Moreover the Sahabah – the best generation of Muslims – never went to the grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to make du’a to him. They asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) to make du’a for them as long as he was alive. After his death there was not a single Companion who went to the Prophet’s grave for help or intercession.
Stop making du’a to the Prophet
By Abdullah Al-Hindi
Many Muslims while visiting the grave of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) make du’a to him directly. They believe the Prophet (peace be upon him) is alive and is able to answer them. But Allah says, “Every soul shall taste death.” (Qur’an, 3:185; 21:35) This verse refers to every soul, including that of the Prophet (peace be upon him). To argue that the Prophet (peace be upon him) is alive with a life akin to ours on earth is not based on any evidence or proof from the Qur’an and Sunnah. Instead the opposite is proved by the ahadith that describe his last days and final moments in this world.
Ayesha (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated: “When the Prophet (peace be upon him) was healthy, he used to say, ‘No soul of a Prophet is taken until he has been shown his place in Paradise and then he is given the choice.’ When death approached him while his head was on my thigh, he became unconscious and then recovered consciousness. He then looked at the ceiling of the house and said, ‘O Allah! (with) the highest companions.’ I said (to myself), ‘He is not going to choose (to stay with) us.’ Then I understood what he meant when he said that to us when he was healthy. The last words he spoke were, ‘O Allah! (with) the highest companions.’” (Al-Bukhari, no. 4463; Muslim, no. 2444)
His closest relatives – Ali Bin Abu Talib, Al-Abbas Bin Abdul Muttalib, his two sons Al-Fadl and Qutham, as well as Usama Bin Zayd – performed ghusl over his body, the Sahabah performed the funeral prayer and then they buried him in the spot where he died in Ayesha’s (may Allah be pleased with her) home. Would they have done this to a living man?
The clear text indicates that the Prophet (peace be upon him) passed away from the life of this world, just as every one of us has to. Allah says:
“Verily, you (O Muhammad, peace be upon him) will die, and verily, they (too) will die.” (Qur’an, 39:30)
The life in the grave – the life of Barzakh – however is established. But this life is different from the life of the world and there is no connection between the two. As the soul departs, we are transited into a different life called the Barzakh. This is the intermediary stage till the Day of Judgment. On the Day of Judgment, Allah will bring every one back to life – and this life will be the eternal life. Mankind will be raised up naked and uncircumcised.
Some misuse texts that show the special status of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to establish wrong acts of worship. For instance some may say cite fact that the Prophet (peace be upon him) receives our greetings of peace and blessings in the grave to say that he can hear our pleas. The truth however is that Allah has appointed angels to bring the greetings of his followers to him.
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Allah has angels who go around on earth, conveying to me the salaam of my Ummah.” (Sunan Nasa’i, authenticated by Al-Albani)
This further indicates – and Allah knows best – that our greetings are not directly heard by him.
Whatever may be the case, when it comes to making du’a to him, it becomes an act of worship. Directly making du’a to anyone – alive or dead – believing that he or she is capable of answering our du’a is Shirk. The person who does that sets up a partner to Allah by giving what is the right of Allah alone to other than Allah. This goes against the fundamental of Islam – Laa ilaha illAllah – that all Prophets called their nations to.
“And We did not send any Messenger before you (O Muhammad, peace be upon him) but We revealed to him (saying): Laa ilaaha illa Ana (none has the right to be worshipped but I (Allah)), so worship Me (Alone and none else).” (Qur’an, 21:25)
“And your Lord says: Call on Me, I will answer your (prayer). But those who are too arrogant to serve Me will surely find themselves in hell, in humiliation.” (Qur’an, 40:60)
Moreover, any religious act is not acceptable to Allah unless it has been explicitly mentioned in the authentic texts. The Prophet (peace be upon him) forbade his followers from exaggerating his status. In fact, in his final moments he warned the Ummah against taking his grave as a place of worship.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The most evil of people are those who took the graves of their Prophets as places of worship.” (Musnad Ahmad, no. 1691; authenticated by Al-Albani)
Seeking intercession of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to ask Allah’s help is also Haraam and Shirk.
The Quraish of Makkah used idols as intercessors with Allah. They worshipped idols of pious men of the past only to get nearer to Allah. However this act was rejected by Allah and His Messenger and they were considered Mushriks (polytheists).
They were instead commanded to worship Allah alone. Allah says about the Quraish:
And they worship besides Allah things that hurt them not, nor profit them, and they say: “These are our intercessors with Allah.” Say: “Do you inform Allah of that which He knows not in the heavens and on the earth?” Glorified and Exalted be He above all that which they associate as partners with Him! (Qur’an, 10:18)
Moreover the Sahabah – the best generation of Muslims – never went to the grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to make du’a to him. They asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) to make du’a for them as long as he was alive. After his death there was not a single Companion who went to the Prophet’s grave for help or intercession. Undoubtedly they were deeply rooted in the belief of Tawheed. They gave the due respect which the Prophet (peace be upon him) by obeying him and following his sunnah. Allah Himself has approved of the Sahabah’s faith and made it an example for others in the Qur’an. He has explicitly stated that He is pleased with them.
“So if they believe in the like of that which you believe, then they are rightly guided, but if they turn away, then they are only in opposition.” (Qur’an, 2:137)
From every angle that one may wish to look, there is absolutely no evidence for the practice of directing prayers to the Prophet (peace be upon him). Those who perpetrate this are only fooling themselves that they are practicing Islam. They follow nothing but conjecture. – SG