Dealing with obsessions during Salah

Q: I am obsessed and I repeat Ghusl (ritual bath following major ritual impurity) several times. When I want to offer Salah (Prayer), I can hardly pronounce Takbir (saying: "Allahu Akbar [Allah is the Greatest]") and recite the Fatihah (first chapter of the Qur'an). I do not know what the reason behind this obsession is. A shaykh recited Qur'an on me and said that it might be a devil haunting me. He told me that I can offer Salah without Takbir or reciting the Fatihah. What should I do, may Allah reward you well.

A: This is a kind of obsession and insinuations. One should be steadfast, determined and have strong belief in Allah, keeping away from obsessions and insinuations of Satan. You should adopt the Shari`ah means for driving away these insinuations, including: reading Dhikr (Remembrance of Allah), reciting the Qur'an, Wird (portion of Qur'an recited with consistency) in the morning and evening, observing the five daily prayers in congregation in the Masjid (mosque), keeping good company, attending Halaqahs (learning circles), resorting to Du`a' (supplication), asking for Allah's Forgiveness and Well-being and seeking refuge with Allah (Exalted be He) (Part No. 6; Page No. 50) from the accursed Satan, even in prayer. It was narrated on the authority of `Uthman ibn Abu Al-`As (may Allah be pleased with him) that he said: "O Messenger of Allah, the evil spirit obsesses me when offering Salah and reciting the Qur'an trying to confound me." Thereupon, the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "It is a devil called Khanzab, thus when you feel obsessed, seek refuge with Allah from him and spit three times on the left side." He said, "I did that and Allah dispelled it away from me." (Related by Muslim in his Sahih and Al-Imam Ahmad in Al-Musnad). May Allah grant us well-being and safety!May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.