Category Archives: Pillars of Islam

Pillars of Islam – Pictorial

A bit of cutting and pasting of the pillars of Islam.

On the authority of Abu ‘Abd al-Rahman ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar bin al-Khattab,radiyallahu ‘anhuma, who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, say:

“Islam has been built upon five things – on testifying that there is no god save Allah, and that Muhammad is His Messenger; on performing salah; on giving the zakah; on Hajj to the House; and on fasting during Ramadhan.”

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Pillars of Prayer : Takbir Al-Ihram

Prayers consists of

  • pillars
  • obligatory acts
  • non obligatory acts

For now we will concentrate on the pillars of prayers. If one of them is omitted, the prayer will not be accepted.

The second pillar is takbeerat al ihram

Prayer (Kitab Al-Salat)
Dawud :: Book 2 : Hadith 618

Narrated Ali ibn AbuTalib:

The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: The key of prayer is purification. The act that puts on into the inviolable state (of prayer) is the takbeer. And the act that ends the violable state is the tasleem (salutation).

This hadith is hasan saheeh. According to Sheikh al-Albani, Saheeh Ibn Majah. recorded by Tirmidhi, Abu dawood and Ibn Majah.

This is the first takbir in salah. It is called takbir Al Ihram because after its recitation many things become unlawful (haram) for the worshipping such as eating, talking, drinking etc.)

Takbir Al Ihram is a pillar of prayer meaning if we leave it, our prayers is not accepted.

Looooongg Takbir

I was taught when I was young to say the niyah of prayer in my language in the heart while reciting the takbir. Thus my takbeer became very loooonnngg and sometimes jerky. This is unnecessary fr it is not in the sunnah to say the niyah in the heart during the takbir. Rather the niyah must be thought in the heart before the prayer itself.

Where to raise your hand during takbeer

Raising your hands during takbeer is sunnah or recommended acts. Meaning if one leaves it, the prayer is still valid. However we would have missed on doing the sunnah.
1. Opposite the shoulder

Characteristics of Prayer
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 12 :: Hadith 703

Narrated ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar:

I saw that whenever Allah’s Apostle stood for the prayer, he used to raise both his hands up to the shoulders, and used to do the same on saying the Takbir for bowing and on raising his head from it and used to say, “Sami a-l-lahu Liman hamida”. But he did not do that (i.e. raising his hands) in prostrations.

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 758
Salim narrated it on the authority of his father who reported:

I saw the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) raising his hands opposite the shoulders at the time of beginning the prayer and before bowing down and after coming back to the position after bowing. but he did not raise them between two prostrations.

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 759
Ibn Umar reported that

the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him), when he stood up for prayer, used to raise his hands apposite the shoulders and then recited takbir (Allah-o-Akbar), and when he was about to bow he again did like it and when he raised himself from the ruku’ (bowing posture) he again did like it, but he did not do it at the time of raising his head from prostration.

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 760
This hadith has been transmitted with the same chain of transmitters by al. Zuhri as narrated by Ibn Juraij (who) said.

When the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) stood up for prayer, he raised hands (to the height) apposite the shoulders and then recited takbir.

2. Raising the Hands to Opposite the Ears

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 762
Malik b. Huwairith reported:

The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) raised his hands opposite his ears at the time of reciting the takbir (i. e. at the time of beginning the prayer) and then again raised his hands apposite the ears at the time of bowing and when he lifted his head after bowing he said: Allah listened to him who praised Him, and did like it (raised his hands up to the ears).

The Book of Prayers (Kitab Al-Salat)
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 763
This hadith has been transmitted by Qatada with the same chain of transmitters

that he saw the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) doing like this (i. e. raising his hands) till they were opposite the lobes of ears.

All of these hadith above are sahih.
1. We can raise our hand during takbir al-ihram either at the lobe of our ears or at our shoulders, Insya Allah.
2. This also apply to the takbirs before ruku’ and after ruku’. These after ruku’.

Boy at ears. Girls at shoulders?

I was also taught when I was young that for boys to raise their hands at the ears while the girls at the shoulders uring takbeer. From these ahadeeth, it is clear that one can raise their hands either at the shoulder or the ears regardless of gender. There is no difference between a man’s prayer and a woman’s. We pray as how Rasulullah saw prayed.


1. Takbirratul Ihram is a pillar of prayer.

2. It signifies the starting of a prayer.

3. If we miss it, our prayer is not accepted.

4. Raising the handsduring takbiratul ihram is sunnah.

5. Thus if we do not raise the hands during takbiratul ihram, or prayer is still accepted. But we would have missed the reward for sunnah acts.

