World of Jinn

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(part 1 of 2) Description:  An introduction to Allah’s creation known as the “ jinn .”  Part 1: Their life, abilities and weaknesses.  Objec...

(part 1 of 2)

Description: An introduction to Allah’s creation known as the “jinn.”  Part 1: Their life, abilities and weaknesses. 
Objectives
·       To learn about the lives and abilities of the jinn.
·       To learn about the weaknesses of the jinn.
Arabic Terms
·       Jinn - A creation of Allah that was created before humankind from smokeless flame.  They are referred to at times as spirit beings, banshees, poltergeists, phantoms and so forth.   
·       Sunnah - The word Sunnah has several meanings depending on the area of study however the meaning is generally accepted to be, whatever was reported that the Prophet said, did, or approved.
Jinn1.jpgThe “jinn” are a separate creation of Allah like the human beings and angels.  They can think like human beings and choose the path of good or evil, but, unlike human beings, the jinnare created from fire (Quran 15:27, 55:15).  Also, the jinn are generally invisible to human beings (Quran 7: 27) and have some special abilities that human beings simply do not have.
Believing in jinn is not optional.  Since they are mentioned in the Quran and in the Prophet’sSunnah, a Muslim is required to believe in their existence and whatever information we find about them in the two Islamic sources. 

Life of the Jinn

The jinn live on earth like human beings do, but they are found more often in ruins and impure places likes toilets and cemeteries.  They love to sit between the shade and sunlight.
All jinn are not created equal.  Among them are good jinn and among them are evil ones.  Allah mentions in the Quran what the jinn said about themselves:
“There are among us some that are righteous, and some the contrary.  We follow divergent paths.” (Quran 72:11)
There are Muslim and non-Muslim jinn
“And among us are Muslims and among us are disbelievers (who have deviated from the Right Path).  And whosoever has embraced Islam, then such have sought the Right Path.” (Quran 72:14)
The jinn eat and drink, sometimes with us.  It is easy to keep them away from eating and drinking with us as we will learn later.   They also marry and have children.  Allah has mentioned the children of the jinn in the Quran, “...Will you then take him and his progeny as protectors rather than Me?...” (Quran 18:50)
Jinn do not live forever, they do die.  The Prophet used to say in one of his prayers, “I seek refuge with Your Glory, there is no true God other than You, the One Who never dies, and the humans and the jinn die.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)
The jinn can take the shape of snakes, black cats, black dogs, and sometime they can assume human form. 
The jinn also have riding animals as mentioned in the Quran:
“And incite [to senselessness] whoever you can among them with your voice and assault them with your horses…” (Quran 17:64)

Abilities of the Jinn

Compared to human beings, the jinn have some special abilities. One, they can travel very fast.  Allah tells us in the Quran:
"lfreet of the jinn said, “I will bring it to you before you can rise from your place.  Surely, I am strong and trustworthy for such work.” (Quran 27:39-40)
They can reach the skies as they are quoted to say in the Quran:
“And we have sought to reach the heaven; but found it filled with stern guards and flaming fires.“ (Quran 72:8)
They can take different shapes as mentioned earlier.  The evil jinn – the devils – can possess the human body.  They can also whisper thoughts and influence human beings:
“From the evil of the whisperer (devil who whispers evil in the hearts of men) who withdraws (from his whispering in one’s heart after one remembers Allah).” (Quran 114:4)

Jinn’s Weaknesses

Even though the evil jinn – the devils – have special abilities, a believer is protected by Allah.  The devils cannot harm a righteous Muslim by Allah’s permission. 
“Surely, My (faithful) slaves - over them you have no power; and your Lord suffices as (their) guardian.” (Quran 17:65)
The following are some examples of their limited powers:
1.    They fear some believers. 
“Surely, My (faithful) slaves – over them you have no power, and your Lord suffices as (their) guardian.” (Quran 17:65)
“The believer emaciates his devil in the same way that one of you weakens his camel during travel.” (Musnad)
2.    The Prophet said that if we cover our plates and say ‘Bismillah,’ the devils cannot take off the cover.  Similarly, they cannot enter a house if we close the door saying ‘Bismillah.’
“If the man enters his house and mentions the name of Allah upon entering it and upon eating therein, Satan says, ‘There is no lodging for you here and no meal here.’ But if the man enters his house and neglects to mention the name of Allah upon entering it, Satan says, ‘I have found lodging for you.’ And if he does not mention Allah’s name upon eating his meal, Satan says, ‘I have found lodging and a meal.’ (Saheeh Muslim, Musnad)
3.    They can take different forms, but they can not take the form of Prophet Muhammad.  The Prophet said,
“Whoever sees me in a dream will have indeed seen me, for Satan cannot mimic my appearance.” Abu ‘Abdullah said, “Ibn Sirin said, ‘Only if he sees the Prophet in his (real) shape.’” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)
4.    They cannot gather information from the sky since they are stopped from reaching that far, as Allah says:
“Indeed they have been removed far from even (a chance of) hearing it.” (Quran 26:212)
5.    Like human beings, the jinn were also challenged to produce something similar to the Quran, but they could not and will not be able to do it:
Say: “If the whole of mankind and jinn were to gather together to produce like of this Quran, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support.” (Quran 17:88)

World of Jinn (part 2 of 2)

