It is the blessed month of Rabiul Awwal, the month wherein our beloved Nabi Muhammad (Sallallhu Alayhi wa Sallam) was born and passed away. With this comes innovations (bid’ah) – actions not sanctioned by Muhammad [saw]. The most truthful speech is the Book of Allaah. The best way is the way of Muhammad. Rasoolullah [saw] has said… “The worst of affairs are the novelties and every novelty is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance and every misguidance is in the Fire.” [Sahih according to Shaykh al-Albaanee in Sahih Sunan in-Nasaa’ee (no. 1487)]
The exact date of birth of the Rasoolullah [saw] is unknown. Imaam an-Nawawee [rahimahu] said: “There is an agreement that he [saw] was born on Monday in the month of Rabi ul-Awwal. There is a difference of opinion whether this day was the 2nd, 8th, 10th or 12th day of the month – and these are the four most well-known opinions concerning this.”Tahdheeb Seeratun-Nabawiyyah (p.20) of Imaam an-Nawawee.
Rasoolullah [saw] passed away on Monday morning, the twelfth of Rabi ul-Awwal, in 11 AH at age of 63. (Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum/ Sealed Nectar)
Those who celebrate Meelad un Nabi (birth of Rasoolullah [saw]) erroneously think that they are doing something good by remembering Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi wa Sallam).
Abu Qatada Ansari (radhiyAllahu ‘anhu) reported that Rasoolullah [saw] was asked about fasting on Monday, whereupon he said: It is (the day) when I was born and revelation was sent down to me. Book 006, Number 2606 (Sahih Muslim)
Since this hadeeth is also reported in by al-Bahayqi in his “Sunnan ul Kubra” (Vol. 4, pg. 300 Hadith no 8182, 8259), in the “Sunan” of an- Nisai and the “Musnad” of Ahmad bin Hanbal (rahimahumullah), those who commit the bid’ah (innovation) of celebrating the birth of Rasoolullah [saw] use this as a daleel (proof) for them saying “Nabi [saw] was very happy about the day of his birth and so fasted out of gratitude. Fasting is a form of worship, so one can celebrate this day of his birth by any form of ibaadah. One can fast or hold gatherings or provide food to the poor, all being acts of worship”. This is WRONG since Rasoolullah [saw] DID NOT sanction gatherings held in celebration of his birth. The haddeth pertained to fasting on a Monday not celebrations.
If someone loves Rasoolullah [saw] wants to follow his sunnah then let him fast every Monday but not celebrate this innovated festival of Meeladun Nabi.
It is not permissible to celebrate Meelaadun Nabi (the birthday of Rasoolullah [saw], nor the birthday of anyone else, since these are introduced into Islam without the approval from Qur-aan or Sunnah. Similarly this innovation of Meelad celebration was not introduced or sanctioned by the the most knowledgeable of people concerning the Sunnah viz, Khulafaa Raashidoon (Rightly-Guided Successors), nor the Sahaabah radhiyallahu anhum (Companions of the Prophet [saw]), nor any of their followers from the first three excellent generations.
The Sahaabah loved and venerated Rasoolullah [saw] in the correct way as can be seen from the words of ‘Urwah ibn Mas’ood ath-Thaqafee (radi Allahu ‘anhu) to the Quraysh: “O people, by Allah I have visited kings. I went to Caesar, Chosroes and the Negus, but by Allah I never saw a king whose companions venerated him as much as the companions of Muhammad venerated Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). By Allah, whenever he spat it never fell on the ground, it fell into into the hand of one his companions, then they wiped their faces and skins with it. If he instructed them to do something, they would hasten to do as he commanded. When he did wudoo’, they would almost fight over his water. When he spoke they would lower their voices in his presence; and they did not stare at him out of respect for him”
What we should do at any given moment is to obey him, as mentioned in Qur-aan Kareem “Whoever obeys the Messenger [Rasoolullah [saw]] has indeed obeyed Allah; and whoever turns away, so We have not sent you as a keeper over them. (4:80)
Do as he commanded and avoid that which he forbade as mentioned in the Qur-aan “Whatever Allah has restored to His Messenger from the people of the towns, it is for Allah and for the Messenger, and for the near of kin and the orphans and the needy and the wayfarers, so that it may not (merely) circulate between the wealthy among you, and whatever the Messenger gives you, take it and whatever he forbids you, abstain (from it), and be in reverential awe of Allah; surely Allah is severe in retributing (evil). (59:7)
Love him as he ought to be without innovation. Rasoolullah [saw] has said “Do not over-praise me as the Christians over-praised the son of Mary. I am His slave so say: ‘Allah’s slave and messenger'”. [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
Iblees waits to deceive us by beautifying these so called acts of worship. One doing these acts cannot see the wrong in them so he continues his innovations, taking him further away from sunnah and deeper into darkness. May Allah protect us from this and all types of bid’ah.