What is dua in Islam?

what is dua in islam
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Dua in Islam is a form of prayer or supplication in which an individual sincerely asks for a kind of help from Allah s.w.t. It is a way of communicating an individual with the Creator in which a Muslim asks for help, forgiveness, blessing, or something else. We can dove in three different ways: with words, thoughts, or inaction.

Many scholars say that prayer is the believer’s strongest weapon, because prayer is not a request but an opportunity that the Lord has left for us to call upon him, and he will answer.

In Surah Ghafir, verse 60, Allah s.w.t. says:

وقَال ربم ادعون استَجِب لَم

Which in translation means: Call me! I will answer.

This is just one of the verses that proves the power of dua. If we look at the difference between the words call and ask, it is clear to us that ours is only to call upon Allah s.w.t. and that he will answer our duas. He will not consider but answer our prayers. How will they answer our duas? Read the rest of this text.

What is the meaning of dua in Islam?

As we said the Arabic word ‘dua’ translates as “invocation” or “invocation”. Muslims believe that Allah s.w.t. is All-Knowing, All-Powerful, and Merciful, and through prayer, they call upon Him to please Him in various aspects of life or to express gratitude.

The term “dua” has a rich and multiple meanings. In the following, we present the various meanings of this expression, which briefly represents the essence of the description of communication between believers and Allah.

Supplication and Invocation in duas. If you had to determine the basic purpose of dua, then it would be prayer or sincere invocation of Allah s.w.t. In this context, dua represents a call in which an individual with a need, desire, gratitude, or request for forgiveness calls upon his Creator, Allah s.w.t.

Personal Connection with Allah s.w.t. Dua can also mean a personal connection with Allah s.w.t. The possibility of making dua proves that in Islam, in the communication of Muslims with Allah s.w.t., there is and should not be an intermediary. Dua is an intimate conversation with Allah s.w.t. in which we can confide our deepest feelings, worries, and thoughts. Islam teaches us that Allah Almighty sees everything, hears everything and knows everything so that there is no moment that is not suitable for making dua.

Seeking Allah’s Mercy and Assistance in dua. The dua also confirms our dependence on the Only Lord Allah. Muslims make supplications to seek Allah’s mercy and help in various aspects of life. In this way, we seek His guidance through life’s challenges.

Heartfelt Communication in dua. We said that the prayer can be made with thoughts, that is, with the heart. That represents the depth of the believer’s relationship with Allah s.w.t. and involves sincere communication. These are not just words, but our emotions, intentions, and desires.

Act of Worship in dua. Dua is considered one of the acts of worship in Islam. Its strength is also reflected in the fact that it is not limited by any strict rules, such as salat prayer, which we know is strictly obligatory, what are the conditions for correct performance, and so on.

Expression of Gratitude and Humility in dua. Dua is not only asking and invoking. Dua is also an expression of gratitude for all the good we are showered with. Dua is an acknowledgment of one’s limitations and the need for divine guidance.

Submission to Allah’s Will in dua. By expressing wishes and calling for all that we need, we acknowledge that Allah’s s.w.t. wisdom surpasses human understanding. This confirms that His plan is perfect. Praying, we accept Allah’s s.w.t. will with humility.

Dynamic and versatile in dua. Dua is one of the most interesting concepts of worship in Islam. It is not limited to minimum or maximum. Dua is not limited to asking or expressing gratitude. It represents a free concept of showing penance to Allah s.w.t. but also the possibility of solving the accumulated problems that plague us.

Why do Muslims recite Dua?

Muslims in Islam learn supplications in various life situations because of the advantages it offers in solving and seeking help in solving problems. The first of them is a direct connection with Allah s.w.t. whom we can directly ask for help in solving our problems or fulfilling our wishes. Muslims recite duas also because they feel the need for guidance in situations when they need to learn great life lessons or when they are faced with difficult life challenges. People need to express gratitude and dua is a way in which we can do it very easily.

Dua is also a strong way to ask for forgiveness in Islam. Muslims recite duas because a true believer often seeks forgiveness by reciting duas. In the same way that they seek forgiveness, a true Muslim will also seek blessings in various aspects of life, such as health, wealth, business and success.

