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How Many Rakats Are Best for Tahajjud Prayer? Read This!

Hi all readers! Are you looking for an explanation of "how many rakats are best for Tahajjud prayer?"? If your answer is “Yes”, congratulations! Now you are reading the right article. Why? Because that is what I will explain in this article. As Muslims, we must understand that. That's why I wrote this article. So, you should read it to the end!

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Specifically, there are some important things about "how many rakats are best for Tahajjud prayer?" which I will explain in this article. Some of the important things I mean are as follows:

Minimum and Maximum Rakats for Tahajjud Prayer

The first important thing about "how many rakats are best for Tahajjud prayer?" what I will explain now is minimum and maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer. I want you to understand all of that first before you read more explanations in this article because those are some of the basic things in this discussion that should be well understood.

Before I explain minimum and maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer, I will quote several hadiths that explain it all. Understand the explanation below.

Hadith About Minimum Rakats for Tahajjud Prayer

The hadith about minimum rakats for Tahajjud prayer is as follows:

قَالَ عَبْدَ اللَّهِ بْنَ عُمَرَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمَا : إِنَّ رَجُلاً قَالَ : يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ، كَيْفَ صَلاَةُ اللَّيْلِ ؟ قَالَ :‏ مَثْنَى مَثْنَى، فَإِذَا خِفْتَ الصُّبْحَ فَأَوْتِرْ بِوَاحِدَةٍ ‏‏‏

Abdullah bin Umar radliyallahu anhuma said, "Someone asked Allah's Messenger (Prophet Muhammad), "How to do the night prayer?" He said, "Two rakats, two rakats. If you are worried that you will not be able to perform the Fajr prayer (because of that), then do the Witr prayer with one rakat."

If we understand the hadith about minimum rakats for Tahajjud prayer above, we can conclude that the minimum rakats for Tahajjud prayer is two rakats. As Muslims, we must understand that.

Hadith About Maximum Rakats for Tahajjud Prayer

The hadith about maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer is as follows:

عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمَا , قَالَ : كَانَ صَلاَةُ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ثَلاَثَ عَشْرَةَ رَكْعَةً‏ (‏ يَعْنِي بِاللَّيْلِ‏)‏

From Ibn Abbas radliyallahu anhuma, he said, "The prayer of Prophet (Muhammad) sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam was thirteen rakats (meaning he prayed at night)."

The above hadith explains that Prophet Muhammad sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam prayed at night until thirteen rakats. Witr prayer and Tahajjud prayers are some of the prayers he does at night. So, we can assume that he performed twelve rakats in Tahajjud prayer and one rakat in Witr prayer.

عَنْ مَسْرُوقٍ ، قَالَ : سَأَلْتُ عَائِشَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهَا عَنْ صَلاَةِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ بِاللَّيْلِ‏ .‏ فَقَالَتْ : سَبْعٌ وَتِسْعٌ وَإِحْدَى عَشْرَةَ سِوَى رَكْعَتَىِ الْفَجْرِ‏‏

From Masruq, he said, "I have asked Aisha radiyallahu anha about the prayer of the Messenger of Allah (Prophet Muhammad) sallallahu alayhi wa sallam at night. She then said, "Seven (rakats), or nine (rakats), or eleven (rakats) apart from two rakats in Fajr prayer."

The hadith above explains that sometimes Prophet Muhammad sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam prayed at night up to seven rakats, nine rakats, or eleven rakats. These rakats are in addition to the two rakats in Fajr prayer. So, we can assume that he performed six rakats or eight rakats, or ten rakats in Tahajjud prayer.

عَنْ عَائِشَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهَا , قَالَتْ : كَانَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يُصَلِّي مِنَ اللَّيْلِ ثَلاَثَ عَشْرَةَ رَكْعَةً مِنْهَا الْوِتْرُ وَرَكْعَتَا الْفَجْرِ‏‏

From Aisha radiyallahu anha, she said, "The Prophet (Muhammad) sallallahu alayhi wa sallam prayed at night as many as thirteen rakats of which were Witr prayer and two rakats in Fajr prayer."

The above hadith explains that Prophet Muhammad sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam prayed at night up to thirteen rakats of which were rakat for the Witr prayer and two rakat for Fajr prayer. So, we can assume that he performed ten rakats in Tahajjud prayer.

If we understand some of the hadith about maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer above, we can conclude that there is no maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer. We can do whatever rakats for Tahajjud prayer according to our ability. Why?

There are two main reasons why we may conclude that there is no maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer:

  1. Because there is no hadith that specifically describes the maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer.
  2. Because several hadiths that describe the rakats that Prophet Muhammad did in his prayers are different: that the rakats he performed for the tahajjud prayer varied.

All readers! That is a brief explanation of minimum and maximum rakats for Tahajjud prayer. As Muslims, we must understand that.

How Many Rakats Are Best for Tahajjud Prayer?

The second important thing about "how many rakats are best for Tahajjud prayer?" what I'm going to explain now is a specific answer. So, I really hope you guys read the explanation below very well.

Before I explain about "how many rakats are best for Tahajjud prayer?", I will quote some hadiths about best rakats for Tahajjud prayer. Pay attention to the explanation below!

