What Happens at a Muslim Funeral Service?

There are several religions worldwide, and Islam is one of the most widespread today. Like other religions, funerals are held when a follower of Islam passes away, but the funeral service is slightly different from those of Christianity and Judaism, for example. If you want to know more about Muslim funeral services, we’ve composed a helpful article about it here.

A Traditional Muslim Funeral Service

Like all other major religions, Muslims believe in life after death, so it’s essential that the deceased has a peaceful funeral service. Unlike many other funeral services in the major religions, Muslims are not allowed to mourn their deceased relatives excessively. So a Muslim funeral is supposed to be arranged immediately after the death is confirmed.

When a Muslim departs this life, family and friends gather in the home of the deceased to pray together. According to Islam, a Muslim person should be buried immediately after death. However, before the burial, the body should be washed and then wrapped in two clean pieces of cloth. Cleansing the body is partly to get rid of extra fluids and partly to prepare the body religiously for a final prayer. In Islam, cremation is forbidden because the body must not be harmed before departure from this world.

Once the body is purified, it’s placed on a bier and, according to tradition, two men related to the deceased carry him or her to the burial site. Once there, the participants pray together while the body is buried in the tomb facing Mecca. The grave is not allowed to be walked upon, and no ornaments may adorn it. 

There’s no special dress code at a Muslim funeral, but if the service occurs in a mosque, participants should remove their shoes and women should cover their hair.

The Mourning Period in Islam

As mentioned earlier, Islam does not allow Muslims to mourn excessively. This is simply because they don’t see the end of earthly life as anything other than the beginning of a new chapter in life. 

However, Muslims are required to mourn for three days, whereas widows mourn for a more extended period, namely four months and ten days. During this period, widows couldn’t remarry or interact with non-mahrams, men they were otherwise permitted to marry. This is to make sure that the widow isn’t pregnant with the deceased child before marrying someone new.

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