How should one react upon hearing news of someone’s death?


Someone wrote to Hazrat Amirul Momineen, Khalifatul Masih Vaa that some people had reacted to the death of his cousin in an inappropriate manner, which had deeply hurt him. He also asked Huzooraa whether the Holy Quran forbade us from praying for a relative who died while opposing Islam. Huzoor-e-Anwaraa, in a letter dated 13 December 2020, provided the following guidance on this issue:

“If any Ahmadi has shown any inappropriate behaviour upon the death of your cousin then surely they have acted in a wrong way. After the death of a human being, their case rests with God alone who can deal with them however He desires. No one else has the right to form a judgement about them. The Promised Messiahas, explaining this, says:

‘Every person has a separate account with God. Thus, everyone should examine and reform his actions. The death of others should serve as a lesson for you lest you stumble instead of causing you to spend that time in laughter and mockery and thereby becoming more oblivious to God Almighty.’ (Malfuzat, Vol. 3, p. 217)

As you have referenced Abid Khan Sahib’s diary in your letter, so, you would have already read my answer that we cannot call it any kind of divine sign because neither was there any ongoing [prayer] duel between your cousin and Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya, nor had he challenged the Community so as to consider it a duel.

Islam does not teach hatred towards any human being but expresses dislike towards certain actions. Therefore, in the Holy Quran, Hazrat Lutas, while addressing his opponents, said, ‘Certainly I hate your practice.’ (Surah ash-Shu‘ara, Ch.26, V.169) Similarly, Allah has commanded the believers that when they hear the Signs of Allah being mocked at, not to sit with the mocking people as long as they are engaged in such mockery. (Surah an-Nisa, Ch.4: V.141) In other words, we have been instructed not to hate people but rather to express disgust about their actions. 

Thus, the teaching of Islam is complete and beautiful in every respect. Islam does not teach to rejoice in the death of even the most hostile enemy. Rather, a true believer is saddened even by such a person’s death because he wishes he had been guided. Pandit Lekhram was an enemy of Islam and the most belligerent foe of Ahmadiyyat. He had slandered the most sacred being of our Master and Guide, the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa, the Chosen One. When he was killed in accordance to divine prophecies, the Promised Messiahas expressed his sympathy with the people of his nation over his death and said:

‘We are saddened by the loss of a human’s life but also pleased by the fulfilment of a prophecy of God. Why are we pleased? Only for the good of nations: Would that they contemplated and understood that it is not man’s work to prophecy many years in advance with this high level of accuracy and clarity. Our heart is in a strange state at the moment; there is pain as well as happiness. There is pain because had Lekhram turned [to God]; if not much then had he only desisted cursing, then I swear by Allah the Exalted that I would have prayed for him and I hoped that even if he had been cut to pieces, he would still have come to life.’ (Siraj-e-Munir, Ruhani Khazain, Vol. 12, p. 28)

As far as praying for a person who dies while opposing Islam is concerned, Islam only forbids praying for forgiveness for a mushrik who is openly hostile to God Almighty. It does not forbid praying for anyone else. (Surah at-Taubah, Ch.9: V.114)”

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