Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
(Note: contains useful pointers on makeup prayers)
1. About the prostration of recital Question:
Firstly, one cannot be reciting in a congregational prayer as a follower, even if it is a quiet prayer, such as Zuhr or Asr. The great books of the Hanafi school all agree that the position of our Imams is that it is prohibitively disliked (makruh tahriman) to do so. Such as prayer would be obligatory to repeat within the time, and obligatory to repent from after the time (though no longer obligatory to repeat but merely recommended).
If you recite a verse of prostration as the imam or if praying alone, you should prostrate at the end of the verse, come back up, recite a few more verses, and then bow. If the verse of prostration is at the end of the sura, it is nonetheless recommended to add some verses. However, it is also permitted to simply bow, while intending to make one's regular prayer prostration also count for the verse of prostration. One needs to intend this, and to bow shortly after reciting the verse.
2. Makeup Prayers Question
First: one does not recite behind the Imam, full stop. There is no authentic narration from Abu Hanifa or his two companions, to permit this, as Imam Kamal al-Din ibn al-Humam decisively states in his commentary on the Hidaya, Fath al-Qadir. This is the transmitted position of the school, as found in its major texts, and supported by Ibn Abidin in his masterly Radd al-Muhtar (famous as the Hashiya). This is the position of the great scholars in both the Arab and Indian lands. That which has been transmitted from a few great Indian scholars to the contrary is their own personal ijtihad, and, as Mufti Mahmoud Usmani explained, is not generally followed by the fuqaha of our homeland.
If doing makeups, on one's can either recite out loud or quietly.
A few points to note, however: [all of them are from Ibn Abidin's Hashiya]
a) When performing makeups, it remains a strong confirmed sunna (sunna mu'akkada) to give the call to prayer (adhan), quietly, for every session of prayer. However, if you are praying more than one makeup, it is merely recommended to give the adhan for subsequent makeups. A session remains as long as you do not get busied away by a long action other than prayer. To leave a confirmed sunna repeatedly is a sin.
b) When performing makeups, it remains a strong confirmed sunna to give the call of commencement (iqama) before every single prayer, quietly, even within the same session. To leave a confirmed sunna repeatedly is a sin.
c) It is prohibitively disliked to inform others of one's makeups, or to perform them in a way that would make them know what one is performing, unless there is a valid Shariah reason to inform them. Both missing prayers and performing them invalidly are sins; it is not permitted to talk about sins without a valid reason.
d) It is immediately obligatory to make up missed prayers. However, one may delay making them up if there is a need (haja) to fulfill worldly or next-worldly needs. If one has a large number of prayers to make up, one should figure out a reasonable amount one can regularly makeup, and stick to it.
e) When calculating one's makeups, one should note that the initial assumption for all actions is that they are valid. This is considered to be our operative certainty. And certainty is not lifted by mere doubt, but, rather, by another certainty. It is therefore not legally necessary to makeup prayers one merely doubts about. If one decides to make up prayers one did not certainly miss or was not certainly invalid, it is necessary to add a sura to the Fatiha in all rak`as of the prayer: if it turns out that one's original prayer was sound, then it makeup would be considered a supererogatory (nafl) prayer, and it is necessary to add a sura to the Fatiha in all rak`as of supererogatory prayers.
d) One should intend either the first or last specific prayer (e.g. Zuhr or Asr) one missed.
e) If one left necessary (wajib) acts or performed prohibitively disliked (makruh tahriman) acts, it is necessary (wajib) to make up such a prayer within the time. After the time goes out, however, it is no longer necessary to make up such prayers, though it remains recommended, according to Imam al-Tahtawi. There is a stricter opinion that it remains necessary, which one may apply if one doesn't have a lot of makeups, and if one is free of doubts and misgivings (waswasa). People with doubts and misgivings should not try to apply more cautious rulings, as Imam al-Barkawi points out in his al-Tariqa al-Muhammadiyya.
These are just some useful rulings. Before starting for perform one's makeups, one should quickly learn the basics of performing a proper ablution and prayer, and learn the fiqh of making up missed prayers.
One should not excessively hasten the performance of one's makeups in such a way that one is completely inattentive of one's Lord: makeups are also up for acceptance or rejection, and Allah does not accept an act performed by the heedless.
3. Questions of Volume
A quiet recitation is ideally such that one can hear oneself in a quiet room, or someone sitting right next to one. However, there is also a valid opinion, chosen by some major Hanafi imams, and Imam Ashraf Ali Thanvi said that in our times the fatwa is on it, that it is enough to move the mouth and lips as one recite, even if there is no sound. While the first opinion is more cautious, the latter is also valid, so one may certainly use it for avoid making up past prayers. Reciting silently "in one's heart" without even moving the mouth or lips is certainly not recitation and such prayers need to be made up.
And Allah alone shows the way.
MMVIII © Faraz Rabbani and Qibla.
All rights reserved
No part of this article may be reproduced, displayed, modified, or distributed without the express prior written permission of both copyright holders. For permission, please submit a request at our Helpdesk.
The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, "Knowledge is only through study." While some knowledge can be gained from reading or casually listening to lectures, the best means to gain knowledge is through finding a qualified teacher and then setting up a systematic program of learning. Picking up a book or reading an article and trying to figure things out on our own is no substitute for learning from someone who has a direct link to our living tradition.
Through joining an online class at Qibla, you can benefit from convenient, online courses that will give you access to reliable scholars and our popular curriculum learning tracks. Knowledge gained in these courses will both build your iman and assist you in putting into practice what you learn. Don't give yourself less than you deserve, register today.