The Shafi’i school states that combining the prayers (jama‘), whether Thuhr or ‘Asr or Maghrib and ‘Isha’, when it is raining is permissible (ja’iz) in the law, and a divine dispensation (rukhsah). However, they are not unanimous regarding the shuroot (conditions) that are needed for it to be valid. This article will discuss the disagreements.
Ibn Naqib Al-Masri stipulates the following conditions for the validity ofJama‘ (combining prayers) at the time of rain:
- The rain is strong enough to wet one’s garment.
- With the condition that he INTENDS to make jama’ah in the Masjid.
- The Masjid is far.
- It is raining when the first prayer begins and it ends, and when the 2nd prayer begins. Then he mentions that the conditions mentioned for travelling (i.e. those not specifically for travel such as distance etc, are also conditions)
- That the first prayer be prayed first (e.x.: thuhr before ‘asr )
- the intent exists for joining before the end of the first prayer.
- That one not seperate the two prayers by waiting between them, however if the seperation is short then it is forgiven.
[See Reliance of the Traveller 15.10, 15.14 (pages 194-196)]
- Qadi Husayn and Mutawalli1 stipulate the condition that the shoes become wet (not the garment – thobe).
- Taqiyud-din Al-Hisni stipulates that the rain be present at the time of the end of the Salams for the first prayer “as stated by the ‘Iraqi jurists” and this is the “correct opinion” in his view. However he does state that there is a minor opinion of this not being conditional.2
- Imam Abi Shuja’ in his “Matn” (Ghayatul-Ikhtisar) stipulates that it be at the first Salah time they be combined, not at the second. and Taqiy-ud-din calls this the Ath-har (lit. most manifest) opinion. The other view is that is permitted and this is do to the qiyas (the analogy) that it is the same as travelling. Those who disagree state that analogy can not be made between the two issues, as rain is not in the ‘hand’ of the one praying, whereas it is in the hand of the one travelling.
Imam An-Nawawi stipulates the following in his Minhaj:
“And it is permitted to combine the prayers in rain praying them at an early time (i.e. praying the second prayer early), and in the ‘new school’ it is forbidden to pray it in its later time (i.e. for jama’), and the condition for praying it at an early time is that [the rain is] present at the time of the first prayer. The most correct view is that its conditional that it be present at the time at the end of the salams. Snow and hail are just like [the ruling of] rain if it is pouring. And the Ath-har (and he states Asa-hh – most correct view in Rawdat at talibin) is that this dispensation is for those who are going for prayer in jama’ah at the masjid that is far off and the rain creates difficulty for him in his path [to the masjid].”
Imam Al-Khatib Ash-Shirbini mentions a second opinion in his Mughni al-Muhtaj after mentioning the words of An-Nawawi regarding it be specific to the one going to the masjid: “And the second view is that it is an absolute dispensation.”3
May Allah shower His blessing on the Prophet Muhammad, his family, his followers. Amin!