A Brief of Islamic Law

Things On Which Sajdah Is Allowed

  1. Sajdah should be performed on earth, and on those things not edible nor worn, which grow from earth (e.g. wood and leaves of trees). It is not permissible to perform Sajdah on things which are used as food or dress (e.g. wheat, barley and cotton etc.), or on things whinch are not considered to be partsof the earth (e.g.golol, silver, etc.). And in the situation of helplessness, pitch and tar will have preference over other nonallowable things.

  2. Sajdah should not be performed on the vine leaves, when they are delicate and hence edible. Otherwise, there is no objection.

  3. It is in order to perform Sajdah on things which grow from the earth and serve as fodder for animals (e.g. grass, hay etc.).

  4. It is allowed to perform Sajdah on limestone and gypsum. In fact, there is no objection also in performing Sajdah on baked gypsum, lime, pick and baked earthenware etc.

  5. It is in order to perform Sajdah on paper, if it is manufactured from allowed sources like wood or grass, and also if it is made from cotton or flax. But it is made from silk etc, Sajdah on it will not be permissible. In case of tissue (disposable handkercheif), Sajdah on it is order only when one is sure that it is made from allowed sources.

  6. Turbat-ul-Husayn is the best thing for performing Sajdah. After it, there are earth, stone and grass, in order of priority.

  7. If the Turbah sticks to the forehead in the first Sajdah, it should be removed from the forhead for the second Sajdah.

  8. If a thing on which a person performs Sajdah gets lost while he is offering prayer, and he does not possess any other thing on which Sajdah is allowed, he can perform Sajdah on any other thing.

The Mustahab and Makruh Things in Sajdah

  1. It is Mustahab to say Takbir before going to Sajdah. A person who prays standing will do so after having stood up from Ruku, and a person who prays sitting will do so after having sat properly. It is also recommended to place the nose on a Turbah, or on any other thing on which Sajdah is allowed; and to say Takbir, after every Sajdah, when the person has sat down and his body is composed; and when his body is steady after the first Sajdah, to say: `Astaghfiru-llaha rabbi wa atubu ilayh`; and to say `Allahu Akbar` for going into second Sajdah, when his body is steady; and to recite Salawat while in prostrations.

Obligatory Prostrations in the Holy Qur'an

  1. Upon reciting or hearing any of the following verses of the holy Qur'an, the performance of Sajdah becomes obligatory:

* Surat-us-Sajdah, 32:15 * Surah Fussilat, 41:38 * Surat-un-Najm, 53:62 * Surat-ul-Alaq, 96:19

Whenever a person recites the verse or hears it when recited by someone else, he should perform Sajdah immediately when the verse ends, and if he forgets to perform it, he should do it as and when he remember. If one hears the verse without any expectation, in an involuntary situation, the Sajdah is not obligatory, though it is better to perform it.

  1. If a person hears the Sajdah verse, and recites it himself also, he should perform two Sajdahs.

  2. If a person hears the verse of obligatory Sajdah from a person who is asleep, or one who is insane, or from a child who knows nothing of the Qur'an, it will be obligatory upon him to perform Sajdah. But if he hears from a gramophone or a tape recorder, Sajdah will not be obligatory.

Similarly, the Sajdah will not be obligatory if he listens to a taped recitation from radio (not to a live programme). But if there is a live programme and a person recites a verse of Sajdah from the station, it will be obligatory to perform Sajdah.

  1. The obligotory precaution is that in the obligatory sajdah caused by the Quranic verse, aperson should place his forehad ona Turbah, or any other on which sajdah is allowed, and as a recommended precaution one should keeo other parts of one’s body on the ground as require in asajdah of prayer.

  2. When a person peforms the obligatory Sajdah upon hearing the relevant verse, it will be sufficient even if he does not recite any Dhikr. However, it is Mustahab to recite Dhikr, preferably the following: La ilaha illa-llahu haqqan haqqa ; la ilaha illa-llahu imanan wa tasdiqa ; la ilaha illa-llahu ubudiyyatan wa riqqa ; sajadtu laka ya rabbi ta'abbudan wa riqqa, la mustankifan wa la mustakbira, bal ana abdun dhalilun daifun kha'ifun mustajir.


  1. In the second unit (Rak'ah) of all obligatory prayers, and in the third unit of Maghrib prayer and in the fourth unit of Tuhr, A?r and Isha prayers, one should sit after the second prostration with a tranquil body, and recite Tashahhud thus: Ashhadu an la ilaha illa-llahu wahdahu la sharika lah, wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan abduhu wa rasuluh; allahumma salli ala Muhammadin wa ali Muhammad.

