Who were Haroot & Maroot?

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Allah the Almighty says: “They followed what the Shayatin (devils) gave out (falsely of the magic) in the lifetime of Sulaiman (Solomon). Sulaiman did not disbelieve, but the Shayatin (devils) disbelieved, teaching men magic and such things that came down at Babylon to the two angels, Harut and Marut but neither of these two (angels) taught anyone (such things) till they had said, “We are only for trial, so disbelieve not (by learning this magic from us). “And from these (angels) people learn that by which they cause separation between man and his wife, but they could not thus harm anyone except by Allah’s Leave. And they learn that which harms them and profits them not. And indeed they knew that the buyers of it (magic) would have no share in the Hereafter. And how bad indeed was that for which they sold their own selves, if they but knew. And if they had believed and guarded themselves from evil and kept their duty to Allah, far better would have been the reward from their Lord, if they but knew!”
(Al-Baqarah, 102,103)

Narrated Al-`Ufi in his interpretation on the authority of Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) pertaining to above Statement: When Sulaiman (AS) lost his kingdom, great numbers from among mankind and the jinn renegaded and followed their lusts. But, when Allah restored to Sulaiman (AS) his kingdom and the renegade came to follow the Straight Path once again, Sulaiman (AS) seized their holy scriptures which he buried underneath his throne. Shortly after, Sulaiman (Peace be upon him) died. In no time, the men and the Jinn uncovered the buried scriptures and said: This was a book revealed by Allah to Sulaiman (AS) who hid it from us. They took it as their religion and Allah the Almighty revealed His Saying: “And when there came to them a Messenger from Allah confirming what was with them, a party of those who were given the Scripture threw away the Book of Allah behind their backs as if they did not know!” (Al-Baqarah, 101) and they followed what the devils gave out, i.e. musical instruments, play and all that blocks the remembrance of Allah.

Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) as saying: Asif was Sulaiman’s scribe. He knew the Greatest Name of Allah and used to write what he was ordered to by Sulaiman, then, bury it underneath the throne. After Sulaiman’s death, the devils got it out and wrote between each two lines magical and blasphemous things. They said: “this is what Sulaiman (AS) used to apply and act upon.” The ignorant among the people regarded Sulaiman as a disbeliever and continued to insult him till Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was sent with the Glorious Qur’an that reads: “They followed what the, Shayatin (devils) gave out (falsely of the magic) in the lifetime of Sulaiman (Solomon). Sulaiman (AS) did not disbelieve, but the Shayatin (devils) disbelieved”.

Sa`id Ibn Jubair on the authority of Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) said: When Sulaiman (AS) wanted to answer the call of nature or to make love with any of his wives, he used to give his ring to a woman called Al-Jaradah. When Allah the Almighty wanted to afflict Sulaiman (AS), he gave his ring to that woman. Afterwards, Satan came to her in the form of Sulaiman (AS) and took the ring from her. When Satan put the ring on, all mankind, the jinn and Devils submitted to him. Then, Sulaiman (AS) came seeking his ring from her and she said: “You are a liar, you are not Sulaiman (AS).” Thus, Sulaiman (AS) knew that it was a test from Allah the Almighty. Upon this, the devils were free to do whatever they wished. So, they wrote down books of black magic and blasphemy which they buried underneath the throne of Sulaiman (AS). After Sulaiman (AS)’s death, they uncovered these books and said to the people: Verily, Sulaiman used to prevail with the help of these books. Consequently, the people declared their innocence of Sulaiman (AS) and declared him to be a disbeliever till the advent of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) who came with the Qur’anic Verse in his favour.

A man came and Ibn `Abbas asked him: Where do you come from? The man said: from Iraq. Ibn `Abbas asked: which city? The man said: Kufa. Ibn `Abbas asked: What is the latest news there? The man said: I left them talking about `Ali’s departing for them. Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) said: how dare you say so! If we felt that (he is departing us for the people of Kufa), we would not marry his women, or divide his properties among us. However, I will tell you the truth: the angels used to descend on the clouds and mention this or that matter decreed in the Heaven. The devils listen stealthily to such a matter, come down to inspire the soothsayers with it, and the latter would add to it one hundred lies of their own. The people believe in them and regard them trustworthy. Allah the Almighty informed Sulaiman (AS) with the matter and enabled him to bury these lies under his throne. After his death, one of the devils said: I can lead you to Sulaiman’s dearest and most precious treasure. It is under his throne. Consequently, they uncovered it and said: this is magic. Afterwards, it continued to be copied and acted upon and what the Iraqi people practice nowadays is nothing but its remnants.

