-'Awaali, he would reach ther when the sun was still high. And some of the `Awaali were about four miles or so from the town."
So it is clear that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم used to hurry the `Asr prayer. And strikingly, the other side of the argument has no authentic hadeeth to the contrary. Nothing what so ever! Except for one hadeeth about the Jews and Christians reported in Saheeh al-Bukhaari no. (557):
It is narrated by Saalim bin `Abdullaah that he said: my father said: I heard Allaahs Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) saying,
"The period of your stay as compared to the previous nations is like the period equal to the time between the `Asr prayer and sunset. The people of the Torah were given the Torah and they acted upon it till midday, then they were exhausted and were given one Qiraat each. And then the people of the Gospel were given the Gospel and they acted upon it till the `Asr prayer, then they were exhausted and were given one Qiraat each. And then we were given the Qur'aan and we acted upon it till sunset and we were given two Qiraat each. On that the people of both the Scriptures said: `O our Lord! You have given them two Qiraat and given us one Qiraat, though we have worked more than they. Allaah said: `Have I usurped some of your rights?' They said `No' Allaah said: `that is my Blessing I bestow upon whomsoever I wish.'"
They argue that the time of the Muslims must be shorter due to the context of the hadeeth and therefore the `Asr prayer must be delayed in order for the hadeeth to make sense. This is because they argue that the time from Thuhr till `Asr would be equal to the time between `Asr and Maghrib.
However, this arguement is false due to many reasons which were elaborated upon by Shaykh Mubaarakpuri in Tuhfah al-Ahwathi in Vol. 1 p. 150. And we will mention some of them and some of our own as follows:
The clear texts take precedence over this hadeeth because they are more specific and they show that hurrying `Asr was an action that he (صلى الله عليه و سلمremained upon as well as his companions after him.
The intent of the hadeeth is to make an analogy and an analogy doesn't have to be exact from every angle or esle it wouldn't be an analogy because it would be the exact situation!!
The reality is that the time between Thuhr and `Asr is longer than the time between `Asr and Mughrib!
The time of the Muslims could be seen as smaller in comparison to the combined time of the Jews and Christians.
The mid-day mentioned in the hadeeth could mean the middle of the day according to the shar'iah. (which means from the beginning of fajr to the setting of the sun)
The hadeeth mentions that they were more in actions, but it doesn't say that they were more necessarily because of the time that they remained working. If we look to the example of the jews we see that they had very little actions because they are characterized by rejecting knowledge after it came to them and they are categorized by falling short. However, even though they worked little, they worked longer. So by virtue of this they worked more than us. As for the Christians, then they are the opposite. They acted without knowledge and were of the misguided. So they are characterized by extremism and monasticism. Therefore, despite their working as long as we did (as the upholders of the other opinion wish for us to believe), they still worked harder and hence they worked more.
So this argument is easily defeated. Walhamdulilaah.
At this point in the discussion another matter should be mentioned about the end of the time for Asr.
It is reported on the authority of Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلمsaid:
"Whoever catches a rak'ah before the rising of the sun, then he has caught the morning prayer, and whoever catches a rak'ah from `Asr before the setting of the sun, then he has caught `Asr."(this is an agreed upon hadeeth)
Al-Albaani brought a similar hadeeth in "as-Saheehah" no. 66:
On the authority of Abu Hurayrah that he said: the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله عليه و سلمsaid:
"If one of you catches the first sujood from the `Asr prayer before the sun sets, then he should complete his prayer, and if he catches the first sujood from the morning prayer before the sun rises, then he should complete his prayer."
From the benefits of the hadeeth:
And it is clear that the hadeeth gives us some important benefits:
The first: is the falsity of the statement of some of the madh-habs that whomever the sun rises upon while he is in the second raka'ah of the Fajr prayer, then his prayer is null! And they said similarly about the one upon whom the sun set while he was in the last rak'ah of the `Asr prayer! And this madh-hab is clearly false, because it is in contradiction to the text of the hadeeth, as Imaam an-Nawawi has clarified as well as others.
And it is not persmissable to contradict this hadeeth with the hadeeths which prohibit prayer during the time in the east and the one in the west; because they are general, and this is specific, and the specific takes precedence over the general, as is affirmed in `Ilm al-Usool.
And from the oddities is the stubborn partisanship towards a madh-hab in opposition to this hadeeth, because some of them try to establish evidence for their madh-hab, regarding a particular issue, using it, then they oppose it in this issue which we are discussing! And it makes problems for them in other issues because of this! So unto Allaah is the complaint about what this stubborn partisanship has led its people to from opposition to the authentic Sunnah!
