Umm Al-Dardâ` [the Younger] – Allâh be pleased with her – reports:
One day, Abû Al-Dardâ` came home angry, so I asked him, “What has made you so angry?” He replied, “By Allâh, I do not recognize anything from the Ummah of Muhammad except that they pray (salâh) in congregation.”
Al-Bukhârî, Al-Sahîh, Chapter on the Virtue of Praying Al-Fajr in Congregation.
We learn from this narration:
· Prayer (salâh) in congregation is from the characteristics of the Ummah of Allâh’s Messenger – Allâh’s peace and blessings be upon him.
· The noble Companion Abû Al-Dardâ` was conveying the idea that deficiency and negative changes had begun to creep in to the practices of the Muslims, and he wanted to point out this evil so that people could be aware and try to keep to the original teachings. Al-Hâfidh Ibn Hajr states, “Abû Al-Dardâ` intended to point out that all the deeds of those mentioned had suffered some degree of deficiency and change, except praying in congregation. This [change] is relative, for the condition of the people during the time of the Prophet was better compared to how it changed after that time; and during the time of the Two Shaykhs (Abû Bakr and ‘Umar) it was better compared to how it was after them. It is as if this concern came from Abû Al-Dardâ` towards the end of his life – during the latter part of ‘Uthmân’s Caliphate. And just imagine, if that virtuous generation was described by Abû Al-Dardâ` as it was, then what about those who came after them up to our own time?!”
· This narration shows us that we should be angry if some aspect of the religion is changed, and that renouncing evil can be done by showing one’s anger if one is not able to do any more than that.
Taken from Fath Al-Bârî of Ibn Rajab and Fath Al-Bârî of Ibn Hajr; both of which are commentaries on Sahîh Al-Bukhârî.