Muslims are keen to pray Tahajjud ( Arabic: صلاة التهجد )  ( called: qiyam al layl ) but most of them wonder about how to pray Tahajjud in a correct way to gain its grace, especially it is a recommended not compulsory Islamic prayer which is done between Isha and Fajr preferably in the last third of the night if it is possible. 

So, many Muslims make Tahajjud prayer the main part of their routine of worship and perform it in the same way laid out by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to get closer to Allah and ask for prayers in all that they need so let us learn all about that great prayer.

What is Tahajjud prayer?

Tahajjud prayer is also known as the night prayer and it is an Islamic voluntary prayer done by most Muslims who like praying at night before Fajr and ask Allah what they want.

pray Tahajjud isn’t one of the five daily prayers required of Muslims (Fajr, Dhuhr, Asr, Maghrib, and Isha). But it is recorded that the prophet Muhammad performed it routinely and encouraged the Muslims and his associates to do it Continuously and do not give up praying Tahajjud.

It is considered a sunnah prayer ( no obligation) and there are several verses from the Holy Quran that urge Muslims to pray Tahajjud.

How to pray Tahajjud?

Muslims should learn the perfect time for the pray, and the right steps to perform Tahajjud prayer as follow

What time is Tahajjud prayer?

tahajjud prayers are done after Isha and before Fajr. So, if you wish you can sleep after Isha and set the alarm for waking up at any part of the time, especially at the last third of night because Allah descends to the lowest heaven during this time to ask who is asking me to give him? and who is calling me to answer him? Who is seeking my forgiveness to forgive him?

So, you should learn how to pray Tahajjud and make a great effort to wake up and don’t give in to laziness and sleep. Noting that in the case of severe sleep and inability to wake up, this is not considered a sin on the Muslim and that Allah is Forgiving, Most Merciful, and the Muslim will not be punished for that.

Can I pray Tahajjud without sleeping?

The origin of the Tahajjud prayer is waking up from sleep to pray and converse with Allah Almighty and ask Allah for whatever you want, even if that sleep is for a few moments, but it is an essential condition for performing the Tahajjud prayer and its validity.

Is it necessary to sleep before praying Tahajjud?

When you ask how to pray Tahajjud and the time for it, you find that the ultimate opinion that even if someone sleeps before the Isha’ prayer, he must sleep again after it and wake up for qiyam al layl prayer as it should be after bed as it is a sunnah from our Prophet Muhammad.

However, if one performs the Tahajjud prayers without sleeping, it would be acceptable.

The Secretary of Fatwa at Dar Al Iftaa, in his answer to the question: “All prayers after the evening prayer are night prayers, and this prayer falls under several sunnah, including: “The Sunnah of Isha, Tarawih, Witr, Tahajjud, and any other night prayer is from standing.” The basic principle in standing is that a person performs it after moments of awakening after the sunset prayer, but the matter depends on his condition. If he is awake all night, his prayer is valid.

Can I pray isha and tahajjud together?

When you ask how to pray Tahajjud, you find that It is permissible for you to start the night prayer after the Isha prayer because the starting time is after the Isha prayer and ends with the appearance of the true dawn.

There is a belief that he is not rewarded for the night prayer until after sleep, and this is a common mistake that everyone must completely change, pointing out that the night prayer is permissible at any time, even if it is immediately after the evening prayer.

Performing Wudu

Ablution is an essential part of preparing for prayer and learning how to pray Tahajjud by using clean water to wash oneself as follow:

1-Washing face.

2-Rinsing the mouth.

3-Nose wash

4-then washing arms and hands up to the elbows.

5-wiping (masah) the head.

6-Ear wash.

7-And finally washing the feet up to the ankles.

But in case of discharging mani due to sexual intercourse or even in a wet dream, the Ghusl for full-body is essential before the prayer.

  • choose a good place for praying

It must be a clean and quiet place to perform your prayers and how to pray Tahajjud with concentration.

It shouldn’t be a special place, but you can do it anywhere like the mosque, or the house but choose a good place to speak with Allah with your prayer mat facing the Holy Kaaba in Mecca. 

Wow, it is a wonderful feeling to be between the hands of Allah at midnight and praying for him.

Don’t worry about anything, focus on how to pray Tahajjud properly and forget all of your problems and fears, just remember your hopes. Stop your mind and pray with your heart you are with Allah.

How to read Tahajjud prayer?

When you ask how to pray Tahajjud, you find that the first pillar of prayer is the intention to pray and as soon as you stand up for prayer, you should intend to pray Tahajjud.

In the Islamic religion, the place of intention is the heart. But You must also convince your mind that you will begin to enter into prayer and there should be reverence in prayer.

You should decide how to pray Tahajjud, the number of rakats, and the surahs you will recite.

Also, you should know why you pray Tahajjud. For example, you do it to glorify the Holy Allah, thanking him for all his blessings, and asking for forgiveness.

All of this should be in your mind and not uttered in prayer out loud, Allah knows very well what is on your mind.

Tahajjud prayer is done by repeating several Rakat like the Muslims perform in the five daily prayers. These rakats are done in pairs, so you should decide exactly how many rakats you will pray.

How to perform Tahajjud prayer?

At the beginning of the Tahajjud prayer, you start with two rakats.

Firstly, the prayer starts with “Takbeer Ihram”, then you begin to recite Al-Fatihah and then some verses from the Holy Quran.

Then after the Muslim says “Allahu Akbar”, the worshiper kneels by placing his hands on his knees and repeating sobhan Allah the Great three times at least three times with the possibility of increasing the number.

And when approaching, he repeats Allah’s hearing to those who praise him and praises Allah for all the blessings he has bestowed upon him.

The person repeats Allahu Akbar, then he prostrates on the ground so that his entire face, forehead, and nose are attached to the ground, repeating “Subhan Rabiy Al’aelaa” at least 3 times doing that two times.

Imitating the prayer of our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), it is preferred to recite the following surahs after each rak’ah in the Tahajjud prayer,

  • Reciting Surah “Al-A’la” after Surah “Al-Fatihah” in the first rak’ah.
  • Reciting Surah “Al-kafirun” after Surah “Al-Fatihah” in the second rak’ah.

How many rakats are in Tahajjud prayer? 

As performing two rakats is considered the minimum number for praying Islam Tahajjud, you can repeat them as you wish.

According to the Hadiths, we found the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was praying up to 13 rakats.

Tahajjud prayer is performed in Pairs, and most Muslims do it in 8 rakats.

Anyway, the number of rak’ahs varies from person to person. So, we find someone prays two rakats, while the other prays four, or six, or eight rakats.

If you can, try to recite long surahs like ” Al-Baqarah” or “Aal-Imran” from time to time, as it is highly recommended.

How to pray Tahajjud and Witr?

Following our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), the Muslim performs one last rak’ah after completing the Tahajud prayer, which is called the Witr rak’ah.

It is an optional prayer that is done before the dawn required prayer Al-Fajr.

This one Raka will be a Witr for all the Rakat which he has prayed before.

It is sunnah from the Prophet Muhammad to recite Surat Al-Ikhlas after Al-Fatihah in the Witr rak’ah.

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Can you pray Tahajjud after witr?

When Muslim asks how to pray Tahajjud in a correct way, he found that the Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Make witr as your last prayer at night.”

حَدَّثَنَا مُسَدَّدٌ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ سَعِيدٍ، عَنْ عُبَيْدِ اللَّهِ، حَدَّثَنِي نَافِعٌ، عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ، عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ اجْعَلُوا آخِرَ صَلاَتِكُمْ بِاللَّيْلِ وِتْرًا ‏”‏‏.‏

Sahih al-Bukhari 998

Meaning that the rak’ah of the witr is the last before the dawn prayer, and the Muslim prays it to conclude the Tahajjud rak’ahs.

كما حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ يُوسُفَ، قَالَ أَخْبَرَنَا مَالِكٌ، عَنْ نَافِعٍ، وَعَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ دِينَارٍ، عَنِ ابْنِ عُمَرَ، أَنَّ رَجُلاً، سَأَلَ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم عَنْ صَلاَةِ اللَّيْلِ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ “‏ صَلاَةُ اللَّيْلِ مَثْنَى مَثْنَى، فَإِذَا خَشِيَ أَحَدُكُمُ الصُّبْحَ صَلَّى رَكْعَةً وَاحِدَةً، تُوتِرُ لَهُ مَا قَدْ صَلَّى ‏”‏‏.‏

Sahih al-Bukhari 990

Once a person asked Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) (ﷺ) about the night prayer. Allah’s Apostle (ﷺ) replied, “The night prayer is offered as two Rakat followed by two Rakat and so on and if anyone is afraid of the approaching dawn (Fajr prayer) he should pray one Rak’ah and this will be a Witr for all the Rakat which he has prayed before.”

After completing the rakats, you should add your Tahajjud prayer dua.

