Prostration for forget fulness in the prayer
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Prostration for forget fulness in the prayer

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Muhammad bin Salih Usaymain

Muhammad bin Salih Usaymain

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Prostration for forget fulness in the prayer Prostration for forget fulness in the prayer Document Transcript

  • A TREATISE ABOUT ___________________The Prostration of Forgetfulness ByShaikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-Uthaimeen Translated by Aboo Talhah Dawood ibn Ronald Burbank 2
  • ContentsThe Prostration due to Forgetfulness ….. 4Its Causes ….. 4(i) Having Added Something ….. 5(ii) Omission ….. 8(iii) Doubt ….. 11Prostration of Forgetfulness for one praying behind anImaam ….. 15It is performed before salutation in two cases ….. 18It is also performed after the salutation ….. 18 3
  • Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-RaheemAll Praise is for Allaah, the Lord of all creation, andmay He extol and send blessings of peace upon ourProphet Muhammad who delivered the clear message,and upon his true followers, his Companions, andthose who follow them upon good until the Day ofRequital. To proceed:Then many people are ignorant about many of therulings concerning the Sujoodus-Sahw (prostration forforgetfulness) in the prayer. Some of them leave theSujoodus-Sahw when it is obligatory upon them;others perform the prostration in other than its correctplace; some perform it before the salaam (salutation atthe end of the prayer) even in cases when’ it has to beperformed after the salaam; others prostrate after thesalaam even when it should be performed before it.Therefore, it is very important to become aware of itsrulings, especially for the Imaams whom the peoplefollow in their prayers, and who have therefore takenon the responsibility of following that, which is correctand prescribed in their prayers, and of leading theMuslims upon that. So I wished to put before mybrothers some of the rulings in this regard, hopingthat Allaah, the Most High, will cause it to be of benefitto His believing servants.So I say, whilst seeking the help of Allaah, the MostHigh, and asking Him to guide us to and grant uswhat is correct: 4
  • The Prostration of Forgetfulness is: two prostrationsthat the one praying makes in order to compensate formistakes occurring in the prayer due to forgetfulness(sahw).Its causes are three: having added something (az-Ziyaadah), having omitted something (an-Naqs) andhaving been in a state of doubt (as-Skakk).( I ) HAVING ADDED SOMETHING (Az-Ziyaadah)If the person praying deliberately adds an extrastanding, sitting, bowing or prostration, then hisprayer is nullified. If however, he does so due toforgetfulness and does not remember the additionuntil having completed it, then there is nothing dueupon him except Sujoodus-Sahw, his prayer will becorrect. If however, he remembers whilst performingthat addition, then it is obligatory upon him to leavethat addition and also to perform Sujoodus-Sahw (i.e.,at the end of the prayer), and his prayer will becorrect.An example of this is a person who prayer the Zuhrprayer as five rak’ahs, but does not remember that hehas added except whilst in the Tashahhud. So heshould complete the Tashahhud, and make thesalutations (salaam) and then prostrate forforgetfulness, and then give the salutation (again). If,however, he does not remember the addition exceptafter the salutation, then he should performprostration for forgetfulness and give the salutation(again). 5
  • The proof for this is the hadeeth of ‘Abdullaah ibnMas’ood (radiallahu anhu) who said that, “The Prophet(sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) prayed Zuhr with fiverak’ahs, so someone said, ‘Has increase been made inthe prayer?’ So he replied, ‘And why is that?’ Theysaid, ‘You have prayed five (rak’ahs).’ So he performedtwo prostrations after having given the salutation” andin a narration (there occurs)“… so he turned his feet and faced the Qiblah, and performed two Prostrations, then he gave the Salutation.”Reported by the whole group.’1GIVING SALUTATIONS (Salaam) BEFORECOMPLETION OF THE PRAYERGiving salutation before the completion of the Prayer isa case of addition in the Prayer. So whoever gives thesalutation before the completion of the Prayerdeliberately, then his prayer is nullified.If, however, it is done due to forgetfulness, and he doesnot remember this until after a long time then heshould repeat his prayer again. If he remembers ashort time later, such as after two or three minutes,then he should complete his prayer and salutation,and then prostrate for forgetfulness, and then givesalutation (again).1 I.e., AI-Bukharee, Muslim and the four Sunan. Reported by al-Bukhaaree, (Eng. Trans. vol. 1, no. 394 & 398, vol. 2 no. 317, vol. 8no.664, vol. 9, no. 355) Muslim, (Eng. trans. vol. 1 no. 1177) and AbooDaawood, (Eng; Trans. vol. 1 nos. 1014-1017). 6
  • The proof for this is the hadeeth of Aboo Hurairah(radiallahu anhu) who said that, “The Prophet(sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) lead them in the Zuhrprayer or the ‘Asr prayer and gave the salutation aftertwo rak’ah.s. Then he departed quickly from one of thedoors of the mosque, and the people were saying thatthe prayer had been decreased. The Prophet sallallahualaihe wa-sallam meanwhile, stood by a piece of woodplaced in the mosque, leaning against it, as if he wasangry. So a man stood and said, ‘0 Messenger ofAllaah, have you forgotten or has the prayer beenreduced?’ So the Prophet, (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam)said, ‘I did not forget nor has it been reduced.’ So theman said, ‘Rather you have indeed forgotten.’ So theProphet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) said to theCompanions, ‘Is what he is saying true. They said,‘Yes.’ So the Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) wentforward and prayed what remained of his prayer, thenhe gave the salutation, then he prostrated twice, thenhe gave the salutation.” Agreed upon1.And if the Imaam gives the salutation beforecompletion of his prayer and there are some followerswho missed part of the prayer and who stand up tomake up what they had missed, and then the Imaamremembers that there is something incomplete in hisprayer that he has to make up for, so he stands tocomplete that - then in this case the followers who1 Reported by Al-Bukhaaree (Eng. Trans. vol. 2, nos. 318-321) and(Muslim Eng. Trans. vol. 1, nos. 1182-1186). 7
  • have already stood to complete what they missed havea choice between continuing to make up what theymissed and then performing prostration forforgetfulness, and between returning to following theImaam - and when he performs the salutation tocomplete what they had missed - and then to prostratefor forgetfulness after giving the salutation, and this ismore right and is more prudent.( II ) OMISSION (Naqs)Omission of Pillars (Arkaan) — If a person omits aPillar (Rukn) from his prayer, then if it is in the initialTakbeer (Takbeeratul-Ihraam), then there is no prayerfor him whether he left it deliberately or forgetfullybecause his prayer has not been established. If it issomething other than the initial Takbeer, then if it isleft deliberately, his prayer is nullified. If however, heleaves it due to forgetfulness, then if he goes on andreaches its place in the next rak’ah, then he discardsthe rak’ah which he forgot it in, and the following onetakes its place. If he has not reached its place in thenext rak’ah, then it is obligatory upon him to return tothe missed pillar and to perform it and whatevercomes after it. In either of these two cases it will beobligatory upon him to perform prostration forforgetfulness after the salutation.An example (of this) is the case of a person who forgetsthe second prostration in the first rak’ah, butremembers this whilst sitting between the twoprostrations in the second rak’ah. So he shoulddiscard the first rak’ah and the second one will take its 8
  • place, so he counts that as his first rak’ah andcompletes his prayer based upon that. Then he shouldgive the salutation, prostrate for forgetfulness, andthen give salutation.A further example (is that of) a person who forgets thesecond prostration and the sitting before it in the firstrak’ah. But he remembers this after standing straightfrom the rukoo in the second rak’ah. He should goback to sit and to prostrate, and then complete hisprayer from there on. Then he should give thesalutation, prostrate for forgetfulness, and finally givesalutation.Omission of Obligations (Waajibaat)- - If the personpraying leaves an obligation from the obligations of theprayer deliberately, then his prayer is nullified. Ifhowever, he does so due to forgetfulness, and heremembers it before moving on from its place in theprayer, then he should perform it, and there is nothingupon him.If he remembers it after having moved on from itsplace in the prayer, but before reaching the pillar thatfollows it, then he returns to it and performs it. Thenhe completes his prayer and gives salutation,prostrates for forgetfulness, and gives salutation. Ifhowever, he remembers it after reaching the pillar thatfollows it, then it is cancelled, so he should not goback to it but should continue his prayer and thenprostrate for forgetfulness before giving the salutation. 9
  • An example of that (is where) a person raises himselfup from the second prostration in the second rak’ah inorder to stand for the third rak’ah, forgetting the firsttashahhud. But he remembers before actually gettingup, so he should remain in the sitting position,perform the tashahhud, and then complete his prayerand there is nothing upon him. However, if heremembers after beginning to stand, but beforestanding straight, then he should return to the sittingposition and perform the tashahhud. He should thencomplete his prayer and give the salutation, prostratefor forgetfulness, and give the salutation.If he remembers after standing straight, then thetashahhud is cancelled for him, he does not return toit. Rather he continues and completes his prayer, andprostrates for forgetfulness before giving thesalutation.The proof for this is what is reported by al-Bukhaareeand others from ‘Abdullaah ibn Buhaynah (radiallahuanhu) who said that, “The Prophet (sallallahu alaihewa-sallam) led them in Zulu prayer. He stood after thefirst two ‘rak’ah and did not sit (meaning for the firsttashahhud), so the people stood along with him. Thenwhen it came to the completion of the prayer and thepeople awaited his salutation, he said takbeer whilstsitting and performed two prostrations before givingthe salutation. Then he gave the salutation.”11 Reported by Bukhaaree, (Eng. Trans. vol. 2, nos. 315-316) and Muslim(Eng. Trans. vol.l, nos. 1163-1165). 10
  • ( III ) DOUBT (Shakk)Doubt is to be uncertain about which of the twomatters has occurred, and doubt is not taken notice ofin matters of worship in three cases:(i) If it is just a self-delusion, having no reality, likedevilish whisperings.(ii) If it occurs very frequently to a person such that hedoes not perform any act of worship except that he iscaused to doubt in it.(iii) If it occurs after the completion of the acts ofworship, then it is not taken account of, as long as heis not certain of it, in which case he will act upon whathe is certain of.An example of this is that a person prays Zuhr, andafter finishing his prayer he doubts whether he prayedthree or four rak’ahs. Then he takes no notice of thisdoubt unless he is certain that he only prayed threerak’ah, in which case he should complete his prayer ifit occurs a short while later, then he should give thesalutation, prostrate for forgetfulness and thenperform the salutation. If however, he does notremember until a long time has passed, then he mustrepeat the whole prayer afresh.As for doubt in other than these three cases, then it istaken account of. Doubt in the prayer will be one oftwo kinds: 11
  • (i) That one of the two matters is more weighty in hismind, so he will act upon what is more weighty to him,then he will complete his prayer based upon that, afterwhich he should give the salutation, prostrate forforgetfulness and finally give the salutation. Anexample of this is if a person prays.Zuhr and doubts in a rak’ah (as to whether) it is thesecond or the third rak’ah? But the weightier case inhis mind is that it is the third, so he makes it thethird. So after he performs one further rak’ah, he givesthe salutation, prostrates for forgetfulness and then hegives the salutation.The proof for what is established in the two Saheehsand elsewhere from the hadeeth of ‘Abdullaah ibnMas’ood (radiallahu anhu) that the Prophet (sallallahualaihe wa-sallam) said, “If one of you doubts in hisprayer, then let him strive to arrive at what is correct,and complete it upon that basis. Then let him give thesalutation and perform two prostrations.”1 This is thewording of al-Bukhaaree.(ii) Neither of the two possibilities are more weightier inhis mind. Therefore, he should act upon what he iscertain of, which will be the lesser of the two, andcomplete his prayer based upon that, and thenprostrate for forgetfulness before giving the salutation,and then give the salutation.1 Reported by Bukhaaree (Eng. Trans. vol. 1 no. 394.) 12
  • An example of this is if a person is praying ‘Asr anddoubts in a rak’ah (as to) whether it is the second orthe third, and neither its being the second nor itsbeing the third is more weighty in his mind. So hemakes it the second, performs the first tashahhud andtwo rak’ahs after it, and then prostrates forforgetfulness and gives salutation.The proof for this is what Muslim reports from AbooSa’eed al-Khudree (radiallahu anhu) that the Prophet(sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) said, “If one of youdoubts in his prayer and does not know how many hehas prayed- whether it is three or four - then let himcast away the doubt and build upon what he is certainof. Then let him perform two prostrations before givingthe salutation. So if he has prayed five, then they willmake his prayer even for him, and if he has prayed thefull four, then they will be a humiliation for Satan.”1And from the examples of doubt is a person whoarrives whilst the Imaam is in the bowing (rukoo’). Sohe gives the initial takbeer whilst he is standing upstraight, and then he performs the rukoo’, and this willresult in one of three cases:(i) That he is certain that he has reached the Imaamwhilst he was performing rukoo’, before he raises upfrom it. So he has caught that rak’ah and recitation ofSooratul-Faatihah is not required from him in thiscase.1 Reported by Muslim (Eng. Trans. vol. 1, no. 1166). 13
