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Sleep paralysis - is it connected to being possessed by jinn?


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Author Topic: Sleep paralysis - is it connected to being possessed by jinn?  (Read 14618 times)
Ruhi_Rose
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« on: September 15, 2013, 05:59:59 am »

A paragraph with an image was posted in a Facebook group called the "Jinn Group" by a Muslim, as follows:

Quote:

"Commonly known as sleep paralysis by the science community. However, science has now agreed to allow the truth about Demonic possession. This is the jinn known as the shadow mist like entity that stands at the corner of your bed and paralyzes your body during sleep. If you're really lucky you might get to hear the noise it makes as well. Buzzing of bees is what it sounds like when it's pretty close to the head and if you use strong religious recitations in your mind with full faith in our Creator, it will start to move around causing paranormal activity in the room. It would have a foul rotten or decayed smell that would be gone if it left.  During flight while escaping through a door or window edges it might make a sound similar to many drumming fingers on a window.  This much information is good enough."



Unquote:


So .... let us discuss on this a bit.

There are no such activities by jinn mentioned in the Quran.  I don't recall any Quranic Surah stating that jinn have the capability to possess or take over humans. More on this at Can jinn possess humans?

Let us also take a look on what exactly sleep paralysis is according to psychologists and other researchers of this field.

Sleep paralysis means inability to move either at onset of sleep or upon awakening.  Usually one feels as if their backs and limbs have frozen and just won't move.  Sometimes it's also accompanied with hallucinations or dream-like occurrences.   Sleep paralysis is most common with people having narcolepsy.  Narcolepsy is the opposite of insomnia in which a person feels sleepy or drowsy all the time, desiring to take a nap every now and then.  But normal people also do experience sleep paralysis which is sometimes hereditary, running in the family.  There is no apparent harm or danger involved in it, though sometimes those experiencing it have complained of a feeling of fear, which might be connected with their physical condition during sleep as they don't know what is happening to them.  If sleep paralysis is accompanied with hallucination, there is a feeling of someone's presence in the room.  Some people also complain of a heavy feeling on the chest as is something is sitting on it with sensations of suffocation or even impending death.  This is called the "hag phenomena" and is thought to be happening to people since centuries.  Sleep paralysis is terminated very abruptly by a touch on the body or a sound in the room, just the way a dream is disrupted.  Such feelings do cause quite a lot of anxiety and terror, often even after waking up, but no physical harm or danger has ever been reported.   

It's thought by some experts that sleep paralysis might be caused by pinched nerve endings in the spine.  But this is not confirmed.  The precise reason is not known.  However, experts also presume that those having an irregular sleep schedule are more likely to get it.  Getting enough sleep, keeping a regular sleep schedule and avoiding stress might help to avoid sleep paralysis.

Usually there is no need for medical assistance.  But rarely it may become too frequent, like once or twice every week and continue for months.  In such cases medical help can be sought.  For some people, sleep paralysis is a once-in-a-lifetime experience; for others, it can be a frequent, even a nightly, phenomenon.

Some scientists have proposed this condition as an explanation for reports of alien abductions.  A university in western England also stated that in their opinion alien abductions are related to sleep paralysis.  However, "alien abduction" itself denotes the experience of hallucination and is by no means a confirmed phenomenon.

A lot of people don't believe sleep paralysis to be connected with demonic or jinn possession and they insist it must be having some physical underlying cause.  However, they do agree that it feels very similar to being possessed and it's scary.  I suppose we can put it in the same category as a real bad nightmare that leaves us fearful and rattled when we awake.  There seems to be no evidence of any jinn possession. 
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Zeynab
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« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2013, 12:11:37 pm »

Incredibly interesting thread!  It can be explained with many different possibilities.  It's really hard, if not impossible, to come up with any clear cut answers.  Only Allah can confirm what exactly this occurrence is, though being physically possessed by jinn is very unlikely with no such confirmations in the Quran, not even a hint.  But it's nothing uncommon on the part of storytellers to give such mental conditions a scandalous twist by making them look like the works of jinn.
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« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2013, 05:32:50 pm »

As per certain Quranic verses, the disobedient jinn do have the power to tempt humans to sin and disobedience invisibly, perhaps the same way as Shaitaan does.  But yes, possessing humans as described by many story tellers is something the Quran doesn't confirm nor hint upon.

I would say sleep paralysis is basically a severe nightmare.  The feeling of being awake is likely a deception .. same way as many times ordinary dreams also confuse us ..  we sometimes dither whether something we heard or saw at a glance several days or weeks or months ago was real or a dream?  It might be having certain reasons different from a regular nightmare, like fatigue, worries of life, fear of sleeping in the dark which is found in some people or some mental condition that creates the sleep paralysis condition after the person drifts into a slumber.  Sleep paralysis seems to have connections with the activities of the sub-conscious mind after the person falls asleep.  That's the way I've always interpreted it.  Allah knows best.  I've never experienced this condition and neither do I know anyone in my family or extended family having gone through it even though we have a huge family  Grin
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« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2013, 05:36:45 pm »

Yeah brother truthseeker.  So far I've also interpreted it on the same lines.  It's not possession by the jinn, nah!  I really doubt that.  Jinn could tempt humans to misguidance is the idea I too get from the Quran.  But the stories I hear of jinn possessing humans is something I've never been able to connect with Quranic information because the Quran does not speak on these lines.

Another thing confuses me about what this facebook guy mentioned.  I quote him:

"and if you use strong religious recitations in your mind with full faith in our Creator, it will start to move around causing paranormal activity in the room. It would have a foul rotten or decayed smell that would be gone if it left."

Quranic recitation has always been reported to chase away a bad jinn altogether, not just move them around.  It doesn't hover around after the recitations begin.

And "foul rotten or decayed smell" ?   .... never heard of that.  LOL.  A naughty dancing jinn crippling the body is bad enough.  Additionally if it also stinks, aw!  that would be a bit too steep!  Cheesy
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« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2013, 05:43:11 pm »

I also don't know anyone in my family having this issue and I myself surely don't up till, thank Allah.  But I know of someone who used to experience it .. not relative but a neighbor's daughter.  About 9 or 10 years ago the girl's mom said her daughter had sleep paralysis quite often, once every 2 or 3 months.  Her description of it was quite alarming, very similar to the description mentioned by Sister Ruhi in this post, and she was convinced that it would happen when she would be fully awake.  However, I don't quite buy that for granted.  As stated by both Sister Ruhi and Br. truthseeker, while in bed one often gets the feeling of being awake when actually one is not fully conscious.  That state of the mind is very common in a condition of sleep.

Anyhow, this lady was 22 years old and she said she had been having it since she was 15 or 16.  Whenever it would happen, she mentioned, it would be after she would fall asleep for a while and then awaken in a paralysed state.  After that, she was convinced that she would be fully awake but couldn't move nor speak because of the paralysed feeling.  During this period she would often get the feeling that someone is in the room, even though she would be sleeping alone in her bedroom with the door locked from inside.  Once she said seeing a few shadows on the walls.  Another time she said she clearly heard someone whispering and calling out her name, even though the door was locked and she was the only one in the room.  Her parents got worried thinking she may have a brain tumor or something similar, so they took her to the doctor for a MRI and few other tests.  But all results came normal.  She also didn't complain of having sleep problems nor any depression or anxiety.  But she did mention that once she saw a strange object on a tree while taking a walk in her neighborhood that brought an eerie feeling within her.  She was convinced it was a UFO or some alien body.  But that happened just once.  We were quite confused when she and her parents recounted this entire story.  It was difficult to confirm whether it was only a physical phenomenon or consisted of some elements of the paranormal (jinn).  The story can actually be interpreted both ways, so only Allah would know best.

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« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2013, 10:14:01 pm »


"and if you use strong religious recitations in your mind with full faith in our Creator, it will start to move around causing paranormal activity in the room. It would have a foul rotten or decayed smell that would be gone if it left."

Quranic recitation has always been reported to chase away a bad jinn altogether, not just move them around.  It doesn't hover around after the recitations begin.

That's a good point and a very truthful one.



And "foul rotten or decayed smell" ?   .... never heard of that.  LOL.  A naughty dancing jinn crippling the body is bad enough.  Additionally if it also stinks, aw!  that would be a bit too steep!  Cheesy
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« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2013, 10:20:06 pm »

Your neighbor's story is interesting.  Are they still your neighbors?  And is she still having those eerie experiences?

It was difficult to confirm whether it was only a physical phenomenon or consisted of some elements of the paranormal (jinn).  The story can actually be interpreted both ways, so only Allah would know best.

You're absolutely right.  It can go both ways.  So little is known about the nature of the phenomenon itself that it's impossible to come to a conclusion.  Reasons and the reality about it remain inconclusive.  Only Allah knows the relevant facts.
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« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2013, 10:23:18 pm »

Just want to add one more thing.  Sometimes people also mix-up the condition of occasional and inexplicable ringing sounds in the ear as related to sleep paralysis, even though it causes no movement problems.  This has nothing to do with sleep paralysis.  It's called Tinnitus, which involves a feeling of ringing sound within the human ear when no actual sound is present. It's usually caused by ear infections, wax build-up, stress or excessive exposure to loud sounds.  In some rare cases it can also be caused by multiple sclerosis (ms).
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