As Ramadan is coming soon, Muslims all around the world prepare themselves to make the most of it and gain the pleasure of Allah SWT by doing as many good deeds as they can and making their best to stay away from Haram acts of all kinds.
After deciding on the Ramadan Quran reading schedule to follow during the blessed month, Ahmad sits with his father to review the rules of Ramadan and the acts of worship related. Today is the time to review the rules of prayer from a book serving as Ramadan prayer guide 2021. Ahmad is so curious as he knows that prayer is one of the pillars of Islam and it is the connection between the slave and his Creator as well.
Ahmad and his father want to create a Ramadan prayer guide 2021 to follow. The father starts saying: Prayer (Salah) is the most important practice in Islam after declaring faith in Allah and His Messenger. It is:
This is for the five obligatory prayers when they are performed properly and with serenity. As for the Nafilah meaning, it is the non-obligatory prayer like the regular Sunnah prayers, Duha prayer… etc
Moreover, the father continues, Muslims should increase the acts of worship in this month due to its virtue. Thus, he should perform the non-obligatory prayer (Nafilah) in Ramadan, like the regular Sunnah prayers, Duha prayer, and so on. Also, Muslims should pray the special type of Nafilah in Ramadan, called Taraweeh prayer or Ramadan night prayer, out of its virtue. Some Muslims even draw a Taraweeh prayer guide to track their progress and stay motivated to regularly pray it.
Shaykh Al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said: If a person prays Taraaweeh according to the Madhhabs of Abu Haneefah, al-Shaafa’i, and Ahmad, with twenty rak’ahs, or according to the madhhab of Maalik, with thirty-six rak’ahs, or with thirteen or eleven rak’ahs, he has done well, as Imam Ahmad said… because there is nothing to specify the number. So the greater or lesser number of rak’ahs depends on how long or short the Qiyaam (standing in the prayer) is. (Islam Question & Answer)
As for the virtue of performing the night prayers during Ramadan (Taraweeh prayer), it is highly recommended. It is classified under the night prayer [Qiyam]. However, as mentioned before, the reward is special out of the virtue of Ramadan.
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) says: “Whoever performs night prayer [Qiyam] in Ramadan out of faith and in the hope of reward, his previous sins will be forgiven.” [Sunan an-Nasa’i]
At this point, Ahmad asks a question: O father, before we create our Ramadan Prayer Guide 2021, what about praying the non-obligatory prayers in a congregation?
The father explains this issue saying: There is nothing wrong with offering Nafilah prayers in congregation, but that should not be done on an ongoing basis, rather it may only be done sometimes.
The father continues: Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said: “Voluntary prayers done in the congregation are of two types, one of which it is Sunnah to do in a congregation, such as the Eclipse prayer, prayers for rain, and Qiyam during Ramadan (Taraweeh). These are always done in a congregation as it is the Sunnah to do so. The second type is not done in a congregation, such as Qiyam Al-Layl, the regular Sunnah prayers, Duha prayer, Tahiyyat al-masjid (greeting the mosque), and so on…”(Islam Question & Answer)
Ahmad asks his father about the condition of congregation prayers, like Taraweeh prayer, under Covid 19 or the like epidemics. He says: are we allowed to pray in congregation at that time?
The father answers: It is prohibited for a person infected with this virus to attend Friday prayers and prayers in congregation, because the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said, “Sick (camels) should not be put with healthy (camels).” [Sahih al-Bukhari]
Also, If anyone fears that he may be harmed or may harm others, it is permissible for him to not attend the Friday prayer and prayers in congregation, because the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said, “There should be neither harm nor reciprocating harm.” [Narrated by Ibn Majah].
Ahmad is now interested in the idea of creating an organized Ramadan prayer guide 2021 so as to stay focused and get the most of the blessed month.
As for the first 10 days of the month, Ahmad searched for this topic before, so he wants to take authentic information from his father who is a Muslim scholar. Is there any special merit for the first 10 days or for the prayers of Ramadan in them?
His father replies saying: No Ahmad. There is no Ayah from the Quran or an authentic Hadith to depend on in this regard. Thus, we say what the authentic sources say; the merit of Ramadan as a whole is unique, and the merit of prayers in Ramadan as a whole is unique as well.
However, there is extra merit for the last 10 days in Ramadan, not the first ones, mentioned in the Prophet’s (PBUH) Sayings. For example: “When the last ten days began, the Prophet (PBUH) would tie his lower garment (Izaar) tight and stay up at night, and wake his family.
There is one more important topic before creating Ahmad’s Muslim Ramadan prayer guide 2021, and his Muslim prayer guide when Ramadan ends. This topic is the Al-Qadr night and the extra merit for the last 10 days of Ramadan. they are of great importance due to the existence of the Night of Decree (Al Qadr Night). It is not revealed for us to do our best in all the last 10 nights of Ramadan.
Allah says: “The Night of Al-Qadr (Decree) is better than a thousand months.” [Al-Qadr: 3]
After talking about Ramadan prayer guide 2021, Ahmad moves to another important act of worship in Ramadan, asking his father if there are prayers that should be said at certain times.
The father replies saying: Dua is highly recommended at any time of Ramadan, especially in the time of breaking fast. One of the payers to say during Ramadan is the Muslim fasting prayer or the Dua we say before breaking our fast. Marwan ibn Salim al-Muqaffa’ said: I saw Ibn Umar holding his beard with his hand and cutting what exceeded the handful of it. He (Ibn Umar) said that the Prophet (ﷺ) said when he broke his fast: Thirst has gone, the arteries are moist, and the reward is sure if Allah wills. (Al-Albani)
Indeed, what helps Ahmad to be a true Muslim is his understanding of the uniqueness of his religion and its effect on him. He often reads about Islamic history, the Names and Attributes of Allah the Almighty, and the inspiring Muslim leaders throughout time.
He read before an inspiring article under the title How Did the Spread of Islam Affect the World? and that made him want to learn more and more about his religion. Understanding this aspect paves the way of worship for Muslims to modify their prayer and feel the beauty of religion as well.
By the end of this informative session, Ahmad thanks his father for reviewing the Ramadan prayer guide 2021. He understands now the importance of praying, especially Ramadan prayers. Thus, he decides to correct his recitation of the Quran and to continue his memorization for it, to be an Imam for the Masjid in Taraweeh prayer like his father InshaAllah.
In Riwaq Al Azhar Institute, our mission is to instill the love of Allah’s religion in our children’s hearts by teaching them what they need to know about their religion and making them passionate about learning more and more all through the Islamic studies for kids course as well as the online Quran for kids course.
This is Ahmad’s dream and this is how he has decided to create his Islamic prayer guide. What is yours?