My question is what is closer to the Sunnah: to praise Allah Ta’ala, then send salutations on the Prophet sallallahu alaihi wasallam and make du’a or to send salutations before praising Allah Ta’ala?
Some people send salutations first, saying this is the practice of our elders. Please clarify.
Sayyiduna Fadalah ibn ‘Ubayd (radiyallahu’anhu) reports that Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) heard a person making du’a in which he did not praise Allah and never send salutations upon Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam).
Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) called this person and said to him:
‘When any of you prays, he should commence with praising Allah Ta’ala and lauding him, then he should send salutations upon me, thereafter he may ask for whatever he wishes.’
(Sunan Tirmidhi, hadith: 3477)
Imam Tirmidhi (rahimahullah) has graded this Hadith as authentic.
‘Allamah Sakhawi (rahimahullah) has quoted more on this from the Sahabah (radiyallahu’anhum)
(Al-Qawlul Badi’, pg.439)
The books that discuss du’as and its etiquette generally also state that one should first praise Allah Ta’ala, followed by salutations on Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam). Thereafter one should ask for whatever (permissible thing) he wishes.
See: Al-Adhkar, hadith:352-353, Al-Hisnul Hasin, pg.34 Silahul Mu-min, pg.119 & Al-Futuhatur Rabbaniyyah, vol. 3 pg. 333)
‘Allamah Nawawi (rahimahullah) writes:
‘The Scholars are unanimous that it is preferable (Mustahabb) to commence the du’a with Allah’s praises, followed by salutations upon Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam)… There are several narrations that support this.’
(Al-Adkar, after hadith: 353)
The common practice
I haven’t seen any proof for the common habit of reciting salutations before praising Allah Ta’ala. However, my understanding is that those who do so actually do so before commencing the du’ a. One reason for this could be to draw the mercy of Allah upon the gathering before commencing the du’a.
Therefore you would notice that after reciting salutations upon Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) they praise Allah Ta’ala followed by salutations once more. This will not be considered as a violation of the above Hadith and etiquette.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,
Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar
Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar