What does it mean that the prophets are alive in their graves? Are they aware of what’s going on in the world right now? Did they experience all the amount of years that have passed?
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Before discussing the issue of the prophets being alive in their graves, it is important to first note that the prophets did in fact die and leave the life of this world. They are no longer amongst the living of the world. Allāh says: "Indeed you [O Prophet] will die, and they will die too" (Qur'ān, 39:30).
Abū Bakr raḍīAllāhu ʻanhu said upon the passing away of the Prophet ﷺ: "No doubt! Whoever worshipped Muḥammad, then Muḥammad is dead, but whoever worshipped Allāh, then Allāh is Alive and shall never die."
It is our belief that the prophets are alive in their graves after passing away from this world, but that life is the life of al-barzakh, and not this world. The barzakh is the period between a person's death and their resurrection on the Day of Resurrection. The life of al-barzakh is completely different from and nothing like that of this world. The true nature and the reality of the barzakh is not something that anyone understands except Allāh, and we do not understand how time passes during that life. We cannot imagine what it is like nor can we compare it to our worldly life.
Only Allah knows best
Written by Shaykh Umer Khan
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham