Istikhara is a prayer and guidance-seeking process in Islam. It is performed to seek Allah’s guidance in making important decisions or resolving problems. While Istikhara is not a solution to all problems, it is a way to seek divine guidance and make informed choices.
Performing Istikhara involves the following steps:
Purify your intentions: Before starting Istikhara, ensure that your intention is sincere and solely seeking Allah’s guidance.
Perform ablution (Wudu): Perform the ritual ablution to purify yourself before starting the prayer.
Offer two Rak’ahs of voluntary prayer: After ablution, offer two units of voluntary prayer.
Recite the Istikhara dua: After completing the voluntary prayer, recite the Istikhara dua (supplication) with sincerity. The dua can be recited in Arabic or your native language. Here is a commonly used version:”Allahumma inni astakhiruka bi ilmika wa astaqdiruka bi qudratika wa as’aluka min fadlika al-‘azim fa-innaka taqdiru wa la aqdiru wa ta’lamu wa la a’lamu wa anta ‘allamu l-ghuyub. Allahumma, in kunta ta’lamu anna hadha-l-amra khairun li fi dini wa ma’ashi wa ‘aqibati amri (or ‘ajili amri wa’ajilihi) faqdurhu li wa yassirhu li thumma barik li fihi. Wa in kunta ta’lamu anna hadha-l-amra sharrun li fi dini wa ma’ashi wa ‘aqibati amri (or fi’ajili amri wa ajilihi) fasrifhu anni waqdur li al-khaira haythu kana thumma ardini bihi.
“Translation: “O Allah, I seek Your guidance (in making a choice) by virtue of Your knowledge, and I seek ability by virtue of Your power, and I ask You of Your great bounty. You have power, I have none. And You know, I know not. You are the Knower of the unseen. O Allah, if in Your knowledge, this matter is good for my religion, my livelihood, and my affairs, immediate and in the future, then ordain it for me, make it easy for me, and bless it for me. And if in Your knowledge, this matter is bad for my religion, my livelihood, and my affairs, immediate and in the future, then turn it away from me, and turn me away from it. And ordain for me the good wherever it may be and make me pleased with it.”
Reflect and seek signs: After reciting the dua, reflect on your problem or decision and sincerely seek signs from Allah. These signs can come in various forms, such as dreams, feelings, or unfolding circumstances. It is essential to be patient and observant, as signs may not be immediate or obvious.
Remember, Istikhara is a personal supplication to seek Allah’s guidance. It is not necessary to consult an Islamic scholar or perform it in a specific mosque. You can perform Istikhara on your own, in the comfort of your home, as long as you sincerely seek Allah’s guidance.
It’s important to note that Istikhara is not a guarantee of a specific outcome, but a means to seek guidance and make the best decision based on the signs received. Additionally, it’s recommended to seek advice from knowledgeable individuals or scholars in matters where their expertise can be helpful.