It used to be that I heard about deaths in the community, long before I was involved in social media; I would read about them in the Janazah/Du’a Request section of The Muslim Link newspaper that we would get on some Fridays. I used to read them, make du’a for them, and move on with my life until the next issue came around. Sometimes I would also hear my grandma talking to her sisters and my aunts about someone who had passed away back home in India, and then again, I would make du’a for them and then forget and move on with my life.
Being involved online (and consequently, with people from around the world), it seems like the news of one death doesn’t pass and another one is announced. It was very different when I heard in lectures that people are always being born and dying ’round the world, but when I *constantly* hear about it, and “see” it through the graphic images, it has a different effect. I remember telling my friend last month, “This week I heard about the deaths of about 3 different people. It seems like everyone just keeps passing away.” And since then I’ve noticed that every, single week I hear about someone’s death. SubhanAllah, it’s like having several wake-up calls, one after the other.
It reminded me of the ayah: “O mankind, indeed you are laboring toward your Lord with [great] exertion and will meet it.” (84:6)