In The Name Of Allah The Most Beneficent, The Most Merciful
A COMPLETE REFUTATION OF SHAYKH FAAIK GAMIELDIEN
AND THE REAL ISLAMIC VIEWPOINT CONCERNING THE GRAVES OF THE AWLIYA
(FROM QURAN & SUNNAH)
STUDENTS OF ISLAMIC KNOWLEDGE
(BASED ON THE RESEARCH OF AL-IMAM AL-SAYYID MUHAMMAD
ALAWI AL-MALIKI OF MAKKAH MUKARRAMAH)
refutation to Shaykh Faaik Gamieldien’s letters and program on VOC Radio
Recently, there has been much controversy regarding the well-established practice of Muslims of visiting the shrines of the Awliya and paying homage to them. A local Muslim cleric, Shaykh Faaik Gamieldien, has referred to the Muslims who show respect to the blessed shrines as “Mushriks” and “Kafirs”. He further claims that there is no Qur’anic or Sunnah injunction to justify the visiting of these graves. He holds that the dead have no awareness or spiritual life and there is no Baraka at the shrines of these saints. He goes on to claim that it is forbidden to build structures around or above the graves of the saints and to honour them. He claims that expressing respect and veneration for the Prophets (s) leads to Shirk.
These outrageous claims have caused an uproar and unnecessary conflict and division in the Muslim community. The great scholar of Makkah, and one of the most highly respected `Ulama (religious scholars) of the contemporary Muslim world, Sayyid Muhammad bin Alawi Al-Maliki, has discussed these issues in detail, especially in his major work (Mafahim Yajib an Tusah-hah.), a book recognised by `Ulama from every Muslim country, including the muftis of Al-Azhar and Pakistan.
Using the eminent Shaykh’s research, in the following pages we will expound upon the true Islamic viewpoint concerning these important issues, based on the Quran, Sunnah and the Sayings of the great scholars of Islam.
What do the Qur’an and Sunnah say concerning the visitation of graves, the spiritual life and awareness of the dead, and the presence of Baraka (grace) and Nur (light) at the graves of the pious ones among Allah’s (swt) servants?
Firstly, Allah (swt) says in the Holy Qur’an about the qabr of the munafiq (hypocrite): “do not stand at his grave” ( Wa la Taqum ala Qabrihi ). From this the `Ulama have deduced that we should visit the graves of the mu’minin, i.e. our Muslim brothers and sisters..
Also, it is narrated in Sahih Muslim, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, Nasai and Musnad Ahmad (Bab al-Jana’iz) that Nabi Muhammad (s) said:
“I had previously forbidden you to visit graves, but I now permit you to visit them, for it will remind you of the Akhira.”
Even the Nabi Muhammad (s) used to visit the graves of his companions who had passed away at that time. It is narrated in the six authentic compilations of Hadith that the Nabi Muhammad (s) used to regularly visit the graveyard of Madinah, Jannatul-Baqi and make Du`a there (Muslim and Tirmidhi).
Al-Bayhaqi, narrates that he used to visit the graveyard of the martyrs of Uhud annually (Ala r’a s kulli Hawl).
So, besides merely visiting the graves, in some cases, the Nabi Muhammad (s), also did so at specific periodic intervals, e.g. annual commemoration, for visiting certain graves, as is the custom of many Muslims all over the world today.
We also know that the Nabi Muhammad (s) visited the Jannat al-Mua’lla graveyard in Makkah, where his dear wife Sayyidah Khadijah is buried and called the whole place a blessed graveyard “Ni’m al-Maqbarah Hazihi” (contrary to Shaykh Gamieldien’s claim that he did not give any importance to his wife’s grave). Narrated by al-Bazzar.
Imam Muslim narrates that the Prophet (s) even visited his honourable mother’s grave, which is in a place between Makkah and Madinah. He cried there and made everybody else also cry.
We also ask, why was the Jannatul Baqi` in Madinah made the holiest graveyard on earth as in the Sahih AHadith?
Precisely because of the Holy people who were going to be buried there, a fact which clearly shows that not all graves and graveyards are the same in status and Darajah (level), according to the Shariah. Those graveyards in which Holy people are buried are definitely higher in Status and Baraka, otherwise, why visit Jannat ul-Baq`i and Jannat ul-Mu`alla in Madinah and Makkah?
