The Virtues of Qiyam Ramadhān
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.
Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) had informed the ummah on the virtues of Ramadhan: “Whoever fasts Ramadhān with faith and to seek reward from Allāh, he will be forgiven for all of his previous sins; Whoever stands for prayer at night during Ramadhān (Solātul Tarawih) with faith and to seek reward from Allāh, he will be forgiven for all of his previous sins; Whoever stands (for prayer at night) during Laylatul-Qadar (the Night of Decree) with faith and to seek reward from Allāh he will be forgiven for all of his previous sins.” [Al-Bukhari no. 2014 and Muslim no. 759-760]
2.The word “faith” means faith in what Allāh has promised the observers of Ramadhān; perform Solāt Tarawih and Qiyamulail during Laitul-Qadar. “To seek reward” means, the observer's intent of seeking special recognition and forgiveness from Allāh alone.
3. The term Qiyam and Solāt Tahajjud is the same Solāt with different names. When these two names are used in Ramadhān, it is also referred as Qiyam or Solāt Tarāwīh including Witr; while spending the night in worship, after some sleep is called Tahajjud or Qimyamulail. Both names have been used in the Qur'ān. The Qur’ān uses the phrase Qum al-layl when Allāh says: "O thou wrapped up in thy raiment! Keep vigil the night long (Qum al-layl), save a little, a half thereof, or abate a little thereof, or add (a little) thereto and chant the Qur’ān in measure…" [Al-Muzzammil, 73: 1-4] The verb Fatahajjad is a derivative from the root word Hajada (to keep vigil), Allāh says: "And some part of the night awake for it (fatahajjad), a largess for thee. It may be that thy Lord will raise thee to a praised estate." [Al-Isra', 17: 79] The later verse means to get up and perform Solāt Tahajjud. Tahajjud derives from the term night prayers or Qiyam, which means standing. Qiyam also refers to spending the night in worship in general, whether it is solāh or any other form acts of worship.
Who performs it with Faith and Hope the Previous Sins Will Be Forgiven.
4. Abu Hurairah (radiallāhu`anhu) said: “The Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) used to encourage us to pray at night in Ramadhān, without making it an obligatory. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, ‘Whoever stands for prayer at night in Ramadhān (Solāt Tarawih) out of faith and to seek reward from Allāh, all his previous sins will be forgiven.’ ‘When the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) died, this is how things were (i.e., Tarawih was not performed in congregation), and this remained during the Khalifah of Abu Bakar (radiallāhu`anhu), until the beginning of the Khalifah of ‘Umar Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu). [Muslim1663]
5. Tarawih is the plural of Tarwihah. Four Rak`ah are called Tarwihah. It derived from the Arabic root word, "rāha", which means to rest, relax and use as recreation. It is so called because the believers used to prolong it. After every four raka'at they would stop for rest and relaxation and resume until Tarawih was complete.
