As for meeting Allaah and seeing Him:
- Meeting Allah [az] occurs after death and on the Day of Judgement.
- Seeing Him will occur only on the Day of Judgement.
Concerning the meeting with Allaah after death, Imaam al-Bukhaari (may Allaah have mercy on him) reported in Saheeh al Bukhari, in the chapter on 'Whoever loves to meet Allaah, Allaah loves to meet him,' the following:
From ‘Ubaadah ibn al-Saamit, from the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) who said: "Whoever loves to meet Allaah, Allaah will love to meet him, and whoever hates to meet Allaah, Allaah will hate to meet him." ‘Aa’ishah or one of his wives said: "But we all dislike the idea of death." He said, "It is not what you are thinking. When death approaches the believer and he is given the news of Allaah’s pleasure and honour, nothing will be more dear to him than what lies ahead of him, so he will love to meet Allaah and Allaah will love to meet him. But when death approaches the disbeliever and he is given the news of Allaah’s wrath and punishment, nothing will be more disliked by him that what lies ahead of him, so he will hate to meet Allaah and Allaah will hate to meet him." (Saheeh al-Bukhaari, 6026)
The Meaning of 'Meeting Allah'
The words "...nothing will be more dear to him than what lies ahead of him..." refer to what he will go through after death.
Muslim and al-Nisaa’i report that Shurayh ibn Haani’ said: "I said to ‘Aa’ishah: ‘I have heard a hadeeth which, if it is as I heard it, means that we are doomed. The hadeeth says: "There is not one of us who does not dislike death."’ She said: ‘It is not what you think. What it means is when a person’s eyes stare without blinking, when the death rattle is in his chest and his skin and muscles contract.’
"There are different types of meeting: it may mean seeing with one’s own eyes, or it may mean resurrection, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): ‘They indeed are losers who denied their meeting with Allaah…’ (Al-An’aam 6:31); or it may mean death, as Allaah says: (interpretation of the meaning): ‘Whoever hopes for the Meeting with Allaah, then Allaah’s term is surely coming…’ (Al-‘Ankaboot 29:5) and ‘Say (to them): Verily, the death from which you flee will surely meet you…’ (Al-Jumu’ah 62:8)"
The meeting with Allaah (mentioned in the hadeeth quoted above) refers to something other than death, because in another hadeeth the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) said, "Death is a barrier between us and the meeting with Allaah.": "The hadeeth does not refer to a dislike of death and the suffering involved, because everybody feels this way. What is being criticized here is a love and preference for this world and a dislike of the idea of moving on to Allaah and the Hereafter. This is explained by the fact that Allaah condemned people who love this life, and said (interpretation of the meaning): ‘… those who hope not for their meeting with Us, but are pleased and satisfied with the life of the present world…’ (Yoonus 10:7.)"
But when death is the means of meeting Allaah, it is described as the meeting with Allaah.
"The meaning of the hadeeth is that the like and dislike referred to are those that occur at the time of death, at the stage when repentance is no longer acceptable, when the dying person is shown where he is headed. There is also some discussion in the hadeeth about the dislike of death. Whoever dislikes death because he prefers this life to the blessings of the Hereafter is condemned. Whoever dislikes death because he fears being brought to account for his shortcomings, lack of preparation and failure to carry out the commands of Allah properly, is not to blame in this case. The one who feels this way should hasten to prepare himself so that when death comes to him he will not dislike it but will love it because of the meeting with Allaah which he is hoping for after death."
The hadeeth quoted above also indicates that no living person will see Allaah in this life, but that the believers will see Him after death, as the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) said: "Death is a barrier between us and the meeting with Allaah." This fact is stated even more clearly in another hadeeth narrated by Muslim from Abu Umaamah, in which the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) says: "Know that you will not see your Lord until you die."
The meeting with Allaah and seeing Him on the Day of Judgement is proven in many texts, such as the verse (interpretation of the meaning): "Some faces that Day will be naadirah (shining and radiant), looking at their Lord." (Al-Qiyaamah 75:22-23)
Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that the people said, "O Messenger of Allaah, will we see our Lord on the Day of Resurrection?" He said, "Do you have any doubts about seeing the full moon on a cloudless night?" They said, "No." He said, "Do you have any doubts about seeing the sun on a cloudless day?" They said, "No." He said, "Then you will see your Lord in the same way." (Reported by Al-Bukhaari, 764.)