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 Calling Reason: Intercession Explained

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revolutionary guard 79



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PostSubject: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Tue Mar 13, 2007 11:41 pm

In the name of Allah, the All Merciful, the All Compassionate

"Call unto the way of your Lord with wisdom and good exhortation, and reason with them in the best way. Lo! Your Lord best knows those who go astray from His path, and He knows best those who are rightly guided". (Holy Quran 16:125)



Introduction


“Say Ya Allah, not Ya Ali you mushrik. Have you not read the verses:

‘so call not anyone with Allah’ (Quran 72:18)

‘Thee Alone we worship and Thee Alone we seek help’ (Quran 1:4)


Yet you still call on others besides Allah! SubhanAllah. Don’t you know the dead cannot help you? You don’t believe me? Look at the Quran you claim to follow:

“Nor are alike those that are living and those that are dead. Allah can make any that He wills to hear; but thou canst not make those to hear who are (buried) in graves..” (Quran 35:22)

You see! The dead cannot hear! My walking stick is of more use than those who have passed away!

Allah describes you people perfectly, you are just like the polytheists who sought intercession from their idols even though they were unable to help:

"And they worship beside Allah which can neither hurt them nor profit them, and they say: these are our intercessors with Allah..." (Holy Quran 10:18)

May Allah guide you or break your back you mushrik”



What you read above is a typical argument put forward by the adherents of the controversial scholar, Ibn Taymiyah. As we can see they are of the belief that seeking intercession through the dead is clear cut polytheism.

This discourse into intercession will dispell this recent extremist ideology by referring to the following sources:

1: Quran
2: Sunnah
3: The ‘Ahlul-Sunnah Wa Jammah’ consensus
4: Reason

It should be noted that the author of this article is a follower of the Jaffari fiqh, in other words a follower of the Quran and Ahlul-Bayt. Yet you will come to discover that no Shia sources will need to be used to prove that intercession through the dead is not only Islamically permissible, but in fact is Islamically recommended.


Part One: Is calling on other than Allah always Shirk?

The simplest definition of du’a is ‘to call’. Islamic terminology expands on this definition by describing it as a supplication to Allah whereby we ask Allah to help us by granting us our needs. It is therefore commonly identified with worship. So valuable is this form of worship that Imam Ali (as) describes du’a as ‘the best weapon of the believer’.

This importance is made manifestly clear in the Holy Quran as Allah (swt) urges the Muslims to invoke Him by calling upon His names:

“The most beautiful names belong to Allah: so call on Him by them…” (Quran 7:180)

“Call on Me, I will answer your (prayer)” (Quran 40:60)

“Call ye, then, upon Allah with sincere devotion to Him” (Quran 40:14)

“…and call upon Him, making your devotion sincere in His sight” (Quran 7:29)


Now although du’a is undoubtedly a form of worship, a problem would arise if we were to assume all du’a is worship. To demonstrate this point, consider the following verses:

“let us call (nad’u) our sons” (Quran 3:61)

“Make not your addressing (du’a) of the Prophet among you like your addressing (du’a) of one another” (Quran 24:63)


We can see that Allah (swt) is using the word du’a solely in accordance with its simplest definition and so has no connotations to worship whatsoever. We can make this conclusion for three reasons.

1: Allah (swt) will never use the term du’a in reference to other than Him if all du’a was worship.

2: If all du’a was worship then the above verses would be in direct conflict with the other verses in the Quran such as:

“so call not anyone with Allah” (Quran 72:18)

3: It would be highly impractical for all du’a to be reserved only for Allah. This is due to the fact that all human beings, either directly or indirectly call on other than Allah for help all the time.

For instance, we literally call on Mum, Dad, friends, teacher, doctor or police in times of sickness or trouble.

So if calling on other than Allah is the determining factor on whether we have made partners with Allah, then we have no option but to condemn ourselves and the entire Muslim ummah as polytheists.

Now unless we are suffering from delusional paranoia, such an option is clearly unacceptable because the reasonable mind can easily discern that du’a and worship have often got nothing to do with one another.

So when is dua not worship and when is dua worship?


Part Two: When is it permissible to call on other than Allah for help?


Salafi: ”Ya Shia, say Ya Allah not Ali”

Shia: “Why did you say Ya Shia if we can only say Ya Allah?”

Salafi: “Because your alive”


Those of intellect can quickly see the lack of insight in such responses.

For example, Paul calls Sam for help: “O Sam!”

Sam is alive. But Paul believes Sam is independent from God.

Does it mean Paul didn’t commit polytheism because Sam was alive? Ofcourse not.

So we can see how this response neglected the real factor that makes dua to other than Allah permissible. This factor is one of the most basic principles of tawheed. Let us introduce this basic principle with a verse Muslims recite regularly:

“Allah, the eternally Besought of all!” (Holy Quran 112:2)

From this verse alone we understand:

Everything other than Allah is dependant on Allah and so, Allah is Independent from us all.

From this basic principle we can establish two elements that is vital for our understanding of tawheed and shirk. If these principles are not the foundation of our arguments, than it will inevitably lead confusion and thus our understanding of Islam will never be correct:

a) Any help we do receive from that which is dependant on Allah, ie an intermediary, that help ultimately comes from Allah.

Let us briefly discuss the concept behind the meaning of intermediary.

The strict definition of the term is basically to be ‘in between’. Here the term is used in reference to that particular thing that Allah has created for us in order to satisfy a need.

For instance, consider the need to quench our thirst. In order to satisfy that need we seek water. Now we can see that the water is in between ourselves and our need and thus, the water acts as an intermediary.

b) If Allah wills, he can prevent that which is dependant on Him from helping anyone or anything.

Let us implement the above principles with an example.

Suppose we were to call on someone for help. For instance, we sought the help of a doctor to relieve us of our sickness. If we believe in the principles outlined, then we understand that the doctor is dependant on Allah and so any help we do receive, is not solely from the doctor himself. Rather, the help is from Allah via the doctor.

We also understand that the doctor is directed by the will of Allah. This means that no matter how talented the doctor is, he or she can do nothing if that is what Allah wills. Alternatively we also understand that no matter how untalented the doctor is, he or she can do anything if that is what Allah wills.

So to summarise, to believe everything other than Allah is dependant on Allah means we understand that the fulfilment of our needs are from Allah and the intermediaries can do nothing without the will of Allah.

This belief will always ensure our worship is to Allah alone for we understand that the fullfiment of our needs is ultimately from Allah.

We can consequently therefore quickly establish that calling on other than Allah is shirk when:

The intermediary called upon is believed to be independent from Allah.

To further elaborate on this point suppose we believe the power of the doctor to heal was inherent in the doctor himself. This would mean that Allah is not helping us via the doctor, but it is solely the doctor himself that is helping us. What we have done here is to change the doctor from being an intermediary to being independent from Allah. This would immediately constitute shirk because we have made the doctor a rival to Allah and thus not subject to the will of Allah.


