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Are Gravestone allowed in our Shia religion?


I was wondering if gravestones are allowed in our Shia religion? My Mother has passed and there is a small plaque that has her name on it temporarily, but I wanted to work on getting her a nice gravestone, is there any recommendations on what I should write on her gravestone and any specific dua or ziyarat I should include on it? Also, is there any specific name of dua or ziyarat to recite at her grave? Jazakallah


Wa Alaykumussalam

Thank you for your query.

According to the ahadith from Masumeen (as) it is Mustahab to write the name of the deceased person on the grave.

It is narrated in Usool-Al-Kafi from Shaykh Kulayni:

لَمَّا رَجَعَ أَبُو الْحَسَنِ مُوسَى (ع) مِنْ بَغْدَادَ وَ مَضَى إِلَى الْمَدِينَةِ مَاتَتْ لَهُ ابْنَةٌ بِفَيْدَ فَدَفَنَهَا وَ أَمَرَ بَعْضَ مَوَالِيهِ أَنْ يُجَصِّصَ قَبْرَهَا وَ يَكْتُبَ عَلَى لَوْحٍ اسْمَهَا وَ يَجْعَلَهُ فِي الْقَبْر

When Imam Kazim (as) was returning to Baghdad from Madina. One of his daughters died on the land “Fayd”. Imam ordered to plaster her grave and write her name on a plaque and put on the grave. (Kulayni, Muhammad bin Yaqoub, Kafi, Tehran, 1407: volume 3, page 202)

Whenever someone dies, the family members or relatives put the gravestone and  put his/her name on it so people can find it easily while visiting the cemetery to recite Fatiha and duas on the grave. This had been there since a long time and there is no problem in it according to Islamic Shari’ah. But one must be careful that the gravestone should be customary and traditional which is used usually and shouldn’t be which differs a lot from the other gravestones and shouldn’t be to show off or because one wants to have a bigger gravestone comparing to the other graves. It is not appropriate if someone builds a bigger or decorated gravestone or puts very expensive gravestone to place a difference between the graves.

This mustahab act can be performed by placing a simple and cheap gravestone having the name of the mayyit so the grave can be distinguished among all the graves.

Usually the name, father’s name, date of birth, date of death of the deceased is written on the grave along with some Quranic verses, duas or ziarat.

Some of the Quranic verses which are written are related to death or the Hereafter which I will quote here:

  1. Surah Rahman/26:  كُلُّ مَنْ عَلَيْهَا فَانٍ

Everyone on it must pass away/ All that is on earth will perish:


2. Surah Qasas/88:    كُلُّ شَيْءٍ هَالِكٌ إِلَّا وَجْهَهُ

everything is perishable but He /  There is no god but He


3. Surah Baqarah/156:     إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ 

To Allah We belong, and to Him is our return


4. Surah Aale Imran/185:     كُلُّ نَفْسٍ ذَائِقَةُ الْمَوْتِ

Every soul shall taste of death


Duas like Dua Faraj or some part of Ziarate Ashura is written as follows:

اَللّهُمَّ اجْعَلْ مَحْیاىَ مَحْیا مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ مَماتى مَماتَ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ

O Allah, (please) make me live my lifetime in the same way as Muhammad and Muhammad’s Household lived


Duas to be recited while visiting graveyard:

  1. Imam Ali said: Recite this dua while entering the cemetery:

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحیمِ اَلسَّلامُ عَلی اَهْلِ لا إِلهَ إلاَّ اللهُ مِنْ أَهْلِ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ یا أَهْلِ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ بِحَقِّ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ کَیْفَ وَجَدْتُمْ قَوْلَ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ مِنْ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ یا لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ بِحَقِّ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ اِغْفِرْ لِمَنْ قالَ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ وَحْشُرْنا فی زُمْرَهِ مَنْ قالَ لا إِلهَ إِلاّ اللهُ مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ اللهِ وَلِیٌّ وَلِیٌّ الله

2. Imam Sadiq (as) said: Recite Surah Mulk on the grave to decrease the punishment of the grave

3. Imam Raza (as) said: Whoever visits the grave of a momin and recites Surah Qadr 7times, Allah swt will forgive him and the person in the grave.

4. Some of the Surahs which are recommended to recite are Surah Fatiha, Surah Yasin, Surah Mulk, Surah Ahzab, Ayatul Kursi, 7times Surah Qadr.

5. One of the Duas to be recited for the happiness of the deceased souls especially parents is Dua24 of Sahifa Sajjadiah (
Whatever is recited at the grave, its reward must be sent to the deceased soul which may ease his/her difficulties in Barzakh.

May Allah swt gladen the departed souls and give us Tawfiq to make our deeds better before the day arrives when we have to depart this mortal world.


Syed Haider