Tawassul by virtue of the Prophets and the righteous
Fatwa No: 264595

Question

your fatawa section is great mashaAllah, but please please please do not ONLY send me the links of other fatawa in response. (yes if there are fatawa related to this question than please send along with the answer to this particular question). My question is regarding Hafith Ibn Hujr al Asqalani. What was his aqeedah with regards to Tawassul Through Auliyah and Prophets? Because I have seen salafi website quoting him against sufi aqeedah, i.e. wahdatul wajood, seeing Prophet peace be upon him while awake, asking help from dead etc. on the other hand sufis quote him against salafis like on the issue of tawassul. My main question is regarding the issue of tawassul through auliyah. A sufi Abul Hasan Hussein Ahmad said that Hafith Ibn Hujr al asqalani wrote a "Diwan" (Hayderabad n.d) page 16 which was published with the editing of dr al-Sayyid Abul Fadl who said "This edition uses the original manuscript preserved in the egyption national library" In which Hafith Said: """By the gate of your generosity stands a sinner, who is mad with love.... Through you he seeks means (tawassala), hoping for Allah's forgiveness of ships."""[translated by Abdal Hakim Murad in his selections from the Fath al Bari by al Asqalani page 4] my question is is this "diwan" rightly attributed to Ibn Hujr and whether these words are really from Ibn Hujr?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and messenger.

We cannot verify whether or not this Deewaan (collection of poems) is authentically attributed to Ibn Hajar because this requires seeing the book and reading its introduction and seeing the copies/manuscripts that the editor relied upon, and other matters which prove whether this book can really be attributed to the author [Ibn Hajar].

In any case, what we can say is that making Tawassul by virtue of the Prophets and righteous people, meaning, asking Allaah by their persons, like saying, O Allaah I ask you by the high status of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) or I call upon you by the right of such-and-such person, then there is a well-known difference of opinion among the scholars concerning it. Many of them are of the view that such a kind of Tawassul is permissible, but the preponderant opinion is that it is forbidden and not permissible.

Nonetheless, such an issue is a matter of Ijtihaad (personal reasoning) in which the difference of opinion is acceptable.

Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: "There is a justifiable difference of opinion with regard to the issue of supplicating Allaah by the virtue of the Prophets and righteous people without swearing by them..."

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhaab  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: "We do not object to those who do this [kind of Tawassul]. There is no objection to matters which are open to Ijtihaad. However, we object to that person who calls upon a creature more earnestly than he calls upon Allaah, intentionally goes to a grave and supplicates at the shrine of Shaykh ‘Abdul Qaadir [Al-Jeelaani] or any other person asking him to make for him a way out of his difficulties, to relieve his hardship, and fulfill his wishes. How can this person be equal to the one who only calls upon Allaah devoting his faith to Him and who does not call upon any other one than Allaah, but he says in his supplication: I ask you, O Allaah, by the virtue of your Prophet, or by the virtue of the Messengers, or by the virtue of righteous people, or purposefully goes to a grave of famous righteous person or whosoever so as to supplicate at that place, yet he does not call upon anybody else except Allaah devoting his faith to Him? So, how can they be equal?"

For more information, please refer to Fataawa 7775 and 89076.

Allaah Knows best.

Related Fatwa