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Offline Reader Questions

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How Does One Pray Where the Sun Never Sets?
« on: June 03, 2013, 08:17:11 PM »
Assalamu Alaikum,

How are you brother? 

I have read many of your articles in your site.  Alhamdulillah you are doing a lot of work and research.  May Allah give you barakah in your time and efforts and give you more knowledge of the truth. 

Anyways, I am writing to you regarding an issue that I am facing now.  I currently reside in Fort Mc Murray, Alberta, Canada.  It is a city that is very north.  As summer is approaching we are getting very long days.  Span of night is currently non existent.  Because the sun does set and rise but there is no time where it is absolute darkness.  So now the question is, we are suppose to abide by the Qur'an.  And the Qur'an tells us to pray in the 5 or 6 times that we pray.  But what is happening here is that it never gets dark in order to pray Salatul Isha as per the directive of the Qur'an. 

I think you understand what I am trying to say.  So please throw some light into this issue with the guidance of Qur'an. 

Jazak Allah Khair

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: How Does One Pray Where the Sun Never Sets?
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2013, 08:19:06 PM »
Wa alaikum assalam

I'd like to share a few verses with you and would humbly request you to consider them in light of the situation you find yourself in.

Firstly, the Quran was revealed to a particular people who were part of a particular geographical location. When God provided analogies, such as 'shade' (zalil, zill - 4:57, 56:30, 77:41) and of streams or rivers, it is with a view to show respite from the hot arid climate that the Arabs of the Hijaz were used to. These analogies would mean little to people living in the cold remote parts of the world who longed for the heat of the sun.

Similarly, when periods of prayer were given, the immediate audience were arguably of primary focus. The Quran was not addressing the conditions of someone who may be residing in the northern extremities of the globe.

The Quran explicitly asserts that it intends no difficult in religion.

"He has chosen you, and has imposed no difficulties on you in religion" (22:78 part)

"Goes does not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean" (5:6 part)

"God desires ease for you, and He does not desire for you difficulty..." (2:185 part)

Coupled with the fact, He is an extremely merciful and just God (6:12, 6:54); one must consider predicaments such as yours with all the attributes of God and the guidance He has proffered to us in mind.

The intent is to listen to His word and extract the best meaning whilst applying the guidance to one’s circumstances (39:18, 39:55) remaining mindful not to transgress.

"Those who listen to the Word (the Quran) and follow the best meaning in it / best of it (Arabic: fayattabi'una ahsanahu) those are the ones whom God has guided and those are the one's endowed with understanding (Arabic: Albabi)
Finally, please note the following verse carefully.

“So keep your duty to God as best you can / what you are able (Arabic: ma is’tata’tum), and listen, and obey, and spend; that is better for your souls. And whoso is saved from his own greed, such are the successful”

The Arabic word 'istata'a' means to be able, can or to be capable of. Therefore, given the above verse, one is only expected to do the best they can whilst striving in the way of God.

What I would do personally, is to ascertain the nearest location in which it does become completely dark or there is a regularity of prayer timings and in the name of God (and not with a view to transgress), align prayer times to that locale.

I hope that helps, God willing.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell