The Significance of Salat
Salat is a spiritual journey and a means of attaining nearness to Allah. By enacting the specific commands that make up the physical form of Salat , a person declares their submission and subservience to Allah.
Salat is a means of communication with Allah. During Salat, a person turns away from worldly preoccupations and gives their attention to Allah, reminding themselves of their obligations towards their Cherisher and Creator.
Salat is a facilitator for self-reflection. During Salat, a person reflects on their actions in the preceding time, and their intentions for the near future, and examines these in relation to obedience to God. One of the purposes of prayer is to steer us away from actions harmful to our soul, and towards actions which are beneficial to our soul, through the process of reflection.
"Surely, Salat prevents from abominable sins and evil deeds..." (The Holy Qur'an, 29:45)
Salat is a means of purifying the soul from the dirt of harmful actions and thoughts. Allah has placed this power of purification in Salat.
Imam as-Sadiq (‘a) said: "If there be a stream at the house of one of you in which the one washes himself five times a day, will there remain anything from the dirt over his body? Verily, the likeness of Salat is the same as the stream. The person who establishes Salat clears out his sins thereby, except for the sin that takes him out from Faith he believes in."
The Holy Prophet (S) said: "At the (appointed) time of every prayer (salat), I hear a caller who calls and says: "O children of Adam! Keep up prayers in order to extinguish the fire you have lit against yourselves (by committing sins)."