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Gifting Rewards of Deeds to Someone Alive or Deceased and Visiting the Cemetery

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Mathabah.org

Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Badat

Question:

Is offering “fatihah” and going to tombs of saints and imams prohibited in Islam?

Answer

Jazakumullahu Khayran/ Thank you for your question.

Reciting ‘fatihah’ usually denotes ‘rewards of deeds reaching the dead. Majority scholars regard this as permissible and valid. There are numerous prophetic reports and actions of the noble Companions to substantiate the validity of this.

“Pray for the forgiveness of your brother and ask that he be made steadfast, for now he is being questioned.” (Abu Dawud)

“Recite ‘Yasin’ upon your dead” (Ibn Majah)

“It is permissible for the one who fasts, performs prayers and gives charity, to gift its rewards to someone who is either dead or alive. The reward reaches them, according to the Ahl al Sunnah wal Jama’ah (Sunnis)” (Badai al Sanai)

It is also permissible to visit the graves of the deceased whether they be of the pious or otherwise. The Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) would often visit the Baqi al Gharqad cemetery in Medina.

The intention for visiting the cemetery should be correct. One must use the occasion to remember death and only pray to Allah while at the cemetery. One must not pray to the deceased seeking help or blessings from them, since they are in need of mercy just like the living amongst us are.

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that “The Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) visited his mother’ s grave” (Muslim)

“You should visit graves, because they will remind you of the reality of death.” (Muslim, Musnad Ahmad, Abu Dawud)

Shu`bi (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “When someone died among the Ansar, they would go to their grave and recite the Quran there” (Kitab al Ruh of Ibn Qayyim)

And Allah Knows Best

This answer was collected from Mathabah.org. It’s an Islamic educational institute based in Canada. The questions are generally answered by Sheikh Yusuf Badat and Sheikh Omar Subedar.

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