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How Do Muslim View Death?

Muslims believe that the present life is a trial in preparation for the next realm of existence. When a Muslim dies, he or she is washed and wrapped in a clean, white cloth (usually by a family member) and buried after a special prayer, preferably the same day. Muslims consider this a final service that they can do for their relatives and an opportunity to remember that their own existence here on earth is brief.

The question of whether there is life after death does not fall under the jurisdiction of science, as science is concerned only with classification and analysis of sense data. Moreover, man has been busy with scientific inquiries and research, in the modern sense of the term, only for the last few centuries, while he has been familiar with the concept of life after death since time immemorial.

All the Prophets of God called their people to worship God and to believe in life after death. They laid so much emphasis on the belief in life after death that even a slight doubt in it meant denying God and made all other beliefs meaningless.

The very fact that all the Prophets of God have dealt with this metaphysical question of life after death so confidently and so uniformly - the gap between their ages in some cases, being thousands of years - goes to prove that the source of their knowledge of life after death as proclaimed by them all, was the same, i.e. Divine revelation.

We also know that these Prophets of God were greatly opposed by their people, mainly on the issue of life after death, as their people thought it impossible. But in spite of opposition, the Prophets won many sincere followers.

The question arises: what made those followers forsake the established beliefs, traditions and customs of their forefathers, notwithstanding the risk of being totally alienated from their own community? The simple answer is: they made use of their faculties of mind and heart and realized the truth.

Did they realize the truth through perceptual consciousness? They couldn?t, as perceptual experience of life after death is impossible. God has given man besides perceptual consciousness, rational, aesthetic and moral consciousness too. It is this consciousness that guides man regarding realities that cannot be verified through sensory data. That is why all the Prophets of God while calling people to believe in God and life after death, appeal to the aesthetic, moral and rational consciousness of man.

For example, when the idolaters of Makkah denied even the possibility of life after death, the Quran exposed the weakness of their stand by advancing very logical and rational arguments in support of it:

And he (i.e. man) presents for Us an example (i.e. attempting to establish the finality of death) and forgets his [own] creation. He says, ?Who will give life to bones while they are disintegrated?? Say, ?He will give them life who produced them the first time; and He is, of all creation, Knowing.? [It is] He who made for you from the green tree, fire, and then from it you ignite. Is not He who created the heavens and the earth Able to create the likes of them? Yes, [it is so]; and He is the Knowing Creator. (Quran, 36:78-81)

On another occasion, the Quran very clearly says that the disbelievers have no sound basis for their denial of life after death. It is based on pure conjecture:

And they say, ?There is not but our worldly life; we die and live (i.e. some people die and others live, replacing them) and nothing destroys us except time.? And they have of that no knowledge; they are only assuming. And when Our verses are recited to them as clear evidences, their argument is only that they say, ?Bring [back] our forefathers, if you should be truthful.? Say, ?God causes you to live, then causes you to die; then He will assemble you for the Day of Resurrection, about which there is no doubt,? but most of the people do not know. (Quran, 45:24-26)

Surely God will raise all the dead. But God has His own plan of things. A day will come when the whole universe will be destroyed and then the dead will be resurrected to stand before God. That day will be the beginning of a life that will never end, and on that day every person will be rewarded by God according to his or her good or evil deeds.

The explanation that the Quran gives about the necessity of life after death is what the moral consciousness of man demands. Actually, if there is no life after death, the very belief in God becomes meaningless or even if one believes in God, it would be n unjust and indifferent God, having once created man and now not being concerned with his fate.Surely, God is just. He will punish the tyrants, whose crimes are beyond count - having tortured and killed hundreds or thousands of innocent people, created great corruption in society, enslaved numerous persons to serve their whims, etc., because man has a very short life span in this world and because numerous individuals are affected by one?s actions, adequate punishments and rewards are not possible in this life. The Quran very emphatically states that the Day of Judgment must come and that God will decide the fate of each soul according to his or her record of deeds:

But those who disbelieve say, ? The Hour (i.e. the Day of Judgment) will not come to us.? Say, ?Yes, by my Lord, it will surely come to you. [God is] the Knower of the unseen.? Not absent from Him is an atom?s weight within the heavens or within the earth or [what is] smaller than that or greater, except that it is in a clear register - That He may reward those who believe and do righteous deeds. Those will have forgiveness and noble provision. But those who strive against Our verses [seeking] to cause failure (i.e. to undermine their credibility) - for them will be a painful punishment of foul nature. (Quran, 34:3-5)

The Day of Resurrection will be the Day when God?s attributes of Justice and Mercy will be in full manifestation. God will shower His mercy on those who suffered for His sake in the worldly life, believing that an eternal bliss was awaiting them. But those who abused the bounties of God, caring nothing for the life to come, will be in the most miserable state. Drawing a comparison between them, the Quran says:

Then is he whom We have promised a good promise which he will meet [i.e. obtain] like he for whom We provided enjoyment of worldly life [but] then he is, on the Day of Resurrection, among those presented [for punishment in Hell]? (Quran, 28:61)

The Quran also states that this worldly life is a preparation for the eternal life after death. But those who deny it become slaves of their passions and desires, making fun of virtuous and God-conscious persons.

Such persons realize their folly only at the time of their death and wish to be given a further chance in the world but in vain. Their miserable state at the time of death, and the horror of the Day of Judgment, and the eternal bliss guaranteed to the sincere believers are very clearly and beautifully mentioned in the following verses of the Quran:

[For such is the state of the disbelievers], until, when death comes to one of them, he says, ?My Lord, send me back that I might do righteousness in that which I left behind (i.e. in that which I neglected).? No! It is only a word he is saying; and behind them is a barrier until the Day they are resurrected. So when the Horn is blown, no relationship will there be among them that Day, nor will they ask about one another. And those whose scales are heavy [with good deeds] - it is they who are the successful. But those whose scales are light - those are the ones who have lost their souls, [being] in Hell, abiding eternally. The Fire will sear their faces, and they therein will have taut smiles (i.e. their lips having been contracted by scorching until the teeth are exposed). (Quran, 23:99-104)

The belief in life after death not only guarantees success in the Hereafter but also makes this world full of peace and happiness by making individuals most responsible and dutiful in their activities.

Think of the people of Arabia before the arrival of the Prophet Muhammad . Gambling, wine, tribal feuds, plundering and murdering were their main traits when they had no belief in life after death. But as soon as they accepted the belief in the One God and life after death they became the most disciplined nation of the world. They gave up their vices, helped each other in hours of need, and settled all their disputes on the basis of justice and equality. Similarly the denial of life after death has its consequences not only in the Hereafter but also in this world. When a nation as a whole denies it, all kinds of evils and corruption become rampant in that society and ultimately it is destroyed.

The Quran mentions the terrible end of Aad, Thamud and the Pharaoh in some detail:

[The tribes of] Thamud and Aad denied the Striking Calamity [i.e. the Resurrection]. So as for Thamud, they were destroyed by the overpowering [blast]. And as for Aad, they were destroyed by a screaming, violent wind which He [i.e. God] imposed upon them for seven nights and eight days in succession, so you would see the people therein fallen as if they were hollow trunks of palm trees. Then do you see of them any remains? And there came Pharaoh and those before him and the overturned cities (i.e. those to which Lot was sent) with sin. And they disobeyed the messenger of their Lord, so He seized them with a seizure exceeding [in severity]. Indeed, when the water overflowed, We carried you [i.e. your ancestors] in the sailing ship (i.e. which was constructed by Noah). That We might make it for you a reminder and [that] a conscious ear would be conscious of it. (Quran, 69:4-12)


Source

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The Three Questions In Your Grave!

If the son of Adam died, his soul departs his body and he placed in his grave. Then two angels (Munkar & Nakir) came to him and ask him what he used to believe in when he was alive in this world (dunya). They ask him: 1) who was his Lord, 2) what was his religion, 3) who was his Prophet. If he gives a good answer, that is good, but if he does not answer them they inflict a severe and painful beating on him.

It was narrated that al-Bara’ (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: We went out with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) for the funeral of a man from among the Ansaar. We came to the grave and when (the deceased) was placed in the lahd, the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sat down and we sat around him, as if there were birds on our heads (i.e., quiet and still). In his hand he had a stick with which he was scratching the ground.

Then he raised his head and said, “Seek refuge with Allaah from the torment of the grave”, two or three times. Then he said, “When the believing slave is about to depart this world and enter the Hereafter, there come down to him from heaven angels with white faces like the sun, and they sit around him as far as the eye can see. They bring with them shrouds from Paradise and perfumes from Paradise. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits by his head, and he says, ‘O good soul, come forth to forgiveness from Allaah and His pleasure.’ Then it comes out easily like a drop of water from the the mouth of a waterskin. When he seizes it, they do not leave it in his hand for an instant before they take it and put it in that shroud with that perfume, and there comes from it a fragrance like the finest musk on the face of the earth.

Then they ascend and they do not pass by any group of angels but they say, ‘Who is this good soul?’ and they say, ‘It is So and so the son of So and so, calling him by the best names by which he was known in this world, until they reach the lowest heaven. They ask for it to be opened to them and it is opened, and (the soul) is welcomed and accompanied to the next heaven by those who are closest to Allaah, until they reach the seventh heaven. Then Allaah says: ‘Record the book of My slave in ‘Illiyoon in the seventh heaven, and return him to the earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them and from it I will bring them forth once again.’ So his soul is returned to his body and there come to him two angels who make him sit up and they say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He says, ‘Allaah.’ They say, ‘What is your religion?’ He says, ‘My religion is Islam.’ They say, ‘Who is this man who was sent among you?’ He says, ‘He is the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).’ They say, ‘What did you do?’ He says, ‘I read the Book of Allaah and I believed in it.

'Then a voice calls out from heaven, ‘My slave has spoken the truth, so prepare for him a bed from Paradise and clothe him from Paradise, and open for him a gate to Paradise.’ Then there comes to him some of its fragrance, and his grave is made wide, as far as he can see. Then there comes to him a man with a handsome face and handsome clothes, and a good fragrance, who says, ‘Receive the glad tidings that will bring you joy this day.’ He says, ‘Who are you? Your face is a face which brings glad tidings.’ He says, ‘I am your righteous deeds.’ He says, ‘O Lord, hasten the Hour so that I may return to my family and my wealth.

’ But when the disbelieving slave is about to depart this world and enter the Hereafter, there come down to him from heaven angels with black faces, bringing sackcloth, and they sit around him as far as the eye can see. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits by his head, and he says, ‘O evil soul, come forth to the wrath of Allaah and His anger.’ Then his soul disperses inside his body, then comes out cutting the veins and nerves, like a skewer passing through wet wool. When he seizes it, they do not leave it in his hand for an instant before they take it and put it in that sackcloth, and there comes from it a stench like the foulest stench of a dead body on the face of the earth. Then they ascend and they do not pass by any group of angels but they say, ‘Who is this evil soul?’ and they say, ‘It is So and so the son of So and so, calling him by the worst names by which he was known in this world, until they reach the lowest heaven.

They ask for it to be opened to them and it is not opened.” Then the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) recited (interpretation of the meaning): 

“for them the gates of heaven will not be opened, and they will not enter Paradise until the camel goes through the eye of the needle” [al-A’raaf 7:40] 

He said: “Then Allaah says, ‘Record the book of My slave in Sijjeen in the lowest earth, and return him to the earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them and from it I will bring them forth once again.’ So his soul is cast down.”  Then the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) recited the verse (interpretation of the meaning): 

“and whoever assigns partners to Allaah, it is as if he had fallen from the sky, and the birds had snatched him, or the wind had thrown him to a far off place” [al-Hajj 22:31] 

He said: “Then his soul is returned to his body, and there come to him two angels who make him sit up and they say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He says, ‘Oh, oh, I don’t know.’ They say, ‘What is your religion?’ He says, ‘Oh, oh, I don’t know.’ Then a voice calls out from heaven, ‘Prepare for him a bed from Hell and clothe him from Hell, and open for him a gate to Hell.’ Then there comes to him some of its heat and hot winds, and his grave is constricted and compresses him until his ribs interlock. Then there comes to him a man with an ugly face and ugly clothes, and a foul stench, who says, ‘Receive the bad news, this is the day that you were promised.’ He says, ‘Who are you? Your face is a face which forebodes evil.’ He says, ‘I am your evil deeds.’ He says, ‘O Lord, do not let the Hour come, do not let the Hour come.’” 

Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4753; Ahmad, 18063.

Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, 1676.

May Allah guide us to be among those who will answer those three questions in the grave.

 

Resurrection After Death

After death, until the day of Judgment, are the human beings reborn in any other form?.

When the son of Adam dies, his body disintegrates and vanishes apart from the tailbone, which is a bone at the base of the spine. When the Resurrection begins, Allaah will cause the bodies to grow by means of rain from the earth which will make these bones grow until each person’s body is restored to the way it was before he died. 

It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, ‘What is between the two Trumpet-blasts will be forty.’ Somebody asked, ‘Forty days?’ But I could not answer. Then he asked, ‘Forty months?’ But I could not answer. Then he asked, ‘Forty years?’ But I could not answer.” Abu Hurayrah added, “Then (after this period) Allah will send water from the sky and then the dead bodies will grow like vegetation grows. There is nothing of the human body that does not decay except one bone; that is the little bone at the end of the coccyx from which the human body will be recreated on the Day of Resurrection.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4651; Muslim, 2955). 

Al-Nawawi said: 

“The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, ‘What is between the two Trumpet-blasts will be forty.’ Somebody asked, ‘Forty days?’ But I could not answer…” What is meant is that he refused to specify whether it would be forty days, or years, or months. Rather what he was sure of was that it would be just forty. It is explained in another report narrated by someone other than Muslim, which says that it will be forty years. 

The phrase “the little bone at the end of the coccyx” refers to the small bone at the base of the spine, which is the end of the coccyx. This is the first part of a person that is created, and it is what will be left of him so that he will be created anew from it. [Sharh Muslim, 18/92]

When a person comes forth from his grave and is gathered and brought to account, his body will remain the same as it was before he died. Then when the people of Paradise enter Paradise and the people of Hell enter Hell, Allaah will change their forms.

Source

 

The Life Of Barzakh

What is meant by al-barzakh is the period between a person's death and his resurrection on the Day of Resurrection. Its the separator stage between two other stages (the life and the resurrection day).

Whoever dies as a Muslim, obeying Allaah, will be in a blessed state, and whoever dies as a kaafir, disobeying Allaah, will be punished. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning); “The Fire, they are exposed to it, morning and afternoon. And on the Day when the Hour will be established (it will be said to the angels): ‘Cause Fir‘aun’s (Pharaoh) people to enter the severest torment!’” [Ghaafir 40:46]

 The punishments vary according to the sins committed. A hadeeth was narrated in Saheeh al-Bukhaari which describes the torments of al-barzakh which will befall some of those who committed major sins. It was narrated that Samurah ibn Jundub (may Allaah be pleased with him) said that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) often used to ask his companions, ‘Did any one of you see a  dream?’ So dreams would be described to him by those who Allaah willed should speak. One morning, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:

“Last night, two people came to me (in a dream), and woke me up and said, ‘Let’s go!’ I set out with them, and we came across a man who was lying down, with another man standing over him, holding a big rock. He threw the rock at the man's head, smashing it. The rock rolled away, and the one who had thrown it followed it, and picked it up. By the time he came back to the man, his head had been restored to its former state. Then he (the one who had thrown the rock) did the same as he had done before. I said to my two companions, ‘Subhaan Allaah! Who are these two persons?’ They said, ‘Move on!’

So we went on, and came to a man who was lying flat on his back, with another man standing over him, holding an iron hook. He put the hook in the man's mouth and tore off that side of his face to the back (of his neck), and he tore his nose and his eye from front to back in a similar manner. Then he turned to the other side of the man's face and did likewise. No sooner had he finished the second side but the first side was restored to its former state, then he went back and did the same thing again. I said to my two companions, ‘Subhaan Allaah! Who are these two persons?’ They said, ‘Move on!’

So we went on, and came to something like a tannoor (a kind of oven, lined with clay, usually used for baking bread).  – I think the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, in that oven there was much noise and voices. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) added:  - We  looked into it and saw naked men and  women. A flame of fire was reaching them from underneath, and when it reached them, they cried out loudly. I asked them, ‘Who are these?’ They said to me,  ‘Move on!’

So we went on and came to a river – I think he said, red like blood. – In the river there was a man swimming, and on the bank there was a man who had gathered many stones. Whilst the swimmer was swimming, the man who had gathered the stones approached him. The swimmer opened his mouth and the man on the bank threw a stone into it, then the swimmer carried on swimming. Each time he came back, he opened his mouth again, and the man on the bank threw another stone into his mouth. I said to my two companions, ‘Who are these two persons?’ They said, ‘Move on, move on!’

We went on and came to a man who had the most repulsive appearance imaginable. Beside him there was a fire, which he was kindling, and he was running around it. I asked my companions, ‘Who is this man?’ They said, ‘Move on, move on!’

So we went on until we reached a garden of deep green dense vegetation, with all kinds of spring colours. In the midst of this garden was a very tall man, whose head I could hardly see because of his great height. Around him there were children, a great number such as I have never seen. I said to my companions, ‘who is this man, and who are these children?’ They said, ‘Move on, move on!’

So we went on, until we came to a huge garden, bigger and better than any I have ever seen. My two companions said to me, ‘Go up.’ So we went up into it, until we reached a city built of gold and silver bricks. We went to the gate and asked for it to be opened. It was opened and we entered the city, where we found men with one side of their bodies more handsome than the most handsome person you have ever seen, and the other side uglier than the ugliest person you have ever seen. My two companions ordered those men to throw themselves into the river. There was a river flowing through the city, and its water was pure white. The men went and threw themselves in the river, and came out with the ugliness in their bodies gone, and they were in the best shape. (My two companions) said to me, ‘This is the Paradise of ‘Aden (the Garden of Eden), and that is your place.’ I looked up and saw a palace like a white cloud. They said to me, ‘That is your place.’ I said to them, ‘May Allaah bless you both, let me enter it.’ They said, ‘For now you will not enter it, but you shall enter it (one day).’ I said to them, I have seen many wonders this night. What do all these things mean that I have seen?’

They said: ‘We will tell you.

The first man you came across, whose head was being smashed with the rock, is the man who studies the Qur’aan then he neither recites it nor acts upon it, and he goes to sleep, neglecting the obligatory prayers.

The man you came across whose mouth, nose and ears were being torn from front to back, is the man who goes out of his house in the morning and tells a lie that is so serious that it spreads all over the world.

The naked men and women whom you saw in a structure that resembled an oven are the adulterers and adulteresses.

The man you saw swimming in the river with rocks being thrown into his mouth is the one who consumed riba (usury).

The ugly-looking man whom you saw kindling a fire and walking around it was Maalik, the keeper of Hell.

The tall man whom you saw in the garden was Ibraaheem, and the children around him were the children who died (young) in a state of fitrah (natural state of mankind, i.e., Islam).’ – Some of the Muslims asked, ‘O Messenger of Allaah, what about the children of the mushrikeen (disbelievers)?’ He said, ‘And the children of the mushrikeen too.’ – ‘

As for the men who were half handsome and half ugly, they were people who had mixed a good deed with another deed  that was bad, but Allaah forgave them.’”  (narrated by Muslim, no. 6525)

 

Shaykh Waleed al-Firyaan

Taken from Islamqa with slight modifications

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Images of The Blessings of The Grave

The evidence indicates that the believer will be blessed in his grave until the Hour begins, then he will move by the grace and mercy of Allaah to the blessings that will never cease or come to an end, which is the blessing of Paradise. May Allaah make us among its people. 

These are some of the images of the blessings which are bestowed upon the believer in his grave: 

1- His grave is furnished from Paradise for him

2- He is clothed in garments from Paradise.

3- A gate to Paradise is opened for him, and its breezes come to him, and he smells its fragrance and he feels delight in what he can see of its blessings.

4- His grave is made wide and spacious for him.

5- He is given the glad tidings of Allaah’s pleasure and Paradise. Hence he longs for the Hour to begin. 

