Center For Indigenous Psychology (Pusat Pengembangan Psikologi Islam) is led by Prof. DR Achmad Mubarok MA, a Professor of Indigenous Psychology at University of Indonesia (UI), Jakarta State Islamic University (UIN Jakarta), and Assyafiiyah Islamic University (UIA)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Fridays and Jama’ah
at 9:10 PM 
Friday prayers are done together (collectively by jama’ah/congregation) by people of the same village or environment in a public mosque, every Fridays. What is the meaning of the Friday prayers actually? Allah says that man and genie are created to worship (doing ibadah to) Allah. “Wama khalaqtu al jinna wa al insa illa liya`budun” (Q: 51:56). Making Allah the only one to be worshipped (“la ilaha illa Allah”) is called tauhid, meaning making Allah the only one God. Salat is the most complete ibadat rituals, consisting of movements, readings, and prayers. As one of religious shariahs, salat doesn’t only indicate tauhid but also symbolize the ideal order of man’s society.


Man is created by God from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and is made into nations and tribes, that they may know each other “lita`arafu” (Q: 49:13). Prayers’ order also symbolizes how man society achieves the goals, knowing and benefiting each others. All people in their prayers should face the same kiblat (direction), with the same reading and the same language (Arabic). To build togetherness, it is a shariah that prayers should be done in jama’ah, doing them together led by an imam.

Like in a social leadership, an imam is required to meet three requirements: (1) fluent in his readings, (2) having the most religious knowledges compared to the others, and (3) oldest among the others. These requirements symbolize requirements of a common leader or even a president: (1) able to communicate with his people, (2) achieving relevant scientific standards, (3) senior. If a person is acting as an imam then the makmums behind him should totally obey him, they shouldn’t do something (a movement etc required) in the prayer before the imam doing it and they shouldn’t do it lately. If the imam does a mistake, however, then the makmums may remind him by reading “subhanallah” loudly. If the imam is failed since he had broken wind, for example, then he should immediately resign, replaced by a person exactly behind him.

Similarly, in society order, if a person had been elected to be a leader (president, for example), then the people should respect and obey his/her leadership. If the leader does a mistake, then his people may warn and criticize him, and if the Leader violates his/her oath of office then he/she should resign to avoid social turbulence, not waiting till his/her people dethrone him, since dethroning a leader requires big (economic and social) costs.

Societal order has grades, and so collective shariah (“syari`at berjama’ah”) also has grades. In every household there should be collective prayers, the father becomes the imam and his wife’s and children become his makmums. On five-times prayers there should be congregational prayers (salat jama’ah) in every mosque and mushalla. Once a week a wider community holds Friday prayer in a big mosque, called masjid jami’ (public mosque). Twice a year in a wider area, collective prayers are held in a grand mosque or alun-alun (town square), which are Idul Fitr and Idul Adha prayers. Geographically, it is a shariah that once a year representatives of nations should be together in a same place, doing hajj in Makkah al Mukarramah. Be together; be in jama’ah, since in a jama’ah there is a lot of grace. Wallahu a`lamu bissawab.
posted by : Mubarok institute

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