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An Invocation for Spells

Muhammad b. Ja’far al-Bursi narrated from Ahmad b. Yahya al-Armani from Muhammad b. Sayyar from Muhammad b. al-Fadl b. ‘Umar from Abu ‘Abd Allah, peace be upon him, who said: ‘Amir al-Mu’minin, blessings of Allah on him, said that Jibra’il peace be upon him, came to the Prophet, blessings be on him, and said: “O Muhammad.” He replied: “At your service, O Jibra’il.” He said: “Such-and-such a Jew has bewitched you and put a spell in the well of Banu so-and-so. Therefore, send to it the most trustworthy of people in your opinion and the most important of them before you and the equal of you, so that he may bring you the spell.”’ He [Abu ‘Abd Allah] said: ‘The Prophet, blessings be on him, sent ‘Ali b. Abu Talib, peace be upon him, and said: “Go to the well of Dharwan, for in it is a spell with which the Jew Labid b. A’sam has bewitched me, and bring it to me.”

‘Ali peace be upon him, said; “I set out at the request of the Messenger of Allah. I descended into it and there was the spring water as if it were water in a cistern because of the spell. I searched for it hurriedly until I came to the bottom of the well but 1 did not obtain it. Those who were with me said: ‘There is nothing in it.’ So I went up. But then I said: ‘No, by Allah, he did not lie and nor do I, and I am not with him as you are,’ meaning the Messenger of Allah. I searched for it again carefully, and brought it out, in truth.

“I went to the Prophet, and he said: ‘Open it.’ I opened it and there was, in truth, a piece of a palm branch inside it on which was tied twenty-one knots. Jibra'il had brought down that day to the Prophet the two suras of taking refuge (al-Falaq (113) and al-Nas (114)). The Prophet said: “O ‘Ali, then recite over the string.” Whenever Amir al-Mu’minin recited it, a knot opened, until he finished with all of them and Allah, the Mighty and Sublime, removed the spell from His Prophet and restored him to health.’

It is related that Jibra’il and Mika’il, peace be upon them, came to the Prophet, blessings of Allah on him and his family. One of them sat on his right and the other on his left. Then Jibra’il said to Mika'il: “What ails the man?” Mika’il replied: “He has been treated.” Jibra’il, peace be upon him, asked: “Who has treated him?” He [Mika’il] replied: “Labid b. A’sam, the Jew.” Then he related the hadith until the end.