Steps for Salat Janazah

How to perform Janazzah Prayer 

All praise is due to Allah; we praise Allah and seek Allah’s help and forgiveness. And we seek refuge in Allah, Most High, from the evils of our own selves. Whomsoever has been guided by Allah, none can misguide him, and whomsoever is misguided, no one can guide him except Allah.


And I bear witness that there is no god worthy of being worshipped except Allah Al Mighty, alone, without partner or associate. I further bear witness that Muhammad (P.B.U.H) is his true worshipper and messenger, may Allah the exalted bestow His peace and blessings upon him.


Allah says in the Qur’an:

"O you who believe! Fear Allah as Allah should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam " (Quran 3:102).

"O mankind ! Be grateful to your lord, Who created you from a single soul and from it created its mate, and from them both Allah created many men and women, and fear Allah through Whom you demand your mutual rights and do not cut relations of Kinship. Surely Allah is ever a watcher over you "(Qur’an 4:1).

"O you who believe! Keep your duty to Allah, and speak always the truth. Allah will direct you to do good deeds and will forgive you your sins. And whosoever obeys Allah and His messenger, he verily has got a great success " (Quran 33:70-71).


Almost every day we hear of the death of someone, yet most people ignore the fact that one day they will die too, they go on with their life as if nothing has happened feeling that their time has not yet come for them to die.Allah says in the Qur’an:

" Everyone shall taste death. And only on the day of resurrection shall you be paid your wages in full. And whoever is removed away from the fire and admitted to paradise, this person is indeed successful. The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception:" (Quran 3:185). 

" Every soul shall have the taste of death " (Qur’an 29:57).


In an authentic Hadith Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) said : " Remember the destroyer of pleasures-death, for not a day passes upon the grave except it says ‘ I am the house of remoteness; I am the house of loneliness; I am the house of soil; I am the house of worms’ " ( Authentic-Thermithi).


Death is simply a transition state from one world to another, as birth is. No one knows when and where he will die or knows how. In this respect Allah (SWT) says in the Qur’an in Surat (Chapter) Luqman: " Nor does anyone know what it is that he will earn tomorrow: Nor does anyone know in what land he is to die. Verily with Allah is full knowledge and Allah is acquainted with all things " (Quran 31: 34).


It is a reminder to prepare for this day; prepare for it by truly and sincerely submitting to Allah, doing good deeds according to Allah’s commands in the Quran and the teachings of the Prophet. Avoid all types of wrong and evil which Allah (swt) and the Prophet (pbuh) asked us to avoid, but do not delay or postpone since you do not know when death will come.


A divine service is held over the dead body of every Muslim, young or old, even of infants who have lived only a few minutes. When the soul leaves the body, preparations are made for bidding him the last farewell.


It is highly recommended that, after washing and shrouding the body of the deceased, the body not to be kept long, but rather taken quickly, prayed for, and then buried.


Salatul Janazah is required to be performed in congregation to request pardon for the deceased and all dead Muslims, and to wrap them all in Allah’s Mercy.


Salatul Janazah is a collective obligation. A Muslim should not hesitate to participate in it, whether or not the deceased or his relatives are known to him.


Salatul Janazah is said silently, except the Takbeer and Tassleem. All conditions for regular Salat are required in Salatul Janazah such as Tahara, Wudu, clean body and clothes, neeyah (Intention), and facing the Qiblah.


There is a reward for attending Salatul Janazah for both the deceased and those who make the Salat according to the following Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) who said : " Who ever attends the Janazah until it is finished, will earn a Qirat, and who ever stays until the burial, will earn two Qirats. Someone asked: What does Qirat mean ? , the Prophet answered :‘It means rewards as big as great mountain" ( Bukhari & Muslim ).


There are specific times when it is prohibited to perform Salatul Janazah, unless it becomes necessary, due to the condition of the body, to perform it quickly and then bury the body.

This is due to the Hadith of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) who forbade us to pray, or bury our dead during these specified times (Muslim). These prohibited times are : 

  • From sunrise until the sun is fully risen,

  • At the zenith of the sun (the sun at meridian), until it passes the meridian,

  • From when the sun pales before sunset until it has set





All conditions for regular Salat are required in Salatul Janazah such as Tahara, Wudu, clean body and clothes, neeyah (Intention), and facing the Qiblah.


The entire service is held standing (there are NO Rukuh, Sujud, Athan or Eqama). The person to lead the service is called Imam, who is chosen by the deceased family. The Imam stands by the middle of a female body and by the head of a male body facing the Ka’abah in Mecca and the congregation makes rows, of at least three, behind the Imam. If there is only one Muslim with the Imam, he should stand behind the Imam.


In case there are more than one dead Muslim (Males and females), then the female(s) should be placed in the first row(s) in the direction of the Qiblah, then the male(s) in the following row(s), then the Imam.


For example : If there are : a dead Muslim male, a female, a young girl, and a young boy, then behind the Qiblah, first place the body of the young girl, then the adult female, then the young boy, then the adult male, so the bodies are arranged in a way that females’ bodies are first, then the males ( Figure (3) ).





