Ablution (Ghusl) for the Corpse – ISLAM

After getting rid of the impure (najis) elements that are on the body of the dead person (e.g., blood, semen, etc.), the corpse has to be given three ablutions as follows:


1. First wash it with sidr water. That is, water to which a little of sidr has been added.

2. The second wash is with camphour water. That is, water to which a little bit of camphour has been added.

3. The third wash is with pure water.

It is necessary that the ablution given to the corpse be of the tartibi kind: that is, the body should be washed in proper sequence with the head and the neck first, then the right side of the body, and then the left side.


The person washing the corpse must be of the same gender as the dead person. So, a male should wash a male corpse, and a female should wash a female corpse. However, husband and wife are allowed to perform ablution to one another; although it is better that the washing be done with the body covered with a sheet of cloth.
If a person of the same gender is not available, then, based on obligatory precaution, those of the opposite gender who are mahram to the deceased can perform it. Mahram means those relations with whom marriage is forbidden because of blood relationship or nursing (suckling) relationship or marriage, like brother and sister [or son-in-law and mother-in-law]. However, it is better that the washing be done with the body covered with a sheet of cloth. Unity of gender is not required when giving ablution to a corpse of a child that had not reached the age of discerning the right and wrong.

Based on obligatory precaution, the person performing ablution must be a believer (mu’min). If neither a mu’min of the same gender as the deceased is available nor a mahram [even of the opposite gender], it is permissible that a Muslim of the same gender can wash the deceased.
If even a Muslim is not available, then the deceased can be washed by an Ahlul Kitãb person [that is, a Jew, a Christian or a Zoroastrian] of the same gender with the condition that the person should first wash himself and then perform ablution to the corpse. If even an Ahlul Kitab person of the same gender is not available, the duty of performing ablution to the corpse is lifted, and the deceased should be buried without it.

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