Preparing a healthy lunch.
Performing Thuhr prayer
(4 Rak'ah of Sunnah, 4 Rak'ah Fard, and 2 Rak'ah Sunnah)
Regarding the Sunnah prayer, `Aa`ishah may Allaah be pleased with her said: "When the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) used to be in my house, he would offer four Sunnah Rak’ahs before Thuhr, then he would go and lead the congregation, and thereafter return home and offer two Sunnah Rak’ahs. Similarly, he would lead the Maghrib prayer in the congregation and come back and offer two Sunnah Rak’ahs. Likewise after having led the `lshaa` prayer, he would come back to my apartment and offer two Sunnah Rak’ahs.” [Muslim]
Obviously, for women it is preferable to perform both Sunnah and Fard Prayer within the home; Umm Humayd As-Sa'idiyyah said: “O, Prophet of Allaah, I love praying behind you." Thereupon the Prophet of Allaah sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) told her: ''I had known that you like praying with me. But your prayer in your private room is better than your prayer in other rooms of your house, and your prayer in other rooms of your house is better than your prayer in the halls of your house, and your prayer in the halls of your house is better than your prayer in your community's mosque, and your prayer in your community's mosque is better than your prayer in my mosque." [Ahmad and At-Tabaraani] However, the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) did not forbid women from going to the mosque as he said: “Do not prohibit the female-servants of Allaah from coming to the mosque of Allaah. When a wife of one of you asks for permission to go to the mosque, she should not be refused this permission." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
„X Saying this Du`aa` when leaving the house: If a woman goes to the mosque or must leave the house for her needs or the needs of the family, she should say this Du`aa`, "In the name of Allaah, I trust in Allaah, there is no might and power but in Allaah.” Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "When a man leaves his house, saying: ‘In the name of Allaah, I trust in Allaah there is no might and power but in Allaah’, it is said to him at that time, ‘Your are guided, you are taken care of, you are protected.' Then Satan turns away from him, and another Satan says, `How can a man approach you, who is already guided, cared for and protected?"' [Abu Daawood]
„X Du`aa` when entering the house: The prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "When a man enters his house, let him say: '0 Allaah, I ask of You the good of entry and the good of exit. In the name of Allaah, we enter; in the name of Allaah, we exit. And upon Allaah, our Lord, we depend.' Then he should say Salaam to his family.” [Abu Daawood]
Performing ‘Asr prayer:
( 4 Rak’ah Fard)
The prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "He who leaves the ‘Asr prayer is like one who has lost (some of) his family and his property." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] The significance of the afternoon prayer is often likened to that of Fajr prayer. The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “A person will not be sent to Hell who has offered his Fajr prayer and his ‘Asr prayer.” [Muslim]
Preparing a healthy dinner for the family.
Perform the Maghrib prayer
(3 Rak’ah Fard and 2 Rak’ah Sunnah)
It is advised that the family makes the prayer together in congregation at times when two or more are present. Young children may even be encouraged to participate in the activity. This is a good way of strengthening family ties and setting a positive example for the children.
Conducting a study circle within the home:
The evening is a nice time to gather the family members for the study of the Quran, Ahadeeth, Seerah (Biography of the Prophet) and other areas of Islamic knowledge.
This is something that can be made a regular part of the daily or weekly schedule.
Although parents will be primarily responsible for the topics and discussions, older children may be given assignments to prepare for the group. Encouraging them to actively participate will enhance their excitement and interest in learning. Creative and engaging methods may be used to maintain the attention of younger children, although they should not be forced to sit for long periods of time. Regarding the importance of teaching, the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "Each of you is a guardian, and each of you will be asked about your guardianship. The leader (Muslim ruler) is a guardian, and the man is a guardian over the people of his house, and the woman is a guardian over her husband's house and children. So each of you is a guardian, and each of you will be asked about your guardianship." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
Holding a family discussion:
The evening is also an ideal time for family discussions since most family members are likely to be present. The family may discuss happenings or special events of the day, issues that need to be considered together, or other matters of importance such as rules or schedules. Doing this on a regular basis will instill responsibility and respect in children and make them feel that they are a vital part of the family unit. As children mature and reach the age of responsibility, it becomes necessary to include them in discussions and decision-making, particularly in matters that pertain to them. This is actually a time for them to learn how a family should function and the most effective ways to plan and make decisions, since they will eventually begin a family of their own. Obviously, the parents should provide acceptable role models that the children will want to emulate.
