Use of Surahs on Paper
  • Question:

    Recently, I have heard that the practice of having surahs noted on paper is forbidden. Does this practice signify weakness of Iman?

    Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh

    Thank you for your question.

    The best way for spiritual protection, blessings and cure is through continuous recitation of the Qur’ān and authentic prophetic supplications, without the need to hang amulets or carry a surah noted on paper.

    Ibn Al-Juhanī (may Allāh be pleased with him) stated that the Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) said to him, “Shall I guide you to the best thing that those who seek protection use for protection?” He replied, “Of course, O Messenger of Allāh!” The Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) said, “Say, I seek refuge with the Lord of Al-Falaq.’ (Sūrah Falaq, Qur’ānic chapter 113) and ‘Say, I seek refuge with the Lord of mankind.’ (Sūrah Nās, Qur’ānic chapter 114). These two chapters [are the best protection].” (Nasa’I, Tafsīr ibn Kathīr)

    That being said, it must be noted that most Islamic jurists deem it permissible to wear an amulet (ta’awīdh), provided the following conditions are met:

    • The amulet should only contain words and writings that are Islamically upright, such as the names of Allāh or known prophetic supplications.
    • The one wearing the amulet must believe that Almighty Allāh is the only Being that protects and provides cure from all harms and sicknesses. The amulet must only be adopted as a means, similar to how one resorts to medicine, when sick, while knowing well that Allāh is the only Shāfī (Provider of cure).

    Abdullāh ibn ‘Amr (may Allāh be pleased with him), who is amongst the Companions and students of the Prophet Muḥammad (peace be upon him), is known to have written the words of a specific supplication from the teachings of the Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) in an amulet. He then tied this around the neck of his children. (See Bukhārī, Sunan Abī Dāwūd and Tirmidhī)

    A number of other Companions, successors, pious predecessors and Islamic scholars have also been reported to have tied such amulets. (See Muṣannaf ibn Abī Shaybah)

    The prohibition of amulets in some ḥadīth, is regarding the amulets that were worn in the days of ignorance pre-Islam. These contained words of shirk, incorporated pagan deities as the dispensing powers, and were worn assuming the amulet itself provided cure and protection. (Fatḥ al Bārī lil Asqalānī)

    A note of caution must be presented here. In today’s time, there are many individuals who claim to provide spiritual healing through amulets and spells, but their procedures do not fall under the required above criteria.

    And Allah knows best.

    Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Badat
    Hadith of the Day Imam
    Imam of the Islamic Foundation of Toronto and Director of Mathabah Institute
Earn Amazing Reward
Join HOTD Love HOTD Meet the HOTD Imams Ask a Question

Asalaam Alaykum!

If you want to ask the HOTD Imam a question please click Ask a Question