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July 7th, 2011

Advantages of a Muslim burial

Submitted by Rashid Jahangiri.

Growing up in densely and over populated country Pakistan, where graveyards and tombs have created traffic congestions. Lives in this world for living has become “hell” in some way for those who live near the dead. I was of the opinion that only solution for this problem is cremation and Muslims should adopt it. About couple of decades ago I discussed it with Mian Abdul Mannan Omar sahib (marhoom). He gave me reasons and advantages of Muslim burial along with stating that Islam does not prohibit leveling of Muslim graveyard every few years and reusing it as fresh place of burial. I can appreciate what he said then more after watching following report on Al Jazeera English website:

‘Ecofunerals’ on the rise in the US
Environmentally conscious Americans are opting for ecofriendly “green” funerals.

2 Responses to “Advantages of a Muslim burial”

  1. July 7th, 2011 at 2:08 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Also about a couple of decades ago, when I expanded the Index in the English translation and commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali, I added a topic “Nature (and ecology)”. It is as follows:

    the natural environment, 2:164; 13:17; growth of vegetation, 6:99, 141; 7:57–58; 10:24; 18:45; importance of climate, 24:43; 29:63; 35:9; 45:5; 78:14–16; survival of all creatures : all creatures are communities, 6:38; earth for all, 55:10; sustenance for all provided by God, 15:19–20; 20:53–54; 29:60; 32:27; 50:7–11; 79:31–33; 80:24–32; sustenance and places of habitation provided by God, 11:6; animal species are a “sign” for man, 42:29; 45:4; variety of animals, 24:45; trees, importance and function of, 14:24–25; 16:10–11; 27:60; 36:79–80; 56:71–72; benefit of whole grain, 55:12, 12a; signs in, for man to ponder, see Signs; see also under Knowledge.

    I once read that the Holy Prophet Muhammad once ordered all dogs in Madina to be destroyed (for hygienic reasons), but the next day he withdrew the order, saying that dogs were also one of the “communities” mentioned in 6:38 (and hence had a right to life).

  2. An elder, now deceased narrated this anecdote. In the times of British India, a colleague of his, Jayne by faith, working for a court in North-West of now Pakistan, received the news of death of his only brother in present day India. After he returned from his home town, he went through a prolonged bereavement. This elder, tried to console him and every time he would get the same reply, “I wish we had graves like you Muslims” because when he reached his town, his brother had been cremated and the ashes had been set afloat in Ganges. His reason for a grave was that at least they can provide closure to the mourners long after the death. His comment was “Where in the world can I go to hug the remains of my brother which have disappeared into thin air.”