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Vows are only to be devoted to Allaah


I was in distress and I determined to make a votive offering to Lady Zaynab. However, I live in Beirut while the shrine of the Lady Zaynab is in Syria. Can I fulfill my vow here in Beirut? Must I fulfill it in Syria before the shrine?


All perfect praise be to Allaah, the Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His Slave and Messenger.

It is impermissible to fulfill such a vow because it contradicts the guidance of the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and it is a religious innovation. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, told us that whoever does an act of worship that is not part of the religion (and neither the Prophet nor his Companions did it), it will be rejected and will not be accepted from him. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Vows are an act of worship and are thus impermissible to be devoted to other than Allaah. Allaah the Almighty Says (what means): {Say, "Indeed, my prayer, my rites of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allaah, Lord of the worlds. No partner has He. And this I have been commanded, and I am the first [among you] of the Muslims."} [Quran 6: 162-163]. It is narrated that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, stated that Allaah curses those who slaughter a sacrifice for others, other than Him. [Muslim]

Accordingly, it is impermissible to make votive offerings at shrines or for any other with the intention of endearing oneself to Allaah or as an act of worship. You should instead do a lot of good deeds and give charity to the poor and needy.

Allaah Knows best.

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