The Imam should stand by the middle of a female body, and by the head for a male body, this is due to the Hadith in which Anas related that Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) leading Salatul Janazah for a dead male, the Prophet (P.B.U.H) stood in front of the deceased head, and for a dead female, the Prophet (P.B.U.H) stood in front of the middle of her body.( Authentic-Abu Dawood). In another Hadith Samura ben Jundub said when Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) made Salatul Janazah for a dead Muslim female, he stood in front of her waist (Muslim). Behind the Imam, males stand in lines, then children and then females.



The Imam will say four takbirs, “Allahu Akbar” (God is the Greatest), aloud while raising both hands to his ears. The congregation will follow his lead.


After the first takbir is said, the Imam and the congregation will recite silently a short prayer, followed by the “Opening” chapter of the Holy Qur’an.



Allahu Akbar
God is the Greatest




 The Short Prayer 




Transliteration: Subhanak Allahumma wa bihamdika wa tabaraka ismuka wa ta’ala jadduka wa la ilaha illa ghairuka.


Translation: Pure and Glorified are you, O Allah, Blessed is Your Name and exalted is Your Majesty, and there is nothing worthy of worship except you.



The “Opening”




Transliteration: 1- Bismillaahir rahmaanir raheem 2- Alhamdu lillaahi rabbil ‘aalameen 3- Arrahmaanir raheem. 4- Maaliki yawmid deen. 5- Iyyaaka na’ budu wa-iyyaaka nasta ‘een. 6- Ih-dinas siraatal mustaqeem 7- Siraatal ladheena an‘amta 'alayhim ghayril maghdoobi ‘alayhim waladdaalleen

Translation: 1- In the Name of Allâh, the Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 2- Praise be to Allah The Cherisher and Sustainer of the worlds. 3- Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 4- Master of the Day of Judgment. 5- Thee do we worship, And Thine aid we seek. 6- Show us the straight way. 7- The way of those on whom Thou has bestowedThy Grace, Those whose (portion) is not wrath. And who go not astray. 


Afterwards the Imam says the second takbir aloud. The congregation follows, the the “Prayer upon the Prophet (PBUH)” is recited silently as follow:



Allahu Akbar
God is the Greatest




The Prayer upon the Prophet (PBUH)


Transliteration: Al-Lahum-Ma Sal-Li 'Ala Muhammad Wa 'Ala Áli Muhammad. Kama Sal-Laita 'Ala Ibrahima Wa'ala Áli Ibrahim, In-Naka Hamidun Majeed.

Al-Lahum Ma Barik 'Ala Muhammad Wa 'Ala Áli Muhammad, Kama Barakta 'Ala Ibrahima Wa 'Ala Áli Ibrahima, In-Naka Hamidun Majeed.


Translation: O Alláh! Exalt Muhammad and the followers of Muhammad. As thou did exalt Ibrahim and his followers. Thou art the praised, the Glorious.

O Alláh, bless Muhammad and his followers, as Thou has blest Ibrahim and his followers. Thou art the Praised, The Glorious.




The congregation follows the Imam in third takbir. The private prayers are offered for the deceased silently. Different prayers have been offered by the Prophet (PBUH), and it seems as though any form of prayer is permissible. The following prayer is one that is well known:



Allahu Akbar
God is the Greatest







 Transliteration: Allahumma igfir-lahu wa irham-hu wa a’afihi wa’ afu a’anhu wa akrim nuzulahu wa wassi’ madkhalahu wa aghsilhu bil-maai wat-talji wal-bardi wa naqqi-hi min alkhataya kama naqqaita-th-thawbal-abyada mi-nad-danas

 Translation: O Alláh! Forgive him and have mercy upon him, and pardon his sins, and honor his arrival, and widen his place of entering, and wash him with water, snow and hail and clean him of faults as the white cloth is cleansed of stain.


The Imam announces the fourth and final takbir. The last prayer is offered in silence:



Allahu Akbar
God is the Greatest





Transliteration: Allahumma igfir-lihayyina wa mayyitina wa shahidina wa ghaaibina wa saghirina wa kabeerina wa thakarina wa unthana, Allahumma man ahyayta-hu minna fa-ahyi-hi alal-islami, wa man tawaffaita-hu min-naa fatawaffa-hu alal-ieemaani, Allahumma la tahrim-naa ajrahu wa la taftin-naa ba’dahu


Translation: O Alláh! Grant protection to our living and to our dead and to those of us who are present and those who are absent, and to our young and our old folk and to our males and our females; O Alláh! Whomsoever You grant to live from among us, cause him to live in Islam (submission) and whomsoever of us You cause to die, make him die in faith; Alláh! Do not deprive us of his reward and do not make us fall into a trial after him.


To conclude the prayer service, the Imam turns his head to the right saying the final greeting aloud. The congregation then follows. The greeting is as such:


Al Salamu alaikum wa rahmatu-llahi Peace be upon you and the Mercy of Allah




then the Imam turns his face to the left and repeats the same final greeting aloud.


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