6. ‘Amr Ibn Murrah Al-Juhani (radiallāhu`anhu) said: “A man from Quda’ah came to the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) and said, ‘O Messenger of Allāh! What do you think if I testify that there is no god except Allāh, and that you, Muhammad, are His Messenger, and I pray the five daily prayers, and fast in the month (of Ramadhān), and pray at night in Ramadhān, and pay zakah?’ Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘Whoever dies on that will be among the siddiqin (those who tell the truth) and the martyrs.’” [Muslim]
7. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “Whoever prays at night during Lailatul-Qadar [and manages to “catch” it] out of faith and the hope of reward, all his previous sins will be forgiven.” [Muslim] It is the Most Blessed Night and indeed a great amount of value. It falls on one the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadhan [21, 23, 25, 27, 29]. The Night is better than worshiping Allāh thousand months, i.e. 83 years and 4 months. A believing person should strive to encounter the night with worship, if encountered all of the previous sins will be forgiven. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “Seek it in the last ten nights, on the odd-numbered nights.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim] Zurr Ibn Hubaish (radiallāhu`anhu) said: “I heard Ubayy Ibn Ka’ab (radiallāhu`anhu) saying – and it was said to him that ‘Abdallāh Ibn Mas’ud (radiallāhu`anhu) said: ‘whoever follows the Sunnah will ‘catch’ Lailatul-Qadar!’- Ubayy Ibn Ka’ab (radiallāhu`anhu) said: ‘May Allāh have mercy on him, he did not want people to take it for granted and only stay up to pray on one night. By the One besides Whom there is no other god, it is in Ramadhān – he was swearing without a doubt – and by Allāh, I do know which night it is. It is the night in which the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) commanded us to qiyam. It is the night the morning of which is the twenty seventh, and the sign of it is that the sun rises on that morning white and without rays.’” [Muslim (1169) and others]
8. Jabir bin Abdullah (radiallāhu’anhu) reported: “I heard the Apostle of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) as saying: ‘There is an hour during the night in which no Muslim bondman will ask Allāh for good in this world and the next but He will grant it to him’.” [Muslim (1655)]This indicates that it is most mustajab to make duā’ at the end of the night (i.e. Tahajjud prayer) is witnessed (by the angels) and that would be better and bless is ensured by Allāh. It would be appropriate to make extensive supplications and repentance. ‘Aishah (radiallāhu ‘anha) reported that she asked Allāh’s Messenger (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam), “O Messenger of Allāh! If I knew which night is Lailatul-Qadar, what should I say during it?” And he instructed her to say: “Allāhummainna Ka ‘afuw Wun Tuhibbul ‘Afwa Fa’fu’ Anna [Wa ‘an walidina wa ‘an jami‘il Muslimina wal Muslimat, mu’minin wal mu’minat. Birahmatika Ya arhamar rāhimīn, Walhamdulilahi Rabbil ‘ālamīn].” (O Allāh! You are Forgiving, and you love forgiveness. So forgive us.[ And Muslim and Muslimat, Mu’minin and Mu’minat Thou are most Gracious and the Merciful, All the praise is to Allah, the Lord of the entire universe.]) [Recorded by Ahmad, Ibn Majah, and At-Tirmidzi; Verified to be authentic by Al-Albani]
The Time for Qiyam.
9. The Qiyam (Solāt of Tarawih, witr and Tahajjud) is to be offered after Solāt ‘Isha until before Solāt Fajar. [Al-Bukhari, Muslim]Allah Says: “Verily, your Lord knows that you stand (to pray at night) a little less than two-thirds of the night, or half the night, or a third of the night, and so do a party of those with you, And Allah measures the night and the day. He knows that you are unable to pray the whole night, so He has turned to you (in mercy). So, recite the Quran as much as may be easy for you…” [Muzzammil, 73:20] Allāh has praised those who observe them: "Those who spend the night in adoration of their Lord, prostrate and standing." [Al-Furqan, 25:64] "Their limbs do forsake their beds of sleep, the while they call on their Lord in fear and hope and they spend (in charity) out of the sustenance which we have bestowed on them." [As-Sajdah, 32:16]. It also indicates the basis for nightly prayer and the good rewards for those who observe it.
10. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: "The best prayer after the obligatory ones is the night prayer." [Muslim] Elsewhere he said: "O people! Disseminate the salutations of peace As-Salām 'Alaikum; feed the needy food, and join the blood ties among the next of kin; and observe night prayer while people are at sleep, you will enter paradise peacefully." [Tirmidzi]
11. With regard to witr, Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “Allāh has added one more prayer for you, which is witir, so pray it between Salat al-‘Isha’ and Salat al-Fajar.” [Al-Tirmidzi, 425: sahih]. Jabir bin Abdullah (radiallāhu’anhu) said: The Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “Whoever fears that he will not get up at the end of the night, let him pray Witir at the beginning of the night, but whoever thinks that he will be able to get up at the end of the night (i.e. Tahajjud prayer), let him pray Witir at the end of the night, for prayer at the end of the night is witnessed (by the angels) and that would be better.” [Muslim 755]
12. Nevertheless, between doing Tarawih ( and Witr) in jama’ah at the beginning of the night and doing alone at the end of the night, it is thus mustahab to perform it in jama’ah, because that is counted as if one had qiyam the whole night through.
Solāt Tarawih in Jama’ah
13. It was Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) who the first to establish the Sunnah of congregational Tarawih in the Masjid. Then he did not continue with the Sunnah for fear that it might be made mandatory on the Ummah in Ramadhan, and they might not be able to do it. Aa’ishah (radiallāhu`anha) has been reported as saying: "The Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) observed Solāt Tarawīh in the Masjid one night and people prayed with him. He repeated the following night and the number of participants grew. The companions congregated the third and fourth night, but the Messenger did not show up. In the morning he told them, "I saw what you did last night, but nothing prevented me from joining you except my fear that it might be made mandatory on you in Ramadhan." [Bukhari and Muslim] And Abu Dharr (radiallāhu`anhu) said: “We fast the Ramadhān with the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) and he did not lead us in qiyam at all until there were only seven days left (23rd.), he led us in prayer until a third of the night had passed. When there were six days left, he did not lead us in qiyam. When there were five days left (25th.), he led us in prayer until half the night had passed. I said, ‘O Messenger of Allāh, I wish that you had continued until the end of the night.’ He (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, ‘If a man prays with the imām until he concludes it, it will be counted as if he prayed the whole night.’ When there were four nights left, he did not lead us in qiyam. When there were three nights left (27th.), he brought together his family, his wives and the people, and led us in qiyam until we were worried that we would miss al-falah. I asked, ‘What is al-falah?’ he said, ‘Sahur. Then he did not lead us in qiyam for the rest of the month.’” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim and others].
14. Solāt Tarawih in congregation was not an innovation of Khalifah 'Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu), despite his saying to the contrary. For ‘Abd Al-Rahman Ibn ‘Abd Al-Qari (radiallāhu`anhu) narrated: “I went out with ‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) to the mosque (Masjidil Nabawi) one night during Ramadhān, and saw the people scattered throughout the mosque, some praying individually, and some praying in small groups. ‘Umar (radiallāhu`anhu) said, ‘By Allāh, I think that if I gathered all of them behind one reader it would be better.’ So, he resolved to do it, and he gathered them behind Ubayy Ibn Ka’ab (radiallāhu`anhu) and Tamimu Ad-Dari (radiallāhu`anhu) to alternate and lead the believers in eleven raka'at of night prayer. Then I went with him on another night, and the people were all praying behind their reader, and ‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) said, ‘What a good innovation this is. What if they sleep and miss – refers the latter part of the night – is better than what they are doing,’ – the people used to qiyam (Tarawih) at the beginning of the night.” [Al-Bukhari]
15. ‘Umar's use of the word Bid’ah in the hadith has been presented and unjustifiably cited as justification for concocting up various so called good innovations. Hence the Khalifah 'Umar's act to gather the believers in Jama'ah is not Bid’ah. For it was the Rasūlullāh himself who started jama'ah by praying in congregation the first and second day, then stopped only as he feared it would become mandatory? After his death, the fear of Tarawīh becoming mandatory (Fardhu) was not only remote, it was impossible. With the death of Rasulullah Muhammad (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam), there will be no more revelation to change any law or rule by abrogation.
Women is allowed to Participate
16. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: "Prevent not the women servants of Allāh, from going to the Masjid of Allāh." [Muslim]However, when they attend the Masjid they should wear no perfume, nor raise their voices, and or show their beauty. Allāh states: "...they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof..."[Al-Nur, 24:31]. What ordinarily appears refers to the outer garments, for when the Messenger (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) commanded women to attend Eid prayer, Umm 'Atiyah (radiallāhu`anha) said: "O Messenger of Allāh, some of us do not have the outer garment (jilbab). Rasūlullāh told her to let a sister (who has more than one) gives her one to wear." [Muslim]
17. It is Sunnah that women pray behind the men in the rear lines. The Messenger (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) has been reported as saying: "The best lines for men are the front lines and the worst lines for men are the rear lines. The best lines for women are the rear and the worst lines of women are the front line.” [Muslim]
18. During his time Khalifah Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) gathered the people to pray qiyam, and appointed Ubayy Ibn Ka’ab (radiallāhu`anhu) to lead the men and Sulayman Ibn Abi Hathmah (radiallāhu`anhu) to lead the women. [Al-Bukhari] ‘Arfajah Al-Thaqafi (radiallāhu`anhu) said: “Ali Ibn Abi Talib (radiallāhu`anhu) used to command the people to pray during the night in Ramadhān, and he would appoint an imām for the men and an imam for the women. I was the imām for the women.” The reason for not praying qiyam in congregation during Ramadhān no longer valid, it is prescribed in Islam, remained in effect. ‘Umar Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) revived the practice, as recorded in Sahih Al-Bukhari and elsewhere.
The women should leave the Masjid as soon as the Imam says Salam
19.The women should leave the Masjid as soon as the Imam says: As-Salamu 'alaikum. They should not delay without a valid reason. In a hadith by Umm Salmah (radiallāhu`anha), she said: "When Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) saluted to end prayer, the women would stand up to leave and the Messenger would remain in his place for a while." Umm Salmah (radiallāhu`anha) said: Allāh is the best knower, but perhaps the Messenger did that so women would leave before men could overtake them". [Bukhari]
Number of Raka’at of Tarawih
20. The Salaf differs on the number of raka'at in Tarawīh and Witr. The numbers mentioned are: 41, 39, 36, 29, 23, 19, 13, and 11 raka'at and then perform three raka'at of Witr prayers. Of all mentioned, none is sounder than 11 raka'at, Eight raka’at Tarawih and three Witr. It is a clear matter Rasulullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) did not fix a specific number of raka'at, neither in Ramadhān nor in any other times.
21. Abu Salamah bin Abd al-Rahman (radiallāhu`anhu) asked ‘A’ishah (radiallāhu`anha) about the (night) prayer of the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) during the month of Ramadhan. She said: “The Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) did not observe either in Ramadhan or in other months more than eleven raka'ahs (of the night prayer). He (in the first instance) observed four rak'ahs. Ask not about their excellence and their length (i.e. these were matchless in perfection and length). He again observed four rak'ahs, and ask not about their excellence and their length. He would then observe three rak'ahs (of the Witr prayer). 'A'ishah again said: “I said: Messenger of Allāh, do you sleep before observing the Witr prayer? He said: O 'A'ishah, my eyes sleep but my heart does not sleep.” [Al-Bukhāri, Muslim (1607) and others].
22. Another mustahab way of doing the prayer is in twos and capped with witr and nothing wrong with offering more than 11 raka'at as Ibn 'Umar (radiallāhu`anhu) reported that a person asked the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) about the night prayer. The Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: "In sets of two, in sets of two. Then when one of you fears the emerging of morning, he prays one (raka'ah) that will serve as a Solāt Witr (i.e. make the number odd) of what he has prayed." [Al-Bukhari 990 , Muslim 749, Abu Dawud 1326]
23. In their desire to pray more raka'at, some people make Tarawih in extreme speed. That is wrong, especially when the speed leads to a breach of certain rules of prayer. In that case, the prayer will not be valid. Similarly, it is undesirable for an Imam to pray with such speed whereby the followers will have difficulty observing the necessary deeds in Solāt.
