Reasons for doing Sujud al-Sahwi
When is it prescribed for a worshipper to do the prostration of forgetfulness?
In the name of Allāh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful;
All the praise and Thanks are due to Allāh, the Lord of the al-ā’lamīn. There is none worthy of worship except Allāh, and that Muhammad, Sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam, is His Messenger.
By the Allāh’s mercy to His slaves, and as one of the beauties of Islam, Allāh has prescribed that His slaves may make up for shortcomings and mistakes that they make in their worship and that cannot be avoid completely, that is by performing supererogatory (nāfil) acts of worship, praying for forgiveness.
One of the things that Allāh has prescribed for His slaves to make up for shortcomings that may occur in their solat is Sujud al-Sahwi (Prostration of Forgetfulness), but it is only prescribed to make up for certain things; it does not make up for everything nor is it prescribed for everything.
The Sujud al-Sahwi in solāt is generally prescribed for three reasons:
1- Doing something extra
In the case of doing something extra.
The example, doing an extra bow (rukū’), prostration (sujūd), standing or sitting.
Omitting something: such as omitting an essential part of the solat, or omitting one of the obligatory parts of the prayer.
Being uncertain: such as when a person is not sure how many rak’ahs he has prayed, whether it was three or four, for example.
In the case of doing something extra, if a person adds something to his prayer – bowing, prostrating, standing or sitting – deliberately, then his prayer becomes invalid, because when he added it, that means that he did not do the prayer in the manner ordained by Allāh and His Messenger (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam). The Prophet (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “Whoever does an action that is not part of this matter of ours (i.e., Islam), will have it rejected.” [Narrated by Muslim, 1718]
But if he did that extra thing by mistake, then his prayer is not invalidated, but he should do the prostration of forgetfulness after saying the Salam. The evidence for that is the ahadīth:
Abu Hurayrah (radiallāhu`anhu) narrated, who said that when the Prophet (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said the salām after two rak’ahs in one of the two afternoon prayers, either Zuhur or ‘Asar, and they told him about that, he (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) did the rest of the prayer, then he said the salām, then he prostrated twice (the prostration of forgetfulness) after saying the salām.
[Narrated by al-Bukhāri, 482; Muslim, 573].
Secondly, Ibn Mas’ūd (radiallāhu`anhu) narrated that the Prophet (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) led them in praying Zuhur and he prayed five rak’ahs. When Rasūlullāh (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) had finished it was said to him: “Has something been added to the prayer?” He (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “Why are you asking that?” They said: “You prayed five (rak’ahs).” So he (Sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) turned towards the qiblah and prostrated twice.
[Narrated by al-Bukhāri, 4040; Muslim, 572].
In the case of omitting something.
If a person omits one of the essential parts of the prayer, one of the following two scenarios must apply:
· Either he remembers it before he reaches the same point in the following rak’ah, so he has to go back and do that essential part of the prayer and whatever came after it,
· Or he does not remember it until he reaches the same point in the following rak’ah, in which case the following rak’ah takes the place of the one in which he omitted that essential part, and he should make up the invalid rak’ah.
In either of these two cases, he should do the prostration of forgetfulness after saying the Salam.
For example: a man stood up after doing the first prostration of the first rak’ah and did not sit or do the second prostration. When he started to recite Qur’aan he remembers that he had not done the second prostration or sat between the two prostrations. In that case he should go back and sit as between the two prostrations, then prostrate, then stand up and do whatever is left of his prayer, and do the prostration of forgetfulness after saying the Salam.
An example of one who did not remember until after he reached the same point in the following rak’ah is a man who stood up following the first prostration in the first rak’ah and did not do the second prostration or sit between the two prostrations, but he did not remember that until he sat between the two prostrations in the second rak’ah. In this case he should make the second rak’ah the first rak’ah, and add another rak’ah to his prayer, then say the Salam then do the prostration of forgetfulness.
