Q 56: QIBLA ON MOON?
Suppose I were to fly to the Moon. Whilst on the Moon or on the way to it, which direction will be my Qibla for prayers?
A. According to "Fatwas" of some Mujtahids, the Qibla of a space-traveler is the Earth. You will face the Earth during your prayer.
Q 57 : WHY USE OF GOLD IS FORBIDDEN FOR MAN ?
Why is gold not allowed for men? And why is gold permitted for women?
A. It is not possible to know definitely the reason as to why a certain rule has been given to us by Allah and or His Prophet.
Once we accept that allah is our Creator and is a Wise Creator and that the Prophet Muhammad Mustafa (s.a.w.) was His true Prophet, then we must accept that whatever order was given by the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) must have been based on some sound reason. At the same time, however, it is not necessary that that reason be known to us.
So, if reason of any rule has been explained by the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) or Imams. well and good. We must be thankful to them for that explanation. But if it has not been explained, then we must obey them without any 'ifs' 'buts' or 'whys'. It is for this reason that our shari'ah says that you have all the liberty to argue and discuss concerning matters of_Usul-e-Deen till you are fully convinced of their truth. But you have no liberty in 'Furu-e-Deen'. You must obey them faithfully, because after accepting the truth of the divine office of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) and the Imams (a.s.) there is no ground for you to ignore their orders. This is the general principle governing your two questions. Still, so far as these particular questions are concerned, our thoughts may give us the following reason (which may or may not be the actual reason). Islam wants men to be hardy, brave and tough in order that they may boldy enlist for Jihad. It does not like men to be soft and meek because such men cannot stand the rigour of military diuscipline. And this discipline is s MUST for every male Muslim, because he must always be ready to fight in the way of Allah as soon as our 12th Imam (a.s.) re-appears.
Q 58 : IS IQAMAH WAJIB?
Is iqamah wajib before prayer?
It is Sunnah Mu’akkadah (emphasized Sunnah).
Q 59 : PRAYER IN FRONT OF A PHOTOGRAPH
Can one pray Salah facing a wall on which a photo of Ka’bah or some du’s is displayed.
A. It is Makruh to pray before a photograph or a statue of a living thing, except when it is hidden by a curtain or a cover. It is also Makruh to pray in a room which has any photograph. Therefore, if one prays facing a wall on which a photograph of the Ka’bah is hung, it will be Makruh- i.e. the thawab of Salah will be less than usual.
Q 60 : WHY KA’BAH IS CALLED THE HOUSE OF ALLAH ?
Allah is Omnipresent. He doesn’t need any house or place to dwell . Then why Ka’bah is called Allah’s House ?
A. When Allah pleases to show importance and prestige of a person or a thing ,He declares it as belonging to Himself; though in fact every thing belongs to Him.
For example, every soul belongs to him; but He called the soul of Adam (a.s.) as (My Soul); and it showed the importance of the soul. Everyone is a ‘slave ‘ of Allah, but He referred to our Holy Prophet (s.a.w.)as (His Slave); and it showed the prophet’s high prestige with Allah. Likewise every place belongs to Him; but He specifically named Kab’as as (My House) to show its distinction and sancity.
Q 61. PROSTRATION BEFORE OTHER THAN ALLAH
If anybody knowingly prostrates before other than Allah, what is his
judgement according to the Sheri'ah? Is he a Muslim or Kafir?
A. If he does not know that Sajdah before anything or person, other than Allah, is Haram in the Sheriah of Muhammad Mustafa (s.a.w.), then he will have committed only a major sin (Gunah-e-Kabira). If however he knows the law and still does Sajdah before anything or person, then he is a Mushrik (an idolator).
Q 62 : READING QURAN WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING
Is it necessary for a Shia to continue to recite Qur'an although he does not know what he
A. It is of great "thawab" to recite Qur'an (even if you do not know its meaning).
For one thing, it will bind you strongly with the religion and the Book of Allah.
For another, by regularly reciting it, you will one day feel that you should also
know its meaning.
Q. 63: SEVEN TAKBIRS
Are there six takbirs before Takbiratul-Ihram?
A. Yes, It is Sunnah Mu'akkadah (emphasized Sunnah) to say seven Takbirs after Niyat, one of which should be "Takbiratul Ihram" (any one, depending on your intention), and the remaining six, Sunnah.
Q 64 POSITION OF HANDS DURING QIYAM FOR WOMAN
Should ladies put their hands on the chest while praying?
