Are muslims allowed to supplicate for wordly benefits for disbelievers?


Our Shaykh Abu Bilaal Al-Hadhramy- may Allah preserve him- was asked the following question on 2nd Sha’ban 1441( 26th March 2020):

The Questioner says:

Some brothers have sent this question from outside of Yemen; which is: Is it permissible for us to supplicate for the recovery, health and other worldy benefits of non-combatant disbelievers, generally, individually or groups of them – without seeking forgiveness for them?

Answer:

If they request this from the people of Islam, then there is certainly nothing wrong with supplication being made for them. For indeed, Musa (peace be upon him) supplicated when the drought and other things which the children of Israel were afflicted with occurred.

《ٱدْعُ لَنَا رَبَّكَ 》
Invoke for us your Lord (Al-A’raf 7:134)

They said to Musa.

Similarly Quraish went to the Prophet ﷺ in order for him to supplicate for them so he supplicated for them. So one should intend this from the angle of calling them to Allah, as perhaps they will be affected and accept Islam.

《لَّا يَنْهَىٰكُمُ ٱللَّهُ عَنِ ٱلَّذِينَ لَمْ يُقَٰتِلُوكُمْ فِى ٱلدِّينِ وَلَمْ يُخْرِجُوكُم مِّن دِيَٰرِكُمْ أَن تَبَرُّوهُمْ وَتُقْسِطُوٓا۟ إِلَيْهِمْۚ 》
Allah does not forbid you from those who do not fight you due to the religion and do not expel you from your homes – from being righteous toward them and acting justly toward them. (Al-Mumtahanah 60:8)

i.e. a family member; just like Asmaa (the daughter of Abu Bakr – may Allah be pleased with them both) did with her mother. She said to the Prophet ﷺ :

[ ‏{‏إِنَّ أُمِّي قَدِمَتْ‏}‏ وَهْىَ رَاغِبَةٌ، أَفَأَصِلُ أُمِّي قَالَ نَعَمْ صِلِي أُمَّكِ ‏”]
Indeed, my mother has arrived with much enthusiasm should I keep family ties with my mother? He said ﷺ: yes, keep family ties with your mother [1]

This ayat is from this angle. So if a person supplicates for the guidance of his father or the removal of an affliction that has befallen him, as perhaps he will embrace Islam or correct his state; then Allah has not forbidden us from these kinds of people.

Allah (also) answers the call of the desperate, even if he is a disbeliever:

《أَمَّن يُجِيبُ ٱلْمُضْطَرَّ إِذَا دَعَاهُ وَيَكْشِفُ ٱلسُّوٓءَ وَيَجْعَلُكُمْ خُلَفَآءَ ٱلْأَرْضِۗ أَءِلَٰهٌ مَّعَ اللهِ》
Is He [not best] who responds to the desperate one when he calls upon Him and removes evil and makes you inheritors of the earth? Is there a deity with Allah ? (An-Naml 27:62)

“قُلْ مَن يُنَجِّيكُم مِّن ظُلُمَٰتِ ٱلْبَرِّ وَٱلْبَحْرِ تَدْعُونَهُۥ تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً لَّئِنْ أَنجَىٰنَا مِنْ هَٰذِهِۦ لَنَكُونَنَّ مِنَ ٱلشَّٰكِرِينَ”
Say, “Who rescues you from the darkness’s of the land and sea [when] you call upon Him imploring [aloud] and privately, ‘If He should save us from this, we will surely be among the thankful.’ ” (Al-An’am 6:63)

《قُلِ ٱللَّهُ يُنَجِّيكُم مِّنْهَا وَمِن كُلِّ كَرْبٍ ثُمَّ أَنتُمْ تُشْرِكُونَ》
Say, “It is Allah who saves you from it and from every distress; then you [still] associate others with Him.” (Al-An’am 6:64)

“فَإِذَا رَكِبُوا۟ فِى ٱلْفُلْكِ دَعَوُا۟ ٱللَّهَ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ ٱلدِّينَ فَلَمَّا نَجَّىٰهُمْ إِلَى ٱلْبَرِّ إِذَا هُمْ يُشْرِكُونَ”
And when they board a ship, they supplicate to Allah, sincere to Him in religion. But when He delivers them to the land, at once they associate others with Him. (Al-‘Ankabut 29:65)

They should supplicate to Allah for themselves and be encouraged upon this; that they may seek the protection of Allah and know that they have a Lord that removes harm when it descends.

They must be taught these matters, that it (i.e. the removal of pandemics) requires repentance and submissive obedience to Allah.

As for the enemy combatant; if they see there is something to be gained by supplicating for him; that perhaps he will discontinue his harm and not return to it or perhaps even embrace Islam; if they request this; what is apparent is that there is nothing to prevent this.

(Likewise) If the people of Islam supplicate for the general removal of the affliction; seeing something to be gained from that, as they are also suffering; what is apparent is that no admonition should be made of them.

As for supplicating out of affection and compassion for them – never. They are disbelievers and we are muslims and there is no form of closeness between us.

Perhaps Allah has afflicted them due to their sins, for they have certainly harmed the Muslims and brought about much bloodshed in the muslim lands. So we ask Allah to destroy from them those there is no goodness in.

One should not say: “Oh Allah remove this affliction from Trump” – no, be careful, rather may Allah destroy Trump. He has harmed the Muslims – wallahi.

Do not single anyone out, supplicate with a general supplication.

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[1] Narrated by Asmaa, the daughter of Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with them both) in AlBukhari (2620) and Muslim (1003)

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Translated by : Abu Sufyaan Saami ibn Daniel Al-Ghaani

Arabic Transcript https://t.me/abubilalhami/4383

🕪 Audio https://t.me/abubilalhami/4382