Islamic Concept of Intermediation (Tawassul)

Reality of Intermediation

Section One: Basic conceptions of intermediation (توسل)

The relevance and wholesomeness of the concept of intermediation is an established fact. The negation of this reality is in fact the negation of the Qur’ānic injunctions. This attitude is simply inconceivable for any Muslim, irrespective of his group affiliation. Intermediation is a twofold act: on the one hand, it acknowledges the humility and helplessness of the creature who has a pressing need to be fulfilled; on the other hand, it asserts the superiority of an act which has been hallowed by divine sanction, or of a personage who enjoys divine approval through a series of noble deeds. The idea behind intermediation is not to vitiate or supplant divine authority but to facilitate the acceptance of human needs through the act of prayer. Thus the act of intermediation involves a sliding-scale of graded functions: at the bottom is the humble creature who hopes for a favourable divine response; in the middle is the sanctified act or the personage who has developed closer affiliation with God through meditation, prayer and human service and at the top is God Himself Who Alone possesses the power to grant the prayer.

The concept does not imply that the intermediary will grant the prayer or that he will pressurize God to grant the prayer of an individual or condone his sins. This is an egregious misconception, which haunts the minds of a number of people. In fact, the prayee believes that when he mediates his prayer through divinely blessed persons, after positing his own helplessness and after articulating the praise of God, He will fulfil his need as a token of courtesy to the intermediary. He does not even have the creeping notion that the intermediary is a partner in divinity. It is, therefore, vitally significant to grasp the reality of intermediation to obviate any misunderstanding, especially on the part of those who are prone to interpreting it in a characteristically un-Islamic sense.

It should be understood at the very outset that intermediation is only a form of prayer to be answered by God Alone. The intermediary is only a medium who serves as a means to activate the process of its fulfilment.

It should also be noted that the choice of an intermediary depends on two vital factors; first he is loved by the prayee and secondly he is also loved by God. Therefore, to love someone simply because he is loved by God is in itself a virtuous act, so his choice as an intermediary becomes indisputable. This is the factual position and if someone harps on another string, he is not only mistaken but is also committing an ignominious deed. This contention is easily endorsed by the logic of commonsense. If the prayee believes that the intermediary can harm or benefit like God, he is guilty of a heinous sin and will be dismissed as a believer on the basis of this erroneous belief.

Besides, it is not necessary that mediation alone should serve as a guarantee for the realization of prayer, because Allah says:

And (O beloved,) when My servants ask you about Me, (tell them,) “I am Near.”[1]

(O beloved,) say, “Call upon Allah or call upon ar-Rahmān (the most Merciful), by whichever name you call on Him, His are the most beautiful names.”[2]

The misunderstanding that intermediation is a form of coercion should end now as the intermediary cannot force God to grant a prayer against His Own will. No one can dictate to Him, we can only beseech Him. It is only an expression of His infinite mercy that he has upscaled some of His creatures on the grounds of their love and obedience and turned them into agents of redemption for millions of ordinary people who, without their mediation, might have drifted in sheer hopelessness and frustration. This is an indirect divine recognition of their services that God puts a positive spin on whatever is associated with them. It is for the same reason that sacred places and objects are offered as means. The purpose is to boost human expectation for the divine reprieve.

Different views about intermediation (توسل)

There is complete agreement on some aspects of intermediation while a fractious climate of opinion marks its other aspects.

The Muslim scholars agree that virtuous deeds like prayer, fasting, pilgrimage to Makkah, zakat and recitation of the holy Qur’ān can serve as legitimate means of intermediation. There are, of course, some people who deny intermediation without action (passive intermediation) i.e. through prophets, righteous ones, saints and relics, though the Muslim scholars have affirmed the possibility of intermediation through these means. These differences have been eloquently highlighted by Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī:

“The conflicting view relates to intermediation without action (passive intermediation), i.e. when individuals and personalities are taken as means, for example, to say, “O God, I take Your Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as an intermediary to You,” or “I take Abū Bakr as-Siddīq or ‘Umar bin al-Khattāb or ‘Uthmān or ‘Alī as intermediaries to You.” Some scholars treat it as forbidden. I believe that this difference is only superficial because in intermediation through an individual, the intermediary powers are vested in that individual on the basis of his deeds and intermediation through action is unanimously acceptable. People who deny intermediation have adopted a stubborn posture. If they had cared to look at the problem perceptibly, it would have cleared up, the doubts would have vanished and the conflict would have resolved which has led them to hurl unsavoury allegations against the Muslims. Intermediation without action is actually attributed to the intermediary and he has acquired this status on the basis of his actions. A man tends to choose someone as his intermediary because he loves him and reposes unqualified trust in his spiritual superiority as a consequence of this love, or he believes the intermediary is loved by Allah Himself. As He says:

