What is the ruling on stopping work...

Egypt's Dar Al-Ifta

What is the ruling on stopping work at prayer time?


What is the ruling on stopping work at prayer time?


The window of time in which to complete one’s prayers, from beginning to end, is considerable. Islamic law does not require a person to interrupt his work as soon as the time for prayer enters, though hastening to pray is the better option. A person who is busy with an important task that may be lost if not completed on time, may postpone the prayer, though it is obligatory to perform it before the call to the next prayer is made.

As for the Friday prayer, it is obligatory for merchants to stop selling their products and those engaged in any act that is not directed towards God to cease what they are doing when the first call to prayer is made which is after the time of zawal [when noon begins]. God the Almighty says: “O Ye who believe! When the call is heard for the prayer of the day of congregation, haste into remembrance of Allah and leave your trading” [62: 9]. We note, however, that there is nothing in this verse to indicate that Muslims must close their shops on Fridays, neither during prayer time nor after prayer time has ended. Such matters have been left to the individual’s discretion.

The following verse includes a clear command to increase trade and find God’s blessing in the process: “And when the prayer is ended, then disperse in the land and seek of Allah’s bounty” [62: 10].

While this command may not obligate Muslims to trade on Fridays, it certainly permits them to do so [when they are not praying]. There is no instruction to suspend business on Fridays. The legal obligation is simply to attend Friday prayers.

And God the Almighty knows best.

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