Mandoob – The Highly Recommended Four Rakat Prayer After Isha


Mandoob – Praying 4 Rakat After Isha

Isha is a night prayer that consists of 4 rakat (prayer units). It is prayed from the disappearance of twilight until midnight, or just before dawn.

It is recommended to pray four rakat after isha with the intention of tahajjud. This is based on a hadith in Sahih al-Bukhari and is a Sunnah that is highly recommended.

1. They are Mandoob

The word Mandoob is a term used for delegating a duty or task to someone else. It is an act of worship and can earn us immense reward. The four rakaat that come after isha are one such act. They are Sunnah and highly encouraged to be prayed.

There are numerous narrations that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) used to pray four rakah after isha. While many of these are saheeh, there are some that are considered da’eef (weak).

Despite the fact that there are doubts about the validity of this practice, it was adopted by the Sahabah and the later generations. It was also established by Sayyidina Umar bin Khattab (RA). Thus, it is an accepted Sunnah that has been safeguarded by the scholars of this Ummah. The Hanafi fuqaha’ are of the opinion that it is indeed a Sunnah and should be prayed, even though there is no specific saheeh hadith regarding it.

2. They are Mandoob in the Sunnah

There are a group of Ulama who believe that the four Sunnah Rakats before Isha are Mandoob. They use the Hadith in Sahih Bukhari where it is narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever prays four rakt before Isha without separating them with a tasleem, it is equivalent to four rakt on Laylat al-Qadr.”

Others argue that this Hadith is weak and does not establish a fixed number of rakts for Tahajjud prayer. According to this view, only the Fard of Tahajjud is considered as obligatory, and the rest is naafil. The difference between a Sunnah and a naafil is that the latter is not obligatory, while the former is. This is why some scholars are hesitant to accept that the four rakts before Isha are naafil. Nevertheless, some of them do accept it. However, they recommend that they be offered after the two rakts of Fard. This is because it is more likely that they will be completed before Isha begins.

3. They are Mandoob in the Traditions

In Islam, Mandoob means something that the Prophet (peace be upon him) or Islamic scholars recommend or encourage. It can also mean that it is preferred or better than something else. For example, visiting graves is considered both a Mandoob and a Mustahab (strongly recommended or preferable) activity.

Kalthami says that making the film about a delivery man helped him see different parts of the city, but it also gave him the perspective of a person who is not part of the richer class. It was a way to show the social disparity that exists in Saudi Arabia.

He says that it is not his place to say whether a dead loved one is in Paradise or Hell, but it is his place to show the disparity between the rich and poor.

4. They are Mandoob in the Hadith

Among the most important elements of Islamic practice and belief are those that are not explicitly commanded in the Quran but are reported in hadith. These are referred to as Mustahab or Mandoob, and they form the basis of sharia and fiqh.

The School of Ahnaf distinguishes between two levels of Mandoob, namely Makrooh Tahrimi and Tanzeehi. The former is that which Sharia asks not to be performed in definite language and is punishable if ignored; the latter is that which is neither an obligation nor a sin. Examples include not rinsing the mouth or nose during wudu.

A key example of this is the hadith that encourages praying four rakat before the Fard of Isha. This is a Mustahab, and not a Makrooh Tahrimi or Tanzeehi, because it is not proven by definite proof, but is nonetheless encouraged. This is one of the reasons that it is a Sunnah.

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November 1, 2023