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A rerun of marriage ceremony / Midmorning prayer

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    A rerun of marriage ceremony / Midmorning prayer

    Edited by Adil Salahi, Saudi Arabia.

    A rerun of marriage ceremony:
    Q. A man and a woman got married legally a year ago, without informing
    their families. They continued to live with their respective families
    and worked on their parents until they agreed to the marriage. But none
    of their parents is aware that the marriage has taken place. They are
    afraid to tell them. Can they keep the matter a secret and go through
    the marriage ceremony again?

    M., Makkah

    A. There is no harm in going through the marriage ceremony again for a
    valid reason. This happens often in minority Muslim communities. Where a
    community does not have a legal status, what happens is that the
    marriage is first done in a Registrarís office. If there are enough
    witnesses present, then the formalities of such a marriage meet the
    requirements of Islamic marriage. But then most people go to a mosque or
    an Islamic center to have the marriage contract done again. They feel
    that this is the appropriate way, and they receive a certificate of
    marriage from both the Registrarís office and from the mosque.

    In this case, there are two reasons for the re-run of the marriage. The
    first is that it will spare the couple any potential trouble with their
    families. The other is that it will meet the requirements of schools of
    law which do not consider the first marriage valid. Only the Hanafi
    school of law considers a marriage contract in which the woman acts for
    herself valid. The other three schools consider it invalid. Therefore, a
    rerun of the marriage now will make it valid according to all schools.
    This is an important reason for redoing the marriage contract.

    Having said that, I should add that it was wrong of the couple to do
    what they did. Marriage is an important relationship which should not be
    trifled with. It establishes a family. Therefore, it is important that
    the families of the two partners are involved. Islam honors the woman by
    making the presence of her father or guardian a requirement for the
    validity of the marriage.

    Midmorning prayer:
    Q. What is the difference, particularly with regard to time, between
    Ishraaq and Chaast prayers, and what reward is attained by these

    Abd Al-Ghafoor, Riyadh

    A. I do not know of any prayer by either of these names. There is simply
    no such prayer to be offered as a duty or voluntarily. However, the
    first one, Ishraaq, means a prayer at or after sunrise. We should
    remember that prayer at sunrise is strongly discouraged, until the sun
    has risen well into the sky. Scholars of old times compared it to the
    length of a spear. The other name, Chaast, is not an Arabic word and I
    do not know what it means.

    What we have is a morning prayer with the name of Dhoha. Its time
    stretches from early morning, after the sun has risen well into the sky,
    to shortly before dhuhr prayer, when the sun is at the highest point in
    the sky. It is strongly recommended. It may be offered at any time, in
    2-8 rakaahs, which are normally made short. Its reward is very rich.

    The Prophet says that we have to pay a charity for every one of 360
    joints in our bodies, every day. Some of his companions wondered who
    could afford that. The Prophet said: "Every time you glorify God or
    praise Him counts as a charity, and if you remove harmful objects from
    the road, it counts as a charity. You may compensate for all that by
    offering two rakaahs at Dhoha."

    In another Hadith, the Prophet quotes God as saying that if one offers
    four rakaahs at the beginning of the day, He will take care of him for
    the rest of the day. You see, the reward is rich and immediate.

    "I put my trust in Allah, my Lord and your Lord! There is not a moving creature, but He has a grasp of its forelock. Verily, my Lord is on the straight path. (The truth)"

    "...Indeed my prayer, my sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allaah, the Lord of the worlds" (6:162)