It was narrated that al-Bara’ ibn ‘Aazib said: “We went out with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) for the funeral of a man from among the Ansaar. We came to the grave and when (the deceased) was placed in the lahd, the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sat down and we sat around him, as if there were birds on our heads (i.e., quiet and still). In his hand he had a stick with which he was scratching the ground. Then he raised his head and said, “Seek refuge with Allaah from the torment of the grave”, two or three times. Then he said, “When the believing slave is about to depart this world and enter the Hereafter, there come down to him from heaven angels with white faces like the sun, and they sit around him as far as the eye can see. They bring with them shrouds from Paradise and perfumes from Paradise. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits by his head, and he says, ‘O good soul, come forth to forgiveness from Allaah and His pleasure.’ Then it comes out easily like a drop of water from the mouth of a waterskin. When he seizes it, they do not leave it in his hand for an instant before they take it and put it in that shroud with that perfume, and there comes from it a fragrance like the finest musk on the face of the earth. Then they ascend and they do not pass by any group of angels but they say, ‘Who is this good soul?’ and they say, ‘It is So and so the son of So and so, calling him by the best names by which he was known in this world, until they reach the lowest heaven. They ask for it to be opened to them and it is opened, and (the soul) is welcomed and accompanied to the next heaven by those who are closest to Allaah, until they reach the seventh heaven. Then Allaah says: ‘Record the book of My slave in ‘Illiyoon in the seventh heaven, and return him to the earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them and from it I will bring them forth once again.’ So his soul is returned to his body and there come to him two angels who make him sit up and they say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He says, ‘Allaah.’ They say, ‘What is your religion?’ He says, ‘My religion is Islam.’ They say, ‘Who is this man who was sent among you?’ He says, ‘He is the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).’ They say, ‘What did you do?’ He says, ‘I read the Book of Allaah and I believed in it.’ Then a voice calls out from heaven, ‘My slave has spoken the truth, so prepare for him a bed from Paradise and clothe him from Paradise, and open for him a gate to Paradise.’ Then there comes to him some of its fragrance, and his grave is made wide, as far as he can see. Then there comes to him a man with a handsome face and handsome clothes, and a good fragrance, who says, ‘Receive the glad tidings that will bring you joy this day.’ He says, ‘Who are you? Your face is a face which brings glad tidings.’ He says, ‘I am your righteous deeds.’ He says, ‘O Lord, hasten the Hour so that I may return to my family and my wealth.’…” 

Narrated by Ahmad, 17803; Abu Dawood, 4753. Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Ahkaam al-Janaa’iz, p. 156 

6- He will be happy when he sees what would have been his place in Hell, which Allaah has replaced for him with a place in Paradise. 

Ahmad (10577) narrated that Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri said: I attended a funeral with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “O people, this ummah will be tested in their graves. When a man is buried and his friends leave him, an angel with a hammer in his hand comes and sits by him and asks, ‘What do you say about this man?’ If he is a believer, he says, ‘I bear witness that there is no god but Allaah and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.’ He says, ‘You have spoken the truth.’ Then a door to Hell is opened for him and he says, ‘This would have been your place if you had disbelieved in your Lord, but because you believed, this is your place.’ Then a door to Paradise is opened for him and he wants to go there, but the angel says to him, ‘Calm down,’ and his grave is made wide and spacious for him. But if he is a kaafir or a hypocrite, (the angel) says to him, ‘What do you say about this man?’ He says, ‘I do not know, I heard the people saying something.’ The angel says, ‘You did not know and you did not follow those who knew and you were not guided.’ Then a door to Paradise is opened for him and he says, ‘This would have been your position if you had believed in your Lord. But because you disbelieved, Allaah has replaced it for you with this.’ Then a gate to Hell is opened for him, and he strikes him a blow with the hammer which is heard by all of Allaah’s creation apart from the two races (of mankind and the jinn).” Some of the people said, “O Messenger of Allaah, there is no one who would have an angel standing by him holding a hammer but he would dumbfounded.” The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Allaah will keep firm those who believe, with the word that stands firm.” [Ibraaheem 14:27 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in his commentary on Kitaab al-Sunnah by Ibn Abi ‘Aasim, 865 

7- He will sleep the sleep of a bridegroom

8- His grave will be illuminated for him 

It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “When the deceased (or he said: any one of you) is buried, two black and blue angels, one of whom is called Munkar and the other Nakeer come to him. They say, ‘What did you say about this man?’ And he says what he used to say, that he is the slave of Allaah and His Messenger, ‘I bear witness that there is no god but Allaah and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.’ They say, ‘We knew that you would say this.’ Then his grave is expanded, seventy cubits wide, and it is filled with light. He says, ‘Let me go back to my family and tell them.’ They say, ‘Sleep like a bridegroom whom no one will wake but his most beloved,’ until Allaah raises him up. But if he was a hypocrite he says, ‘I heard the people saying something and I said likewise, I do not know.’ So they say, ‘We knew that you would say that.’ Then it is said to the earth, ‘Squeeze him,’ so it squeezes him until his ribs interlock. And he will remain like that, being tormented, until Allaah raises him up.” 

Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 1071. Classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 1391. 

With regard to his sleep being likened to the sleep of a bridegroom, that is because he will be so happy and comfortable.  Tuhfat al-Ahwadhi. 

These are some of the blessings that the believer will enjoy in his grave. We ask Allaah to make us among His people.

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Images Of The Torment In The Grave

The torment in the grave will vary according to the sins committed by the person in this world, whether he was a kaafir or a disobedient Muslim. There are saheeh ahaadeeth which describe this torment for the people who commit these sins. For example: 

1 – Being struck with an iron hammer: 

It was narrated from Anas (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “When a person is placed in his grave and his companions leave him, and he can no longer hear the sound of their sandals (footsteps), two angels come to him and make him sit up, and they ask him, ‘What did you say about this man Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)?’ He says, ‘I bear witness that he is the slave of Allaah and His Messenger.’ It is said, ‘Look at your place in Hell which Allaah has replaced for you with a place in Paradise.’” The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “And he sees them both. But as for the kaafir or hypocrite, he says, ‘I do not know, I used to say what the people said.’ It is said, ‘You did not know and you did not follow those who knew.’ Then he is struck a blow with an iron hammer between his ears and he screams a scream which everything around him can hear apart from the two races (of mankind and the jinn).”  (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1222) 

2 –7 Furnishings from Hell are prepared out for him; he is clothed with fire; a door to Hell is opened for him; his grave is made narrow for him; he is struck with a great hammer which, if a mountain were to be struck with it, it would turn to dust; and he is given the tidings of torment in the Hereafter. Hence he will wish that the hour will never come.  

Ahmad (17803) and Abu Dawood (4753) narrated that al-Baraa’ ibn ‘Aazib said: We went out with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) for the funeral of a man from among the Ansaar. We came to the grave and when (the deceased) was placed in the lahd, the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sat down and we sat around him, as if there were birds on our heads (i.e., quiet and still). In his hand he had a stick with which he was scratching the ground. Then he raised his head and said, “Seek refuge with Allaah from the torment of the grave”, two or three times …” – Then he mentioned the soul of the believer and how he is blessed in his grave. Then he said: “But when the disbelieving slave is about to depart this world and enter the Hereafter, there come down to him from heaven angels with black faces, bringing sackcloth, and they sit around him as far as the eye can see. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits by his head, and he says, ‘O evil soul, come forth to the wrath of Allaah and His anger.’ Then his soul disperses inside his body, then comes out cutting the veins and nerves, like a skewer passing through wet wool. When he seizes it, they do not leave it in his hand for an instant before they take it and put it in that sackcloth, and there comes from it a stench like the foulest stench of a dead body on the face of the earth. Then they ascend and they do not pass by any group of angels but they say, ‘Who is this evil soul?’ and they say, ‘It is So and so the son of So and so, calling him by the worst names by which he was known in this world, until they reach the lowest heaven. They ask for it to be opened to them and it is not opened.” Then the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) recited (interpretation of the meaning): 

 

“for them the gates of heaven will not be opened, and they will not enter Paradise until the camel goes through the eye of the needle” [al-A’raaf 7:40] 

He said: “Then Allaah says, ‘Record the book of My slave in Sijjeen in the lowest earth, and return him to the earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them and from it I will bring them forth once again.’ So his soul is cast down.”  Then the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) recited the verse (interpretation of the meaning): 

“and whoever assigns partners to Allaah, it is as if he had fallen from the sky, and the birds had snatched him, or the wind had thrown him to a far off place” [al-Hajj 22:31] 

He said: “Then his soul is returned to his body, and there come to him two angels who make him sit up and they say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He says, ‘Oh, oh, I don’t know.’ They say, ‘What is your religion?’ He says, ‘Oh, oh, I don’t know.’ Then a voice calls out from heaven, ‘Prepare for him a bed from Hell and clothe him from Hell, and open for him a gate to Hell.’ Then there comes to him some of its heat and hot winds, and his grave is constricted and compresses him until his ribs interlock. Then there comes to him a man with an ugly face and ugly clothes, and a foul stench, who says, ‘Receive the bad news, this is the day that you were promised.’ He says, ‘Who are you? Your face is a face which forebodes evil.’ He says, ‘I am your evil deeds.’ He says, ‘O Lord, do not let the Hour come, do not let the Hour come.’” 

This hadeeth was classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani in Ahkaam al-Janaa’iz, p. 156 


8 – Being swallowed up by the earth:

It was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whilst a man was dragging his lower garment out of pride, the earth swallowed him up and he will continue sinking into the earth until the Day of Resurrection.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 5345; Muslim, 3894). 

9- The edge of the mouth being torn to the back of the head

10- The head being smashed with a rock

11- Being burned in a (tannoor) oven

12- Swimming in a river of blood whilst being pelted with stones. 

Al-Bukhaari (1386, 7047) narrated that Samurah ibn Jundub said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) often used to ask his companions, “Has any one of you had a dream?” Then those whom Allaah willed would tell him (about their dreams). One morning he said,

“Last night, two people came to me (in a dream), and woke me up and said, ‘Let’s go!’ I set out with them, and we came across a man who was lying down, with another man standing over him, holding a big rock. He threw the rock at the man's head, smashing it. The rock rolled away, and the one who had thrown it followed it, and picked it up. By the time he came back to the man, his head had been restored to its former state. Then he (the one who had thrown the rock) did the same as he had done before. I said to my two companions, ‘Subhaan Allaah! Who are these two persons?’ They said, ‘Move on!’ So we went on, and came to a man who was lying flat on his back, with another man standing over him, holding an iron hook. He put the hook in the man's mouth and tore off that side of his face to the back (of his neck), and he tore his nose and his eye from front to back in a similar manner. Then he turned to the other side of the man's face and did likewise. No sooner had he finished the second side but the first side was restored to its former state, then he went back and did the same thing again. I said to my two companions, ‘Subhaan Allaah! Who are these two persons?’ They said, ‘Move on!’ So we went on, and came to something like a tannoor (a kind of oven, lined with clay, usually used for baking bread).  – I think the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, in that oven there was much noise and voices. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) added:  - We  looked into it and saw naked men and  women. A flame of fire was reaching them from underneath, and when it reached them, they cried out loudly. I asked them, ‘Who are these?’ They said to me,  ‘Move on!’ So we went on and came to a river – I think he said, red like blood. – In the river there was a man swimming, and on the bank there was a man who had gathered many stones. Whilst the swimmer was swimming, the man who had gathered the stones approached him. The swimmer opened his mouth and the man on the bank threw a stone into it, then the swimmer carried on swimming. Each time he came back, he opened his mouth again, and the man on the bank threw another stone into his mouth. I said to my two companions, ‘Who are these two persons?’ They said, ‘Move on, move on!’ …

I said to them, I have seen many wonders this night. What do all these things mean that I have seen?’ They said: ‘We will tell you. The first man you came across, whose head was being smashed with the rock, is the man who studies the Qur’aan then he neither recites it nor acts upon it, and he goes to sleep, neglecting the obligatory prayers. The man you came across whose mouth, nose and ears were being torn from front to back, is the man who goes out of his house in the morning and tells a lie that is so serious that it spreads all over the world. The naked men and women whom you saw in a structure that resembled an oven are the adulterers and adulteresses. The man you saw swimming in the river with rocks being thrown into his mouth is the one who consumed riba (usury).” 

Al-Haafiz ibn Hajar said: 

This indicates that some sinners will be punished in al-barzakh (the interval between death and the Day of Resurrection).  Fath al-Baari, 12/445 

 

13- Items stolen from the war booty will be set ablaze on the one who stole them:

 Al-Bukhaari (4234) and Muslim (115) narrated that Abu Hurayrah said: “We went out with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) to Khaybar, and Allaah granted us victory. We did not take gold or silver as booty, but we seized goods, food and clothes, then we set out for the valley. Along with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) there was a slave called Rifaa’ah ibn Zayd. When we camped in the valley, the slave of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) stood up and began to unpack his saddlebag, when he was struck by a (stray) arrow which proved fatal. We said, ‘Congratulations to him, for he is a martyr, O Messenger of Allaah.’ The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:  ‘Not so, by the One in Whose hand is the soul of Muhammad, for the small garment that he stole from the booty on the day of Khaybar and which was not part of his share is burning like fire on him.’ The people were very distressed by this. Then a man brought one or two shoelaces and said, ‘O Messenger of Allaah, I found (them) on the day of Khaybar.’ The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘A lace of fire’ or ‘Two laces of fire.’” 

 

14- Along with this physical punishment there will also be a spiritual or mental punishment, which is that in the grave the kaafir will be shown what would have been his place in Paradise if he had obeyed his Lord; this will increase his regret and pain when he realizes the greatness of the blessing that he has missed out on. 

Ahmad (10577) narrated that Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri said: I attended a funeral with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “O people, this ummah will be tested in their graves. When a man is buried and his friends leave him, an angel with a hammer in his hand comes and sits by him and asks, ‘What do you say about this man?’ If he is a believer, he says, ‘I bear witness that there is no god but Allaah and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.’ He says, ‘You have spoken the truth.’ Then a door to Hell is opened for him and he says, ‘This would have been your place if you had disbelieved in your Lord, but because you believed, this is your place.’ Then a door to Paradise is opened for him and he wants to go there, but the angel says to him, ‘Calm down,’ and his grave is made wide and spacious for him. But if he is a kaafir or a hypocrite, (the angel) says to him, ‘What do you say about this man?’ He says, ‘I do not know, I heard the people saying something.’ The angel says, ‘You did not know and you did not follow those who knew and you were not guided.’ Then a door to Paradise is opened for him and he says, ‘This would have been your position if you had believed in your Lord. But because you disbelieved, Allaah has replaced it for you with this.’ Then a gate to Hell is opened for him, and he strikes him a blow with the hammer which is heard by all of Allaah’s creation apart from the two races (of mankind and the jinn).” Some of the people said, “O Messenger of Allaah, there is no one who would have an angel standing by him holding a hammer but he would dumbfounded.” The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Allaah will keep firm those who believe, with the word that stands firm.” [Ibraaheem 14:27 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in his commentary on Kitaab al-Sunnah by Ibn Abi ‘Aasim, 865 

These are some of the kinds of punishment that will befall some sinners in the grave. 

We ask Allaah to grant us refuge from the torment of the grave.

 

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What Is The Belief In The Last Day?

What is meant by belief in the Last Day is: 

Firmly believing that everything that Allaah has told us about in His Book and that His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) has told us about what will happen after death, will indeed happen and come to pass. That includes believing in the signs of the Hour which will happen before the Last Day; in death and things that accompany it when a person is on his deathbed; what comes after death, namely the trial of the grave and torment or blessing therein; the Trumpet-blast and resurrection; the standing and terrors of the Day of Resurrection; the details of the gathering and reckoning; Paradise and its delights, the greatest of which will be looking upon the Face of Allaah; Hell and its torments, the most severe of which will be their being veiled from seeing their Lord. And belief in the Last Day includes acting in accordance with what is implied by these beliefs. 

If this belief is firmly established in a person’s heart, it will bear great fruits, including the following: 

1 – The desire to do acts of obedience and worship, and to strive hard in doing so, in the hope of attaining the rewards of that Day. 

2 – Fear of committing sin or approving of it, for fear of the punishment of that Day. 

3 – The believer will be consoled for whatever he misses out on of worldly luxuries and delights, because of his hope for the delights and rewards of the Hereafter. 

We ask Almighty Allaah to bless us with sincere belief and unshakeable certainty of faith… Ameen. 

See A’laam al-Sunnah al-Manshoorah, 110; Sharh al-Usool al-Thalaathah by Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen, 98-103.

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Major Signs Of The Day Of Judgment

The major portents of the Hour are those which were mentioned by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) in the hadeeth of Hudhayfah ibn Aseed, and there are ten signs: The Dajjaal; the descent of ‘Eesa ibn Maryam (Jesus son of Mary); Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj (Gog and Magog); three landslides, one in the east, one in the west and one in the Arabian Peninsula; the smoke; the rising of the sun from its place of setting; the Beast; and the fire which will drive the people to their place of gathering. These signs will appear one after another, and when the first of these signs appear, the others will come soon after. 

Muslim narrated that Hudhayfah ibn Aseed al-Ghifaari (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) came out to us when we were discussing. He said: “What are you discussing?” They said: “We are talking about the Hour.” He said: “It will never begin until you see ten signs before it.” He mentioned the smoke, the Dajjaal, the Beast, the rising of the sun from its place of setting, the descent of ‘Eesa ibn Maryam (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj, and three landslides, one in the east, one in the west and one in the Arabian Peninsula, and the last of that is a fire which will emerge from Yemen and drive the people to their place of gathering. 

There is no saheeh text which states the order in which these signs will occur, rather the order of some of them is to be understood from the context of the texts.  

Shaykh Muhammad al-Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked: 

Will the major portents of the Hour occur in a certain order? 

He replied: 

The order of some of the major portents is known, and in the case of others the order is not known. Among those whose order is known are the descent of ‘Eesa ibn Maryam, the emergence of Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj, and the Dajjaal, for the Dajjaal will be sent, then ‘Eesa ibn Maryam will come down and kill him, then Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj will emerge. 

Al-Safareeni (may Allaah have mercy on him) listed the order of these portents in his ‘Aqeedah, but some of the order is acceptable whilst some of it is not. But what matters is that there are major signs of the Hour and when they happen, the Hour has drawn nigh. Allaah has decreed portents of the Hour, because it is a serious event and people need to know when it is about to happen.

End quote.

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Minor signs of the Day of Judgment

The lesser signs of the Hour are many, and are mentioned in many saheeh ahaadeeth. We will list them together without quoting the ahaadeeth, because there is not enough room to do so here. We will provide references to trustworthy books on the topic for those who wish to know more about this matter and the evidence for these signs. These include al-Qiyaamah al-Sughra by Shaykh ‘Umar Sulaymaan al-Ashqar [this book is available in English translation under the title The Minor Resurrection, published by International Islamic Publishing House, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia] and Ashraat al-Saa’ah by Shaykh Yoosuf al-Waabil.

 

The lesser signs of the Hour include the following: 

1. The sending of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)

2. The death of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).

3  The conquest of Jerusalem.

4. The plague of Amwaas (Emmaus), which is a city in Palestine.

5. Widespread wealth and lack of need for charity.

6. The appearance of fitan (tribulations). Among the tribulations that occurred in the early years of Islam were: the killing of ‘Uthmaan (may Allaah be pleased with him), the battle of the camel and the battle of Siffeen, the emergence of the Khawaarij, the battle of al-Harrah, and the opinion that the Qur’aan is a creation.

7.  The emergence of claimants to Prophethood, such as the liar Musaylimah and al-Aswad al-‘Anasi.

8.  The appearance of fire in the Hijaaz, which appeared in the middle of the 7th century AH, in 654 AH. This was a great fire, which the scholars who were alive at the time of its appearance and those who came after them described in great detail. Al-Nawawi said: There appeared in our time a fire in Madeenah, in the year six hundred and fifty-four. It was a very great fire on the eastern side of Madeenah, beyond the Harrah, and knowledge of it was widespread throughout Syria and all lands. Those of the people of Madeenah who were present told me about it.

9.  Loss of trust. One of the manifestations of loss of trust is people’s affairs being entrusted to those who are not qualified or able for that.

10.  The taking away of knowledge and the prevalence of ignorance; the taking away of knowledge will occur with the disappearance of the scholars, as it says in al-Saheehayn.

11. The spread of zina (adultery, fornication)

12. The spread of riba (usury, interest)

13. The prevalence of musical instruments.

14. Widespread drinking of alcohol.

15. Shepherds competing in the construction of tall buildings.

16. A slave woman giving birth to her mistress, as is stated in al-Saheehayn. There are several views among the scholars as to what this means. The view favoured by Ibn Hajar is that there will be widespread disobedience among children, so that a child will treat his mother as a master treats his slave woman, with negligence and insults.

