Why is cremation forbidden?


Why is cremation forbidden in Islam?


See “Should a Muslim honor wish of cremation of a non-Muslim relative?” at IslamQA.org, from which we excerpt the following:

It is forbidden to burn the dead regardless of creed and even if they should so stipulate or instruct regarding their own funeral disposal because it is a sinful act and to carry it out for them or witness it with approval places one under its onus.

Allah Most High said {Truly We have honored human beings} and burning a human being is a blatant disregard of the honor owed them as per the Divine will.

It is forbidden to burn anything endowed with a soul including green vegetation in Islam and human beings enjoy that sacrosanctity in absolute terms and retain it even after the parting of the soul from them.

Further, with regard to human beings, burning is a punishment and in Islam it is considered the exclusive prerogative of the Creator to be able to punish with the fire as the Prophet said, upon him blessings and peace.

The Prophet, upon him blessings and peace, also said:

“Breaking the bone of the dead [human being] is like breaking it while s/he is alive.” Malik, Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and Ibn Majah narrated it from `A’isha, Allah be well-pleased with her.

Meaning: in degree of sin because of the respect due to a human being (hurmat al-adami).

Thus, from the Muslim perspective it is forbidden to mutilate the body of the dead or crush or break their bones regardless of their creed, a fortiori (min babin awla) to burn them.

Hajj Gibril Haddad

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