The Fajr prayer (Arabic: صلاة الفجر ṣalāt al-faǧr, "dawn prayer") is the first of the five daily prayers offered by practising Muslims. (Fajr means dawn in the Arabic language.) The five daily prayers collectively form one pillar of the Five Pillars of Islam, in Sunni Islam, and one of the ten Practices of the Religion (Furū al-Dīn) according to Shia Islam.
The Fajr prayer is mentioned by name in the Qur'an at sura 24 (An-Nur) ayah. Inspired by the tafsir of the two hadiths that were transmitted on behalf of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, the worth of the Fajr daily prayer is explained as being God's most-favoured prayer since others are asleep. This has made the Fajr daily prayer the most essential and obligatory congregational prayer to be held by Muslims together in groups in mosques.
Fajr prayer requires two fard rakaʿāt. In a congregation, the leader of the prayer (imam) recites aloud. However, two sunnah rakaʿāt are highly recommended prior to the two Fard rakaʿāt.
The time period within which the Fajr daily prayer must be offered (with loud recitation of the quran) is from the beginning of dawn to sunrise.
The call to Fajr prayer marks the beginning of the obligatory daily fasting (sawm) during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The Qur'an relates a sura, Al-Fajr, by the same name.
Hadith mentioning Fajr Salat
The following quotations regarding Fajr, the Islamic dawn prayer, are from books of Sunni hadith. These books relate accounts taken from the life of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, his family, and his companions. They were compiled by Islamic scholars after Muhammad's death. These quotations include information about those who related the accounts, as well as the accounts themselves.
- Narrated Aisha: Muhammad never missed four Rakat before the Zuhr prayer and two Rakat before the Fajr prayer. Sahih al-Bukhari, 2:21:276
- Narrated Abu Huraira: Muhammad said, "If anyone of you can get one Rak'a of the 'Asr prayer before sunset, he should complete his prayer. If any of you can get one Rak'a of the Fajr prayer before sunrise, he should complete his prayer." Sahih al-Bukhari, 1:10:531
- Narrated 'Umar: "The Prophet forbade praying after the Fajr prayer till the sun rises and after the 'Asr prayer till the sun sets." Sahih al-Bukhari, 1:10:555
- Abu Hurairah stated that Muhammad had said, "There are angels who take turns in visiting you by night and by day, and they all assemble at the dawn (Fajr) and the afternoon (`Asr) prayers. Those who have spent the night with you, ascend to the heaven and their Rabb (Lord), Who Knows better about them, Asks: 'In what condition did you leave My slaves?' They reply: 'We left them while they were performing Salat and we went to them while they were performing Salat.' " From Al-Bukhari and Muslim.
- Aishah relates that Muhammad said about the two rakahs before Fajr, "They are dearer to me than the whole world." This is related by Muslim, Ahmad and Tirmidhi.
- Ahmad and Muslim record that Aishah said, "I have never seen him (Muhammad) more in haste to do a good deed than he was to perform the two rakahs before the morning (prayer)."
- Abu Huraira reports that Muhammad said: "Do not leave the two rak'ahs of Fajr, even if you are being attacked by cavalry." This is confirmed by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Al-Bahaiqi and at Tahawi.
- Aishah reports that Muhammad said, "The two (sunnah) rakahs of Fajr are better than this world and all it contains." This is reported by Ahmad, Muslim, Tirmidhi and Nasa'i.
- Abu Hurairah reported: Muhammad said, "No Salat is more burdensome to the hypocrites than the Fajr (dawn) prayer and the `Isha' (night) prayer; and if they knew their merits, they would come to them even if they had to crawl to do so. [Sahih-Al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim].
- ^ Quran 24:58
- ^ There are differing opinions on what angle to use to calculate dawn. The two popular angles are 15° and 18° below the horizon, yet others use 12°.
- ^ Excellence of the Morning (Fajr) and 'Asr Prayers