Istikhara is a supplication which is recommended by our beloved Prophet (PBUH) . This supplication is very easy but there are many misconceptions prevailed in our society about this supplication. This supplication is recited after 2 Rakat of salah which are called as Salat-al-Istikhara. The whole procedure of this dua is mentioned in Hadith and it is an act performed by our beloved Prophet (P.B.U.H) before making any important decision. Let us know what istikhara is and what is its procedure?
Meaning of Istikhara
Istikhara means to consult or to seek guidance. Muslims can ask help of ALLAH in every matter of life with the help of Istikhara. It is the best way to have guidance in the times of trouble.
Salat-al-istikhara is a two Rakat Salah which is performed to seek guidance from Allah.
When to offer Salah-al-istikhara
When a person is confused about any particular decision in his life like marriage, divorce, business, migration etc then he can offer Salah-e-Istikhara to seek consultation from Allah. . After making up one’s mind about the particular thing, one should offer Salat-al-Istikhara. It is meant to open up the avenues from Allah regarding the best path for you. Allah will open up the good paths and block the bad paths for you by the way of istikhara.
Conditions of Salah-e-istikhara
- Making up one’s mind that what he or she wants
- Wudu or ablution
- Niyyah or intention
- Offering 2 Rakat salat
- Reciting the supplication of Istikhara
Supplication of salat-al-istikhara
اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُكَ بِعِلْمِكَ وَأَسْتَقْدِرُكَ بِقُدْرَتِكَ، وَأَسْأَلُكَ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ الْعَظِيمِ، فَإِنَّكَ تَقْدِرُ وَلاَ أَقْدِرُ وَتَعْلَمُ وَلاَ أَعْلَمُ وَأَنْتَ عَلاَّمُ الْغُيُوبِ، اللَّهُمَّ إِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ خَيْرٌ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي فَاقْدُرْهُ لِي وَيَسِّرْهُ لِي ثُمَّ بَارِكْ لِي فِيهِ، وَإِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ شَرٌّ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي فَاصْرِفْهُ عَنِّي وَاصْرِفْنِي عَنْهُ، وَاقْدُرْ لِي الْخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ ثُمَّ أَرْضِنِي بِهِ
O Allah! Behold I ask You the good through Your Knowledge, and ability through Your Power, and beg out of Your infinite Bounty. Indeed, You have Power; I have none. You know all; I know nothing. You are the Great Knower of all things.
O Allah! If in Your Knowledge this matter is good for my faith (Deen), for my livelihood, and for the consequences of my affairs, then ordain it for me, and make it easy for me, and bless me therein. But if in Your Knowledge, this matter be bad for my faith (Deen), for my livelihood, and for the consequences of my affairs, then turn it away from me, and turn me away therefrom, and ordain for me the good wherever it be, and cause me to please with it.
Prohibitions of Istikhara
- Matter should be halal and not haram.
- Matter should be one which is not against the laws of Islam.
Answer of istikhara
There are many misconceptions in this regard but scholars are unanimously agreed that Allah open ups the paths of goodness for the seeker. The thing towards which ones heart is inclined after doing Istikhara is the best thing for him or her. And if the selected path is not good for the seeker then hurdles will come in that path which is a clear sign that it is not the right path to choose.
Inclination plays a vital role as its answer because if the chosen option is good then the heart will remain inclined towards it and feelings become stronger but if it is not the good path then ones mind become diverted after sometime or suddenly.
Misconceptions about Istikhara
- It is a common misconception that after istikhara one can see the answer in dream or someone will touch his or her feet during night etc. There is no such authentic Hadith upon this matter. But it is the will of Allah if He wants to guide someone through dream or not. If someone sees a dream, it is well and good and if he does not, it does not affect the purpose of Istikhara.
- Another misconception is one should not talk about offering istikhara prayer and sleep right after the Salah. It is also not proven from Hadith as our beloved Prophet (PBUH) used to offer this Salah before going out of house for some important work.
- It is also assumed that salat-e-istikhara can only be offered before sleeping but it is not true. One can offer it at any time.
- Another misconception is that anyone can do Istikara for someone else. This is not the real case.no one can do istikhara for anyone. One can ask others to make dua for them but istikhara has to be done by the person who wants the guidance.
Purpose of Istikhara
The purpose of Istikhara is to seek guidance from Allah, in a particular matter, to help him or her choose the right path.
Another purpose is one can be save itself from any big loss. It does not mean that one cannot lose after istikhara. Sometimes, this loss is beneficial for him or her in one or other way. The loss after istikhara meant to open up good ways for the seeker. The goodness may be of spirituality or wealth or anything.
Messages hidden when doing istikhara
- It is a way to show Allah that I, as a human being, is not worthy of anything.
- I , as a human being, is not good at making decision.
- Person seeks the help of Allah.
- One is showing his or her inferiority in front of Allah.
- It is a way to show ones humbleness towards Allah Almighty.
- It is a way to show ones believe in the fate.
Hadith about istikhara
Narrated Jabir bin Abdullah: As-Salami: Allah’s Apostle used to teach his companions to perform the prayer of Istikhara for each and every matter just as he used to teach them the Suras from the Quran He used to say, “If anyone of you intends to do some thing, he should offer a two rakat prayer other than the compulsory prayers, and after finishing it, he should say: O Allah! I consult You, for You have all knowledge, and appeal to You to support me with Your Power and ask for Your Bounty, for You are able to do things while I am not, and You know while I do not; and You are the Knower of the Unseen. O Allah If You know It this matter (name your matter) is good for me both at present and in the future, (or in my religion), in my this life and in the Hereafter, then fulfill it for me and make it easy for me, and then bestow Your Blessings on me in that matter. O Allah! If You know that this matter is not good for me in my religion, in my this life and in my coming Hereafter (or at present or in the future), then divert me from it and choose for me what is good wherever it may be, and make me be pleased with it. Sahih Bukhari book of salat-ul-tahajud hadith 1162.
( If you find any mistake in this article please feel free to contact us and point it out and we will try to correct it in the light of Quran and Sunnah.May Allah bless us all with the authentic knowledge of Islam. May this efforts of ours ease the way of jannah for our family. Amin)