Islamic Sufism Spirituality

Demonology in Islam

Posted on: June 13, 2008

ARWAH: Plural for Ruh, meaning spirits. They are relatively harmless with respect to supernatural abilities. They usually possess people and speak through them etc. Arwahs can be left behind on earth sometimes if they have some sort of unfinished business. Many people are skilled in Arwah exorcisms.

JINN: These guys are the average run-off-the-mill Jinns. They also have the ability to enter our bodies. Some people say that they live in the abdominal area of humans but certain people possess the knowledge to extract them. These Jinns can be caught as they are not immensely powerful and people to use them to perform tasks even though that practice is haram. Jinns have the ability to change their shape. The Prophet said several things about telling snakes to leave 3 times before killing it to ensure that it is not a Jinn. There are of course Muslim and Kafir Jinns. Jinns tend to live in isolated areas such as forests, caves, and mountains. Jinns eat bones and they demand more and more each time they are asked to perform another task.

MAARID: Maarids are also a type of supernatural being in Islam. However, they are not made of fire, they are made of water. Maarids are generally not very harmful but many do not live on the land and reside instead in the ocean, where they are in their natural environment.

DEO: Pashtun mythology is full of stories about Deos. Deos are generally regarded as being Jinn like creature of both incredible magical powers as well as great physical strength. They have been known to be as big as mountains. Deos are generally ugly creatures with bodies that look somewhere between humans and animals. They have very thick ox-like skin and some possess horns. The famous Saif-ul-Muluk is still said to be inhabited by Deos who are there guarding the Shaperay. The most common kind of Deo seen these days is the “Tor Deo”, which is black in colour, has red coal-like eyes, and makes sounds that resemble that of an azhdeha (dragon). If you encounter a “Tor Deo”, read the Ayat-ul-Kursi.

SHAPERAY: Fairies are said to be beautiful winged creatures of varying size. Many a story has been told about fairies kidnapping handsome young men after falling in love with them, and taking them back to their kingdoms. Fairies have little physical strength but they possess supernatural and magical abilities, such as wings for flying.

SHAYTAN: A Shaytan is often a Jinn or other being that has become or turned evil. Shaytans are generally more powerful than all of the previous mentioned beings, however that is uncertain. Shaytans are usually the ones that influence mankind to commit evil deeds, on behalf of their big boss, Iblis.

AFRIT: These are by far the most powerful supernatural beings mentioned in the Quran. An Afrit is mentioned in the Surah where Hazrat Suleiman wants the throne of Balqis brought to him, and the Afrit is beaten only by prayer. A female Afrit is called an Ifritah. Afrits are pure evil by nature. It is said that an Afrit is born at the site of a murder committed in cold-blood. They are made of fire and have enormous wings. Possessing both tremendous physical prowess and magical capabilities, few tasks are beyond them. Afrits generally inhabit secluded places such as large caverns, mountains, or other dark places. Surprisingly, Afrits can also be caught and made to perform tasks. However, an Afrit often lies to its master and even when it completes a task it will complete it such that the master does not fully benefit. Often in Afrit and master relationships, the Afrit becomes the master and the human becomes the slave.

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