This guide explains what happens at a Muslim funeral:
Muslims commonly believe that the present life is a trial in preparation for the eternal life to come. According to the Quran, Muslims will only be allowed entry into Paradise if their good deeds in life outweigh the bad.
According to Islamic law, the deceased should be buried as soon as possible.
Prior to a Muslim funeral, the body of the deceased must be washed (Ghusl) three times and shrouded (Kafan). Same-sex family members usually give Ghusl. However, some Muslim communities will allow the husband or wife of the deceased to take part in the preparations.
Once cleaned and prepared, the deceased is covered in a white sheet and is laid upon three large white sheets of material.
Before being transported to the mosque, the deceased is wrapped in the sheets and secured with ropes; one tied above the head, two tied around the body, and one tied below the feet. There is no viewing of the body before the funeral service.
Family and friends of the deceased will gather in the prayer room, study room or courtyard of the mosque to perform Salat al-Janazah (funeral prayers).
The Muslim funeral service is led by an Imam (Islamic leader) and includes readings from the Quran.
Following a Muslim funeral service, the deceased is taken to the cemetery for burial. Traditionally, only men are allowed to attend the burial, though some Muslim communities may allow women to attend.
The grave should be at right angles to the direction of Mecca, with the deceased placed on their right side facing the Islamic holy city. Wood and stones should be placed on top of the body to prevent direct contact between the person and the soil. Cremation is prohibited for Muslims.
After a Muslim funeral service and burial, family will gather in their home and receive guests. During the first three days of mourning, the community usually provide food for the family. Mourning typically lasts for 40 days but can vary depending on the family.
Source: Muslim Burial Council
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