[Updated 12 April 2021] Alhamdulillah, the month of Ramadhan is upon us again. So we get to enjoy all kinds of traditional goodies ? But that’s not the only reason we rejoice. Ramadhan is the perfect way of gaining Allah’s pleasure and mercy. So what else can we do apart from fasting? Nope, not solat Aidilfitri. Tarawih of course! And to help you out, here is a handy breakdown of all you need to know about this prayer and how to do it. P.S. Singapore friends, check out our article on how to book terawih prayers at mosques this Ramadan 2021.
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What is Tarawih?
- During Ramadan, special prayers called Tarawih are carried out after every Isyak prayers. Tarawih is derived from the Arabic word meaning “to rest and relax”, as righteous people before our time used to rest after every two or four lengthy rakaat.
- Tarawih prayers are not obligatory, (phew!) but it is highly encouraged (sunnah) for us to perform it.
- There are different opinions on how many rakaat to perform for Tarawih prayer, some scholars saying 8, 20 or even 36. What we commonly use locally is either 8 or 20 rakaat. Just because we have different arguments it doesn’t mean we avoid it completely. Strive for 8 rakaat at the very least. Any amount of units observed for Tarawih is still better than none. Go for it! ?
Why do we do Tarawih?
Origins of Tarawih
Rewards of Tarawih
When do we do Tarawih?
How to do Tarawih prayers?
- After the Isyak prayers, we can (and are highly encouraged!) to perform another Sunnah prayer known as “ba'diyah Isyak” or “after Isyak” of 2 rakaat (done individually).
- Now, you are ready to start Tarawih. Tarawih can be prayed in a congregation or it can also be done alone. But we surely gain more rewards praying it in a congregation (teamwork makes the dreamwork guys!)
- If you’re doing it individually, start off by making the intention for Tarawih prayers, as follows: “I intend to pray Sunnah Tarawih prayers, 2 rakaat due to Allah ta’ala.” If you’re doing it in a congregation, then make the intention, “I intend to pray Sunnah Tarawih prayers, 2 rakaat as a makmum due to Allah ta’ala.” It is not required to pronounce it verbally - the important thing is to have this intention in your heart and mind that you are now praying Tarawih.
- Continue praying in a similar fashion to any other 2 rakaat Sunnah prayers until you’ve completed either a set of 8 or 20 rakaat, depending on which length you’re comfortable with.
- Finally, conclude your Tarawih with the Witr prayer. Witr prayers are usually done after Tarawih prayers as means of closing off our prayers for the night. They are odd-numbered (such as 1, 3,5 rakaat and so on), though for after Tawarih, it is most common locally to perform three rakaat with either two, or one salam. Witr prayers can be done in a congregation or individually. If you performed Tarawih prayers in a congregation at the mosque and you are doing only 8 rakaat while the rest of the congregation are doing 20 rakaat, just make sure to perform the Witr prayer on your own ?
And that's it! You have completed tarawih prayers and experienced one of the blessings of this holy month of Ramadan. Now, you can head back home to the Ayam Percik that you’ve saved for after prayers ? This post was written by Ustaz Md Khalid Md Rafi, who is part of the Asatizah Youth Network. Find more articles on Islamic religious knowledge at muslim.sg. Ustaz Khalid can also be found on Facebook and Instagram.