tawassul part 3

  • Bukhari and Tirmidhi narrate from Qatada: “I asked Anas to describe the sandals of Allah’s Messenger and he replied: Each sandal had two straps”; and from `Isa ibn Tahman: “Anas took out a pair of shoes and showed them to us. They did not have hair on them.” (The remark refers to the Arabian practice of not removing the hair from the leather from which shoes were made.) Bukhari, Malik, and Abu Dawud relate that `Ubayd ibn Jarih said to `Abd Allah ibn `Umar: “I saw you wear tanned sandals.” He replied: “I saw the Prophet wearing sandals with no hair on them and perform ablution in them, and so I like to wear them.”
  • al-Qastallani in his Mawahib al-laduniyya said that Ibn Mas`ud was one of the Prophet’s servants and that he used to bring for the Prophet his cushion (wisada), his tooth-stick (siwak), his two sandals (na`layn), and the water for his ablution. When the Prophet rose he would put his sandals on him; when he sat he would carry his sandals in his arms until he rose.

Qastallani mentions the following from one of the greatest Tabi`in:

Abu Ishaq (al-Zuhri) said: al-Qasim ibn Muhammad (ibn Abu Bakr al-Siddiq) said: Of the proven blessing of the likeness of the Prophet’s sandal is that whoever has it in his possession for tabarruk, it will safeguard him from the sedition of rebels and the mastery of enemies, and will be a barrier against every recreant devil and the evil eye of the envious. If the pregnant woman holds it in her right hand at the time of labor, her delivery will be easier by Allah’s change and His might.

al-Qastallani also said that Abu al-Yaman ibn `Asakir wrote a volume on the image of the Prophet’s sandal, and so did Ibn aHajj al-Andalusi. He relates the account of a pious shaykh by the name of Abu Ja`far Ahmad ibn `Abd al-Majid:

I cut the pattern of this sandal for one of my students. He came to me one day and said: “I saw a wonder yesterday from the blessing of this sandal. My wife was suffered from a pain which almost took her life. I placed the sandal on the spot of her pain and said: O Allah, show me the blessing of the owner of this sandal. Allah cured her on the spot.”

al-Munawi and al-Qari mentioned in their commentary on Tirmidhi’s al-Shama’il that Ibn al-`Arabi said that the sandals are part of the attire of prophets, and the people only left them due to the mud in their lands. He also mentioned that one of the names of the Prophet in the ancient books is sahib al-na`layn or “The wearer of the two sandals.”

Shaykh Yusuf al-Nabahani recited about the Prophet’s sandals:

wa na`lun khada`na haybatan li waqariha

fa inna mata nakhda`u li haybatiha na`lu

fa da`ha `ala a`la al-mafariqi innaha

haqiqataha tajun wa surataha na`lu

A sandal to whose majestic nobility we submit

For by submitting to its majesty do we rise:

Therefore place it in the highest spot for it is

In reality a crown, though its image is a sandal.

And when Imam al-Fakhani first saw the Prophet’s sandals he recited:

wa law qila li al-majnuni layla wa wasluha

turidu am al-dunya wa ma fi zawayaha

laqala ghubarun min turabi ni`aliha

ahabbu ila nafsi wa ashfa li balawaha

And if Layla’s Madman were asked: do you prefer

Union with Layla, or the world and its treasures?

He would answer: “Dust from the earth of her sandals

Is dearer to my soul, and its most soothing remedy.”

Shihab al-Din Ahmad al-Muqri wrote a book on this which he named Fath al-muta`al fi madh al-ni`al (The opening of the Most High in the praise of the Prophet’s sandals).

Ashraf `Ali al-Tahanawi the Deobandi shaykh wrote a treatise entitled Nayl al-shifa’ bi na`l al-mustafa (The attainment of cure through the sandals of the Elect One) found in his book Zad al-sa`id (Provision for the fortunate).

The muhaddith of India Muhammad Zakariyya Kandhalwi said in his translation of Tirmidhi’s Shama’il:

Maulana Ashraf `Ali Thaanwi Saahib has written in his kitaab Zaadus Sa`eed a detailed treatise on the barakaat and virtues of the shoes of Rasulullah Sallallahu `Alayhi Wasallam. Those interested in this should read that kitaab (which is available in English). In short, it may be said that it [the Prophet's sandal] has countless qualities. The `ulama have experienced it many a time. One is blessed by seeing Rasulullah Sallallahu `Alayhi Wasallam in one’s dreams; one gains safety from oppressors and every heartfelt desire is attained. Every object is fulfilled by its tawassul (means, petition, request). The method of tawassul is also mentioned therein.

We see by all the above evidence that tawassul and tabarruk are an intimate and integral part of the practice of the Companions, that it is Sunna, and that no-one denies it except those who deviate from the Sunna and who harbor the disease of ignorance and suspicion in their heart. May Allah protect us from their designs, and may He keep all Muslims unswervingly on the path of Ahl al-Sunna and that of the true Salaf. And Allah knows best.

Peace and Blessings upon the Prophet, his Family, and his Companions

© 2012 As-Sunnah Foundation of America

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