The Reward of Performing the Two Sunna Cycles (rak`ats) of Fajr

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: I recently heard about a hadith in which the Prophet (saw) said that the 2-rakat sunnah prayer before fajr is better than the whole of this world and all that is in it. I was wondering:
[1] Does this mean that the reward you will receive in Jannah for performing this prayer will be better than this world and everything in it? If not, what does it refer to?
[2] If so, must you perform the sunnah prayer every morning before fajr to earn the reward or will you get the reward for only doing it occasionally, or even just once in your life?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.

Yes, performing these cycles (rak`ats) is better than the world and all of the things within it. [Nawawi, Sharh Muslim]

`A’isha relates that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “The two [sunna] cycles (rak`ats) of the morning prayer are better than the world and what it contains’ [Muslim]

It is better than the world because the world is perishing and its blessings are not free from the staleness of exertion and fatigue whilst the reward of performing these two sunna cycles (rak`ats) remains and does not become stale.” [Shah Wali Allah, Hujjat Allah al-Baligha]

Does one get the Reward for performing it occasionally?

According to the Hanafi school, the two sunna cycles (rak`ats) before the obligatory Fajr prayer are a confirmed sunna, at the level of being necessary (wajib). We understand that this was a prayer which was rarely missed by the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace), as indicated by his saying (Allah bless him and give him peace) regarding the pre-Fajr sunna prayer that it is “more beloved to me than the whole world.”

The prophetic sunna would seem to indicate that one would receive the aforementioned reward by performing the action consistently, throughout one’s life. However, Allah’s mercy is endless and He does as He wishes.

And Allah knows best.

Wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani