Topic: Visiting graveyards on Shab e barat (the 15th night of Sha’ban)   (No-14571)

Q Is it permissible to visit a graveyard on the Night of Forgiveness (Shab e barat)?

a In our society, just as many actions have been given the status of ibadah in the Night of Forgiveness, visiting graveyards during this night is also being considered obligatory. However, it is important to note that visiting the graveyard on this night was not a regular practice of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). In fact, in the entire collection of hadith only one instance of him visiting the graveyard on this night can be found. Therefore, the true essence of our deen and following the sunnah of our Prophet (peace be upon him) lies in giving each sunnah the same importance that he gave it, and acting upon it on the same level that he did.
Unfortunately, many bid’aat (innovations) have crept into the practice of people visiting the graves such as considering it obligatory to visit the graveyard on this night, decorating the roads around the graveyard, illuminating the graveyard with lamps, women visiting the graveyard, covering the graves with (decorative) cloths.
None of these actions are supported by the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and it is therefore necessary to avoid them.
However, if someone visits the graveyard on this night with the intention of following the Sunnah, then it is permissible according to Shariah law. In fact, they will be rewarded for their intention of following the sunnah. However, it is incorrect to consider visiting the graveyard on this night every year as obligatory, and to judge those who do not visit as having not fulfilled the rights of the night.
Therefore, as Shab-e-Barat is the night of forgiveness, it is important to spend this night in the worship of Allah (SWT). This includes praying nafil prayers, reciting the Quran, engaging in zikr and wird, specially making istighfar and pleading Allah with the utmost humility and sincerity to forgive our sins.


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