Death has to come and it is a fact that cannot be refuted. It is Fardh-e-Kifaayah to bury the deceased. The place where a person is buried is called the “Qabar” or grave and the place of burial for many people is called “Qabristaan” or graveyard. A graveyard always reminds one of death and of meeting with the Creator.
After death, every person has to be buried accordingly. This is the final level on earth and the first step towards the Hereafter. To visit the graveyard is the Sunnah of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). When visiting the graveyard, one should first make Salaam and then make Du’a for the deceased. In this era it is totally forbidden for women to visit the graves or Mazaars. She is only allowed to visit the Roza Mubarak of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) because it is close to Waajib and a means of great blessing.
It is also necessary to respect the graveyard. To sit, sleep or lean against the grave is unethical. It is not allowed for one to jump over graves. To place your feet (walk) on a grave is totally wrong. It is also forbidden to perform Salaah in the direction of a grave and to make Sajdah on a grave is Haraam. To make Sajdah to a grave is Kufr. However, to touch the grave of parents and saints (and to kiss their hands) is allowed and a means of great blessings. This is an action of love and respect.
In the grave, Munkar and Nakir ask three questions to the deceased. The first question concerns Allah. The second concerns the Deen and the third concerns Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). In the grave the deceased is blessed with the Ziyaarah of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). If the person had been pious in his or her life, then the grave becomes a garden, but if not, then the grave becomes a fire from Hell. In the grave there is mercy and torment.
To place the Shajrah and Ahad Nama, etc. in the grave is allowed. To also place flowers or green plants on a grave is permissable. It is the Sunnah of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). It is also permissible to put water on the grave. This act benefits the deceased since fresh flowers and plants recite the Tasbih. To give Azaan at the grave-side after burial is permissible and a means of great blessings.
RESPECT FOR A MUSLIM’S GRAVE
It is stated in the Hadith that the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said, “It is easier for me to put my foot on a sharp sword than to put a foot on the grave of a Muslim”. In another Hadith, he says, “I will prefer to put my foot on burning fire so much so that it burns my shoe and reaches my feet, than putting my foot on the grave of a Muslim”. This is a statement by that person, whom by Allah, if he sets his holy feet on the chest or eyes of any Muslim, will gain the peace and pleasure of both the world! It is stated in “Fathul Kadeer”, “Tahtawi” and “Raddul Mukhtaar” that, “If a new path is created in a Muslim graveyard by any person then it is Haraam to walk on it because it must have been made over graves. On the contrary, old pathways were made avoiding graves. Therefore, to walk on them is quite in order”.
Once, in the presence of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), a person was walking out of a graveyard with his shoes on, Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: “O you who have shaved your hair, are you wearing shoes? Throw your shoes away. Do not harm the people of the grave so that they may not harm you”. To perform Salaah on graves, to perform Salaah facing graves, to stand or set foot on a grave, to build a masjid on graves and to farm and cultivate on graves are all forbidden and Haraam.