The ruling on Witr Qunoot

بســـم اللــه الرحــمــن الـرحـــيــم

▪️The ruling on Witr Qunoot▪️

Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Hizaam wrote:

“There are several opinions amongst the scholars in this issue:

▫️The 1st opinion: It’s legislated to perform the Witr Qunoot throughout the whole year.

This stance was reported from Ibn Mas’ood -may Allah be pleased with him- (with an authentic chain, in At-Tabaraani, Hadeeth no.9165), as well as Hasan Al-Basri, An-Nakha’ee. This is also the madhab of Ishaaq, Abu Thawr and Ahmed in one narration; this is the most common view among the Hanbalees.

The evidence used to support this view is the Hadeeth of Hassan ibn ‘Ali -may Allah be pleased with him- that he said: “The Messenger of Allah ﷺ taught me some words to say ‘in the Witr Qunoot’: 

اللهُمَّ اهْدِنِي فِيمَنْ هَدَيْتَ، وَعَافِنِي فِيمَنْ عَافَيْتَ، وَتَوَلَّنِي فِيمَنْ تَوَلَّيْتَ، وَبَارِكْ لِي فِيمَا أَعْطَيْتَ، وَقِنِي شَرَّ مَا قَضَيْتَ؛ إِنَّكَ تَقْضِي وَلَا يُقْضَى عَلَيْكَ، وَلَا يَذِلُّ مَنْ وَالَيْتَ، تَبَارَكْتَ رَبَّنَا وَتَعَالَيْتَ

‘O Allah, guide me among those whom You have guided, pardon me among those whom You have pardoned, turn to me in friendship among those on whom You have turned in friendship, and bless me in what You have bestowed, and save me from the evil of what You have decreed. For verily You decree and none can influence You; and he is not humiliated whom You have befriended, nor is he honoured who is Your enemy. Blessed are You, O Lord, and Exalted.’
[Reported by Abu Dawood & authenticated by Shaykh Muqbil in Saheeh Al-musnad Hadeeth no. 957]

▫️The 2nd opinion: It’s legislated to perform Witr Qunoot in the last half of Ramadhan.

This stance is authentically reported from Ibn Umar -may Allah be pleased with him-; Ibn Abi Shaybah & Ibn Mundhir both reported with an authentic chain to Nafi’i, that he said:
“كان لا يقنت إلا في نصف” يعني من رمضان
“Ibn Umar never used to perform Witr qunoot, except halfway” i.e. Halfway through Ramadhan.

They (Ibn Abi Shaybah & Ibn Mundhir) also reported this stance from ‘Ali Ibn Abi Taalib. However, the chain of narration includes Haarith ibn Al-a’war (who is was liar).

Also, Ibn Khuzaymah reported with an authentic chain that this was the practice of Ubay ibn Ka’b in the presence of Umar -may Allah be pleased with them-.

This was also the stance of a number of scholars the scholars, the likes of Ibn Sireen, Az-Zuhree, Maalik, Ash-Shaafi’ee and Ahmed in one narration.

▫️The 3rd opinion: It’s not legislated to perform Witr Qunoot at any time.

This is the opinion of Taawoos, and Ibn Wahb ascribed this stance to Imaam Maalik. Also, Ibn Abi Shaybah reported with an authentic chain that Ibn Umar:
كان لا يقنت في الفجر ولا في الوتر، فكان إذا سئل عن القنوت قال “ما نعلم القنوت، إلا طول القيام، و قراءة القرآن”.
“…would never perform qunoot – not in the Fajr prayer, nor in Witr. When asked why, he would simply say: “As far as I know, Qunoot is standing for long and reciting the Qur’an”.

✅ Abu Abdillah (i.e. Shaykh Muhammad Ibn hizaam) -may Allah Grant him firmness- says:

In conclusion, the strongest opinion is not to perform Witr Qunoot at all, because the addition, “in the Witr Qunoot”, in the Hadeeth of Hassan ibn Ali is not authentic. Additionally, nothing authentic has come from the Prophet ﷺ that he ever performed Witr Qunoot, despite the fact that he used to be continuous in offering the night prayer. And the Hadeeth of Hassan ibn Ali should be taken in its apparent meaning, that the aforementioned Du’a should be made (in the Witr prayer) before the Tasleem. Hence, in his Musannaf, Ibn Abi Shaybah gave the chapter heading: “Chapter – what one says at the end of the Witr prayer (i.e. Before giving Tasleem)”

Nonetheless, we cannot rebuke those who perform Qunoot in the Witr prayer as some of the companions used to do this, and with Allah lies all success.

Important Note:
There is no Authentic Hadeeth reported from our messenger ﷺ that he ever performed the Witr Qunoot, as it was mentioned by Imaam Ahmed, Ibn Khuzaymah, Ibn Mundhir, Al-Bayhaaqi and others. This indicates that it is not legislated to perform Witr Qunoot as we have mentioned, and Allah knows best.

Translated by:
Abu Nu’aim Abduraheem ibn Ali As-Somali

Original Source:
Fat-hul ‘Allaam of Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Hizaam, Vol.1, pg. 779 – 780

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