The Jinn

bintfulaan March 31, 2011 6

The world of Jinn

Can you provide some information on the Jinn

Praise be to Allaah.

The Qur’aan and Sunnah indicate that the jinn exist, and that there is a purpose for their existence in this life, which is to worship Allaah Alone, with no partner or associate. Allaah says (interpretation of the meanings):

“And I (Allaah) created not the jinns and humans, except they should worship Me (Alone).” [al-Dhaariyaat 51:56].

“O assembly of jinns and mankind! Did there not come to you Messengers from amongst you, reciting unto you My Verses…?” [al-An’aam 6:130]

The world of the jinn is an independent and separate world, with its own distinct nature and features that are hidden from the world of humans. Jinns and humans have some things in common, such as the possession of understanding and the choice between the way of good and the way of evil. The word jinn comes from an Arabic root meaning “hidden from sight”. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“… Verily he [Shaytaan] and his qabeeluhu [his soldiers from the jinn or his tribe] see you from where you cannot see them…” [al-A’raaf 7:27]

Allaah has told us in His Book the essence from which the jinn were created. He says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And the jinn, We created aforetime from the smokeless flame o fire.” [al-Hijr 15:27]

“And the jinns did He create from a smokeless flame of fire.” [al-Rahmaan 55:15].

According to a hadeeth narrated by ‘Aa’ishah, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The angels were created from light, the jinn were created from fire, and Aadam was created from that which has been described to you.” [Reported by Muslim, 5314].

Types of jinn

Allaah has created different types of jinn. Among them are some who can take on different forms, such as dogs and snakes; some who are like flying winds with wings; and some who can travel and rest. Abu Tha’labah al-Khushani said:

“The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘The jinn are of three types: a types 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.” [Reported by al-Tahhaawi in Mushkil al-Athaar, 4/95, and by al-Tabaraani in al-Kabeer, 22/214. Shaykh al-Albaani said in al-Mishkaat (2/1206, no. 4148): al-Tahhaawi and Abu’l-Shaykh reported it with a saheeh isnaad].

The jinn and the sons of Aadam

Every individual among the sons of Aadam has a jinn who has been appointed to be his constant companion (qareen). Ibn Mas’ood said:

“The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, ‘There is not one of you who does not have a jinn appointed to be his constant companion.’ They said, ‘And you too, O Messenger of Allaah?’ He said, ‘Me too, but Allaah has helped me and he has submitted, so that he only helps me to do good.’” [Reported by Muslim, 2814].

Al-Nawawi said in his commentary on Muslim (17/175): “‘He has submitted’ … he became a believing Muslim. This is the apparent meaning. Al-Qaadi said: Know that the ummah is agreed upon the fact that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was protected from Shaytaan, physically and mentally, and with regard to his speech. This hadeeth contains a reference to the warning against the fitnah (temptation, trial) and whispers of the qareen (constant companion from among the jinn). We know that he is with us so we should beware of him as much as possible.”

Their powers

Allaah has given the jinn powers that he has not given to humans. Allaah has told us about some of their powers, such as the ability to move and travel quickly. An ‘ifreet from among the jinn guaranteed to the Prophet Sulaymaan (peace be upon him) that he would bring the throne of the Queen of Yemen to Jerusalem in a moment faster than that needed for a man to get up from where he was sitting. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“An ‘ifreet (strong one) from the jinns said: ‘I will bring it [her throne] to you before you rise from your place (council). And verily, I am indeed strong, and trustworthy for such work.’ One with whom was knowledge of the Scripture said: ‘I will bring it to you within the twinkling of an eye!’ – then when Sulaymaan saw it placed before him, he said, ‘This is by the Grace of my Lord…’” [al-Naml 27:39-40].

The food and drink of the jinn

The jinn eat and drink. Ibn Mas’ood said:

“The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘Someone from among the jinn called me, and I went with him and recited Qur’aan 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 Allaah has been mentioned that comes into your possession, as meat, and all the droppings as food for your animals.’ The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, ‘So do not use [these things] for cleaning yourselves [after relieving oneself], for they are the food and provision of your brothers.’” [Reported by Muslim, 450].

According to another report:

“A delegation of jinn from Naseebeen came to me, and what good jinn they are! They asked me for food and I prayed to Allaah for them, so that they would not pass by bones or droppings, but they would find food on them.” [Reported by al-Bukhaari, 3571].

The believing jinn may eat any bone on which the name of Allaah has been mentioned, because the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did not permit them to have anything on which Allaah’s name has not been mentioned – those are for the kuffaar among the jinn.

The beasts of the jinn

According to the hadeeth narrated by Ibn Mas’ood, that we have quoted above, the jinn asked the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) for provision, and he said to them: “…and [you can have] all the droppings as food for your animals.”

The dwelling-places of the jinn

The jinn live on this earth where we do. They are mostly to be found in ruins and unclean places like bathrooms, dunghills, garbage dumps and graveyards. Hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught us to take precautions when entering such places, by reciting the adhkaar (prayers) prescribed by Islam. One of these was reported by Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him), who said:

“When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) entered the toilet, he would say, ‘Allaahumma innee a’oodhu bika min al-khubuthi wa’l-khabaa’ith (O Allaah, I seek refuge with You from the evil ones, male and female).’” [Reported by al-Bukhaari, 142; and Muslim, 375].

Al-Khattaabi explained that khubuth is the plural of khabeeth (evil or dirty – masculine form), and khabaa’ith is the plural of khabeethah (evil or dirty – feminine form), and that what is meant is male and female shayaateen.

Some jinns are Muslims and some are kaafirs

Allaah tells us that some of the jinn said (interpretation of the meaning):

“ ‘And some of us are Muslims, and of us some are al-qaasitoon (disbelievers – those who have deviated from the Right Path). And whosoever has embraced Islam, then such have sought the Right Path. And as for the qaasitoon, they shall be firewood for Hell.’” [al-Jinn 72:14-15]

The Muslims among the jinn are of different levels as regards righteousness and taqwa. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“[Some jinn said:] ‘There are among us some that are righteous, and some the contrary; we are groups, each having a different way (religious sects, etc.)’” [al-Jinn 72:11]

The story of how the first jinn of this ummah became Muslim was narrated by ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Abbaas, who said:

“The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) went out with a group of his Companions heading for the marketplace of ‘Ukaaz. This was when the shayaateen were prevented from getting any news from heaven, and shooting stars had been sent against them. The shayaateen went back to their people, who said, ‘What is the matter with you?’ They said, ‘We cannot get news from heaven, and shooting stars were sent against us.’ Their people said, ‘Nothing is stopping you from hearing news from heaven except some new event that must have happened. Go and look in the east and the west of the earth, and see if you can find out what it is that is stopping you from hearing news from heaven.’ Those who went out in the direction of Tihaamah came upon the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) in Nakhlah, when he was on his way to ‘Ukaaz, and found him leading his Companions in Fajr prayer. When they heard the Qur’aan, they listened to it and said, ‘By Allaah, this is what is stopping us from hearing news from heaven.’ When they went back to their people, they said, ‘O our people, we have heard a wonderful Recital (the Qur’aan). It guides to the Right Path, and we have believed therein, and we shall never join (in worship) anything with our Lord (Allaah). [al-Jinn 72:2 – interpretation of the meaning]. Then Allaah revealed to His Prophet peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) the words (interpretation of the meaning): “Say (O Muhammad): ‘It has been revealed to me that a group of jinns listened (to this Qur’aan)…’ [al-Jinn 72:1], and Allaah revealed to him what the jinn had said.” [Reported by al-Bukhaari, 731].

Their reckoning on the Day of Resurrection

The jinn will be called to account on the day of Resurrection. Mujaahid (may Allaah have mercy on him) said, concerning the aayah (interpretation of the meaning):

“… but the jinns know well that they have indeed to appear (before Him) (i.e., they will be brought to account)” [al-Saffaat 37:158]

“They will be brought to judgement.” [Saheeh al-Bukhaari, Baab Dhikr al-Jinn wa Thawaabihim wa ‘Iqaabihim].

