Numerous ahadeeth and Qur’anic verses mention the excellence of Qiyaam al-Layl and the merit of those who perform it regularly. The craziness of life often have us trudging through our daily routine and forgetting about this fruitful prayer, here are a few reminders of its importance and a number of practical tips to help you get in the habit of Qiyaam al-Layl.
He (Peace and Blessings be upon Him) said: “You should pray Qiyaam al-Layl, for it is the habit of the righteous people who came before you, and it will bring you closer to your Lord, expiate for bad deeds, prevent sin, and expel disease from the body.” [At-Tirmidhee and Musnad Ahmad]
It is also narrated Mu’adh Ibn Jabal (May Allah be Pleased with Him): The Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon Him) said to him: “May I show you the gates of goodness? (they are), (a) Fasting is a screen from Hell, (b) As-Sadaqah extinguishes the sins, as water extinguishes fire, (c) Standing in salaat (prayer) by a slave of Allah during the last third part of a night.”
Then the Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon Him) recited the verse: “Their (believer’s) sides forsake their beds, to invoke their Lord in fear and hope; and they spend out of what We have bestowed on them.” [Abu Dawood and at-Tirmidhee]
Practical Tips for Praying Qiyaam al-Layl
1. Ikhlas (Sincerity)
This is the key to Allah’s Help and blessings. The help of Allah is needed to accomplish and achieve success in all our affairs. And Allah helps those who are sincere in their hearts. The Messenger of Allah (Peace and blessings upon him) said: “If you are truthful with Allah, then Allah will deliver to you what you wish for.” [An-Nasa’ee, al-Hakim and Saheeh al-Jamee]
Therefore, one should have a sincere intention to pray Qiyaam al-Layl; seek the Pleasure of Allah Alone and avoid the desire of praise or fame. Allah says: “And they were commanded not, but that they should worship Allah, and worship none but Him Alone.” [Quran 98: 5]
2. Knowing the Virtues of Qiyaam al-Layl
Knowing the virtues and rewards of performing worship produces willingness and desire to perform the worship. We have previously mentioned numerous virtues of regularly praying Qiyaam al-Layl, here we mention the excellence of praying Qiyaam al-Layl particularly in the great month of Ramadan.
Abu Hurayrah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Allah’s Messenger (Peace and blessings be upon Him) encouraged the people, without making it an absolute command, to perform Qiyaam during Ramadan. He (Peace and blessings be upon Him) used to say: “Whoever stands (in Qiyaam) in Ramadan out of faith and expectation (of Allah’s reward), all his previous sins will be forgiven.” [Saheeh Muslim]
3. Taking a Nap in the Day Time
Taking a nap before or after Dhuhr salah will dismiss stress and thus enable one to get up in the night and stand in front of his Lord. The Messenger of Allah (Peace and blessings be upon Him) said: “Take a nap, for the Shayateen do not take naps.” [Reported by at-Tabaranee. Al-Saheehah 2647]
In essence, purify your intentions, clear your mind and rest your body in preparation for this fruitful salah.
Look out for part 2 of this article for more practical tips on how to achieve Qiyam al-Layl.
Do you pray Qiyam al-Layl regularly? If so, inspire us with some of your tips that help you remain consistent, share with us how this prayer has impacted your life.
About the Author
This article was shared by Al Huda Institute Canada, a non-profit, non-sectarian, non-political organization currently working to promote authentic Islamic knowledge. The institute began its educational program in 2001, and is now providing structured courses for people from all walks of life.