Return to site

Approaches to Supplication (duʿāʾ)

Arif Abdul Hussain & Hashim Bata

The term used for supplication in Arabic is ʾadʿiya (sing. duʿāʾ). The Quran elucidates the importance of supplicating, remembering, and relying on God for help and assistance in many instances. For example, in Quran 2:186 God conveys to the Prophet, “And when My servants ask you, concerning Me - indeed I am near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls upon Me. So let them respond to Me and believe in Me that they may be guided.” Elsewhere, Quran 40:60 expresses that, “And your Lord says, "Call upon Me; I will respond to you..." The importance of supplication is also emphasised in the reported tradition (sunna) of the Prophet and his immaculate progeny. For instance, there are many reports in which the Prophet categorically asserts that supplication is one of the greatest acts of worship, and devotion to God is like a weapon that believers possess to manifest their desires. In addition to the Quran and sunna, the human faculties of reason and intuition also recognise the significance of supplication, and acknowledge that there are numerous benefits of praying and pleading humbly to God by opening our hearts and confessing our innermost desires to Him.