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Catching the Takbeer-i-Tahrima

The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “When you come upon an ongoing congregational prayer (Jamaat), join it. If you have offered your prayer already, the prayer you are going to offer in the congregation will be supererogatory (Nafl) for you. The prayer that you offered at your home becomes your obligatory (Fardh) prayer. Two guarantees will be given to him who offers the prayer from its Takbeer-i-Tahrima for forty days. One is the Guarantee of Salvation from Hell and the other is the Guarantee of Immunity from Hypocrisy.” [Abu Dawud, Salaat]
The Takbeer-i-Tahrima is the first “Allahu-Akbar” with which we start the prayer and fold our hands. This Hadith gives us the good news of being secured from the punishment of Hell and from a thing which is worse than disbelief – hypocrisy.

These two pledges of protection are issued by Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) to that man who arrives in time for each of his five prayers in the Masjid, so as not to miss the Takbeer-i-Tahrima for a continuous period of forty days.

In addition, this Hadith informs us that if one has already prayed but comes upon a group of Muslims praying in Jamaat, they should not pass the opportunity of earning additional rewards by praying with them. Their additional prayer will count as Nafl for them even though it is the Fardh prayer of the group.

One day when the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) was offering prayer, a Companion named Yazeed (radi Allahu anhu) came to see him. He waited for the Jamaat to be over. When the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) completed his prayer, he noticed that Yazeed (radi Allahu anhu) had not prayed with the Jamaat.

So the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said, “Haven’t you become a Muslim yet?” Yazeed (radi Allahu anhu) replied, “Why, yes, Rasulullah. I am a Muslim.” Then the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) asked him, “What prevents you from participating in the Jamaat then?” Yazeed (radi Allahu anhu) replied, “I thought that you had already offered the prayer here, so I performed my prayer at home (before coming).” Thereupon, the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said,

“When you come upon an ongoing congregational prayer, join it. If you have offered your prayer already, the prayer you are going to offer in the congregation will be supererogatory (Nafl) for you. The prayer that you offered at your home becomes your obligatory (Fardh) prayer. Two guarantees will be given to him who offers the prayer from its Takbeer-i-Tahrima for forty days. One is the Guarantee of Salvation from Hell and the other is the Guarantee of Immunity from Hypocrisy.” [Abu Dawud, Salaat]

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