A sister in the community has asked a couple of questions that I would like to ask and answer please:
1. In the past, this sister used to go to people who made taweez, and she would do what they said with them, i.e., hitting them with a shoe, hanging them outside. She thought this would help her problems with her in-laws. Now that she knows this is wrong, she wants to know how to repent?
2. When this same lady was giving her mother a ghusl when she passed away, she heard a lot of crying, but no one was there. Another family member heard this crying at the home where their mother lived. Also, when they were burying her, her eyes would continuously keep opening. She wants to know if these things are signs that she is suffering and what she should do.
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
We do not know the nature and details of what these people prescribed the sister in reference; hence, we cannot comment on such taweezes. Nevertheless, if she committed a sinful act, she should make tawba. Allah (SWT) says:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا تُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ تَوْبَةً نَّصُوحًا
Translation: "O you who believe! Repent to Allah a sincere repentance. (Surah At-Tahrim: verse 8)
Umar (RA) describes a 'sincere repentance' as not returning to the sin that he repented from just as milk does not return to the udder. (Hashiya of Shaykh Sabooni for Riyadh As-Saliheen: p. 19 [Maktaba Asriya])
Keep in mind three conditions for tawbah to be accepted. Many people resort back to sin due to not keeping these conditions in mind. If any of these three conditions are missing, then the tawba is invalid:
a. To remove oneself from that sin
b. To regret committing it
c. To have a firm resolve never to return to it
If the sin relates to someone's right, then along with the conditions mentioned above, they must fulfill the right, e.g., if he steals someone's watch, he must return it to its rightful owner. (Riyadh As-Saliheen: p. 18 (Al-Maktaba Al-Asriya)
We advise this sister to seek Islamic knowledge from authentic scholars and act per what she learns. She should seek Allah's (SWT) assistance through living a life of taqwa (piety) and making dua to him. Nowadays, there are many frauds out there who manipulate people to take their money. One should be cautious in this regard and refrain from seeking spiritual guidance from such individuals. For more details regarding the ruling of taweez, kindly refer to the following link: https://daruliftabirmingham.co.uk/iin-islam-is-taweez-haram-or-halal/
2. We have not come across any evidence suggesting that such things are signs of punishment. We advise the sister not to worry about these matters as they are beyond her control. There is no benefit for us nor the deceased in occupying ourselves with grief and worry. Instead, we should focus on bettering ourselves through obeying Allah (SWT) and doing those things that please Him. We should focus on acquiring the love of Allah (SWT) by occupying ourselves in His remembrance, doing various good deeds, refraining from sin, and sitting in the company of pious people. Also, we can benefit the deceased by making dua for them and doing isal e thawab (performing a good deed then asking Allah [SWT] to convey its reward to the dead).
Only Allah knows best
Written by Maulana Mohammad Ahsan Osmani
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham