Home > Tawheed > 5 Reasons not to worship (ask dua to) saints

5 Reasons not to worship (ask dua to) saints

As an apple can be only an apple, not an apple and an orange; so there is only one truth. And we do our best to research and pray to Allah to guide us to the siratul mustakeem.

1. Prophet Muhammad pbuh has warned time and again of not bringing new things in the religion. Every bidaa’ belongs to hellfire. This is a stern warning saying that he has shown the path that leads us close to Allah. So if some person, no matter who he is, comes and says that I have found a better method than what the Prophet of Allah had prescribed, it contradicts the very teaching of Prophet Muhammad SAW.

Wa sharrul Umoori Muhdathaatuhaa, Wa kulla Bid’atin dhaialah, wa kulla dhalatin fin-naar” Al-Hadith (Sahih Muslim). Translation of the above Hadith: Every innovation is a misguidance and every misguidance goes to Hell fire.

You can study all the authentic hadiths and I can guarantee you that you will not find any proof that prophet Muhammad SAW indicated us to pray to Allah through holy saints.

2. Allah says in the Quran: “This day have I perfected for you your religion and completed My favor on you and chosen for you Islam as a religion.” Qur’an 5:3
When Abu Backr RA heard this ayah, he could not stop crying because he knew that Rasool Ullah SAW has finished his mission and has completed teaching the religion. Hence, he was going to pass away soon.

Now when Allah has said he has “perfected” our religion, that means we cannot add anything new or delete anything from what Rasool Ullah has taught us. So, how can people come 100s of years later and say do this and this to get closer to Allah?

3. Also consider the following warnings from Allah Azzawajal:

“When My servants ask you about Me [tell them], ‘Verily I am close [to them]; I listen to the prayer of everyone who calls on Me. So let them respond to Me and believe in Me in order that the may be guided aright.'” (2:186)

“It is We Who created man and We know what his soul whispers to him, for We are nearer to him than his jugular vein.” (50:16)

These two verses above, Allah is saying that He directly listens to prayers of His slaves and He is closer to the slave than his own vein! So why do we need saints to go to Allah, when we can go directly to Allah? If I have direct access to the CEO of a company, why should I send a message through the secretary?

Prophet Muhammad PBUH said “Duaa is worship” (Sunnan Abi Dawud, hadith 1474) (This clearly indicates that making dua to anybody is worship, be it to Allah, to prophet Muhammad, to the grave or to saints is worship)

Further Allah warns “… Do you worship besides Allah that which [cannot and] does not help you at all or harm you?” (21:66)
“Those on whom you call besides Allah are only slaves like yourselves…” (7:194)

In these two verses above, Allah is telling us that we should ask dua and worship Him alone. Making dua to prophet Muhammad, to Saints, angels, jinns, graves asking for help or asking them to request help from Allah, is shirk (or associating partners with Allah); the biggest sins in Islam.

“Most of them [claim] belief in Allah, while committing shirk” (12:106)

When Makkans were asked about why they were offering prayers to idols, they said “… We only worship them so that they may bring us closer to Allah…” (39:3) So the idols were only used as intermediaries as the pagans thought it helped them get closer to Allah. Muslims who insist on praying to other than Allah should also reflect on these Ayahs.

4. I think the Ayah’s and proofs above show clearly why one should refrain from asking dua (prayer) to saints. And just because famous scholars do a practice does not make it correct. Allah had guided us by saying that follow those who stick to the Quran and Authentic hadeeth and the way of the early generations (sahabas). Sahabas never did such practices. You may know the famous verse commanding us to Obey Allah and Obey His messenger. And numerous other hadiths advising the Ummah to hold on tightly to the Quran and Sunnah. The Quran gives us numerous examples where the scholars misled their people and has indicated that they are among the worst of people. Consider this ayah, “They have taken their rabbis and monks as lords besides Allah, …” Prophet’s companion said “Surely we do not worship them.” Then Prophet SAW responded “Did they not make haram what Allah had made halal and you all made it haram, and did they not make halal what Allah made (haram) and you all made it halal?” He replied, “We certainly did.” The Prophet then said, “that was how you worshiped them.”

