Dreams in Islam: An Islamic Perspective on True Dreams and Bad Dreams
PLEASE DO NOT SHARE YOUR DREAMS IN THE COMMENTS SECTION BELOW!!!
It is not safe to share your dreams with random people, especially on an international scale.
One should share their dreams with those they like as Muhammad (S) said, "If one sees a good dream, let him expect good, and not tell it except to those he likes." (Muslim) An example of this is Yaqoob (AS) telling his son, Yusuf (AS) concerning his dream about eleven stars and the sun and the moon prostrating to him (scholars have said the eleven stars were his brothers, and the sun and the moon represented his mother and father): "He said, "O my son! Relate not your vision to your brothers lest they arrange a plot against you. Verily! Satan is to man an open enemy." (Surah Yusuf 12:5) We know the half-brothers of Yusuf were jealous of him to begin with so telling them the dream would probably only serve to increase the jealousy.
"True dreams are from Allah and bad dreams are from satan" [Sahih of Bukhari, Vol 9 p 95, no 113]
Why do we dream? What are meanings of dreams? What do we know about dreams? Why do we have nightmares?
There are so many questions to be answered when it comes to dreams.
I was very curious once when i was gathering knowledge of my religion, Islam, and at the same time researching Christianity due to learning of the great similarities of the two religions. As i was growing up and going to mosque and learning the Quran because i was told to by my parents, i did not understand what the whole reason was behind it all. Not until i reached the age of 17 at least when things were becoming confusing to me. I read about Jesus in Christianity and was surprised to know that 'Issa' is Jesus in Islam. Since then i have been reading many books, the translation of the Quran etc to gain as much knowledge as possible.
Dreams and the process of dreams intrigued me since i was young when i used to have some very bad dreams and sometimes good dreams. My research through the years have helped me understand it all and now i know what to do before i go to sleep and after i wake up. You will understand by reading the information below the whole process of how we dream and what happens from before going to sleep to waking up.
(This article will not address scientific evidence. It is only to understand about dreams in an Islamic point of view).
Video on dreams in Islam
The Soul in Islam
Every person will agree that human beings have a soul, and a person becomes 'dead' by the departure of 'life' or 'soul'. The soul is the only part of the unknown that even atheists and materialists cannot deny.
In Islam, there are a few glimpses into the knowledge of the soul.
A verse from the Quran:
'They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning the soul. Say 'The soul is of the affair (i.e., knowledge) of my Lord. And you (people) have not been given of knowledge except a little.'
A scholar interpreted this as:
'This means that the knowledge of the soul is a great major affair that belongs with Allah. He kept this knowledge obscure and undetailed so that people would realise their inability to know the truth about their soul - though they know it (i.e., the soul) exists.And being capable of fully comprehending the truth about themselves is more reason for them to be incapable of fully comprehending the truth about Allah (i.e., His majesty and other attributes).'
We understand that the soul is an invisible object, but we cannot explain what the soul is fully. When we go to sleep, we actually experience a minor death. Every sleeping person have their soul depart from their body and is held with Allah (God). He then releases them when it is time to wake. This means that every time someone is asleep, their soul leaves their body. He holds the souls for which death has arrived, and releases the other souls until their time of death.
"Allah takes the souls at their time of death, and (also) those that have not died yet - during their sleep. Then He keeps those for which He has decreed death and releases the others for a specified term. Indeed, in this are signs for those who reflect." Az-Zumar 39:42
During our sleep in "minor death" our souls get to meet other souls of both living and dead people, and the interaction between one soul and the other may be remembered only by one or both of the souls.
“Abu Hurairah reported: When the Apostle of Allah finished his morning prayer he used to ask
whether anyone had seen a dream, and used to say: After me there would be nothing left of
prophethood except good dreams.”
(Muwatta, Imam Malick)
When night comes it is an opportunity for evil doing by many creatures causing harm and spreading fear. While majority of people sleep and rest under the night cover, many crimes take place in that time of darkness. What are these evil creatures? They are Jinns (devils, ghosts, demons), black magic and countless evil practice by degenerate people.
