Ruling on collective Dhikr as done by Sufi orders

Q: Please give us your Fatwa concerning a group of people who sit in circles in Masjids (mosques) in which they observe remembrance of Allah (Exalted be He) and His Messenger. Sometimes in their Dhikr (Remembrance of Allah), they say things that are contrary to Tawhid (Oneness of Allah). An example of what they say is: "Help us, O Messenger of Allah!" They repeat these words while their leader says: "O, you (the Prophet) are the key of Allah's treasures. O you are the Ka`bah of Allah's appearance. O you are the throne of Allah's leveling and O you are the chair of Allah's descent! Suffice us, O Messenger of Allah. O Allah's beloved! You are the intended one. It is you, O Messenger of Allah," and other similar words of Shirk (associating others with Allah in His Divinity or worship).


A: First of all, collective Dhikr (Remembrance of Allah) like what is done in the Sufi orders is an act of Bid`ah (innovation in religion). It was stated that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: Anyone who does something in this matter of ours (the religion) that is not from it, it will be rejected. Secondly, invoking others beside Allah (Exalted be He) and seeking their help to relieve distress or grief are acts of major Shirk, which is forbidden because invoking and seeking help are acts of worship that must be dedicated to Allah Alone. Therefore, dedicating one's worship to other than Allah (Exalted be He) is an act of major Shirk which makes one a disbeliever. 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. (Part No. 1; Page No. 139) Allah (Exalted be He) also says: And the mosques are for Allâh (Alone): so invoke not anyone along with Allâh. He (Exalted be He) says as well: 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. And other Ayahs (Qur`anic verses) indicating the obligation of dedicating worship to Allah Alone. It was stated in the Hadith that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: If you ask, ask of Allah Alone; and if you seek help, seek it from Allah Alone... He (peace be upon him) also said: Du`a' (supplication) is itself worship. May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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