Death Funeral and Burial – Part 1
All praises be to Allaah, Lord and Sustainer of the worlds, and may the peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon our Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and
upon his family and companions.
Allaah Subhanahu-wa-Ta’alaa says:
Did you think that We had created you without a purpose, and that you would not
be brought back to Us? 23.115
Everyone is going to taste death, and We shall make a trial of you with evil
and with good. And to Us you will be returned.. Al-Anbiya.35.
Everyone shall taste death. And only on the Day of Resurrection shall you be
paid your wages in full. And whoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted
to Paradise, he indeed is successful. The life of this world is only the
enjoyment of deception (a deceiving thing)..3.185.
Say (to them): Verily, the death from which you flee will surely meet you, then
you will be sent back to (Allâh), the AllKnower of the unseen and the seen, and
He will tell you what you used to do..Al-Jumuah 8.
And no person can ever die except by Allâh's Leave and at an appointed term.
And no person knows in what land he will die. Verily, Allâh is AllKnower,
AllAware (of things).. Luqmaan38
Wheresoever you may be, death will overtake you even if you are in fortresses
built up strong and high! 4.78.
And the stupor of death will come in truth: This is what you have been
avoiding!. Qaaf 19.
The one who is wise prepares before this stupor approaches.
Ibn ‘Umar said: I was with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) when a man from among the Ansaar came to him and greeted
the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) with salaam, then he
said: “O Messenger of Allaah, which of the believers is best?” He said: “The
one who is best in attitude.” He said: “Which of the believers is most wise?” He
said: “The one who remembers death the most, and is best prepared for what
comes after it. Those are the wise.” narrated Ibn Maajah (4259).
Therefore what is required of a believer is that he prepares for death before
it comes and be ready for it at any time. Part of this readiness is also to
know what should be done at the time of dying and after death, avoiding all
kind of innovations which have become prevalent among Muslims everywhere.
Following is a brief guideline as to what should be done at the time of death
If a person is suffering from a terminal illness he should make a "Will"
if he has wealth, return all his dues and trusts to their owners, make up with
those he had broken ties of relation and repent for his sins for Allaah is most
forgiving and accepts repentance. Repentance is accepted until just before
death and not when the soul reaches the throat as Allaah says:
And of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil deeds until
death faces one of them and he says: Now I repent. 4.18.
When a person is close to death it is recommended that he utters
the Shahaadah making it as his last speech because the Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
"Prompt your dying ones to say La ilaha il lallaah, whoever has his last speech
to be La ilaha il lallaah will enter paradise regardless of what happens prior
to that." Narrated Muslim
However a dying person may not be able to communicate at the time and may utter
something wrong in confusion therefore it is recommended in such a situation
not to pressurise him to say anything rather other people around him should say
the Shahaadah to encourage him or even show him something with the Shahaadah
written on it.
A dying person should also be reminded of the mercy of Allaah and to have good
hope in Him.
There are some narrations regarding reciting surah Yaseen when a person is
dying though scholars have disputed about the authenticity of these narrations
therefore it is better not to do this, and even if we accept that some of these
narration are acceptable there is no proof for reciting surah Yaseen or
al-Fatihs or any part of Quraan after the death.
Once a person dies:
His eyes should be closed. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) closed the eyes of Abu Salaamah when he died, and said; "when
the soul is taken the sight follows it." Narrated Muslim
The body should be fully covered with a cloth
Any debts due on the deceased should be paid off. This includes any debt of
Allaah such as an expiation, a vow or unpaid Zakaah, as well as a debt of
people such as a loan, a financial penalty or a bill.
The household of the deceased should be consoled and food should be provided to
them as the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)
told people to cook food for the family of Jaafar (may Allaah be pleased with
No one is allowed to mourn for a deceased for more than three days except for a
woman on the death of her husband, her waiting period in morning is four months
and ten days.
It is not appropriate to go to the family of the deceased and sit down with
them for a long time gossiping and eating food from them. Some people use the
occasion as a celebration and gathering when all the relatives and friends
gather at the house or Masjid, reading Quraan and making congregational
supplication etc. these action were never done by the the Messenger of Allaah
(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) or his companions therefore these
are innovated actions and must be rejected.
It is reported from ‘Aa'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Prophet
(Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Whoever innovates something in
this matter of ours [Islam] that is not part of it, will have it rejected.”
Jaabir (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) used to
say in his Friday khutbahs : “The best of speech is the Book of Allah and the
best of guidance is the guidance of Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be
upon him). The most evil of things are those which are newly-invented, and
every innovation (bid'ah) is a going-astray.” Reported Muslim
Condolence should be brief with Du'aa for the mercy and forgiveness for the
deceased and advice of patience for the family. Allaah says:
And certainly, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, loss of wealth,
lives and fruits, but give glad tidings to As-SâbirIn (the patient ones etc.).
Who, when afflicted with calamity, say: Truly! To Allâh we belong and truly, to
Him we shall return. They are those on whom are the Salawât (i.e. blessings,
etc.) (i.e. who are blessed and will be forgiven) from their Lord, and (they
are those who) receive His Mercy, and it is they who are the guided ones..
A person should be buried in the land he dies without any undue delay because
Transferring the body from one land to another should be discouraged unless it
is very necessary as this causes delay in burial and harm to the body. The
companions of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) moved to many different lands and they were buried wherever they died.
Their bodies were not transferred back to Madeenah.