The holy Prophet’s (pbuh) knowledge of the unseen (Gheyb)

Question 393: I wanat to know about the holy Prophet’s (pbuh) knowledge of the unseen (Gheyb)? Did Prophet Muhammad S.a.w.w have the knowledge of the unseen? If yes, then what does Allah mean about the following verse? How to reply back the wahabis on such verses which says “We pray to you and from you we seek help”

Answer 393: Gheyb or unseen, means for something to be concealed from the senses.  It is defined as: الغیب: کل ما غاب عنک; meaning that anything that is hidden from you is considered gheyb and unseen.[1]  This is why when the sun sets, Arabs say: “غابت الشمس”; meaning that the sun became hidden and unseen.[2] (Seyyid Ali Akbar Qureyshi, Qamuse Quran, vol. 5, pg. 133;  Ibn Fares, Mu’jam Maqayisil-Lughah, root word “غیب”.) Read More


keeping or hanging pictures ascribed to the Imams

Question 144: What is the Shia view on religious and non-religious pictures (like for creative arts or illustration)? What about depictions of the Prophets (saws), and Imams (a.s)? I want to know the permissibly of these things, as well as whether they are liked or makrooh.

Answer 144: The religious authorities’ (grand jurists) answer in this regards: As per the Islamic law, there is no problem to keep or hang those pictures which are ascribed to the Infallible Imams (a.s) and the Holy Prophet (pbuh) in our houses or Hussainiyah, if it is not considered desecrating or disrespectful according to Urf (custom) nor opposed to the status of them.

According to Ayatollah Sistani, If it does not involve desecration of them, there is no problem.

Note: The jurists have said: Offering prayers is makrooh (abominable) at certain places including “facing the picture or statue of living creatures, unless it is covered. It is makrooh to offer prayers at a place where there is a picture, even if it may not be placed in front of the person who offers prayers”.[1]

For further information in this regards, please refer to the following answer:

Index: Rules on drawing according to Islam, answer 226.

[1] . Ajwabat al-Istiftaat (Answers to Religious Queries), vol.2, pg. 38. Tauzihul Masail of Sayyid Roohollah al-Moosavi al-Khomeini (with connotation), vol.1, issue No.898.


Miracles of the Prophet Noah (as) in the Holy Quran

Question 499: what is the miracle of prophet Noah mentioned in chapter 11 verse 28? I haven’t seen anything in the Qur’an specifically that mentions exactly what it is or in any hadith.

Answer 499: When People of the Prophet Noah told Him: ‘We do not see you to be anything but a human being like ourselves.’ the Prophet (as) answered: “O my people! tell me if I have with me clear proof from my Lord, and He has granted me mercy from Himself and it has been made obscure to you; shall we constrain you to (accept) it while you are averse from it?” When they told Him: “We do not see anyone following you except those who are simpleminded riffraff from our midst. Nor do we see that you have any merit over us. Rather we consider you to be liars”, He said: “O my people! I do not ask you any material reward for it. My reward lies only with Allah. But, I will not drive away those who have faith. Indeed they will encounter their Lord. But I see that you are an ignorant lot”. [1]

In order to call people to salvation, keep them to the right path and prove these missions each Prophet (as) has certainly come to His people with the Truth, Clear Signs and Miracles from Allah, the Almighty.

In the holy Quran Allah (SWT) says: “Has there not come to you the account of those who were before you the people of Noah,” Ad and Thamoud, and those who were after them, whom no one knows [well] except Allah? Their apostles brought them manifest proofs, but they did not respond to them, and said,” We disbelieve in what you have been sent with. Indeed we have grave doubts concerning that to which you invite us.””. [2]

Although, Miracles of the Prophet Noah (as) have not clearly mentioned in the Holy Quran, but if we interpret some verses of the Holy Quran and refer to some authentic sources available in this regards we would find miracles some of which are as follows:

  1. Being Signaled and Revealed about the Storm and Saved and delivered from: In the holy Quran Allah (SWT says: “So We delivered him and the Inmates of the Ark, and made it a sign to the nations”.[3] Also, Allah, the Almighty says: “When Our edict came and the oven gushed [a stream of water], We said,” Carry in it a pair of every kind [of animal], along with your family except those [of them] against whom the edict has already been given and those who have faith.” And none believed with him except a few.”
  2. Build the Ark (at a place where there was no sea) that saved Him and those with Him: “In the Holy Quran Allah (SWT) says: “Build the ark before Our eyes and by Our revelation, and do not plead with Me for those who are wrongdoers: they shall indeed be drowned.”[4]
  3. Long Life: None of the Prophets (as) have lived a lifetime as the Prophet Noah. He had lived more than 2500 years, though His strength had never decreased through the ages neither His teeth fell out.[5]

Note: The Prophet Noah had been Guided and Preached His People for nine hundred and fifty years[6], but He lived about 2500 years.  [7]

[1] . Surah Hud, verses 27-29;  Tafsir al-Mizan Vol. 10, Pgs. 304-307.

[2] . Surah Ebrahim, verse 9.

[3] . Surah Ankabout, verse 15.

[4] . Surah Momenoon, verse 27.

[5] . According to Tha’labi, living long time (more than 1000 years old) is a Miracle of the Prophet Noah. History of the Prophets (as), Pg. 65.

[6] . Surah Ankaboot, verse 14.

[7] . Biharul Anwar, Vol. 11, Pg. 284, (quoted by Sheikh Sadouq in Amali), Pg. 287;  Majma al-Bahrain, Pg. 1367, second edition, Tehran, office of Farhang Islami Publication.


The Wilayah of Imam Ali (as) in Ghadir Khumm

Question 470: Did the Holy Prophet (s) mean political authority or religious and mystical authority (Wilayah) in the event of Ghadir Khumm?

Answer 470:  According to Shiites, there is no doubt that the Wilayah (guardianship/authority) of the Commander of the Faithful that was announced and stressed by the Holy Prophet (s) in the event of Ghadir and on many other occasions before and after Ghadir[1] includes all the cases where the Messenger of Allah (s) maintained wilayah (authority). Considering that the Prophet (s) established and led a government, we entertain no doubt that political authority or discretion over political affairs was one of the main aspects of his authority. Read More


killing rabid and biting dogs in order to receive Wahy (revelation)

Question 491: Did the Prophet ordered that killing rabid and biting dogs is allowed (in any situation)?

Answer 491: It is quoted a story in some tafasir in which mentioned that Gabriel (as) went to the holy Prophet (pbuh) and asked if He gives him permission to come in? The Prophet gave him permission, but Gabriel didn’t come in. After a while, the holy Prophet said: We gave you permission! So, why don’t you come in? Gabriel replied: we don’t come in a house where a dog is in. According to Abu Rafe’, the narrator of this hadith, quoted that after this event, the Holy Prophet (pbuh) ordered to kill dogs existed in the city. The companions of the holy Prophet asked if keeping any dogs are forbidden? The Prophet kept silence until the verse four of the surah Maedah has sent down in which keeping hunting dogs have been permitted.[1]

It is generally mentioned in Shia traditions that the Angels will not enter a house in which a dog is keeping.[2]

It is noteworthy that there hasn’t mentioned in any Shia traditions that this dog was kept in the house of the Holy Prophet (pbuh). It is said that this event happened at the time when the holy Prophet were presented in an area where a puppy dog was kept inside a house.[3]

There is a tradition narrated from Imam Ali (as) that the holy Prophet (pbuh) sent me to Medina and ordered: …destroy graves and kill dogs. Damiri narrated from Abdullah bin Ma’qal the he narrated a Hadith in which the Holy Prophet (pbuh) ordered to kill dogs then He (pbuh) said: You are allowed to keep hunting and herding dogs. So, His companions interpreted the holy Prophet’s order that rabid and biting dogs have to be killed.[4]

According to Imam Sadiq (as), black dogs are Jin.[5]

Conclusion: It is narrated in Shia and Sunni[6] sources that the holy Prophet (pbuh) ordered to kill dogs, however He later said that keeping hunting and herding dogs are permitted.

Dogs are of some species. Those rabid and biting dogs need to be killed if they harm us, but hunting and herding dogs have been permitted to be kept.[7]

[1] . Tabari, Abu Jaafar Muhammad bin Jarir, Jame al-Bayan fee Tafsir al-Quran, Vol. 6, Pg. 57, Dar al-Ma’rifat, Beirut, 1412 A.H.

[2] . Kuleini, Muhammad bin Yaqoub, Kafi, Vol. 3, Pg. 393, H 26, Dar al-Kutub al-Islamiyah, Tehran;  Majlesi, Biharul Anwar, Vol. 80, Pg. 288;  Hurr Ameli, Muhammad bin Hasan, Wasael al-Shia, Aalul Bayt Institution, Qom, 1409 A.H. Vol. 5, Pg. 275, H 6260.

[3] . Wahedi, Ali bin Ahmad, Asbab al-Nozul, Pg. 194, Dar al-Kutub al-Elmiyyah, Beirut, 1411 A.H.

[4] . al-Kafi, Vol. 6, Pgs. 552-553.

[5] . Biharul Anwar, Vol. 6, Pg. 287.

[6] . Muslim, 1572-1573-280; Abu Dawood, 2845.

[7] . Surah Maedah, verse 4;  Hurr Ameli, Muhammad bin Hasan, Wasael al-Shia, Aalul Bayt Institution, Qom, 1409 A.H. Vol. 5, Pg. 275, H 6260;  Golpayegani, Sayyid Muhammad Reza Moosavi, Majma al-Masael, Dar al-Quran al-Karim, Qom, Iran, second edition. 1409 A.H, Q 181;  Tawzih al-Masael of maraja (annotated), Vol. 2, Pg. 198;  Ibid, Vol. 1, Pg. 67.