Questions and answers

Do All Muslims Pray the Same Way?

No. There are many different denominations within Islam, and the mothod of offering prayers by certain denominations may differ from that of others. For example, the Ja’fery Shia method of offering prayers is different from that of Hanafi Sunnis.
These differences arise because of lack of consistency in the reports that describe the praying style of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP). However, these differences are usually very minor. All Muslims pray to the only God, Allah. We all pray facing the same direction (the Ka’ba in Mecca). We all have the same number of obligatory prayers, with the same number of units in each prayer. We all have to recite Qur’anic verses in our prayers, and most of the actions performed in the prayers are also alike.

The differences include things like, how most Sunni Muslims will fold their hands in front of them while they are standing in prayer, whilst Shias (and Maliki Sunnis, among others) leave their hands by their sides.

How the sitting and standing postures might vary slightly – for example, some denominations believe that the feet should not be far apart when standing, while others believe that there should be a considerable gap between them. There are also other minor variations in issues like the recitation while sitting during prayers, and also on the issue of what materials are permissible to prostrate on. So although Muslims don’t all pray the same way, the differences are not very significant.

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