Last edited by on Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:55 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Tue Mar 13, 2007 11:51 pm

Part Three: The flawed ‘Salafi’ approach

The ‘Salafi’s’ refer to the following verses they claim proves their argument:

"And they worship beside Allah which can neither hurt them nor profit them, and they say: these are our intercessors with Allah..." (Holy Quran 10:18)

"...those who take guardians besides Him, (say) we worship them not but (in order) that they make us near to Allah; surely Allah will judge between them about what they differ; surely Allah does not guide the one who is a liar and an ingrate." (Holy Quran 39:3)


The implication the Salafi’s try to make by using these verses is that because the Prophet is dead, he is as much help to us now as an idol is as much help to us. Thus to seek his intercession is no different from being an idol worshipper.

Such arguments which are born from clear haste and irrationality can only be described as something embarrassing and outrageous.

Firstly, any person with sincerity and intellect can see there is no such a thing as intercession when the intermediaries are worshipped which is exactly why Allah condemned them. That’s why when the idol worshippers claimed they were seeking intercession, Allah condemned them as being liars!

Recall that in the previous section we outlined that if a person is of the belief the doctor’s help is independent from Allah than the doctor is no longer an intermediary but rather a rival to Allah.

Yet no Muslim believes the Prophet (s) is independent from Allah. It is indeed a sad state of affairs the Muslims need to explain the blatantly obvious to the ‘Salafi’ sect.

Consider the following example.

Person A:

- seeks intercession from Prophet Muhammad (s) by saying ‘Ya Muhammad’
- believes Prophet Muhammad (s) is dependant on Allah so that all harm and benefit is from Allah alone.
- believes Prophet Muhammad (s) is made aware of the living by Allah.
- believes Prophet Muhammad (s) can pray to Allah on his behalf.

Those of understanding can clearly see that the same way a person calls on his brother to pray for him is no different from what Person A is seeking from Prophet Muhammad (s). Both are seeking intercession and in neither case does the person believe that Allah is not the one granting his needs.

This intercession is explicitly made clear in the Quran:

“If they had only, when they were unjust to themselves, come unto thee and asked Allah’s forgiveness, and the Messenger had asked forgiveness for them, they would have found Allah indeed Oft-returning, Most Merciful” (4:64)

“They (ie Prophets and Imams) do not say anything until He orders, and they act (in all things) by His command. He knows what is before them and what is after them and they offer no intercession except for anyone whom Allah accepts, and they are in awe and reverence of his glory” ( Holy Quran 21:27-28)


So here we have irrefutable that the Prophet can intercede for us. Obviously the ‘Salafi’s’ interpret these verses to only be relevant to those that lived during the Prophet’s life and on the Day of Judgement. This leads us to our second point.

To equate the Prophet as now being as useless to us as an idol must be condemned as nothing short of unadulterated deviance.

Remarkably, the adherents of Abdul Wahab go a step further by believing that an inanimate object like a walking stick is of more use than what the Prophet (s) can be ( As Shahab As Thaqib, p.45-46).

It is apparent that this insulting idealogy all rests on this myth that the dead are unable to help. Yet before we prove how unislamic such a position is, let us hammer the nail in the coffin of this flawed mentality by first exposing what the scholars they claim to follow have to say.
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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Tue Mar 13, 2007 11:54 pm

Part Four: Sunni scholars recommend intercession through the dead

Perhaps the most unfortunate aspect of this topic is not only the inability for some to think beyond their nose, but the audacious deception and utter ignorance the Ibn Taymiyah followers have fallen into.

We can comfortably make this claim because these self confessed members of the ‘Ahlul Sunnah wa Jammah’ have either deceptively or ignorantly represented their views on intercession as being the accepted norm and anyone opposed to these views can only be a Shia or Sufi. Yet we shall see nothing can be further from the truth.

Take for instance Imam Malik Anas, the founder of the Malaki school. He was once asked about the preferred direction one should be facing when making supplication. The choice put to him was the shrine of the Prophet (s) or the Qiblah. His response was the following:

Why do you want to turn away from the Prophet (s) when he (Prophet Muhammad (s)) is the wasilah (means) for you and for your father Adam, towards Allah on the Day of Resurrection. Turn to him (the Prophet) and seek his intercession (shafa'at).
Sharh al-Mawahib, vol. 8, p. 304-5; Wafa' al-Wafad, vol. 4, p. 1371; al-Qawanin al-Fiqhiyyah, p. 148; and Sharh Ibn al-Hasan 'ala al-Risalah al-Qirwani, vol. 12, p. 478).

Let us look at what some of the other prominent Sunni scholars have to say regarding intercession.

Sunni scholar al-Nawawi:

The pilgrim should face the shrine of the Messenger of Allah (s), make him a means (tawassul) towards reaching God and seek his wasilah as intercession (shafa'at), in the same manner as the Bedouin who visited the Prophet's shrine and standing beside it said: Peace unto you O Messenger of Allah, I have heard Allah has said:...Had they, when they had wronged themselves, come to you and asked Allah's forgiveness and the Apostle had asked forgiveness for them, they would certainly have found Allah Most-Propitious, Most-Merciful. (Holy Qur'an 4: 64).
Therefore, I have come to you for forgiveness of my sins and seeking your intercession with Allah.

Al-Majmu', vol. 8, p. 274; Fayd al-Qadir, vol. 2, p. 134; I'anah al-Talibiyyin, p. 315.

Sunni scholar Khalil Saharanpuri collected over 75 fatawa from the leading Sunni scholars from the different parts of the world, he says:

In our opinion and that of our teachers, pilgrimage to the shrine of the Master of Messengers (my soul be sacrificed for him) is the most exalted of proximities, the most important of blessings, and the greatest of means (wasilah) for attaining lofty ranks. It could be said that it is an enjoinment almost to the degree of obligations, even if it requires the trouble of a journey to perform it and there is no other option other than to make efforts with life and wealth. Tawassul to the Prophets, saints, pious persons, martyrs and the righteous during supplications, whether in their lifetime or after their death, is permissible in the following manner: Allahumma inni atawassalu ilayka bi-fulan an tujiba da'wati wa taqdia hajati (O Allah! I beseech you by means of so and so a person, accept my supplication and grant my request).
Shaykh Khalil Ahmad Saharanpuri, 'Aqa'id Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jama'ah fi radd al-Wahhabiyyah wa al-Bid'ah, translated into Persian by 'Abd al-Rahman Sarbazi, p. 86.

Sunni scholar Ibn Qudamah Hanbali:

Stand beside the tomb of the Prophet (s), and say: I have come to you for forgiveness of my sins and to seek your intercession with Allah.
Al-Mughni ma' al-Sharh, vol. 3, p. 588; al-Sharh al-Kabir ma' al-Mughni, vol. 3, p. 494.

