29 - That author writes on page 503:
"It is permissible to ask any living person for shafa'a, that is, help and prayers. Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, 'Oh brother! Do not forget us in your good prayers!' to Hadrat 'Umar who was then leaving Medina for Mecca to carry out umra. This hadith ash-Sharif is written in the Musnads of Abu Dawud and Imam Ahmad. Hadrat 'Umar said, 'I had never heard in my life a word lovelier than brother in that hadith ash-Sharif.' Islam permits only to pray for the dead. Asking the dead for their prayer is not stated in Islam. Ayats and hadiths forbid this. The 13th ayat of Surat al-Fatir declares, 'The idols you worship other than Allahu ta'ala cannot be useful to you even as much the membrane around the stone of a date is. Those idols do not hear when your pray to them. They would not answer you even if they heard, because they do not have the power to help you. And the idols will tell you on the Day of Judgement that you made a mistake by attributing them as partners to Allahu ta'ala.' This ayat indicates that those who ask the dead for prayer will be treated as unbelievers on the Day of Judgement. This is also expressed in the statement, 'Their idols will become enemies to unbelievers on the Day of Judgement and tell them that their worship was wrong,' which is the sixth ayat of Surat al-Ahqaf. Therefore, no dead or absent person can hear, help or do harm. As-Sahaba and al-Khulafa' ar-Rashidin, who were their superiors, did not go to Rasulullah's grave to ask for anything. Hadrat 'Umar (radi-Allahu 'anh) took Hadrat 'Abbas for rain-prayer and asked him to pray for rain, for he was alive and could pray to Allah. If it had been permissible to ask the dead to pray for rain, Hadrat 'Umar and as-Sahaba would have asked Rasulullah's grave for it."
That author has quoted the hadith ash-Sharif, "Wherever you are, your greeting will be conveyed to me," and remarked that this hadith ash-Sharif was sahih and mashhur on page 486, but here, he alludes that Rasulullah would hear nothing and could not pray and that it was polytheistic to ask him to pray. His statements disagree with one another. The ayat al-Karim of Surat al-Fatir, which he quotes as a document for his ideas, is about the unbelievers who do not believe in and worship Allahu ta'ala, but worship idols and statues. It is slander against the Qur'an al-karim and Muslims to quote the ayats about kafirs as documents to call 'disbelievers' those Muslims who visit the grave of the Beloved Prophet or of a wali of Allahu ta'ala to ask for intercession and prayer. The above ayat al-karima is not about graves or the dead, but it is about idolatrous disbelievers who do not believe in Allahu ta'ala. Nobody has any right in the least to support his idea of showing Muslims as the subject of this ayat. In the ayat al-karima just before the one he quotes from Surat al-Ahqaf, Allahu ta'ala declares, "There is no one worse and more heretical than the one who does not believe in and worship Allahu ta'ala but worships idols that do not hear." This ayat karima is about unbelievers, too. It was with the intention of following the Sunnat that Hadrat 'Umar set out for rain-prayer. Because Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) had prayed for rain, Hadrat 'Umar, too, copying his sunnat, prayed for rain. Performing rain-prayer in an 'ibada, and an 'ibada must be performed in accordance with the Sunnat. Moreover, as written in Maraqi'l-falah, an invaluable Hanafi book of fiqh, "It is better for the Medinans to assemble in Masjid an-Nabi for rain-prayer. Because, in Masjid an-Nabi, no request is made to Allahu ta'ala with the mediation of someone other than Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) since nothing is attained otherwise. It is written by al-Bukhari and Muslim that Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam), too, had performed rain-prayer in Masjid an-Nabi. The more honorable the place where the prayer is performed, the more the rain of blessings will fall. First, Rasulullah is begged through the mediation of his two Khalifas. Then, Allahu ta'ala is begged through the mediation of the there of them." Another lie of that author is that he writes that one should turn his face to the qibla, leaving the graves behind him, when visiting the Qabr as-Saada. The book Maraqi 'l-falah says, "The visitor turns his face to the grave and leaves the qibla behind. It is the same with visiting other graves too." Assembling and praying for rain in accordance with the Sunnat is an 'ibada confirmed by the Qur'an al- Karim and Sunnat. To ask for rain at the Qabr as-Saada without observing the associated sunnat is to change this 'ibada. It is ordered that a Muslim should make up (qada') for the salat he has omitted so that he may be forgiven for the sin of omitting the salat. As it is not permissible to ask forgiveness at the Qabr as-Saada without performing the qada' of an omitted salat, so it is not permissible to ask for rain at the Qabr as-Saada. Nevertheless, it is stated in the well-known hadith ash-Sharif that it is thousands of times more beneficial to perform such 'ibada near the Qabr as-Saada than at any other place.
Of course, salat is not to be performed for a wali. One should not face a wali's grave while performing salat. This is a grave sin or even polytheism. However, it is very meritorious to perform salat near the graves of awliya', but only for Allah and facing the qibla. Because, blessings flow to the graves of awliya'. If it had not been permissible to perform salat near graves or tombs, as-Sahabat al-kiram would not have placed the Qabr as-Saada in a mosque. All the Sahabis and billions of Muslims for over fourteen centuries of Islam have performed salat near the Qabr as-Saada. The high virtue of performing salat at that place was revealed in a Hadith ash-Sharif. Those who perform salat in the rear line in Masjid as-Saada face the Qabr as-Saada. No scholar of Islam has ever objected to this in fourteen hundred years. Can there be any other document greater than this to prove that it is permissible to perform salat near the graves of awliya'? It is prohibited by a Hadith ash-Sharif to perform salat towards a grave with the intention of performing salat towards a grave. But it is certain by consensus (ijma' al-Umma) that it does not harm one's salat which is intended to be performed towards the qibla if a grave happens to be between him and the Kaba.
Ibn Hajar al-Haitami al-Makki (rahimah-Allahu ta'ala), on the 91st page of his book Zawajir quotes the hadith qudsi written in the Sahih of al-Bukhari: "Allahu ta'ala declared, 'He who hostiles to one of My awliya' should know that he is at war with Me. The approach of My servant to Me by means of the things which I have decreed as fard on him is lovelier to Me than his approach by any other means. I love My servant when he comes to Me by performing the nafila, and I grant him whatever he wishes.' " He writes on page 95, "A hadith ash-Sharif declares, 'It is made known to me when someone says salawat for me. And I pray for him.' Another hadith ash-Sharif declares, 'My soul comes to my body when a Muslim greets me. I reply to his greeting. Prophets are alive in their graves.' It is declared in a hadith ash-Sharif related by Abu 'd-Darda, 'The earth does not rot prophets' bodies. On Fridays, recite salawat onto me repeatedly! The salawat recited by my umma will be communicated to me every Friday.' He was asked: 'Oh Rasul-Allah! How are the salawat made known to you after your body rots in the grave?' 'Allahu ta'ala has made it haram for earth to rot prophets,' he answered. Such hadiths show that prophets ('alaihimu 's-salawatu wat-taslimat) are alive in their graves and do not rot. And awliya' are their inheritors." The hadiths related by Ibn Abi Shaiba and Abu Nuaym, as quoted in the book Kunuz ad-daqaiq, declare, "Allahu ta'ala is remembered when His awliya' are seen," and "Allahu ta'ala has awliya'. Allahu ta'ala occurs to the mind when they are seen." The hadith ash-Sharif transmitted by ad-Dailami and quoted in Kunuz ad-daqaiq declares, "If those in graves did not exist, the people in the town would have burnt." These hadiths show that Allahu ta'ala bestows goodness upon living people through the cause and grace of the dead. The hadith ash-Sharif narrated by al-'Askari and quoted in the book Kunuz by 'Abd ar-Ra'uf al-Munawi ash-Shafi'i (rahmat-Allah 'alaih), who passed away in Cairo in 1031 A.H. (1621), declares, "I would visit Yahya ibn Zakariyya's grave if I knew where it was."
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