Monday, 12 January 2009

All about evil spirits and their geographical friends

By Syed Akbar
Hyderabad: What have geographically localised evil spirits like "pretatma", "chudail", "dayan" and "bhoot" to do with the Islamic concept of Jinns or Genie?
If Aurangabad-based Islamic scholar Maulana Mahfooz-Ur-Rehman Farooqui is to be believed, these purely Indian folklore evil forces are nothing but various adaptations by Jinns and Satan. If a Jinn takes the shape of a wicked woman, he or she appears like a "chudail" and in case the Jinn decides to look like a haunted spirit, he or she will take the shape of "bhoot" or "dayan". If the Jinn sheds its body, the appearance will that of "pretatma".
Muslims the world over believe only in the existence of Satan (Shaitan) and Jinns, the supernatural creatures that socialises like human beings. But they do not believe in evil spirits like "pretatma", "chudail" or "bhoot" and dismiss them as a mere superstitious belief.
In this backdrop, Maulana Farooqui's assertion that the Indian spirits are nothing but local adaptation by the Jinns gains significance. The Maulana, who is also a member of the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board, has come out with a 33-verse Quranic formula to drive away the local evil spirits. He had been in the city to popularise his concept.
"All the evil spirits are one and the same. Call them by any name, the evil influence they exert on human beings is the same. What we call chudail, dayan, bhoot and pretatma in Hindi and Urdu are known to the Arabs as Jinns. The Quranic verses recited to drive away the evil Jinns are also effective on chudail and other local spirits," he told this correspondent.
According to his Quranic formula, one should recite twice a day verses from the last two Surahs or chapters (113 and 114) of the Quran, besides select verses from the Chapter Jinn, the Chapter Saffat, Chapter Baqara and Surah Hashar.
The Maulana says the treatment is guaranteed and at no cost. The symptoms of possession by evil spirits include mental disturbance, poor livelihood, family discord and forgetfulness.
"What is important is that one should approach a true "aamil". Fake aamils cheat people. They are nothing but human evil spirits. If you have the knowledge of Quran, recite the verses on your own. Or approach a genuine aamil," Maulana Farooqui said.

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