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Prayer

Salah(Arabic: صلاة ṣalāh) is the practice of formal prayer in Islam. Its supreme importance for Muslims aas indicated by its status as one of the Five Pillars of Sunni Islam and one of the Ten Practices of the Religion of Shia Twelver Islam. Salah is a ritual prayer, having prescribed conditions, a prescribed procedure, and prescribed times.

Performing salah is obligatory, with a few dispensations for those for whom it would be difficult. To perform valid salah, Muslims must be in a state of ritual purity, which is mainly achieved by ritual ablution or Wudhu according to prescribed procedures. The place of prayer should be clean. In a few cases when a person is bleeding, salah can’t be performed.

Salah consists of the repetition of two or more units of a prescribed sequence of actions and words. One complete sequence is known as a raka’ah (pl. raka’āt). The number of obligatory (fard) raka’āt varies according to the time of day or other circumstances (such as Friday congregational prayers). The minimal, obligatory raka’at may be supplemented with acts which are optional but are considered meritorious. There are also dispensations from some or all of the prescribed actions for those who are physically unable to complete them. The prescribed words of the prayer remain obligatory.

After Salah, often duas and munazats are held. Ceratin hadiths recommends reciting Ayatul Kursi and Sura Al-Falaq, Al-Nas , etc after Salah.

For Sunnis Muslims, salah is prescribed at five periods of the day, which are measured according to the movement of the sun. These are: near dawn (fajr), just after noon (dhuhr), in the afternoon (asr), just after sunset (maghrib) and around nightfall (isha’a).  Under some circumstances prayers can be shortened or combined (according to prescribed procedures). In case a prayer is skipped, it must be made up later.

Shia Islam permits two sets of these prayers to be performed in succession. Shia Muslims pray the near dawn (fajr), just after noon (dhuhr)  immediately perform the afternoon (asr) prayer, just after sunset (maghriband immediately perform the nightfall (isha’a). Sufis Muslims often perform dhikr after the conclusion of prayers.

Step by step guide to perform the prayers (according to Shia tradition).