Sutrah

I am introducing the act of putting a barrier in front of ourselves while performing solah.  I see H diligently putting an object in front of his sajjadah. Alhamdullilah.  I have not talked to him about this sunnah, he must have picked it from somewhere.

Thus I think it’s time to talk about the sutrah. So Insya Allah, wherever/ whenever they pray, they will abide to this sunnah.

WHAT IS A SUTRAH

A sutrah is a barrier that you put in front of you when you pray.

WHAT DOES IT TELL WHEN ONE HAVE A SUTRAH

First of all it tells other people not to walk in between you and the sutrah during prayers. It acts like a border or a fence of your personal praying area. People may walk in front of the sutrah though.

It guides you also that during prayers, you should not look beyond the sutrah.

HADITH ON THE NECESSITY OF THE SUTRAH

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 1032

Abu Dharr reported:

The Messenger of ‘Allah (may peace be upon him) said: When any one of you stands for prayer and there is a thing before him equal to the back of the saddle that covers him and in case there is not before him (a thing) equal to the back of the saddle, his prayer would be cut off by (passing of an) ass, woman, and black Dog. I said: O Abu Dharr, what feature is there in a black dog which distinguish it from the red dog and the yellow dog? He said: O, son of my brother, I asked the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) as you are asking me, and he said: The black dog is a devil.

It should be noted that a woman is not being compared to a donkey or a dog in this hadith but rather when a woman passes in front of a praying man, she may take away his attention from Salah.

A few hadith by Aishah r.a.

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (Sutra of the Musalla)
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 9 :: Hadith 490
Narrated ‘Aisha:

The things which annul the prayers were mentioned before me. They said, “Prayer is annulled by a dog, a donkey and a woman (if they pass in front of the praying people).” I said, “You have made us (i.e. women) dogs. I saw the Prophet praying while I used to lie in my bed between him and the Qibla. Whenever I was in need of something, I would slip away. for I disliked to face him.”

Another hadith on putting on a sutrah as a sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (sutra of the Musalla)

Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 9 :: Hadith 473

Narrated Ibn ‘Umar:

Whenever Allah’s Apostle came out on ‘Id day, he used to order that a Harba (a short spear) to be planted in front of him (as a Sutra for his prayer) and then he used to pray facing it with the people behind him and used to do the same while on a journey. After the Prophet , this practice was adopted by the Muslim rulers (who followed his traditions).

And another hadith

Virtues of the prayer hall (Sutra of the Musolla)

Bukhari Book 1 Volume 9 Hadith 485

Narrated Nafi

“The Prophet used to make his she-camel sit across and he would pray facing it (as a Sutra).” I asked, “What would the Prophet do if the she-camel was provoked and moved?” He said, “He would take its camel-saddle and put it in front of him and pray facing its back part (as a Sutra). And Ibn ‘Umar used to do the same.” (This indicates that one should not pray except behind a Sutra).

The Two Festivals (Eids)
Bukhari :: Book 2 :: Volume 15 :: Hadith 89
Narrated Ibn Umar:

On the day of ‘Id-ul-Fitr and ‘Id-ul-Adha a spear used to be planted in front of the Prophet I (as a Sutra for the prayer) and then he would pray.

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 1008
‘A’isha reported:

The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) was asked about sutra of a worshipper; he said: Equal to the back of the saddle.

__________________________________________________________

Summary

1. The sutrah can be an object as low as a saddle back i.e. about one foot high to as tall as a wall (another hadith to follow).

2. Thus essentially it is clear that it is a sunnah to place a sutrah in front of us when we pray.

__________________________________________________________

TO PRAY BEHIND A PILLAR

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (Sutra of the Musalla)
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 9 :: Hadith 481
Narrated Yazid bin Al ‘Ubaid:

I used to accompany Salama bin Al-Akwa’ and he used to pray behind the pillar which was near the place where the Quran’s were kept I said, “O Abu Muslim! I see you always seeking to pray behind this pillar.” He replied, “I saw Allah’s Apostle always seeking to pray near that pillar.”

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (Sutra of the Musalla)

Bukhari : Book 1 : Volume 9 : Hadith 482

Narrated Anas:

I saw the most famous people amongst the companions of the Prophet hurrying towards the pillars at the Maghrib prayer before the Prophet came for the prayer.

_________________________________________________________

Summary
1. Try to find a pillar and make it as a sutrah when you are in musolla
2. Or pray nearest to the wall. Remember this the next time you pray in the musolla when we go shopping for instance.😉

________________________________________________________

DISTANCE BETWEEN THE PERSON AND THE SUTRAH

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (Sutra of the Musalla)
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 9 :: Hadith 475
Narrated Sahl (bin Sa’d):

The distance between the Musalla of Allah’s Apostle and the wall was just sufficient for a sheep to pass through .


________________________________________________________

Summary

1. Usually you’d put the sutrah at the end of your sajjadah. That should be quite right.

__________________________________________________________

IT’S A SIN TO WALK IN FRONT A PERSON PERFORMING SOLAH

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (Sutra of the Musalla)
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 9 :: Hadith 489
Narrated Busr bin Said:

that Zaid bin Khalid sent him to Abi Juhaim to ask him what he had heard from Allah’s Apostle about a person passing in front of another person who was praying. Abu Juhaim replied, “Allah’s Apostle said, ‘If the person who passes in front of another person in prayer knew the magnitude of his sin he would prefer to wait for 40 (days, months or years) rather than to pass in front of him.” Abu An-Nadr said, “I do not remember exactly whether he said 40 days, months or years.”

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 1006
Musa b. Talha

reported it on the authority of his father: The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: When one of you places in front of him so me. thing such as the back of a saddle, he should pray without caring who passes on the other side of it.

_____________________________________________________

Summary

1. Never ever walk in front of a person praying.

2. When Z do this, remind him gently not to do so.

3. Suffice to say that the sin of walking in front of a person praying is very big.

4. And what if you have no way to pass? Try putting a sutrah in front of the person.

5. This reminds you again to put a sutrah in front of you so you won’t cause unnecessary trouble to other people.

6. It’s ok to walk in front of the sutrah.

_________________________________________________________

PREVENTING A PERSON WHO TRIES TO PASS IN FRONT

Virtues of the Prayer Hall (Sutra of the Musalla)
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 9 :: Hadith 488
Narrated Abu Salih As-Samman:

I saw Abu Said Al-Khudri praying on a Friday, behind something which acted as a Sutra. A young man from Bani Abi Mu’ait, wanted to pass in front of him, but Abu Said repulsed him with a push on his chest. Finding no alternative he again tried to pass but Abu Said pushed him with a greater force. The young man abused Abu Said and went to Marwan and lodged a complaint against Abu Said and Abu Said followed the young man to Marwan who asked him, “O Abu Said! What has happened between you and the son of your brother?” Abu Sa’id said to him, “I heard the Prophet saying, ‘If anybody amongst you is praying behind something as a Sutra and somebody tries to pass in front of him, then he should repulse him and if he refuses, he should use force against him for he is a satan.’ “

__________________________________________________________

Summary

1. We should try to prevent someone who wants to pass in front of us praying

2. Better still we must try to avoid the situation that we would block other people who need the path to pass.

__________________________________________________________

————————————————————-

Sutrah in masjidil Haram

Do refer to this link for fatwa on sutra and people walking in front of you praying in the masjidil haram.  WALKING IN FRONT OF PEOPLE PRAYING IN MASJIDILHARAM

Essentially
1. We should take care that our praying spot is not in people’s path. This can be done by firstly going early to the Masjidil Haram. And try our level best to not to use the corridor as praying spot.
2. Care must be taken aslo to place a sutrah when doing the nawafil prayer.
3. try not to walk in fron of people praying.
4. however understandably some of these cannot be avoided, thus in such an avoidable case the fatwa in the link is applicable. May Allah make it easy for all of us.

3 Comments

Filed under Fiqh, Solat

3 responses to “Sutrah

  1. nonah

    interesting points.

    just recently i was thinking about this cause somehow, though we grow up learning we should put this ‘barrier’ infront of us when we’re praying, one of my siblings said it’s not required so i kept telling myself to check it out but u’ve brought it up first, alhamdullilah.

    thanks🙂

    • nr

      Tq for this article. I do know of its significance but somehow never practise it. thanks again for the reminder

  2. SubhanAllah. Very important and good article. May Allah bless you with peace and mercy. Ameen.

    I am gonna use this on my blog and spread the word! JazakAllah!

    Naved Zia.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s