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My grandfather said that someone (I think his brother) when he was dying he told my grandfather's niece (probably the dying person's daughter) to direct him towards the Qibla. Then she directed him towards the Qibla, and he said the Shahada, then he died, may Allah have mercy on him.

Saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah or the Shahada before dying is very recommended, because:

The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “If a person’s last words are Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah, Paradise will be guaranteed for him.”

Classed as Saheeh (authentic)

But what about facing the Qibla? Is there any narration about facing the Qibla?

Jazakum Allah khayran

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Yes, it is. The evidence cited for it includes:

  • The Prophet ﷺ approved of the act of Bara’ bin Ma’rur:

    أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم حين قدم المدينة سأل عن البراء بن معرور، فقالوا: توفي وأوصى بثلثه لك يا رسول الله، وأوصى أن يوجه إلى القبلة لما احتضر، فقال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: أصاب الفطرة وقد رددت ثلثه على ولده

    When the Messenger of Allah ﷺ arrived in Medinah he asked about Bara’ bin Ma’rur. The people told him that he had died and had made the bequest that a third of his wealth be given to the Messenger of Allah, and that his face be turned towards the qiblah when he is close to death. The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: "He has followed the fitrah. And I return the wealth to his children".

    Mustadrak al-Hakim and Sunan Kubra al-Bayhaqi

  • It has been claimed to have been the practice of Fatimah, the daughter of the Prophet (see e.g. Musnad Ahmad) and others among the Sahaba and the Tabi'een (see e.g. in Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaiba).

  • Analogy, as this state is near to the state of death and in the grave and it is agreed that in that state the face should be turned towards the qiblah.

    البيت الحرام قبلتكم أحياء وأمواتا

    The Sacred House, your qiblah in your life and after death.

    Sunan Abi Dawud

Some scholars have disagreed and cited the lack of clear or reliable evidence. For example, Said ibn al-Musayyib is narrated to have disliked the practice.

References:

  1. الهداية في شرح بداية المبتدي [English Translation]
  2. الموسوعة الفقهية
  3. الفقه الإسلامي وأدلته

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