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Salam, I read a post on Instagram saying that if you read the zikr (subhanallah, alhamdulillah, allahuakbar) 10 times for each phrase after each salah it’s an easy way to gain reward. Another post I saw said to read it 33 times after each salah. Can someone shed some light onto which one is correct and back it up with evidence? Jazakallah Khair.

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Tasbeeh, tahmeed and takbeer are recommended words of dhikr

First of all there are many ahadith that highly recommend saying these there dhikr (also called a-Tasbeeh/a-Tasbih التسبيح, a-Tahmeed/a-Tahmid التحميد, a-Takbeer/a-Takbir التكبير)without specification on a time or location etc. like:

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said "The dearest phrases to Allah are four: Subhan Allah (Hallowed be Allah), Al-Hamdulillah (Praise be to Allah), La ilaha illa-Allah (There is no deity but Allah), Allahu Akbar (Allah is Greater). There is no harm for you in which of them begin with (while remembering Allah). And do not give these names to your servants: Yasar and Rabah and Najih and Aflah. (Sahih Muslim)

See also in Sahih Muslim.

As in relation of the prayer the most prominent is the version recommending 33 repetitions of tasbeeh, tahmeed and takbeer. As for how to perform them the matter is wide open. One could start with the 33 tasbeehs, then do 33 tahmeed and so on. Or one could say at once: Subhan Allahi wal Alhmadu liLlahi wa Allahu akbar(u) and repeat it 33 times etc..

In the following I'll quote all known and accepted forms of dhikrs including tasbeeh, tahmeed and takbeer which are recommended after an obligatory prayer, even if I used the term "sources" I might not quote all of them, but only the most soundest one(s) this doesn't mean that similar versions or ahadith are mentioned in other sources which I haven't named nor referred to. In other words if a hadith appears in the two Sahihs I won't share other sources, if not I'll share at least some.

The three first versions or formulations of dhikr repetitions have the highest level of authenticity and are mentioned in at least one of the two Sahih books.

Some sources for the 33 repetitions of tasbeeh, tahmeed and takbeer

The known and recommended way to do the dhikr after an obligatory prayer is actually saying:

سبحان الله Subhan Allah 33 times
الحمد لله Alhamdu liLlah 33 times
الله أكبر Allahu akbar 33 (34) times

In summary: 99/100 dhikr. It is also recommended to recite 100 words of dhikr by completing the 99 words of dhikr by (at-Tahleel التهليل):

لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللهُ وَحْدَهُ لَا شَرِيكَ لَهُ ، لَهُ الْمُلْكُ وَلَهُ الْحَمْدُ وَهُوَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِير
Laa Ilaaha illa ALLAHu wahdahu laa Sharyka lahu, lahu al-Mulku walahu al-Hamdu wa-huwa 'alaa kulli Shay'in qadeer.

Saying it itself is also recommended in the Sahih sunnah (see for example here in Sahih Muslim).

This can be found in both Sahihs. The 3 times 33 words of dhikr is mentioned for example in:

  • ...Extol Allah, declare His Greatness, and Praise Him thirty-three times after every prayer. ... You have forgotten; he (the Holy Prophet) had said (like this): "Extol Allah thirty-three time, praise Allah thirty-three times and declare His Greatness thirty-three times." (Sahih Muslim)

Note that in the Fatwa islamqa #228520 they don't regard it as complete without tahleel (see my 3rd version) as they regard it only complete with 100 words of dhikr. But the ahadith above actually don't support their view, as the prophet() taught it this way and didn't complete the 100 words.

Some sources for repeating tasbeeh and tahmeed 33 times and saying takbeer 34 times

The 2 times 33 of tasbeeeh and tahmeed plus 34 times takbeer are mentioned for example in:

  • There are certain ejaculations, the repeaters of which or the performers of which after every prescribed prayer will never be caused disappointment:" Glory be to Allah" thirty-three times." Praise be to Allah" thirty-three times, and" Allah is most Great" thirty-four times. (Sahih Muslim)

  • ... Say "Subhana l-lah", "Al hamdu li l-lah" and "Allahu Akbar" thirty three times each after every (compulsory) prayer." We differed and some of us said that we should say, "Subhan-al-lah" thirty three times and "Al hamdu li l-lah" thirty three times and "Allahu Akbar" thirty four times. I went to the Prophet (ﷺ) who said, "Say, "Subhan-al-lah" and "Al hamdu li l-lah" and "Allahu Akbar" all together [??], thirty three times." (Sahih al-Bukhari)

Some sources for completing the repetition of 33 tasbeehs, tahmeed and takbeer by one tahlil

The 3 times 33 of tasbeeh, tahmeed and takbeer completed by one tahlil:

  • If anyone extols Allah after every prayer thirty-three times, and praises Allah thirty-three times, and declares His Greatness thirty-three times, ninety-nine times in all, and says to complete a hundred:" There is no god but Allah, having no partner with Him, to Him belongs sovereignty and to Him is praise due, and He is Potent over everything," his sins will be forgiven even If these are as abundant as the foam of the sea. (Sahih Muslim)

Sources for 25 repetitions of tasbeeh, tahmeed, takbeer and tahleel

The ahadith of this way shows that the prophet() apparently accepted a deviation suggested by a sahabi (). Maybe the sahabi was taught so by the prophet()?

"They were commanded to say the tasbih thirty-three times following the prayer, and to say the tahmid thirty-three times, and to say the takbir thirty-four times, then a man from among the Ansar was told in a dream: 'Did the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) command you to say the tasbih thirty-three times following the prayer, and to say the tahmid thirty-three times, and to say the takbir thirty-four times?' He said: 'Yes.' 'Instead of that, say each one twenty-five times, and include the tahlil among them.' The next morning he came to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and told him about that, and he said: 'Do that.'" (Sunan an-Nasa-i and Jami' at-Tirmdihi)

The version of imam an-Nasa-i was qualified as sahih by al-Albani according the fatwa mentioned above! Both versions are mainly identical in wording and have the same narrator chain until Hisham ibn Hassan هِشَامِ بْنِ حَسَّانَ.

Sources for the ten times repitition of tasbeeh, tahmeed and takeer.

Similarly to the version of 25 repetitions of tasbeeh, tahmeed, takbeer and tahleel this form of the dhikr was mentioned along with the 33 repetitions of tasbeeh and tahmeed and 34 repetitions of takbeer, but not in the context of prayer in some of its versions, others didn't mention it at all.

  • The Prophet (ﷺ) said: There are two qualities or characteristics which will not be returned by any Muslim without his entering Paradise. While they are easy, those who act upon them are few. One should say: "Glory be to Allah" ten times after every prayer, "Praise be to Allah" ten times and "Allah is Most Great" ten times. That is a hundred and fifty on the tongue, but one thousand and five hundred on the scale. When he goes to bed, he should say: "Allah is Most Great" thirty-four times, "Praise be to Allah" thirty-three times, and Glory be to Allah thirty-three times, for that is a hundred on the tongue and a thousand on the scale. (He said:) I saw the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) counting them on his hand. ...
    (Sunan abi Dawod, see also in Sunan a-Nasa-i and with a different wording in Sunan ibn Majah, Jami' at-Tirmdihi and al-Bukahri's al-Adab al-Mufrad)

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  • Jazakallah Khair for the detailed answer, may Allah continue to bless you with immense knowledge and give you the ability to continue to share this knowledge with everyone!
    – Usman
    Jan 6 at 0:23

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