By Shaikh Abdullah Faisal
3 August 2014 / 8 Shawwal 1435 (Evening)
What is tawassul?
- It means to seek means to draw near to Allah
O you who believe! Do your duty to Allah and fear Him. Seek the means of approach to Him, and strive hard in His Cause as much as you can. So that you may be successful. (Al-Ma'idah 5:35)
There are two types of tawassul:
HALAL TYPES OF TAWASSUL
1. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH ACTS OF PIETY
Allah said in a hadith qudsi:
On the authority of Abu Hurayrah (RA) who said: The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said, "Verily Allah ta’ala has said: ‘Whosoever shows enmity to a wali (friend) of Mine, then I have declared war against him. And My servant does not draw near to Me with anything more loved to Me than the religious duties I have obligated upon him. And My servant continues to draw near to me with nafil (supererogatory) deeds until I Love him. When I Love him, I am his hearing with which he hears, and his sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he strikes, and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask [something] of Me, I would surely give it to him; and were he to seek refuge with Me, I would surely grant him refuge.’" [It was related by al-Bukhari]
2. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH HIS 99 NAMES AND ATTRIBUTES
Allah said in Surah A'raf:
And (all) the Most Beautiful Names belong to Allah, so call on Him by them, and leave the company of those who belie or deny (or utter impious speech against) His Names. They will be requited for what they used to do. (Al-A'raf 7:180)
3. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH PROPER TAWHEED
- To be upon proper tawheed is the means to draw near to Allah
- Abu Haneefa said tawheed is fiqh al akbar
- Without proper tawheed you won’t be counted as the muttaqeen
- Allah will only accept from the muttaqeen
And (O Muhammad SAW) recite to them (the Jews) the story of the two sons of Adam [Habil (Abel) and Qabil (Cain)] in truth; when each offered a sacrifice (to Allah), it was accepted from the one but not from the other. The latter said to the former: "I will surely kill you." The former said: "Verily, Allah accepts only from those who are Al-Muttaqun (the pious - see V.2:2)." (Al-Ma'idah 5:27)
Narrated By Ibn Abbas: When the Prophet sent Muadh to Yemen, he said to him, "You are going to a nation from the people of the Scripture, so let the first thing to which you will invite them, be the Tauhid of Allah. If they learn that, tell them that Allah has enjoined on them, five prayers to be offered in one day and one night. And if they pray, tell them that Allah has enjoined on them Zakat of their properties and it is to be taken from the rich among them and given to the poor. And if they agree to that, then take from them Zakat but avoid the best property of the people." [Sahih Bukhari, Vol 9, Book 93, Hadith #469]
4. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH SINCERITY
- You cannot draw near to Allah with hypocrisy
- You can’t do things with ulterior motives
- E.g. Hamas are democrats so it is difficult for them to win
- Allah praised prophet Yusuf (AS) as among the mukhlaseen
And indeed she did desire him and he would have inclined to her desire, had he not seen the evidence of his Lord. Thus it was, that We might turn away from him evil and illegal sexual intercourse. Surely, he was one of Our chosen, guided slaves. (Yusuf 12:24)
- He was too sincere for the woman to seduce.
5. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH SINCERE TAWBAH
- An example of this is the man who killed 100 people
Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance and loves those who purify themselves (by taking a bath and cleaning and washing thoroughly their private parts, bodies, for their prayers, etc.). (Al-Baqarah 2:222)
Abu Sa'id al-Khudri reported Allah's Messenger (SAW) as saying: There was a person before you who had killed ninety-nine persons and then made an inquiry about the learned persons of the world (who could show him the way to salvation). He was directed to a monk.
He came to him and told him that he had killed ninety-nine persons and asked him whether there was any scope for his repentance to be accepted. He said: No. He killed him also and thus completed one hundred.
He then asked about the learned persons of the earth and he was directed to a scholar, and he told him that he had killed one hundred persons and asked him whether there was any scope for his repentance to be accepted. He said: Yes; what stands between you and the repentance?
You better go to such and such land; there are people devoted to prayer and worship and you also worship along with them and do not come to the land of yours since it was an evil land (for you). So he went away and he had hardly covered half the distance when death came to him and there was a dispute between the angels of mercy and the angels of punishment.
The angels of mercy said: This man has come as a penitent and remorseful to Allah and the angels of punishment said: He has done no good at all. Then there came another angel in the form of a human being in order to decide between them. He said: You measure the land to which he has drawn near.
They measured it and found him nearer to the land where he intended to go (the land of piety), and so the angels of mercy took possession of it. Qatada said that Hasan told him that it was said to them that as death approached him, he crawled upon his chest (and managed) to slip in the land of mercy. [Sahih Muslim, Book 37, Hadith #6662] Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger having said: “By Him in Whose Hand is my life, if you were not to commit sin, Allah would sweep you out of existence and He would replace (you by) those people who would commit sin and seek forgiveness from Allah, and He would have pardoned them.” [Sahih Muslim (4/2106) No. 2749]
- Allah rewards you for your intention
- When prophet Yunus (AS) was in the belly of the whale he did tawassul like Allah mentioned in the following ayah:
And (remember) Dhan-Nun (Jonah), when he went off in anger, and imagined that We shall not punish him (i.e. the calamites which had befallen him)! But he cried through the darkness (saying) : La ilaha illa Anta [none has the right to be worshipped but You (O Allah)], Glorified (and Exalted) are You [above all that (evil) they associate with You]. Truly, I have been of the wrong-doers." (Al-Anbiya 21:87)
6. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH SADAQAH
On the authority of Abu Hurayrah (RA) who said: The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said, "Every joint of a person must perform a charity each day that the sun rises: to judge justly between two people is a charity. To help a man with his mount, lifting him onto it or hoisting up his belongings onto it, is a charity. And the good word is a charity. And every step that you take towards the prayer is a charity, and removing a harmful object from the road is a charity." [It was related by al-Bukhari and Muslim]
7. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH FASTING
O you who believe! Observing As-Saum (the fasting) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al-Muttaqun (the pious - see V.2:2). (Al-Baqarah 2:183)
8. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH HIJRA
- This is from the land of kufr to the land of tawqa
Verily! As for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves (as they stayed among the disbelievers even though emigration was obligatory for them), they (angels) say (to them) : "In what (condition) were you?" They reply: "We were weak and oppressed on earth." They (angels) say: "Was not the earth of Allah spacious enough for you to emigrate therein?" Such men will find their abode in Hell - What an evil destination! (An-Nisa 4:97)
Shaykh ul Islam Ibn Taymiyyah (rh) said, “The state of a place reflects the state of a person. It is possible to be sometimes a Muslim and at other times a disbeliever; sometimes sincere and at other times hypocritical; sometimes good and pious and at other times rotten and corrupt. Thus, a person becomes like the place of his abode. The migration of a person from a land of disbelief and profanity to one of faith and probity is an expression of repentance and of his turning away from disobedience and perversion to belief and obedience. This is so until the Day of Resurrection.” [Majmu’al-Fatawa, (18/284)]
- One of the ways to get closer to Allah is Hijra.
- Many muslim girls in the UK, US, etc. have become harlots, because of the land where they live
- Many Muslim men become homosexuals because of the land where they live
- Ibn Taymiyyah did not mince his words in the above statement.
- You have become such low life scum on the earth, you prefer not to have a caliph.
- You prefer to live with the kuffar
- So when the caliphate was established, they were the first to reject it
- They are classically conditioned to live under humiliation.
- The white man is a control freak, why do you want to live among him?
- You the people who are living in the UK, if I ask you to tell me a good quality of the white or black man, what would you tell me?
