Here is the excellent refutaion of this poetyr by Ahmad Musa Jibril
- Exaggeration of the Prophet (Sallalahi Alahi Wasallam )
- Qasidah Al-Burdah: The Cloak of Love or Ignorance? - Ahmad Musa Jibril [PDF]
In the past few years, there is a particular piece of Arabic poetry that has reached the Muslims in the west and has been translated into English. This poem is called Qasidah Al-Burdah by Muhammad Al-Busairi. It is also known as the most famous if not the most famous poem that supposedly praises the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam).The poem has been widespread in Arabic for nearly eight centuries and many scholars have replied to it in Arabic.
I am pasting portion of it here for the benefit of the readers.
Analysis of the Poem
وكيف تدعو إلى الدنيا ضرورة من * * * لولاه لم تُخرج الدنيا من العدم
For had it not been for him this world would not have come out of non
existence. (Chapter 3/10)
1) This is an extreme exaggeration in the description of the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). We love the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) but this love has a limit we cannot go beyond or below. For example, because of our love of the Prophet we cannot say he is the son of Allah, as the Christians went into an extreme in loving their prophet. If we did this, we would be just like the Christians.
In this line Al-Busairi said the universe was not created except for the purpose of the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) .
Allah said “And I have not created human and jinn but to worship me.” (Althariyat:56)
And even the Prophet was created to worship as Allah said, “And worship your Lord until there comes unto you the certainty (i.e. death).” (AlHijer 99)
The Sufis may come back with a supposed hadith where it was said, "Had it not been for you the universe would not have been created." The problem with this
hadith is it is fabricated and cannot be given as proof.[i]
فاق النبيين في خَلق وفي خُلُق *** ولـم يـدانــوه في عــلـــم ولا كر
وكلهم من رسول الله ملتمس *** غرفاً من البحر أو رشفاً من الدي
He transcends the Ambiya, physically and in (noble) character.
And (the other Ambiya) cannot come near his in knowledge and noble nature
They all obtained from Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam).
(Like a) handful (of water) from the ocean or (a few) sips from continuous rains. (Chapter 3/22)
2) Here Al-Busairi claims that all messengers benefited and received from the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). Meaning, the prior messengers received and benefited from the latter. No realistic mind can accept that, and more importantly, there is no proof for that claim.
This goes back to some major misguidance which is present in Sufi belief. Alhalaj said, “The Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) has brightness before the universe was created, and from it every (piece of) knowledge and every thing was derived, he even supplied the previous messengers.”
Ibn Araby Altaey said, “Every Prophet and messenger from Adam to the last messenger takes from the guidance of the Prophet Muhammad .”[ii]
دع ما ادعته النصارىفينبيهم * * * واحكم بما شئت مدحاً فيه واحتكم
Discard what the Christians claim about their Nabi
Then decide and say what you wish in praise of him (Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi
Wasallam). (Chapter 3/29-30)
3) Here he says as long as you refrain from claiming to our messenger that which Christians claimed to theirs then it is permissible for you to go as extreme as you want in your love for the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). So long as you do not claim calling the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) the son of Allah, one can state anything, be as extreme as they wish to be about him to show one’s love for him. To be more specific then, one can prostrate to the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) so long as one does not claim about him what the Christians do that he is to be worshipped.
The proof against this is the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) said, “Do not do to me as the Christians did to Issa, I am a messenger of Allah, therefore, say the servant of Allah and His messenger.”
Ibn Al Jawzy said the hadith means do not go into extreme in one’s love for the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). The context of the hadith was such that Mu’ath (radia allahu anh) asked the Prophet if he may prostrate to him, and the Prophet (sallah allah alieh wasalam) set a rule against going into extreme love for him.[iii]
لو ناسبت قدره آياته عِظماً * * * أحيا اسمه حين يُدعى دارس الرمم
If his miracles were proportionate (according) to his rank, in greatness,
Then his name would have, when called out brought decaying bones back to life (Chapter 3/35-36)
4) Those who explained this poem said that this line means that had the miracles been given to him by Allah reached the level of his honor, then among those miracles would be that Allah would reconstruct from bones and dust a human simply due to the blessing and sacredness of calling of his name.[iv]
In an indirect way this objects to the miracles Allah has chosen for his messenger.
Imam Mahmood Shukry Al Aloosy said in reply to this line, “This is extremism in praise of the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) , as how can one say the Qur’an does not suit the honor of the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam), or that it is lower than his honor. Also the name of Allah is mentioned yet as sacred as Allah’s name is, the bones and dust do not resurrect to His name.[v]
لا طيب يعدل ترباً ضم أعظمه * * * طوبى لمنتشق منه وملتثم
No perfume equals the dust (earth) which is touching his (Rasulullah Sallallahu
Alayhi Wasallam’s mubarak) body.
Glad tidings be to the person who smells it (the dust) and kisses it. (Chapter 3/61-62)
5) Al-Busairi made the dirt where the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) is buried better than the smell of best of musk. Then he said (Tuba) praise or (praise of jannah) for the one who inhales it or kisses it.
That is extremism, and no doubt, an innovation that leads to clear shirk.
Ibn Taimieh (Rahimahu allah) said, “ The imams agreed that the grave of the Prophet should not be touched or kissed, and that is to guard tawheed.”[vi]
أقسمتُ بالقمر المنشق إنّ له * * * من قلبه نسبةً مبرورة القسم
I take an oath (of truth) by the moon that was split, it bears.
A connection with his heart (which shows) the truth of my oath. (Chapter 5/7-8)
6) Here the author gives an oath by the moon. As we know, giving an oath by other than Allah is minor shirk. The Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) said, “Whomever gives an oath by other than Allah has committed Shirk or kufer.”[vii]
Ibn Abdel Albar said, “It is not permissible to give an oath by other than Allah in any manner or form, and it is united upon by scholars.”[viii]
ولا التمست غنى الدارين من يده * * * إلا استلمت الندى من خير مستلم
I did not ask for the wealth of the two worlds from his hand.
But I received a great gift the best hand that was ever kissed. (Chapter 5/19-20)
7) The author says he would like to achieve the richness of both worlds in this life and the hereafter from the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) .
However, Allah says:
“Whatever grant you have is from Allah.” (Nahl:53)
“See from Allah your rizk and worship him.” (AlAnkaboot: 17)
“And say who gives you rizk from the sky and earth.” (Younis:31)
Finally, as a warning to us with regards to this matter, Allah says, “Say: (O Muhammad to those polytheists, pagans, etc.) "Call upon those whom you assert (to be associate gods) besides Allah, they possess not even the weight of an atom (or a small ant), either in the heavens or on the earth, nor have they any share in either, nor there is for Him any supporter from among them.” (Saba: 22)
فإن لي ذمة منه بتسميتي * * * محمداً وهو أوفى الخلق بالذمم
If I had committed any sin my covenant is not (likely to be) violated.
With my Nabi Rasuluallah Sallallahu Alayhi Wassallam and nor is my rope
For verily I have a security from him due to my name.
(Being) Muhammad , while he is the most faithful of mankind in fulfilling his
promise. (Chapter 9/11-14)
8) Here, Al-Busairi claims that he has a special covenant and relationship with the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) based on the fact that his name is also Muhammad .
There is no bond between anyone and the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) simply because he shares the same name. There are many individuals whose name is Muhammad who are corrupt deviants.
The bond between anyone and the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) comes with the obedience to Allah and following the commands of the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). Sharing the same name has no relation to following the prophet’s (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) actions and commands.[ix]
لعل رحمة ربي حين يقسمها * * * تأتي على حسب العصيانفيالقسم
Perhaps the mercy of my Lord when distributed.
Would be distributed in proportion to the sins. (Chapter 10/9-10)
9) Here he says that it is possible that the mercy of Allah comes down based on the amount of sins. Meaning, the more one sins, the more mercy from Allah. This goes against what Allah says in the Qur’an.
Allah says, “And do not do mischief on the earth, after it has been set in order, and invoke Him with fear and hope; Surely, Allah's Mercy is (ever) near unto the good doers.” (AlAraf: 56)”
Allah says, “And ordain for us good in this world, and in the Hereafter. Certainly we have turned unto You. "He (Allah) said: (As to) My Punishment I afflict therewith whom I will and My Mercy embraces all things. That (Mercy) I shall ordain for those who are the Muttaqun (pious), and give Zakat; and those who believe in Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs and revelations, etc.)." (AlAraf:156)
يا أكرم الرسل ما لي من ألوذ به * * * سواك عند حلول الحادث العمم
Most generous of mankind, I have no one to take refuge in
Except you at occurrence of widespread calamity. (Chapter 10/1-2)
10) Al-Busairi says here that when the biggest of all hardships befalls him, he has no one to turn to but the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). This is the kind of shirk that may place one in an everlasting spot in hell
Allah says, "And invoke not besides Allah, any that will neither profit you, nor hurt you, but if (in case) you did so, you shall certainly be one of the Zalimun
(polytheists and wrong-doers). " (Younis:106)
Imam Sulieman bin Abdel Wahab said, “Pay attention to this line of shirk, he denied anyone to turn to in hardships but the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). And, refuge really belongs to Allah with no partner, as He is the One whom all humans turn to. He (AlBusairy) also calls the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) in that line (of poetry) in lowliness and time of hardship and need, and asked him that which should only be asked of Allah. And, that is shirk in uluhiyah.” [x]
Imam Abdelrahaman bin Hasan bin Abdelwahab said, “He honored the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) in that which saddens the prophet, and the Prophet forbade exaggerating in his honor that which is much less than what Al-Busairi has done here as anyone with any knowledge knows. This person limited humans to turn to another human rather than Allah. Allah denounced those who do “liyath” (the term the author used as turning to) in Surat al Jinn ayah 6 (And verily, there were men among mankind who took shelter with the masculine among the jinns, but they (jinns) increased them (mankind) in sin and disbelief.)
Meaning they added deviance, liyath and giyath. One of which is to ask for good. And, the other asking to turn away harm. Both are forms of worship that only belong to Allah.” [xi]
AlShawkany said, “Look at how he limited liyath (turning for good) to no other than the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) and he forgot about Allah, ina lillah wa ina ilieh rajioon.”[xii]
ما سامني الدهر ضيماً واستجرت به * * * إلا ونلت جواراً منه لم يُضَم
Whenever time caused me any distress and I took refuge in him.
I receive shelter from him which was not misused. (Chapter 5/17-18)
11) Here he is saying that every time he became worried, distressed or ill, he would call upon the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam), and then these problems would disappear.
In relaying the story of Ibrahim, Allah says the words of Ibrahim, "And when I am ill, it is He who cures me;” (Ash-Shu’ra:80)
Allah says, “And if Allah touches you with harm, none can remove it but He, and if He touches you with good, then He is Able to do all things.” (AlAnam: 17)
The Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) told Ibn Abbas, “If you ask, ask Allah, and if you seek aid, seek it from Allah.”[xiii]
ولن يضيق رسول الله جاهك بي * * * إذا الكريم تحلى باسم منتقم
And O messenger of Allah, your exalted status will not diminish, because of me
(intercession on my behalf)
When most Bountiful (Allah Ta’ala) will manifest (Himself) by the name of the
punisher. (Chapter 10/3-4)
12) Suliem bin Abdallah bin Muhammad said, “In this line he is seeking from the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) exactly what the mushrikeen sought from their statues, jah, which is intercession to Allah, and that is shirk. Also, the intercession comes from Allah, therefore it should not be asked from other than Allah. Allah permits one to give intercession not the one giving intercession initially.”[xiv]
فإن من جودك الدنيا وضرتها * * * ومن علومك علم اللوح والقلم
For verily amongst your bounties is this world, and the hereafter.
And part of your knowledge is knowledge of the Preserved Tablet (Lowh), and
the Pen. (Chapter 10/5-6)
13) Here he is saying that this life and the life after is from the generosity of the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). Therefore, this life and the hereafter belong to the Prophet Muhammad (sallah allahu alieh wasalam). Yet Allah attributes both this life and the life after to him.
Allah says, “Truly! Ours it is (to give) guidance, And truly, unto Us (belong) the last (Hereafter) and the first (this world). Therefore I have warned you of a Fire blazing fiercely (Hell); None shall enter it save the most wretched, Who denies and turns away.” (AlLayl 12-16)
In the second line of poetry, Al-Busairi mentions (al-Lahw) which is with Allah alone, as well as (the kalam), which is the unforeseen knowledge, where Allah has written everything that will happen 50,000 years before the creation of the sky and earth. Al-Busairi attributes this knowledge to the Prophet (sallah allahu alieh wasalam) and claims that the Prophet knows what is in that book.
This is from deviance as Allah says,
“Say: "None in the heavens and the earth knows the Ghaib
(unseen) except Allah, nor can they perceive when they shall be resurrected." (AlNaml: 65)
“And with Him are the keys of the Ghaib
(all that is hidden), none knows them but He. And He knows whatever there is in (or on) the earth and in the sea; not a leaf falls, but he knows it. There is not a grain in the darkness of the earth nor anything fresh or dry, but is written in a Clear Record.” (AlAnam: 59)
Silsilat aldafeeh 1/299; Alsanany fe Mawduateh P. 46
Mahabar Al rasool – Abdel Raoof Uthman 169-196
Fateh Albary 12/49
Ghaet Al Amany – Alaloosy 2/349
See above and AlDur Alnaded – Ibn hamdan p. 136
Alrad Ala Alakhniay p, 41
Narrated by ahmad 4509, Tirmithy 1534
Taiseer al azeez Alhameed p.22; Aldurar Alsunieh 9/51
Tayseer Al azeez alhameed 219-220
Aldorar alsunieh 9/89; and 9/49
Al dur alnadeed p, 26
Narated by Tirmithy as hasan
Aldurar alsunieh 9/52