Bayhaqi narrates in Shu’ab al-Iman that the Prophet (s) said: “Whoever visits the grave of his parents or the grave of one of them, every Friday, he will be forgiven and his name will be written among the pious ones”(Man zaara qabra abawayhi au ahadihima fi kulli Jum’ah, ghufira lahu wa kutiba barran).
If visiting the graves of one’s parents can result in such a blessing, what about visiting the graves of the esteemed friends of Allah (swt)?
We ask, when the Prophet of Islam (s) has encouraged us to visit graves regularly and considered it a cause for Maghfirah, then how can anyone ever condemn it?
It is narrated in Sharhus Sudoor by al-Imam al-Suyuti that Nabi Muhammad (s) said that when you visit the graveyard, you should read Suratul-Ikhlas, Suratut-Takathur and Suratul-Fatiha, and present the reward of the recitations as a gift to the inhabitants of the graves. Nabi Muhammad (s) explains that these souls will then make du’a for you, asking Allah (swt) to forgive you and bless you.
So this then is a command of the Nabi Muhammad (s). We learn from this Hadith that the souls of the departed have the ability to make Du’a for the living, asking Allah (swt) to help the living who are visiting them.
In another Hadith in (Kanzul Ummal by al-Imam al-Muttaqi) it is narrated by Sayyidina ‘Ali (r) that the Nabi Muhammad (s) said: “Whoever goes to a graveyard or passes by a graveyard and recites surat al-Ikhlas eleven times and gives the thawab (reward) of the recital to the dead buried there, will receive the same thawab for it as the dead people.
In fact the Nabi Muhammad (s) is encouraging us to recite surat al-Ikhlas and present the thawab of it as a gift to the dead when we visit them. Today, some people are saying that making Dhikr at the graves is Bid`a!!! They must go and study Hadith.
Awareness of the dead and their spiritual life in the graves
Firstly, the Qubur of the Prophets (as):
A Sahih Hadith narrated by Imam Muslim (vol.2 p.268) states that the Nabi Muhammad (s) said that on the night of Mi’raj he (s) passed by the grave of Sayyidina Musa (as) and saw him praying in his grave (idha bi Musa yusalli fi Qabrihi)
This is evidence from the Sunnah of the Nabi Muhammad (s) that there are certain holy people of Allah (swt) who can even pray in the qabr . The ulama say that they are not praying because it is fard (obligatory) upon them (since they have already died) but that they are praying for the sake of the love of Allah (swt) and because they enjoy praying and thus talking to Allah (swt).
About the Anbiya (Prophets) (as), there are no doubts since Abu Ya’la and al-Bazzar (in their Musnads) narrate a sahih Hadith concering the Prophets that the Prophet (s) said that all of the Prophets are alive and praying in their graves. (al-Anbiya Ahyaa’un fi Quburihim yusalloon). The Arabic word for prayer used in this Hadith is (Salah), which may also mean du’a, besides the ritual Salah we know.
In another Sahih Hadith narrated by Abu Dawud, Nasai, Ibn Majah, Ahmad, Tabarani and others, the Nabi Muhammad (s) said that one must make a lot of Salawat on the day of Jumu`ah as this will be presented to the Nabi Muhammad (s). Then the Sahabah asked the Prophet (s) how their salawat was going to be presented to him after he had died and his body is no more, and the Prophet (s) replied that:
“Allah (swt) has made it haram (forbidden) for the earth to consume the bodies of the Prophets”
Things are only presented to someone if he is alive , fully aware and conscious of everything. This Hadith also shows that the Prophet (s) is aware of our salawat and our spiritual states, otherwise what is the meaning of this presentation?
So they are alive in the graves, they are praying, they are aware of who is making salawat on them -“ in short, they know us.
Prophet Muhammad’s (s) meeting with other Anbiya (as)
We also know that on the night of Mi’raj, all the Prophets (as) assembled in Masjidul Aqsa, physically (or spiritually as some say), but all of these prophets save `Isa (as) had already died, so to say. Yet that night they met the Nabi Muhammad (s), spoke to him and prayed behind him.
And when he went into the samawat (the skies) he (s) met them again. This shows, and we know it from many Sahih Hadith concerning the Mi’raj (Ascension) that these Prophets were alive and they went to the Aqsa, went to the skies and met the Nabi Muhammad (s).
Yet many people today want to deny the life of the Prophet (s) who is in fact the Imam of all those prophets (as), saying that the Nabi Muhammad (s) is dead and cannot go from place to place, that he is finished and has no awareness, A’udhu billah. May Allah (swt) protect us from such blasphemy.
