The term evil eye has been around for centuries. This term has become so common that even if people face any small hardship, they blame it on the evil eye. While many consider it superstition or an old wives’ tale, Muslims strongly believe in the evil eye and its consequences. Keeping this in mind, this blog will elaborate what is the evil eye in Islam and how to protect oneself from it.
The evil eye, also known as al-’ayn in Arabic, is used to describe the trouble or misfortune a person can face because of the envy or hatred that somebody might have against him.
This evil eye can manifest as sickness, loss of wealth or family, setbacks in life, conflict with loved ones, or bad luck. However, the person afflicted by this evil eye may or may not know its consequences.
The symbol of the evil eye has been around for a long time. The symbol, consisting of four concentric circles in the shape of an eye, is often used to ward off evil in many cultures.
Many cultures and religions, like ancient Greece, Rome, Judaism, and Hinduism, have believed in the concept of the evil eye for centuries. Also, each of these cultures and religions has its own way of warding off this evil curse.
Such as the people in Greece who use eye charms to battle this curse, whereas others in India recite their religious supplications.
As for the concept of the evil eye being a superstition, in the tafsir (explanation) of the Quranic verses of Surah Al-Qalam 51–52, Allah SWT says that people will effect you by looking at you with their eyes, i.e., the evil eye, because they are jealous of you due to their hatred towards you.
The term evil eye is also mentioned in many hadiths of the Holy Prophet (PBUH). In one hadith, the Prophet (PBUH) says the evil eye is real.
Another hadith also states that the Holy Prophet (PBUH) said that if anything could effect a person’s fate or destiny other than the divinely decreed, it is the evil eye, and if someone is requested to wash due to the evil eye, then they should bathe.
All of these hadiths and the Quranic verses rule out any doubt about the existence of the evil eye being real.
Many symptoms are mentioned by people who do Ruqya to check if the evil eye has afflicted someone. However, these symptoms may vary in certain cases.
- Headaches or migraines
- Crying for no reason.
- Feeling tired all the time
- Weak appetite
- Anxiety and sadness
- Health problems with no known medical cause
- Sweating excessively
- Withdrawal and love of solitude
- Getting more inclined toward sleeping
- Laziness, and many more.
In the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (PBUH), several ways are mentioned to protect an individual against the evil eye, such as:
Ruqya is the Islamic process of healing by reciting Quranic verses. In a hadith, the Holy Prophet (PBUH) says that Ruqya should be performed on a person who is in danger of the evil eye.
Some Quranic verses can be recited while performing ruqya include Surah Fatiha, Surah An-Naas, Surah Al-Falaq, and Ayatul Kursi (the 255th verse of Surah Baqarah).
Another dua for ruqya from hadith:
When the Prophet (ﷺ) visited any ailing member of his family, he would touch the sick person with his right hand and would supplicate: “Allahumma Rabban-nasi, adhhibil-ba’sa, washfi, Antash-Shafi, la shifa’a illa shifa’uka, shifaan la yughadiru saqaman [O Allah! the Rubb of mankind! Remove this disease and cure (him or her)! You are the Great Curer. There is no cure but through You, which leaves behind no disease].”
Al-Mu’awwidhatayn refers to the last two chapters of the Quran, Surah Al-Falaq and Surah An-naas. The recitation of these two chapters is one of the best protections against the evil eye. Moreover, it is also mentioned in a hadith that the Holy Prophet (PBUH) used to recite these two chapters of the Quran for protection against the evil of jinn and the evil eye.
Reciting these three chapters of the Holy Quran can protect one from the evil eye and any other evil that may harm us.
In a hadith, it is said that the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said to recite these three surahs thrice in the morning and the evening, and they will protect anything. Therefore, one should habitually recite these three chapters daily to remain under Allah SWT’s protection.
You can also recite these surahs at night and blow them on your hands, then rub your hands over whatever body part you can reach, just like the Holy Prophet (PBUH)
The word adhkaar is the remembrance of Allah SWT, which means saying phrases like ‘Glory to Allah’ or ‘I ask Allah’s forgiveness’. When we constantly keep our tongues wet from the dhikr, the chances of any evil affecting us become less. Below is one of the adhkaars that our Holy Prophet (PBUH) used to do.
أَعـوذُ بِكَلِـماتِ اللّهِ التّـامّاتِ مِنْ شَـرِّ ما خَلَـق
I seek refuge in the Perfect Words of Allah from the evil of what He has created.
Many people wear amulets or charm bracelets to ward off the evil eye, but it is not permissible in Islam, and in a hadith, our Holy Prophet (PBUH) states that it is shirk to wear any amulets.
In summary, the evil eye concept in Islam highlights the harmful influence of jealousy and envy and how one should always be aware of one’s actions and constantly do dhikr to remain protected by Allah SWT.