Aslamu Alaikum, two questions:
1. Will everyone suffer the squeezing of the grave? I have read even the prophets are not spared. Is there anything one can do to avoid this or make it as easy as possible?? Please help
2. I have read in many hadith that when a person is questioned in the grave, depending on his faith and deeds, either a door from paradise will open for him or from hell. My question is, when it comes to resurrection and the questioning, wouldn’t a person who was shown the door to paradise already know where he is heading? This would mean people would already know where they are heading before resurrection day, by way of the grave.
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.
1. In the grave there will be different forms of squeezing. One squeezing will assume the form of punishment. Whilst another will be a means of love and compassion. Just as a mother wraps her arms around her child and shows affection towards him. Similarly the grave will squeeze some in a show of affection.
In the grave every deceased will be posed with three questions. Who is your lord? What is your religion? Who is this individual who was sent in your midst?
If an individual had true belief in Allah Ta’ala and lived in accordance to the commands of Allah Ta’ala he will provide the appropriate answers. Thereafter his grave will expand 70 cubits, a bedding of paradise will be laid for him and a door leading to paradise will be opened for him.
However one who did not have true belief in Allah Ta’ala or who ascribed partners to Allah Ta’ala will be unable to provide answers to these questions. He will then be punished in his grave. He will be made to don fire, a bed of fire will be laid for him and a door leading to Hell will open for him. Thereafter his grave will begin to contract until his ribs will intersert.
Depending on the type of deeds one has he will be will be treated accordingly.
Nabi salallāhu ῾alayhi wasallam has advised us to seek refuge from the punishment of the grave. You can recite the following supplication for seeking refuge from the punishment of the grave;
اللهم إني أعوذ بك من عذاب القبر
Allhuma inni a’uwdhubika min ‘adhaabil qabr
“Oh Allah I seek refuge in you from the punishment of the grave.” (Musnad Ahmad vol.4 pg. 496; Muassasatir Risalah)
2. Yes, the conditions of the grave will be a sign of what is to come after the grave. In a narration recorded by Imam Tirmizi rahimahullāh, Nabi salallāhu ῾alayhi wasallam said,
إن القبر أول منزل من منازل الآخرة، فإن نجا منه فما بعده أيسر منه، وإن لم ينج منه فما بعده أشد منه
“Verily the grave is the first stages of the stages of the Hereafter. If one is saved therein then whatever is after will be easier then it. However if one is not saved therein then the stages thereafter will be more severe than it.” (Tirmizi vol.4 pg.130; Darul Gharbul Islami)
However due to the severity of the different stages of the Hereafter one will still have concern for one’s final fate. To understand this take the example of a student who is well prepared for an examination. The student knows he has mastered the material to be covered in the exam. However at the time of the examination he still experiences levels of stress and anxiety. The possibility of going blank, inability to retain some information or inaccuracies in writing leaves him nerve wrecked. Only after the examination does he feel a sense of relief.
Similarly whilst people may know of their final fate, they will still have high levels of tension and anxiety in the court of Allah Ta’ala. Only when Allah Ta’ala has given an individual the official certificate of success will he be at ease.
And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best
Mawlana Ali bin Cassim,
Student Darul Iftaa
Los Angeles, U.S.A
Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.
وأما ضغطة القبر لبعض المؤمنين بل الأكابر الموحدين كسعد بن معاذ سيد الأنصار الذي حمل جنازته سبعون ألف ملك، واهتز لموته عرش الرحمن، فإنما هو ضمة للأرض كمعانقة الأم المشتاقة لولدها (مرقاة المفاتيح شرح مشكاة المصابيح، ج3ص1181، دار الفكر)
 استعيذوا بالله من عذاب القبر (مشكاة المصابيح، ج1ص 512، المكتب الإسلامي)