Praying Fardh behind one who is offering Sunnah or Nafl prayers

Fatwa ID: 01439

Answered by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Question:

I have a question if you can help but I'm Hanafi looking for Shafi explanation and Daleel of a person praying farz behind someone who’s praying nafl or sunnah. Do you know the evidence in Shafi school?

So the person is praying farz behind a person who's praying sunnah or nafl valid or not and evidence please? And what is the solution at work places where an arab or salafe or shafi guy comes and joins in with hanafi sunnah or nafl prayer but his farz prayer by tapping his shoulders?

Answer:

Bismillah

In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.

In the Hanafi Fiqh it is considered impermissible for a person to pray his obligatory prayer behind someone who is praying sunnah or nafl, whereas in the Shafi Fiqh it is considered permissible. (Taqrir Bukhari p.412 v.3)

The evidence of Imam Shafi raḥimahullāh (may Allāh have mercy upon him) is the following hadith narrated by Saaiduna Jabir Bin Abdullah Radiallahu Anhu who said Saaiduna Muadh Bin Jabal Radiallahu Anhu used to pray with the Prophet of Allah ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) then he would go to his people and lead them in prayer….(Sahih Bukhari p.98 v.1) 

Imam Nawawil raḥimahullāh (may Allāh have mercy upon him) a Shafi himself has derived that the prayer of Saaiduna Muadh Bin Jabal raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) behind the Prophet of Allah ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) was his fardh and then the second time he prayed with his people was voluntary for him and obligatory for them. (Sharah Sahih Muslim p.181v.4) 

The Hanafi interpretation of the following hadith is:

  1. Saaiduna Muadh raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) prayed the first prayer behind the Prophet of Allah ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) with the intention of nafl and the second prayer with his people with the intention of fardh.
  2. Imam Tahawi raḥimahullāh (may Allāh have mercy upon him) says that this incident was during the beginning part of Islam when it was allowed to pray the fardh prayer twice. (Taqrir Bukhari p.412 v.3)

If a Shafi was to tap your back and gestures that he wants to pray his fardh behind you whilst you are praying your sunnah or nafl, then you should continue with your salah as normal without reading the recitation or the takbeer loudly. 

Only Allah Knows Best

Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham.

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