Q. I’d like to find out the proper etiquette for women going to a funeral, i.e., visiting a home where a member has passed away and the body is still in the house. I always go with my mom and more often than not, the women just sit around making small talk or make busy in the kitchen. It just doesn’t feel right.
A. the proper custom is to recite Qur’an and send the reward gained from the recitation to the spirit of the dead person rather than talking about other issues. Both men and women, together or separately, should do that. they can read Surat yasin or make khatm al-Quran depending how much time they have. if they decide to make khatm al-Quran every reads one or two juz’ and the recitation of the whole Quran is completed quickly. than someone makes du`a’ for all and for the dead.
it’s also recommended that they do other good things such as helping the household to organize their home, cooking and cleaning, etc. because they are very sorry and busy with the people who come to visit. The Sunna is that the family of the dead person are given food for a couple of days by the friends or neighbors because they would not even think about cooking in that situation.
Our position is also that each country has its tradition which should be followed if they do not contradict with Islam.
© 2012 As-Sunnah Foundation of America