#487: Qadha’ Prayer Due to Deviated Qibla


Assalamualaikum w.b.t. What is the status of a prayer that has been performed but later he found out that his qibla was wrong? Should he qadha’ the prayer? Hope for an explanation.



Waalaikumussalam w.b.t.

Alhamdulillah, praise and gratitude to Allah SWT for His countless blessings for us all. Praise and salutations to our beloved Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his family, companions and all those who follow his footsteps until the Last Day.

Definition of Qibla

Lexically, qibla means direction (al-jihah) where we pray facing it and according to the syara’ terminology, it can be understood as the Kaaba and nothing else. [1]

There is no khilaf amongst the fuqaha’ which states facing the Kaaba is one of the valid conditions of prayer for those who are capable to do so. [2]

Facing the Qibla as Prayer’s Valid Condition

According to the evidence presented in al-Fiqh al-Manhaji, it is stated: “What is meant by the qibla is the Kaaba meaning the Kaaba must be in front of him. The evidence for this condition is the statement of Allah SWT:

وَمِنْ حَيْثُ خَرَجْتَ فَوَلِّ وَجْهَكَ شَطْرَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ ۚ وَحَيْثُ مَا كُنتُمْ فَوَلُّوا وُجُوهَكُمْ شَطْرَهُ

“And from wherever you go out [for prayer], turn your face toward al-Masjid al-Haram. And wherever you [believers] may be, turn your faces toward it,” [3]

Likewise, in a hadith, Rasullullah PBUH was teaching a person how to pray, when he said:

إِذَا قُمْتَ إِلَى الصَّلاَةِ فَأَسْبِغِ الْوُضُوءَ، ثُمَّ اسْتَقْبِلِ الْقِبْلَةَ فَكَبِّرْ

“When you get up to pray, perform the ablution completely, and then turn towards the Qibla and recite takbir (Allah o Akbar = Allah is the Most-Great).” [4]

The meaning of Masjid al-haram in the verse means the qibla in the hadith which is the Kaaba. A person who prays whether he is near, which he can look at the Kaaba if he so wishes or far where it is impossible for him to see it. For a person who is near the Kaaba, it is obligatory to face the Kaaba with certainty while for a person who is far from Kaaba it is obligatory to face it with strong guides if there isn’t a certain and absolute guide.” [5]

Facing the Kaaba means his chest is facing the Kaaba, not with his head for a person who is praying whilst standing and sitting; with the head and chest for a person who is praying whilst lying on his side; and with his head and toes for a person praying on his supine. [6]

For those who are far away from the Kaaba or those who are hindered from seeing the Kaaba directly, the prayer isn’t affected if the position is slightly to the right or left of the Kaaba itself, as long as it hasn’t deviated away from the direction of the Kaaba. [7]

In madhhab al-Syafie, the methodologies to determine the qibla is by following the 4 orders of prioritizations, which are:

  • One’s own certain knowledge, such as a person who can see the Kaaba himself or a blind person who can touch the Kaaba.
  • News or information from a trusted person.
  • Ijtihad, such as by using compass or others.
  • A person who taqlid with the ijtihad of someone else. [8]

Is it necessary to qadha’ a prayer when a person realizes that his qibla was wrong?

Scholars have differing opinions on this issue. There are two qaul (opinions):

  1. The first qaul according to madhhab Syafi’e is the prayer performed facing the wrong qibla is obligatory to be repeated. This is cited from Minhaj at-Thalibin, where whoever prays (facing the qibla) according to ijtihad, then he found out that the qibla is wrong, then it is obligatory for him to qadha’ his prayer according to a stronger opinion. And if he finds out that his qibla is wrong while he’s praying, then it is obligatory for him to repeat his prayer. [9]
  2. The second qaul states that it isn’t necessary to qadha’ the prayer performed if then it is later proven that the qibla faced was wrong. This follows one of the qaul of Syafi’iyyah, Hanafiyyah and Malikiyyah madhhab.