17. Widespread killing.

18. Widespread earthquakes.

19. Appearance of landslides, transformations and stones from heaven.

20. Appearance of women who are clothed yet naked.

21. Believer’s dreams coming true.

22. Widespread giving of false testimony and concealment of true testimony.

23. Large numbers of women.

24. The land of the Arabs becoming once again meadows and rivers.

25. The Euphrates will uncover a mountain of gold.

26. Wild animals and inanimate objects will speak to people.

27. The “Romans” will increase in number and fight the Muslims.

28. The conquest of Constantinople.

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When Is The Last Day?

Knowledge of the hour is a matter of the unseen which belongs to Allaah and which He has kept to Himself. He has not told any of His creation of that, including the Prophets, Messengers and the angels who are close to Him. Even the best of the Messengers, our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), did not know when the hour will begin. 

The texts of the Qur’aan and Sunnah clearly indicate that the knowledge of the Hour is something unseen which no created being knows. 

The evidence from the Qur’aan includes the following: 

1 – Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“They ask you about the Hour (Day of Resurrection): ‘When will be its appointed time?’ Say: ‘The knowledge thereof is with my Lord (Alone). None can reveal its time but He. Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth. It shall not come upon you except all of a sudden.’ They ask you as if you have a good knowledge of it. Say: ‘The knowledge thereof is with Allaah (Alone), but most of mankind know not.’” [al-‘Araaf 7:187] 

 

2 – Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“People ask you concerning the Hour, say: ‘The knowledge of it is with Allaah only. What do you know? It may be that the Hour is near!’” [al-Ahzaab 33:63] 

The people used to ask the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) about the time that the hour would begin, so Allaah commanded him to refer the matter to Him: “The knowledge of it is with Allaah only”. 

Ibn Katheer (3/527) said: 

Allaah tells His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) that he has no knowledge of the Hour and that when the people ask him about that, he should refer the matter to Allaah. 

Al-Shanqeeti said (6/604): 

It is known that the word innama (translated here as “only”) has the effect of limiting or restricting the meaning, so what the verse means is: No one knows when the Hour will come except Allaah alone. 

 

3 – Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“They ask you (O Muhammad) about the Hour — when will be its appointed time? You have no knowledge to say anything about it. To your Lord belongs (the knowledge of) the term thereof? You (O Muhammad) are only a warner for those who fear it” [al-Naaz’iaat 79:42-45] 

al-Sa’di said:  

Because knowing the time of the Hour serves no spiritual or worldly purpose for people, rather their interests lie in it being concealed from them, the knowledge of that has been kept from all of creation and Allaah has kept it to Himself. “To your Lord belongs (the knowledge of) the term thereof.” 

 

4 – Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“Verily, Allaah, with Him (Alone) is the knowledge of the Hour, He sends down the rain, and knows that which is in the wombs” [Luqmaan 31:34] 

It was narrated from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The keys of the unknown are five: Allaah has knowledge of the Hour, and He sends down rain, and He knows what is in the wombs, and no person knows what he will earn tomorrow, and no person knows in what land he will die. Verily, Allaah is All-Knower, All-Aware (of things).” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4627. 

And it was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: These five things are known to no one except Allaah; no angel who is close to Allaah and no Messenger who was sent has any knowledge of them. Whoever claims that he has any knowledge of them has disbelieved in the Qur’aan, because he has gone against it. Tafseer al-Qurtubi, 14/82. 

 

Ibn Katheer said (3/462): 

These are the keys of the unseen, knowledge of which Allaah has kept to Himself. So no one knows them until after Allaah has informed him of them. And no angel who is close to Allaah and no Messenger who was sent has any knowledge of the Hour. 

End quote. 

The ahaadeeth which indicate that no one knows when the Hour will begin except Allaah include the following: 

1 – The famous hadeeth of Jibreel, in which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Jibreel, when he asked him when the Hour would begin: “The one who is asked about it does not know more than the one who is asking.” Narrated by Muslim, 8. 

2 – It was narrated that Jaabir ibn ‘Abd-Allaah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: I heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say, one month before he died: “You ask me about the Hour, but the knowledge thereof is only with Allaah.  I swear by Allaah that there is no soul on earth that will live for more than one hundred years.”  Narrated by Muslim, 2538. 

What this hadeeth means is: every soul that was on the face of the earth when the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said these words would not live for more than one hundred years. The hadeeth does not means that the Resurrection would happen within one hundred years. 

And Muslim narrated (2537) that Ibn ‘Umar said: What he meant was that that generation would come to an end. 

This hadeeth shows that there is no possibility that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) could have come to know it after Jibreel asked about it, because that was one month before he died. 

Whoever claims after this that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) knew when the Hour would begin is ignorant, because the verses of the Qur’aan and the ahaadeeth of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) quoted above clearly refute that. 

 

Ibn al-Qayyim said in al-Manaar al-Muneef: 

One of those in our own time who claim to have knowledge clearly told lies when he said that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) knew when the Hour would begin. It was said to him that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said in the hadeeth of Jibreel: “The one who is asked about it does not know more than the one who is asking,” but he misinterpreted that and said that it means, you and I know it. This is one of the worst kinds of ignorance and distortion. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) could not have said to one whom he thought was a Bedouin, you and I know when the Hour will be. But this ignorant man may say that he knew that this was Jibreel, and the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “By the One in Whose hand is my soul, he never came to me in any form but I recognized him, except in this case.” Narrated by Ahmad, 374. Ahmad Shaakir said: Its isnaad is saheeh.  Rather the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) realized that this was Jibreel after a while, as Umar said: A short while passed, then the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “O ‘Umar, do you know who that questioner was?” Narrated by Muslim, 8. This liar says that he knew at the time of questioning that this was Jibreel but he did not tell his companions about that until a while afterwards. Moreover the words “The one who is asked about it does not know more than the one who is asking” are general and include both the one who asked and the one who was asked, regardless of who they may be, so every one who asks and everyone who is asked about the Hour are all the same.

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Events of The Day of Judgment

Allah states in the Quran about the events of the Day of Judgment:

Then when the Horn is blown with one blast, and the earth and the mountains are lifted and leveled with one blow [i.e. stroke] - Then on that Day, the Occurrence [i.e. Resurrection] will occur, And the heaven will split [open], for that Day it is infirm (i.e. weak, enfeebled and unstable). And the angels are at its edges. And there will bear the Throne of your Lord above them, that Day, eight [of them]. That Day, you will be exhibited [for judgment]; not hidden among you is anything concealed (i.e. any person or any secret you might attempt to conceal). So as for he who is given his record in his right hand, he will say, ?Here, read my record! Indeed, I was certain that I would be meeting my account.? So he will be in a pleasant life - In an elevated Garden, Its [fruit] to be picked hanging near. [They will be told], ?Eat and drink in satisfaction for what you put forth (i.e. literally, advanced in anticipation of reward in the Hereafter) in the days past.? But as for he who is given his record in his left hand, he will say, ?Oh, I wish I had not been given my record, and had not known what is my account. I wish it [i.e. my death] had been the decisive one (i.e. ending life rather than being the gateway to eternal life). My wealth has not availed me. Gone from me is my authority.? [God will say], ?Seize him and shackle him. Then into Hellfire drive him. Then into a chain whose length is seventy cubits insert him.? Indeed, he did not used to believe in God, the Most Great. (Quran, 69:13-33)

The Prophet Muhammad taught that three things continue to benefit a [believing] person even after death - charity which he had given (which continues to benefit others), beneficial knowledge which he had left behind (i.e. authored or taught), and supplication on his behalf by a righteous child (Narrated by Saheeh Muslim).

