Error, Innovation and True Belief

Abdullah bin `Umar (r) said that the Prophet (s) said those who deviate from the beliefs of the majority of the Muslims, “using the verses of Holy Qur’an which were revealed about unbelievers to apply to believers, are themselves unbelievers.5 In another narration Ibn `Umar (r) said that the Prophet (s) said, “The thing I fear most for my nation is that a man will apply verses of Holy Qur’an outside its intended context.5

The followers of Muhammad bin Abdul Wahhab tried to suppress the writings of Ahlus-Sunnah scholars from the eyes of Muslims, hiding all books of previous scholars from the market and propagating their own limited literature–that of Ibn Taymiyyah, Ibn Qayyim and Muhammad bin Abdul Wahhab, and even attempting to corrupt the writings of Ahlus-Sunnah `ulama by buying out publishers for large sums of cash. It is an act of sacrilege for that man, Muhammad b. Abdul Wahhab and his followers, with their incorrect beliefs, to call the majority of Muslims unbelievers! In fact, the one who deviates from the majority of Muslims is nearer to unbelief than belief because he chooses a path removed from that of the majority of the Muslims. As Allah said in the Holy Qur’an,

“Whoever opposes the Prophet after he has found the Guidance and the Reality and follows a different way than the Believers, We are going to put him in Hell…”[4:115]

Many hadith of the Holy Prophet (s) predicted the coming of the Najdis and its destructive effect on Islam. the Holy Prophet said, “A people will emerge from the East, reading the Holy Qur’an in such a way that it never reaches past their throats. They pass through religion as the arrow passes through its target, consequently missing the mark.” 6

This has been a short introduction concerning the Najdi sect. We mentioned their accusation of shirk and kufr (association and unbelief) for those who accept Shafa’a of the Prophet (s), despite the hadiths which prohibit calling someone who says `La ilaha illa-Allah, Muhammadar-Rasulullah an unbeliever.

The Acceptability of Tawassul

One belief of the majority of Muslims which is rejected by the Najdi school is using the Prophet as intermediary to Allah (tawassul). Najdis regard this belief as constituting association or polytheism (shirk). However, clear proof of the acceptability of this belief is found in the Holy Qur’an and authentic Hadiths.

Here we will present some texts which will disprove their claim of shirk without a doubt. Firstly, if it was association, tawassul would never have been accepted by the Prophet (s) himself. As narrated in an authentic hadith, the Prophet in his prayers used to say, “O my Lord, I am asking you for the sake of those who ask You. . .” 7 He used to teach this supplication to his Sahabah and order them to use it. In this case, he (s) was using those who ask Allah to be the intermediaries for his supplication.

Question: Does belief in the use of the holy prophets and messengers as intermediaries (wasilah) make the believer asking through them a mushrik and a kafir? And is it true that his worship–salat, sawm, hajj, etc. –is corrupted by this belief?

Answer: Belief in the mediation (tawassul) of Prophets and messengers is faith, not unbelief, and it is permissible, not forbidden! The one who asks using the mediation (tawassul) of these Holy prophets TO Allah, in order that his request may be accepted, is a believer and a monotheist, and he is not a polytheist because he is asking Allah–not asking the holy prophets–but asking for the sake of their honor as holy prophets. That is why his worship is accepted–because he is worshipping Allah, not the prophets.

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