How to Offer Salat- The Shia Way

As the Sunni Muslims pray five times a day, it is very much the same in the Shia Muslims. However, the way of praying or Salat is quite different in both sects. Some of the differences can be observed upfront such as Qayyam. The Qayyam in Sunni Way of Salat involves the two arms placed between the belly and the chest area such that the right hand is on the top of the left hand. On the other hand, the Qayyam in Shia Way of Salat simply involves keeping the arms straight right along the thighs. Unlike the Sunni Way of Sajdah, in Shia Salat the Sajdah involves a “Sijdah Gah” which is normally made up of Khak-e-Shifa(the soil of Karbala). For those who belong to the Shia sect and still do not know about the Shia way of offering Salat this article can be helpful.


  • 1

    Ablution (Wuduh)

    Make sure that you have performed Wuzu before offering Salat. There should be no traces of makeup or anything that may prevent water from getting contaminated with any part of your skin. You should take into account a few important things while performing Wuzu.

    The intention for Wuzu. Make the intention for Wuzu by saying to yourself “I make the intention to do Wuzu to perform the (name of Prayer)”.

    Washing Mouth & Nose. Insert handful of water into your mouth followed by sniffing of water into your nose and then let water go out. Both have to be repeated thrice.

    Washing Face. The face should be washed from the forehead to chin twice and not from chin to forehead.

    Washing of arms. First wash you right arm. Fill water in your right hand and pour it into the left hand right away. After that pour the water on the top of your right elbow and wipe your entire arm with left hand starting from elbow to the fingers. Wash your left arm in the same way but this time the water should be in your right hand. Remember not to wipe your arm from fingers to the elbow in both cases. It is good to recite Kalma-e-Shahdat while performing this step which is as follows:

    - Ash-hadu Alla Ilaha Illa Allah…. Wahdaho La Shareeka Laho.... Wa Ash-Hadu Anna Muhammadan ‘Abdoho wa Rasooloh……….. Allahumma Sally Ala Muhammadin wa Aaly Muhammad.

    Wiping Head and Feet. The head is wiped from the middle to the forehead whereas the right foot is wiped with right hand and the left foot with left hand. While wiping feet make sure you touch the toe of your foot with your hand as you go on to wipe the entire foot. The Wuzu is complete after this step.

    Note: During the month of Ramadan while performing the first step of ablution i.e to wash mouth, gargling is not allowed as water might get in from the throat.

  • 2

    The Salat (Prayer)

    After you are done with Ablution(wuduh) simply proceed to the prayer mat for Salat. The below given are steps that you go through.

  • 3

    Intention for Salat

    Make the intention for Salat by saying:

    - I make the intention for (Name of Prayer) Qurbatan ila AllahiTa’ala (seeking nearness to Allah)

    This should be followed by raising both of your hands to touch your ears and reciting loudly:


  • 4

    First Rakah and first Surah: Surah Alhamd

    After you have made the intention for Salah you proceed by reciting Surah Fatiha  or Surah Alhamd in the first Rakah which is as follows:

    - Alhamdo Lillahi Rabbil Aalameen Ar Rahmaanir Raheem Maaliki Yaomid Deen iyya Kana Budoo Wa iyya kanastaeen ihdinas Siratual Mustaqeem Siratual Lazeena An Amtaa Alaihim Ghairil Maghdoobe Alaihim Walad Dualleen……

    After reciting the Surah you say

    - Alhamdo Lillahi Rabbil Aalameem

  • 5

    Second Surah: Surah Ikhlas/Kausar/Qadar

    You can recite any Surah after Surah Alhamd. Normally it is Surah Kausar in the Shia practice which is as follows:

    - Innaa a'taina kal kauthar….. Fa salli li rabbika wanhar….. Inna shani-aka huwal abtar

  • 6


    As you are done with reciting the two Surahs, you have to go to the Rukuh. This is done by bowing down with two hands on both knees and reciting:

    - Subhana Rabbiyal-Adheemy wa Behamdeh

  • 7

    Getting Up from Rukuh

    As you get up from Rukuh, you do so by reciting as listed below:

    - Sami’aa Allahu Le-man Hamidah, Allahu Akbar

  • 8

    Going to Sajdah

    After you have recited Allahu Akbar, it is followed by going to Sajdah and reciting:

    - Subhana Rabbiyal-A’alaa wa Behamdeh

  • 9

    Rising Head from Sajdah

    As you get up from Sajdah you say Allahu Akbar followed by saying:

    - Astaghfirullah Rabbi wa Atubu 'ilayh

  • 10

    Second Sajdah

    After reciting the above mentioned, you again say Allahu Akbar and go for the second Sajdah and again say:

    - Subhana Rabbiyal-A’alaa wa Behamdeh

  • 11

    Getting Up after Sujood

    As you are done with second Sajdah, you raise your head again saying Allahu Akbar. After that you stand up again using the support of your hands to lift your body and NOT the knees. While you are standing up you say:

    - Behawlillahy Wa Quwwatihee Aqoomo wa Aq-ood

  • 12

    Second Rakah

    The secong rakah is very much the same like the first one. However, it is mandatory that after reciting Surah Alhamd you recite Surah Ikhlas as the second surah which is as follows:

    - Qul Howa Allahu Ahad…. Allahu As-Samad… Lam Yalid wa Lam Yoolad…. Wa Lam Yakul-Lahoo Kufwan Ahad

  • 13


    This is done by raising both your hands in a begging position right in front of your face. Doing so you recite:

    - Rabbana Aatina Fiddunya Hasanah, waFil Aakheeraty Hasanah wa Qeena Athaaban-Naar, Allahumma Sally ‘Ala Muhammadin wa Aaly Muhammad

  • 14

    Rukhu and Sujood

    After the above step, you again go for Rukuh and Sujood in the same way as you did in the previous rakah. Nevertheless, as you get up from the second sajdah you recite the following Darood Shareef and Salam:

    - Ash-hadu Alla Ilaha Illa Allah…. Wahdaho La Shareeka Laho…. Wa Ash-Hadu Anna Muhammadan ‘Abdoho wa Rasooloh……..Allahumma Sally ‘Ala Muhammadin wa Aaly Muhammad

    - Assalamu Alaika Ayyuhan-Nabiyyo Wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh…. Assalamu Alaina wa ‘Ala Ibadillahes-Saleheen…. Assalamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullahe wa Barakatuh

    If this was Salat Al-fajar, the prayer ends otherwise continues.

  • 15

    For 3rd and 4th Rakah

    If there are more than two rakahs in Salat then instead of reciting Surah Fatiha and other Surahs, you simply recite the following that are called Tasbehaat-e-Arbah. There is no need for Dua-e-Qunoot in fourth Rakah.

    - Subhanallah…. Wal-Hamdulillah…. Wa La Ilaha Illa Allah…. Wa Allahu Akbar (3 times)

  • 16

    Tasbeeh-e-Fatimah Zahra (S.A)

    It is highly suggested that you recite few prayers after the Salat which include reciting Allahu Akbar (34 times), Al-Hamdulillah (33-times) and Subhanallah (33times). This is known as Tasbeeh Az-Zahraa (peace be upon her). You can pray for whatever you want from Allah after this tasbeeh.

  • 17


    As you get up from the prayer mat the last thing you do is reciting ziarat. Pointing your index finger of the right had you recite:

    - Assallam O Alaika Ya Aba Abdullah……Assallam Alaika Yabna RasulAllah……Assallam Alekum Wa Rehmatullahe Wabarakatahu.

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