24. Sheikh-Islam ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullāh) mentioned that the matter concerning this is broad (i.e. an easy matter). He also mentioned that it is better for whoever lengthens his recitation, ruku’ and sujud to lessen the number of Raka'at, and whoever lightens (shortens) the recitation, ruku’ and sujud, to increase the number of raka'at. This is the meaning of his statement, may Allāh have mercy on him. One may chose to perform 11 or 13 raka’at during Ramadhān and other times. This is also in agreement with the practice of Rasulullah (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) in most of his situations (i.e. what he usually did). This is easier for those who are offering qiyam for humility and tranquility. Likewise, there is no harm whoever likes to offer more raka’at. It is best for whoever performs with the Imām in Tarawih is that he does not stop until the Imām concludes it. This is due to the statement of Rasulullah (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam): "Verily, if the man stands for night prayer with the Imām until he finishes, Allāh will write for him (the reward of) standing the entire night (in prayer)." [Abu Dawud 1375, At-Tirmidzi no. 806, Ibn Mājah no. 1327 and Ahmad 5:159.] If Tarawih congregation is organized with alternate Imām, one should follow all Imams until they conclude it, including the Witr, due to rewards awaiting the observers of this prayer. It should not also be neglected without reasons, for it is part virtuous training.
Recitation in Tarawih
25. Rasulullah (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) did not set a limit reciting the Qur’an during qiyam. His recitation used to vary; sometimes it would be long, at other times short. Sometimes in every raka’ah he would recite the equivalent of ‘Yā ayyuha’l-muzammil’, which is twenty ayat; sometimes he would recite the equivalent of fifty ayat. He used to say, “Whoever prays at night and reads one hundred ayat will not be recorded as one of the negligent.” According to another hadith: “…and reads two hundred ayat will be recorded as one of the devout and sincere believers.” When Rasulullah (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) were sick, he recited the seven long surahs in his qiyam, i.e., Al-Baqarah, Al-‘Imran, Al-Nisa’, Al-Ma’idah, Al-An’ām, Al-A’rāf and Al-Tawbah. In the account of Hudhayfah Ibn Al-Yaman (radiallāhu`anhu) praying behind Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam), in one raka’ah he recited Al-Baqarah, Al-Nisa’ and Al-‘Imran and he recited them in a slow and measured tone. When ‘Umar Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) appointed Ubayy Ibn Ka’ab (radiallāhu`anhu) to lead the people in praying eleven raka’at in Ramadhān, Ubayy used to recite ayat by the hundreds, so that the people behind him would be leaning on sticks because the prayers were so long, and they did not finish until just before Fajar.[ Al-Bukhari]
26. It was narrated in a sahih account that ‘Umar Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) called the readers during Ramadhān, and told the fastest of them to recite thirty ayat, the moderate ones to recite twenty-five ayat, and the slowest ones to recite twenty ayat. However, if a person offers qiyam by himself; he can make it as long as he wishes; if others agree with the imam, and he may also make it as long as he wishes. The longer it is, the better, but a person should not go to extremes and spend the whole night in qiyam, except on rare occasions, following the example of Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “The best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad.” [Narrated by Muslim (867)] If a person is praying as an imām, he should make it only as long as is easy for the people behind him, because Abu Hurairah (radiallāhu`anhu) reported Rasulullah (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “If any of you leads the people in solāt, let him make it short, because among them are the young and the old, the weak, and those who have pressing needs. But if he is praying alone, let him make it as long as he likes.” [Muslim 942]
Witr after Tarawih.
