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Day 12: Learn a Dua for the Deceased – 30 Deeds 30 Days

Day 12: Learn a Dua for the Deceased.

In Ramadan, we tend to focus on our fasts and prayers, and their spiritual effects on us. However, sometimes we forget about the ones who can’t perform these deeds anymore. You may have grandparents, parents, or even siblings and friends who have passed away.

This Ramadan, look up a comprehensive dua for the deceased, and make an effort to recite it often, such as after tarawih prayers or before breaking the fast. You will be giving benefit to those who have passed away, as well as gaining rewards with Allah.


Bring new life to this Ramadan by enrolling in a FREE On-Demand course.

Is It Permissible to Give a Charity on Behalf of a Dead Person?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question: Assalamu alaykum

Is it permissible to give sadaqa jariya (a charity of ongoing benefit) on behalf of a dead person? Does the living person who gave it also get the reward of it?

Answer:  Walaikum assalam,

I hope you’re doing well, insha’Allah.

One can donate reward for good deeds, including giving charity of ongoing benefit (sadaqa jariya), on behalf of both the living and the dead, across the major schoolars of Islamic law.

Effectively, this is akin to making supplication (dua) to Allah for good for them, through good deeds—and it has extensive basis in the teachings of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).

See the following answer for details:

Donating Reward to the Dead: A Detailed Answer

And Allah is the giver of success and facilitation.

[Shaykh] Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Faraz Rabbani is a scholar and researcher of Islamic law and Executive Director of SeekersHub Global After ten years overseas, Shaykh Faraz returned to Canada in the Summer of 2007. In May 2008 he founded SeekersHub Global to deal with the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge—both online and on the ground—in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner. He has been repeatedly listed as one of the world’s 500 most influential Muslims (The Muslim500).

Is There Any Reason a Dead Person’s Eyes are Wide Open?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question: Assalam alaykum,

I recently attended a funeral. As soon as the person died we closed the eyes and mouth. We then sent the body to the mosque and when we returned to it 4/5 hours later we found the eyes were wide open which we found to be really strange.

What could this signify or mean?

Answer: Walaikum assalam,

I hope you’re doing well, insha’Allah. Innaa li’l Llahi wa inna ilayhi raji‘un (We are indeed Allah’s, and to Him is our return)

Don’t worry about this: it is something natural.

As Muslims, we don’t take “bad signs” from things. Rather, the sunna is to think well of the deceased, to remember their good deeds, and to ask Allah Most High for His Mercy and forgiveness for them.

Please see: Burial Amongst Muslims, and a Directive for Proper Burial/Estate Division

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Faraz Rabbani is a scholar and researcher of Islamic law and translator of several Arabic works to the English language. After ten years overseas, Shaykh Faraz returned to Canada in the Summer of 2007. In May 2008 he founded SeekersGuidance to deal with the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge—both online and on the ground—in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner.

Photo: Rusty Clark

Can the Dead Hear Us?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaikum,

Can those buried in their grave hear us when we visit their grave, speak to them, or make du’a for them? Does it differ if they died Muslim or non-Muslim?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.

Yes, the deceased can hear the living when addressed by them, by the enablement of Allah Most High, as affirmed by numerous traditions (hadiths) of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace).

Muslim recorded that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said upon visiting a graveyard, “Peace be upon you abode of a believing people, we, if Allah wills, will surely catch up to you.”

And it is reported that he said (Allah bless him and give him peace), “There is not a person who passes by the grave of his fellow believer whom he used to know in this life, and sends greetings (i.e. salam) upon him, except that he recognises him and returns his greetings.” [Ibn `Abd al-Barr, al-Istidhkar, as related by al-`Iraqi in his Takhrij al-Ihya’]

This understanding is affirmed by numerous scholars such as Suyuti in his al-Hawi li’l Fatawa, Ibn al-Qayyim in his Kitab al-Ruh, Mulla `Ali al-Qari in his Mirqat al-Mafatih, Ibn Hajar al-Haytami in his al-Fatawa al-Fiqhiyya al-Kubra, and many others.

As for supplicating for non-Muslims after they have died, please see the following: Can We Pray for Non-Muslims Who Passed Away?