6. We can either raise our hands to the level of our shoulders or to our ears. Rasulullah saw did it both ways.


1. Ahmad raised his hands at his shoulders during takbirratul ihram? Is his prayer valid?

2. Ali did not raise his hands at all during takbir. Is this ok?

3. Aminah did not say her takbir when she starts prayer. Is her prayer valid?

Main reference

1. Prayer According to the Sunnah – Compiler Prof Muhammad Zulfiqar. Darussalam


Filed under Fiqh, Pillars of Islam, Solat

Saying the Shahadah


أَشْهَدُ أَن لِا إِلَهَ إِلَّا الله وَ أَشْهَدُ أَنّ مُحَمَّدًا رَسُولُ الله

This is just to train the little Z since he got excited about the dua’ after wudhu last week.

A Muslim declares the shahadah.

Shahadah is the first pillar of Islam. Saying the shahadah and believing it makes you a Muslim.

Do you know that if someone who is not a Muslim and wants to become a Muslim, all he needs to do is first of all say the shahadah and believe it?

What are you suppose to believe?

It means that I declare that there is only one God.
He does not have any partner.
He does not have son.
I declare that Allah is the only god to be worshipped.
There is no other God for me.
I worship Allah alone

I declare that Muhammad saw is Allah’s Messenger.
He is the last of all messengers and prophets.
There is no more after him.
I follow the sunnah of Prophet Muhammad saw.

Do you know?

Do you know that the disbelievers Quraysh believe in Allah too?

But they refuse to say the shahadah?

Because even though they believe in Allah  they also believe in idols and mystics. They know that if they say the shahadah and declare that Allah is the only god worth to be worshipped and that Mohammad saw is the Messenger of Allah, they would have to forsake all rituals and traditions.

Do you know that one who just turned a Muslim and declares the shahadah and later died in that state shall enter jannah, bi iznillah?

Something to ponder

The early polytheists were called to La illaha illah Allah but refused it because they truly understood its meaning and all that it entails. The Muslims today, however, accept this word but do not truly understand it and all that it entails! (Shaikh Muhammad Naasiruddeen al-Albaanee (rahimahullaah))

May we be among those who truly understand. May Allah guide us to the straight path.


Filed under Pillars of Islam, Tawhid

Pillars in Prayer : Intention in Solah

I overheard H said out the intention of solah out loud when he was praying with S the other day. I was quite surprise for we have been praying without announcing the intention out loud, and there he was doing it.

So, I decided to introduce this topic in our Fiqh lesson this week.

First of all,  we all know in whatever that we do, the most important thing we must have is our niyah, our intention. This is what that makes the ibadah profitable or useless. It can make even our little act of kindness, like feeding a dieing stray dog, be rewarded heavily in the hereafter or our 1 million donation lost its value in the eyes of Allah. Insya Allah, we will cover this when we discuss the hadith qudsi one day.

Similarly, niyah is also important when we want to make our solah.

However  it is NOT required for us to state the intention out loud.

When the Prophet (s.a.w.) would stand to pray, he would say Allahhu Akbar and would not say anything beforehand. he would not say the intention out loud beforehand.

All of these statements are innovation. None of them have ever been recorded from him, not with a sound or a weak chain, an unbroken or broken chain. Nor has any of them been narrated by the Companions or approved by any of the Followers of the four Imams. (verbatim quoted from The Concise Presentatoon of Fiqh : Dr Abdul Azeem Badawi).

However, the ilm of fiqh many times have different khilaf thus different translation. Refer to this fatwa in ISLAMONLINE.

Sice we want to strive ourselves to follow the sunnah of Rasullullah and His Companions, we can try to make all intentions be stated IN THE HEART at the beginning of the prayer.

To teach them how to think of a niyah and say it in the heart. Insya Allah with conviction from them.

When making intention we must be IKHLAS (sincere). Pray solely for Allah’s pleasure instead of scared of my anger.

This condition of niyah are the same for wudhu’ and fasting. Remember most of all, Allah Al Samee’ knows what you intent in your heart more than anything else, so make your intention right, and Insya Allah you will be rewarded accordingly.

In short
In everything that we want to do (that is permissible of course) we must
1. have good intention in the heart.
2. always correct the niyah.
3. Have ikhlas
3. Do it to please Allah.


