How Do I Know If Someone Intends Evil for Me and My Family?
Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch
I have some family members who don’t like or love us – my family and me. At one event, a relative smirked at my younger brother’s eye problem, which required surgery to be fixed. She hates it because of a family feud that occurred some years ago. I used to have some colleagues at college who never liked me and secretly wished me harm.
They eventually gave me the evil eye, yet I’ve never harmed them. Are there any life/personal signs that could tell someone wishes harm for me or prays for my ailment and my family’s? How can I protect us?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
First Assume Good
In reality, we do not know what is in people’s hearts, and we must be cautious when judging people’s intentions. That said, we also should not allow ourselves to be deceived if someone does prove our reasonable assumptions wrong.
The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “The believer is never bitten from the same whole twice.” [Muslim]
Judge By What’s Apparent
Since we do not know what is in people’s hearts, we can only make judgments according to their actions. If you see anything supporting your suspicions from them, you can act resolutely based on them.
If there is no evidence to support these suspicions, take to the general Prophetic supplications as a means of protection and leave the reality of the matter to Allah Most High.
Prophetic Protections Against the Evil Eye
The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) warned of the harms of the Evil Eye. He said, “The (Evil) Eye is real (or true). If anything could outstrip destiny, it would be the eye.” [Muslim]
Note that the Prophet’s statement, ‘if anything could outstrip destiny,…’ is rhetorical. In it, there is an affirmation that nothing outstrips destiny, and even though the evil eye is harmful, it can only affect to the extent Allah Most High has decreed. [Nawawi, Sharh Muslim]
For this reason, the Prophetic protections are directly related to turning to Allah Most High, whose hands alone control all affairs.
Sayyiduna Sa’id al-Khudri (Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) used to seek refuge (in various ways) from the Jinn and from the human (evil) eye until the two refuge givers were revealed (i.e., Sura al-Falaq and Sura al-Nass). Once they were revealed, he adopted them and left everything else.” [Tirmidhi]
Protecting Loved Ones
Furthermore, the beloved Messenger (may Allah bless him and give him peace) would protect his grandsons, Hasan and Husain (Allah be pleased with them both) saying:
أُعِيذُكُما بِكَلِماتِ اللَّهِ التَّامَّةِ مِنْ كُلِّ شَيْطانٍ وَهامَّةٍ وَمِنْ كُلّ عَيْنٍ لاَمَّةٍ
“I grant you protection, through the perfect words of Allah, from every devil and creature and every accusative eye.”
He would say, “Surely, your (grand) father (Abraham) would protect Ishmael and Isaac by these.” [Bukhari]
This and other morning and evening supplications from the Quran and Sunna are means of protection. The Wird Latif of Imam Abdullah al-Haddad is a short compilation of the daily Prophetic litanies.
Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and a number of texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.