(Allah) loves them and they love Him.[3]

Or he believes that all these qualities are found in the intermediary. If you reflect on it, you are bound to find this matrix of love. And this belief is the action of the intermediary because belief is a form of action, which grips his heart. The intermediatee seems to say:

“O, my Lord! Undoubtedly, I love such and such person and I truly believe that he also loves You, he is Your loyal servant and he wages jihad for Your sake, and I believe You love him too, and You are pleased with him, and I offer him as an intermediary on account of my love for him, and I believe You will grant my prayer.”

“But there are a number of religious scholars (intermediationists) who limit its scope to the One Whose knowledge spans the secrets of the heavens and the earth and Who can detect the waywardness of the eyes and penetrate the secrets of the hearts. A person who says, “I take the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as my intermediary,” and the other who says, “I take the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as my intermediary because I love him,” are both on the same footing because he has chosen the first source of intermediation on the basis of his trust in the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and his love for him. If the prayee had not loved and trusted the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), he would not have chosen him as his intermediary. The same applies to the saints and the holy personages.

“This discussion lifts the haze off of the concept of intermediation. It clearly shows that the difference is only superficial and does in no way insinuate that the prayees (intermediatees) should be maligned as non-believers and chucked out of the fold of Islam. It is a moral stigma.”[4]

True sense of the concept of intermediation (توسل)

Some people are reluctant to pray through the mediation of the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) on account of lack of knowledge. They think that praying through mediation is incompatible with praying directly to Allah. This attitude is grounded in a misunderstanding of the Qur’ānic verses, which enjoin upon the believers to pray directly to Allah and to eschew associating partners with Him. As a result of misinterpretation they believe that to approach Allah through an intermediary amounts to a denial of divine unity. This conception is based on ignorance and misunderstanding and we should try to correct it. To approach Allah while praying, through a prophet or a messenger, a holy person or a pious deed, is neither a denial of the oneness of Allah nor is it inconsistent with an unmediated appeal to Him.

In spite of the intermediation, we pray to Allah directly and not to the intermediary. One commits the act of denying Allah only when he, in opposition to Him, regards someone else as the arbitrator of profit and loss, as the absolute power and as the granter of prayers. But the situation here does not warrant any such development. The prayer is submitted only to Allah, and while appealing to Him to grant these needs and desires, the mediation of the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), a saintly person or a pious deed is cited because they enjoy Allah’s love and favour and, therefore, He has greater regard for them than for other creatures. So such form of intermediation not only makes the words of prayer more effective but also raises its chances of acceptance by Allah. Now his prayer is not a simple prayer, it is rather a blend of his request and divine love. The urgency of his need combines with Allah’s magnanimity and acquires a holier complexion. It should be noted that the grant of prayers is not contingent on mediation but it definitely expedites their fulfilment. The holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) himself instructed his companions to pray through his mediation as we come to know through a tradition narrated by ‘Uthmān bin Hunayf that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) taught a blind man to pray:

O Allah, I appeal to You, and submit to You through the mediation of the merciful Prophet Muhammad. O Muhammad, through your mediation I submit myself to my Lord to have my need granted. O Allah, acknowledge his intercession in my favour.[5]

‘Umar used to pray for rain through the mediation of the Prophet’s uncle ‘Abbās as is attributed to Anas.[6] Once when Medina was in the grip of a severe drought, ‘Ā’ishah asked some of the Companions and residents of the city to visit the holy Prophet’s grave, and on account of his blessings, it rained in buckets.[7]

In short, this blessed act has been popular and prevalent from the days of Adam (عليه السلام) and other prophets to the period of the holy prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), the Companions and the Successors and right down to the present-day Muslims. Now some people, hopelessly deficient in a correct understanding of dīn, are raising unfounded objections against its efficacy, and treating it as a challenge to the uniqueness of Allah. Therefore, it is imperative that the injunctions of Shariah should be understood in their true essence and perspective so that we do not distort them for lack of knowledge and understanding.