Filed under Fiqh, Pillars of Islam, Solat

Our Qiblah is the Kaabah


Qiblah is the direction we face when we pray

  • wordpress
  • Our qiblah is the Kaabah.


    Because Allah tells us so in the Quran Al Baqarah 2:144

  • قَدۡ نَرَىٰ تَقَلُّبَ وَجۡهِكَ فِى ٱلسَّمَآءِ‌ۖ فَلَنُوَلِّيَنَّكَ قِبۡلَةً۬ تَرۡضَٮٰهَا‌ۚ فَوَلِّ وَجۡهَكَ شَطۡرَ ٱلۡمَسۡجِدِ ٱلۡحَرَامِ‌ۚ وَحَيۡثُ مَا كُنتُمۡ فَوَلُّواْ وُجُوهَكُمۡ شَطۡرَهُ ۥ‌ۗ وَإِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ ٱلۡكِتَـٰبَ لَيَعۡلَمُونَ أَنَّهُ ٱلۡحَقُّ مِن رَّبِّهِمۡ‌ۗ وَمَا ٱللَّهُ بِغَـٰفِلٍ عَمَّا يَعۡمَلُونَ (١٤٤)
    Verily! We have seen the turning of your (Muhammad’s SAW) face towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qiblah (prayer direction) that shall please you, so turn your face in the direction of Al-Masjid- Al-Harâm (at Makkah). And wheresoever you people are, turn your faces (in prayer) in that direction. Certainly, the people who were given the Scriptures (i.e. Jews and the Christians) know well that, that (your turning towards the direction of the Ka’bah at Makkah in prayers) is the truth from their Lord. And Allâh is not unaware of what they do. (144)

    Allah says in the Quran that our Qiblah is the masjidil Haram that is the Kaabah in Makkah.


Where is kaabah?

Kaabah is in Makkah, Saudi Arabia.

Print a world map.

Point to where Makkah is and mark it

Point where Qtar is and mark it.

Draw a straight line (use a ruler) from Qtar to Makkah.

Then point to Malaysia . And make another straight line to Makkah.

Then talk about how Muslims around the world face the same qiblah when they pray.

Mark familiar places


London, UK



South Africa



Draw straight lines and arrow indicating the direction from the respective countries to Makkah. Insya Allah they will get the point.

The children, including Z were most excited doing this exercise. It’s a practice of knowing the orientation of a country. And they were racing each other to find a country mentioned.



Use the qiblah compass to show them how to find the qiblah when we are at a new place. Get them to read the coordinate points of different countries and how to use the values to find the qiblah. This is a very useful gadget to have especially when we travel.



Introducing the concept of North, East, West and South.

Remind them where does the sun rise? Where does the sun set?

wordpressIf we are outside, in the dunes for example, and we do not have the Qiblah compass, and come prayer time (Remember solah is compulsory wherever we are!), how do we gauge where the direction is?

First look at the map. Look at the location of Makah in relative to Doha. Makkah is approximately South West from D0ha.

We must always be aware of our our position on earth relative to Makkah.


When Mohammad s.a.w. became prophet he prayed towards Bayt Al Maqdis.


Using the Saudi Arabia map, point to where Jurusalem where Bayt Al Maqdis is

Refer to another post : The story of the change of Qiblah

    • Nearly all my notes here are taken from TALIBEDEEN JR. May Allah reward her for her great work. Masya Allah.
    • Cross referenced with the book The concise presentation of the Fiqh – Dr. Abdul Azeem Badawi.
    • A Description of Prophet’s SAW Prayer : Shaikh Muhammad Naasir ud Deen Albaani. Translated by Usama Ibn Suhaib Hasan.


Filed under Fiqh, Pillars of Islam, Solat

The story of the Change of Qiblah

wordpress Our Qiblah did not start off with the Kaabah. It was the Bayt Al-Maqdis (Jerusalem) first then Allah change it to Kaabah.


First look for Jerusalem on the map. Draw a line from Makkah to Jerusalem. This map will help explain the orientation of Jerusalem relative to Makkah and also the orientation of Madinah.

Prophet Muhammad when he was praying in his years in Makkah, he used to pray facing the Kaabah but towards Jurusalem, bayt Al-Maqdis. When he made hijrah, he pray also to Bayt Al Maqdis but he had to back the Kaabah. Muhammad s.a.w. had wished that he would face the Kaabah, the Qiblah of Ibrahim, again. Prophet Muhammad used to supplicate to Allah and look at the sky, waiting for Allah’s command. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir). He was keen on the change but dared not request.

