Islamic funerals

Funeral rites are very important:

  • they show respect for the dead
  • they include various ceremonies which people believe are necessary to ensure that the deceased go on to whatever their next life will be
  • they give relatives and friends of the deceased time to mourn and show their grief - people often say that showing their grief formally helps them to get over their loss

When a Muslim is dying, they try to say the last words of Muhammad, the prophet of Allah: Allah, help me through the hardship and agony of death. Other people will say: To Allah we belong and to Allah we return.

  • Muslims try to bury the deceased as soon as possible, and certainly within three days.
  • The deceased’s body is washed and wrapped in a white cloth or shroud.
  • Muslims prefer not to use a coffin, but in some countries, including Wales and the rest of the UK, this is not allowed.
  • Bodies are buried facing Mecca which is the Muslim holy city in Saudi Arabia, where Muhammad is believed to have been born.