Bringing the Dead Back to Life – Part 1
Allah Ta’ala has Power over all things and He can bring the dead back to life as and when He wishes. He has used such incidents for our guidance and has mentioned them in the Holy Qur’an as a sign for the people. Hereunder we will discuss two such incidents as mentioned in the Glorious Qur’an.
When the disobedience of the Bani Isra’eel reached its peak, Allah Ta’ala placed the tyrant king Bakht Nasr, as the ruler over the land, who wasted no time in slaying the Bani Isra’eel (and even ruining Baitul-Muqaddas). The Prophet Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) later arrived in the city, and when he saw the place deserted, its buildings obliterated and its pillars demolished, he could say nothing in his surprise but wonder how Allah Ta’ala will bring this city back to life again. Regarding this Allah Ta’ala mentions in the Holy Qur’an, “Or like him who passed by a town and it was laid down fallen upon its roofs. Spoke he, “How shall Allah give life to it after its death.”” [Surah 2, Verse 259]
At the time, he was travelling on a donkey and had a bowl of fruit juice in his possession. He then proceeded to a tree, tied his animal to it and fell asleep, at which time Allah Ta’ala seized his soul and also took the life of his donkey. Seventy years later, a king of Persia became the ruler over the land and brought his army to the area. This helped in drawing people a second time to the city & its surroundings and allowed it to become populated once again (even by the little of the Bani Isra’eel that remained).
Allah Ta’ala kept the eyes of Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) closed throughout all of this, and only a hundred years after his demise did Almighty Allah return the Prophet’s soul to his body; first to his eyes and then to the rest of him. Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) even awoke and gazed as he slowly became animate again!
Allah Ta’ala then asked him, “Uzair, how long have you been here?” Seeing that it was the evening and knowing that he had gone to sleep in the morning, the Prophet (Alaihis Salaam) replied, “Not more than a day.” Allah Ta’ala then said, “No, you’ve been asleep for a hundred years. Look at your animal and provisions.” The Prophet did so and saw that although his juice was still the same, his donkey had by now completely decayed and its bones were all over the place.
Before his eyes, the power of Allah Ta’ala then brought the donkey back to life by first gathering all of its bones together to form a skeleton, then growing out of them its meat and skin, and thereafter bringing its hair out. The animal was lastly given back its soul, and it then began to bray as normal again!
Witnessing the Power of Allah Ta’ala, Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) proclaimed, “I know very well that Allah is Powerful over everything [Surah 2, Verse 259],” and he then made his way back home (recognizing no one as he passed) as he was still only 40 years old! When he reached the door of his house, a blind, disabled servant, who had seen Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) before, opened it and was asked by the Prophet, “Is this the house of Uzair?”
The woman replied, “Yes, but Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) has been gone for a hundred years.” She then burst into tears, at which point the Prophet said, “Allah Ta’ala held me for a hundred years and then brought me back to life!” She then said, “Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) was a person whose Duas were always accepted. If you are who you say you are, make Dua for my sight to return so that I may see you.” So, Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) replied, “Stand, by the command of Allah,” and he then held the woman’s hand. As she awoke, her foot returned to its normal state, and she was also able to see again! After looking at Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) she said, “I know now that you are truly Uzair (Alaihis Salaam).” Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) then entered his home and saw his son (who was now 118 years of age) sitting with his grandson. The woman said to them, “Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) has come back to us!” This made everyone in the house jump to their feet. She also said, “See, he has even brought my eyesight back!” The son of Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) then approached his father and said, “My father had a mole between his shoulders.” Hearing this, Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) opened his shirt and showed him the sign he was looking for. [Tafseer Khazaainul Irfaan]
Hazrat Ibrahim (Alaihis Salaam) was once walking along the coast when he saw a corpse being eaten by fish, birds and predators and wanted to see how such a person would be brought back to life again. For this reason, he raised his hands in Dua and said, “O Allah! I don’t doubt that You will bring the dead back to life, but I want to see how someone whose body parts are scattered all over the earth will be reconstructed.”
Allah Ta’ala replied, “O Khaleel, take four birds, familiarize yourself with them so that you may recognize them later on, cook them and then place each portion on a separate mountain-top before calling out to them. In doing so, you’ll see how I bring them back to life.” So, Hazrat Ibrahim (Alaihis Salaam) gathered four birds, all clearly distinguishable from one another (a crow, a chicken, a pigeon and a peacock), slaughtered them, cut each into individual pieces and roasted them all. He then placed single pieces on separate mountain-tops (except their heads, which he kept with himself) before finally calling out to them, saying, “Come!” As soon as this order was given, the Prophet saw the fragments gathering together before his very eyes to form each respective bird! When the bodies had everything but their heads, they then ran towards Hazrat Ibrahim (Alaihis Salaam), regained what they were looking for, and flew away after becoming completely whole and alive once again! Regarding this incident Allah Ta’ala states in the Holy Qur’an, “And when Ibrahim submitted, “O my Lord, show me how You shall give life to the dead.” Said He, “Do you not believe.” Submitted he, “Why not, but I like that my heart may be at rest.” Said He, “Then taking four birds, make them familiar to you, then put a part of each of them on each hill, thereafter call them they will come to you running with their feet. And know that Allah is Mighty, Wise.”” [Surah 2, Verse 260]
We learn from these incidents that the Power of Allah Ta’ala is such that He will reconstruct every individual to stand on the plains of Qiyaamah even if pieces of their bodies were spread over the entire earth. Indeed, no one will be exempt from that Day. We also learn that the dead hear us. If not, Allah Ta’ala would not have ordered Hazrat Ibrahim (Alaihis Salaam) to call out to them. If such is the hearing ability of dead animals, what can then be said about the hearing ability of the Prophets and Friends of Allah! We also learn that although Allah Ta’ala is Himself able to give life to the dead, He carries out His work through the commands of those whom He chooses. Lastly, we learn from this that the bodies of the Prophets do not decompose. If they did, the body of Hazrat Uzair (Alaihis Salaam) would have decayed just like his donkey’s.
May Allah Ta’ala grant us the Taufeeq to seek knowledge of the Holy Qur’an and to understand the Signs of Allah, Ameen.