Thu 17 Jm2 1435 - 17 April 2014
21524

Can the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) hear those who call upon him when he is in his grave?

Some people believe that the Prophet Muhamamd [(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)] is "Shaheed" and is in BArzakh where he can hear us if we send 'darood' on him and also if we ask his 'wasta' [by virtue of his closeness to Allah]in praying to God.

Praise be to Allaah.  

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) is alive in his grave in the sense of the life of al-barzakh, so he enjoys the blessings that Allaah has prepared for him as a reward for his great good actions that he did in this world. But the life in the grave is not like the life of this world, or the life in the Hereafter. Rather it is the life of al-barzakh which comes in between his life in this world and his life in the Hereafter. Hence we know that he died as other Prophets and other people before him died. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“And We granted not to any human being immortality before you (O Muhammad); then if you die, would they live forever?”

[al-Anbiya’ 21:34] 

“Whatsoever is on it (the earth) will perish.

And the Face of your Lord full of Majesty and Honour will remain forever”

[al-Rahmaan 55:26,27] 

“Verily, you (O Muhammad) will die, and verily, they (too) will die”

[al-Zumar 39:30] 

And there are other verses which also indicate that Allaah caused him to die. Moreover, the Sahaabah (may Allaah be pleased with them) washed him, shrouded him, offered the funeral prayer for him and buried him; if he had been alive in the worldly sense, they would not have done the same as is done for others who die. 

Faatimah (may Allaah be pleased with her) asked Abu Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with him) for her inheritance from her father (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) because she was convinced that he had died, and no one among the Sahaabah (may Allaah be pleased with them) differed with her concerning that. Rather Abu Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with him) responded to her request by saying that nothing could be inherited from the Prophets.  

The Sahaabah agreed unanimously to choose a khaleefah for the Muslims to succeed the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him),  and that was done with the appointment of Abu Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with him) as khaleefah. If the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) had been alive in a worldly sense, they would not have done that. So this indicates that there was consensus among them that he had indeed died. 

When the tribulations (fitan) and problems increased during the time of ‘Uthmaan and ‘Ali (may Allaah be pleased with them both), and before and after that, they did not go to his grave to consult him or ask him for a way out of those tribulations and problems, or the way to solve them. If he had been alive in a worldly sense, they would not have overlooked that when they were in such great need of someone to save them from the trials that surrounded them.  

With regard to the soul of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), it is in the highest part of ‘Illiyyeen, because he is the best of creation, and because Allaah has given him al-waseelah which is the highest position in Paradise. 

The life of al-barzakh is a special life. The Prophets and the shuhada’ (martyrs) are alive in al-barzakh as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The Prophets are alive and they pray in their graves.” (Narrated by al-Mundhiri and al-Bayhaqi who classed it as saheeh because of corroborating reports in al-Saheehayn.) 

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“And say not of those who are killed in the way of Allaah, ‘They are dead.’ Nay, they are living, but you perceive (it) not”

[al-Baqarah 2:154] 

This is a special life, the nature of which is known to Allaah. It is not like the life of this world in which the soul remains with the body.  

The basic principle concerning the dead is that they do not hear the words of the living sons of Adam, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“but you cannot make hear those who are in graves”

[Faatir 35:22] 

Allaah confirmed that those whom he (the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)) was calling to Islam could not hear, by likening them to the dead. There is nothing in the Qur’aan or in the saheeh Sunnah to indicate that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) can hear every du’aa’ or call from human beings. Rather it is proven that the only thing that reaches him (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) is the blessings and salaams of those who send blessings and salaams upon him. This was narrated by Abu Dawood, 2041, with a hasan isnaad from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) who said that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There is no one who sends salaams upon me but Allaah will restore to me my soul so that I may return his salaams.” This does not mean that he hears the words of the one who sends salaams. Rather it is possible that he comes to know of those salaams when the angels convey that to him. If we assume that he hears the words of the one who sends salaams, this is an exception from the general rule, as in the case of the dead hearing the footsteps of those who carry his bier, and as in the case of the slain kuffaar in the well at Badr who heard the call of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) when he said to them: “Have you found your Lord’s promise to be true? For we have found our Lord’s promise to be true.” (See Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah, 1/313, 318, 321). 

With regard to calling upon the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and asking him directly, this is the essence of shirk which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was sent to forbid and to fight against its people. For more details on the ruling on that, see Question no. 10289, 11402, 1439. We ask Allaah to bring the Muslims back to the right path. And Allaah knows best. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon his Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid
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