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As a recent convert to Islam, I have been a little confused by the issue of Sunnah prayers, I understand that these are extra rak'āt before and after the five daily prayers.

The area that I am unsure about is how many rak'āt each time. I am looking for a definitive list of the Sunnah rak'āt for each prayer, including Jumma prayer, and whether there is any difference between the number if you are at home or in the masjid.

From here, I have the following list:

  • Salat al-Fajr - 2 rak‘at before, none after until after sunrise.
  • Salat al-Dhuhr - 2 rak‘at before and after
  • Salat al-‘Asr - none before or after
  • Salat al-Maghrib - 2 after
  • Salat al-‘Isha - 2 after

However there is no reference, so I am unable to follow up the information, and also I have found other websites (here and here) stating

  • 'Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet used to pray four rak'ahs before the 'Asr, ending each two rak'ahs with a tasleem for angels, prophets, and the believers (An-Nawawi, Al-Majmu').

  • Ibn 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet said, "May Allah shower His mercy on the person who prays four rak'ahs before the 'Asr Prayer" (Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi).

and

  • 1119. 'Ali bin Abu Talib (May Allah be pleased with him)reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) used to perform four Rak'ah before the 'Asr prayer, separating them with Taslim (i.e., offering blessings) on the favourite angels who are near Allah's proximity and the Muslims and the believers who come after them. [At-Tirmidhi].

  • 1120. Ibn 'Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, "May Allah have mercy on a man who performs four Rak'ah before the 'Asr prayer.'' [Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].

  • 1121. 'Ali bin Abu Talib (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) used to perform two Rak'ah before the 'Asr prayer. [Abu Dawud].

Which contradicts what was written in the post that I quoted.

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MASHA ALLAH very informative your Question. From [here][1] I have follow the list

  • Salat al-Fajr - Total 4 Rak'ats, 2 rak‘at before Must offer, none after until after sunrise.
  • Salat al-Dhuhr - Total 12 rak‘at, 4 Rak'at before and 4 Rak'at with Jamaat, Then after 2 Rak'at Sunnah, and 2 Rak'at Nawafil
  • Salat al-‘Asr - Total 4 Rak'at, 4 Rak'at Fard
  • Salat al-Maghrib - Total 7 after, 3 Rak'at Fard, after 2 Rak'at Sunnah, 2 Rak'at Nawafil
  • Salat al-‘Isha - 4 Rak'at Fard, 2 Rak'at Sunnah, 3 Rak'at Vitar, 2 Rak'at Nawafil Nafl or nawafil is not mandatory,only if you wish...!

It's better that you do offer prayer in Masjid. This is because salat offered in masjid (in congregation) is 27 times better than the salat offered at home. Hadith

  • Jazakh'Allah khir, this is very informative, thank you! Would it be possible for you to list them a little differently as I am finding it a little difficult to understand. – wilsnunn Apr 23 '14 at 21:11
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    There are 4 sunnah rakat before the 4 rakat of asr which can be done. Of course, all sunnah prayers are optional, only the 2 rakat sunnah before the fardth prayer of fajr is greatly preferred. Check out this website with the hadith quoted, islamqa.info/en/1048 Salam alikum brother danial, may Allah make it easy for you. – Jam Apr 27 '14 at 15:11
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  1. Fajr — The dawn prayer: 2 rakats sunnah then 2 rakats farz
  2. Dhuhr — The noon prayer: 4 rakats sunnah then 4 rakats farz then 2 rakats sunnah
  3. Asr — The afternoon prayer: 4 rakats farz
  4. Maghrib — The sunset prayer: 3 rakats farz then 2 rakats sunnah
  5. Isha'a — The night prayer: 4 rakats farz then 2 rakats sunnah then 3 rakats witr

Fajr,Dhuhr,Asr,Maghrib and Isha'a are names of prayers and sunnah means whatever our beloved prophet (p.b.u.h)has done and farz means what Allah swt has told us to do...

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