Question: I said to a neighbor of mine who rejects most of the rules of Islam, “Do not keep a dog at home, for angels do not enter a place where there is a dog.” He, in turn, said, “Well, then so much the better because the archangel Azrâil will not enter, either. Thus, I can live for 250 years.” Is it appropriate for him to utter such a statement?
A person who does not know Islam is a religiously ignorant one. The Angels of Compassion, the Angels of Haphaza, and the Angel of Death are different from one another. Their duties are different, too. On the shoulders of each person are angels who record his or her deeds. These angels enter a house where a dog enters. The Angels of Compassion, on the other hand, do not enter the following places:
1. A room where there is a picture or a sculpture of a living being (that is, a human or an animal),
2. A place where an alcoholic beverage is drunk or where there is an alcoholic beverage,
3. A place where people are gambling or where there is a thing used for gambling,
4. A place where a sin is being committed,
5. A place where there is a dog,
6. A room where there is a junub person,
7. A room where there is a musical instrument [a TV, for example],
8. A house where no guest comes,
9. A place where there are people whose awrah parts are bare,
10. A house where parents are disobeyed. (Nisâbul-ahbâr)
Well then, what do we lose if the Angels of Compassion do not enter a house? What are their benefits for us? Some points that were made mention of in ahâdîth are as follows:
1. (If an angel does not enter a house, the devil enters there.) The devil, in turn, casts evil suggestions in order to make a person do every kind of evil. [What is meant by angels in these ahâdîth is the Angels of Compassion.]
2. (When a guest pays a visit to a house, angels pray for the host at the dining table.) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer.
3. (Similarly, the angels pray for him who eats vinegar at a meal.) When angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer, even if we eat vinegar.
4. (Angels pray for those who get up for sahûr [the meal consumed before starting to fast, sawm].) When angels do not enter, such people will be deprived of this prayer of angels’.
5. (Angels pray for the forgiveness of the sins of him who says salawât.) If angels do not enter, we will miss out this prayer.
6. (Angels scatter compassion to the places where Allahu ta’âlâ is remembered.) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this compassion as well.
7. (Sixty thousand angels pray for him who does a khatm [that is, who reads all] of the Qur’ân al-karîm.) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer.
8. (Until a person leaves the place he has performed namâz, angels pray for him, saying “O my Rabb! Show compassion for him.) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer. Besides, if there are things that prevent the Angels of Compassion from entering, our namâz will be makrûh.
9. (Angels pray for those who teach goodness.) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer.
10. (Thousands of angels pray for him who does some work for his Muslim brother.) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer.
11. (If a person gets into bed with ablution, an angel prays for him until the morning, saying, “O my Rabb! Forgive him.”) If angels do not enter, we will be deprived of this prayer.
12. There should not be a menstruating woman or anything else that prevent the angels from coming into the room where there is an ill person showing the symptoms of death. At the time of death, a Believer sees the Angels of Compassion, which gives him or her so much pleasure that he or she does not even feel the pangs of death. If the Angels of Compassion do not come into that place, he or she may be subject to vexations. Therefore, we should not do deeds that keep the Angels of Compassion from entering.
The Angel of Death’s taking away souls
It is a very wrong utterance to say, “If an angel does not enter a house, then no one can take away my soul. So I can live for 250 years.” Why 250 years? Live for 1,000 years, even never die. Is it possible not to die? Because it is impossible not to die, the Death of Angel takes away our souls no matter where we are. Likewise, he simultaneously takes away the souls of those who die simultaneously in various parts of the world. It is like turning all the electric lamps of a city off at the same instant.
Ibrâhîm ‘alaihis-salâm asked Azrâil ‘alaihis-salâm:
“There are many people in various parts of the world who die concurrently for such reasons as earthquakes, war, and diseases. How can you reach all of them at the same time?”
Azrâil ‘alaihis-salâm answered:
“I summon all those whose times of death have arrived, and they all immediately come into my palm.”
A man of wisdom said, “For the Angel of Death, the globe is like a washtub in front of him. He takes the one whose time of death has come.”
Sulaiman ‘alaihis-salâm said to the Angel of Death:
“The people whose souls you take away are sometimes young and sometimes children. How can it be?”
“It is not me who determines the times of death. The list of those whose appointed times of death have come is given to me. I, on my part, summon them, and thus they come.”
The souls of Muslims are taken away by Azrâil ‘alaihis-salâm, while those of disbelievers are taken away by the angels who are at the service of Azrâil ‘alaihis-salâm. That is, he commands other angels to take away the souls of the sinful and disbelievers, and they take them.
Not to clean a potty
Question: Is there a religious obstacle to leaving the urine of children in a potty all through the night?
You should pour the urine into the toilet and wash the potty. You should not leave it with urine through the night. The purport of a hadîth-i sharîf is as follows:
(Do not leave urine in a container at home. The Angels of Compassion do not enter such a room.) [Tabarânî]
It is not appropriate to leave even rubbish at home. The purport of a hadîth-i sharîf is as follows:
(If there is rubbish at a home, barakah is removed from that house.) [Daylamî]