It is impossible for the soul upon which death has been decreed to return to this world:
فَيُمْسِكُ الَّتِي قَضَىٰ عَلَيْهَا الْمَوْتَ
Then He withholds the one whom He has decreed death for
Despite the crystal clear verdict of the Qur’an al-Karim, the idea that the soul of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ is returned to his body in this world is widespread among the Muslims. It is based on a Hadith of questionable authenticity:
عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ مَا مِنْ أَحَدٍ يُسَلِّمُ عَلَىَّ إِلاَّ رَدَّ اللَّهُ عَلَىَّ رُوحِي حَتَّى أَرُدَّ عَلَيْهِ السَّلاَمَ
Narrated Abi Huraira: Allah’s Apostle ﷺ said: “None of you greets me with Salam except that Allah returns my spirit to me until I return to him the Salam.” (Sunan Abi Dawud #2041)
Although the muhaddith, al-Albani, declared this Hadith hasan, the truth is that it is doubtful in its authenticity due to the fact that the narrator Yazid b. Abdillah b. Qusait having heard directly from Abi Huraira is not firmly established. More importantly, this narration clashes with the holy Qur’an, which, as has preceded, declares that Allah Most High “withholds” the soul upon which death has been decreed from returning.