Consideration for other believers

Abu Mas`ud `Uqbah bin `Amr Al-Badri (radi Allahu anhu) reported: A man came to the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) and said: “I joined the morning Salat late because of so-and-so who leads it and prolongs it.” (Abu Mas`ud said): I have never seen the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) so angry while giving a speech as he was on that day. He (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said, “Some of you create hatred among the people against faith. Whoever leads Salat (the prayer), should make it brief because the congregation includes old men and youngsters and those who have some urgent work to do.”

[Sahih Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Commentary:

We benefit from the above Hadith:

Firstly, there is allowance for a genuine complaint regarding some public inconvenience.

Secondly, a believer is supposed to be passionately uncompromising on religious precepts.

Thirdly, the Imam should refrain from prolonging Salat (prayer) and be considerate of the congregation standing behind him. But a brief recitation of the Qur’an or prayer does not imply a disregard of the example of the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) and the adjustment of different postures in Salat. In no way should it be a hasty and heedless Salat as unfortunately offered by a majority of men. They are scarcely regardful of the example of the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) in offering Salat. What a pity!

Fourthly, one may be exempted from offering congregational Salat for a valid religious excuse.

And finally, the Imam should avoid an attitude which may provoke people’s aversion to worship.

And Allah knows best!

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