  • (ii) That he is certain that the Imaam raised up fromthe rukoo’ before he reached him, then this rak’ah hasescaped him.(iii) That he doubts as to whether he caught up to theImaam whilst he was performing rukoo’ - such that hecatches that rukoo’, or whether the Imaam raised upfrom the rukoo’ before he caught him - such that hewill have missed that rak’ah. So if one of the two ismore weighty in his mind, then he acts upon that andcompletes his prayer upon that basis and he gives thesalutation, performs prostration for forgetfulness, andthen gives the salutation. This is unless it is the casethat he did not miss anything from the prayer becauseno prostration will be due upon him in that case.But if neither of the two cases has more weight in hismind then he acts upon what is certain (which is thathe has missed a rak’ah), so he completes his prayerupon that basis1 and he prostrates for forgetfulnessbefore giving the salutation, then he gives thesalutation.(Note): If he doubts in his prayer he should act uponwhat he is certain of, or upon what is more weighty inhis mind - in accordance with the details mentionedpreviously. Then if it becomes clear to him that thecourse of action he has proceeded upon is indeed inaccordance with reality and that he has neither addedto or deleted anything from his prayer, then he nolonger has to perform the prostration for forgetfulness,1 I.e., he performs a further rak’ah in place of this one. 14
  • according to what is well known from the madhhab1,due to the fact that the doubt which necessitates it isno longer present. A different saying is that it is stillnecessary in order to humiliate Satan, due to thesaying of the Prophet sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam,“And if he has prayed it completely, then the twoprostrations will be a humiliation for Satan.” And dueto the fact that he performed a part of his prayer in astate of doubt with regard to its performance, and thisis the more correct saying.An example of this (is if) a person prays and doubts ina rak’ah whether it is the second or the third rak’ah.Neither of these two possibilities carries more weight inhis mind, so he makes it the second rak’ah andcompletes his prayer upon that basis. But whilstcontinuing (the prayer) it becomes clear to him that itwas indeed the second rak’ah in reality. In such a casethere is no prostration for forgetfulness due upon himin the saying most well known in the madhhab, butprostration for forgetfulness before the salutation isrequired from him in the second saying that we hold tobe preferable.Prostration for forgetfulness for one praying behindan ImaamIf the Imaam forgets then it is obligatory upon thosefollowing him in prayer to follow him in performance ofthe prostration for forgetfulness due to the saying ofthe Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) “The Imaam1 I.e., the Hanbalee Madhhab 15
  • is appointed to be followed, so do not differ withhim…” until he said “… so when he prostrates thenprostrate”1 This hadeeth is agreed upon from thehadeeth of Aboo Hurairah (radiallahu anhu).So whether the Imaam prostrates for forgetfulnessbefore the salutation or after it, it is obligatory uponthose praying behind him. This is except for the onewho arrived late and needs to make up the part of theprayer that he missed, he should not follow the Imaamin performance of prostration after the salutation, asthis is not possible for him. This is because he cannotgive the salutation along with the Imaam, so what heshould do is to first make up what he had missed, andthen give the salutation, then to prostrate forforgetfulness, and then to give the salutation.An example of this (is if) a man enters the prayer alongwith the Imaam in the final rak’ah, and a prostrationfor forgetfulness is due from the Imaam after thesalutation. So when the Imaam gives the salutationthis man should stand to complete what he missedand does not prostrate along with the Imaam. Thenwhen he has completed what he missed and has giventhe salutation, he should then perform prostration forforgetfulness after this salutation. But if the followerand not the Imaam forgets in the prayer, and nothingof the prayer escapes him, then no prostration is duefrom him. This is because his prostrating would cause1 Reported by Bukhaaree, (Eng. Trans. vol. 1, nos. 689, 701) andMuslim, Eng. Trans. (vol. 1 nos. 826 and 831). 16
  • him to differ from the Imaam and to disrupt his stateof following him. Also because the Companions(radiallahu anhu) left the tashahhud when the Prophet(sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) forget it, so they stoodalong with him and did not sit for the tashahhud inorder to comply with the duty of following and notdiffering with the Imaam.But if he misses part of the prayer due to forgettingwhilst praying behind the Imaam, or whilst making upwhat he had missed on his own, then he mustprostrate for forgetfulness after completion of what hehad missed. This prostration will be either before orafter the salutation depending on its cause, as haspreceded.An example of this (is if) a follower forgets to say,‘Subhaana Rabbi yal-’Adlteem’ in the rukoo’, but hedoes not miss any action of the prayer, he does notneed to prostrate. But if a rak’ah or more is missed byhim, then he must make it up and then prostrate forforgetfulness before the salutation.A further example (is if) a follower prays the Zuhrprayer along with the Imaam, then when the Imaamstands for the fourth rak’ah the follower remainssitting thinking it to be the last rak’ah. But when heknows that the Imaam has stood, he stands. So if hehas not missed anything of the prayer then noprostration is due from him. But if it caused him tomiss a rak’ah or more then he should make that upand give the salutation, and then prostrate for 17
