Placing a cloth under the dead body inside grave while burying

Question :

What is the ruling for placing a cloth inside the grave along with the deceased ? Is it permissible?

Answer :

In the book of Funerals in the explanation of Sunan an-Nisaaee Shaykh Abdul-Muhsin al-‘abbaad stated:

..: (and there was placed under the Messenger of Allaah, -sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- when he was buried a red velvet (garment/cloth).

Al-Imam an-Nisaaee then cited this preface, which is:

The Chapter of Placing a Garment in Grave i.e. under the Dead

Then an-Nisaaee (2012) mentioned the hadeeth of Ibn Abbaas –may Allaah be pleased with them both- that he said:

There was placed under Prophet, -sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- a red velvet (garment/cloth).

(Shaykh Abdul-Muhsin said): i.e. it was placed by the Companions -may Allaah be pleased with them-, yet this was from the (affairs) which were specific to him salallaahu alaihi wa sallam; and this was not done for ANYONE else and for this reason it was deemed to be from the matters specific to him –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam-.

And adh-Dhahabi mentioned in the biography of Abdullah bin Lahee’ah a number of characteristics which were specific to the Messenger of Allah, -sallallaahu alahi wa sallam- after his death. And from them was this matter, i.e. placing a cloth/garment (etc.) underneath him sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam (in his grave).

Also from these (matters specific to the Messenger -sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- after his death) was: that the Companions prayed upon the Messenger –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- separately (and not in congregation).

And he (i.e. adh-Dhahabi) listed a number of characteristics specific to the Messenger –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- concerning what happened after his death –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam-.

Therefore, this act is something specific (and solely) for him –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam–, and nothing should be placed under the deceased in his grave, but instead he should be placed with his only with shroud/sheets the deceased person is wrapped with in his grave. End quote.

Benefit: It was reported Al-Imam at-Tirmidhi reported in his Jaami’ (1047) and authenticated by al-Albani in al-Irwaa under hadeeth no. (745), on the authority of Jafar bin Muhammad who reported from his father, that the one who placed the red velvet garment/cloth under the Messenger –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- was Shaqran (who was a servant of the Messenger –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam-).

Al-Imam An-Nawawi further clarified in his explanation of Saheeh Muslim hadeeth no. (967) the reason this was done by Shaqraan was that he disliked for anyone other than the Messenger –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- to wear/dress themselves with this red velvet garment/cloth after him –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam-. He also stated that this action of placing any material/fabrics etc under the deceased person was considered detested by the majority of scholars. And Allaah knows best.

Thus, we benefit that placing a garment/clothing or so on underneath the deceased person in his grave was not done by the Companions for anyone other than the Messenger –sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam- and therefore this should not be practiced by the Muslims.

NOTE : This hadeeth mention about placing a cloth under the dead body inside the grave and there no proof in this hadeeth for placing cloth over the graves which is a practice done by many grave worshippers.(AbdnNoor Al Hindi)


Compiled by : Noble brother Abu ‘Atiyah Mahmood bin Muhammad