This is causing some restraint in the community as for far too long the Muslim Ummah has been used to reciting congregational du’a after fard salat, as some believe that the Prophet Mohammed (SAW) used to do it sometimes as well. But, due to the view of others that it is Bid’ah to do supplication in congregation, this has made people to get confused.
Another thorny Issue is whether the prayers which was said by the Holy Prophet Mohammed (SAW) was individual or collective. This comes up with so many questions as to whether those that believed that it is Bid’ah are right or those that believe that it is permissible are right too.
To discuss this Issue, I will first start by looking at the Ruling of making Du’a collectively according to the Imams of the Salaf, Researched by Ahmad bin Muhammad an-Najjar. It reads; "indeed the Imams of the Salaf from the (Sahabah) Companions and those that followed them in goodness agreed upon the rejection of every innovation in the Deen, and rejecting every worship or form of worship which the Prophet (SAW) did not do, nor what his noble Companions did not practice".
According to them, the rightly guided Khalifah Umar bin al-Khattab (RA) rejected a group gathered to make Du’a in a form that the Prophet (SAW) did not do, nor did the best of his Companions. To the extent Umar (RA) did not suffice by rejecting what they did by just speaking about it, rather he beat their leader with a whip, and this shows the great concern that the Companions had in rejecting innovated Bid’ah in the Deen.
In another narration, it is said that Imam Malik rejected this, saying this was not how the people used to do, rather one man used to recite to another person for learning purpose. It went further that Al-Imam Ibn Taymeeyah said "gathering for optional prayers, to listen to Qur’aan or for the Dhikr of Allaah", etc. if that is done occasionally, then it is better since it has been authentically reported that the Prophet (SAW) prayed an optional prayer in congregation sometimes. Likewise, he went out to his Companions and he would be amongst them one who would recite and the others would listen, and the Prophet (SAW) would sit with them to listen.
According to the book Knowledge from the methodology of the Salaf as-Salah Shaatabi al-Maliki ‘Constantly making Dua’ in a form of a congregation was not from the actions of the Messenger of Allaah (SAW), as it was not from the statements of the Messenger, nor was it from that which he allowed'.
Finally in Fatawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah: Making du’a after the obligatory prayer is not Sunnah if it is done by raising the hands, whether that is done by the imam alone or a member of the congregation alone, or it is done by them both together. Rather that is bid’ah, because it was not narrated that the Prophet (SAW) or any of his companions (may Allaah be pleased with them) did such.
These are some of the beliefs of those who think that it is Bid’ah to make Du’a in congregation after prayers and prayer ends after the Salaam. But according to some narrations, this is not bid’ah and it is permissible for one to make Du’a in congregation after prayers.
In a report by Abu Umama al-Bahili (Allah be pleased with him) he narrates: "The Messenger of Allah (SAW) was asked as to which supplication (du’a) was most quickly accepted"? He replied: “In the middle of the night and after the obligatory (fard) prayers.” (Sunan Tirmidhi, 5/188 with a sound (hasan) chain of transmission).
Muadh ibn Jabal (Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said to him: “I advise you O Muadh that you don’t leave the following words after every prayer; “O Allah, assist me in remembering you, showing gratitude to you and worshipping you in a good manner.” (Sunan Abu Dawud, 2/115 & Sunan Nasa’i, 3/53).
In some narrations it is reported that Ali ibn Abi Talib (Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) “Raising the hands (whilst supplicating) is from the humbleness, regarding which Allah Most High said; We inflicted punishment on them, but they humbled not themselves to their lord, nor do they submissively entreat.” (Sunan al-Bayhaqi & Mustadrak al-Hakim)
Abu Huraira (Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) raised his hands after making salam, and then whilst facing the direction of the Qiblah, he said: “O Allah, …. liberate the weak Muslims from the hands of the non-believers.” (Recorded by Ibn Abi Hatim & Imam Ibn Kathir in his Tafsir)
Supplicating collectively is also not foreign to the Qur’an and Sunnah. There are many proofs for the collective dua in the Qur’an and Sunnah, both inside and outside Salat.
Habib ibn Maslama al-Fihri (Allah be pleased with him) narrates that I heard the Messenger of Allah (SAW) say: “No group of believers assemble, one of them supplicating while others saying Amîn, except that Allah answers their prayer.” (Recorded by Tabrani in al-Mu’jum al-Kabir, 4/26 & Hakim in his al-Mustadrak, 3/347 and he classed it as authentic (sahih) .
The above and other narrations are clear proof on the fact that to supplicate collectively is not against the Sunnah or an innovation (bid’ah). This relates to supplicating inside or outside prayer.
In Conclusion , it becomes clear that to supplicate collectively after prayers is not an innovation rather something that has been proven from the Sunnah. There are evidences that one should supplicate immediately after obligatory prayers, and that raising one’s hands whilst supplicating is also a Sunnah, and finally collective supplication is also established in the Sunnah.
I am of the view that with these evidences in mind, if one was to supplicate with the Imam and the other followers, then there is nothing wrong in doing so. Moreover, if all the worshippers supplicate simultaneously after Fard prayers, then automatically there will be collective supplication.
This belief must be avoided, as to supplicate after a prayer is not obligatory. If an individual does not supplicate, then he should not be rebuked or looked down upon. People must be left free to do what they want. For this reason, some of the scholars have stated that it would be better if the supplication was left out once in a while so that the concept on ‘necessity’ is removed from the minds of people.
The followers of Imam Azam Abu Hanifa and Imam Shafai neither term it bid’ah insisting on the same nor adopt injustice and bid’ah rather they followed whatever is mentioned in the hadith. Then why should one bother with their saying and practice.
Lesson Learnt from my research is that, because of the Issue of Bid’ah that have surrounded the Issue of praying after the obligatory prayers we are missing two very important things that is so important in our prayers that we have abandoned just to avoid doing the things that people think is bid’ah.
It is reported from Abdullaah bin Rabaha from a man who was from the Companions of the Prophet (SAW) that the Messenger of Allaah had prayed the Asr prayer, and this man (immediately) stood up to pray. `Umar saw him and said to him sit down, since indeed the people of the book were destroyed because they did not leave a gap after their (obligatory) prayer. The Prophet (SAW) said to him: 'You have done well O Ibn Khattab!'
Secondly, Is the Issue of Tasbir :- Sub-han Allah, Alhamdu lillah, Allah hu Akbar followed at the end with Laa ilaaha ill-allaahu, waḥdahu laa shareeka lahu, lahul-mulku wa lahul-ḥamdu, wa huwa alaa kulli shay in qadeer. Translation Glorious is God, Praises are due to Allah, Allah is the greatest. None has the right to be worshipped except Allah, alone, without partner, to Him belongs all sovereignty and praise, and He is over all things omnipotent
Abu Hurairah (R.A) it is reported from the Messenger of Allah (S.A.W) said "whoever follow this Tasweeh, will have his sins forgiven, even if they were like the foam on the sea". [Muslim no. 597]
Allah Knows Best, Salamualiakum I love you all for the sake of Allah Keep Smiling