Chapter Seven

Raising Hands to Ears

The hadith I have used is by no means go against the great Imams i.e. Imam Malik, Imam Shafi’i and Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (may Allah be pleased with them all). Their method of Salaah is correct as it is according to the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace). The hadith quoted are to show that the Fatwas of Imam Abu Hanifa (may Allah be pleased with him) are according to the Sunnah, proving the Hanafi method of Salaah

Note: The hadith numbers before the hadith indicate the different chains of narrations, hence, each chain will count as a separate hadith

 

Hadith 1 – 8

Bara bin Azib (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that, “When the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) began prayer, he raised his hands until his ears.” 1

Hadith 9 – 12

Wa’il bin Hujr (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that, “He saw the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) raising his hands at the time of beginning the prayer and reciting takbir, and according to Hammam (the narrator) the hands were lifted upto to the ears.” 2

Hadith 13 – 15

Malik bin Huwayrath (may Allah be pleased with him) reported, “The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) raised his hands next to his ears at the time of reciting the takbir.” 3

Hadith 16

Qatada (may Allah be pleased with him) saw the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) doing like this (i.e. raising his hands) till they were upto the lobes of the ears.4

Hadith 17

Abu Hameed Sa’idi (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “He would make a mention to the companions of the Messenger of Allah (may bless him and grant him peace) from amongst you I am the one who knows how the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) prayed, when he would stand he say the Takbir and raise his hands upto his face.” 5

Hadith 18

Wa’il bin Hujr (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that, “I saw the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) lift his hands when beginning Salaah.” Another narrator states that he used to lift them to his ears and thereafter cover his hands in his clothes. 6

Hadith 19 -20

Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) narrates, “I saw the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) lift his hands until his ears when he made the Takbir-e-Tahrima of Salaah.” 7

The evidence also shows this was also the practise of many Companions, ‘Umar, ‘Ali Abu Hurayra, (may Allah be pleased with them) and the early Muslims of Madinah and Kufa. It is therefore pointless to question the validity of not raising the hands or to claim that it is an error.

These ahadith are related with few different chains, hence when few strings are tied together it becomes a strong rope. Similarly, when few narrations are weak, become strong The mens’ Salaah differs from the women’s, the woman would raise her hands upto the shoulders due to the different physical structure of a woman and modesty etc. hence proving that the Great Imam Aazam Abu Hanifa (may Allah be pleased with him) has used the ahadith that are mentioned of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) as well as those ahadith where the hands are raised to the shoulder.

Imam Aazam Abu Hanifa took all ahadith into consideration and also the practices of the companions to decide that raising the hands to the ears is a Sunnah.

Common Sense

When a person is about to be arrested by the police or a robber is about to attack, a person will put their hands in the air to signify that I give up and will do no harm and am under your control and do what you tell me. Similarly, a person when commencing Salaah raises the hands, to the ears giving up what is permissible outside Salaah i.e. to eat, drink, talk etc. leaving the worldly matters behind whilst stood in front of The Lord Almighty and coming under the control of Allah (The Exalted). Another point is when someone makes repentance (and say’s Tawbah, Tawbah) it is common they repent and are sorry by holding their ears and not their shoulders. The person offering Salaah commences Salaah in this manner. Likewise, a Muslim when in prostration praises Allah (The Exalted) and places the head on the ground for humility. When beginning Salaah one action is with the tongue saying the takbir and one by action that is to raise the hands to the ears and metaphorically leaving the world behind and giving yourself up in the court of The Almighty.

Objection of Ghair Muqalid

Question: There are some ahadith that state that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) would raise his hands near the shoulders, hence to raise the hands to the ears is against the Sunnah and goes against the Hanafis.

Answer: It does not go against the Hanafis at all as by rising the hands to the ears the hands will reach the shoulders anyway, hence both types of hadiths will be practiced, one by raising the hands near the shoulders and also the ears. However, by rising the hands by the shoulders alone you will be only practicing on one type of hadith and leaving the hadith out mention above for example. The woman’s Salaah in the Hanafi Madhhab is to raise the hands to the shoulders due to the physical structure of the female and modesty, so in reality the Hanafis’ practise both types of hadiths, so who are the real people of hadith? Subhanallah!

My question is split into two parts: “Did the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) raise his hands to the shoulder all the time?” “Did the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) do this until he passed away?”

Hope you can prove these two questions and when doing so I do not want to hear the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) raised his hands to his shoulders etc. but I want Sahih hadith that clearly (no meanings or interpretations) states the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) raised his hands to his shoulders all the time and that he did this action until he passed away. Good luck!

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