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In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Welcome to the home of the Chisti Silsilah in the Western Cape.
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There is a hadith:
The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “Allah has angels traveling about the earth to convey to me the salaams of my ummah.” [An-Nasaai]
Can you please explain this hadith to me in relation to a salafi scholar's statement that:
"....this hadith informs us that the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) himself does not travel the earth to attend the gatherings where he is mentioned. Such un-Islamic beliefs have unfortunately found their way into the Bidat (innovations) that have been introduced into the religion.....".....
This authentic Hadith is not for the Deniers but actually against them.
Some of the things we learn from this Hadith are:
1-The Angels attend gatherings of Salawat! This is a bisharah (glad-tidings) for those who regularly hold gatherings of Salawat and Salam! The Deniers do not have such gatherings at all. So the lovers names are presented to him (SAW) daily, carried by the Angels!
2-The Prophet (SAW) is ALIVE and AWARE of the actions of his Ummah. Otherwise, whats the purpose of Angel's presenting Salawat and Salams of the Ummah to a "dead man who doesn't even know us" as the Deniers ignorantly claim??!
3-The Prophet (SAW) possesses the most powerful SOUL/SPIRIT/RUH in the whole world. Otherwise, how does he (SAW) have the power to RECIEVE and HEAR the endless Salawat and Salams of his Ummah that goes on 24 hours???!!! This in addition to many other matters his noble Ruh is busy with!!!
4-That the Angels are his servants. So he obviously has more authority and power in the spiritual world than them.
I ask: If his servants, the Angels, can travel freely around the Universe, how can the Spirit of the Master (SAW) not have the power to do that???
I already highlighted the power of the Soul of the Prophet (SAW) above!!!
The great 9th century Egyptian scholar Imam al-Suyuti mentions in his book on the "Affairs of the Dead" (Shar'h al-Sudur) that the souls of all Pious People are free to m
ove around in this world. He qoutes this from the Sahabah, so how can it be a bid'ah or Shirk? He also mentions that the Soul can travel through the Heavens and Earth in a second!
The salafi ideologue Ibn al-Qayyim also seems to agree with this in his book "Kitab al-Ruh".
In fact, Imam al-Suyuti, the mujaddid of the 9th Century, states unequivocally in his work Tanwir al-Halak bi-Imkan Ru'yat al-Nabi wa 'l-Malak:
فحصل من مجموع هذا النقول والأحاديث أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم حي بجسده وروحه
وأنه يتصرف ويسير حيث شاء في أقطار الأرض وفي الملكوت وهو بهيئته التي كان عليها قبل وفاته لم يتبدل منه شيء وأنه مغيب عن الأبصار كما غيبت الملائكة مع كونهم أحياء بأجسادهم فإذا أراد الله رفع الحجاب عمن أراد إكرامه برؤيته رآه على هيئته التي هو عليها لا مانع من ذلك ولا داعي إلى التخصيص برؤية المثال...سئل بعضهم كيف يراه الراؤن المتعددون
في أقطار متباعدة فأنشد :
كالشمس في كبد السماء وضوؤها
يغشى البلاد مشارقاً ومغارباً
So it is learnt from all these narrations and Ahadith that the Prophet (SAW) is alive, with body and soul, and that he (SAW) acts with authority and travels wherever he wishes to in Earth and Heavens, and he (SAW) is in the manner he was before he died, nothing has changed of him. He has just been hidden from the (physical) eyes just as Angels are hidden, though they are physically in existence. So if Allah wishes to honor someone by seeing him (SAW), He just removes the veil betwen them and him and that person sees him (SAW) the way he (SAW) is. There is nothing that makes this inconcievable, and there is no need to claim that the seer sees his (SAW) image only.
And some of them (i.e. the scholars/saints) was asked: 'How can multiple people see him (SAW) in far-off lands (i.e. at the same time)?'
So he replied in poetry:
'Like the Sun, situated in the centre of the Sky'
but its light covers the lands, east and west!'
Read this statement again carefully. It is the words of the author ofTafsir al-Jalalayn and other great books that are even taught in the Islamic (read Wahhabi) University of Medina!
The work I referred to now can be read online here:
Also read this amazing poem on the Afterlife of the Prophet (SAW) by great Shafi'i Imam and Mujaddid Ibn-Hajar al-Haytami of Makkah:
5- Note that on the night of the M'iraj, the Souls of all Prophets were present in the Masjid al-Aqsa site in Jerusalem (Palestine). They all prayed there behind our Prophet (SAW) and socialized with him (SAW). This despite the fact that about all of them had already died centuries ago and were buried all over the world. The Prophet (SAW) then met them again in the Heavens as is known!