- You could not find one
9. THE OTHER WAY TO DO TAWASSUL IS TO JOIN THE JIHAD FISABILILLAH
Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their properties; for the price that theirs shall be the Paradise. They fight in Allah's Cause, so they kill (others) and are killed. It is a promise in truth which is binding on Him in the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel) and the Qur'an. And who is truer to his covenant than Allah? Then rejoice in the bargain which you have concluded. That is the supreme success. (At-Tawbah 9:111)
On the authority of Muadh bin Jabal (RA) who said: I said, "O Messenger of Allah, tell me of an act which will take me into Paradise and will keep me away from the Hellfire." He (SAW) said, "Shall I not inform you of the head of the matter, its pillar and its peak?" I said, "Yes, O Messenger of Allah." He (SAW) said, "The head of the matter is Islam, its pillar is the prayer and its peak is jihad. [Sunan Tirmidhi (5/11)No. 2616, Sunan Ibn Majah (5/116) No. 3973, Musnad Ahmad (5/231) No. 22069]
10. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH A PIOUS DEED THAT YOU DID IN THE PAST
- An example of this is the story of the three men in the cave when the exit was blocked with a rock as mentioned in the following hadith:
Narrated By Ibn 'Umar: The Prophet said, "While three persons were walking, rain began to fall and they had to enter a cave in a mountain. A big rock rolled over and blocked the mouth of the cave. They said to each other, 'Invoke Allah with the best deed you have performed (so Allah might remove the rock)'.
One of them said, 'O Allah! My parents were old and I used to go out for grazing (my animals). On my return I would milk (the animals) and take the milk in a vessel to my parents to drink. After they had drunk from it, I would give it to my children, family and wife.
One day I was delayed and on my return I found my parents sleeping, and I disliked towake them up. The children were crying at my feet (because of hunger). That state of affairs continued till it was dawn. O Allah! If You regard that I did it for Your sake, then please remove this rock so that we may see the sky.' So, the rock was moved a bit.
The second said, 'O Allah! You know that I was in love with a cousin of mine, like the deepest love a man may have for a woman, and she told me that I would not get my desire fulfilled unless I paid her one-hundred Dinars (gold pieces). So, I struggled for it till I gathered the desired amount, and when I sat in between her legs, she told me to be afraid of Allah, and asked me not to deflower her except rightfully (by marriage) So, I got up and left her.
O Allah! If You regard that I did if for Your sake, kindly remove this rock.' So, two-thirds of the rock was removed.
Then the third man said, 'O Allah! No doubt You know that once I employed a worker for one Faraq (three Sa's) of millet, and when I wanted to pay him, he refused to take it, so I sowed it and from its yield I bought cows and a shepherd. After a time that man came and demanded his money.
I said to him Go to those cows and the shepherd and take them for they are for you. He asked me whether I was joking with him. I told him that I was not joking with him, and all that belonged to him. O Allah! If You regard that I did it sincerely for Your sake, then please remove the rock.' So, the rock was removed completely from the mouth of the cave." [Sahih Bukhari, Vol 3, Book 34, Hadith #418]
- Maybe you did something good 10 years ago, but today you are in a plight.
- You can call upon Allah with that pious deed which you did to remove the calamity
11. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH BY PROMISING TO DO A GOOD DEED FOR THE SAKE OF ALLAH
- Maybe you have a problem, you can ask Allah to remove it by making a promise
- E.g. a promise to fast for three days.
