The wisdom behind the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, being exposed to magic
Fatwa No: 15596

Question

In a discussion about Jinn and magic on a TV program, one of the guests (a professor) totally denied the authenticity of the Hadeeth which states that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, was once bewitched by a Jew. He claimed that Allaah The Almighty would not have allowed this Jew to harm the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Furthermore, he said that magic no longer exists. Would you please clarify the matter? Thank you.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu 'alyhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.

Magic is a reality, and it has an effect by the power of Allaah The Almighty. There are different types of magic, and the one that afflicted the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, was the magic of illusion. 

The fact that Allaah The Almighty enabled the Jews to affect the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, with their magic does not mean that He humiliated His Prophet while exalting his enemies. Rather, Allaah The Almighty enabled them to bewitch him for certain rationales. The following are some of them:

-        To emphasize that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is human and therefore subject to whatever affects humans. 

-        As a test and tribulation for the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. It was reported on the authority of Sa‘d ibn Abi Waqqaas  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him that he asked the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, about the people who are susceptible to the hardest tribulations in this life. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, answered that they are the prophets followed by those who are most like them. [At-Tirmithi: Saheeh (Authentic)]

-        To gradually lead the enemies of Allaah The Almighty to their promised punishment.

The bewitchment of the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, was by no means an indication that he was imperfect in his mission, for had it been so, it would imply that the empowerment of the disbelievers, particularly the Jews, over the prophets in general was a sign of imperfection. Allaah The Almighty Says, according to the recitation of Naafi‘ (what means): {And how many a prophet [fought and] with him many religious scholars were killed.} [Quran 3:146]  In another verse, He Says (what means): {But is it [not] that every time a messenger came to you, [O people of Israel], with what your souls did not desire, you were arrogant? And a party [of messengers] you denied and another party you killed.} [Quran 2:87]

Allaah Knows best.

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