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How many times to recite 'istighfar'?

Question

There is a narration in Bukhari where Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) says that:

I seek forgiveness more than 70 times a day

There are also narrations in Abu Dawood and Nasai’ which, if I am correct, asks for 100 times a day.

Please classify if the narrations in Abu Dawood and Nasai’ are also Sahih? 

I understand that we should do istighfar as many times as possible, but when wanting to practice on the above, which number should I adhere to?

Answer

The Hadith of Sunan Abi Dawud and Nasai is authentic.

The mention of 100 times istighfar is also found in a Hadith of Sahih Muslim, hadith: 6799.

There is no contradiction between these Hadiths, since the narration in Bukhari states: ‘…more than 70 times’ It doesn’t specify how much more. The Hadith in Sahih Muslim and the Sunan have specified that ‘more’ to be: 100. Therefore reciting istighfar 100 times is in accordance to sunnah too.

Note: Some Hadiths mention that Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) would recite istighfar exactly 70 times. These are also correct, and will be understood to be on a different occasion. One could practice either of the 2, although 100 will be better for obvious reasons.

Reference for the above: Fathul Bari, hadith: 6307

 

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,

 

Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar

 

Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar