‘‘Satan Has Afflicted Me!’’ Jinn-Possession and Mental illness in the Qur’an

Mental health stigma in Muslim communities may be partly due to a commonly held belief among some Muslims about the supernatural causes of mental illness(i.e. jinn-possession brought on by one’s sinful life). A thematic analysis was carried out on four English translations and the Arabic text of the Qur’an to explore whether the connection between jinn-possession and insanity exists within the Muslim holy book. No connection between spirit-possession and madness or mental illness was found. Pagans taunted and labelled people as jinn-possessed only to ostracize and scapegoat. Linking the labeling of people as jinn-possession to a pagan practice may be used to educate Muslims,so they can reassess their community’s stigma towards the mentally ill. Read more here

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