Why is Numerology Haram in Islam?

Introduction

Numerology, the study of the purported divine and mystical relationship between numbers and events, is a practice that has been around for thousands of years. In numerology, numbers are believed to have hidden meanings and hold insights into a person’s personality, future events, and more.

While numerology is popular in some faiths and cultures, it is considered forbidden (haram) in Islam. There are several reasons why Muslims are prohibited from practicing numerology.

Numerology Involves Shirk (Polytheism)

The core foundation of Islamic belief is the absolute oneness and unity of God (tawhid). Associating any partners with God or worshipping anything besides the one true God is considered an unforgivable sin called shirk.

In numerology, numbers are seen as having divine powers and meanings. Believing that numbers have supernatural powers or can influence events is a form of polytheism and idolatry, as only Allah has divine power and knowledge of the unseen. This contradicts the Islamic concept of tawhid.

Reliance on Numbers Over Allah

Putting one’s trust in numbers for guidance and predictions, rather than relying on Allah alone, is another reason numerology is forbidden in Islam. Muslims believe that only Allah knows the future and what is best for us. Looking to anything else for one’s fate and destiny can lead one away from faith in Allah’s divine plan.

Numerology also involves looking for patterns and meaning in random events and occurrences. In Islam, everything that happens is by the will of Allah. Trying to find divine messages and supernatural meanings in numbers is a diversion from total trust and belief in Allah’s power.

Lack of Basis in the Quran and Sunnah

Importantly, there is no guidance, teaching or basis for the practice of numerology anywhere in the Quran or the Sunnah (teachings and traditions of Prophet Muhammad PBUH). Any ritual or belief that lacks scriptural justification and origin in Islam is automatically considered an innovation (bid’ah) and forbidden in the religion.

Since numerology has roots in ancient pagan cultures, rather than Islam, it is clear why Muslims consider it an outside innovation and strongly avoid it.

Hadiths Prohibiting Divination Practices

There are also several hadiths, or sayings of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), that warn against occult practices like fortune-telling, astrology and divination. These include:

“Whoever goes to a fortune teller and asks him about something, his prayer will not be accepted for forty days.” (Sahih Muslim)

“Whoever has his horoscope cast or consults a diviner, while believing in what he says, has denied what was revealed to Muhammad.” (Sunan Abu Dawud)

Such hadiths make it evident that numerology and any attempt to divine the future or the unseen is haram (forbidden) in Islam.

Conclusion

In summary, numerology goes against the core Islamic principles of tawhid (God’s unity), reliance on Allah, following Quran and Sunnah, and avoiding pagan customs and divination. For these reasons, mainstream Muslim scholars overwhelmingly consider numerology a forbidden and sinful practice to avoid. The harms of numerology outweigh any supposed benefits for a faithful Muslim.

References

[1] Numerology – Oxford Islamic Studies Online. http://www.oxfordislamicstudies.com/article/opr/t125/e1859

[2] Fortune Telling, Divination and Predictions in Islam. Yaqeen Institute. https://yaqeeninstitute.org/read/paper/fortune-telling-divination-and-predictions-in-islam

[3] Ruling on numerology. Reminder Network. https://islamqa.info/en/answers/11219/ruling-on-numerology

[4] Hadith on Fortune Tellers. Daily Hadith Online. https://dailyhadithonline.com/2012/12/31/hadith-on-fortune-tellers/

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