Death Will Come Knocking


Death Will Come Knocking

I attended a funeral today (May Allah forgive the deceased and his family and enter them into paradise) and came away with two major reflections. This post may not be very coherent because I am writing this as I develop my thoughts. 

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I stood aside at the graveyard as a large group of men removed a wooden box from a hearse that carried what once was a lively human being. Breath, speech, emotion and life itself were no longer the nature of what lay in the coffin. Instead, the body and wood that would forever house it, were now destined for the same fate: burial. I have sadly witnessed many funerals and there has yet to been one that hasn’t drawn a plethora of emotions from me and this glum, cloudy day was no different.  

The rain soaked dirt  prevented the coffin carriers from getting appropriate footing and the task of placement and lowering of the body became complicated and tedious. It required extensive manpower and a tractor to appropriately re-open the grave that had been filled with rain water and soft earth. Finally the casket was cautiously and carefully lowered into its final resting place.  At this point, an overwhelming feeling of ‘Allah is teaching you something so pay attention!’ hit me in the face…The lesson was pretty simple and something I had learned so many times since I was a child: ‘Every soul shall taste death’ but this time the lesson plan had a bonus ‘learning objective.’ When this thing called death happens to me, this body of mine will become nothing more than a piece of flesh that requires disposal (sounds harsh BUT that is what it is).   At the point of death, this body that I have spent a lifetime serving, will simply be an inconvenience for the group of men that decide that my funeral is worth attending. So what did I learn from this very stark and unforgiving reality? This reminder: with the time I have on this Earth, I better be working for more than just the satisfaction of this body that I have. This body, that when Allah decrees, will reject my soul, lock the entrance and throw away the key. This body that will forsake me…

After the casket was lowered, the men who had known and loved the deceased (may Allah have mercy on him) began to shovel dirt on to his grave turn by turn.  At this point I began to think about what this could mean for me when it was my turn to ‘go.’  What would I be thinking of those who I left behind in this world as they covered my body with the soil from which I was created?  Two thought processes come to mind as possibilities. The first mindset (and may Allah protect us from this fate) is one of betrayal. These people, who supposedly loved me, are now separating me from sun-rays1themselves and this world forever. They are now responsible for putting me in absolute darkness; never to see the sun again and never to enjoy another moment of the happiness of this dunya. On top of that, they are sending me on the fast lane to a judgement for which I already know the result… and it is not good.  The second mindset (may Allah grant us this understanding and fate) is one ‘I love you guys, but lets get this show on the road!’ Imagine watching those you love sending you into another phase of existence and knowing the that ‘other stage’ is where you wanted to be all along… mmmmmm… “so yeah… its sweet that you guys care but can you pick up the pace so that I can be with my Creator!”

 

After the prayer was made for our beloved brother, I realized that it had stopped raining. The dirt that now acted as his blanket would soon dry and ‘dust to dust’ would become a reality. For the onlookers, moments of reflection will be washed away by the distractions and struggles of daily life and the souls of the believers would continue to wait patiently for the face of their Lord.

May Allah forgive Abu Majid and his family and enter him into jannah. 🙂

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~ by Yousaf on April 4, 2009.

3 Responses to “Death Will Come Knocking”

  1. it’s interesting how you observe a burial. it seems to me that you feel like it is an act of forsaking a friend. i find it a bit harsh.

    by burying an individual i feel, you are preparing him or her for the next life. not that we are now cutting him out of our world. it’s almost as if your best friend is moving to another state and you’re helping him move his furniture. you aren’t forsaking that friend, but doing what you can to ease his transition into the void.

    i find it more an act of love and compassion. this friend has to go, and you have no say in Allah’s decision. so you do your best to aid him by burying him with love.

    may Allah enter us all into Jannah.

  2. It’s kind of ironic that in the previous post you talked about birth and in this post you talk about death. Nice comparison. May Allah (SWT) have mercy on all our souls.

  3. There is a lot of words I want to say, but I can’t translate it to English.
    But I can say:

    May Allah Bless you and your great family.

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