We all know about the incident of Mi’raj and the reason why Masjidul Aqsa is so dear to us and so holy is because the Prophet (s) prayed there with all the Nabis. If we say that they never prayed there, then why is it so dear to us? What then is the significance of Aqsa?
We also know that Sayyidina Musa (as) benefitted us on that night because Allah (swt) had made fifty Prayers fard on us. But, through the intermediary action of Musa (as) this number was reduced to five times daily. What a great help is this to the Ummah of Muhammad (s). There are so many people having problems performing only the five daily prayers, how much more difficult would not 50 have been? Allah’s (swt) mercy upon us is indeed great.
But what is astonishing about this incident is that Musa (as) had passed away 4,000 years before that night of Mi’raj, yet there he was, acting as an intermediary for the Ummah of the Nabi Muhammad (s). If this is the ability of Musa (as), what about the best of creation, the Imam of prophets, our own Nabi Muhammad (s)? Can the Nabi Muhammad (s) not help us today if Sayyidina Musa (as) could help us then?
Concerning the Qubur of ordinary Muslims:
It is narrated by Abu Na’im and Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal that the great Tabi’i (a person who met the Sahabah) Thabit al-Bannani, used to say “O Allah! If you would give anyone the honour of making salah in the qabr (grave), give me that honour.”
Abu Na’im narrates that on the day of Thabit’s death ,Jubair (r) one of the great Tabi’in also, said: “I swear by Allah who created me, other than whom there is no Lord, I put Thabit al-Bannani in his his qabr that day when we buried him and with me was a person named Humaid at-Taweel and when we had finished putting the stones on the qabr one of the bricks fell down and I saw Thabit al-Bannani making salat in his qabr.”
In other words, Allah (swt) accepted the du’a of this great wali to make salat in his grave This is a sahih Hadith narrated by Ahmad ibn Hanbal and Abu Na’im.
In another sahih narration by Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah, the Nabi Muhammad (s) said that if anyone buries his brother, that he must put on a beautiful kafan for the dead person because they visit one another in the grave (innahum yatazaawarun).
This is only speaking about ordinary Muslims and not Awliya Allah. If ordinary Muslim dead can visit one another in their Qubur, then how much greater is not the status and ability of the Awliya Allah in their Qubur? What awareness do not these friends of Allah (swt) have in their Qubur?
It is narrated by Tirmidhi and an-Nasa’i as well as al-Hakim that one of the Sahabah put his tent over a qabr without knowing it and when he was inside the tent, he heard someone reciting surat al-Mulk. He went to Nabi Muhammad (s) and told him what he heard. Nabi Muhammad (s) informed him that surat al-Mulk is a protection against punishment in the qabr, and is protecting the man buried there.
The `Ulama of Hadith explain that that man loved reciting surat al-Mulk when he was alive and thus Allah (swt) granted him that he could recite it in his qabr as well.
This proves that an ordinary man is able to recite Qur’an in his qabr and a normal living man is able to hear him. Thus if a truthful person claims that he has been spoken to by a wali at the wali’s qabr it most likely is true, and most importantly, possible.. This fact is grounded in the above Hadith.
Another sahih Hadith is interpreted by Ibn Taymiyah, who is called Shaykhul Islam by his followers. We note that most of his followers claim that the dead have no perception or power after their demise -“ an Atheistic Materialistic view of death.
However Ibn Taymiyah narrates in his Fatawa (vol.24 p.331) that Nabi Muhammad (s) said that “When one passes by the grave of his mu’min brother who he had known in the dunya, and stands at the qabr and says, `Assalamu `alaykum’, the person in the qabr will know him and also return his greeting”(yarifuhu wa yarudda alayihi as salaam)”.
This shows that the dead have awareness and are able to invoke Du`a for the living, as the Islamic greeting is a Du`a.
Ibn Taymiyah on the Life of the Dead
Furthermore Ibn Taymiyah was asked in his Majmu at al-Fatawa (vol.24 p.362) whether the dead could perceive the living acquaintances that visit them. He replied that: There is no doubt that they can.
And he quoted the following Sahih Hadith in substantiation of that:
Evidence to this effect comes from the two Sahih books of Bukhari and Muslim where Nabi Muhammad (s) said that when the people have buried a dead person and leave for home the dead person can hear the steps of those who leave (yasma`u qar’a ni `alihim). (This even refers to the kuffar).
