Clothing in the Prayer

The Sahih Collection of al-Bukhari

by Imam Bukhari
Translated by: Ustadha Aisha Bewley

Chapter 9: Clothing in the Prayer

I: The obligation of wearing clothes when praying.

The words of Allah Almighty, "Wear fine clothing in every mosque." (7:31)

Someone praying while wrapped in a single cloth.

It is mentioned from Salama ibn al-Akwa' that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "He should fasten it, even with only a thorn." The isnad needs to be studied.

Someone praying in the same garment in which he has had sexual intercourse if he does not see any impurity on it. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, commmanded, "Tawaf of the House must not be done naked."

344. It is related that Umm 'Atiyya said, "We were ordered to bring out the menstruating women and veiled women on the days of the two festivals. They would be present at the assemblies of the Muslims and their feasts, but menstruating women would stay away from the place of prayer. A woman said, 'Messenger of Allah, what if one of us does not have a veil?' He said, 'Her friend should share her veil with her.'"

Muhammad ibn Sirin related that Umm 'Atiyya related that she heard this from the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace,

II: Tying the waist-wrapper at the back of the neck during the prayer

Sahl said, "Some people prayed with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, with their wrappers tied round their necks."

345. It is related that Muhammad ibn al-Munkadir said, "Jabir prayed in his wrapper which he tied round his neck, while his clothes were hanging on a peg beside him. Someone asked him, 'Do you pray in a single wrapper?' He said, 'I did that so that a fool like you might see me. Which of us had two garments in the time of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace?'"

346. It is related that Muhammad ibn al-Munkadir said, "I saw Jabir ibn 'Abdullah praying in a single garment and he said, 'I saw the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, praying wearing a single cloth.'"

III: Praying wrapped in a single cloth

Az-Zuhri said in his hadith, "Wrapped in the tawashshuh style, which is that the ends of the garment are crossed over the shoulders, with one end over one shoulder and the other under the opposite arm.

He said that Umm Hani' said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, wrapped himself in a garment and the ends were crossed over his shoulders."

347. It is related from 'Umar ibn Abi Salama that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, prayed in a single garment with its ends crossed.

348. It is related that 'Umar ibn Abi Salama saw the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, praying in a single garment in the house of Umm Salama and he had crossed its ends over his shoulders.

349. It is related that 'Umar ibn Abi Salama said, "I saw the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, praying in the house of Umm Salama wrapped in a single garment, having placed the ends of it over his shoulders.

350. It is related that Abu Muraa, the mawla of Umm Hani' bint Abi Talib, heard Umm Hani' bint Abi Talib say, "I went to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, in the year of the Conquest of Makka and found him doing ghusl, with his daughter Fatima screening him. I greeted him and he asked, 'Who is this?' I said, 'It is Umm Hani' bint Abi Talib.' He said, 'Welcome, Umm Hani'.' When he finished his ghusl, he stood up and prayed eight rak'ats wrapped in a single cloth. When he finished, I said, 'Messenger of Allah, my brother claims that he is going to kill a man to whom I have given protection. It is so-and-so, the son of Hubayra.' The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'We give protection to the one to whom you have given protection, Umm Hani'.'"  (Muwatta, Book 9, 31)

Umm Hani' said that that happened in the morning.

351. It is related from Abu Hurayra that someone asked the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, about praying wearing a single garment and the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Do all of you have two garments?" (Muwatta, Book 8, 31)

IV: If someone prays in a single cloth, he should put its ends over his shoulders.

352. It is related that Abu Hurayra said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'None of you should pray in a single cloth, none of which is covering his shoulders.'"

353. It is related that Abu Hurayra was heard to say, "I testify that I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, 'Someone who prays in a single garment must cross its ends over.'"

V: If the cloth is narrow

354. It is related that Sa'id ibn al-Harith said, "We asked Jabir ibn 'Abdullah about praying in a single cloth. He said, 'I went out with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, on one of his journeys. One night I went to him for some reason and found him praying. I was wearing a single garment. I wrapped myself in it and prayed beside him. When he finished, he said, 'What is your purpose, Jabir?' I told him what I wanted and when I had concluded, he said, 'What is this covering business I saw you do?' I said, 'I was wearing a single cloth.' He said, 'If it is wide enough, wrap yourself in it, but if it is narrow then use it as a waist-wrapper.'" (Muwatta, Book 8, 35)

355. It is related that Sahl said, "Some men used to pray with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, with their wrappers tied around their necks like boys do. The women were told not to raise their heads until the men were sitting up straight."

VI: Praying wearing a Syrian cloak

Al-Hasan said that he did not see any harm in clothes woven by a Magian. Ma'mar said, "I saw az-Zuhri wearing Yemeni garments which had been dyed with urine. 'Ali prayed in a garment before it had been washed.

356. It is related that al-Mughira ibn Shu'ba said, "Once when I was with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, on a journey he said, 'Mughira, hold this small container of water for me.' I took it and the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, went on until he disappeared from my sight and relieved himself. He was wearing a Syrian cloak. He tried to extend his arm out through the sleeve, but it was tight, so he pulled his arm out from underneath it. I poured for him and he did wudu' for the prayer, wiping over his leather socks, and then prayed.

VII: The undesirability of being naked in the prayer and elsewhere

357. Jabir ibn 'Abdullah was heard to relate that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was carrying stones with them for the Ka'ba. He was wearing a waist-wrapper. His uncle, al-'Abbas, said to him, 'Nephew, will you take off your wrapper and put it on your shoulders underneath the stones?' He removed his wrapper and put it onto his shoulders and then fell unconscious. After that he was never seen naked."

VIII: Praying in a shirt, trousers, knee-length shorts and qaba' (outer garment with long sleeves)

358. It is related that Abu Hurayra said, "A man came to the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and asked about praying in a single garment. He said, 'Do all of you have two garments?' Then a man asked 'Umar who said, 'When Allah enriches you, then expend more. A man should combine his garments A man can pray in a waist-wrapper and cloak (rida'), in a wrapper and a shirt, in a wrapper and qaba', in trousers and a cloak, in trousers and a shirt, in trousers and a qaba', in long shorts and a qaba', and in long shorts and a shirt.'"

He said, "I think he also said "in long shorts and a cloak."

359. It is related that Ibn 'Umar said, "A man asked the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, 'What should someone in ihram wear?' He said, 'He should not wear a shirt, trousers, burnoose or clothes coloured with saffron or wars (a yellow dye). If someone cannot find any sandals, he can wear leather socks but cut short so that they come below the ankles.'"

Nafi' reports the same from Ibn 'Umar from the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace.

IX: What should be used to cover private parts

360. It is related that Abu Sa'id al-Khudri said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, forbade the samma' style of wrapping (wrapping yourself in a garment in such a way that you cannot put your hands out) and a man wearing a single cloth sitting with his legs drawn up when none of it was covering his private parts.

361. It is related that Abu Hurayra said, "The Prophet forbade two kinds of sales: limas (a sale which is concluded when an article is touched) and nibadh (when an article is thrown to a buyer) and the samma' style of wrapping and a man sitting with his legs drawn up in a single garment."

362. It is related that Abu Hurayra said, "On that hajj Abu Bakr sent me with the callers on the Day of Sacrifice. At Mina we called out, 'No pagan is to make the hajj after this year and no one is to do tawaf of the House naked.'"

Humayd ibn 'Abdu'r-Rahman said, "Then the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, sent 'Ali out and commanded him to call out Surat Bara'a (i.e. Surat at-Tawba (9))."

Abu Hurayra said, "'Ali called out with us on the Day of Sacrifice to the people at Mina, 'No pagan is to make the hajj after this year and no one is to do tawaf of the house naked.'"

X: Praying without a cloak

363. It is related that Muhammad ibn al-Munkadir said, "I came upon Jabir ibn 'Abdullah when he was praying in a garment which was wrapped about him. His cloak had been laid aside. When he finished, we said, 'Abu 'Abdullah! Do you pray with your cloak lying there at your side?' He said, 'Yes, I wanted ignorant people like you to see me. I saw the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, praying like that.'"

XI: What is said about the thigh

It is related from Ibn 'Abbas, Jarhad and Muhammad ibn Jahsh from the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace,"The thigh is one of the private parts." Anas said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, uncovered his thigh." The hadith of Anas is stronger, but the hadith of Jarhad is more complete in order to resolve the disagreement of the scholars .Abu Musa said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, covered his knees when 'Uthman entered." Zayd ibn Thabit said, "Allah sent down revelation on His Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, while his thigh was resting on my thigh and it became so heavy that I was afraid that it would bruise my thigh."

