Q: I want to ask if it is OK to recite the name of Imam-e-Ali while in Tash'ahod in prayer, like ash'hado anna mohammadan abdahu wa rasoolo, Wa ash\'hado anna ameer al momeneen wa imam ul matakeen Ali un wali Allah\" please give me the answer. If it is OK, then why can't we say the name of Imam Ali in, Azan, Eqamat.
A: The recitation of the name of part of Imam Ali is not part of the azan and Eqamat, either we may say it in Azan and Eqamat, but we can't add it to Tash'ahod because that would be an addition to a prayer!
Q: I live about 65 miles away from Dearborn. I think I spend more time in Dearborn than home actually. Is it OK if I pray normally and not shorten my prayers? I
A: Your prayer in Dearborn is complete. May Allah accept your worship.
Q: Some brothers in the community refuse to pray behind a certain imam because of his political beliefs and other things. They told me that I should not pray behind him. I told them that I will continue to pray behind him until I find out what Islam says about the subject. My question is, under what circumstances should a follower NOT pray behind an imam? Please clarify.
A: For an imam to lead the prayer, in addition to being an adult, he must also be just and sane and able to do prayer in a right way. If you trusted an imam in the past and now for any reason you start doubting about him, don't pay attention to your doubt and keep praying with him. Remember the Shaitan always tries to create fitna and divisions among the faithful. Muslims are not allowed to rely on rumors and gossip for opinions about other people. If you want to discuss politics with the imam, he should explain his beliefs to you himself. It is a very bad sin in Islam to label a Muslim brother as a non-Muslim just for having a different opinion. If he is making a mistake, advising him about it and keeping his trust is far more productive than slandering him or refusing to pray with him.
Q: Is it compulsory for a man to go to Jumma prayer ?
A: If there is a qualified imam leading Friday prayer service in your area, then you must go. The Friday prayer was so significant at the time of Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) that if a person missed it without excuse, he would be considered as a hypocrite. The day of Jumma is a Muslim spiritual retreat. It's a day to worship, give charity, and visit the graves of our relatives and more. The gathering of Jumma prayer is even more important where Muslims are a minority. It empowers the community of Believers to meet regularly, in addition to the blessing of the prayer.
Q: I have recently become very waswasi [obsessive – compulsive]. I feel a lot of things are nijas [unclean], especially when I use the bathroom. I worry if the water splashes back from the toilet when I am washing myself, or if water from the bathroom floor splashes up, or when I fill the water can and the bottom drips on the sink counter, then I feel it is nijas. I don't want to be like this. My family is always shouting at me that I should stop taking showers and asking me why I keep going in the shower. I get so tired and feel like I can't do anything else because my mind is really getting troubled from all this. I am going to go ahead and make dry ablution [tayammum] and then minor ablution [wudu] and then pray [namaz] now at school. But do I have to continuously take a shower [ghusl] when I get this feeling? Do I have to make up all my fats and namaz because I really feel like I have a huge burden on myself?
A: Too much anxiety, doubt, suspicion about what is clean or dirty [taher or najis] is wrong. Islamic law says everything is clean, unless you are certain that it is not clean. Therefore never confuse yourself and get rid of this wrong temptation. If it is just a few drops you don't need to make ghusl. Just rinse yourself and make wudu \. It is important not to waste water. If you avoid pouring too much water at once that will solve the problem of the water splashing back from the toilet. If you use toilet paper first it is much cleaner. You do not have to repeat your prayer, and your fast is OK too. May Allah accept you ebadat.
Q: Is it permissible to pray for people of the Book that have died? I am the only Muslim in my family and would like to pray for my grandparents, who were Christians. I know about the verse in Quran about Prophet Ibrahim (pbuh) not being permitted to pray for his uncle Azar because he was an idol worshiper, but I don't know if this verse applies to People of the Book or not.
A: No, that verse doesn't apply to your grandparents. They might have been ignorant about certain things, while the uncle of Ibrahim was not ignorant about the truth; he refused the truth out of stubbornness!
Q: The sunset time where I live is 5:07 PM. I add 20 minutes precautionary time before I pray Maghrib, making it 5:27 PM. I was traveling during this time, and the plan left my home city at 5:35 PM. I did not offer the Maghrib or Isha prayers. When I wich to make the qada [make up for late prayer] for Maghrib and Isha, do I make the shortened prayer [qasr] or do I make the full prayer, since I make the in my home city when Maghrib began, but the plan departed within 10 minutes of the onset of the time? Or do I offer the Maghrib qada full and the Isha qada qasr?
A: you make the ada prayer the way you lost it. Your Maghrib prayer always is full and your Isha prayer should be done fully in this case..
Q: One of the prayer positions, rukoo, is confusing for me. I am unclear as to how long this pause will have to be. I count approximately 2 seconds, but I notice in the congregation prayer, it seems not to be observed at all. How long should this pause be? Sometimes I think I do it too short, sometimes too long.
A: Yes, a pause after the rukoo is required [wajeb] and a 2 second pause is enough.
Q: God willing [insha-Allah], I am planning to go to Madina but I want to ask you about what we have to do in Madina. I mean what kinds of Prayers we have to do there and what shrines to visit [Ziyarats].
A: Spend as much times as you can in the Prophets mosque. Do your prayer inside the mosque. Visit the graves of the Imams and the Prophets companions in Baghie, visit the seven mosques elsewhere in Madina. If you go to Makka after Madina, do your Ehram in Shajara mosque in the citys suburb.