Grave’s act of pressing

One of the things that happen in Barzakh is ‘grave’s act of pressing’. Sayyiduna Sa’eed Bin Musayyab رَضِىَ اللّٰەُ عَنْهُ has narrated that the Beloved Prophet صَلَّى اللّٰەُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم said to Sayyidatuna ‘Aishah Siddiqah رَضِیَ اللّٰەُ عَنْهَا: O ‘Aishah! The voice of Munkar and Nakeer (the angels who ask questions in the grave) will be felt to the ears of believers as Ismid kohl in the eyes and the grave will press believers as when a child makes a complaint of his headache to his affectionate mother so the mother gently presses his head; but ‘Aishah! Destruction is for those who have doubts in Allah Almighty; they will be pressed in the grave as a rock presses an egg. (Bushral Kaeeb, pp. 58)

Hakeem-ul-Ummat, Mufti Ahmad Yar Khan Na’eemi رَحْمَةُ اللّٰەِ عَلَيْه has said: Righteous people also experience narrowness in the grave, but it is Divine mercy as a mother lovingly presses her child in her lap due to which the child becomes agitated. (Mirat-ul-Manajih, vol. 2, pp. 458)

Who will grave press?

Grave presses everyone whether the deceased is Muslim or a disbeliever. However, there is a difference in the act of pressing both as ‘Allamah ‘Ali Qari رَحْمَةُ اللّٰەِ عَلَيْه has said: If the dead body is of a Muslim, then the act of pressing it is as a mother hugs her child lovingly who returns from a long journey. (Minh-ur-Raud-il-Azhar, pp. 294)

If the dead body is of an unbeliever, the grave presses it so hard that the ribs [break and] are intertwine. (Bahar-e-Shari’at, vol. 1, pp. 105)

‘Allamah ‘Ali Qari رَحْمَةُ اللّٰەِ عَلَيْه has said: Grave’s act of pressing some believers or rather a pious predecessor like companion Sayyiduna Sa’d Bin Mu’aaz رَضِىَ اللّٰەُ عَنْهُ is similar to a mother’s act of hugging her son because she is very eager to meet him. (Mirqat-ul-Mafatih, vol. 3, pp. 111, Taht-al-Hadees: 1630, summarised)

One reason for ‘ضَغْطَةُ الْقَبْر’ [grave’s act of pressing]

Imam Ibn Abi Dunya رَحْمَةُ اللّٰەِ عَلَيْه has narrated: The reason why grave presses is that grave is like a mother for humans as they are born to this earth, and then they stay away from it for a long time, so when after death they go back to their origin, the earth presses them as a mother hugs her son when he returns from a journey. I.e. the earth gently and lovingly presses the one who is obedient to Allah Almighty and presses a sinner hard after being angry with him for the sake of Allah Almighty. (Bushral Kaeeb, pp. 58)

Reason why obedient are pressed

Sayyiduna Imam Nasafi رَحْمَةُ اللّٰەِ عَلَيْه has said: An obedient Muslim will not suffer the torment of the grave, but grave will press him and he will also feel pain and fear of it. It is because he had been with the blessings of Allah Almighty but could not express thanks properly for them. (Bahr-ul-Kalam, pp. 250)

Personalities safe from grave’s act of pressing

Grave does not press blessed Prophets عَلَيْهِمُ السَّلَام. (Sharh-us-Sudoor, pp. 110) Islamic jurists have said: Accountability will not be made in the grave from Mujahid and Murabit (those who guard Islamic boundaries) and will remain safe from the narrowness of the grave and the accountability in the grave. (Mirat-ul-Manajih, vol. 5, pp. 414)

Deed which saves from grave’s act of pressing

The Beloved Prophet صَلَّى اللّٰەُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم has said: He who recites Surah Al-Ikhlas during Maraz-ul-Maut (fatal illness) will not suffer Fitnah (tribulations) of Qabr and will also remain safe from ‘grave’s act of pressing’. (Hilya-tul-Awliya, vol. 2, pp. 243, Hadees 2091)

Chalay qabr mayn sab akaila lita ker

Karam Ya Ilahi Karam Ya Ilahi

(Wasail-e-Bakhshish, pp. 111)

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