Tahajjud | The Night Prayer

Salah/Namaz/ Prayer is the second pillar of Islam. It has two types. Obligatory prayers and extravagant prayer. Obligatory prayer or namaz is to be offered five times a day at specific times with no choice of skipping it under normal circumstances. While second is the extravagant prayer or Nafl Namaz which is optional and one has the choice to offer it or not. Moreover, he is not answerable to Allah for not offering it. Tahajjud prayer is one of Nafl namaz.

Tahajjud prayer

The Tahajjud prayer/ Salat ul Layl /Night Prayer is one of the obligatory prayers. It is to be performed at night time after isha prayer till breaking of Dawn.

And from [part of] the night, pray with it as additional [prayer] for you; it is expected that your Lord will resurrect you to a praised station.

17:79

Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported from the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ):

The best month for observing Saum (fasting) next after Ramadan is the month of Allah, the Muharram; and the best Salat (prayer) next after the prescribed Salah is Salat at night (Tahajjud).

Riyad as-Salihin 1246, Muslim
Tahajjud Prayer

Time of Tahajjud

Time of Tahajjud prayer starts after Isha till Fajr prayer. It can be performed any time after Isha, but waking after sleeping for tahajjud is more rewarding. Best time for night prayer is last one third(1/3) part of the night after sleep. An-Numan ibn Bashir narrated that:

I am the one who is best informed of the time of this prayer, i.e. the night prayer/tahajjud. The Prophet (ﷺ) used to offer it at the hour when the moon went down on its third night.

Sunan Abi Dawud 419

How to perform Tahajjud

  • This prayer is without iqama.
  • First of all wake-up and recite recommended supplication.
  • Perform ablution (Wudu) and then remove all worldly worries and thinking from the mind.
  • Start with two quick rakats.
  • Moreover, tahajjud rakahs are performed in pairs and eight rakats is a good number by many Muslims scholars. Most Muslims perform two, four, six, or eight rakats, though can pray more. Hazrat Aisha(RA) Narrated:

Prophet (ﷺ) used to offer thirteen(13) Rakat in the night prayer(Tahajjud) and on hearing the Adhan for the morning prayer, he used to offer two light rakahs.  

Sahih al-Bukhari 1164
  • End this prayer with witr. Offer three rakah witr prayer or one if time is short to Fajr. Ibn ‘Umar reported Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as saying:

Make Witr the end of your night prayer.

Sahih Muslim 752 b

Moreover, Hazrat A’isha(RA) observed that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) used to observe prayer in the night and the last of his (night) prayer as Witr.

Sahih Muslim 740
  • This time is best to ask Allah for forgiveness, and blessings. Take time to supplicate and get rewarded. Abu Huraira narrated that Prophet (ﷺ) said,

When it is the last third (1/3) of the night, our Lord, the Superior, the Blessed, descends every night to the heaven of the world and says, ‘Is there anyone who invokes Me (request anything from Me), that I may respond to his supplication(invocation); Is there anyone who asks Me for something that I may give (it to) him; Is there anyone who asks My forgiveness that I may forgive him?’ “

Sahih al-Bukhari 6321
  • It is recommended that one wakes up his/her family, as Abu Hurairah reported the Prophet (PBUH) as saying: “May Allah bless the man who gets up during the night to pray and wakes up his wife and who, if she refuses to get up, sprinkles water on her face. And may Allah bless the woman who gets up during the night to pray and wakes up her husband and who, if he refuses, sprinkles water on his face.” (Ahmad)

Benefits of Tahajjud Prayer

Following benefits one could get by offering Tahajjud prayer:

  • Regularly offering tahajjud gives inner strength.
  • moreover, It provides mental toughness and relaxation.
  • Seeking forgiveness at this precious time will surely be acceptable by Almighty Allah. As the doors of Mercy and Forgiveness are open during the last part of the night.
  • This is the best time to ask what one wish and dream of.
  •  Tahajjud prayer can strengthen religious knowledge and enable the believer to deeply understand Islam. Moreover, it can bring fresh inspiration and innovations and learnings.
  • Tahajjud prayer can prevent the believer from doing sins and purify his heart from negative thinkings.
  • Modern science proved that making at the time of Tahajjud prayer can strengthen memory.

Tahajjud prayer is one of the best among non-obligatory prayers(Nafl), it is the cause of getting Allah`s closeness, with great Blessings and Mercy. We all should make a practice to offer this tahajjud namaz so that we can come closer and closer to Almighty Allah. Insha Allah