Since it is Friday today, I thought of telling you a little bit about Muslims Friday Prayer (Salat Al Jumu'ah) as we name it in Arabic. (1)
Jumu'ah, also known as jum'ah, Friday prayer, is a congregational prayer (salat) that we Muslims hold every Friday, just after noon in lieu of noon time (dhuhr).
When the call is made for prayer on Friday, then people should leave off business; everything, and go to pray. That's why, on Fridays, Shops, Supermarkets, Shopping Malls, Restaurants and everything else opens after the Friday Prayer (Around 3:00 p.m).
The jumu'ah prayer is half the dhuhr prayer, for convenience, preceded by a khutba (a sermon as a technical replacement of the two reduced raka'ahs (2) of the ordinary dhuhr prayer), and followed by a communal prayer, led by the imam (3).
In most cases the khatib (4) also serves as the imam. Attendance is strictly incumbent upon all adult males who are legal residents of the locality, females are also permitted to go to the Mosque to perform the Friday prayers, and have a section that is separated from men in which they pray with fellow Muslim women, though it is only obligatory on all Muslim males.
The muezzin (5) makes the call to prayer, called the adhan (the call for prayer), usually 15-20 minutes prior to the start of Jum'ah. When the khatib takes his place on the minbar (6), a second adhan is made. The khatib is supposed to deliver two speeches, stopping and sitting briefly between them. In practice, the first speech is longer and contains most of the content. The second speech is very brief and concludes with a du'a (7), after which the muezzin calls the iqama (8). This signals the start of the main two rak'at prayer of Jumu'ah.
The prayers mainly have high attendance of worshipers, as compared to the ritual prayers.
Abu Hurayrah reported that Prophet Muhammad said: "When it is Friday, the angels stand at every door of the mosque and record the people in order of arrival, and when the Imam sits on the pulpit for delivering the sermon, qutba, they fold up their sheets and listen to the mention of Allah, the speech."
A person who goes to Friday prayer is said to have his sins between that Friday and last forgiven.
(1)-- What is Salah or Salat?
Salat is the name given to the formal prayer of Islam. Its supreme importance for Muslims is indicated by its status as one of the paradigmatic Five Pillars of Islam, which are:
1- Shahadah (profession of faith)
2- Salat (prayers)
3- Zakat (giving of alms, specifically during Ramadan)
4- Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca, the place were the most famous islamic temple is located)
5- Sawm (fasting)
and These five practices are essential to all Muslims.
Salah is a ritual prayer, having prescribed conditions, a prescribed procedure, and prescribed times.
Performing salah is obligatory on all adult Muslims, with a few dispensations for those for whom it would be difficult.
To perform valid salah, Muslims must be in a state of ritual purity, which is mainly achieved by ritual ablution according to prescribed procedures.
The place of prayer should be clean. In a few cases where blood is leaving the body, salah is forbidden until a later time.
(2)-- What is rak'ah?
Salah consists of the repetition of two or more units of a prescribed sequence of actions and words. One complete sequence is known as a rak'ah (pl. rak'at).
The number of obligatory (fard) rak'at varies according to the time of day or other circumstances requiring salah (such as Friday congregational prayers). Additions to the fard rak'at can be made, again in different multiples according to the circumstances.
These are not required, but are considered meritorious. There are also dispensations from some or all of the prescribed actions for those who are physically unable to complete them. The prescribed words of the prayer remain obligatory.
Salah is prescribed at five periods of the day, which are measured according to the movement of the sun. These are:
1- near dawn (fajr)
2- after the sun's noon (dhuhr)
3- in the afternoon (asr)
4- just after sunset (maghrib)
5- and around nightfall (isha'a).
The Islamic day begins at sundown. Under some circumstances prayers can be shortened or combined (according to prescribed procedures). Prayers can be missed in serious cases, but they should be made up later.
(3)-- Who is the Imam?
An imam is an Islamic leadership position, often the leader of a mosque and the community. Similar to spiritual leaders, the imam is the one who leads the prayer during Islamic gatherings.
More often, the community turns to the mosque imam if they have an Islamic question. In smaller communities an imam could be the community leader based on the community setting.
(4)-- Who is the Khatib?
Khatib or khateeb (khatib) is an Arabic term used to describe a person who delivers the sermon (khuṭbah), during the Friday prayer or Eid prayers.
The khatib is usually the Imam (prayer leader), but sometimes the two roles can be played by different people. There are no requirements of eligibility to become a khatib, although the person must be a male who has attained the age of puberty. It is also required that the khatib be in a state of physical purity.
(5)-- Who is the Muezzin?
A muezzin is a chosen person at the mosque who leads the call (adhan) to Friday service and the five daily prayers (salat) from one of the mosque's minarets. In most modern mosques, electronic amplification aids the muezzins.
(6)-- What is a minbar?
A minbar (also spelt mimbar) is a pulpit in the mosque where the Imam (leader of prayer) stands to deliver sermons (khutbah).
(7)-- What is Du'a?
In the terminology of Islam, Du'a is the act of supplication. The term is derived from an Arabic word meaning to 'call out' or to 'summon', and Muslims regard this as a profound act of worship. Our Islamic Prophet Muhammad is reported to have said "Dua is the very essence of worship," while one of Allah's commands expressed to Muslims through the Qur'an is for them to call out to Him:
"And your Lord says: "Call on Me; I will answer your (Prayer)!"
(8)-- What is Iqama?
The word iqama refers to the second call to Islamic Prayer, given immediately before the prayer begins. Generally speaking, the iqama is given more quickly and in a more monotone fashion, as compared to the adhan. It differs from the first call to prayer, the adhan.
In order to know hoe to perfom a complete correct Salat, pls visit: