CHAPTER: PREFERENCE FOR SAYING THE'ASR PRAYER AT THE COMMENCEMENT OF THE PRESCRIBED TIME
Anas b. Malik reported that the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) used to pray the afternoon prayer when the sun was high and bright, then one would go off to al-'Awali and get there while the sun was still high. Ibn Qutaiba made no mention of" one would go off to al-'Awali".
This hadith that the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) used to offer the afternoon prayer like the one narrated above has been transmitted by Anas b. Malik by another chain of transmitters.
Anas b. Malik reported: We used to offer the 'Asr prayer, then one would go to Quba' and reach there and the sun would be still high.
Anas b. Malik reported: We used to offer the afternoon prayer (at such a time) that a person would go to Bani 'Amr b. Auf and he would find them busy offering the afternoon prayer.
'Ala' b. 'Abd al-Rahman reported that they came to the house of Anas b. Malik in Basra after saying the noon prayer. His (Anas) house was situated by the side of the mosque. As revisited him he (Anas) said: Have you said the afternoon prayer? We said to him: It is just a few minutes before that we finished the noon prayer. He said: Offer the afternoon prayer. So we stood up and said our prayer. And when we completed it, he said: I have heard the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) saying: This is how the hypocrite prays: he sits watching the sun, and when it is between the horns of devil, he rises and strikes the ground four times (in haste) mentioning Allaah a little during it.
Abu Umama b. Sahl reported: We offered the noon prayer with Umar b. 'Abd al-'Aziz. We then set out till we came to Anas b. Malik and found him busy in saying the afternoon prayer. I said to him: O uncle! which is this prayer that you are offering? He said: It is the afternoon prayer and this is the prayer of the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) that we offered along with him.
Anas b. Malik reported: The Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) led us in the afternoon prayer. When he completed it, a person from Bani Salama came to him and said: Messenger of Allaah, we intend to slaughter our came and we are desirous that you should also be present there (on this occasion). He (the Prophet) said: Yes. He (the person) went and we also went along with him and we found that the camel had not been slaughtered yet. Then it was slaughtered, and it was cut into pieces and then some of those were cooked, and then we ate (them) before the setting of the sun. This hadith has also been narrated by another chain of transmitters.
Rafi' b. Khadij reported: We used to say the afternoon prayer with the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam), and then the camel was slaughtered and ten parts of it were distributed; then it was cooked and then we ate this cooked meat before the sinking of the sun.
This hadith has been reported by 'Auza'i with the same chain of transmitters: We used to slaughter the camel during the lifetime of the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) after the 'Asr prayer, but he made no mention of:" We used to pray along with him."