Superstitious beliefs (The month of Safar)

Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam is reported to have said,

There is no contagiousness in diseases, no bad omens, no bad luck in an owl and no bad luck in the month of Safar.

In the above Hadith, Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam had negated the various forms of superstitious believes that had existed amongst the pagan Arabs. Unfortunately many Muslims also have various superstitious beliefs, although it may be in a different form. This is farfetched for a Muslim as we believe in the oneness of Allah Ta'ala.

The example of Tauheed (belief in the oneness of Allah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam can be understood from the following example. A judge in a court of law only accepts solid evidence from those individuals that serve as witnesses to a case. A judge will never accept any statement from a witness that is based on rumour-mongering. Similarly, a person that believes in the oneness of Allah Ta'ala can never stoop to the low level of believing in superstition and bad luck.

The pagan Arabs believed that certain sicknesses were contagious but Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam totally negated such practices. Many a times the doctors say that an epidemic has broken out, yet from a family of five people only two people contract the disease and the remaining three are perfectly healthy. This clearly indicates that sicknesses are not contagious. Allah Ta'ala inflicts a person with sicknesses.

On one occasion, a Sahaabi came to Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam and said, Oh messenger of Allah Ta'ala, we have noticed that the camels that remain in the company of such camels that have a skin disease also contract the disease. Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam had negated such a practice immediately and asked,

Who inflicted the first camel with the disease?

Many doctors recommend their patients to have a flu vaccine prior to the month of winter; In spite of taking the flu vaccine many individuals are still inflicted by the flu.

Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam had also negated all forms of bad luck. When the pagan Arabs would want to undertake a journey or some important task, they would fly a bird. If the bird flew to the right, it will be regarded as a sign of good luck and they would proceed with their task. However, if the bird flew to the left, then this will be regarded as a sign of bad luck. This was a superstitious belief, what has the flying of a bird got to do with undertaking an important task. Allah Ta'ala has blessed us with Istikaraah whereby a person consults directly with Allah Ta'ala and reaches a conclusion. Alternately, a person can make Mashwera. A person that makes Istikharah will not make an incorrect decision, and a person that makes Mashwera will not suffer a loss.

Imaam Ghazali (R.A) has explained that Ism- A'zam is that a person calls unto Allah Ta'ala in such a manner that he is certain that Allah alone can fulfil his needs. Unfortunately we have traded this belief in, and we now believe in bad luck.

On one occasion the Sahaaba t were sitting with Rasulullah SalallahuAlaihi Wasallam and a certain person had taken a bad omen. Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam said, You should rather take a good omen. Bad omens should not stop you from undertaking any important work. You should undertake a task and recite the following Dua,

Oh Allah, it is only you that brings good and only you repel evil, there is no might and power except the might and power of Allah.

When Hadrat Maulana Hakim Muhammed Akhtar Saheb (D.B) had suffered a stroke, many Aamils had attributed the stroke to Jadu. Hadrat refused any form of treatment and said that he would only accept treatment from Quraan and Hadith.

The third superstitious belief that Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam had negated was the belief of bad luck existing in an owl. The pagan Arabs believed that if an owl sat on the roof of a house, then the inmate of the house will die.

Finally, Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam negated the belief of bad luck in the month of Safar. The pagan Arabs regarded this month to be an empty month (i.e. empty of all good). Due to this belief, many people do not get married in the month of Safar. Many people do not undertake a journey in the month of Safar. The elderly women feel that this month is a difficult month on the men therefore eggs, bread and some calico should be given in charity.

We should correct our beliefs in the month of Safar and remove all forms of superstitious beliefs. This can only be attained by remaining in the companionship of the Mashaaikh.