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Position Yourself

Announce your Niyya (intentions) silently in your heart

Make your Qibla (prayer direction) face the direction of the Ka'bah

The Noble Qur'an: Al-Baqara 2:143-145 Thus We have made you [true Muslims -- real believers of Islamic Monotheism, true followers of Prophet Muhammad and his Sunna (legal ways)], a just (and the best) nation, that you be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger (Muhammad ) be a witness over you. And We made the Qiblah (prayer direction towards Jerusalem) which you used to face, only to test those who followed the Messenger (Muhammad ) from those who would turn on their heels (i.e. disobey the Messenger). Indeed it was great (heavy) except for those whom Allah guided. And Allah would never make your faith (prayers) to be lost (i.e. your prayers offered towards Jerusalem). Truly, Allah is full of Kindness, the Most Merciful towards mankind.
Verily! We have seen the turning of your (Muhammad's ) face towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qiblah (prayer direction) that shall please you, so turn your face in the direction of Al-Masjid-al-Haram (at Makka). And wheresoever you people are, turn your faces (in prayer) in that direction. Cerainly, the people who were given the Scriptures (i.e. Jews and the Christians) know well that, that (your turning towards the direction of the Ka'ba at Makka in prayers) is the truth from their Lord. And Allah is not unaware of what they do.

And even if you were to bring to the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) all the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.), they would not follow your Qiblah (prayer direction), nor are you going to follow their Qiblah (prayer direction).



Position your feet about shoulder width with arms to side

Do not put either arm on your hip

Abu Hurairah (r.a.) relates: "The Messenger of Allah prohibited putting one's hands on one's hips during the salah." [Abu Dawud]

Do not intertwine fingers

Straighten the Row and Narrow the Gap (For Group/Congregational Salah)

"...stand before Allâh with obedience..." [Qur'an 2:238]

An-Nu'maan Bin Basheer(r) reported that Allaah's Messenger used to straighten his companions' rows for the prayer like a straight arrow. One day, though, he was about to start the prayer when he noticed a man's chest protruding outside the row, and he said: "Servants of Allaah! You either straight.. your rows, or Allaah would cause your faces to differ." [Recorded by Muslim, Abu Daawood, and others]

In another report, he said: "Straighten your rows, or Allah would cause your hearts to differ" [Recorded by Abu Daawood and Ibn Hibbaan]

Related Link: Straighten the Rows

Focus your eyes on where you will be prostrating later

He (saaws) used to incline his head during prayer and fix his sight towards the ground [Baihaqi and Haakim, who declared it saheeh and also agreed by Albaani.]
While he was in the Ka'bah, his sight did not leave the place of his prostration until he came out from it [Baihaqi and Haakim, who declared it saheeh and also agreed by Albaani.]

For group salah, you make the Rakat motions after the Imam and say nothing outloud, except "Amin" which you should not say before the Imam says it. Women are allowed to, but do not have to say "Amin", for it is not recommended for her to bring attention to her voice if around non-mahram men.

For individual salah, or in the case that you are the Imam leading a group salah, use the following guidelines, insha'Allah. Once these guidelines and learned, the muslim should study hadith to learn various other du'a that may be made in place of the basic ones listed here, as it is recommended that he alternates between the various du'a.

 

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