Bismillahi Al-Rahmani Al-Rahim

More About Qunut

Salaam alaikum,

In the Hanafi madhab, I understand that the Qunoot is what is read in the third rakaat of Witr prayer. Hanafi's recite Surah Al-Fatiha and then do takbeer with hands and then fold hands again to recite dawa-e- qunoot. In the tarawih prayers of Saudi Arabia I notice them read what seems to be the qunoot at the same time in the Witr prayers but in the form of a collective supplication i.e. the Imam recites  what is a dua (where the followers recite ameen after each sentence - a bit like what Hanafi's tend to do AFTER prayer has finished altogether).

Is the above Saudi example, the way of the Hanbali madhab? If not, does it have any validity? Please do elaborate on the differences amongst the way the 4 madhabs pray after reciting Surah Al-Fatiha in the third rakaat of Witr prayer (with reference to placing of hands).


wa `alaykum al-salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu

This is a lot of information. Please read carefully.

[Hanafi-owner and Shafii-owner: feel free to comment]

Hanafi: Witr is prayed 3 rak'at. In the third after reading Al-Fatihah the imam and followers make a takbir, return the hands where they were, and then make the du`a. Whether or not the imam makes the du`a and the followers say Amin is something that should be asked of the Hanafi group. This du`a is done throughout the year.

[Note: the du`a that some Hanafi imams do after the prayer should be done with more care. Some imams single themselves out, where they should be making du`a for the entire group. Not knowing Arabic is hardly an excuse, as learning Arabic is personally obligatory with Hanafis. And Allah knows best]

Maliki: I have never studied Maliki fiqh. This shouldbe asked of someone who studies the madhhab and does not simple have a fetish for a particular place or era in Islamic history.

Shafi`i: Witr is either prayed as 2 rak`at with a taslim and then 1 rak`ah with an additional surah, or as 3 rak`ah without the middle taslim. After making ruku` the imam raises his hands in front of his chest with his hands palm up to the sky and begins making the du`a out loud; whenever Allah is asked to remove something harmful the palms are turned palm side down, which is adab whenever making du`a. It is offensive for him to single himself out in the du`a; the palms are not wiped over the face before going down to sujud (contrary to the Hanbalis). The followers raise their hands too and say amin behind him. This is make only during the last 10 days of Ramada.

[Note: Imam Al-Nawawi (Allah have mercy upon him) says that if someone wanted to make qunut for both Fajr and for Witr that it is find to do so. This is a personal opinion and not an opinion he ascribed to the madhhab.]

Hanbali: Witr is best to pray 2+1 (as in the Shafi`is above). It is best to do the du`a after ruku` (as with the Shafi`is) but doing it before the ruku` (as with the Hanafis) is valid. The hands are raised in front of the chest palms up (as with the Shafi`is); they are not turned upside down (like the Shafi`is do in some places), and at the end of the du`a the hands are wiped over the face before going to sujud (contrary to the Shafi`is). It is makruh for the imam to single himself out during the du`a. This is made throughout the year in witr.

And Allah knows best.

wa al-salamu `alaykum