  2. The words of Tashahud should be recited in correct Arabic, and in usual succession.

  3. If a person forgets Tashahhud, and rises and remembers before Ruku, he should sit down to recite it, and then stand up again. He will then continue with his prayer. But if he remembers this in Ruku or thereafter, he should complete the prayer and perform two Sajdah-us-Sahv for the forgotten Tashahhid.

  4. It is Mustahab to say before Tashahhud: Al-hamdu li-llah ; Bismi-llahi wa bi-llah, wal-hamdu li-llah, wa Khayr-ul-asma'i li-llah. It is also Mustahab to place one's hands on noe's thights, with joined fingers, and to look at one's laps, and to say this after Tashahhud and Salawat: Wa taqabbal shafa atahu wa-rfa darajatah.

Salam in the Prayers

  1. While a person is sitting, after reciting Tashahhud in the last unit (Rak'ah), and his body is tranquil, it is Mustahab to say: As-salamu alayka ayyuhan-nabiyyu wa rahmatu-llahi wa barakatuh. Then it is obligatory to say: As-salamu alaykum ; and as a recommended precaution add to it, Wa rahmatu-llahi wa barakatuh. Alternatively, he can say:

As-salamu alayna wa ala ibadi-llahis-salihin. But if he recites this Salam, then as per obligatory precaution, he must follow it up with saying: As-salamu alaykum.

Tartib (Sequence)

  1. If a person forgets a Rukn (elemental part) of the prayer, an performs the next Rukn, like before performing Ruku if he performs the two Sajdahs, his prayer would become void, as as measure of precaution.

  2. If a person forgets a Rukn, and performs an act after it which is not a Rukn, like if he

recites Tashahhud without performing the two Sajdahs, he should perform the Rukn and should recite again the part which he performed erroneously earlier than the Rukn.

  1. If a person forgets a thing which is not a Rukn, and performs a Rukn which comes after it, like if he forgets al-Hamd and begins performing Ruku, his prayer is in order.

  2. If a person forgets an act which is not a Rukn, and performs the next act which too, is not a Rukn, like if he forgets al-Hamd and recites the other Surah, he should perform what he has forgotten, and then recite again the thing which he mistakenly recited earlier.

Muwalat (Maintenance of Succession)

  1. A person should maintain continuity during prayer, that is he should perform various acts of prayer, like Ruku, two Sajdahs and Tashahhud, in continuous succession, and he should recite the Dhikr etc. also in usual succession. If he allows an undue interval between different acts, till it becomes difficult to visualise that he is praying, his prayer will be void.


  1. It is Mustahab that Qunut be recited in all obligatory and Mustahab prayers before the Ruku of the second Rak'ah, and it is also Mustahab that Qunut be recited in the Witr prayer (inSalat-ul-layl) before Ruku, although that prayer is of one Rak'ah only.

In Friday prayer there is one Qunut in every Rak;ah. InSalat,there are five Qunut, and in Id Prayers there are several Qunut in two Rak'ahs which will be explained later. In the prayer of Shaf, which is a part ofSalat-ul-layl, Qunut is to be performed with the intention of Raja.

  1. It is also Mustahab that while reciting Qunut, a person keeps his hands in front of his face, turning the palms facing the sky, and keeping both the hands and the fingers, except the thumbs, close together. It is Mustahab to look at the palms in Qunut. But as an obligatory precaution Qunut will not be in order without raising the hands, except in case of helplessness.000

Taqibat (Supplications after Prayers)

  1. It is Mustahab that after offering the prayer, one should engage oneself in reciting suppliacations, and reading from the holy Qur'an. It is better that before he leaves his place, and before his Wudu, or Ghusl or Tayammum becomes void, he should recite supplications facing Qiblah. The Tasbih of Fatimat-uz-Zahra (peace be on her) is one of those acts which have been emphasised. This Tasbih should be recited in the following order:

* Allahu Akbar -34 times * Al-hamdu li-llah-33 times * Subhana-llah -33 times Subhana-llah can be recited earlier than Al-hamdu li-llah, but it is better to maintain the said order.

  1. It is Mustahab that after the prayer a person performs a Sajdah of thanksgiving, and it will be sufficient if one placed his forehead on the ground with that intention. However, it is better to say: Shukran li-llah or Shukran or Afwan, 100 times, or three times, or even once. It is also Mustahab that whenever a person is blessed with His bounties, or when the adversities are averted, he should go to Sajdah for Shukr, that is, thanksgiving.

