576. The body of a Muslim should be shrouded with three pieces of clothing: a loin-cloth, a tunic and a cloth that extends from the head to the toes.
577. The length of the loin-cloth and the tunic should be such that it would be considered a loin-cloth and a tunic in the common understanding. However, the obligatory precaution is that the loin-cloth should cover the area between the navel and the knees, and it is better if it covers the area between the chest and the feet. Based on obligatory precaution, the tunic should cover the entire body starting from the shoulder, and based on obligatory precaution, going down to the middle of the shin. In fact, it is better that it reaches the feet.
The head-to-toe cover should be long enough such that it would be possible to tie a knot on both ends of it. It should also be wide enough such that one side of it can overlap the other side.
578. If the inheritors of the deceased are bÁligh, and they permit an amount to be withdrawn from the inheritance that is more than the cost of the most basic shroud—as elaborated in the previous article—it will not be problematic to do so. The obligatory precaution is that one should not withdraw more than the cost of the minimum obligatory shroud from the portion of an inheritor who is not bÁligh.
579. If a person makes a will that the amount required for an ideal shroud be withdrawn from one-third of his estate, one can accordingly do so. The same will apply if he makes a will that one-third of his estate be used for himself, but does not specify how it should be used, or only specifies how a part of it should be used.
580. If the deceased did not make a will that the cost of the shroud be withdrawn from one-third of his estate, and one wishes to withdraw it from his actual estate , he should act according to the ruling specified in article 578.
581. The husband bears the responsibility for providing his wife’s shroud, even though she may have her own wealth. Similarly, if the husband divorces his wife through a revocable divorce—as elaborated in the section on the rules of divorce—and the wife passes away prior to the completion of her ‘Ðdaho (waiting period), the husband will have to provide her shroud.
If the husband is not bÁligh, or if he is insane, the guardian of the husband will have to provide the wife’s shroud from the husband’s wealth. Obligatory precaution dictates that the husband must provide the shroud of a recalcitrant wife (nÁshizah) and a temporary wife as well.
582. It is not obligatory on the family of a deceased person to provide his shroud. In the event that the deceased does not have any wealth of his own, the shroud should be provided by the person who was obligated to pay for the deceased’s expenses during his lifetime.
583. It is obligatory for the combination of the three pieces of a shroud to be opaque enough so that the body cannot be seen through them. In fact, based on obligatory precaution, neither should each of the three pieces be so thin that the body is visible through them.
584. It is not permissible to shroud a dead body with pieces of clothing which are usurped, even though no other pieces may be available. Hence, if the shroud on a dead body is usurped, and the owner does not approve of it, it should be taken off the deceased’s body, even if it has already been buried.
It is also not permissible to shroud a body with the najis hide of a dead animal when other options are available. In fact, it is problematic even when one is compelled out of necessity. Similarly, it is problematic to shroud a body with the ÔÁhir hide of a dead animal when other options are available.
585. It is not permissible to shroud a dead body with a najis cloth—in the case of a najÁsah that has been excused in prayer, this ruling is based on obligatory precaution—or a cloth that is made of pure silk, or a silk blend in which the ratio of the blends is not greater than the silk. Based on obligatory precaution, it is also not permissible to use a cloth that is woven with gold. However there is no harm in using these clothes if one is compelled to do so out of necessity.
586. Based on obligatory precaution, it is not permissible to shroud a body with a cloth made from the wool or hair of an animal whose meat is forbidden, when other options are available. The same ruling applies to shrouding a body with the hide of an animal whose meat is permissible to consume, and has been slaughtered according to Islamic law. However, there is no problem in shrouding a body with the cloth made from the wool or hair of an animal that is permissible to consume, although the recommended precaution is to avoid these as well.
587. If the shroud on a corpse becomes najis owing to his own najÁsah or any other najÁsah, and it is possible to wash or cut out the najis area without ruining the shroud, one should do so, even if it occurs after the body has been laid in the grave. If however, it is not possible to wash or cut out the najis area, but it is possible to replace it, it should be replaced. In the event that the najÁsah is one that is excused in prayer, this ruling will apply to it based on precaution.
588. If a person who has put on iÎrÁm for Hajj and ‘umrah passes away, he should be shrouded like all other Muslims, and there is no harm in covering his head and face.
589. It is recommended for a person to prepare his own shroud during his lifetime, and every time he looks at it, he will be rewarded.