A. Yes. It is Sunnah to put the right hand on the right breast and the left hand on
the left breast, when she is in a standing position (Qiyam).
Q 65. 'ADIL IMAM NOT EASILY AVAILABLE
Wise, honest and just Imams are not easily available these days. So, Congregational
prayers are usually avoided Could we have a relaxation in these restrictions?
No relaxation whatsoever. Being an Adil is a condition not only for the Imam of prayers; every Mu'min must be an Adil. If he is not, it shows the weakness of his Iman (Faith).
Q 66: HOW TO ORGANIZE A JAMA'A T WITHOUT A QUALIFIED IMAM?
We are a group of a former American Sunni Muslims who have recently converted to Shia Ithna-'ashen faith What are we to ob concerning electing a leader and establishing an organized Ummah, when we are told by Shias that only the 12th Imam, or a Multahid or one with proper written Islamic credentials can lead a community and act as Imam of all congregational prayers?
We have read all the Qur'anic verses and sayings of our Holy Prophet commanding us to follow the leadership of Ahlul-Bait (12 Imams)for proper spiritual guidance and success, but none of the Imams (Ahlul-Bait) are here to give us guidance, to lead us, to direct us, because they have all died except Imam Mahdi. And even Imam Mahdi (a.s.) can't give us guidance because we cannot see, hear or bodily feel him since he is in seclusion. Furthermore, we don't have access to the traditions of the 12 Imams So when it is said that the correct interpretation of the Holy Qur'an can be had only through the Ahlul-Bait, "one of the 2 weighty things", "the ark of salvation", what meaning or relevance does this saying have to us in the US, A. ? There are no Mujtahids in this country. There is no one who has credentials to he Imam in any respect according to the belief of Shias. So. please kindly tell me what the 6 non-Arabic speaking recent converts are supposed to do as an 'ummah' to maintain a Muslim Jama"at and establish a mosque under the aforementioned difficulties. Should we just give 4o the hope of starting an 'Ummah' ourselves for religious matter? And, lastly should we discontinue our congregational prayers even when the Holy Prophet has emphasized the importance of and greater blessings to be received !turn/ prayers in Jama'at and making regular Jum'ah prayers on Fiday?
A. The position of our newly-converted Shi'a brethren in U.S.A. is like that of those Muslims of Mecca who, after the Hijra of our beloved Prophet (s.a.w.) and before the conquest of Mecca, had to suffer the atrocities of the pagans of Mecca and could not get any help from the Prophet (s.a.w.). The community will have to remain steadfast in the way of Allah and pray to him to give them "Tawfeeq" (help) and strength to succeed in this test with full honour.
Organizing the community for social, religious and educational purposes should be started at once and one of you may be elected the leader of the community to keep them together and to help them solve their social and other problems. So far as the question of an "Imam" of 'Jama'at' prayers is concerned, you must follow the tenets of the Sheri'ah. There is no need for any credential from a Mujtahid. If someone fulfils all the necessary conditions, he is entitled to lead the Prayers. These conditions and qualifications are given below and you will see that they are not so very difficult to fulfill: He must be (1) Baligh (adult), (2) Sane (3) Shi'a Ithna'ashari, (4) Legitimately born, (5) Knowing necessary Rulings of Sheri'ah. (6) 'Adil', (7) Man, if those who are praying behind are males, (8) Not praying in sitting position (because of sickness etc.), if those who are praying behind are doing so in standing position. 'Adil means a person who does not commit major sin seven. unintentionally; and if he, inadvertently, commits a minor sin, he repents at once and does not repeat it.Now, I do not know whether you know Arabic. If You know the language, I will send some relevant books which will help you to understand the necessary Rules and Laws of Sheriah, (prayers Fast, Zakah, Khumus, Marriage, Divorce, Inheritance etc.). If you do not know the language Then I will send you Some books in English, but they do not contain minor details. From the contents of letter, I have a feeling that you earnestly wish to lead your life according to commandments of Allah and His Representatives. In this situation It will not be very difficult for you to abstain from all “Kaba’ir(Major Sins). When you acquire the Power (which in Islam is called ‘Adalah’) then you may lawfully lead your fellow Shi'as in prayers and other religious affairs. And until that stage is reached, you may make temporary arrangements in this way. All of you should gather at prayer time at an appointed place. One of you may stand slightly forward, and all of you pray together without the Niyyah (intention) of jama’at prayer. Everyone will say his own prayer but it will look like a congregational prayer. It will provide a chance to interested persons to deliver religious sermons and lectures, to discuss matters of common welfare and communal interest; and, in short, almost all the benefits of congregational prayer will be achieved. When Allah gives you more success and a sufficient number have accepted our faith, then, perhaps, you may even enlist the services of someone from Iran as your Imam, or send someone from your group to Iran to acquire the necessary knowledge.
