“Do you pray FIVE TIMES A DAY?” some of my non-Muslim friends would inquire. “Didn’t you pray yet?” another set of non-Muslim friends would ask. Different people have different perspectives concerning prayers. The latter section is the ones who have been with me since childhood. They have an understanding of Islam and its obligations.
The first set of friends is new to my circle, so they are clueless about why we do these. I’m not judging them because they don’t know why Muslims pray, so we are to educate them about it.
However, what’s unfortunate is most Muslims don’t practice the obligatory prayer though they can. Therefore, it is essential to discuss obligatory prayers and how one feels to do it regularly.
What Exactly is the Five Daily Prayer?
It’s an obligation for Muslims and one of the pillars of Islam. Prayer or in Arabic Salah is the connection between the Creator and the creations. It sets the path to get connected to the one who created. Millions of Muslims around the world follow this practical ritual.
Muslims who understand the benefits of prayers tend to feel as if he/she is standing in front of Him and conversing directly. Every adult who is sane and physically fit must meet this obligation. A child must begin praying at the age of 7, but its parents’ duty to train them.
“You lead by example.” –anonymous
But why is it five times instead of one? Think about it, after praying the early Morning Prayer (Fajr) your mind keeps reminding you to pray Noon Prayer (dhuhr). Likewise, there is a constant reminder of the Creator. The five times prayer will continue as afternoon prayer ( Asr), prayer during Sunset (Maghrib), and the Evening Prayer (Isha).
Therefore, it is more like a reminder that the world is temporary, and you will one day return to God.
“Every soul will taste death, and you will only be given your [full] compensation on the Day of Resurrection. So he who is drawn away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise has attained [his desire]. And what is the life of this world except for the enjoyment of delusion.” –Surah Ali-Imran (3:185).
How Does it Feel to Pray Five Times a Day?
Most of my non-Muslim friends find it meaningful to engage in prayers five times a day. Sometimes it can be how I portray what praying means to me. I have seen and associated people who’d skip praying for reasons that are not approved in Islam. I have also seen people who’d do whatever it takes to perform their obligatory prayer.
So if you are a Muslim, remember, you are the proof of your religion. People around you see and examine things that you do. If you don’t respect and understand the value of Salah, they will not either.
But, if someone experiences the benefits of prayers, they will not be able to overlook it. As someone who practices five times prayer, I can tell you how relaxing it feels once you have performed all five prayers.
If you ask someone who regularly mediates to skip meditation for a day, he/she might be disturbed and might not be in a good mood throughout the day.
So this is how a Muslim who prays five times a day would feel if he/she misses a prayer.
Hence, meditation can be considered the non-Muslim version of prayers.
I’ve seen my parents praying to God, so I had the habit of connecting to God through my prayers from a young age. Some days I’d wake up crying if I miss my evening prayer (Isha). So prayers have been an essential part of my life.
However, my adulthood isn’t a bed of roses, so if I was able to manage the thorns in between, it is because of the prayers. When I’m down, I pray. When I’m happy, I pray. For every emotion, I turn to God, and that hits different.
Well, this doesn’t mean that I’m pious, or I consider myself sinless. Praying helps me in tough situations, and will you understand when you practice it religiously.
How to Make it a Habit to Pray Five times a Day?
There have been days that I missed one or two prayers, but not anymore. I have friends and cousins who struggled to pray Fajr. I helped most of them make praying a habit, and now I’ll share some of the tips with you. But remember, Allah (SWT) is the most merciful if you are trying, he knows it.
1.Try to do it when you hear the call for prayers (Azan) or stop procrastinating
Learn to prioritize; if you are a Muslim, you know that praying is obligatory. *in another five minutes* *after this one video* are the excuses that make you delay prayers or miss it altogether. Thus, put an end card to your reasons by prioritizing prayers.
You can make it a habit to pray right after you hear the Azan. But I understand sometimes it’s not possible given the work hours and other duties. Therefore, you must keep reminding that there’s a deadline for the prayer, so once you get home, perform the prayer as the first thing. You wouldn’t need more than 15 minutes to take wudhu (wash) and pray, so it’s not too much to ask for. Isn’t it?
Or if you are someone who needs a little motivation, you can ask your mother, friend, or someone to remind you to pray until it becomes a practice.
2. Make it a regular thing or in simple words, a habit
We can’t say 21 day-myth will work for everyone. Habit formation depends on hard work, persistence, and patience, so we can’t rely on the number of days. However, if you understand the meaning of prayers and discussed it with people who pray and how they feel, it will eventually create the need to pray regularly.
Thus, you will work hard to make it a habit. During this practice session, if you miss a prayer or two in between, don’t get hard on yourself. Just relax, and remind yourself why you are trying this in the first place and think about the reward –Jannah!
3. Focus on the health and spiritual benefits of praying
To comprehend the actual need for five times prayers, you need to understand the benefits. By praying, you are enhancing the love for God and your spirituality as a Muslim.
Some of the health benefits that I can share are:
- Great way to start the day; it’s not only an exercise but also meditation.
- Risk of arthritis reduces because your joints and bones are treated well.
- It helps digestion, and through experience, I can say how great I feel when I pray after eating. It feels as if I’m actually helping my body to feel better.
- Sajadah, or the position in which your forehead touches the ground, supports the blood supply to your brain.
- Your body regains energy when the energy drains. For example, taking wudhu (wash) for Asr prayer might boost your productivity.
Some of the spiritual benefits are:
- A reminder about life and death.
- It helps you to stay humble and down to earth.
- The best way to connect with Allah (SWT).
- Offers the perfect balance between life and Islam.
- Acceptance of the Day of Judgment.
- Slows down your rat race and helps you to relax and purify your heart and soul.
- It helps to practice truthfulness, humility, kindness, and patience.
- A chance to offer thanks to Allah.
- Reminder to stay on the right track by removing yourself from bad deeds and evils.
“Worry increases stress, whereas prayer releases peace.” – Dr. Bilal Philips