Protection from the harm of the jinn

Because the jinn can see us while we cannot see them, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught us many ways to protect ourselves from their harm, such as seeking refuge with Allaah from the accursed Shaytaan, reciting Soorat al-Falaq and Soorat al-Naas (the last two Soorahs of the Qur’aan), and reciting the words taught by Allaah in the Qur’aan (interpretation of the meaning):

“Say: ‘My Lord! I seek refuge with You from the whisperings (suggestions) of the shayaateen (devils). And I seek refuge with You, my Lord, lest they may attend (or come near) me.’” [al-Mu’minoon 23:97-98]

Saying Bismillaah (in the Name of Allaah) before entering one’s home, before eating or drinking, and before having intercourse will also keep the Shaytaan from entering the house or partaking with a person in his food, drink and sexual activity. Similarly, mentioning the name of Allaah before entering the toilet or taking off one’s clothes will prevent the jinn from seeing a person’s ‘awrah or harming him, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said,

“To put a barrier that will prevent the jinn from seeing the ‘awrah of the sons of Aadam, let any one of you say ‘Bismillaah’ when entering the toilet.” [Reported by al-Tirmidhi, 551; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 3611].

Strength of faith and religion in general will also prevent the jinn from harming a person, so much so that if they were to fight, the one who has faith would win. ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:

“A man from among the Companions of Muhammad met a man from among the jinn. They wrestled, and the human knocked down the jinn. The human said to him, ‘You look small and skinny to me, and your forearms look like the front paws of a dog. Do all the jinn look like this, or only you?’ He said, ‘No, by Allaah, among them I am strong, but let us wrestle again, and if you defeat me I will teach you something that will do you good.’ The human said, ‘Fine.’ He said, ‘Recite, ‘Allaah! None has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever-living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists…’ [Aayat al-Kursi – al-Baqarah 2:255 – interpretation of the meaning]. The human said, ‘Fine.’ He said, ‘You will never recite this in your house but the Shaytaan will come out of it like a donkey breaking wind, and he will never come back in until the next morning.’” [Reported by al-Daarimi, 3247].

This is a brief summary about the jinn, and their nature and characteristics. Allaah is the Best of protectors and the Most Merciful of those who show mercy.

[Islam QA]


  1. bintfulaan March 31, 2011 at 9:46 pm Reply Tweet

    "Refraining from unnecessary looking, speaking, eating and mixing with people because going to extremes in these four matters weakens one's spirituality and makes it easier for the evil among mankind and jinn to gain power over you."

    Taken from The Jinn and Human Sickness

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  2. - April 1, 2011 at 12:23 am Reply Tweet

    bismillahir rahmaanir raheem

    jazaakillahu khairan for this. i was a bit apprehensive in reading it coz i don't believe in giving these things more weight than they deserve, and as sheikh ahmad ali once said [with a slight hint of dismay], this is a matter that greatly interests the muslims – more than it should. i think he meant that we have more important matters to preoccupy ourselves with, like rectifying that which is between every man and his lord. and that is correct, of course, but alhamdulillah alhamdulillah i'm glad i read this, because masha'allah tabarak'allah it mentions some wonderful points about the jinn, like how they first came to islam. sheikh luhaydaan hafidhahullah mentioned this when he was talking about the qur'aan and its virtues, how even the jinn were so taken by it and couldn't resist it, subhan'allah. that's the beautfy of the qur'aan i guess, it just does something to you. alhamdulillah, allah has blessed us with much. jazaakillahu khairan.

    i would like to make a small request of all those who read this comment please insha'allah:

    a story was once conveyed to me, a few months ago, about a young boy who has long been troubled by jinn. now of course you will agree with me that this is something we often hear, and these things, sadly, are quite common. and may allah protect and preserve us, and our brethren amongst the jinn and mankind who take to these means and hold to them, for indeed they are in great error, and we fear for them before their lord for what they indulge in, and we ask allah to turn their hearts towards righteouesness and sincere repentance, aameen ya rabb.

    anyhow, this young boy, he and his family are greatly troubled by jinn. they have sought remedy from various scholars and righteous people, and it's not that the remedy is not there, of course we know the remedy is there, but the matter is rather a complex one. khair, my brother had the honour of meeting this young boy at a course. and they would spend the day with the shuyookh and they would learn, and at night the lights would go out and everyone would sleep. because that's what normal people do, right? well, not this kid.

    his jinn friends do not allow him to sleep. so he spends the night awake. the whole, long, dark night, wide awake and troubled by these creatures. wallahil adheem sometimes i think about him and it makes my heart ache. to think, allah has bestowed such a wonderful mercy on us that when the day is done and we're tired, we close our eyes and we rest our souls. and then there's this young boy, and he spends the whole night awake, being terrified and tormented while the world around him sleeps soundly. wallahi it hurts inside.

