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Is Driving to the Masjid Similar to Walking

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Publication : 02-04-2024

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Question

Does خَرَجَ in this hadith exclusively mean walking to the masjid or even driving is acceptable? Likewise, مِنْ بَيْتِهِ, does it only have to be from the house? what about from work? Different prophetic narrations state the great reward of walking to the mosque on foot. in addition to getting rewarded for attending congregational prayers, one could also get rewarded when he drives to the mosque. His argument was that tire revolutions of the car can be equated to the physical steps that one takes when walking. Is this a valid comparison? Are there hadiths that for example talk about the virtues of riding (camel/horse) to the mosque?

Answer

Praise be to Allah.

Abu Dawud (558) narrated from Al-Qasim Abu `Abd Ar-Rahman, from Abu Umamah, that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said: "Whoever leaves his house in a state of purification for an obligatory Salah, his reward will be like that of a pilgrim in the state of Ihram, and whoever goes out to perform the Duha prayer, seeking nothing but that, his reward will be like that of a person performing `Umrah, and a Salah following another Salah with no idle talk in between them is recorded in Illiyyin."

A number of scholars have authenticated and considered this Hadith sound. Sheikh Shu`aib authenticated it in his verification of Sunan Abu Dawud.

And Sheikh Al-Albani (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

"This chain is sound; all its narrators are trustworthy. However, there is a difference of opinion regarding this Al-Qasim - who is Al-Qasim ibn `Abd Ar-Rahman Ash-Shami Ad-Dimashqi - but he was declared trustworthy by Ibn Ma`in, Al-`Ajli, Ya`qub ibn Sufyan and At-Tirmidhi, who authenticated his narrations, and others..." End quote. "Sahih Sunan Abu Dawud" (3/83).

And (leaves) here is understood by the scholars to mean walking.

Abu Dawud and others have narrated this Hadith under the chapter of the virtue of walking to Salah.

Interpreting it as walking is what is consistent with the rest of the narrations regarding going to the mosques; as they encourage walking.

Ibn Rajab (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

"The second means of having sins expiated: walking on foot to the congregational prayers and to Jumu`ah.

Especially if a man performs Wudu’ at his home, then leaves for the mosque intending nothing but Salah, as in As-Sahihayn from Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him), from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said: 'A man's Salah in congregation is multiplied twenty-five times over his Salah in his house or in the market, and that is because when he performs Wudu’ and does it well, then goes to the mosque, only for Salah: he does not take a step except that he is raised a degree for it, and a sin is removed from him for it, and when he prays, the angels continue to pray for him as long as he is in his prayer place: O Allah, bestow Your blessings upon him, O Allah, have mercy on him, and one of you continues to be in Salah as long as he is waiting for Salah.'

And in Sahih Muslim from Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said: 'Whoever purifies himself in his house then walks to one of the houses of Allah in order to perform one of the duties enjoined by Allah, for every two steps he takes, one will erase a sin and the other will raise him one degree in status.'

And in As-Sahihayn from Abu Hurairah from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said: 'Every step one takes to Salah is charity'...

And in Sunan Abu Dawud from Abu Umamah from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said: 'Whoever leaves his house in a state of purification to an obligatory Salah, his reward will be like that of a pilgrim in the state of Ihram.'

And also in Sunan Abu Dawud from a man of the Ansar from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said: 'Whoever performs Wudu’ and does it well, then goes out to Salah, does not lift his right foot except that Allah writes for him a good deed for it, and does not put down his left foot except that Allah removes a sin for it, so let him come close or let him go far, for if he comes to the mosque and prays in congregation, he is forgiven.'

And there are many Hadiths with this meaning.

And walking to Jumu`ah has an additional virtue..." End quote. "Majmu` Rasail Ibn Rajab" (4/23-24).

Most narrations of this Hadith came with the wording (whoever walked).

Imam Ahmad in "Musnad" (36/640) and others narrated with the wording: 'Whoever walks to an obligatory Salah while in a state of purification, his reward will be like that of a pilgrim in the state of Ihram...' .

In fact, some of the narrations specified the going that has a special reward with "walked, and did not ride":

From Aws ibn Aws Ath-Thaqafi, I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) say: 'Whoever washes (his head) on Friday and then bathes, then goes early and arrives early, and walks and does not ride, and sits close to the Imam and listens and does not engage in idle talk, for him with every step is the reward of a year's worth of fasting and standing (in prayer)' narrated by Abu Dawud (345), An-Nasa’i (1384), and At-Tirmidhi (496), who said: 'The Hadith of Aws ibn Aws is a sound Hadith.' And At-Tirmidhi did not mention: (and walked and did not ride).

Al-Albani (may Allah have mercy on him) authenticated it in "Sahih Abu Dawud (2/176-177).

And we have not come across any virtue of riding to Jumu`ah and congregational prayers, but what is mentioned in this chapter is walking, not riding.

Imam Muslim (663) narrated from Ubayy ibn Ka`b, who said: There was a man, I do not know of anyone who lived further from the mosque than him, and he would not miss a Salah. It was said to him, or I said to him: If you bought a donkey to ride on in the dark and in the heat, he said: It would not please me that my house is next to the mosque, for I want my walk to the mosque and my return when I return to my family to be recorded for me. So the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said: 'Allah has gathered all of that for you.'

And riding cannot be equated with walking; because walking involves more effort and work, and riding involves more comfort and ease, and the step of the servant is from his work, and the turning of the car's wheel is not from his effort, so they cannot be equated.

Pease see the answer to question number (70216 ).

Secondly:

The mention of the house in the Hadith is used in the sense of what is most common, because most people usually head to the mosques for most of the prayers coming from their homes.

So it includes those who intend Salah from their place of work or their temporary residence and the like, because these are similar actions.

Ibn Al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

"It has been established in His, the Exalted, Shari`ah that the ruling of a thing is the ruling of its like, so His Shari`ah does not differentiate between two similar things ever, nor does it combine two opposites... So by His wisdom and justice, His creation and Shari`ah appeared, and by justice and balance, the creation and Shari`ah stand, which is to equate the similar and to differentiate the different." End quote. "Zad al-Ma`ad" (4/248).

And Allah knows best.

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Source: Islam Q&A