Ruqyah refers to the healing method based on the Quran and hadith through the recitation of the Quran, seeking of refuge, remembrance and supplication that is used as a means of treating sickness and other problems.
Ruqyah by reading verses of the Quran, the names and attributes of Allah, or by using the prayers in Arabic or in a language the meaning of which is understood.
The use of ruqyah as a method of treatment is popular among the Islamic healing practitioners. This method of ruqyah is based on the recommendations and practices carried out by the Prophet Muhammad for self-treatment or to help his Sahabah and others.
Through analysis of the inductive, deductive and historical approaches, this article aims to explain the views of Imam Al Bukhari in relation to aspects of ruqyah and its use in the treatment of disease by analysing some chapters translated (tarjamah al-bab) by Imam Al Bukhari in the Kitab Al Tibb.
The results show that the use of ruqyah in the treatment of diseases refers to the discussion of the seven chapters translated (tarjamah al-bab) on three main issues;
1. The use of ruqyah from the Quran
2. Conditions in using a ruqyah
3. The types of ruqyah recommended by the Prophet Muhammad
What is Ruqyah?
‘Ruqyah’ is the practice of treating illnesses through Qur’anic ayat, and invocations prescribed by the Messenger of Allah ﷺ. It is a means of cure for evil eye, magic, jinn, and physical ailments.
The Qur’an offers complete solace to a believer – both spiritually and physically. Ruqyah should therefore play an essential role in our lives. Allah says: “And say: The truth has come, and falsehood has vanished. Surely falsehood is ever bound to vanish by its very nature.”
وَنُنَزِّلُ مِنَ الْقُرْآنِ مَا هُوَ شِفَاءٌ وَرَحْمَةٌ لِّلْمُؤْمِنِيْنَ
“And We send down in the Qur’an that which is a cure and a mercy for the believers” (Al Isra 81).
As well as providing a means of cure, ruqyah is an excellent way for the believers to build their iman and reaffirm their tawḥid for Allah. This is because seeking treatment through the Glorious Qur’an undoubtedly demonstrates complete belief in the Book of Allah.
The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: “Make good use of the two cures: honey and the Qur’an.” (Ibnu Majah)
‘A’ishah (Raḍiy Allahu ‘Anha) said: “When the Messenger of Allah ﷺ was ill, Jibril (‘Alayhis Salam) performed ruqyah on him.” (Shahih Muslim)
‘A’ishah (Raḍiy Allahu ‘Anha) informs us that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ entered upon her and found a woman treating her with ruqyah (through other than the words of Allah. He Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said: “Treat her with the book of Allah.” (Ibnu Hibban)
She also said: “The Messenger of Allah ﷺ used to command me to perform ruqyah from the evil eye.” (Shahih Muslim)
Once the Messenger of Allah ﷺ saw a girl whose face had changed colour in the house of Umm Salamah (Raḍiy AllAhu ‘Anha), so he ﷺ said: “Seek ruqyah for her, because she has been affected by the evil eye.” (Bukhārī)
‘A’ishah (Raḍiy Allahu ‘Anha) narrated that whenever the Messenger of Allah ﷺ would become sick, he would recite the last three surahs of the Qur’an] and then blow (in his hands and wipe) over his body.
She says: “During his last illness from which he passed away, the Messenger of Allah ﷺ used to blow over himself. But when his sickness intensified, I used to (recite and then) blow over him using his own hands because of their blessings.”
In another hadith, she mentions that whenever anyone from his family would become ill, he Prophet Muhammad ﷺ would blow over them with these three surahs. (Muslim)