Ramadan month Taraweeh
Hafiz Ibn Hajar Asqlaani Shaafi explains the word “Taraweeh”. He says, “The word ‘Taraweeh’ derives from ‘Tarweeha’ which means to take rest for once. It is much like “Tasleemah” that refers to saying Salam (Greetings) one time.
In Ramadan month taraweeh indicates to unit of prayer at night after “Issha”. Therefore, Tarweeha is that unit of prayer after which the Muslims take rest.
The Muslims use to take rest after every four unit of prayers in Ramadan month Taraweeh prayer. And they repeat four units for five times mostly. So, the aggregation of these four Taraweeha becomes Taraweeh.
Taraweeha is the singular of the Taraweeha. The word points out the resting times among units of prayers.
Taraweeh is the prayer which the Muslims offer at the nights of the Ramadan month in congregation. When the companions of the Holy Prophet united for the first time. It was congregational prayer. They took rest after every two Salams. Two Salams means every four units (Rakat).
(Sahih bukhari, fatah albaari sharah 317)
Ramadan month Taraweeh is a Sunnat e Moakada. The word “Moakada” refers to equivalent to compulsory if not compulsory. Hazrat Arbaaz bin Saariya narrates.
“You should hold firm to my way (Sunnah) and make compulsory the acts of rightly guided caliphs.”
(Sunnan abu dawood, ch 2. 290)
The Holy Prophet offered Taraweeh Salah (prayer) for only three consecutive days. He did not offer the Ramadan month Taraweeh prayer for the whole month. Hence, He offered it in the mosque and the companions of the prophet followed under his Immamat (leadership).
“Hazrat Abu Zar narrates that we observed fasting for the entire Ramadan month with the Holy Prophet. And He did not lead us in prayer at night. He lead us in prayer at twenty third (23rd Ramadan) night. Then, He lead us in prayer at twenty fifth (25th Ramadan) night till half of the night.”
Then on twenty seventh (27th Ramadan), the Holy Prophet took his family, women and others to mosque. Where He lead in prayer till such late at night. We thought there would be no more Suhur. However, He did not lead us again in Ramadan month Taraweeh.
(Sunnan Abu Dawood ch 1. 204)
There was no act of congregation for Ramadan month Taraweeh in the age of Hazrat Abud Bakr. Hence, Different class of people offered Taraweeh prayer differently. The followers of Islam even did not have fix number of units of prayer.
Ramadan month Taraweeh
The first orthodox caliph of Islam Hazrat Abu Bakr could not focus on the reform for Ramadan month Taraweeh. He had to fight against the false prophets and absconders of Zakkat (charity). As a result, he did not have time to focus on the issue.
Finally, Ramadan month Taraweeh first time offered in congregation in the time of Hazrat Umar Farooq.
Hazrat Umar Farooq was the Second orthodox caliph of Islam. When he became the Ameer ul Momineen, He offered a summon.
“It is the month in which the fasting became obligatory upon you. However, standing at night was not made compulsory. So, whosoever got the strength should stand at night. While the rest should lie in the bed.”
He delivered the summon after the two months since he became the Ameer.
The rightly guided caliph ordered to observe Ramadan month Taraweeh in congregation the next year.
Hazrat Abdul Rehman narrates that Hazart Umar Farooq left for mosque one night in the Ramadan. And saw that the people were offering Salah (prayer) in different groups.
The Caliph said, “It would be better to bring people under the leadership of a Immam. Who could condult Ramadan month Taraweeh.”
He decided it firmly and brought the people under the leadership of Hazrat Abi bin Kaab. Consequentially, the Taraweeh started in congregation since then.
Sunnah e Farooqi
Ramadan month Taraweeh is remembered as the Sunnah e Farooqi. Because he was the first caliph who ordered the people to offer in congregation for whole month.