The Unseen and the Mysterious: The Jinn
After countless hours of watching clips on youtube, reading articles on the Internet, studying the Quran and ahadith (teachings of the Prophet Muhammad), as well as going through non-muslim forums, I've finally gathered my thoughts about the Jinn (djinn).
In order for you to get the whole picture about the Jinn I will have to first take you through some history and characteristics then explain several phenomena around the world related to the Jinn.
Let's get started...
This article is a result of my research and as far as I know it is accurate, but at the end of the day, only Allah knows best what is true and accurate.
The word Jinn (Djinn) is an Arabic word meaning “to hide” or “hidden”.
The Jinn are hidden from our sight and are considered to be spiritual beings similar to angels.
The Jinn are mentioned mainly in Islam but also have some links to Christianity, regarding Prophet Solomon.
Jinnī (Genie), is the singular form of Jinn.
According to a translation of the Quran by Mufti Taqi Usmani, the father of the Jinn is called Jānn, just as the father of mankind is Adam.
Jann was said to be created from a substance that was as blazing as fire, but subtle as wind.
“from a fire of scorching wind” [Quran 15:27]
“from a smokeless flame of fire” [Quran 55:15]
The Jinn are mentioned in the Quran in approximately 28 instances. Therefore the earliest book that talks about the Jinn would be the Quran (1400 years old). Jinn stories can be found in the book called 'One Thousand and One Nights', which is a collection folk tales compiled in Arabic. The English version is known as the Arabian Nights.
Suleimān (King Solomon—son of David) was a prophet of ancient Israel. He was bestowed upon with special powers or gifts by God which include wisdom in his youth, talking to birds and having control over the Jinn. He was also known to be a great preacher.
In the Quran, Prophet Suleiman talks to the Jinn and people, to bring the throne of the Queen of Saba' (Sheba - some say Sheba is Yemen).
Chapter 27 Verses 38-40 Translation: Yusuf Ali
Said an Ifrit of the Jinns: "I will bring it to thee before thou rise from thy Council: indeed I have full strength for the purpose, and may be trusted." (39)
the main thing to be noted here is the travelling speed of the jinni.
According to the Quran, humans and Jinn will both face the day of Judgement and be punished or rewarded according to their deeds (i.e. both have free will).
A Jinnī called Iblis used his free will and refused to bow to Adam and was therefore expelled from the heavens and was declared Saytān (Satan) meaning “the opposer” and in the Quran Allah says "He is of the Jinn". The throne of Iblis is said to be over water.
It is still not clearly understood whether Jinn are angels or Jinn are a tribe of angels or a separate entitiy altogether, but I will leave that for the scholars to decide.
Fortune telling was a common practice before /during and after the time of the prophet Muhammad. The fortune tellers before the time of the Prophet Muhammad were very accurate. The reason for the fortune teller’s great accuracy was that the gates to the heavens were open to the jinn. The jinn used to listen to the commands of the Almighty and relay the message to the fortune teller. During the time of the Prophet Muhammad, new barriers were placed with guards to distance the Jinn from the truth and therefore the accuracy in fortune telling went downhill.
Every human is believed to have one angel and one jinni with them at all times. The angel is there to note everything you do and writes down all your deeds in a book attached to your neck, as well as report your daily and nightly deeds to God. The jinni is there to lead you astray. when a person dies the jinni is relieved of it's duty and is free to roam the earth to cause more mischeif, until the jinni dies.
The lifespan of the jinni is not known clearly. Some say they live for 1000 years, others say up to 8000 years.
Types of Jinn
Some people believe there are tribes and not types of Jinn. I found more logical sense in the types rather than tribes during my research, therefore will stick to the types of Jinn in this hub.
There are 4 types of Jinn
Note: If there had to be only one type of Jinn out of these four then it would be the Ifrīt. There could also be Ranks among the Jinn instead of types. The Ifrīt are mentioned in some Quran translations and the Hadith.
The sílā are believed to be female. They are a rare, and It is not known which areas they inhabit on earth. They are reserved and secretive. They have a sense of being very independent. They are excellent shape shifters. They also can manipulate circumstances around you but is only an illusion which makes them great in the art of manipulating others for a short time. They are believed to be the most intelligent of the jinn. They can become a human’s companion. Some people confuse the sílā with the Ghūl because it is difficult to differentiate between them.
[Source: Non-Muslim Forum - see reference links at end of article]
The Ghūl are believed to be female, that inhabit burial grounds and other deserted places. They are evil jinn and are said to be the offspring of Iblīs (Saytān). They are also shape shifters but can be recognized by their unchangable sign; the ass’s hooves.
“A ghūl stalked the desert, often in the guise of an attractive woman, trying to distract travellers, and, when successful, killed and ate them. The sole defence that one had against a ghūl was to strike it dead in one blow; a second blow would only bring it back to life again.”
[Source: Britannica encyclopaedia online]
One thing to note here is that the throne of Iblis is in the waters yet the offspring (Ghul) inhabit burial grounds and deserted places. The throne part is from the Hadith which are more reliable than the internet so if any of the two statements are wrong it would be the ghul inhabiting burial grounds and deserted places.
Ifrīt means “rebellious”. They can be male (Ifrīt) or female (Ifrītah). Like humans they have good and bad ones between them but are depicted as being wicked and ruthless. They inhabit the underground and ruins. Ifrīts have a whole structured society complete with kings, tribes and clans. They are known to have enormous wings and look like they are made out of smoke. They are susceptible to magic, which humans can use to kill or capture and enslave them. An Ifrīt can be a believer or unbeliever, and have the same belief system as humans (i.e. Jews, Christians, Muslim, Atheist, Sikh, Hindu, and Buddhist). It is difficult to differentiate between an Ifrīt and a Mārid as they have very similar characteristics.
[Source: Britannica encyclopaedia online]
Mārid are described to be the most powerful type of jinn having great powers and inhabit the oceans, seas and open waters. They are the most arrogant and proud of all the jinn types. They do grant wishes to humans but it requires some kind of battle, rituals, imprisonment or even a great deal of flattery.
[Source: Britannica encyclopaedia online]
Note - I would have assumed the Marid to be the offsprings of Iblis (Saytan) as they inhabit similar regions as well as being the most powerful.
The term Hadīth (plural: hadīth, or ahadīth) in Islām is a body of Authentic literature that comprises the sayings, teachings, behaviour and characteristics of the last messenger of God; Prophet Muhammad.
The Hadīth is a key source of information for Muslims, who try to emulate the character and apply the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad in their everyday lives.
There are over 50 hadith which talk about the Jinn and I would like to share 3 with you.
Bukhari :: Book 1 :: Volume 8 :: Hadith 450
Narrated Abu Huraira:
"The Prophet said, "Last night a big demon (afreet) from the Jinns came to me and wanted to interrupt my prayers (or said something similar) but Allah enabled me to overpower him. I wanted to fasten him to one of the pillars of the mosque so that all of you could See him in the morning but I remembered the statement of my brother Solomon (as stated in Quran): My Lord! Forgive me and bestow on me a kingdom such as shall not belong to anybody after me (38.35)." The sub narrator Rauh said, "He (the demon) was dismissed humiliated."
afreet is a different spelling of Ifrīt
Aisha was the wife of Prophet Muhammad
Abu Huraira and Jabir bin 'Abdullah were companions of Prophet Muhammad.
Bukhari :: Book 4 :: Volume 54 :: Hadith 533
Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah:
The Prophet said, "Cover your utensils and tie your water skins, and close your doors and keep your children close to you at night, as the Jinns spread out at such time and snatch things away. When you go to bed, put out your lights, for the mischief-doer (i.e. the rat) may drag away the wick of the candle and burn the dwellers of the house." Ata said, "The devils." (instead of the Jinns).
Bukhari :: Book 7 :: Volume 71 :: Hadith 657
Some people asked Allah's Apostle about the fore-tellers He said. ' They are nothing" They said, 'O Allah's Apostle! Sometimes they tell us of a thing which turns out to be true." Allah's Apostle said, "A Jinn snatches that true word and pours it Into the ear of his friend (the fore-teller) (as one puts something into a bottle) The foreteller then mixes with that word one hundred lies."
