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Solar / Lunar Eclipse: Should we offer special salat?


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Author Topic: Solar / Lunar Eclipse: Should we offer special salat?  (Read 67 times)
Ruhi_Rose
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« on: August 21, 2017, 10:49:28 am »

As-Salam Alaykum folks.   I guess you know a solar eclipse is expected today across north America - August 21, 2017.

As believers we also know that an eclipse is one of the wonders or portents displayed by The Almighty, The Greatest.  It provides us yet another opportunity to do zikr and offer nafl prayer.   You can offer either 2, 3 or as many rakats as you please from your heart, praise Allah Almighty and make dua for loved ones, for the needy and the unfortunate.  Ameen.  If you can afford some charity of money, food or clothing, you would be making big provision for your soul in the Hereafter, InshAllah.  You don't have to offer your nafl prayer while the eclipse is taking place as demanded by traditionalists.  Your nafl prayer can be offered any time after the eclipse .. after maghrib or isha prayers would be fine. 

Another important point:  As educated believers, we must be aware never to stare at the sun without proper eye protection during a solar eclipse as that could seriously harm the eyesight and damage the retina.  Staring at the sun is never a good idea even when there's no eclipse.  But during an eclipse, people tend to look at the awesome spectacle for several minutes.  That must not be done without special solar eclipse eyewear that are generally available in astronomical societies, pharmacies or you could buy them online at Amazon.  Science museums and universities often distribute them for free.  But do make sure the eclipse eye protection you use is appropriate and not sub-standard.  In my opinion, with the prerogative of the internet era, Alhumdulilah, it's best to watch an eclipse online.  NASA website is one of many that usually has live streaming of the event.
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Zeynab
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« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2017, 11:09:37 am »

Wa'salaam and many thanks Sis.  Very thoughtful and useful information. 
Allah bless.
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Heba E. Husseyn
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« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2017, 11:18:00 am »

Walaikum As-salam everyone.  Hadithists refer to eclipse prayer as salat-al-kusoof according to which, there's no adhan and only requires the announcement saying "as-salatu jami'ah" (prayer of gathering); and yes they insist the salat should begin as soon as the eclipse starts.  Unreasonable as always.  However, jurists also say it can also be offered individually because it's often not possible to attend a jam'ah at the time of an eclipse.  Neither is it quite possible to start the salat along with the eclipse.  Particularly in the middle ages when there was no such thing as meteorological department for studying the weather, possibility of an eclipse wasn't announced years, months or even days in advance.  It appeared suddenly and would be over in a few short minutes.  So how could anyone do wudu so fast and start the salat while the eclipse would be taking place?   

From the Hadith view point, the real purpose is to collect donation.  Thus they also call it sadaqa prayer.   There's a specific hadith for it which I cannot recall at the moment. 
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« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2017, 11:22:51 am »

and yes they insist the salat should begin as soon as the eclipse starts.  Unreasonable as always.  .. 

Really?   Indeed that's impractical.
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« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2017, 01:16:38 pm »

The idea of specifying it as salat-al-Kusoof comes from the interpolations introduced.  I'm not sure if that term is mentioned in hadith or constructed by the jurists.   We certainly do offer nafl prayers on this event but after the eclipse.  How can you offer while its taking place .. particularly considering that it's not healthy for the eyes to look out while an eclipse is happening?  Even with eclipse glasses is not a guarantee for safety as dozens of poor quality, cheap eclipse glasses are sold in science museums and also in pharmacies.

And yes, I agree, you can offer any number of nafl rakats you wish.   
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« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2017, 01:24:18 pm »

Exactly .. very rightly said brother.   I usually offer nafl for eclipse after offering my Isha prayer .. and I too never watch a solar eclipse.  It's very detrimental for the eyesight. 
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« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2017, 01:27:22 pm »

Yes, after Isha ..... we do the same.
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