What is purgatory?

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)


One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

Dear Brother,

What is purgatory? Do we Muslims believe in it?


(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)




What is purgatory?

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol,  no person,  no grave, no prophet,  no imam,  no dai,  nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad(saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Purgatory is basically a Christian concept which means a supposed place or state of expiation of petty sins after death and before entering Paradise.


Islam, on the other hand advocates that for the ones who believed and did good righteous deeds in the life of the world, and if the weight of the good deeds is heavier on the Day of Judgement, the Merciful Lord will forgive the petty sins of the person and enter him into Paradise.


For the ones,  whose evil deeds are heavier on the Day of Judgment,  they will have a severe accounting in the Just Court of Allah Subhanah.


Islam also advocates that there is a place or state, where one’s soul is kept after death and before the Day of Judgement.   This place is known as ‘Barzakh’, but this is not a place or state of ‘expiation of sins’ as believed in the Christian dogma.   It is basically a pre-cursor to the state of the person before his actual accounting on the Day of Judgement.


We have written a detailed article regarding ‘Barzakh’, which we are attaching for your reference.


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me.  Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.


Your Brother in Islam,







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