Can They Be Enslaved or Captured?
The straight forward answer is yes they can.
On some certain non-Muslims forums I’ve read about people even creating a family of Jinn and spirits for themselves and being light, dark and grey. One important aspect to remember is if the Jinn have free will like humans then they will not always be telling the truth. If they are evil jinn then they will become whatever you want them to be to drive you astray.
The Islamic scholars say they are the unseen and cannot be seen yet many non-Muslims claim they have seen them. One possibility could be that they cannot be seen in their actual state but can be seen if they modify their state.
In order to capture them you need to have a vessel of some kind with a precious stone in it which is liked by the jinn, where they can live with you and there is some kind of welcoming ritual involved where you raise the vessel in a tea light and introduce yourself to them and welcome them as well as ask them to protect and guide you and to stay with you in the vessel till you die, and some other wordings are involved to start creating a bond between the human and the jinn.
In other cases you do not welcome them but you must have an article that belongs to that particular jinni. If the jinni is unwilling to be bound then the person and the jinn engage in a batter of mind games/riddles in order to obtain the others true name. The games are said to be long and dangerous and the winner can chose to enslave or kill the other.
For believers in God - It is not advisable to take this route as in some cases you have to start calling them your Protector, and are asking for guidance. Only God is the Protector and the one who provides Guidance. I believe this is a trap for the believer as they start associating something else with God.
Phenomena Associated With the Jinn
Visions of dead people
Because everyone has a jinni attached to them in this world, when the person dies their jinni is released. This jinni knows the shape of your close relative who has passed away. The jinni can come in the shape of your family member and talk to you. There could be good intentions of the jinni as well as bad. For some people it helps get over the sorrow of losing a loved one, knowing they are well and safe. Since the jinni has lived with the relative all their lives the jinni will know everything about the person and can speak about memories and everything.
Jinni’s can form the shape of a shadow and stand on top of you or on the side of your bed. It just stands and watches people. I have no idea why it stares at the person and even lets them see that someone is watching them, but I will assume that they might want their presence to be recognized by the specific person who sees the jinni. The reason I say a specific person is because it has happened to a friend of mine who saw the shadow standing on top of him but when he woke his family member up to show her, she could not see anything.
I’ve been through sleep paralysis and I know it feels like someone is grabbing hold of you and you cannot move at all. I believe it’s a jinni who might either be obsessed with you and is giving you a hug, or a jinni who is angry with you, who might want you out of the house or the way and giving you a warning. Your bed could be in the jinni's everyday path and since you’re blocking the route the jinni gets frustrated and makes sure you know something you’ve done is wrong. Some might just do it for the fun of scaring the daylights out of the person.
Appear in the form of saints
There are a number of stories where people see a pious person or a saint who says to the person in their dream that all your sins are forgiven and you no longer need to pray. People do fall for these kinds of dreams or visions and quit their prayers. It’s obviously a bad jinni doing a good job in the eyes of Satan.
They will look at you for a second or two and then tell you something correct and secretive about your past. How does that work? The fortune teller has an enslaved jinni, he then makes the jinni ask your jinni about your life and the information is relayed to the fortune teller. This is how they know things about you. Once they have built your trust that they know what no one knows, then they start telling you false information about your future.
Powerful jinn are used in black magic, probably the Mārid. It is believed that there is some sort of contract between the jinn and the practitioner of black magic. Contracts could include sacrifice of animals or even a disrespectful act such as urinating on religious scriptures. These jinn are sent by the practitioner to possess you. They cause aches and pains as well as diseases which cannot be diagnosed by doctors. If the black magic is strong enough then it can even take your life. Black magic also causes stoppages in ones daily errands and makes the affected person’s life really difficult. Some people would not be able to get married no matter how hard they try, at the end of the day something goes wrong. Some people might suffer financially. Some people would have to try a couple of times to get a single task completed. All these are variations in black magic. In black magic as far as I’ve heard, people are used as vessels for travel. I have no idea how it works and why a black magician would need a vessel but the person performing black magic would be using the jinn. I also know that some UFO aircraft seen have been military undercover projects, and for some reason if there is a large object in the sky the governments never attack it for being in their air space.
