Hijama-Traditional Cupping

Al-Hijamaالحجامة

{قال تعالى :{ وَمَا يَنْطِق عَنِ  الْهَوَى ، إِنْ هُوَ إِلا وَحْيٌ  يُوحَى

“Nor does he speak of his own desire.  It is only a revelation revealed.”

[Surah An-Najm 53:3-4]

Hijama, translated as cupping, literally means to suck.  It is practiced by applying cups on the body.  A suction is created through the cup and  blood is sucked towards the cupped area.

Cupping Therapy

Cupping is an ancient Chinese method of causing local congestion to treat various conditions. A partial vacuum is created in cups placed on the skin either by heat or suction.  This draws up the underlying tissues.

When the cup is left in place on the skin for a few minutes, blood stasis is formed and localized healing takes place. 

Cupping Legislated in the Sunnah

Anas (RAA) reported that the Prophet (SAWS) said, “When I went on the journey of al-Isra to Heaven I did not pass by any group of angels but they said, “O Mohammed!  Order your community to practice cupping.”  [Ibn Majah]

[Tirmidhi] relates from this hadith of Ibn Abbas, “O Mohammed, practice cupping!”

 Cupping as a form of Healing

*Ibn ‘Abbas, (RAA), narrated that the Prophet, (SAWS), said: “Healing is in three things: a drink of honey, a slash with a knife used for cupping and cauterizing by fire, but I forbid my followers from cauterizing by fire.”  [Bukhari] –In another version in Bukhari “And I do not wish to be cauterized.”

*Anas (RAA) reports that Rasulullah (SAWS) said, ‘The best medicine is cupping.’  [Shamaail, Chapter of Cupping].

How Cupping Therapy Works

-Releases local toxins

-Stimulates the lymphatic system

-Clears blockages or stagnated circulation

-Activates and clears the veins, arteries and capillaries

-Realigns and balances vital energy

-Promotes and improves circulation

Cupping used by the Prophet Mohammad(SAWS)

*Rasullullah (SAWS) was once hurt on his leg, (probably due to the clogging of the blood), hence he underwent cupping on his leg.  [Mishkat p. 389] .

*During the battle of Khaibar in 7 A.H., a woman prepared some meat which she filled with deadly poison and presented to Rasullulah (SAWS).  Upon tasting the meat, the poison affected Rasullulah (SAWS).  Rasullulah (SAWS) then used to undergo cupping in order to relieve himself from effects of the poison in his blood.  [Shamaail Tirmidhi].

Recommended Times for Cupping

Some days and times are better for cupping than others.  The middle of the lunar month, the 17th, 19th and 21st have been mentioned in some Hadith 

As the need may arise, cupping may be performed at any time according to the condition or urgency 

Location for Cupping

The Prophet, (SAWS), was cupped on the upper back, the two jugular veins, the head and the hip.  Cupping may be applied to other areas including the face, legs and feet.

 Method of Dry Cupping

-A partial vacuum is created in the cup by heat or suction on the area.

-The skin and underlying tissue swells and becomes warm, and gets sucked into the cup.

-This produces blood congestion at the site and stimulates circulation.

-After a prescribed period of time the cup is gently removed.

-No blood is removed from the body.

Method of Wet Cupping

-Dry cupping is first performed .

-Small cuts are made in the cupped area then the cup is replaced on the skin and suctioned again.

-The skin will be drawn into the cup and blood is sucked out of the area.

 -When done properly, on an area that has septic blood, the blood drawn will be dark. The process is repeated until the blood turns red.  Then the cupping should be stopped.

-The area should be cleaned and bandaged as necessary.

Some Benefits of Hijama

Hijama is known to help benefit:

-Migraine headaches.

-Rheumatoid Arthritis.

-Stiff or swollen joints, especially in the neck and back.

-Stomach ulcers and problems associated with diabetes.

-High blood pressure 6.Psychological disorders and some cases of paralysis.

-While the cupper or patient reads Quran during the treatment.

-Back pain, joint pain, gout, constipation, digestive problems, loss of appetite.

-Insomnia, problems associated with menstruation.

Side Effects of Cupping

- Cupping is a painless procedure.

-Red or purplish circular marks may appear on the skin for a few days.