- Sayyidina ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar Radiyallahu ‘Anhu says, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “A (beloved) present for the Mu-min (believer) is death”. – Ibnul Mubaarak, Ibn Abid Dardaa, Tabrani and Haakim.
- Sayyidina Mahmud bin Labeed Radiyallahu ‘Anhu reports, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “Ibn Aadam (offspring of Sayyidina Aadam ‘Alayhis Salaam) dislikes maut (death) whilst maul is better for him then fitnah (trials and tribulations in the diin)”. – Ahmed, Sa‘iid bin Mansur.
The benefit of death is, there is no fear that one’s diin (religion) will deteriorate. If one lives, there is always the fear of this happening (deterioration) especially if one confronts causes that will lead to it. We seek Allah’s refuge from turning astray.
- Sayyidina ‘Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Al’Aas Radiyallahu ‘Anhu reports, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “The world is a prison (because of the many restrictions) for a Mu-min and a place of drought (both comfort, favours and affluence are deficient). When one leaves the world, one leaves a prison and place of drought (because comfort, favours and affluence are complete and widespread in the hereafter).” – Ibnul Mubaarak, Tabrani.
- Sayyidina Anas Radiyallahu ‘Anhu narrates, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “Maut (death) is an atonement for (the sins of) every Muslim (Due to hardships confronted, sins are pardoned. For some all sins are forgiven and for some part of their sins are forgiven, according to the person’s status).” – Abu Nu’aym.
- Sayyidina Abii Maalik Al-Ash‘arii says, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “O Allah, make death beloved to the one who believe that I am your Rasul.” – Tabrani.
- Sayyidina Anus Radiyallahu ‘Anhu reports, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said to him: “If you remember and keep up my wasiyyah (advise) then nothing should be more beloved to you than maut (death).” – Isbahaani.
- Sayyidina Anus Radiyallahu ‘Anhu says, Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “I find the example of Ibn Aadam (human) passing away from this world but like that of a baby emerging from the narrow and dark womb of it’s mother into the wide open world. (Before coming into the world the womb is thought to be a very comfortable place. After witnessing the comforts and pleasures of the world one does not wish to return there. In the same manner, whilst living in the world one fears the hereafter. But after going there one does not wish to return. This explanation has also been narrated in a hadith).” – Ibn Abid Dunyaa, Tirmithi.
Two questions arise here. One is, from this hadith preference is given to death over life. From some ahadith it is found that life is given preference over death. For example, the hadith in Bukhaari and Muslim state Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said: “None from among you should hope and desire death, because if one is pious, good deeds will increase by longevity. If one is sinful, it is possible one will have the taufeeq of repenting.” From this it is clear that life is better than death. The answer to this doubt is that laws differ according to different aspects. During life good deeds could increase and repentance from sin could also be made, as mentioned in the above hadith. Death is the opposite, but the cause for this preference for life is temporary and lasts for a few days. The world in comparison to the hereafter is like the narrowness and darkness of a mother’s womb. According, to this, only death could be given preference, because leaving this world, and going out of this dark home and reaching into the vast and splendid home is not possible without death. The hereafter is much better than this world. The world is nothing in comparison to the hereafter. The hereafter is not temporary but everlasting. The preference for the everlasting is apparent over that which is temporary and mortal. By this answer there remains no difference, and life and death also do not remain equal. The preference for death remains.
The second question is that in the hadith it has been prohibited to hope for death.
If death is a good thing why is it prohibited to hope for it?
The answer is that in the same hadith this has also been mentioned “Min darrin asaabahu” (from difficulties confronted). That means one must not wish for death due to hardships or difficulties experienced, because this will be a sign of not accepting the Will of Allah Ta’aala. If hoping for death is due to yearning for the hereafter and saving one’s self from fitnah, then it is not prohibited.