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The Manner of Praying After the Appointed Time 

Imām Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn

Evidence for the fact that all prayers performed after their appointed time should mirror how they would have been performed at their appointed time, as well as the command to avoid travel to another destination before praying.

Ṣalāh that is performed after its appointed time should be performed in the same manner as if it was performed at its proper time. This is because the performance of any act of worship after its appointed time should mirror performance at its appointed time. This is a well-known judicial rule. In consideration of this, if one was to perform a night prayer in the daytime, he would recite aloud as if he was praying in the night. Likewise, if he was to perform a daytime prayer in the night, he should recite quietly.

The evidence for this is the following:

  1. The saying of the Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم): “Whoever misses a ṣalāh due to sleep or forgetfulness must pray it when he remembers it”.1 The command relates to the ṣalāh that was missed. Thus, the same command also pertains to the attributes and manner in which that ṣalāh would have been performed. Among said characteristics is reciting aloud if the missed ṣalāh was in the night, or quietly if the missed ṣalāh was in the day.
  2. The ḥadīth of Abū Qatādah (رضي الله عنه) in which the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and his companions missed the morning prayer due to sleep, he said: “So they prayed in the morning in the same manner as they had prayed every other day.”2
  3. The rule in jurisprudence: Performance of any act of worship after its appointed time should mirror performance at its appointed time.

We can also deduce from the ḥādīth of Abū Qatādah (رضي الله عنه) that the ṣalāh that is performed after the time should be performed in congregation if it was among the congregatory ṣalāhs. This is because performance of any act of worship after its appointed time should mirror performance at its appointed time. For if they had prayed it at its proper time, they would have done so in congregation. Likewise, when praying it after its appointed time, they should also pray it in congregation. This was also narrated in the ḥadīth of Abū Hurayrah (رضي الله عنه): The Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) ordered Bilāl (رضي الله عنه) to call the adhān so he called it after which they prayed two rakʿahs. Then, he led them in Fajr prayer in congregation.3

As for performing missed ṣalāhs as soon as possible, its evidence is the following:

  1. The saying of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم): “Whoever misses a ṣalāh due to sleep or forgetfulness must pray it when he remembers it”. A verbal command is used in the hadīth in attachment to the time of remembrance. This proves that it should be performed as soon as one remembers, or as soon as one awakens from his sleep. The fundamental state of any command is that it is undertaken with immediacy unless stated otherwise.
  2. This is representative of a debt whose fulfilment is obligatory. It should be fulfilled as soon as possible, as a person does not know what will happen to him if he delays it.
  3. A person that practises carelessness, devaluing acts of worship, will compound matters until it becomes habitual for him, to the extent that it becomes amongst his characteristics and attributes. In consideration of this, he should always perform acts of worship with immediacy.

[Q]: Did the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم), after awakening, not order his companions to travel to another place before praying?

[A]: Yes, he did so but provided a reasoning which was: “This is a place in which the devil is present.” Thus, it is inappropriate to pray in a place in which the devils are present. For this reason, he (صلى الله عليه وسلم) forbade praying in the area of the toilet because it is a place in which the devils reside.4 He (صلى الله عليه وسلم) also forbade praying in grass [i.e. gardens often used for satisfying the call of nature]5, and the place wherein camels rest near a waterhole.6 This is because camels were created from the devils. This does not mean that their base compositions are the same. Rather, they share a great number of traits and behaviours of the devils. If a created being shares the traits of another, they are often associated with that being. As the Most High said:

خُلِقَ الْإِنسَانُ مِنْ عَجَل

“Man is created of haste.”
(Al-Anbiyāʾ, 21:37)

Even though man was created from dirt. Due to their hasty nature, they are associated with haste as if they came from it, as if haste is the very material from which they were derived.

This ḥadīth [of Abū Qatādah (رضي الله عنه)] does not prove the lack of immediacy, even if some scholars have taken that stance in consideration of this ḥadīth.

Endnotes:
1. Authentic: narrated by al-Bukhārī: 597 and Muslim: 684.
2. Authentic: narrated by Muslim: 681.
3. Authentic: narrated by Muslim: 680.
4. Authentic: narrated by Aḥmad 3:83, 96, Abū Dāwūd: 492, and al-Tirmidhī: 317. Graded authentic by Shaykh al-Islām in Sharḥ al-ʿUmdah 2: 425 and Shaykh al-Albānī in al-Sirāj al-Munīr: 933.
5. Narrated by ʿAbd al-Razzāq in al-Muṣannaf: 1584 from the saying of Ibn ʿAbbās (رضي الله عنه). Also, narrated by Ibn al-Mundhir in al-Awsaṭ: 762 from the saying of ʿAbdullāh ibn ʿAmr ibn al-ʿĀṣ (رضي الله عنه).
6. Authentic: narrated by Muslim: 360.

Source: Al-Sharḥ al-Mumtiʿ 2:140-143
Translated by: Riyāḍ al-Kanadī

Published: January 3, 2024
Edited: January 3, 2024

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