5. Inorder to understand how these practices crept into the Muslim world, we would have to look the historical events. I would highly encourage you to study this. I will give you a brief idea, bee idn Illah: Saint worship (calling on saints for dua) was a common practice among Catholic Christians. This religious philosophy is derived from the Greeks, thinkers such as Plotinus ((205 – 270AD), Valentinus (140 AD) etc. Saint Pachomius (290 – 346AD) established rules for Christian monasteries in Egyptian desert and set up 9 monasteries there. This methodology later came to be known as “Mysticism”. You would notice that Sufism is also called Mysticism! If you ponder on why, these monasteries spread all over Egypt and Syria. So when Islam finally came to these lands, Muslims who were not completely satisfied with Islamic law, Shariah, and who did not want to abandon their old practices of Mysticisms developed the system of Tariqah with the ultimate goal of Fana (seeking union with God.) By the way, this concept of Fanaa is borrowed from Hinduism/Bhuddism (Called Nirvana) and also in the Christian Mystic practice outlined in Plato’s Symposium in which mention is made of various ladders of ascent, composed of steep hard steps, and finally the union of the soul with God is achieved”.!

Allah also warns us in the Quran that Hell is the destination for those who continue to follow the way of their ancestors despite the truth being apparent to them.

I do hope that you read these points, open up the Quran and ponder on the verses mentioned and study research the other proofs that I have presented. This is extremely important as every Muslim should be extremely careful of knowingly and unknowingly committing shirk.

Categories: Tawheed Tags: , , ,
  1. Ashfaq Dulloo
    April 5, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    Before answering these Questions I would like to quote a hadith (actually it is Hadith-e-Qudsi) from Sahih Bukhari Shreef.

    Bukhari sharif Volume 8, Book 76, Number 509:

    Narrated Abu Huraira:

    Allah’s Apostle (peace be upon him) said, “Allah said, ‘I will declare war against him who shows hostility to a pious worshipper of Mine. And the most beloved things with which My slave comes nearer to Me, is what I have enjoined upon him; and My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawafil (praying or doing extra deeds besides what is obligatory) till I love him, so I become his sense of hearing with which he hears, and his sense of sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he grips, and his leg with which he walks; and if he asks Me, I will give him, and if he asks My protection (Refuge), I will protect him; (i.e. give him My Refuge) and I do not hesitate to do anything as I hesitate to take the soul of the believer, for he hates death, and I hate to disappoint him.”

    حضرت ابوہریرہ رضی اللہ عنہ سے روایت ہے کہ حضور نبی اکرم صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم نے فرمایا : اللہ تعالیٰ فرماتا ہے : جو میرے کسی ولی سے دشمنی رکھے میں اُس سے اعلانِ جنگ کرتا ہوں اور میرا بندہ ایسی کسی چیز کے ذریعے میرا قرب نہیں پاتا جو مجھے فرائض سے زیادہ محبوب ہو اور میرا بندہ نفلی عبادات کے ذریعے برابر میرا قرب حاصل کرتا رہتا ہے یہاں تک کہ میں اس سے محبت کرنے لگتا ہوں اور جب میں اس سے محبت کرتا ہوں تو میں اس کا کان بن جاتا ہوں جس سے وہ سنتا ہے اور اس کی آنکھ بن جاتا ہوں جس سے وہ دیکھتا ہے اور اس کا ہاتھ بن جاتا ہوں جس سے وہ پکڑتا ہے اور اس کا پاؤں بن جاتا ہوں جس سے وہ چلتا ہے۔ اگر وہ مجھ سے سوال کرتا ہے تو میں اسے ضرور عطا کرتا ہوں اور اگر وہ میری پناہ مانگتا ہے تو میں ضرور اسے پناہ دیتا ہوں۔ میں نے جو کام کرنا ہوتا ہے اس میں کبھی اس طرح متردد نہیں ہوتا جیسے بندۂ مومن کی جان لینے میں ہوتا ہوں۔ اسے موت پسند نہیں اور مجھے اس کی تکلیف پسند نہیں۔

    First of all note the starting words, Allah Said : I will declare war against him who shows hostility to a pious worshipper of Mine. So it’s just a warning to those who deny the virtues the powers and the status of friends of Allah, and disrespect them and consider them as ordinary person and compare them with idols. So those who keep these views regarding friends of Allah, Allah declare war against them.

    Now, one can imagine that to whom Allah declared war, he/she whether apparently looks like muslim and show knowledge of religion, actually tht person is Munafiq, and Allah has declared war against him/her.

