Here some of the mosques are saying one Azan (Adhan) at the time the Imam sets himself on the mimber (rostrum) and others are saying two Azans.
Could you provide me the basis of this difference from Qur’an/Hadeeth.
The initiation of the two Adhans before the Jum`ah congregation is reported to have been effected during the times of Uthman (ra) – the third Caliph after the Prophet (pbuh)1). To fully appreciate the reason for the initiation of the second Adhan during the times of the third caliph, the following factors should be kept in mind:
- The purpose of Adhan is primarily to inform the public, at large, of the fact that the prayers are about to be initiated or, in case of Jum`ah congregation, that the Imam is about to initiate the address;
- During the times of Uthman, the capital city of Medinah had considerably expanded2 in comparison to what it was during the times of the Prophet (pbuh) and the first two caliphs3;
- During those times, public address systems – like loud speakers etc. – had not been developed. It was only the human voice that would have to be relied upon for taking the voice to the farthest of places.
In view of these factors, Uthman (ra) initiated a second Adhan, which was to be delivered a little while before the first one, at a farther place4. It is obvious that the reason for the initiation of this second Adhan was to inform those people of the initiation of the Jum`ah congregation, who lived or worked at a place which was beyond the range of the Adhan delivered at the mosque.
The foregoing explanation should clarify the reason for which the second Adhan was initiated by Uthman (ra).
As time went by, there were some people, who did not approve of the additional Adhan directed by Uthman (ra) and considered it to be an unwarranted addition5 to the corpus of the Shari`ah6 as taught and practiced by the Prophet (pbuh). On the other hand, there were others who considered this action of the Caliph to have become a part of the Shari`ah, because it was accepted by all the companions present during the time of the third Caliph. Subsequently, the former group are of the opinion that only one Adhan should be delivered before the Jum`ah congregation. They do not approve of the second Adhan, considering it to be an unwarranted addition to the corpus of the Shari`ah. While the latter group strictly adhere to the practice of two Adhans before the Jum`ah congregation.
As I see it, neither of these opinions is very accurate. Both these opinions ignore the fact that Uthman’s (ra) action was only with the intention of accomplishing the very purpose of Adhan more effectively. This action can by no means be considered as an unwarranted addition in the corpus of the Shari`ah. In fact, the additional Adhan, was in fact, only the amplification of the first one, at a time when there was no other way of amplifying the voice of the person delivering the Adhan to the whole population of Medinah. As a corollary, I am of the opinion that in the present times, when a number of voice amplification methods have evolved – like the use of public address systems – there seems to be no reason to deliver two Adhans. One Adhan delivered on a public address system, like for instance, loud speakers etc., would serve its purpose sufficiently.
I hope this helps.
- According to Bukhari, Kitaab al-Jum`ah, Baab al-Juloos `ala al-Minbar `inda al-Ta’zeen, Narrative No. 864. According to another narrative also reported in Bukhari, it was not just two, but actually three Adhans which were initiated by the third Caliph. Though, according to Layth, it is said that the third Adhan mentioned in the other narrative of Bukhari is actually the Iqaamah, rather than an additional Adhan (Sunan Al-Bayhaqiy, Baab `adad al-Mu’azzineen). This explanation is mentioned by Ibn Hajar in his commentary of Bukhari – ‘Al-Fath al-Bariy’ and is supported by narrative 6647 of Al-Tabrani’s ‘Mu’jam al-Kabeer’. [↩]
- As also mentioned in the referred narrative reported by Bukhari. [↩]
- i.e. Abu Bakr (ra) and Omar (ra). [↩]
- As mentioned in Fath al-Bari, Vol.2, pg. 394. It is also mentioned in a few narratives that the additional Adhan was not delivered at the mosque, but was delivered at a place in the market, away from the mosque. [↩]
- i.e. Bid`ah [↩]
- The Islamic laws and practices as taught by the Prophet (pbuh) and transmitted through the companions. [↩]