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Chapter Seven Kissing the Black Stone and Touching the Yemeni Corner

Lessons of Creed Acquired From the Hajj


‘AbdurRazzaq bin ‘Abdul-Muhsin al-Badr

Translated by

Abbas Abu Yahya

Chapter Seven

Kissing the Black Stone and Touching the Yemeni Corner[1]


What preceded was a discussion of the excellence of Tawaaf of the House of Allaah al-Haraam, the great act of worship and important act of obedience which is a pillar from the pillars of Hajj and Umrah and that it is prescribed for this one place only, as Allaah Ta’ala said:

وَلۡيَطَّوَّفُواْ بِٱلۡبَيۡتِ ٱلۡعَتِيقِ

<< and circumambulate the Ancient House (the Ka’ba at Makkah). >>

[Hajj: 29]

So it is not permissible to make Tawaaf of domes, graves, tombs or other things; since these matters clash with the principles of the Sharia’ and they oppose the reality of Tawheed, because it involves associating and equating the created with The Creator -Subhanahu.


The discussion of a part of this issue, with a brief explanation, has already preceded.  As for what we will discuss here, by Allaah’s permission, regarding another lesson and benefit for the Muslim is what happens when he reaches the House of Allaah al-Haraam to perform Tawaaf of it.  It is legislated at this place to kiss the black stone and touch the Yemeni corner in obedience to Allaah and in imitation of the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam. There are very many proofs which explain the legality of it and show that the Prophet sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam did this when he came to the House of Allaah al-Haraam.


It has been narrated by Bukhari and Muslim on the authority of Abdullaah bin Umar bin al-Khattab –RadhiAllaahu anhu- who said : ‘I saw the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam when he came to Makkah.  He touched the black corner (the black stone) at the beginning of his Tawaaf and he would jog the first three of the seven circuits.[2]


It is narrated by Muslim in the hadeeth of Jaabir bin AbdAllaah, who said that: ‘When the Prophet sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam came to Makkah he entered the Masjid and touched the stone, he then began from the right hand side.  He jogged for three circuits and walked for four………..’[3]


Hence, the Muslims also kiss the stone imitating the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam, following his guidance and adhering to his Sunnah; rejecting any belief that the Black Stone could bring benefit or harm or give or withhold.  This is why the Ameer ul-Mumineen, Umar bin al-Khattaab -RadiAllaahu anhu- said, as he kissed the Black stone: ‘Indeed I  know that you are a stone and you cannot cause benefit or harm.  If it were not that I saw the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam kiss you, I would not have kissed you.’  Narrated by Bukhari and  Muslim.

Ibn Jareer at-Tabaree -Rahimullaah- said: ‘Verily, Umar said this because the people had newly entered Islaam after having left the worship of idols.  So Umar feared that some of the ignorant people would take the act of touching of the stone to signify glorification of stones or rocks as had been the practice of previous Arabs in times of ignorance.  Umar intended to teach the people that he only touched this stone imitating the action of the Messenger of Allaah, not because the stone itself caused harm or benefit, which they had previously believed about their idols.’[4]

As for what has been narrated in the hadeeth of Abu Saeed that Alee, when Umar said this, responded by saying. ‘Indeed it does harm and benefit’ and went on to mention how Allaah took covenants from the sons of Aadam and they were written upon parchement which were devoured by the stone.  He continued, ‘I heard the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam say: ‘The black Stone will be brought on the Day of Judgment, it will have a tongue and it will testify for those upon Tawheed who touched it.’


Then, this narration is not established from the Ameer ul-Mumineen, Alee bin Abu Taalib.  Hafidh Ibn Hajr said in Fath ul-Bari: ‘In its chain is Abu Haroon al-Abdee and he is very weak.’[5]


Abu Haroon, the narrator of this narration is Matrook Hadeeth (his narrations are not accepted) according to the people of knowledge, some even call him a liar! an-Nisaee mentions that he is ‘Matrook al-Hadeeth’.  Hamaad Ibn Zayd said ‘Abu Haroon al-Abdee is a liar, in the morning he says one thing and  in the evening another!’


Al Jawzajani said of him ‘a slandering liar’ and Ibn Hibban said of him ‘I used to narrate from Abu Saeed that which was not narrated by him. It is not permissible to write his hadeeth except from the standpoint of amazement!!’[6]

So how can anyone support this narration if this, according to the people of knowledge, is the state of the narrator.


Thus what is prescribed is kissing of the Black stone only and if you cannot do so then touching it.  If it is not possible to kiss or touch it then pointing to it is sufficient.

It is also legislated to touch the Yemeni corner, as found in the two authentic books.  On the authority of Abdullaah bin Umar bin al-Khattaab –RadiAllaahu anhu-  ‘I did not see the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam touch any part of the House except the two Yemeni corners.’[7]


This clarifies that it is not legislated to touch any part of the House other than the two Yemeni corners, namely the Black stone and the Yemeni corner.


Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymeeyah said: ‘No corners other than the two Yemeni corners are to be touched and not the Shami corners.  The Prophet – sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam – specifically touched them because they are from the foundations laid by Ibraheem whilst the other corners are from inside the House.  Thus the Black stone is touched and kissed and the Yemeni corner is touched but not kissed.  The remaining two corners are not touched or kissed. Al-Istislaam is to touch with the hand.


Concerning the remaining parts of the House and the Station of Ibraheem, the entire masjid and its walls, graves of Prophets and righteous people, such as the house of our Prophet – sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam, the cave of Ibraheem, the place in which our Prophet used to pray in and other places such as the graves of the Prophets and the righteous people and the stone in Bait al-Maqdis, then none of these are to be touched or kissed and the Imaams are all in agreement on this.’[8]


There are great lessons and benefits which the Muslim derives from the fact that touching and kissing is only legislated at the above-mentioned specific place.  The evidence does not allow these acts to be performed at other than these two places.  Thus the Muslim does this in obedience to Allaah and imitating His Messenger – sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam.  The Muslim does not believe that in doing this (i.e. touching/kissing) he will receive any benefit or ward off any harm, as in the preceding explanation of the Ameer ul-Mumineen, Umar bin Khattab, where he kissed the Black stone and said as much in front of the people in order to teach and guide them.


As previous texts have illustrated, touching or kissing the walls of the Ka’ba at other than the Yemeni corners or the Black stone is not from the Sunnah.  The texts show that touching or kissing the station of Ibraheem is, likewise, not from the Sunnah as nothing regarding this has been narrated from the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam.


If it (i.e. touching/kissing) is not permissible with the Ka’bah itself -whose sacredness over all other Masajid and places is well-known- then it is not permissible at the Station of Ibraeem, about which Allaah says:

وَٱتَّخِذُواْ مِن مَّقَامِ إِبۡرَٰهِ‍ۧمَ مُصَلّٗىۖ

<< And take the Maqaam (place) of Ibraheem [or the stone on which Ibraheem stood while he was building the Ka’bah] as a place of prayer>>

[al-Baqarah : 125]


Even though it is known that there is the Station of Ibraheem in Shaam, and other places, along with the other places of the Prophets lesser than this one, Allaah has only ordered us to take this particular, one station as a place of prayer.  Yet even so, we are not allowed to touch it or kiss it, as there is no evidence to sanction such an action.


So Know! That the rest of places cannot be made places of prayer nor can you touch or kiss any of them.  In fact there is no one thing on the face of this earth other than the Black stone that it has been made allowed to kiss.[9]


As for those ignorant people -who encourage one another to gather around shrines and tombs etc- they kiss, rub and touch them.  They seek blessings from them and request their help and aid.  All of this has nothing at all to do with the Deen.  On the contrary, it is clear misguidance and a great lie.


Shaykh ul Islaam Ibn Taymeeyah said: ‘As for touching/rubbing a grave, regardless of whose it is, kissing it or placing one’s cheek upon it then this is prohibited by the consensus of the Muslims, even if they were the graves of the Prophets.  Neither anyone from the Salaf of this Ummah nor from the Imaams did it, rather this is from Shirk.’[10]


[1] This Highly beneficial booklet was compiled from a series of lectures that the Shaykh delivered in Masjid Quba for the visiting pilgrims.  It was translated by Allaah’s blessings in 1423 A.H. in the Prophetic City of al-Madina.


[2] Saheeh al-Bukharee  and Saheeh Muslim

[3] Saheeh Muslim

[4] Fath al-Bari

[5] Fath al-Bari

[6] Tahdheeb al-Kamal by al-Mizzi

[7] Saheeh al-Bukharee  and Saheeh Muslim

[8] Al-Fatawa

[9] Al-Fatawa by Ibn Taymeeyah

[10] Al-Fatawa