Saturday, March 23, 2013

Once upon a Friday (Jumu'ah)

It was a typical sunny Friday morning in the tropical city of Singapore. Ramlee was already up by 9 a.m. getting ready for Friday prayers. He’s a little more eager to go for prayers on that particular day as it would be the first time he would be going with his close elder cousin from Malaysia who came over a few days before and stayed at his house as they were both having their term break from tertiary studies.

 “Hey, wake up Afdlin, it’s already 9!” nudged Ramlee.

 “Yeah yeah, I’m already up. Just let me finish this last part of this nice dream I’m having..” with his eyes barely opened.

 “Oh, c’mon!” said Ramlee, and pushed Afdlin off his mattress.

 “Woii!” cried out Afdlin finally awake.

 After Afdlin got ready, they had a sumptuous brunch prepared by Ramlee’s mom and soon after they both set off to the nearby mosque. It was about half an hour before the call for prayer, when they reached the main hall of the mosque and it was already half-filled.

 Ramlee went about his usual manner as he reached the main hall. He saw two empty spots in the middle of an already filled area and suggested to Afdlin to go there. However, Afdlin declined saying,

 “Nah, we’ll just take one of the empty spaces behind this filled row of congregation.”

 Ramlee was a little hesitant but decided to agree with Afdlin’s suggestion after seeing two other people who had hurriedly stepped over some people in order to get to the two available spots. He then immediately sat down. He noticed his cousin, Afdlin starting to pray two units of prayer. He remained seated wondering what type of prayer his cousin was performing. He had noticed before, people performing at least two units of prayers similarly but never had the chance to ask about it.

 Up till that day, Ramlee had mostly performed Friday prayers without much knowledge and had merely followed as how he had observed the common actions of the congregation. He had only started going for Friday prayers when he was in Sec. 3 as most of his close Muslim friends would, leaving school a little earlier than usual with the permission of the school. He does have basic knowledge on how to perform solat though but that’s about it.

 The call for prayer finally came, and the Friday sermon started. In the middle of the sermon, Ramlee’s phone vibrated. There was a text message from his mom and it read,

 “Ibu: Lee, Ayah said he’s taking a half day off today and we’ll all go shopping at Orchard Rd. later after Friday prayers. So make sure the both of you come back ASAP.”

 Excited, Ramlee nudged Afdlin showing him the message. Afdlin only took a glance and went back to focus on the khutbah. Ramlee thought that Afdlin’s standoffish actions were a little weird.

The sermon finally reached its end where the Imam would start reading the general supplications. As the congragation started to raise their hands for the supplications, to Ramlee’s surprise, Afdlin didn’t raise his hands but only said “Aameen” instead.

 Ramlee’s curiousity grew and he decided to ask Afdlin about all that he had observed after the Friday prayers.

 As they headed back home, Ramlee began to ask,

 “Eh, can I ask you something?”

 “Yeah shoot!” Afdlin replied.

 “I observed some things as we went about our Friday prayers. Firstly, why didn’t you want to get to the empty spots as I suggested? Secondly, what type of prayers did you perform before sitting down? Thirdly, why didn’t you seem to bother when I showed you the SMS during the sermon? And the most weird of all, why didn’t you raise your hands while everyone else were raising theirs while supplicating?!”

 “Ma sha Allah.. good observation skills my dear cousin! Haha..” said Afdlin.

 “Haha..Nah, I’ve actually noticed these things from time to time but haven’t had the chance to ask anyone about it..”

 “I see, ok, as you may have already known, whatever we do in our Ibaadah, we must do it according to how our dear Prophet sallallaahu’alayhi wassalam had taught us. He is the practical reference for all Muslims. The Qur’an is the theory and the Prophet (peace & blessings of Allah be upon him) is our guide in all the practical matters in religion.

 About your first question, the reason is that the Prophet sallallaahu’alayhi wasallam had prohibited people from stepping over others who have sat in the mosque.[1] True, there were two empty spots but seeing that there was no way to get there other than to step over some people or separate between two, I suggested for us to seat at the empty spaces readily available instead.

 Secondly, the Messenger sallaallaahu’alayhi wassalam had recommended us to pray at least two units of prayer before sitting down in the mosque.[2]

 Thirdly, the Prophet sallallaahu’alayhi wassallam had prohibited us to engage in idle speech during the khutbah and to pay full attention to the contents of the sermon.[3]

 And lastly, I understand that most people raise their hands while supplicating, in fact, almost everyone, but I’m merely following one of the sunnahs of our dear Prophet sallallaahu’alayhi wassalam.[4] I’ll show you the references to the things I’ve said later ok!?"

 "Hmm, okay, I see I see.. but why do so many people or probably most do it differently than some of the things you have said?" Ramlee continued to ask.

 "I'm not really sure, they probably have their own reasons or their references. Why don't you ask them instead? Now let’s get back home.. Pak Long is on his way to fetch us!” was Afdlins' reply.

 "Yeah, can't wait to show you around Orchard Rd. Thanks for explaining!” Ramlee smiled as they both rushed back to Ramlee’s home.


 [1] – Abu Dawood (1118) and Ibn Maajah (1115) narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Busr (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: A man came and started stepping over the people one Friday when the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was delivering the khutbah, and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to him: “Sit down, for you have annoyed (people).” [Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.]

 Al-Bukhaari (883) and Muslim (657) narrated that Salmaan al-Faarisi said: The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Whoever does ghusl on Friday, purifies himself as much as he can, uses (hair) oil or perfumes himself with the perfume of his house, then goes out (for the Jumu‘ah prayer) and does not separate between two (persons sitting together in the mosque), then prays as much as is decreed for him, then remains silent whilst the imam is speaking, his sins between the present and the last Friday will be forgiven for him.”

 [2] - Jaabir ibn ‘Abdullaah said: "Sulayk Al-Ghatafaani came on Friday when the Messenger of Allaah was delivering the Khutbah. When he (Sulayk) sat down, the Prophet said to him: "O Sulayk, stand up and observe two Rak’ahs and make them short." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

 Abu Qataadah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “When one of you enters the mosque, let him not sit down until he has prayed two rak‘ahs.” [Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1167; Muslim, 714]

 An-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

The scholars are unanimously agreed that it is mustahabb to greet the mosque, and it is makrooh to sit down without greeting it with no excuse, because of the hadeeth of Abu Qataadah which clearly states that that is not allowed. [End quote from al-Majmoo‘, 3/544]

 [3] - It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “If you say to your companion when the imam is preaching on Friday, ‘Be quiet and listen,’ you have engaged in idle talk.” [Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 892; Muslim, 851]

 This prohibition also applies to responding to a question about Islam, let alone any other kind of speech that has to do with worldly matters.

 It was narrated that Abu’l-Darda’ said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sat on the minbar and addressed the people, and he recited a verse. Ubayy ibn Ka’b was next to me, so I said to him: “O Ubayy, when was this verse revealed?” But he refused to speak to me, so I asked him again and he refused to speak to me, until the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) came down (from the minbar). Then Ubayy said to me: “You have gained nothing from your Jumu’ah except idle talk.” When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) had finished (the prayer), I went to him and told him (what had happened). He said: “Ubayy was right. When you hear your imam speaking, then keep quiet and listen attentively until he has finished.” [Narrated by Ahmad, 20780; Ibn Maajah, 1111; classed as saheeh by al-Busayri and al-Albaani in Tamaam al-Mannah, p. 338.]

 This indicates that it is obligatory to remain silent and listen attentively, and that it is forbidden to speak while the imam is delivering the khutbah on Friday.

 Ibn ‘Abd al-Baarr said:

 There is no dispute among the fuqaha’ of all regions that it is obligatory to remain silent and listen attentively to the khutbah, for those who hear it. [Al-Istidhkaar, 5/43.]

 [4] - Muslim (874) and Abu Dawood (1104) narrated that ‘Umaarah ibn Ru’aybah saw Bishr ibn Marwaan on the minbar raising his hands (Abu Dawood added: when he was making du’aa’ on Friday), and he said: “May Allaah make these two hands ugly. I saw the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) doing no more than this with his hand,” and he gestured with his forefinger.

 Al-Nawawi said:

 This indicates that the Sunnah is not to raise the hands during the khutbah, This is the view of Maalik and our companions and others.

 In Tuhfat al-Ahwadhi it says:

 This hadeeth indicates that it is makrooh to raise the hands on the minbar when making du’aa’. As it is not prescribed for the khateeb to raise his hands, the members of the congregation are like him because they follow his lead.

 Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked:

 What is the ruling on raising one's hands when the imam is delivering the khutbah on Friday? He replied:

 Raising the hands when the imam is delivering the khutbah on Friday is not prescribed in sharee’ah. The Sahaabah denounced Bishr ibn Marwaan when he raised his hands during the Friday khutbah. But an exception is made in the case of prayers for rain (istisqaa’), because it is proven that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) raised his hands when praying to Allaah for rain during the Friday khutbah, and the people raised their hands with him. But apart from that one should not raise one's hands when making du’aa’ during the Friday khutbah. [Fataawa Arkaan al-Islam, p. 392.]

 And Allaah Almighty knows best.


madame blossom said...

Masyaa Allah. I imagine, it'll be nice if this can be turned into a short video.

redtide said...

Salam madame blossom.. Didn't expect any readers. This blog has been dead for quite a while, haha.

Yeah, if possible, why not? The points that I highlighted are practices that are commonly seen every Friday.

Some do it out of ignorance, some probably forgot or maybe overlooked its importance.

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