364. It is related from Anas, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, raided Khaybar and we prayed the Morning Prayer there when it was still dark. The Prophet of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, mounted, Abu Talha mounted, and I followed behind Abu Talha. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, rode quickly through the lane of Khaybar and my knee touched the thigh of the Prophet of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. He had removed the wrapper from his thigh so that I could see the whiteness of the thigh of the Prophet of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. When he entered the town, he said, 'Allah is greater! Khaybar is ruined. When we alight in the courtyard of a people, it is an evil morning for those who have been warned.' He said this three times. The people came out for their jobs and said, 'Muhammad!'"

'Abdu'l-'Aziz said, "Some of our companions said, 'and the army."

Anas said, "We took it by force and the captives were rounded up. Dihya came and said, 'Prophet of Allah! Give me a slavegirl from the captives.' He said, 'Go and take a slavegirl.' He took Safiyya bint Huyayy. A man came to the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and said, 'Prophet of Allah, you have given Dihya Safiyya bint Huyayy, the mistress of Qurayza and an-Nadir. She is suitable for none but you.' He said, 'Tell him to bring her.' He brought her and when the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, looked at her, he said, 'Take a slavegirl from the captives other than this one.' The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, set her free and married her."

Thabit said to him, "O Abu Hamza, what was her bride-price?" He said, "Herself He set her free and married her. When they were on the way back, Umm Sulaym decked her out for him and sent her to him as a bride in the night. So the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, got up in the morning as a bridegroom and said, 'If anyone has anything, he should bring it.' He spread out a leather mat and one man brought dates while someone else brought ghee - I think that he also mentioned sawiq (mash from wheat or barley) - They made hays and that was the wedding feast of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace."

XII: How much a woman should wear when praying

'Ikrima said, "If she can cover her body with a single garment, that is enough."

365. It is related that 'A'isha said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, would pray the Fajr prayer and some of the believing women used to be present with him, wrapped up in their garments and then they would return to their homes without anyone recognising them."

XIII: When someone prays in a patterned garment and looks at the pattern

366. It is related from 'A'isha that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, prayed in a long shirt which had a pattern on it and glanced once at the pattern. When he finished, he said, "Take this shirt of mine to Abu Jahm and bring me Abu Jahm's anbijaniyya [a garment without any pattern on it." It has just distracted me from my prayer."

It is related from 'A'isha that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "I was looking at its pattern while I was praying and I was afraid it might distract me."

XIV: If a person prays in a garment with a cross or pictures on it, does that invalidate his prayer? What is forbidden in that respect

367. It is related from Anas that 'A'isha had a thin patterned curtain which she used to screen off one side of her room. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'Remove this curtain of yours from our sight. Its pictures keep appearing in my prayer."

XV: Someone praying in a silk garment and then removing it

368. It is related that 'Uqba ibn 'Amir said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was given a silk garment and put it on and prayed in it. When he finished, he wrenched it off violently as if it was hateful to him and said, 'This is not appropriate for those who fear Allah.'"

XVI: Praying in a red garment

369. It is related from Abu Juhayfa that his father said, "I saw the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, in a red leather tent and I saw Bilal take the left-over wudu' water of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. I saw the people racing one another to get that wudu' water. Anyone who managed to get some of it would rub it on himself and those who did not get any of it would take some of the moisture from the hands of their friends. Then I saw Bilal take a short spear and plant it firmly in the ground. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, came out wearing a gathered-up red robe, and, with the spear in front of him, led the people in prayer. I saw people and animals passing in front of the spear."

XVII: Praying on the roof, on the minbar and on wood

Abu 'Abdullah said, "Al-Hasan saw nothing wrong in praying on ice or on bridges, even if there was urine flowing under them or over or in front of them provided there was a sutra between him and it." Abu Hurayra prayed on the roof of the mosque following the Imam's prayer and Ibn 'Umar prayed on snow.

370. It is related that Abu Hazim said, "They asked Sahl ibn Sa'd, 'What was the minbar made out of?' He said, 'No one is left who knows that better than I do. It was made of tamarisk from al-Ghaba. So-and-so, the mawla of so-and-so, made it for the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and when it had been made and put in place the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, stood on it, faced the qibla and said, "Allah is greater." The people stood behind him. He recited and bowed and the people bowed behind him. Then he raised his head and stepped down and prostrated on the ground. Then he returned to the minbar and bowed again and raised his head. Then he stepped back down to prostrate on the ground. This is what I know about it."

'Ali ibn 'Abdullah said that Ahmad ibn Hanbal asked him about this hadith. He said, "I meant that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was higher than the people, so, according to this hadith, there is no harm in the Imam being higher than the people." I said, "Sufyan ibn 'Uyayna used to be asked about this a lot, so did you not hear it from him?" He said, "No."

371. It is related from Anas ibn Malik, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, fell off his horse and his leg or shoulder was scraped. He swore to stay away from his wives for a month and he stayed in an attic room of his which had stairs made of palm trunks. His Companions came to visit him and he prayed with them sitting while they stood up. When he gave the salam, he said, 'The Imam is to be followed. So when he says the takbir, you say the takbir. When he bows, you bow. When he prostrates, you prostrate. If he prays standing you pray standing.' He came down after twenty-nine days. They said, 'Messenger of Allah, you swore that you would not go to your wives for a month.' He said, 'The month is twenty-nine days.'"

XVIII: When the garment of someone praying touches his wife when he prostrates

372. It is related that Maymuna said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, would pray with me next to him when I was menstruating. Sometimes his garment would touch me when he prostrated." She continued, "He used to pray on a small mat."

XIX: Praying on a straw mat

Jabir and Abu Sa'id prayed standing up in a boat. Al-Hasan said, "You can pray standing as long as it does not cause hardship to your companions and you turn with the ship. Otherwise you should pray sitting down."

373. It is related from Anas ibn Malik that his grandmother, Mulayka, invited the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, for some food which she had prepared for him. He ate some of it and then said, "Get up. I will lead you in prayer." Anas said, "I went to fetch our mat which had become black from long use and I sprinkled it with water. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, stood on it and the orphan and I lined up behind him and the old woman stood behind us. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, prayed two rak'ats with us and then left.

XX: Praying on a small mat

374. It is related that Maymuna said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, used to pray on a small mat."

XXI: Praying on a bed

Anas prayed on his bed. Anas said, "We used to pray with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and some of us would prostrate on our clothes."

375. It is related that 'A'isha, the wife of the Prophet, said. "I used to sleep directly in front of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and my legs were in his qibla. When he prostrated, he would nudge me and I would pull up my legs. When he stood up, I stretched them out again." She added, "In those days there were no lamps in the houses." (Muwatta, Book 7, 3)

376. It is related from 'Urwa that 'A'isha informed him that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, used to pray with her stretched out on the family bed between him and the qibla like a corpse at a funeral.

377. It is related from 'Urwa that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, used to pray with 'A'isha lying between him and the qibla on the bed on which they slept.

XXII: Prostrating on a garment when it is very hot

Al-Hasan said, "People used to prostrate on their turbans and head coverings with their hands in their sleeves."

378. It is related that Anas ibn Malik said, "We used to pray with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and some of us would put down the ends of our garments in the place we were going to prostrate because of the intense heat."

XXIII: Praying in sandals

379. It is related that Abu Maslama, Sa'id ibn Yazid al-Azdi, said, "I asked Anas ibn Malik, 'Did the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, pray in his sandals?' and he said,'Yes.'"

XXIV: To pray in leather socks

380. It is related that Hammam ibn al-Harith said, "I saw Jarir ibn 'Abdullah urinating. Then he did wudu', wiping over his leather socks. Then he stood up and prayed. He was asked about this and said, 'I saw the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, do the same as this.'"

Ibrahim said that they had a high opinion of this because Jarir was one of the last of those who became Muslim.

381. It is related that al-Mughira ibn Shu'ba said, "I assisted the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, in wudu' and he wiped over his leather socks and prayed.

XXV: When the prostration is not completed

382. It is reported from Hudhayfa that he saw a man who did not complete his ruku' or prostration. When he finished his prayer, Hudhayfa said to him, "You have not prayed." He added, "I think that he also said, "If you were to die, you would have died following other than the sunna of Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him peace."

XXVI: In prostration you should show your armpits and keep your arms away from your body.

383. It is related from 'Abdullah ibn Malik ibn Buhayna that when the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, prayed, he spread his arms to the extent that the whiteness of his armpits became visible.

Al-Layth said that Ja'far ibn Rabi'a related the same.