Transform Your Prayer: Secret 12

The Second Call

To download the audio MP3, hover over the video and click the Download icon in the bottom right.

If you've ever gone for umrah (voluntary pilgrimage to Mecca), or to any country or area that is majority believers...'ve likely experienced hearing the adhan and the iqamah aloud: in the streets, in the mall, in your hotel (or home, if you live there) and of course, in and around the mosque.

- The First Call to prayer (the adhan) tells people: It's almost time for the congregational prayer. Get ready!

- Then The Second Call to prayer (the iqamah) tells people: It's time to pray NOW, we're about to start! Where are you? 

The effect that The Second Call has on people is especially amazing to me... 

You see, even after The First Call has been made, I've seen that many people continue to do what they're doing i.e. family, food, shopping, entertainment, resting, work, etc.

I think this is because there is often a gap of 10, 20 or even 30 minutes between The First Call and The Second Call / the start of the prayer.

Although ideally we should begin preparing ourselves for the prayer once The First Call is made, we often tend to wait because "there's still time" until the prayer itself begins.

And that's where The Second Call comes in...

It's a second and final "wake-up call", in case the first one wasn't enough... and it urgently reminds and directs our attention to what is about to happen:

One of the five daily invitations to meet and have a conversation with God i.e. Salah.

And that is the moment when everyone pauses / leaves what they're doing and begins marching towards the mosque!

(It's quite a scene, if you've seen it.)

And those already in or around the mosque start moving towards the front rows, lining up next to each other, straightening their lines, and standing together for one purpose:

To show their devotion to, and desire to meet, their Lord.

All of this beautiful movement of people's attentions and selves 'towards God' is as a result of the two calls to prayer, especially The Second Call.

And that's exactly why, even if you're praying by yourself (at home, at work or anywhere else)... you should take a few seconds to say the iqamah before you start praying.

Surprisingly, I've found that most people actually don't do this before beginning their salah.

It's not mandatory... but it will help to build you up, almost like a drumroll, and bring you more into the zone of what you're about to do.

Just like The Golden Minute gets your mind, body and heart focused and ready for prayer right before you begin... The Second Call is meant to have a similar effect.

But, as always, it can only have the intended effect if you actually understand and feel what you're saying... so that you can express it meaningfully, from your heart.

So, here are two quick and easy ways you can learn the meaning of the iqamah:

1. Watch Iqbal Nasim's video explanation above (only about 6 minutes). He starts explaining the meaning at the 1:10 mark.

2. Download the What to Say in Salah guide here. The translation and transliteration of the iqamah is on page 2.

Here's a screenshot of it, for your convenience: