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Iḥtiḍār (Arabic: الإحتضار) is a terminology in fiqh (jurisprudence) which means the presence of death. A person who is about to die and whose soul is about to leave his body is called "muḥtaḍar"(مُحتَضَر). When a person is in such a state, people around him have certain jurisprudential obligations.

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Definition

"Ihtidar" literally means "presence". In the religious terminology, it means the presence of death and the arrival of the time at which one's soul leaves the body.[1]

In the Qur'an

In the Qur'an 4 in the Qur'an, "ihtidar" is characterized as the presence of death and it is emphasized that tawba of sinners is not accepted when they are in this state.[2][3] The Qur'an 5 refers to the pains and hardships suffered by unjust people in this state while the angels talk to them.[4][5] And according to the Qur'an 56, remind people who deny the truth of the Qur'an that there will be a time at which their life comes to their throat and they are asked to return a "muhtadar" to life, if they can.[6][7]

In Hadith

According to some hadiths, the Prophet (s) and Imam 'Ali (a) go to the "muhtadar"; if he or she is a believer, then they give them the good news of going to the Heaven and if they are unbelievers, then they notify them of the divine anger. The believer is given the option to go back to this world, but upon seeing their place in the Heaven, they choose to go to the Afterlife. After seeing their place in the Heaven, some believers ask to go back to this world just to inform their family and friends about their position in the Afterlife, but they are not given the permission to do so.[8]

Practices

There are certain jurisprudential rulings for ihtidar whi