Chapter 1

The Salah, the Salah!

We are people of ṣalāh. It is core to our identity, as described by the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم. The masjid is the place of ṣalāh, and its importance is in its direct connection to the ṣalāh.

The caretakers of the masjids need to be people of ṣalāh. We have strangely come across masjid administrators who don’t regularly perform ṣalāh or to whom ṣalāh is not a priority. How can a person who doesn’t recognize the value of ṣalāh be an administrator of the house of ṣalāh?

The Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم established ṣalāh as an essential component of our identity. He said, comparing us to people of the other religions, “What distinguishes between us and them is ṣalāh” (Tirmidhi, Nasa'i, Ibn Majah - Sahih). Ali ibn Abu Talib, may Allah be pleased with him, tells us that one of the last words which the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم spoke were: “The ṣalāh, The ṣalāh!” (Abu Dawud – Sahih).

Ṣalāh has a central place in our existence because Allah, the Exalted, commands us:

حَـٰفِظُوا۟ عَلَى ٱلصَّلَوَٰتِ وَٱلصَّلَوٰةِ ٱلْوُسْطَىٰ وَقُومُوا۟ لِلَّهِ قَـٰنِتِينَ

Guard strictly the ṣalāh. (Qur'an 2: 238)

Ṣalāh is integral to our success. Allah, the Exalted, gives us this good news:

قَدْ أَفْلَحَ ٱلْمُؤْمِنُونَ

Successful indeed are the believers. (Qur'an 23:1)

Our Lord goes on to describe us, the believers, as successful people with many virtues. The very first characteristic He describes about us is our tranquility and focus in ṣalāh:

ٱلَّذِينَ هُمْ فِى صَلَاتِهِمْ خَـٰشِعُونَ

They are most humble in their ṣalāh. (Qur'an 23:2)

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