[Q-ID0832] Why do people fold the corners of the prayer mat after praying?
What do the scholars of the Dīn and muftīs of the Sacred Law state regarding the following issue: I have seen many Imāms in several Masjids turning over the corner of the prayer mat after leading the prayer – some people do the same thing at home and say that it is so that the Devil [Satan] does not pray Salāh. Does Satan also pray Salāh, and is it essential to fold the corner of the prayer mat?
Questioner: Brother from UK
بسم اللہ الرحمن الرحیم
الجواب بعون الملک الوھاب اللھم ھدایۃ الحق والصواب
After people praying Salāh in Masjids or at home, it is permissible and better to fold the prayer mat but it is not essential. The proof for this can be established from the Hadīths in which it has been mentioned to fold clothes after using them. Yes, there is no reality to the matter of not folding the corner of the prayer mat resulting in Satan praying Salāh. It is better to completely fold the whole entire prayer mat in full so that one may act upon the Hadīths how they ought to be and deserve to be acted upon in which it is mentioned that a cloth should be folded after use; it should not be left for the Devil to use.
Just as there is a narration by the respected Jābir Ibn ‘Abdullāh – may Allāh Almighty be pleased with him – in al-Mu’jam al-Awsat;
“قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: «اطْوُوا ثِيَابَكُمْ تَرْجِعُ إِلَيْهَا أَرْوَاحُهَا، فَإِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ إِذَا وَجَدَ الثَّوْبَ مَطْوِيًّا لَمْ يَلْبَسْهُ، وَإِذَا وَجَدَهُ مَنْشُورًا لَبِسَهُ “
“The Noble Messenger of Allāh Almighty ﷺ states, ‘You should fold your clothes such that the clothes feel comfort because the Devil does not wear the clothes that he sees as folded, and he uses those that he sees left spread out unfolded.’”
[al-Mu’jam al-Awsat, vol. 6, p. 328, Hadīth no. 5698]
And it is stated in Kanz al-Ummāl that the Noble Messenger of Allāh ﷺ stated,
“الشياطين يستمتعون بثيابكم، فإذا نزع أحدكم ثوبه فليطوه حتى ترجع إليها أنفاسها، فإن الشيطان لا يلبس ثوبا مطويا”
“The devils use your clothes, so you should fold your clothes when you remove them so that they are right and level in essence because the Devil does not use folded clothes.”
[Kanz al-‘Ummāl – with reference to – Ibn ‘Asākir – vol. 15, part 3, p. 299]
The Imām of the Ahl al-Sunnah, Imām Ahmad Ridā Khān – upon whom be mercies – actually mentions in the answer to a question, stating that the essence of that (i.e. folding the corner of a prayer mat after Salāh) can be derived from those Hadīths, and it is better to fold them in full.
[Fatāwā Ridawiyyah, vol. 6, p. 308]
واللہ تعالی اعلم ورسولہ اعلم صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم
کتبہ ابو الحسن محمد قاسم ضیاء قادری
Answered by Mufti Qasim Zia al-Qadri
Translated by Haider Ali Madani
Read the original Urdu answer here: [Q-ID0832] Why do people fold the corners of the prayer mat after praying?