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Wearing a Copper/Brass Bracelet for Curing Rheumatism – Imam Ibn Baz

October 8, 2016

Ibn Baz Fatwas – (Part No. 1; Page No. 206,207)

Copper bracelets [1]

[1]This is another answer to a question about copper bracelets made to cure rheumatism

From `Abdul-`Aziz ibn `Abdullah ibn Baz to my honorable brother, may Allah safeguard you.

As-salamu `alaykum warahmatullah wabarakatuh (May Allah’s Peace, Mercy, and Blessings be upon you).

I have received your noble letter, may Allah be pleased with you. I have also reviewed the enclosed documents on the properties of the copper bracelet recently made to cure rheumatism. I have considered the whole matter more than once and discussed it with a number of university lecturers. We exchanged opinions on the juristic ruling on the copper bracelet in question, but there were different opinions on the matter; some regard it permissible as it has properties of curing rheumatism, whereas others see that it is better not to wear it, on the ground that wearing it is like the practice of the people of Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic time of ignorance), who used to wear copper amulets and bracelets, thinking that they were a cure for many diseases and a reason for the safety of the person wearing them against envy.

`Uqbah ibn `Amir (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

Anyone who wears an amulet, Allah will not fulfill their need, and anyone who wears a seashell, Allah will not give them peace. [1]

According to another narration:

Anyone who hangs an amulet has committed Shirk (associating others with Allah in His Divinity or worship). [2]

Imran ibn Al-Husayn (may Allah be pleased with him and his father) also narrated:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) saw a man with a brass bracelet on his hand. He (peace be upon him) asked him, ‘What is this?’ The man replied, ‘A protection from weakness.’ He (peace be upon him) said, ‘Cast it off, for verily it will only increase your weakness; and if you die wearing it, you will never succeed.’ [3]

According to another Hadith:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) in one of his journeys sent a messenger to check the camels of the caravan, and ordered the cutting of all string necklaces hung around the necks of the camels which were thought by the people of Jahiliyyah to benefit and protect their camels.

These Hadiths and others show that a Muslim must not wear amulets, bracelets, strings, bones, beads or other things that are used by some people to prevent or remove evil.

In my opinion, it is better not to wear or use this copper bracelet to block any means to Shirk, and to not let the heart be attached to such things, and to direct Muslims with their hearts toward Allah Alone trustingly and confidently, and to restrict oneself to lawful means that are indisputably permissible. Surely, what Allah has made lawful and accessible is sufficient and dispenses with any need for what is forbidden.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) is authentically reported to have said:

Anyone who guards themselves against doubtful matters keeps their religion and honor blameless, and anyone who indulges in doubtful matters indulges in unlawful matters, just as a shepherd who pastures his animals around a sanctuary will soon (transgress upon it and) pasture them in it. [4]

He (peace be upon him) also said:

Leave what causes you doubt and turn to what does not cause you doubt. [5]

Undoubtedly, wearing a copper bracelet is similar to what was practiced by the people of Jahiliyyah. Wearing it constitutes either a prohibited matter of Shirk or a means leading to Shirk or at least a doubtful matter.

Therefore, it is better for a Muslim not to wear it and resort to lawful medical treatment. This is the opinion that seems correct to a group of scholars, shaykhs, and myself as well with regard to this issue.

We ask Allah (Exalted be He) to guide you and us to what pleases Him, grant us good understanding of His Religion, and protect us against all that opposes His Laws. Indeed, He is Able to do all things. May Allah safeguard you. As-salamu `alaykum.


[1] Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 4, p. 154.

[2] Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 4, p. 156.

[3] Ibn Majah, Sunan, Book on medicine, no. 3531; Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 4, p. 445.

[4] Al-Bukhari, Sahih, Book on faith, no. 52; Muslim, Sahih, Book on sharecropping, no. 1599; Al-Nasa’y, Sunan, Book on transactions, no. 4453; Ibn Majah, Sunan, Book on trials, no. 3984; and Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 4, p. 270.

[5] Al-Tirmidhy, Sunan, Book on Resurrection, heart-softening narrations, and piety, no. 2518; Al-Nasa’y, Sunan, Book on drinks, no. 5711; Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 1, p. 200; and Al-Darimy, Sunan, Book on transactions, no. 2532.

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