Salatul Layl

Salatul Layl

(Tahajjud PRAYER)-(Namaz-e-SHAB)-(NIGHT PRAYER)


وَمِنَ اللَّيْلِ فَتَهَجَّدْ بِهِ نَافِلَةً لَّكَ عَسَى أَن يَبْعَثَكَ رَبُّكَ مَقَامًا مَّحْمُودًا

And (during part) of the night, abandon sleep and keep vigil to pray Salat, in addition to the regular obligatory prayer. Your Rabb (the Sustainer) may (as a reward) elevate you to the position of High Distinction, Glory and Praise.”[THE HOLY QUR’AN: 17:79]


The time for praying Salatul-Layl is from midnight (midnight is reckoned as the time which is exactly half the time between sunset and the actual dawn) to the time of Adhan for Fajr prayers. However, it can be prayed at anytime after Isha prayers but it is better to pray during the last part of the night near to the time of Fajr prayers. If it is not possible to pray after midnight or before Fajr, then it can be prayed in the morning or any part of the day with the niyyah (intention) of Qadha. It is better to pray with the niyyah of Qadha during the day time than to pray in the early part of the night.

Note: According to Ayatullah Seestani, the time for Salatul-Layl is from midnight to the Adhan time for Fajr prayers. However, it is better to pray near the time of Fajr prayers. Anyone who finds it difficult to pray Salatul-Layl after midnight can pray before midnight.



Salatul-Layl is made up of eleven Rak’ats.


Ø      The first eight Rak’ats are prayed as normal in pairs of two Rak’ats each with the niyyah of Nawafilatul-Layl.


Ø      The next two Rak’ats are prayed with the Niyyah of Salatul Shaf’a.


Ø      The remaining one Rak’at is prayed with the Niyyah of Salatul Witr.


In the last one Rak’at, Qunoot is recited before Rukuu and the Salat is completed as usual with Tashahud and Salaam.

The last one Rak’at is prayed as follows:


            Hold Tasbih in the right hand for keeping count of the dhikr mentioned below to be recited.


Make Niyyah and say Takbiratul Ihram.

Recite:         Surah Al-Hamd;

Surah Qul Huwallahu Ahad - three times;

Surah Qul-Audhubi Rabbil Falaq - once;
Surah Qul-Audhubi Rabbin Naas - once.


Note: If one does not know the last two Surahs mentioned above, then it is sufficient to recite Surah Qul Huwallahu Ahad, three times.


Say Takbir and raise both hands for Qunoot.:-

 You may recite any Dua. However, it is recommended to recite the following Dua



Laa ilaaha illallaahul Halimul Karim

لآ اِلَهَ اِلاَّ اللّهُ الْحَلِيْمُ الْكَرِيْمُ


Laa ilaaha illallaahul ‘Aliyyul ‘Azim

لآ اِلَهَ اِلاَّ اللّهُ الْعَلِيُّ الْعَظِيْمُ


Subhaanallaahi Rabbis Samaawaatis Sab'

سُبْحَانَ اللّهِ رَبِّ السَّمَاوَاتِ السَّبْعِ


wa Rabbil ‘Arzinas Sab'

وَ رَبِّ الاَرْضِيْنَ السَّبْعِ


wa maa fihinna wa maa baynahunna

وَ مَا فِيْهِنَّ وَ مَا بَيْنَهُنَّ وَ


wa Rabbul 'Arshil ‘Azim

رَبُّ الْعَرْشِ الْعَظِيْمِ


Wal Hamdul lillaahi Rabbil 'Aalamin

وَ الْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِيْنَ

There is none worth worshipping but Allah Who is Forbearing and Generous

There is none worth worshipping but Allah Who is Most High and Great

Glory be to Allah, Who is the Sustainer of the seven heavens and of the seven earth

And Who is the Sustainer of all the things in them, and between them,

And Who is the Lord of the great ‘Arsh (Divine Center of Authority & Power)

And all praise for Allah, the Sustainer of the worlds.



 Then, while holding the Tasbih in the right hand, raise the left hand and pray for forgiveness of forty [40] or

more Mu’mineen/Mu’minaat who are either dead or living in the following manner:


Allaahummagh Firli… (Name)

اَللّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ ل...

O Allah, forgive … giving the names of Mu’mineen/Mu’minaat.

(In each case saying, Allahummagh Firli …….)

 Continuing with the Qunoot, while still raising the left hand, recite the following Istighfar seventy [70] times:

Astaghfirullah Rabbi wa Atuubu Ilayh

اَسْتَغْفِرُ اللّهَ رَبِّي وَ اَتُوْبُ اِلَيْهِ

I seek forgiveness of Allah my Lord and I turn to Him

 Still continuing further while raising the left hand, recite the following Dua seven [7] times:

Haadhaa Maqaamul 'Aaidhi Bika Minannaar

هذَا مَقَامُ الْعَآئِذِ بِكَ مِنَ النَّارِ

This is the position of one who seeks refuge in You from the fire [of Hell]


Continuing yet further while still raising the left hand, recite three hundred [300] times - 

Al-'Afwa (I ask for) forgiveness اَلْعَفْوَ


Following this, the following should be said once:

" Rabbigfirli warhamni wa tubalaiyyi,Innaka tawwaburrahim" “Lord, please forgive me and have mercy upon me and turn back towards me. Verily You are the Oft-Turning back, Most Merciful”



Finally, complete the Salat in the normal way by going to Rukuu’ followed by Sajdah, Tashahud and Salaam, ending Salatul-Layl.


