Fatwa: # 26652
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Country: Nigeria
Date: 21st August 2013

Title

Procedure of performing Istikharah

Question

Please can you tell me what is the procedure for reading Istikharah and how would you come to know if it is good or bad?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Istikharah means to seek khair (goodness) from Allah regarding any task in which one is unable to make a correct decision.[1] When one performs Salat-ul-Istikharah, Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala places a feeling of inclination towards a particular side. In Istikharah, it is not necessary that a person will see a dream. Rather, a person should carry out whatever occurs to him. In other words, one should continue to do Mashwara and seek advises from others regarding the task. It is preferable that one performs the Istikharah himself rather than others performing it on his behalf.[2] Salat-ul-Istikharah may be performed at anytime. It is not a condition to perform Salat-ul-Istikharah before going to sleep.

The method of performing Salat-ul-Istikharah is as follows:

Perform wudu and offer two Rakahs with the intention of Salat-ul-Istikharah. The Salah will be performed normally like any other Salah. Recite Surah Kafiroon in the first Rakah and Surah Ikhlas in the second Rakah. Upon completing the Salah, recite the following Dua.

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُكَ بِعِلْمِكَ وَأَسْتَقْدِرُكَ بِقُدْرَتِكَ، وَأَسْأَلُكَ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ العَظِيمِ، فَإِنَّكَ تَقْدِرُ وَلاَ أَقْدِرُ، وَتَعْلَمُ وَلاَ أَعْلَمُ، وَأَنْتَ عَلَّامُ الغُيُوبِ، 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 الخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ، ثُمَّ أَرْضِنِي[3]

(Note: Some of the narrations have mentioned the word رَضِّنِي instead of the word أَرْضِنِي. Both forms are correct.)

Translation: “All praises are due to Allah, the Rabb of the Worlds. Salutations and Greetings be on our leader, Muhammad, his family and all his Companions.

O Allah! I seek from You a decision by virtue of Your Knowledge (of what is best), and I seek from You the ability (to realize my object) by virtue of Your Power, and I ask You (to grant me) from Your Great Bounty, for indeed You have power and I do not have power, and You know and I do not know, and You are the Knower of the unseen. Oh Allah! If, according you Your Knowledge, this matter is good for me with regards to my religious affairs, my worldly life and my final outcome (i.e. in the Hearafter), then direct it towards me and ease it for me, thereafter grant me blessing in it. And if according to Your Knowledge, this matter is evil for me with regards to my religious affairs, my worldly life and my final outcome (i.e. Hearafter), then turn it away from me and turn me away from it. And direct towards me that which is good, no matter where it is, thereafter make me pleased with it (i.e. that good.)

Mention your need while reciting the underline portion of the Dua. It is Mustahab to follow this procedure three times. One may use the help of a book etc. if one does not know the Dua by heart. Alternatively, if time does not allow a person to go through this entire procedure, one may recite the following Dua without having to perform any Salah. This is the shortest form of Istikharah.

اللَّهُمَّ خِرْ لِي وَاخْتَرْ لِي

“O Allah, destine good for me and choose for me” [4]

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Mufti Abdul Hannan Nizami,

Chicago, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

________


[1] "وندب صلاة الاستخارة" أي طلب ما فيه الخير وهي تكون لأمر في المستقبل ليظهر الله تعالى خير الأمرين (حاشية الطحطاوي على مراقي الفلاح، ص397، دار الكتب العلمية)

[2] Istikharah In The Light of Sunnah pg. 15

[3] حَدَّثَنَا مُطَرِّفُ بْنُ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ أَبُو مُصْعَبٍ، حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ الرَّحْمَنِ بْنُ أَبِي المَوَالِ، عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ المُنْكَدِرِ، عَنْ جَابِرٍ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ، قَالَ: كَانَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يُعَلِّمُنَا الِاسْتِخَارَةَ فِي الأُمُورِ كُلِّهَا، كَالسُّورَةِ مِنَ القُرْآنِ: " إِذَا هَمَّ بِالأَمْرِ فَلْيَرْكَعْ رَكْعَتَيْنِ ثُمَّ يَقُولُ: اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُكَ بِعِلْمِكَ، وَأَسْتَقْدِرُكَ بِقُدْرَتِكَ، وَأَسْأَلُكَ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ العَظِيمِ، فَإِنَّكَ تَقْدِرُ وَلاَ أَقْدِرُ، وَتَعْلَمُ وَلاَ أَعْلَمُ، وَأَنْتَ عَلَّامُ الغُيُوبِ، اللَّهُمَّ إِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ خَيْرٌ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي - أَوْ قَالَ: فِي عَاجِلِ أَمْرِي وَآجِلِهِ - فَاقْدُرْهُ لِي، وَإِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ شَرٌّ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي - أَوْ قَالَ: فِي عَاجِلِ أَمْرِي وَآجِلِهِ - فَاصْرِفْهُ عَنِّي وَاصْرِفْنِي عَنْهُ، وَاقْدُرْ لِي الخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ، ثُمَّ رَضِّنِي بِهِ، وَيُسَمِّي حَاجَتَهُ " (صحيح البخاري، ج8ص 81، دار طوق النجاة)

[4] أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ كَانَ إِذَا أَرَادَ أَمْرًا قَالَ: «اللَّهُمَّ خِرْ لِي وَاخْتَرْ لِي (سنن الترمذي، ج5ص 535، شركة مكتبة)

Istikharah in The Light of Sunnah Pg. 35-37

DISCLAIMER - AskImam.org questions
AskImam.org answers issues pertaining to Shar'ah. Thereafter, these questions and answers are placed for public view on www.askimam.org for educational purposes. However, many of these answers are unique to a particular scenario and cannot be taken as a basis to establish a ruling in another situation or another environment. Askimam.org bears no responsibility with regards to these questions being used out of their intended context.
  • The Shar's ruling herein given is based specifically on the question posed and should be read in conjunction with the question.
  • AskImam.org bears no responsibility to any party who may or may not act on this answer and is being hereby exempted from loss or damage howsoever caused.
  • This answer may not be used as evidence in any Court of Law without prior written consent of AskImam.org.
  • Any or all links provided in our emails, answers and articles are restricted to the specific material being cited. Such referencing should not be taken as an endorsement of other contents of that website.
The Messenger of Allah said, "When Allah wishes good for someone, He bestows upon him the understanding of Deen."
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]