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If the people knew what is the reward of making the call (for the prayer) and (of being in) the first row (in the prayer), and they found no other way to get this privilege except by casting lots, they would certainly cast lots for it. If they knew the reward of coming early, they would race for it, and if they knew the reward of the Ishâ` and morning (i.e. Fajr) prayers, they would go for the prayer even if they had to crawl to reach there. [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
An exegesis of the ninety-eighth chapter of the Noble Qur'an by Imam as-Sadi. His exegesis is widely regarded as being amongst the best and most moving for the layman to read.
If the prayer does not prevent us from obscene and evil deeds then it is necessary to carefully scrutinise the deficiency within it and to correct it. There is no escaping from correcting one's prayer and there is no fleeing from bringing about khushoo' within it. So let us look at the causes and let us strive to treat them with the cure, just as we treat our bodies for their diseases.
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