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RECITATION OF 3 OR 1 SURATUL IKHLAS FOR THE DEAD: SUNNAH OR BID'AH?




By
In Abdillah As-sudaisiy Al-Iloori

During our last Halqah on 'Aqeedatut Tahaawiyyah and 'Umadatul Ahkaam, Our Guest Lecturer, Ustadh Sa'd Sarumi (may Allah preserve him) answered a question on whether there is any evidence for asking people to recite 1 or 3 Suratul Ikhlas when praying for the dead Muslims. Expectedly, he said there was no evidence for it in the Sunnah. He urge us to stick to the du'a the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم prescribed.

The Ustadh said if we keep saying "Allahumma ghfirlahu warhamhu" (Oh Allah, forgive and have mercy on him or her), it is enough. He said that was what the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said when Abu Salamah رضي الله عنه died. This was how he used to pray for the dead. He has some other prayers that are longer than this. But the truth is that at no point in time did the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم or any of his noble Companions رضي الله عنهم read or prescribe the reading of Suratul ikhlas specifically for the dead Muslims. All acts of bid'ah must be comdemned, no matter how small. 

After all, many people died and he (the Prophet) prayed over them. He neither ordered any fidau sitting, nor prescribe the reading of a whole Qur'an, or some chapters for them. This is the bitter truth. It shows that some of the things we do in this part of the world over our loved ones when they die have no evidence in the shar'iah. They are innovations. Some people even recite Suratut Takaathur for the dead. Where is the evidence for this? 

A lot of people are just doing what they like and painting it with religious colouration. I think those bid'ah with religious colouration deserve to be fought more because a lot people get easily deceived by them. This was how Solaatul Faatih was forced on our innocent throats because of our ignorance. We didn't know its origin and the dangerous 'aqeedah of the Tijaaniyyah Sufi sect on it. Up till, now, many Muslims can't recite the authentic Solaatul Ibrahimiyyah correctly.

I posted the video of this question and answer in a group yesterday and a cousin of mine came to attack it. I will not post his comments because they are mere emotional comments. He has no evidence for recitation of Suratul Ikhlas for the dead Muslims. I will post some of my replied that I feel can benefit each and everyone of us.

1. He accused us of not providing evidence from the Qur'an and Sunnah to back up our claims. Then, I said:

You are the one who should bring evidence that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم used to prescribe recitation of 3 or even 1 ikhlas for the dead. Even our forefathers who left us with this innovation would not claim to know more than the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم and his Companions رضي الله عنهم. One of the Companions, Abdullahi ibn 'Umar رضي الله عنه said:

كل بدعة ضلالة وإن رآها الناس حسنة

Every innovation is misguidance even if people see it as something good.

There are many Qur'an and Hadith provisions on the sanctity of adhering to Sunnah and refraining from all kinds of bid'ah that are widespread in our society. Q5:3 is a clear example. Islām was completed during the time of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم and His Companions رضي الله عنهم. So, we need no addition. 

2. He wanted me to bring specific evidence from the Qur'an and Sunnah saying recitation of Suratul Ikhlas for the dead is innovation. I said:

The truth of the matter is that the act of reciting Suratul Ikhlas for the dead did not even occur during the time of the best generations. This goes further to show that it is bid'ah. How will the Qur'an and Hadith condemn specifically what was not even in practice during those golden eras?

The condemnation of all forms of bid'ah by many verses of the Qur'an and Sunnah is clear. In a Hadith reported by Aisha رضي الله عنها, the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said anyone who introduces into our matter what it does not contain, it shall be rejected (Bukhari). 

I said:

You yourself know that the best of generations didn't use Ikhlas in that manner, why should we claim to know better than them? When people introduce anything they like in the religion thinking it is good, this is what destroys the Deen. May Allah save us. 

3. He alleged that condemnation of bid'ah leads to disunity and that the unity of the Muslim is more important. I said:

You said the issue of unity of Muslim is more important. But our condition of unity is far more important. We cannot attain the true unity that Allāh desires for us except we stick to the Sunnah as practised by the salaf. Bid'ah is the main cause of our division. Except we are ready to unite upon Sunnah and fight bid'ah collectively, we can't unite. Darkness and lightness can't stay together. Sunnah and bid'ah can't be mixed together. Any unity that is based on diversity that affects the foundation of Islām is a fake unity and it will crumble with time. Allāh has placed our unity upon His rope (Qur'an and Sunnah based on the understanding of the Companions رضي الله عنهم). These are the main sources of the shar'iah. Allah says:
وَاعْتَصِمُوا بِحَبْلِ اللَّهِ جَمِيعًا وَلَا تَفَرَّقُوا

Hold to the rope of Allāh and do not be disintegrated [Surat Aal-E-Imran 103]

4. He linked us to the delivish Boko Haram. Subhanallah! I said:

Boko Haram is one of the deviant sects just like the Sufis, shias, Ahmadees, Ikhwaanees and so on. Boko Haram are from the Khawaarij. They have no link with the people of Sunnah. They oppose many of the foundations of Sunnah. You need to learn about all these sects to be able to differentiate them from the real path of Sunnah. But if you close your mind and keep following forefathers on their errors, you will not have time for this. Linking us with BH is a mere propaganda that has no substance whatsoever.

In my closing remarks, I said:

Islām is to be practised based on the Qur'an and Sunnah and not the ways of our forefathers. Islām is a universal religion. It is not a religion in which anyone can just do what he likes. We have to abide by the rules as laid down in the Qur'an and Sunnah. The bid'ah of reciting Ikhlas for the dead is only common in our part of the world and there is no basis for it. 

There are situations where the ikhlas is prescribed for us, let us stick to that. For instance, the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم prescribed that we recite 3 Ikhlas individually after every daily prayers and during the morning and evening adhkaar. This is Sunnah. You will not see anyone kick against this because there is evidence for it. But to say: let us recite 3 Ikhlas for the dead, there is no proof for this. Let us fear Allāh and stick to Sunnah.  

Lastly, let me urge that if you cannot join a group of people who strive upon Sunnah, promote it and fight bid'ah, please don't be an attacker of Sunnah or supporter of any act of bid'ah. It is a dangerous mission. The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said in Hadith reported by 'Ali Ibn Abi Talib رضي الله عنه,

 لَعَنَ اللهُ  محدثا أو آوَى مُحْدِثًا

"Whoever innovates or accommodates an innovator then upon him is the curse of Allaah, His Angels and the whole of mankind." Reported by Bukhaaree (12/41) and Muslim (9/140)

May Allah guide us aright.


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