What makes people who have studied Hadith claim that Prophets, Awliya and ordinary dead have no awareness after their demise? Maybe they have not studied properly.
Imam Suyuti on the Life of the Dead
The Great Hadith and Tafsir scholar al-Suyuti was asked the following questions:
Do the Dead recognize their visitors and know their states in life?
Do the Dead hear what the living say?
Do the souls of the Dead meet and see each other?
He replied to all Questions : “YES”, and produced many Hadith in support.
About the Ayah which some people quote about the Dead not hearing, the learned Suyuti says that it is an allegorical statement (an-Nafi Ja’a ala m’ana al-Majaz). and the actual meaning of it is that “They cannot listen to Guidance (Ma’naha Sama` Huda) i.e. they are dead and they cannot be guided now”.
Any scholar can check al-Hawi lil Fatawa (vol.2 p.169-175) by Imam Jalaluddin al-Suyuti.
Do we want to follow the great giants of Islamic knowledge or modern day dwarfs?
Abu Dawud narrates that Aisha (r) said that when Najashi (the pious King of Abyssinia) had passed away, the Sahabah reported that there was LIGHT shining from his grave (yura ala qabrihi Nur). He was not even a Sahabi but it was believed that he was a Wali. Thus, if the Sahabah believed that the Awliya can have nur (light) and blessings at their Qubur, it does not matter what any 21st-Century `scholar’ says.
Do Not Harm Those in the Grave
In another Sahih Hadith narrated by Ibn Hanbal, Hakim and Tabarani, Nabi Muhammad (s) saw a person sitting on a qabr and told him: “Do not harm the person in the qabr and he will not harm you.”(la tu’zi sahib al-Qabri wala yu’zeek).
The `Ulama of Hadith explained that this shows that the dead are affected by what people do at their Qubur. This Hadith also shows that the dead feel what happens on the top of their graves. Otherwise, why not sit on a Qabr, if the dead does not feel anything?
Therefore one should not harm or destroy Qubur. On the other hand showing respect at a qabr and conveying your love to the inhabitant will also be felt by him and result in like action being returned to you That is why Muslims show outward respect to the Graves of those who they are ordered by Allah (swt) to love, i.e. The Prophets and The Saliheen (saints of Allah).
The Dead are Aware of the Presence of the Living
The second part of the Hadith proves that the dead have the power to harm as well as to benefit you, each in their own way and according to their status with Allah (swt),of course.
In Surah al-A’araf, we are told by Allah that after the evil people of Thamud were destroyed, Nabi Salih (as) addressed them and said ” my people! I did indeed convey to you the Message for which I was sent by my Lord: I gave you good counsel, But ye love not good counsellors!”(7:79). Nabi Shu`ayb (as) also addressed his destroyed nation and said similar words (7:93).
The fact that Nabi Salih (as) and Nabi Shuayb (as) addressed their destroyed nations proves that according to these Nabi’s, even the dead kuffar can hear. If the kuffar can hear in their graves (the destroyed people didn’t even have graves) why can’t Believers hear from their graves?
In a Sahih Hadith regarding the Battle of Badr, it is narrated that the Muslims threw Abu Jahal and other kuffar who were slain into a well. Nabi Muhammad (s) went to their Qubur and asked them whether they had found the promise of Allah (swt) to be true (that the kuffar would be punished.)
Sayyidana Umar (r) inquired of Nabi Muhammad (s) whether the dead could hear him. Nabi Muhammad (s) explained that he (Umar) could not hear any better than them, but they did not have the ability to respond (Bukhari and Muslim). This is the life of the dead of the kuffar.
Today, some ignorant Muslims say that even the Prophet and the Awliya cannot hear us
We can only cry at their level of Iman (faith).
Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal narrates that before Sayyidina Umar (r) was buried in her room, Sayyidah Aisha (r) would go their without Hijab, as the Nabi 14.0pt”>(s) and Sayyidina Abu Bakr (r), who were buried there were her Husband and Father. However, when Sayyidina Umar got buried there, she would only go in the room with Hijab. (check al-Mishkat: Bab ziyarat al-Qubur).
This action clearly shows that according to Sayyidah Aisha, the dead can feel and see their visitors and are aware of those who come to them and How they come to them. .