And az-Zayla'i said in "Nusub ar-Rayyah" (1/229) after quoting this hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah and others with its meaning:
"These hadeeths also present a conflict for our madh-hab regarding the statement of nullification of the morning prayer if the sun comes up during it, and the author has used it has evidence that the end of the time for `Asr is as long as the sun does not set"!!
So O Stubborn Partisan! Is the conflict that the hadeeth opposes your madh-hab?! Or is the opposite the case?!
The second: A rebuttle to those who say that catching the prayer is merely by catching any part from the many parts of the prayer, even if it's just the takbeer al-ihraam, and that is contrary to the apparentness of the hadeeth....(Translator: some of the shaykhs words have been left out for brevity)
The third: And know that the hadeeth is only about the one who intentionally delayed the prayer until this constricted time, and he is a sinner for this because of delaying it-even if he catches the prayer-due to his (صلى الله عليه و سلمstatement:
"That is the prayer of the munaafiq, he sits awaiting the sun, until it is between the two horns of shaytaan; then he stands and pecks four times; not remembering Allaah in them except a little."
It is reported by Muslim (2/110) and other than him from the hadeeth of Anas (رضي الله عنه), and it is cross-referenced in (Saheeh Abee Dawood) no.(441).
And as for the one who didn't do it intentionally-and he is no other than the one who forgot or overslept-then he has another ruling, and that is that he prays the prayer whenever he remembers it, even during the time of the suns rising or setting; due to his (صلى الله عليه و سلمstatement:
"Whoever forgets a prayer or oversleeps it; then he should pray whenever he remembers it, and there is no penance for it except that; for Allaah, the Exalted, says:
«Establish the prayer in My rememberance.» [ Ta Ha (14)]
It is reported by Muslim as well (2/142), and also al-Bukhaari, and it is cross-referenced in "as-Saheeh"as well (469).
So there are two matters: (1)catching the prayer, and (2)sin; and the first is what the first hadeeth was quoted to clarify, and none can cast conjecture, due to his being quiet about the second matter, that there is no sin on his head for delaying the prayer, No!; Rather he is a sinner no matter what; whether he catches the prayer or doesn't. The end of the matter is that he considered him as one who caught the prayer because of catching a rak'ah, and that he isn't one who caught the prayer if he didn't catch a rak'ah. So in the best case scenerio his prayer is acceptable accompanied by sin, and in the other scenerio his prayer is not acceptable while also being accompanied by sin, rather he is more deserving of it, as it is not hidden from the people of intellect.
The fourth: The meaning of his (صلى الله عليه و سلمstatement: "he should complete his prayer"; means: because he caught the prayer in its time and he prayed it in an acceptable fashion, then he is free of defficiency in his prayer, and if he does not catch a rak'ah then he should not complete the prayer, because it is not acceptable due to the end of the time for the prayer, so he is not free of defficiency.
And it is not hidden that his like-rather those more deserving of this than him-from those that don't catch anything from the prayer before the end of the time, have no prayer, nor freedom from defficiency. Meaning: if the one who didn't catch a rak'ah is not ordered with prayer; then the one who didn't catch anything is more deserving of not being ordered with it, and this is only from the category of chiding him and preventing him from losing the prayer, so the wise legislator has not made any penance for his like so that he will not return to losing it another time, with the understanding that he can just make it up after its time. No! There is no making up of the prayer for the one who does it intentionally; as this noble hadeeth has shown as well as the previous hadeeth of Anas: "there is no penance for it except that."
And from this, it is clear to anyone who has been given any knowledge or understanding of the religion, that the statement of some of the latter people that: "And if the one who over-sleeps or forgets the prayer-and they are excused-make it up after its time; then the one who left it on purpose is more deserving of this" because this is an erroneous qiyyaas. Rather it may be from the most false types of qiyyaas upon the face of the earth. Because it is from the category of making qiyyaas upon an opposite by its opposite, and it is completely false, since how is it possible that qiyyaas be made upon an un-excused by the case of the excused, and the one who did it intentionally, and the forgetful one?! And qiyaas upon the one, whom Allaah has not made a penance for, by the case of the one whom Allaah has made a penance for?! And the reason for this is nothing but carelessness regarding the meaning and the intent of this noble hadeeth. And Allaah, the Exalted, has granted us the ability to clarify it, and all praises and thanks are due to Allaah, the Exalted for granting success."
