Tawassul, (Arabic: توسّل) is one of the beliefs of Shi'a and most Muslims which means to resort to someone or something with a high position as an intermediary before God in order to become closer to Him so that He may fulfill one's requests. The concept of Tawassul is closely related to the concept of Shafa'a (intercession) and they are often mentioned together.
Resorting to the Prophet (s) and Imams (a) as an intermediary is among the prominent beliefs of Shi'a due to God's order to them in the Qur'an and many hadiths of the Ahl al-Bayt (a). It is mentioned in Shi'a supplications and ziyarah of the Infallible Ones (a), the most comprehensive one of which is Al-Tawassul Supplication.
In the contemporary period, following Ibn Taymiyya, Wahhabis have mentioned criticisms about Tawassul which have been rejected by all Shi'a and most Sunni scholars. Read more...