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The Ruling on Commemorative Gatherings for the Deceased

Al-ʿAllāmah ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz ibn Bāz

Flashy post-funeral gatherings (wakes) where animals are slaughtered and food prepared are a form of innovation. The family of the deceased should make duʿāʾ and food should be prepared for them in order to ease their burdens.

Al-ʿAllāmah ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz ibn Bāz was asked: There are some customs in Yemen that people do after the death of a family member in which the relatives are forced to go into debt to pay for a commemorative gathering, and food and drink that is served there and similar things, even in the case of a very poor person who died and did not leave behind any inheritance, so what is the ruling concerning this gathering?

Answer: It is not allowed for the family of the deceased person to establish such commemorative gatherings nor may they slaughter animals and prepare food for the people; all of these things are innovations, and they are from the actions and ways of the people of jāhilīyyah, and it is obligated to abandon these things. What is legislated is that they supplicate for them and it is legislated for the close family and neighbours to prepare food for them as they have become occupied with the trial which they have been afflicted with.

Translated by: Abū al-ʿAbbās Mūsá Richardson

Published: July 11, 2023
Edited: July 11, 2023

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