If We Are Confused and Wrong in Determining Qibla, What Should We Do?

Confused and Wrong in Determining Qibla

Determining Qibla ~ Hi all readers! In this article, I will explain a problem that we may have experienced or will experience. For example, one day in a place we do not know the direction of Qibla even though we have to pray. If we experience such conditions, what should we do?

Confused and Wrong in Determining Qibla

As always, before I explain about determining Qibla and I answer the question above, I will quote one hadith that is specifically related to our discussion. Pay attention!

Hadith About Determining Qibla

The hadith about determining Qibla that I mean is as follows:

عَنْ عَامِرٍ بْنِ رَبِيْعَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ قَالَ ؛ كُنَّا مَعَ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فِيْ لَيْلَةٍ مُظْلِمَةٍ ، فَأَشْكَلَتْ عَلَيْنَا الْقِبْلَةَ ، فَصَلَّيْنَا . فَلَمَّا طَلَعَتِ الشَّمْسُ إِذَا نَحْنُ صَلَّيْنَا إِلَى غَيْرِ الْقِبْلَةِ ، فَنَزَلْتْ ( فَأَيْنَمَا تُوَلُّوْا فَثَمَّ وَجْهُ اللهِ ) . أَخْرَجَهُ التِّرْمِذِيُّ

From ‘Amir bin Rabi'ah radliyallaahu anhu, he said, "We have been with the Prophet (Muhammad) sallallaahu alaihi wa salalm on a dark night. We don't know the direction of the qibla. We also pray. When the sun rises it turns out we have prayers facing a direction that is not the direction of the qibla. Then the verse goes down "Wherever you face, then there is “the face” of Allah.” This hadith is narrated by at-Tirmidhi.

All readers! You need to know, that one of the legitimate requirements for prayer is facing the Qibla. Without it, our prayers are invalid. It can be found in the word of Allah Ta'ala as follows;

قَدۡ نَرَىٰ تَقَلُّبَ وَجۡهِكَ فِي ٱلسَّمَآءِۖ فَلَنُوَلِّيَنَّكَ قِبۡلَةٗ تَرۡضَىٰهَاۚ فَوَلِّ وَجۡهَكَ شَطۡرَ ٱلۡمَسۡجِدِ ٱلۡحَرَامِۚ وَحَيۡثُ مَا كُنتُمۡ فَوَلُّواْ وُجُوهَكُمۡ شَطۡرَهُۥۗ وَإِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ ٱلۡكِتَٰبَ لَيَعۡلَمُونَ أَنَّهُ ٱلۡحَقُّ مِن رَّبِّهِمۡۗ وَمَا ٱللَّهُ بِغَٰفِلٍ عَمَّا يَعۡمَلُونَ ١٤٤

Indeed We see the turning of your face to heaven, so We shall surely turn you to a qibla which you shall like; turn then your face towards the Sacred Mosque, and wherever you are, turn your face towards it, and those who have been given the Book most surely know that it is the truth from their Lord; and Allah is not at all heedless of what they do. (Al-Baqarah: 144).

There are several things related to the hadith above that we need to know;

  • The hadith explains, that if we experience the conditions as I meant above, then we must try to find the direction of qiblah and after that we pray. But if it turns out we are wrong in determining the direction of the qiblah, then our prayers are still valid.
  • There are differences of opinion among experts on Islamic law on this issue. The information in the first point, that our prayers are still valid, is the opinion of Ahmad, Abu Hanifah, and Malik. But Malik has another opinion, that the person is recommended to pray again. Ash-Shafi'i argued that his prayers were invalid because facing qibla was one of the legal requirements for prayer. The meaning is, that according to Ash-Syafi'i, the person must pray again.

That is a brief explanation of determining Qibla. Now, do you understand? The problem is simple and the explanation I have conveyed is very clear. So, I hope you understand! But if you want to ask, please ask!

I think that is enough for this article. May be useful! Amen!

See you again in the next article!

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