Fri 18 Jm2 1435 - 18 April 2014
1048

Al Sunnan Al Rawatib (Sunnah Prayers associated with Fardh Prayers)

What is the structure of the obligatory prayers?
For example for Fajr prayers, are there two Farz rakats and two sunnat. Similarly for Zuhr, are there 4 farz and 2 sunnat. For Ashr, are there 4 farz and 2 sunnat; for Magribh are there 3 farz rakat and 2 sunnat. Lastly, for Isha are there 4 farz and 2 sunnat?
Am I correct in my assumption and if not would you kindly let me know to the correct structure?

Praise be to Allah;

The answer to your question is a Hadith by the Prophet (May peace and blessings be upon him) in which he said:

"Allaah will build a house in Heaven for whoever is diligent in observing 12 Sunnah Rak'aat (as follows): 4 Rak'aat before and 2 after the Dhuhr (Midday) Prayer, 2 after the Maghrib (Sunset Prayer), 2 after the ‘Ishaa’ (Evening) Prayer and 2 before the Fajr (Dawn) Prayer." Hadith sahih narrated by at-Tirmidhi No. 379 and by others. Hadith No. 6183 in Sahih al-Jaami’.

‘Anbasah ibn Abi Sufyan quoted Umm Habibah as saying "Allaah’s Messenger (May peace and blessings be upon him) said:

"A house will be built in Heaven for one who prays 12 Rak'aat in a day and evening as follows: 4 Rak'aat before and 2 after the Dhuhr Prayer, 2 after the Maghrib Prayer, 2 after the ‘Ishaa’ Prayer and 2 before the Fajr Prayer." Narrated by at-Tirmizi under No. 380. He said: The Hadith narrated by ‘Anbasah quoting Umm Habibah in this chapter is a hassan and sahih hadith. It is under No. 6362 in Sahih al-Jaami’.

The ‘Asr (Late-Afternoon) Prayer has no routine Sunnah (basic recommended voluntary prayer). However, it is mustahab (preferable and recommended) that one prays 4 Rak'aat before the ‘Asr Prayer. The 4 Rak'ahs are of less reward and significance in importance of adhering to them compared to the "sunnan al-rawaatib" described above. The 4 Rak'ahs are the ones intended by the Prophet (May peace and blessings be upon him) in saying: "May Allaah have mercy on one who prays 4 raka’aat before the ‘Asr Prayer." Narrated by at-Tirmidhi no. 395 and he declared it a hassan and ghareeb Hadith. Al-Albany rated the Hadith as hassan in Sahih al-Jami’ No. 3493.
All the foregoing 4-Rak'ah voluntary prayers are to be prayed two at a time according to Imam ash-Shafi’i and Imam Ahmad.

Allaah, the Exalted, knows best.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid
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