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Salah (The Prayers)
The Arabic word for the five daily prayers is salah, which comes from the root word meaning 'connection'.

Salah (The Prayers)

Salah is the daily prayer enjoined upon all Muslims as one of the five Pillars of Islam. It is performed five times a day by all Muslims. Muslims pray or, perhaps more correctly, worship five times throughout the day:

  • Between first light and sunrise
  • After the sun has passed the middle of the sky
  • Between mid-afternoon and sunset
  • Between sunset and the last light of the day
  • Between darkness and midnight

The prayers consist of recitations from the Quran in Arabic and a sequence of movements: standing, bowing, prostrating, and sitting.

All recitations and movements express submission, humility, and homage to Allah. The various postures Muslims assume during their prayers capture the spirit of submission; the words remind them of their commitments to Allah. In the course of the day, Muslims dissociate themselves form their worldly engagements for a few moments and stand before Allah.

1.
How many times does a Muslim offer obligatory prayers in a day?
Three times
Four times
Five times
Six times
The Arabic word for the five daily prayers is salah, which comes from the root word meaning “connection”.

“Guard strictly five obligatory prayers especially the middle prayer. And stand before God with obedience.” (Quran 2:238)

Allah, the Exalted, says in the Quran: “…glorify the praises of your Lord, before the rising of the sun and before (its) setting. And during a part of the night (also) glorify His praises …” (Quran 50:39-40) “Verily, the prayer is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours”. (Quran 4:103)

The Messenger of Allah, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Allah has obligated five prayers. Whoever excellently performs their ablutions, prays them in their proper times, completes their bows, prostrations and khushu, has a promise from God that He will forgive him. And whoever does not do that has no promise from God. He may either forgive him or punish him”
2.
How many rakath (units of prayers) does a Muslim pray during the obligatory maghrib salah (prayers)?
Two rakath
Three rakath
Four rakath
None of the above
The number of rakaths (units) in obligatory prayers (salah) is as follows; Fajr: 2 Rakaths (units), Zuhr: 4 Rakaths (units), Asar: 4 Rakaths (units), Maghrib: 3 Rakaths (units), Isha : 4 Rakaths (units)
3.
How do Muslims begin their prayers?
By Saying Bismillah (In the Name of Allah)
By Saying Subhanallah (Glory be to Allah)
By Saying Alhamdulillah (All praise is due to Allah)
By Saying Allahu Akbar (By pronouncing the greatness of Almighty Allah)
Prophet Muhammad said that, “When any one of you stands to pray, he is communicating with his Lord, so let him pay attention to how he speaks to Him.”

The postures of prayer are symbolic of humankind’s relationship with Allah. We stand and assert our existence, we bow to show humility and we prostrate in awe of our Creator’s power and strength. From this state of complete abasement we acknowledge our total reliance on and need of Allah. Allah however is not in need of our prayers; it is us, the frail human being that is in constant need of His protection and love. Thus the postures of prayer are not a random set of movements.

Muslims begin the salah (prayers) words Allahu Akbar. Allah is the greatest. It is an affirmation that there is none greater and thus none more worthy of worship than Allah himself. We raise our hands and say Allahu Akbar and this signifies the beginning of our audience with Almighty Allah. We put the world behind us and the prayer has begun, our connection is secure. Throughout the prayer we repeat the phrase, Allahu Akbar, Allah is the greatest, over and over. Each time we move from standing to bowing or standing to prostrating or prostrating to sitting, we say these words, this phrase precisely, because it changes our psychology. It keeps us focused on the awe and reverence of the one before whom we’re praying. It constantly reminds us of the greatness of the Creator and the insignificance of this world
4.
What is the call for prayer called?
Adhan
Takbeer
Kalimah
Salah
The 'call to prayer' or ‘Adhan’ is called out to let people know that it is time for the obligatory prayers. The meaning of the Adhan is as follows:

Allahu Akbar (Allah is the greatest),
Allahu Akbar (Allah is the greatest),
Allahu Akbar (Allah is the greatest),
Allahu Akbar (Allah is the greatest),

Ash-hadu an-laa ilaaha ill-Allah (I bear witness that none deserves worship except Allah).
Ash-hadu an-laa ilaaha ill-Allah (I bear witness that none deserves worship except Allah).

Ash-hadu anna Muhammad-ar-Rasool-ullah (I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah).
Ash-hadu anna Muhammad-ar-Rasool-ullah (I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah).

Hayya ‘alas-Salah (Come to prayer!)
Hayya ‘alas-Salah (Come to prayer!)

Hayya ‘alal-Falah (Come towards success!)
Hayya ‘alal-Falah (Come towards success!)

Allahu Akbar (Allah is the greatest),
Allahu Akbar (Allah is the greatest),

La ilaaha ill-Allah (None deserves worship except Allah)
5.
Which direction do Muslims face while offering salah (prayers)?
Kabah (Makkah)
Baitul Muqaddas (Al-Aqsa Mosque Palestine)
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque (Dubai)
The Al-Fateh Mosque (Bahrain)
Allah, the Exalted, says in the Quran, ““Verily! We have seen the turning of your (Muhammad) face towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qibla (prayer direction) that shall please you, so turn your face in the direction of Al-Masjid- al-Haram (at Makkah). And wheresoever you people are, turn your faces (in prayer) in that direction...” (Quran 2:143-144)
6.
Are women allowed to go to mosques to offer prayers?
No, women are not allowed in the mosque
Women can only listen to prayers
Yes, women can offer prayers in mosques, provided there are separate facilities and provision
Women can pray in the mosque, standing right beside the men
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: When your women seek your permission for going to the mosque, you grant them (permission). (Muslim: Book 4 : Hadith 887)

The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: When women ask permission for going to the mosque, do not prevent them. (Muslim: Book 4: Hadith 884)

The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: "If your women ask permission to go to the mosque at night, allow them." (Bukhari : Book 1 : Volume 12 : Hadith 824)
7.
What should Muslims perform before offering salah (prayers)?
Wearing of skull-cap
Wearing of perfume
Wudu (ablution)
Clipping of nails
Before a person stands before Allah in the special connection that is salah (prayer), he must ensure that his heart is free from sin, arrogance, and hypocrisy. Once this is accomplished, or at least greatly desired, he is able to cleanse himself from physical impurities. This is usually achieved by using water.

Allah, the Exalted mentions in the Quran: “O you who believe! When you intend to offer the prayer, wash your faces and your hands (forearms) up to the elbows, wipe your heads, and (wash) your feet up to the ankles. If you are in a state of Janaba (i.e. had a sexual discharge) purify yourself.” (Quran 5:6)

Prior to obligatory or voluntary prayer a person must assure that he is in a state of cleanliness, he does this by performing either Wudu (often translated as ablution) or Ghusl (a full bath). Wudu rids the body of minor impurities, and Ghusl cleanses the body of major impurities
8.
Which prayer does Allah mention in the Holy Quran to especially guard?
Fajr Salah (pre-dawn prayers)
Asar Salah (middle prayers)
Zuhr Salah (mid-afternoon prayers)
Maghrib prayers (sunset prayers)
Allah, the Exalted mentions in the Quran “Guard strictly five obligatory prayers especially the middle prayer. And stand before God with obedience.” (Quran 2:238)
9.
Which Surah (chapter) of the Quran is recited in every rakath of salah (prayers)?
Al-Ikhlas (chapter 112)
An-Nas (chapter 114)
Al-Fatihah (chapter 1)
Al-Ala (chapter 87)
Reciting al-Fatihah is one of the essential parts of the prayer, and is to be recited in each rak’ah both by the imam and by those who are being led by him, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “There is no prayer for the one who does not recite the opening of the book [i.e., al-Fatihah].” (narrated by al-Bukhari, 714)
10.
Who among Muslims have the privilege to stand in the first row for salah (prayers), behind the Imam?
Powerful men have the right to stand in the front row during salah (prayers)
Men from Saudi Arabia have the right to stand in the front row during salah (prayers)
White men have the right to stand in the front row during salah (prayers)
There is no privilege to anyone to stand in the first row. Even a king stands in the row besides an ordinary man during salah (prayers)
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) mentions during his last sermon “O People, listen to me in earnest, worship God, perform your five daily prayers, fast during the month of Ramadan, and offer Zakat. Perform Hajj if you have the means. An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor does a non-Arab have any superiority over an Arab; white has no superiority over black, nor does black have any superiority over white; [none have superiority over another] except by piety and good action

 

Author:  Mohammed Azmath

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