Omitting an obligatory part of the prayer – such as if he omits an obligatory part and moves on to the next part of the prayer. For example, he forgets to say Subhaan Rabbiy al-A’la (Glory be to my Lord Most High) and he does not remember until he has got up from prostrating. In this case he has omitted an obligatory part of the prayer by mistake, so he should carry on with his prayer then do the prostration of forgetfulness before saying the salām, because when the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) omitted the first tashahhud he carried on with his prayer and did not go back and repeat anything, then he did the prostration of forgetfulness before saying the salām.
In the case of being uncertain.
If a person is not sure if he has done something extra or omitted something, e.g., he is not sure whether he has prayed three rak’ahs or four, one of the following two scenarios must apply:
· Either he thinks that one or the other is more likely to be case, whether it is doing more or omitting something, in which case he should proceed on the basis of what he thinks is more likely to be the case, complete his prayer accordingly, then do the prostration of forgetfulness after saying the salām;
· Or neither appears more likely to be the case, so he should proceed on the basis of what is certain, namely the lesser amount, and complete his prayer accordingly, then do the prostration of forgetfulness before saying the Salam.
For example: a man prays Zuhur then he is not sure whether he is praying the third or fourth rak’ah, but he thinks it more likely that it is the third. So he should pray another rak’ah, then say the Salam, then do the prostration of forgetfulness.
An example of when neither seems to him more likely to be the case is when a man is praying Zuhur and is not sure whether he is in the third rak’ah or the fourth, and neither seems to him more likely to be the case. In that case he should proceed on the basis of what are certain, which is the lesser amount. So he should regard it as the third rak’ah, then do another rak’ah and do the prostration of forgetfulness before saying the Salam. Thus it becomes clear that this should be done before the Salam if you have omitted one of the obligatory parts of the prayer or if you are not sure how many rak’ahs you have done, and neither of the two choices seems more likely to be the case. And it should be done after the Salam if you have added something extra to the prayer or you are not certain but one of the two choices seems more likely to be the case.
[See Majmū’ Fatāwa al-Shaykh, 14/14-16]
What the Tasbih in Sujūd al-Sahwi?
There is no specific mention of how the tasbih should be said in Sujūd al-Sahwi. The Tasbih in Sujūd al-sahwi is the same as in the Sujūd of the solah. There are variations of adhkār but Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alaihi wassallam) used to recite one of the following.
“Subhāna rabbiy al an’lāwa bihamdih” (Glory be to my Lord Most High, and He be Praised), (three times) [Abu Dawud, Daraqutni, Ahmad, Tabarāni; Baihaqi: Sahih]
“Subhāna rabbiy al-a’lā” (Glory is to my Lord Most High) [Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Ibn Mājah, Daraqutni]
“Allāhumma laka sajadtu, wabika āmantu, wa laka aslamtu, [waantarabbi], sajadawajhiya lillazihu wasowarahu, [faahsanuwasowarahu], wasyaqqan sam’ahu wabasorahu, fatabarakallāhhu ahsanulkhaliqīn” (O Allāh! For you I have prostrated; in You I have believed; to You I have submitted; [You are my Lord;] my face has prostrated for the One Who created it and shaped it, [shaped it excellently], then brought forth its hearing and vision: [so] Blessed be Allāh, the Best of creators) [Muslim, Abu `Awānah, Tahawi & Daraqutni]
Aishah (radiallāh`anha) also reported the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alaihi wassallam) often used to say when ruku’ and sujūd:
“Subhānaka Allāhumma Rabbana wa bi hamdika, Allāhummaghfir li” (Glory be to Thee, O Allāh, our Lord, and praise be to Thee, O Allāh, forgive me), Thus, complying with the (command in) the Qur'an. [Al-Bukhari; Muslim (0981)]
“Subūhun quddūs, Rabb ul-maā’ikatu wal-rūh” (Glorified, Holy, Lord of the angels and the Spirit [i.e., Jibreel] [Muslim (0987)]
Or, other tasbihah which are reported as being Sunnah to say in the sujūd.
It is said in Al-Sunan wal-Mubtada’at: “There is no report that the Prophet (Sallallāhu ‘alayhi Wa Sallam) said any specific words in Sujūd al-Sahwi; the adhkar to mention in Sujūd al-Sahwi are the same as those to be recited in the Sujūd of prayer…”
And Allāh Knows Best.
[Via Islam Q&A (12527)]