The Rules of Jama’at


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

1. Jama’at is a prerequisite for the salaats of jumu’ah and the two eids. In
other words, these salaats are not valid when offered alone.

2. Jama’at is wajib for the five daily salaats as long as there is no valid
excuse. It is sunnat-e-mu’akkadah for the taraweeh salaat even if one complete
Quran has already been recited with jama’at. It is also sunnat-e-mu’akkadah for
salaat-e-kusuf. It is mustahab for the witr salaat in Ramadaan. Apart from
Ramadaan, witr salaat with jama’at is makruh-e-tanzihi at any other time. This
is if it is offered regularly. If it is not offered regularly and occasionally a
few persons get together and offer it with jama’at, then it will not be makruh.
If salaat-e-kusuf and all the other nafl salaats are offered with the importance
that is given to the jama’at of the fard salaats, i.e. by giving adhaan, iqaamah
or by gathering the people through any other way – then it will be
makruh-e-tahrimi. However, if a few people get together and offer a nafl salaat
in jama’at without giving adhaan or iqaamah and without calling the people, then
there will be no harm in this. But even then, this should not be done regularly.

3. In the same way, it is also makruh-e-tahrimi to make a second jama’at for the
fard salaats with these four conditions:

i) The musjid is a mahalli musjid and it is not on the main road. A mahalli
musjid is a musjid in which the imam and musallis are appointed.

ii) The first jama’at was offered with a loud adhaan and iqaamah.

iii) The first jama’at was offered by those people who stay in that residential
area and who have some influence over the day to day affairs of that musjid.

iv) The second jama’at is offered in the same position and with the same care
and attention as the first jama’at was offered.

This fourth condition is according to Imam Abu Yusuf rahmatullahi alayh.
According to Imam Abu Hanifah rahmatullahi alayh, it will remain makruh even if
the position was changed.

If the second jama’at is not offered in the musjid but in a house, it will not
be makruh. Similarly, if any of these four conditions are not found, it will not
be makruh. For example, if the musjid is on the main road and not a mahalli
musjid, as has been explained above, then not only a second jama’at, but even a
third or fourth jama’at will not be makruh. Or, if the first jama’at was not
offered after saying the adhaan and iqaamah with a loud voice, the second
jama’at will not be makruh. Or, if the first jama’at was not offered by those
who live in that residential area, nor do they have any influence over the day
to day affairs of that musjid, then the second jama’at will not be makruh. Or,
according to Imam Abu Yusuf rahamatullahi alayh, if the position of the second
jama’at was not the same as the first jama’at whereby that place where the imam
of the first jama’at had stood, the imam of the second jama’at moved away from
that place and performed the salaat on another spot, then the position will be
regarded as being changed, and according to Imam Abu Yusuf rahmatullahi alayh,
the jama’at will not be makruh.

Note: Although the practice of the people is on the opinion of Imam Abu Yusuf
rahamatullahi alayh, the opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah rahmatullahi alayh is also
based on a strong proof. The laxity and laziness in Deeni matters, especially in
regards to the jama’at, also demands that a fatwa be passed making the second
jama’at makruh even after changing the position of the second jama’at. If this
is not done, people will intentionally miss out the first jama’at and say that
they can always make a second jama’at.

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