Does deceased know who gave charity on his behalf?
Fatwa No: 346168

Question

Assalaamu alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuh. My dear father passed away recently, and I have a simple question. Whenever I make Sadaqah Jaariyah (continuous charity) on his behalf and it reaches him, will he know that it came from me? Or will it reach him without him knowing where it came from? May Allaah have mercy upon him and reunite me with him in Paradise.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger. 

The scholars unanimously agreed that it is prescribed to offer charity on behalf of the deceased and that the reward for it reaches them. ‘Aa'ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, narrated that a man came to the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and said, “My mother died unexpectedly and she had not made a will. I think that if she could have spoken, she would have given in charity. Will she receive a reward if I give charity on her behalf?” He, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said, “Yes, give charity on behalf of your mother.” [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

As to whether the deceased knows the person who gave charity on his behalf, we could not find an authentic text in this regard. Hwever, a relevant hadeeth whose authenticity was questioned by scholars was cited by As-Suyooti and Ibn Al-Jawzi. It mentioned that Jibreel (Gabriel) presents the reward for such charity to the deceased on a plate of light. Anas ibn Maalik, may Allah be pleased with him, reported that the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said, “There is no household in which one of its members dies and they give charity on his behalf after his death but that Jibreel, may Allah exalt his mention, will present it to him on a platter of light. He will stand at the edge of the grave and say, ‘O dweller of the deep grave, this is a gift for you from your family, so accept it.’ Then he will enter upon him, and he (the deceased) will rejoice thereat and be of good cheer, and his neighbors who were not given anything will be sad.

Al-Haafith Al-Haythami  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said about this narration “It was cited by At-Tabaraani in his book Al-Awsat, and its chain of narration includes Abu Muhammad Ash-Shaami, who was classified as a liar by Al-Azdi.” [Majma’ Az-Zawaa'id]

Al-Albaani  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him classified it as Mawdhoo’ (fabricated) in his book Silsilat Al-Ahadeeth Adh-Dha‘eefah wal-Mawdhoo‘ah (1/699).

Allah knows best.

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