Volume - V / CHAPTER - 1 / LESSON NO: 2
Ql: What is "Shafaa'at?
A. "Shafa'a (Shafaa'at)" means somebody's intercession with his superior for his servant or junior. "Shafaa'at" (intercession) is neither thrust nor accepted under duress.
To accede to something under threat is no "Shafaa'at" but cowardice and helplessness and similarly to bully someone into doing what one wants him to do is also no intercession and recommendation.
Q 2: What is the belief of Ahle Sunnat about Shafaa'at?
A. "Shafaa'at" of the chosen servants of Allah is "Haq" (the truth, certain thing) which is borne out by numerous Quranic verses, a chain of authentic "Ahaadees"(Prophetic sayings) and consensus of Muslim scholars. Besides, religious books are also replete with it.
The sum and substance of this belief is that Allah Almighty is the sole real Creator, Master and King. Neither He has avarice nor fear of anyone. He is Absolutely Independent and all others are helpless and dependent on Him. He has chosen His "loved ones" from His servants and made Hadrat Muhammad Mustafa (may Allah's choicest blessings & peace be upon him) leader of them. He pleases them with His favours and entertains their "say" out of His infinite mercy. He has made His "loved ones" intercessor for His servants to show their greatness and excellences.
He has blessed "Auliyah"(saints) of the community of the Holy Prophet with such a high rank that if they swear for something their words come true by the grace of Allah.
Allah Almighty has made our lord and master Hadrat Saieyyedina Muhammadur Rasoolullah (may Allah's choicest blessings & peace be upon him) His great vicegerent and beloved and said: "O' beloved! your Sovereign Lord will surely give you so much that you will be pleased."
Responding to this grace of Allah, the Most Affectionate, the Holy Prophet said" "then I will not be pleased if even a single Ummati(bond slave) of mine is detained in Hell."
Glory be to Allah! what is the greatness of Allah's Darling Elect. How beautifully the Holy Quran affirms the intercession of the Holy Prophet. How graciously Allah Almighty has promised him His myriad of favours and pledged to please him. And see the kindness of the Beloved Prophet who said: "I will not leave away any of my Ummati in Hell."
Q 3: Whose Shafaa'at will be accepted?
A. According to the Holy Qur-aan, the affirmation of intercession depends on two principles i.e. grant of prior permission by Allah Almighty to intercede for somebody and intercessor must be truthful and righteous.
Study of "Ahaadees" and books on Islamic beliefs reveals that Allah, the Most Beneficent, will accept the intercession of Apostles, Messengers, Prophets, saints, "Ulama" (religious scholars), martyrs and pious servants. "Huffaaz" (those who learnt the Holy Quran by heart), "Hujrjaj" (those who performed pilgrimage to holy Makkah) and those believers who were granted any religious rank in the world will intercede for their relatives, friends and followers and even those children who died in minor age will also intercede for their parents. The scope of Shafaa'at will enlarge to such an extent that some people will approach "Ulama" and remind them that "we had fetched you water for ablution on such and such day or time or we had given you (a) clod(s) for abstersion" on this, the Ulama will intercede for them. Besides, Ahaadees indicate that after deliverance from hell-fire, believers would pray to Allah Almighty for absolution of their brothers (in faith) who were still in Hell and on Divine permission they would take out believers of Hell in great number.
Q 4: Which people will seek "Shafa'a"?
A. It is proved by Ahaadees that every believer will be seeker of Shafa'a and all believers (regardless of the past and future) will be divinely inspired to seek Shafa'a. The doctors of Ahaadees have clarified that only those believers will be the seekers of Shafa'a who used to have recourse to the Prophets in their lifetime. It will naturally get into their hearts that when Allah's Prophets were their benefactors and helpers in the world then today also they will help them out from the distress.
All people will discuss as to which Prophet should be approached and it will be decided that all should go to Prophet Adam. All will come to Prophet Adam. They will first speak of his excellences and then entreat him to intercede with Allah to save them from the trials and tribulations of the Doomsday. He will refer them to Prophet Noah. He will send them to Prophet Abraham who will ask them to approach Prophet Moses. Prophet Moses will refer them to Prophet Jesus who will advise them to go to that Prophet who has been endowed with "victory"(right of intercession), who has no fear today, who is the leader of all mankind and who is the Last Prophet. Who will intercede even for us. He is "Muhammadur Rasoolullah" (Sallal Laahu 'Alai-hei Wasallam [may Allah's choicest blessings & peace be upon him]).
