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Friday, January 27, 2017

The Quran applies to you





We have a disjointed relationship with the Quran because we claim to love it yet we do not read it! Are we aware that when we do something a line of the Quran applies to us? Anything we do has an effect on our beings.

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow upon him peace and blessings) said, "The Quran is a proof for you or against you." (Muslim 1/203, Imam Ahmed 5/342).

This hadith has many meanings and one such meaning is the actions of the person. When someone does something, a different part of the Quran applies to them. This is how the Quran is a proof against you because you did not read it and it bears witness that you did not read it. You just keep is wrapped up on the highest shelf but never thought to look up, reach out and read it. Instead preferring to read anything else and in many cases this goes on for years. 


If you lie this applies to you:
Allah (the Exalted) has cursed those who lie and when someone lies, they join them.

Allah (the Exalted) says, “Is not the curse of Allah upon the liars?”
Quran, Hud 11:18.

Or

"The curse of Allah is upon him if he should be among the liars.”
Quran: the light 24:7.


When you go your own way

“My people have renounced the Qur'an.” (25:30)

This is a comment that needs to be urgently heeded in this time. Some elders get offended if someone reads the Quran and they are praying in front him. They will even make him move and think disturbing him is a good action. Even though the whole masjid is empty, the elder will pick the place where a youngster is reading the Quran to pray. Why? Because they consider this as turning their backs on the Quran.


Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Perhaps someone recites the Quran and it curses him." (Muslim).

Why? Because of the rights he owes others that he has not fulfilled. In addition to the sins of not acting upon what he is reading or at least reflecting and repenting.
Disbelievers are rejected and warned of severe punishment.

Actually, read the Quran and let it talk to you. See what it is telling you. Whatever hits your heart was meant for you and that what you should change about yourself. The Quran applies to us all. 

Our understanding of it will change when we reach the afterlife.

Even in our dreams are rooted in the Quranic narrative and that is where someone who interprets dreams, draws its meanings.

Next time you read the Quran let it speak to you and try not to skip the words in a rush.

Ibn 'Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said whenever the Quran says O believers you should pay attention because we are being addressed.  

Friday, January 20, 2017

How to see ones Pir/Sheikh/Murshid





When one takes the hand of a Murshid then he must know that the Sheikh is guide to the path and not the purpose of the path. The purpose of the path is to reach Allah (the Exalted) not to reach the Sheikh. 


The Sheikh will have his favorite students and this should not upset you. 


Pushing everyone out of the way to reach the Sheikh does not mean one is close. He is as far as one could be.


You cannot love a Wali and not be like them, unless you are making claims. Like students that love a teacher but are not like him at all. Many students make claims but have no reality.


Your Sheikh will aid you like a father, on our journey to Allah (the Exalted). His words and state will move you to excellent moral conduct and correcting yourself. What he is not there is to give you new rulings upon matters that are agreed upon in fiqh and Aquida. Nor is he there for you to look at like a priceless ornament that you do not touch but admire from far away. 


The Sheikh should not oppose the sacred law and if he does then the Murids should never follow. The hadith is, "There is no obedience to creation by disobeying the creator." You cannot obey the Sheikh by opposing the sacred law. It is better for the sheikh that you disobey him. Anyone can slip up from time to time because we are all human but it should not be constant. If he is not aware of the sacred law then this negates his fellowship in all matters. This happens frequently with people who not qualified to take students. The Sheikh should be bothered about his student's welfare. Rather than brush them off as if they do not exist or never make any effort with the Murids. Leaving them without guidance and help for years and claim, he is their Murshid. 


The murid must know that others may oppose his Sheikh. This could be from things that he has written or said. There are two types of things that Murids should be aware of: 1. Difference of opinion and 2. Actual criticism. If it is upon a disagreed matter then there are going to be disagreements and that is normal. There is no sin upon a person who disagrees as long as he remains within the limits and does not go to the actual criticism. If it is actual criticism of the Sheikh himself then this is not welcome and its slander. He should not act like a wounded animal and attack the criticiser. Rather, he should accept it as the person's opinion and not fight him. The Sheikh should not be concerned by those who oppose him. Its normal for people to disagree with each other, especially in this modern age.


Sometimes, a kashaf/disclosure can be misunderstood and then be transmitted. Other things are specific for his Murids and not for public consumption. Therefore, the murid should beware of spreading information to those who will not understand it. Also, know that the instructions that the Sheikh gives are for his murids only and not meant for others. So do not spread these instructions because it may cause people to ridicule the Sheikh. 

