The Holy Prophet: Cupping and Migraines


Hazrat Mir Muhammad Ishaqra

عَبْد اللہِ ابْنَ بُحَیْنَۃَ یُحَدِّثُ اَنَّ رَسُولَ اللہِ صلّی اللہ علیہ وسلّم احْتَجَمَ وَسَطَ رَأسِہِ وَھُوَ مُحْرِمٌ بِلَحْیِ جَمَلٍ مِنْ طَرِیقِ مَکَّۃَ

“Hazrat Abdullah bin Buhaynah narrated that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was treated by means of cupping in the middle of his head, when he was in Ihram, in Lahya Jamal, on the road to Mecca.” (Sunan al-Nasai)

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Referring to the above-mentioned hadith, Hazrat Mir Muhammad Ishaq, may Allah pleased with him, said the following:

It is established from the ahadith and history that the Holy Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was experiencing a migraine [when he had his head cupped at this instance]. Migraine is characterised by pain in only one part or half of the head and can develop as soon as the sun rises, lasting for days. When one experiences severe migraines, they cannot even open their eyes and begin to feel lethargic and drowsy. If, during migraine, the [head is cupped] and some blood is taken out, then relief usually follows. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih I, may Allah be pleased with him, once told us a remedy for treating migraines. He advised that upon waking, before eating anything, to mix a little cow’s milk with some butter in the palm of the hand. Then he said to inhale the mixture through one’s nose like snuff. After a little while, Insha-Allah, relief would follow. I have used this remedy on many occasions and have found it extremely beneficial and effective. The first time I heard this remedy from Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira, I applied it on a very sincere companion of the Promised Messiahas, who was experiencing a migraine.

Cupping was very common and prevalent in Arab culture and still is today. As most Arab countries undergo extreme heat during summer, the temperature of blood within people also rises to very severe levels. If they do not take some blood out [through cupping], there could be danger of possible brain damage.

(Originally published in Al Fazl on 22 Febuary 1940 in the form of notes taken by Mahmood Ahmad Khalil Sahib from the lectures on hadith by Hazrat Mir Muhammad Ishaqra, a scholar of hadith and brother-in-law of the Promised Messiahas)

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