Answered by Molana Ishaaq Hussain
Will it be permissible for someone to say radiyallahu anhu for a person who is not a Sahabi?
The word ” Radiyallahu Anhu” has two explanations:
1. Ikhbaar. In other words a person says radiyallahu anhu with this belief that Allah is indeed pleased with him.
2. Radiyallahu Anhu also comes in the meaning of dua. In this situation the meaning will be ‘ May Allah be pleased with him’
With regards to the first explanation this can only be applied to the honourable companions. Allah says;
” Verily those who believe and do good, those are the best of men, there reward with their lord gardens of perpetuity beneath which rivers flow, abiding therein forever, Allah is pleased with them and they are pleased with him, that is for him who fears his lord” ( Surah Bayyinah v8).
This verse and other verses in the Holy Quran indicate towards the fact that Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala is indeed pleased with the Sahaabah rizwanullaahi alaihi ajmaeen. This we cannot say regarding anybody else. Only the Anbiyaa and the Blessed Companions have this privilege.
On the other hand, the second explanation is also permissible. Imam Nawawi writes:
” It is recommended to say Radiyallahu Anhu or Rahimullah for the Sahabah, for the taabieen, the scholars and for all those worshippers who come after them. Those Ulama who say that Radiyallahu Anhu is specific only for the sahabah cannot be agreed upon. Rather the correct opinion is what the Jumhoor (ie what the Majority of the scholars) have said that it is permissible, and the evidence for this is uncountable.” (Al Adhkaar p 112)
From the above text we conclude that it would be permissible to say Radiyallahu Anhu to a person only with the intention of dua.
Only Allah Knows Best
Written by Molana Ishaaq Hussain
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham.
This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.