Assalam alaikum,

These are comments to your questions.They were supplied by
MALLAM ABDURRAHMAN ISA <>our learned brother,who is also
on the NMN mailing list;for any comments please dont hesitate to contact
HIM directly.Allah knows best.Maasalam,AGH.

Please, help revise this and forward it to the brother as soon as

1. What is the position of Islam regarding the burial of a deceased
Muslim in a coffin?

The Scholars strongly condemned this practice, although they used the
term 'Makrouh'.   Among the evidences cited is that it was not reported
practiced by the Prophet (Peace and blessing of be upon him) nor his
companions after him.  And because the bear earth eats up/consumes the
corpse faster than when put in a coffin.
However, some scholars approved the use of coffin in the following
circumstance or a similar one.  That is if the corpse has started
decomposing and there is fear that its odour might cause harm to those
carrying it or putting it inside the grave.

2.  Does Islam allow the burial of two or more people in the same
This as well is also not allowed.  It is haram for the following
Allah's Apostle (peace be upon him) said: If you were not (to abandon)
the burying of the dead (in the grave), I would have certainly
supplicated Allah that He should make you listen to the torment of the
grave. (Muslim).
In another tradition he said: "You should hasten to bury your dead
ones, for if they are good you will be taking them to goodness, and if
they are bad you will be relieving yourself of their evil". (Muslim)
The above traditions clearly show that there is punishment in the
grave.  The second tradition particularly shows that the evil in the
corpse of a bad man could extend to others even if they are alive.
This is more so, if they are buried with him in the same grave.  This
is the major reason why non-Muslims are not buried together with
Muslims in the same graveyard, because part of the torment their souls
will be going through could extend to their neigbours.
Therefore it is not allowed to bury more than one corpse in one grave.

But in an emergency situation like, during wars, disasters, where there
are more corpses to bury and the number of Muslims to do the burial are
very few, and if the corpses are left unattended to might start
decomposing, leading to the spread of diseases.  In such situations, a
mass burial is allowed, but we should note what the prophet did as
narrated in the following hadith:
"Allah's Apostle used to shroud two martyrs of Uhud in one sheet and
then say, "Which of them knew Qur'an more?" When one of the two was
pointed out, he would put him first in the grave. Then he said, "I will
be a witness for them on the Day of Resurrection…" (Bukhari)
Meaning that if more than one Muslim is to be buried in a grave, we
should seek to know the most religious among them and put him first in
the grave.

3. What is the Islamic injunction regarding inheritance will by a
Muslim in a non-Islamic society?
There is no place for 'Inheritance will' in Islam. The portion and
share of every heir is fixed and known from the Quran and the Hadiths
of the Prophet (Peace be upon him).  A Muslim should not deliberately
disobey the inheritance law because of some preferences, which he
wishes to extend to some children.  The legal ownership of a man's
wealth stops at his death.  Therefore, he is not to judge who takes
what after his death, except the one third of his entire property,
which he is allowed to dispose of in a will before his death.
However, if a Muslim should find himself in a difficult situation
where he is compelled to write out an inheritance will for his
children.  The scholars suggest that the only solution is that he
should seek to know the share of every inheritor, as stipulated by the
Quran and Sunnah, write them down exactly and make it his inheritance
will.  This is only way he can clear himself before Allah.
These are the answers to your question and Allah knows best.