Conditions After Death

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Mahmoodiyah


What will happen to a Muslim when he or she dies?? please tell me step by step. !!Thank you very very much!!




Allah says, “O mankind! Keep your duty to your Sustainer and fear a day when the parent will not be able to avail the child in aught, nor the child to avail the parent. Lo! Allah’s promise is very true. Let not the life of the world beguile you, nor let the deceiver beguile you, in regard to Allah.

Lo! Allah! With Him is the knowledge of the Hour. He sends down the rain, and knows that which is in the wombs. No soul knows what it will earn tomorrow, and no soul knows in what land it will die. Lo! Allah is All- Knowing, Fully Aware” (31: 33-34)

In another verse, Allah says, “Every soul will taste of death. And you will be paid on the day of Resurrection only that which you have fairly earned. So who is removed from the fire and is made to enter paradise, he indeed is triumphant. The life of this world is but comfort of illusion” (3: 185)

In another verse, Allah says, “Lo! Those who expect not meeting with Us but desire the life of the world and feel secure therein, and those who are neglectful of Our revelations, there home will be fire because of what they used to earn” (10: 8-9)

When a person dies, he will be shrouded, then his debts will be paid off from the entire amount of his wealth, then his bequests will be discharged from one third of the remaining wealth after the debts have been paid off, then the remaining wealth will be distributed amongst his heirs, according to the Qur’an, Sunnah and Ijma’ of the Ummah.

Islam requires us to believe that we are all responsible beings and will one day have to render an account before Allah for all that we have done in our earthly sojourn.

Every man possesses a body, life and soul and what we call death is nothing but the separation of the body and life from the soul. The soul will not die; it is immortal, while body is mortal. After death, it will have a continuous existence in another world, where it will reap the fruits of its actions, good or bad, done in this world. Allah says, “Beautified for men is the love for desirable things, such as: women, children, heaped-up mounds of gold, silver, branded horses, cattle and crops. These are entertainments of the worldly life. And Allah, to Him alone is the excellent return.

Say: “Should I not inform you of anything better than all that. For those who ward-off evil there are gardens by their Sustainer with streams flowing beneath it – they will abide in it perpetually – and pure spouses, and Allah’s pleasure.” And Allah is an Overseer of those servants

Who plead, that: “O our Rabb! Indeed we brought faith, therefore forgive us our sins, and protect us from the chastisement of the fire.”     

They are those who are steadfast, truthful, humble, who spend (in charitable causes) and who beg for forgiveness during the hours of dawn.” (Surah Al ‘Imraan Verse 14-17)

At death, the soul leaves the body. All things are now absolutely clear to that soul- The realities concerning all or which one was unaware during his lifetime or chose to ignore as explained in Surah Qaaf verse 21-23.Allah says, “And each soul will come, along with whom there will be one who will drive him forward and one witness.

Indeed you have been unmindful of this, now We have removed from you your veil, hence keen is your sight today.

And the angel with him will say: “Here is that which I have ready with me.” Nabi (SAW) reported, “When one of you dies, he is shown his place (in the hereafter) morning and evening. If he is from the people of Paradise, then among the people of Paradise. If he is from the people of Hell, then among the people of Hell. And it will be said to him, ‘This is your place until Allah resurrects you on the day of Judgement.” (Bukhari, Muslim). Thus each soul remains until the Day of Reckoning (according to its preview of the Hereafter), feeling either sadness and regret or happiness and reassurance. Nabi (SAW) says, “The grave is the first station among the stations of the hereafter.” (Tirmidhi). In a long and detailed Hadith, Nabi (SAW) described how two angels come to the believer in a beautiful form, taking his sweet smelling soul gently up to the seventh heaven where Allah registers him and the angels question him about his Rabb, his religion and his Prophet. After he has answered correctly, ‘My Rabb is Allah; my religion is Islam and my prophet is Muhammad (SAW),” his soul is returned to its body in the grave, which is expanded for him as far as he can see. Then his good deeds come to keep his company in the form of a handsome man telling him to look forward to all that will please him. One’s reward or punishment begins from the instant of death.

There are three stages that will follow after death. The first stage runs from death to Resurrection. It is called Barzakh (the interval between death and Resurrection). In this other world, the angels question him about his spiritual state. If he is a believer, he gives correct answers; whereupon the angels impart to him the glad tidings that he is going to live in peace and happiness till the Last Day. If his answer is otherwise, that is he turns out to be an infidel or hypocritical Muslim, he is, at once placed under dreadful chastisements which will not cease before the day of Reckoning.

The next stage comprises of the Day of Resurrection and Reckoning. In this stage, those who will be worthy of deliverance on the basis of Firm Imaan and good deeds will be awarded a place in paradise and those who will turn out to be guilty and deserving of divine chastisement will be consigned to Hell.

After this, the final stage will commence. The dwellers of Paradise will live in a state of bliss, supremely immune from every pain, anxiety or suffering and exulting in the bounties of their Sustainer the like of which they would not have dreamt of in the world, while those that will be condemned to Hell will have to live in unmitigated misery and distress. There will be for them nothing but horrible agony and castigation. This will be the ultimate stage after death. When the appointed hour has arrived, the whole universe will undergo such drastic changes as no one can imagine. In the early Makkan Surahs, Allah gives terrifying descriptions of some of these events in order to awaken man to the realisation that Allah will manifest His absolute power and control on that Day over all things, that He will restore life to the dead and that all beings will be totally helpless and answerable to Him. In Surah Infitaar verses 1-5 Allah says, When the sky will cleave asunder,

And when the stars will be dispersed,                                                                                 

And when the oceans will be caused to burst forth,

And when the graves will be overturned,

Each soul will know what it advanced and left behind.”

The Hour will be herald by a trumpet blast which will strike everyone in the heavens and upon the earth dead from terror, except whom Allah wills. Then upon the second blast, life will be restored to the dead as is explained in Surah Zumar verses 39:68. Allah says, “And the trumpet will be sounded, and then all those in the heavens and all those in the earth will fall unconscious, except he whom Allah wills. Thereafter, it will be sounded once again, then in no time all men will be standing, gaping on.

 Each will feel as one who has slept but for a short while, having been awakened when the soul returned to the body. Thus every soul will be returned to life in the same psychological condition it was at the time of death. In support of this statement are the words of Nabi (SAW), “Every servant will be brought back to life in accordance with the state in which he died.” (Muslim)

The second creation of man will occur in a way similar to the growth of plants upon the earth as is mentioned in the Qur’an. In authentic Ahaadith, Nabi (SAW) explained, “…then water will descend from the heavens and they (the people) will grow as vegetation grows. There is no part of man which will not have decayed except for one bone, which is the base of the tail, from which creation will be developed on the Day of Judgement. (Bukhari, Muslim)

In Muslim, there is a narration in which Nabi (SAW) says, “Every part of the son of Adam is consumed by the earth except for the base of the tail. He was created from it and he will be reassembled from it.”

All creatures will then be gathered together for Reckoning, each one will be alone, stripped of family ties and friends. In Saheeh Muslim, there is a Hadith in which Nabi (SAW) says, “People will be gathered on a land that is white, untrodden, pure and unowned by anyone. They will be gathered as they were at birth – barefoot, naked and uncircumcised – but they will be too preoccupied to notice each other. This day every person will be concerned with the Reckoning that awaits him, no longer thinking of those he loved in his earthly life – even being willing to sacrifice them to save himself, if only that was possible, as is mentioned in Surah Ma’arij Verses 11-14. Allah says, Although they will be given sight of each other. The guilty will wish, if only he could ransom himself from the torment of that Day, by offering his children, And his spouse, and his brother,

And his family that gave him shelter,

And entirely all those in the land; then it (the ransom) provide for him safety.” On that day, Allah will fold up the heavens, taking them in His right hand; and He will fold up the earth taking it in His left Hand, saying, “I am Sovereign. Where are the tyrants? Where are the arrogant?”

Then there will be the Reckoning. All deeds, intentions and conditions will be taken into account. No minor amount of good or evil will be ignored in His register as is mentioned in Surah Kahaf, verse 49 and Surah Zilzaal, verses 7-8. Every person will be given his record, in front of the creation and he will be told, “Read your own record. Sufficient as an accountant against you today is yourself.” (Surah Al-Israa, verse 14)

Concerning the believer who had sinned at times, Nabi (SAW) related that he will be confronted privately by his Sustainer, who will say, “Do you know that you have committed such and such a sin,” mentioning each sin one by one until the servant has admitted all of them and he sees that he can only be doomed to destruction. Then Allah will say, “I had concealed it for you in the world, and I forgive it for you today.” Then he will be given his record containing only the good that he did.

Ahaadith from Saheeh Muslim and Saheeh Bukhari explain that a narrow bridge will be erected over Hell, and everyone will be made to pass over it. The best of people will cross it at the speed of lightening, others at the speed of wind, others at the speed of horses and others will cross it more slowly, some crawling on their hands and knees. The wrongdoers and the unjust will not succeed in crossing it but will be seized by claws like giant thorns along the path, pulling them off into the fire. Some of the believers will escape untouched, others narrowly escaping after having been scratched. Then those successful in crossing will proceed on to Paradise.

It is mentioned in some prophetic traditions that there are those among the believers who will enter the Fire for a time due to the gravity of their sins. It is possible that one might not be forgiven if he did not repent before his death. It is true, as well, that every soul will be compensated in full at the time of Judgement, and that even animals will obtain their rights. So if one has been unjust to others, then he has, in reality, been unjust to himself since he will have to pay the price. Nabi (SAW) has referred to such persons as ‘bankrupt’ because he will come forward on the day of Judgement with some good deeds, such as prayers, fasting and Zakaah, but if he had wronged others during his lifetime, those people will all take their compensation from his good deeds until, when there are no good deeds left, they will unload their bad deeds upon him, one by one, until justice is restored. Thus he will be thrown into the fire. (Muslim)

There are a lot of books written on this subject e.g. Fadaail-e-Sadaqat by Moulana Zakariah, Ahkaamul Mayyit by Doctor Abdul Hay Sahib.

And Allah Ta’ala knows best

Nezaam bin Yahya Ali

Attested to as correct by:

Mufti Muhammad Ashraf

Darul Iftaa

Jameah Mahmoodiyah



03 September 2005

28 Rajab 1426

This answer was collected in 2012 from the website of Jameah Mahmoodiyah, South Africa. The original website no longer exists.

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