Salah: A Prayer

It’s just my connection to God, time to reflect on what life means to me

This is a short story on my friend and roommate Saudah Ahmad. She is of the Islamic faith and I wanted to capture her in the element of prayer. Although it is very sacred, she let me in and I was able to learn a little about her sacred moment with Allah.

Saudah is a senior at Morgan State University, earning her bachelor’s degree in social work.

Speaking with Saudah, I was able to obtain a bunch of information on the different phases of prayer. This is a religion that she and her family follow wherever they go.

This is one of the four pillars called namāz (Persian: نَماز‎‎) in some languages, is one of the Five Pillars in the faith of Islam and an obligatory religious duty for every Muslim. It is a physical, mental, and spiritual act of worship that is observed five times every day at prescribed times. She says that everything but your face, hands and feet must be covered.

When you start praying, certain motions have a meaning. The beginning position is standing on the rug with your hands lifted. Once you say allahu akbar (god is great), you are officially in prayer. Everything you do from then on is a motion in prayer. You also say allahu akbar whenever you change phases, which may range from 2-4 times. The motions and stances you see in the video, with the exception of the exit stance, are done this many times.

Muslims use the words “dua” or “supplication” when referring to the common definition of prayers which is “reverent petitions made to God”.

When saying your prayer, you are actually reciting specific things from the Quran.

In prostration, you say a short prayer saying how awesome god is and give him all of your praise. This is when you are closest to him. This is also a time where you ask him for the things you want in life.

When exiting your prayer, you look to your left and look to your right and say: As salaamu Alaykum.

ذَٰلِكَ ٱلْكِتَٰبُ لَا رَيْبَۛ فِيهِۛ هُدًى لِّلْمُتَّقِينَ

ٱلَّذِينَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِٱلْغَيْبِ وَيُقِيمُونَ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَمِمَّا رَزَقْنَٰهُمْ يُنفِقُونَ وَٱلَّذِينَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِمَآ أُنزِلَ إِلَيْكَ وَمَآ أُنزِلَ مِن قَبْلِكَ وَبِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ هُمْ يُوقِنُونَ أُو۟لَٰٓئِكَ عَلَىٰ هُدًى مِّن رَّبِّهِمْۖ وَأُو۟لَٰٓئِكَ هُمُ ٱلْمُفْلِحُونَ

— Qur’an 2:2-5

Translation:

2. This is the Book about which there is no doubt, a guidance for those conscious of Allah –

3. Who believe in the unseen, establish prayer, and spend out of what We have provided for them,

4. And who believe in what has been revealed to you, [O Muhammad], and what was revealed before you, and of the Hereafter they are certain [in faith].

5. Those are upon [right] guidance from their Lord, and it is those who are the successful.

وَأَقِيمُوا۟ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَءَاتُوا۟ ٱلزَّكَوٰةَ وَٱرْكَعُوا۟ مَعَ ٱلرَّٰكِعِينَ

— Qur’an 2:43

Translation: And establish Salah and give Zakah and bow with those who bow [in worship and obedience].

Guard your Salah and middle Salah; and stand before God devoutly obedient. Then if you fear on foot or riding; then when you become secure remember God as he has taught you that which you did not know previously. (Al-Quran 2:238-239)

And offer Salah at the two ends of day and at the approach of night; indeed good deeds remove bad deeds; this is a reminder for those who remember. (Al-Quran 11:114)

offer Salah at the decline of the day until the darkness of night; and Quran at dawn; indeed Quran at dawn ever is a witness. And at night pray Tahajjud an extra for thee; it is expected that your lord raise you to praised station. (Al-Quran 17:78-79))

Say call God or call Merciful ; by whomever you call; He has good names; and do not make your Salah loud nor make silent and choose a path between them. (Al-Quran 17:110)

And offer Salah and pay Zakah and obey Messenger so that you may receive mercy.(Al-Quran 24:56)

And recite that is revealed to youas a book and offer Salah; indeed Salah prohibits immorality and wrongdoing; and remembrance of God is great; and God is aware of what you do. (Al-Quran 29:45))

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