وروى الترمذي عن أبي بن كعب قال: كان رسول اللّه صلى اللّه عليه وسلم إذا ذهب ثلثا الليل قام فقال: "يا أيها الناس اذكروا اللّه اذكروا اللّه، جاءت الراجفة تتبعها الرادفة، جاء الموت بما فيه جاء الموت بما فيه" قال أبي: قلت يا رسول اللّه إني أكثر الصلاة عليك فكم أجعل لك من صلاتي؟ قال: "ما شئت" قلت الربع، قال: "ما شئت فإن زدت فهو خير لك" قلت: فالنصف قال: {ما شئت فإن زدت فهو خير لك" قلت: فالثلثين، قال: "ما شئت فإن زدت فهو خير لك" قلت أجعل لك صلاتي كلها، قال: "إذن تكفي همك ويغفر لك ذنبك". 

32. Ubayy ibn Ka'b said: "After one third of the night the Prophet used to get up. One such time he said: O People! Remember Allah! The rājifa [first blow of the Trumpet] is upon us! The rādifa [second blow of the Trumpet] follows it. Death has come." Ubayy said: ya rasulallāh innī ukthiru al-salāta `alayka fa kam aj`al laka min salātī "O Messenger of Allah, I make much salawat upon you as a habit. How much of my prayer should I devote to you?" The Prophet said: "As much as you like." Ubayy said: "A quarter?" The Prophet said: "As you like, but if you add to that it will be better for you." Ubayy then mentioned a third, then a half, then two thirds, and always the Prophet answered: "As you like, but if you add to that it will be better for you." Finally Ubayy said: yā rasulallāh innī urīdu an aj`ala salātī kullahā lak - "O Messenger of Allah, I want to devote my entire prayer (i.e. du`a) to you." Whereupon the Prophet said: "Then you will be freed from care and your sins will be forgiven." (Another version has: "Then Allah will suffice you in the matter of your worldly life and your hereafter.")

[at-Tirmidhī and al-Hākim narrated it and graded it sound. ]

The meaning given in Al-Mubarakfuri's commentary on at-Tirmidhī, Tuhfa al-Ahwadhī said:

What is meant by, "I make all of my prayers for you," is "I turn over my prayers to you at every time which I supplicate therein for my self."

As-Sābūnī wrote in his abridgment of Ibn Kathīr's commentary the opinion of al-Imām an-Nawawī:

If one invokes blessings on the Prophet , let him combine it with prayers and peace and not fall short on either of them. So do not say, salla-llahu 'alayhi and not 'alayhis-salām, only.

As-Sābūnī commented:

This is what he said taken from the verse, "O ye who believe, invoke blessings on him and peace unceasingly." For it is more proper to be said,  salla-llahu 'alayhi wa sallam, unceasingly.   

Commenting on this hadith, Al-Haytami said:

 It is understood from the wording of these narrations that the meaning of the word salāt in the expression: "I shall devote my salāt to you" is du`a' -- invocation... Then the meaning is: "There is a time in which I make du`a on behalf of myself: how much of that should I devote to you?" If this is established firmly, then consider what the Shaykh al-Islam al-hāfiz Ibn Hajar said as reported from him by his student al-hāfiz al-Sakhawi who particularly commended this saying of his: "This hadith constitutes a tremendous principle of the Religion for whoever makes du`a after his recitation and says: O Allah, grant our Master Allah's Messenger the reward of this worship."

Commenting on this hadith, Imam Sakhawi said:

Salāt in this hadith means invocation (du`a) and habitual devotion (wird) in the following sense: "There is a time in which I make du`a on behalf of myself: how much of that should I devote to you?" The Prophet did not consider that he should place a limit for him in this respect in order not to close the gate of superabundance for him. Accordingly he persisted in giving Ubayy the choice at the same time as he stressed for him surplus in invocation until Ubayy said: "I shall devote my entire prayer to you." That is: I shall invoke blessings upon you instead of asking anything for myself. Whereupon the Prophet said: "Then you will be freed from care," that is: do not worry either for your Religion or for your worldly need, because invoking blessings on me includes both remembrance of Allah and rendering honor to the Prophet; and the sense of this is an indication to Ubayy that he is actually invoking for himself, as confirmed by the Prophet's report on behalf of his Lord: "Whoever is occupied from beseeching Me because of remembering Me, I shall grant him the best of what I grant those who beseech." Know then that if you make most of your worship consist in invoking blessings upon your Prophet, Allah will suffice you in the matter of your worldly life and your hereafter.

However we say that , according to the party of the bukhala -- the mean and miserly -- to follow the Prophet's advice in this matter "would foster his worship"! How far is this "Salafi" opinion from the Qur'an and the Sunnah! In 1,400 years of sending salawāt on the Prophet far more abundantly than in our age, we have never witnessed what they claim; how then do they want us to fear its occurrence now? And have they forgotten that the Prophet specifically said: "Those closest to me in the hereafter are those who invoked blessings upon me the most (in dunyā)" and "No people sit at length without mentioning Allah and invoking blessings on His Prophet except they will incur dissatisfaction from Allah (or: dissatisfaction on the Day of resurrection): if He likes He will punish them and if He likes He will forgive them"? Rather, they are intent on hindering Muslims from expressing love for their Prophet through invoking blessings upon him, celebrating his birth, reading his life, and encouraging each other towards knowing him and loving him more than their own parents and children. For this is the great characteristic of this Community which its enemies wish to eradicate: we know our Prophet; we keep his status high; we prefer his Sunnah to all other lifestyles; and we cherish his love among us more dearly than our own lives and properties. [Shaykh Hisham Kabbani]

copyright 2004 As-Sunnah Foundation of America