Can you wear a imamah (turban) without a hat on?
To tie an ‘Imāmah (turban) without a hat underneath is against the Sunnah.
It is narrated by Sayyidunā Rukānah (رضي الله عنه) that the Prophet of Allāh (صلى الله عليه وآله وصحبه وسلم) has said, “The difference between us and the polytheists is tying the ‘Imāmah on the hat”
[Sunan of Abū Da’ud, vol. 2, p. 208]
‘Allāmah Manāwi writes in Al-Taysīr Sharĥ al-Jāmi’ al-Şaghīr, “The Muslims tie the ‘Imāmah on the hats…”
[Al-Taysīr Sharĥ al-Jāmi’ al-Şaghīr, vol 2, p. 169].
In another narration, the Prophet of Allāh (صلى الله عليه وآله وصحبه وسلم) has said, “’Imāmah upon the hats is the difference between us and the polytheists. For every round (of the Imāmah) tied around the head, a light will be given to the person on the day of Judgement.”
[Kanz al-‘Ummāl, vol. 15, p. 305].
Praying Salāh by wearing a turban without a hat underneath will render the prayer Makrūh which is mentioned in many books of Fiqh.
Imam Ahmed Rida Khan (رحمة الله عليه) writes, “It is Sunnah to keep the length of the turban no shorter than two and a half yards, and no longer six yards. And one should tie it giving a shape like that of a dome, like I do it. What we now see in Arabia is not Sunnah but it is called ‘I’tijār’, meaning tying the turban round the head and keeping the middle part open. The scholars have deem I’tijār as Makrūh…”
[Al-Fatāwā al-Ridawiyyah, vol. 22, pp. 186-187]
For the benefit of the reader I would like to mention few Aĥadīth in relation to the virtues and excellences of wearing the turban.
Hadīth 1: “Turbans are the crowns of the Arabs.” [Musnad Al-Firdows, Ĥadīth 4246, vol. 3, p. 87]
Hadīth 2: “Turbans are the crowns of Arabs. When they will place them down (by not wearing them anymore) they will lose their dignity.” [Al-Jāmi’ al-Şaghīr, vol. 4, p. 392]
Hadīth 3: “Tie turbans as it increases your forbearance (Ĥilm).” [Al-Mu’jam al-Kabīr, vol. 1, p. 194]
Hadīth 4: “My nation will remain steadfast on truth as long as they tie turbans on hats.” [Al-Firdows, vol. 3, p. 88]
Hadīth 5: “Indeed Allāh sent Angels wearing these turbans to support me in (the battles of) Badar and Ĥunayn. Verily, turbans differentiate between Kufr (infidelity) and Imān (faith).” [Al-Sunan al-Kubrā, vol. 10, p. 14]
Hadīth 6: “Tie the turbans as they are the signs of the Angels, and keep the ends on the backs.” [Al-Mu’jam al-Kabīr, vol. 12, p. 383]
Hadīth 7: “Verily Allāh honoured this nation with turbans…” [Kanz al-‘Ummāl, vol, 15, p. 307]
Hadīth 8: “Verily Allāh and His Angels send salutations on those who wear turbans on the day of Jumu’ah (Friday).” [Majma’ al-Zawā’id, vol.2, p. 176]
Hadīth 9: “Prayer (Şalāh) with turban is equal to ten thousand (10,000) rewards.” [Al-Firdows, vol. 2, p. 406]
Hadīth 10: “Two cycles (Rak’at) of prayer with turban is better than seventy prayers without a turban.” [Al-Firdows, vol. 2, p. 265]
Hadīth 11: Imām Maymūn Ibn Mahrān narrates: I entered the house of Sālim Ibn ‘Abdullāh Ibn ‘Umar (رضي الله عنه) who asked me, “Shouldn’t I inform you a Ĥadīth?” I replied in positive. So he said, ‘I went to my father, (‘Abdullāh Ibn ‘Umar rađiyAllāhu ánhumā) who was tying his turban. When he completed tying the turban, he turned round and asked, ‘Do you like the turban (meaning do you love wearing turban)?’
I (Sālim) said, ‘of course’, so my father then said, ‘Loving turbans will give you honour, and if the Shayţān (devil) sees you in that state, he will run away.
‘I (‘Abdullāh) heard the Prophet of Allāh (صلى الله عليه وآله وصحبه وسلم) say, “A voluntary prayer, or a prescribed prayer, with a turban is equal to twenty-five prayers (its reward is multiplied 25 times) and a Friday prayer with a turban, is equal to seventy Friday prayers without a turban.”
‘My Son! Wear turban because the Angels come to the Friday prayers wearing turbans and they send salutation on those who wear turbans till the sunset.’” [Lisān al-Mīzān, vol. 3, p. 244]
The above Aĥadīth have been taken from al-Fatāwā al-Ridawiyyah, [vol. 6, pp- 208-214].
Allah knows best.
Answered by Mawlana Mohamed Husein Qadri