    but then i think about this same boy, and i have never seen him, i do not know him, but i think about him, and i think about how much allah must love him, and how great his reward will be in the hereafter. i think about how he can't sleep now, how tired he must be in this world, and then i think paradise; your rest is in paradise. no doubt we do not know the end of anyone, but we know that allah is kind and loving, full of mercy to the believers. and we know that allah expiates sins by trial, that he tests those he loves, and we ask allah to make this young boy of those He [swt] most dearly loves. aameen.

    and i sincerely ask allah [swt] to raise his rank, to honour and exalt him in this world and the next. i ask allah to keep him on the path of righteousness and taqwaa, and to relieve him and his family of their hardships. and allah has power over all things. aameen ya rabbil alameen.


    my apologies, what was to be a small request asking that you make du'aa for this young boy, has now turned into a mini essay. you must forgive me, i talk alot.

    please make du'aa for the young boy insha'allah. any mistakes in my conveyance of his story or what sheikh luhaydaan or sheikh ahmad mentioned – the fault is of none but my own. and all praise is to allah for any good that comes of this.

    jazaakumullahu khairan


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  3. bintfulaan April 1, 2011 at 3:25 am Reply Tweet

    Aameen thumma aameen.

    I think a lot of people lack the correct knowledge in this topic (by no means am I saying that I have this knowledge). There are two extremes in belief of the jinn: one is dismissal of jinn completely, and we see this all the time living in the west. A lot of those around us do not believe in jinn and black magic at all. The second, which is also very common, is that they have knowledge of the unseen. Hence why people queue up to see magicians and their like, because they think these people will be able to give them knowledge of the unseen through communicating with the jinn.

    Both these extremes are very dangerous to a persons aqeedah. We know that jinn exist. There are several ayaat and ahadith about them; there is even a surah named after them. And we know that knowledge of al ghaib (the unseen) lies with no-one but Allaah.

    So yes, some people do give more weight to this than it deserves but on the other hand, some people completely deny it. The jinn and black magic are real, and some sicknesses are caused by this and therefore cannot be treated with conventional medicine. The Prophet salAllaahu alayhi wa sallam himself was a victim of sihr.

    WAllaahu a'lam

    And this was so not supposed to be an essay either.

    If anything in the above is incorrect, please do forgive me but also inform me inshaAllaah.

    Wa Jazaakillaahu khayran

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  4. Amatullaah April 1, 2011 at 5:45 pm Reply Tweet

    jazakillaah khair for that story, it makes me feel sad about the things i complain about. May Allaah have mercy on this boy, provide him with relief and reward him for his patience both in this world and the nextameen

    im also one of those people who sort of ignore/forget about this issue (not good) but i remember my ustaadh also mentioning that the best way to protect yourselves is via saying your adkars in the morning and evening/after salaah. He had also said that his shaykh had never come across anyone who read their adkars but that they were inflicted with black magic etc. Allaahu 'Alam

    Walillaahil Hamd.

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  5. - April 1, 2011 at 11:00 pm Reply Tweet


    jazaakillahu khairan bint fulaan for ur post. what was said with regard to muslims giving more weight to this than it deserves was in relation to the great interest young muslims have in knowing jinn stories, or knowing about the jinn. and this is common. try telling a young bro/sis about islaam they'll switch off, but talk to any jack about jinn and automatically they sit up and look at you in eager anticipation. this is what sheikh ahmad alluded to when he gave the lecture, and i say this not for myself, but to clarify his position [the best i can insha'allah]. i myself am guilty of this, after all; one of the first books i ever bought was indeed about the jinn..

    anyhow thought i'd mention that so as to not dismiss or undermine your effort in anyway. and may allah increase you in good, aameen.

    sister amatullaah: you're telling me about complaining! i've adopted a new motto: if you think you're life couldn't get any worse, it's only coz you lack sufficient imagination. lool! alhamdulillah, allah protects us from a lot by his mercy. walhamdulillah.


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  6. bintfulaan April 2, 2011 at 3:16 am Reply Tweet

    wa iyyaki

    my only effort was the copy and paste (how sad)


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