Aliens and Abductions
Once again the Jinn. I recently saw a true story movie called "the fourth kind", where people were being abducted in Nome, Alaska. The lady in the movie saw black shadows who had dragged her out of bed while she was asleep and maybe did an experiment or two on her, but she never remembered anything until she heard a recording. The beings were possessing people in Nome and also claimed that it was God. The possessed people were either severely injured or killed after the message of the being had been relayed. The original footages are also shown in the movie but whenever the jinn arrived or wanted to show themselves the visual recording and audio became scrambled.
Similar to black magic we have magicians who use the jinn to entertain people. I know most magicians are actually very good illusionists, but some who do great stunts in front of a 3D crowd have some jinn under their sleeves.
Psychics I’ve only seen in the west. There is nothing like it in the east or I have not personally come across a psychic in the east. I do not know how much in depth information a psychic can reveal about the dead person but if they are only things that match the person they are working for then they are not in touch with the dead but the jinni of the person sitting in front of them. They can get all the information from the jinni inside you if you go to the psychic. They just don’t know who’s jinni is talking to them but I do believe they have the ability to communicate to the jinn.
Ghosts & Hauntings
Spirits of dead people do not leave the graves. The people in the grave are asleep and will wake up on the day of judgement feeling like they have slept for something like 10 days. As we know the Jinn occupy empty places, this tells me there could be a family of jinn living in the haunted house, and do not want people to move in because the house is occupied. The easiest way is to frighten the people who visit to secure the location.
Almost all the people interested in the paranormal have tried the ouija board. In my view you are not talking to a dead person you are talking to any jinn that is present in your house at the time. Yes they do have names. They cannot tell you the correct future. They might be able to tell you about your past while talking to the jinn attached to you.
I might be stretching it out a little, but it's a thought that came across my mind. It could be possible that this phenomena can be related to the Jinn as well. As discussed earlier the human has to battle with the jinn in order to capture or ensalve a jinn. If the human loses the battle maybe the jinn burns him with the fire he/she was created with. Maybe the human was mistreating the jinn and the jinn wanted revenge and killed him/her. Could be a possibility. I have personally never come across anyone who knew a person who passed away this way therefore i cannot verify if they were in any contact with beings before their death.
We know the throne of Iblis (Saytan) is over water. It could be possible that the Bermuda triangle is where the throne of Iblis is situated. People who make it out alive, see all kinds of illusions in the Bermuda Triangle and it could be the jinn creating the illusions. We also know electronic devices fail in the Bermuda Triangle and we also know that when the jinn want their presence known the electronic devices do not function well. There could be a link but once again only a guess.
Pyramids of Egypt
This is also another possibility not a fact. We know the pyramids have a link to astrology, where the tunnels point towards a specific point in the sky. We also know people worshipped the jinn in the past, and we also know the jinn have great strenghts. Jinn also have a link to teaching majic and fortune telling to man therefore i think it is quite safe to assume that there is a possibility that the jinn were the gods of the people of the time and they constructed the pyramids.
Protection from Jinn and Black Magic
There are many ways to protect yourself from a Jinn but most of them are Islamic methods which i will write about in a different hub.
One thing I can share here for readers of all faiths is to dispose your nails and hair properly. Also guard your mothers name, meaning do not tell people your mothers name. If someone wants magic done on you they will need one or all of these items.
Most spiritual healing type people I have personally visited have asked for the following.
- a picture of the person.
- the address of the person
- the mothers name of the person
If the healers can use this information to get to a person who lives over 7,000 miles away within seconds, then this information can be equally dangerous if it falls in the wrong hands. One possibility can be the healer is an expert astral traveller and using their power of travel to misguide you.
