Death and Dying
Almighty Allah, Exhorts us in the Holy Quran:
“Every Soul (person) shall taste of death – And on the day of Judgment shall you paid your full recompense – Only he who is saved from the fire and admitted to paradise would have obtained the purpose of the life of this world-The life of the world is but goods and a chattel of deception)”. (Chapter3: 185) –
Our Prophet (Peace be upon him), declared:
“Live in this world as if you are a stranger passing through.” – All thanks and Praise is only due only to Almighty Allah only and benedictions, salutations, and blessings upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him).
As Muslims it is time for us to reassess our approach to dying and death. Dying is understood to be a part of living — an important part. Sometimes we may not want to know about the processes that occur after we die because we are afraid or don’t want to think about it. However, this should not be the attitude of a Muslim. — The prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said, “live in this world as though you are a stranger or a traveller (passing through it).” [Muslim]
We as Muslims are on a journey and should know about the whole journey’s itinerary, not just one part, and should also understand some things about the destination.– We should be foremost in learning and understanding about death and dying, so we can organize our lives accordingly. We are urged to accept the will of Almighty Allah with good grace and patience – but many Muslims when they find out that they are going to die – are quite appalled and indignant – They protest in agony and outrage-
-Dying is normally associated with Suffering –Pain and Trauma. — And it is normal to fear suffering, and react to it with anger and frustration, because we feel oppressed by it and powerless against it. The denial of our own power lies at the root of suffering. Quite often suffering blocks our faith (IMAN) and some of the many Questions that are asked are “Why Me” “Where is Allah in all of this” Why am I being Punished. — There is this Search for meaning.
SOURCES of information for Muslims –HQ. And Hadith — H.Q. 2 / 155-157. “(O Man whilst on the earth) be sure that we will test you with many things — Fear- Hunger- loss of goods – Life (sickness/death) — The Fruits of your toil. But give glad tidings to those (when they are tested) who turn to Almighty GOD when afflicted — with patience and prayer — and they will say ” O Allah everything comes from you and to you we will return.” Three Things will then happen when we submit to Almighty Allah — – Salawaat (Peace/Blessings) (Allah’s Mercy/Compassion) and (They will guided by Allah).
Pain & Suffering is most certainly not a curse from Almighty Allah but rather a blessing and a test to see how we will react when challenged and tested.
What is called DEATH is not pure annihilation but a movement from one state to another or transmigration from our form of biological existence to another in another zone or dimension. In the prophetic traditions this Zone or Dimension is referred to as BARZAGHT translated from the Arabic means Barrier or partition between two areas, zones or dimensions.-(The physical state and the Day of Resurrection) . So the human SPIRIT (Ruh) is released to a new life independent from the physical body. Such an event is what the word DEATH indicates. Almighty Allah states:
“Kullu Nafsien Thaa Ikatul Maut -Thumma Illayna Turja Oon” Every soul shall taste death, then in the end you shall all return to us. (Sura: 29, Ayah: 57.)
The person continues his life within a form of SPIRIT BODY the same way as within his physical body! Almighty declares— “And say not of those who are slain in the way of Allah as dead -Nay they are alive – though you perceive it not”. (2:154).
Following is a saying of Prophet Mohammed [S.A.W.] about death as it is recounted by one of the great Islamic scholars: “The deceased (who tasted death) knows those who washed his body, who shrouded the corpse, who performed the funeral service for him, who attended his funeral procession, who descended the corpse into the grave and who prompted over his grave! “
As narrated by Talha (r.a.) “On the day of the battle of Badr, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) ordered that the 24 corpses from the Quraish tribe should be picked up all together and buried in a mass grave. After the battle, the Prophet (saw) stopped by the mass grave where the corpses of the slain Quraish had been thrown, and then called them by the names of their fathers: “O So-and-so! O, Aba Jahil Ibn-i Hisham! O, Utbe Ibn-i Rabia! Would not you be joyful now if you believed and obeyed “ALLAH” and His Messenger? We have indeed found the victory that our Lord promised us. Have you, too, found the victory that your idols promised you?” On hearing him speak, Omar (ra) asked: “O Rasulullah! How do you address people already dead?” The Prophet replied: “I swear by Him in whose hands Mohammed’s soul is that you are no better than they at hearing what I say! They can hear better than you]. This event is recounted in Bukhari 30, —
Clinical Psychologists Raymond Moody — Elizabeth Kubler Ross — Dr. Melvyn Morse – Ralph Wilkinson etc. who researched NDE’s (near death experiences) discovered in the 1960’s (after comparing case histories) some remarkable phenomena – during the experiences.
A strange sound and beautiful smell. A buzzing or ringing noise and a clean pure smell of fragrant perfume, while having a sense of being dead
Peace and painlessness. While people are dying, they may be in intense pain, but as soon as they leave the body the pain vanishes and they experience peace
Out-of-body experience. — The tunnel experience.— Rising rapidly into the heavens. Instead of a tunnel, some people report rising suddenly into the heavens and seeing the earth and the celestial sphere as they would be seen by astronauts in space.
People of light. Once on the other side of the tunnel, or after they have risen into the heavens, the dying meet people who glow with an inner light. Often they find that friends and relatives who have already died are there to greet them.
The Great being of light. After meeting the people of light, the dying often meet a powerful spiritual being whom some have called God, Jesus, or an Angel or Angels. Also, although they sometimes report feeling scared, they do not sense that they were on the way to hell or that they fell into it.
The life review. The being of light presents the dying person with a panoramic review of everything they have done in this life, based on certain non-verbal communication. In particular they are questioned about acts of worship, how most of their lives were spent, and they relive every act they have ever done to other people and come away feeling that love is the most important thing in life
Reluctance to return. The being of light sometimes tells the dying that they must return back to life. Other times, they are given a choice of staying or returning. In either case, they are reluctant to return. The people who choose to return do so only because of loved ones they do not wish to leave behind
One common question is — what possible evolutionary pressure could have resulted in Nde’s? Why would dying brains suddenly have the ability to perceive other realities? The Qur’an states:
“It is ALLAH that takes the souls (of men) at death; and those that die not (He takes) during their sleep; those on whom He has passed the decree of death, He keeps back (from returning to life) but the rest He sends (to their bodies) for a term appointed. Verily in these are signs for those who reflect.” (39:42)
Almighty Allah tells us in the Holy Quran:
“O! You people of Iman – Fear Allah as He (Allah) ought to be feared and die not – Accept in the state of full surrender and submission to the will of Almighty Allah”.
We are taught in Islam about life and how to die. –
Dying is normally associated with Suffering –Pain and Trauma. — And it is normal to fear suffering, and react to it with anger and frustration, because we feel oppressed by it and powerless against it. The denial of our own power lies at the root of suffering. Quite often suffering blocks our faith (IMAN) and some of the many Questions that are asked are “Why Me” “Where is Allah” Why am I being Punished. — There is this Search for meaning. SOURCES OF INFO for Muslims –HQ. And Hadith
Nafs al-Mutma’inna (the Soul at Peace): (89:27) Almighty Allah tells us,
“O Contented Soul, “O satisfied Soul” (O! Purified Self) return unto thy Lord – Well pleased (Thyself) and He well pleased (with you). Enter Thou among My devotees! Yea Enter thou into My Paradise”
Death is a stage, which occurs when the spirit departs from the body to make it lifeless. As Muslims, A fundamental article of Faith (IMAN) is that we believe in the resurrection when the body and the spirit will be reunited in the hereafter. This life is a stage for action, “every action will have reaction in the hereafter”.
The life to come after the resurrection is a stage of reward. Human beings will either be in pure happiness or in total misery. It is part of the basic Islamic beliefs that after resurrection, we will account for our deeds and we will be judged accordingly. Those on whom Allah bestows His mercy will be in heaven, while those who are denied it will abide in hell, the place of absolute misery. It is also clearly stated by the Prophet (saw) that the deeds of even the best person will not be enough to send him to heaven without Allah’s grace.
Sayings of the Prophet —
“A true slave of Almighty Allah when he is afflicted with suffering or pain will turn to HIM and say in Prayer, “We belong to Allah and unto him Is our return” O Allah reward me for my affliction and give something better in exchange for it”.— O Allah! Cause me to live so long that life is better for me–and cause me to die when death is better for me.–“The road to paradise is paved with suffering and hardship, while the road to the hellfire is paved with desire.”
The prophet also stated
” O Muslims! you are need of having patience in dealing with adversity as well as success. That everything that happens in one’s life is for some purpose and we need to turn to Almighty God with patience and prayer. The prophet also stated — Increase the remembrance of the destroyer of all pleasures – Death”
We Pray Almighty Allah: To bless this congregation and the Ummah at large and To Create affection in the hearts of the Muslims. Reform them; guide them to the paths of safety and peace.
Draw them out from the Darkness into the Light, Assist them against the enemies of Islam. Our Lord, grant us beneficence in this world and in the Aakhirah. Save us from the torment of Jahannam.