Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Brief Comments on Riyaadh al-Saaliheen #19

Du`aa for prolonging life

بـسـم الله والحـمـد لله والـصلاة والـسـلام عــلى رسـول الله، وبـعـد

[Sharh Riyaadh al-Saaliheen, pg. 2/108]

Shaikh al-`Uthaymeen رحمه الله said: 

Some scholars have disliked that du`aa should be made for prolonging a person’s life (age). They said: “Don’t say: ‘Allaah prolong your life’, except that you should limit (saying such a thing).”

Rather one should say: ‘Allaah prolong your life upon obedience to Him.’ This is because prolonging of life could be evil for a person. [1]

[1] It might happen that a good person would stop doing good deeds and an evil-doer would just continue in his evil.

Similarly, the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم prohibited from seeking death:

Narrated Sa`d bin `Ubaid رضي الله عنه: Allaah’s Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم said: “None of you should long for death, for if he is a good man, he may increase his good deeds, and if he is an evil-doer, he may stop the evil deeds and repent.” [Saheeh al-Bukhaaree, the same was reported on the authority of Abu Hurairah رضي الله عنه also]


  1. I believe the only time it is permissible to "wish" for death is in the time of Fitnah (great). As was the case with Ali bin abu Talib radi Allahu anhu. Now before in the shariah of ...during lets say for example of prophet Yusuf allayhi salam it was permissible even if not during fitnah. I believe he was the only prophet who wished for death which was speculated by the scholars to be during times of ease.

    1. Assalaam `alaikum.

      I believe that you are referring to the following Hadeeth when you said: “I believe the only time it is permissible to "wish" for death is in the time of Fitnah”:

      “till a man when passing by a grave of someone will say, 'Would that I were in his place.” [Saheeh al-Bukhaaree]

      But this is only a part of a long Hadeeth reported on the authority of Abu Hurairah رضي الله عنه about the Signs before the advent of the Day of Judgment. From what I understand is that this Hadeeth does not give the permission to seek death.

      Apart from what was quoted earlier, there is another Hadeeth which prohibits wishing for death (directly) even at the times of fitan:

      Narrated Anas رضي الله عنه: Allaah’s Apostle صلى الله عليه وسلم said: “None of you should long for death because of a calamity that had befallen him, and if he cannot but long for death, then he should say: “O Allaah! Let me live as long as life is better for me, and take my life if death is better for me.”” [Saheeh al-Bukhaaree]

      Pardon me for my ignorance, but could you kindly enlighten me more on the incident of Ali bin Abu Taalib رضي الله عنه and Yusuf عليه السلام as I am unaware of what you have said.

      Baarak Allaahu feeki.

    2. In our Shariah, its is forbidden to desire for death except on occasion as the time of Fitnah. A prayer is narrated from Mu'adh in which the prophet sallahu allayhi wa salam said: "When you put a people to trial, take us to you before it (i.e. without bein put to test)." [ahmad 5:43]

      In another hadith it is said: "Oh son of Adam, Death is better for you than Fitnah (trial affliction)" [ahmad 5:427]

      And Mary mother of Isa allayhi salam made this dua
      "Would that I had died before this, and become a thing forgotten [19:23]"

      I don't have or can find the evidence in which ali bin Talib radi Allahu anhu explicitly desire death. I just read that he desired death when the fitnah became severe in his time, and people started fighting and killing each other. It was the same case with Imam Bukhari.

      Also there is a hadith in respect to what you stated: "Hope not for death for the terror of the unveiling is great. It is from the felicity of a person that Allah grants him a long life and nourishes him with penitence [Ahmad#14564 on the authority of Jabir.]"

      According to ibn Kathir he says that "Harm" in the hadith by Anas ibn Malik refers to illness and diseases one is inflicted upon his body and not about his religion (not a trial in his faith which in that case it is better to wish for death before kufr obviously).

      In [12:99-101], Prophet Yusuf Allayhi salam made dua to Allah because he had found that the favors of Allah had been completed (the dream and etc).The commentary is that it was possible he made this dua at the time of his death as our Prophet (sallahu allayhi wa salam) did ("Oh Alah to Ar-Rafeeq Al-A'la" Bukhari 4437 and Muslim 2444." It was also speculated that maybe it was not at the time of his death because Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) narrated: "No Prophet has ever desired death except Joseph.(maybe it was permissible in their shariah.)"

      That is all... I got lots of the above from the book of ibn Kathir, the stories of the prophets and Journey to Allah from Ahmad ibn Hanbal. I just included their footnotes in parentheses.

    3. Something you want to read or have read already:

      Baarak Allaahu feeki