Hijama – Blessing for Mankind
Many may wonder about the word ‘hijama’ when referred by some therapists to treat diseases or to improve some medical conditions. It is natural to wonder about this particular way of addressing diseases since hijama or cupping has remained out of the picture for a long time.
Hijama or cupping had been extensively practiced in the past as a bloodletting treatment that used to be done slight differently than now. Chinese and Europeans were using leeches and glass or bamboo cups to get rid of ‘bad blood’ from the body. The Arabs were doing it too, especially as a Sunnah of the Prophet SAW, with identical motive of removing the ‘bad blood’.
Types of Hijama
Hijama can be performed in three different ways:
- Dry Hijama / Dry Cupping
Dry hijama is performed by using a vacuum on the target locations of the body to gather blood in that area. This is done without making any incisions on the hijama point.
- Dry Massage Hijama
This procedure is more or less like dry hijama except that olive oil is massaged onto the skin before applying the cups. Oil is applied to ensure easy movements of the cups.
- Wet Hijama
In the wet cupping procedure, small incisions are made at the cupping site and vacuum is applied to suck out the ‘bad’ or harmful blood from the target cupping point. This procedure also requires a cup to draw out the blood.
The Doctrine of Hijama
In wet cupping or hijama, minute incisions are made on the surface of the skin, then a cup is placed over the area and vacuum is applied to draw out the blood. This is the simple and easy method of removing toxins accumulated in the blood. If you check the blood that had been removed in a laboratory, you will find that the blood is highly toxic and harmful for a human body.
The objective of hijama is to free the body from toxins and other waste materials that has been accumulated. It is necessary to pinpoint the exact locations of certain hijama points that have direct relevance to an organ or function of the body. When such blood is drawn out from certain points on the body, the related organ or its function greatly benefits in return. As a result, the patient experiences a faster recovery from an ailment and/or it works as a preventive measure against a disease. In other words, the cause of a disease is removed and the related body function is improved to fight diseases and to stay healthy to help the body flourish or work properly and healthily.
When we look at the doctrine of hijama, it becomes clear that it can both be used as a cure and preventive measure to keep the body healthy.
Hijama, a Highly Recommended Sunnah of the Prophet SAW
For a believer, the ultimate verdict is either the Quran or the saying of the Prophet SAW. When it comes to hijama, we have so many authentic ahadith that highly recommend it. When the maker of a machine recommends a way to maintain the machine to keep it in good running condition, can anyone deny following such an instruction or can anyone even doubt the directive of the manufacturer? Likewise, Prophet’s SAW words are not his words, they are actually the words of Allah SWT, and being our creator, Allah SWT knows what is good for our body. His commands about hijama have clearly been revealed to us by His Prophet SAW in the following wording:
“Indeed the best of remedies you have is hijama (cupping)” – [Sahih al-Bukhari]
Abu Hurairah (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam ) said, “If there was something excellent to be used as a remedy then it is cupping.” [Saheeh Sunan Abi Dawud (3857), Saheeh Sunan ibn Maajah (3476)].
Abdullah ibn Abbas (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam ) said, “Healing is in three things: in the incision of the cupper, in drinking honey, and in cauterizing with fire, but I forbid my Ummah (nation) from cauterization (branding with fire).” [Saheeh al-Bukhaaree (5681), Saheeh Sunan ibn Maajah (3491)].
Abu Hurairah (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam ) said, “Whoever performs cupping on the 17th, 19th or 21st day (of the Islamic month) then it is a cure for every disease.” [Saheeh Sunan Abi Dawud (3861)].
Salma (may Allaah be pleased with him), the servant of the Messenger of Allaah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam ) said, “Whenever someone would complain of a headache to the Messenger of Allaah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam), he (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) would advise them to perform cupping.” [Saheeh Sunan Abi Dawud (3858)].
Ibn al-Qaiyum (may Allaah have mercy on him) mentions that the Messenger (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam ) cupped his head when he was afflicted with magic and that it is from the best of cures for this if done correctly. [Zaad al Ma’aad (4/125-126)].
Ibn Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam ) said, “Cupping on an empty stomach is best. In it is a cure and a blessing. It improves the intellect and the memory. So cup yourselves with the blessing of Allaah on Thursday. Keep away from cupping on Wednesday, and Friday, Saturday and Sunday to be safe. Perform cupping on Monday and Tuesday for it is the day that Allaah saved Ayoub from the trial. He was inflicted with the trial on Wednesday. You will not find leprosy except (by being cupped) on Wednesday or Wednesday night.” [Saheeh Sunan Ibn Majah (3487)].
Of course, to get proper results, one has to follow certain guidelines that will be specific to an individual case. It is, therefore, advisable for any person who wishes to undergo a hijama or cupping therapy to approach an authentic hijama center or a professional to ensure he or she gets the best from hijama. A person well experienced in hijama or cupping therapy knows when to perform and how to perform it, how to avoid any complications, how to get the best from a hijama session, who is suitable for hijama and who is not, etc.
Hijama and Medical Science
For a believer, the Sunnah or a saying of the Prophet SAW is the final verdict in any matter and no further clarification or authenticity will be required to follow it or to believe it. Having said so, it is also worth noting that the medical science is now recognizing the benefits of hijama and even the non-Muslims are going after the cupping therapy. Hijama, which had gone behind the curtain for some time, has now being recognized as a sure way to cure and prevent many diseases, even many serious kinds of medical conditions can be effectively corrected by a properly done hijama.