When the Prophet (ﷺ) got up at night to offer the Tahajjud prayer, he used to say: Allahumma lakal-hamd. Anta qaiyyimus-samawati wal-ard wa man fihinna. Walakal-hamd, Laka mulkus-samawati wal-ard wa man fihinna. Walakal-hamd, anta nurus-samawati wal-ard. Wa lakal-hamd, anta-l-haq wa wa’duka-lhaq, wa liqa’uka Haq, wa qauluka Haq, wal-jannatu Han wan-naru Haq wannabiyuna Haq. Wa Muhammadun, sallal-lahu’alaihi wasallam, Haq, was-sa’atu Haq. Allahumma aslamtu Laka wabika amantu, wa ‘Alaika tawakkaltu, wa ilaika anabtu wa bika khasamtu, wa ilaika hakamtu faghfir li ma qaddamtu wama akh-khartu wama as-rartu wama’a lantu, anta-l-muqaddim wa anta-l-mu akh-khir, la ilaha illa anta (or la ilaha ghairuka). (O Allah! All the praises are for you, You are the Holder of the Heavens and the Earth, And whatever is in them. All the praises are for You; You have the possession of the Heavens and the Earth And whatever is in them. All the praises are for You; You are the Light of the Heavens and the Earth And all the praises are for You; You are the King of the Heavens and the Earth, And all the praises are for You; You are the Truth and Your Promise is the truth, And to meet You is true, Your Word is the truth And Paradise is true And Hell is true And all the Prophets (Peace be upon them) are true, And Muhammad is true, And the Day of Resurrection is true. O, Allah! I surrender (my will) to You; I believe in You and depend on You. And repent to You, And with Your help, I argue (with my opponents, the non-believers) And I take You as a judge (to judge between us). Please forgive me my previous And future sins; And whatever I concealed or revealed And You are the One who make (some people) forward And (some) backward. There is none to be worshipped but you. Sufyan said that `Abdul Karim Abu Umaiya added to the above, ‘Wala hawla Wala quwwata illa billah’ (There is neither might nor power except with Allah).

حَدَّثَنَا عَلِيُّ بْنُ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا سُفْيَانُ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا سُلَيْمَانُ بْنُ أَبِي مُسْلِمٍ، عَنْ طَاوُسٍ، سَمِعَ ابْنَ عَبَّاسٍ ـ رضى الله عنهما ـ قَالَ كَانَ النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِذَا قَامَ مِنَ اللَّيْلِ يَتَهَجَّدُ قَالَ ‏”‏ اللَّهُمَّ لَكَ الْحَمْدُ أَنْتَ قَيِّمُ السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَمَنْ فِيهِنَّ وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ، لَكَ مُلْكُ السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَمَنْ فِيهِنَّ، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ أَنْتَ نُورُ السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ أَنْتَ الْحَقُّ، وَوَعْدُكَ الْحَقُّ، وَلِقَاؤُكَ حَقٌّ، وَقَوْلُكَ حَقٌّ، وَالْجَنَّةُ حَقٌّ، وَالنَّارُ حَقٌّ، وَالنَّبِيُّونَ حَقٌّ، وَمُحَمَّدٌ صلى الله عليه وسلم حَقٌّ، وَالسَّاعَةُ حَقٌّ، اللَّهُمَّ لَكَ أَسْلَمْتُ، وَبِكَ آمَنْتُ وَعَلَيْكَ تَوَكَّلْتُ، وَإِلَيْكَ أَنَبْتُ، وَبِكَ خَاصَمْتُ، وَإِلَيْكَ حَاكَمْتُ، فَاغْفِرْ لِي مَا قَدَّمْتُ وَمَا أَخَّرْتُ، وَمَا أَسْرَرْتُ وَمَا أَعْلَنْتُ، أَنْتَ الْمُقَدِّمُ وَأَنْتَ الْمُؤَخِّرُ، لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ ـ أَوْ لاَ إِلَهَ غَيْرُكَ ـ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالَ سُفْيَانُ وَزَادَ عَبْدُ الْكَرِيمِ أَبُو أُمَيَّةَ ‏”‏ وَلاَ حَوْلَ وَلاَ قُوَّةَ إِلاَّ بِاللَّهِ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالَ سُفْيَانُ قَالَ سُلَيْمَانُ بْنُ أَبِي مُسْلِمٍ سَمِعَهُ مِنْ طَاوُسٍ عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ ـ رضى الله عنهما ـ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم‏.‏

Sahih al-Bukhari 1120

Whatever your dua, you must be sure that Allah hears you and wants to forgive you.

Just ask him honestly for forgiveness, and thank Him for all the blessings He has given you. You can ask for anything from Allah and never lose hope whatever your mistakes or sins. Allah is Forgiving, Most Merciful.

After Tahajjud

After finishing your Tahajjud prayer, you can go back to sleep and have a rest until Al- fajr prayer.



Following the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad, you must keep performing the Tahajjud prayer, know how to pray Tahajjud, and make it a part of your worship routine.

Many Muslims practice Tahajjud prayer regularly to make themselves closer to Allah.

Like Book 21 from Sahih Bukhari, it is a great place to start if you are looking for emulating the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in Tahajjud habits and practices.

Also, we find Muslim families pray Tahajjud with each other like the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his wife Aisha. This allows them to become closer to each other and they help each other in worship and obedience to Allah.

Also, you should encourage your children for voluntary worship like praying Tahajjud to be closer to Allah and ask him all they need. And so that they learn to praise and thank Allah for all His blessings since childhood.

You should learn how to wake up and how to pray Tahajjud correctly and don’t give up on sleeping.

You should give Allah his right to proper worship, his thanks and praise, and the request for repentance and forgiveness for all your mistakes.

In the end, we ask Allah all to accept our deeds, worship, prayers, and supplications, and to grant us a good end and entry to heaven.