There Are only 5 Obligatory Prayers
Fatwa No: 86157

Question

How many required Salat are there in Islam? I had thought there were five - Fajr, Zuhr, Asr, Maghrib, and Isha. But on calendars with prayer times, I notice there is another prayer after Fajr - the Shuruq. Is Shuruq obligatory? Does this bring the number of obligatory Salat to six?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

Al-Bukhaari, Muslim, and others reported on the authority of Talhah ibn ‘Ubaydullah  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him who said: “A man from Najd with disheveled hair came to the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ). We heard his loud voice but we did not understand what he was saying, until he came near. He was asking about Islam, so the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Five obligatory prayers in a day and night.” The man asked, “Are there any other prayers due upon me?” The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “No, unless you wish to perform voluntary prayers.” The Prophet then added, “You have to observe fast during the month of Ramadan.” The man said, “Am I to fast any other days?’ The Prophet said, “No, unless you wish to observe optional fast voluntarily.” Then The Prophet told him about the compulsory Zakaah. The man asked, “Do I have to give anything besides?” The Prophet said, “No, unless you wish to give in charity voluntarily.” So, the man departed saying, “By Allah, I will neither do more nor less than that.” The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said, “If he has said the truth he will be successful.

Every Muslim knows that there are only five obligatory prayers in a day and night. 'Shurooq' is not among the obligatory prayers. Shurooq means the Thuha (forenoon). Performing optional prayers after Fajr prayer is forbidden until the sun has completely risen to the length of a spear. Therefore, the reason for mentioning the time of Shurooq prayer along with the five prayers in the calendar is only to inform the people that the lawful time of prayers has begun.

Allah knows best.

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