    Always remember, we are not discussing friends of normal person or our friends, it’s the matter of friends of Allah, to whom Allah say that they are my Friends, so now they are not like or equal to status and position of ordinary person. Obviously because he is friend of Allah. So there is also warning in Quran as well :

    حضرت عمر بن خطاب رضی اللہ عنہ سے روایت ہے کہ حضور نبی اکرم صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم نے فرمایا : بے شک اﷲ تعالیٰ کے کچھ ایسے برگزیدہ بندے ہیں جو نہ انبیاء کرام ہیں نہ شہداء، قیامت کے دن انبیاء کرام علیھم السلام اور شہداء انہیں اﷲ تعالیٰ کی طرف سے عطا کردہ مقام دیکھ کر اُن پر رشک کریں گے۔ صحابہ کرام رضی اللہ عنھم نے عرض کیا : یا رسول اﷲ! آپ ہمیں ان کے بارے میں بتائیں کہ وہ کون ہیں؟ آپ صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم نے فرمایا : وہ ایسے لوگ ہیں جن کی ایک دوسرے سے محبت صرف اﷲ تعالیٰ کی خاطر ہوتی ہے نہ کہ رشتہ داری اور مالی لین دین کی وجہ سے۔ اﷲتعالیٰ کی قسم! ان کے چہرے نور ہوں گے اور وہ نور (کے منبروں) پر ہوں گے، انہیں کوئی خوف نہیں ہوگا جب لوگ خوفزدہ ہوں گے، انہیں کوئی غم نہیں ہوگا جب لوگ غم زدہ ہوں گے پھر آپ صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم نے یہ آیت تلاوت فرمائی : ’’خبردار! بیشک اولیاء اللہ پر نہ کوئی خوف ہے اور نہ وہ رنجیدہ و غمگین ہوں گے۔


    • May 18, 2011 at 2:20 am

      Assalam Alikum Brother,

      Jazak Allah Khairan for visiting the blog and sharing your thoughts. In response to your comment, as per the hadith it says: ” I will declare war against him who shows hostility to a pious worshipper of Mine.” Did our Noble Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) ever declare that if you don’t make sajda to the graves or ask dua to the graves of awliya, then it is showing hostility to awliya? So, nowhere in our religion (Quran and Authentic Sunnah) does Allah ever direct us and say that you should respect the awliyah by making sajda to their graves or asking dua in their graves. In fact, our prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has warned severly against this and the Quran has equated this to Shirk. Please read the article again and comments below carefully and heed the warning.

      “Indeed Allah does not forgive shirk (that you associate any partners with Him), but He forgives other than that to whom He pleases.” [Surah An Nisaa 4:48]

      One of the forms of shirk which is particularly widespread in Muslim countries is: grave-worship, the belief that dead awliyaa’ (“saints”) can fulfil one’s needs or help at times of distress, and calling upon them for aid. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him . . .” [al-Israa’ 17:23]

      Similarly, they call upon dead Prophets, righteous people and others to intercede for them or to rescue them from some calamity, but Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Is not He (better than your gods) Who responds to the distressed one, when he calls Him, and Who removes the evil, and makes you inheritors of the earth, generations after generations? Is there any ilaah (god) with Allaah? . . .” [al-Naml 27:62]

      Some of them have adopted the habit of mentioning the name of a shaykh or wali (“saint”) when they stand up, or sit down, or stumble, or encounter problems or distress, so they might say “O Muhammad!” or “O ‘Ali!” or “O Husayn!” or “O Badawi!” or “O Jeelaani!” or “O Shaadhili!” or “O Rifaa’i!” – or they may call upon al-’Aydaroos or Sayyidah Zaynab or Ibn ‘Alwaan. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Verily those whom you call upon besides Allaah are slaves like you . . .” [al-A’raf 7:194]

      Some of those who worship graves walk around them as if in Tawaaf, and acknowledge their corners, or touch them, kiss them, wipe their faces with their dust, prostrate towards them when they see them, or stand before them in fear and humility, praying for whatever they need of healing from some disease, or for a child, or for help with some difficulty. Sometimes they call upon the occupant of the grave, saying “O my master, I have come to you from far away, so do not let me down.”

