How To Ask Allah (SWT) For Anything (Istikhara)

By Author Dur-E-SabihOpens in a new tab.

In everyday life, one frequently encounters challenging situations where they are unsure about the appropriate course of action; or which choice to make from two options.

In such conditions, Muslims knock to Allah and make a prayer known as Istikhara to seek guidance from Allah. 

The Quran and the Sunnah both support this practice of prayers.

People often perform Istikhara before deciding on anything related to marriage, job opportunities, relocating, or even selecting an educational institution or degree program.

What Is The Asking Allah (SWT) Prayer (Istikhara)?

Istikhara derives its meaning from the root word in Arabic, Khair. It means goodness, blessings, and guidance. It means seeking acceptance from Allah, as Khair encompasses all kinds of benefits. 

It is a practice (Sunnah) prescribed by Prophet Mohammad (SAW). When Muslims need guidance from Allah (SWT) or encounter various issues in life, they recite a prayer known as the Asking Allah (SWT) or Salat ul-Istikhara.

This prayer continues with supplications specific to asking Allah (SWT) (Istikhara). Before making these supplications, two prayers (Rakah) are performed. It enhances mindfulness and increases the likelihood of the supplications being accepted and answered.

Why Did Muslims Perform The Asking Allah (SWT) Prayer (Istikhara)

The practice of the Asking Allah (SWT) Prayer (Istikhara) prayer was prescribed and taught by Prophet Mohammad (SAW) as a means for individuals who are hesitant or uncertain about a decision they need to make.

Its primary aim is to seek guidance from Allah in making the right choice. 

We believe that Allah (SWT) possesses the ultimate knowledge and will assist in selecting the most suitable option among the alternatives.

This prayer is commonly performed when:

  • finalizing marriage proposals
  • considering job offers
  • before undergoing major surgeries 
  • entering into contracts 
  • and similar situations 

The Asking Allah (SWT) Prayer (Istikhara) prayer is for the recommended or permissible things, not the obligatory things prohibited (Makrooh).

How To Perform The Asking Allah (SWT) Prayer (Istikhara)

As narrated by Jabir bin ‘Abdullah:

“The Prophet (SAW) used to teach us the way of doing Istikhara (Istikhara means to ask Allah to guide one to the right sort of action concerning any job or a deed), in all matters as he taught us the Surahs of the Qur’an.”

(Sahih al-Bukhari 1166)

Before engaging in the Istikhara prayer, it is a high recommendation (Mustahabb) to undertake thorough consultations and research with experts, intellectuals, and individuals who are sincere, trustworthy, and cares for your best interest with heart.

Allah (SWT) says in The Quran:

“…and consult with them in conducting matters. Once you make a decision, put your trust in Allah. Surely Allah loves those who trust in Him.”

Surat Al Imran 3:159

The teachings of the Quran and Sunnah simplify life. The way of performing the Istikhara prayer, according to the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW), is straightforward.

Step 1: The person should have an open mind. His thoughts must not be inclined to a specific course of action. 

Step 2: Offer two prayers (Rakah). As narrated by Jabir bin `Abdullah, Prophet Mohammed (SAW) says: 

“…He said, “If anyone of you thinks of doing any job, he should offer a two rakyat prayer other than the compulsory ones and say (after the prayer) …”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 1166]

Step 3: Make supplication (du’aa):

As per the way of Prophet Mohammed (SAW), read the following Istikhara Dua with faith:

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُكَ بِعِلْمِكَ وَأَسْتَقْدِرُكَ بِقُدْرَتِكَ، وَأَسْأَلُكَ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ الْعَظِيمِ، فَإِنَّكَ تَقْدِرُ وَلاَ أَقْدِرُ وَتَعْلَمُ وَلاَ أَعْلَمُ وَأَنْتَ عَلاَّمُ الْغُيُوبِ، اللَّهُمَّ إِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ خَيْرٌ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي فَاقْدُرْهُ لِي وَيَسِّرْهُ لِي ثُمَّ بَارِكْ لِي فِيهِ، وَإِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ شَرٌّ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي فَاصْرِفْهُ عَنِّي وَاصْرِفْنِي عَنْهُ، وَاقْدُرْ لِي الْخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ ثُمَّ أَرْضِنِي بِهِ


O Allah! I ask guidance from Your knowledge, And Power from You Might, and I ask for Your great blessings. You are capable, and I am not. You know, and I do not, and You know the unseen. O Allah! If You know that this job is good for my religion and my subsistence and in my Hereafter–(or said: If it is better for my present and later needs)–Then You ordain it for me and make it easy for me to get, And then bless me in it, and if You know that this job is harmful to me In my religion and subsistence and the Hereafter–(or said: If it is worse for my present and later needs)–Then keep it away from me and let me be away from it. And ordain whatever is good for me, And satisfy me. (Sahih al-Bukhari 1166)

Step 4: Never forget to mention your need

Since Islam makes things easier, you do not need to know Arabic for the things you ask for guidance from Allah (SWT). Just thinking of the matter is enough while making the dua or mentioning it in the supplication (Dua).

Step 5: Make a Decision

If you have a sense of confidence lately and contentment, or if you perceive that events and circumstances are beginning to align in a specific direction, you may be getting an answer.

You may start by reciting In The Name of Allah (SWT) Bismillah and proceed with your choice while seeking barakah (blessings) from Allah (SWT).

However, if you lack confidence and find that circumstances are not similar to your expectations, it is crucial to recognize these signs and be open to changing your course of action.

In such times, we must stay firm in our belief and leave our matters for Istikhara as He knows best!

Things You Need to Remember:

Things you need to remember:

1. It is always better to perform the Asking Allah prayer Istikhara yourself. Perform it yourself if it is for you since there is no verification in religion for having someone else do the prayer for you, not even the scholars or any righteous person, because Allah (SWT) is accessible to all: sinful and pious. 

2. Never rely on Dreams. Dreams may be a part of your subconscious mind or something from Satan. Dreams cannot discover unseen.

3. Once you receive indications or guidance after the prayer, there is no further need to repeat the Istikhara. You can repeat if you find no ease or no signs from Allah (SWT) in any form.

4. It is permissible to supplicate or make (Dua) before or after the end of the prayer whether it is Istikhara or another prayer. However, a supplication (Dua) before salaam is preferable, as Prophet Mohammad (SAW) offered frequent supplication (Dua) before ending his prayers.

Can the Asking Allah Prayer (Istikhara) Be Performed Without Two Prayers (Rakah)?

The way of Prophet MOhammed (SAW) was to offer two prayers (Rakah) the supplication of asking Allah (SWT) prayer, (Istikhara).

The main reason behind it is to combine the acts of this world with the beauty of the Hereafter. We knock at the door of our Creator for help, and what better way would it be than praying? We begin by praying and presenting our case in the court of The Creator. 

Remembering His goodness and seeking His blessings, so he can grant us his knowledge and wisdom to save us in these troubling times.

For some valid reason, if a Muslim cannot pray before making a supplication (Dua) (for example, menstruating woman, in urgent affairs, or not at home), it is okay to make a supplication (Dua) for easy decisions for him.

However, the preferred way is to offer two prayers RakaH) before making a supplication (Dua).


The Asking Allah (SWT) prayer or Istikhara involves asking Him for assistance.

It is to guide us in choosing the better option, seeking guidance, and seeking divine help in decision-making based on the knowledge of the Almighty.

It is submission to the command of Allah and seeking the combination of goodness of this world and hereafter.

The Prophet’s Way (SAW) or the Sunnah of performing Istikhara is to offer two prayers (Rakah) before doing supplication (Dua) and ask for guidance from Allah. But, if someone cannot offer prayers, Islam grants them ease in such conditions so they can ask for blessings (Khair).

Who Is The Author?

Dur-E-SabihOpens in a new tab. provides ghostwriting and copywriting services. Her educational background in  Accountancy helps her in tackling topics ranging from career and business productivity to web development, finance, and digital marketing. 


Salam Allekum! Hi there! Thanks for reading. Contact the Editor Mohammed Francis directly at with any questions or queries.