Visiting the Graveyard

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Rasulullah (peace be upon him) said ‘Visit the graves, for surely visiting the graves lessens worldly love, and reminds you of the hereafter.’

The graveyard can be visited on any day. Friday is preferred for this visit, and if possible it should be done weekly. It is related in the Hadith that “Whoever will visit his parent’s grave every Friday will be granted Maghfirat (forgiveness of sins), and he will be recorded as an obedient son of his parents.”

WHAT TO READ WHEN ENTERING THE GRAVEYARD

Rasulullah (peace be upon him) has taught his Companions these words to send salutations to the people of the graves and pray for their forgiveness:-

‘AS-SALAAM ALAYKUM AHLA D-DIYAARI MINA LIMU-UMININA WALIMU-SILIMINA WAINNA INSHA-ALLAHU BIKUM LALAHIQUUNA. NAS-ALU LLAHU LANA WALAKUM LIA-FIYATA.’ (Translation: Peace be upon you, O you the believers and Muslims dwelling in these abodes. Behold, if Allah will, we shall meet you. We bessech of Allah safety for us and for you).

WHAT TO RECITE WHEN IN THE GRAVEYARD

There are many Duaas (supplications) that may be read at the graveside, the best being the recital f the Quran. Stand facing the grave (back to Qiblah) and recite as much of the Quran as possible, and make Duaa for the forgiveness for the departed. A few ways of praying for the dead, as related in the Hadith, as follows: –

1. Recite Surah Ikhlaas (Qulhuwallah….) 11 times. It is related in the Hadith that whoever visits the graveyard and recite Surah Ikhlaas 11 times, and prays for the dead, will be rewarded as many fold as the number of the dead in the graveyard.

2. Recite Surah Faatiha, Surah Ikhlaas and Surah Takaathur. In the Hadith it is reported that whoever visits the graveyard and reads Alhamdulillah….., Qulhuwallah…., ans Alhaakumttakathur…., and then prays for the dead, the people of the graves will also ask Allah for such a person’s forgiveness.

3. Recite Surah Yassen. In the Hadith it is reported that if a person reads Surah Yaaseen in the graveyards, the punishment of the dead will be eased, and the reader will be rewarded just as much as the dead. In this manner, the Companions of Rasulullah (peace be upon him) visited the graveyard.

The words in the Hadith indicate only salutations and Duaas for the dead and remembering Allah. All other ways such as placing wreaths, flowers, paying homage etc., are incorrect according to Sharia, and one should abstain from acting wrongly. And Allah knows best.

Source: Death and Burial of a Muslim by Waterval Islamic Institure, RSA.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Jazakumullah for producing this article. As a woman I would like to know if I can also visit the graves of my late sisters and father? I heard that it is not advised for woman to visit graveyards.? Pliz enlighten me on this one.

  2. Women are fobbiden visiting grave during burial :hadeeth;Yaa haraam li insaan tashiya'un lijanaza-meaning;It is haraam for women to escort the dead.But during optional times after analyising her state,can visit the grave and make dua's for her loved ones.

  3. In Islam it is allowed or prescribed to recite the dua mentioned above. Then after that a person may make any dua (for forgiveness) from Allah for the dead.

    From what i know there is no saheeh (authentic) hadeeth which proves that reciting any quranic chapters or verses in the graveyard is allowed rather its bidah (an innovation).

    The prophet (pbuh) said

    "Do not make your houses into graveyards, for the Shaytaan flees from a house in which Soorat al-Baqarah is recited.” This was narrated by Muslim and al-Tirmidhi from the hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah. This indicates that graves are not the place for reading Qur’aan, hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) encouraged reading Qur’aan in our houses and told us not to make them like graveyards where it is not read.

    The prophet also said

    "Pray in your houses and do not make them like graves.” This was narrated by Muslim and others from Ibn ‘Umar. A similar report was narrated by al-Bukhaari, who included it in a chapter entitled Baab Karaahat al-Salaah fi’l-Maqaabir (Chapter on it being disliked to pray in graveyards); thus he indicated that the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Umar could be understood to mean that it is makrooh to pray in graveyards. Similarly the hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah may be understood to mean that it is makrooh to read Qur’aan in graveyards. The only prayer allowed in graveyards is the funeral prayer (this is also done when the dead was buried in your absence within a month or less)

    Abu Dawood said in his Masaa’il (p. 158): “I heard Ahmad being asked about reading Qur’aan at the graveside. He said, ‘No [that should not be done].’”

    Therefore from what i know, there is no quran recitation in the graveyard. If somebody knows something on this(if is in agreement with the article above), then i would be eager to know the books of ahadeeth where the ahadeeth mentioned in the article were taken and also their authenticity.

    I know the views expressed in this above article are not from the poster (bro. dmajeed) but they are the views of the people who posted it on the original source (waterval Islamic Institute), thats why i have put this comment very clear.

    Allah knows best

    • it should be clear that Islam does encourage visiting the graves since it reminds people of the hereafter. When visiting the graves, a person is to make du`aa’ (supplication) for the dead and seek Allah’s forgiveness for them.

      In his response to your question, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:

      Visiting graves is a recommended sunnah of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), who said, “In the past, I had forbidden you earlier from visiting graves, but now you can do so, for it helps to remind you of the hereafter.” In other words, in the early days of Islam, Muslims were told not to visit graves, because of the fear of shirk, as the Arabs had been closer to their pagan ways, for they had been in the habit of worshiping idols, statues, and graves, etc. But after Islamic creed of tawheed (the Oneness of Allah) had become rooted and people had imbibed the true lessons of Islam, there was no fear of Muslims reverting to the practice of worshiping graves; hence the above prohibition was lifted and the Muslims were allowed to visit graves.

      The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), however, did not merely allow them to visit graves, but also went a step further to encourage them to do so because of the obvious benefits associated with it: First, it reminds them of their final resting place; second, it helps people remember their dead ones and offer prayers for them. Allah tells us in the Qur’an that the true believers are those who supplicate to Allah saying, [Our Lord, forgive us and our brothers who have preceded us in faith and do not allow for any rancour in our hearts towards the believers; our Lord you are Full of Pity, Merciful] (Al-Hashr 59:10).

      The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) demonstrated the sunnah of visiting graves through his own practice. We are told that he used to visit the graves of his Companions who had passed away and prayed for them. Once when `A’ishah, the beloved wife of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), saw him returning from the graveyard, she inquired, “If I were to visit the graves, what should I say?” Then he told her, “Pray: Greetings of peace to you, the faithful residing in these dwellings. Surely we will be joining you soon. May Allah forgive us and you and all the Muslims.”

      • Indeed i agree with you that islam encourages muslims to visit the graves and make dua for the dead.

        However, my problem was the act of reciting quran in the graveyard. I stated it clearly by providing evidence that according to a lot of Ulama (Muslim scholars) it is not allowed to recite any quran in the graveyard since there is no authentic ahadeeth which prove that. And according to the sunnah of the Prophet nowhere in the authentic books will you find that the prophet allowed, prescribed, encouraged or did the recitation of the Quran in the graveyard.

        Allah knows best

        • No Reading of the Quran in the graveyards
          When Rasoolullah(SAW) was asked about what to do while visiting the graveyard he only told to read the Duaa mentioned above. He did not tell the Sahabas to read the Quran or certain Surahs of the Quran like Surah Fatiha, Surah Falaq, Surah Nas, Surah Yasin. If we start saying today "No! It is necessary to read the Fatiha there" Then the question that arises is – "Why is it that our beloved messenger Muhammed(SAW) never told us to do that?" Either he did not know about it (Nauzobillah!) or he knew about it but did not tell us about it! In that case it is as if we are alleging that he did not fulfill his duty of passing the message of Allah fully and completely (Nauzobillah)!

  4. Thank you very much Bro. Kaisi for enlightening and inspiring feedback. I think this is all what this website is about; enlightening the Ummah.

    Immediately after reading your comment I had to revert to the distributors of that booklet the Islamic Information Bureau and managed to get in touch with Sh. Muhammad Uthmaan who of course couldn't provide a prompt response. Nevertheless, you have Inspired us to make even more further researh and readers will be updated accordingly on this page.

  5. Thank you very much for this enlightening article.this article has brought out very critical issues especial amongst Malawian Muslims.the issue of sukuti and qadiriat very common and divisive in Malawi.secondly,that book was provided by information bearual.my assumption is that all the books being provided are reviewed before making them available to the public unless otherwise.this article will most likely raise alot of debate because most of the divisions in Malawi originate from such issues.hopefully we wil be enlightened more on this issue

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