More Islamic evidence that Muhammad is not SavedSam Shamoun
In several articles and rebuttals (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7) we have discussed and presented conclusive and clear evidence proving that Muhammad was uncertain of his own salvation. Here we would like to provide some additional data which further confirms that Muhammad wasn’t saved even according to the Islamic source materials. We will specifically be discussing the Islamic practice of praying for Muhammad during the five daily prayers or whenever his name is mentioned in order see the implications that such a practice has in understanding and determining Muhammad’s status in the afterlife.
We begin by analyzing what the Quran has to say about this issue.
According to the Quran Allah and his angels pray for Muhammad and on that basis commands all believers to do the same:
Verily, God and His angels pray for the prophet. O ye who believe! pray for him and salute him with a salutation! S. 33:56 Palmer
The following commentators tell us that the prayers of Muslims consist of invoking peace and blessings upon Muhammad:
Indeed God and His angels bless the Prophet, Muhammad (s). O you who believe, invoke blessings on him and invoke peace upon himin a worthy manner, in other words, say: ‘O God, bless our master Muhammad and grant him peace’ (Allāhumma sallī ‘alā sayyidinā Muhammad wa-sallim). (Tafsir al-Jalalayn)
We will see a little later why such invocations of peace are crucial in determining whether Muhammad is truly saved or not.
The hadith literature is filled with traditions of Muhammad commanding his followers to pray for him and instructing them how to do it:
The Command to say Salah upon the Prophet
Al-Bukhari said: "Abu Al-`Aliyah said: “Allah's Salah is His praising him before the angels, and the Salah of the angels is their supplication.” Ibn `Abbas said: “They send blessings.” Abu `Isa At-Tirmidhi said: “This was narrated from Sufyan Ath-Thawri and other scholars, who said: `The Salah of the Lord is mercy, and the Salah of the angels is their seeking forgiveness.’” There are Mutawatir Hadiths narrated from the Messenger of Allah commanding us to send blessings on him and how we should say Salah upon him. We will mention as many of them as we can, if Allah wills, and Allah is the One Whose help we seek. In his Tafsir of this Ayah, Al-Bukhari recorded that Ka`b bin `Ujrah said, “It was said, `O Messenger of Allah, with regard to sending Salam upon you, we know about this, but how about Salah?’ He said…
Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri said: “We said, `O Messenger of Allah, this is the Salam upon you, but how do we send Salah upon you?’ He said…
See also the following narrations, repeating basically the same thing: 1, 2.
Ibn Kathir goes on to exhort Muslims to not only pray for Muhammad often but to do so on many occasions, especially during the call to prayer:
Occasions for saying Salah upon Him
It is reported that we should send blessings upon him on many occasions, such as following the call to prayer, as in the Hadith recorded by Imam Ahmad from `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As, who said that he heard the Messenger of Allah say…
As a side note, notice how uncertain Muhammad was regarding whether Allah would actually grant him the status of al-Wasilah, i.e. mediation. Muhammad could only hope for this privilege and asked his followers to pray that Allah would give him this honor.
Saying Salah upon the Prophet before the Supplication
Imam Ahmad, Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi reported the following Hadith and graded it Sahih; An-Nasa'i, Ibn Khuzaymah and Ibn Hibban recorded in their Sahihs that Fadalah bin `Ubayd, may Allah be pleased with him, said: “The Messenger of Allah heard a man making supplication in his prayer when he had not praised Allah or said Salah upon the Prophet. The Messenger of Allah said…
Muhammad even had the audacity to claim that a person’s prayer will not reach Allah if s/he does not pray for him at the start of the prayer, during its middle part, and at its conclusion!
It is recommended to conclude supplications with Salah upon the Prophet.
