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In the Name of God بسم الله

Sunni or Shia pray like prophet?

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Salam 

a Sunni asked me why don't u Shias pray like us like the prophet Muhammad I was like uhhh... mmmm what shall i say she said what's about this Shia Shia way why not pray like the prophet peace be upon him

and she said we Sunnis follow the prophet more than Shias that follow the imams she said the Quran says follow the prophet more times than it says the imams and that Sunnis focus on Allah more can someone plz give me an answer so that I can give her my answer and I also want to know why

thank u

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Shi’a and Sunni Muslims are often easily distinguishable merely from the way that they each conduct their prayers. While there are small differences in the prayer rituals of each school, these differences have often been overstated due to misconceptions about the origin and meaning of these traditions.

This entry will seek clarify and explain some of these differences.

 

The Number of Prayer Units

Shi’a are regularly criticised for praying on three occasions per day as opposed to the usual five occasions observed by other Muslims. 

According to all Muslims, regardless of the school, there are certain circumstances which have allowed for prayers to be combined during the day. For most Sunnis such circumstances include travelling and even occasions such as the weather.

According to the Sunni jurist Imam Malik, if it rains, it is permissible to combine the Dhuhr and Asr prayers, and the Maghrib prayers with Isha prayers.

The Jurists of the Shi’a school have followed the explanation of the Prophet (s.a.w) and the Twelve Imams (s.a.w), who all state that combining the prayers is not contingent on a specific set of circumstances.

Therefore, whilst the number of times a day during which the Shi’a might pray is recognised as being either five or three distinct timings, the number of prayers, like all other Muslims, is actually five.

It must be stated, however, that to combine these prayers and recite them immediately after each other (in the case of Dhuhr and Asr and then Maghrib and Isha) is by no means an obligatory act for the Shi’a.  Rather it is viewed as one’s own personal choice, whether an individual prefers to combine the prayers or perform them separately. 

The Turbah of the Shi’a

Another misconception is that Shi’a worship a stone idol. This criticism is based on a lack of understanding of Shi’a Jurisprudence which stipulates that prostration during prayers must not be performed on anything other than natural elements from the earth which can neither be consumed nor worn, as such symbolism would reflect the worship of materialism.

This interpretation has prompted many Shi’a to adopt the convenience of praying to clay tablets, or Turbah (a clay tablet produced normally but not exclusively from the soil of the land of Karbala).

In the absence of the Turbah, Shi’a prostrate upon leaves or other natural objects.

The philosophy of prostrating on objects which are made from earth/clay is symbolic of mankind’s origin being from clay, the substance we were created from, and the substance we will return to once our bodies are buries after death.

It must be highlighted that the sole reason why most Turbahs are produced from the soil of Karbala, is the belief that this soil has immense spiritual value reminding one of the sacrifice of the Imam (a.s) at Karbala in the way of God, a dedication which the believer himself would hope to emulate in his prayers.

 

Qunut

Qunut literally means "being obedient" or "the act of standing" in Arabic. The word is usually used in reference to special supplications made in certain prayers while in the standing posture.  During the second unit of every prayer, it is recommended for Shi’a to raise their hands in supplication after the recitation of the two chapters of the Qur’an. Whilst it may seem like an unfamiliar practice to some Muslims, several of the Sunni schools of Jurisprudence also share this practice which they restrict to only the Fajr prayer.

Sadl al-Yadayn

Sadl al-Yadayn is a practice which most obviously distinguishes the Shi’a prayers from those of most other Muslims. It refers to a movement performed during the prayer in the Qiyyam (standing up) position in which Shi’a place their hands to the sides of their body, as opposed to raising them and folding them at their chest in the Qabd al-Yadayn position as other Muslims do.  

