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Possession by Jinn

Jinns are intelligent living beings who have been exposed to divine revelation containing both commands and prohibitions, and are thereby eligible for either a reward or punishment in the next life. Since the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu ‘Alaihi wa Sallam) as also sent to them, it is therefore obligatory for Muslims to treat them as they would any other human being with regard to commanding and prohibiting evil.

The occasional possession of man by the Jinn may be due to jest on the part of the Jinn, anger or even love just as among humans. A person in a village, for example, throws left over hot water from a bath outside to dispose of it. Naturally the person will throw the water in the garden or field. He/she cannot see the Jinn when the water out is being flung out. Should this water have burnt a Jinn who was there, the Jinn will become angry with the person and think that they have been intentionally harmed. Though humans may not realise what they have done, the Jinns are by nature very ignorant, harsh and volatile in their behaviour, so they may vengefully punish humans much more than they actually deserve.

Jinn possession sometimes also occurs as a result of “fun” on the part of the Jinn just as evil and mischief occurs among humans for similar reasons. The disbelieving jinn and sometimes believing jinn as well (although very rarely) may possess the body of a human.

Most of the time possession is due to sihr (black magic) where a Jinn is purposely sent by a sorcerer/a person doing the sihr to invade the body of a human so as to make that person ill, or lethargic or insane, or violent etc.

Ibn Hajar Al-Haythami said in his book Al-Fatawa Al-Hadithiyah, after mentioning this Hadeeth: “It is a proof against those who deny the devil’s ability to infiltrate the body of a person, such as the­ Mu’tazilah sect.”
‘Uthmaan bin al ‘Aas (RadiyAllaahu ‘anhu) narrated: “”When the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘Alaihi wa Sallam) appointed me as a governor of at-Ta-if, I used to feel something exposed to me during Salaah which made me forget what I had prayed; so I traveled to see the Messenger of Allah (Sallallaahu ‘Alaihi wa Sallam). When he saw me he asked the reason of my visit, I replied: ‘O Messenger of Allah, something comes to me. during prayer, and makes me forget what I have prayed’. He replied: ‘That is Satan. Come closer’. So I approached near him, sitting on my heals. He struck my chest and blew in my mouth, saying: ‘Come out, enemy of Allah’. He said this three times, then said to me: ‘Go back to your work’. Since that moment, I have never felt anything.”

‘Abdullah ibn Ahmad ibn Hanbal (rahimahullaah) said: “I said to my father: ‘Some people claim that Jinn do not enter the body of humans.’ So he replied: ‘O my son, they lie; it is a Jinn who speaks through a human (when he possesses him/her).’”

How does a Jinn enter the body of a human?
The Jinn exists in the form of a spirit. The body of human is permeable, therefore the Jinn is able to enter the body of a human through any place he/she wants. The evidence for this is Allah’s verse: “He created the Jinn from a fusion of fire”. [Surah 55/ar-Rahmaan, v: 15] Ibn ‘Abbaas (RadiyAllaahu ‘anhu) said: “From the fusion of fire; and the fusion of fire is the hot wind coming out from fire”. When the Jinn enters the body of a human, it heads directly for the brain where it can affect any organ of he body from that central position. Medical research has proved that possessed people have some strange vibrations in their brains.

Below is the experience of Shaykh Waahid Abdus-Salaam regarding possession by Jinn.
“One of them (Jinn) once told me: ‘I can have a direct effect on any organ of the body, of this person that I am possessing.’”
“I once said to a Jinn: ‘Hold this arm’, so he stretched his arm, and three strong young men tried to bend the arm, but they could not. So then I said: ‘Let go now’ and he did.”

In cases wherein the human was unaware that he harmed a Jinn, the Jinn should be addressed and informed that the human’s act was unintentional and as such does not deserve a punishment. If it took place in the man’s house or possession, the Jinn should be informed that the house and property belong to the man and as such he is permitted to use them as he pleases in allowable ways. The Jinn should also be told that they do not have the right to inhabit human property without permission of the occupants. They only have a right to dwell in places not occupied by humans like abandoned buildings and open country. Consequently, the Jinn can most often be found in abandoned settlements, the open desert or open fields. They also occupy places of impurity like toilets, garbage-dumps, graveyards and camel pens.

As regards camel pens, al-Barra ibn ‘Aazib reported that Allah’s Messenger was asked about performing wudoo’ after eating camel meat and he replied. “Perform wudoo’ after eating it.” When he was asked about making wudoo’ after eating mutton, he replied, “Do not make wudoo’ after eating it.” He was then asked about making formal prayer in camel pens and he replied,“Do not offer prayer in camel pens as they are places of the devil.” When he was asked about prayer in sheep folds, he replied, “You may pray in them, as they are places of blessing.” [Sunan Abi Dawood, (English Trans.), vol. I, Pp. 44-45, hadith no. 184] There are ahaadeeth prohibiting salaah in camel pens as has been collected by Muslim [Saheeh Muslim (English Trans.) vol. I, p.198, hadith no. 700] and others.

If the human committed an act against the Jinn unintentionally, then this should be explained to them; that he never intended to harm them. And if the act took place in his house, then he is free to act in a way that is permitted.
As for you Jinn, they do not have the permission to take shelter in human bodies without their authorisation. No sane person would permit that anyway.

The point is that if the Jinn attacks a human, they should be informed about Allah and His Messenger’s ruling on the matter and proof of their error should be pointed out. They should be ordered to be righteous and to abstain from evil just as is done with humans, based on Allah’s statement: “O assembly of Jinns and men! Have not messengers from among you come to you relating to you Our signs and warning you about meeting this day of yours?..)”. [Surah 06/al An‘aam, v: 130]

Types of Jinn possession of humans
1. A total possession. A Jinn possesses the whole body of a person, such as the one who suffers from seizures.
2. A partial possession. A Jinn possesses one particular organ of the body, such as an arm, leg or tongue.
3. Constant possession. A Jinn possesses the body for a long period of time.
4. Temporary possession, which lasts no more than a few minutes, like a nightmare.

If you are “not yourself” and have symptoms as we have previously mentioned, consult a raaqi (one who does ar-ruqyaa to remove the jinn from the human body). But beware, there are many fake raaqis out there who will charge you large sums of money and just make matters worse. It is indeed extremely rare to find a raaqi who works according to Qur-aan and Hadeeth. May Allah grant shifaa kaamil to all those suffering from jinn possession and sihr.


– Ibn Taimiyya’s “Eedawh ad-Dalaalah fee ‘Umoom ar-Risaalah” in vol 19. of Majmoo’ul Fataawaa. Translated by Abu Ameenah Bilal Phillips

– “Protect Yourself from the Jinn and Shaytaan” by Shaykh Wahid And al-Salam Bali

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