A Commentary on Prayer
By: Mohsin Qara’ati
Translator: Mansoor Limba
Cultural Affairs Department Ahl al-Bayt World Assembly
All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the worlds, and may the blessings of Allah be upon our Master and Prophet, Muhammad, and his pure progeny, and may the curse of Allah be upon all their enemies.
I was glad to be present at the holy shrine of Imam ar-Rida (‘a) and to have started writing this booklet, the drafts of which I had prepared earlier, prior to the beginning of the (Iranian) New Year 1374 AHS (which commenced on March 21, 1995).
In line with the efforts made after the [victory of the] Islamic Revolution in establishing the performance of Islamic prayer [salah] in schools, universities, military garrisons, and other public places, I also decided—after writing the books, Partu-ye az Asrar-e Namaz [Radiance of the Secrets of Prayer], Hamrah ba Namaz [In the Company of Prayer] and Yeksad va Chahardah Nokteh Darbareh-ye Namaz [One Hundred and Fourteen Points about Prayer]—to write about a commentary on the recitals [adhkar] in prayer such as the takbir [recital of Allahu akbar at the beginning of the prayer] and the recital of Sural al-Fatihah and another surah, bowing down [ruku‘], prostration [sujud], tashahhud and salam so that we could understand better what we are uttering to God in this regard, and have a conscious and gnostic involvement in the act of worship.
Before embarking on the subject proper, let us first take a cursory glance at “Worship [‘ibadah] and Servitude [‘ubudiyyah]” which is the soul of prayer as well as all other devotional duties so as to better internalize its sublime station in our lives.