Q 2: If I was on a journey and found a group of people offering Zhuhr (Noon) Prayer in congregation, is it permissible for me to offer two Rak‘ahs (units of Prayer) with them only and end my Salah or should I offer Salah individually? I would like Your Eminence to
explain the manner of shortening Salah that all Muslims should follow.
Applying the Rukhsah (concession) of shortening Salah during travel is only Mustahab (recommended), not Wajib (obligatory). Thus, it is permissible for a traveler to offer Salah in full. However, it is only permissible, not Mustahab, to combine Salah when necessary unless a traveler is riding as a passenger. If a traveler offers Salah behind a non-traveling Imam (the one who leads congregational Prayer) who is offering Salah in full, the traveler must follow the Imam, i.e. Offer complete number of Rak‘ahs (units of Prayer). In this case it is not permissible for the traveler to shorten Salah, because the Prophet (peace be upon him) said,
“The Imam is appointed to be followed, so do not differ from him.”
It is not permissible for you to offer Salah alone as long as you find a group of people offering Congregational Salah. Observing Congregational Salah is Wajib, so pray with the congregation and offer Salah in full if the congregation does so.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.