The Hadeeth:

Narrated Hanash:

That ‘Ali used to slaughter two male sheep, one for the Prophet (ﷺ) and the other for himself. When this was mentioned to him, he said: “He ordered me to” – meaning the Prophet (ﷺ) – “So I will never leave it.

Reported by Abu Dawud and Tirmidhi.

The Commentary:

Ash-Shaykh Abdul-Muhsin al-Abbaad hafidaho-Allah, comments on the aforesaid hadith:

As for making a special sacrifice on behalf of the deceased, then nothing has come from the Prophet sallahu alayhi wa salam concerning singling it out [with a specific sacrifice]. As for this hadeeth on which the author reported on Ali, then it is weak since the chain comprises of the narrator Abul Hasnaa (i.e. who is unknown). However, if the individual were to make a general sacrifice while including him [i.e. the deceased] then this is permissible since a person makes a sacrifice on his behalf and on the behalf of his own family members of those alive and of those who are dead. As for making it specific for the deceased, then there hasn’t come any explicit narrations in support of it but some scholars permit it and consider it similar to the act of charity. However, in relation to there being an explicit text on making a special sacrifice for the deceased, then nothing [authentic] has come in its regards.”

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Note: Ash-Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-Uthaymeen rahimahullah, states it becomes permissible to specify the deceased with a sacrifice if the deceased bequested it before his death.

Therefore, since this is an act of worship, one should avoid inventing any special things concerning it such as making yearly sacrifices on behalf of the Noble Prophet, sallahu alayhi wa salam, being if this was legislated, then those who loved him greatly from his companions would have preceded us in doing so. And carrying in mind that the above narration, even if it was authentic, it wouldn’t be a proof to justify this act since it comes in some of the wordings of the hadeeth: أوصاني meaning “I was specifically bequested by The Prophet sallahu alayhi wa salam to make a sacrifice on his behalf”. Also remember that Ali bin Abi Taalib had close family ties to the Noble Prophet sallahu alayhi wa salam, which clearly indicates we can’t make the same comparison for ourselves. And Allaah knows best.

Translated by

AbdulFattaah Bin Uthman
Abu Fajr