How to perform Salat-ul-Istikhara

The root word of istikhara is an Arabic word of khayr. Khayr represents all that which is good. Istikhara means to ask Allah to guide us for the right decision.

On many occasions in our life, we come across a situation when we are doubtful about something. There are two ways to go, and it is hard for us to make a decision. Everything seems to be unsure. In such a situation, we want Allah’s guidance so that we can choose the right path. The path is better for us in this world, as well as in the hereafter. Allah Almighty has helped us out through His Prophet(PBUH) so that we can ask Him for his guidance in all matters.

two ways infront of man, difficult to decide where to go, help by istikhara

When to make Istikhara

Sometime when we have two choices, we can’t decide which to follow. Also sometimes we are unsure about our decision, whether it is right or wrong, we must ask Allah first. We can do istikhara in every matter, small or big. We can ask Allah to help in the decision making of marriage, job, business, or even meeting someone or taking admission to school/college.

Time for Istikhara

We can make istikhara at any time when we need help in decision making. It has no specific time. We can do it in times other than salah or after salah, whatever our choice or need is.

Method of Istikhara

When we ask Allah for something, we must first make our intentions pure. Also, in salat-ul-istikhara, make a clear intention that you are asking Allah for guidance. Moreover, you would follow what Allah will guide us, whether it is against our desires.


First, perform ablution as one makes for prayer. Taharah is necessary for this prayer as for other prayers.

Two Rak’ahs Prayer

Offer a two Rakat(rakah) prayer just like other compulsory ones. After completing recite dua for istikhara.

Supplication or Dua for Istikhara

After prayer, recite this supplication, keeping in mind your problem(two paths about which you are unsure) and asking Allah for guidance.

supplication for istikhara
Supplication for Istikhara(Sahih Bhukhari:1162)

Keep in mind your problem. While reciting hadha-l-Amra(highlighted red), think about your decisions.


Allahummah ini astakhairuka bi ilmika, Wa astaqdiruka bi qudratika, Wa as’ alaka min fadlika al-‘azlm Fa-in-naka taqdiru Wala aqdiru, Wa tah’ lamu Wala ah’lamu, Wa anta ‘allamu-l-ghuyub. Allahummah, inkunta tah’lam anna hadha-l-amra Khairun li fe dini wa ma’ahshi wa’aqibati amri Faqdirhu wa yas sirhu li thumma barik li Fihe, Wa inkunta ta’lamu anna hadha-l-amra sharrun li fe dini wa ma’ashi wa’aqibati amri Fasrifhu anni was rifni anhu. Waqdir li al-khaira haithu kana Thumma ardini bihi.


O Allah, I seek Your guidance by Your knowledge, and I seek Your help by Your power, and I ask You from Your endless favor, for verily You are able while I am not, and indeed You know while I do not, and You are aware of the Unseen. Oh Allah, If You know this affair ( mention affair here ) to be good for me with my religion, my life, and consequences, my present, and future, then decree it and facilitate it for me, and bless me with it. If You know this matter to be ill for me regarding my religion, my life and end, my present and future, then take away it from me and take away me from it, And decree for me what is right, whatever it may be, and make me satisfied with it.

What to not expect after Istikhara

Allah will guide us on the right path by giving any signs or diverting our intentions to the right side or making the situation right for us. Allah knows well, how He will guide us. But after istikhara never expect these things:

  • No miracle will occur.
  • Don’t think that all will come in a dream with clear signs. How Allah will guide, only He knows.
  • There is no specific time for guidance, Allah has heard us and answer in the best time and best way, He knows well.

Misconceptions about Istikhara

Allah, the Almighty divert our intentions to the right. He may give signs of a right decision in dreams. Also, He makes circumstances in favor of us. Allah will provide us with the best. There are some misconceptions about istikhara like:

  • Istikharah can only be done at night.
  • Allah will guide us only through dreams.
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