Azizi Khalid

May 26, 2021

The Night Prayers

Last week we were discussing Surah al-Muzzammil with some of our more advance Quran students at Qaswa. 

We divide our Quran classes into three levels; reading, reading with tajweed and reading with meaning. For the third level, I take the students through the Quran based on the order of revelation to allow them to see the historical significance of each surah. That way, we get to cover Quran and Seerah together. Anyway, that’s not what I wanted to write about today.

“Stand all night (in prayer) except a little. (Pray) half the night, or a little less. Or a little more — and recite the Quran (properly) in a measured way.”

[al-Muzzammil 2-4]

Surah al-Muzzammil is one of the earliest revelations, and it is the first surah commanding the Prophet (and the Muslims) to pray at night and reading Quran. Rasulullah was commanded to spend most of his nights praying and reading the words of Allah.

“Half a night? That’s really long,” said one student.

“That’s 6 hours! How do you that?” said another student.

“My dear students, do you have a best friend? Your best friend forever?” I asked them.

“Yes,” most of them answered.

“Have you ever had a sleepover with your best friend?”


“Do you sleep early when you have your sleepover?”

“Of course not,” they answered confidently.

“What do you do once the lights are off, and your parents are asleep?”

“We talk—a lot. Until the wee hours of the night,” giggled some of them.

“Do you find it boring? Or tiring?”

“No. It is really fun.”

“Now, my dear students, that is what you do with your best friend. You spend hours and hours talking. You don’t find it tiring or boring. Because you love your best friend, Rasulullah said that he had been chosen to the ‘khalil’ or best friend of Allah. He doesn’t find prayers or reading Quran tiring or boring because he is in a loving relationship with God. When we pray to Allah, we are talking to Him, and when we read the Quran, Allah is speaking to us.

“When you love someone, you want to spend a lot of time with them. When you love Allah, you want to spend most of your time with Him. You want to listen to His words, over and over. To Rasulullah, praying is a pleasure, and it is his rest time,” I said.

“What? Rest?” asked them, astonished.

“Imagine, after a tiring day at school, who would you like to walk home with?”

“My best friend, of course.”

“Why?” I asked.

“It is nice to talk to my best friend and unwind,” they said.

“Ah… I get it. Allah is Rasulullah’s best friend. So he is unwinding by talking to Allah,” said another student.

“Exactly. Now you are getting it. And who better to be your best friend than God? He created us, guides us, feeds us, provides for us and sustains us.”

“How can we be best friends of Allah?” asked one of the students.

“Excellent question. Do what the Prophet did. Pray and read Quran, especially at night. Maybe not 6 hours. You are all growing, and you need your sleep. But make it a habit to read Quran daily. Set aside time after Maghrib or after Isha’ to read some Quran. Start small. Maybe just a few lines. And add more as you get used to it.

“It is going to be easy at the beginning. Remember our discussion about polishing the heart? The fight between the Ruh and the Nafs?” I asked.

“Yes! We need to get our Nafs under control,” said one of them.

“That’s why we fast in Ramadan,” said another.

“Masha Allah… That’s true. Okay, that’s all for today. Next week we will continue studying surah al-Muzzammil, insha Allah.”

Azizi Khalid
Making Islamic education fun at Qaswa House
Towards the Middle Path