Death and Sleeping are brothers if not then at least cousins. If Sleeping is lunar, Death is a full moon. Death is a perfect sleep. In fact, when you see a dead man or a sleeping one, you can hardly notice the difference if the sleeper’s chest wasn’t rising and falling, I couldn’t find anything similar to Death like Sleeping. Sleeping is Nature’s call reminding of death. As much as we can’t resist but to sleep; the same goes with death as we can’t resist but to die one day.
In the past two days, I slept without feeling the surrounding or myself, a state I would call a “Perfect Unconscious”. People tried their best to wake me but they failed, I didn’t even notice the simplest thing. That deep sleep might be a wish for many people but to me it was frightening. When I woke up, I immediately asked myself, what if I opened my eyes and it’s not the world I know, what if I opened my eyes instead of seeing humans I see Angels! What if the next time I wake up I find myself in the middle of people standing waiting for judgment? I realized that what happened to me in these past two days is what will happen to me when I die.
The reasons these questions popped up in my mind are because of the sleep I slept was not very different from my perception of death. I couldn’t feel anything, I couldn’t hear, see, smell, touch what I wanted and in fact I didn’t have the power to wake up. One of the most depression states we may go through is when we want something badly but we don’t have the power to do it, no one is supporting you and you don’t even have the ability to ask for help. It’s not in our hands to wake up when we are sleeping its Allah’s work. Allah Said in the Quran:
"وَهُوَ الَّذِي يَتَوَفَّاكُمْ بِاللَّيْلِ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا جَرَحْتُمْ بِالنَّهَارِ ثُمَّ يَبْعَثُكُمْ فِيهِ لِيُقْضَى أَجَلٌ مُسَمًّى ثُمَّ إِلَيْهِ مَرْجِعُكُمْ ثُمَّ يُنَبِّئُكُمْ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ"
سورة الأنعام الآية 60
It is He who doth take your souls by night, and hath knowledge of all that ye have done by day: by day doth He raise you up again; that a term appointed be fulfilled; In the end unto Him will be your return; then will He show you the truth of all that ye did.
Holy Quran (6:60)
I must say that just waking up after sleep and being alive is one of God’s greatest gifts to us Humans. We are actually going in the dying process everyday and then re-birthing, if we just realized the countless fruits of this process, we will realize how merciful Allah is for raising us from dead every day with the so many sins we commit daily.
Don’t we feel happy and grateful when a baby is born, an egg crack then a bird comes out, we feel happily amazed just seeing the process, why we are not happy seeing this process on daily basis. Not to forget the difference is when you wake up, you have all your memory, all your thoughts and powers without the need to learn again, that is a reason that we should be even more happy grateful.
We can consider sleeping is death of past problems and events, our past deeds both good and bad. When we wake up, it is a new birth, a new life, a new chance. If we did bad deeds it’s time to repent and take pledge that we will never repeat them. It’s time to accept what happened, admit our mistakes and find the mistakes that leaded us in those bad deeds so we avoid them. If we did a good deed we shouldn’t stop, our balance is zero, this is a new life, past good deeds is gone, so we should raise our balance in every day, we should find our strength and spend it in good deeds.
The good sleeping is a sleeping without nightmares, when we are sleeping, we can’t select to see dreams or nightmares no matter how much we do in our life, and we can never know what we are going to see. However, once we are dead even though we maybe can’t be sure about the details but Prophet Mohammed peace be upon him told us about certain things for sure we are going to see. Based on our deeds in this life we can expect what we are going to see. No wise man would love to see and experience nightmares after his death, to avoid nightmares we have to follow Allah’s orders.
Death for a true believer is a rest, it removes all the pain. We sleep when we get tired and want to get rid of Life’s issues, if we are seeing a lovely dream we wish that we never wake up, same thing death for the believer, it removes the troubles of this life and put him in an eternal peace where not only he see the dreams but really experience them.