Friday, 17 November 2017

Imam ibn al-Mulaqqin (r.a.) on the Blessings of the Swalawat

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Imam ibn al-Mulaqqin (r.a.) mentioned, in Kitab al-Hada’iq, that there was a young man who would perform thawaf around the Ka’bah frequently while sending abundant swalawat upon the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.).  He was asked, “Is there a reason why you do what you do?”

“Yes,” the young man replied.  “My father and I left our home to perform hajj together, but in one of the rest houses, my father fell ill and passed away.

Immediately after he died, his face became blackened, his eyes became bloodshot, and his stomach swelled up.  Seeing this, I began to weep, and I said ‘Verily, to Allah we belong and to Him we shall Return!  My father has died such a ghastly death, far from his homeland!’  When nighttime arrived, I was overcome by sleep, and while sleeping, I saw the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.).  He was wearing white garments and he smelled fragrant like fine scent.  He came near my father and wiped his face and, lo and behold, it became whiter than milk.  Then he wiped his hand over my father's stomach and it returned to its normal size.

Then, when the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) was going to depart, he turned to me and said, ‘Your father sinned frequently, but he also sent swalawat upon me frequently; so, when death approached him, he sought my aid and I came to his rescue.  Verily, I am the helper of those who send frequent swalawat upon me in the worldly abode!’”

Imam ‘Abd al-Wahhab ash-Sha’rani (r.a.): The Prophet (s.a.w.) was Sent to All Creation

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Shaykh ‘Abd al-Wahhab ash-Sha’rani (r.a.) wrote, in al-Jawahir wa ad-Durar, “I asked my shaykh about the generality of the message of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.): Is it exclusive to the ummah to which he was Sent, or is it inclusive of all of the souls and past nations?

He replied, ‘It includes the souls and past nations, for all of the Messengers, from Adam to his time, are his representatives, in the same arrangement found with the ministers of a kingdom and the generals of armies.’”

Monday, 13 November 2017

The Hadits on Seeking Help from the Unseen

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Imam ath-Thabarani (r.a.) related from ‘Utbah ibn Ghazwan (r.a.) that the Prophet (s.a.w.) said, “If one of you loses his way with respect to anything whatsoever or wishes help when he is in a land in which he has no friend, let him say, ‘O servants of Allah, help me!  For Allah has servants whom he does not see.”  The transliterated Arabic phrase is, “Ya ‘Ibadullah a’inuni.”  This hadits is hasan, and is found in Imam ath-Thabarani’s (r.a.) al-Kabir.  It was also recorded by Imam Abu Ya’la (r.a.), Imam ibn as-Sani (r.a.), and Imam al-Haytsami (r.a.), who recorded it in his Majma’ az-Zawa’id.

Imam al-Bayhaqi (r.a.) related something close to it on the authority of ibn ‘Abbas (r.a.) in Kitab al-Adab: “Allah has angels on earth who keep a record even of the leaves that falls on the ground.  Therefore, if one of you has a lameness in his leg or finds himself in need in a deserted place of the earth, let him say, ‘Help, O servants of Allah, may Allah have Mercy on you!’  Verily he shall be helped, if Allah Wills.”  Here, the transliterated Arabic phrase is, “A’inu ‘ibadullah rahimakum Allah.”  Imam ibn Hajr (r.a.) said its chain is hasan in al-Amali.  Imam al-Bayhaqi (r.a.) related it with two more chains from ibn ‘Abbas (r.a.) in Shu’ab al-Iman, and another from ibn Mas’ud (r.a.) in Hayat al-Anbiya’ Ba’da Wafatihim.  This latter chain is also recorded in al-Kabir by Imam ath-Thabarani (r.a.) who has, “Ya ‘Ibadullah a’inu,” repeated three times.  Imam ibn as-Sani (r.a.), Imam Abu Ya’la (r.a.), and Imam an-Nawawi (r.a.) in al-Adzkar, also mentioned it.

Imam ibn Abi Shaybah (r.a.) related, in his Muswannaf, through Aban ibn Swalih (r.a.), that the Prophet (s.a.w.) said, “If one of you loses his animal or his camel in a deserted land where there is no-one in sight, let him say, ‘O servants of Allah, help me!’ for verily he will be helped.”

It is not said that all that is meant by the “servants of Allah” in the ahadits cited above are only angels, or Muslims among the jinn, or men of the realm of the invisible: for all of these are living and there is no controversy about asking their help.  Hence, the ahadits would not give evidence for asking aid from the dead, but this is not the case.  We mention this because there is nothing explicit in the ahadits whereby what is meant by “servants of Allah” are the categories we mentioned above and nothing else.  Yet even if we were to concede this, the ahadits would still be a proof against the Wahhabis from another standpoint, and that is the calling on someone invisible.  The Wahhabis no more allow it than the calling on the dead.  Imam ash-Shawkani (r.a.) allowed the calling on someone invisible.  In Tuhfat adz-Dzakirin, he wrote. “in the ahadits of ‘a’inu’, there is evidence that it is permissible to ask help from those one does not see among the servants of Allah, whether angels or good jinn, and there is nothing wrong in doing it, just as it is permissible for someone to seek the help of human beings if his mount becomes unmanageable or runs loose.”

Tawaswswul & the Hadits of Intercession

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Imam al-Bukhari (r.a.) related, in the Hadits of Intercession, that people, while they are in the horrors in the Day of Resurrection, ask help of Adam (a.s.), then of Noah (a.s.), then of Abraham (a.s.), then of Moses (a.s.), then of Jesus (a.s.), and all of them will give an excuse, and Jesus (a.s.) will say, “Go to Muhammad.”

Then, they will go to Muhammad (s.a.w.) and he will say, “I will do it.”  If seeking aid of a creature was forbidden, then the Prophet (s.a.w.) would have not mentioned to the companions.  The ones who object to this give the answer that this is the Day of Resurrection when the Prophet (s.a.w.) has power.  One responds with the refutation that in their worldly life they have no power except as a secondary cause, likewise after death, the living in their graves and beyond are allowed to be secondary causes only.