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Letter Exchange 2: Burial Next to Prophet (SAW)

The following Queries were mailed to us by a fellow visitor, student and seeker of truth. Below is an article-version of the email exchange.

  1. Why are Abu bakr and Umar allowed by Allah, to be buried next to prophet Muhammad (SAW), if they were bad and evil men and will go to hell, as Shias believe.
  2. Even if they are bad men, burying next to prophet (SAW) means they won’t be punished in their grave due to the barkat of Rasool Allah (SAW)
  3. How can evil people be allowed to be buried next to the greatest creation, prophet Muhammad (SAW)


The will of Allah is to give free will to men. Everything is governed by the will of Allah because Allah has given free will to man. Man's free will is the will of Allah, thus any action of any man is indirectly the will of Allah, as Allah wanted man to choose for himself. But every action of man is not a desire of Allah, and any action of man which is undesirable to Allah would not gain Allah's pleasure.

There are people amongst the Jews and atheists, among the disbelievers, who abuse Muhammad (SAW) very badly! Is this also the will of Allah? You and I both know it is not, it is the free will of man, for which he is highly punishable.

Abu bakr was succeeded by Umar and thus umar buried Abu bakr next to prophet (SAW). Umar was succeeded by Usman and thus usman buried Umer next to Rasool (SAW) as well. When usman was killed, people didn’t let him be buried next to prophet (SAW) and thus he was buried in the graveyard just where the graves of the Jews started! These burials were due to the free will of the people. Do u believe that if Abu bakr was succeeded by someone else who was not his ally, would he allow Abu bakr to be buried next to prophet (SAW)? Maybe not.

Thus the part that only good people can be buried next to prophet (SAW) is not true and illogical.

And from among those who are round about you of the dwellers of the desert there are hypocrites, and from among the people of Medina (also); they are stubborn in hypocrisy; you do not know them; We know them; We will chastise them twice then shall they be turned back to a grievous chastisement
Quran [9:101]

Allah sets forth an example to those who disbelieve the wife of Nuh and the wife of Lut: they were both under two of Our righteous servants, but they acted treacherously towards them so they availed them naught against Allah, and it was said: Enter both the fire with those who enter.
Quran [66:10]

If hypocrites can eat with prophet (SAW), and if the wives of prophets, such as that of Nuh and Lut, the very wives who shared the prophets' bed etc, if they can be burnt in hell due to their deeds, then no one is safe until their actions, deeds and faiths saved them. Being the teacher of angels couldn’t save Satan due to his deeds, do you expect that any bad person if dies in a holy place or is buried in a holy place will be saved? That is against the Justice of Allah.

And guard yourselves against a day in which you shall be returned to Allah; then every soul shall be paid back in full what it has earned, and they shall not be dealt with unjustly.
Quran [2:281]

Mecca and Medina are holy places. Kerbala is a holy place to Shias. Jerusalem is a holy place. A lot of people have lived and died in these areas. Were all of these people good, sinless, masooms, on the right path ? As a matter of fact, Kaaba has been surrounded by idols most of the time in pre-Islamic era. Thus the sanctity, piety and goodness of any place and personality cannot be judged by the day they died, the place they died or the place where they are buried!! It will only be judged by their faith and actions.

I have heard, not read, that the punishment of the grave is relieved if a momin is buried nearby. This means that people around the grave of Prophet (SAW) will not be punished due to the barkat of the prophet (SAW). What happens in the grave is not our matter, because we do not know.

And the trumpet shall be blown, when lo ! from their graves they shall hasten on to their Lord. They shall say: O woe to us! who has raised us up from our sleeping-place? This is what the Beneficent Allah promised and the messengers told the truth.
Quran [36:51-52]

This verse proves that the disbelievers, the kuffars, on the day of Qiyamat will complain that who disturbed them from a very good sleeping place. Due to this verse, many people do not believe in the punishment of the grave, because a punishment place cannot be referred to as a sleeping place, sleep is peaceful.

However, the other ideology is, which i tend to agree to, given the numerous prayers of Prophet (SAW) and Imams regarding the punishment in the grave, that such punishment exists. However, this the punishment of the grave is not permanent and not even the real deal. The punishment of the grave lasts only for three days, and after that the person is put to sleep until the day of resurrection. You do not feel anything in your sleep.

So this day no soul shall be dealt with unjustly in the least; and you shall not be rewarded aught but that which you did.
Quran [36:54]

The real deal is the Qiyamat. If Abu bakr and Umer were evil, they might not suffer the punishment in grave due to the presence of prophet (SAW), or they might be punished in the grave in such a way that no one else around them is disturbed. That is not our concern. Is it ?

Because what they did, was wrong and that is what matters. Allah is the judge, he forgives whom he wills and punishes whom he wills. Why should we judge who will be punished and how and who will go to heaven. Leave it to Allah. We are only concerned with who did good and who did bad! Recognize that goodness or badness, and stay away from the path of those who did bad.

As I said earlier, past prophets were killed brutally, prophet Yahya for example! Is not Allah the protector of everyone? Will not Allah protect his Prophets from all harm, all evil? Why then were Prophets slain? Past prophets had evil spouses, even evil children, corrupt followers! Prophet Nuh had animals for his companions in his ark!!

O my two mates of the prison! are sundry lords better or Allah the One, the Supreme? You do not serve besides Him but names which you have named, you and your fathers; Allah has not sent down any authority for them; judgment is only Allah's; He has commanded that you shall not serve aught but Him; this is the right religion but most people do not know;
Quran [12:39-40]

Prophet Yusuf had disbelievers as companions in the prison and was an advisor to the pharaoh. Prophet Moses was brought up in the house of Firaun! People who killed prophet’s grandson, imam Hussain at Kerbala, were hajis and namazis!!!

Thus in no way does being buried next to the prophet prove u were masoom or good, neither it guarantees as an atonement for your sins. What matters is your faith, your beliefs, your actions and your sincerity and love for Allah, his Deen, his Quran, his angels, his Rasool and his ahlulbayt.

For argument's sake, if i agree to your ideology that no wretched can be buried  next to Prophet Muhammad (SAW), then you should remember, that the third caliph, Usman ibn Affan, was not allowed to be buried next to Prophet Muhammad (SAW). Your argument will prove that Abu Bakr and Umer were noble, while Usman was wretched. Or you should accept the principles of Islam, which declare that every man will be judged according to his faith, actions and intentions.

The Shias do not judge anyone, nor do we declare who goes to paradise and who to hell. But it is important to realize who did bad, and stay away from that forbidden path

I hope this helped.

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