Important terminology about tawassul (توسل)

Whenever we discuss the concept of intermediation we should take into account four factors, which are interlinked:

  1. Wasīlah: mediation; the means of approach.
  2. Mutawassil: intermediatee; the prayee who chooses his own pious deed or a personage or a place as a source of intermediation in his prayer.
  3. Mutawassal bihī: intermediary; intermediator; an object that is offered as a source of intermediation to Allah, for example, virtuous deeds, saintly personages and hallowed signs and acts associated with them.
  4. Mutawassal ilayh: Allah is the Focus of all intermediation because it is submitted to Him Alone.

Section Two :

Literal meaning of tawassul (توسل)

Tawassul (intermediation) and wasīlah (means) are similarly used. Lexicologists think that wasīlah is a means of achieving an objective.

1. Imam Rāghib Asfahānī comments:

Wasīlah means to seek willingly access to something and since it is based on willingness, it is related to wasīlah, the means of approach.[8]

2. Ibn Manzūr, in his research conducted on the word wasīlah, writes:

In fact, wasīlah is a means of approach to something to attain nearness to it.[9]

3. Imam Zamakhsharī says:

Everything that helps in seeking means of approach, that is, nearness to Allah, is wasīlah.[10]

Technical meaning of tawassul (توسل)

tawassul (توسل) carries multiple meanings. It is used in the sense of need, inclination, stature and nearness; three of these senses are consistent with its technical usage:

1. Highest station

Wasīlah is the highest station in Paradise, which is reserved for the intercessor – the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) – on the Day of Judgement. It is usual for Muslims to pray, after the call to prayer, that Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) may obtain this station. It is related to Bukhārī that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) himself persuaded his followers to offer the following prayer:

Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said as reported by Jābir bin ‘Abdullāh: Anyone who prays after the call to prayer, “O Lord, in exchange for this complete invitation and standing prayer, make Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) a source of intermediation and superiority and appoint him to the highest station in Paradise as promised by You,” my intercession for him on the Day of Judgement will be obligatory.[11]

In this supplication (du‘ā’), al-wasīlah means ‘a spot which is a special grade of excellence in Paradise,’ this is also the highest station reserved for the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم). Whenever we invoke the mediation of the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), we have in mind this specific place in Paradise.

2. Proximity to Allah

The nearness to Allah is in itself a source of intermediation. When a creature comes close to Allah through the perfection of his faith, obedience to His rules and prescriptions, observance of forms of worship, following the sunnah and avoiding sins, this nearness to Allah in itself becomes a source of intermediation. Similarly those who work with sincerity of intention acquire close access to Allah and are elevated to the stature of His favourites. Their sincerity and affiliation keep them steadily glued to the right path and serve as an mediation to counter the tricks of the devil. According to Allah Himself, Satan has sworn to lead the believers astray:

(Satan) said, “I swear by Your honour that I will mislead all of them.”[12]

But he will never be able to mislead those who have attained nearness to Allah.

3. Source of intermediation

All objects, which are a means to attain the nearness of Allah, also serve as sources of intermediation whether they are related to individuals or deeds. The Qur’ān has made it permissible to seek the means of approach, and what is permitted cannot be waived without proper shar‘ī argument or convincing proof. The Qur’ān says:

O believers! Fear Allah and seek means (of approach to) His (presence and to His nearness and accessibility).[13]

This verse does not stress any specific application and includes both acts and individuals. The same verse acts as an explicit justification of intermediation.

Shāh Ismā‘īl Dihlawī interprets the Qur’ānic verse as the direction provided by the spiritual guide:

People who are in search of the true conduct mean by wasīlah a kind of guide. Search for the guide should necessarily precede the hard struggle that is required for the attainment of true success, and Allah has prescribed this method for the seekers of the true path. Therefore, without the direction of the guide, its acquisition is almost impossible.[14]

Kinds of tawassul (توسل)

tawassul (توسل) may be divided into the following kinds:

  1. at-Tawassul lid-du‘ā’
  2. at-Tawassul fid-du‘ā’
  3. at-Tawassul bid-du‘ā’
  4. at-Tawassul bin-nidā’
  5. at-Tawassul bil-a‘māl-is-sālihah
  6. at-Tawassul bi-āthār-is-sālihīn

1. at-Tawassul lid-du‘ā’

This (kind of intermediation) seeks nearness of Allah through a source approved by Shariah.

2. at-Tawassul fid-du‘ā’

When a need or worry is submitted to Allah for its relief, the help of an intermediary is sought to fulfil the need or remove the worry.

Difference between the two

The first kind of intermediation is a means of drawing near to Allah while the second kind of intermediation serves to fulfil the need of an individual or to eliminate a specific anxiety.

Kinds of tawassul fid-du‘ā’

This kind of intermediation is further divided into two kinds:

  1. Intermediation through words, and
  2. Intermediation without words.

1. Intermediation through words

In this form of intermediation, the name of the intermediary is mentioned (for the acceptance of a prayer and the fulfilment of a need and) to acquire the close access to Allah.

During prayer to Allah, reference to a good deed or a saintly person serves as a kind of intermediation for the acceptance of that prayer. The petitioner does not need to specify the name of the intermediary, a mere reference to him is enough as is endorsed by Bukhārī, which is summarized below:

“During journey, the entrance of the cave closed on them. All the three were virtuous men, one of them prayed to Allah by referring to his kindly treatment of his parents. The second man prayed by suggesting how he had managed to escape committing a sin though it was the easiest thing for him to do. The third man talked about how he had guarded the wages of a labourer for many years and paid him the money after a lapse of considerable time and then prayed. Their prayers were accepted as Allah removed the heavy stone that had closed the entrance of the cave.”

2. Intermediation without words

When a good deed or a sacred place serves as a means of approach at the time of prayer to attain the nearness of Allah, this deed or place is endeared to Him. Even though these are not given a strictly verbal form, they automatically serve as a source of intermediation.

It is also known as intermediation through action. It eliminates the use of the words during prayer. The petitioner either prays in the company of a saintly person or prays at a sacred place or he places a hallowed object in front of him and then prays to Allah for a favourable reception of his prayer.

The first instance of intermediation through action is attested by Zakariyyā’s prayer at Maryam’s place of worship, as it is stated by the Qur’ān:

At this place (Maryam’s place of worship) Zakariyyā prayed to his Lord. He besought, “O my Master, bless me with children who are of sound moral character. There is no doubt that You hear our petitions.”[15]

In this verse, Allah has pinpointed the blessed act of Zakariyyā (عليه السلام). When he observed out-of-season fruit and other prized objects at Maryam’s place who was being groomed by him as a trainee, he chose that particular spot for the submission of his prayer. Allah responded positively to his plea and he was blessed with Yahyā (عليه السلام) especially at a time when it was almost impossible for his wife to conceive a child.

The second example is that of Yūsuf (عليه السلام) dispatching his shirt to his father Ya‘qūb (عليه السلام) for the restoration of his eyesight through the mediation of the shirt. Besides good deeds of the prophets and the righteous people, the relics associated with these personages can also act as instruments of intermediation, a topic that is proposed to be dealt with at length in the course of the book.

3. at-Tawassul bid-du‘ā’

In this kind of intermediation a person who is very close to Allah is requested to pray for the petitioner in order to relieve him of the worries and troubles that have turned his life into sheer torture. When this saintly person raises his hands in prayer, Allah, out of His infinite mercy, does not turn down his request, but acknowledges it as a proof of the fact that He holds His loyal servants so dear. Allah says:

And remember when you said, “O Mūsā, surely we will not remain content with only one kind of food (manna and quail), pray, then, to your Lord for us that He may bring forth for us of what the earth grows – of its herbs, and its cucumbers and its wheat and its lentils and its onions.”[16]

In this verse, the words fad‘u lanā rabbaka (pray, then, to your Lord for us), are the source of intermediation. The followers of Mūsā (عليه السلام) are clearly asking him to pray for them to Allah. Since here tawassul (توسل) is being relied upon through Mūsā’s prayer, this act is known as tawassul bid-du‘ā’.

4. at-Tawassul bin-nidā’

The petitioner himself submits his request to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and uses him as a means in his supplication to seek Allah’s help. When he processes his petition through the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), it becomes a source of intermediation for Allah’s help. Ibn Kathīr says that on the occasion of the battle of Yamāmah, yā Muhammadāh (O Muhammad, help us), was the battle cry of the Muslims. He adds that during the war, Khālid bin Walīd picked up the flag, and passing through the army positions, set out towards the mountain of Musaylimah, the Liar. He waited there for him to turn up so that he could kill him. Then he returned and, standing between the two armies, he shouted:

“I am the son of Walīd. I am the son of ‘Āmir and Zayd.” And then he raised the battle cry current among the Muslims which was “yā Muhammadāh” (O Muhammad, help us).[17]

In this tradition the Muslims are relying on the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as a source of intermediation, and the Muslims who are committing this act are the Companions themselves. Thus to use the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as an intermediary was a practice of the Companions. Similarly, it is narrated by ‘Abdullāh bin ‘Abbās that Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said:

Undoubtedly, there are some of Allah’s angels on the earth who are in addition to the guardian angels. They note down each leaf that falls down from a tree. If anyone of you is being tortured in the jungle, you should cry, “O servants of Allah, help me.”[18]

Here, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) himself and in his own words instructs the Muslims to adopt intermediation as a means of seeking Allah’s help through His angels. He is advising us not to delink ourselves from those who not only believe in Allah but also practice their belief. In case there is no human figure to come to your rescue, you should pray to Allah through the mediation of the angels. Allah will command them to come to your help and fulfil your need. This universe is not a meaningless vacuum as many atheists in their ignorance tend to assume; it is filled with flights of angels though they remain invisible to the naked eye and whenever human beings under duress invoke the help of Allah, the angels practically demonstrate the merciful presence of Allah by meeting human exigencies. Thus the words falyunād a‘īnū ‘ibādallāh are a clear proof that intermediation through the Prophet’s intervention is permissible.

On the Day of Judgement, when the first and the last among the Muslims are in distress on account of the gruelling heat and judgement is yet to be pronounced, they will all rally round the prophets including the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), and in their supplication to Allah will ask for their help. The tradition cited in different books bears testimony to the propriety and efficacy of this kind of intermediation. If this is permissible on the Day of Judgement, this should be equally permissible during our stay in this world. This reflects the kind-heartedness and benevolence of the prophets that the believers can depend on their mediation as a means of approach to the infinite mercy of Allah, whether we are on the earth or in the Hereafter.

The text of the tradition is as follows:

Narrated by ‘Abdullāh bin ‘Umar that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said, “A person constantly begs from other people till he on the Day of Judgement has no flesh on his face.” He added, “The sun will come closer to the people on the Day of Judgement. It will be so close that half of one’s ear will be drenched in sweat. In this condition, people will first seek the mediation of Adam, then of Mūsā and finally of Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم).” And ‘Abdullāh – the sub-narrator –added, “Layth narrated to me that Ibn Abū Ja‘far had narrated: He (the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم)) will intercede with Allah to judge amongst the people. Then he will leave here until he will hold the arc of the gate of Paradise. On that day, Allah will make him ascend the glorious station and all the people present there will sing his praises.[19]

Mutual relation between intermediation, intercession and seeking aid

Another point worth noting in the context of intermediation is that when we request someone to act as our intermediary to Allah, it also seems to support the relevance of the related concepts of intercession and seeking help from Allah’s favourites. It means that when the relevance of intermediation has been proved, the relevance of other two concepts is automatically established. The following Qur’ānic verse clearly links the three concepts by explaining their mutually reinforcing role:

(O beloved!) And if they had come to you, when they had wronged their souls, and asked forgiveness of Allah, and the Messenger also had asked forgiveness for them, they (on the basis of this means and intercession) would have surely found Allah the Granter of repentance, extremely Merciful.[20]

This Qur’ānic verse clearly argues in favour of intermediation. It means when people have committed sin, they should seek the mediation of the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in their supplication to Allah and the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) also prays for their forgiveness, then they will find Allah Compassionate and Merciful.

Fastaghfarullāh argues for intercession. When Allah condoned their sin through the intercession of the Messenger (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), it means that intercession is validated by the Qur’ānic text. And the third concept of istighāthah is in fact a proof of seeking someone’s assistance. When a man returns to the holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) for the forgiveness of his sins, it clearly means that he is asking for his intercession: “O, Messenger of Allah, I am a sinner. Have mercy on me and intercede for me before Allah so that He may condone my sins.” This desire of the sinner, in fact, amounts to istighāthah (seeking help from others) while the Prophet’s readiness to implore Allah for the forgiveness of his sins is intercession.

[1]. Qur’ān (al-Baqarah) 2:186.

[2]. Qur’ān (al-Isrā’) 17:110.

[3]. Qur’ān (al-Mā’idah) 5:54.

[4]. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī, Mafāhīm yajib an tusahhah, (pp.117-8).

[5]. Ibn Mājah transmitted it in his Sunan, b. of iqāmat-us-salāt was-sunnah fīhā (establishing prayer and its sunnahs), ch.189 (1:441#1385) and declared it sahīh (sound); Tirmidhī in al-Jāmi‘-us-sahīh, b. of da‘awāt (supplications), ch.119 (5:569#3578) and graded it hasan (fair) sahīh (sound) gharīb (unfamiliar or rare); Ahmad bin Hambal in his Musnad (4:138); and Hākim in al-Mustadrak (1:313,519,526-7) and Dhahabī also declared it sahīh (sound). Bukhārī narrated it in at-Tārīkh-ul-kabīr (6:209-10); Nasā’ī, ‘Amal-ul-yawm wal-laylah (pp.417-8#658-60); Ibn Khuzaymah, as-Sahīh (2:225-6#1219); Bayhaqī, Dalā’il-un-nubuwwah (6:166-7); Ibn-us-Sunnī, ‘Amal-ul-yawm wal-laylah (p.202#622); Subkī, Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (pp.123,125); Nawawī, al-Adhkār (p.83); Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāyah wan-nihāyah (4:558-9); Ibn-ul-Athīr, Asad-ul-ghābah (3:571); Mundhirī, at-Targhīb wat-tarhīb (1:473-4); Yūsuf Mizzī, Tuhfat-ul-ashrāf bi-ma‘rifat-il-atrāf (7:236#9760); Suyūtī, Khasā’is-ul-kubrā (2:201); Qastallānī, al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:594); Zurqānī in his Commentary (12:221-2); Ibn Hajar Haythamī, al-Jawhar-ul-munazzam (p.61); and Shawkānī in Tuhfat-udh-dhākirīn (pp.194-5).

[6]. Bukhārī narrated it in his as-Sahīh, b. of istisqā’ (to invoke Allah for rain at the time of drought) ch.3 (1:342-3#964), and b. of fadā’il-us-sahābah (the virtues of the Companions) ch.11 (3:1360#3507); Ibn Hibbān, as-Sahīh (7:110-1#2861); Ibn Khuzaymah, as-Sahīh (2:337-8#1421); Hākim, al-Mustadrak (3:334); Ibn ‘Abd-ul-Barr, al-Istī‘āb fī ma‘rifat-il-ashāb (3:97); Bayhaqī in as-Sunan-ul-kubrā (3:352) and Dalā’il-un-nubuwwah (6:147); Baghawī, Sharh-us-sunnah (4:409#1165); Nawawī, al-Adhkār (p.80); Subkī, Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.128); Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Fath-ul-bārī (2:494); Qastallānī, al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:277); Zurqānī in his Commentary (11:151-3); Shawkānī, Tuhfat-udh-dhākirīn (p.58); and Muhammad Zāhid Kawtharī in his Maqālāt (p.380).

[7]. Dārimī narrated it in ch.15 of the muqaddimah (introduction) to his Sunan (1:43#93); Ibn-ul-Jawzī, al-Wafā’ bi-ahwāl-il-Mustafā (2:801); Subkī, Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.128); Qastallānī, al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:276); and Zurqānī in his Commentary (11:150).

[8]. Rāghib Asfahānī, Mufradāt alfāz al-Qur’ān (p.871).

[9]. Ibn Manzūr, Lisān-ul-Arab (11:725).

[10]. Zamakhsharī, al-Kashshāf ‘an haqā’iq ghawāmid-it-tanzīl (1:488).

[11]. Bukhārī, as-Sahīh, b. of adhān (the call to prayer) ch.8 (1:222#589); Nasā’ī, Sunan, b. of adhān (2:27); Ahmad bin Hambal, Musnad (3:354); Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Fath-ul-bārī (2:94; 8:399); Bayhaqī, as-Sunan-ul-kubrā (1:410); Baghawī, Sharh-us-sunnah (2:283-4#420); Muhammad Khatīb Tabrīzī, Mishkāt-ul-masābīh, b. of salāt (prayer) ch.4 (1:216#659).

[12]. Qur’ān (Sād) 38:82.

[13]. Qur’ān (al-Mā’idah) 5:35.

[14]. Ismā‘īl Dihlawī, Sirāt mustaqīm (p.58).

[15]. Qur’ān (Āl-i-‘Imrān) 3:38.

[16]. Qur’ān (al-Baqarah) 2:61.

[17]. Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāyah wan-nihāyah (5:30).

[18]. Haythamī narrates it in Majma‘-uz-zawā’id (10:132) and says that its men are trustworthy.

[19]. Bukhārī, as-Sahīh, b. of zakat (obligatory charity) ch.51 (2:536-7#1405); Tabarānī transmitted it in al-Mu‘jam-ul-awsat (9:331#8720); and Haythamī cited it in Majma‘-uz-zawā’id (10:371).

[20]. Qur’ān (an-Nisā’) 4:64.

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