Observing prayer (salat) in a sitting position – The permanent committee for Fatawa.
The third question from Al Fatawa Number 20109.
As regards observing salah after my illness, So I am not able [due to the illness] to stand for a long time, so is it permissible for me to pray while sitting? Knowing that I am 26 years old. And when I stand in the row to observe my salah in congregation, a man of over 60 years in age also stands beside me in despite of his old age to pray standing, so how do I pray in a sitting position? And what will that man standing beside me who is over 60 years in age say, and what do I do in salat ut Taraaweeh [Night prayer during Ramadan] and Qiyam ul Layl [Night prayer other than Ramadan]. And is it upon a sick person when he is unable to stand to observe Qiyam ul Layl and voluntarily pray to Allaah-Azza wa Jalla-in despite of his illness? I hope your eminence give me peace of mind regarding this topic. And I hope from you Ad Dua for cure.
Answer : If you are unable to stand in the obligatory prayers or it causes you pain in your body by way of standing, then there is nothing upon you if you pray while sitting. Becuase of Allaah’s statement:
“فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ”
“So fear Allaah as much as you are able.”
And the statement of the prophet ﷺ to some of his companions:” pray standing, so if you are unable, then [pray ] sitting and if you are unable then pray (laying) on your side. Reported by Al Bukhari.
Regarding the affair of voluntary prayers, then there is comprehensiveness in it. And standing during this (prayer) is not obligatory, even if a person has the ability to stand. However, to stand [in it] is better and a sick person is similar to healthy people, it is recommended for him in the salawaat [prayers] and the non obligatory ‘Ibaadaat [actions of worship] to do that which he is able.
And with Allaah lies all success. May peace and blessings of Allah be upon our prophet ﷺ and his families and companions.
The permanent committee for Fatawa.
Chairman: Sheikh Abdul-Aziz bin Abdillah bin Baaz.
Deputy chairman: Abdul-Aziz bin Abdillah Aal Sheikh
Sheikh Abdullah bin Ghudyan [Member]
Sheikh Saalih Al Fawzan [Member]
Sheikh Bakr Abu Zayd [Member]