RULES RELATED TO FACING THE QIBLAH


Bahishti Zewar, Fiqh, Part 2-Salat and its virtues / Sunday, August 31st, 2008

1. If a person is at a place where he does not know in which direction the
qiblah is, nor is there anyone whom he could ask, then he should think in his
heart. Whichever direction his heart tells him to face, he should turn in that
direction. If he offers his salaat without thinking, his salaat will not be
valid. However, if, in this case where he did not think, he later learns that
the direction in which he had offered his salaat was the correct direction, then
his salaat will be valid. If there was a person whom he could ask, but because
of hijaab and shyness, he did not ask and continued with his salaat, it will not
be valid. In such cases, one should not feel shy, but should ask and then offer
the salaat.

2. If there was no one who could show him the direction and he offered his
salaat according to what his heart told him, and later he learnt that the
direction in which he had offered his salaat was wrong; even then his salaat
will be valid.

3. If a person was offering his salaat in the wrong direction and in his very
salaat he learns that this is the wrong direction and that the correct direction
is the other way, he should turn towards the qiblah in his very salaat. If after
learning the correct direction, he did not turn towards the qiblah, his salaat
will not be valid.

4. It is permissible for a person to offer salaat inside the Ka’bah. The person
offering salaat inside the Ka’bah has the choice to face in whichever direction
he wishes.

5. Both fard and nafl salaats are permissible in the Ka’bah.

6. If the qiblah is not known and salaat is being offered in congregation, then
the imam and those following him – all of them will have to act according to
their conviction. If the conviction of a particular muqtadi is contrary to that
of the imam, his salaat will not be valid behind that imam. This is so because
according to him that imam is in error, and it is not permissible to follow
someone while considering him to be in error. Therefore, in this case, the
muqtadi will have to offer his salaat on his own according to his own
conviction.

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