It is worth highlighting that Shi’a are not the only Muslims who pray in the form of Sadl al-Yadayn, but rather a large majority of the Maliki school of Sunni jurisprudence (primarily concentrated in North Africa) have also traditionally prayed in such a way. Crossing the arms in prayer was initiated by the second Caliph who observed Persian prisoners crossing their arms as a sign of respect when brought before him and decided to implement it in Salat. 

For the adherents of the Ja’fari school of thought, they justify such actions by stating that all of the above practises can be traced back to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w) and the Imams (a.s).

These rituals are also endorsed by Sunni jurist Malik b. Anas, who points out that the people of the Holy City of Madinah, where the Prophet (s.a.w) established the first Islamic Capital, used to pray in this way. Hence, according to his logic, this was the most original form of prayer as the inhabitants were taught by their parents who were contemporaries of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w).

 

The Three Takabir

Whilst not technically a part of the prayer, which ends upon the recitation of the Taslim at the end of the Tashahud, Shi’a are recommended to raise ones hands up from their knees three times and recite the Takbir or “Allahu Akbar” three times.

Sadly, this has caused some confusion for some non-Shi’a who have suspected that the Shi’a are reciting something else. However anyone who observes the Shi’a daily prayers will notice that the recited formula during this practice is nothing more than to testify to the greatness of God, three times.

This practice is recommended in numerous narrations of the Imams and has become a recommended ritual which immediately follows the daily prayers.

Conclusion

There are numerous observable differences between the prayers of the Shi’a and the prayers of other schools of Jurisprudence. However, it is crucial to note that despite the above, the difference which distinguish the Shi’a prayer from other schools of jurisprudence are in no way larger than the difference which occur between the four Sunni schools of Jurisprudence themselves.

It is also crucial to highlight the fact that the differences in these prayers are due to scholarly differences in attempting to return to the pristine Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w). Shi’a prayers have been taught to the Shi’a via the Twelve Imams (a.s), whom the Shi’a believe would naturally be the best people to make recourse to in uncovering the authentic Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w).

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8 hours ago, Tryingtolearn said:

a Sunni asked me why don't u Shias pray like us like the prophet Muhammad

Ask her for a Hadith stating which way the Prophet prayed. Ask her for her source (if she has one or if she's just regurgitating something she's been spoon fed)

8 hours ago, Tryingtolearn said:

and she said we Sunnis follow the prophet more than Shias that follow the imams

Ask her who the Imams (AS) followed? Also, ask her why she is slandering the Ahle Bayt by claiming that they followed and preached something other than what the Prophet (PBUH) preached because that's what she's implying by stating that.

8 hours ago, Tryingtolearn said:

she said the Quran says follow the prophet more times than it says the imams

Again, ask her logic in stating that the Imams (AS) taught and preached something different than what the Prophet (PBUH) did.

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That Sunni is ignorant, tell him/her to provide references to his/her claims, than we can talk. The Shias have plenty of proof that tell us how the Prophet (saw) prayed, for example there are even Sunni hadiths that state the Prophet (saw) only prostrated on the earth, exactly what the Shias do today, meanwhile the Sunnis prostrate on carpet. 

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10 hours ago, Tryingtolearn said:

Salam 

a Sunni asked me why don't u Shias pray like us like the prophet Muhammad I was like uhhh... mmmm what shall i say she said what's about this Shia Shia way why not pray like the prophet peace be upon him

Wa aleykumsalaam,

Ask her where did Holy Prophet Õáì Çááå Úáíå æÂáå æÓáã use to put his Hands while praying. (Sunnies are themselves confuse in that, why bothering Shia then)

 

Quote

and she said we Sunnis follow the prophet more than Shias that follow the imams she said the Quran says follow the prophet more times than it says the imams and that Sunnis focus on Allah more can someone plz give me an answer so that I can give her my answer and I also want to know why

Ask her why do Sunnies take hadeeth from book like Sahih Bukhari and not from book authored by Holy Prophet Õáì Çááå Úáíå æÂáå æÓáã.

