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Malik related to me from Ibn Shihab from Urwa ibn az-Zubayr that Abd ar-Rahman ibn Abd al-Qari said, "I went out with Umar ibn alKhattab in Ramadan to the mosque and the people there were spread out in groups. Some men were praying by themselves, whilst others were praying in small groups. Umar said, 'By Allah! It would be better in my opinion if these people gathered behind one reciter.' So he gathered them behind Ubayy ibn Kab. Then I went out with him another night and the people were praying behind their Qur'an reciter. Umar said, 'How excellent this new way is, but what you miss while you are asleep is better than what you watch in prayer.' He meant the end of the night, and people used to watch the beginning of the night in prayer."
حَدَّثَنِي مَالِكٌ، عَنِ ابْنِ شِهَابٍ، عَنْ عُرْوَةَ بْنِ الزُّبَيْرِ، عَنْ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ بْنِ عَبْدٍ الْقَارِيِّ، أَنَّهُ قَالَ خَرَجْتُ مَعَ عُمَرَ بْنِ الْخَطَّابِ فِي رَمَضَانَ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ فَإِذَا النَّاسُ أَوْزَاعٌ مُتَفَرِّقُونَ يُصَلِّي الرَّجُلُ لِنَفْسِهِ وَيُصَلِّي الرَّجُلُ فَيُصَلِّي بِصَلاَتِهِ الرَّهْطُ فَقَالَ عُمَرُ وَاللَّهِ إِنِّي لأَرَانِي لَوْ جَمَعْتُ هَؤُلاَءِ عَلَى قَارِئٍ وَاحِدٍ لَكَانَ أَمْثَلَ ‏.‏ فَجَمَعَهُمْ عَلَى أُبَىِّ بْنِ كَعْبٍ - قَالَ - ثُمَّ خَرَجْتُ مَعَهُ لَيْلَةً أُخْرَى وَالنَّاسُ يُصَلُّونَ بِصَلاَةِ قَارِئِهِمْ فَقَالَ عُمَرُ نِعْمَتِ الْبِدْعَةُ هَذِهِ وَالَّتِي تَنَامُونَ عَنْهَا أَفْضَلُ مِنَ الَّتِي تَقُومُونَ ‏.‏ يَعْنِي آخِرَ اللَّيْلِ وَكَانَ النَّاسُ يَقُومُونَ أَوَّلَهُ ‏.‏

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References

• Muwatta Imam Malik, Book of Prayer in Ramadan, Hadith 3