THE ISLAMIC LEGAL VIEWPOINT OF CELEBRATING THE ANNIVERSARY NIGHT OF ISRA’ AND MI’RAJ.
Source: The Islamic View Point on Celebrations Mawlid, The Night of Isra and Miraj , Mid Shaban Night - by Shaykh Ibn Baaz
AsSalam Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakaatuhu
The night wherein the event of Isra’ and Mi’raj occurred had not been particularized in the authentic Hadith. All that was in this concern, according to the scholars of Hadith, has not been asserted as valid by the Prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Such is the extensive judiciousness of the Almighty Allaah that He made people forget it. Even if its particularization had been asserted, Muslims should have not favoured it with any devotional services whatsoever.
They are not permitted to celebrate its anniversary, since the Prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and his companions –May Allaah be pleased with them- never did it. Neither did they favour it with certain acts of devotion. Should such celebration of the Night be a licit matter, the Apostle (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), would have expounded it to the nation, either by word or by deed. And if such a thing had occurred, it would have been known and become common, and the companions-may Allaah be pleased with them- would have transmitted it to us. They, in fact, passed on from their Prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), everything Muslims are in need of. Never were they remiss with regard to religion, nay, they were outstrippers to every good. Should celebration of this anniversary Night were licit, they would have been the first to do it. The Prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), is most sincere in guiding people. He most truly fulfilled his mission, and performed his noble duty.
If the glorification and celebration of that Night had something to do with Islam, the Prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), would have never neglected it. Neither would he have concealed it. And since nothing of such a matter have ever occurred, it has become known that glorification and celebration of that Night has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with Islam, because the Almighty Allaah has perfected for this nation its religion, completed His favour upon it, and rebuked the innovators who introduce in religion that which Allaah had not allowed.
The Almighty-glory be to Him- says in the Quranic Chapter Al-Ma’ida: (This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed my favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion).[5: 3]. Allaah –may He be exalted- also says in Chapter Al-Shura: (What! Have they partners [godhead], who have established for them some religion without the permission of Allaah? Had it not been for the Decree of Judgement, the matter would have been decided between them [at once]. But verily the wrongdoers will have a grievous Penalty). Warning against heresies, and declaring that they are errors by way of reminding the nation of their gruesome peril, and estranging people from committing them, have been established as valid in the authentic Hadith of the Apostle (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). It has been asserted as valid, among other traditions, in both Sahih Muslim and Sahih Al-Bukhari, on the authority of A’isha –may Allah be pleased with her- that the Prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), said: (If anyone introduces into this affair of ours anything which does not belong to it, it is rejected). In another version by Muslim, the Prophet said: (Whoever performs a deed inconsistent with our principles, it will be rejected). Muslim transmitted in his Sahih, on the authority of Jabir-may Allaah be pleased with him- that the Apostle (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), was always used to saying in his speech on Fridays: (and now to our topic; the best speech is that of the Quran, and the best guidance is that of Muhammad (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and the most wicked matter is that of heretic innovations and each heresy is an error). It is reported in the Sunan (precepts) on the authority of Al-‘irbad ibn Sariah-may Allaah be pleased with him-who said: the Apostle (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), gave us an eloquent exhortation that scared the hearts, and shed tears from the eyes. We said: O Apostle of Allah, it looks as if it were a farewell exhortation. Admonish us. He then said: “I enjoin you to fear Allah, and to hear and obey your commander even if he were a slave; for those of you who live after me will see great disagreement. You must therefore follow my Sunnah and that of the rightly guided Caliphs. Hold to it, and stick fast to it. Avoid novelties; for every novelty is an innovation, and every innovation is an error). The traditions to that effect are numerous.
Caution and intimidation against heresies have been established as a matter of fact, on the authority of the companions of the Apostle (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and the pious ancestors thereafter. Such was the case only for its being an unnecessary addition to religion, a prescription of something novel without the permission of Allaah, and an imitation of the adversaries of Allaah, as did the Jews and the Christians with regard to making additions to their religion, and inventing what was beyond the permission of Allaah, since that act of theirs was attended by their being prejudicial to Islamic religion, and accusing it of lack of perfection. This matter is quite known to be rife with a great deal of gross corruption, ignominious file actions, contradiction with the saying of the Almighty Allaah: (This day I have perfected your religion for you….), and an obvious contrast to the traditions of the Apostle (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), that caution against, and estrange from heresies.
I hope that the aforementioned evidences are quite enough for the truth-seeker to reject this heresy, namely, that of celebrating the anniversary Night of ‘Isra’ and Mi’raj, and to caution against it, considering that it has absolutely nothing to do with Islam. In view of the fact that Allaah has enjoined the duty to give Muslims sincere advice, to elucidate the divine prescription for them, and to proscribe concealing of knowledge to them, I decided to call the attention of my Muslim brethren to this heresy which became so rife in a lot of countries that some people deemed it pertaining to religion
About Shaykh Ibn Baaz
He held the position of Grand Muftee of Saudi Arabia, the Presidency of many Islaamic Committees and Councils, the prominent among these being: Senior Scholars Committee of the Kingdom, Permanent Committee for Islaamic Research and Fataawa, the Founding Committee of Muslim World League, World Supreme Council for Mosques, Islaamic Jurisprudence Assembly Makkah; and the member of the Supreme Council of the Islaamic University at al-Madeenah, and the Supreme Committee for Islaamic Propagation, until he passed away on Thursday 27 Muharram 1420 A.H./May 13 1999 C.E. May Allaah (Subhaanahu wa Ta'aala) have Mercy upon his soul, aameen.
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