Another thing we know is that the devil or jinns spread out just after sunset. So to make sure they do not stay over in an abandonded room in your house, you should to switch on a light in every room when the sun is about to set and leave the light on for 30 mins or so.
A strong warning for my brothers and sisters in Islam. If you go to a spiritual healing person and they ask for names and pictures then please do not supply the information and walk out. Moving forward with this kind of healing is not the right way in Islam, and many scholars have declared that as soon as you provide that information, to the healer you have stepped out of the boundaries of Islam. The correct way is to perform Ruqya. You can do it yourself or get a knowledgeable person to perform Ruqya on the possessed or affected person. (More in another Hub, you can search google for Ruqya and you'll get many results)
Muslim :: Book 1 : Hadith 343
Abu Musa reported: The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) was standing amongst us and he told us five things. He said: Verily the Exalted and Mighty God does not sleep, and it does not befit Him to sleep. He lowers the scale and lifts it. The deeds in the night are taken up to Him before the deeds of the day. and the deeds of the day before the deeds of the night. His veil is the light. In the hadith narrated by Abu Bakr (instead of the word" light" ) it is fire. If he withdraws it (the veil), the splendour of His countenance would consume His creation so far as His sight reaches.
And there we have it, from ghosts, shape shifters, man eaters, illusionists to flying around the world and even up to the heavens and back within seconds. The Jinn are truly powerful beings that live parallel to us in this world.
I would like to leave you with the thought that if we have such enormous beings which are capable of so much in this world then how Great, Powerful and Enormous would the Creator, the Almighty be...
Update - 22 Sept 2012
Is there anything unseen to the Jinn?
Quran Surah 34:14
"King Solomon had entrusted the construction of Bait-ul-Maqdis (Jerusalem) to the Jinns. They used to work only under the supervision of Solomon. When the time of his death approached, he stood before them (in his place of worship) reclining on his sceptre. When he died in this position, his body remained standing with the support of the sceptre. The Jinns, believing him to be alive, continued their work until the remaining work was completed. At that point Allah sent a termite that ate up the wood of the sceptre, and the body of Solomon fell down. Then the Jinns came to know about his death. This incident also falsified the presumption that the Jinns have the knowledge of the Unseen."
Quran Commentary : Mufti Taqi Usmani.
Websites used for reference...
http://www.quranexplorer.com/ - Quran and Hadith explorer
http://www.spiritedenterprise.com/ - Non-muslim forums and explanations of Jinn
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbEkvt-ReBg – Movie Kingdom of Solomon
http://www.quranexplorer.com/Hadith/English/Index.html - Hadith Explorer
http://www.quranexplorer.com/Quran/Default.aspx - Quran Explorer
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bk51OizBdTo– Interview with the Jinn
http://www.kalamullah.com/jinn.html - video talking about Jinn
Questions & Answers
How do non-Muslims deal with Jinn?
Every religion has access to the Jinn using their own system. If they are bothering you then you can follow some of the Wiccan techniques to cleanse the household and yourself. If you need more information then send me an email.Helpful 9
What are the ruqyas for man?
Ruqya is the Islamic way of getting rid of Jinn related troubles as well as evil eye. As far as I can remember it took about 53 years of research by various people to collect all the ayah from the Quran which helped.Helpful 6
I read that ghul was originally a death demon (gallu) which was later changed into a jinn by Islamic belief. How would your belief explain if someone with Western (agnostic) background is fascinated by ghouls for no reason, no benefit, and no association with life background/incidents? I read tons of literature and practically got no answer.
Depends on exactly what you want to know about them. There is a video of a dash cam on YouTube somewhere. In the video you see the car driving at night in the mountains so there are lots of curves. As the car moves you see a fully clothed lady walking on the side of the road. The car passes her and curves around a bend and the lady is still walking on the side. The same happens about 3 more times and the fourth time on the fourth curve she is seen walking in the middle of the road very slowly. The driver panics a little and starts to turn back. That’s where the video ends. You may be able to find it.
I will need more information on the exact kind of information you are looking for on the Ghoul to be able to answer properly.Helpful 6