How to perform eclipse prayer and important issues regarding eclipse prayer
Know that eclipses happen by the will of Allāh because he decrees it. One should not take it as a natural phenomena.
The reason behind it has been explained to us by the Prophet ﷺ.
(إنَّ الشمسَ و القمرَ لا يَنكَسِفان لموتِ أحدٍ و لا لحياتِه ، و لكنهما آيتانِ من آيات اللهِ ، يخوِّفُ اللهُ بهما عبادَه ، فإذا رأيتُم ذلك ، فصلُّوا و ادعُوا حتى ينكشِفَ ما بكم )
“Indeed the sun and moon eclipses does not happen when someone dies or is born. They are two signs from the (mighty and majestic) capabilities of Allāh sent to strike fear into the hearts of His slaves. If you see it happen pray to Allāh asking to remove it from you.”
Dear brothers! Know that eclipse is a warning. It’s a warning given about a calamity that might happen. That is why it is commanded to hasten for prayer when it happens.
We have been commanded to engage in supplicating, giving charity, freeing of slaves, making Dhikr and to submit to Allāh with humbleness, uttering that we have no power or strength.
We have been instructed to repent. Dear beloved brothers! If we look at what’s happening around us in this world, do we see even among the Muslims the attributes mentioned above? Isn’t it the same as any other night? Do we see them behave differently because there’s something different happening? Do we see them frightened?
This is because the hearts have gone cold and their hearts are dead. These are the signs of dead hearts. It should not be the case.
In the time of the Prophet ﷺ the eclipse happened on the day that his son Ibraheem رضي الله عنه died. But he asked the people to assemble for prayer and الصلاة جامعة (call to assemble for prayer) was called.
So the people gathered to the mosque. And a prayer that the Sahaba never saw was established. It was a prayer that surprised the Sahaba رضي الله عنهم
Dear brothers! This is a significant sign. An enormous evidence sent by Allāh in their lives so that the people would get a lesson from that.
Why shouldn’t it be so? The prayer that was performed was a surprisingly different prayer. And the thing that has happened (the eclipse) was new to them. The sun’s light went all black during the day.
When the Prophet ﷺ was performing the eclipse prayer, he was shown paradise. So he took a step forward as he saw the fruits of paradise.
He was also shown the Hellfire. When he felt the heat from it, he took a step backward.
Dear brothers! This was a different situation, a different prayer, Paradise and Hellfire was shown….. Aren’t these therefore lessons we could learn? Aren’t these admonitions to learn from? Aren’t you afraid that the light would go away and never come back?
Isn’t it possible that it might become a very frightening situation?
In the prayer that was performed by the Prophet ﷺ he stood for a long time in Qiyam (standing reciting the Qur’an). He prayed two Rak’ahs. After the prayer he mentioned some very impactful words. He said:
(واللهِ لو تَعلمونَ ما أعْلَمُ لضَحِكْتُمْ قليلًا ولبَكَيتُمْ كثيرًا)
“If you knew that which I know, you would laugh little and weep much.”
Dear brothers! With what is happening already within you, add this warning to that and awaken yourself. Give yourself an admonition from this.
I will now mention some point regarding the prayer.
Firstly: Many of us are still amidst a lockdown. So can we pray at home?
If we look at the words of scholars, it is possible to pray at home in congregation or even seperately. It is better to pray in the mosque where it is possible. It is Sunnah to pray in congregation as well as seperately.
The evidence for this is the words of the Prophet ﷺ.
(فإذا رأيتموه فصلوا)
“When you see the eclipse, establish the prayer
Al-Imām ibn Qudamah said:
“With the permission of the Imām or without, people should hasten to pray even if it’s individually”.المقنع ) 72)
The authentic view in this matter is that it is not a condition for the Imām to give his permission in this matter. Al-Imām ash-Sheikh Sālih al-Fawzān حفظه الله said:
“From the actions of the Prophet ﷺ we know that it is a Sunnah to pray the eclipse prayer. And as Sunnah prayers are prayed individually, it is permissible to pray individually as well. However, it is better to pray in congregation.الملخص) 282 )
Secondly: How the prayer is performed?
1- Make the intention, say Allāh Akbar and fold your arms on the chest. Then say Istiftaaḥ, Isti’ādah and Basmalah and recite Suratul Fatiḥah. Then recite a lengthy passage from the Qur’ān that’s easy for you to recite.
2- Say Allāh Akbar and go to Rukoo’. Recite the Tasbeeh at Rukoo’ (It’s a Sunnah to lengthen the Rukoo’ as well).
Say سمع الله لمن حمده and stand up for Qiyam. Say Isti’ādah, Basmalah and recite Suratul Fatiḥah and recite a lengthy passage from the Qur’ān from what is easy for you. This was the second Rukoo’ of the first Rak’ah.
3- After saying the Tasbeeḥ at Rukoo’ say Sami Allāh li-man Ḥamidah، سمع الله لمن حمده and stand up. Then go to Sajdah.
4- Say the Tasbeeḥ that is read in Sajdah, say Allāh Akbar and sit, then read the Dhikr and do the second Sajdah.
5- When the second Sajdah is done, get up for the second Rak’ah. And as done previously in the first Rak’ah, (do two Rukoo’) I’tidaal, Sajdah, sitting after Sajdah, second Sajdah, read the At-Taḥiyyaat and give salaam to end the prayer.
Thirdly: Is it allowed to recite from the Mus-haf in this prayer. Yes. It is permissible to recite from the Mus-haf in this prayer. There is no problem with that.