Need a few reasons to go to the Mosque?

Since 2014-01-08

The next time someone gives you a call inviting you to the Mosque for the congregational prayer, why don’t you give them these 27 reasons on why you’ve been in the Mosque for ages before they called!

Praying salâh and fulfilling its rights is one thing; praying on time is something else. But praying in the Mosque in Jamâah (congregation) – how much importance have you ever given that?

The prayer is our only true daily opportunity to really thank our Lord for all the blessings He has bestowed upon us. It confirms our belief, shows our gratitude, helps the Angels and Righteous people to make intercession for us and most importantly, gives us a vital piece of evidence for our case to enter Paradise when we present it to our Lord on the final Day of Reckoning. Surely we need to perfect as far as possible all that is connected with the prayer, both internally and externally…

Ok sure – far too many people don’t even pray their obligatory salâh, either in congregation or individually within their own home. We spend hours and hours wasting our time with frivolous activities yet we forget that it’ll be the prayer that’ll be the first thing that Allâh ‘azza wa jall will question us about!

Maybe at the more difficult times when Fajr is very early and ‘Isha is very late, we should just be content with those who perform their minimum fardh prayers. Shouldn’t we?

But maybe we shouldn’t. Why not aim higher? Why let the possibility of great rewards pass us by just like that? Ever heard the saying, “Aim for the stars; you might hit the Moon”…

Maybe we should look instead at what the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) has advised us in relation to praying in congregation in the Mosque. He (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “The prayer performed in congregation is twenty seven times greater than that prayed individually.” [Bukhâri]

Hadîth such as this and many more like it have been related to us by Imâm Bukhâri (rahimahullâh) in his authentic collection, encouraging the believers to pray in the mosques with the congregation. Actually, some scholars insisted that it was obligatory upon the men to do so! And we see that we will get a reward at least 25 times and even 27 times greater than praying by ourselves!

It’s not like we don’t need such advice in our day to day practising of our faith. I don’t know about you, but have you noticed how short and insignificant the prayer one does by himself can be? This goes double for the Fajr prayer of course, especially when there’s a nice lovely warm bed waiting for you to jump straight back into!

Why is it that when we’re at home, we quicken the prayer because there’s always ‘something to do’? Why is it that in our daily list of things-to-do, it is always the prayer that will come out the loser in terms of cutting corners and saving time?

So I think it’d be a good idea to remind ourselves of how the prayer in the Mosque might be 27 times greater than normal. As Imâm ibn Hajr (rahimahullâh) has mentioned in his encyclopaedic work Fath al-Bârî, one can enumerate 27, if not more, excellent reasons to pray in Jamâ‛ah due to all the followinghasanât (actions that are rewarded) that can be achieved. What is truly amazing is that each of the following points is to be found in specific narrations of the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) encouraging us to that particular action:

1. Responding to the Mu’adhdhin (the caller to prayer) with the intention to pray in Jamâ‛ah

2. Arriving early to pray in its beginning time

3. Going to the Mosque with sakînah (with calmness and humility).

4. Entering the Mosque in supplication

5. Greeting the Mosque with two raka‛ât of Tahiyyatul Masjid (the prayer for the Mosque)

6. Waiting in the Mosque for the Jamâ‛ah to start

7. The Angels praying for you and seeking forgiveness for you

8. The Angels will bear witness for you

9. Safety from the Devil as he flees at hearing the Iqâmah (the second call that establishes the prayer)

10. Responding to the call of the Iqâmah

11. Standing and waiting with the Imâm in readiness to enter a state where everything else other than the prayer will become harâm

12. Being present for the Takbîratul Ihrâm (the start of the prayer)

13. Straightening the rows and closing the gaps

14. Responding to the Imâm when he says, “Sami-Allâhu liman hamidah” (Allâh Hears the one who praises Him)

15. A greater chance of not forgetting in the prayer, or being able to remind the Imâm if he forgets

16. A greater chance of perfecting the external aspects of the prayer

17. A greater chance to achieve peace and humility in the prayer from what normally distracts oneself whilst praying alone

18. Being surrounded by the Angels throughout the prayer

19. Familiarising oneself with the recitation of the Qur‛ân and the pillars of the prayer

20. Promoting the signs and rituals of Islâm

21. Defeating the attempts of Satan by the combined worship of those in the congregation, and the encouragement of one another in the obedience of Allâh whilst helping the lazy to become stronger

22. Safety from showing the sign of the hyprocrites (not attending the Mosque) and the bad opinions of others who may think that you do not pray

23. The returning of the Salâm upon the Imâm (at the end of the prayer)

24. Benefitting from the congregation in supplications and dhikr, whilst at the same time enjoying the combined blessings of others when one is deficient (in blessing) by himself

25. Establishing good relations with your neighbours, looking out for them especially at the prayer times

26. Listening and deeply reflecting upon the recitation of the Imâm

27. Joining in with the Imâm and the Angels in saying آmîn after Sûrah al-Fâtihah.

These final two benefits would only be realised at the ‘loud’ prayers such as Fajr, Maghrib, ‘Eed etc.

With such a treasure of excellent actions and great reward waiting for us when we sincerely go to worship Allâh in His houses, it is crazy that we are missing out by praying individually – or unfortunately, and unbelievably so – by not praying at all!

So hey – the next time someone gives you a call inviting you to the Mosque for the congregational prayer, why don’t you give them these 27 reasons on why you’ve been in the Mosque for ages before they called!

Source: Prophetic Guidance

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