The Jinn

The belief in the existence of Jinn is an integral part of Islam since the Qur'an speaks about the existence of man and Jinn. There is even a Sura called 'Al-Jinn'. Both humans and Jinn were created by Allah to serve and worship Him (Sura al-Dariyat 56).

Jinn are subtle beings living in the subtle world who normally have nothing to do with us. Like humans they have the ability to reflect and to choose freely (unlike angels and animals), that is why they are also responsible for their deeds.

The word "Jinn" in Arabic refers to something that is hidden and invisible. In this world the Jinn see us but we can not see them (in the hereafter, this is reversed), unless we are possessed by a Jinn or they take a visible form, sometimes as humans, but usually as black animals. (For the ordinary citizen, witches with black cats who sacrifice children to Satan, belong to the realm of fairy tales, just as sorcerers and all the strange beings like fairies and goblins.)

If the Jinn takes a visible form, it can not disappear as long as we look at it. This makes him extremely vulnerable, because when the Jinn come into our world, they can be easily fought (with God's word), as a shark can be fought on the mainland. Fear of the Jinn is therefore inappropriate. However, a precise definition of "their" and "our" world is not possible, since they can move and act in both. Both worlds are interwoven or parallel, so to speak. "Our world" is when they become visible or perceptible to us while "their world" is ghaib or where we can not see them (under normal circumstances).

The Messenger of Allahs s.a.w. said: "The Jinn are of three types: A type that has wings, and they fly through the air; a type that looks like snakes and dogs; and a type that stops for a rest then resumes its journey." [al-Tahhaawi in Mushkil al-Athaar, 4/95, al-Tabaraani in al-Kabir]

There are believing Jinn and disbelievers. The vicious infidel Jinn are the Satans (Shaytan, majority Shayateen).
A very bad Satan is called Maarid (Demon). If he is even worse, and at the same time strong, he is called Ifrit, and in the plural Afaart. The most powerful of all the Jinn is Iblis himself. He commands his troops like a general, and has army commanders.

Jabir bin Abdullah r.a.reported that the Prophet s.a.w. said: "The throne of Iblis is on the sea and he sends out his troops to spread Fitna (evil, discord) among the people. The greatest (or best) of them, from his point of view, is the one that causes the most Fitna. One of the Satans would return after a mission and report to Iblis: "I have done this and that!" Iblis would answer, "You have not done anything!" So another would come and say, "I have not left this and that person without separating him from his wife." Iblis approaches this Satan and says to him, "How good you are!" [Muslim 17.157]

The goal of Iblis is to lead as many people astray as possible so that they follow him to hell in the hereafter. He is our hereditary enemy, with whom there can be no peace. He hates us men because we were the cause of his condemnation. He was jealous of man and considered himself something better, for which reason he did not want to bow before Adam:

And when We said unto the angels: Fall down prostrate before Adam and they fell prostrate all save Iblis, he said: Shall I fall prostrate before that which Thou hast created of clay? He said: Seest Thou this [creature] whom Thou hast honoured above me, if Thou give me grace until the Day of Resurrection I verily will seize his seed, save but a few. He said: Go, and whosoever of them followeth thee - lo! Hell will be your payment, an ample payment. And excite any of them whom thou canst with thy voice, and urge thy horse and foot against them, and be a partner in their wealth and children, and promise them. Satan promiseth them only to deceive. Lo! My [faithful] bondmen - over them thou hast no power, and thy Lord sufficeth as [their] guardian. [Al-Isra '61-65]

O Children of Adam! Let not Satan seduce you as he caused your [first] parents to go forth from the Garden and tore off from them their robe [of innocence] that he might manifest their shame to them. Lo! He seeth you, he and his tribe, from whence ye see him not. Lo! We have made the devils protecting friends for those who believe not. [Al-Araf 27]

And when thou recitest the Qur'an, seek refuge in Allah from Satan the outcast. Lo! He hath no power over those who believe and put trust in their Lord. His power is only over those who make a friend of him, and those who ascribe partners unto Him [Allah]. [An-Nahl 98-100]

Allah commands us to seek protection with Him so that Satan can not lead us astray.

