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Respect for the Dead

Duterte rebukes Del Rosario: You have no business using diplomatic passport. Don't miss out on the latest news and information. For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us. Whether dead or alive, the human body—created by God in the perfect shape—must be given dignity and respect. There, it is narrated that when Cain was unsure of how to deal with the body of his brother Abel—whom he had murdered—God sent a message in the form of a raven.

Faced with the difficulties of ensuring the dignified burial of the dead in the context of armed conflicts and other situations of violence and natural disasters, classical Muslim jurists developed Islamic laws to deal with the challenge. These laws aim to respect the dignity of the dead and respect the feelings of their loved ones to the degree possible. The dignity of the dead surfaced in the discussions of the classical Muslim jurists [2] on a number of issues.

Some of the most significant of which, for our purposes here, are: searching for and collecting the dead, disposal of Muslim and non-Muslim mortal remains, quick burial, exhumation of human remains and burial at sea. This is the case as well with the management of the dead. For instance, burial and grave regulations are deliberated in the Islamic legal literature along with the etiquette of visiting graves. Combining legal and ethical elements is an important characteristic of Islamic law that helps keeps it alive.

This nature of Islamic law points to the impact Islamic law can have in influencing societal behavior. Understanding these Islamic rules can help guide humanitarian forensic specialists to overcome challenges they face by respecting the religious needs of Muslim societies when they work in Muslim contexts. It is a way to show that respecting the dead is the common overriding concern of both their forensic work and Islamic law. The dead are usually remembered. They sometimes remain alive in the hearts and minds of their loved ones, as well as through historical accounts for decades, for centuries or even forever.

Hence, in Islamic historical literature, we find remarkable documentation of the lists of war fatalities from early battles that took place during the lifetime of Prophet Muhammed—mainly between and For example, a quick Google search reveals some of these historical records. The full names of seventy fatalities from the adversary party and fourteen fatalities from the Muslim party at the battle of Badr in March is documented.

Early Islamic sources reflect a longstanding practice where parties to conflicts documented fatalities, sometimes in great detail. As we will see below, martyrs enjoy a special place in Islam. It is because of their heroism and sacrifices that Islam has survived until the present. Therefore, these Islamic sources are still being studied today to commemorate the heroism and sacrifices of the early Muslim martyrs.

Respecting the mortal remains of the deceased necessitated decently burying them in order to prevent their bodies from being preyed upon by wild animals. Decent burial was also necessary to allow their families and loved ones to visit their graves. Such concerns remain relevant today.

Respect for the Dead - HaMoked

The rule in Islamic law is that every dead body should be buried in an individual grave. However, in cases of necessity, two or three bodies—or even more if needed—can be buried in the same grave. Today, collective graves—usually for members of the same family—are common in many Muslim countries, simply because of a shortage of space for graveyards in villages, or because the cost of individual graves is too high. It should be noted here that in case of multiple burials, bodies must be placed respectively side by side with suitable space between each.

This is also the practice followed now by forensic specialists when they carry out their investigations.

There are different Islamic rulings as well as cultural and traditional practices throughout the Muslim world governing the building of graves. Their significance stems from the fact that they witnessed the highest number of fatalities between the Muslims and their enemies during the lifetime of Prophet Muhammed. First, there should be no ritual washing for the body of the martyr. This majority understanding has been the norm and practice throughout Islamic history and remains so today.

The rule endures despite the fact that there are a host of divergent opinions among the jurists. The different interpretations arose because of conflicting reports attributed to the Prophet.


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Second, there should be no shrouding of the martyrs and they should be buried in the same clothes in which they are killed. Third, no funeral prayer should be performed on the body of the martyrs. Others give theological rationalesto the rule. The importance of celebrating and commemorating thestatus of the martyrs continues today in modern Muslim cultures.

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For example, there are images of martyrs hanging in the streets of Iran, Egypt, Lebanon and Syria and there are schools, streets etc. Because of the prominent place that martyrs occupy under Islamic law and in Muslim cultures and traditions, it is important that those who handle the bodies of Muslims classified as martyrs take these three specific rules as well as any other relevant rules into consideration. In any case, such decisions are left to the family of the deceased. It's simply a matter of respect My City.

But the guidelines said cremains should be kept in cemeteries or in a consecrated place as a sign of respect for the dead and to prevent them from being forgotten.

Respect for the dead and dying.

Church reminds faithful about guidelines for cremation. Dia de Muertos - The Day of the Dead - is a festival which originated in Mexico where, each year, thousands of people dress up as skeletons in respect for the dead. Shoppers invited to a fun day with a difference. Donna Louise Boltwood Does no-one have any respect for the dead anymore? I wrote this week's column before the game but am sure it was an emotional night with England supporters ready to sing along with the French National Anthem out of respect for the dead and to show France the world is with them.

I was proud to show my solidarity.