I have come across this issue with regards to men wearing cap or covering head while praying. Let me tell you this, people indeed create a lot of fuss about it.
It’s quite common among people, especially in India and other sub-continent countries, who have made it as Fardh(obligatory) when it is actually optional.
Yes! Wearing cap or kufi especially while praying is optional which you can either choose to do or leave it. And there is no sin on leaving it.
But please do know that to cover the awra is Fardh! So do not just wear a cap and then expose your butt cleavage or the strap of your branded cloth which is supposedly called as ‘inner wear’ with a reason. So don’t go to make it as outer wear!
Ask yourself will that salah be appropriate?
Awra for a man extends from the naval to the knee. So this has to be covered at all times especially when in Salah. Even your skinny jeans do not cover your awra, sorry to say, as it hugs ur body revealing the shape of your awra.
But sadly people have made wearing a cap as an issue of dispute such that they have created a big rift for such a petty thing which is actually optional and they are spreading hatred and dividing the ummah based on that.
It’s basically an issue where people have confused religion with customs and culture. As long as the things that are present in our culture do not go against our religion and Deen, then we can continue with our culture. That is what our prophet (ﷺ) taught us, if we look at his teachings.
We belong to a particular place or region, that was chosen by Allah for us and we didn’t have any say on that. Did we? And so we are bound to differ in our food habits, dressing and other walks of life. We should also understand that everything what prophet (ﷺ) did was not sunnah but some were his regular day to day things. As sunnah stands for those things which are our prophet’s sayings, actions and approvals(open or silent) in relation to the worship of Allah and obeying His commandments. For example before we travel we recite a dua that’s a sunnah, before we go to the loo we recite a dua and enter with left foot and we come out with our right leg first and then we recite a dua again and wen we eat and drink then again we read duas and we eat and drink with our right hand only. All these are sunnah but the mode which we choose to travel is not considered sunnah, the type of loo u use is not sunnah and the type of food we have is not considered sunnah. Thus there are many misconceptions which people have passed on to one generation to the other and sadly we have clung on it without basic understanding. And we have clung on to such things so strongly that we don’t mind leaving out our Fardh to keep up with the things that are not even Sunnah. May Allah alone protect us.
It was the era in which he (ﷺ) was living and the region where he (ﷺ) was born and brought up that he (ﷺ) chose clothes and food based on that. So if he (ﷺ) wore the dress which was available in those days and used a camel or mule or horse to ride then that doesn’t mean that we need to leave all the present day modes of transport and clothes and food that are existing in our times. We actually don’t need to quit and adopt the day to day activities what he (ﷺ) used as basic needs of human, based on what was available then. As long as what we use to eat and drink are halal we can use them with no limitations. Remember I used the word ‘use’ and not ‘abuse’!
We need to understand that many actions what he (ﷺ) did related to worshipping Allah and obeying His commands in the manner he (ﷺ) chose are his sunnah but among them some of the actions might be due to the culture being an Arab. So it’s recommended to follow ones culture as long as it’s not prohibited in Islam or goes against the teachings of Islam.
So if u choose to wear it’s basically because of your culture coz the cap what u wear and what our prophet (ﷺ) wore will actually be different. Isn’t that the same with the dress what we wear? And if I choose to wear the cap sometimes and wear not, then that doesn’t mean I am sinning or doing haram. It’s just that I do what is comfortable for me where I have a choice and where things are compulsory then I follow that strictly.
By the way praying Tahajjud; isn’t it more important sunnah and nafil prayer to offer, more important than this cap? But it’s left to people, one who can pray it’s good for them and one who cannot it’s no sin on that person.
Hope i could clear the misconception and shed some light on this issue.
Moreover all these are small issues and the ummah should not fight over such things. Thus we see often that the divide in our ummah is not due to clear haram or prohibited things but due to those which are mustahab and optional. And these are not at all Fardh, as long as one does it it’s good for him and if he leaves it out then it’s no sin. So first understand things which are Fardh , implement them and we can make our lives easy. And then try to perfect the mustahab and nafil. After all this life is not about being perfect coz we can never be as it was only for our prophet (ﷺ) to be. So let’s try to improve on daily basis from where we were yesterday.
Remember small increments is what we need but on consistent basis!
PS – You have every right to disagree with me but please do not hate me for that.
Life is much above than hating one another!
© Dr. Nisar Ahmad Ibn Ibrahim