Narrated Ibn Jarir: I was told by Muhammad Ibn`Abdel A`la As-San`ani that he was told by Al-Mu`tamir Ibn Sulaiman who said: I heard ` Imran Ibn Jarir who narrated from Abu Majliz as saying: Sulaiman (Peace be upon him) took from every living creature a covenant. So when any person gets afflicted with anything, he (Sulaiman) asks Allah with that covenant and the person recovers. Unfortunately, the people added to this sorcery and magic and said: this is what Sulaiman Ibn Dawud used to act upon.

It is true that magic existed before the time of Sulaiman Ibn Dawud (Peace be upon them) because magicians were found in the lifetime of Musa (Moses) (Peace be upon him) and that Sulaiman came after Musa (Peace be upon them both). Allah the Almighty says: “Have you not thought about the group of the Children of Israel after (the time of) Musa (Moses)? When they said to a Prophet of theirs, “Appoint for us a king and we will fight in Allah’s Way.” He said, “Would you then refrain from fighting, if fighting was prescribed for you?” They said, “Why should we not fight in Allah’s Way while we have been driven out of our homes and our children (families have been taken as captives)?” But when fighting was ordered for them, they turned away, all except a few of them. And Allah is All-Aware of the Zalimun (polytheists and wrong-doers)”. (Al- Baqarah, 246) then, Allah mentioned the story in which, “and Dawud (David) killed Jalut (Goliath), and Allah gave him [Dawud (David)] the kingdom [after the death of Talut (Saul) and Samuel] and Al-Hikmah (Prophethood), and taught him of that which He willed”. (Al-Baqarah, 251) and, the people of Salih who existed before Ibrahim (Peace be upon him) said to their Prophet Salih: “You are only of those bewitched!”. (Ash-Shu’ara’, 153)

The Jew falsely claimed that Allah Almighty revealed magic on the tongues of Gabriel and Michael to Sulaiman Ibn Dawud, but Allah belied them and showed their falsehood. Moreover, Allah informed His Messenger Muhammad (Peace be upon him) that neither Gabriel, nor Michael has descended with magic and He declared the innocence of Sulaiman (Peace be upon him) from sorcery and black magic. Allah told the whole people that magic is nothing but the work of devils who teach it to the people in Babylon. And, that the two men who used to teach it to the people there were called Harut and Marut.

Abdullah Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) that he heard Allah’s Messenger (Peace be upon him) as saying: “When Adam (Peace be upon him) was put down on earth, the angels said: 0 Lord! “Will You place therein those who will make mischief therein and shed blood, -while we glorify You with praises and thanks and sanctify You”. (Al-Baqarah, 30) They continued: Our Lord! We obey You more than man does. Allah the Almighty said to them: Appoint two angels from amongst you to descend to earth. The angels said: Our Lord! (We chose) Harut and Marut. They went down to earth where the flower appeared to them in the form of the most beautiful woman on earth. They asked her to have sexual intercourse with them. But, she said: only after you disbelieve in Allah. They refused and she went away for a while. Then, she came back holding a child in her arms and they asked her for the second time. She said: first, you must kill this boy. They refused to and she went away for a while and then, came back holding a glass of wine. They asked her for the third time. She said: First, you must drink this glass of wine. They drank the wine, committed adultery with her and finally killed the boy. When they restored their conscience, the woman said: By Allah! After you had drunk the wine, you committed all that which you refused to do at first. Thereupon, they were given the choice between receiving the torment of this like or that of the Hereafter. They’ chose that of the present life.”

Allah the Almighty says: “And from these (angels) people learn that by which they cause separation between man and his wife”, i.e. the people learns from Harut and Marut the magic by which they cause separation between man and his wife though they (the man and his wife) have some kind of affinity and passion. This is caused by cunning of the devils as transmitted in Imam Muslim’s Sahih from the Hadith narrated by Jabir Ibn ‘Abdullah that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) says: “Iblis places his throne upon water; he then sends detachments (for creating dissension); the nearer to him in rank are those who are most notorious in creating dissension. One of them comes and says: I did so and so. And he says: You have done nothing. Then one amongst them comes and says: I did not spare so and so until I sowed the seed of discord between a husband and a wife. The Satan goes near him and says: ‘You have done well. “Al-A’mash said: “He then embraces him.” The dissension between a husband and his wife can be created through magic in that the devil let each one of them imagine something bad -a view, or manner, etc.