What is Permissible & What is Impermissible to Gift from Actions to the Deceased

Shaykh Abdul Azeez ibn Baaz rahimahullaah in his Majmoo` Fataawaa vol. 13 pg. 249 was asked the following question:

Q: Do righteous actions reach the deceased?

A: Those actions which the legislation indicates reaches the deceased, then they reach the deceased, due to the saying of the Prophet sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam: “When the son of Aadam passes away all of his actions are cut off, except for three: A continuous charity, or knowledge which people derive benefit from or a pious child who makes supplication for him.” Reported by Muslim.

And due to other narrations which have been reported in that regard (showing that actions benefit the deceased), from those actions is: Giving in charity, du`aa (supplication), Hajj (the major pilgrimage), Umrah (the minor pilgrimage), and that which the deceased leaves behind from the spreading of knowledge.

As for gifting prayer and the reading of Quraan to the dead, or doing tawaaf (circumambulation of the Ka`bah), or supererogatory fasting for him – then I do not know the basis for any of this, rather what is prescribed is to leave such off; due to the saying of the Prophet sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam: “Whoever carries out an action that is not in accordance to our way then it is rejected.” Reported by Muslim.

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