To think of death as nothingness is wrong because the grave is either a pit of hell or a garden of paradise. Those who have been illumined to the essence of reality know and understand with insight that man has been created for eternity. Never can nothingness be attributed to it. Yes, sometimes the connection ceases with the body and they say he has died, and sometimes the connection is given back and they say he has come to life.
Those who think resurrection will be like the first creation have been wronged in their assumption. For, resurrection comprises an act of creation much different to that of the first time. In truth, man resurrects many times, not only twice.”
When one tastes of death, the material body will dissolve and the spirit will resurrect and continue to live in the grave until Doomsday.
When Doomsday occurs, that is, the instance that the earth is engulfed in the radioactive heat of the sun…
And finally, our bodies will also be resurrected appropriate to the environment to which they will go.
Will we work with the same mind and perception mechanisms we have here in our graves?
In regards to this, Abdullah bin Omar (r.a.) narrates the following:
When Rasulullah (saw) was talking about Munkir and Nakir, the two angels who will call the person to account in his grave, Hadhrat Omar (r.a.) asked: “Are we going to be conscious in our graves, O Rasulullah?”
“Indeed, exactly as you are today,” Rasulullah (saw) answered.
So what happens when a person, who is fully aware and conscious, yet whose body has become dysfunctional, is placed the grave?
Let us see how Anas (r.a.) has to say about this:
Rasulullah (saw) said:
“When the person is placed in his grave he will hear the footsteps of those who buried him moving further and further away. Then the two angels will come and ask him: ‘What do you say about the man Muhammad?’
If the person is a believer he will say ‘I bear witness that Muhammad is Allah’s servant and Rasul.’ Then they will ask ‘Look at your place in hell, Allah has transformed it into paradise for you.’ From that point on, he will see both his place in hell and the place he will go to in heaven.
If he is a denier or a hypocrite disguised as a Muslim, he will say ‘I do not have a definite opinion, I only know of what others used to say.’ They will say to him ‘You have failed to recognize and know him!’ and then they will hit him with a hammer with such intensity that the whole of creation except man and the jinni will hear his anguish!”
Let us now end this topic with a final hadith:
“The deceased one will be tormented by the lamenting of his relatives and friends.”
There are many more warning of Rasulullah (saw) pertaining to this topic. Those who are interested may consult the appropriate hadith books.
The point is, the person does not die, he merely experiences death!
To experience death is to lose control over one’s material body and to continue living with a sort of holographic wave body, termed spirit.
Therefore, everyone who is buried is fully conscious and aware! And they will exist in this state until Doomsday, after which they will be equipped with new bodies according to the environment and conditions of that time and place.
What happens when death is experienced?
As we said, the person continues to perceive the world around him, he hears and sees everything that is spoken and done in his immediate environment; he hears the lamenting of his relatives as though he is right next to them. At this stage, he is in a vegetative state. He perceives everything but is unable to show any response whatsoever. Then comes the time for his body to get washed.
Why do the deceased get washed?
My understanding of the wisdom pertaining to washing the corpse is related to bioelectrical energy. That is, through osmosis, the bioelectrical energy of the body becomes reinforced , so that it’s life continues at the molecular level. As such, the person is able to keep a connection (even if one-way) with the world for a little while longer.