Namaz is the best among all acts of worship. If it is accepted by the
Almighty Allah, other acts of worship are also accepted. And, if prayers are
not accepted, other acts are also not accepted.
Offering of prayers five times during day and night purifies us of sins in
the same manner as bathing five times during day and night makes our body clean
of all filth and dirt.
It is befitting that one should offer prayers punctually. A person who
considers prayers to be something ordinary and unimportant is just like one
who does not offer prayers at all. The holy Prophet has said that a person who
does not attach any importance to prayers and considers it to be something
insignificant deserves chastisement in the hereafter.
Once, while the holy Prophet was present in the Mosque (i.e. Masjidun Nabi),
a man entered and began offering prayers but did not perform the Ruku' and
Sajdah properly. The holy Prophet said: "If this man dies and his prayers
continue to be this way, he will not depart on my religion". Hence, one should
not offer one's prayers hurriedly. While offering prayers one should remember
Allah constantly and should offer the prayers humbly and with all solemnity.
One should keep in mind the Greatness of Almighty Allah with whom one communes
while offering prayers and should consider oneself to be very humble and
insignificant before His Grandeur and Glory.
And if a person keeps himself absorbed in these thoughts while performing
prayers he becomes unmindful and oblivious to himself, just as when an arrow
was pulled out of the foot of the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (peace
be on him) while he was offering prayers but he did not become aware of it.
Furthermore, one who performs prayers should be repentant and should refrain
from all sins and especially those which are an impediment in the way of
acceptance of one's prayers (e.g. jealousy, pride, backbiting, eating haraam
things, drinking intoxicating beverages, non-payment of Khums and Zakat). In
fact, he should refrain from all sins.
Similarly, he should avoid acts which diminish the reward for prayers like
praying when one is drowsy or restless because of an urge to urinate, and while
offering prayers he should not look up towards the sky. On the other hand, one
should perform such acts which increase the reward like wearing an Aqiq,
wearing clean clothes, combing the hair, brushing the teeth and using