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who set up tents in the cemeteries on holidays, turning assemblies for mourning (majålis li-l-taåz) into celebrations.114 One of the main reasons for undertaking a visit to the cemetery was the hope of aecting the fate of beloved ones in the after-world. Some Qurånic verses deny such a possibility altogether: And beware of a day when no soul for another shall give satisfaction, and no intercession be accepted from it (2:48); or: Warn them of the Day of the Imminent . . . and the evildoers have not one loyal friend, no intercessor to be heeded (40:18), and: Neither your blood-kind nor your children shall prot you upon the day of resurrection (60:3). Other verses allow for the intervention of angels on behalf of the dead—Those who bear the throne, and those round about it, proclaim the praise of their Lord and believe in Him and ask forgiveness for those who believe (40:7); or for the intervention of the Prophet Abraham, or some other intercessor whom He accepts (21:28).115 From early on, Muslims attributed shafåa (intercession) for the living and the dead to Muªammad. Al-Nawaw quotes Abd Allåh ibn Amr b. al-Å‚, who is said to have heard the Prophet say: When you hear the muezzin repeat what he says, then call down blessing on me . . . then ask God to bless me with mediation, for that is an oce in Paradise reserved for one only of the servants of God, and I hope to be he. And whoever asks for me the power of mediation shall have the right to my intercession. He also comments that all, even perfect believers, need the Prophets intercession, as the traditions . . . rmly establish the fact of intercession made for some groups that they may enter Paradise without judgment, and for another group that their position in Paradise may be a higher one.116 Various other mediators, such as the personication of good deeds, martyrs, dead infants and living mortals, were attributed with the same power.117 An inscription on the tombstone of a Muslim who died as early as 31/652 implores God to forgive the deceased and his


Ibn al-Athr, ¤iyå al-Dn, al-Mathal, 2:154. See Bowker, Intercession, 69–77. 116 Nawaw, Adhkår, 19, 169; trans. in Padwick, Muslim Devotions, 37, 41. 117 Wensinck Shafåa, 177–179; Padwick, Muslim Devotions, 38–47; Kinberg, Interaction, 304; Giladi, The child, 378. 115

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Jsrc 007 talmon heller islamic piety in medieval syria mosques, cemeteries and sermons under the zan  

Jsrc 007 talmon heller islamic piety in medieval syria mosques, cemeteries and sermons under the zan