- If you die before you fulfil the promise, someone in your family has to fulfil it by fasting the three days
12. TO DRAW NEAR TO ALLAH WITH THE DUA OF A PIOUS PERSON
- For example, if a person is going to hajj/umrah, you can ask them to make a dua for you
Uthman ibn Haneef (RA) narrated: "A man who was blind came to the Prophet and requested him to pray to Allah that He may cure me of my blindness. He said, 'If you wish, but if you be patient, that is better for you.' He said that the Prophet (SAW) may pray for him. So, the Prophet (SAW) commanded him to make ablution and make it very well and pray in these words, 'O Allah I ask you and plead to you through your Prophet Muhammad, Prophet of mercy, I plead by your virtue O my Lord, for my need, this one that it be granted to me. O Allah, accept his intercession for me.'" [Tirmidhi 3589, Ibn Majah 1385, Ahmed 17240]
THE HARAM TYPE OF TAWASSUL
- There are people in the world today who say, "O Allah forgive me because of the status of Muhammad (SAWS)” or “because of the right that Muhammad (SAWS) has over You”
- Ibn Taymiyyah says this type of tawassul is haram
- But many scholars allow it
- Those who allow it rely on a fabricated hadith
Imaam Haakim and others have narrated on the authority of Sayyiduna Umar ibn al-Khattaab [radhiallaahu anhu] that Rasulullah [Sallallahu alayhi wasallam] said, 'When Adam [alayhis salaam] ate from the forbidden tree, he said, 'O My Lord, I ask you through the right of Muhammad [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam] that you forgive me.' The words used were, 'Bi haqqi Muhammad' Allah Ta'ala accepted Aadam's [alayhis salaam] repentance. (al-Mustadrak vol.2 pg.615; Dalaailun-Nubuwwah of Imaa Bayhaqi vol.5 pg.489; al-Mu'jamus saghir of Imaam Tabrani vol.2 pg.82)
- This hadith is not authentic
- Even though Ibn Taymiyyah doesn’t approve of this type of tawassul, it doesn't reach the level of shirk.
- Many people go to the grave of Muhammad (SAWS) in Madina, begging him to intercede for them
- They say "O Muhammad, beg Allah to forgive me" because this is their understanding of tawassul
- When you ask them for evidence of what they're doing, they quote hadith of the blind man, the hadith of Uthman ibn Hanif.
- They quote it because the hadith is saheeh
- We are going to refute their understanding
- The sahaba begged Muhammad (SAWS) to pray for him, while Muhammad (SAWS) was alive .
- But when the Prophet passed away, none of the rightly guided caliphs went to his grave to pray to him even though they suffered a lot of calamities.
- E.g. when Omar was the caliph, he suffered a drought
- Omar went to the uncle of the Prophet (SAWS)
- Abbas prayed for rain and it rained
Narrated By Anas: Whenever drought threatened them, 'Umar bin Al-Khattab, used to ask Al-Abbas bin 'Abdul Muttalib to invoke Allah for rain. He used to say, "O Allah! We used to ask our Prophet to invoke You for rain, and You would bless us with rain, and now we ask his uncle to invoke You for rain. O Allah ! Bless us with rain." And so it would rain. [Sahih Bukhari, Vol 2, Book 17, Hadith #123]
- If it were allowed to pray to Muhammad (SAWS) after he died, why didn't Omar do it?
You can call on Muhammad - Hamza Yusuf
- Omar approached a man that was alive
- It's called to do tawassul with the dua of a pious man
Think not of those who are killed in the Way of Allah as dead. Nay, they are alive, with their Lord, and they have provision. (Aali Imran 3:169)
Verily, you (O Muhammad SAW) will die and verily, they (too) will die. (Az-Zumar 39:30)
Narrated By 'Aisha: Abu Bakr came from his house at As-Sunh on a horse. He dismounted and entered the Mosque, but did not speak to the people till he entered upon 'Aisha and went straight to Allah's Apostle who was covered with Hibra cloth (i.e. a kind of Yemenite cloth). He then uncovered the Prophet's face and bowed over him and kissed him and wept, saying, "Let my father and mother be sacrificed for you. By Allah, Allah will never cause you to die twice. As for the death which was written for you, has come upon you."