Q 5: Who will be the first to intercede with Allah?
A. The Holy Prophet himself says: "Anaa Awwalu Shaafiyoon wa Awwalu Mushaffa'a"(I am the first who will intercede with Allah and my intercession will be acceded-to first of all). Nobody will dare to intercede with Allah until the door of the institution of "Shafaa'at" is opened by the Holy Prophet rather all those who will intercede later will come to the Holy Prophet to route their intercessions through him for acceptance.
The Holy Prophet is, indeed, the only "Shafi" (intercessor) in Allah's creatures who will intercede for them with Allah.
Q 6: How will the Holy Prophet's intercession begin?
A. On the advice of Prophet Jesus all people will come to the Holy Prophet in extremely pitiable condition. They will first praise him and then supplicate him for intercession. The Holy Prophet will respond to their supplication saying: "Anaa Lahaa, Anaa Lahaa, Anaa Saahib-kum" (Really, I am for this work, I am for this work. I am the very person whom you have located everywhere). Thereafter, the Holy Prophet will go to the throne and prostrate. Seeing this, Allah Almighty will say: "O' Muhammad! raise your head and speak, you will be heard. Ask for, you will be granted and intercede, your intercession will be accepted. Glory be to Allah. How very much Allah loves His beloved. The Holy Prophet has not yet spoken a word but He preceded and spoke: "O' Muhammad! lift your head and say what you want to and ask for what you need. You will be heard and granted. In short, the process of Shafa'a will now begin. The Holy Prophet will intercede for his Ummah and will keep doing so to such an extent that those having Eimaan (Islamic faith) as little as a mustard seed will be interceded and taken out of Hell. Then all other Prophets will intercede for their respective communities.
Q 7: How many kinds of intercession of the Holy Prophet are there?
A. The intercession of the Holy Prophet is of different kinds like (1)."Shafaa'at-e-Kubraa" (the grand intercession), (2). he will get a great multitude of believers admitted into heavens without any reckoning. A known figure of it is 4,90,00,00,000. A countless number of believers much more than this figure will also be entered into Paradise which is known to Allah and His beloved only, (3). will protect a large number of believers who will have been destined to be cast into Hell due to their sins, (4). will intercede for those believers who will have been consigned to Hell and take them out of it, (5). will get the positions of some believers upgraded, (6). will get the chastisement of certain believers remitted and (7). will get those believers whose virtues and evils will be equal, admitted into heavens.
Q 8: What is "Shafaa'at-e-Kubraa"?
A. "Shafa'a" of the Holy Prophet which he will make by interceding with Allah for the commencement of "settlement of account" will be for all creatures regardless of believers, infidels, obedient, disobedient, proponents, opponents, friends and foes. Waiting for "reckoning" on that day will be so terrible that all people will wish would that they had been thrown into hell so that they would have saved from these terrible sufferings. The commencement of "reckoning of account" will relieve all people of the ghastliness of the Doomsday who (the past and future nations, antagonists and protagonists, believers and infidels) will in turn praise the Holy Prophet. This is called "Maqaam-e-Mahmood" (the dignified station of praise). The status of "Shafaa'at-e-Kubraa" is one of the exclusive traits of the Holy Prophet.
Q 9: What about he who denies "Shafa'a"?
A. Shafa'a is proved by "Ijma'-e-Ummah" (consensus of Muslim scholars). It is vindicated by a number of Quranic verses and a large number of Prophetic sayings. Only a "misguided" can deny it. The intercession which the Holy Quran refutes is of idols and infidels. Infidels, Jews and Christians acknowledged "Shafa'a" but their belief was that the intercessor was all powerful to rescue anyone from Allah's wrath and even idol-worshippers considered their gods and goddesses intercessor with Allah. The Holy Quran has declared such belief of infidels, Jews and Christians "starkly false" and made it clear that none of those whom they worship excepting Allah can intercede for them. Only Allah's loved ones can intercede not those who incur (ed) His wrath.
Allah's wrath will soon overtake these infidels and disbelievers and their supporters. To apply those Quranic verses and Allah's commands which condemn "false belief of infidels and idol-worshippers to Allah's Prophets, saints and His loved ones and to say that nobody can intercede for or advocate anyone is an open opposition to Quran-o-Hadees and tantamount to calumniate Allah and His Prophet and create new "Shari'ah". Intercession of idols and infidels has been condemned by the Holy Quran and of Allah's friends and believers confirmed.