Salawat on the Holy Prophet

  1. It is Mustahab that whenever a person hears or utters the sacred name of the holy Prophet of Islam, like Muhammad or Ahmad, or his title, like Musatfa or his patronymic appellation like Ad-ul-Qasim, he should say, Allahumma salli ala Muhammaden wa ali Muhammad; even if that happens during theSalat.

Things which Invalidate Prayers

  1. Twelve things make prayers void, and they are called Mubtilat-us-Salatt.

First: If any of the prerequisites of prayer ceases to exist while one is inSalat, like, if he comes to know that the dress with which he has covered himself is Najis.

Second: If a person, intentionally or by mistake, or uncontrollably, commits an act which makes his Wudu or Ghusl void, like, when urine comes out, even if, as a precaution, it is discharged forgetfully, or involuntarily, after the last Sajdah of the prayer. But if a person is incontinent, unable to control urine or excretion, his prayer will not be void if he acts according to the rules explained early in the Chapter of Wudu. Similarly, if a woman sees blood of Istihadah during prayer, herSalat is not invalidated if she has acted according to the rules of Istihadah.

Third: If a person folds his hands as a mark of humility and reverence, his prayer will be void, but this is based on precautionary rule. However, there is no doubt about it being Halal (allowed), if it is done believing that it is ordained by Shariah.

  1. There is no harm if a person places one hand on another forgetfully, or due to help lessness or Taqiyyah, or for some other purposes, like, scratching.

Fourth: The fourth thing which invalidates prayer is to say Amin after al-Hamd. This rule, when applied to one praying invalidually, is based on precaution, but if someone utters it beliveing that it has been ordained by Shariah, it is Halal (allowed). There is no harm if someone utters it erroneously or under Taqiyyah.

Fifth: The fifth thing which invalidates prayer is to turn away from Qiblah without any excuse. But if there is an excuse, hisSalat will be valid, providing he has not deviated entirely to his right or left side. But it is necessary to return to the dire ction of Qiblah assoon as the excuse dis appears. And if he turned away towards right or left side or his back turned towards Qiblah, due to forgetting, or ignorance or mistaking in direction of Qiblah, he should pray again towards Qiblah as soon as he remembers, if there is time left even for one Rak'ah. But if there is no time for even one Rak'ah at his disposal, then he should continue with the sameSalat towards Qiblah, and he will not have to give any Qada for that. Similar rule applies to the one who has deviated because of the external force.

Sixth: The sixth thing which invalidates prayer is to talk internionally, even by uttering a single word consisting of one single letter which has a meaning or denotes something. For example, one letter “Q”i in Arabic means: protect. Or if someone asked a person who is praying, as to which is the second letter of Arabic alphabet, and he said simply Ba. But if the utterance is meaningless, then, if it constitutes two or more Arabic letters, his prayer will be void, based on precaution.

  1. If a person forgetfully utters a word consisting of one or more letters, his prayer does not become void, even if that word may carry some meaning, but as a precaution, it is necessary that after the prayer, he should perform Sajdat-us-Sahv, as will be explained later.

  2. If a person utters a word with the object of Dhikr, like, if he says Allahu Akbar, and raises his voice to indicate something, there is no harm in it.

  3. There is no harm in reciting the Qur'an or supplications in prayers.

  4. If a person intentionally or as a matter of precaution repeats parts of al-Hamd and other Surah, and the Dhikr of prayer, there is no harm in it.

  5. A person offering prayer should not greet anyone with Salam, and if another person says Salam to him, he should use the same words in reply without adding anything to it. For example, if someone says Salamun alaykum, he should also say “Salamun ‘alakum in reply, without adding “wa rahmatu-llahi wa barakatuh.

  6. It is necessary that the reply to Salam is given at once, irrespective of whether one is praying or not. And if, whether intentionally or due to forgetfulness, he delays reply to the Salam, so much that if he gives a reply after the delay, it may not be reckoned to be a reply to that Salam, then he should not reply if he is inSalat. And if he is not inSalat it is not obligatory for him to reply.

  7. If a woman or man or a discerning child, that is, one who can distinguish between good and evil, says Salam to a person inSalat, the person should respond. However, in reply to the Salam by a woman who says Salamun alayka, the person offering prayer can say Salamun alayki, giving Ka?rah to Kafat the end.

  8. If a person inSalat does not respond to Salam his prayer is in order, though he will have committed a sin.

  9. If a person says Salam to a group of poeple, it is obligatory for all of them to give a reply. However, if one of them relies, it is sufficient.

  10. If two person simultaneusly say Salam to each other, each one of them should, on the basis of obligatory precaution, reply the Salam of the other.