#401: ‘Ain Illness and Its Cure

Question:

Assalamualaikum ustaz. Can you please explain about ‘ain illness? Can it affect humans? And how should one go about treating it? I’d really appreciate it if you can also explain the ways to protect ourselves from this ‘ain illness. Thank you.

Answer:

Waalaikumussalam wrt. wbt.,

Alhamdulillah, praise and gratitude to Allah SWT for His countless blessings for us all. Praise and salutations to our beloved Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his family, companions, and all those who follow his footsteps until the Final day.

‘Ain illness is thabit in syara’ evidences. Allah SWT states:

وَإِن يَكَادُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا لَيُزْلِقُونَكَ بِأَبْصَارِهِمْ

“And indeed, those who disbelieve would almost make you slip with their eyes,” [1]

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid and others said: (لَيُزْلِقُونَكَ) means those who wish you to slip. (بِأَبْصَارِهِمْ) “with their eyes” means they are jealous of you and their hatred for you. If it is not for the protection and safety from Allah SWT for you from them (surely you aren’t safe).

In this verse, there is evidence showing that the target and influence of the “eye” are true based on this verse from Allah SWT. This is as stated in several hadiths narrated from various routes. [2]

From Abu Hurairah RA, the Prophet PBUH said:

الْعَيْنُ حَقٌّ

“The evil eye is genuine,” [3]

In a hadith narrated from Ibn Abbas R.Anhuma, the Prophet PBUH said:

الْعَيْنُ حَقٌّ وَلَوْ كَانَ شَىْءٌ سَابَقَ الْقَدَرَ سَبَقَتْهُ الْعَيْنُ وَإِذَا اسْتُغْسِلْتُمْ فَاغْسِلُوا

“The evil eye is genuine If anything could get ahead of the decree the evil eye would do so. And when you are asked to bathe do so.” [4]

Imam al-Nawawi said: “In this hadith, there is ithbat faith in the fate from Allah SWT and the genuine existence of ‘ain illness and that it is dangerous.” [5]

Whereas al-Hafiz Ibnu Hajar al-Asqalani said: “It means that a person in danger for something that Allah SWT has determined when a person looks at him, in truth it happens by the will of Allah SWT that has been set previously, not something newly created by the person who is looking or being looked at.”

‘Ain illness is caused by the eye that looks at another with intense jealousy or amazement at the person he is looking at. It can happen due to jealousy or love from evil or pious person.

Al-hafiz Ibnu Hajar said: “’Ain is a jealous negative look from a person that harms the person he is looking at.

He also said: “’Ain can occur with the feeling of amazement even if it is without jealousy and enmity, (it can happen) even from a beloved person or from a pious person (unintentionally).” [6]

According to Ibn al-Qayyim: “The soul of a person that causes ‘ain can result in ‘ain, without just by looking. Furthermore, sometimes, even for a blind person, if he is told something then in his heart, it causes ‘ain, then ‘ain can arise even when he couldn’t see it. There are a lot of causes of ‘ain that could result in ‘ain, even without looking or seeing.” [7] This means, ‘ain can also happen with just a feeling without looking at something such as through a television or picture.

The treatment for ‘ain illness

In a hadith from Amrah from ‘Aisyah RA, she said, “One day when the Prophet PBUH entered the house. Suddenly, he heard the cries of a small child, he then said:

مَا لِصَبِيِّكُمْ هَذَا يَبْكِي، هَلَّا اسْتَرْقَيْتُمْ لَهُ مِنَ الْعَيْنِ

“Why is your child crying? Didn’t you go to find a person who can treat ‘ain illness?” [8]

There is also another hadith regarding this matter:

أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ كَانَ يَأْمُرُهَا أَنْ تَسْتَرْقِيَ مِنَ الْعَيْنِ

“Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) commanded (Aisyah) the use of incantation for curing the influence of an evil eye.” [9]

If a person is sick due to ‘ain illness, then seek treatment according to the syarak which is through:

  • The recitation of ruqyah or supplication.

From Buraidah bin al-Husyaib RA, Rasullullah PBUH said:

لاَ رُقْيَةَ إِلاَّ مِنْ عَيْنٍ أَوْ حُمَة

“No spell is to be used except for the evil eye, or a scorpion sting,” [10]

For parents, they can supplicate asking for protection and safety for their child from ‘ain illness just like the supplication recited by the Prophet PBUH for his two grandchildren, Hassan and Hussain:

أَعُوذُ بِكَلِمَاتِ اللَّهِ التَّامَّةِ، مِنْ كُلِّ شَيْطَانٍ وَهَامَّةٍ، وَمِنْ كُلِّ عَيْنٍ لاَمَّةٍ

‘O Allah! I seek Refuge with Your Perfect Words from every devil and from poisonous pests and from every evil, harmful, envious eye.’ “ [11]

  • Bathed with water

In a hadith narrated from Abi Umamah bin Sahl bin Hunaif, he said: “ ‘Amir bin Rabi’ah passed by Sahl bin Hunaif when he was having a bath, and said: ‘I have never seen such beautiful skin.’ Straightaway, he (Sahl) fell to the ground. He was brought to the Prophet (ﷺ) and it was said: ‘Sahl has had a fit.’ He said: ‘Whom do you accuse with regard to him?’ They said: “ ‘Amir bin Rabi’ah.’ They said: 

عَلاَمَ يَقْتُلُ أَحَدُكُمْ أَخَاهُ ، إِذَا رَأَى أَحَدُكُمْ مِنْ أَخِيهِ مَا يُعْجِبُهُ ، فَلْيَدْعُ لَهُ بِالْبَرَكَةِ

‘Why would anyone of you kill his brother? If he sees something that he likes, then let him pray for blessing for him.’ 

Then he called for water, and he told ‘Amir to perform ablution, then he washed his face and his arms up to the elbows, his knees and inside his lower garment, then he told him to pour the water over him.” [12]

Al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar cited that Ibn al-Qayyim said:


هَذِهِ الْكَيْفِيَّةُ لَا يَنْتَفِعُ بِهَا مَنْ أَنْكَرَهَا وَلَا مَنْ سَخِرَ مِنْهَا وَلَا مَنْ شَكَّ فِيهَا أَوْ فَعَلَهَا مُجَرِّبًا غَيْرَ مُعْتَقِدٍ

“This method of treatment is not beneficial for those who disbelief it, make fun of it, doubt it or do it just as a last resort without believing in it.” [13]

Seeking protection from ‘ain illness

It is permissible to seek protection from ‘ain illness and it doesn’t deny the concept of tawakkal. The reason is tawakkal which is a dependence on Allah SWT is accompanied by the asbab of matters that are permissible or commanded by it.

Seeking protection from Allah SWT is the best preventive measure against ‘ain illness even from any harm or danger. The Prophet PBUH ask for protection for al-Hasan and al-Husin R.ANhuma as stated in a hadith from Ibn Abbas R.Anhuma, the Prophet PBUH said:

أُعِيذُكُمَا بِكَلِمَاتِ اللهِ التَّامَّةِ مِنْ كُلِّ شَيْطَانٍ وَهَامَّةٍ ، وَمِنْ شَرِّ كُلِّ عَيْنٍ لاَمَّةٍ

“With God’s perfect words I commend you to God’s protection from every devil and poisonous creature and from every evil eye.” [14]

For a person who may cause ‘ain illness to another person, it is best to supplicate for blessing (utter Barakallahu fik or tabarakallah) when he sees someone that amazes him. This follows the instruction of the Prophet PBUH in the hadith from Abu Umamah. [15]

Lastly, we’d like to ask our readers to reflect and tadabbur surah al-Falaq as well as practise reciting it in our effort to seek protection from jealousy and envy. Hence, we end this discussion with surah al-Falaq:

بِسْمِ اللَّـهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

قُلْ أَعُوذُ بِرَبِّ الْفَلَقِ ﴿١﴾ مِن شَرِّ مَا خَلَقَ ﴿٢﴾ وَمِن شَرِّ غَاسِقٍ إِذَا وَقَبَ ﴿٣﴾ وَمِن شَرِّ النَّفَّاثَاتِ فِي الْعُقَدِ ﴿٤﴾ وَمِن شَرِّ حَاسِدٍ إِذَا حَسَدَ

“Say, “I seek refuge in the Lord of daybreak. From the evil of that which He created. And from the evil of darkness when it settles. And from the evil of the blowers in knots. And from the evil of an envier when he envies.” [16]

Wallahu a’lam.

[1] Surah al-Qalam (51)

[2] See Tafsir al-Qur’an al-‘Azim8/260

[3] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5740) and Muslim (2187)

[4] Narrated by Muslim (5831)

[5] See Syarh al-Nawawi ‘ala Sahih Muslim7/328

[6] See Fath al-Bari, 10/203-205

[7] See Zad al-Ma’ad, 4/149

[8] Narrated by Ahmad (24442)

[9] Narrated by Muslim (2195)

[10] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5705) and Muslim (220)

[11] Narrated by al-Bukhari (3371)

[12] Narrated by Ibn Majah (2828), al-Nasa’ie (10036)

[13] See Fath al-Bari, 10/205

[14] Narrated by al-Nasa’ie (7679), Abu Daud (4737), Ibn Majah (3525), and al-Tirmizi (2060)

[15] Narrated by Ibn Majah, no. 3509

[16] Surah al-Falaq (1-5)

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