It is narrated in a Sahih Hadith that Nabi Muhammad (s) said that every person’s grave will be either a garden from the gardens of Paradise or a hole from the holes of hell (rawda mim riyad al-Jannah aw Hufrah min Hufar an naar)
If the qabr of a normal mu’min is a garden of paradise, what about the Qubur of the Awliya of Allah (swt). Are they not from the Jannah?, if yes, then only a fool can claim that there is no Baraka there.
Imam Shafi`i seeks Baraka from the Tomb of Imam Abu Hanifa
The people of Cape Town are Shafi`i. We say that when Imam Shafi`i was in Baghdad, whenever he would have a problem, he would visit the TOMB of Imam Abu Hanifah , pray two Rakahs there and ask Allah (swt) through the Baraka of Imam Abu Hanifah, and his problem would be immediately be solved. He would also make those two Rakahs according to the Hanafi Mazhab. When asked why, he replied : “In respect of the person in the Tomb (i.e. Abu Hanifah)” (ta’adduban ma’a sahib al-Qabr).
This Authentic story is narrated by the Great Shafi`i scholar Imam Ibn Hajar al-Makki in in his Book called “al-Khairat al-Hisan fi manaqib al-imam Abu Hanifah al-Numan”. And also by the great Hanafi scholar Ibn Abidin Shami in the introduction of his massive work called Rad al-Muhtar.
We ask, was Imam Shafi`i making Shirk, and are these great Ulama who narrated this incident also encouraging Shirk? Na’udhu billah min dhalik.
The people in the Qubur have awareness about what is happening outside. Some dead are actually praying or making Du`ah in their Qubur.
There is Baraka at the Qubur of the Awliya.
It is Sunnah to ask the pious to make du`a for you. It is absurd to say that one may ask the living pious for du`a but once they have passed away it is Shirk to ask du`a, as they are still alive in their Qubur.Or do they say that Shirk is allowed with and a living person and not allowed with a dead person.
Is it true that Sayiddina Umar (r) chopped down the tree when he saw people praying there to attain the Baraka of Nabi Muhammad (s). (It was believed that special Bay`ah was taken at this tree.)?
Mr.Gamieldien uses this to show that the Sahabah did not believe in the Baraka of Sayyidina wa Mawlana Rasul Allah (s):
It is narrated that when Nabi Muhammad (s) was in Hudaybia he gave bay’a to some people under a tree. The incident was known as bay’atur Ridwan. The tree became famous when Allah (swt) mentioned it in the Qur’an (48:18) saying : (laqad radiy Allahu anil muminina iz. Yubayi-oonaka tahta ash shajarah) “Verily Allah (swt) is pleased with those believers who gave Bayah to you under the tree”.
In the time of Sayyidina Umar (r) people went to pray at this tree to receive the Baraka of Nabi Muhammad (s). Then, Sayyidina Umar went and chopped down the tree. Faiek Gamieldien uses this Hadith, wrongly, to prove that praying under the blessed tree was Shirk. Also, to search for Tabarruk and blessings of Nabi Muhammad (s) and pious people is Shirk and it is for this reason that Sayyidina Umar chopped the tree down.
This is a great lie and some people fabricate this to suit their own ideas and Sayyidina Umar (r) did chop the tree down, because he thought the people praying there were mushriks.
That kind of a silly thought did not even occur his mind.
This incident -“as recorded in Sahih Bukhari (Kitab al-Maghazi) and Muslim (Kitab al-Imamah) -“ took place because there was controversy over which tree was the one where ba’yah was taken and reliable sources from amongst the Sahabah held that that tree was definitely the wrong tree and the original tree could no longer be located and had vanished .
Ibn Umar (who was present in the Bayah under the tree) said no one could locate the tree after that year. (Bukhari).
The tree that the Tabi’een were visiting at the Hudaybiyyah , in the the time of Sayyidina Umar was not the real one, but it was in the same valley where the real one was.
Hence, the real reason Umar had the tree chopped down (because it was wrongly attributed to the Prophet (s).
In fact, the mysterious vanishing of the real tree by Allah (swt) shows how important it was.
Sahaba’s Respect for the Person and Relics of the Prophet (s)
What were the true views of Sayyidina Umar (r) and other Sahaba regarding Tabarruk (seeking Baraka with the Nabi Muhammad (s) ?