„X Du`aa` after a meeting or gathering: "Glory be to You, O Allaah, and praise be to You. I witness that none is worthy of worship but You. I seek Your forgiveness and I turn to you in repentance." [At-Tirmithi]
Securing the house:
Keep children in after the darkness begins and be sure to secure the house. The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "When the darkness of the night or evening (comes), then keep in your children, for satan is then out. And when an hour of the night has gone, then let them go and close the doors, and invoke the name of Allaah, for satan does not open a closed door, and tie up your water-skins and invoke the name of Allaah, and cover your vessels and invoke the name of Allaah, even when you put something on them, and put out your lights."
Reviewing the day for acts of charity:
There should be at least one act of charity in each person's day and this can come in many forms. Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "Charity is due upon every limb of a human being on each day that the sun rises. To act justly between two (people) is charity. To help a man with his riding beast, or to load his provisions on it or lift them up for him is charity. A good word is charity. Every step going to prayer is a charity. Removing from the road what causes harm is charity." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
Performing `Ishaa` Prayer
( 4 Rak’ah Fard and 2 Rak’ah Sunnah)
Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "No Prayer is more burdensome to the hypocrites than the Fajr prayer and the `Ishaa` prayer, but if they knew what blessings lie in them, they would certainly come for them, even if they had to crawl." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] It is best to perform the `Ishaa` prayer before one-half of the night is over.
Performing Witr Prayer
(an odd number of Rak’ah)
The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Allaah is single, He loves what is single, therefore, do the Witr, O you people of the Quran." [At-Tirmithi and Abu Daawood] He also said: "He who fears that he will not get up in the later part of the night should do the Witr in the first part of it. And he who eagerly wishes to get up in the later part of it should perform the Witr then, for the prayer in the later part of the night is witnessed and that is more excellent." [Muslim] It is recommended to include the supplication of Qunoot (the standing-in-Prayer supplication) in the Witr Prayer . The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) used to recite the Qunoot Du`aa` after raising his head from the position of bowing, saying: "O Allaah, guide us among those whom You have guided and preserve us from all ill among those whom You have preserved. Take us for friends among those whom You have taken and bless for us that which You have given. Protect us from the evil of that which You have ordained, for it is You who ordains and none can ordain upon You. Indeed, never is he abased whom You have taken for a friend, and none is honored whom You have taken for a foe. Blessed are You, our Lord, and Exalted. There is no escape from You except in You. And may Allaah bless Prophet Muhammad." [An-Nasaa'ee]
„X Du`aa` before sleeping: The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "When one of you goes to bed, he should dust it with the edge of his gown three times and then say: `0 Allaah, in Your name I die and I live. In Your name, my Lord, I place my side (upon this bed), and through You I raise it. If you retain my soul, have mercy upon it; if You release it, then protect it as You protect Your righteous servants.” [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] It is also beneficial to read some chapters or verses from the Quran before sleeping. `Aa`ishah may Allaah be pleased with her said: "Every night when the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) would go to bed, he would cup his hands together and blow into them after reciting Surah Al-Ikhlaas, Surah Al-Falaq, and Surah An-Naas. He would then rub his hands over whatever he was able from his body, beginning with his head, face and the front of his body. He used to do that three times.” [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] The verse of Al-Kursiyy [2:225] is also a special verse. The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "When you go to your bed, recite the verse of Al-Kursiyy, ‘Allaah! There is no god but Him, the Ever-living, the One Who Sustains and Protects all that exists’ to the end, for then there will remain over you a guardian from Allaah, and Satan will not come near you until morning." [Al-Bukhaari] It is also preferred to perform ablution before sleeping and to lie on the right side.
First published in Islamweb