Muslim men and women across the world are faced with one major dilemma – whether to pray or not pray at work. While prayer has their hearts and they are well aware how important offering salah at work is, they often find it awkward to ask for a prayer room or to pause their work for a while and pray. This happens especially when the colleagues are non- Muslims. We tend to overthink of their perception and ignore our prayer. It begins with “We’ll pray later at home” and ends at “Oh I am too tired to pray now. I’ll compensate tomorrow.”
You must have heard the famous story of the man whom Shaitan tricked into Zina. He was hosting a lady (his friend’s sister) in his outhouse and would pass on food to her. The Shaitan instigated him to ask about her well being every time he gave her food. Next, the Shaitan instigated him to step into the house and have a conversation with her. This ended at adultery.
In a similar way, when we think “We’ll pray later”, we are actually being tricked by the Shaitan. So how do we overcome the awkwardness of offering Salah at work?
Well, sometimes the burdens we are carrying in the mind are just imaginary. We just need to overcome our fears and ask the Human Resource Manager. You might not get a full fledged prayer room – you might have to do with a meeting room or a crampled storage room but that’s ok. Your goal is to offer Salah. You can’t expect a whole Masjid within your workplace. Generally, companies have “Smoking or Tea Breaks”. You can offer salah during that time.
The key is to adapt but not let go of your Salah. If the space you are allotted doesn’t live up to your expectations, remember that Allah is not concerned with the place you are praying in. Rather, He is concerned with your prayer.
But why can’t you just pray later?
Like lunch is food for your body, Salah is food for your soul. You don’t keep your body nourished while you soul is starving. And most importantly, it is Allah who gave you that job, you don’t want to make it a priority while ignoring His command.
The main goal of this life is worship so we don’t want to lax at that! Also, did you know that offering salah at work can actually improve your productivity. It helps you unplug for a while and works pretty much the same way as a power nap.
But while offering Salah at work, remember the golden points:
- Keep it short and focused
You can choose shorter Surahs in your Qiyaam. It is no sin to offer a shorter prayer if the situation demands so!
- Be Present
Focus while you are praying. Don’t start wondering what your colleagues must be thinking while you are offering Salah at work. Allah gave you the opportunity to pray so make the most of it.
- Be grateful
Whatever little space or time you are given for offering Salah at work, be grateful for it. Don’t crib. Allah doesn’t expect a fancy Musallah while you struggle at your workplace.