Muslims also make dua for protection. In Islam, there are duas for protection from the visible and invisible world. Protection of family, property, children, protection in pregnancy or work is a basic thing in the life of every person. In this way, Muslims can take care of the protection of all of the above.

Also, a Muslim can recite a dua for strength and sabur in difficult times.

In Islam, a Muslim prays for other people as well. We can recite duas for family, friends, children, and spouses, but also for those whom we want Allah s.w.t. lead to the right path.

Finally, reciting dua among Muslims also represents the cultivation of the spirit of humanity. In Islam, dua is a fundamental part and a deeply private way of expressing spirituality.

For whom can I recite the dua?

There are no restrictions on reciting dua for others in Islam. You can recite the dua for yourself, and ask for forgiveness and success in both worlds. Seeking protection in duas for your family and loved ones is a normal thing and should be done as often as possible.

Reciting dua for friends and community is also okay. You can also pray for the entire ummah of Muhammad, peace be upon him, or for those who are in a complicated situation, such as our brothers in Palestine. Also, you can recite dua for leaders and authorities. These duas are less common in practice because the duas mostly mention those who are weaker and in a more difficult situation than us.

In Islam, we can pray for our opponents and enemies. A person’s awareness and greatness of faith can also be reflected in whether he recites supplications for his enemies. Asking for forgiveness and the end of enmity with those with whom we are at odds and with whom we have a problem can only be great.


Types of dua in Islam?

Dua encompasses a broad spectrum of supplications, each serving specific purposes and occasions. In the continuation, we will list only some of the various types of dua in Islam:

 Dua for Guidance (Hidayah)

Seeking Allah’s s.w.t.  guidance in matters of faith, decision-making, or correct behavior. We can say that it is a dua for seeking wisdom to follow the right path.

Dua for forgiveness (Istighfar)

Seeking Allah’s s.w.t forgiveness for sins and shortcomings. Remorse and expressing regret for mistakes.

Dua for Prosperity and Health (Afiah)

Duas for mental and physical health. It implies seeking protection from diseases and ailments.

Dua for provision and sustenance (Rizq)

Duas for supply and better financial condition. Seeking blessings in existence and wealth

Prayer for Protection (Tawakkul)

Seeking Allah’s protection from evil, misfortune and adversity. It implies seeking protection from visible and invisible dangers.

Dua for family and posterity

Duas for the welfare, guidance and success of family members. For past and future generations.

Dua for Patience and Endurance (Sabr)

Dua for strength and patience in difficult times. This is also a dua for the ability to endure trials with patience.

Dua of Thanksgiving (Shukr)

Dua in which we express our gratitude to Allah s.w.t. for the blessings He has showered upon us. This dua includes expressing gratitude in times of abundance as well as in times of scarcity.

Dua for Knowledge and Wisdom (Ilm)

Dua for useful knowledge, wisdom and understanding. Dua for protection from useless knowledge but also the correct use of useful knowledge.

Dua for traveling (Safar)

Dua for seeking protection and blessings during rest. It also refers to seeking a safe return and a pleasant travel experience.

Dua for dead (Du’a al-Mayyit)

Dua for the dead implies forgiveness of the sins of the dead and mercy towards them. We can also pray for a place in Heaven for the dead.

Dua for Rain (Istisqaa)

Dua for seeking salvation from dry conditions. It is a supplication for rainfall and Allah’s s.w.t.mercy in times of drought.

Dua for the Right End (Husn al-Khatimah)

This dua implies seeking a righteous end to one’s life in the light of Islam.

These are just some of the examples of supplications in Islam that we have. Initially, we said that dua in Islam is a dynamic act of worship that can be done in various situations and for multiple purposes. The key to successful supplication is dedication and sincerity in seeking Allah’s s.w.t. guidance, mercy and blessings.

When is the best time to recite dua?

The best time for reciting dua in Islam is not clearly defined, but there are several parts of the day or situations when it is nice to recite dua. Islam does not specify the time when it is forbidden to make dua, quite the opposite.

7 Best times to recite dua

In the last third of the night (Tahajjud)

The last third of the night, and especially the hours before the Fajr Salah, is specially marked as a blessed time for making supplications. In that period, Allah s.w.t. He descends to the last heaven with the special intention of answering all the prayers of those who call Him contritely.

Between Adhan and Iqamah

The time between the call to the Adhan prayer and the actual start of the Iqamah prayer is recorded as a special time for making dua in Islam. A special part of this special moment is on Fridays during the Jumu’ah salat also between the Adhan and Ikamat.

Dua during fasting (Sehoor and Iftar)

The moments during Sehoor (beginning of the fast) and Iftar (end of the fast) during the month of Ramadan are also blessed times for supplication. Just as fasting is a special type of worship, so is the fasting person’s prayer.

Dua during rain

Muhammad, peace be upon him, stated that the rain is a sign of Allah’s s.w.t. mercy and that it does not fall but descends. It is to be expected that duas, with the help of Allah s.w.t., will be received during that period.

Dua during prayer and pilgrimage (Salah, Hajj, and Umrah)

Reciting supplications in salat is commendable and there is a high probability that they will be accepted. A special part of salat for learning personalized prayers is prostration. It is also recommended to recite dua during the pilgrimage. During Hajj and Umrah, we have special times for reciting prayers.

Dua in the night of Laylat al-Qadr

The night of Laylat al-Qadr is the 27th night of the month of Ramadan. According to numerous hadith, the night of Laylatul al-Qadr is worth 1000 months in which there is no such night. On such a special night, prayers are not rejected. Apart from it, the entire last third of the month of Ramadan is special and a time for prayers. On the odd nights of the last third of Ramadan, the night of Laylat al-Qadr should also be sought.

Dua during travel

Prayer for the time of travel was recommended by Muhammad, peace be upon him, said that dua is not refused.

These moments are emphasized as special and recommended for making supplications. It is important to point out that Allah s.w.t. is always ready to accept duas. Making dua in all circumstances is recommended. If you feel the need for a dua, use the moment of sincerity and devotion that you feel at the moment of inspiration and make a dua regardless of the time and place.

How to know if the dua will be accepted?

The decision on whether or not the supplication will be accepted is only known to Allah s.w.t. He decides with His power what is best for his creatures. There is no guaranteed formula that a particular supplication will be accepted or rejected. There is a list of things that when we observe, increase the chance that our duas will be answered. We will list them in the rest of the text as things that are good to do when reciting the prayer.

The decision on whether or not the supplication will be accepted is only known to Allah. He decides with his power what is best for his creatures. There is no guaranteed formula that a particular supplication will be accepted or rejected. There is a list of things that when we observe, we increase the chance that our prayers will be answered. We will list them in the rest of the text as things that are good to do when reciting the prayer.

To be sincere when seeking supplication

Sincerity is the soul of accepted supplication. Without sincerity, dua is challenging to be accepted. Be sincere first to yourself, then affirm that sincerity in your heart, and if God will, the dua will be accepted. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “Call upon Allah s.w.t. while being certain of being answered, and know that Allah s.w.t. does not answer a supplication that comes from a negligent and heedless heart.”

Faith and Certainty (Yaqeen)

Strong faith in Allah s.w.t. and certainty that only He can answer our supplications. Dua should be made with the understanding that Allah’s s.w.t. wisdom surpasses our human comprehension of things and processes. He knows what is best for His creations.

Choosing the Time for Making Dua

When we want to make a specific supplication, we can choose certain parts of the day, week, or year to do so. We discussed this in the chapter above when we mentioned the 7 best moments for making dua.

Persistence in Reciting Duas

Persistence in learning and reciting duas is essential, as well as consistency. Developing a habit of reciting duas at a specific time is the best thing we can do if we want our supplications to be accepted. If our dua is not answered, persistence should be an indicator of our desire.

Humility in Making Dua

Allah s.w.t. loves humility and expressing dependence on Him because He is our only Lord. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “Nothing is more honourable to Allah s.w.t. the Most High than dua.”

Seeking the Best Solution

Believing that Allah s.w.t. is All-Knowing and Most Wise is a fundamental part of faith. Seeking the best for us because He knows what that is. Certainly, His wisdom will ensure what is better for us.

Reciting Duas for Others

When we recite duas, it is desirable to recite them for others as well. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) mentioned that when you pray for someone else, the angels say, “Ameen, and for you the same.”

Expressing Gratitude and Contentment in Duas

Before seeking, it is preferable to express satisfaction for all that we already have. Acknowledging blessings brings even more blessings. We should recite duas while fully recognizing that Allah’s s.w.t. plan is perfect.

Avoiding Haram (Prohibited) Earnings

One of the conditions that influence whether our supplication will be accepted is whether our earnings are halal or haram. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) mentioned that if one’s sustenance is from haram sources, their supplication may not be answered. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure that our earnings are not haram. To read more about dua for business and success click here.

Challenges and Trials in Life (Ibtila)

Challenges and trials are an integral part of life. We must not forget that these are tests from Allah s.w.t. for our faith. Trials can be both positive and negative and may also come in the form of our supplications not being answered. Therefore, if our dua is not immediately accepted, we should be patient and persistent because only Allah s.w.t.  knows what is best for us.

Dua Etiquette (Things that are nice to do when reciting duas)

Dua Etiquette is essentially the manners of supplication. As such, they are important in Islamic teachings when it comes to making duas. In addition to the aspects we have already mentioned regarding the favorable times for making dua, below are some things to complement your supplication.

Start with Praise and Gratitude

It’s nice to begin your dua with gratitude to Allah s.w.t. . You can start with phrases like “Bismillah” (In the name of Allah) and “Alhamdulillah” (All praise is due to Allah) to acknowledge His greatness.

Raise Your Hands

Raising your hands during the recitation of dua is a common practice, especially during intense moments of supplication. It symbolizes openness, humility, and a gesture of seeking.

Face the Qibla and Be Specific in Your Requests and Desires

Facing the Qibla, the direction of the Kaaba in Mecca, is an order from Allah for all Muslims during prayer, symbolizing unity.

Precision is a beautiful quality, and it is desirable when making duas.

Use Allah’s s.w.t. Names in Your Duas

Allah s.w.t.  has 99 beautiful names, which describe His omnipotence, wisdom, and knowledge. Using Allah’s s.w.t.  names in your duas enhances the recognition of His greatness.

Be Mindful of Your Tone and Volume

Maintaining a humble tone is also one of the etiquettes of good behavior when making dua. Excessively raising your voice is unnecessary as Allah sees and hears everything.

Dua after Obligatory Prayers

After prayers, the heart is humbled, and during this time, it is recommended to make dua, hoping that it will be accepted.

Use Comprehensive Supplications

Include comprehensive supplications from the Quran and Sunnah, balancing requests for both worldly and Hereafter benefits.

End with Praise

Conclude your dua by praising Allah s.w.t.  again, using phrases like “SubhanAllah” (Glory be to Allah) or “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is the Greatest).

Observing dua etiquette reflects the humility, devotion, and respect that believers have for Allah s.w.t. It is a way to approach the Creator with the utmost sincerity and mindfulness.

Common mistakes in reciting dua

When making dua, we may unknowingly make mistakes that can influence whether our supplication is accepted or not. One of the main mistakes we can make is the lack of sincerity. Another common mistake is impatience, which manifests as impatience and expectations. Using inappropriate language, doubting Allah’s s.w.t.  wisdom, and making supplications against others are standard reasons why dua may not be accepted. It is essential to ensure that our supplications align with Islamic principles and strictly avoid what is forbidden and harmful.

Dua has a selfless nature, and it is wrong to perceive it as a means to solve only personal problems. Personal requests should be aligned with supplications for the benefit of the community. Although dua is a request from Allah, it should be accompanied by real effort and endeavor. Dua cannot be just a request; it should be a complementary factor to our invested effort, as much as we are capable, and Allah knows best.

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