He who follows Satan perceives his thoughts and deeds as good, reasonable and pleasing, but in the end he will always find that he has only followed delusion:

And when Satan made their deeds seem fair to them and said: No-one of mankind can conquer you this day, for I am your protector. But when the armies came in sight of one another, he took flight, saying: Lo! I am guiltless of you. Lo! I see that which ye see not. Lo! I fear Allah. And Allah is severe in punishment. [Al-Anfal 48]

Satan was cursed for his arrogance, and this arrogance he tries to induce in man so that he thinks as Satan did: "I am better than him!" Whoever is arrogant follows Satan, and the Prophet s.a.w. said that no one with a mustard seed of arrogance will enter paradise. Satan always tries to persuade us to assign partners to Allah, e.g. that we perform our deeds not for Allah alone, but to obtain praise and prestige ( Riya ).

The Satan which leads us astray is actually not Iblis himself but one of his subordinates. Each person is accompanied by a Jinn called the Qarien, his personal Satan, which can not be expelled with Ruqyah, because the Qarien is ordained by Allah, and Allah's will is not abrogated by Allah's Word. This Qarien causes a person to do evil things and rebel against Allah's law. On the last day, the person and his Qarien will lead a dispute before Allah:

His companion (the Qarien) says, "O our Lord, I did not seduce him to transgress, but he himself went astray." He said, "Do not dispute before Me, where I had sent you the warning in advance. [Al-Qaf 26-27]

Abd-Allah ibn Mas'ood r.a. reported that the Messenger of Allah s.a.w. said, "There is no one among you who has not assigned a companion of the Jinn." They asked, "Even to you, O Messenger of Allah?" said, "Even to me, but Allah has helped me with him, and he became a Muslim (or: I am secure of him), so he only asks me to do what is good." [Muslim]

According to another report, "... He has assigned to him a companion of the Jinn and a companion of the angels."

In the Qur'an, ingratitude and unbelief are used synonymously. He who disbelieves, denies both Allah as well as everything given by Allah. Ingratitude often manifests itself in wastefulness:

Lo! The squanderers were ever brothers of the devils, and the devil was ever an ingrate to his Lord. [Al-Isra '27]

We may say that Satan and his band want to instigate exactly the opposite of what we call virtues. Faith in the One God, taqwa, humbleness, humility, honesty, loyalty, gratitude, right purpose, cleanliness, courage, modesty, shyness, selflessness, generosity, diligence, gentleness, sense of responsibility and so on. The more we realize these virtues and follow the Sunnah of the Prophet s.a.w., the more secure we are.

Disbelieving Jinn are dark, and the worse they become, the darker they become. On the other hand, faithful Jinn are bright, and the more good they do, the more light they get until they are almost at the level of angels and can take orders from them, e.g. assisting believing humans.

There are male and female Jinn that can have offspring like humans. They do not marry. It is enough to love each other.

Jinn can also have sex with people, especially during dreams, and participate in the sexual intercourse of people if they forget to say "Bismillah" before it.

Jinn like to live in empty houses and on cemeteries, that's why indeed there can be a creepy atmosphere, which does not result of ghosts but in fact of "evil spirits". Are the evil Jinn in our homes, they evoke nightmares, especially in children.

In the house, Jinn prefer "quiet corners", where they are left alone, e.g. the attic. Believing Jinn often live in Muslim homes and protect the inhabitants against evil Jinn, but leave the house if the human inhabitants disobey God. Unfortunately, pious Jinn are rare. Like humans too, most of the Jinn are occupied with their daily lives and do not care much about religion.

Jinn also live in the forest, in the desert and on the sea, and find shelter in images of animated creatures, above all statues. The unbelieving Jinn do also like to stay on markets and shopping centers, where they cause mischief, and they love stench, which is why they are found in the toilet and generally in dirty places.

Jinn nourish themselves from old bones and food remnants (which should not be left over uncovered because this is almost an invitation for the Jinn, but should be covered with something while saying ' bismillah ').

Ibn Mas'ood r.a. said: The Messenger of Allahs said: 'Someone from among the Jinn called me, and I went with him and recited Qur'an for them.' He took us and showed us the traces of where they had been and the traces of their fires. They asked him for food and he said, 'You can have every bone on which the name of Allah has been mentioned that comes into your possession, as meat, and all the droppings as food for your animals.' The Prophet said, 'So do not use [these things] for cleaning yourselves [after relieving oneself], for they are the food and provision of your brothers.' [Muslim 450]

Jinn have different characters like humans. They have their own sects and groups, and there are Muslims, Jews, Christians, Catholics, Buddhists, Hindu, atheists and sun worshipers among them.

They have a simple life compared to mankind, since they do not produce anything, although they have the ability to do so, as we know from the Qur'an, where the Prophet Sulaiman a.s. used them to create palaces and many things. He also let them dive in the sea, which means that at least a group of them can live in the water.

Jinn feel more than they think, although they can memorize information quite well. But they do not process and link this information as humans do and therefore appear relatively dumb or uneducated. They have no books and do not go to school. They get their knowledge by listening to people or other Jinn. Many, however, have extensive experience because they are already very old, sometimes thousands of years.

When a Jinn enters the body of a human being, he transmits his thoughts and feelings in a subtle form so that man interprets them as his own thoughts and feelings. Man begins to hate what the Jinn hates; to love what the Jinn loves; becomes angry when the Jinn becomes angry; is afraid if the Jinn is afraid, and so on.

In the same way that a Jinn imposes his thoughts and feelings upon the possessed man, a man can also force his thoughts and feelings upon the Jinn, and can overcome and dominate him. Every time the Jinn sends his negative thoughts or feelings, one counteracts by thinking the opposite and entertains positive thoughts. This weakens the Jinn considerably.

Jinn are made of pure, smokeless fire (but they are not fire), and cause a "hot temperament" in humans, which makes people lose control, which is why the Prophet s.a.w. has always advised not to become angry. One knows the expressions like "hot anger", "burning envy" and so on. Smoke is their element, and any experienced Raqi will confirm that, without exception, all smokers are possessed by one or more Jinn, as well as all those who have any other kind of drug addiction. If Jinn remain in the body for an extended period of time, they typically cause diseases, both physical and mental. When they are in the body, they usually stay in the bloodstream, which is why they typically cause diseases that are related to blood.

The Prophet s.a.w. said, "Shaytan flows through the son of Adam as the blood flows through his veins." [Buchari 3.251]

All bad thoughts we entertain open the doors for attacks of Jinn. Every bad thought generates more evil thoughts, and every evil deed generates evil deeds, as long as we do not remember God and repent, take another path and entertain other thoughts. That is why we have to gain control over our thoughts, especially by thinking of God.

And if a whisper from the devil reach thee then seek refuge in Allah. Lo! He is the Hearer, the Knower. [Fussilat 36]

God-Rememberance (Dhikr) is the key to Ruqyah and the ultimate weapon to be used against Satan and his band. The word "Ruqyah" means "seeking refuge" or "protecting" or "armed against sorcery". And the best Dhikr and thus the best weapon and the best refuge is the reading of the Qur'an. In this way, we can not only overcome the whispering, but even destroy the Jinn.

And We reveal of the Qur'an that which is a healing and a mercy for believers though it increase the evil-doers in naught save ruin. [Al-Isra' 82]

If someone makes good progress in Islam, Iblis will send him a special Satan, which is supposed to lead him astray. If the person has already brought his thoughts and emotions under control, and therefore is very difficult to be led astray, he is classified as dangerous by the Satans.

In all the cultures of the world, Jinn were and are being used for different purposes (see also the chapter "Jinn in other religions and cultures"). In the case of "natural healers" such as shamans and medicine men, the "expulsion of evil spirits" is customary and is actually a win-win situation for all involved: the Jinn sent by the medicine man expels the Jinn who caused the disease and gets his sacrifice, the medicine man is paid by the patient, and the patient is cured. Everyone is happy! But of course, that is all haram!


Next chapter:

Sihr (Magic) and 'Ain (Evil Eye)
Magic is a form of devil worship in which people bring Satan ritual sacrifices, so that the Jinn do "supernatural things" for them, primarily harm other people. Allah promises people, who make use of the "services" of the Jinn, the hellfire...

Ruqyah - Islamic Exorcism