Sunni Hanafi scholar, Kamal al-Din ibn al-Humam:

Then let him ask Allah for his need, using Allah’s Prophet as his means to Allah; (then he said): Let him ask the Prophet for his intercession and say: O Messenger of Allah, I am asking you for your intercession; O Messenger of Allah, I am using you as my means to Allah.
Fath al-Qadir 2:337

Sunni Hanbali scholar Ala al-Din al-Mardawi:

The correct position of the (Hanbali) madhab is that it is permissible in one’s supplication (du’a) to use as one’s means a pious person, and it is said that it is desirable (mustahab). Imam Ahmad said to Abu Bakr al-Marwazi: yatawassalu bi al-nabi fi du’a’ih – “Let him use the Prophet as a means in his supplication to Allah”
Al-Insaf fi ma’rifat al-rajih min al-khilaf ‘ala madhhab al-Imam al-mubajjal Ahmed ibn Hanbal 3:456

Sunni Imam Hajar al-Haytami:

Imam al-Shafi’ was in Baghdad, he would visit the grave of Imam Abu Hanifa, give him salam, and then ask Allah for the fulfillment of his need through his means.
Al-Khayrat al-hisan fi manaqib al-imam Abi Hanifa al-Nu’man Ch. 35, p.63

Haytami also said:

Imam Shafi’i made tawassul through the Family of the Prophet (Ahl al-Bayt) when he said: Al al-nabi dhari’ati wa hum ilayhi wasilati arju bihim u’ta ghadan bi yadi al-yamini sahifati The family of the Prophet are my means and my intermediary to him. Through them I hope to be given my record with the right hand tomorrow.
al-Sawa’iq al-muhriqa li ahl al-dalal wa al-zandaqa (cf. p.180) and al-Khayrat al-hisan (p.69)

Sunni Imam Sakhawi:

The emphasis and encouragement on visiting his noble grave is mentioned in numerous hadiths, and it would suffice to show this if there was only the hadith whereby the truthful and God-confirmed Prophet promises that his intercession among other things becomes obligatory for whoever visits him, and the Imams are in complete agreement from the time directly after his passing until our own time that this [i.e. visiting him] is among the best acts of drawing near to Allah.
Al-Qawl al-badi’ (p.160)

Sunni Shafi’ite Ghazzali:

The Prophet should be made the means (wasilah) and the intercessor (shafi'), and with face turned towards the tomb, the pilgrim should implore Allah for the sake and position of the Prophet with the words: "O Allah, indeed You have said, ‘Had they, who had wronged themselves, come to you and asked Allah's forgiveness and the Apostle had asked forgiveness for them, they would have certainly found Allah Most-Propitious, Most-Merciful’ (Holy Qur'an 4:64); Allah, surely we have heard Your words and we obey Your command, by coming to Your Prophet to seek his intercession with You for our sins; how burdensome and heavy (are sins) on our backs! We repent of slipperiness, we confess our wrongs and our faults, accept our repentance for his sake, make Your Prophet intercessor for us, and exalt us for the sake of his position and his rights with You."Al-Ghazzali adds: It is recommended the pilgrim should go daily to the Baqi' Cemetery and after saluting the Prophet (s), make pilgrimage to the tombs of (Imam) Hasan ibn 'Ali, (Imam) 'Ali ibn al-Husayn, (Imam) Muhammad ibn 'Ali and (Imam) Ja'far ibn Muhammad (Allah be pleased with them), and also perform the Salat in the Mosque of Fatimah (Allah be pleased with her).
Abu Hamid Muhammad al-Ghazzali', Ihya' 'Ulum al-Din, vol. 1, pp. 258-261.
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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Tue Mar 13, 2007 11:58 pm

Part Four: Sunni scholars recommend intercession through the dead (cont)

Albani, a prominent Scholar of the Ibn Taymiyah school, himself conceded that the Ahlul-Sunnah wa Jammah are not unanimous on this topic:

Imam Ahmad allowed tawassul by means of the Messenger alone, and others such as Imam ash-Shawkaanee allowed tawassul by means of him and other Prophets and the Pious. However we as is the case in all matters where there is disagreement, follow whatever is supported by the proof whatever that is, without blindly sticking to the opinions of men.
Albani, Tawassul, p.38

Although Albani failed to truly reveal the extent of support for intercession through the dead, his words alone are sufficient proof that the school of Ibn Taymiyah does not represent the consensus of the prominent scholars the ‘Salafi’s’ claim to follow.

In addition, contemporary opposition to this man’s work is well documented for those who are well informed.

Take for instance Shaykh Hasan ‘Ali al-Saqqaf’s preface to ‘abd Allah al-Ghumari’s refutation of Albani entitled Irgham al mubtadi’ al-ghabi bi jawaz al-ghabi bi jawaz al-tawassul bi al-nabi (The compulsion of the ignorant innovator with the permissibility of seeking means with the Prophet) in which he says:

Al-Sayyid ‘Abd Allah al-Ghumari and other hadith scholars as well as some of those who work with hadith have said: namely that Albani knows the correct facts in many matters but … is not to be relied upon for (assessing) a single hadith. This is the explicit position of many of the scholars such as the three muhaddiths al-Sayyid Ahmad al-Ghumari, al-Sayyid ‘Abd Allah al-Ghumari, and al-Sayyid ‘Abd al-‘Aziz; the shaykh ‘Abd al-Fattah Abu Ghudda; the muhaddith of India and Pakistan Habib al-Rahman al-A’zami; Shaykh Isma’il al-Ansari; Shaykh Muhammad ‘Awwama; Shaykh Mahmud Sa’id; Shaykh Shu’ayb Arna’ut; and tens of others among the experts in this field and those that deal with it. The People of Hadith therefore witness that the man’s word is not relied upon in the authentication and weakening of hadith because he authenticates and weakens according to whim and mood, not scientific rules, and whoever examines his sayings and writings can verify this.Irgham al mubtadi’ al-ghabi bi jawaz al-ghabi bi jawaz al-tawassul bi al-nabi, p.7-9

Shaykh Hasan ‘Ali al-Saqqaf himself comments on Albani saying:

We know full well that it is Albani who betrays scholarly trust and deliberately misinforms the people. Albani has adduced worthless proofs as is his habit when embellishing falsehood.
Irgham al mubtadi’ al-ghabi bi jawaz al-ghabi bi jawaz al-tawassul bi al-nabi, p.23-25

Such condemnations may be ignored by present day followers of controversial scholar’s like Ibn Taymiyah and his protégé, Abdul Wahab. Yet when requesting their opinion on Albani’s weakening of ten hadith in their beloved Sahih Bukhari, watch them squirm in their seats trying to defend this man.

In any case, what has been presented thus far is irrefutable proof that those claiming to be amongst the ‘Ahlul Sunnah Wa Jammah’ have explicitly permitted intercession through the dead.

Let us now delve into the reasons why Taymiyah and Co. have deviated from the consensus on this particular issue:

Quote :
‘Ibn Tamiyah commented in this regard: “But whoever takes from them (Shaykhs, Awliya, Pirs etc..) as intermediaries between Allah and His creation… so that they are the ones to pass on to Allah the needs of His creations, since (they believe that) Allah gives the guidance and the sustenance because of their intercession, so that the people would ask them (the intermediaries) who will then ask Allah, just as kings intermediaries present peoples needs to the kings because they are closer to them from the need seeker. Whoever takes them as intermediaries in this manner, then such a person is a Kaffir and Mushrik and should be asked to repent and should be killed if he refuses, such people are Mushabbiha (resemblers) who have resembled the Creator to His creation and have adopted parters with Him”’
Source

Contemporary scholar of the Ibn Taymiyah school, the late Bin Baz, argues in support for his teachers views by stating:

The polytheists also testified to the Oneness of Allah but as the Holy Qur'an states, they tried to justify their worshipping of idols by saying: "...we worship them not but (in order) that they make us near to God..." (39:3). This is similar to the actions of those who make tawassul to those in the graves in order to seek proximity to Allah.
Risalatan Bayn al-Shaykhayn al-Ustadh Muhammad Wa'iz-Zadeh Khurasani wa al-Ustadh 'Abd al-'Aziz bin 'Abdullah bin Baz, pp. 32-33.

