Fard prayers are obligatory prayers that have to be performed unless circumstances allow otherwise. Not performing these prayers is considered a serious sin.

The 5 Daily Prayers

[table]Name,Prescribed time period (waqt),Fard Rakahs
Fajr (فجر),Dawn to sunrise,2 Raka’ah

Zohr (ظهر),After true noon until Asr,4 Raka’ah

Asr (عصر),From mid-afternoon till early evening just before sunset,4 Raka’ah
Maghrib (مغرب),Right after sunset until dusk,3 Raka’ah
Isha (عشاء),Dusk until just before dawn,4 Raka’ah[/table]


1. Fajr

The Fajr (Arabic: فجر‎) prayer is the first of the five daily prayers (Salah). ‘Fajr’ means dawn in Arabic.

Importance

According to some opinions, it is considered by Muslims to be more precious than their lives. Inspired by the tafsir of the two hadiths that were transmitted on behalf of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, the worth of the Fajr daily prayer is explained as being God’s most-favoured prayer since others are asleep. This has made the Fajr daily prayer the most essential and obligatory congregational prayer to be held by Muslims together in groups in mosques.

Time

The time period within which the Fajr daily prayer must be recited is from the beginning of dawn to sunrise.

Number Of Rakahs

  • 2 Fard
  • 2 Sunnah before the 2 Fard (highly recommended)

Other Facts

  • The call to Fajr prayer (the Adhan) marks the beginning of the obligatory daily fasting (sawm) during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
  • The Adhan for Fajr is the only Adhan that’s different. The phrase ‘Prayer is better than sleep’ is included only in the Fajr call to prayer.
  • There is a Surah called ‘Fajr’ which means ‘Dawn’

Hadith Quotes

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “He who observes Al-Bardan (i.e., Fajr and `Asr prayers) will enter Jannah.”
Sahih Bukhari and Muslim, Narrated by Abu Musa

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “He who performs Salah (prayers) before the rising of the sun and before its setting, will not enter the Hell.’
Sahih Muslim, Narrated by Abu Zuhair `Umarah Ruwaibah

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “He who offers the dawn (Fajr) prayers will come under the Protection of Allah. O son of Adam! Beware, lest Allah should call you to account in any respect from (for withdrawing) His Protection.”
Sahih Muslim, Narrated by Jundub bin Sufyan

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “There are angels who take turns in visiting you by night and by day, and they all assemble at the dawn (Fajr) and the afternoon (`Asr) prayers. Those who have spent the night with you, ascend to the heaven and their Rubb, Who knows better about them, asks: `In what condition did you leave My slaves?’ They reply: `We left them while they were performing Salah and we went to them while they were performing Salah.”’
Sahih Bukhari and Muslim, Narrated by Abu Hurairah

We were sitting with Prophet Muhammad ﷺ when he looked at the full moon and observed, “You will see your Rubb in the Hereafter as you see this moon having no difficulty in seeing it. So try your best to perform the prayers before the rising of the sun and that before its setting.”
Sahih Bukhari and Muslim, Narrated by Jarir bin `Abdullah Al-Bajali

How to pray Fajr


 2. Zohr

Zohr is the prayer after midday (but before the shadow of the sun becomes twice its length from midday.)

Four raka’ah are required (Fard) and are prayed silently in congregation.

Time

Once the sun has crossed the celestial meridian (true noon), exactly halfway between sunrise and sunset. This is when the Sun is at the highest point in the sky and a little after that. The time ends when Asr prayer begins.

Number Of Rakahs

  • 4 Sunnah before Fard
  • 4 Fard
  • 2 or 4 Sunnah after the 4 Fard

Other Facts

  • On Friday the Zohr prayer is replaced by Jumu’ah, which is obligatory for all Muslim males above the age of puberty.

Hadith Quotes

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ used to pray four rak’ats when the sun began to descend before the Zohr prayer. He said, ‘It is an hour in which the gates of heaven are opened and I want a righteous action to ascend for me in it.'”
At-Tirmidhi, Narrated by Abdullah ibn as-Sa’ib

 

“I prayed with Prophet Muhammad ﷺ two rak’ats before Zohr and two rak’ats after it.”‘
Narrated by Ibn Umar

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ did not fail to pray four rak’ats before Zohr
Sahih Bukhari, Narrated by Aisha

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ used to pray four rak’ats in my house before Zohr and then go out and lead the people in prayer. Then he would come in and pray two rak’ats. He would lead the people in the Maghrib prayer and then enter and pray two rak’ats. He would lead the people in the ‘Isha’ prayer and then enter my house and pray two rak’ats.”
Sahih Muslim, Narrated by Aisha

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Allah will make unlawful for the Fire anyone who maintains the practice of the four rak’ats before Zohr and the four after it.”
Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi, Narrated by Umm Habiba

How to pray Zohr


3. Asr

The Asr (Arabic: عصر‎) prayer is the afternoon daily prayer. It is the third of the five daily prayers (Salah).

Time

Once the Zohr prayer time is over, around mid afternoon, to the late evening, just before the setting of the sun.

Number Of Rakahs

  • 4 Fard

Importance

Missing Asr salah is equated with losing ones wealth, as mentioned in the hadith below.

Hadith Quotes

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said ‘He who misses his Asr Salah (i.e. reads it after its specified time) is as if he has lost his wife, children and all his wealth.’ (Sahih Muslim)
Sahih Muslim

Narrated by Jundub bin Sufyan Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “There are angels who take turns in visiting you by night and by day, and they all assemble at the dawn (Fajr) and the afternoon (`Asr) prayers. Those who have spent the night with you, ascend to the heaven and their Rubb, Who knows better about them, asks: `In what condition did you leave My slaves?’ They reply: `We left them while they were performing Salah and we went to them while they were performing Salah.”’
Sahih Bukhari and Muslim, Narrated by Abu Hurairah

How to pray Asr


4. Maghrib

Maghrib is the fourth prayer and is offered at sunset. The word maghrib is an Arabic term for “of the setting (sun)”; from the root “gharaba|غَرَبَ”, “to set”; “to be hidden” (but it is not used for the setting of the moon).

Time

Once the sun has completely set in the horizon till the sky turns completely dark for night.

Number Of Rakahs

  • 3 Fard
  • 2 Sunnah after the 3 Fard

Importance

The time of Maghrib is considered to be when angels change, and so a time of blessing.

Other Facts

The Maghrib prayer indicates the end of the daily Muslim obligatory fasting during the holy month of Ramadan.

How to pray Maghrib


5. Isha

The Isha (Arabic: عشاء‎) prayer is the night-time prayer and is the last of the five daily Fard prayers (salah). Although it is the last obligatory prayer of the day, there are a few optional prayers that can be recited after the Isha’a prayer, including the Tahajjud and Witr, as well as the Tarawih in Ramadan.

Time

Once the sky has turned dark for the night, until just before dawn, however delaying it till before dawn is highly discouraged. Allah sends most of his blessings in the late part of the night just before dawn, so it is better to pray Isha early and then Tahajjud later in the night.

Number Of Rakahs

  • 4 Fard
  • 2 Sunnah after the 4 Fard

Importance

It is advised that to sleep well, it is better for one to pray Isha to have restful sleep.

How to pray Isha