Shaykh Muhammad Salim Ghisa is a prominent young scholar in the UK. He has studied Islam in India, UK and Jordan.
After submission to the faith of Islam, Salaah is the most important form of worship for the believers. The purpose behind the Salaah is to remember the creator within regular intervals during the day. This will lead to a believer putting his/her full trust in Allah for all their day to day necessities. There are many Hadith advising the believers of the true benefits of Salaah and the beauty it holds for both this world and the hereafter.
During our day we commit many sins without even realising their consequences. However, we cannot always remember to perform repentance to Allah and hence justifiably we should await our punishment. However, how great is the mercy of Allah who forgives these sins just by us performing our daily prayers, as narrated in the following Hadith;
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) narrates: “I heard the Messenger of Allah (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) say”, “What would you think if there were a river running by the door of any of you, and he bathed in it five times every day, would any trace of dirt be left on him?” The people said “There would be no trace of dirt on him”. He said “this is like the five daily prayers through which Allah erases (minor) sins. ” (Bukhari and Muslim)
The Messenger of Allah (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) said: “The five daily prayers are like a deep river flowing by the door of any of you, in which he bathes five times a day.” (Muslim)
Ibn Mas’ud said: “A man kissed a woman, and then he came to the Prophet of Allah (pbuh) and told him what he had done. Then Allah revealed the verse “And establish regular prayers at the two ends of the day and at the approaches of the night: For those things that are good remove those that are evil…(11:114). The man said “does it apply to me?” The Prophet (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) replied “it applies to all of my Ummah. (Bukhari and Muslim)
Uthman Ibn Affan said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) saying “There is no Muslim who, when the time for prayer comes, performs ablution properly, concentrates on his prayer and bows correctly, but the prayer will be an expiation for the sins committed prior to it, so as long as no major sin has been committed. This is the case until the end of time.” (Muslim)
Benefit in this world
From the above few Hadith we can understand the benefit of Salaah for us and our after life. However one may ask how it can benefit me in this world? The fact of the matter is that when a Muslim devotes himself to prayer he gains such closeness to his creator that all that he does is always accepted and becomes spiritual. Therefore when he asks for something Allah grants it, when he needs something Allah gives it even before he requests it. Allah has said that he becomes the power in the hand that he uses or the step he takes, meaning he only does with the absolute will of Allah. This is when a person becomes the friend of Allah and Allah loves him so much that He will wage war against his servant’s enemies. Who needs any defence when Allah will protect them?
Abu Hurairah narrated from the Prophet (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) that Allah said “Whoever is hostile to my friends I declare war against him. A man does not come close to me with anything more dearly than what I have made obligatory upon them (Salaah, saum etc). Man continues to come nearer to me through voluntary deeds until I love him, and when I love him, I become his ears with which he hears, I become his sight with which he sees. I become his hands with which he strikes and I become his legs with which he strides. If he asks me I shall surely grant his request. If he seeks my refuge I shall protect him. I do not hesitate in what I intend to do, as I hesitate to take the soul of My faithful servant; he hates death whilst I hate for any harm to come to him (through pain of death). [Bukhari]
From the above hadith we can see how powerful man can become when he becomes close to Allah. This can only be done by performing regular Salaah.
Here's a few more benefits of prayer in this world:
- It helps you from doing evil deeds and makes you a better person.
- It gives you peace, tranquillity and meditation.
- Prayer gives you stress-relief because you shut everything else out.
- Prayer in congregation (jamaat) builds your bond with other Muslims.
- It gives you a timetable for the day. It gives you discipline.
Salaah in times of difficulty
When we face difficulties we try and find remedy in various different aspects, such as finance, medicine, friendship etc. However, whenever our Prophet (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) would face difficulty he would always turn to prayer.
Huzaifa narrates that whenever the Prophet (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) faced any difficulty, he would at once resort to Salaah. (Ahmad, Abu Dawood)
Salaah is a great blessing of Allah. To resort to Salaah at the time of worry is to hasten to His mercy, and when Allah’s mercy comes to the rescue there can be no trace of any worry. When Ibn Abbas heard the news of the death of his son, he came off his camel and performed two cycles of prayer and said this is what Allah has commanded us to do in the following verse “Seek Allah’s help with patience and Salaah”(2:45)
There are many other reports of when Allah’s Messenger and his companions used to resort to Salaah. We unfortunately find that our youth resort to Haram such as alcohol and drugs to drown their worries, and then we wonder why we as an Ummah are in such a state.
Other benefits of Salaah
There are numerous benefits for Salaah both physically and mentally, here are some that our scholars have highlighted:
- The love of Allah will start to increase.
- The body will stay free from illness.
- You will stay in the protection of the angels.
- You will gain blessing in the home.
- Your face and body will become illuminated.
- Allah will protect you from the punishment of the grave.
- Allah will protect you from the fire of Hell.
- There will be ease in the questioning on the day of judgement.
- The Prophet (May Allah bless him and grant him peace) will intercede for you.
- You will be with the friends of Allah without fear.
- The greatest benefit for the believer will be the vision of Allah.
May Allah guide us all and keep us steadfast in prayer and worship. Of course Allah knows best