And see also: Donating Reward to the Dead: A Detailed Answer and: What Is the Proper Etiquette in Giving Condolences to the Family of a Deceased Who Is Non-Muslim? and: Dealing with Death: Inward & Outward Manners

And Allah alone gives success

wassalam,
Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Presentation of the Deeds of the Living to the Deceased and Martyrs and their Ranks

Answered by Ustadh Tariq Abdul-Rasheed
Question: Assalamu alaykum,
1) Can a person somehow watch over other people? Can they actually “be proud” of their children, for example? Is it permissible to act according to what they would have wanted?
2) Often times, after a martyr dies it is said about them that they are in Paradise. But is it not the case that a person cannot really experience Paradise or Hellfire until after Judgement Day?
Answer: In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful, and blessings and peace upon our master Muhammad, his Family, Companions and those who follow their noble way.
Wa alaikum salaam wa rahmatullahi wa barkatuh,
May Allah (Most High) increase you in sincerity, beneficial knowledge and acceptable actions. These are wonderful and important questions and we ask Allah (The Exalted) to grant us ease and facilitation in understanding His (Most High) Deen.
Deeds are presented to the deceased
Regarding the first question; Imam Suyuti (Allah have mercy on him) authored a book related to the states of the deceased and the grave. Therein is a chapter entitled, “Presentation of the deeds of the living to the deceased” [Suyuti, Sharh as-Sudur].
He relates: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Certainly your actions are presented to your close relatives and kinsfolk from amongst the deceased. So, if your actions were good, they are delighted by it and if they are other than that – they say, “Our Lord, do not cause them to die until You guide then like You guided us.” [Imam Ahmad: Musnad from Anas with some weakness in the chain or narration]
He also relates: Abu Ayyub (Allah be pleased with him) said: “Your actions are presented to the deceased. If they see good they are happy and delighted and they say this if from Your immense favor upon your servant so complete it. If they see evil they say,” Our Lord reject it!”. [Ibn Mubarak: az-Zuhd with a sound chain, Ibn Ibi Dunya: al-Munamat]
He relates from an-Nʿumān bin Basheer, who said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) say, “Fear Allah regarding your brothers from the inhabitants of the grave for certainly your actions are presented to them”.[al-Bayhaqi: Shuab al-Iman, Ibn Ibi Dunya: al-Munamat]
These narrations are just some of what Imam Suyuti (Allah have mercy on him) has related in his book. From this we can understand that our actions are seen by our loved ones after death and they are pleased by our good actions and repudiate our foul actions.
Excellence to Parents and Relatives
Regarding doing what will please our parents and loved ones, then, this is encouraged by Allah (The Exalted) and His Noble Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) clearly in the Quran and may Prophetic narrations.
Allah (Most High) says, “Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and to parents do good, and to relatives, orphans, the needy, the near neighbor, the neighbor farther away, the companion at your side, the traveler, and those whom your right hands possess. Indeed, Allah does not like those who are self-deluding and boastful.”[Nisa :36]
This verse is general in its implications and applies the same during their lives and after their death. In fact, it is clearly established in the Sunnah of our beloved Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) that we are encouraged to do good to the friends of our parents even after our parents have died.
Ibn Umar (Allah be pleased with them both) relates: “I heard Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) saying, “The finest act of goodness is the kind treatment of a person to the loved ones of his father after his death” [Imam Nawawi: Riyadh as-Saliheen from the collection of Muslim]
This is not exclusive to our parents (although greater in excellence) but is application to our other loved ones insha’a Allah.
Martyrs and their Rank
The scholars mention that there are three categories of martyrs:
1.) The martyr of this life and the hereafter: This refers to one who dies in a legitimate battle fighting for the sole purpose of establishing the word of Allah (The Most High). The burial for them entails specific rulings and as such they are regarded as a martyr in this life and the next.
2.) The martyr of this life only: Refers to one who dies in battle, but fought seeking the spoils of war or out of bravery. His reward is deficient though he is buried similar to the aforementioned since his affair is only know to Allah (Most High).
3.) The martyr of the hereafter only: This category refers to the like of those who are stricken by a plague or who die of a stomach ailment . The rulings of their burial are the same as other Muslims while they are considered martyrs with Allah (Most High). [Imam Bajuri: Tuhfah al-Murid, Imam Sawi: Sharh ala Jawharah at-Tawheed]
Imam Bajūri (Allah have mercy on him) mentions that it is an obligation for a Muslim to believe the martyr who died in battle is completely alive even if the particular circumstances is not known to us. The first category of martyr of is considered the highest ranking and actually do enjoy the food, drink and clothing of the hereafter.
Allah (Most High) says, “And never think of those who have been killed in the cause of Allah as dead. Rather, they are alive with their Lord, receiving provision.” [Al Imran: 169]
As for the third category, they are lesser in rank than the first and as such only witness paradise without enjoying its provisions.
The upshot is there would be nothing wrong, in any case, in referring to the status of martyrs in the present-tense. Either literally or by way of honoring them as Allah (The Exalted) has honored them.
Allah (The Exalted) knows best
Tariq Abdul-Rasheed
Checked and Approved by Faraz Rabbani