Rules Relating To A Dying Person

A Muslim who is dying, whether male or female, old or young, should as a measure of precaution, be laid on their back if possible, in such a manner that the soles of their feet would face the Qibla (direction towards the Holy Ka’bah).

It is an obligatory precaution upon every Muslim, to lay a dying person facing the Qibla (most of the hospitals are aware of this requirement for Muslims and they will allow this to be done). If the dying person consents to it, there is no need to seek the permission for it from the guardian. Otherwise, the permission must be sought.

It is recommended that the doctrinal testimony of Islam (Shahadatain) and the acknowledgement of the twelve Imams and other tenets of faith should be inculcated to a dying person in such a manner that they would understand. It is also recommended that these utterances are repeated till the time of their death.

This may be done as follows:

Radhitbu bil-lahi Rabban;
Wa bi Muhammadin (sal-lal-lahu ‘alayhi wa alihi) nabiyyan;
Wa bil Islami dinan'
Wa bil Qur’ani kitaban;
Wa bil Ka’bati qiblatan;
Wa bi’ Aliyyan waliyyan wa imaman;
Wa bil Hasan, wal Husayn, wa ‘Aliy-yib nil Husayn;
Wa Muhammad bin ‘Aliyyan,Wa Jafar ibn Muhammadin;
Wa Musa ibn Ja’farin, wa ‘Ali yibn Musa;
Wa Muhammad ibn Aliyyin; wa Ali yibn Muhammadin;
Wal Hasan ibn ‘Aliyyin; wal Hujjat ibnil Hasan (salawatul-lahi ‘alayhim) aimmatan wa sadatan wa qadatan;
Bi him atawalla, wa min a’da’ihim ata-barra Wa an-nas sa’ata atiyatun la rayba fiha;
Wa annal-laha yab’athu man fil qubur;
Wa annal hisaba haqqun; wa annal jannata haqqun;
Wa annan nar haqqun.

The statement of Faraj:

La ilahah il-lal lahu Halimul Karim;
La ilaha il-lal lahu ‘Aliyyul ‘Azim;
Subhana ‘l-laha Rabbus samawatis sab’i
Wa Rabbul ardhinas sab’i;
Wa ma fee hinna wa ma bayna hunna Wa ma fawqa hunna wa ma tahta hunna;
Wa Rabbul ‘arshil ‘azim;
Wal hamdu lil-lahi Rabbis ‘alameen.

It is recommended that the following supplications be read over to a dying person in such a manner that they would understand:

Allahhummaghfir liyal kathira mim ma’asika waqbal minniyal yasira min ta’atika ya man yaqbalul yasira wa ya’afu ‘anil kathir, iqbal minniyal yasira wa’fu ‘anniyal kathir. Innaka antal ‘afuwwul Ghafur. Allahhummar hamni fa innaka Rahim.

It is Mustahab to carry a person experiencing painfully slow death (at home) to the place where they used to offer prayers, provided that it does not cause any discomfort.

If a person is in the throes of death it is Mustahab to recite the following by their side:
Surah Yasin
Surah as-Saffat
Surah al-Ahzab
Ayat al-Kursi
54th verse of Surah al-A’raf
The last three verses of Surah al-Baqarah.

In fact it is better to recite as much from the Holy Qur’an as possible.

It is Makrooh to leave a dying person alone, place weight on their stomach, chatter idly, wail near them or to let only women remain with them. It is Makrooh to be by their side in the state of Janabat or Hayz.

Immediately after the Death:
It is Mustahab that the eyes and lips of a dead person be shut, the chin be tied, their hands and feet be straightened and to spread a cloth over the body.

Any ornaments (rings, earrings, etc.) and false teeth should be removed from the dead person’s body. If death has taken place in the hospital, the nurses should be requested to ensure that any tubes, needles, plasters and bandages are removed and in case of external bleeding, the wound should be stitched.

It is Mustahab to keep the body in a well lit place. It is recommended to inform Momineen to join the funeral and also to hasten the burial. If however the death has not yet been confirmed, they should wait until they are certain. Moreover, if the dead person is a pregnant woman and there is a living child in her womb, her burial should be delayed until such a time that her left side is cut open and the child is taken out and then to sew her side.

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