This thread is for information purposes and not merely to debate aimlessly. If your ego is going to make you argue aimlessly, then you are free to leave this thread. Please don't post if you want to 'negate' valid ikhtilaf.
The madhhab of Imam ash-Shafi'i (All names are anonymous but they are learned brothers and some are scholars such as Ustadh Abu Yahya and one of the comments is of Shaykh Musa Furber):
The Maliki perspective:There is no ijma on Tarawih being 20 raka'at, and Ulama have been of the opinion that it is 12, 20, 36, and/or that you may choose to pray as much as you'd like, while some stated that the minimum should be 8 or 12. Some did say that the Sunnah is strictly 20 raka'at, and that any less would not count as fulfillment of the Sunnah of Tarawih, but others mentioned that this is weak, let alone there being an Ijma.
It is clear as the full moon that there is no consensus in the real sense of the word, perhaps it would be better to say there exists a majority as the evidence against the consensus is that by merely looking at the books of fiqh we will see that numerous fuqaha mentioned differently, such as 8 being sufficient, or 12 and so on.
Shaykh Musa Furber: ''Ibn Rajab exports that the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) would read complete the Quran during tarawih, praying two or three verses in each rak'ah. This ends up being more than 20 per day.''
As for this:
Then: Imam Nawawi is saying that there is consensus on tarawih being Sunnah, and continues to say that the tarawih is 20, but not that there is consensus on it being 20.
If one only prays 8 at the Masjid, the reply given was: It would be better if you increased the number to 20 insha'Allah, and this is the well-known number of raka'at. Wa Allahu a'lam.
Interestingly though in the Rawda the specific statements of Imam al-Nawawi. He states that al-Shafi'I stated the practice in Madinah was 36. But not elsewhere. He states that they are 20 rakaat, with 10 tasleemat; and that doing it in sets of 4 rakaat would be invalid (la yasih!) [am not sure how that reconciles with the riwayat that the companions performed sets of 4); as Qadi Husayn states that it must involve a specific intention for tarawih in sets of two in his Fatawa. I would be very interested in hearing a longer explanation of this is also reconciled with the claim of Ijma and the narrations. (Rawdah al-Talibin, page 149, Dar ibn Hazm pubication).
Reply to the above:
There is not much doubt that it is permissible to follow other than the Mu'tamad of the school, and one cannot fault someone for praying less than 20, or worse, as we find today, accuse them of "abandoning the Sunnah" etc.
As for the riwayah of "sets of four", could it refer to praying 2+2, then pausing, before praying another 2+2, and as such it is "in sets of 4"? I cannot recall any riwayah mentioning that they prayed 4 raka'at with one tasleem. If you have access to such a riwayah, please do share....
Wa Allahu a'lam
JazakAllah khair; I am referring to the.narration of Malik, from Sa'id al-Muqbiri on the authority of Abu Salama on the authority of Abdul-Roman bin Awf that he asked Aisha (may Allah be pleased with them all), 'how was the salat of the Messenger in Ramadan?' she replies "prayed 4 then 4" - "do not ask about their length or their beauty"...
I know there are other narrations which mention that the night prayers are in twos. But this narration implies 4 rakat - Ibn Abdul Barr states actually some took this view also i.e. That is should be 4 without Salam in his Tamhid.
(volume 6 page 144 of Fat'h Barri' tartib al-Fiqh li-tamhid Ibn Abdul Barr)
Am just wondering why it would not be valid, as that is pretty strong. Interestingly Ibn Abdul Barr states it was preferred also by Malik to be in sets of 2 though Abu Hanifah stated: if you wish it could be in 2's or 4's etc.
Though there are obviously many narrations which mention the prophet sallalahu alaihi wassalam praying the night prayer in twos also.
among the malikiyah there are different views. Am not stating this as the view just incidentally was reading this today - Qadi Abu Bakr bin al-Arabi the judge, jurist and hadith master, in his commentary on the Muwatta al-Qabas states that some stated twenty, some twelve, some thirty six. All were practiced. He however states that this is not something that the shariah in his view specified like the obligatory (wajib).or specific prayers like Witr. Rather it is not defined specifically. This is his opinion.
This is in 'Bab Targhib fi Salat Ramad' page 259 volume 1 Dar ibn al-Jawzi 1429hijrifrom the Risalah of Shaykh Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani:
23.16d. How the Salaf first did them
The righteous people of the first community used to do these prayers in the mosque. They did twenty rak'as followed by three rak'as - two for shaf'i and one for witr with a salam in between.
[These are the Companions, peace be upon all of them. They did them in the time of 'Umar ibn al-Khattab in the mosque with 20 rak'ats. That is preferred by a group, including, Abu Hanifa, ash-Shafi'i and Ahmad, and the action now does that followed by the shaf'i and witr. Abu Hanifa says that there is no salam between the two, and ash-Shafi'i says that there is a choice.]
23.16e. The later practice of the Salaf
Later they began praying thirty-six rak'as not including the shaf'i and witr. Both of these are acceptable.
[Then the Salaf other than the first Salaf, namely the Tabi'un, increased it. 'Umar ibn 'Abdu'l-'Aziz commanded that to do that since it contained benefit because they were making the recitation long which caused boredom and weariness, and so he commanded them to shorten the recitaiton and increase the rak'ats. That which 'Umar ibn 'Abdu'l-'Aziz did was preferred by Malik in the Mudawwana.]
23.16f. Done in groups of two rak'ats
You say the salam after each two rak'as. 'A'isha, may Allah be pleased with her, said that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, never did more than twelve rak'as followed by a single rak'a of witr, either in Ramadan or out of it.
[Then he explains how the Messenger of Allah did them according to 'A'isha which differs from what is in the Muwatta' where she says that he did not exceed twelve at any time, Ramadan or not. It also differs from what is related from her that he prayed 15 and 17. Other things are related from his wives and they can be combined if the Prophet first prayed two to greet the msoque and then stood to do tahajjud with two quick ra'kats to start. When he left for the Subh prayer he prayed the two rak'ats of Fajr. So they can be added together.]Ibn Abdul Barr says on the other hand:
"Qiyam in Ramadan is a sunnah which the Messenger of God sallahu alahi wasallam initiated and then stopped fearing it may be obliged on his ummah; and then Umar re-established this sunnah in he presence of the companions and none of them objected, and so there was a consensus (Ijma) of acting on this sunnah. And upon the saying of the prophet "upon you is my sunnah and the sunnah of rightly guided Caliphs after me" [hadith musnad Imam Ahmed 5/382,385]
For this reason we say qiyam in Ramadan is a sunnah. The minimum is 12 rakat in twos. Then Witr. This was the Salat of the Messenger of Allah sallahu alahi wassalam in Ramadan and other than it. Through preference of a group of ulema from the salaf salih in Madinah was 20 rakat and Witr. Others from among them preferred 36 rakat and Witr. This was the choice of Malik according to through narration of Ibn al-Qasim from hi."
Page 74 of 'al-Kafi fi Fiqh Ahl al-Madinah al-Maliki' Dar ul-Kutub ul-Ilmiyah, Beirut-LebanonSo in other words,we can leave the salafis alone for praying 8 rak'ah then because there is no set number.Malik narrates on the authority of Muhammad bin Yusuf on the authority of Sa'ib bin Yazid who said: 'Umar bin al-Khattab (radiAllahuanhum ajma'in) ordered Ubay bin Ka'b and Tamim al-Dari to lead the prayer with the people, 11 rakat....
Al-Baji said 'maybe Umar took this from the the Salat of the Prophet sallahualalaihiwassalam, for in the hadith of A'isha that she was asked about Salat in Ramadan and she said: "The Prophet did not excede 11 rakat whether in Ramadan or outside it".'
Ibn Abdul Barr said: 'Other than Malik narrated this hadith with 21 rakat and that is.correct. I do not know anyone who said in this matter 11 rakat, except Malik. It is possible thatvthat it was initially 11 rakat then it was lightened for them due to the long standing and then it became 21 but it seems more likely to me that it was 21 and that his saying 11 is a mistake' [end quote]
This is not a mistake (wahm), as the reconciliation of the narrations mentioned is very likely and is mentioned by Bayhaqi also. And his saying Malik is alone in this is not the case! Saeed bin Mansur has also narrate this from Muhammad bin Yusuf.
Al-Baji said: he initially instructed them.with long recitation as that is mire meritorious (afdal), but as the people were became weak he instructed them with 23 rakat, and lightened the length of recitation. Some have taken the view merit (fadeela) lies in the number of rakat. [end of quote]
Al-Baji stated: the matter was like that... Till it became much and the qiyam was lightened further and the number of rakat was increased to 36 not including the shaf'e and and Witr. (bn Habib mentioned (the same)...
Malik said: the affair is like this with us. (i.e. 36 rakat)
Imam al-Zarqani "Shar'h Zarqani alaa Muwatta Imam Malik"
Imam Muhammad Abdul Baqi bin Shihab al-Din Yusuf al-Zarqani
Dar el-Fikr 1998/1418, beirut-Lebanon