Ramadan 2019 – Day 7 : What is Taraweeh? How compulsory is it?

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Ramadan 2019 –Day 7: What is Taraweeh? How compulsory is it?

Ramadan is the month of blessings it is the time to start fixing and adjusting our schedule accordingly. In the Holy month of Ramadan, it’s essential for every Muslim to leave every useless, worldly and bad thought behind and only think about Allah Almighty. While we fast and pray, even waiting for iftar is all about remembrance of Allah Almighty. Muslims offer special prayers during the holy month of Ramadan one of them is Taraweeh that is held every night during Ramadan. Every Muslim is expected to attend and offer this special prayer which is Taraweeh.

Belief

Taraweeh prayer is an obligatory Sunnah for all Muslims in Ramadan. According to hadith, Holy Prophet PBUH prayed one night in Mosque and several people followed Him in the mosque. Then He (SAW) prayed next night in mosque again and more people followed Him. Then the people gathered again in mosque on third and fourth night but Holy Prophet (SAW) did not come and the very next morning, He (SAW) said: “I saw what you did, and nothing kept me from coming out to you except the fact that I feared that it would be made obligatory for you” (Al-Bukhari). From this hadith, we concluded that Taraweeh prayer is the prescribed Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (SAW).

According to Abu Hurairah (RA), Our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said that: “He who prays during the night in Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven” (Muslim).  We can say that Taraweeh is one of the many blessings that Holy month of Ramadan brings for us.

According to the  followers Prophet stated, “Whoever observes night prayer in Ramadan as an expression of his faith and to seek reward from Allah, his previous sins will be blotted out.” (Muslim)

Tradition

Traditionally, a Hafiz of the Quran, a person who has memorized the whole Quran which is in Arabic, leads the prayer. He recites the Quran in small portions, in proper sequence, every night and completes the recitation of the whole Quran before the end of the month of Ramadan. Every Muslim who attends such prayers regularly gets the opportunity of listening to the whole Quran in a month.

If a Hafiz of the Quran is not available, the Muslim who has memorized the most in a group leads the prayer and recites according to his ability. In the absence of a Hafiz, some Muslims hold the Quran in the hand during their salah and read from it. Some Islamic scholars cite the report of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) that, with the exception of three nights in one Ramadan, he always prayed during the night in his house whether it was Ramadan or not.

Offering this special prayer for the entire month of Ramadan provides spiritual as well as medical benefits. It not only purifies our soul but also keeps us healthy and fit. Although offering this prayer is not compulsory but the virtues and benefit it holds leave no reason for skipping it. Taraweeh is a special prayer consisting of 20 Rakat which is performed immediately after the Isha prayer.

 Benefits of Taraweeh Prayer

  • This special prayer improves physical and emotional health. The gentle up and down movements, including Sajdah and Ruku, performed while praying improves physical and emotional health as well as enhances the endurance of the person praying. It has been reported that people who fast the whole day and then perform Taraweeh prayers at night feel more prosperous.
  • Taraweeh restores Muscle strength in aged persons. As people get older, their physical exercise decreases, which results in thinning of their bones. The repeated movements during Taraweeh prayers improve joint flexibility, muscle strength, and tendon power. So, Taraweeh prayers improve stamina, self-confidence, and self-respect of the elderly people in being self-sustaining.
  • Another advantage of Taraweeh is to encourage visiting the mosque most for offering this special prayer more often in the congregation.
  • Taraweeh prayer gets all Muslims together from different walks of life at one place.
  • Taraweeh prayer also brings unity among Muslims all over the world.
  • Practising the act of offering this special prayer for the entire month of Ramadan strengthens Muslims faith and encourages Muslims to do what pleases Allah Almighty and what makes Him happy.
  • Taraweeh prayer makes us worship more which in turn provides a peaceful sleep.
  • This special prayer not only brings us closer to Allah Almighty but also provides us with a chance to do some physical activity which keeps us from eating much and stay healthy and fit.
  • It also improves the memory with the continuous recitation of the verses from the Holy Quran, screening the mind from inbound thoughts.
  • As regular movements during the Taraweeh are a form of exercise, they help burn down calories.
  • A balanced meal at Sahoor and Iftar followed by Taraweeh prayers can help a person reduce weight.
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