Q 67. CAN PRAYER BE LED BY TAPERECORDER?
Can Jamaat prayer be led by a tape-recorded Prayer?
A. No, Please.
Q 68 : MINIMUM NUMBER FOR JUM’A PRAYER
Is it necessary to have certain number of people to conduct Jum’a Prayers ?
if so, how many people should be there? Here, in certain mosques, they conduct the
Zuhr prayer if the attendance for Jum’a prayer is less than 40.
A. According to our Shia Shari'ah, there must at least be 5 persons.
Q 69 : ARE WOMEN EXEMPTED FROM JUMA PRAYER ?
Why women do not attend the Jum'a prayer? Are they exempted?
A. Yes. They are exempted.
Q 70 : WHY PRAY ONE SALAH SOON AFTER THE OTHER ?
The Muslims have to pray Five times a day. But it has been conventional in the Shia world to pray 3 times a day, i.e., in the morning, afternoon (Zuhr + Asr) and at night (Magrib & Isha). Why is this so?
A. It is better (and it earns more thawab) to say the five prayers separately; but it is also allowed to pray 'Asr soon after Zuhr and 'Isha soon after Maghrib. The Shi'as generally take advantage of this permission.
Q 71. PRAYER OF A MAN WHO ATE “NAJIS” FOOD
Eating Najis food has a penalty of 40 days prayers, isn’t it? For a man who is to live in boarding house where their is a common mess, what will happen? Is it that he will be penalized 3 (least number of meals a day) x 40 penalties (for each food) X 2 (No. of years he is supposed to be there) X 365 (no. of days in a year). i.e 3 X 40 X 365 X 2 days penalty . ( One of the traditions says “Go even upto China in search of Knowledge).
A. For your information, this tradition is about the knowledge to religion only. So far as the eating a Najis food is concerned, it has its own penalty. But it does not mean that you should neglect your prayer for so many days. It is one thing to say, “Your prayers will not be rewarded”; and quite another to say, “you did not pray” Because if you did not pray then you would be liable to punishment, for “not praying”, which is one of the most serious sins in Islam. On the other hand, if you prayed but your prayers were “not accepted” (i.e. not rewarded) at least you would be immune from the punishment of “not” having said your prayers.
Q 72 ; HOW TO THANK ALLAH?
Please show me some ways of expressing thanks to Allah. That is if there is any particular way of prayer or reading a Du’a for Shukr (Thanking Allah)?
A. The easiest way of Thanking Allah is to say “ALHAMDOLILLAH”. Also, you may do Sajdah of “Sukr” or recite 2 Reak’ah prayer of “Shukr”. If Allah has given you something, then the best way of thanking Him is to share it with His servants with open heart i.e. not foe making a show but only foe the Love of Allah.
Q 73 : MEANING OF SOME ARABIC PHRASES
What is the meaning of the following words and phrases which are commonly used by the Muslims?
Astaghfirullah I seek Pardon from Allah
Barakallah May Allah Bless (You)
Fi Sabilillah In the way of Allah
Tawakkaltu Alallah On Allah I rely
Bismillah In the Name of Allah
Subhanallah Glory be to Allah
Li Hubbillah For the love of Allah
Insha-Allah - If Allah wills; God Willing
Fi Amanillah - In the protection of Allah
Mashy-Allah - As Allah wishes
AI-Hamdu Lillah - Praise be to Allah
Inna Lillahi Wainna - To Allah we belong and unto
Ilayhi Raji'un Him do we return.
Yarhamukallah - Allah's mercy be on you
La-Ilaha Illallah - There is no God but Allah
'Amantu Billah - I believe in Allah
Wallahi /Billahi /Tallahi - (I swear) by Allah
Ya Allah - 0 Allah
'Amin - May it be so
Jazakallah - May Allah reward you
Q 74 : COLOUR OF SHROUD (KAFAN)
If white colour cotton is not available, can we use any other colour in cotton, like cream or can we use any other material in white.
A. You may use any material (except silk) for Kafan, and it is mustahab (but it is not necessary) that it should be of white colour.