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Does Every Person Have a Qarin from the Jinn?

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Publication : 28-05-2002

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Question

Is there anything in Islam that is called the Qarin? I would like to know whether I have a Qarin. What does Islam say about this, or does it not exist at all?

Summary of answer

There is something which is called the qarin, which Allah has caused to accompany every human being. This qarin pushes a person to do evil things and to disobey Allah, with the exception of the Prophet, as will be explained in the detailed answer.

Answer

Praise be to Allah.

Yes, there is something which is called the qarin , which Allah has caused to accompany every human being. This qarin pushes a person to do evil things and to disobey Allah, with the exception of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), as will be explained below. 

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“His companion (qarin) will say: ‘Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression, (in disbelief, oppression, and evil deeds), but he was himself in error far astray.’ Allah will say: ‘Dispute not in front of Me, I had already in advance sent you the threat. The Sentence that comes from Me cannot be changed, and I am not unjust  to the slaves.’” [Qaf 50:27-29]

Ibn Kathir said: 

“‘His companion (qarin) will say’ – Ibn 'Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him), Mujahid, Qatadah and others said: this refers to the devil who is appointed to accompany him. ‘Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression’ means, he will disown that person on the Day of Judgement, and will say, ‘Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression’ meaning, I did not lead him astray. 

‘but he was himself in error far astray’ means, he was misguided in himself, receptive to falsehood and resistant to the truth – as Allah says elsewhere (interpretation of the meaning): 

‘And Shaytan (Satan) will say when the matter has been decided: “Verily, Allah promised you a promise of truth. And I too promised you, but I betrayed you. I had no authority over you except that I called you, and you responded to me. So blame me not, but blame yourselves. I cannot help you, nor can you help me. I deny your former act in associating me (Satan) as a partner with Allah (by obeying me in the life of the world). Verily, there is a painful torment for the Zalimun (polytheists and wrongdoers).”’ [Ibrahim 14:22]

The phrase ‘Dispute not in front of Me’ refers to what Allah will say to the human and his companion from among the jinn, when they dispute before Him, and the human says, ‘O Lord, this one led me astray from the Reminder after it had come to me’ and the devil will say, ‘Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression, (in disbelief, oppression, and evil deeds), but he was himself in error far astray’ – i.e., from the path of truth. 

Allah will say, ‘Dispute not in front of Me’ meaning, in My presence. ‘I had already in advance sent you the threat’ means, I sent the warning on the lips of the Messengers, and I sent down the Books, so proof and evidence was established against you. 

‘The Sentence that comes from Me cannot be changed’ – Mujahid said, this means I have passed My judgement. 

‘and I am not unjust  to the slaves’ means, I do not punish anyone for the sin of another, and I only punish a person for his sin after proof has been established against him.” (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, 4/227) 

‘Abd-Allah ibn Mas’ud said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “There is no one among you but a companion from among the jinn has been assigned to him.” They said, “Even you, O Messenger of Allah?’ He said, “Even me, but Allah helped me with him and he became Muslim (or: and I am safe from him), so he only enjoins me to do that which is good.” 

According to another report, “… There is assigned to him a companion from among the jinn and a companion from among the angels.” (Narrated by Muslim, 2814)

Al-Nawawi included this in a chapter which he called: Bab Tahrish al-Shaytan wa Ba’thihi Sarayahu li Fitnat il-Nas wa anna ma’a kulli insanin Qarin (Chapter on the evil of the Shaytan and his sending his troops to tempt the people, and the fact that there is a jinn -companion with every human being). 

Al-Nawawi said: 

“Fa aslamu (and I am safe from him) or fa aslama (and he became Muslim). These are two well known versions. One means ‘and I am safe from his evil and his temptation.’ The other means that ‘the qarin became Muslim and became a believer, so he does not tell me to do anything but good’.  

There was some scholarly dispute as to the form of the word. Al-Khattabi said that the word was Fa aslamu (and I am safe from him); al-Qadi ‘Iyad said that it was fa aslama (and he became Muslim), which is more correct, because the hadith says, ‘so he only enjoins me to do that which is good’.  

They also disputed as to the meaning of the word fa aslama.  Some said that it meant that he (the qarin) submitted and surrendered, as it was narrated elsewhere than in Sahih Muslim, fa astaslama [he gave up and surrendered]. It was also suggested that it means that he became a Muslim and a believer. The latter is the apparent meaning. Al-Qadi said: Note that the ummah unanimously agreed that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was protected from the Shaytan physically, mentally and with regard to what he said. This hadith contains a warning against the temptation of the qarin and his whispers and temptations. We know that he is with us so we should beware of him as much as possible.” (Sharh Muslim, 17/157, 158)

‘Abd-Allah ibn ‘Umar reported that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “If anyone of you is praying, he should not let anyone pass in front of him; if that person insists then he should fight him for there is a qarin with him.” (Narrated by Muslim, 506) 

Al-Shawkani said: 

“The phrase ‘for there is a qarin with him’—according to al-Qamus [an Arabic-language dictionary] the word qarin refers to a companion; the Shaytan always accompanies man and never leaves him. This is what is referred to here.” (Nayl al-Awtar, 3/7)

 And Allah knows best.

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Source: Islam Q&A