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  1. Show the dead more respect
  2. The Straits Times
  3. Respect for the dead | The Manila Times Online

In any case, such decisions are left to the family of the deceased. In addition to its detailed rules pertaining to martyrs, Islamic law also contains rules on the burial of both Muslim and non-Muslim enemies. Specifically, there is a duty to bury dead bodies of the adverse party. If for any reason the non-Muslim adverse party does not bury its dead, then it becomes the obligation of the Muslims to do so. Such an outcome would be tantamount to mutilation, which is prohibited under Islamic law.

There are, of course, exceptions to this misconception—such as in the case of Ebola. Respect for dead bodies manifests itself in diverse ways in different cultures around the world. In Islamic law and Muslim cultures, burying the dead in the ground is the correct way to respect dead bodies. Cremation is prohibited under Islamic law because, unlike in some cultures, it is considered a violation of the dignity of the human body.

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The reports, however, do not give specific indications on how quickly burial should be undertaken. Therefore, the jurists preferred that the burial should be delayed until death is confirmed. Another exception to quick burial is if there is a suspicion that death is due to criminal action. In that case, burial is to be postponed until the body is examined. These discussions on the timeframe for burial do not change if the dead body is unclaimed or unidentified.

In those cases, the same rules just discussed for respecting the dead apply.

Show the dead more respect

The humanitarian concern of respecting dead bodies prompts Muslims to quickly bury unclaimed or unidentified bodies. Apart from these Islamic legal deliberations, other factors play a major role in why different cultures and traditions may have a tendency to bury the dead quickly. One main concern is that relatives and neighboursmight want to prevent the body from emitting an odor. This can particularly true in countries where temperatures are high and there are insufficient means to refrigerate the dead bodies, where electricity blackouts occur frequently, or in remote desert villages that lack electricity completely.

Another reason for quick burial could be that the extended family and neighbours want to alleviate the pain that family members and their loved ones might suffer. In both situations, quick burial is motivated by the desire to respect the dead bodies. Regardless of the reason, quick burial of the dead can, in some cases, hinder the work of forensic specialists.

The Straits Times

Forensic specialists need sufficient time to establish the identities of the dead bodies. This is especially true in cases of armed conflicts and other situations of violence and natural disasters. Therefore, for forensic specialists to be able to carry out their job, it is necessary to provide refrigerators to keep dead bodies cool. It is also necessary to engage with community and religious leaders and local authorities in order to convince the public and the relatives of the dead that forensic specialists need sufficient time to examine the bodies. Otherwise, families of the dead risk the pain of being unable to identify their loved ones and unable to visit their graves.

In general, one cannot exhume graves under Islamic law. However, there are a number of exceptions and some differences in views. Therefore, classical Muslim jurists agreed there is a prohibition on exhuming graves unnecessarily. Jurists did, however, deliberate on the permissibility of doing so in a several cases, including hypothetical ones. Exhuming graves was deliberated for.

Various jurists have developed different rulings on the matter. As a result, exhumation of human remains is permissible in some cases and prohibited in others. The different rationales upon which these jurists base their views explains the different rulings they developed, and the various practices adopted in the Muslim societies accordingly.

What is important to note here for forensic specialists is that there can be Islamic legal grounds for exhumation of graves under certain circumstances. This can be kept in mind if forensic specialists face rejection of exhuming dead bodies in Muslim contexts. Interestingly, classical Muslim jurists deliberated the question of burial at sea going as far back as the seventh and eighth centuries. The rationale behind their discussions of this question appears to be the need to ensure decent burial when death would take place on ships at sea. In any case, whether or not the dead body will be buried at the sea, the Islamic burial rituals must be performed in accordance with the rules set out above.

Time and again, ensuring the dignified burial of the dead emerges as constant criterion in the discussion above. The classical Islamic legal framework laid out here was developed in the seventh and eighth centuries in response to the circumstances of that time. Yet, today it still remains the guiding Islamic legal framework that any Muslim jurist will refer to on the subject of the management of the dead.

Respect for the dead | The Manila Times Online

This information—from an Islamic law perspective—is necessary for any forensic specialists working in Muslim societies today to ensure respect for the dead. In order to be able to make more informed decisions and to communicate more effectively, it is recommended that forensic specialists familiarize themselves with both the Islamic regulations on the management of the dead and in how far the cultural practices in these societies correspond with Islamic law. In such cases engaging with Islamic institutions, scholars, and community leader becomes inevitable.

There is no doubt that the specialized forensic expertise that institutions such as the ICRC have developed are indispensable for achieving the protection of dead bodies in contemporary armed conflicts in Muslims contexts. Nonetheless, the cooperation between humanitarian forensic specialists and Islamic jurists in addressing such challenges is essential for ensuring the proper and dignified treatment of dead bodies in Muslim contexts. It is never too late to learn the lesson the raven taught us! They are more than discussions.

Rather, they mean deliberations, legal argumentation, legal rulings or Islamic legal manuals that should be taken into account when interpreting Islamic law. These classical Islamic rules still constitute the body of Islamic law that Muslim jurists refer to as the reference. Women treated the injured, looked after the sick, prepared food, and repatriated the injured and the dead back to their cities. Their humanitarian acts and services resemble those provided by health care personnel and aid societies in contemporary armed conflicts. Highly informative and educative piece, it would be interesting to discuss this in the Nigerian context, especially as a number of states in the federal republic of Nigeria practice sharia law and are hubs of internal conflicts with a high death toll of Muslims.

Not to mean any criticism, rather promoting cosmetic perfectionism of a perfect content, I would like to point to this sentence where, as I was reading, was found with a typo error:. This is also the practice followed now by forensic specialists when they when they carry out their investigations. Thank you so much, Anne. Hopefully, both French and Arabic translations will be available in the next few months. Click here to cancel reply. Your email address will not be made public. Your comment. During armed conflict, forensic specialists encounter huge challenges in ensuring the proper and dignified management of the dead.

We can surely all agree that a cemetery should be a place for quiet reflection, private memories and respect for the dead and those who mourn them. 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.

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. The military had killed nearly 1, militants since the operation began, he said, but refused to show their pictures out of respect for the dead.

Big blow to Taliban as army offensive kills 1, rebels.

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Out of the respect for the dead , the rest has been told exactly as it occurred," the opening text claims.