The description of the Dhuhaa prayer – Shaykhul-islaam ‘abdulazeez ibn baz (rahimahullaah)
It is said : The minimum number of rakaats of Salaatul Dhuhaa is two (2) and the the most is twelve (12). And some say its number is eight (8) rakaats because this is what the Prophet sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed.
And I pray according to what I can in regards i.e if I have time : such that some times I pray 2 rakaats and other times I pray 8 . and if time permits me then I pray 12 complete.
And In my prayer ; in the first rakaat I recite alhamdu (Suraatul Faatiha) and as-shams (suratul shams) and in the second rakaat I recite alhamdu (Suraatul Faatiha) and al-dhuha (Suraatul dhuha).
But sometimes , due to sickness ; I don’t do them regularly. So it was said to me ; “ this is not permissible, and it is obligatory on you to keep on doing the salaah constantly (regularly).”
Question : How many rakaats should I regularly pray the salaatul Dhuhaa ? should I remain (doing) 8 rakaats , as was the custom of the Prophet sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam?
And what is the surah that I should begin with ; ad-dhuha or as-shams , i.e. after the Suraatul Faatiha ?
Salaatul dhuhaa is a strongly recommended Sunnah. The Prophet sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam performed it and his companions have guided and emphasized on its performance.
Its minimum is 2 rakaats ; if you guard (and be constant) in perfoming these , then you have performed dhuhaa.
And if you prayed four or six or eight or more than that ; there is no problem on that. And in accordance of wanting to make it easy (on yourself).
And there is no specific restricted amount , but The Prophet sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed two and prayed four and he prayed them eight during the day Allaah opened for him Makkah (Conquest of Makkah).
Thus the affair in this ; is vast (and easy).
And in the saheeh of Muslim from Aisha (radhiyaAllaahu anha) , she said :
“The Messenger sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam used to pray the Dhuhaa ; four rakaat. And he sometimes prayer more as Allaah willed.” 1
And in the two Saheehs from Abee Hurayrah (radhiyaAllaahu anhu) who said :
“My close friend sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam , recommended (advised) me to do three things : to fast three days of every month , To pray two rakaats of Dhuhaa , and to perform Witr before sleeping.” 2
And in the two Saheehs from Umm Haanee (radhiyaAllaahu anha) :
“that she saw the Messenger sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam , praying eight rakaat of Dhuhaa : during the day of the Conquest of Makkah.” 3
So whoever prayed eight or ten or twelve or more that than , or less than that : then there is no problem. According to his sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement : “the prayer of the day and the night are in pairs (two rakaats).” 4
Thus the sunnah is to pray in sets of two rakaahs , with tasleem after every two rakaats, and the least of that is 2 rakaats.
The time of Dhuhaa is from ; just after sunrise , to when it (the sun) stops rising (at the meridian / midday) at dhuhr. All of this is (time of) dhuhaa.
And it is best to pray it when the day is intense and when the heat of the sun is strong.
This is according to his sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement :
“ Salaatul Awwabin is performed when weaned camels fell the heat of the sun.” and this was narrated by Muslim in his saheeh.
And its meaning is : when the earth becomes so hot for the young camels.
And if you prayed it one day and left it some day , then there is no sin.
But that which is better is being constant. As the Prophet sallaAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said :
“The most loved deed to Allaah ; is that which the person does it constantly , even if it is little.” 5 .
Thus being constant and regular is better.
And whoever abandons praying Dhuhaa ; always or doesn’t perform it for some days : then there is nothing upon him. Because it is a voluntary prayer and not an obligation.
Then (also) , the Sunnah is to recite together with Suraatul Faatiha : whatever else is easy. Whether a surah or some ayaats (verses). And there is no specification and restricitions in this ; because the obligation is the fatiha.
And whatever is increased (after the fatiha) then this is Sunnah.
So if you recite with it (suratul fatiha) ; was-shamsi wadhuhaaha (suratul shams) , or wal-layli idha yaghsaa (suratu layl) , or wadh-dhuhaa (suratu dhuha) or alam nashirah (suratu ash-sharh) , or wat-tiyn (suratu tiyn) , or iqraa (Suratul ‘alaq) , or other than these from the surahs : there is no problem.
And if you were to recite a few ayats (verses) , or just one verse after Suraatul fatiha ; then all of this is good and all of it is correct . Walhamdulillah (and All Praise is for Allaah).
And may Allaah make all Succesful.
Translation by : Abu Waheeda as-salafee
 Saheeh Muslim : 1175, Musnad Ahmad : 25084 , Sunaan Ibn Majaah : 1371
 Saheeh Bukharee : 1845 and Saheeh Muslim : 1182
 Saheeh Bukharee : 344 and Saheeh Muslim : 1177
 Musnad Ahmad : 4776 , Sunaan Tirmidhee 424 & 429 , Sunaan Abu Daawood : 1295, Sunan an-Nasaaee : 1666 , and Sunaan Ibn Majaah : 1322
 Saheeh Bukharee : 5983 and Saheeh Muslim : 1958