18 October 2017 CE | 27 Muharram 1439 AH

Hadith Explanation

6 Sunnah of Zuhr

Abdullah ibn Shaqiq said: “I asked Aisha about the prayer of the Prophet and she said, ‘He would pray four rakat before zuhr and two after it.’’ [Sahih Muslim]

In a hadith recorded by Imam Bukhari, Aisha (radi Allahu anha) said: “The Prophet never left praying four rakat before Zuhr and two rakat before Fajr under any circumstances.”

There is no contradiction between the hadith of Ibn Umar (radi Allahu anhu) also recorded by Imam Bukhari which states that the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) prayed two rakat before Zuhr, and these ahadith which state that the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) prayed four rakat before Zuhr. Ibn Hajr writes in Fath al-Bari: “It is better to take them as describing different circumstances, sometimes he prayed two rakat and sometimes he prayed four rakat. Some say that it may be construed that if he prayed them in the mosque, he prayed only two rakat, and when he prayed in his house, he prayed four rakat. On the other hand, it could imply that he prayed two rakat in his house and then went to the mosque and prayed two rakat there also. Ibn Umar only saw what he prayed in the mosque and not what he prayed in his house, while Aisha was aware of both of them.” [Fiqh us-Sunnah by As-Sayyid Sabiq]

These rakat would be sunnah to pray. This means that they would be highly rewarded, nevertheless not obligatory. The reward for fardh (obligatory) deeds is greater than the reward for sunnah deeds and one incurs Allah’s displeasure and sin for leaving the fardh. 

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