Unfortunately, most people worship their pirs and look unfavorably at criticism of him. They will often act like a gang, or even tag team, and attack others. This is very sad and very silly to see. It makes the Murids look childish and petulant. Guess what, your Sheikh can be wrong and he is a human being. All human beings can make mistakes and you as a murid should not argue about what you do not have any knowledge of. Imam Malik (may Allah show him mercy) said, "Everyone opinions can be accepted or rejected except the owner of this grave." This was in the field of knowledge and the owner of the grave is the blessed Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). Yet, most Murids are doing this on a regular, and some, on a permanent basis. 

Most Murids are the worst advert for the Sheikhs and that applies to every path that I have seen. You should love your sheikh but that should not make you insane by slandering and backbiting others.


When a murid thinks that his Pir is the pinnacle of everything, then he can be veiled. Veiled because he considers his Pir akin to a idol. A murid is on the cusp of this when he will not accept criticism of his 'idol.' A murid will not benefit from the path when he 'worships' his Sheikh.


The sheikh is not divinely protected from sin because that is only the rank of the prophets. The murshid is protected from kufr but he can commit sins like anyone else. If the Wali commits kufr then know he was not a Wali in the first place but a liar. Junaid al-Baghdadi (may Allah show him mercy) was asked if a Wali could commit a sin (illegal fornication) and he recited the Quran verse, "The decree of Allah is apportioned." Meaning it is possible but it is hoped that the Pir will repent from sin. If it is in public then in public and if in private then in private. 


Also, know there are fake stories about Awliyah of the past. Any story, which breaks the law, should be ignored. There was a story reported to me about a great Wali, which was fake, but when I explained why it was fake, the students did not accept it. Why, did I not accept the story? Because it was against the sacred law and any story that is against the sacred law is rejected. Neither could the story be verified. Aquida Al-Tahawiyyah point 124, "We believe in the miracles of the Awliyah that are verified by trustworthy narrators." Books contain things are valid and things that are not.

One recent book on salawat states a hadith from a Jinn in which the action of salawat can save one from hell. This hadith contradicts other hadith in which the person cannot change their final destination, heaven or hell, its already written. Though, we do not know where we will go and this should not put one off from doing good actions. Nor, can we verify the contents of the hadith nor chain etc. So this hadith would be left matruk and shaad, because it opposes stronger hadith. Because people will read this hadith they will think its true. Hadith that cannot be verified are left and no ruling can be given to them. Imam Shafi does not accept hadith that are mursal - missing a companion (except by five conditions). This hadith is missing names for centuries!




How to benefit


Taking a Sheikh who lives in another country is not a problem, as long as there is frequent contact. How is this contact? Through the works and lectures of the Sheikh. The murid must follow up on as many lessons as possible. However, it is not about listening to as many lessons as possible. It is about taking something on board, changing yourself and then finding something else to work on. Listening carefully to his instructions and applying it to yourself. Without concern if it applies to others or not. 


The best thing is to have weekly physical contact. Otherwise, daily contact with the Sheikh by the means of recorded lectures is a good substitute. 


If it is not possible to reach the Sheikh then it should have been considered before taking bayah.


However, the real problem of the Murids is that they are not honest enough to admit their faults. Until they are honest enough to admit their faults, they will not make any progress. It is as simple as that. One of the Habiab of Yemen said that Allah looks at a servant with pleasure when the servant looks at himself in displeasure.  


Your Sheikh is a human being and can make mistakes. So refer to other scholars of outward knowledge for matters he is not trained in. Matters that he is not trained in with other than his father.


See your Pir as someone who has reached a great rank by great divine assistance and that he could not reach Him without it. All he is doing is treating the illnesses of your heart like a doctor. You are the patient and should not fight with others or you will lose the chance to take medicine. Know, that it takes time for medicine to take effect and if its not taken as prescribed, then it might not have any effect at all.


The next time someone criticises your Pir, take a step back and try to understand his point of view. Because if it is another teacher then it might be genuine. Rather than try to defend someone, realise that it might be you that has misunderstood, not them.


Know, that there are many fake peers who make money from their murids and do things against the sacred law. Some of the stories that I have heard will make your hat curl. One pir had illegal marital relations with someone he was not lawfully married to. Or make the females expose themselves and so forth. Such people often claim to be Ahl Al-Bayt and are lairs. They lie on behalf of Allah and his Messenger (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). So do not be surprised that they are lying about being Ahl Al-Bayt too.


A Sheikh/pir/ wali who does not follow the sacred law is an imposter and a lair. Your bayah is not valid and you should flee, never to return. The true one teaches his students and cares for them. He does not take his female murids to do unlawful activities to them, to remove black magic or similar. If this is the case then leave such a person because they are a lair and you have wasted your time with them.

You should respect and love your Sheikh, this is the main pillar of the path. But your love should make you hate, slander or attack others. If it does, then its not love at all. 



Sunday, January 01, 2017

Can women visit graves?




This is something that was brought to my attention but I did not want to write anything. I thought that others had written on this subject and that I was unnecessarily adding to the ink.


When I realised that this issue was deeper than I first thought. My fingers started to get busy. Is this a cyber pen I see before me? Yes it is and now lets clear up this problem.

Why, was there such confusion on this issue? Well, welcome to my usual swim into the ocean of knowledge. Care to join me?




Hadith


We have two sets of hadith on this issue. One set of hadith condemning women going to graves and another set allowing. So let us look at these hadiths before going further.



Set one of hadith that was reported early in Islamic years of 609 - 624


أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه: "أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم لعن زوارات القبور"

الترمذي 1056, ابن ماجه 1576, أحمد 8449, قال الترمذي: هذا حديث حسن صحيح


1. Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) said, "the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) cursed females visiting graves."

Al-Tirmidhi rated hassan sahih, Ibn Majah, Ahmed.



      عن ابن عباس قال: "لعن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم زائرات القبور والمتخذات عليها المساجد"

أبو داود 3236, البيهقي 7206


2. Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said, "the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) cursed women who visited graves and making them places of prostration."

Abu Dawood and Al-Bayhaqi












Set two reported from hijri years 624/5 to 632


كنت نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور فزوروها ولا تقولوا هجرا

مسند أحمد

3. The Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Previously, I forbade you from visiting graves (but) now visit them and do not speak (wail) loudly."

Ahmed





كنت نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور، ألا فزوروها، فإنه يرق القلب، وتدمع العين، وتذكر الآخرة، ولا تقولوا هجر

مستدرك الحاكم


4. The Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "I used to forbid you from visiting graves, will you not visit them? As it cleans the heart, brings a tear to the eye, it makes you remember the afterlife but do not speak out aloud."

Al-Hakim




ونهيتكم عن زيارة القبور فمن أراد أن يزور فليزر ولا تقولوا هجرا

سنن النسائي



5. The Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "I forbid your from visiting graves, yet (now) whoever wants to visit can go and visit, but not speak (wail) aloud."

Sunan Al-Nisa'i

 


زوروا القبور فإنها تذكركم الآخرة
سنن ابن ماجه


6. The Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Visit graves because it causes you to remember the afterlife." Ibn Majah




     حديث أنس بن مالك رضي الله عنه قال: "مرَّ النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم بامرأة تبكي عند قبر, فقال: اتقي الله واصبري, فقالت: إليك عني فإنك لم تصب بمصيبتي ولم تعرفه, فقيل لها: إنه النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم, فأتت باب النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم فلم تجد عنده بوابين, فقالت: 
 لم أعرفك, فقال: إنما الصبر عند الصدمة الأولى" (البخاري 1283, مسلم 926).



7. Anas ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) reports, "the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) passed by a woman weeping at a grave. He said, "Fear Allah and be patient." She said, "Leave me because you have not been afflicted by what I have." She did not know him and someone said to her, "That was the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). She went to the home of the Prophet and did not find any doormen. She said, "I did not know it was you." He said, "Patience is when calamity first strikes." Bukhari and Muslim



Ibn Hajar said in Fath Al-Bari, "This hadith is proof that he (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) did not reproach the woman for sitting at the grave and his confirmation is proof. This is confirmation of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) to visit graves, standing beside them and the confirmation of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) is proof."





قال ابن حجر: "وموضع الدلالة منه أنه صلى الله عليه وسلم لم ينكر على المرأة قعودها عند القبر، وتقريره حجة" (فتح الباري 3/148) فأقرها النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم على زيارتها القبر والوقوف عليه، وإقرار النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم حجة.


This final hadith from this section has much fruits. Firstly, Imam Ibn Hajar Al-Asqalani followed the Shafi school of thought; this will become more relevant later. This hadith came later and it is a proof that the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) allowed women to visit graves because had it been forbidden then the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) should have said something. 

Hadith is defined as the speech, action or confirmation of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him), i.e. something would occur before him and he would not deny it. Thus, this was confirmation. Attendance of women at graves is permitted as long as they do not cry aloud. Note, that the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) saw her inner state and gave her the best advice and did not insist when she did not initially accept it. The female companion accepted it, when she found out who he was. 


The second proof to the hadith being later in Islam; was that the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) did not have any doormen. As the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) had doormen or guards with him until Badr. When the Quranic passage was revealed that Allah will protect the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) from people. The Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) sent the guard home and never had any guards or doormen, afterward. Ibn Jawzi (may Allah show him mercy) in Al-Wafa (p.205) states that this event (ayah mentioning that Allah will protect him) was after obligation of Ramadan which was second year in Medinah. So it could be between the second and third year of migration. The dates are 624 or 625. Therefore, this is a sign that corroborates hadith three to seven that they came later. So the first two hadith should be considered abrogated/mansukh.


This is an example abrogation in hadith. When we have one evidence, which is not followed because the command was later altered. The first set of hadiths come early in Islam numbers one and two. Hadiths three to seven are hadiths in which allow the visitation of graves by women.


There is an example of this in the Quran which one passage says not to pray intoxicated and another not to drink at all. Another example, in hadith, is the eating of locust. This was allowed when Muslims first went to Medinah but then it was made highly disliked/makru tahrimah because circumstances changed.


Also, the first two hadiths are reported from companions and the speech of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) is over the speech of companions. This applies when there is a difference, so this is another reason why the first two hadith should be unused.




Now let us look at the four Sunni schools of thought.






Hanafi Fiqh


Zayn Al-Din Ibn Nujaym Al-Hanafi (may Allah show him mercy) said, "There is no harm in visiting graves and supplicating for the deceased as long as they are believers without stepping on the graves because he (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said that he forbade you from visiting graves and then said will you not visit them now. This is action of the community from the time of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) until today.  It is clear that in Al-Mujtaba that it is desired. It was claimed that is unlawful for women but the valid opinion is there is a proven dispensation for them." Al-Bahr Al-Raiaq 2/210


قال زين الدين ابن نجيم الحنفي : " لا بأس بزيارة القبور والدعاء للأموات إن كانوا مؤمنين من غير وطء القبور لقوله صلى الله عليه وسلم إني كنت نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور ألا فزوروها ولعمل الأمة من لدن الرسول صلى الله عليه وسلم إلى يومنا هذا، وصرح في المجتبي بأنها مندوبة ، وقيل تحرم على النساء والأصح أن الرخصة ثابتة لهما "

البحر الرائق لابن نجيم 2/210


Imam Al-Kasani (may Allah show him mercy) confirms this, "There is no harm in visiting graves and supplicating for the deceased as long as they are believers without stepping on the graves because he (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said that he forbade you from visiting graves and then said  will you not visit them now. This is action of the community from the time of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) until today." Bidya' Al-Sania fi Tartib Al-Sharia' 1/320


قال الكاساني : لا بأس بزيارة القبور والدعاء للأموات إن كانوا مؤمنين من غير وطء القبور لقول النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم إني كنت نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور ألا فزوروها فإنها تذكركم الآخرة ولعمل الأمة من لدن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم إلى يومنا هذا

بدائع الصنائع في ترتيب الشرائع للكاساني 1/320


Ibn Abideen (may Allah show him mercy) said, "He said in the commentary of Quduri, is it a desired action for women to visit graves. The correct position is yes without any dislike with the conditions that are clarified by the some of the scholars. Concerning what is the soundest position of our school, this is the opinion of Al-Kharki and others that it is permitted to visit graves for both men and women, there is no problem. As for others then it was it was desired by most of the peers, and Allah knows better. It was claimed that it was necessary and mentioned in the commentary of Quduri." Hashiya ibn Abideen 2/626


قال ابن عابدين : " قال في شرح اللباب وهل تستحب زيارة قبره للنساء الصحيح نعم بلا كراهة بشروطها
 على ما صرح به بعض العلماء أما على الأصح من مذهبنا وهو قول الكرخي وغيره من أن الرخصة في زيارة القبور ثابتة للرجال والنساء جميعا فلا إشكال وأما على غيره فكذلك نقول بالاستحباب لإطلاق الأصحاب والله أعلم بالصواب قوله بل قيل واجبة ذكره في شرح اللباب

حاشية ابن عابدين  2/626



In Al-Fatawa Al-Hindiyyah in the sixteenth chapter on visitation of the grave and reciting the Quran in the graveyard, "There is no harm in visitation of graves and this is the opinion of Abu Hanifah (may Allah show him mercy) and the manifest opinion/zahir qawl of Muhammad (Al-Shibani) (may Allah show him mercy) that necessitates the permissibility of women also because it is not specific for women and in drinks. There are differences of opinion with the scholars (may Allah show them mercy) in the visitation of women to graves. Shams Al-Imamah Al-Sarakhsi (may Allah show him mercy) said the correct/Asahah position is that there is no harm with it. In Al-Tahdib it says it is a desired action to visit graves. The manner of visitation is like visiting the deceased when there were alive, like those who are close and far (relatives or not), as stated in Khayanah Al-Fatawa."


وفي الفتاوى الهندية

الباب السادس عشر في زيارة القبور وقراءة القرآن في المقابر لا بأس بزيارة القبور وهو قول أبي حنيفة رحمه الله تعالى وظاهر قول محمد رحمه الله تعالى يقتضي الجواز للنساء أيضا لأنه لم يخص الرجال وفي الأشربة واختلف المشايخ رحمهم الله تعالى في زيارة القبور للنساء قال شمس الأئمة السرخسي رحمه الله تعالى الأصح أنه لا بأس بها وفي التهذيب يستحب زيارة القبور وكيفية الزيارة كزيارة ذلك الميت في حياته من القرب والبعد كذا في خزانة الفتاوى


Imam Al-Tahtawi (may Allah show him mercy) said in Hashiyah Al-Tahtawi 'ala Miraqi Al-Falah Sharh Nur Al-Idah, "The correct opinion is that it is allowed, proven, for men and for women because our lady Fatimah (may Allah be pleased with her) used to visit the grave of Hamza (may Allah be pleased with him) every Friday. Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) used to visit the grave of her brother Abd Al-Rahman in Mekkah. Similar is reported by Al-Badr Al-'Ayni in his commentary of Al-Bukhari." (p.630)



There are other Hanafi opinions who do not allow this visiting of graves by women, as stated in the previous two quotes that it is not the correct opinion. This is the reason that I have not included them. Not because I consider them to be incorrect. Rather, that some were due to regional issues where strange events occur at graves.


If great figures such as Abu Hanifah, Imam Muhammad, Ibn Nujaym, Imam Al-Kasani, Ibn 'Abideen and his son, Al-Kharkhi, Imam Al-Tahtawi and Imam Shams Al-Imamah all allow it, there is little need in looking elsewhere. 


I am not an expert in other madhabs but I have included these opinions here. Nevertheless, please refer to the experts in these schools.




Maliki


Ibn Abd Al-Baar (may Allah show him mercy) said, "The scholars differ about this in two aspects: one they allow to visit graves for everyone. As some, forbid the visitation for everyone. Then the abrogate the permissibility for everyone. It is permissible for women and men to visit graves according the outward of this hadith because there is no exception for men or women." Al-Tamhid


قال ابن عبد البر رحمه الله : إن العلماء اختلفوا في ذلك على وجهين : أحدهما إن الإباحة في زيارة القبور إباحة عموم كما كان النهي عن زيارتها نهي عموم ثم ورد النسخ بالإباحة على العموم فجائز للنساء والرجال زيارة القبور على ظاهر هذا الحديث لأنه لم يستثن فيه رجلاً ولا امرأة



Sidi Abd Al-Rahman Al-Tha'labi (may Allah show him mercy) in his book named Al-Ulum Al-Fakhirah in the chapter of looking into the matters of the afterlife, "Visiting the graves for men is agreed upon. Concerning women then it is permissible upon principles. It is forbidden for the young who tribulation is feared from and there are hadith mentioned the keenness about visiting graves." (Muahib Al-Jalail fi Sharh Mukhtasir Khalil 5/450) 



وَقَالَ سَيِّدِي عَبْدُ الرَّحْمَنِ الثَّعَالِبِيُّ فِي كِتَابِهِ الْمُسَمَّى بِالْعُلُومِ الْفَاخِرَةِ فِي النَّظَرِ فِي أُمُورِ الْآخِرَةِ : وَزِيَارَةُ الْقُبُورِ لِلرِّجَالِ مُتَّفَقٌ عَلَيْهِ وَأَمَّا النِّسَاءُ فَيُبَاحُ لِلْقَوَاعِدِ وَيَحْرُمُ عَلَى الشَّوَابِّ اللَّوَاتِي يُخْشَى عَلَيْهِنَّ مِنْ الْفِتْنَةِ وَذَكَرَ أَحَادِيثَ تَقْضِي الْحَثَّ عَلَى زِيَارَةِ الْقُبُورِ مواهب الجليل في شرح مختصر خليل 5/450 .



Al-Qurtabi (may Allah show him mercy) said, "Visitation of men to graves is agreed upon by the scholars and there is difference of opinion about the women. As for the forbiddance is ongoing and as for the principle it is permissible for them and permitted for them all." Tafsir Al-Qurtabi


قال القرطبي رحمه الله : زيارة القبور للرجال متفق عليه عند العلماء مختلف فيه للنساء أما الصواب فحرام عليهن الخروج ، وأما القواعد فمباح لهن ذلك وجائز لجميعهن ذلك  "





Hanbali


Ibn Qudaymah (may Allah show him mercy) said, "There are different narrations from (Imam) Ahmed in women's visitation of graves. It was reported that it was disliked because it was reported from Umm 'Atiyah that she said, "We are forbidden from visiting graves and we did not continue." Reported by Muslim. Moreover, because the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Allah cursed women who visited graves." Al-Tirmidhi said it was an authentic report and this is specific for women. Its prohibition is abrogated for men generally and for women it bears reports about the curse of women who visit graves, after the command of men to visit them. This revolves between danger and permissibility. I say that it is disliked because women have little patience and worries frequently. When they visit graves it agitates their sadness, renews there remembrance of their troubles and when it is not safe that she will arrive to this then it is not permissible, and not the men. Therefore, this is specific for those who wail and specific prohibition is for those who cut hair and strike themselves and so forth. The second narration is that is not disliked generally because of his (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "I forbid you from visiting graves (but) now visit them." This indicates about a previous prohibition and it abrogation men and women enter generally into. It was reported from Ibn Abi Malikiah when she asked Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her), "O mother of the believers, where did you come from?" She said, "From the grave of my brother Abd Al-Rahman." She asked, "The Messenger of Allah forbid visitation of graves." She said, "Yes he did, then he ordered us to visit them." It was reported by Al-Tirmidhi that Aishah used to visit the grave of her brother. It was also narrated that she said, "If I had not seen him then I would not visit him."" (Al-Mughani 2/226) 


قال ابن قدامة رحمه الله : اختلفت الرواية عن أحمد في زيارة النساء القبور فروي عنه كراهتها لما روت أم عطية قالت نهينا عن زيارة القبور ولم يعزم علينا رواه مسلم ولأن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قال لعن الله زوارات القبور قال الترمذي هذا حديث صحيح وهذا خاص في النساء والنهي المنسوخ كان عاما للرجال والنساء ويحتمل أنه كان خاصا للرجال ويتحمل أيضا كون الخبر في لعن زوارات القبور بعد أمر الرجال بزيارتها فقد دار بين الحظر والإباحة فأقل أحواله الكراهة ولأن المرأة قليلة الصبر كثيرة الجزع وفي زيارتها للقبر تهييج لحزنها وتجديد لذكر مصابها ولا يؤمن أن يفضي بها ذلك إلى فعل ما لا يجوز بخلاف الرجل ولهذا اختصصن بالنوح والتعديد وخصصن بالنهي عن الحلق والصلق ونحوهما والرواية الثانية لا يكره لعموم قوله عليه الصلاة والسلام كنت نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور فزوروها وهذا يدل على سبق النهي ونسخه فيدخل في عمومه الرجال والنساء وروي عن ابن أبي مليكة أنه قال لعائشة : يا أم المؤمنين أين أقبلت قالت من قبر أخي عبد الرحمن فقلت لها قد نهى رسول الله عن زيارة القبور قالت نعم قد نهى ثم أمر بزيارتها وروى الترمذي أن عائشة زارات قبر أخيها وروي عنها أنها قالت لو شهدته ما زرته

المغني لابن قدامة 2 / 226




Shafi


In Hujjah Allah Al-Balighah by Imam Shah Wali Allah Al-Dahalwi (may Allah show him mercy) he said, "He (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "I forbid you from visiting graves (but) now visit them." I say it was forbidden because the door of worship of other (things was open) and when the principles of Islam were affirmed, then when the souls were tranquil after being freed from worship for other than Allah, they were given permission."  (p. 68)


Abu Bakr Al-Bakari (may Allah show him mercy) said, "Visiting (graves) as it is thought that they might weep, raise their voices, because they have light hearts, worry much and have little ability to bear tribulations. It is not forbidden because he (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) passed a woman weeping at the grave of her child, he said, "Fear Allah and be patient." This is agreed upon. If visitation were unlawful, he would have forbid it. He informed our lady Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) when she asked, "What do I say, O Messenger of Allah?" when visiting graves, he (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Peace upon the residents of the abode of the believers and Muslim, may Allah show mercy to those who preceded and those who are forthcoming, when Allah wills us to join you." The position of this is when they go that there is no tribulation, then there is no doubt it is unlawful, then this moves to the authentic report that Allah curses women who visit graves." (Abu Bakr Al-Bakari in A'anah Al-Talibeen 2/161)


 أي الزيارة، لانها مظنة لطلب بكائهن، ورفع أصواتهن، لما فيهن من رقة القلب، وكثرة الجزع، وقلة احتمال المصائب, وإنما لم تحرم لانه (صلى الله عليه وسلم) مر بامرأة تبكي على قبر صبي لها، فقال لها: اتقي الله واصبري متفق عليه.

فلو كانت الزيارة حراما لنهي عنها, ولخبر السيدة عائشة رضي الله عنها قالت: قلت: كيف أقول يا رسول الله ؟ - تعني إذا زرت القبور -.قال: قولي: السلام على أهل الدار من المؤمنين والمسلمين، ويرحم الله المستقدمين والمستأخرين، وإنا إن شاء الله بكم لاحقون.

ومحل ذلك حيث لم يترتب على خروجها فتنة، وإلا فلا شك في التحريم.ويحمل على ذلك الخبر الصحيح.لعن الله زوارات القبور.

اعانة الطالبين 2/161


Imam Al-Ramli (may Allah show him mercy) said, "It is desired to visit graves, graves of the Muslims, for men, from a hadith in Muslim, "I forbid you from visiting graves will you visit them because they remind you of the afterlife." Its disliked for women, because of worry, but it is not unlawful, by the speech of Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said, "What do I say, O Messenger of Allah?" when visiting graves, He (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Peace upon the residents of the abode of the believers and Muslim, may Allah show mercy to those who preceded and those who are forthcoming, when Allah will us to join you." Reported by Muslim as for the report, "Allah curses women who visit graves." This is applicable when women visit graves to eulogise, weep and scream aloud, according to their habits." (Asna Al-Mutalib 4/350)


[(تُسْتَحَبُّ زِيَارَةُ الْقُبُورِ ) أَيْ قُبُورِ الْمُسْلِمِينَ ( لِلرَّجُلِ ) لِخَبَرِ مُسْلِمٍ { كُنْت نَهَيْتُكُمْ عَنْ زِيَارَةِ الْقُبُورِ فَزُورُوهَا فَإِنَّهَا تُذَكِّرُ الْآخِرَةَ } ( وَتُكْرَهُ لِلْمَرْأَةِ ) لِجَزَعِهَا ، وَإِنَّمَا لَمْ تَحْرُمْ عَلَيْهَا { لِقَوْلِ عَائِشَةَ قُلْت كَيْفَ أَقُولُ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ تَعْنِي إذَا زُرْت الْقُبُورَ قَالَ قُولِي السَّلَامُ عَلَى أَهْلِ الدِّيَارِ مِنْ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُسْلِمِينَ وَيَرْحَمُ اللَّهُ الْمُسْتَقْدِمِينَ مِنَّا وَالْمُسْتَأْخِرِينَ ، وَإِنَّا إنْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ بِكُمْ لَاحِقُونَ } رَوَاهُ مُسْلِمٌ ، وَأَمَّا خَبَرُ { لَعَنَ اللَّهُ زَوْرَاتِ الْقُبُورِ } فَمَحْمُولٌ عَلَى مَا إذَا كَانَتْ زِيَارَتُهُنَّ لِلتَّعْدِيدِ وَالْبُكَاءِ وَالنَّوْحِ عَلَى مَا جَرَتْ بِهِ عَادَتُهُنَّ ]. أسنى المطالب 4/350


Interestingly, the hadith about what to say in the graveyard adds further weight to our argument that women are allowed to visit graves. Why else would the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) teach her the supplication, if she was not allowed to go? Imam Ramli takes the position if they cry then they are cursed which is strange because the hadith is abrogated, as we have clearly shown. 

Again, please, note I am not an expert in other schools, so refer to the experts in these schools. 




Regional influences


In the indo pak region, some scholars take a hard line against women visiting graves. Unfortunately, there are practices that are unlawful taking place. Some graves of Awliyah have become festivals, some people dance there and so on. Anyone would agree this unlawful and it does not matter which side of the fence one sits. 


This is why some scholars in this region have banned women from visiting graves. They should ban festivals and dance etc, not just women. They should ban the men too, in this case. 


There are stories that women are seen naked by the inhabitants of the graves and lots of strange stuff. This is of course untrue and I have not found any textual evidence to back this up. If anyone has such proof, please email me. 


In Saudi, women are not allowed to see the blessed grave of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) from the front. Therefore, they give salams from a corner of the Rawdhah. It is actually closer to the grave than the wajihah. 


Imam Al-Nawawi (may Allah show him mercy) said, "Know that visiting the grave of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) is one the most important of actions that draw one close (to Allah), as well as speedy success."


وقال النووي رحمه الله : اعلم أن زيارة قبر رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم من أهم القربات وأنجح المساعي

المجموع 8 / 201 – 203


Apparently, there were some issues with some sects but I cannot confirm or deny this. Nor are women allowed to visit Jannat Al-Baqi. They even use the hadith above but unfortunately, they have not read them. If they did then they would allow women to go. 

There are two major Wahabi/Selefi opinions: Albani allows women to visit graves and Ibn Al-Bazz does not.





Final points


Now that we have looked at this issue from the side of hadith and fiqh, we have come to conclusion that it is permissible. 

As for those who disagree then a few scholars in geographical regions does not mean the entire Ummah have agreed. The vast majority of scholars allow it; with the conditions mentioned. There are others from other regions who do not agree with them but we have explained this. Yet, it all boils down to the same point, are they just reading the early hadiths and ignoring the rest? Alternatively, it is because things are plainly wrong because regrettable practices are taken place. 

It could be either but it could just be regrettable practices. There does not seem to be the same practices prevalent in the UK. So could one argue that the fatwas were valid in there times and places but not valid elsewhere. Unless, similar practices are taking place in other countries. This is a hard question and needs research.


The only Haram/unlawful thing would be for them wail or weep excessively aloud at the grave, question divine decree or damage graves etc. Yet, it would be disliked for men to do the same. As long as there is no fitna/tribulation then it is allowed. However, if they are likely to be weeping with tongues and hands then they should stay away. This is what is disliked. 

Hanafis note, the soundest position from zahir al-riwayah is that they are allowed to visit graves.


There is a report in Al-Shifa of Qadi Iyyad Al-Maliki (may Allah show him mercy) in which a woman came to Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) to visit the grave of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) showed her the blessed grave, the righteous woman swooned and died out of extreme love of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). 

Let me get this right, a woman visited a grave and was allowed by Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her), she was well acquainted with the sacred law, of course. This hadith comes after the first two hadith, which forbade it. This affirms it was allowed afterward. We hear this report often and are enamored by it but we do not understand it?! Yet, we still do not allow women to graves because???! Imam Al-Nawawi (may Allah show him mercy) said, "Know that visiting the grave of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) is one the most important of actions that draw one close (to Allah), as well as speedy success."


We really hope that this has clarified this matter beyond any shadow of a doubt. Women 
can visit graves and men should not stop them. If they are concerned about their safety then they should accompany them. Going during the day is best and avoid the night. They can also recite some Quran for the deceased and make dua to Allah (the Exalted) for them. Putting plants or flowers can relieve the punishment of the grave. Now we are moving to another issue!


In summary, it was not allowed to visit graves early in Islam but it was allowed later. So we should not attempt to control people or make religion difficult.


Constantly re-living the death of any family member/friend is not good for anyone. It is important to deal with ones grief and eventually move on. The deceased would not want someone to grieve over their death forever. As painful as things get, one has to move on. It does not matter who dies tonight, tomorrow the sun will rise again. 

And Allah knows best.



How the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) treated women click here



Treatment of women click here


Women's reward in paradise click here


Hijab in the modern context click here 


Bulgarian translation click here