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Quran is a Shifa

The Quran is a miracle that Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) revealed to His Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) and it is a blessing for humanity. The Quran is not only a guidance for mankind but Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) has also made it a means and a cure for physical, spiritual and psychological ailments of all kinds.  The Creator has clearly told us that the words of the Quran are a “shifa” (healing) for all; this form of treatment can bring miraculous cure to all forms of ailments, as has been reported from various authentic Islamic sources, including the Sunnah. However, as a part of a Muslim's Aqeedah, doctrine or belief, we must realise that the Quran is a means to the cure and the one who cures is in reality Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) alone. This is the case whether we read the Quran, take a pill for a headache, use acupunture; or undergo an operation, the one who cures you is Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), the means we use are only a tool and we do not put our trust in them, except as a means. 

Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says concerning the Quran:

“O mankind!  There has come to you a good advice from your Lord (i.e. the Quran), and a healing for that which is in your hearts.” [Quran: Surah Yunus 10: Ayah 57)

And We send down of the Quran that which is a healing and a mercy to those who believe… [Quran: Surah Al-Israa 17: Ayah 82]

The recitation of the Quran, or even just listening to it, has a calming and soothing effect as the Sakeenah, tranquility, of Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) descends upon one: It is related on the authority of Abu Hurayrah (رضي الله عنه), that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: "Whoever removes a worldly grief from a believer, Allah will remove from him one of the griefs of the Day of Resurrection. And whoever alleviates the need of a needy person, Allah will alleviate his needs in this world and the Hereafter. Whoever shields [or hides the misdeeds of] a Muslim, Allah will shield him in this world and the Hereafter. And Allah will aid His slave so long as he aids his brother. And whoever follows a path to seek knowledge therein, Allah will make easy for him a path to Paradise. No people gather together in one of the Houses of Allah, reciting the Book of Allah and studying it among themselves, except that sakeenah (tranquility) descends upon them, and mercy envelops them, and the angels surround them, and Allah mentions them amongst those who are with Him. And whoever is slowed down by his actions, will not be hastened forward by his lineage."[Sahih Muslim]

As for other forms of treatment, Islam does not discourage the use of treatments available to us through medical and other sciences. On the contrary, the use of such treatments is encouraged in the teachings of the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) who sought the treatment of illnesses and diseases for himself and urged his followers to do the same. Thus, seeking traditional medical treatment for the cure of diseases is a part of Islam as has been narrated to us from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم):

Usamah ibn Shuraik narrated: “Some Bedouins asked, ‘O Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم)!, shall we treat (our illness)?’ He said, ‘Yes, O worshippers of Allah! Use remedies. For indeed Allah did not make a disease but made a cure for it, except for one disease.’ They said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم)! What is it?’ He said. ‘Old age.” [At-Tirmidhi Hadith No. 2038, Chapters on Medicine, Jami’, Vol. 4; Sunan Abu Dawud, Hadith No. 3855, Book of Medicine,  Vol.4].

Abu Hurayrah narrates that The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “There is no disease that Allah has created, except that He also has created its remedy.” [Bukhari 7.582].

Using Quran in Ruqyah

Ruqyah is an "incantation" done for healing and consists of reading duas, prayers, or verses from the Quran, in accordance to the teachings or practice of Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) to affect a cure. We need to remember that the  ruqyah is only a means of treatment for many different types of ailments, but the one from whom the cure ultimately comes is Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) alone, and this point cannot be emphasised enough. From the Sunnah, we know that the ruqyah can be used to affect a cure from physical ailments such as scorpion or snake bites and physical or spiritual ailments such as Ayn (evil eye), Sihr (magic) and Jinn possession. Hauntings, poltergeists and other such phenomena are nothing other than actions associated with the Jinn. We have evidence of the use of Ruqyah from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) and his companions.

In an incident of Jinn possession of a young boy resulting in fits, during the time of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم), it is narrated by Ya'la ibn Murah (رضي الله عنه‎): "I saw Allah's Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) do three things which no one before or after me saw. I went with him on a trip. On the way, we passed by a woman sitting at the roadside with a young boy. She called out, 'O Messenger of Allah, this boy is afflicted, with a trial, and from him we have also been afflicted with a trial. I don't know how many time sper day he is seized by fits.' He (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: 'Give him to me.' So she lifted him up to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم).

He (صلى الله عليه و سلم) then placed the boy between himself and the middle of the saddle, open the boy's mouth and blew in it three times, saying, 'in the name of Allah, I am the slave of Allah, get out enemy of Allah!' Then he gave the boy back to her and said: 'Meet us on our return at this same place and inform us how he has fared.' We then went. On our return, we found her in the same place with three sheep. When he said to her, 'How has your son fared?' She replied: 'By the One who sent you with the truth, we have not detected anything (unusual) in his behaviour up to this time' [Musnad Ahmad (vol. 4 p.170, and Haakim who declared it sahih]

In another incident involving the Companions of the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم), it is narrated by Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (رضي الله عنه): Some of the companions of the Prophet came across a tribe amongst the tribes of the Arabs, and that tribe did not entertain them. While they were in that state, the chief of that tribe was bitten by a snake (or stung by a scorpion). They said, (to the companions of the Prophet ), "Have you got any medicine with you or anybody who can treat with Ruqya?" The Prophet's companions said, "You refuse to entertain us, so we will not treat (your chief) unless you pay us for it." So they agreed to pay them a flock of sheep. One of them (the Prophet's companions) started reciting Surat-al-Fatiha and gathering his saliva and spitting it (at the snake-bite). The patient got cured and his people presented the sheep to them, but they said, "We will not take it unless we ask the Prophet (whether it is lawful)." When they asked him, he smiled and said, "How do you know that Surat-al-Fatiha is a Ruqya? Take it (flock of sheep) and assign a share for me." [Sahih Bukhari].

The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) used Surahs from the Quran as a protection when he used to go to sleep. Aishah (رضی اللہ عنھا) narrates: Whenever Allah's Apostle went to bed, he used to recite Surat-al-Ikhlas, Surat-al-Falaq and Surat-an-Nas and then blow on his palms and pass them over his face and those parts of his body that his hands could reach. And when he fell ill, he used to order me to do like that for him. [Sahih Bukhari].

Islamic View on Magic

An important point to know is that Islam does not distinguish between white or black magic, all true magic is considered evil since all real magic involves the magician making some form of contract with the Jinn, whether the magician calls these 'spirits', 'gods' 'demons' 'arch angels' or other than that. The magician calls upon these evil Jinn to do what the magician requires from the magic through the contract.

A contract is be its very nature an agreement between the magician requesting a service from the Jinn and the Jinn demanding some form of payment for that service from the magician. The Jinn may want an offering made to it or require another act of Shirk to be committed. Shirk in this case is to ascribe anything of the Creator to the creation, such as to worship a created thing instead of the Creator; the very act of seeking aid from the Jinn instead of Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) is shirk as is making a sacrifice to the Jinn in return for their aid, etc. The Jinn once pleased with the act of kuffar, disbelief, carries out the contract.

All Jinns that respond to the magicians request are considered evil, and it does not matter whether the magic is done to harm or protect, ultimately once the magician makes a contract with the devil (also known as shaytan, i.e. any rebelious and evil Jinn), the devil is to be paid. The magician damns his own soul and will never ultimately be successful, as Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) has said:

"... and the magician will never be successful, no matter whatever amount (of skill) he may attain." [Quran: Surah Ta'Ha'20: Ayah 69]

Please see our section on Magic and Ruqyaah (currently under development).

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