Avoiding Innovations (Bid’ah) through Prayer

I generally dislike talking about the issues on khilaf (disagreement in religious views) and bid’ah (innovations in religion). It usually will end with copy-paste war, emotional war and you can imagine all the ugly things happening.

To me, the specific rituals and liturgy are already complete; Prophet Muhammad has completed his mission and further enhancement has been finalized by the best generation of Islam – the Salaf us Soleh (Muslims up until 300 Hijriah). And yes I’m talking about ibadah khusus and not about matters of muamalah which can change in accordance of time.

But I have found a simple way to tackle this problem; through prayers (solat).

In prayer (solat), we recite the Qur’an, we do zikr (remembrance of God), we seek forgiveness, we do supplication and we give peace (selawat) to Prophet Muhammad. And it is obligatory to perform ablution (wudu’) before praying.

Rarely do people innovate things in the prayer. In a prayer we:

  • Recite the Quranic verses on our own. We do not pay anyone to recite for us. We do not have any intention of ‘donating’ the Quranic recitation to the dead people. We read them for our own good.
  • Read zikr which is authentic, taught by the Prophet himself. We do not read innovated zikr for thousands of time to seek worldly gains (become invincible, walk on water, flying machete; these are just a few of blasphemous things people do, supposedly in the name of God!). We read zikr to become close to God.
  • Seek forgiveness and supplicate directly to God. We do not ask for any pious individual to intercede for us. Doing this, is akin to what the Christians and Hindus are doing. God is All-hearing and All-Forgiving.
  • Give peace to the Prophet. We read selawat Ibrahimiyyah before giving salam in the final tahiyat. We do not read innovated selawat such as selawat as-Syifa’. We give peace to Prophet and his family. We do not pray to Prophet for rejuvenation or recovery. We pray to God for any of our intentions.

And thus let us perform sunnah prayer as much as possible. If we are in trouble, pray. If we are in need of something, then pray. Pray and ask from God. Only to God. And Allah Knows Best.


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