The Jews also used the fact that Muslims adopted their own holy city (Jews consider Jurusalem to be their holy city) as their qiblah to claim that Judaism was the religion of truth and that Muhammad and his companions adopt Judaism, instead of calling on the Jews to accept Islam.

Then Allah revealed ayah Al Baqarah 2:144.

Verily! We have seen the turning of your (Muhammad’s SAW) face towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qiblah (prayer direction) that shall please you, so turn your face in the direction of Al-Masjid- Al-Harâm (at Makkah). And wheresoever you people are, turn your faces (in prayer) in that direction. Certainly, the people who were given the Scriptures (i.e. Jews and the Christians) know well that, that (your turning towards the direction of the Ka’bah at Makkah in prayers) is the truth from their Lord. And Allâh is not unaware of what they do. (144)

Imam Bukhari reported that Al Bara’ bin ‘Azib narrated

The Prophet prayed facing Bait-ulmaqdis (i.e. Jerusalem) for sixteen or seventeen months but he wished that his Qibla would be the Ka’ba (at Mecca). (So Allah Revealed (2.144) and he offered ‘Asr prayers(in his Mosque facing Ka’ba at Mecca) and some people prayed with him. A man from among those who had prayed with him, went out and passed by some people offering prayer in another mosque, and they were in the state of bowing. He said, “I, (swearing by Allah,) testify that I have prayed with the Prophet facing Mecca.” Hearing that, they turned their faces to the Ka’ba while they were still bowing.

The Jews in Madinah countered with a sustained campaign of criticism. Their new campaign sought to create doubts in the minds of Muslims as to the basis of their own religion.

These are among what they argued

  1. If it was right, the Jews argued, that the Muslims should formerly face Jerusalem in their Prayers, then the new direction is wrong.
  2. They also told the Muslims:“Your Prayers from now on would then be of no value. If, on the other hand, the new direction is right and the Kabah is the true qiblah, then your Prayers in the past were in vain.”
  3. The Jews also argued that God, the Lord Who knows all, does not change His instructions in that manner. The change clearly showed, the Jews went on, that Muhammad did not really receive any revelation from God.

Reassurance was needed and was, indeed, provided in a long passage in the Quran, which runs from verse 106 to verse 150 in the surah entitled Al-Baqarah.

Also in the same hadith as the above..

Reported by Imam Bukhari

..Some Muslims who offered prayer towards the previous Qiblah (Jerusalem) before it was changed towards the House (the Ka`bah in Makkah) had died or had been martyred, and we did not know what to say about them (regarding their prayers towards Jerusalem). Allah then revealed Al Baqarah 2:143:

وَكَذَٲلِكَ جَعَلۡنَـٰكُمۡ أُمَّةً۬ وَسَطً۬ا لِّتَڪُونُواْ شُہَدَآءَ عَلَى ٱلنَّاسِ وَيَكُونَ ٱلرَّسُولُ عَلَيۡكُمۡ شَهِيدً۬ا‌ۗ وَمَا جَعَلۡنَا ٱلۡقِبۡلَةَ ٱلَّتِى كُنتَ عَلَيۡہَآ إِلَّا لِنَعۡلَمَ مَن يَتَّبِعُ ٱلرَّسُولَ مِمَّن يَنقَلِبُ عَلَىٰ عَقِبَيۡهِ‌ۚ وَإِن كَانَتۡ لَكَبِيرَةً إِلَّا عَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ هَدَى ٱللَّهُ‌ۗ وَمَا كَانَ ٱللَّهُ لِيُضِيعَ إِيمَـٰنَكُمۡ‌ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ بِٱلنَّاسِ لَرَءُوفٌ۬ رَّحِيمٌ۬ (١٤٣)

Thus We have made you [true Muslims – real believers of Islâmic Monotheism, true followers of Prophet Muhammad SAW and his Sunnah (legal ways)], a (just) (and the best) nation, that you be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger (Muhammad SAW) be a witness over you. And We made the Qiblah (prayer direction towards Jerusalem) which you used to face, only to test those who followed the Messenger (Muhammad SAW) from those who would turn on their heels (i.e. disobey the Messenger). Indeed it was great (heavy) except for those whom Allâh guided. And Allâh would never make your faith (prayers) to be lost (i.e. your prayers offered towards Jerusalem). Truly, Allâh is full of kindness, the Most Merciful towards mankind. (143)

