The permissibility of making qunut in Dawn prayers
What is the permissibility of making qunut in Dawn prayers?
Making qunut in Dawn prayers is an established sunnah upheld by the majority of the
pious predecessors from among the Companions of the Prophet [peace and blessings be upon him], their successors and later scholars. Anas ibn Malik, may Allah be pleased with him, said, "The Prophet [peace and blessings be upon him] made qunut for an entire month asking Allah to punish [the tribes of Ra'l and Dhakhwan] and then ceased to do so. He continued to make qunut in morning prayers until his death"
[This hadith was reported by a large number of hadith scholars who declared it authentic. Al-Nawawi and others likewise declared it authentic].
The Shafi'is and Malikis
It is desirable to make qunut in Dawn prayers according to the well known opinions of their schools. They maintain that what has been reported about the abrogation of qunut or its prohibition concerns making qunut against a specific group of people and not making qunut in a general sense.
The Hanafis and Hanbalis
They maintain that it is only permissible to make qunut in Dawn prayers at times of afflictions befalling Muslims. In their absence, qunut is not allowed.
Points of scholarly agreement and disagreement
There is no disagreement among scholars on the permissibility of making qunut in Dawn prayers at times of affliction and trials. However they disagree on the permissibility of making qunut during the prescribed prayers other than dawn. The Malikis restricted qunut to Dawn prayers while the Hanafis extended the permissibility to audible prescribed prayers. The Shafi'is in their most correct opinion maintain that qunut may be made during all the prescribed prayers, stating examples of afflictions such as epidemics, drought, torrential rains that damage buildings or plants, fear of an enemy or the capture of a scholar.
In short, although scholars differed on the permissibility of making qunut in Dawn prayers in the absence of afflictions, they agreed on the permissibility of making qunut and its recommendation in Dawn prayers in times of affliction. They differed on its permissibility in the rest of the prescribed prayers.
Duration for making qunut
Some scholars maintained that since afflictions are not continuous but time restricted, qunut is to be limited to no more than one month or forty days. Other scholars who maintained the continuity of afflictions and its universal application held that there is no time limit regarding its observance. Followers of either opinion have no right to deny the other's right to making qunut at the time dictated by the school of jurisprudence they follow. This is because the legal axioms state, "objection is not for issues where there is a difference of opinion" and "one legal interpretation does not