By Shaikh ‘Abdul-‘Adheem bin Badawee
Translated by: Aboo Ishaaq Rasheed Gonzales (for QSS.Org)
Taken from al-Wajeez fee Fiqh as-Sunnah wal-Kitaab al-‘Azeez
In the name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
The Prostration of Recitation (Sujood at-Tilaawah)
In al-Muhallaa (105/5), (106/5), Ibn Hazm said, “In the Qur’an are fourteen [places of] prostration, the first of them is at the end of the recitation of Soorah al-A’raaf, then in ar-Ra’d, then in an-Nahl, then in ‘Glory be … ’ (al-Israa’), then in ‘Kaaf-haa-yaa-‘ain-saad … ’ (Maryam), then in al-Hajj at the beginning, and close to its end is not a [place of] prostration, then in al-Furqaan, then in an-Naml, then in ‘Alif-laam-meem, revelation … ’ (as-Sajdah), then in Saad, then in ‘Haa-meem … ’ Fussilat, then in ‘By the Star … ’ (an-Najm) at its end, then in ‘When the sky burst open … ’ (al-Inshiqaaq) with His statement, exalted is He, ‘they do not prostrate … ’, then in ‘Read! In the Name of your Lord … ’ (al-‘Alaq) at its end.”
The Ruling of the Prostration
He [Ibn Hazm] said, “The prostration is not obligatory, but it is surplus [i.e., supererogatory], one prostrates for it in the obligatory prayer and the voluntary, and in other than the [ritual] prayer, during every time, with the rising of the sun, its setting and its standing [i.e, it’s zenith], towards the [ritual prayer’s] direction and towards other than the [ritual prayer’s] direction, with purification or without purification.”
I [Shaikh ‘Abdul-‘Adheem] said: As for its being of surplus and not obligatory, then it is because the Prophet (s) read “By the star … ” then prostrated at it. And Zaid bin Thaabit read it to him and he did not prostrate at it. For clarification of the permissibility, just as Haafidh [Ibn Hajar] mentioned it in al-Fath (555/2), Ibn Hazm said (111/5), “And as for its prostration without ablution and towards other than the [ritual prayer’s] direction, how is it not possible? For certainly, it is not a [ritual] prayer. Surely, he (r) said, ‘The prayer of night and day is two by two.’ So whatever is less than two rak’ahs, then it is not [ritual] prayer, except that a text comes with that it is a [ritual] prayer; such as the rak’ah of fear, witr, and the funeral prayer. And there is no text in that the prostration of recitation is a [ritual] prayer.”
From Abee Hurairah who said, “Allah’s messenger (s) said, «When the son of Adam reads the prostration [verse] then prostrates, the devil withdraws crying saying ‘O woe is him! He was ordered with prostration so he prostrated. So for him is paradise. And I was ordered with prostration and I disobeyed. So for me is the fire.’»”
What One Says When He Prostrates
From ‘Aa’ishah (r) who said, “Allah’s messenger (s) used to say in the prostration of the Qur’an at night, he says in the prostration several times, «sajada wajhee lilladhee khalaqahu wa shaqqa sam’ahu wa basarahu bi hawlihi wa quwwatihi – my face prostrated to the One who created it and opened up its hearing and its sight with His might and His strength.»”
From ‘Alee that the Prophet (s) when he prostrated, he used to say, «Allahumma laka sajadtu wa bika amantu wa laka aslamtu, anta rabbee sajada wajhee lilladhee shaqqa sam’ahu wa basarahu tabaarakallahu ahsan al-khaaliqeen – O Allah, to You I prostrated, and in You I believed and to You I submitted. You are my Lord, my face prostrated to the One who opened up its hearing and its sight, blessed is Allah, the best of the creators.»
From Ibn ‘Abbaas who said, “I was with the Prophet (s) when a man came to him. He said, ‘Indeed, I saw yesterday what the sleeping person sees. It was as if I was prayering towards the root of a tree. I read the prostration [verse] and prostrated. Then the tree prostrated for my prostration and I heard it say: Allahummahtut ‘annee bi maa wizraa. waktub lee bihaa ajraa. waj’alhaa lee ‘indaka dhukhraa – O Allah, diminish from me by it, a sin. Write for me by it, a reward. Make it for me with you, a treasure.’” Ibn ‘Abbaas said, “Then I saw the Prophet (s) read the prostration [verse] and prostrate. I heard him say in his prostration like that which the man informed him of the tree’s statement.”
 Agreed upon. al-Bukhaaree (1070/553/2), Muslim (576/405/1), Aboo Daawud (1393/282/4) and an-Nasaa’ee (160/2).
 Agreed upon. al-Bukhaaree (1073/554/2), Muslim (577/406/1), an-Nasaa’ee (160/2), Aboo Daawud (1391/280/4) and at-Tirmidhee (573/44/2).
 Authentic. [Saheeh Abee Daawud (1151)] Aboo Daawud (1281/173/4), at-Tirmidhee (594/54/2), Ibn Maajah (1322/419/1) and an-Nasaa’ee (227/3).
 Authentic. [Mukhtasir Saheeh Muslim (369)] Muslim (81/87/1).
 Authentic. [Saheeh Abee Daawud (1255)] Aboo Daawud (1401/289/4), at-Tirmidhee (577/47/5) and an-Nasaa’ee (222/2).
 Authentic. [Saheeh Ibn Maajah (866)], Muslim (771/534/1), Ibn Maajah (1054/335/1) Aboo Daawud (736/463/2) and at-Tirmidhee (3481/149/5).
 Authentic. [Saheeh Ibn Maajah (875)], at-Tirmidhee (576/46/2) and Ibn Maajah (1053/334/1).
THE AYAT ON PROSTRATION
There are 15 places marked in the Qur’an as ayat for prostration (as-sajdah) which are at the end of the ayah mentioned below:
1. Al-Araf 7:206
2. Ar-Ra’d 13:15
3. An-Nahl 16:50
4. Al-Isra 17:109
5. Maryam 19:58
6. Al-Hajj 22:18
7. Al-Hajj 22:77
8. Al-Furqan 25:60
9. An-Naml 27:26
10. As-Sajdah 32:15
11. Sa’d 38:24
12. Fussilat 41:38
13. An-Najm 53:62
14. Al- Inshiqaq 84:21
15. Al-Alaq 96:19
On the recitation of ayah on prostration (sajdah), the sajdah should be performed as it is performed in the prayer.