Further Question About Milad
- A Discussion of Milad
- Some Wrongs
of the Contemporary Milad Gatherings
Belief that the Prophet Comes to the Milad Meeting
- The Importance of Durood
|Q.) I was brought up in a Barelwi tradition. Since I have
begun seeking knowledge from the wider Muslim (i.e. not just Barelwis, but
excluding Shias and similar groups, though including Wahhabis and Salafis)
community, I can say that I have gained much. I now understand more and more of what the
common ground is between groups and focus less on the disagreements. I think this kind of
tolerance comes with knowledge. Just as your article, "Humility in Knowledge and
Arrogance in Ignorance" would say.
I can say that I have changed certain beliefs
that I had before my "quest for knowledge." I have benefited enormously from Deoband
educated imams here - as a very famous Middle Eastern Sheikh said "Deobandis
know their fiqh."
There is one issue though that remains an anomaly and that really leaves me wondering.
That is concerning the Maulid (or as they would say in the Indian subcontinent, Milad).
Granted, there are some things that Barelwis may do which are curious, but from all
that I have seen around the world the Maulid seems to be an accepted practice among
Sunni Muslims. Scholars like Jalaluddin Suyuti, Ibn Hajar Asqalani and even Ibn Taimiya
described it as a praiseworthy innovation.
From the Ottoman Turks, to the pre-Salafi Arabs, the Malay Archipelago, the
Persian and Indo-Pak region, the Maulid was not controversial or questionable in
any way. The Sudanese uprising against the colonial forces was fueled by the emotion of
the Maulid (verhandelingen). This is why the colonial forces tried to quell the
celebration of Maulid in order to subdue the masses.
Today the Turks (Hanafi) still celebrate it with fervor, the Malay (Shafii),
the Bosnians (Hanafi), some (non-Salafi) Arabs, the Barelwis, the Sudanese.
In fact, the only people who dont celebrate it seem to be the Salafis, Deobandis
and the Tabligh Jamaat (the Shariah base of which is of course the books and texts
of the Deobandi school).
This is curious. If imams like as-Suyuti have permitted it (if it is free of
blameworthiness), was he in error? Was Asqalani in error? The establishment of a day to
celebrate the Maulid is completely regarded as bid'ah by Mufti Usmani, praiseworthy
or blameworthy acts aside.
A.) As I explained in my article on celebration of
Eid-e-Milaad-un-Nabi, holding a meeting to discuss different aspects of the life of the
Holy Prophet is a very meritorious act for which the Muslims should
strive to the best of their ability. But confining this discussion to the events of the
birth of the Holy Prophet and restricting it to a
particular date and holding attendance at such meetings as necessary or obligatory for
every Muslim renders this practice as bid'ah or innovation. Mostly the meetings of
Maulid today are of this type. Therefore, contemporary Ulema of Deoband have
declared it a bid'ah.
If the life of the Holy Prophet is made subject of a
meeting, and the meeting is free of the above mentioned defects, nobody can call it a bid'ah.
It is in this context that some scholars of the past have allowed the practice.
Answer by: Justice Mufti
A Discussion of Milad
[Note: Although the question does not address the issue of Milad from a fiqh point
of view, but only from a historical point of view, yet it is also important to examine the
issue in that context. For the most important question for a Muslim has to be whether or
not a particular act is permissible according to the Shariah, which is derived from
Qur'an, Sunnah, and the practice of the Sahabah, as they understood the Sunnah. The
following provides that perspective.]
The establishment of ceremonial gatherings under the banner of
"Eid-Milad-un-Nabee" and attaching religious significance to them is purely bid'ah
and an innovation in Deen, because neither did Rasulullah
himself indulge in it, nor did the illustrious Khulafaa-e-Raashideen, Radi-Allahu anhum,
organize such functions. Similarly, neither did any of the other Sahaaba-e-Kiraam,
Radi-Allahu anhum, participate in such gatherings, nor is there any incident on record
during the blessed era of the taabieen or tabe taabieen (Rahmat-u-Allahi
alayhim) that can, in any way, substantiate this innovation. These people were best
acquainted with the Sunnah of Rasulullah and had total love for
him. They were staunch followers of the Shariah.
Rasulullah has in no unclear terms, said: "Whoever introduces
anything that is not part of Deen, into this Deen of ours, it shall be rejected."
In another Hadith he says: "Hold fast onto my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the
rightly-guided Khulafa, after me. Hold fast onto it firmly, and beware of newly-introduced
practices, for every new practice is an innovation and every innovation leads one
astray." (Abu Dawood/Tirmizi)
Severe warnings have been sounded in the above-mentioned Ahadith with regard to
introducing and implementing innovations in Deen. The holy Quran enjoins: "And
whatsoever the messenger giveth you, take it. And whatsoever he forbiddeth, abstain (from
it). And keep your duty to Allah. Lo! Allah is stern in reprisal." [Al-Hashr 59:7]
"Verily in the messenger of Allah, ye have a good example for him who looks unto
Allah and the last day, and remembers Allah much." [Al-Ahzab 33:21]
"This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed my favor unto you,
and have chosen for you a religion, al-Islam." [Al-Maidah 5:3]
There are numerous other Ayat and Ahadith that can be quoted. But from no Ayat or
Ahadith can the current form of "Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabee " be proved.
Will such innovations grant proximity to Allah Taala? On the contrary, these
innovations should be a cause of great concern and alarm for the Ummat-e-Muslimah!
It is a known fact that Rasulullah is the most superior of
all the Ambiyaa alaihimus-salaam and also that he is the seal of all the prophets
alayhimus-salaam. He left no stone unturned in conveying Deen to us and rendering precious
advice to us. If the "Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabee " was a divinely
inspired act, then surely Rasulullah would have commanded the
Muslims to it, or at least, either he or his beloved Sahabah, Radi-Allahu anhum, would
have practiced it.
That is why, in the light of these unambiguous proofs, the Ulama-e-Haqq have always
refuted and rejected the customary form of "Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabee "
and Mahfeel-e-Milad and have also always discouraged people from participating in such
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Wrongs of the Contemporary Milad Gatherings
The contemporary form of Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabee apart from being a
manifestation of Bidah, also encompasses other evils such as the
intermingling of sexes, usage of musical instruments and many other such evils. The most
abhorring and shocking evils in these functions are the acts of shirk that take place.
With hollow claims of "Hubbe-Rasul " (love for
Rasulullah ) entreaties and supplications are made to beings other than
Allah, namely to Ambiyaa alaihimus-salaam and Auliaa-e-Kiraam Rahmat-u-Allahi-alaaihim.
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Belief that the Prophet Comes to the Milad Meeting
Some people also believe that Rasulullah comes to this function
and due to this belief, they stand up in respect and veneration. This is absolutely
untrue. Rasulullah does not arrive at any "Eid-e-Milad-un Nabee "
function. He is in his Rawdha-e-Mubarak (grave) at Madinah Munawwarah and will emerge from
it at the onset of Yawmul-Qiyaamah, or the Day of Judgement.
The following Ayat and Hadith testify to this fact: The Quran, addressing
Rasulullah announces explicitly: - "Lo! Thou wilt die, and Lo!
They will die. Then Lo! On the day of resurrection, before your sustainer, you will
dispute." [Az-Zumar 39:30-31]
At another place, Rasulullah is addressed together
with the rest of mankind: - "Then Lo! After that you surely die, then Lo! On the day
of resurrection you are raised (again)" [Al-Muminun 23:16]
Rasulullah himself has said in a Hadith: - "My grave will be the
first to be opened on the day of Qiyamah and I shall be the first person to intercede and
the first person whose intercession shall be accepted."
These Ayat and Hadith as well (and there are others) prove that all of mankind will be
raised from their graves on the day of Qiyamah, with Rasulullah
being no exception. On this, there is consensus of the entire Ummah.
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The Importance of Durood
Instead of squandering our money and time on futile acts of Bid'ah let us rather
utilize our precious time, as much as possible in the recitation of Durood and salaam upon
our beloved Rasulullah which is indeed, a highly meritorious and virtuous act. The
Quran enjoins: - "Lo! Allah and his Angels shower blessings on the Nabee 'O' ye
who believe ask for the descent of blessings on him and salute him with a worthy
salutation." [Al-Ahzab 33:56]
Rasulullah has said: "Whosoever sends one Durood upon me, Allah
Taala will shower ten mercies upon him." (Muslim). Particularly on Jumuah, one should
increase the recitation of Durood and salaam.
[Mufti Ebrahim Desai FATWA DEPT. Jamiat Ulema Islam. South Africa]
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