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IslamiCity > Articles > The Stupor of Death
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I am leaving this world ... I am departing from my friends... I am to taste death... To Allah I am going ...I don't know whether my soul will go to Paradise and then I should congratulate it, or to hell so that I will console it.
Audio The Stupor of Death

The Stupor of Death
6/7/2008 - Religious Social Science - Article Ref: ic0806-3589
Number of comments: 15
Opinion Summary: Agree:14  Disagree:0  Neutral:1
By: Dr. Ahmad H. Sakr
IslamiCity* -

Death is a mystery and an illusion to all human beings and irrespective of color, nationality, ethnic, social, economic, or religious background. The Process of death that every person will go through is also a taboo, which is not really discussed on a normal basis, nor is it easy to write about, or even to go through. Since everyone is to taste death, its taste would be bitter, sour, or sweet, depending on the individuals relationship with Allah (The Creator).

The following is a summary of the verses revealed in the Qur'an about the process of death and the pain that a person has to go through.

In Surah or chapter Qaf, Allah (swt) informs us that the state of death is a state of unconsciousness. The Qur'an states the following:  And the stupor of death comes in truth. "This was the thing which you were trying to escape!" [50:19]

Yusuf Ali in his explanatory note to the above (#4955) says the following:

What is Stupor unconsciousness to this probationary life will be the Opening of the eyes to the next world: for Death is the Gateway between the two. Once through that Gateway man will realize how the things which he neglected or looked upon as remote are the intimate Realities, and the things which seemed to loom large in his eyes in this world were shadows that have fled. The things he wanted to avoid are the things that have really come to pass. Both Good and Evil will realize the Truth now in its intensity.

In Surah Al-An'am (The Cattle), Allah (swt) informs us about the agonies of death. The Qur'an states the following:

If you could but see how the wicked (do fare) in the agonies of death! -the angels stretch forth their hands; (Saying), "Yield up your souls: this day shall you receive your reward -a chastisement of disgrace for that you used to tell lies against Allah and scornfully to reject of His Signs!" [6:93]

In Surah Al-Waqi'ah (The Inevitable Event), Allah (swt) teaches us that when the soul reaches the throat, no one can bring life back. The Qur'an is explicit about this idea:

Then why do you not (intervene) when (the soul of the dying man) reaches the throat, -And you all the while (sit) looking on, -But We are nearer to him than you, and yet you see not -Then why do you not, -if you are exempt from (future) account -Call back the soul, if you are true (in your claim of independence)? [56:83-87]

In Surah Al-Qiyanlah (The Resurrection) Allah (swt) stresses the idea about the pain of death. The Qur'an states the following:

Yes, when (the soul) reaches to the collar-bone (in its exit) And there will be a cry, "Who is an enchanter (to restore him)?" And he will think that it was (the time) of Parting; And one leg will be joined with another: That day the drive will be (all) to your Lord!" [75:26-30]


Death Experiences Of The Scholars

Abu Bakr

1. When the first Khalifa, Abu Bakr (R), was dying, his daughter, Aisha (R), recited a poem. He told her to recite a Verse from the Qur'an in Surah Qaf:

"And the stupor of death come in truth. "This was the thing which you were trying to escape!" [50:19]

He told her to pick up his two pieces of clothing (thawb), wash them, and then use them as his funereal attire. He said:

"It is more important for the living to have new clothing than the dead." 

When his relatives found out that he was very sick, they asked if they could bring a doctor to look at him. 

He said that the Doctor (Allah (swt)) had already seen him, and had told him:

"You are to do what you want..."

Imam Al-Hussein

It was narrated by Muhammad the son of Imam Al-Hassan that:

When Imam Hussein recognized that people had already surrounded him, he recognized that surely he was going to be killed. He said to his companions:

"You have seen what is going on . . Life has changed.. People are full of ingratitude...Favors don't exist. . My life is like someone on an unhealthy farm . . Don't you see that Truth (Haqq) is not being practiced. . Falsehood is not corrected . . Therefore, a Mumin (Strong Believer) loves to meet Allah (swt). I see death as a happiness, and life with criminals as a crime."

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