Prostrating and slaughtering animals at graves

Q: What is the ruling on making Sujud (Prostration) and slaughtering animals on graves?


(Part No. 1; Page No. 193)  A: Making Sujud (Prostration) and slaughtering animals at graves are idolatrous habits and acts of Shirk Akbar (major form of associating others in worship with Allah). Sujud and slaughtering are acts of `Ibadah (worship) and `Ibadah should be exclusively confined to Allah. Thus, whoever performs any of them to anyone other than Allah commits an act of disbelief. Allah (the Exalted) says: Say (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم): "Verily, my Salât (prayer), my sacrifice, my living, and my dying are for Allâh, the Lord of the ‘Alamîn (mankind, jinn and all that exists). "He has no partner. And of this I have been commanded, and I am the first of the Muslims." He also says: Verily, We have granted you (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) Al-Kauthar (a river in Paradise). Therefore turn in prayer to your Lord and sacrifice (to Him only). In addition, there are so many Ayahs (Qur'anic verses) indicating that Sujud and slaughtering are acts of `Ibadah, thus performing them to anyone other than Allah is an act of Shirk Akbar. It is undoubtedly true that going to graves to make Sujud and sacrifice is an act of glorifying these graves by means of Sujud and sacrificing animals near them. This is also reported by Imam Muslim in a long Hadith concerning the prohibition of slaughtering for anyone other than Allah and cursing its doers. `Aly Ibn Abu Talib (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated: "The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) told me four statements": Allah curses a person who sacrifices to anyone other than Allah; Allah curses a person who curses his or her parents; Allah curses a person who shelters a heretic; Allah curses a person who changes the marks of the land. Likewise, Abu Dawud related in his Sunan (Hadith compilations classified by jurisprudential themes) on the authority of Thabit ibn Al-Dahhak (may Allah be pleased with him) who said: A man vowed to sacrifice camels in Buwanah, he then came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and said, "I have vowed to sacrifice camels in Buwanah." The Prophet (peace be upon him) asked: "Did the place contain any idols that were worshipped in pre-Islamic times?" They said: "No." He asked: "Was any pre-Islamic festival observed there?" They said, "No." The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "Fulfill your vow, for an invalid vow that must not be fulfilled is that of doing an act of disobedience to Allah or vowing things over which a child of Adam has no control." (Part No. 1; Page No. 194) The evidence mentioned above indicates the curse incurred on those who sacrifice for anyone other than Allah. Likewise, they declare the prohibition of slaughtering animals in places containing worshipped idols, glorified graves, or customary meetings of people of the pre-Islamic period even if the doer devotes the act of slaughter to Allah.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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