Today I had an opportunity to visit a Muslim cemetery (Üçler Mezarlığı) in Konya, Turkey.
Perusing the graves, I noticed the words “Ruhuna Fatiha.” At first I thought it was a common name like “Mehmet” but then I realized that this phrase is on almost every tombstone whether in full form or abbreviation and that it is a kind of Islamic equivalent to “Rest in Peace.”
According to one source upon which I stumbled online: “It is the first chapter in the Quran, the holy book of Islam. The literal meaning of Al-Fatiha is ‘The Opener’, because it is the first Surah recited in full during every prayer circle (rak’ah).”
Here’s the translation of its meaning:
In the name of God, the infinitely Compassionate and Merciful.
Praise be to God, Lord of all the worlds.
The Compassionate, the Merciful. Ruler on the Day of Reckoning.
You alone do we worship, and You alone do we ask for help.
Guide us on the straight path,
the path of those who have received your grace; not the path of those who have brought down wrath, nor of those who wander astray.
Here are some of the sights that struck me as I perused this cemetery: