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Offline Mubashir

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Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« on: November 07, 2011, 06:04:10 PM »
Peace Br Joe and all forum friends!!

We read in the Qur'an that Allah bestows peace upon Messengers who are no longer with us and were no longer alive when the Qur'an was revealed:"and We left him thus to be remembered among later generations:" (27:78)  'Peace be upon Noah throughout all the worlds!' (37:79)

Is the above an indication of how to remember those noble Messengers of Allah are to be remembered by believer (by invoking a short prayer for them)?

Does that mean, to show respect and our appreciation,  whenever the name of a Messenger is mentioned, it must be followed by "Upon him be peace"? What if  during a discussion his name comes up repeatedly?


I read the following at your website:

".....033.056  'Indeed, God and His angels send blessings (Arabic: Yusalluna) on the Prophet: O you that believe! Send blessings on him and greet him with respect / greetings'

1. Although you have pointed out that to make exclusions for Muhammad (PBUH) is not the way to go, you did not provide an alternate translation !

2. What is the meaning of Yasulluna? Does it mean blessings alone or does it also include help, support, acknowledge, encourage, salute, cheer on?

3. If the above (33:056) is to be done (send blessings by uttering a short prayer), how can it be done for a Messenger who is no longer with us?

To help us with the discussion, allow me to share the following concerning Salawat and "Durood" that I read recently:

The word DAROOD is not Arabic. The word SALAWAAT is Arabic. It is usually believed that if we read SALAWAAT on Muhammad [s.a.] for a certain number of times, our sins will be forgiven, so on and so forth.
If we see the Quran, we come to know that it is not only human beings who are to do SALAWAAT but Allah, His angels as well as the prophet [s.a.] also do SALAWAAT on human beings.

Please see the following:

Allah's SALAWAAT on human beings

2:156 When a calamity befalls them, they do not waver. Rather, they say, "We are for Allah, dedicated to His Cause and every step of ours will advance in the Direction shown by Him."
2:157 It is they on whom is SALAWAAT from their Lord [i.e. whom their Lord supports] and blesses with His Grace. And it is they, they who are guided to the most desirable destination.

The above verse clearly indicates that SALAWAAT can also be on human beings from Allah. Now does this mean that Allah reads for a certain time SALAWAAT on people? It does not make sense.
 

Rasool's SALAWAAT for human beings
 

9:103 Accept their contribution for the community. Purify their thoughts with proper education and training so that their "Self" may grow. SALLI ALAIHIM [i.e. commend/appreciate them!] Your SALAWAAT [i.e. commendation/appreciation] is a great source of peace in their hearts. Allah is Hearer, Knower.
 

In the above verse Allah has ordered Muhammad [s.a.] to do SALAWAAT on human beings. Does this mean that Muhammad [s.a.] reads SALAWAAT on people for a certain number of times? It does not make sense.
 

Allah's and His Angels' SALAWAAT on human beings

33:43 He it is Who bestows His blessings upon you, and supports you [YUSALLI ALAIKUM], and His angels, that He may bring you forth from darkness into the Light. And Merciful is He, indeed, to those who attain belief.
 

In the above verse Allah and His angles do SALAWAAT on momineen. Does this mean that Allah and His angels reads SALAWAAT on people for a certain number of times? It does not make sense.
 

SALAWAT of human beings for the RASOOL
 

9:99 And among the Bedouins are those who believe in Allah and the Last Day and consider their spending as a means towards Allah and a means of SALAWAAT-E-RASOOL [i.e. commendation/appreciation/moral support of the Messenger]. This will raise their ranks with Allah. Allah will embrace them with His Mercy. Verily, Allah is Forgiving, Gracious.
 

The above verse explains the concept of SALAWAAT by describing "Spending" as a means of "getting appreciation".


Now see the most commonly referred verse according to which momineen should do SALAWAAT on Muhammad [s.a.]
 

33:56 Verily, Allah and His angels bless the Messenger and commend/support his Mission [YUSALLOONA]. O You who have chosen to be graced with belief! Commend/Support his Mission [SALOO ALAIHI] in total submission.

Consider all the above verses and decide yourself.
Is SALAWAAT just from Momineen for Muhammad [a.s.]?
The answer is no.
The SALAWAAT is also from Allah to human beings.
The SALAWAAT is also from the Messenger [a.s.] for human beings.

So when Allah does SALAWAAT on human beings, Does He read something for a certain number of times on human beings?

SALAWAAT is not reading something for a certain number of times but practically doing something i.e. commending and supporting the mission of the Messenger [a.s.]  by whatever means we can.

SALAWAAT is not something that should be a bone of contention whether there should be a SALAWAAT before adhan (i.e. the call for the prayer) or not. It has an utterly different meaning and objective.

Thanks

Mubashir


 

Offline Truth Seeker

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2011, 08:44:30 PM »
Salaam and welcome to the forum

I find that your post makes some interesting points.

Although the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) is no longer with us, by virtue of 37.79 and others, I feel that out of respect for him and all the other prophets and
messengers that came before him, we should ask God to 'bless/ send peace' upon them.

If you are mentioning a certain prophet in a conversation many times then I think there may not be a need to add the 'blessing' every time.

With regards:

1. I agree with Joseph that this is not an 'exclusive' action for the Prophet because of verse 33.43 which applies to 'normal people'  Many Muslims ignore this   
    verse and stick to 33.56 instead to make the Prophet 'exclusive' and to support an ideology that excessively venerates him.

2. I think it just means to bless or give honour to or commend

3. I feel that the blessing is fine as it is eg 'May peace be upon him' or 'May Allah bless him' even though he has passed away. This is because of the directives in (33.79), 
    (37.120), (37.109) etc where later generations were asked for blessings to be given for previous messengers.
   

With regard to 2.157 I feel that it simply means that God 'blesses' them and not literally that God 'reads' a certain number of Salawaat. This concept of reading a certain number of Salawaat a certain way is not from the Quran.  In all the cases anyway ..we and even the angels are asking God to bless the prophets.

You said:

SALAWAAT is not reading something for a certain number of times but practically doing something i.e. commending and supporting the mission of the Messenger [a.s.]  by whatever means we can.

That is not possible now of course as he has passed away. Even if we look at 33.56, the second part of the verse asks believers that were with the Prophet to ask for blessings for him and also to greet him with a good greeting. It makes sense that you ask for God to bless a Prophet that is amongst you as one would want to wish well for him and what better way to convey this by asking God to bless him.

The Quranic directive of 'sending blessings' is so simple but unfortunately it has become so 'ritualistic' and 'exclusive' for Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) as he receives a special blessing (saw) compared to the other messengers!


Thanks

Offline Mubashir

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2011, 10:44:13 PM »
Thanks for your comments Visionary. You said:

"..Although the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) is no longer with us, by virtue of 37.79 and others, I feel that out of respect for him and all the other prophets and messengers that came before him, we should ask God to 'bless/ send peace' upon them...."

Just wondering the logic behind this directive. We know that Allah's noble and exalted Messengers who have passed on are blessed and in peace. Allah testifies to that. Since they have passed on just wondering why are we asked to pray for those blessed and in peace already?? As against other believers and our dead parents we are not to ask for forgiveness for them just ask for peace and blessings on them.

Once we understand the logic or reason for a directive, we feel more enthusiasm in in following it (rather than a robot)!! That is why Allah tells us to do X to achieve Y (in case, for example for Salat and Saum).

Regards,



Offline Truth Seeker

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2011, 12:29:04 AM »
Salaam,

Of course we are sure of their honored positions and they as you say 'are blessed and in peace'. It therefore follows that by virtue of this fact it seems befitting that when we recall them we send peace upon them. Verse 37.78 says that God has left the salutation/blessing for Prophet Noah (pbuh) amongst the later generations in a way to honour him.

Quite simply in my view when mentioning their names, it is an acknowledgement of their honored positions and respect for them and the work that they did. In many places in the Quran, God is praising them and tells us what wonderful servants they were.

On a separate note, when we lose a loved one, always (in my experience any way) people add 'may God bless his soul or 'may he rest in peace' and 'may God have mercy on his soul'. Even when we hear of a death, we instinctively say something to that effect as we hope the best for them

Yet in the case of the prophets and messengers God is confirming that they are 'blessed' and all that he is asking is that we in a way testify to this fact.

This is my personal view as I feel that they deserve no less than this.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2011, 12:43:57 AM »
Peace brother Mubashir.

The verse rendition of 33:56 I provided was contained in the following article.

GOD AND THE ANGELS BLESS THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD (pbuh)
http://quransmessage.com/articles/prophet%20is%20blessed%20FM3.htm

The primary purport of this article was not to provide a comprehensive discussion on the meaning of 'yasalluna'. Rather, it was to underscore the point that the 'Yasalluna' by virtue of '33:56' was not an exclusive concept for the Prophet as similar 'Yusalli' was conferred on the believers in 33:43 too.

You are absolutely correct, I clearly believe as expressed in the above article that to argue for the exclusivity and preference of one messenger of God over another is not sanctioned by the Quran and is in fact rebuked by it.

The root of the word 'yasalluna' admits many shades of meaning depending on context. Its root can mean prayer, to magnify, to honour, to bless, to commend etc.

As with any language, the flow of a language and context is key. Words can take different shades of meaning depending on context.  Arabic is no different. The Quran simply spoke in the language of its primary audience and what words they knew and used in a particular context.

For example, if we consult the derivative verbal root 'salla' (form II verb) in 3:39, we note it applies to Zachariya while he was standing (qamu) and praying (yu-salli). In verse 9:84, we note God telling its immediate audience not to 'tusalli' (pray) for a particular people who died. In verse 33:43 and 33:56 it takes the meaning of blessings.

The genitive female plural noun 'salawaat' that you mention in 2:157 has a meaning depending on its context too. In the context of 23:9 and 2:238 there is a directive to guard 'hafizun' which lends to the meaning of prayer. In 22:40 in the context of monasteries, mosques and churches, the same word 'salawatun' means 'synagogues'!

Much like 9:99, the same genitive female plural noun 'salawaat' in your verse 2:157 is best rendered 'blessings'. No one would argue it means 'synagogues'. This is especially when the context is a conferment of God on his servants.

I think the difficulty you are having is trying to get one meaning of a word to fit 'all contexts'. This is as problematic for Arabic as it is for other languages.

I hope that helps.

Your brother in faith,
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Mubashir

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2011, 01:59:35 PM »
Dear Truth Seeker, Peace

You said:

"...Yet in the case of the prophets and messengers God is confirming that they are 'blessed' and all that he is asking is that we in a way testify to this fact......."

In that case, would you not agree that for Messengers/Apostles we should say "Blessed are they (or he/she)?" Rather than expressing a hope by asking Allah to bless them. Allah testifies that they are blessed.

As for other people who died and we express a hope for Allah to bless them I think we do that because we really don't know their final destination. Messengers/Apostles are different. From the Qur'an we do know what their status is/will be.


Offline Mubashir

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2011, 03:28:36 PM »
Dear Br Joe

It is a common Muslim practice to ask for peace and blessings for the Messenger. Therefore, I wanted to explore this concept keeping in mind that there can be no other person who is blessed than a Messenger.

Now that The blessed Messenger is no longer with us, In short,  I tend to agree with:

"...SALAWAAT is not reading something for a certain number of times but practically doing something i.e. commending and supporting the mission of the Messenger [a.s.]  by whatever means we can..."


Offline Truth Seeker

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2011, 04:14:28 PM »
Salaam,


I do not see anything wrong with that if you feel that that is a more appropriate phrase as we can ascertain what their state is from the various verses in the Quran.

However I personally would have no issue in using the phrase 'peace be upon him/them' as is used in 37.79 and others.

Maybe Joseph can elaborate further..

 



Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Sending salutations to the Messenger/s or Help his/their mission
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2011, 05:57:53 PM »
Peace Mubashir / Truth Seeker.

A very healthy discussion.

Mubashir you say:

""...SALAWAAT is not reading something for a certain number of times but practically doing something i.e. commending and supporting the mission of the Messenger [a.s.]  by whatever means we can..."

There seems to be an inherent dilemma either / or scenario in the argument that you may be presenting. (i.e. if something is not A then it is B).

Salawaat has different shades of meanings given the context as we have already discussed. Yes indeed, salawaat is not reading something an X number of times, but the Quran never prescribes that nor does it describe it as that. That is the non-Quranic formula of many modern day Muslims.

I also feel two words are being confused here. 'Yusalli' and 'salam' are two different words. Truth Seeker, with respect, I think you may also be confusing the two and seeing them both as synonymous.

The root of 'Yasalluna' can mean prayer, to magnify, to honour, to bless, to commend. I find its primary usage in the present or for those who are alive such as in 33:56 and 33:41-43. 'Salam' as used in the phrase 'Salamun ala...' (37:109; 37:79; 37:120; 37:130 and 37:181) means peace. These are two separate words.

Leaving aside what present Muslims do or say today, we need to better understand what the Quran teaches us.

We note that an acknowledgment of 'peace' (salam) has been captured by the Quran in later posterity:

037:108-111
"And We left for him among generations (to come) in later times: "Peace be upon Abraham!" (Arabic: Salamun ala Ibraheem) Thus indeed do We reward those who do right. Indeed, he was one of Our believing Servants"

Even God uses the present tense to confer such peace on messengers whose souls may have left their earthly abode.

037:181           
"And Peace be upon the messengers!" (Arabic: Salamun ala-l mursaleen)

The central question is why the Quran acknowledges 'salam' on those that have passed away in the present tense.

WHY DOES THE CONFERMENT OF PEACE ON DECEASED MESSENGERS OCCUR IN THE PRESENT TENSE?

Those whose souls have departed (tawaffu) may be considered 'dead' by humans, they are not 'dead' for God.  Souls depart to God, much like when we are asleep (19:42; 6:60) and in death move to a state of 'Barzakh' (23:100) where the human concept of time is lost. Nothing is dead for God who has the ability to resurrect any of His creation that He wills. Even the animals will return back to God (6:38).

We are taught in the case of the righteous that we should not consider them as 'dead'.

002:154
"And do not speak of those who are slain in God's way as dead; nay, (they are) alive, but you do not perceive (Arabic: 'walakin la tash'urun)"

Note the term 'walakin la tash'urun' (but you do not perceive). We simply don't have that perception of their state which is proven by the above verse. Very little information has been given with regards the state of 'Barzakh'. Regardless of the years that are spent in this state, for the deceased this state would appear to pass very quickly. (See related article [1] below).

Albeit, this concept has been explained in terms of 'martyrs', there is no reason to conclude that this does not apply to all souls.

However, this is not to be confused with other narratives of the Quran which informs us that the 'dead cannot hear' (30:52) or those narratives that imply that the record of one's soul is complete upon death. These narratives merely serve to separate the living from those that have deceased.

Furthermore, God is NOT dependant on time nor does He exist 'in time' that He Himself has created. We exist in time. God transcends space, time and His creation. He is not dependant on the laws He himself has created. A lot of difficulties in our understandings are resolved if we remove God from our linear perception of time and space which He is not subject to. Many verses in the Quran indicate that He is in the past, present and future simultaneously and governs affairs from outside His universal creation.

When we confer 'peace' on past personalities, we do it with an intention. We acknowledge that an ever-living God receives our salutations of their state of harmony and with conferred respect. For God, nothing is dead.

I also don't find this form of salutation necessarily prescribed. The Quran simply captures a form of salutation that was left to later generations. We can emulate them if we so choose. We can confer other forms of salutations that we wish, such as 'Blessed / In peace are the messengers of God'. This is a choice.

I personally would incline to follow the method of salutations that the Quran 'captures'. Please note that is different from it being 'prescribed' on believers.

I hope that helps.

Joseph.


Related Articles:

[1] PUNISHMENT OF THE GRAVE (AZAB-E-QABR)
http://quransmessage.com/articles/grave%20punishment%20FM3.htm

[2] PBUH (PEACE BE UPON HIM)
http://quransmessage.com/articles/pbuh%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell