Saturday 7 Oct 2017
Chapter of Prayer: The Washing and Shrouding of the Deceased
- Washing the deceased is mentioned in Multiple narrations and is obligatory for those acquainted with the rulings and conditions and aware of the death.
- The Prophet ((صلى الله عليه وسلم)) washed the deceased and was washed himself upon his death
- A deceased man should be washed by a man, and likewise a deceased woman should be washed by another woman. (NOTE: there are two exceptions which will be mentioned below)
- The person who does the washing should be trustworthy and knowledgeable in this regard as this is a special act with rulings to it
- Priority of who has the right to wash:
- If a person specifies in his will that a person should carry out the washing, then this person has the foremost right provided that person is capable and knowledgeable in this regard. For example, Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) stated in his will to be washed by Asmaa Bint Umays, his wife (may Allah be pleased with her). This also shows that Husband can wash the body of his wife, and likewise a Wife can wash the body of her husband. Another example of specifying a person is that Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) specified in his will that he should be washed by Muhammad Ibn Sîrîn (may Allah be pleased with him)
- After a person specified in will, then the father has the next most right to do the washing.
- If it is not possible for the father to wash then it becomes the right of the Grandfather
- if that is not possible then the next of kin/relatives.
- If no family or next of kin can be found to do the washing, then someone outside of his family should do so.
- The order above applies to women also, e.g. if a woman specifies a specific woman to do the washing then she will have priority, and after that it is the closest female relative etc
- NOTE: one who is acquainted with the rulings should be given priority over one that does not have the required knowledge and ability to carry out the washing
- In General, a deceased man is to be washed by a man and likewise for the women. An exception to this is the aforementioned where a Husband washes his wife or a wife washes her deceased husband. A further example of this is that Ali Ibn Abî Tâlib (may Allah be pleased with him) washed the body of his wife Fatima (may Allah be pleased with her)
- If a small child under the age of 7 dies, then that child can be washed by either a man or a woman. For example, Ibrahim (may Allah be pleased with him) the baby son of the prophet was washed by women when he died.
- If a child is 7 or older then that child should be washed by the correct gender (Males wash the males etc)