Hadith About Best Rakats for Tahajjud Prayer

As for the hadith about best rakats for Tahajjud prayer what I mean is as follows:

عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ قَالَ : دَخَلَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَإِذَا حَبْلٌ مَمْدُودٌ بَيْنَ السَّارِيَتَيْنِ فَقَالَ :‏ مَا هَذَا الْحَبْلُ ؟‏ قَالُوا هَذَا حَبْلٌ لِزَيْنَبَ فَإِذَا فَتَرَتْ تَعَلَّقَتْ‏ .‏ فَقَالَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ‏:‏ لاَ ، حُلُّوهُ ، لِيُصَلِّ أَحَدُكُمْ نَشَاطَهُ ، فَإِذَا فَتَرَ فَلْيَقْعُدْ ‏‏

From Anas bin Malik radliyallahu anhu, he said, “Once the Prophet (Muhammad) sallallahu alaihi wa sallam entered the Mosque and saw a rope hanging in between its two pillars. He said, “What is this rope?” The people said, "This rope is for Zainab who, when she feels tired, holds it (to keep standing for the prayer.)" The Prophet sallallahu alaihi wa sallam said, "Don't use it. Remove the rope. You should pray as long as you feel active, and when you get tired, sit down."

عَنْ عَائِشَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهَا قَالَتْ : كَانَتْ عِنْدِي امْرَأَةٌ مِنْ بَنِي أَسَدٍ فَدَخَلَ عَلَىَّ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَقَالَ ‏:‏ مَنْ هَذِهِ ؟‏ قُلْتُ فُلاَنَةُ لاَ تَنَامُ بِاللَّيْلِ‏ .‏ فَذُكِرَ مِنْ صَلاَتِهَا . فَقَالَ : مَهْ عَلَيْكُمْ مَا تُطِيقُونَ مِنَ الأَعْمَالِ ، فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يَمَلُّ حَتَّى تَمَلُّوا ‏‏

From Aisha radliyallahu anha, she said, “A woman from the tribe of Bani Asad was sitting with me and Allah's Apostle (Prophet Muhammad) sallallahu alaihi wa sallam came to my house and said, "Who is this?" I said, "(She is) So and so. She does not sleep at night because she is engaged in prayer." The Prophet said disapprovingly: Do (good) deeds which is within your capacity as Allah never gets tired of giving rewards till you get tired of doing good deeds."

عَنْ أَبِي الْعَبَّاسِ ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ عَبْدَ اللَّهِ بْنَ عَمْرٍو رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمَا ـ قَالَ لِيْ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ :‏ أَلَمْ أُخْبَرْ أَنَّكَ تَقُومُ اللَّيْلَ وَتَصُومُ النَّهَارَ ‏؟ قُلْتُ : إِنِّي أَفْعَلُ ذَلِكَ‏ .‏ قَالَ : فَإِنَّكَ إِذَا فَعَلْتَ ذَلِكَ هَجَمَتْ عَيْنُكَ وَنَفِهَتْ نَفْسُكَ ، وَإِنَّ لِنَفْسِكَ حَقٌّ ، وَلأَهْلِكَ حَقٌّ ، فَصُمْ وَأَفْطِرْ ، وَقُمْ وَنَمْ ‏‏

From Abu al-Abbas, he said, "I've heard Abdullah bin Amr bin al-Ash radiyallahu anhuma say, "Once Allah's Messenger (Prophet Muhammad) sallallahu alaihi wa sallam said to me, "I have been informed that you offer Salat (prayer) all the night and observe Saum (fast) during the day." I said, "(Yes) I do so." He said, "If you do so, your eye sight will become weak and you will become weak. No doubt, your body has right on you, and your family has right on you, so observe Saum (for some days) and do not observe it (for some days), offer Salat (for sometime) and then sleep."

عَنْ ابْنِ عُمَر رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمَا : أَنَّ رَجُلاً جَاءَ إِلَى النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ وَهُوَ يَخْطُبُ ، فَقَالَ : كَيْفَ صَلَاةُ اللَّيْلِ ؟ فَقَالَ : مَثْنَى مَثْنَى، فَإِذَا خَشِيتَ الصُّبْحَ فَأَوْتِرْ بِوَاحِدَةٍ ، تُوتِرُ لَكَ مَا قَدْ صَلَّيْتَ

From Ibn Umar radliyallahu anhuma, “A man came to the Prophet (Muhammad) sallallahu alaihi wa sallam while he was delivering the sermon and asked him how to offer the night prayers. The Prophet replied, 'Pray two rakats at a time and then two and then two and so on and if you are afraid of dawn (the approach of the time of the Fajr prayer) pray one rakat and that will be the with for all the rakats which you have prayed."

Now, if we understand some of the hadiths above, we can conclude that best rakats for Tahajjud prayer are rakats that does not burden us. We should not force ourselves to do a lot of rakats in Tahajjud prayer even though we are not able to do it all.

All readers! That is a brief explanation of "how many rakats are best for Tahajjud prayer?" and some important things about it. Do you understand? If you want to ask, please ask.

I think that's enough for this article. May be useful. Amen.

See you again in the next article!

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