Volume - III / CHAPTER - 2 / LESSON NO: 18
"NIYAH" (PRAYER'S INTENTION)
Q 1: What is "Niyah"?
A. "Niyah" means to have firm intention to offer prayer. Mere intention will not serve the purpose unless one resolves and forms "Niyah" in the heart.
Q 2: What about the expression of "Niyah" by the tongue?
A. It is Mustahab (commendable) to express "Niyah" by the tongue (in whatever language it may be) but if one has the intention of Zuhr prayer at heart and inadvertently utters "Asr prayer" then it will be Zuhr prayer not 'Asr.
Q 3: What things are essential for "Niyah"?
A. One should form "Niyah" in the heart for whichever prayer he is about to offer. For example: I make Niyah to offer four Rakahs' Fard (obligatory) prayer of Zuhr or Asr. In case of congregation (Jama'at) also say under the leadership of (following) this Imaam (leader of prayer). Similarly, one should offer missed prayers (if owes) saying: I intend to offer such and such missed prayer of so and so day.
Q 4: How to make Niyah of Nafil and Sunnat prayer?
A. In Nafil and Sunnat prayer it is enough to say: I intend to offer prayer. However, it is better to speak the word of "Sunnat" for Sunnat prayer.
Q 5: Please illustrate full Niyah?
A. Example: I intend to offer two Rakahs' obligatory prayer of Fajr of today for the sake of Allah Almighty and I am facing the Qiblah Shareef. Then he should recite Takbeer-e-Tahreema and fold his hands below the navel. In case of Jama'at, he should also say "following (behind) this Imaam".
Q 6: How to intend for Sunnat prayer?
A. If one has to offer four Sunnats of Zuhr, should say: I intend to offer four Rakahs1 Sunnat prayer of Zuhr for the sake of Allah, Sunnats for the Holy Prophet and I am facing Ka'bah Shareef or Qiblah Shareef.
Q 7: How to intend for Wajib prayer?
A. In Wajib prayer one should make Niyah for Wajib and also say (for example) prayer of Eid-ul-Fitr Wajib or Eid-ul-Azha (Adha) Wajib or Witr Wajib.
Q 8: Is it necessary to mention number of Rakahs in
A. Mentioning number of Rakahs is not necessary while making Niyah for prayer. However, it is commendable.