      But Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And who is more astray than one who calls (invokes) besides Allaah such as will not answer him till the Day of Resurrection, and who are (even) unaware of their calls (invocations) to them?” [al-Ahqaaf 46:5]

      The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever dies calling on someone else as a rival to Allaah, will enter Hell.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, al-Fath, 8/176). [http://www.islamiczone.netfirms.com/Islamic%20Articles%20Folder/Prohibitions%20that%20are%20taken%20too%20lightly%20(Grave-Worship).htm]

      It is proven that the Prophet (saw) said: “May the curse of ALLAH, be upon the Jews and the Christians; they have taken the graves of their Prophets as places of worship.” He said that as he was dying, as a warning to his ummah against doing what they did.

      n al-Saheehayn it is also narrated that Umm Salamah and Umm Habeebah (ra) told the Messenger (saw) about a church that they had seen in the land of Abyssinia, and the images that were in it. He (saw) said: “When a righteous man died among them, they would build a place of worship over his grave and put those images in it. They are the most evil of mankind before ALLAH (swt).” (Al-Bukhaari, 427; Muslim, 528) Don’t you think the same is happening now as “Dargah”?

      In Saheeh Muslim (532) it is narrated that Jundub ibn ‘Abdallah (ra) said: “I heard the Messenger (saw) say: ‘I stand acquitted before ALLAH (swt) that I took anyone of you as a close friend (khaleel), for ALLAH (swt) has taken me as His close friend, as He took Ibraaheem (as) as His close friend. Had I taken any one of my ummah as a close friend, I would have taken Abu Bakr (ra) as a close friend. Those who came before you used to take the graves of their Prophets and righteous men as places of worship, but you must not take graves as places of worship; I forbid you to do that.’”

      There are many more to be shared, but one who reads this with open heart, Allah will truly open the doors of guidance, InshaAllah. I end with this ayah:

      “Indeed Allah does not forgive shirk (that you associate any partners with Him), but He forgives other than that to whom He pleases.” [Surah An Nisaa 4:48]

  2. Muslim
    February 18, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    Its not shirk to ask the deceased to make dua fro you as its the same if you was to ask them when they was alive. We make ziyarath and say the dua “Asalamualykum ya ahlul khabur.” If they cant hear our request because they are dead the why do we salaam them. in the Quran it does not just say obey Allah and obey the prophet, it also says obey those in authority. Tariqa is nothing new its a method of doing things. for example you can do loud dhikr which is one method the prophet did after prays or silent dhikr which is mentioned in Quran. This is what is meant by fana in Allah by doing lots of dhikr so you remember Allah constantly and never become heedless as Mosa AS was told to do in the Quran. Thats how the soul becomes fana in Allah through dhikr.

    • May 16, 2013 at 9:00 am

      In response to your comment about obeying leaders, Rasul Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “There is no obedience to the creation in disobedience to the Creator.” [Ahmed and Haakim]

      So if any leader command to something that is in contradiction to Quran and Sunnah, then you must not obey them. This is what Allah requests from us. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) commanded us not to invent something new in the religion and Allah says in Quran:

      “…This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion. But whoever is forced by severe hunger with no inclination to sin – then indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” [Surah Maidah: 3]

      So after Allah has perfected and completed the religion for us, then somebody else comes and says about tarikah for example, which is not commanded in Quran and Sunnah, then outhubillah, what that person is saying is that Allah did not perfect the religion like He said in the ayah above and you have to do this new thing…Hense contradicting the Quran & Sunnah. As per the hadith quoted in the beginning, there is no obedience to a leader when there is disobedience to Allah.

      I pray that you read this with an open heart and that the light of truth becomes apparent to you. Ameen.

      Jazak Allah Khairan,

  3. Muslim
    February 18, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    Also not just muslims but hindu people tend to visit sufi graves. just because they do such things as grave worship it does not mean you can associate it with ziyarath which muslims do.remember indians also wear head scarfs and turbans and the wear sherwanis an kurtas like othe pakistani muslims.so it can be confusing. I myself have never gone to graves and asked the piouse to make dua for me. but i say there is nothing wrong in it. its the same if i asked you to make dua for me.

  4. May 15, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Brother Muslim. Salam Alikum. You comment that there is nothing wrong with asking those in the grave to make dua for you. The reality is what matters is what did Allah say and what did Rasoolullah (SAW) say about it. That takes priority over what you say. Please share proof from the Quran and Sunnah to back your claim. Please read my post again and ponder over the numerous verses that I have posted that explain what Allah and His Rasool have spoken on this topic.

    Further Allah warns “… Do you worship besides Allah that which [cannot and] does not help you at all or harm you?” (21:66)

    Prophet Muhammad PBUH said “Duaa is worship” (Sunnan Abi Dawud, hadith 1474) (This clearly indicates that making dua to anybody is worship, be it to Allah, to prophet Muhammad, to the grave or to saints is worship)

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