These two facts prove that the Souls of Prophets can travel ANYWHERE in Earth or in Heaven! So how can we deny that power for their Imam Sayyidna Muhammad (SAW)?!!!
6-Note that the hadith you quoted simply states a "procedure and duty" of the Angels. It does not deny the power of the Soul of the Prophet (SAW) to travel anywhere.
For example, there are many ahadith that state that there are Angels who present our Deeds to Almighty Allah (SWT) daily as well!!!
Does that mean that Allah (SWT) does not have the power to witness our deeds?
What about the Day of Qiyamah when Angels will present all our deeds to Allah (SWT) and He will question people about them? Is it because He (SWT) doesnt know???
Of course not! It is simply a procedural matter!
The best example of that would be of a president who has a driver driving him or butler serving him. It does not mean that he himself canot drive. It is simply a matter of honor that a driver drives him or a butler serves him.
So the Blessed Spirit of the Nabi (SAW) can indeed attend any gathering it wishes to in Heavens and Earth, and is aware of all Salawatrecited. The presenting by the Angels is simply a matter of procedure and respect.
It is ironic that the Deniers believe that the Devil can travel all over the arth and attend all gatherings he wishes to, but not the blessed Prophet (SAW)!
We ask: Who is more stronger in the Unseen World, the Spirit of Allah's Beloved (SAW), or the spirit of His enemy (LA)??!!!
Note also, that not only Salawat and Salam, but all actions of this Ummah ae presented to the Nabi (SAW) as narrated in the authentic hadith:
حياتي خير لكم، تحدثون ويحدث لكم،و وفاتي خيرا لكم، تعرض علي أعمالكم، فإن رأيت خيرا حمدت الله، وإن رأيت شرا استغفرت لكم
"My life is a great good for you: you will relate about me and it will be related to you, and my death is a great good for you, as your actions will be exhibited to me, and if I see goodness I will praise Allah, and if I see evil I will ask forgiveness of Him for you."
This Hadith was narrated by Imam al-Qadi and considered reliable by noneless then great Hadith Imams such as Ibn-Hajar, al-Iraqi, al-Suyuti and even Wahhabi/Salafi ideologues such Ibn-Abd-al-Hadi and al-Albani!
More importantly, Allah (SWT) states in the Holy Qur'an:
وَقُلِ اعْمَلُواْ فَسَيَرَى اللّهُ عَمَلَكُمْ وَرَسُولُهُ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ
And say: Work! For Allah will witness your actions and His Prophet and the beleivers
It is narrated that once a wahhabi alim entered a Mosque and saw the above Ayah written on the wall, so he complained and said: "This is Shirk! You cannot say "Allah and His Prophet" together. Remove this Kufr statement from the Mosque!"
Then he was told that it was actually a Qur'anic Verse, so he shut up!
In summary: Indeed, as in the hadith mentioned above, it is the honoraray duty of the Angels to carry the Salawat anad Salams of all Muslims to the Presence of the Prophet (SAW), who then pays attention to them and answers them.
This is the normal general rule.
However, if the Prophet (SAW) wishes to honor a certain gatheing of his sincere lovers, then he may personally attend that gathering spiritually.
Indeed, Allah (SWT) has granted his Soul the power to do that. Allah can do anything He wishes. The Qur'an confirms that Jesus (AS) used to make the dead people Alive! Whats more unbelievable?
We do not say that the Prophet (SAW) attends every single gathering of Salawat. Of course not! What we say is that he (SAW) may attend any gathering he wishes to bless.
Indeed, countless great Awliya and Men of God have felt his presence in their gatherings and many have even seen him (SAW) in the gatherings of Dhikr and Purity.
To call them all liars is itself a most horrible lie.
Our Shaykh of Shaykhs, Shaykh-al-Islam Ibrahim Niasse of Senegal used to say:
"If someone denies the possibilty of seeing the Prophet (SAW) in wakefullness, then we know that he is not from those who deserve to see him (SAW)"
May Allah make us from the believers and not the deniers ويل للمكذبين
May Allah make us from those whose gatherings are attended by Rasul-Allah (SAW), and those who have vision of him (SAW), in Dunya and Akhirah. Amen.
Sheikh Fakhruddin Owaisi al-Madani
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger S.A.W.
In the beginning, it should be noted that our love for our Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is really great. This love places many obligations and duties on our shoulders. Among these duties is to show respect to him, study his Biography and follow in his footsteps, defend him against any misconception and to try to spread the truth about his morals, manners and Sunnah.
Referring to Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) Allah, Most High, says, “And you (stand) on an exalted standard of character.” (Al-Qalam 68: 4) “Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the praise of Allah.” (Al-Ahzab 33: 21)
Muhammad SAW: A Unique Character
The uniqueness of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) is that he was not only a great person in his own time, but he is great for all times, for all people of any race, color, nationality or geographical location. His example was good for the 7th century Arabs and it is good also for the humanity living now at the beginning of this 21st century. He is an excellent example for the rich and poor, for young and old, for rulers and ruled, for the most intelligent as well as the most common people. Allah sent him as His Prophet for all humanity. Allah says in the Qur’an: Say: “O people! I am sent unto you all, as the Messenger of Allah, to whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth: there is no god but He: it is He that gives both life and death. So believe in Allah and His Messenger, the unlettered Prophet, who believed in Allah and His Words: follow him that (so) you may be guided.” (Al-A`raf 7: 158)
Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) practiced what he preached. He very carefully and meticulously followed the Qur’an, Allah’s Word that was revealed to him. He followed and lived the Qur’an at every moment in every detail of his life. His life was the reflection of Allah’s Words. He became the Qur’an in person, the embodiment of the Qur’an, or one may even say in a metaphorical sense “the Word in flesh”. It is reported in a Hadith: Sa`d ibn Hisham said that he asked `A’ishah, Prophet’s wife (may Allah be pleased with her) “Tell me about the character of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).” She said, “His character was the Qur’an.” (Musnad Ahmad, Hadith No. 24139)
Some of His Attributes
The morality of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was not restricted to just a few moral attributes, but included diverse traits and aspects of life. He was kind, compassionate, caring, generous and humble, but he was also strong, brave, eloquent, wise and insightful. He was a great planner, organizer and thinker, yet he was also a man of faith, trust and devotion to Allah. He was involved and active with his family and community but he did not neglect his prayers, fasting and devotion to Allah. Actually, he prayed so much that no one prayed like him. He was exemplary as a teacher, preacher, Imam, leader, statesman, and judge, commander of the armies as well as a husband, a father, a grandfather, a businessman, a neighbour and a friend.
Before he received the honor of nubuwwah (Prophethood), he was known among the people of Makkah as As-Sadiq Al-Amin, the most honest and trustworthy person. He kept this character throughout his life. He never broke a pledge or promise. Even his enemies could not accuse him of being dishonest. He was a most humble person. He used to mingle with the poor and sit with them. He stopped people standing up for him. He used to sit wherever there was a place available in an assembly and never sought a prominent or elevated place. The newcomers sometimes would not know who was the Prophet among the people. When he entered the city of Makkah as a conqueror leading a big army, he entered in a most humble manner. In a unique demonstration of humility his forehead was touching the saddle of his camel!
Muhammad: A Mercy to Mankind
He was the most merciful person. Allah called him as “A mercy to the worlds” (Al-Anbiya’ 21: 107) He was merciful to his family, followers, friends, even enemies. He was merciful to young and old, to humans and to animals. Those who persecuted him in Makkah and killed his relatives and his followers, when they were defeated in the battles and brought as captives, were forgiven by him. He did not ever take revenge or retaliated. He was the most forgiving person.
Constancy was a very important aspect of his moral behavior. Once he established some good way or practice he used to follow it and adhere to it always. He used to say: “The dearest deed to Allah is the one that is performed regularly, even if it was a little.” (Al-Bukhari, No. 5983)
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) has many names reflecting his attributes and qualities. Some of the most beautiful names of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) mentioned in both the Qur’an and Hadith are the following: Muhammad (the praised one), Ahmad (most praiseworthy), Hamid (the giver of praise and thanks), Ar-Rasul (the Messenger), An-Nabi (the Prophet), Shahid (the witness), Rashid (the righteous), Bashir (the giver of good news), Nadhir (the warner), Da`i (the caller to Allah), Hadi (the guide), Mahi (the remover of evil), Fatih (the conqueror), Ra’uf (the compassionate), Rahim (the merciful), Mujtaba (the chosen one), Mustafa (the selected one), Murtada (the well-pleasing in the sight of Allah), As-Sadiq (the truthful), Al-Amin (the trustworthy), Musaddiq (the confirmer of truth), Habibullah (Allah’s beloved one), Safiullah (the one selected by Allah), Najiullah (the one protected by Allah), Shakur (the most grateful one), Karim (the noble one), Hakim (the wise one), Sayyid (the leader), Siraj Munir (the shining lamp), Jawwad (the generous one), `Adil (the Just), and Khatam Ar-Rusul (the final Messenger). May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him!