Zikr in congregation

Q: Some people mention that it is bid’ah to engage in halqah zikr. Their proof is as follows:

It was reported to Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu) that a group of persons (non-Sahaabah) were sitting in a halqah (circle) in the Musjid reciting in unison 100 times Allahu Akbar, 100 times Laa ilaaha illallaah and 100 times Subhanallah, using pebbles for counting the number of times. In receiving this information Hazrat Ibnu Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu) went to the Musjid and found the group conducting their congregational zikr program. He exclaimed: “Count your sins on these pebbles. I guarantee then that none of your virtuous deeds will be destroyed. Alas upon you, O Ummat of Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wasallam)! How quickly have you lapsed into destruction! There are still numerous Sahaabah among you; the garments of Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) have not yet become old nor have his utensils broken, but you have opened up the gateway of deviation.” (Musnad Daarmi)

Is there any response to this?

A: The prohibition is for such a halqah where there are doing zikr in chorus. And if people are doing zikr in one place and at the same time then this does not come under the definition of halqah zikr. Rather it comes under the definition of the hadeeth which speaks of people gathering together to remember Allah Ta`ala and He in turn then speaks about them to the angels in the heavens.

And Allah Ta'ala (الله تعالى) knows best.


Answered by:

Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)