Prohibition of Consultation with Soothsayers

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Predicting Future

‘Aishah (RA) said: Some people asked the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) about soothsayers. He (PBUH) said, “They are of no account.” Upon this they said to him, “O Messenger of Allah! But they sometimes make true predictions.” Thereupon the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “That is a word pertaining to truth which a jinn snatches (from the angels) and whispers into the ears of his friend (the soothsayers) who will then mix more than a hundred lies with it.”

[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Commentary

Soothsayers, astrologers and foretellers have similar characteristics but with a slight difference. All of them make predictions about the future. But the curiosity that arises in the minds of a common man is that how do they do it. In the above hadith, Prophet Muhammad (PBUHH) notified us about it:

The narration in Al-Bukhari is: “The angels descend in the clouds and mention matters which has been decreed in heaven; Satan steals a hearing (listens to it stealthily) and communicates it to the soothsayers who tell along with it a hundred lies.” Soothsayers overhear some jinn and disclose the secret to people which would sometimes prove true, because the jinn’s source of information was Satan who sometimes stole away some information from the angels.

But after the proclamation of the Prophet (PBUH) it was made impossible for jinns and satans to overhear anything in the skies. Nowadays, the future tellers make predictions on the basis of certain signs and circumstantial evidence which can go wrong or right. Whatever the source might be to determine the future, it’s unlawful and strictly forbidden by Islam. If anything predicted by these means comes by chance true, it does not furnish any justification for their validity.

 

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