One of the qaul in Syafi’iyyah madhhab stated that it is not necessary to qadha’ the prayer because it is permissible to use ijtihad in determining the qibla direction and when one is certain that it is not wrong. While the true qibla direction can never be known accurately, then it comes back to the ijtihad methodology cannot invalidate other ijtihad. [10]

According to the madhhab Hanfiyyah opinion taken from al-Ikhtiyar li Ta’lil al-Mukhtar:

وَإِنِ اشْتَبَهَتْ عَلَيْهِ الْقِبْلَةُ وَلَيْسَ لَهُ مَنْ يَسْأَلُهُ اجْتَهَدَ وَصَلَّى وَلَا يُعِيدُ (ف) وَإِنْ أَخْطَأَ فَإِنْ عَلِمَ بِالْخَطَأِ وَهُوَ فِي الصَّلَاةِ اسْتَدَارَ وَبَنَى، وَإِنْ صَلَّى بِغَيْرِ اجْتِهَادٍ فَأَخْطَأَ أَعَادَ

“If a person doesn’t know the direction of the qibla and he cannot ask anyone, then he can make his own ijtihad (in determining the qibla direction) and his prayer isn’t necessary to be repeated even if his qibla was wrong. If he finds his qibla was wrong when he was praying, then he should immediately change his qibla and turn towards the correct qibla and continue his prayer. And if he prayed without first trying his best to determine the correct qibla direction, then he was proven wrong later, it is obligatory for him to repeat his prayer.” [11]

In the book Durar al-Hukkam, it is stated that a person isn’t necessary to have to repeat his prayer if he found out his qibla direction is wrong after he has made his ijtihad in determining the qibla direction. The reason is Allah SWT doesn’t condition that a person to determine the true most accurate direction of the qibla. [12]

This opinion is based on the hadith of the Prophet PBUH:

كُنَّا مَعَ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فِي سَفَرٍ فِي لَيْلَةٍ مُظْلِمَةٍ فَلَمْ نَدْرِ أَيْنَ القِبْلَةُ، فَصَلَّى كُلُّ رَجُلٍ مِنَّا عَلَى حِيَالِهِ، فَلَمَّا أَصْبَحْنَا ذَكَرْنَا ذَلِكَ لِلنَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَنَزَلَتْ: {فَأَيْنَمَا تُوَلُّوا فَثَمَّ وَجْهُ اللَّهِ

“We were with the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) on a journey on a very dark night and we did not know where the Qiblah was. So, each man among us prayed in his own direction. In the morning when we mentioned that to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), then the following was revealed: “So wherever you turn, there is the Face of Allah.” [13]

According to the Malikiyyah madhhab, whoever prayed then found out his qibla was wrong, then he must repeat his prayer (the famous opinion). If a person prayed following his own ijtihad, then he found out clearly that his qibla was wrong, then he must repeat his prayer. If there is no clear evidence proving it was wrong, then it isn’t necessary to be repeated. [14]

Lastly, according to Hanabilah madhhab, Imam Ibn Qudamah is of the opinion where he states in al-Mughniy that when a person prayed facing one direction according to his ijtihad, then he found out that his qibla was wrong, it isn’t necessary for him to repeat it. [15]


The issue of determining the direction of the qibla is among matters of ijtihadiyyah and is of zhanniy characteristic. The direction of qibla is determined by falak syar’ie team following the modern technological methodologies using special pieces of equipment.

According to the question, is it necessary to qadha’ a prayer performed facing the wrong qibla, hence, we choose to conclude with the opinion that states the prayer is valid and it isn’t necessary to qadha’ the prayer based on the evidences and references presented.

This is also in line with the principle mentioned in al-Quran al-Karim:

يريد اللَّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلَا يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ

“Allah intends for you ease and does not intend for you hardship,”

Allah SWT states in another verse:

فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ

“So, fear Allah as much as you are able,” [16]

Although, if there are one or two times one made a mistake, we suggest for them be repeated. However, if it has been for a long time and years, then in our opinion it is forgiven and not necessary to be qadha’.

Wallahu a’lam.

[1] See Mughni al-Muhtaj, 1/142

[2] See al-Mausu’ah al-Fiqhiyyah al-Kuwaitiyyah, 32/302

[3] Surah al-Baqarah: 150

[4] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5897) and Muslim (397)

[5] See al-Fiqh al-Manhaji, 1/127-128

[6] See Kasyifah al-Saja, pg. 197; al-Taqrirat al-Sadidah, pg.200

[7] See al-Mu`tamad fi al-Fiqh al-Syafie, 1/217

[8] See I`anah al-Talibin, 1/145

[9] See Minhaj al-Talibin, 1/158

[10] See al-Majmu’ Syarh al-Muhazzab, 1/222; al-Mausu’ah al-Fiqhiyyah al-Kuwaitiyyah, 19/144

[11] See al-Ikhtiyar li Ta’lil al-Mukhtar, 1/47

[12] See Durar al-Hukkam Syarh Majallah al-Ahkam, 1/61

[13] Narrated by al-Tirmizi (345)

[14] See al-Qawanin al-Fiqhiyyah, 1/42

[15] See al-Mughni, 1/325

[16] Surah al-Taghabun: 16