Thursday, November 23, 2017 - 4 Rabi' al-Awwal 1439

Subscribe to our mail list

Home » Fatwas » Worship » Funerals

Is it permissible to bury a Muslim in a non-Muslim cemetery due to limited space?

Is it permissible to bury a Muslim in a non-Muslim cemetery due to limited space?

Answer

Muslims living in a non-Muslim country need to integrate and co-exist with its inhabitants without contradicting the country’s customs provided they do not contradict a ruling of Islamic law. And as long as the manner of burial in a particular country does not contradict a definitive matter, then there is no legal impediment to it. Islamic law does not aim to contradict customs as long as they are consistent with scholarly consensus.

Imam Al-Sharkhasy, the Hanafi scholar, said, "Imam Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Al-Fadl [may God have mercy on him] maintained that there is no harm in using bricks in their region because the ground is soft. He permitted the use of wooden boards and coffin burials to the extent that it was said, ‘There would be no harm in using iron coffins in these lands.’ "

It is obligatory to bury a Muslim in a Muslim cemetery if one exists. Otherwise, he is to be buried in his native country except if his transport poses overwhelming hardship and harm to his family or damage to his body. In such a case, there is no objection to burying him in a non-Muslim cemetery in the country where he died but in a separate grave. If this is not possible, there is no objection to burying him in a non-Muslim grave because of the legal axiom that states, "Necessity renders prohibited things permissible." Burying a Muslim in a non-Muslim grave takes precedence over leaving him without burial.
And God Almighty knows best.
 

Related links
» Inviting neighbors for food and grant the reward for the deceased, is it permissible?
» Burying the dead in separate coffins in the same pit
» Holding a big banquet on behalf of a deceased from a joint fund
» A husband washing his deceased wife, is it permissible?
» Does the deceased hear the salutations of the living?