Corresponding the Jews asking why the change of Qiblah, Al Baqarah 2:115

وَلِلَّهِ ٱلۡمَشۡرِقُ وَٱلۡمَغۡرِبُ‌ۚ فَأَيۡنَمَا تُوَلُّواْ فَثَمَّ وَجۡهُ ٱللَّهِ‌ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ وَٲسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ۬ (١١٥)

And to Allâh belong the east and the west, so wherever you turn (yourselves or your faces) there is the Face of Allâh (and He is High above, over His Throne). Surely! Allâh is All-Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knowing. (115)

Also read Al BAqarah 2: 148-152

The change of Qiblah is a test for those who believe. the Arabs, even though they were pagans before Islam, still perform traditional prayer ritual towards the Kaabah. Unfortunately mostly have taken up to worshiping idols.

Kaabah is highly revered among the Arabs. It is a symbol of national glory. It is a factor that pull all the Arab tribes together.

Thus it was  a test of true submission towards Allah when they were asked to pray towards Jerusalem initially. The sahabahs need to abandon former loyalties and tribal racial. hence the need to separate worship from traditional practice of the Kaabah.

After Hijrah however, the Muslims were taught to see Kaabah in a different light, unlike the idol practice and national pride that they had before. Then only they were asked to face Kaabah. Having purification of the Muslim’s heart by them giving full submission to Allah’s command, they are then directed to face their distinctive Qiblah, the Kaabah, the first house of worship ever built. (reference

The revelation to change the qiblah was sent down when Mohammad saw was in a masjid now called Masjid Qiblatain, meaning the masjid of two qiblahs. Masjid al Qiblatain (or the Mosque with two Qiblas), is situated in Madinah, a few kilometres from Masjid an-Nabi. It is one of the oldest Mosques in the world, and uniquely contains thus two mihrabs – one in the direction of bait al-Maqdis (Jerusalem), and the other towards Makkah.

Quoted from here


This story might be heavy for the younger children. These notes are only for my guideline. Like any story, narrate them according to their level. For S (who is seven), I only told her that our qiblah used to be facing the masjidil Aqsa, I showed her a picture of the sacred mosque and shoqed her on the map where Jerusalem is.

I tell a bit more to H (he is ten). But did tell him in a simplified manner that the directions are a test to the early muslims.

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Awrah in Solah

This is mainly for Haziq.

During prayers we must cover our awrah

۞ يَـٰبَنِىٓ ءَادَمَ خُذُواْ زِينَتَكُمۡ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسۡجِدٍ۬ وَڪُلُواْ وَٱشۡرَبُواْ وَلَا تُسۡرِفُوٓاْ‌ۚ إِنَّهُ ۥ لَا يُحِبُّ ٱلۡمُسۡرِفِينَ (٣١
Al Aaraf 7:31
O Children of Adam! Take your adornment (by wearing your clean clothes) while praying.

The awrah for woman

I was flipping through the buku sekolah agama selangor Malaysia on this topic but I became unsure of the contents concerning the arwah for woman as depicted in their photos.

I am not sure about the gloves the girls are wearing. I also am not sure about the last bottom right picture where her hijab is not covering her chest.

Can you comment about this?

I didn’t use this photo for the study though.

  • Anyway the awrah for woman is all except for face and hand
  • She should cover the top feet too.

Prophet s.a.w said, “The prayer of an adult woman is not accepted unless she is wearing headcovering.” recorded by Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi and Ibn Najah.

The awrah for men are

  • between the navel and the knees
  • However must also cover the shoulders

The prophet s.a.w said, “None of you should offer prayer in a single garment that does not cover the shoulders.”

Sahih Al Bukhari Book 8 (reported by Abu huraira R.A.)


  • The praying clothes should not show shape or body contour. This applies for both man and woman
  • They should not be thin and transparent. for both men and women
  • They should be clean
  • We should present ourselves nicely when we want to pray.

e.g. if we are ashame to walk about in particular shirt, we should present ourselves better than that.

  • Rasullullah prefers thick garments without any marking (pictures of animals). Patterns are preferable than pictures. The jamhoor hold the position that it is makrooh.
  • It is permissible tp pray in bare head for man as the head is awrah for woman. however it is recommended (mustahab) that he is completely dressed for praying thus the head is best covered. This is also to differentiate between muslims and non. However during pilgrimage it is law not to cover the head.


Filed under Fiqh, Pillars of Islam, Solat