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A day in the life of a Muslim (part 2 of 2): From Noon to Bed

Description: A continuation of the lesson on how to make daily routine activities into rewarding acts of worship by following the daily spiritual routine of a Muslim.

By Imam Kamil Mufti

Published on 02 Jan 2012 - Last modified on 20 Sep 2017

Printed: 399 - Emailed: 3 - Viewed: 20779 (daily average: 10)

Category: Lessons > Islamic Lifestyle, Morals and Practices > General Morals and Practices


Prerequisites

·       Prayer for Beginners (2 parts).

·       Simple Explanation of Three Short Surahs of Quran.

Objectives

·       Learn the daily spiritual routine of a Muslim from noon till bedtime.

Arabic Terms

·       Salah - the Arabic word to denote a direct connection between the believer and Allah.  More specifically, in Islam it refers to the formal five daily prayers and is the most important form of worship.

·       Wudoo – ablution.

·       Fajr, Dhuhr, Asr, Maghrib, Isha – the names of five daily prayers in Islam.

·       Rakah - unit of prayer.

·       Hadith - (plural – ahadith) is a piece of information or a story. In Islam it is a narrative record of the sayings and actions of Prophet Muhammad and his companions.

Afternoon

(1)  A Muslim eats a healthy lunch within the Islamic dietary guidelines.

(2)  Performing the 4 rakahs of Dhuhr salah: One should try to pray 4 or 2 rakahs of Sunnah[1] before it, and 2 rakahs Sunnah after it.  Men should try to offer obligatory prayers in the mosque in congregation especially if a mosque is close to his work/school and on weekends.  Regarding the congregational prayers, the Prophet, may the mercy and blessings of Allah be upon him, said:

“Prayer in congregation is superior to a prayer performed individually by twenty-seven degrees.”[2]

Regarding the Sunnah prayer, Aisha, with whom Allah is pleased, said:

“When the Prophet used to be in my house, he would offer four Sunnah rakahs before Dhuhr prayer, then go and lead the congregation, and thereafter return home and offer two Sunnah rakahs.  Similarly, he would lead Maghrib salah in the congregation and come back and offer two Sunnah rakahs.  Likewise, after having led the Isha salah, he would come back to my apartment and offer two Sunnah rakahs.”[3]

It is preferable for women to perform both the obligatory and Sunnah prayers at her home.  Regarding a woman’s prayer, the Prophet, may the mercy and blessings of Allah be upon him, said:

“Do not prevent women from going to the mosques, although their houses are better for them.”

(3)  A Muslim offers the Asr salah (4 rakahs) on time realizing its importance as the Prophet said:

“He who leaves the Asr salah is like one who has lost (some of) his family and his property.”[4]

“A person will not be sent to Hell who has offered his Fajr and the Asr salahs.”[5]

(4)  There are a number of supplications which should be recited before dusk, but they are quite lengthy and thus will be saved for another lesson.

Evening

(1)  A Muslim enters his house in the Name of Allah by saying the supplication:

Bismillahi wa-lajna, wa Bismillahi kharajna, wa-’ala Rabbinaa tawak-kalnaa.

“With the name of Allah we enter and with the name of Allah we leave, and upon our Lord we place our trust.”[6]

(2)  Perform the 3 rakahs Maghrib salah: Try to perform 2 rakahs of Sunnah after it.  The Muslim man should make every effort to pray in the mosque if he lives reasonably close to one.  Children should be taken to accustom them to worshipping Allah in the mosque.  For those living too far from the mosque, they should try to offer the salah together in congregation.  This is a good way of strengthening family bonding and setting a positive example for the children.

(3)  Conducting a study circle within the home.  The evening is a good time for family members to gather for study of Quran, ahadith, Seerah (biography of Prophet Muhammad) and other areas of Islam knowledge.  This is something that can be made a regular part of the daily or weekly schedule.  Although parents will be primarily responsible for the topics and discussions, older children may be given assignments to prepare for the group.  Encouraging them to actively participate will enhance their excitement and interest in learning.  Creative and engaging methods may be used to maintain the attention of younger children, although they should not be forced to sit for long periods of time.  Regarding the importance of teaching, the Prophet said:

“Each of you is a guardian, and each of you will be asked about your guardianship.  The leader is a guardian, and the man is a guardian over the people of his house, and the woman is a guardian over her husband’s house and children.  So each of you is a guardian, and each of you will be asked about your guardianship.”[7]

The care one takes in teaching those for whom one is responsible, if it is done to please Allah rather than oneself and the family, is regarded as worship.

(4)  A Muslim should be careful what he watches on TV and how much time he/she spends on the Internet or in chat-rooms.  A portion of the evening should be spent on holding a family discussion as it is an ideal time for family discussions since most family members are likely to be present.  The father should make himself available to his family members, discuss rules, schedules, plan vacations, address teen issues, and more.  Doing this on a regular basis will instill responsibility and respect in children and make them feel that they are vital part of the family and the father will play a responsible role in raising his children.  As children mature and reach the age of responsibility, it becomes necessary to include them in discussions, decision-making, even financial planning, particularly in matters that pertain to them.  This is actually a time for them to learn how a family should function since they will eventually begin a family of their own.  Obviously, the parents should provide acceptable role models that the children will want to emulate.  Controlling their leisure activities and one’s family bonding to please Allah will be on the positive side of the ledger of one’s life when we are called for Judgment.

A Muslim concludes any meeting or gathering by:

‘Subhanakal-laa’hum’ma wa be’ham’dik. Ash’hadu an laa e’laahah il’la anta astagh-fe’roka wa a’too-bo e’laik’

‘How perfect You are O Allah, and I praise You.  I bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped except You.  I seek Your forgiveness and turn to You in repentance.’ [8]

(5)  Performing 4 rakahs of Isha salah: One should try to pray 2 rakahs Sunnah, and 3 or 1 rakah of Witr after it.

Allah’s Messenger said:

“No salah is more burdensome to the hypocrites than the Fajr salah and the Isha salah, but if they knew what blessing lie in them they would certainly come for them, even if they had to crawl.”[9]

(6)  A Muslim should not waste time watching movies, playing cards, or other non-essential activities late at night.  Avoiding such things to please Allah will be counted as a good deed.  Staying up late at night is bad for one’s health and makes getting up for Fajr salah harder.

Every night when the Prophet would go to bed, he would cup his hands together and blow into them after reciting Surat ul-Ikhlas, Surat ul-Falaq, and Surat un-Naas.[10]  He would then rub his hands over whatever he was able from his body, beginning with his head, face, and the front of his body.  He used to do that three times.[11]

The Prophet said:

“When you go to your bed, recite the verse of the Footstool (Ayat al-Kursi), ‘Allah! There is no true god but Him, the Ever-living, the One who Sustains and Protects all that exists…’ (Quran 2: 255) to the end, for then there will remain over you a guardian from Allah, and Satan will not come near you until morning.”[12]

It is also preferred to make wudoo before sleeping and to lie on one’s right side.



Footnotes:

[1] The word Sunnah in this lesson refers to prayers that are recommended, but not obligatory.

[2] Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Saheeh Muslim

[3] Saheeh Muslim

[4] Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Saheeh Muslim

[5] Saheeh Muslim

[6] Abu Dawood

[7] Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Saheeh Muslim

[8] Tirmidthi

[9] Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Saheeh Muslim

[10] There are other supplications to be recited before sleeping, but they are quite lengthy and thus will be saved for another lesson.

[11] Saheeh Al-Bukhari and Saheeh Muslim

[12] Saheeh Al-Bukhari

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