It has becomes widespread in recent times for people to offer condolences through newspapers and magazines and for the family of the deceased to respond with thanks for condolences in the same manner. What is the ruling on doing this? Does it come under the heading of the kind of death announcements that are forbidden in sharee'ah?
Praise be to Allaah. Yes... what I think is that this comes under the heading of the kind of death announcements that are forbidden even if it does not, it is still extravagance and a waste of money. Condolences are not like congratulations which people may be keen to offer whether the one who has been bereaved is sad or not. What is meant by offering condolences is that if you see a person who has been bereaved and his sorrow is plainly visible, you try to give him moral support and help him to bear that loss.
This is the point of offering condolences. It is not something you do as a mere act of courtesy. If the people understood the purpose of offering condolences they would not go to the extreme of publishing them in the newspapers or gathering for that purpose or receiving people and offering them food, etc.
Answered by Shaykh Muhammad al-Saalih al-Uthaymeen (SuaaI fi Ahkaam al- janaaiz, p, 53).
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited