Holy mosques cancel lunar eclipse prayers due to rains
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Makkah: Salatul Khusoof, the lunar eclipse prayer scheduled to take place at the two holy mosques of Makkah and Masjid An Nabawi in Madinah, has been called off due to the weather.

There was no visibility of the eclipse due to rains in Masjid An Nabawi and cloudy weather in Makkah.

The prayers, which were to begin at 22:45 hours on Saturday, were to be led by Sheikh Bandar Baleelah at Makkah and Sheikh Ahmed Talib Hammed at Madinah.

Lunar and solar eclipse prayers were part of the tradition of the Prophet Mohammed, and therefore, Muslims are encouraged to perform the prayer, preferably in congregation.

It is made up of two rakats (units), where the first raka’a entails reciting fatiha and a long surah before a ruku (bowing), then another round of fatiha and a long surah, then a ruku and two sajda (prostrations).

The same process is repeated in the second raka’a and concluded with a salam as done in normal prayers.

It is recommended that the ruku and sajda are well prolonged.

Islamic history has it that on the day the Prophet lost his son, Ibrahim, there was an eclipse.

It was speculated that eclipse occured in grieve of the prophet’s loss.

However, the prophet dispelled the speculation in a Hadith that says, “The Sun and Moon do not eclipse because of the death or life (i.e birth) of someone. When you see the eclipse  pray and invoke Allah” (Sahih Al Bukhari, 2.153).

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