Qiyaam al-Layl (the Night Prayer)
1- Narrated 'Aisha (ra): "Allah's Apostle (peace and blessings be upon him) used to pray eleven rak'at at night and when it was Dawn time, he used to pray two light rak'at (sunna) before the Fajr prayer and then lie down on his right side till the muadh-dhin (caller to prayer) come to him for the Fajr prayer."1
2- Abdullah Ibn Omar said: "During the lifetime of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), men used to narrate their dreams to the Messenger (pbuh). So, I wished to see a dream so that I narrate it to the Messenger (pbuh). I was a young man and I would sleep in the mosque in the time of the Messenger (pbuh).
I saw in a dream as if two angels came to me and took me to the edge of hell. It was enclosed like a well and it had foldings like a well and two horns. Some men were downwards and I recognized some men of Quraysh among them. So I kept saying 'O Allah, I seek refuge with you from hellfire!' Then, we met another angel who said to me 'do not be afraid.' I narrated my dream to Hafsa (the wife of the Prophet (pbuh) and sister of Abdullah). Hafsa (ra) narrated the dream to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him). The Messenger said: 'Abdullah is the best kind of man if only he prays at night (Qiyaam al-Layl).'" So after that day Abudllah Ibn Omar used to sleep for a short time at night (praying most of the night).2
3- Abdullah Ibn Amr Ibn Al-As (ra) narrated: Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) said to me: "The most beloved prayer to Allah was the prayer of Dawud (pbuh) and the most beloved fasting to Allah was the fasting of prophet Dawud. He used to sleep the first half of the night, and pray for one third of it and again sleep for a sixth of it. He also used to fast alternate days."3
4- Narrated Abu Hurairah (ra): the Messenger of Allah said: "Our Lord Almighty descends each night to the earth’s first sky when there remains the final third of the night, and He (Subhana wa Ta'ala) says: 'Who is saying a prayer to me that I may answer it? Who is asking something from me that I may give it to him? Who is asking for forgiveness that I may forgive him?'4
5- Jabir (ra) said that he heard the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) say: "There is an hour during the night in which no Muslim individual will ask Allah for goodness in this world and the next without giving it to him; and that applies to every night."5
6- Abu Hurairah (ra) reported: "I asked the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): 'Which prayer is the best after the obligatory prayers?' he said: 'prayer during the middle of the night.' I asked: 'Which fast is the best after the fast of Ramadan?' he said, 'the month of Allah that you call Muharram.' "6
7- Abdullah Ibn Salam said: "When the Messenger of Allah arrived- meaning his arrival in Madinah- the people came out to meet him. It was said that the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) had arrived, so I went among the people to get a look at him, when I gazed upon the face of the Messenger of Allah, I knew that his face was not the face of a liar. The first thing that he said was: O people! Spread the salam (peace and the greeting of peace), feed (others who are hungry), and perform prayers while the people are sleeping (at night), and you will enter paradise with ease."7
8- Abu Hurirah (ra) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said: "May Allah has mercy on a man who wakes up at night, prays, and wakes his wife to pray; and if she refuses, he sprinkles water on her face. And may Allah have mercy on a woman who wakes up at night, prays, and wakes her husband to pray; and if he refuses, she sprinkles water on his face." 8
() Sahih Al-Bukhari – Kitab Al-Da'wat (1036), Sahih Muslim – Kitab Salatu Al-Musafreen (427).
() Sahih Al-Bukhari – Kitab Al-Jumu'a (2211), Shaih Muslim – Kitab Fadha'el Al-Sahaba (842).
() Sahih Al-Bukhari – Kitab Al-Jumu'a (1311), Sahih Muslim – Kitab Al-Sayyam (9511).
() Sahih Al-Bukhari – Kitab Al-Jumu'a (5411), Sahih Muslim – Kitab Salatu Al-Musafreen (875).
() Sahih Muslim – Kitab Salatu Al-Musafreen (757)
() Sahih Muslim – Kitab Al-Sayyam (3611)
() Sunan Al-Tirmidhi – Kitab Safat Al-Qayamah wa Al-Raqa'iq wa Al-Wara' (5842)
() Sunan Abu Dawoud – Kitab Al-Salah (8031), Sunan An-Nisa'ie – Kitab Qiyaam Al-Layl (1061).