The Death of Hazrat Ibrahim

(Rabiul-Awwal 10, Tuesday, 10th Year of the Migration)

The blessed heart of the Prophet was like a source of compassion and mercy for all human beings. He had a very different love and compassion for young children. He was like an ocean of compassion and love for his own children.

The Prophet had buried Qasim and Abdullah, who were born of Khadija, when he was in Makkah and when they were babies. He felt very sorry when they died. However, when Ibrahim, his son born of Mariya, was born, he was consoled. Therefore, he loved this unique son of his very much. He often caressed his head, hugged him and put him over his chest, showing his love and compassion.

Yes, compassion is “one of the fastest, nicest and prettiest manifestations of divine mercy.” The nicest compassion is the compassion shown to one’s child. A child is a trust given by God Almighty to the parents temporarily.

Thus, the Messenger of Allah showed interest in this trust as he did for other trusts. He regarded his son as a manifestation of God’s mercy, loved and hugged him.

Ibrahim was only 16 months old when the Prophet was informed about his illness. He went to the house in the vineyard where his beloved son stayed with his mother Mariya. 

The Prophet could no longer see the previous bright and active looks in the eyes of Ibrahim, who was ill. Ibrahim, who had been robust and active, became quiet and calm; he looked as if he was tired of the world. With his appearance, he virtually showed that he was ready to go to the eternal realm. 

When the Prophet noticed it, he looked at his son’s eyes that were moving slightly and said, “O Ibrahim! What can we do against the preordination of Allah?”

After a while, Ibrahim passed away.

Meanwhile, tears started to roll down the face of the Prophet.

Abdurrahman b. Awf said, “O Messenger of Allah! Are you crying, too? Did you not prohibit people from crying like that?” The Prophet said, 

“O Ibn Awf! I prohibited you from two kinds of crying and shouting, which are expressions of sins and stupidity: Shouting when one receives bounties, shouting while playing, and crying by scratching one’s body and tearing one’s garment... My crying is an indication of compassion and mercy. A person who does not show mercy is not shown mercy.”[1]

“The Eye Cries, the Heart Feels Sorry”

After uttering the words above, the Prophet could not help crying again. When his eyes were full of tears, he said, “The eye cries, the heart feels sorry. We will not utter any words other than what our Lord will consent.”[2]He added, “By Allah! O Ibrahim! Your passing away distressed us a lot.”[3]

The Prophet, who shed longing tears of not getting enough of a son, looked at the mountain located opposite and said, “O mountain! If you had the sorrow that I have, you would be destroyed and broken into pieces. However, we say what Allah orders us to say, ‘Inna lil­lahi wa inna ilayhi rajiun.’ (To Allah we belong and to Him is our return.)”[4]

Next to His Grave

After being washed and enshrouded, Ibrahim was taken to the cemetery of Baqi on the most distinguished and blessed hands. The Prophet led the janazah prayer there.

The grave had been prepared. The Prophet saw a hole in the grave. He told the person who dug the grave to fill that hole.

The man said, “O Messenger of Allah! That hole will neither harm nor help the dead person.” The Messenger of Allah gave the following lesson:

“Yes, it will neither harm nor help the dead person but it will harm the eye of the living person. Allah wants a person to do whatever he does perfectly.”[5]

Then, Ibrahim was put in the grave. The Messenger of Allah sprinkled some water and soil on the grave with his blessed hands and in tears. 

The Prophet Warns the Muslims

When Ibrahim died, the sun eclipsed.

People thought it eclipsed because of the death of Ibrahim. They said, “The sun eclipsed due to the death of Ib­rahim.”

When the Messenger of Allah heard it, he went to the mosque and said the following to his Companions after praising and thanking Allah:

“O people! Know it very well that the sun and the moon are two signs of the power of Allah. They do not eclipse due to the death or birth of anyone. When you see them eclipse, go to mosques; pray Allah and perform prayers until the eclipse ends.”[6]

A Sign

With the death of Ibrahim, only one of the children of the Prophet, Fatima, remained alive. This indicated that his line would continue through his female descendants not male descendants due to a reason. Thus, the implication of the following verse was understood:  “Muhammad is not the father of any of your men, but (he is) the Messenger of Allah, and the Seal of the Prophets: and Allah has full knowledge of all things.”[7]“The Prophet's male children would not remain at the degree of 'men' (rijal); as a consequence of some wise purpose, his descendants would not continue as men. Since through the use of the term 'rijal' it indicates that he is the father of women, his line would continue through women. And, Praise be to God, Hazret-i Fatima's blessed descendants, like Hasan and Husayn, the light-giving moons of two luminous lines, continue the material and spiritual line of the Sun of Prophethood.”[8]

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[1]Ibn Sa’d, Tabaqat, Vol. 1, p. 138.

[2]Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 1, p. 138; Muslim, Sahih, Vol. 4, p. 1808.

[3]Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 1, p. 138; Muslim, ibid, Vol. 4, p. 1808.

[4]Balazuri, Ansabu’l-Ashraf, Vol. 1, p. 452.

[5]Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 1, p. 142.

[6]Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 1, p. 142; Muslim, ibid, Vol. 2, p. 630.

[7]al-Ahzab, 40.

[8]Badiuzzaman Said Nursi, Sözler, p. 384.

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