In response Sunni Imam Shawkani says in his treatise al-durr al-nadid fi ikhlas kalimat al-tawhid:

Regarding what those who forbid tawassul to Allah through the Prophets and the saints cite their position, such as Allah’s sayings: “We only worship them in order that they may bring us nearer” 39:3 “Do not call on any other god with Allah, or you will be among those who will be punished” 26:213 “Say: Call on those besides Him who ye fancy; they have no power to remove your trouble from you or to change them. Those unto whom they cry seek for themselves the means of approach to their Lord, which of them shall be the nearest; they hope for His mercy and fear His wrath: for the wrath of thy Lord is something to take heed of” 17:57 These verses are irrelevant. Rather they support exactly the reverse of what the objectors to tawassul claim, since the verses are related to another issue. To wit: the verse “We only worship them in order that they may bring us nearer” explicitly states that they worship them for that purpose, whereas the one who makes tawassul through a scholar for example, never worships him, but he knows that he has a special distinction (maziyya) before Allah for being a carrier of knowledge; and that is why he uses him as a means.

Sunni Shaykh Mustafa ibn Ahmed ibn al-Hasan al-Shatti:

..these verse do not support the Wahhabis’ claim that it is prohibited to use the means of the Prophets and the pious. This is very clear. Those who agree among Muslims about the permissibility and recommendability of seeking the Prophets and the pious ones as a means never meant to suppose any effective power originating in them. They never believed in such a belief at all! Rather, all Muslims believe that Allah Almighty is the doer of His own free deliberation, and He alone is the giver and taker of existence, of benefit and harm. This is one of the basic beliefs in Islam. The scholars never considered seeking the means of Prophets and the pious ones as consisting in mimman ittakhadha min dunillahi or “taking equals other than Allah” as the Wahhabis have claimed.
From the 1994 Waqf Ikhlas offset reprint of al-Shatti’s al-Nuqul al-shar’iyyah fi al-radd ‘ala al-wahhabiyya (The Legal Proof- Texts Concerning the Reply of the Wahhabi Sect)

Also confirmed by the late Mufti of Mecca, al-Sayyid Ahmad ibn Zayni Dahlan (.1304) who responded to this misunderstanding surrounding tawassul after the initial rise of the Wahabi movement:

Tawassul (using means), tashaffu (using intercession) and istighatha (asking help) all have the same meaning, and the only meaning they have in the hearts of the believers is that of tabarruk (using blessings) with the mention of Allah’s beloved ones, since it is established that He grants His mercy to all His servants for the sake of His beloved ones, and this is the case whether they are alive or dead, because in either case the actual effecting agent and true executor is Allah Himself, and these beloved ones are only ordinary causes for His mercy. Like any other secondary cause, they have no effective power of influence in themselves.
Ahmad Zayni Dahlan, Khulasat al-kalam fi umara’ al-balad al-haram (The summation concerning the leaders of the sacrosanct country) 2:245

Similarly Sunni Shaykh Salih al-Na’man both proclaims the permissibility of tawassul while condemning those Wahabi’s who are vehemently opposed to it:

..some of the Wahhabi’s today may be guilty of hastening to accuse others of disbelief (takfir), as they have done in the past with hundreds of thousands in the Hijaz whom they massacred even as they were saying la ilaha illallah, and as the Kharijis have done in the time of our Master ‘Ali – may Allah ennoble his countenance. In short, tawassul is not prohibited, rather it is legally commendable (mustahsanu shar’an), and it is not permitted to cast the label of shirk on the believer. This is what will be found in the established books of Islamic law. And Allah knows best.
Signature of the Secretary of Fatwas in Hama, Seal of the Ministry of Religious Endowments, District of the Muhafazat of Hama, Syria, 6 Jumuda I 1400 22 March 1989

The reader should bear in mind that the references read thus far was just a mere sample. Yet it is sufficient to prove that intercession through the dead is an Islamically permitted and recommended act according to the Scholars of the ‘Ahlul-Sunnah wa Jammah’.
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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:11 am

Part Five: The Prophet (s) is aware of our actions and intercedes for us

This section will dispell any suggestion the dead are unaware of our actions. We shall begin with the following verses:

“It is your actions that Allah and His Messenger will observe…” (Holy Quran 9:94)

“Work (righteousness): Soon will Allah observe your work and His Messenger and the believers” (Holy Quran 9:105)

As is customary of any verse proving intercession or in this case, the dead being aware of our actions, the ‘Salafi’s’ will immediately dismiss these verses posted above as being only applicable on Day of Judgement.

Yet such a position would contradict other verses in Quran. For instance, consider the following verse:

“Then they ham-strung, and insolently defied the order of their Lord, saying: “O Salih! Bring about thy threats, if thou art a messenger (of Allah)! So the earthquake took them unawares, and they prostrate in their homes in the morning! So Salih left them saying: “O my people! I indeed convey to you the message for which I was sent by my Lord: I gave you good counsel, but ye love not good counsellors!” (Holy Quran 7:77-79)

Now if the dead were unaware of our actions, why would Prophet Saleh (as) speak to the dead? What is the point of speaking to them if they are unaware of his words? Would any Prophet do something that was pointless? The answer ofcourse is that they would not. Which means this story of Prophet Saleh proves that the dead are aware of our actions and so therefore, when Allah says the Prophet and the righteous can observe our actions, this must apply for all times!

This position is supported by numerous hadith. Take for instance the following words of our beloved Prophet (s):

"Your deeds are presented to me. If they are good, I express my gratitude to Allah, and if the deeds are not good, then I pray to Allah for your forgiveness".
Haythami transmitted it in Majma'-uz-zawa'id (9:24) and said that that tradition had been reported by Bazzar (in his Musnad) and its sub-narrators are all of sahih (sound) hadith. 'Iraqi has confirmed the soundness of its chain of transmission in his book Tarh-ut-tathrib fi sharh-it-taqrib (3:297). Ibn Sa'd has recorded it in at-Tabaqat-ul-kubra (2:194). Qadi 'Iyad has inscribed this tradition in ash-Shifa (1:19); and Suyuti, recording it in al-Khasa'is-ul-kubra (2:281) and Manahil-us-sifa fi takhrij ahadith ash-Shifa (p.3), has commented that Ibn Abi Usamah in his Musnad has reproduced it through Bakr bin 'Abdullah al-Muzani and Bazzar in his Musnad who have relied on its narration by 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud with a sound chain of transmission. It has been endorsed by Khafaji and Mulla 'Ali Qari in their commentaries on ash-Shifa, i.e. Nasim-ur-riyad (1:102) and Sharh ash-Shifa (1:36) respectively. Hadith-scholar Ibn-ul-Jawzi has reproduced it in al-Wafa bi-ahwal-il-mustafa (2:809-10) from Bakr bin 'Abdullah and Anas bin Malik. Subki has copied this tradition in Shifa'-us-siqam fi ziyarat khayr-il-anam (p.34) from Bakr bin 'Abdullah al-Muzani, and Ibn 'Abd-ul-Hadi in as-Sarim-ul-munki (p.266-7) has authenticated its veracity. Bazzar's tradition has also been recorded by Ibn Kathir in al-Bidayah wan-nihayah (4:257). 'Asqalani narrated it through Bakr bin 'Abdullah al-Muzani in al-Matalib-ul-'aliyah (4:22-3#3853). 'Ali al-Hindi copied Ibn Sa'd's tradition in Kanz-ul-'ummal (11:407#31903) and from Harith (#31904). Nabhani related it in Hujjatullah 'alal-'alamin fi mu'jazat sayyid-il-mursalin (p.713).

