In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Because jinn have an ethereal existence, they are in closer proximity to the angels and can sometimes overhear bits of their discourse. This is how fortune-tellers, soothsayers, and black magicians can acquire some knowledge of the future. But the jinn who support these soothsayers are evil, so they mix the little truth they give them with many lies.
Aisha, RadhiAllahu Anha, reported: Some people asked the Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, about soothsayers. The Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said:
They are nothing.
They said, “O Messenger of Allah, sometimes they speak about things that come true.” The Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said:
تِلْكَ الْكَلِمَةُ مِنْ الْجِنِّ يَخْطَفُهَا الْجِنِّيُّ فَيَقُرُّهَا فِي أُذُنِ وَلِيِّهِ قَرَّ الدَّجَاجَةِ فَيَخْلِطُونَ فِيهَا أَكْثَرَ مِنْ مِائَةِ كَذْبَةٍ
Those are the words snatched by the jinn, who whisper it into the ears of their friends and it is mixed with more than one hundred lies.
Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5859, Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi
The jinn can only acquire such knowledge if Allah allows them to do so, since Allah is in full control of the heavens and earth. If Allah wills, He can banish them from the heavens with fiery projectiles.
وَأَنَّا كُنَّا نَقْعُدُ مِنْهَا مَقَاعِدَ لِلسَّمْعِ ۖ فَمَن يَسْتَمِعِ الْآنَ يَجِدْ لَهُ شِهَابًا رَّصَدًا
The jinn said: We used to sit to listen, but whoever listens now will find a flame lying in wait.
Surat al-Jinn 72:9
And Allah said:
وَلَقَدْ زَيَّنَّا السَّمَاءَ الدُّنْيَا بِمَصَابِيحَ وَجَعَلْنَاهَا رُجُومًا لِّلشَّيَاطِينِ
We have adorned the lowest heavens with lamps and have made them missiles against the devils.
Surat al-Mulk 67:5
Just as the jinn were created by a fire unlike the ordinary fire we experience, the shooting stars that are thrown at them are unlike the ordinary meteors and space rocks we can identify. Again, the scientific modality of these matters is unknown because they exist in a realm inaccessible and imperceptible to us.
We are all exposed to the whispering of devils among jinn in our daily lives, as we struggle with ordinary day-to-day temptations to commit sins. We are also potentially vulnerable to black magicians who contact the jinn via Satanic rituals and command them to attack and harass their chosen victims. Yet protecting ourselves from them is easy as long as we remain vigilant in the remembrance of Allah.
The key to protecting ourselves from evil jinn is to not assign importance to them by cursing them or trying to ‘defeat’ them. Rather, it is best to ignore them by returning our mindfulness and awareness to Allah. If we leave them alone, they will leave us alone. Simply saying the name of Allah, just by itself, has the power to banish Satan.
Abu al-Malih, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Prophet, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, said:
لَا تَقُلْ تَعِسَ الشَّيْطَانُ فَإِنَّكَ إِذَا قُلْتَ ذَلِكَ تَعَاظَمَ حَتَّى يَكُونَ مِثْلَ الْبَيْتِ وَيَقُولُ بِقُوَّتِي وَلَكِنْ قُلْ بِسْمِ اللَّهِ فَإِنَّكَ إِذَا قُلْتَ ذَلِكَ تَصَاغَرَ حَتَّى يَكُونَ مِثْلَ الذُّبَابِ
Do not say: May Satan perish. Verily, if you say that he will swell up with pride until he is as big as a house and he says: By my might! Rather, you should say: In the name of Allah. Verily, if you say that he will shrink until he is as small as a fly.
Source: Sunan Abī Dāwūd 4982, Grade: Sahih
Abu Huraira, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Messenger of Allah, said:
لا تَسُبُّوا الشَّيْطَانَ وَتَعَوَّذُوا بِاللَّهِ مِنْ شَرِّهِ
Do not curse Satan, but rather seek refuge in Allah from his evil.
Source: al-Mukhalliṣīyāt 1572, Grade: Sahih
Anas ibn Malik, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, said:
مَنْ قَالَ يَعْنِي إِذَا خَرَجَ مِنْ بَيْتِهِ بِسْمِ اللَّهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ عَلَى اللَّهِ لَا حَوْلَ وَلَا قُوَّةَ إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ يُقَالُ لَهُ كُفِيتَ وَوُقِيتَ وَتَنَحَّى عَنْهُ الشَّيْطَانُ
Whoever says when he leaves his house, ‘In the name of Allah, I trust in Allah for there is no power or might but with Allah,’ then it will be said to him that you have been sufficed and protected, and the devils will be far from him.
Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 3426, Grade: Sahih
Jabir, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Prophet, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, said:
إِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ إِذَا سَمِعَ النِّدَاءَ بِالصَّلَاةِ ذَهَبَ حَتَّى يَكُونَ مَكَانَ الرَّوْحَاءِ
Verily, when Satan hears the call to prayer, he flees to a very distant place.
Source: Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 388, Grade: Sahih
The Quran is likewise our most powerful defense against the evil jinn. In particular, the chapters of Surat al-Baqarah, Surat al-Falaq, and Surat al-Nas are especially potent in warding off demonic entities.
Abu Huraira, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, entrusted me to protect the charity of Ramadan. Someone came to me and began taking from the food. I took hold of him and I said, “I will certainly take you to the Messenger of Allah!” Abu Huraira, RadhiAllahu Anhu, told the story to the Prophet, and he said, “The man told me that when I go to bed, I should recite the verse of the throne (2:255). Allah would appoint a protector with me and no devil would come near to me until morning.” The Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said:
صَدَقَكَ وَهُوَ كَذُوبٌ ذَاكَ شَيْطَانٌ
He told you the truth, although he is a liar. That was Satan.
Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 4723, Grade: Sahih
Abu Huraira, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, said:
إِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ يَنْفِرُ مِنْ الْبَيْتِ الَّذِي تُقْرَأُ فِيهِ سُورَةُ الْبَقَرَةِ
Verily, Satan flees from the house in which Surat al-Baqarah is recited.
Source: Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 780, Grade: Sahih
Al-Nu’man ibn Bashir, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, said:
الْآيَتَانِ خُتِمَ بِهِمَا سُورَةُ الْبَقَرَةِ لَا تُقْرَآنِ فِي دَارٍ ثَلَاثَ لَيَالٍ فَيَقْرَبُهَا شَيْطَانٌ
Satan does not come near a house in which the last two verses of Surat al-Baqarah have been recited for three nights.
Source: Ṣaḥīḥ Ibn Ḥibbān 782, Grade: Sahih
Abu Sa’id, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported:
كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَتَعَوَّذُ مِنْ الْجَانِّ وَعَيْنِ الْإِنْسَانِ حَتَّى نَزَلَتْ الْمُعَوِّذَتَانِ فَلَمَّا نَزَلَتَا أَخَذَ بِهِمَا وَتَرَكَ مَا سِوَاهُمَا
The Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, would seek refuge from jinn and the evil eye of man, until the two chapters of refuge were revealed, Surat al-Falaq and al-Nas. After they were revealed, he took both of them and left everything else.
Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 2058, Grade: Sahih
‘Uqbah ibn ‘Amir, RadhiAllahu Anhu, reported: The Prophet, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, said:
قَدْ أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَيَّ آيَاتٍ لَمْ يُرَ مِثْلُهُنَّ قُلْ أَعُوذُ بِرَبِّ النَّاسِ إِلَى آخِرِ السُّورَةِ وَ قُلْ أَعُوذُ بِرَبِّ الْفَلَقِ إِلَى آخِرِ السُّورَةِ
Allah has revealed verses the likes of which you have never seen, ‘Say: I seek refuge in the Lord of the people,’ (114:1) and, ‘Say; I seek refuge in the Lord of the daybreak.’ (113:1)
Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 2902, Grade: Sahih
Imams and scholars will use the Quran to treat a person who is being harassed or controlled by jinn. However, for any true case of possession in need of an exorcism, which is a documented but very rare phenomenon, we must consult religious, medical, and psychological experts for their advice on a holistic treatment plan.
Lastly, we should not be paranoid over the jinn, just as we should not be afraid of ordinary animals. In fact, the jinn are usually more afraid of us than we are of them, but they become emboldened when they sense our fear.
وَأَنَّهُ كَانَ رِجَالٌ مِّنَ الْإِنسِ يَعُوذُونَ بِرِجَالٍ مِّنَ الْجِنِّ فَزَادُوهُمْ رَهَقًا
Among humankind were men who sought refuge in the men of the jinn, but it only increased their burden.
Surat al-Jinn 72:6
‘Ikramah commented on this verse, saying:
كَانَ الْجِنُّ يَفْرَقُونَ مِنَ الْإِنْسِ كَمَا يَفْرَقُ الْإِنْسُ مِنْهُمْ أَوْ أَشَدَّ وَكَانَ الْإِنْسُ إِذَا نَزَلُوا وَادِيًا هَرَبَ الْجِنُّ فَيَقُولُ سَيِّدُ الْقَوْمِ نَعُوذُ بِسَيِّدِ أَهْلِ هَذَا الْوَادِي فَقَالَ الْجِنُّ نَرَاهُمْ يَفْرَقُونَ مِنَّا كَمَا نَفْرَقُ مِنْهُمْ فَدَنَوْا مِنَ الْإِنْسِ فَأَصَابُوهُمْ بِالْخَبَلِ وَالْجُنُونِ
The jinn used to leave when people came, just as people used to run away from them or even more so. When humans descended into a valley, the jinn would flee but the chief of the people would say: We seek refuge with the chief of this valley. The jinn would say: We saw them running away from us just as we ran from them. Thus, the jinn would come close to the humans and afflict them with insanity and madness.
Source: Tafsīr Ibn Kathīr 72:6
The jinn would be afraid when a group of people came into their valley, but once they saw how much the people feared them, the jinn realized they could harass them without consequence. Giving such importance to the jinn only inflates their egos. Instead, we can use the name of Allah to banish any evil jinn at any time.
In sum, the jinn are a species of intelligent creatures who exist beyond the physical world, in a manner that is scientifically unknown. Some of them can materialize in a form of their choosing, sometimes impersonating people or pretending to be frightening monsters. Like humans, they can be good or evil. The evil jinn, at the behest of their leader Satan, whisper evil suggestions into the hearts and minds of people. Soothsayers, fortune-tellers, and black magicians can also harness the abilities of evil jinn through ceremonial magic, although such power comes at the price of their souls. We can protect ourselves from these evil forces by being vigilant in remembering Allah, following the teachings of Islam, frequently mentioning the name of Allah, and reciting the Quran.
Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.