The Salafi view on Ziyarat of Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) is defined by the views of their leaders like Ibn Taymiyyah and Muhammad Ibn Abdil Wahhab.
Ibn Taymiyyah famously said – Man cannot undertake journey specifically for the ziyarat of Prophet (s.a.w.a.). Such a journey would be a grave sin and one must offer full prayers instead of the shortened prayers.
For this view, Ibn Taymiyyah and his student Ibn Qayyim Jauziyyah, who repeated this decree, were punished by the rulers of the time with strict imprisonment terms and were prohibited from issuing any more decrees (fatawa).
Scholars of his era as also subsequent eras were quick to condemn him by penning a fitting response to his absurd decree banning the ziyarat of the Prophet (s.a.w.a.).
Some of the books written by Muslim scholars challenging Ibn Taymiyyah’s decree include:
- Kashf al-Siqam fi Ziyarat Khair al-Anam by Subki
- Al-Durr al-Maziyyah fi Radd ala Ibn Taymiyyah by Subki
- Al-Maqalah al-Marziyyah le Qaza Qozaat al-Malikiyyah by Al-Akhnai
- Najm al-Mohtadi wa Rajm al-Muqtadi by Al-Qarashi
- Daf al-Shubhah by Al-Hisni
- Tohfah al-Mukhtarah fi Radd al-Munkir al-Ziyarah by Al-Fakehani
For details, please refer Al-Ghadeer v 5 p 87
But Ibn Taymiyya was hardly the first person to take such an extremist and totally un-Islamic view on visiting the grave of Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.).
It will not be surprising at all if Ibn Taymiyya’s view on visiting grave of Prophet (s.a.w.a.) was inspired by the incident involving Hajjaj Ibn Yusuf, the right hand of Abdul Malik Ibn Marwan.
While delivering a sermon in Kufa, Hajjaj was informed about people circumambulating (tawaf) the grave of the Prophet (s.a.w.a.), at this he declared:
May they be destroyed, they are circumambulating stones and decayed bones. Why aren’t they instead circumambulating the palace of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) – Abdul Ibn Malik Ibn Marwan?!
- Sharh Nahj al-Balaghah v 15 p 242
It is due to this statement that Hajjaj Ibn Yusuf has been deemed an apostate.
- Al-Kamil fi al-Lughat wa al-Adab v 1 p 185
Given the similarity between the views of Ibn Taymiyya and Hajjaj Ibn Yusuf on Ziyarat of Prophet (s.a.w.a.), it comes as no surprise that the Muslims of the time considered them heretics who had no place in Islam.