The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) provided us with a set of instructions for warding off evils of the night. The most effective form of protection is extolling Allah in the form of saying Allah's name before we do anything. An affirmation that what we do is by Allah's will, help and protection is by pronouncing Allah's name saying bismillah. Saying bismillah upon entering the home inhibits the devils from entering that home. You should keep your food covered by saying bismillah also to protect against any diseases or food poisoning.
Satan strives to divert people from Allah, and he places a strong spell upon each persons head when he goes to sleep. Satan ties three knots over the back of the sleeping person's head, blowing into each knot while saying, 'You have a long night, so sleep on.' He also urinates in the ears of some people making them deaf to calls for worship and prayer.
To untie the three knots over the back of a sleeping persons head, these three steps are needed:
- Wake up for the morning prayer (Fajr)
- Do ablution (wudu)
- Carry out the morning prayer (fajr)
Inshallah the three actions above will untie the three knots made by Satan behind a persons head and start the day perfectly!
Muslims should always strive against Satan who is the main enemy of Muslims to overcome the evil whispers he mentions into Human ears evil thoughts and actions to carry out. Muslims should always be weary of the evil whispers Satan whispers into peoples ears and fight against the desires and urges that sometimes humans feel. The easiest way to do that is to remember Allah at that time of the thought and pray to Allah for protection against Satan and his evil whispers.
(Awuzu billahiminash shaytan nirrajim, bismillah hirrahman nirrahim)
What Is A Dream?
A dream is basically a vision that a person sees during their sleep. Dreams are a part of the spiritual parts of human life. Only by adhering to the guidance of the Quran and Sunnah can we form a reasonable understanding of dreams in an Islamic concept.
Dreams are visions Allah creates and instills into our hearts. Some dreams truthful and sublime, are granted by Allah. They are shown to support reassure a believer or warn them of some individuals, reprimand them for some wrongdoings, foretell him of some good (to anticipate) or harm (to beware of), and so on. Such dreams are attributed to Allah because of the truth and good they carry.
Other dreams, false and unpleasant, mix truth with falsehood, and frighten people during sleep or even after awakening. Such dreams are whispered by a devil and are attributed to Satan.
"Allah is the Creator of all things, and He is in charge of all things."
Good and True Dreams Are a Part of Prophethood
Narrated Anas bin Malik:
Allah’s Apostle said, “A good dream of a righteous person (which comes true) is one of forty-six
parts of prophethood.”
Satan And Bad Dreams
Satan is attributed with bad dreams for these reasons:
- He initiates the bad and hateful thoughts and insinuates them into people's thoughts in dream form.
- He likes and approves bad dreams and evil thoughts.
- Bad dreams conform with his evil nature.
- His hate towards humans makes him do all that is possible to harm and frighten them - both during their sleep and their wakefulness.
Satan shows people absurd dreams which are unimaginable in real life.
A person dreamt that his throat was cut and his head fell off and rolled away. He chased after it, retrieved it and put it back in it's place. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) smiled and said:
"When satan makes fun of you during your sleep, do not tell people about it."
The Prophet (pbuh) discouraged people from relating dreams that appear meaningless or frightening.
What Are Wet Dreams?
Wet dreams are associated with the ejection of seminal fluid during sleep. Seminal fluids eject after having dreams or visions of prohibited actions or interactions instigated by satan. It is mainly common for men to have wet dreams, but women can also have them.
Below is a section from islamqa.info/en which is supervised by Shaykh Muhammad Saalih al-Munajjid
Praise be to Allaah.
Allaah has created desire in man and He has commanded His slaves to use this energy in the proper manner, which is marriage for those who can afford it, in order to attain worldly interests such as building families, strengthening society and populating the earth according to the laws of Allaah. Moreover one of the ways which Allaah has created in His slaves as an outlet for this energy is wet dreams. It is a means of expending sexual energy for both sexes. A person plays no role in that, rather it happens as a result of human nature and a person will not be held to blame for that. The evidence for that is as follows:
1 – It was narrated from ‘Ali that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The Pen has been lifted from three: from the one who is sleeping until he wakes up, from the child until he reaches the age of puberty, and from one who is insane until he comes to his senses.”
(Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 1343; Ibn Maajah, 3032; al-Nasaa’i, 3378)
A similar hadeeth was also narrated from ‘Aa’ishah in the four books of Sunan apart from al-Tirmidhi.
This hadeeth was classed as hasan by al-Tirmidhi, and by al-Nawawi in Sharh Muslim, 8/14
A person who is sleeping does not know what he is doing, so he is one of those from whom the Pen is lifted (i.e., his deeds are not recorded). Wet dreams happen when a person is asleep, so they are among the things that are forgiven.
2 – Allaah has in fact made wet dreams [al-hilm] one of the signs of puberty. Hence Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And when the children among you come to puberty [al-hilm]…”
If wet dreams were haraam, Allaah would not have made that a sign of puberty.
Dreams Interpretation by Anwar Al Awlaki
Actions To Take Upon Having A Good Or Bad Dream
Actions to take upon having a good dream
- View it as a good omen from Allah
- Praise Allah for it
- Narrate it to those whom he really trusts
- Avoid narrating the dream to whomever he does not trust
- Seek it's interpretation, especially from learned people with good knowledge of dream interpretation
Actions to take upon having a bad dream
- Seek Allah's protection from it's evil
- Seek Allah's protection from satan
- Lightly spit three times, on your left side
- Turn over and sleep facing the right hand side
- Say some duas or narrate some short surats (verses) like ayat ul kursi or say A'uthu billahi min ash-shaytan ir-rajim (I seek Allah's protection from Satan, the outcast)
- Get up and pray
- Avoid narrating it to anyone else
- Avoid attempting to interpret it
Prophet Muhammad's (pbuh) Dream About Islam And Imaan
I would like to share this dream Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) had about a King's banquet;
Indeed, i saw in a dream as though Jibril was at my head and Mikail at my feet. One of them said to the other, "Indeed, he is asleep." The other replied, "Indeed, his eyes are asleep, but his heart is awake."
Then one of them said, "Indeed, there is a parable that applies to our companion, so tell him the parable." The other said, "Indeed, he is asleep." And the first replied, "Indeed, his eyes are asleep, but his heart is awake."
So, one of them said, "Listen, may your ear be able to hear; and understand, may your heart be able to understand; Indeed, the parable that applies to you and your people is that of a king who built a mansion, established in it a hall, set up in the hall a banquet, and then sent a messenger to invite people to his food. Some people answered the messenger, while others ignored him. Those who answered him entered the mansion and ate from the banquet, while those who ignored him neither entered the mansion nor ate from the banquet."
One of them said, "Interpret it for him so that he would understand it." But again, the other said, "Indeed, he is asleep." And the first replied, "Indeed, his eyes are alseep, but his heart is awake."
So, one of them said, "The king, then, is Allah, the mansion is Islam, the hall is Jannah (heaven), and you, O Muhammad, are the messenger; Whoever answers you will enter into Islam, and whoever enters into Islam will enter Jannah and eat from it. Therefore, whoever obeys Muhammad has surely obeyed Allah, and whoever disobeys Muhammad has surely disobeyed Allah. And Muhammad is a divider among the people."
Free Dream Interpretation Online
This is a link to a free dream interpretaion online dictionary where you enter a word corresponding to a vision of the dream you had to find the interpretation.
The dream dictionary presented in the link above is based on the work of Muhammad Ibn Sirin, a specialist in the field of dream interpretation in regards to the traditions of Islam.
Muhammad Ibn Sirin was born in 654 and died at the age of 77. He was a very pious Muslim. He belonged to the tabighins, formed by the kufit school.
However, in today's world, he is more know for his expertise in giving the meaning of dreams.
He also brought lots of hadiths from Abu Huraira, Anas Ibn Malik and others.
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