It is a communal obligation (fard kifiya) to pray to the funeral prayer.
Women are permitted to join the funeral prayer, but it is sinful for them to follow the funeral procession (i.e. when the body is being carried to the graveyard and buried).
Preparations for the Funeral Prayer
The prerequisites for a funeral prayer are the same as for the obligatory prayers. Anyone intending to offer funeral prayer must be in a state of purity, be free from all physical impurities, cover his or her awrah, and stand facing the direction of the qibla.
Method of the Funeral Prayer
This is how the funeral prayer (janaza) is offered according to the Hanafi maddhab.
The prayer is performed while standing the entire time. There is no bowing (ruku’) or prostrating (sujud).
- After having made intention the imam should raise both hands up to the ears while saying “Allahu Akbar” aloud and place the hands in their usual place as in the normal daily prayers. The opening thana (Subhanakal lahumma…) is recited quietly.
- A second “Allahu akbar” should be said by the imam without raising the hands. As-Salat al-Ibrahimiyya which is usually read in the tashahud (Allahumma Salli ala Muhammad wa ala ali Muhammad kama sallayta…) is recited quietly.
- A third “Allahu akbar” is said by the imam without raising the hands and thereafter any dua is said for the deceased and oneself.
- A fourth “Allahu akbar” is said by the imam without raising the hands. Nothing is said.
- The imam says the final salam aloud while turning the face to the right and then the left.
- One makes dua for the deceased afterwards.
The one praying behind the imam will pray according to the same method.
Special Things to Note for Saudi Arabia
- The imams in Saudi Arabia raise their hands for all takbirs. They only give one final salam and not two.
- In the Hanafi madhhab, women are permitted to visit the graveyards. In Makkah and Madina, women are not permitted to enter the graveyards but they can stand outside of them and make du’a for the deceased. Click the link to read more about the main graveyards in Makkah and Madina inshaAllah.