Is it necessary to have wudoo’ in order to do sujood al-tilaawah (prostration required when reading certain verses of the Qur’aan)? Do we have to say Allaahu akbar when going down and coming up, whether that is whilst praying or otherwise? What should be said in this prostration? Are the du’aa’s that have been narrated for it saheeh? Is it prescribed to say salaam after this prostration if it is done outside of prayer?
It is not essential to have wudoo’ for sujood al-tilaawah, according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions, and there is no salaam or takbeer when coming up from it, according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions.
It is prescribed to say takbeer when prostrating, because evidence to that effect is proven in the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him).
But if the sujood al-tilaawah is done during prayer, then it is obligatory to say takbeer when going down and when coming up, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to do that in every movement of the prayer, and he said: “Pray as you have seen me praying.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari in his Saheeh, 595). The same dhikr and du’aa’s are prescribed in sujood al-tilaawah as in the prostration during prayer, because of the general meaning of the ahaadeeth concerning that. Among these du’aa’s are:
Allaahumma laka sajadtu wa bika aamantu wa laka aslamtu, sajada wajhi lilladhi khalaqahu wa sawwarahu wa shaqqa sam’ahu wa basarahu bi hawlihi wa quwwatihi, tabaarak Allaahu ahsan al-khaaliqeen (O Allaah, unto You I have prostrated and in You I have believed, and unto You I have submitted. My face has prostrated before Him Who created it and fashioned it, and brought forth its faculties of hearing and seeing by His Might and Power. Blessed is Allaah, the Best of creators).
This was narrated by Muslim in his Saheeh, 1290 from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him); he said that he used to say this dhikr during the prostration of prayer, according to the hadeeth of ‘Ali (may Allaah be pleased with him).
We have mentioned above that it is prescribed to say the same in sujood al-tilaawah as in the prostration in prayer. It was narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to make du’aa’ when he did sujood al-tilaawah, and he would say:
“Allaahumma aktub li biha ‘indaka ajran wa’mhu ‘anni biha wizran waj’alha li ‘indaka dukhran wa taqabbalha minni kama taqabbaltaha min ‘abdika Dawood (O Allaah, record for me a reward for this (prostration), and remove from me a sin. Save it for me and accept it from me just as You accepted it from Your slave Dawood).” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 528).
What is obligatory is to say “Subhaana Rabbiy al-A’laa (Glory be to my Lord Most High), as is obligatory during the prostration of prayer. Any additional du’aa’ or dhikr is mustahabb.
Sujood al-tilaawah, whether during prayer or outside of it, is Sunnah, not obligatory, because evidence to that effect was narrated from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), in the hadeeth of Zayd ibn Thaabit and in the hadeeth of ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him).