Posted: Sat Nov 08, 2008 10:56 pm
What is the Baha'i view on Jinn?
"Regarding your question as to the meaning of Jin or Genii referred to in the Qur'an, these are not beings or creatures that are actually living, but are symbolic references to the power of men of evil and may be likened to evil spirits. But the point to bear in mind is that these have no positive existence of any kind."
(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, June 26, 1936: Bahá'í News, No. 105, p. 1, February 1937)
"As to the question of evil spirits, demons and monsters, any references made to them in the Holy Books have symbolic meaning. What is currently known among the public is but sheer superstition."
(From a Tablet of Abdu'l-Bahá: Spiritualism and Psychic Phenomena, p. 3)
"You have asked regarding the influence of evil spirits. Evil spirits are deprived of eternal life. How then can they exercise any influence? But as eternal life is ordained for holy spirits, therefore their influence exists in all the divine worlds."
(From a Tablet of Abdu'l-Bahá to Mrs. Ella Goodall Cooper: Daily Lessons Received at Akka, p. 78, 1979 ed.)
"The reality underlying this question is that the evil spirit, Satan or whatever is interpreted as evil, refers to the lower nature in man. This baser nature is symbolized in various ways. In man there are two expressions: One is the expression of nature; the other the expression of the spiritual realm. The world of nature is defective. Look at it clearly, casting aside all superstition and imagination... God has never created an evil spirit; all such ideas and nomenclature are symbols expressing the mere human or earthly nature of man. It is an essential condition of the soil of earth that thorns, weeds and fruitless trees may grow from it. Relatively speaking, this is evil; it is simply the lower state and baser product of nature."
(Abdu'l-Bahá: Promulgation of Universal Peace, pp. 294-295, 1982 ed.)
Abu Talib wrote:Then how would you interpret this verse?
[51:56] And I have not created the jinn and the men except that they should serve Me.
Behold, We turned towards thee a company of Jinns (quietly) listening to the Qur'án: when they stood in the presence thereof, they said, "Listen in silence!" When the (reading) was finished, they returned to their people, to warn (them of their sins).
(Qur'an, 46:29, Yusufali)