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Common Types of Nightmares In Islam

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What Is A Nightmare Means?


There are 3 major types of dream in Islam, a good dream which came from Allah SWT, a bad dream or nightmare which came from Satanic act, and a dream which came from the impact of exhausted or food or medicince.

Nightmare or also called bad dreams, is a form of unpleasant dream. It cause an emotional response through our mind it can be both fear, despair, anxiety, and moreover a great sadness. But study learn that having a bad dream does not cause a person to awake, they mostly remain asleep. However a nightmare can cause a further effect through human body and mind that could awaken people from their sleep.

Islamic View of Nightmare

Dream is very important in Islam, since the Prophet get revelation from dream itself. But unlike the Prophet’s dream, nightmare is a worst thing. It affect muslims in such a horrible way.

Narrated from Abu Hurayrah that Rasulullah said :

“Towards the end of time, hardly any dream of a Muslim will be false. The ones who have the truest  dreams will be those who are truest in speech. The dream of a Muslim is one of the forty-five parts of Prophethood. Dreams are of three types; good dream which is glad tidings from Allah, a dream from Satan which causes distress, and a dream that comes from what a man is thinking of to himself.”

From the hadith mentioned above we can understand that nightmare cause a distress to mankind.

Then what are types of nightmare in Islam muslims should know? Here we will discuss it one by one.

1. Nightmare come from satan 

There is no doubt that everything that cause distress and maleficent are come from satan. We will see it in the following verse :

“Private conversation is only from Satan that he may grieve those who have believed, but he will not harm them at all except by permission of Allah. And upon Allah let the believers rely.” (QS. Al-Mujadila : 10)

From the above verse we knew that satan can mislead mankind but they can not harm us without Allah’s permission.

2. Nightmare is satanic trick

Satan with all their tricks will deceive mankind to the end of time. Satan’s way to deceive mankind are various including through nightmare. If we affraid and by that not remembering Allah SWT then satan has succeded on mislead us. To avoid bad dreams or nightmares we can reciting quran. Read more about Etiquettes of Reading The Holy Quran

3. Nightmare effects

There are two effects of nightmare for human, the first one is making us affraid and the other one is make us feel guilty. Did you ever had a nightmare and feel that you have commited a great sin in your dream? That is also the way of satan to mislead human. As muslims if we get a nightmare like that repentance and recite His name to keept those nightmare away from being reality.

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4. Nightmare has no relation with superstition 

If we read this following verse, we can take a conclusion that nightmare has no relation with superstition or vision of anything in the future.

“He said, “O my son, do not relate your vision to your brothers or they will contrive againts you a plan. Indeed Satan, to man, is a manifest enemy.”

Nightmare even feels so real does not have any relation to vision. Sometimes people tell their nightmare toward others and create a multiplier effect and as if it has something to do with something else.

5. Nightmare that make us lazy to worship

Did you ever wake up in the middle of the night because of a nightmare? When you awake did you think about praying right away? A nightmare often occur at midnight until before dawn. For muslims who understand about this precious time, we are encourage to perform prayer during this time. But because of the nightmare, we forget to perform prayer and instead busy with our own fears. Instead of busying with fears we can make life better and life in a peacefull way. Read more about How to Make Life Better in Islam

6. Nightmare should not be told to other person

Rasulullah SAW said in the following hadith:

“Don’t tell the satan deed who played on you in dreams.” (Narrated by Muslim)

From Jabir radhiallahu ‘anhu, there was a time when people came to the Prophet and he asked about his dream. He dream his head was beheaded and then rolled and he ran after his head. And Rasulullah tell those person the hadith above.

7. Nightmare is states of body and mind

Some nightmare happen because our body or mind are exhausted or suffering a great shock. And if our body and mind are in a bad condition it will manifest into a nightmare. If muslims truly understand about this situation after attacking by nightmare we should perform dua and prayer. This act will help to ease our mind and nullified the effects of nightmare afterwards.

There are so many thing that can cause a trauma to people and manifest into nightmare or bad dreams, which are:

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8. Nightmare of disaster

A terrible natural disaster will cause a trauma to the one who experienced it. An earthquake, volcanic eruptions, or floods will imprint on the minds of the victims. Those trauma and terrible incident will haunt them until it became a nightmare. The cure for that matters in back to Quran and hadith. Read more about Effects of Lunar Eclipse in Islam

From Abdullah bin Abbas (R.A) it narrated that Rasulullah said :

“One day I was behind the Prophet and he said to me, ‘Young man! I shall teach you some words (of advice). Be mindful of Allah, and Allah will protect you. Be mindful of Allah, and you will find Him in front of you. If you ask, ask Allah. If you seek help, seek help from Allah. Know that if the nation were to gather to benefit you with anything, it would only benefit you with something that Allah has already prescribed for you, and that if they gather together in order to harm you, they would not harm you except if Allah had prescribed so. The pens have been lifted, and the pages are dry. (Narrated by Tirmidhi)

The above hadith explained to muslims that all event happen to us is only by the permission of Allah. And if we experience bad things only Allah SWT will able to help us.

9. General Nightmare

Islam encourage muslims to seek for knowledge. Therefore if muslims wants to understand the caused of nightmare they should learn about neurology and psychology.

Nightmare occured in the REM (rapid eye movement sleep) phase. The caused of nightmare can be any factors such as illness, negative reactions to medication,  and so forth. If nightmare cames often and bring extreme terror or anxiety continously they will become a deliberating sleep disorder. And it must be cure by medication and improve worship to make the heart calmer.

10. Night Terrors

It happens during the deep sleep, when people experienced this types of nightmare they are unable to respond voice and difficult to fully awaken. Usuallnya it lasting for 15 minutes. This nightmares is harmless and the big factor is geneticss.


Another types of nightmare in Islam are:

  • Recurring nightmares, than a bit hard to distinct between real life and dream.
  • Nightmare should not be intrepeted by muslims since anything that does not come from Allah SWT is the act of Satan.
  • Sleep paralysis.
  • Muslims can prevent theirselves from nightmare by many ways such as ablution, prayer, dua, say istighfar, basmallah, wash our face and so forth. Read more about Effective Islamic Ways to Avoid Bad Dreams

Those are types of nightmare in Islam, after understand this we can conclude that Islam sees nightmare as the evil deed. There is no need for muslims to interpreted any kind of nightmare since it is useless. Use it as a warning and self reminder.

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