Tawassul is an Arabic word that comes from a verbal noun, "wasilah", which means "closeness, nearness, proximity, neighbourship". According to Ibn Manzur (d. 711/1311) in Lisān al-'Arab, wasilah means "a station with King, a rank, or act of devotion. The word wasilat had been stated in the Quran two times ([5:35],[17:57]). It is translated as “a means that can be used to gain nearness to God”. Therefore, the typical meaning of tawassul or tawassulanis use of wasilat to obtain nearness to God.
Requesting assistance from a spiritual intermediary when seeking divine help. In conservative interpretations, only Muhammad can intercede with God on behalf of human beings because Islam teaches that every believer has direct access to God. In Sufism and popular practice, intercession is often asked of saints or holy people. Some reform movements oppose requests for intercession.
— The Oxford Dictionary of Islam
Concept of Tawassul
Tawassul , as the main habitude of Supplications, has key role in to acceptation of them.
O you who believe! be careful of (your duty to) Allah and seek means (wasilah) of nearness to Him and strive hard in His way that you may be successful (Q5:35)
The meaning of the term wasilah in the above verse according to Albani is a thing that is used to obtain closeness and favour of Allah. Some classical commentators, including the great Sufi exegetes, such as al-Qushayri (d. 465/1074) explain the use of al-wasilah in this verse to mean avoiding what is prohibited, fulfilling what is enjoined on us, and drawing near to God through good actions. Both Raghib al-Isfahani and Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Tabataba'i opine that al-wasilah means to reach a certain goal through desire, inclination and willingness, and in fact wasilah towards God means observance of his path with knowledge and worship through adherence to the Sharia.It can be deduced from the verse above that intercession (tawassul) is only with the "permission" of Allah. Also, the practice of seeking intercession began during the time of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. An oft-cited Hadith in support of this is one narrated from Uthman ibn Hunaif regarding a blind man who Muslims believe was healed through the process.
A blind man came to the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) and said: "I've been afflicted in my eyesight, so pray to Allah for me". The Prophet (Allah bless him & give him peace) said: "Go perform ablution (Wudu), perform two Rak’at Salat and then say: "O Allah! I ask you and turn to you through my Prophet Muhammad, the Prophet of Mercy. O Muhammad! I seek your intercession with my lord for the return of my eyesight, that it may be fulfilled. O Allah! Grant him intercession for me". The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) then said: "and if there is some other need, do the same"
— Recorded by Ibn Majah: 1385, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, Nasa'i, Tabarani and others, with a sound chain of narrators.[clarification needed]
Various episodes from the life of Muhammad depict him interceding on behalf of his companions, mostly asking God to forgive their sins (Istighfar). For example, Aisha relates that he often slipped quietly from her side at night to go to the cemetery of Al-Baqi' to beseech forgiveness of God for the dead. Similarly, his istighfar is mentioned in the Salat al-Janazah and its efficacy explained.
Another early example of tawassul is represented by the idea of turning to God by means of Muhammad. This appears in an account concerning the story of a blind man who asked Muhammad to pray to God for his health because of his blindness. This hadith is quoted in some major collections of traditions, such as Ahmad ibn Hanbal's musnad:
The Prophet ordered the blind man to repeat these words: “O God, I ask you and turn to You by means of Your Prophet Muhammad, the Prophet of Mercy, O Muhammad! By your means I turn to God
The Hadith is as follows
The permissible and prohibited types of waseelah
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