Then the Shaykh goes on to quote ibnul Qayyim and some of his arguements for this position. Of the most beneficial is his statement: "The second angle: is that the one excused due to over-sleeping or forgetfulness does not pray the prayer outside of its time, rather during the very time which Allaah has made for him, for the time regarding this one is whenever he wakes up or remembers; as he (صلى الله عليه و سلم said:
"Whoever forgets his prayer, then its time is when he remembers it"(al-Albaani said in a footnote: I say: it is not established with this wording, in its isnaad is some weakness, even though its meaning is covered by the hadeeth of Anas which preceded.)
It is reported by al-Bayhaqi and ad-Daaraqutni; so the time is two times: the preferred time, and the time of excuse, so the time for the one excused due to over-sleeping or forgetting is the time whenever he remembers it or wakes up for it; so this one does not pray the prayer except in its time, so how is qiyyaas made for him due to the one who prays it in other than its time intentionally transgressing?!"
The Shaykh also mentions another issue regarding the `Asr prayer in his "as-Saheehah". And it is praying two voluntary rak'ahs after `Asr. And due to its being a lost Sunnah, we will bring a large portion of the Shaykh's words for optimum benefit. May Allaah bless him and evelope him in mercy.
On the authority of `A'ishah (رضي الله عنه) that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم "Used to not leave off the two rak'ahs before Fajr and the two rak'ahs after `Asr."
There is this, and that which is reported from Ibn Abee Shaybah on the authority of a group from the salaf that they used to pray these two rak'ahs after `Asr. From them are: Abu Furdah bin Abee Musaa, Abu Sha'thaa, `Aamar bin Maymoon, Aswad bin Yazeed, and Abu Waa'il. He reports it with a saheeh isnaad from them, and from them are Muhammad bin al-Muntashr and Masrooq as has preceded.
And as for `Umar beating those who pray the two rak'ahs, then this is from his ijtihaad, which was to close the door to evil, as the two reports of al-Haafith, in al-Fat-h (2/65), allude to:
One of them is in Musannaf `Abdur Razzaaq (2/431-432), and Musnad Ahmad (4/155), and at-Tabaraani (5/260), and al-Haythami graded it hasan (2/223).
The other is on the authority of Imaam Ahmad (4/102) as well, and at-Tabaraani in al-Mu'jam al-Kabeer (2/58-59), and al-Awsat (8848 by his numbering).
And I found a third report which strengthens them, and it is the report of Israa'il on the authority of al-Miqdaad bin Shurayh on the authority of his father who said: "I asked `A'ishah about the prayer of the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله عليه و سلم), How did he used to pray?"
[She said:] "He used to pray the noon prayer then he would pray two rak'ahs after it, then he would pray `Asr and pray two rak'ahs after that."
So I said: "But [`Umar] used to beat people for praying them and prohibit them from it?"
So she said: "'Umar used to pray them, and he knew that the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله عليه و سلم used to pray them, but your people, the people from the people of religion are a people of trasngression, they pray Thuhr and then they pray what is between Thuhr and `Asr, and they prayer `Asr then they pray between `Asr and Maghrib, so `Umar used to beat them, and he has done well."
It is reported by Abul `Abbaas as-Sirraaj in his Musnad (132/1)
I say: Its chain is saheeh, and it is a strong witness for the two narrations previously alluded to. And it is a clear text that the prohibition from `Umar (رضي الله عنه) for the two rak'ahs was not for the two rak'ahs themselves, as many believe. Rather it was from fear of them praying after them, or their delaying them till the disliked time, and it is the reddening of the sun. And that is the time which is intended from the prohibition of prayer after `Asr which is authentically narrated int he hadeeths whose clarifications have preceeded under the two hadeeth previous hadeeths, numbers 200 and 314.
And what summarizes that which has preceded is that the two rak'ahs after `Asr are Sunnah if `Asr is prayed with them before the reddening of the sun, and `Umar's beating people for praying them is only due to his ijtihaad which some of the companions agreed with and others disagreed with it, and the most prevalent of them is the Mother of the Believers (رضي الله عنه), and for each group are those who agreed with them. So it is obligatory to return the issue ot the Sunnah, and it is established and authentic from the narration of the Mother of the Believers, without any proof to reject it except the generality which is sprecified by the hadeeth of `Ali and Anas whose numbers have been alluded to. And it is apparent that this is the madh-hab of ibn `Umar as well as al-Bukhaari narrates on his authority (no. 589) that he said:
"I pray as I saw my companions praying, I don't dislike that anyone pray night or day whatever he wills except that I do not allow the rising of the sun and its setting." And this is the madh-hab of Abu Ayyoob al-Ansaari as well, as `Abdur-Razzaaq narrates on his authority (2/433) with an authentic chain on the authority of ibn Taawoos on the authority of his father:
That Abu Ayyoob al-Ansaari used to pray the two rak'ahs after `Asr before the khilaafah of `Umar. Then when `Umar became khalifah I left them, then when he died I prayed them. So it was said to me: "What is this?" I said: "Indeed `Umar used to beat the people because of them." Ibn Taawoos said: "And my father would not leave them off."
And here it is necessary to remind the people of the Sunnah, who are strong in reviving the Sunnahs, and killing bid'ah that they pray these two rak'ahs when they pray `Asr in its legislated time, due to his (صلى الله عليه و سلم saying: "Whoever initiates a good Sunnah in Islaam..."And with Allaah is the success."
And praying in the time when the sun is actually rising or setting also deserves some discussion:
On page 230 of volume 1 of (at-Ta'leeqaat ar-Radhiyyah `ala ar-Rawdhah an-Nadiyyah) Siddeeq Hasan Khaan quotes the words of Waliyyullaah ad-Dahlawi in (Hujjatullaah al-Baalighah):
" `Prayer is the best of affairs, so whoever can do much of it, then let him do so,' (see saheeh at-Targheeb (386) ) except that he prohibited from five times: three of them are more stressed than the other two and they are the three times when the sun rises until it is high, when it is straight above at noon, until it shifts, and when it begins to set until it sets, because they are the times of prayer for the Zorastrians. And as for the other two, than they are in his (صلى الله عليه و سلم) saying: `There is no prayer after morning until the sun has risen nor is there after `Asr until the sun sets' and for this reason the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلمused to pray in them sometimes.
And an exception for the middle of the day has been reported for Jumu'ah.
And the permissablity (of prayer) in these three times in al-Masjid al-Haraam is derived from the hadeeth: "Oh Banee Abdul Manaaf! Whoever becomes in charge of the affairs of the people should not prevent anyone from making tawwaaf of this house or praying at any hour that he wishes from the day or night."
And due to this, the secret to this is that they (Jumu'ah and alMasjid al-Haraam) are the time and place for displaying the symbols of the religion, so they revoke the reason for prevention (and Shaykh `Ali Hasan says here: and it is looking similar to the Kuffaar) from prayer."
Also ash-Shaafi'i allowed praying voluntary prayers, for which there is a reason in the shari'ah, during the rising and the setting of the sun due to the following hadeeth:
Umm Salamah said: "I heard the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله عليه و سلمforbid from them ( meaning the two raka'ahs after `Asr) then I saw him pray them. When he prayed them he had prayed `Asr, then he entered and I was with some women from Banee Haraam from the Ansaar and he prayed them, so I sent a female slave to him, and I said: stand by him and say to him: Umm Salamah says: Oh Messenger of Allaah I heard you forbid from these two raka'ahs and I see you praying them. And if he signals with his hand, then wait for him. So the slave girl did so, and he signaled with his hand, so she waited for him. Whenever he finished he said: `Oh Bint Abee Umayyah! You asked about the two raka'ahs after `Asr, I was approached by some people from `Abdul Qays because of their people entering Islaam, so they kept me busy from the two raka'ahs after Thuhr, and these were those.'"
And Al-Albaani mentions this hadeeth, under one of the discussions in "as-Saheehah" that he alluded to in the discussion above, and he uses it as a proof that the hadeeth, which says that praying after `Asr is only for the Prophet, (صلى الله عليه و سلم is munkar. He then goes on to say that praying the missed prayers during the rising and setting of the sun is allowed and is the best opinion amongst the fuqahaa'.
And the final issue of importance is in regards to the ayah: "Gaurd the prayers, and the middle prayer, and stand before Allaah in humility." [ Baqarah (238) ]
Many have debated over which prayer is being referred to here. The answer to this is in the hadeeth of `Ali that he said the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله عليه و سلمsaid on the day of Ahzaab: "They made us tarry for the middle prayer, the `Asr prayer, may Allaah fill their houses and graves with fire." [Muslim (628-205-1/437) ]
Insha Allaah the next article in this series will be about the times of Maghrib and `Ishaa'.
Pg. 778 Al-misbah ul-muneer
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