The Jama’ and Qasar Solah

The difference between Jama’ and Qasar of Solah

What is the difference between combining and shortening of Solah?

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All the praise and thanks is due to Allah, Subhanahu wata`ala. Peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

There are many differences between combining (jama’) and shortening (qasar) prayers, including the following:

1. Definition

Qasar Solah is the shortening prayers the four-rak’ah prayers: Zuhur, ‘asar, and ‘Isha, turning it to a two rak’ahs when one is travelling (musafir) [on a good cause free of maksiat]. It is not applicable to Maghrib and Fajar Prayers.

Allah says:

“And when you (Muslims) travel in the land, there is no sin on you if you shorten As-Salah (the prayer) if you fear that the disbelievers may put you in trial (attack you), verily, the disbelievers are ever unto you open enemies”

[Al-Nisa, 4:101]

And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “The prayer when travelling is a two rak’ahs.”

[Narrated by al-Nasa’ie, 1420; classified as sahih by al-Albani in Sahih al-Nasa’ie]

The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “Allah has waived half the prayer for the traveller.”

[Narrated by al-Nasa’ie, 2275; classified as hasan by al-Albani in Sahih al-Nasa’ie]

Anas bin Malik (radiallahu’anhu) said: “We went out with the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) from Madinah to Makkah, and we prayed two rak’ahs each time, until we came back to Madinah”.

[Narrated by al-Bukhari, 1081; Muslim, 693]

As for jama’ (combining) solat means the worshipper combine or join up two prayers, Zuhur and ‘Asar, or Maghrib and ‘Isha’, at the time of the earlier or later of the two solah [zuhur and ‘asar at zuhur or ‘asar; Maghrib and isya’ at maghrib or at isya’].

Anas ibn Malik (radiallahu’anhu) said: “The Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) joined Maghrib and ‘Isha’ prayers when travelling.”

[Al-Bukhari (1108)]

Mu’adz (radiallahu’anhu) said: We went out with the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) on the campaign of Tabuk, and he used to pray Zuhur and ‘Asar together, and Maghrib and ‘Isha’ together.

[Muslim (706)]

It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbas (radiallahu’anhu) said:

The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) joined Zuhur and ‘Asar, and Maghrib and ‘Isha’, in Madinah when there was no fear and no rain.

[Muslim (705)]

2. Ruling of Shari’e

The scholars unanimously agreed that shortening (qasar) the prayers is mustahab for the traveller (musafir) than offering them in full, because the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) shortened (qasar) prayers during all his journeys, and there is no sahih report that he offered the prayers in full [ the four rak’ah solah] whilst travelling.

Ibn ‘Umar (radiallahu`anhu) said: “I accompanied the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) and he did not do more than two rak’ahs [i.e the four rak’ahs solah] whilst travelling, and the same applies to Abu Bakar, ‘Umar and ‘Uthman (radiallahu`anhum)”.

[Al-Bukhari (1102)]

The Hanafis are of the view that it is obligatory for the traveller to shorten his prayers. But the correct view is that of the majority [the Hanbalis, Malikis and Shafi’es], that shortening (qasar) the prayers is Sunnah Mu’akkadah (a confirmed Sunnah), and that it is better (mustahab) than offering the prayers in full.

[See: al-Ijma’ by Ibn al-Mundhir (27); al-Mughni (1/382); al-Mawsu’ah al-Fiqhiyyah (27/274)]

Some scholars view that it is not permissible to combine prayers anywhere except in the case of the pilgrim in these two places, ‘Arafah and Muzdalifah.

The correct view is that of the majority of scholars, which is that it is permissible to combine (jama’) prayers if there is a valid situation and need for doing so, because it is proven that the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) did it in places other than ‘Arafah and Muzdalifah.

3. Reasons which make it permissible to jama’ and qasar prayers

The reasons which make it permissible to combine (jama’) prayers are broader than those which make it permissible to shorten (qasar) them.

Jama’ or combining prayers is permissible for the travellers and for the non-travellers if it is too difficult for him to offer every prayer on time, such as one who is sick, or if there is rain, or he is busy with some work that he cannot delay in order to pray, such as a student taking an exam or a doctor who is doing surgery and so on.

With regard to the qasar (shortening) prayers, it is only permissible when travelling on good cause not involving maksiyat.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (rahimahullah) said:

The reason for shortening (qasar) prayers is travelling only, and it is not permissible in situations other than travelling. As for combining (jama’) prayers, the basis for it is the necessity and valid situations. So if a person find it necessary and needs it he may jamak, or do both qasar and full-length prayers whilst travelling, and he may jamak prayers when it is raining and so on, or because of sickness and the like, and for other reasons, because the purpose behind it is to spare the ummah hardship.

[Majmu’ al-Fatawa (22/293)]

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said:  Jamak (combining) prayers are broader in scope than shortening (qasar) them, i.e., the reasons for doing so are more numerous.

[Al-Liqa’ al-Shahri (60/11)]

And Allah knows best.

[Excerpted with modifications from No: 105109 Islam Q&A]


About Md Radzi Ahmad
A retired Malaysian civil servant. Served the Malaysian government for thirty-one years. Posted to London, Rangoon, Johannesburg, Pretoria and Bangkok. Born in Kampong Hutan Kandeh, Alor Star, Kedah. Educated at Sultan Abdul Hamid College, Alor Star and University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur. Currently resides in Subang Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan,Malaysia.Blessed with three children, a son, two daughters, daughter in law and two grandaughters.

2 Responses to The Jama’ and Qasar Solah

  1. hussein ibrahim says:

    Can i observe ishai behind imam on tarahwi jamah

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