Narrated Ibn 'Abbas: Abu Bakr went out while Umar bin Al-Khattab was talking to the people. Abu Bakr said, "Sit down, O 'Umar!" But 'Umar refused to sit down. So the people came to Abu Bakr and left Umar. Abu Bakr said, "To proceed, if anyone amongst you used to worship Muhammad , then Muhammad is dead, but if (anyone of) you used to worship Allah, then Allah is Alive and shall never die.Allah said: "Muhammad is no more than an Apostle, and indeed (many) apostles have passed away before him...(till the end of the Verse)... Allah will reward to those who are thankful." (3.144) By Allah, it was as if the people never knew that Allah had revealed this Verse before till Abu Bakr recited it and all the people received it from him, and I heard everybody reciting it (then). [Sahih Bukhari, Vol 5, Book 59, Hadith #733]
- The Sufis use another argument against us to prove you can pray to Muhammad (SAWS)
- They use the tasha'hhud as their evidence to worship Muhammad while he is inside the grave
- Because in the tasha'hhud we say "...peace be upon you O Muhammad"
Narrated Ibn Mas'ud Allah's Apostle taught me the Tashah-hud as he taught me a Sura from the Quran, while my hand was between his hands. (Tashah-hud was) all the best compliments and the prayers and the good things are for Allah. Peace and Allah's Mercy and Blessings be on you, O Prophet! Peace be on us and on the pious slaves of Allah, I testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah, and I also testify that Muhammad is Allah's slave and His Apostle. (We used to recite this in the prayer) during the lifetime of the Prophet, but when he had died, we used to say, "Peace be on the Prophet." [Bukhari - Volume 8, Book 74, Number 281]
- They say, “You are a wahabi, you think Muhammad is dead.”
- They say, “As far as we are concerned, Muhammad (SAWS) is alive and he has all of his faculties.”
- When they pray to Muhammad (SAWS) in the grave, they turn his grave into an idol
- Let us refute that Muhammad (SAWS) has all of his faculties
Abu Huraira narrated that the Prophet said, "On the Day of Resurrection a group of companions will come to me, but will be driven away from the Lake-Fount, and I will say, 'O Lord (those are) my companions!' It will be said, 'You have no knowledge as to what they innovated after you left; they turned apostate as renegades (reverted from Islam)." [Sahih Bukhari (8/120) No. 6585]
- The following hadith is evidence that the grave of Muhammad (SAWS) can become an idol.
Yahya related to me from Malik from Zayd ibn Aslam from Ata ibn Yasar that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said, "O Allah! Do not make my grave an idol that is worshipped. The anger on those who took the graves of their Prophets as places of prostration was terrible." [Muwatta Malik (1/223) No. 570, Musannaf Abdur Razzaq (1/406) No. 1587, Musnad Ahmad (2/246) No. 7352]
- The Sufis who call upon Muhammad (SAWS) are worse than the pagans of Makkah.
- Because the pagans of Makkah called upon Allah alone when they were suffering
And when they embark on a ship, they invoke Allah, making their Faith pure for Him only, but when He brings them safely to land, behold, they give a share of their worship to others. (Al-'Ankabut 29:65)
Thus is the Word of your Lord justified against those who rebel (disobey Allah) that they will not believe (in the Oneness of Allah and in Muhammad SAW as the Messenger of Allah). (Yunus 10:33)
And when harm touches you upon the sea, those that you call upon besides Him vanish from you except Him (Allah Alone). But when He brings you safely to land, you turn away (from Him). And man is ever ungrateful. (Al-Isra 17:67)
- Allah told you that when you call upon dead people, Allah blocks them from hearing your kufr and your shirk.
If you invoke (or call upon) them, they hear not your call, and if (in case) they were to hear, they could not grant it (your request) to you. And on the Day of Resurrection, they will disown your worshipping them. And none can inform you (O Muhammad SAW) like Him Who is the AllKnower (of each and everything). (Fatir 35:14)
- Allah said you are worshipping them in the above ayah
- When you call upon them, you are wasting your time
- Because of the ayah, you are not allowed to doubt that the grave worshipper is a kaafir
- Then Allah told you in another ayah that the grave worshippers are liars and kaafirs
Surely, the religion (i.e. the worship and the obedience) is for Allah only. And those who take Auliya' (protectors and helpers) besides Him (say) : "We worship them only that they may bring us near to Allah." Verily, Allah will judge between them concerning that wherein they differ. Truly, Allah guides not him who is a liar, and a disbeliever. (Az-Zumar 39:3)
- I've given you 12 ways to do tawassul in a halal way, so there is no need for you to dabble in shirk