Reciting Soorat Yaa-seen for the dying person
The majority of scholars (including the Hanafis, Shaafa’is and Hanbalis) are of the view that it is mustahabb to recite Soorat Yaa-Seen in the presence of one who is dying, and they quoted a number of things as evidence for that, but the evidence is not free of some weakness.
Ahmad (19789) and Abu Dawood (3121) narrated that Ma’qil ibn Yasaar (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Recite Yaa Seen for your dying ones.”
This hadeeth is da’eef (weak) and was classed as such by al-Nawawi in al-Adhkaar. Ibn Hijr said in al-Talkhees (2/104): Ibn al-Qattaan described it as da’eef because there is some problem with it and it is mawqoof, and because the status of the narrator Abu ‘Uthmaan and his father is unknown. Ibn al-‘Arabi narrated from al-Daaraqutni that it is a hadeeth whose isnaad is weak and whose text is unknown elsewhere, and there is no saheeh hadeeth on this topic. End quote.
It was also classed as da’eef by al-Albaani in Irwa’ al-Ghaleel (688).
Ahmad (4/105 and 16521) narrated that Safwaan said: The shaykhs told me that they were present with Ghudayf ibn al-Haarith al-Thumaali (a Sahaabi) when his death throes grew intense. He said: Is there anyone among you who can recite Yaa Seen? Saalih ibn Shurayh al-Sakooni recited it and when he reached the fortieth verse, he passed away. The shaykhs used to say: If it is recited in the presence of the dying person, he finds relief thereby. Safwaan said: ‘Eesa ibn al-Mu’tamari narrated it in the presence of Ma’bad.
Al-Haafiz said in al-Isaabah (5/324): its isnaad is hasan.
See also: al-Majmoo’ (5/105); Sharh Muntaha al-Iraadaat (1/341); Haashiyat Ibn ‘Aabideen (2/191).
This view was favoured by Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him), who said in al-Ikhtiyaaraat (p. 91):
Reciting Qur’aan over the deceased after he has died is a bid’ah (innovation), unlike reciting for the one who is dying, when it is mustahabb to recite Yaa Seen. End quote.
They said: the reason why it is mustahabb to recite it is that this soorah includes mention of Tawheed and the Resurrection, and the glad tidings of Paradise for the one who dies believing in Tawheed, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Would that my people knew That my Lord (Allaah) has forgiven me” [Yaa Seen 36:26-27]. So the soul is comforted by that and it is easier for it to come out.
See: Mataalib Ooli al-Nuha (1/837).
Imam Maalik (may Allaah have mercy on him) was of the view that it is makrooh to recite Soorah Yaa Seen or any other soorah in the presence of the dying person, because of the weakness of the hadeeth which speaks of that, and because it was not what people did.
See: al-Fawaakih al-Dawaani (1/284); Sharh Muhtadar Khaleel, 2/137.
Shaykh al-Albaani said in Ahkaam al-Janaa’iz:
With regard to reciting Soorat Yaa Seen in the presence of the dying person, and turning him to face the qiblah, there is no saheeh report concerning that. End quote.
Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked: Is it permissible to recite Soorat Yaa Seen when a person is dying?
Reciting Soorat Yaa Seen when a person is dying is mentioned in the hadeeth of Ma’qil ibn Yasaar, according to which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Recite Yaa Seen for your dying ones.” It was classed as saheeh by several scholars who thought that its isnaad was jayyid and that it was narrated by Abu ‘Uthmaan al-Nahdi from Ma’qil ibn Yasaar. Others classed it as da’eef and said: the one who narrated it is not Abu ‘Uthmaan al-Nahdi, rather it is another person who is unknown. What is well known about the hadeeth is that it is da’eef because nothing is known about Abu ‘Uthmaan. So it is not mustahabb to recite it for the one who is dying. The one who said that that is mustahabb thought that the hadeeth was saheeh, so he described it as mustahabb. But reciting Qur’aan in the presence of one who is sick is a good thing, and Allaah may benefit him through that. But with regard to singling out Soorat Yaa Seen, the basic principle is that the hadeeth is da’eef (weak) so there are no grounds for singling out this soorah. End quote.
Fataawa Ibn Baaz, 13/93
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked: Is reciting Soorat Yaa Seen for one who is dying proven in the Sunnah or not?
Reciting Soorat Yaa Seen for one who is dying is Sunnah according to many scholars, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Recite Yaa Seen for your dying ones.” But some of the scholars spoke about this hadeeth and said that it is da’eef. According to those who classed it as saheeh, reciting this soorah is Sunnah, and according to those who classed it is da’eef it is not Sunnah. And Allaah knows best. End quote.
Fataawa Ibn ‘Uthyameen (17/72).
He also said:
“Recite Yaa Seen for your dying ones” – this hadeeth is da’eef (weak) and there is some weakness in it. If the hadeeth is saheeh, the time for reciting it is at the time of death, when the death-throes begin; that is when Soorat Yaa Seen may be recited for him. The scholars said: There is some benefit in it, which is that it makes it easier for the soul to come out, because in it Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“It was said (to him when the disbelievers killed him): ‘Enter Paradise.’ He said: ‘Would that my people knew
27. ‘That my Lord (Allaah) has forgiven me, and made me of the honoured ones!’”
[Yaa Seen 36:26-27]
So this may be recited in the presence of the one who is dying if the hadeeth is saheeh, but there is no basis for reciting it over the grave. End quote.
Fataawa Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (17/74).