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What to recite behind Imam?

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)


One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

can you tell me when we pray jumma then only listen the imman`s surats and not to recite himself even not to recite "Subhanakallah" ?

Please tell me this thing


(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)




What to recite behind Imam?

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad(saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Beloved brother, we are not sure what you mean by the term jumma; for it could mean the Jumuaa or Friday sermon and the prayer, or the general term jamaa which is normally used for prayers in congregation.


From the tone of your question, it seems you are referring to the congregational prayers behind the imam, and what are the people praying behind the imam supposed to recite.


This is an issue on which the scholars of Islam have differed in their opinion. The Prophet of Allah (saws) always led the congregation prayer and did not pray behind any imam, as he was always the imam leading the believers in their prayers.


Imam Abu Hanifa is of the opinion that the reading of Surah Fatiha of the Imam is enough for the congregation, and it is not a must for the muktadi (people praying in congregation) to pray Surah Fateha again after the Imam has prayed it.


Imam Abu Hanifa bases his opinion on the narration of the Prophet (saws) whereby he (saws) said that the recitation of the Imam is the recitation of the muktadis.


Imam Shaafie is of the opinion that the reading of the Surah Fatiha is a must for the muktadi in every rakah. He bases his opinion on the narration of the Prophet (saws) who said that no prayer is valid without the recitation of Surah Fateha.


Imam Maaliks opinion is probably the most accepted and logical on this issue. His opinion is a combination of the above two narrations and in conformity with the Aayah of the Holy Quran Chapter 7 Surah Aaraf verse 204: When the Quran is recited to you, listen to it with attention and keep silent. It may be that you also are blessed with mercy.


Imam Maliks opinion is that in the prayers where the imam prays aloud (fajr, magrib, isha), one should listen to Imams recitation and keep silent. And in the prayers where the imam prays silently (zuhr, asr, the last rakah of magrib, the last two rakahs of isha), the muktadi must pray the Surah Fateha himself. This opinion of Imam Malik is the most accepted and most practiced in the Ummah.


But all the scholars in Islam are unanimous in their opinion that other than the particular recitation of the Surahs from the Quran, everything else like the glorifications and supplications made in the rukoo, sujood, tashahud, etc. must be recited by the person himself even though he is praying behind the imam in congregation.


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.


Your Brother in Islam,





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