Saturday, June 3, 2006

The Solah Duha

The Solah Duha

By Sayyid Sābiq

In the name of Allāh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful;
All the praise and Thanks are due to Allāh, the Lord of al-‘ālamīn. There is none worthy of worship except Allāh, and that Muhammad, Sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam, is His Messenger.

Apart from the Sunnah Solah that Rasūlullah (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) used to offer with the five obligatory Solah, Rasūlullah (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) also offered additional solah during the day. This is known as Solah Duha, using the name of the time of day most suitable for it, i.e. mid-morning. Its range of time extends from about half an hour after sunrise to about half an hour before Dzuhur becomes due at midday. This Nawafil Solah consists of 2-8 raka‘at, which Rasūlullah (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) used to offer whenever he was free in the morning.

1- The Excellence of the Solah Duha

There are many ahadith that describe the excellence of The Solah Duha which is equivalent or it suffices charity.

Abu Dharr (radiyallāhu’anhu) reports that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “Charity is required from every part of your body daily. Every saying of ‘Subhānallāh (Glory be to Allāh)’ is charity. Every saying of ‘Alhamdulillāh (Praise be to Allāh)’ is charity. Every saying of ‘La ila haillallāh (There is no God but Allāh)’ is charity. Every saying of ‘Allāhuakbar (Allāh is the Greatest)’ is charity. Ordering the good is charity. Eradicating the evil is charity. And what suffices for that (as a charity) is the two raka’at of Solah Duha.” This is related by Ahmad, Muslim, and Abu Dawud. 

Ahmad and Abu Dawud recorded from Buraidah (radiyallāhu’anhu) that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “In a human (body) there are 360 joints and man must make a charity for each one.” The people said: “Who can do that, O Messenger of Allāh?” Rasulullah (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) responded: “One may cover the mucus that one finds in the masjid or remove something harmful from the road. If one could not do that, he could pray two raka’at of The Solah Duha and that will be sufficient for him.” 

Ash-Shawkani said: “These two hadith point to the greatness, excellence, and importance of the Solah Duha, stressing its legality as its two raka’at suffice for 360 charities. Something like this should be performed regularly and persistently. The hadith also establish the importance of saying ‘Subhānallāh (Glory be to Allāh)’, ‘Alhamdulillāh (Praise be to Allāh)’, ‘La ila haillallāh (There is no God but Allāh’) and ‘Allāhuakbar (Allāh is the Greatest)’ And [the importance of] ordering the good, eradicating the evil, removing the spittle, removing what is harmful from the path, and such other acts that will fulfill what is required of a person of daily charities.” 

An-Nawas Ibn Sam’an (radiyallāhu’anhu) related that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “Allāh said: ‘Son of Adam, do not fail in performing four raka’at in the early day as it will be sufficient for the latter part of the day.’” This is related by al-Hakim and at-Tabarani and its narrators are trustworthy. Ahmad, At-Tirmidzi, Abu Dawud, and An-Nasa’ie related it on the authority of Na’im Al-Ghatfani with a good chain (sanad). At-Tirmidzi’s wording is: “Son of Adam, pray four raka’at for Me in the early day and it will be sufficient for you for the latter part of the day.” 

Abdullah Ibn ‘Amr (radiyallāhu’anhu) said: “The Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) sent an expedition and they obtained lots of booty and returned quickly. The people talked about their quick victory, abundant booty, and quick return. At this the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: ‘Shall I not guide you to a closer battle, a greater booty and a quicker return? Whoever makes wudhu' and then goes to the masjid to perform Solah Duha, that is the closer battle, better booty, and quicker return.’” This is related by Ahmad and at-Tabarani. Abu Ya’la has something similar to it. 

Abu Hurairah (radiyallāhu’anhu) said: “My friend [the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam)] advised me to do three things: Fasting Three Days (Siyam Al-Beed) of every month, observing the Solah Duha, and praying the Solah Witr before I sleep.” This is related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim. 

Anas bin Malik (radiyallāhu’anhu) said: “During a journey, I saw the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) perform eight raka’at in the early day. When Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) finished, he said: ‘I observed my prayer wishing and fearing. I asked my Lord for three things and He gave me two and withheld one. I asked Him not to put my ummah to trial by famine and He granted that request. And I asked that they would not be overtaken by their enemies and He granted that request. And I asked that they not be split into groups and parties and He refused that request.’” This is related by Ahmad, an-Nasa'ie, al-Hakim, and Ibn Khuzaimah who classifies it as sahih. 

2 - Solatul Duha is A precious Solah

The Solah Duha is a precious prayer and whoever wishes to earn reward should pray it, while there is no blame upon the one who does not pray it. 

Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri (radiyallāhu’anhu) reported: The Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) would observe The Solah Duha until we thought he would never abandon it. And he would abandon it to the point that we thought he would no longer perform it.” This was recorded by Ahmad and Al-Tirmidzi who says it is hasan. 

Anas bin Malik (radiyallāhu’anhu) related that the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “Solah in my masjid is equal to ten thousand solah [elsewhere]. And Solah in the inviolable masjid is equivalent to one hundred thousand solah [elsewhere]. And Solah in the battlefield is equivalent to one million solah [elsewhere]. And what is more than all of that is two raka’at by a slave [of Allāh] during the middle of the night.” This is reported by Abu ash-Shaikh, Ibn Hibban in his work ath-Thawab, and al-Munzhiri, in his book at-Targhib wa Tarhib, is silent about it. 

3 - Recommended Time for the Solah Duha

The time for The Solah Duha begins when the sun is about a spear's length above the horizon and it continues until the sun reaches its meridian. It is preferred to delay it until the sun has risen high and the day has become hot. 

Zaid ibn Arqam (radiyallāhu’anhu) related: “The Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) went to the people of Quba', and they were performing The Solah Duha, and he said: 'The prayer of devotion should be observed when the young weaned camels feel the heat of the sun.'“ This is related by Ahmad, Muslim, and at-Tirmidzi. 

4 - Number of Raka’at for the Solah Duha

The minimum number of raka’ah to be prayed is two, as was mentioned in the hadith of Abu Dharr (radiyallāhu`anhu). The most that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) performed was eight raka’at, whereas, the most he mentioned was twelve raka’at. Some scholars, such as Abu Ja’far at-Tabari, Al-Mulaimi, and Ar-Ruwyani, who subscribes to the Shafi’ie school of Jurisprudence, say there is no maximum limit to the number of raka'at that one may perform for Duha. 

Al-‘Iraqi said, in the commentary on Sunan at-Tirmidzi: “None of the companions or followers is known to have restricted it to twelve raka’at.” As-Sayuti agrees with it. 

Sa’id Ibn Mansur records that Al-Hassan was asked: “Did the companions perform it?” He answered: “Yes . . . some of them would perform two raka’at and some of them would perform four raka’at. And some of them would continue until half the [early] day [had passed].” 

Ibrahim an-Nakha'ie reported that Al-Aswad Ibn Yazid was asked: “How many raka’at are to be performed for Duha?” He answered: “As many as you wish.” 

A hadith attributed to Umm Hani(radiyallāhu ‘anha), the Prophet’s cousin, quotes her as saying: “The Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) entered her home on the day when Makkah was conquered by the Muslims, took a bath and offered eight raka’at of Duha. I have never seen a solah that could be shorter than that. However, he (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) did his ruku’ and sajdah in full.” This report is highly authentic as it is recorded by Abu Dawud and the group. 

It is clear that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) offered this solah when he was away from home, since he was settled in Madinah at the time, and that he kept his solah short.

Other reports, however, mention different approaches. Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri (radiyallāhu ‘anhu) mentions that “the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) used to pray Duha regularly so that we think that he would not omit it, but at other times, he would consistently omit it so that we think that he would not offer it again.” (Recorded by Ahmad and Al-Tirmidzi)

This report makes clear that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) varied his practice with regard to voluntary worship so as to make clear that what is voluntary remains so. It should never be mixed up with what is obligatory. This is clear from three Hadiths by ‘Aishah (radiyallāhu‘anha), his wife. 

The first is a report by Muadhah who said: “I asked ‘Aishah (radiyallāhu’anha) whether the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) used to pray Duha. She said: ‘Yes, in four raka’at, but he (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) could increase that as he wished.’” (Recorded by Ahmad, Al-Bukhari, Muslim, Al-Tirmidzi and Ibn Majah) Another report quotes ‘Aishah (radiyallāhu’anha) as replying to the same question on a different occasion and by a different person. Her answer was: “No, unless he was coming home from travel.” The third report by ‘Aishah (radiallāhu’anha) says: “I have never seen the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) offering prayer in mid-morning, or Duha, but I offer it nevertheless. The Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) used to omit doing something he would have loved to do, fearing that when people did it to emulate him, it would become obligatory for them.” (Recorded by Malik, Al-Bukhari and Muslim.)

The Dual Purpose

These reports by ‘Aishah (radiyallāhu’anha) make clear that the Prophet’s (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) practice concerning this voluntary prayer was varied. She makes clear that she never saw the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) doing it, but in another report she confirms that he (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) offered it in four raka’at or more, while she also points out that he (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) did on his return home after travel. This means that she was aware of his offering this prayer. Indeed this is the reason why she used to offer it despite the fact that she never saw the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) doing it in his normal routine. It was clear to her that it was a good and rewarding voluntary prayer that Muslims should do if they can. 

‘Aishah (radiyallāhu’anha) would not have done it, had she thought that it was not highly recommended. She explains the reason for Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) not doing it so often. Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) cared for his followers and he did not wish to burden them. Should they realize that Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) did it regularly, they would do likewise, and it could become an obligatory for the ummah. 

It is important to realize that in practically everything Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) did in his worship was intended for the dual purpose of expressing his total submission to Allāh Subhanahu wa ta’ala and teaching us how to perform our worship. Hence, it was necessary that Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) should demonstrate in practice what to do in a great variety of situations. Alternatively, Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) provided direct guidance on what was needed in such matters. In all that he did, Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam) acted as an ordinary human being, subject to all the conditions and influences anyone of us may experience.

Allāh the Almighty Alone Know most.

Excerpted from “Fiqh-us-Sunnah, Volume 2: The Solah Duha” by Sayyid Sābiq

1 comment:

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