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Sunnat is an act (or worship) which Hadrat Rasûlullah ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ omitted to do once or twice. A person who omits to do it will not be tormented (in the Hereafter). However, if a person who makes it a habit to omit it without any ’udhr (good reason) for his omission, he deserves ’itâb (reproach in the Hereafter), in addition to being deprived of its thawâb. Examples of it are: To use (the twig called) miswâk (to brush one’s tooth), to perform azân (or adhân) and iqâmat, to perform namâz in jamâ’at, to serve a meal in the evening of one’s wedding, and to have one’s son(s) circumcised. There are three kinds of sunnat: Sunnat-i-muakkada, sunnat-i-ghayr-i-muakkada, and sunnat-i-’ala-l-kifâya.

Examples of sunnat-i-muakkada are: The sunnat of morning prayer, the initial and final sunnats of early afternoon prayer, the sunnat of evening prayer, and the final sunnat of night prayer. These sunnats are sunnat-i-muakkada. There are Islamic scholars who say that the sunnat of morning prayer is wâjib. These sunnats can never be omitted without an ’udhr. A person who despises any one of them becomes a kâfir.

Examples of sunnat-i-ghayr-i-muakkada are: The sunnat of late afternoon prayer and the initial sunnat of night prayer. Omitting them for a number of time will not necessitate anything. However, never to do them will cause one to be reproached and to be deprived of shafâ’at (intercession in the Hereafter).