We all know that salâh is a pillar of Islam and on the Day of Judgement the account for the prayers will have to be rendered first. But what is said regarding the performance of salâh at home as opposed to performing it at the mosque with the congregation?
The Divine instruction is, “And bow your head with those who bow (in worship)”
(Surah Baqarah 43)
The message in this verse is crystal clear, that perform the salâh
with congregation. Prayer surpasses the love of the lone man’s prayer by
twenty-seven ranks in excellence.
The Holy Prophet
has also stated: “It better to join another person and pray than
to pray alone and it is more superior in the company of two men and the
bigger the congregation the more liked it is by Allah.”
The Holy Prophet says
in another tradition: “He who attended the congregation for Isha
prayer, he received the reward of half the nights worship and he who attended
both Isha and Fajr prayer with the congregation he received the reward
of the whole nights worship.”
The Prophet , himself never omitted even a single congregational prayer. Even in his sickness, it was strenuous for him to walk; nonetheless, with the aid of two of his companions he came (while his auspicious feet were dragging on the ground) to the mosque and prayed with the congregation.
Once the Holy Prophet
was constrained to say: “I intend to tell the Muazzin (person who
calls the Azaan) to call out the takbir and ask someone to lead the prayer
and I myself set the house of that person on fire who did not attended
the congregational prayer.”
The merciful Prophet proposes a punishment for those who do not attend the congregational prayer at the mosque, even though they perform them at home. One should ponder and be warned as regards to those who do not attend the congregational prayer at the mosque.
Shah Waliullah Muhaddith of Dehli says: “By establishing this divine purpose is nothing but that Allah’s superiority may be established and no other faith on the surface of the earth may be superior to the Islamic faith. But this can be conceived only when it may be the Ummah regular practice that the elite as well as the common run of the city folk as well as the villagers and the young as well as the old assemble daily for that worship which is the greatest sign of the faith and the most famous among all the devotions.”
An eminent American Sociologist and Physiologist, Mr Denison has written in his book ‘Emotion as the basis of civilization’, “Historians have wondered at the phenomenal success of Islam in conquering the world and have attributed it to the unity and solidity Islam has engaged among its adherents, but no historian he says could solve the riddle as to how this came to pass.”
Mr Denison says that he has no the least doubt that a great and very effective means of this is the congregational prayer.
We can deduce from this, that if the Muslim masses were performing prayers with the congregation regularly we would not be in the sorry state that we find ourselves in today.
We should try and pray all our five times Salâh with the congregation in the mosque, and if possible we should try to be as close to the Imâm as possible, because the first row is superior to the second and thereafter.
The Holy Prophet states in the Hadith: “If you were to know the reward in performing the prayer in the first row, you would fight amongst yourselves to stand in the first row.”
Hence, we can see why it is necessary that we perform the five times daily prayers with the congregation in the mosque.
May Allah give us all the ability to perform our prayers with the congregation in the mosque.