Elderly People and Resurrection
How can you compensate for their past years, their childhood and youth which are already left behind? How can you console them for the loss of their beloved ones, their friends, spouses, children or grandchildren who went to the other world before them? How can you remove from their hearts the fear of death and the grave, which they are approaching day by day? How can you make them forget death, which they feel so deeply? Is it possible to console them with ever-new pleasures of life? It is only when you have convinced them that the grave, which seems to them like a dragon with a mouth wide-opened, is in fact a door to another, much better world, or simply a lovely waiting-room to go to that world, that you can compensate and console them for their losses.
In its inimitable style, The Holy Book voices the feelings of the old through the tongue of the Messenger Zechariah:
“This is a mention of your Lord’s mercy unto His servant Zechariah; when he invoked Him with a secret, sincere call, saying: ‘My Lord, my very bones have become rotten and my head is shining with gray hair. My Lord! I have never been disappointed in my prayer to You’ (19:2-5).”
Fearing that his kinsmen would not be sufficiently loyal to his mission after his death, the Messenger Zechariah asked his Lord for a son, an heir to his mission, with that heart-rending appeal. This is in fact the cry of all old people. Belief in God and the Resurrection gives the old the good news: ‘Do not be afraid of death. For death is not an eternal extinction; it is only a change of worlds, a discharge from the distressing duties of the worldly life and a passport to an eternal world where all kinds of beauties and blessings are waiting for you. The Merciful One Who sent you to the world and has kept you alive therein for so long a time, will not leave you in the darkness of the grave and dark corridors opening on the other world. He will take you to His Presence and grant to you an eternal, ever-happy life. He will bless you with bounties of Paradise.’ It is only in this good news that the old will find true consolation and welcome death with a smile.
Man has a unique place among creatures. He has been honored with free will in order to direct his life. Free will is the manifestation of Divine Mercy. If man uses his free will properly and does good deeds, he will be rewarded with the fruits of Mercy. Belief in the Resurrection is a most important and compelling factor, which urges man to use his free will in the right way and refrain from sinful acts and from wronging and harming others.
The Holy Book declares:
“Those who fear to stand before their Lord and curb the desires of the carnal self, Paradise will be their dwelling place (79:40-1).”