Writing the names of the Ashab Kahf in the Taweez

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Fatwa ID: 01282

Answered by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah


I have come across a number of taweez containing the name 'Qitmir' and 7 other names.  The names are from the story of 'people of the cave' (mentioned in surah Kahf).  Why do people write these names on taweez and is it permissible to do so?



In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.

Using taweez is permissible with the following conditions:

  1. It does not contain words of Kufr and Shirk.
  2. Everything happens by the will of Allah and the use of taweez is just a means similar to using medicine for illness. Jabir ibn Abdullah narrates that Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “There is a remedy for every illness, and when the remedy is applied to the disease it is cured with the permission of Allah, the Exalted and Glorious.” (Muslim, 1035)

The views of my respected teachers of Darul Uloom, Bury with regards to your question is that the words of Qitmir and the rest of the Ashaab Kahf (People of the Cave) are written in the taweez for barakah (blessings) and seeking tawassul from them.  To seek tawassul through or pious predecessors is permissible.

Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) states in the Quran: “O you who believe! Fear Allah and seek a means (wasila) to be closer to him…” (Surah Maida: 35)

In another ayah Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) states: “…If they would have come to you when they had wronged themselves to seek Allah's forgiveness and if the Rasool had also asked Allah's forgiveness for them, they would have found Allah Forgiving, Merciful.. (Surah Nisa: 64)

It is clear from the above verses that tawassul is permissible and there is no difference between the living and the dead in this matter.

The most preferable opinion and method is that the person asks Allah directly and if required through the status of his pious prophet or people and not the deceased (to pray to Allah on his/her behalf). As this could have an effect on the believes of the ordinary people, it is for this reason scholars state that it is undesirable for a person (ordinary individuals as well as scholars) to do dua with the words “bi haqqi rusulika” (right/status of the prophet) as the creation do not have any right over the creator. (Raddul Muhtar p.281 v.5) However the above versus clearly indicate the permissibility of tawassul, therefore, if one does use tawassul then one should be precautious in not having any wrong belief and should always remember that Allah alone has influence over everything.

Finally, for the benefit of the readers I will briefly mention the story of the People of the Cave.

In around 250 CE there ruled a Roman king called Daqyanoos (Decius) who would annually hold a gathering dedicated to the worshipping of idols. Many people would attend, dressed in their best clothing. However, one youth believed in the oneness of Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He), the teachings of Isa Alayhis Salam and shunned pagan worship. He rebelled against the practices that were happening in the society. He attracted another youth and then another few until they became a group of six.

When the king heard of their rebellion he became very angry and issued a command for them to be killed. In order to save their iman (faith) they fled and went into hiding. On their escape route they met a young farmer who owned a dog; they gave him dawah, he accepted and decided to also join them. Eventually they came to a cave in which they made dua to Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) for ease. They decided to take rest there for a while, leaving the dog (named Qitmir) near the entrance as a guard. Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) caused them and the dog to sleep for 300 years.

Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) describes their sleeping in the Holy Qur’an  “And thou wouldst have deemed them waking though they were asleep, and we caused them to turn over to the right and the left, and their dog stretching out his paws on the threshold. If thou hadst observed them closely thou hadst assuredly turned away from them in flight, and hadst been filled with awe of them.” (Surah Kahf v.18)

The Qur’an further states that the period of time these sleepers spent in the cave was 300 years during which the calendar of their people was changed from solar to lunar and, as a result, the period of their sleep was 309 years. When they woke up, they had no idea they slept for centuries and thought they only slept a few hours. When they sent one of them to buy food, the shopkeeper was amazed to see such old coins and the reality of the time they had spent in the cave gradually came to light. The present ruling king, whom some scholars have identified as Tandoosees, was a believer who came on foot to see them and seek their blessings. When these young men died they were buried in the cave along with their dog. The bones of these youth and the dog are visible to see inside. (Reference: Stories of the Prophets by Imam Ibn Kathir [rahinahu] & Maariful Qur’an p.574 – p.587 v.5)

Only Allah Knows Best

Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

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