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10 hours ago, Tryingtolearn said:

Salam 

a Sunni asked me why don't u Shias pray like us like the prophet Muhammad I was like uhhh... mmmm what shall i say she said what's about this Shia Shia way why not pray like the prophet peace be upon him

and she said we Sunnis follow the prophet more than Shias that follow the imams she said the Quran says follow the prophet more times than it says the imams and that Sunnis focus on Allah more can someone plz give me an answer so that I can give her my answer and I also want to know why

thank u

First of all: 

1. Every Child born with open hand and not closed hand. Did not Prophet PBUHHP said: "Fitrah of Every Child is Muslim". So, this is one example of Shia Prayer. 

2. Second example is the following Verse of Surah Nur: 

Shakir: Do you not see that Allah is He Whom do glorify all those who are in the heavens and the earth, and the (very) birds with expanded wings? He knows the prayer of each one and its glorification, and Allah is Cognizant of what they do". (24:41). So, even the birds pray with open hands and not like our sunni brothers with closed hands

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1 hour ago, Sindbad05 said:

First of all: 

1. Every Child born with open hand and not closed hand. Did not Prophet PBUHHP said: "Fitrah of Every Child is Muslim". So, this is one example of Shia Prayer. 

2. Second example is the following Verse of Surah Nur: 

Shakir: Do you not see that Allah is He Whom do glorify all those who are in the heavens and the earth, and the (very) birds with expanded wings? He knows the prayer of each one and its glorification, and Allah is Cognizant of what they do". (24:41). So, even the birds pray with open hands and not like our sunni brothers with closed hands

Very logical and sensible answer.

Apart from that even Sunni Hadith books are full of traditions supporting shia way of praying.

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when Quran says pray like when u get born and when u die its obiviously that we die with hand open not hand locked so who want to beleive can believe but who doesnt want to believe will not even belive proof from Quran even so Shias has many proofs of their beliefs but they doesnt have one weak hadith to prove their false aqeeda which is to take over caliphate from Ahlulbayt AS we believe in Ahlulbayt AS because they were most nearer to Prophet Muhammad Saww and saw him pray and prayed with him and like him so sunni has 4 imams who prays differently and we have 12 Imam AS and they prayed like eachother.

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  • 4 years later...
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On 4/25/2017 at 9:48 PM, Ron_Burgundy said:

Shi’a and Sunni Muslims are often easily distinguishable merely from the way that they each conduct their prayers. While there are small differences in the prayer rituals of each school, these differences have often been overstated due to misconceptions about the origin and meaning of these traditions.

This entry will seek clarify and explain some of these differences.

 

The Number of Prayer Units

Shi’a are regularly criticised for praying on three occasions per day as opposed to the usual five occasions observed by other Muslims. 

According to all Muslims, regardless of the school, there are certain circumstances which have allowed for prayers to be combined during the day. For most Sunnis such circumstances include travelling and even occasions such as the weather.

According to the Sunni jurist Imam Malik, if it rains, it is permissible to combine the Dhuhr and Asr prayers, and the Maghrib prayers with Isha prayers.

The Jurists of the Shi’a school have followed the explanation of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and the Twelve Imams (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), who all state that combining the prayers is not contingent on a specific set of circumstances.

Therefore, whilst the number of times a day during which the Shi’a might pray is recognised as being either five or three distinct timings, the number of prayers, like all other Muslims, is actually five.

It must be stated, however, that to combine these prayers and recite them immediately after each other (in the case of Dhuhr and Asr and then Maghrib and Isha) is by no means an obligatory act for the Shi’a.  Rather it is viewed as one’s own personal choice, whether an individual prefers to combine the prayers or perform them separately. 

The Turbah of the Shi’a

Another misconception is that Shi’a worship a stone idol. This criticism is based on a lack of understanding of Shi’a Jurisprudence which stipulates that prostration during prayers must not be performed on anything other than natural elements from the earth which can neither be consumed nor worn, as such symbolism would reflect the worship of materialism.

