Monday, November 5, 2012

The Eclipse Prayer

The Eclipse Prayer: Salaat-ul-kusoof (Solar Eclipse prayer) and Salaat-ul-Khusoof (Lunar Eclipse prayer)

The prayers for a lunar eclipse and a solar eclipse is the same. It’s important to pray this in congregation, although praying alone is permissible too. The importance is because the Prophet (peace be upon him) instructed us to remember Allah and invoke Allah during this time, and this was als
o a time when the Prophet (peace be upon him) was afraid of what was to come.

Narrated `Abdullah bin `Amr : “When the sun eclipsed in the lifetime of Allah’s Apostle an announcement was made that a prayer was to be offered in congregation.” [Bukhari, 2.155]

The eclipses do not happen because someone has died and this is clear from the following hadith:

Narrated Abu Bakr: We were with Allah’s Apostle when the sun eclipsed. Allah’s Apostle stood up dragging his cloak til he entered the Mosque. He led us in a two-rak`at prayer till the sun (eclipse) had cleared. Then the Prophet (p.b.u.h) said, “The sun and the moon do not eclipse because of someone’s death. So whenever you see these eclipses pray and invoke (Allah) till the eclipse is over.” [Bukhari, 2.150]

Narrated Al-Mughira bin Shu`ba: “The sun eclipsed in the lifetime of Allah’s Apostle on the day when (his son) Ibrahim died. So the people said that the sun had eclipsed because of the death of Ibrahim. Allah’s Apostle said, “The sun and the moon do not eclipse because of the death or life (i.e. birth) of someone. When you see the eclipse pray and invoke Allah.” [Bukhari, 2.153]


An Eclipse prayer is made up of two rakaats of prayer (two units of prayer). Basically there are two rukus (bowings) and two recitations from Qur’an in each unit of prayer (rakaat) – in normal prayer, there is only one bowing per unit of prayer.

So you stand up for prayer as normal
Recite Qur’an as you normally would
Go into Rukoo (bow) and prolong the ru
koo with duas
Stand up and recite Qur’an again
Go into Rukoo (bow) again and prolong the rukoo with duas but not as long as the first rukoo
Stand up and then go into sujood (prostration) and prolong the sujood with duas
Sit up straight
Go into sujood again and prolong it (but not as long as the first sujood)
You repeat the above steps for the second rakaat (second unit of prayer)

Narrated `Aisha: In the lifetime of Allah’s Apostle (p.b.u.h) the sun eclipsed, so he led the people in prayer, and stood up and performed a long Qiyam, then bowed for a long while. He stood up again and performed a long Qiyam but this time the period of standing was shorter than the first. He bowed again for a long time but shorter than the first one, then he prostrated and prolonged the prostration. He did the same in the second rak`a as he did in the first and then finished the prayer; by then the sun (eclipse) had cleared. He delivered the Khutba (sermon) and after praising and glorifying Allah he said, “The sun and the moon are two signs against the signs of Allah; they do not eclipse on the death or life of anyone. So when you see the eclipse, remember Allah and say Takbir, pray and give Sadaqa.” The Prophet then said, “O followers of Muhammad! By Allah! There is none who has more ghaira (self- respect) than Allah as He has forbidden that His slaves, male or female commit adultery (illegal sexual intercourse). O followers of Muhammad! By Allah! If you knew that which I know you would laugh little and weep much. [Bukhari, 2.154]