Oh yeah, this one is difficult. It’s hard enough for many Muslims to even get up for Salaatul Fajr (the Dawn Prayer) which is mandatory. It’s certainly no easy thing waking up even earlier for the night prayer. Establishing and maintaining this wonderful act takes great sacrifice and patience.
Which is why the rewards are so plentiful.
In fact, this is one of the few Sunnahs that are endorsed by Allah in the Quran as well as the hadith.
Arise to (pray) the night except for a little. Half of it or subtract from it a little.
Chapter 73, verse 2-3.
2. Making All of The Sunnah Prayers
- Two Rakaah before Salaatul Fajr; none after.
- Four Rakaah before Salaatul Dhuhr; two Rakaah after.
- Four Rakaah before Salaatul Asr; none after.
- None before Salaatul Maghrib; two Rakaah after.
- None before Salaatul Isha; two Rakaah after.
- It is also recommended that you make Salaatul Witr before going to bed. This can also be combined with Tahajjud instead.
Generally, fasting is difficult no matter when you do it. It’s difficult to do it for thirty days straight during Ramadhan. And it’s difficult to do it twice a week outside of Ramadan.
But it is an act that is loved by Allah. So, it is something you should try to make part of your life. After all, this is one action that no one except you and Allah knows about.
People can see you pray. And they can see you give charity. And they can see you read Quran.
But no one can “see” you fast. Even if you tell someone you’re fasting, no one knows the truth except you and Allah. That’s one of the reasons Allah loves this deed so much.
4. Reciting Suratul Kahf on Fridays
Suratul Kahf (the Chapter of the Cave) is a very interesting chapter. It is the 18th chapter of the Quran and includes many lessons and stories. Some of the stories included are:
- The story of the Companions of the Cave.
- The story of Musa and Khidhr.
- The story of Dhul Qarnain and Gog and Magog.
- Leaving the land of disbelief if oppressed for your beliefs.
- Understanding that all pleasures in this world are temporary.
- Being patient with Allah’s decree.
- Signs of the Last Day.
Whoever reads Suratul Kahf on Friday, he will be illuminated with light between the two Fridays. Narrated by Al-Hakim
- It’s a fairly long chapter. It takes about forty minutes to read the entire chapter in Arabic with proper Tajweed. Even someone who reads better than I do would probably take at least half an hour.
- You have to know how to read Arabic and read it pretty well. If you don’t know how to read Arabic or if you’re not very good at it, you’re going to find what takes me forty minutes will probably take you a couple of hours. Not trying to discourage you. Just keeping it real. And no, you can’t read it in English and expect the same reward.
- People forget. It’s not easy to remember to do something once a week, week in and week out. If it’s done every day, it might be easier to remember. My suggestion, program your cell phone calendar to remind you that it’s Friday and you have to read Suratul Kahf.
- People are lazy. Plain and simple.
Seriously? This one is not even all that difficult. But I’m sure many people don’t do it.
Abu Hurairah reported that the Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace, said to Bilal, “O Bilal, tell me what good deed you have done in Islam that I hear the sound of your footsteps in Paradise?” Bilal said, “That after I purify myself during the day or night, I pray with that purification as much as Allah has destined for me.” Related by Bukhari
But this is a list difficult Sunnahs, isn’t it?
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you’re not fulfilling any of these. Even though there is great reward in doing them, they are voluntary acts. So there is no punishment if you decide not to do them.
However, rather than neglect them altogether, pick out the ones you think you can do. And then, do it.
It’s really that simple.