Prayer (Salah) is the most essential practice in Islam after declaring faith in ALLAH Almighty and His Messenger Prophet (PBUH). The Prophet (PBUH) described the prayer as a light, the pillar of religion Islam, and among the most excellent deeds.
But this is for the sincere and true prayer that completes its objectives purpose, inwardly and outwardly, not just going through the motions without presence of heart. In order for the prayer to be fulfilled, we should allow it to purify our hearts, to keep us away from all sin, and to improve our lives in the remembrance of ALLAH Almighty.
Purification of the heart is the eventual religious objective of Namaz. A prayer will only be acceptable to ALLAH Almighty if it is done with honesty, reverence, awareness, and repentance. Our prayers must cleanse the heart of every spiritual disease such as jealousy, malice, and arrogance. In general, the Namaz expiates minor sins for which there is no need of specific regret. We must not think to ourselves that we can perform major sins and compensate them with prayers alone.
When we are preparing for prayer, we must keep the honesty and sincerity so that our awareness is focused on the objective of attaining a pure heart. Related to this inner purification is the purification from sin, as prayer is among the supreme good deeds for which we expiate our sins.
Verse 87:14-15 of Holy Quran,
He has certainly succeeded who purifies himself. And mentions the name of his Lord and prays.
Major sins which involve the rights of people, such as theft, need specific acts of repentance like returning the stolen money or else redressing what was done wrong. Though, in some special cases an honest prayer as an act of regret can expiate sins which might otherwise involve worldly punishment.
The ablution with water (wuzu), which itself precedes the Namaz, represents this procedure of repentance and purification. When we perform ablution, we must imagine that the honesty and purity of our act is washing out the sin from our souls with every drop of water.
Having performed prayer with this understanding and spiritual reason, the natural result is that our prayers must prevent us from committing additional sins and install us with good character.
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