How do you pray Salat al-Kusuf – the prayer during a solar eclipse

How do you pray Salat al-Kusuf - the prayer during a solar eclipse

There are varied opinions among scholars on how to pray salat al-kusuf or salat al-khusuf, which is a sunnah prayer the Prophet (peace be upon him) performed during a solar eclipse (when a planet blocks out the sun).

The salah is performed during the duration of the eclipse, which usually lasts a few minutes.

There are two opinions on how many ruku and sujud there are.

In the Hanafi school it is two rak’ahs in total, as any nafilah, with one ruku’ in each rak’ah. The ruku is prolonged.

As the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) ruku was so prolonged, the people behind him could not see him and thought he had done two ruku.

For Muslims, an eclipse is a time of seeking Allah’s forgiveness. The sun and moon are signs of Allah’s greatness:

And He is the One Who created the day and the night, the sun and the moon—each traveling in an orbit. [21:33]

Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated that that when there was an eclipse the Prophet (peace be upon him) performed salat al-khusuf and then:

He delivered the Khutba (sermon) and after praising and glorifying Allah he said, “The sun and the moon are two signs against the signs of Allah; they do not eclipse on the death or life of anyone. So when you see the eclipse, remember Allah and say Takbir, pray and give Sadaqa.” [Bukhari]


Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001. His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College). He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.