Description: An introduction to Allah’s creation known as the “jinn.”  Part 2: The story of Satan, the mission of Satan and the devils and means of protection from them.
Objective
·       Learn the story of Satan or Iblees.
·       Understand the mission of Satan and the devils.
·       Learn 7 ways to protect oneself from the devils.
Arabic Terms
·       Jinn – A creation of Allah that was created before humankind from smokeless flame. They are referred to at times as spirit beings, banshees, poltergeists, phantoms and so forth. 
·       Iblees – the proper name of Satan.
·       Qareen – a devil attached to every human being.
·       Shaytan- sometimes spelled shaitan or shaytaan. It is the word used in Islam and the Arabic language to denote the devil or Satan, the personification of evil.
·       Shayateen – devils, plural of ‘shaytan’.
·       Sunnah - The word Sunnah has several meanings depending on the area of study however the meaning is generally accepted to be, whatever was reported that the Prophet said, did, or approved.
·       Surah – chapter of the Quran.
We learned in the previous lesson that some jinn are good and some are evil. Allah has given them the ability to become believers or disbelievers. The evil jinn are known as devils or shayateen in Arabic. The leader of the devils is known as Satan or Iblees in Arabic. He has a very ugly appearance and has two horns.

The Story of Iblees

Satan used to worship Allah with the angels before he became arrogant. He chose the evil path in life, knowing it would bring him punishment. Allah created Adam and ordered the angels to prostrate to Adam. Satan used to worship Allah with the angels, so he was also addressed to prostrate himself as well but he refused Allah’s order out of arrogance. As a result, Satan was cast out of Paradise. He made a promise to Allah that he will mislead the children of Adam if Allah allowed him to live till the Day of Judgment. Thus, he became the greatest enemy of man. He saw that Adam was the cause for his expulsion from Heaven and the reason why Allah cast His curse upon him.

Mission of Satan and the Devils

Satan, or Ibless, is the Commander in Chief of the battle against the earthly human beings. He lays the strategy of this battle against human beings, dispatches his soldiers, and then reviews their performance. He praises those who accomplish his mission. The Prophet of Allah has told us,
“Ibless sets his throne on the water. From there, he sends out his troops to tempt mankind. The one whom he regards as closest to him is the one who causes the greatest temptation. One of them returns to him and says, ‘I stayed with so and so and did not leave him until he did such and such,’ and he is told, ‘You have done nothing.’ Then one comes and reports, ‘I did not leave him until he separated from his wife.’ Iblees then brings him near to him and says, ‘How fine are you!’ [1]
He has soldiers among the jinn, known as devils, and among human beings. Among his soldiers from the jinn is the qareen, the devil that accompanies every human being.
The ultimate goal of Satan is to take human beings with him to Hellfire and keep them from entering Paradise. He does this by getting people to worship others besides Allah. If he cannot do that, then he leads them to sin and to disobey Allah. He tries to block people from doing good deeds. If he cannot do that, then he will do his best to ruin the acts of worship so the person will not receive any reward for them.
One of the means by which Satan misleads people is sorcery. Sorcerers can sometimes perform acts to please the devils who in turn do their bidding. Sorcery is sometimes used to create a separation between husband and wife (Quran 2:102). Sorcery is of two types, some of it is an illusion and some is real. Real sorcery can cause separation between spouses and cause other harms.

Protection Against Satan and the Devils

1.    The greatest means of protecting oneself against the devil is by sticking to the Quran and Sunnah and by living according to Islam’s teachings. Allah has said in the Quran,
“O you who believe, enter into Islam completely and do not follow the footsteps of Satan. Indeed, he is an open enemy to you.” (Quran 2:208)
2.    Seeking protection with Allah.  Actually turning to Allah and asking Him for protection is one of the best ways to be safe from Satan.  Allah teaches us in the Quran the words of protection that can be translated as,
And say, ‘My Lord, I seek refuge with You from the whisperings of the devils and I seek refuge with You, My Lord, in case they come close to me.’” (Quran 23:97-98)
3.    Place your children and property under Allah’s care.  Allah’s Messenger used to seek protection for his grand children with these words:
“U’eedhu-kuma bi kalimaa-til-laahit-taamah min kulli shaytaanin wa haama wa min kulli aynin laamah.”
“I commend you two to the protection of the perfect words of Allah, from every devil and vermin, and from every evil eye.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)
4.    The best words to seek Allah’s protection.
The last two chapters of the Quran, Surah al-Falaq and Surah an-Naas, are the best words to seek protection (Sunan Nasai).
5.    Seek protection with the Verse of  Al-Kursi
“Whoever says this when he rises in the morning will be protected from jinn until he retires in the evening, and whoever says it when retiring in the evening will be protected from them until he rises in the morning.” (Hakim)
You have learned Surah al-Falaq, Surah an-Naas, and the Verse of Al-Kursi in an earlier lesson. Please review them.
6.    Sticking close to Muslim Community
To avoid falling into the traps of the devil, stick close to the Muslim community and choose good, Muslim friends for yourself that will help and encourage you to follow the truth and stay away from falsehood. The Prophet, may Allah praise him, said,
“You must adhere to the Muslim community and beware of division, for the devil is with the one who is alone, but he is further away from two.” (Tirmidhi)
7.    Oppose the Devil
The devil eats, drinks, and takes things with his left hand, so you should oppose him and eat, drink, and take things with your right hand. The devil likes to see money being wasted, so be careful and don’t waste your money. Lastly, suppress yawing (which indicates laziness) as much as you can as it is from the devil.



Footnotes:
[1] Saheeh Muslim

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