27. `Ali bin Abu Talib (radiallāhu`anhu) reported: The Witr prayer is not obligatory as the prescribed Salāt (prayers), but the Messenger of Allah (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) observed it as his regular practice (Sunnah). He (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, "Allah is Witr (single, odd) and loves what is Witr. So perform Witr prayer. O followers of Qur'an, observe Witr (prayer).'' [At-Tirmidzi and Abu Dawud]. Witr is offered in one, and odd raka’at and it should be the last night prayer said before fajar. Ibn `Umar (radiallāhu`anhu) reported the Prophet (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, "Make Witr prayer the last of your Salāt at night.'' [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]. Aa’ishah (radiallāhu`anha) who reported: " Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) never observed prayers after ‘Isya' (night obligatory prayer) and before Fajar (Morning Prayer), more than eleven rak'ats. He saluted after every two raka'at, and he performed Witir with one raka'ah". [Muttafaq alaihi, except Tirmidzi] Ibn 'Umar (radiallāhu`anhu) reported that a person asked the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) about the night prayer. The Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: "In sets of two, in sets of two. Then when one of you fears the emerging of morning, he prays one (raka'ah) that will serve as a Solāt Witr (i.e. make the number odd) of what he has prayed." [Al-Bukhari no. 990 and Muslim no. 749]
28. In a different procedure, one may make four raka'at, and salute, and continue with another four and salute, and then he caps them with three raka'at of Witr. Aa’ishah (radiallāhu`anha) was asked how many raka’at the Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) used to pray in witir? She said, “He used to pray four and three, or six and three, or ten and three. He never used to pray less than seven, or more than thirteen.” [Abu Dawud, Ahmad and others] And Rasulullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said : “Witr is true, so whoever wishes can pray five, and whoever wishes can pray three, and whoever wishes can pray one.” [Abu Dawud, Ahmad and others] It means, solah al-witr is offered in odd raka’at with a minimum of one raka’ah
Do not make it resemble Solāt al-Maghrib
29. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: “Do not make it resemble Solāt al-Maghrib.” [Narrated by al-Hakim (1/304), al-Baihaqi (3/31) and al-Daraqutni (p. 172), and which was classified as sahih by al-Hakim in accordance to the conditions of Al-Bukhāri and Muslim.] Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) meant was that we should not sit to recite the first Tashahhud in a manner that resembles Maghrib. [Fath al-Bāri by Ibn Hajar, 4/301, Al-Hafiz said: Its isnād is sahih. See also ‘Awn al-Ma’bud, commentary on hadith no. 1423; Salat Al-Tarawih by Al-Albāni, p. 97.] There are two ways: one, by giving Salām after the first two raka’at, and add another raka’ah and Salam, which is the best way of doing it; or by praying three raka’at without sitting, but giving Salām at end of the third raka’at.
Recitation in Witr
30. It is Sunnah to recite Sabbih bi ismi Rabbika al-‘A’lā in the first raka’ah, Qul Yā ayyuha’l-Kafirūn in the second raka’at, and Qul Huwa Allāhu ahad in the third raka’at. Sometimes Qul a’udzu bi Rabbi’l-Falaq and Qul a’udzu bi Rabbi’l-Nās may be added as well. [Narrated by al-Nasāie, Abu Dawud and Ahmad] In another narration it was reported in a sahih hadith that Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) once recited one hundred ayat of Surah al-Nisa’ in one raka’ah of witr.
31. The Duā’ Al-Qunut is recited at the final Raka’at of Solāt Witr which Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) taught to his grandson Al-Hasan Ibn ‘Ali (radiallāhu`anhu), which is: “Allāhumma’hdinī fiman hadayta wa ‘āfinī fiman ‘āfayta wa tawallanī fiman tawallayta wa bārik lee fimā a’tayta wa qinī sharra mā qadayt, fa innaka taqdhī wa lā yuqdhā ‘alayk. Wa innahu lā yadzillu man wālayta wa lā ya’izzu man ‘ādayt. Tabārakta Rabbanā wa ta’ālayt. Lā majā minka illa ilayk (O Allāh, guide me along with those whom You have guided, pardon me along with those whom You have pardoned, be an ally to me along with those whom You are an ally to, and bless for me that which You have bestowed. Protect me from the evil You have decreed for verily You decree and none can decree over You. For surety, he whom You show allegiance to is never abased and he whom You take an enemy is never honored and mighty. O our Lord, Blessed and Exalted are You. There is no refuge from You except with You).” [Narrated by Abu Dawud, 1213; Al-Tirmidzi (464), al-Nasa’ie, 1725; classified as sahih by al-Albani in al-Irwa’, 429].
32 It is done in the second half of Ramadhān. During the time of Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiallāhu`anhu) it was add the curses against the kuffar, sending blessings on Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) or praying for the Muslims. It was mentioned at the end of the hadīth of ‘Abd Al-Rahman Ibn ‘Ubayd Al-Qari (radiallāhu`anhu) mentioned above, it says: “… ‘Allāhumma qātil al-kafarata alladhīna yasudduuna ‘an sabīlik wa yukadhdhibuna rusulak wa lā yu’minuna bi wa’dik. Wa khālif baina kalimatihim wa alqi fi qulubihim al-ru’b wa alqi ‘alaihim rijzaka wa ‘adzābak ilāh al-haqq (O Allāh, destroy the kuffar who are trying to prevent people from following Your path, who deny Your Messengers and who do not believe in Your promise (the Day of Judgement). Make them disunited, fill their hearts with terror and send Your wrath and punishment against them, O God of Truth).’” Then he would say: “Allāhumma iyyāka na’bud wa laka nusalli wa najud, wa ilayka nas’ā wa nahfud, wa narju rahmataka rabbanā wa nakhāfu ‘adhābak al-jadd. Inna ‘adhābaka liman ‘ādayta mulhaq (O Allāh, You do we worship, to You do we pray and prostrate, for Your sake we strive and toil. We place our hope in Your Mercy, O our Lord, and we fear Your mighty punishment, for Your punishment will certainly overtake the one whom You have taken as an enemy.” After which he would say “Allāhu akbar” and go down in sujud. [Narrated by al-Baihaqi]
At The End of Witr.
33. It was narrated from ‘Ali ibn Abi Tālib that the Prophet (sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) used to say at the end of Witr: “Allāhumma inni a’udzu bi ridāka min sakhatika wa bi mu’āfātika min ‘uqubatika wa a’udzu bika minka, la uhsi thana’an ‘alayka anta kama athnayta ‘ala nafsika” (O Allāh, I seek refuge in Your pleasure from Your wrath and in Your forgiveness from Your punishment. I cannot praise You enough; You are as You have praised Yourself.) [Narrated by al-Tirmidzi, 1727; classified as sahih by al-Albāni in al-Irwa’, 430; Sahih Abi Dawud, 1282] Then he should send blessings upon the Prophet (sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) as it was narrated that some of the Sahabah – including Ubayy ibn Ka’b and Mu’adz al-Ansari (radiallāhu`anhum) – did that at the end of Qunut al-Witr. [See Tashih al-Dua’ by Shaykh Bakar Abu Zaid, p. 460)] In a narration Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) would say after Salam: “Subhān il-Malik il-Quddus, subhān il-Malik il-Quddus, subhān il-Malik il-Quddus (Glory be to the Sovereign, the Most Holy), elongating the syllables, and raising his voice the third time. [Narrated by , Abu Dawud, al-Nasā’ie (1699) and classified as hasan by al-Albāni in Sahih Sunan al-Nasā’i; See Zaad Al-Ma’ād by Ibn Al-Qayyim, 1/337].
Two Raka’at after Witr
34. Abu Salamah bin Abd al-Rahman asked 'A'ishah (radiallāhu`anha) about the prayer of the Messenger of Allāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam), 'A'ishah (radiallāhu`anha) said: “He (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) observed thirteen raka'at (in the night prayer)-He observed eight raka'at and would then observe Witr and then observe two raka'at sitting, and when he wanted to bow he stood up and then bowed down, and then observed two raka'at in between the Adzan and lqamah of the Fajar prayer.” [Muslim 1608]
35. Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam) did this also during travelling as he said, “This travelling is exhausting and difficult, so after any one of you prays witr, let him perform two raka’at. If he wakes up, this is fine; otherwise these two rak’at will be counted for him.” It is Sunnah to recite Idha zulzilat al-ard and Qul yā ayyuha’l-kāfirun in these two raka’at.
There should not be two Witrs in one night
36. If one performed Solāt Witr after Solāt Tarawih at the beginning of the night and then Allāh enables you to get up at the end of the night, one may offer qiyam, in two by two , but it should be without Witr, as Rasūlullāh (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “There should not be two Witr in one night.” [Abu Dawud 1439]
[ Adapted from Islam Q&A: based on” Qiyam Ramadhān” by Al-Albāni and Solat Tarawih by Tajuddin Shu’aib via MSA]