Thursday, January 05, 2006

Regarding the statement: "ya rasulullah madad"

Question: What do ulama say regarding the statement: "ya rasulullah madad" Is this shirk when u do this from far away (with the belief that Allah can only help)? Is it shirk when have the belief that the prophet saw is hearing this and will answer your call? Or is it totally okay?

Answer: It would only be shirk if one believed that any of this happens against Allah's will, or that the Prophet can benefit someone without Allah willing it, or that Allah is affected by intercession. If one simply believes that one is working on the causes of things, and that all causes and effects are predestined, then there is no shirk in this. 
This question breaks down to two issues.
The first is asking a creation for help. This is allowed by the consensus of the Muslims, or perhaps even by mankind as a whole. No reasonable person would claim that to ask someone for duaa for one, or for something that is not exclusive for Allah, such as forgiving sins or creating something, is shirk.
In Al-Bukhaariy it is mentioned explicitly that people will come to Prophet Muhammad on the Day of Judgement to ask for intercession after having requested it from other prophets before him. This is a request for help, as in "ya rasulullah madad".
This phrase "ya rasulullah madad" is a sufi terminology, and it is nothing but a request for intercession. The hope is that he will intercede, and you will get what you need based on his intercession to Allah. No doubt, the duaa' of a prophet is more likely to be answered than that of a regular human.
Moreover, there is the authentic hadith in which the Messenger of Allah told a blind man to take a good wuduu and pray 2 rak^ah and then say, among other things. "O Muhammad, verily I turn to my Lord through you...."
The second is asking someone absent for intercession
As for claiming that it is shirk to do this in the absence of the intercessor; the blind man was in the absence of the Prophet, as is obvious from the context of the hadith, because the narrator states that the man later came to them and was able to see. Moreover, if it was shirk to do this in his absence, then he would surely have warned him about this. After all, he -may Allah raise his rank- was sent to remove shirk, not lead people to it! 
To claim that it is shirk or haram to say that the Prophet may hear one's call for help, has no proof, and cannot be found in the books of scholars before the 8th century hijri. If someone thinks that this may happen by the will of Allah, where is the shirk in it? The hearing of the dead is stronger than that of the living, for it is mentioned in hadith that after burial a dead person hears the footsteps of those leaving the funeral. It is also mentioned that the Prophet addressed the dead pagans of Badr and spoke to them.
The claim that it is shirk to say this in the intercessor's absence is based on lack of understanding of what shirk is. Shirk is to worship other than Allah, or to believe that He shares attributes with His creation, such as the power to create.