Once again the ‘Salafi’s’ will resort to their argument that it only applies for the Day of Judgement. Yet the former Grand Mufti of Egypt Shaykh Husanayn Muhammad Makhluf writes in his Fatawa shar’yya:

The deeds of the Community are shown to him [i.e. the Prophet (s)] everyday, and he glorifies Allah for the goodness that he finds, while he asks for His forgiveness for the small sins and the alleviation of His punishment for the grave ones: and this is a tremendous good for us. There is therefore “goodness for the Community in his life, and in his death, goodness for the Community. Moreover, as has been established in the hadith, the Prophet is alive in his grave with a special “isthmus-life” (hayat barzakhiyyah khassa) stronger than the lives of the martyrs which the Qur’an spoke about in more than one verse. The nature of these two kinds of life cannot be known except by their Bestower, the Glorious, the Exalted. He is able to do all things. His showing the Community’s deeds to the Prophet as an honorific gift for him and his Community is entirely possible rationally and documented in the reports. There is no leeway for its denial; an Allah guides to His light whomever He pleases; and Allah knows best.
Cairo: Dar al-I’tisam, 1405/1985. 1:91-92

Are the ‘Salafi’s’ prepared to accuse such noteable scholars amongst the Ahlul-Sunnah wa Jammah as being mushriks? And are they prepared to dismiss the numerous other hadith proving the Prophet (s) can intercede for us even after his passing away? Like for instance the following narration:

Al-Utbi said: “As I was sitting by the grave of the Prophet, a Bedouin Arab came and said: “Peace be upon you, O Messenger of Allah! I have heard Allah saying: “If they had only, when they were unjust to themselves, come unto thee and asked Allah’s forgiveness, and the Messenger had asked forgiveness for them, they would have found Allah indeed Oft-returning, Most Merciful” (4:64), so I have come to you asking forgiveness for my sin, seeking your intercession with my Lord. Then he began to recite poetry: O best of those whose bones are buried deep in the earth,And from whose fragrance the depthAnd the height have become sweet,May I be the ranson for a grave which thou inhabit,And which are found purity, bounty and munificence!The he left and I dozed and saw the Prophet in my sleep. He said to me: O Utbi, run after the Bedouin and give him glad tidings that Allah has forgiven him”
The report is mashhur (well known) and related by Nawawi,Adhkar, Mecca ed. P. 253-254, al-Majmu’ 8:217, and al-Idah fi manasik al-hajj, chapters on visiting the grave of the Prophet; Ibn Jama’a, Hidayat al-salik 3:1384; Ibn ‘Aqil, al-Tadhkira; Ibn Qudama, al-Mughni 3:556-557; al-Qurtubi, Tafsir of 4:64 in Akham al-Qur’an 5:265; Samhudi, Khulasat al-Wafa p.121 (from Nawawi); Dahlan, Khulasat al-Kalam 2:247; Ibn Kathir, Tafsir 2:306, and al-Bidayat wa al-nihayat 1:180; Abu al-Faraj ibn Qudama, al-Sharh al-kabir 3:495; al-Bahuti al-Hanbali, Kashshaf al-qina’ 5:30; Taqi al-Din al-Subki, Shifa; al-siqam p.52; Ibn Shu’ab al-iman #4178; Ibn ‘Asakir, Mukhtasar tarikh Dimashq 2:408; Ibn Hajar al-Haytami, al-Jawhar al-munazzam [commentary on Nawwawi’s Idah]; Ibn al-Najjar, Akhbar al-Madina p.147.

Interestingly, in this narration the Bedouin Arab not only uses the verse 4:64 as justification for seeking intercession from the Prophet (s), but his use of this verse produced the desired results proving 4:64 is applicable for all times.

In addition, it is widely regarded the following authentic narration is sufficient proof in itself:

Bukhari, Tirmidhi, and many others relate, through their chain of narrators from 'Uthman ibn Hunayf, that a blind man came to the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) and said, "I've been afflicted in my eyesight, so please pray to Allah for me." The Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said: "Go make ablution (wudu), perform two rak'as of prayer, and then say:"Oh Allah, I ask You and turn to You through my Prophet Muhammad, the Prophet of mercy; O Muhammad (Ya Muhammad), I seek your intercession with my Lord for the return of my eyesight [and in another version: "for my need, that it may be fulfilled. O Allah, grant him intercession for me"]." The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) added, "And if there is some need, do the same."
This hadith was recorded was recorded by Bukhari in his "al-Tarikh al-kabir", Ahmad (4:138 #17246-17247), Tirmidhi (hasan sahih gharib -- Da`awat Ch. 119), Nasa'i (`Amal al-yawm wa al-laylat p. 417-418 #658-660), al-Hakim (1:313, 1:526), Tabarani in al-Kabir, and rigorously authenticated as sound (sahih) by nearly fifteen hadith masters including Ibn Hajar, Dhahabi, Shawkani, and Ibn Taymiyya.] by Ibn Majah in his Sunan (Book of Iqamat al-salat wa al-sunnat, Ch. on Salat al-hajat #1385), where he said it was rigorously authenticated (SAHIH), by Nasa'i in "Amal al-yawm wa al-layla", by Abu Nu'aym in "Ma'rifa al-Sahaba", by Baihaqi in "Dala'il al-nubuwwa", by Mundhiri in "al-Targhib wa al-tahrib", by Haythami in "Majma' al zawa'id wa manba' al-fawa'id", by Tabarani in "al-Mu'jam al-kabir", by Ibn Khuzayma in his "Sahih", and by others. Nearly 15 hadith masters have conformed that this hadith is Sahih.

You will notice that in the above narration the Prophet (s) was not physically present at the time of the blind man’s du’a due to the fact that the Prophet (s) instructed the blind man to “go and make ablution”. The Prophet (s) did not later say, “then come back to me”. Rather the blind was instructed that after ablution, he was to pray two rak’as and then immediately recite the du’a.

Now since it is clear that the living and the dead are exactly alike in terms of physical absence, there is no difference reciting such a du’a during the Prophet’s (s) life or after. This understanding is echoed from the scholars of the Ahlul-Sunnah.

Take note of the following Fatwa of Shaykh Abu Sulayman Suhayl al-Zabibi:

From Uthman ibn Hunayf: He was with the Prophet at the time a blind man came to him complaining of his lack of eyesight etc. This is a sound hadith in which the Prophet explicitly orders those who have a certain need to make tawassul and call him in his absence – both in his life and after his death. This is precisely what the Companions understood from him.
Imam of the Mosque of Najjarin, Damascus1992 Waqf Ikhlas reprint of Sayyid Ahmed Zayni Dahlan’s section of his history of Islam.

Shaykh Yusuf wrote in his rebuttal to a “Salafi” critic entitled “The evidence of the Sunni Community (Adillah Ahl al-Sunna wa al-Jamma’a):

This is an explicit, unequivocal text from a prophetic Companion proving the validity of tawassul through the dead.
Imam Ghazzali, The Reliance of the Traveller p.395-940

Shaykh Muhammad al-Hamid has written in his “Rebuttals of Falsehoods” (Rudud ‘ala abatil):

As for calling upon the righteous (when they are physically absent, as in the words Ya Muhammad in the hadiths of Uthman Ibn Hunayf), tawassul to Allah Most High through them is permissible, the supplication (du’a) being to Allah Most Glorious, and there is much evidence for its permissibility.
Imam Ghazzali, The Reliance of the Traveller p.395-940

Let us continue with further proofs of the Prophet (s) interceding for us without him being physically by our side. We shall turn to Ibn Hajir Asqalani, the master of hadith in the Sunni world. He quotes the following narration:

It is revealed that the Prophet (s) knows his lovers and listens to them. Once he said to his companions about hadrat Isa (s) that he will return to this world. Then Hadrat Isa (s) will visit Madinah and the Prophet (s) said: And when he (Isa) will stand beside my grave calling: “O Muhammad!” I will respond to him.
Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalani, al-Matalib-ul-‘aliyah, (4:23 #3853)

The reader should bare in mind that what was presented thus far was a mere portion of the Sunni textual evidences proving intercession through the dead. The ‘Salafi’s’ however are unable to provide even one weak narration whereby the Prophet (s) forbade people seeking his intercession after his passing way. Yet in order to defend their position, the ‘Salafi’s’ resort to this idea the dead cannot hear the living. The aim of this objective is to prove intercession through the dead is pointless.


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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:34 am

Part Six: Rebuttal to the myth the dead cannot hear

It should be categorically stated that is irrelevant how the dead are aware of our actions. What is relevant is that if they are aware. As was previously discussed we produced Quranic and Hadith evidences proving the Prophet is not only aware of our actions but also can intercede on our behalf.

Yet so as to prove intercession through the dead is pointless, the Ibn Taymiyah school cite the following verse:

“Nor are alike those that are living and those that are dead. Allah can make any that He wills to hear; but thou canst not make those to hear who are (buried) in graves..” (Quran 35:22)

Let us view their explanation of this verse from an extract of an article entitled ‘The Faculty of hearing of the dead’:

Quote :
Allah points to the difference between the living and the dead – they are not alike. He further clarifies to His prophet that he cannot make the rejectors of faith hear the message (for they are dead in heart and spirit) any more than he can make those in the graves hear what is spoken to them.
(Also see Tafseer at-Tabari, vol.2 p.36 and al-Qurtubi’s al-Jami, vol.13,, p.232)

This interpretation is absolutely correct when it acknowledges Allah is speaking figuratively when He says the rejectors of faith cannot ‘hear’ the message, in other words, the rejectors of faith cannot be guided.

The issue however is does Allah use the second word ‘hear’ in the figurative or literal sense?

If we apply it in the figurative sense it will read as follows:

The living and the dead are not alike..Allah can make any that He wills to hear, (ie to be guided to Islam)..But you, (ie the Prophet), cannot make those who are dead to hear,(ie to be guided to Islam).

So essentially what Allah is saying here is that the rejectors of faith are like the dead, meaning the difference between the living and dead is that you can guide the living but you cannot guide the dead.

However if we believe the second word of ‘hear’ is meant to be understood in the literal sense the verse would read as follows:

The living and the dead are not alike. Allah can make any that He wills to hear, (ie to be guided to Islam)…but you, (ie the Prophet), cannot make those who are dead to hear (literally)

As we read earlier, the ‘Salafi’ commentary says this verse means the Prophet cannot guide the rejectors of faith anymore than he can make the dead literally hear.

Yet what exactly is the difference between the living and the dead Allah is referring to?

The only thing we can say in trying to defend this flawed commentary is that the difference between the living and dead Allah is referring to is that the living can literally hear (so can be guided) but the dead cannot literally hear (so cannot be guided).

But there are inherent flaws here.

Firstly, the Salafi commentary already conceded that the verse refers to those rejectors of faith who cannot be guided. So even though they literally hear the message they still cannot be guided.

Secondly, the dead cannot be guided not because they cannot literally hear, they cannot be guided because they are dead!

Clearly the only difference that fits perfectly in the context of the verse is that it is possible to guide the living but not possible to guide the dead.

Let us take a look at the whole verse from a Yusuf Ali translation:

[Yusufali 35:22] Nor are alike those that are living and those that are dead. (Only)Allah can make any that He wills to hear (i.e. guide to his message); but thou canst not make those to hear (i.e. guide to his message) who are (buried) in graves.

So we can conclude here that the word ‘hear’ in both instances in the verse is used in the figurative sense.

Yet the adherents to the Ibn Tamiyah use the same flawed approach as the previous by attempting to use a similar verse to support their case:

“Truly thou canst not cause the dead to listen, nor canst thou cause the deaf to hear the call, (especially) when they turn back in retreat.” (Quran 27:80)

Quote :
Allah addresses His messenger, Muhammad (saw), reminding him that he cannot make the disbelievers hear the invitation to Islam, for they are like the dead, who do not hear either.

In response, the disbelievers did hear the message of Islam. So the meaning of the words ‘hear’ and ‘listen’ cannot be taken literally. Obviously Allah (swt) is speaking figuratively, the meaning of the word ‘listen’ is ‘to be guided’ or ‘to follow’.

Let us take a look at the whole verse again from a Yusuf Ali translation:

[Yusufali 27:80] Truly thou canst not cause the dead to listen ( i.e. guide them to the message of Allah) , nor canst thou cause the deaf ( i.e. Kuffar) to hear the call (i.e. to get guidance), when they turn back in retreat (i.e. when these kuffar are even not ready to pay attention to the signs of Allah. But if these Kuffar ( Deaf ) pay attention in Signs of Allah then Allah will cause them to Hear (i.e. guide them to) his message).

Prominent Sunni Imam, Suyuti has issued a religious verdict on the two verses discussed and he says:

It is an Allegorical statement (an-Nafi Ja'a ala m'ana al -Majaz). The Real meaning of this is that "They cannot listen to Guidance (Ma'naha Sama' Huda) i.e. they are dead and cannot be guided anymore."
Al-hawi lil Fatawa, vol. 2 p. 169-175

It should be clear up until this point the verses are referring to the inability for the dead to be guided and in no way implies the dead cannot hear.
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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:37 am

Part Seven: Sunnah affirming the dead can hear

There is overwhelming evidence in the Sunnah that supports the fact that the dead hear. The reader will discover that in response to these evidences, the Salafi’s find themselves in a hopeless situation which is proven by their desperate interpetations.

Allow us to begin with the following narration:

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah’s apostle said: When (Allah’s) slave is put in his grave and his companions return and he even hears their footsteps, two angels come to him.
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 23, Number 456, Sahih Muslim, Book 040, Number 6862

How is it possible to accept this narration on the one hand while still claiming the Quran says the dead cannot literally hear?

Let us return to the same article, ‘Faculty of the hearing of the dead’ and see their explanation to the above narration:

Quote :
This tradition only specifies another exception to the general rule. In this case, the deceased hears the shuffling feet of those who attended his funeral as they walk away. This is a momentary possession of the faculty of hearing which is terminated at the point at which the two questioning angels come to him.

In response, even if the dead were to hear only momentarily, the dead can still hear and so Allah (swt) would never have said the dead cannot literally hear!

Also assuming the commentary is correct, what proof is there the faculty of hearing will remain terminated after the questioning? There is nothing in the narration that suggests the faculty of hearing will later be terminated.

Now allow us to turn to the narrations surrounding the events that occurred after the battle of Badr where the Prophet (s) addressed the dead.

This event was narrated by Ibn Umar, Anas b. Malik, Ibn Shihab, Abu Talha and Aisha. Lets see what they have to say:

Narrated Ibn 'Umar: "The Messenger of Allah spoke to the People (buried) in the Well saying: "Have you found out that what your Lord had promised you is true?" then someone exclaimed: "Are you calling out to the dead!" The Prophet replied: "You do not hear better than they do, except they do not respond."
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 23, Number 452

Anas b. Malik reported that: Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) let the dead bodies of the unbelievers who fought in Badr (lie unburied) for three days. He then came to them and sat by their side and called them and said: O Abu Jahl b. Hisham, O Umayya b. Khalaf, O Utba b. Rab'ila, O Shaiba b. Rabi'a, have you not found what your Lord had promised with you to be correct? As for me, I have found the promises of my Lord to be (perfectly) correct. Umar listened to the words of Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) and said: Allah's Messenger, how do they listen and respond to you? They are dead and their bodies have decayed. Thereupon he (the Holy Prophet) said: By Him in Whose Hand is my life, what I am saying to them, even you cannot hear more distinctly than they, but they lack the power to reply. Then'he commanded that they should be buried in the well of Badr.
Sahih Muslim, Book 040, Number 6869

Narrated Ibn Shihab: These were the battles of Allah's Apostle (which he fought), and while mentioning (the Badr battle) he said, "While the corpses of the pagans were being thrown into the well, Allah's Apostle said (to them), 'Have you found what your Lord promised true?" 'Abdullah said, "Some of the Prophet's companions said, "O Allah's Apostle! You are addressing dead people.' Allah's Apostle replied, 'You do not hear what I am saying, better than they.'?"
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 5, Book 59, Number 360

Narrated Abu Talha: "On the day of Badr, the Prophet ordered that the corpses of twenty four leaders of Quraish should be thrown into one of the dirty dry wells of Badr. ?? When he halted at the edge of the well, he addressed the corpses of the Quraish infidels by their names and their fathers' names, "O so-and-so, son of so-and-so and O so-and-so, son of so-and-so! Would it have pleased you if you had obeyed Allah and His Apostle? We have found true what our Lord promised us. Have you too found true what your Lord promised you? "'Umar said, "O Allah's Apostle! You are speaking to bodies that have no souls!" Allah's Apostle said, "By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad's soul is, you do not hear, what I say better than they do." (Qatada said, "Allah brought them to life (again) to let them hear him, to reprimand them and slight them and take revenge over them and caused them to feel remorseful and regretful.")
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 5, Book 59, Number 314

Pay particular attention to what Qatada added at the end of the narration. Qatada was only a sub narrator. He heard it from Anas, who heard it from Abu Talha, who narrated it from Rasool Allah. In other words, Qatadah was not present at the event and the other narrators who were present never mentioned anything about Allah (swt) bringing the souls back to life. Now unless Qatadah had a revelation from Allah, Qatadah’s claim could have only originated from his own conjecture. Now despite how good one’s intention is, conjecture has no validity in the Sharia of Islam. This is of paramount importance because if there is any doctrine that is based on conjecture, that doctrine ought not to be followed.

In addition, if Qatadah’s claim was correct, the Prophet (s) would have said something to that effect. Let us take a look at the Prophet's (s) response to Umar’s questioning:

“By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad’s soul is, you do not hear what I say better than they do”

Clearly the only thing the Prophet (s) is confirming here is that the dead can hear and they can hear better than we can! In fact, the Prophets (s) words here are completely consistent with other narrations that reveal the dead can even hear the shuffling of the feet on the ground!

Let us now turn to Aisha and see her views of the same event:

Narrated Ibn Umar: The Prophet stood at the well of Badr (which contained the corpses of the pagans) and said, "Have you found true what your lord promised you?" Then he further said, "They now hear what I say." This was mentioned before 'Aisha and she said, "But the Prophet said, 'Now they know very well that what I used to tell them was the truth.' Then she recited (the Holy Verse):-- "You cannot make the dead hear... ..."
Sahih Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 317: Translated by Mohsin Khan

Narrated 'Aisha: The Prophet said, "They now realize that what I used to tell them was the truth. "And Allah said, 'Verily! You cannot make the dead to hear (ie. benefit them, and similarly the disbelievers) nor can you make the deaf hear (27:80)"
Sahih Bukhari Volume 2, Book 23, Number 453: Translation by Mohsin Khan.

( A'isha said ) The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) stood by the well in which were lying the dead bodies of those polytheists who had been killed on the Day of Badr, and he said to them what he had to say, i.e.: They hear what I say. But he (Ibn 'Umar) misunderstood. The Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) had only said: They understand that what I used to say to them was truth . She then recited: "Certainly,thou canst not make the dead hear the call...."
Sahih Muslim Book 004, Number 2027, Translated by Siddiqi

Pay close attention to the following words of Aisha:

…This was mentioned before Aisha and she said, “But the Prophet said. ‘Now they know very well what I used to tell them was the truth’…Sahih Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 317: Translated by Mohsin Khan

…But he (Ibn Umar) misunderstood. The Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) had only said: They understand what I used to say to them was the truth…
Sahih Muslim Book 004, Number 2027, Translated by Siddiqi

We can see that Aisha is denying the Prophet (s) spoke to the dead at all! Who is right? Does it mean all the other narrators of the event were wrong in their unanimous agreement that not only did the Prophet (s) speak to the dead, but the dead could hear better than Umar? Further more, Aisha was not present at the event so how could she have known what the Prophet (s) said? We can see that Aisha is in the same predicament as Qatadah as both of their interpretations is different from all the other narrators of the event.

Even worse, both of their interpretations are different from one another! We can see that this is one of the consequences of conjecture. If we all resorted to conjecture, despite how well intentioned we may be, we would still most likely all end up with different interpretations.
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PostSubject: Re: Calling Reason: Intercession Explained   Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:46 am

Part Seven: Sunnah affirming the dead can hear (cont)

Returning to the article ‘Faculty of the hearing of the dead’, its proponents ignore Aisha’s interpretation and seek to prove their doctrine on Qatada’s:

Quote :
This miraculous circumstance in which the corpses of the slain Quraysh were made to hear the Prophets address to them is a special case – an exception to the general rule that the dead do not hear.Ignoring the fact that there always seems to be ‘an exception to the rule’, they inadvertently attempt to prove Qatadah’s interpretation from a narration that says the opposite of what they claim: In another narration of this incident there is a slight variation in the wording of the text which follows: Ibn Umar related: “The Prophet (saw) stood at the edge of a well at Badr and said, “Did you find the promise of your Lord to be true?” Then he added, “Verily at his moment they hear what I am saying.” Let on this was mentioned to Aisha, whereupon she commented, “What the Prophet (saw) meant was, “Now they know that what I used to tell them is the truth” The she recited, “Verily you cannot make the dead hear [Surah an-Naml 27:80] up to the end of the verse” [Related authentically by al-Bukhari and others].Some often misconstrue the texts of the two aforementioned hadiths as proof for the contention that the dead can hear. However, the following arguementation refutes such a claim. This miraculous circumstance in which the corpses of the slain Quraysh were made to hear the Prophet’s address to them is a special case – an exception to the general rule that the dead do not hear. By a miracle, Allah, the Almighty, made them hear the scolding from the Prophet (saw) – only for the moment he spoke to them! This is clearly proven by the second narration itself, for their hearing was said to be conditioned by the moment when the Prophet (saw) called out to them in scorn and rebuke. He said, “At this moment they hear what I am saying.” Furthermore, in the first narration the Prophet (saw) does not deny Umar’s sound understanding of the verse’s general ruling that the dead do not hear. Rather, the Prophet (saw) merely clarifies for Umar that what occurred at Badr was a divine miracle and, therefore, an exception to the general ruling of the verse.

Notice how the above commentary completely ignores Aisha’s interpretation of the event? It dismisses it completely with the words ‘slight variation’. This ‘slight variation’ completely changes the context of the event. As already mentioned, according to Aisha, the Prophet did not speak to the dead, he spoke about them. Yet the commentary above mentions nothing of this. Obviously they don’t want to highlight the basis of their doctrine is in conflict with itself.

Now as far as the claim the event was a miracle, the question which must be asked is: why did the Prophet (s) not inform his companions it was a miracle?:

“By Him in Whose Hand lies the soul of Muhammad, you do not hear better than them what I just said”

Here, the only thing the Prophet (s) is confirming is the dead can hear and they can hear better that Umar! Where did the Prophet (s) explain this event was an ‘exception to the rule’?

It is becoming blatantly obvious there is a desperate attempt to squeeze Qatadah’s opinion into the narration of the text in order to give it validity. Yet despite the attempts, there is not the slightest indication from the Prophet (s) that Allah (swt) had returned the dead back to life so they can hear!

In addition, a divine miracle is something unique that rarely occurs. Yet we have already established that the dead can hear the shuffling of the feet on the ground! Even if we are to believe the dead can only hear momentarily, the fact that it is common for them to hear is proof there is nothing miraculous about the dead hearing at all. In fact, the narrations are replete with our beloved Prophet (s) speaking to the dead:

Aisha said: Messenger of Allah, how should I pray for them? He said: "Say, Peace be upon the inhabitants of this city (graveyard) from among the Believers and the Muslims, and may Allah have mercy on those who have gone ahead of us, and those who come later on, and we shall, Go willing, join you."
Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 2127'

A'isha reported (that whenever it was her turn for Allah's Messenger [may peace be upon him] to spend the night with her) he would go out towards the end of the night to al-Baqi' and say: "Peace be upon you, abode of a people who are believers. What you were promised would come to you tomorrow, you receiving it after some delay; and God willing we shall join you. O Allah, grant forgiveness to the inhabitants of Baqi' al-Gharqad. Qutaiba did not mention his words:" would come to you".
Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 2126

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah (may peace The upon him) went out to the graveyard and said: "Peace be upon you, the abode of the believing people. and If Allah so wills we shall join you.... (and so on and so forth) like the hadith narrated by Isma'il b. Ja'far except the words of Malik: Then some persons would be driven away from my Cistern."
Sahih Muslim, Book 002, Number 0483

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) came to the graveyard and said: "Peace be upon you! (O) the abode of the believing people and we, if God so wills, are about to join you.
Sahih Muslim, Book 002, Number 0482

Despite the overwhelming proof the dead do in fact hear, the reason why it is so staunchly opposed is because if the dead do hear, then the Prophet (s) is capable of helping, thus refuting the doctrine that intercession is haram. Yet the overwhelming evidence proves the contrary.

So why does the Ibn Taymiyah school have such a prominent voice even though it goes against the consensus of the learned?

Sunni Imam Taqi al-Din al-Subki provides us some insight in his book Shifa al-siqam fi ziyarat khayr al-anam:

Among those who fall into the category of “Ibn Taymiyya and his followers” on this issue: Ibn ‘Abd al-Hadi who wrote al-Sarim al-munki in an attempt to refute Subki’s book Shifa’ al-siqam on the great merit of visiting the Prophet; the Saudi author Bin Baz who said: “the ahadith that concern the desirability of visiting the grave of the Prophet are all weak, indeed forged” (kulluha da’ifa bal mawdu’a) in the 1993 edition of Fath al-bari (3:387); Nasir al-Din Albani, who claimed that the visit to the Prophet ranks among the innovations in Talkhis ahkam al-jana’iz (p.110) and elsewhere in his writings; and Nasir al-Jadya’, who in 1993 obtained his Ph.D. with First Honors from the University of Muhammad ibn Sa’ud after writing a 600-page book entitled al-Tabarruk in which he perpetuates the same claim (p.322). One will find such books printed and distributed far and wide, while classical books of the Ahl al-Sunnah are deliberately ignored and made unavailable to Muslims at large.


Conclusion: The wisdom of intercession through the Ahlul-Bayt

In Part Two of this discourse we used an example of how a water can serve as an intermediary, in other words, be between ourself and our need, which in this case is our need to quench our thirst.

Yet water is not the only necessary intermediary between satisfying this need. We will never be able to quench our thirst if we do not use our legs to walk to where the water is.

In fact we can go on listing intermediaries all day and night just to satisfy one need. So naturally the human being will use all the intermediaries Allah has made available because without using all those intermediaries, the chances of satisfying our need is zero.

So while we hear the anti Shia clan chanting slogans like we should go directly to Allah, they should know they are literally seeking the help of hundreds of intermediaries without even realising it. Yet audaciously they take pride in saying ‘I only ask Allah’.

Well not only would the Shia ask Allah directly, they will also have the Prophet and his family ask Allah on their behalf. It is clear who is in the better position.

Allahuma sali ala Muhammad wa ale Muhammad
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