This interpretation has prompted many Shi’a to adopt the convenience of praying to clay tablets, or Turbah (a clay tablet produced normally but not exclusively from the soil of the land of Karbala).

In the absence of the Turbah, Shi’a prostrate upon leaves or other natural objects.

The philosophy of prostrating on objects which are made from earth/clay is symbolic of mankind’s origin being from clay, the substance we were created from, and the substance we will return to once our bodies are buries after death.

It must be highlighted that the sole reason why most Turbahs are produced from the soil of Karbala, is the belief that this soil has immense spiritual value reminding one of the sacrifice of the Imam ((عليه السلام)) at Karbala in the way of God, a dedication which the believer himself would hope to emulate in his prayers.

 

Qunut

Qunut literally means "being obedient" or "the act of standing" in Arabic. The word is usually used in reference to special supplications made in certain prayers while in the standing posture.  During the second unit of every prayer, it is recommended for Shi’a to raise their hands in supplication after the recitation of the two chapters of the Qur’an. Whilst it may seem like an unfamiliar practice to some Muslims, several of the Sunni schools of Jurisprudence also share this practice which they restrict to only the Fajr prayer.

Sadl al-Yadayn

Sadl al-Yadayn is a practice which most obviously distinguishes the Shi’a prayers from those of most other Muslims. It refers to a movement performed during the prayer in the Qiyyam (standing up) position in which Shi’a place their hands to the sides of their body, as opposed to raising them and folding them at their chest in the Qabd al-Yadayn position as other Muslims do.  

It is worth highlighting that Shi’a are not the only Muslims who pray in the form of Sadl al-Yadayn, but rather a large majority of the Maliki school of Sunni jurisprudence (primarily concentrated in North Africa) have also traditionally prayed in such a way. Crossing the arms in prayer was initiated by the second Caliph who observed Persian prisoners crossing their arms as a sign of respect when brought before him and decided to implement it in Salat. 

For the adherents of the Ja’fari school of thought, they justify such actions by stating that all of the above practises can be traced back to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and the Imams ((عليه السلام)).

These rituals are also endorsed by Sunni jurist Malik b. Anas, who points out that the people of the Holy City of Madinah, where the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) established the first Islamic Capital, used to pray in this way. Hence, according to his logic, this was the most original form of prayer as the inhabitants were taught by their parents who were contemporaries of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم).

 

The Three Takabir

Whilst not technically a part of the prayer, which ends upon the recitation of the Taslim at the end of the Tashahud, Shi’a are recommended to raise ones hands up from their knees three times and recite the Takbir or “Allahu Akbar” three times.

Sadly, this has caused some confusion for some non-Shi’a who have suspected that the Shi’a are reciting something else. However anyone who observes the Shi’a daily prayers will notice that the recited formula during this practice is nothing more than to testify to the greatness of God, three times.

This practice is recommended in numerous narrations of the Imams and has become a recommended ritual which immediately follows the daily prayers.

Conclusion

There are numerous observable differences between the prayers of the Shi’a and the prayers of other schools of Jurisprudence. However, it is crucial to note that despite the above, the difference which distinguish the Shi’a prayer from other schools of jurisprudence are in no way larger than the difference which occur between the four Sunni schools of Jurisprudence themselves.

It is also crucial to highlight the fact that the differences in these prayers are due to scholarly differences in attempting to return to the pristine Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم). Shi’a prayers have been taught to the Shi’a via the Twelve Imams ((عليه السلام)), whom the Shi’a believe would naturally be the best people to make recourse to in uncovering the authentic Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم).

Wait, so is the Qunoot just a recommended act and not a compulsory part of the Shia prayer? 

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On 5/6/2021 at 1:10 PM, seekingthebeloved said:

Wait, so is the Qunoot just a recommended act and not a compulsory part of the Shia prayer? 

:salam:

 

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