Did the Prophet shake ar-Rifaee's hand from the grave?
Q. Shaykh Muhammad Zakariyya (may Allah be merciful with him) is one of the most famous religious scholars in India and Pakistan , especially among the followers of Tabligh (a group calling to Islam). He has numerous publications; of which is: Fada'il A`mal, which is read in the religious circles of the Tabligh group, and which the members of the group consider as Sahih Al-Bukhari. I was one of them. While reading this book, I found that some narrations are incomprehensible and unbelievable. Therefore, I refer my problem to your Eminent Committee, hoping that you could solve it. These narrations include the one reported by Ahmad Al-Rifa`y in which he claims that after performing Hajj, he visited the grave of the Messenger (peace be upon him) and recited the following lines:
When I was away, I would send my soul on my behalf to the ground to kiss
Now that I am here body and soul extend your right hand to me to kiss
After reading them, the right hand of the Messenger (peace be upon him) came out and he kissed it. This is mentioned in the book entitled Al-Hawi by Al-Suyuty. He also claims that nine thousand Muslims witnessed this great incident and saw the blessed hand, including Shaykh `Abdul-Qadir Jilany (may Allah be merciful with him) who was there in that place in Al-Masjid Al-Nabawy (the Prophet‘s Mosque in Madinah). In the light of this story, I would like to raise the following questions:
1- Is this a real or baseless story?
2- What is your opinion concerning the book entitled Al-Hawy by Al-Suyuty in which this story is mentioned?
3- If the story is not true, is it permissible to offer Salah (Prayer) behind the Imam (the one who leads congregational Prayer) who narrates and believes in this story?
4- Is it permissible to read such books in the religious circles held in Masjids (mosques), as this book is read in the Masjids of Britain by the Tabligh group? It is also widespread in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, particularly in Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah, as the author of the book lived there for a long time.
A. This story is false and utterly baseless. The basic ruling concerning the dead; a prophet or otherwise, is that he cannot move in his grave.
What is claimed that the Prophet (peace be upon him) extended out his hand to Al-Rifa`y or any one else is not true; rather, it is a baseless Wahm (illusion), which should not be believed.He (peace be upon him) did not extend his hands to Abu Bakr, `Umar or any other one of the Sahabah (Companions of the Prophet).
One should not be deceived by mentioning this story by Al Suyuty in his book Al-Hawy, for according to many scholars, Al Suyuty did not check the authenticity of the narrations he reported in his books.
Moreover, it is not permissible to offer Salah behind an Imam who believes in this story, for he is imperfect with regard to his `Aqidah (creed) and believes in superstitions.
It is not permissible to read the book of Fada'il A`mal or any similar book that contains superstitions and lies to the people in Masjids or elsewhere, for this implies misleading people and spreading superstitions among them.
May Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) guide all Muslims to the truth. He is All-Hearer and Responsive!
May Allah grant us success!
May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and Companions!
Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta'
Member Member Member Chairman
Bakr Abu Zayd Salih Al-Fawzan `Abdullah ibn Ghudayyan `Abdul-`Aziz ibn `Abdullah Al Al-Shaykh
Permanent Committee Fatwas>Group two>Volume 2: `Aqidah>Feasts>A false story>Fatwa no. 21412