Question 37: Assalaamu alaikum Sheikh.

Alhamdulillah during the last ten nights, some of the masaajid in my country conduct tahajjud prayers and then they will provide sahur for the jemaah. However some masaajid during their tahajjud prayers also do solat haajat and solat taubat in the congregation and they mention it before starting the prayer.

My question is, during those prayers that they do, should I just join the congregation with the intention to just pray tahajjud or should I leave and possibly just wait until they do the witr prayers. Mind you, when they pray solat hajat in the congregation, they pray a silent prayer (sirr).

Jazaakumullahu Khair.

Answer: Walaikumussalam Brothers,

If we see someone doing something wrong, then IF we get up and walk away either to not participate in wrong and/or to show disapproval of it, if the person walking away is a highly revered, regarded and loved person by those doing wrong, then psychologically walking away can have a positive effect on the congregation to stop the wrong. In such a case it maybe good to walk away if the positive result is very likely or certain.

But of on the other hand, if the person walking away from the congregation doing wrong happens to be one of the minority in the eyes of congregation, moreover they may consider the one walking away to be ignorant or something like that, then the person walking away is not stopping the congregation from continuing to do the wrong. In fact it may make the congregation feel more passionate towards doing the wrong as the emotions of ‘us versus them’ arise! In this situation, it is a bad idea for the person to walk away, rather the person should try to stay put – not do the wrong himself personally (perhaps don’t actually intend to do the wrong prayer or any prayer); and besides not doing the wrong himself, he should be considerate of the results that are likely to be more haraam from his actions in increasing the wrong and as such DO NOT walk away – neither does he do the wrong nor does he walk away increasing the wrong reaction, rather perhaps he sits quietly if possible, and next time perhaps do not come to that place when such a ‘catch 22’ situation is set-up to happen!

This is a very important point we need to keep in mind that we do not try to stop one wrong by fueling a bigger wrong; rather avoid going there in the first place since – and if – it is expected the people will not listen to the advice to stop the wrong. DO NOT divide the people who do not even have the knwolwdge to understand what wrong they are doing or are under a third external party pressure to do the wrong!

VERY IMPORTANTLY remember Prophet Harun, as he said to Prophet Musa upon the latters’ return from the mount, that Prophet Harun did NOT let his people be divided when Samiriy misguided them into calf worship. Instead of dividing them up over revering the calf or not, Prophet Harun appealed to them and when rejected he stayed with them keeping everyone united in brotherhood while he himself did not do the wrong and he did not abandon his people who were being manipulated nor did he walk away from them over the wrong they did being cunningly misled into gross shirk by Saamiriyy. So I recommend you also do not allow division nor fitnah or fasad. Instead try to avoid a catch-22 trouble situation by prior thinking, and if do end up in that situation then do not walk away creating divisions nor exacerbate the community tensions but simply minimise the wrong you yourself are forced to do under the catch-22!

My advise is to speak to the people according to the level of their knowledge, rectify what you can without causing greater harm, leave what you cannot for a later time, keep the people united and do not let the Saamiriyy people of our time to divide the Ummah over matters the Ummah common folk have little control of or little knwolwdge and understanding of.

And Allah knows best

ps: [1]. Salat Tawbah is recommended but to be done alone and not in congregation. [2]. Salat ul Hajah is apparently based on two lies of narrations ascribed to the Prophet (s a.w), a third very weak narration and a fourth still a weak not authentic narration. You can read it in the links in the subsequent posts below.

But as I wrote above, people are doing the wrong today largely due to many Saamiriyys present around us who are not from us and selfishly and cleverly misleading the Ummah in many things. So do not let the Ummah be divided by insensitive actions from you or us, rather be quiet sometimes if the result from talking is likely to be worse, do not walk away but stay put for same reason as above, and reschedule some enjoining good and forbidding wrong for a more conducive time for acceptance, and later when enjoining good and forbidding wrong do so without unnecessary harshnes/coarseness, but rather do it with respect for the other person, empathy, consideration, well-wishes and kindness.

And Allah knows best and may Allah make us the bearaers of good and prevent us from being source of harm to ourselves or to others in their Deen and Dunya.