The Holy Quran mentions Jinns in several places, amongst which are:
“I have only created Jinns and Men that they may serve me”
Surah As Zariyat, Ayat 56
“And the Jinn race, we had created before, from the fire of a scorching wind”
Surah Al Hijr, Ayat 27
Hence all Muslims believe and accept the presence of Jinns. I am not an expert in Islam. My understanding which seems to be confirmed by this IIU website is that Jinns have similarities with humans in that they have the power to reason, and to know what is right and wrong. However we cannot see them. And of course there are good Jinns and bad Jinns. The rewards and punishment promised to humans upon our death depending on how we lived our lives applies equally to Jinns.
The Holy Quran also makes the following statement:
“Yet make Jinns equal with Allah, even though Allah did create the Jinns..”
Surah Al An’am, Ayat 100
This Ayat makes it clear that we should not worship Jinns, as they are just like us, another creation by the All Mighty. There are a lot of literature on people being possessed by Jinns, using Jinns to do extraordinary feats, using Jinns in their fortune telling etc.
In addition, there are also stories about people using Jinns to protect themselves and even to do evil deeds. Malaysian history is rich in stories of people who have either voluntarily or involuntarily been possessed by Jinns and used their powers for both good and evil.
On the 30th March 09, The Star carried a story about Uztaz Trimizi, a 23 year old, modern-day exorcist who would be conducting mobile clinics to rid victims, particularly the Malaysian community in Britain, of sihir (black magic) spells and disturbances by spiteful spirits.He is probably Malaysia’s youngest Islamic medical practitioner who specialises in undoing charms and witchcraft.
Trimizi, who hails from Kuala Lumpur, says he has screened more than 20,000 people in Malaysia, mostly in Sabah and Sarawak, over the past seven years. Of that, 800 were treated for djinn affliction and black magic.
Trimizi has come a long way since he learnt the art from his grandmother at the age of eight in Taiping, Perak. After her death, he continued to study Islamic medicine from renowned teachers in Malaysia, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen S
So it seems that many can be afflicted and be completely unaware.
Ustaz Trimizi says that Jinns can be “burnt with Quranic verses. You can hear them scream before they are weakened and leave the body.”
This issue of Jinns and their ability to infuse themselves into our body and exert some form of control over our actions must have caused some confusion over the treatment of mental illnesses such as schizophrenia etc. So in some cases, people who are just sick may instead be treated as being possessed or being witches. In India and Africa stories of witches being burnt and stoned to death abound. See some of the news here and here.
In Malaysia, there are a number of religious columns written by scholars in the local papers. Often questions are asked in these columns about how to go about riding oneself of Jinns or other “benda halus, like saka”.
In his website, Ustaz Suhaimi from Temerloh writes that “Saka are Jinns that have been in the body of a person for so long that they become almost one. This can happen with or without the person being aware, because it is inherited from his family.”
He also offers services and advice on people wanting to remove these saka, a form of exorcism so to speak.
For a Malaysian family educated in the Western way, the whole issue of being possessed by evil spirits, Jinns etc is a huge poser. Where do they turn to for treatment? How do they even decide it is a matter of the supernatural and not some medical ailment?
For us in Malaysia, though there is a huge number of the Western educated amongst the Muslims, the link with the “kampung” is still incredibly strong. So even though Western medical cures are sought, it is very often supplemented with “traditional treatment”.
I suggest that we should never ignore the issue of these paranormal forces whenever some family member or friend seemingly goes off his or her rocker. Or when things aren’t too often, what they should be!