My mother has a particular tasbih that she follows.
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
My mother has a particular tasbih that she follows. Every Thursday she recites "As Samiyo" 500 times and then does special dua for our family and relatives. This amal of hers is quite popular in the family and some relatives call her on the phone and tell her to make dua for them! However, she has now asked me to find out if her amal is valid and supported from any authentic hadith. As far as she is concerned, she can only quote some "elders" from whom she copies this amal. Can you please advise us in this regard?
May Allah reward you for your strivings.
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Innovation doing tasbeeh
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 7 Surah Aaraaf verse 180: The most beautiful names belong to Allah: so call on Him by them; but shun such men as use profanity in His names: for what they do they will soon be requited.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 7 Surah Aaraaf verse 55: Call on your Lord with humility and in private: for Allah loveth not those who trespass beyond bounds.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 40 Surah Ghafir verse 65: He is the Living (One): There is no god but He: Call upon Him giving Him sincere devotion. Praise be to Allah Lord of the Worlds!
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 40 Surah Ghafir verse 60: And your Lord says: "Call on Me; I will answer your (Prayer): But those who are too arrogant to serve Me will surely find themselves in Hell in humiliation!"
Allah Subhanah has commanded His believing slaves to call upon Him using His Noble and Exclusive Names, in absolute humility, hope, and fear. Those arrogant amongst mankind who think they are self-sufficient and refuse to humble themselves and call upon Him are indeed despised by the All-Mighty Lord. Thus there is absolutely no harm if your mother calls upon the Majestic Lord through one of His Noble and Exclusive Attribute of As-Samee or The All-Hearing One; for Allah Alone is the One Who Hears and responds to the call of those who invoke Him in humility and in hope.
To the best of our knowledge, there is absolutely nothing in the authentic Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saws) or his noble companions and family, whereby they would call upon the Majestic Lord through repeating His Exclusive Attribute of As-Samee 500 times on Thursdays!
The calling upon the Lord Most Merciful through His Noble Names or Attributes is absolutely encouraged and this remembrance is considered as a form of worship of the Lord in Islam; but to appoint or fix a day from oneself, or to appoint a particular time of day or night from oneself to call upon the Lord, or from oneself to appoint a particular number of times one should call upon the Lord when Allah and His Messenger (saws) have not endorsed the time, or place, or count, etc., would be considered an innovation or bida in the deen of Islam.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 3 Surah Ale Imraan verse 191-195:
190 Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of night and day there are indeed Signs for men of understanding.
191 Men who celebrate the praises of Allah standing sitting and lying down on their sides and contemplate the (wonders of) creation in the heavens and the earth (with the thought): "O Our Lord! Not for naught hast Thou created (all) this! Glory to thee! Give us salvation from the penalty of the fire.
192 "O Our Lord! Any whom Thou dost admit to the fire, truly Thou coverest with shame, and never will wrong-doers find any helpers!
193 "O Our Lord! We have heard the call of one calling (us) to faith `Believe ye in the Lord' and we have believed. O Our Lord! Forgive us our sins, blot out from us our iniquities, and take to Thyself our souls in the company of the righteous.
194 "O Our Lord! Grant us what Thou didst promise unto us through Thine Messengers, and save us from shame on the Day of Judgment: for Thou never breakest Thy promise."
195 And their Lord hath accepted of them and answered them: "Never will I suffer to be lost the work of any of you, be he male or female: ye are members one of another; those who have left their homes or been driven out therefrom, or suffered harm in My cause, or fought or been slain; verily, I will blot out from them their iniquities and admit them into Gardens with rivers flowing beneath; a reward from the presence of Allah and from His presence is the best of rewards."
When Allah and His Messenger (saws) have not declared a limit, why should one invent his own limitations and call upon the All-Hearing Lord only on Thursdays? Why not call upon Him every day? Why should one invent and fix a limit of calling Him only 500 times? Why not call upon the Lord Most Merciful all the time, whether one is standing, or sitting, or lying down?
Thus my dear and beloved brother, it would be best if the believers would call upon their Lord Most Merciful as many times as they wish, and unless Allah and His Messenger (saws) have endorsed or fixed a limit, never ever to invent a limit from themselves; for then it would indeed be considered an innovation or a bida in Islam.
Sahih Muslim Hadith 1885 Narrated by Jabir ibn Abdullah
That the Prophet of Allah (saws) said in a sermon: The best speech is that which is embodied in the Book of Allah, the Al Quran; and the best guidance is the guidance given by me, Mohamed (saws). The most evil affairs are the innovations, and every innovation is an error.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your Brother in Islam,