5 - He quotes the hadith ash-Sharif, "The lives and property of those who say, 'La ilaha illa'llah,' and do not worship anything other than Allahu ta'ala are haram," and says on page 111:
"Saying only the kalimat at-tawhid cannot save one's blood and possessions. Those who worship tombs and the dead are in this group. They are worse than the pre-Islamic polytheists mentioned in the Qur'an al-karim."
Some people, putting forward the ayat, "Kill polytheists wherever you find them," as a reason, want to kill Muslims and plunder their possessions. They quote the words of disbelief and polytheism of the Khurufis and of the ignoramuses and attack tasawwuf and the superior authorities on tasawwuf. Quoting the hadiths condemning those who worship trees, stones or graves, they say that it is polytheism or disbelief to build tombs on graves and to visit graves.
It is certainly polytheism to regard a stone, a tree or an unknown grave as a means of blessing. But it is stupidity and ignorance to liken to it visiting the graves of the prophets ('alaihimu 's-salawatu wa 't-taslimat) and awliya' (rahimahum-Allahu ta'ala) with the intention of getting enlightenment and blessings through their baraka (holiness) from Allahu ta'ala. Moreover, it is to set disunion among Muslims to accuse millions of Muslims -because of this- of disbelief and polytheism.
The profound scholar Sulaiman ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab an-Najdi (rahimah-Allahu ta'ala), the author of As-sawa'iq al-ilahiyya fi 'r-raddi 'ala 'l-Wahhabiyya, [First published by Nukhbat al-Akbar press in Baghdad in 1306 A.H.. Second edition was produced by photo-offset in Istanbul, 1395 (1975).] was the brother of Muhammad ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab, the founder of Wahhabism. He proved with documents that the path opened in the name of Wahhabism by his brother was heretical. He wrote on page 44 of his book:
"One of the documents showing that your path is heretical is the hadith ash-Sharif written in Sahihain, the two genuine hadith books, one by al-Bukhari and the other by Muslim. 'Uqba ibn Amir (radi-Allahu 'anh), the relater of the hadith ash-Sharif, said, 'Rasulullah (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam), ascended the minbar. It was the last time I saw him on the minbar. He declared: "I do not fear whether you will become polytheists after I die. I fear that you, because of worldly interests, will kill one another and thus be destroyed like ancient tribes." ' Rasulullah (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam) foretold all that would happen to his umma till the Resurrection. This sahih hadith states that his umma will never worship idols, that he was assured of it. This hadith ash-Sharif demolishes Wahhabism by the roots, for the Wahhabite book claims that the Ummat al-Muhammadiyya worship idols, that Muslim countries are full of idols, that tombs are idol-houses. It says that one also becomes a disbeliever by not believing that he who expects help or intercession at shrines is a disbeliever. However, Muslims have visited graves and asked the mediation and intercession of awliya' for centuries. No Islamic scholars have called such Muslims polytheists; they regarded them as Muslims.
"Question: A hadith ash-Sharif says, "Of all that will befall you, polytheism is the one I fear most." What would you say about that?'
"Answer: It is inferred from other hadiths that this hadith ash-Sharif alludes to shirk asghar (venial polytheism, see below). All similar hadiths related by Shaddan ibn Aws, Abu Huraira and Mahmud ibn LAbid (radi-Allahu ta'ala 'anhum) state that Rasulullah (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam) feared that shirk asghar would be committed by his umma. It has happened as it was told in the hadiths, and many Muslims have fallen into shirk asghar. You confuse shirk asghar with shirk akbar (the greatest polytheism), thus accuse Muslims of disbelief and regard those believers who do not call Muslim 'disbelievers' as disbelievers."
On page 451 of the book Al-Hadiqa, the hadith ash-Sharif, "Oh Mankind! Avoid that very occult polytheism!" is explained and remarked: "This kind of polytheism is to see the causes (sababs) only and not to think that Allahu ta'ala creates. To believe that the causes create the work is to attribute them as partners to Allahu ta'ala. It is called shirk jali (open, apparent polytheism) to attribute things seen or thought as partners of Him. And it is shirk khafi (occult polytheism) to believe that things considered as causes by Islam, reason or customs create." Hadrat 'Abd al-Haqq ad-Dahlawi says on page fifty of his work AShiat al-lama'at, "It is shirk akbar to worship idols. This is the kind of polytheism that causes kufr (disbelief). Shirk asghar is to perform rites and do goodness hypocritically. This minor polytheism does not make one a disbeliever." These two kinds of polytheism are of shirk jali.
The above hadith ash-Sharif quoted from Al-Hadiqa does not say that it is polytheism to ask something from souls and the dead. It means that it is polytheism to believe, while making use of the causes, that is, while asking something from human beings or using visible or invisible things, that the resultant work is done by the causes. It is polytheism, or the attribution of it as a partner to Allahu ta'ala, to believe that a living or lifeless cause is able to create or do whatever he or it wishes; with such a belief in mind, to ask something from the cause means to worship it. To make use of a cause with the belief that not the cause but Allahu ta'ala will create is not to worship it but to hold to it as a means. When Muslims want something from the living or the dead, from the present or the absent, they do not believe that their wish will be granted by these things themselves. Holding to the causes, they expect their wish from Allahu ta'ala and believe that He will create. Therefore, Muslims' asking something from souls and the dead does not mean that they worship them or regard them as beings to be worshiped. Allahu ta'ala creates everything through a cause or means and commands us to hold fast to using causes. For this reason, we hold to the associated cause for attaining what we wish. Holding to the causes is neither polytheism nor a sin. Expecting from the causes is polytheism. It is shirk akbar to expect from them with the belief that they can create whatever wished, and it is shirk khafi to expect from them with the belief that they will create with the power given by Allahu ta'ala. It is conformable to Islam to expect a wish not from the causes but from Allahu ta'ala and to believe that not they but only Allahu ta'ala will create. This is how Muslims request something of the dead and souls. Such lawful requesting is called tawassul or istighatha.
To know whether a person who requests something from a dead or living person worships him or makes tawassul of him, we examine whether he does something unconformable to Islam when he requests. If he does, that is, if he commits a haram or omits a fard with a view to pleasing him, it can be concluded that he worships him. As it is seen, the Wahhabis who, while requesting something from living people, act unconformably to Islam to please them become polytheists. However, those Muslims who make tawassul without doing anything unconformable to Islam carry out Allahu ta'ala's command; that is, they hold to the causes. Of those who call these Muslims polytheists, the ones who do so without a tawil become polytheists. If one does something unconformable to Islam to satisfy the desires of his nafs, he will have worshiped his nafs. However, our religion does not define worshiping one's nafs as polytheism; that is, it makes one not a disbeliever but a sinner.
See our Important Disclaimers and Legal Information