We ask, why did Sayyidina Abu Bakr as well as Sayyidina Umar requested to be buried next to the qabr of Nabi Muhammad (s) in his house, while everybody in Madinah gets buried in the Jannatul Baqi`?. Because they knew that there was Baraka at his Qabr and they wanted it.
Sayyidina Umar’s respect for the relics and things of the Nabi (s) can be ascertained from the following incident narrated in Kanzul Ummal(vol.7 p.66) and Ibn Qudamah (al-Mughni vol.4 p.554):
Once while going to the Mosque to lead the Jumu`ah Salat, Umar passed by a canal (Mizab), which was in the way, and the dirty water from the canal messed up his clean clothes. He got angry and took the canal out of the way, went back home, dressed up again and went to Mosque.
In the Mosque, the Prophets (s) uncle Sayyidina Abbas (r) confronted him and said: “that canal was put there by the Messenger of Allah (s), as I saw with my own eyes”.
When Sayyidina Umar heard that, he immediately left the Mosque with Abbas and went where that canal was, bent himself like in Ruku (bowing) and said to Abbas:
” uncle of the Messenger of Allah (s), climb on my back and put the canal back where Allah’s Messenger put it”.
THIS WAS THE LOVE AND RESPECT OUR MASTER UMAR HAD FOR THE THINGS RELATED TO THE MASTER OF ALL BELIEVERS, SAYYIDINA MUHAMMAD (s).
THOSE WITH NO LOVE IN THEIR HEARTS CAN SAY AND DO WHAT THEY WANT.
Today some people call it `Shirk’. May Allah (swt) Guide them to the Baraka of his Prophet (s).
It is narrated in Sahih Bukhari (Kitab al-Libas) that Nabi Muhammad (s) had a ring, thereafter Sayyidina Abu Bakr (r) had the ring, thereafter Sayyidina Umar (r) and thereafter Sayyidina Uthman (r). Clearly, they wore this ring to receive the Baraka of Nabi Muhammad (s).
It is narrated in Sahih al-Bukhari (Kitab al-Maghazi) that the same holds true for the spear of Nabi Muhammad (s). It was passed on to Sayyidina Abu Bakr (r) and then to Sayyidina Umar (r) and then to Sayyidina Uthman (r) and finally to Sayyidina `Ali (r).
Seeking Baraka by Praying where the Prophet (s) Prayed
It is also narrated in Sahih Bukhari that Sayyidina Ibn Umar (r), when travelling between Makkah and Madinah, would not pray in the mosques that were built by the people, but would pray at the spots where Nabi Muhammad (s) prayed. Are mosques not important? Yes they are, but Sayyidina Ibn Umar (r) wished to receive the Baraka of Nabi Muhammad (s).
This was also the practice of Sayyidina Abu Musa al-Ashari as narrated by Nasai.
Thus,the Sahabah would searched out the places where Nabi Muhammad (s) prayed, and they would pray there.
Seeking Baraka through the Blessed Clothes of the Prophet (s)
In Sahih Muslim (Kitab al-Libas vol.3 p.140), it is narrated that Asma’ (ra), the daughter of Sayyidina Abu Bakr (r), had the garment of Nabi Muhammad (s) which she had received from Sayyida Aisha (r). She would take the water with which she washed it and give it to the sick. They would drink it and be cured. The Sahabah had accepted the fact that the water had Baraka and could cure. Were these Sahabah mushriks?
Seeking Baraka through the Blessed Touch of the Prophet (s)
Tabarani narrates that Sayyidina Abu Mahzura once removed his turban, revealing a long patch of hair on his head. People inquired about this. He explained that Nabi Muhammad (s) had onced touched him on that part of his head and he could not bring himself to cut that hair.
Seeking Baraka through the Pulpit of the Prophet (s)
It is narrated in al-Shifa of al-Qadi Iyad that Sayyidina Ibn Umar (r) had put his hands on Nabi Muhammads (s) minbar (pulpit) and would wipe it over his face. He was clearly looking for Tabarruk. If the Sahabah were clearly in need of Baraka, aren’t we?
Seeking Baraka through a Cup of the Prophet (s)
Imam Ahmad Bin Hanbal narrates that the Nabi Muhammad (s) visited the mother of Anas bin Malik and he drank half a cup of beverage. She cut off and kept the part of the cup that had touched the Nabi Muhammad’s (s) lips, for purposes of Baraka.
