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Fatawaa


Fatwa Number : 2733

Subject : Ruling on Offering Night Prayers on Continuous Basis

Classified : Voluntary Prayer

Fatwa Type : Search Fatawaa


Question :

Is it permissible that I offer the night prayers on continuous basis?


The Answer :

All perfect praise be to Allah The Lord of the Worlds and may His peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

Offering the night prayers (Qiyam al-Lail ) is the practice of the righteous. Allah, The Almighty, said, "They were in the habit of sleeping but little by night, And in the hour of early dawn, they (were found) praying for Forgiveness ;"{Adh-Dhariyat, 17-18}. In addition, the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Hold fast to Qiyam al-Lail, for it is the practice of the righteous before you, and indeed Qiyam al-Lail is a means of nearness to Allah, a means of prevention from sin, an expiation for bad deeds, and a barrier for the body against disease.”{Related by Tirmithi}.

Every voluntary prayer offered at night is called Qiyam al-Lail, including those offered` after Isha prayer. As for Tahajjud, it refers to prayer performed by becoming awake after sleep.

Moreover, it is permissible to offer this prayer for one third or half of the night, but it is reprehensible to offer it for the whole night and on continuous basis. The best times are the fourth and fifth sixths, the last half or the second third.

Al-Shiraazi{May Allah have mercy on him} said, "Offering prayers ate the end of the night is better than offering them at its beginning, because Allah, The Almighty said, {They were in the habit of sleeping but little by night, And in the hour of early dawn, they (were found) praying for Forgiveness}. This time is also better because offering prayer by becoming awake after sleep is more difficult and a few people could do that. If a person divided the night into three thirds, then the second third is the best time for this prayer, because Abdullah bin 'Amr (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "The Salat which is dearest to Allah is that of (Prophet) Dawud; and As-Saum (the fasting) which is dearest to Allah is that of (Prophet) Dawud. He used to sleep half the night, get up to perform Salat for one-third of it, then sleep through the remaining one-sixth of it; and he used to observe Saum on alternative days."
In addition, since the acts of worship offered in this time {Second third of the night} are less, praying in it is better. However, it is reprehensible to spend the whole night offering prayers, because the Prophet said, "…..yet I fast and break my fast, I do sleep and I also marry women. So he who does not follow my tradition in religion, is not from me (not one of my followers)."{Al-Majmou`, V.4/P.43}. And Allah knows best.





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