I decided to post this after a series of sad events and good Deen building experiences recently happened. My purpose in writing this is to educate myself and friends about the dangers of the Evil Eye (Ain Al Hasad) and how we can protect ourselves from being afflicted by it.
My Story: I recently went thru a miscarriage. It was devastating for me and my family. I was close to the end of the first trimester, about to relax into the rest of the pregnancy, when I started to have pain and miscarry. When I got home from the hospital we buried the remnants of that little soul that had barely had a glimpse at life. My mother in law over the phone kindly reminded me that I “have a little green bird waiting for me in Jennah, insha Allah, and that could have more children.” Everyone was gentle and kind, and slowly I began to heal and move on.
A few weeks later after confiding in a friend that I was still very sad, she very delicatly mentioned that she thought I might have been afflicted by Ain Al-Hassad.
“What? No way, are you serious?” I asked in dismay not wanting to take her seriously.
“Yes, its quite possible” she said “ Lots of people knew that you were pregnant. And it was your third child. It makes sense that some people would have been jealous.”
It was then that I began to sit down and really read about envy, and the evil eye in Islam. I knew the basics, but I admit that I never thought it could happen to me. I guess I was oblivious, and wrote it off as a super natural thing that only happens in the Middle East, Astaghfir Allah.
So after reading the book Jinn and Human Sickness by Dr, Abu'l-Mundhir Khaleel ibn Ibraheen Ameen and listening to lectures about Hassad, envy and jealously online, I decided to take stock of my life paying special attention to my frenships and aquaintances. I began evaluating each relationship, trying to see if i had missed anything or wasnt seeing the whole picture. As it turned out, i had some really rose colored glasses on in several of my relatively close relationships. When i stood back and evaluated situations and conversations, keeping in mind what i had learned, i began to see that some Sisters that i believed were friends, may have been foes all along. Again my being oblivious, or inability to read them well, or refusal to aknowledge negative treatment, may have been my downfall. On top of all of that i felt the need to share my joy over the pregnancy with just about everyone, which Im now sure was a major mistake.
What can invite Hassad and the Evil Eye?
Marriage (especially happiness in marriage), children, friends, a new job, beauty, house/material possessions, intelligence, abilities, attributes, education, - just about anything that you can think of can be envied and make people jealous.
“Everything that has a Na'mah in it, is envied by the people.” Prophet Mohammad (sws)
The first sin that was created was Hassad. I didn't know that. Basically, a person sees something that another has been blessed with. They begin to envy them and grow jealous. They then wish that the other doesn't have it, or worse that the person will lose it and it will come to them instead.
How can I protect myself from the Evil Eye?
“Seek the success of all of your needs by being quiet” Prophet Muhammad (sws)
This much I have learned. Hassad is real! Don't be silly like me. In your happiness over whatever Allah(swt) has blessed you with, don't go around telling people. Keep it to yourself and thank Him for His Generosity and Kindness and seek refuge in Him from the envy and jealousy of others.
The Messenger of Allah(sws) commanded us to pray for blessing for everything that we like. That includes things that other people have that we desire – in fact, it is VERY important to pray for blessings for our Sisters, because we naturally often pray for blessing for ourselves.
“If one of you sees something that his brother has, let him pray for blessing for him.” - Prophet Muhammad (sws)
This is why you often hear Muslims saying things like: “She had a baby, Masha Allah.” or “She is beautiful, Masha Allah.” or “She graduated from college, Masha Allah.” or “They just bought a house, Masha Allah.” or “She is getting married, Masha Allah.” etc etc etc...you get the idea.
Sahl ibn Haneef (ra) said: the Messenger of Allah (sws) said:
“If one of you sees something that he likes in himself or his wealth, let him pray for blessing for it, for the evil eye is real.” Narrated by Ibn Al-Sunni , and by Imam Ahmad and Al- Haakim
Could your Sister be envying you?
Listed below are the characteristsics of one who envies. Take a look at your relationships and compare them with this list. Do these characteristics remind you of anyone you are close to?
1. The envier is always angry at the decrees of Allah(swt)
2. The envier always complains and raraley thanks Allah(swt) even if he owns the whole world.
3. He/She follows up the mistakes of the one whom he/she envies, and tries to seek out his faults, and exposes them and exaggerates about them before others.
4. He/She conceals or ignores or belittles the good qualities and distinguishing characteristics of the person whom he/she envies.
5. You will notice that the envier cannot speak I front of the one who he/she envies without addressing him/her in a laughing, jocular manner, but deep down he/she is filled with hatred and resentment that is clear from the way in which he/she looks at him/her.
6. He/She clearly criticizes the one whom he/she envies, with or without evidence.
7. He/She looks for opportunities and makes the most of any chance to harm the one whom he/she envies in him/herself or their wealth.
8. Finally, the envier is a troubled person, due to the resentment that is always festering in their heart, depression and dullness show on their face.
*pages 263-264 of Jinn and Human Sickness
Conclusion: It is natural to see something good that your friend has and want it for yourself. The danger lies in develping jealousy and hatred for your Sister because of Allah's(swt) blessings upon her.
The Messenger of Allah (sws) said: "The evil eye is real and can bring down a person from a high mountain."
Seek refuge in Allah(swt) from the Evil Eye. Take caution in the way you look at your Sister and her blessings. Thank Allah(swt) for everything He(swt) has bestowed upon you, and ask Him to bless you and purify your heart of Hassad.
Finally, if you believe that you may have afflicted someone with the Evil Eye, intentionally or unintentionally: Pray for forgiveness and their well being. You may be asked to wash with water, making Wudu or Ghusl. Then that water is poured over the person that was affected so that the water may cancel out the effect of the evil eye and heal them. If you are asked to wash for someone, it is obligatory. Don't be embarassed to do it, or to ask someone to as well.
Another treatment for those afflicted by the evil eye is Ruqyah and Dhikr. If you are interested in learning more about how this is done, washing, or just for more info on envy, hassad and jealousy follow this link: Jinn and Human Sickness