Thus, there are very convincing reasons to believe in life after death:

1) All the Prophets of God have called their people to believe in it.

2) Whenever a human society is built on the basis of this belief, it has been the most ideal and peaceful society, free of social and moral evils.

3) History bears witness that whenever this belief is rejected collectively by a group of people in spite of the repeated warning of the Prophet, the group as a whole has been punished by God even in this world.

4) Moral, aesthetic and rational faculties of man endorse the possibility of the life after death.

5) God's attributes of Justice and Mercy have no meaning if there is no life after death. 

 

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The Distribution of The Books of Deeds on The Day of Resurrection

The distribution of the books of deeds: 

When people have been brought to account for their deeds, each person will be given the book that contains the record of all his deeds. The believer will be given his book in his right hand, as a sign of honour. He will be the one who is saved and happy on the Day of Resurrection. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand, He surely, will receive an easy reckoning, And will return to his family in joy!” [al-Inshiqaaq 84:7-9] 

“Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand will say: ‘Here! read my Record! Surely, I did believe that I shall meet my Account!’ So he shall be in a life, well-pleasing. In a lofty Paradise, The fruits in bunches whereof will be low and near at hand. Eat and drink at ease for that which you have sent on before you in days past! [al-Haaqqah 69:19-24] 

But the kaafirs, hypocrites and followers of misguidance will be given their books in their left hands, from behind their backs. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “But whosoever is given his Record behind his back, He will invoke (for his) destruction, And he shall enter a blazing Fire” [al-Inshiqaaq 84:10-12] 

“But as for him who will be given his Record in his left hand, will say: ‘I wish that I had not been given my Record! And that I had never known how my Account is! Would that it had been my end (death)! My wealth has not availed me; My power (and arguments to defend myself) have gone from me!’ (It will be said): ‘Seize him and fetter him; Then throw him in the blazing Fire. Then fasten him with a chain whereof the length is seventy cubits!’” [al-Haaqqah 69:25-32] 

 

When the people have been given their books, it will be said to them: 

“This Our Record speaks about you with truth. Verily, We were recording what you used to do (i.e. Our angels used to record your deeds)” [al-Jaathiyah 45:29] 

“Read your book. You yourself are sufficient as a reckoner against you this Day” [al-Isra’ 17:14]

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The Weighing of Deeds on The Day of Resurrection

The Balance will be set up to weigh people’s deeds. Al-Qurtubi said: “When the Reckoning is completed, then people’s deeds will be weighed, because the weighing has to do with reward and punishment. So it is apt that it should come after the Reckoning. The Reckoning is to evaluate the deeds, and the weighing is to determine the amount of reward or punishment.” 

The texts indicate that the Balance is a real Balance, with two pans, in which people’s deeds will be weighed. It is a huge Balance, the size of which is known only to Allaah. The scholars differed as to whether it is one Balance in which people’s deeds will be weighed, or whether there are numerous Balances, so that each person will have his own Balance. Those who said that there will be numerous balances quote as evidence the fact that the word appears in plural form in some verses, for example (interpretation of the meaning): 

“And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything. And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it. And Sufficient are We to take account” [al-Anbiya’ 21:47] 

Those who say that it will be one Balance quote as evidence the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): “The Balance will be set up on the Day of Resurrection, and if the heavens and the earth were to be weighed in it, it would be sufficient to carry them. And the angels will say, ‘O Lord, who is this for?’ Allaah will say, ‘For whomsoever I will from among My slaves.’” (al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, 941). They interpret the verse in which the plural form is mentioned as referring to the large number of things to be weighed, namely words, deeds, records and people.  

One of the things that indicate that words will also be weighed is the hadeeth narrated by Abu Hurayrah, according to which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Two words which are light on the tongue but will weigh heavily in the Balance and are beloved to the Most Merciful: Subhaan Allaah il-‘Azeem, Subhaan Allaahi wa bi Hamdihi (Glory be to Allaah the Almighty, Glory and praise be to Allaah).” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 6406). 

The fact that deeds will be weighed is indicated by the saheeh hadeeth narrated from Abu’l-Darda’ who said: “I heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say, ‘There is nothing that will be placed in the Balance that will weigh more heavily than a good attitude. The one who has a good attitude will attain thereby the status of one who fasts and prays (a great deal).’” (Saheeh Sunan al-Tirmidhi, 1629) 

 

Another thing that indicates that the books of deeds will be weighed is the hadeeth of al-Bitaaqah (card) from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas who said, the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:

“Allaah will separate a man belonging to my ummah in the presence of all creatures and will spread ninety-nine scrolls for him, each scroll extending as far as the eye can see. Then He will say, ‘Do you object to anything in this? Have my scribes who keep note wronged you?’ He will say, ‘No, my Lord.’ He will ask him, ‘Do you have any excuse?’ He will say, ‘No my Lord.’ Allaah will say, ‘On the contrary, you have with Us a good deed, and you will not be wronged this Day.’ A slip of paper will then be brought out, on which are the words ‘Ashhadu an laa ilaaha ill-Allaah wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhu wa rasooluhu  (I  bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and His Messenger).’ Allaah will say, ‘Bring your weight (i.e., the scrolls).’ The man will say, ‘O Lord, what is this slip of paper in comparison to these scrolls?’ And He will reply, ‘You will not be wronged.’ The scrolls will then be put in one side of the Balance and the slip of paper in the other, and the scrolls will become light and the slip of paper heavy, for nothing could compare in weight to the name of Allaah.” (Saheeh Sunan al-Tirmidhi, 2127)  

One of the things that indicate that people will be weighed is the hadeeth narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him), according to which the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “A huge fat man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection, and he will not weigh more before Allaah than the wing of a gnat. Recite: ‘and on the Day of Resurrection, We shall assign no weight for them’ [al-Kahf 18:105 – interpretation of the meaning].” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4729).

It is also indicated by the fact that Ibn Mas’ood was trying to break a siwaak branch from an araak tree and he had thin legs and the wind started to buffet him, so the people laughed at him. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “What are you laughing at?” They said, “O Prophet of Allaah, because his legs are so thin.” He said, “By the One in Whose hand is my soul, they will weigh more heavily in the Balance than Mount Uhud.” Its isnaad was classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Sharh al-Tahhaawiyyah, no. 571, p. 418

We ask Allaah to make us weigh heavily in the Balance.

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