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Istisqa literally means ‘to Seek rain when afflicted by drought.’ It is a form of supplication. And salaat al-istisqa means Offering prayers (Salah) for rain. It consists of a sermon and supplications for rain and a two Rak'ah prayer. It is a Sunnah, as confirmed by saheeh hadeeths and the practice of the early generations of Islam. [1]


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He, the Most Glorified, assured them of answering their supplications, as He (Exalted and Glorified be He) said: “And your Lord said: “Invoke Me, I will respond to your (invocation). Verily! Those who scorn My worship [i.e. do not invoke Me, and do not believe in My Oneness, (Islâmic Monotheism)] they will surely enter Hell in humiliation!“” Quran surah 40:60



“And when My slaves ask you (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) concerning Me, then (answer them), I am indeed near (to them by My Knowledge). I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me (without any mediator or intercessor). So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright.“ Quran surah 2:186


In other aayaath, He (Exalted and Glorified be He) said: “Invoke your Lord with humility and in secret. He likes not the aggressors.” Quran surah 7:55



Narrated `Abbad bin Tamim's uncle: The Prophet () went out to offer the Istisqa' prayer and turned (and put on) his cloak inside out. Sahih al-Bukhari 1005


Ishaaq ibn Abdillah ibn Kinaanah said: al-Waleed ibn ‘Uqbah, who was the governor of Madinah, sent me to ask Ibn ‘Abbaas about the prayer of the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) for rain (istisqa’). He said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) went out wearing modest clothes, walking humbly and beseeching Allah, until he reached the prayer place, where he ascended the minbar, but he did not give a khutbah like this khutbah of yours; rather he continued to offer supplication (du‘aa’), beseech Allah and recite takbeer, then he prayed two rak‘ahs as he used to pray at Eid.Abu Dawood Vol.2: 1165, Sunan Nisa 1506, Tirmidhi 558, Ibn majah 1266


Narrated `Abbad bin Tamim from his uncle who said: "The Prophet () went out to the Musalla to offer the Istisqa' prayer, faced the Qibla and offered a two rak`at prayer and turned his cloak inside out." Narrated Abu Bakr, "The Prophet () put the right side of his cloak on his left side."  Sahih al-Bukhari 1027 [2]



Messenger of Allah () went out with companions to the desert where he led them in two Rak’ahs prayer similar to the ‘Eid prayer. He supplicated his Lord asking Him for rain. In this prayer he raised his hands and repeated the invocation many times and then inverted his garment.


Following the example of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), Muslims also raised their hands in prayer and supplicated Allah. Then Allah will sent down abundant rain, bestowed His Mercy upon them and removed their distress. In-sha-Allah


  • Wearing old clothes and walking with humble and lowly manner, Abi Dawud 1165
  • Ablution or wuzu, Sahih al-Bukhari 135
  • Intention by heart, Sahih al-Bukhari 1
  • No Adhan or Iqama, Sahih al-Bukhari 1022
  • Facing Qiblah while praying Istisqa, Sahih al-Bukhari 1012, 1027
  • Praying at Musalla, Sahih al-Bukhari 1027
  • Offer two rakad salah, Sahih al-Bukhari 1012( 1st rakad – Qur’an Surah Fatiha and other surah (al-A'la) of Qur’an and in 2nd rakad surah Fatiha and other surah (al-Ghashiyah) and rest of the things related to salah are same as of other salah)
  • To recite Quran aloud while offering the prayer of Istisqa, Sahih al-Bukhari 1024, 1025
  • After salam, supplications to Allah for rain, Sahih al-Bukhari 1012.
  • Giving a small sermon (khutbah), Abu Dawood Vol.2: 1165
  • Invoking Allah for rain while standing, Sahih al-Bukhari 1023
  • Raising hands for Dua by Imam and followers behind him, Sahih al-Bukhari 1029
  • Imam Inverts his garment/ cloak while making dua, Sahih al-Bukhari 1005, 1026 [3]


Seeking forgiveness from Allah

If humans seek forgiveness then Allah send rain: And said, 'Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Indeed, He is ever a Perpetual Forgiver. He will send [rain from] the sky upon you in [continuing] showers. And give you increase in wealth and children and provide for you gardens and provide for you rivers. Quran Surah 71: 10-12 [4]


Dua for rain

اللّهُمَّ أغِثْنا، اللّهُمَّ أغِثْنا، اللّهُمَّ أغِثْنا


Allaahumma 'aghisnaa, Allaahumma 'aghisnaa, Allaahumma 'aghisnaa.

Meaning: O Allah , send us rain . O Allah , send us rain . Sahih al-Bukhari Vol2: 1014 and Sahih Muslim 897


اللّهُمَّ اسْقِنا غَيْثاً مُغيثاً مَريئاً مُريعاً، نافِعاً غَيْرَ ضار، عاجِلاً غَيْرَ آجِل

Allaahumma 'asqinaa ghaysan mugheesan maree'an muree'an, naafi'an ghayrazaarrin, 'aajilan ghayra 'aajilin . Meaning: O Allah, shower upon us abundant rain, beneficial not harmful, swiftly and not delayed.  Sunan Abi Dawud 1169 Classed as sahih by sheikh Albani


What should be said if it rains

اللّهُمَّ صَيِّباً نافِعاً


Allaahumma sayyiban naafi'an, meaning: O Allah , (bring) beneficial rain clouds


Narrated Aisha(R):Whenever Allah's Messenger () saw the rain, he used to say, "O Allah! Let it be a strong fruitful rain."  Sahih al-Bukhari 1032 (Vol.2: 142) [5]


Scholars view

Ibn Qudaamah said: Prayer for rain is a confirmed Sunnah, proven by the practice of the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and of his successors (the caliphs – may Allah be pleased with them). Al-Mughni, 2/148


If the people went out for the prayer for rain (istisqa’) or intended to do so and it rained, then there can be two cases:

If they were prepared to go out and it rained before they left, then they should thank Allah (subhanahu wa ta‘ala) for His blessings and not leave. If they had already come out, they should pray in thankfulness to Allah (subhanahu wa ta‘ala). (Al-Mughni, 2/296)  [6] [7]


See also

Salat al Istekhara; Salat al Khusuf; Water cycle in Quran; Salat al Janaza







[5] Fotress of Muslim



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