Invoking the Messenger or other people when standing up or sitting down

Q 2: There is a Muslim who testifies that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah but when standing up or sitting down, he says: 'O Messenger of Allah', 'O Abu Al-Qasem', or 'O Shaykh `Abdul-Qadir', and such words of seeking help from people other than Allah. What is the ruling on doing so?

A: The person who invokes Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) or other people (Part No. 1; Page No. 164) such as `Abdul-Qadir Al-Jelany or Ahmad Al-Tijany when standing up or sitting down, and whoever beseeches them for help whether to bring good or ward off harm is committing an act of Al-Shirk-ul-Akbar (major form of associating others in worship with Allah). These acts were common during Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic time of ignorance). Then, Allah sent His Messengers (peace be upon them) to get rid of Shirk (associating others with Allah in His Divinity or worship), save people from it, and guide them to Tawhid (Oneness of Allah, Exalted be He) and to make them offer `Ibadah (worship) and Du`a' (supplication) to Him Alone. Assistance with issues beyond man's ordinary capacity should be sought from none but Allah (Exalted be He). Because seeking help is an act of `Ibadah and whoever offers it to anyone other than Him (Exalted be He) is considered a Mushrik (one who associates others with Allah in worship). Allah guides His servants to this and teaches them to say: You (Alone) we worship, and You (Alone) we ask for help (for each and everything). Allah also says: And the mosques are for Allâh (Alone): so invoke not anyone along with Allâh. Allah shows them that He Alone wards off harm or delivers it. He confers blessings and good upon His servants. None can prevent what He grants, nor give what He prevents. None can stop what He decrees and He is Able to do all things. Allah (Exalted be He) says: "And invoke not besides Allâh, any such that will neither profit you nor harm you, but if (in case) you did so, you shall certainly be one of the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers)." And if Allâh touches you with harm, there is none who can remove it but He, and if He intends any good for you, there is none who can repel His Favour which He causes it to reach whomsoever of His slaves He wills. And He is the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful. Allah (Exalted be He) says: Such is Allâh, your Lord; His is the kingdom. And those, whom you invoke or call upon instead of Him, own not even a Qitmîr (the thin membrane over the date-stone). If you invoke (or call upon) them, they hear not your call; and if (in case) they were to hear, they could not grant it (your request) to you. And on the Day of Resurrection, they will disown your worshipping them. And none can inform you (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) like Him Who is the All-Knower (of everything). (Part No. 1; Page No. 165) Allah also says: And who is more astray than one who calls on (invokes) besides Allâh, such as will not answer him till the Day of Resurrection, and who are (even) unaware of their calls (invocations) to them? And when mankind are gathered (on the Day of Resurrection), they (false deities) will become their enemies and will deny their worshipping. And also says: And whoever invokes (or worships), besides Allâh, any other ilâh (god), of whom he has no proof; then his reckoning is only with his Lord. Surely! Al-Kâfirûn (the disbelievers in Allâh and in the Oneness of Allâh, polytheists, pagans, idolaters) will not be successful. Allah describes the invocation of anyone or anything other than Him as Kufr (disbelief) and Shirk, as mentioned in these Ayahs (Qur'anic verses); He mentioned that no one is more astray than a person who makes Du`a' to anyone other than Him (Glorified be He). It is reported that the Prophet 'peace be upon him' said to Ibn `Abbas 'may Allah be pleased with them both': If you ask, ask Allah Alone; and if you seek help, seek it from Allah Alone ... He (peace be upon him) also says: Du`a' is the sincere `Ibadah.