What is the ruling of visiting the descendents of the Prophet?
Visiting the descendents of the Prophet is one of the greatest acts that bring one closer to God, and one of the acts of obedience whose acceptance by the Lord of all creation is most hopeful. The Prophet charged his community with his family. It is narrated that Zayd Ibn Arqam said: “The Prophet stood among us one day preaching by a well between Mecca and Madina known as Khumm.
He praised God and gave exhortation, admonishment and reminder. Then he said, ‘To commence, O people, I am but a man, and it may be that God’s messenger [i.e. the angel of death] comes for me and I will answer, but I leave you with two matters of great weight. The first is the Quran, which contains guidance and light, so take the Quran and cling to it.’ And he emphasized [the importance of] the Quran and made it enticing to us. Then he said, ‘And my descendents. I remind you of God concerning my descendents. I remind you of God concerning my descendents. I remind you of God concerning my descendents.’”
The Prophet also encouraged the visiting of graves saying, “Visit graves, for they remind one of death.” And we clarified the ruling of visiting graves in general before. The graves most worthy of visitation, after that of the Messenger of God, are the graves of his noble descendents, because there is obedience to the Messenger of God and a connection to him in visiting them.
God says in the Quran: This is what God announces to true believers who do good works. Say (O Muhammad) “I do not ask of you any reward (for this work) except love of relatives [42:23].
In fact a person’s visiting the graves of the Prophet’s descendents is more strongly affirmed than his visiting the graves of his own relatives. Abu Bakr al-Siddiq said, “By He in whose Hand is my soul, the descendents of the Prophet of God are dearer to me than my own.” He also said, “Be vigilant in your care of Muhammad through his descendents.”
Based on this, visiting the graves of the Prophet's descendents is recommended, and they are more worthy of being visited than the graves of one's own relatives, for the relatives of the Messenger of God are more beloved to us than our own. And God is Most High and Knows best.