Surah al-Falaq and black magic

1 month 2 days ago #1056 by Imam Rassi Society
Wa salam!

The narration in Bukhari mentions that the Prophet would recite Surat al-Falaq as well, before going to bed when he was ill. Due to the wording of Surat al-Falaq, I think it is inferred that the illness was due to black magic.

Is this specific variant of the narration which includes Surat al-Falaq unreliable from our perspective? If it’s not, how do we interpret it given that they insist Surat al-Falaq is specifically recited here for protection from sihr due to the wording of the Surah.

Barakallahu feek!


Thank you for your question! The recitation of al-Falaq before bed does not imply that the Prophet's illness was due to witchcraft just as it does not imply that his illness was due to darkness or envy. The verse can be recited to protect one from sihr; however, the original question was whether our narrations support the view that the Prophet was affected by magic. Also, our imams even question the reality of sihr.

The view is contradictory at best. First of all, the Sunni commentators say that the Prophet was bewitched by a Jewish servant boy which implies that it took place in Medina. However, it is also said that al-Falaq was revealed in Mecca. So, how could the Prophet be commanded to recite al-Falaq to protect him from witchcraft in Mecca if he would later be affected by witchcraft in Medina?! Furthermore, why is it that the sorceresses mentioned in the verse are in the plural feminine when reports say that the one who supposedly bewitched the Prophet from whom he is to seek refuge was a Jewish man named Labid?

In Al-Bahr, Imam Ahmed al-Murtaza (as) explicitly says that the narration of Ai'sha about the Prophet being affected by magic is weak.

And Allah knows best!


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