Seeking Baraka through Hairs of the Prophet (s)
In another Sahih Hadith narrated by Tabarani and Abu Ya`la:
In a battle between the Muslims and the Romans, Sayyidina Khalid Bin Walid (r) (who had the title of commander of the faithful) was looking for a fez. The Sahabah inquired why he was looking for a fez in the middle of a battle. He replied that he had stuck some hair of Nabi Muhammad (s) in it and whenever he would have it in battle he would be victorious. He had lost it and was worried that the kuffar would find it and win the battle.
In Sahih Muslim (Kitab al-Hajj) it is narrated that Nabi Muhammad (s) distributed his hair amongst the Sahabah on cutting it on Mina. Each Sahabah would take a piece for Baraka.
It is narrated in Sahih al-Bukhari (Kitab al-Libas) that Sayyida Umm Salma would keep the hair of her husband, Nabi Muhammad (s) in a red glass. Whenever someone was ill she would stroke the hair in water and give it to the person who would then be cured.
Seeking Baraka through the Body of the Prophet (s)
In a Sahih Hadith it is narrated by Abu Dawud, Tabarani and Imam Hakim that during the preparation for the battle of Uhud, one of the Sahabah was standing out of line. Nabi Muhammad (s) hit him back into line with a stick. The man was unhappy about this and complained to Nabi Muhammad (s). Nabi Muhammad (s) gave him leave to exact revenge with like action. The man insisted that Nabi Muhammad (s) expose his flesh as Nabi Muhammad (s) had hit him upon his naked skin.
Nabi Muhammad (s) lifted up his shirt and the man quickly kissed Nabi Muhammad (s) on his stomach. Nabi Muhammad (s) smiled and asked him to explain his action. The man replied that he may die in the battle and wanted to make sure that he had made physical contact with Nabi Muhammad (s) at least once in his lifetime.
Respect and Seeking Baraka through the Uncle of the Prophet (s)
It is narrated by Bukhari in (al-Adab al_mufrad p.144) that Sayyidina `Ali (r) used to kiss the hands and feet of Sayyidina Abbas (r).
Today it is `Shirk’, but during the time of the holy Sahabah, it was Iman and okay.
Seeking Baraka through the Remains of the Wudu` of the Prophet (s)
An-Nisa narrated that Nabi Muhammad (s) gave bay’ah to a group of people. They informed Nabi Muhammad (s) that they had worshipped idols before, but now that they were Muslim, they desired to build a mosque in that vicinity and requested du`a of Nabi Muhammad (s). Nabi Muhammad (s) took wudu` and gave the water to these people, ordering them to destroy the idols and place the water in the mosque for Baraka. They were concerned that the water may dry up before they reached their far destination. Nabi Muhammad (s) replied that the water would bring purity and would not become less.(check Mishkat al-Masabih No.716).
Seeking Baraka through the Well of Prophet Salih’s Camel (as)
It is narrated in Sahih Muslim (Kitab al-Zuhd) that Nabi Muhammad (s) was travelling with his Sahabah through the land of Thamud (the land of the people of Nabi Salih (as)). While travelling, the Sahabah collected water from the wells in the land. Nabi Muhammad (s) ordered the Sahabah to throw that water away, as those were the wells of the kuffar in the time of Nabi Salih (as). Nabi Muhammad (s) then permitted them to drink from a certain well that the camel of Nabi Salih (as) drank out of.
Imam Nawawi (Sharh Muslim vol.8 p.118) comments on this Hadith that we should try to derive blessings from things connected to pious people(wa min fawaid hadhal Hadith, at-Tabarruk bi Aathaar as-Saliheen).
It is important that we note here that Baraka is received from the camel of a pious person.(4000 years ago). What about the Qubur of the Awliya of Allah (swt)?
In Sahih Muslim, it is narrated that Sayyidina Utbaan (r) always asked Nabi Muhammad (s) to pray in a certain part of his house, so that he too may pray there and receive blessings in this regard.
Imam Nawawi on Seeking Baraka
Imam Nawawi says in Sharh Muslim vol.5 p.161 that there are three main things (Fawa’id) we learn from this Hadith:
It is permitted to get Baraka from Salih people and objects connected to them.
It is recommended to pray in the places where the pious used to pray.
It is recommended to seek Baraka from the places where the pious people resided.
All the Sahabah always sought Tabarruk from any object connected to the pious. Nabi Muhammad (s) was first and foremost in teaching us to receive blessings from him illustrated by the fact that He distributed his hair and wudu` water.