  • forgetfulness, and give the salutation. This prostrationis because of the sitting that he added to the prayerwhen the Imaam stood for the fourth rak ‘ah.(Note): From what has preceded it will be clear that theprostration for forgetfulness is sometimes performedbefore the salutation, and sometimes after it.So it is performed before salutation in two cases:(i) If it is due to deficiency, due to the hadeeth of‘Abdullaah ibn Buhaynah (radiallahu anhu) that theProphet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) prostrated forforgetfulness before the salutation when he left thefirst tashahhud, and the hadeeth with its wording haspreceded.(ii) If it is due to doubt when he is unable todistinguish which of the two possibilities carries moreweight in his mind, due to the hadeeth of Aboo Sa’eedal-Khudree (radiallahu anhu) about one who doubts inhis prayer and does not know how many he hasprayed, whether it is three or four rak’ahs. So theProphet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) commandedsuch a person to perform two prostrations beforegiving the salutation, and the hadeeth and its wordinghave preceded.And the prostration for forgetfulness is performedafter the salutations:(i) If it is due to an addition in the prayer, due tothe hadeeth of ‘Abdullaah ibn Mas’ood (radiallahuanhu) when the Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) 18
  • prayed Zulu with five rak’ahs, so they mentioned thisto him after the salutation, so he (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) performed two prostrations and then gave thesalutation. Nor did he (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam)explain that his prostration after the salutation wasdue to the fact that he only knew of the addition aEterhaving performed it. So this shows that this ruling isgeneral and that prostration because of addition is tobe done after the salutation r whether he knows of theaddition before the salutation or after it.From this also is the case of one who forgetfully givesthe salutation before completion of the prayer, then heremembers and completes it. He has added asalutation within the prayer, so he should prostrateafter salutation due to the hadeeth of Aboo Hurairah(radiallahu anhu) that the Prophet gave the salutationin the Zuhr or the ‘Asr prayer after two rak’ahs. Theymentioned it to him, so he completed the prayer andthen gave the salutation, then prostrated forforgetfulness, and the hadeeth with its wording haspreceded.(ii) If it is due to forgetfulness when one of the twopossibilities carries more weight in his mind, due tothe hadeeth of Ibn Mas’ood (radiallahu anhu) that theProphet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) commanded thatthe one who forgets in his prayer should strive toascertain what is correct, and then to complete hisprayer on that basis, then to give the salutation and toprostrate, and the hadeeth and its wording havepreceded. 19
  • Then if two cases of forgetfulness occur for him, one ofthem requiring prostration before the salutation andthe other requiring prostration after it, then thescholars say that prostration before the salutationpredominates, so he should prostrate before it.An example of this (is if) a person prays Zulu andstands up for the third rak’ah without sitting for thefirst tashahhud, then he sits in the third rak’ahthinking it to be the second. He then remembers thatit is the third - so he should stand, pray a furtherrak’ah, and prostrate for forgetfulness and then givethe salutation. So this person left the first tashuhhud,which requires prostration before the salutation, andadded a sitting in the third rak’ah, which requiresprostration after the salutation, so the prostrationbefore the salutation predominates, and Allaah knowsbest.So I ask Allaah that He should grant us and ourMuslim brothers understanding of His Book and theSunnah of His Messenger (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam)and that we act upon them inwardly and outwardly, inmatters of ‘aqeedah, worship and dealings. And thatHe grants us all a good outcome, indeed He is theMost Beneficent, Most Generous.And all praise is for Allaah, the Lord of all creation,and may Allaah extol and send blessings of peace 20
  • upon our Prophet Muhammad, upon his true followersand all his Companions.Written and compiled by the one in need of Allaah, the Most High Muhammad ibn Saalih al-’Uthaimeen on 4/3/1400H 21