How is the best supplication (dua) made?

The Details of the Question

- What should we be careful about so that our supplications would be accepted?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Supplication (dua / prayer) is a deed of worship. Every deed of worship has a determined time; supplication also has a determined time.  

Just as a prayer has fard and nafilah parts so too does a supplication have fard and nafilah parts. Nafilah prayers can generally be performed any time but fard prayers have to be performed at certain times.

It is a nafilah deed of worship to make supplication all the time, whether there is a problem or not. However, to make supplication at a time of misfortune and problem is like fard; that is, its time has come.

“The supplication is the essence of worship.” (Tirmidhi, Daawat 1)

It is possible to see the close relationship between worship and supplication from the hadith above.

The more the conditions of supplication are fulfilled, the more probable is the acceptance of supplication. The issues that we need to be careful about so that our supplication will be accepted are as follows:

- To clean our spirit from sins, which are spiritual impurities, by repenting.

- To eat and drink legitimate (halal) food and beverages bought through legitimately earned money.

- To have wudu, to turn toward the qiblah and to open the hands toward the sky.

- To start the supplication with audhu-basmala, praising Allah and sending greetings to the Prophet.

- To abandon oppression and to repent of sins.

- Not to ask things that necessitate sins and not to hurry.

- To make supplication sincerely and to continue supplication.

- Not to ask things against other Muslims and things that will harm them; not to curse the families, children and wealth of other Muslims.

- Not to ask things that are contrary to Islam.

- Not to shout and not to show off through literary arts in supplication.

- To make supplication after prayers, especially fard prayers.

- To make supplication between adhan and iqamah for the fard prayer.

- To make supplication in the prostrations of nafilah prayers.

- To make supplication on Friday.

- To make supplication on Ramadan nights, nights of eid al-fitr and eid al-adha, nights of Miraj, Barat, Qadr and Friday.

- To make supplication when one is ill.

- To make supplication while fasting, especially at the time of iftar (breaking fast).

- To make supplication when one is in ihram for hajj or umrah.

- To make supplication for one’s Muslim brother in his absence.

- To make supplication at times of material and spiritual abundance.

- To make supplication with the supplications mentioned in hadiths and reported from Companions.

- To make supplication heartily and sincerely, believing that every supplication will be answered.

- To start and end a supplication by praising Allah and sending greetings to the Prophet.

- To say "amin" at the end of supplication and wipe one’s face with his hands. 

If a person acts accordingly, that supplication will inshallah be accepted. 

A person needs to regard Allah as the being closest to him and he must never forget Him.

We need to arrange our lives and live according to Islam if we want our supplications to be accepted and attain Allah's consent. (see Imam Nawawi, Dualar ve Zikirler)

In fact, all prayers are answered. However, it is not necessary for every prayer to be accepted exactly and to be given in this world. If you go to see a doctor and say, “O doctor! Will you give me this medicine?”, if that medicine is useful for you, the doctor will say, “Here you are.” However, if what you want is irrelevant, useless or harmful, he will not give it to you; he will give you something better.

Similarly, Allah Almighty, who is absolutely wise, answers us and our prayers. However, to accept a prayer is based on His wisdom; therefore, He sometimes gives exactly what is asked, sometimes better than what is asked and sometimes does not give what is asked because He knows that it is harmful.

For instance, if a person asks a son but if he is given a daughter like Hz. Maryam (Mary), does it mean his prayer has not been accepted or is it regarded to have been accepted in a better way? If a person asks worldly wealth and if he is given otherworldly wealth, does it mean that his prayer has not been accepted?

The Prophet explains this fact as follows:

“There is none who utters a supplication, except that Allah gives him what he asked, or prevents evil from him that is equal to it – as long as he does not supplicate for something evil, or the cutting of ties of kinship.” (Tirmidhi, Daawat 145)

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