In the name of Allāh, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

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What to do at the time of death (info for relatives)

بِسۡمِ اللهِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِيۡمِ

The attitude of the true believer to sickness and suffering is that it expiates sins and raises the ranks of the believer to a station determined for him/ her by Allāh (). 

  1. When the signs of death becomes obvious, some people like to place the dying person lie on his back with Qibla on his right and turning the face slightly towards the Qibla if possible.   

  2. In the vicinity of the dying person recite the kalima, “Ašhadu an lā ilāha illā llāhu wa-ašhadu anna Muḥammadan rasūlu-llāh,” in a voice such that the dying person hears it but do not ask the dying person to recite it. This is a time of great trial, who knows what he might say or do under such stress. After the dying person has recited the kalima once, leave it at that. The purpose is to try to ensure that the last words of the dying person is the kalima.  

  3. Do not discuss worldly things. Do not say anything which diverts the attention of the dying to the concerns of worldly affairs. Say good things and positive thoughts.

  4. Some say that reciting surah Yasin lightens the hardship of death and should be recited in the vicinity of the dying, howver, there is no authentic Sunnah to support the specific reciting of surah Yasin at the time of death, nevertheless, it comes under doing good things in the presence of the dying.

  5. When death comes all those concerned should recite, “Innā lillāhi wa innā ilayhi rāji'ūn,” and recite the dua, “Allāhumma'-jurni fee musībatī wa 'akhliflī khayran.”  

  6. Soon after death the following should be done: 

  •  The eyes of the deceased should be closed. 

  • All the limbs should be straightened, so the arms are by the side, parallel to the body and the legs closed. The fingers should be straightened. Do not use force to straighten the limbs. 

  • The mouth should be carefully closed by placing a bandage or strip of cloth around the lower jaw and tied at the top of the head. 

  • The ankles should be gently fastened together with a bandage to keep the legs together. 

  • The patient should be wrapped in a clean sheet and transported to the mortuary. 

  • Anybody in a state requiring ghusl, a woman in a state of menstruation or post-childbirth should not be allowed near the dead body. 

  • Place some incense near the deceased if available. 

  • Do not recite the holy Qurʾān near the deceased before ghusl of the body. 

  1. Inform the remaining family members, relatives and friends to prepare for funeral. 

  2. Make arrangements to bury the deceased as swiftly as possible.