The Duā’ before and after wudhū’
‘What are the duā’ that is to be said before and after wudhu’?
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. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allāh, and that Muhammad, sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam, is His Messenger.
The Prophet (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) recited the Duā’ at the beginning of wudhu’ and after concluding it.
Duā’ recited at the beginning of wudhū’
The duā at the beginning of wudhū’ is to mention: Bismillāh (in the name of Allāh). The evidence for that are the words of the Prophet (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam): “There is no wudhu’ for one who does not mention the name of Allāh in it.” [Narrated by al-Tirmidzi, 25]
The duā’ after wudhu’
‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiallāhu’anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, “There is no one among you who does wudhū’; and does it well, then says:
‘Ashhaduan lā ilāha ill-Allāh wahdahu lā sharīka lah, wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhu was rasūluh. (I bear witness that there is no god except Allāh alone, with no partner or associate, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger)’
But the eight gates of Paradise will be opened for him and he will enter through whichever one he wants.”
[Narrated by Muslim, 234]
Scholars differ in their opinion. At-Tirmidzi (rahimahullāh) said: it was narrated from ‘Aishah, Abu Sa’id, Abu Hurayrah, Sahal ibn Sa’ad and Anas bin Malik (radiallāhu’anhum). While Imām Ahmad ibn Hanbal (rahimahullāh) said: I do not know of any hadith with a jayyid isnad on the topic, [consider it as a mustahabb. And this is what seems to be the correct opinion; it is mustahabb and not wājib]. But, the hadith was classified as sahih by al-Albāni in Sahih al-Tirmidzi.
Al-Nawawi (rahimahullāh) quoting Imām al-Bayhaqi (rahimahullāh), who said: The authentic hadith concerning saying Bismillāh (for wudhu’) is the hadith of Anas bin Malik (radiallāhu’anhu), according to which the Prophet (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) put his hand in the vessel of water then he said: “Do wudhu’ in the name of Allāh.” [Anas bin Malik also] said: I saw the water springing up from between his fingers, and the people did wudhu’ until the last of them had done wudhu’, and there were nearly seventy men. Its isnād is jayyid, and it was quoted as evidence by al-Bayhaqi in his book, “Ma’rifat al-Sunan wa’l-Athar”; but he classified the other ahādīth as da’ief (weak).
Ibn al-Qayyim (rahimahullāh) said: It is not narrated from him that he used to say anything in his wudhu’ apart from saying Bismillāh. Every hadith which speaks of duā’s to be said during wudhu’ is false and fabricated. The Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) did not say any of these things and he did not teach them to his ummah. There is nothing narrated from him except saying “Bismillāh” at the beginning and saying: “Ashhadu an lā ilāha ill-Allāh wahdahu lā sharīka lah, wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhu was rasūluhu. Allāhumm aj’alni min al-tawwābīna waj’alni min al-mutatahhirīna (I bear witness that there is no god except Allāh alone, with no partner or associate, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger. O Allāh, make me one of those who repent and make me one of those who purify themselves)” afterwards.
According to another hadith narrated in Sunan al-Nasā’i, one of the duā’s that may also be said after wudhu’ is: “Subhānaka Allāhumma wa bi hamdika, ashhadu an lā ilāha ill anta, astaghfiruka wa atūbu ilayka (Glory and praise be to You, O Allāh, I bear witness that there is no god but You, I seek Your forgiveness and I repent to You).”.
[Zaad al-Ma’ād (1/195)]