As a Ta’kibaat after the Salat, recite:


Ø      Tasbih of Janabe Fatemah Zahra (a.s.),

                               34 times Allahu Akbar;         

                               33 times Al-Hamdu Lillah:

                               33 times Subhanallah,

Ø      followed by Sajdah of Shukr.

Ø      Next, recite Ayatul Kursi.

Ø      Finally, for the second time, perform Sajdah of Shukr, completing the Salat.

The blessed month of Ramadhan offers a good opportunity and convenient time to pray Salatul Layl, especially when the time of commencing the fast is favorable. Allah [swt] gives abundant reward for all our acts of worship during this blessed month, therefore, we need to make special efforts to pray the Salaat and keep it up for the rest of the year to raise our level of spirituality.

Please do not forget all of the believers throughout the world in your Salat al-Layl especially those downtrodden and oppressed Muslims all over the globe.

 Imam Ali ibn Husain (Zainul Aabideen) (as) Supplication for himself in Confessing Sins after Finishing the Tahajud Prayer


By praying Salatul-Layl one’s livelihood is increased, one passes easily through “Sakaraat” (great and grueling pain a dying person suffers at the time of death) and finds happiness in “Barzakh” (the Spiritual world where the departed souls stay either in happiness or misery, until the Day of Resurrection).  

Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) quotes Imam Ali (as) as saying that the Prophet (saws) said that a person who prays Salatul-Layl gets the following twenty four kinds of benefits: 

  1. Secures Allah’s pleasure.
  2. Makes friendship with Angels.
  3. Is the Sunnat of the Prophets (a.s.)
  4. Provides the means to pursue knowledge.
  5. Constitutes the root of our faith.
  6. Keeps one physically fit.
  7. Drives Shaytan away.
  8. Protects one from enemies.
  9. Serves as a means of acceptance of one’s Duas and good deeds.
  10. Increases one’s livelihood.
  11. Intercedes with the Angel of Death.
  12. Lights up the grave.
  13. Provides comfortable bedding in the grave.
  14. Helps answering with ease the questioning of Munkar and Nakir in the grave.
  15. Gives companionship in the grave.
  16. Provides shelter on the Day of Judgment.
  17. Crowns one on the Day of Reckoning.
  18. Clothes one on the Day of Resurrection.
  19. Provides one with light on the Day of Judgment.
  20. Forms a barrier against the fire of Hell.
  21. Gets Allah’s pardon on the Day of Judgment.
  22. Increases the weight of good deeds on the scale.
  23. Helps one crossing the Bridge of “Siraat” without any difficulty.
  24. Forms the key to the Paradise.

Fazilat (Merit) of reciting the Qaza of Namaz-e-Shab

If one misses the Namaz-e-Shab one can perform its Qaza during the day. If one has missed Namaz-e-Shab there is great merit in performing its Qaza. Thus there is a tradition from Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq (a.s.) in Tafseer Ali Ibne Ibrahim Qummi that a person said to Imam (a.s.): May I be sacrificed on you, sometimes I miss Namaz-e-Shab for one, two or three months and I perform it during the day, is such a thing allowed?

Imam (a.s.) said: By Allah! This action is the cause of the vision of your eyes. And he repeated this sentence thrice.

Ishaq bin Ammar has related from Imam Sadiq (a.s.) that he quoted his father who quoted the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.s.) that when a person performs the Qaza of Namaz-e-Shab the Almighty Allah expresses pride before the Angels and says; O Angels! See he is performing the Qaza of that which I have not made obligatory on him. Be witness that I have given him salvation. (Beharul Anwaar Vol. 87 Pg. 202)

If while one is offering the Namaz-e-Shab and the dawn appears, for example the dawn has appeared after performing four rakats one should perform the rest of the prayer without recommended rituals. However if one has not prayed four rakats, one should complete the two rakats, then offer two rakats of the Nafila of the Morning Prayer, then two rakats obligatory Morning Prayer, and after this he should recite the Qaza of the rest of the Namaz-e-Shab. Or if he has not even begun reciting the Namaz-e-Shab and the dawn has arrived one should recite two rakats of Nafila of the Morning Prayer and then two rakats of Obligatory Morning Prayer. And after the Morning Prayer he should recite the Qaza of Namaz-e-Shab.

If one offers the Namaz-e-Shab after the Morning Azan and before Sunrise one must neither recite it with the intention of Qaza nor the intention of Adaa (in time), rather one should recite it with the intention of 'whatever is applicable'.

It means that one should make an intention that one is praying the Namaz-e-Shab for gaining the proximity to Allah. (Qurbatan Elallah).

Reference:Salatul Layl (Short Article) by `Allamah Majlisi


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