The belief of reincarnation in Islam

Nasihah (Advice): The soul of a Believer

Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah Radhiyallahu Anhu reports: “When the soul of a believer leaves (the body at the time of death) it is received by two angels who take it to the sky.” Hammad (one of the narrators) mentioned the sweetness of its odour, (and further said) that the dwellers of the sky say: “Here comes a pious soul from the earth. May Allah’s blessings be upon the body in which it resided.” Then it is carried (by the angels) to its Lord, the Exalted and Glorious, who would say: “Take it to its destined end.” (Sahih Muslim)


Question and Answer:

Is there any belief in Islam that after a person passes away, a person’s soul moves into another form, like a form of an animal, bird or insect and roams around one’s house, family and friends looking over them?

The belief in resurrection and life after death is one of the fundamental and core beliefs of Islam.

The belief of reincarnation i.e. believing that one’s soul moves into another living form or body after exiting one’s body in an endless cycle contradicts this fundamental and core belief of Islam. The belief of reincarnation exists most commonly amongst the Hindus, Buddhist, Sikhs and also has roots in Greek philosophy. None of these has any basis in Islam.

As Muslims, we believe that once the soul exits the body, it enters an intermediary state between this world and the hereafter (Barzakh) and remains there until the time of resurrection. When resurrection takes place, the soul is placed in a new body to face Judgement in the court of Allah Ta’ala.

The soul does not move into another living form or body in this world after death and neither does it roam around one’s house, family or friends.

If a Muslim believes in reincarnation and negates the fundament belief of resurrection and life after death, such a belief takes one out of the fold of Islam. (Ar-Rooh – Ibnul Jawzi 1/114 – Fataawa Darul Uloom 12/215)

And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

(The answer hereby given is specifically based on the question asked and should be read together with the question asked. Islamic rulings on this Q&A newsletter are answered in accordance to the Hanafi Fiqh unless otherwise stated.)

Fatwa Department
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Council of Muslim Theologians
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Durban, South Africa

Subhaanallaah-The Qudrat Of Allah

3 Safar 1434 – 17 December 2012
Subhaanallaah-The Qudrat Of Allah

No mind can ever imagine the stupendous Qudrat (Power) of Allah Azza Wa Jal. The mind boggling dimensions and objects of space which the atheist scientists have discovered and acknowledged are extremely infinitesimal in relation to what man does not know of Allah’s creation.
Hadhrat Ali Bin Abi Taalib (radhiyallahu anhu) narrated that there is one being whose name is Rooh. Allah Ta’ala has created him with 70,000 mouths. In every mouth there are 70,000 tongues. Every tongue has 70,000 lughaat (dialects). The wonderful being recites the tasbeeh of Allah Azza Wa Jal with all his tongues and dialects.
With every Tasbeeh emanating from Rooh (alayhis salaam), Allah Ta’ala creates an Angel who will fly around among the Malaaikah until the Day of Qiyaamah. Subhaanallaah!
According to Hadhrat Ibn Abbaas (radhiyallahu anhu), Rooh (alayhis salaam) has 10,000 wings.
According to Hadhrat Mujaahid (rahmatullah alayh), Rooh (alayhis salaam) is not an Angel. He has the form of a human being, but is not human. He also eats and drinks. He is an entirely different, unique creation of Allah Azza Wa Jal.
Besides this wonderful and gigantic being called Rooh (alayhis salaam), Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) explained that Rooh is a creation apart from the Malaaikah. The term, Rooh in this context is used in the same way as the word ‘man’ which refers to entire mankind. They dwell among the Malaaikah. They have features and limbs like human beings, and they descend to earth with the Malaaikah who are despatched by Allah Ta’ala on a variety of errands and duties.
Hadhrat Abdullah Bin Buraidah (radhiyallahu anhu) narrated that the combined number – the total – of insaan (human beings) jinn and malaaikah (angels) is less than the number of the species called Rooh. They do not constitute even one tenth of the species Rooh. Here rooh does not mean soul. It is a different species of creation. Just as the jinn are invisible to human beings, so too are the Rooh invisible to the Malaaikah.
Further, there is another species of Allah’s creation called Karoobi. In number, the Karoobi is ten times more than the species Rooh. Only Allah Azza Wa Jal knows what else abounds in His creation.



Once Hadhrat Moulana Maseehullah Rahmatullahi alayh advised a person who complained bitterly about his evilness and extreme weak spiritual state that: “Do not focus so much about your sins. Rather use your energies to reform yourself by making Taubah.”

The person responded by saying “Hadhrat, every time I make Taubah, I break my Taubah. So what is the sense of making Taubah?”

Hazratjee replied: “Clean clothing gets dirty after a day or two. It is understood that the clothing needs to be washed. No one says: “What’s the sense of washing my clothing. It will get dirty again. Similarly, the soul gets dirty when sin is committed. Just as one regularly washes and changes one’s clothing, so is there a need to “wash” the soul regularly even though you fear that you will sin again.”

Subhanallah! What a brilliant method of explaining the need for continuous Taubaah. What a wonderful remedy to cure the wasaawis (whisperings) of Shaytaan. We did sin and soil ourselves but, with the Fadhl of Allah, we shall humbly walk through the doors of Taubah, with cap in hand… again and again. His is the Court whose doors never close. His is the Mercy which embraces the worst of the worst. His is the Forgiveness which with just one heartfelt “Astaghfirullah” (I seek forgiveness), an entire life of sins is forgiven though the sins may be more than the foam of the oceans.

Yes, Ramadaan is here! Yes, it is the month of Mercy and Forgiveness. Yes, it is time for a good scrub which paves the way to Taqwa. Taqwa is obtained by combating the nafs. The nafs feeds upon excessive eating, excessive sleeping and excessive association. Ramadaan is a time when Allah Ta’aala has compelled us to restrict the eating, drinking, sleeping and cohabiting.

The benefits of combating the nafs is that its power to incline towards evil, vice and wickedness is substantially diminished. The reprehensible qualities such as greed, malice, pride, jealousy, love of the world, vanity, love for fame, love for wealth and anger is diminished substantially. Obliteration is impossible for man is saddled with this basic animalism called nafs until death. He is not under any obligation to uproot his nafs, he is only obliged to control it. Fasting snips, cuts and smothers the power of the nafs. It removes the sting and steam from it.

The rooh, which is the opposite of the nafs, is strengthened whenever the nafs is opposed. The rooh is the source of good qualities. It is the engine of goodness, purity and nobleness. When the rooh is strong and pumps with vitality, virtuous qualities flow freely from that person. Tauheed, sincerity, truth, generosity, patience, tolerance, humility, and fear of Allah etc. becomes secondary to one’s disposition. Ramadaan is a month to lessen our association with the Creation and bond ourselves to our Creator. This bond cannot be acquired by indulging in fanning the flames of greed and negligence by entering competitions, shopping, feasting and indulging in an abundance of socialising, amusement and fun.

Ramadaan is a time for training the rooh to submit to Allah’s Will. Food there is plenty but a true Muslim submits and refrains from eating, the bed is comfortable but a true Muslim stands for Taraweeh and trains his nafs to submit to the Shariah. After the scrubbing, comes the adorning of the rooh with the apparel called Taqwa. “And the clothing of Taqwa, that is best” (Qur’an)