Getting to Know Allah

Allah and Witches

Allah first broaches the subject of witchcraft early on in His Koran, at the end of a wide-ranging condemnation of the Jews for allegedly breaking their covenant with Him.

2:99 Indeed, we have revealed to you clear Signs (the revelations) in which only the wicked will disbelieve.

2:100 Will it be that every time they make a covenant, a group of them will cast it aside? Indeed, most of them do not believe.

2:101 And when a Messenger came to them from Allah confirming what they had, a group of those who were given the Book (the Torah) cast the Book (Qur’an) of Allah behind their backs, as if they knew nothing;

2:102 And they believed what the devils said about Solomon’s kingdom. Not that Solomon disbelieved; but the devils did, teaching the people witchcraft and that which was revealed in Babylon to the two angels, Harut and Marut. Yet those two angels did not teach anybody without saying [to him]: “We are a temptation. So do not disbelieve.” Those [who wished] learned from them what would sow discord between man and wife, but could not harm anybody with it (what they had learned), except with Allah’s Permission. They learn what harms them and does not profit them. They knew that he who bought it will have no share in the Hereafter. Evil is the price for which they sold themselves, if only they knew.

In Muhammad’s time, witches were thought to blow into knots to cast spells, another superstition from the Dark Ages that made it into the Koran. In the penultimate surah, Allah again admits to being the source of evil—as He did with His Allah Days—and that includes “those who blow into knotted reads.”


113 Al-Falaq

In the Name of Allah,

the Compassionate, the Merciful

113:1 Say: “I seek refuge with the Lord of the Daybreak,

113:2 “From the evil of what He has created, 113:3 “And the evil of the darkness when it gathers,

113:4 “And the evil of those who blow into knotted reeds (witches or sorceresses),

113:5 “And from the evil of the envious when he envies.”

Every year, Saudi Arabia is assumed to behead an unknown number of witches and warlocks. It is only when a well-known personality is convicted of witchcraft do we hear of such executions.

Ali Hussain Sibat hosted a popular show broadcast in Arabic from Beirut. On his show, he offered advice on a variety of subjects including marital advice and made predictions about the future. In 2008, he went on pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, was arrested by the religious police on charges of sorcery, then was convicted and sentenced to be beheaded.

 Witchcraft or Sorcery is the 32nd gravest sin among the sins for which death is the normative sentence under the Sharia, God's Law.