At-Tirmidhi recorded that `Umar bin Al-Khattab said: “A supplication remains suspended between heaven and earth and does not ascend any further UNTIL you send Salah upon your Prophet.” This was also narrated by Mu`adh bin Al-Harith from Abu Qurrah from Sa`id bin Al-Musayyib from `Umar, as a saying of the Prophet. It was also recorded by Razin bin Mu`awiyah in his book, where he also attributed it to the Prophet reporting that he said…
<<A supplication remains suspended between heaven and earth and does not ascend any further UNTIL a person sends Salah on me. Do not treat me like a spare water container, send Salah upon me at the beginning of your supplication, at the end and in the middle.>> Sending Salah upon the Prophet is even more strongly encouraged in the Qunut supplication. Ahmad, the Sunan compilers, Ibn Khuzaymah, Ibn Hibban and Al-Hakim recorded that Al-Hasan bin `Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, said: “The Messenger of Allah taught me some words to say during Al-Witr…
<<‘O Allah, guide me along with those whom You have guided, grant me health along with those to whom You have granted health, be an ally to me along with those to whom You are an ally, and bless me for that which You have bestowed. Protect me from the evil You have decreed, for verily You decree and none can decree over You. Verily, he whom You show allegiance to is never abased and he whom You take as an enemy is never honored and mighty, O our Lord, blessed and Exalted are You.’>>” In his Sunan, An-Nasa'i has the addition…
<<“and may Allah bless Muhammad.”>> at the end of this Qunut. It is also recommended to say plenty of Salah upon him on Friday and on the eve of Friday. (Ibid.; capital and underline emphasis ours)
Muhammad also went so far as to encourage his followers to make their entire prayer for him, promising that their sins would be forgiven if they did so!
The Virtue of saying Salah upon the Prophet
Another Hadith At-Tirmidhi recorded that Ubayy bin Ka`b said: “When two thirds of the night had passed, the Messenger of Allah would get up and say…
<<(Whatever you want, but if you increase it, it will be better for you.>> I said, `Should I make my whole prayer for you?’ He said…
Another incentive that Muhammad gave for praying for him is that Allah will reward all such prayers tenfold and reckon them as charity to the one performing them:
Imam Ahmad recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet said…
<<Send Salah upon me, for this is Zakah for you, and ask Allah to grant me Al-Wasilah, for it is a position in the highest part of Paradise which only one man will attain, and I hope that I will be the one.>> This was recorded only by Ahmad. (Ibid.; underline emphasis ours)
Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Talhah said that the Messenger of Allah came one day looking happy. They said, “O Messenger of Allah, we see that you look happy.” He said…
Another Chain of Narration
Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Talhah Al-Ansari said: “One morning the Messenger of Allah was in a cheerful mood and looked happy. They said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, this morning you are in a cheerful mood and look happy.’ He said…
Muslim, Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i recorded that Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, said: “The Messenger of Allah said…
<<Whoever sends one Salah upon me, ALLAH WILL SEND TEN UPON HIM.>> At-Tirmidhi said: “This is a Sahih Hasan Hadith. On the same topic, narrations come from `Abdur-Rahman bin `Awf, `Amir bin Rabi`ah, `Ammar, Abu Talhah, Anas and Ubayy bin Ka`b.” (Ibid.; capital and underline emphasis ours)
There are other narrations where Muhammad even warned and outright threatened the Muslims that they would experience humiliation if they did/do not pray for him whenever they hear his name mentioned:
Imam Ahmad recorded that Al-Husayn bin `Ali said that the Messenger of Allah said…
<<... and he does not send Salah upon me.>> This was also recorded by At-Tirmidhi, who then said: “This Hadith is Hasan Gharib,Sahih.” (Ibid.)
At-Tirmidhi recorded that Abu Hurayrah said: “The Messenger of Allah said…
<<May he be humiliated, the man in whose presence I am mentioned and he does not send Salah upon me; may he be humiliated, the man who sees the month of Ramadan come and go, and he is not forgiven; may he be humiliated, the man whose parents live to old age and they do not cause him to be granted admittance to Paradise.>>” Then he (At-Tirmidhi) said: “Hasan Gharib.” (Ibid.; underline emphasis ours)
It is obvious that praying for Muhammad is no light matter since a Muslim’s success and salvation hinge on it.
The reason why Muslims are required to pray for Muhammad
The following verse gives us an idea as to why Allah, his angels, and the believers pray for Muhammad:
He it is who prays for you and His angels too, to bring you forth out of the darkness into the light, for He is merciful to the believers. S. 33:43 Palmer
According to this specific text Allah and the angels pray for the believers to be brought out of darkness and into the light. In other words, Allah and his angels are actively praying for the salvation of Muslims, a point that is confirmed by this next passage.
Those (angels) who bear the Throne (of Allah) and those around it glorify the praises of their Lord, and believe in Him, and ask forgiveness for those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah) (saying): "Our Lord! You comprehend all things in mercy and knowledge, so forgive those who repent and follow Your Way, and save them from the torment of the blazing Fire! Our Lord! And make them enter the 'Adn (Eden) Paradise (everlasting Gardens) which you have promised them, and to the righteous among their fathers, their wives, and their offspring! Verily, You are the All-Mighty, the All-Wise. And save them from (the punishment, because of what they did of) the sins, and whomsoever You save from (the punishment, because of what they did of) the sins (i.e. excuse them) that Day, him verily, You have taken into mercy.” And that is the supreme success. S. 40:7-9
Angels pray to Allah to forgive the believers and to save them from hellfire by bringing them into paradise.
In light of this it seems reasonably certain that Allah, his angels and the Muslims are all praying for Muhammad’s salvation. Muhammad didn’t have any assurance that he would be saved and so decided to command his followers to pray that Allah would grant him deliverance from hell.
This is further brought out by the Arabic words that Muslims normally utter whenever Muhammad’s name is mentioned, namely sallallahu alayhi wa-salam, which literally means, “the prayers of Allah be upon him and peace.” The Muslims are basically asking their god to grant Muhammad peace.
It is obvious that the peace that Muslims are praying that Allah would give Muhammad is paradise which is actually called the home or abode of peace in the Quran:
Allah calls to the home of peace (i.e. Paradise, by accepting Allah's religion of Islamic Monotheism and by doing righteous good deeds and abstaining from polytheism and evil deeds) and guides whom He wills to a Straight Path. For those who have done good is the best (reward, i.e. Paradise) and even more (i.e. having the honour of glancing at the Countenance of Allah) Neither darkness nor dust nor any humiliating disgrace shall cover their faces. They are the dwellers of Paradise, they will abide therein forever. S. 10:25-26
The Quran, in several places, speaks of paradise as the place of both peace and security. Hence, to enter paradise is to enter into peace and safety:
Truly! The Muttaqun (pious and righteous persons - see V.2:2) will be amidst Gardens and water-springs (Paradise). (It will be said to them): 'Enter therein (Paradise), in PEACE and security.' And We shall remove from their breasts any sense of injury (that they may have), (So they will be like) brothers facing each other on thrones. No sense of fatigue shall touch them, nor shall they (ever) be asked to leave it. S. 15:45-48 Hilali-Khan
Those will be rewarded with the highest place (in Paradise) because of their patience. Therein they shall be met with greetings and the word of PEACE and respect. Abiding therein; excellent it is as an abode, and as a place to dwell. S. 25:75-76
And Paradise will be brought near to the Muttaqun (pious - see V.2:2) not far off. (It will be said): “This is what you were promised, - (it is) for those oft-returning (to Allah) in sincere repentance, and those who preserve their covenant with Allah (by obeying Him in all what He has ordered, and worship none but Allah Alone, i.e. follow Allah's Religion, Islamic Monotheism). "Who feared the Most Beneficent (Allah) in the Ghaib (unseen): (i.e. in this worldly life before seeing and meeting Him), and brought a heart turned in repentance (to Him - and absolutely free from each and every kind of polytheism), "Enter you therein in PEACE and security; this is a Day of eternal life!" There they will have all that they desire, and We have more (for them, i.e. a glance at the All-Mighty, All-Majestic). S. 50:31-35 Hilali-Khan
And those foremost [(in Islamic Faith of Monotheism and in performing righteous deeds) in the life of this world on the very first call for to embrace Islam,] will be foremost (in Paradise). These will be those nearest to Allah. In the Gardens of delight (Paradise). A multitude of those (foremost) will be from the first generations (who embraced Islam). And a few of those (foremost) will be from the later time (generations). (They will be) on thrones woven with gold and precious stones, Reclining thereon, face to face. They will be served by immortal boys, With cups, and jugs, and a glass from the flowing wine, Wherefrom they will get neither any aching of the head, nor any intoxication. And fruit; that they may choose. And the flesh of fowls that they desire. And (there will be) Houris (fair females) with wide, lovely eyes (as wives for the pious), Like unto preserved pearls. A reward for what they used to do. No Laghw (dirty, false, evil vain talk) will they hear therein, nor any sinful speech (like backbiting, etc.). But only the saying of: Salam!, Salam! (greetings with peace)! S. 56:10-26 Hilali-Khan
Then, if he (the dying person) be of the Muqarrabun (those brought near to Allah), (There is for him) rest and provision, and a Garden of delights (Paradise). And if he (the dying person) be of those on the Right Hand, Then there is safety AND PEACE (from the Punishment of Allah) for (you as you are from) those on the Right Hand. S. 56:88-91 Hilali-Khan
Thus, by praying that Allah would grant Muhammad peace Muslims are essentially praying for Muhammad’s salvation! Muslims are basically asking Allah to save his messenger from hell by allowing him to enter paradise which is the abode of peace.
Follows: Part II