Duas and prayers - How to say your prayers
Before offering prayers or salat, perform ablutions (wadu) to make sure that you have a clean body, make sure that you are in a clean place and that you are wearing clean clothes. Now stand upright on your prayer mat and face in the direction of the Kabah, which is called qiblah.
The following is the way to offer prayers:
1) Make known your intention (niyyah): "I intend to pray 2 (3 or 4) rakahs fard (or sunnah, etc.) of the dawn (fajr), noon (zuhr), afternoon ('asr), sunset (maghrib) or night ('isha) prayer for Allah, facing toward the Kabah."
2) Say "Allahu Akbar," raising your hands to your ears (up to the shoulders for ladies) and place the right hand on the left hand just below the navel or on the lower chest (on the chest for ladies)
3) Now recite:
Subhanaka Allahumma wa bi hamdika wa tabarak'smuka wa ta'ala jadduka wa la ilaha ghairuk.
A'udhu billahi minash-shaitanir-rajim. Bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim
Allah, all glory and praise belong to You alone, Blessed is Your name and exalted is Your Majesty, there is no god but You!
I seek refuge in Allah from the cursed Satan. In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
4) After this, recite the first chapter of the Qur'an, the surah al-Fatiha;
Allahdu lillahi rabbil-alamin, ar rahmanir-rahim, Maliki yawmiddin, Iyyaka na'budu wa iyyaka nastain. Ihdinassiratal-mustaqim. Siratal-ladhina anamata alayhim, ghayril-maghdhubi alayhim waladhdhalin. Amin.
Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Universe. The Compassionate, the Merciful. Master of the Day of Judgement. You alone we worship, and to You alone we turn for help. Guide us to the straight path. The path of those whom You have favoured. Not of those who have incurred Your wrath nor of those who have gone astray.
5) Add one of the short surahs of the Qur'an such as surah 112, al-Ikhlas:
Qul huallahu ahad. Allahussamad, lam yalid walam yulud, walam yakullahu kufuwan ahad.
Say: He is Allah, the One and Only, Allah, the Eternal, Absolute; He begot none, nor was He begotten. And there is none equal to Him.
6) Now say, "Allahu Akbar," bowing down and placing both hands on the knees, (the posture known as ruku) then say three or five times,
(Glory be to my Lord, the Most High).
7) Rising now to the standing position, say: "Sami' Allahu liman hamidah." (Allah listens to him who praises Him). In congregational prayers, when the imam says this phrase, the congregation says in responce: "Rabbana lakal hamd." (Our Lord, to You belongs Praise!).
8) Saying "Allahu Akbar," prostrate yourself on the floor, touching your forehead to the ground and with both palms on the ground. In this position, which is called sajda, say silently three or five times: "Subhana rabbiyala'la" (Glory to my Lord, the Most High).
Now rise to the seated position saying, "Allahu Akbar," and then make the second prostration, saying, "Allahu Akbar" and repeat: "Subhana rabbiyal-ala." Get up from this position saying, "Allahu Akbar." This completes one rakah. The second rakah will be performed in the same way, except that steps 1, 2 and 3 will not be repeated.
9) After completion of the second rakah, sit upright and recite:
At-tahiyyatu lillahi was-salawatu wat-tayyibatu. Assalamu alaika ayyuhannabiyya wa rahmatullahi wa barkatuhu. Assalamu alaina wa ala ibadillahis-salihin.
Ashhadu an la ilaha illal Lahu wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan abduhu wa rasuluhu.
Salutation, prayers and good works are all for Allah. Let there be peace, Allah's mercy and blessings on you, O Prophet. Peace be on us and on all Allah's righteous servants. I testify that there is no god by Allah, and I testify that Muhammad is His servant and His Messenger.
If the salat has more than two rakahs, then stand up for the remaining rakah(s) and perform the same way exvept the steps 1,2,3 and 5. Or, if it is a two-rakah prayer, remain seated and recite, the supplication called qunut:
Allahumma salli ala Muhammadin wa ala ali Muhammadin kama sallayta ala Ibrahima wa ala ali Ibrahima innaka hamidum majid.
Allah, bless Muhammad and the family of Muhammad, as You blessed Ibrahim (Abraham) and his family, for You are the Praiseworthy and the Glorious.
Allahumma barik ala Muhammadin wa ala ali Muhammadin kama barakta ala Ibrahima wa ala ali Ibrahima innaka hamidum majid.
Allah, bless Muhammad and the family of Muhammad, as You blessed Ibrahim and the family of Ibrahim; for You are the Praised, the Magnified.
Allahumma inni zalamtu nafsi zulman kathiran wa la yaghfiudh dhunuba illa anta faghfirli maghfiratan min indika wa rhamni innaka antal ghafurur-rahim.
Allah, I have been unjust to myself, too unjust. No one can grant pardon for my sins except You, so forgive me with Your forgiveness and have mercy on me, for You are the Forgiver, the Merciful.
And now turn your face first to the right, then to the left, saying:
Assalamu'alaikum wa rahmatullah
Peace and the mercy of Allah be upon you.
This completes the Salah. Now it is the time for personal prayers. You may raise your hands and pray to Allah in your own words. However, here are some prayers for this purpose:
Rabbana atina fiddunia hasanah wa fil-akhirati hasanah wa qina ashabannar.
O our Lord, grant us good in this world and good in the Hereafter and save me from the punishment of the Hell-fire.
Allahumma antas salamu wa minkas salamu tabarakata ya dhaljalali wal-ikram.
O Allah, You are the source of peace and from You comes peace, exalted You are, O Lord of Majesty and Honour.
Allahummaghfirli waliwalidaiyya wali jami'il mu'minina walmu'minati wal-muslimina wal-muslimati birahmatika ya arhamurrahimin.
O Allah, forgive me and my parents and all the believing men and women and all Muslim men and women with Your mercy. O Most Merciful of all who have mercy.
Rabbana zalamna anfusana wa illam taghfirlana wa tarhamna lanakunanna minal-khasirin.
Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves and if You do not forgive us and have no mercy on us, surely we will be of the losers.