Is it valid for the congregation to salute after the imam salutes to the right and left?

The Details of the Question

- In Hanbali madhhab, is it valid for the congregation to salute after the imam salutes to the right and left?
- Will you write with its source?

- Is the prayer of a person who salutes before the imam invalidated?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Answer 1:

Yes, according to all madhhabs, including Hanbali Madhhab, it is valid for the congregation to salute after the imam salutes to the right and to the left; the prayer is valid. (See Jazari, Dört Mezhebe Göre İslâm Fıkhı İmametin Şartları Bahsi)

At the end of the prayer, it is wajib to salute to the both sides to exit the prayer according to Hanafis and fard according to Hanbalis.

In Maliki and Shafii madhhabs, the first salutation is fard; Shafiis regard the second salutation as sunnah. Although it is sunnah according to Maliki madhhab for the person following the imam to salute three times in order to exit the prayer, to answer the salutation of the imam and to salute the congregation on his left, according to the well-known view in the madhhab, the second salutation is not sunnah for the imam and one who performs the prayer alone.

Answer 2:

According to Hanbalis, if a person deliberately salutes before the imam, his prayer is invalidated. If he does it by mistake, he should wait until the imam salutes, and then salute again. If he does it, his prayer will be valid and he does not have to do anything else. If he salutes before the imam and does not salute again afterwards, his prayer will be invalid.

According to Hanafis, if the person following the imam has read the tashahhud completely during the imam’s salutation, it becomes wajib for him to follow the imam in salutation. If a person who follows the imam reads the tashahhud before the imam and salutes, and does not have an excuse to do so, his prayer is makruh tahrimi, but it will be valid. The most virtuous form of following the imam in salutation is to salute with the imam, not before or after. The decree on saluting before the imam has just ­been stated. A person who salutes after the imam is regarded to have abandoned the virtuous one.

According to Shafiis, a person following the imam must not greet before the imam. Otherwise, his prayer will be invalidated. If he greets at the same time as the imam, his prayer will be valid though it is makruh. ­If he doubts that he saluted before the imam, his prayer will be invalid.

According to Malikis, the person who follows the imam must follow the imam in salutation and salute after the imam salutes. If he salutes before the imam by mistake, he should wait until the imam salutes and then salute again. If he does so, his prayer will be valid. If he starts saluting after the imam begins to salute and completes the salutation with or after him, his prayer will still be valid. However, if he completes it before the imam, his prayer will be invalidated. Therefore, it is better for the imam to act hastily in order to prevent those who follow him from completing the salutation before him because the prayers of those who complete the salutation before him will be invalidated.

We advise you look at the catechisms (ilm al-hal books) of each madhhab and the works of Zuhayli and Jazari on the Four Madhhabs for detailed information.

In addition, you must know the rules of madhhab that you follow.

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