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Salatul-Mayyit [Salat over the Dead Person]

1. The Salat over the Mayyit (dead) is a Kifa'i Wajib. That is performing Ghuslul-Mayyit, wrapping it in the Kafan [shroud], and performing the Salat, over it, are all Kifa'i Wajibs, so, when a Muslim dies and somebody, or some people, perform the Salat over him, the others would be exempted from performing it. But if they have neglected the body and nobody offered to perform the Salat over it, then all of them would be considered sinners.

2. This Salat is not Wajib on a Mayyit who has not yet reached 6 years of age.1

3. The Salat is performed over the dead after giving it the Ghusl, anointing it with the Hunut2, and wrapping it in the Kafan.

How to Perform the Salat over the Mayyit

1. The body is stretched on its back, with its head to the right, and it; legs to the left of the Musalli, who is to face the Qiblah.

2. The Musalli makes the Niyyah that he performs Salatul-Mayyit, and starts the Salat, which consists of five Takbirs3, as follows:

a. The Musalli says the Takbir and the Shahadatan [Tashahhud].

b. He says the second Takbir and sends blessings on Muhammad and Alee Muhammad,

c. He says the third Takbir and asks forgiveness and pardon for the Mu’minun [the believers].

d. He says the fourth Takbir and asks forgiveness and pardon for the Mayyit. If the Mayyit was a child, he is to say: "Allahumma-J'alhu Li'abawayhi Wa Lana Salafan Wa Faratan Wa Ajran”.

e. He says the fifth Takbir and finishes the Salat.

Explanations

1. There is no Qira'ah in this Salat as is in the daily Salats, nor Ruku nor Sujud, and it does not need Taharah.4

2. The women are allowed to perform the Salat over a male Mayyit, as the males are allowed to perform it over a female Mayyit.

3. It is Mustahabb to perform this Salat in Jama’ah.

4. If a Mayyit was buried without performing the Salat over it, negligently or for any other reason, or the Salat which has already been performed was not correct, the Salat would be performed over its grave in the same original manner as usually done before burial.

Discussion

Q1. Tell which of the following Salats is correct and which is Batil.
a. A Musalli, without being Tahir performed Salatul-Mayyit.

b. A Musalli performed Salatul-Mayyit over a dead body with a curtain in between.

c. A Musalli, who has performed Salatul-Mayyit without facing the Qiblah.

Q2. How many Takbirs are there in Salatul-Mayyit?

  • 1. The Shafi’is and the Malikis say that, in the case of a child, if the child cried afler birth, the Salat is to be performed over it. The Hanbalis and the Hanafis say: The Salat is to be performed over it, if it stayed 4 months in it’s mother's womb.
  • 2. Al-Hunut is to anoint the 7 parts of Sujud with camphor. The Sujud parts are: the forehead, the two palms, the two knees and the two tips of the big toes of the feet.
  • 3. The four Islamic sects [the Hanafis, the Hanbalis, the Shafi'is and the Malikis say that only 4 Takbirs are Wajib.
  • 4. The four sects conditioned for the correctness of the Salat that the Taharah is to be observed, as in the incumbent Salat.