What is Hijama / Cupping Therapy?
Cupping is a method of relieving local congestion by applying a partial vacuum that is created in a cup(s), either by heat or by suction. Cupping has been used for thousands of years. Although it is often associated with Traditional Chinese Medicine, the entire world once knew this of therapy and used it. The Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Chinese used cupping therapy. The oldest recorded medical textbook, Ebers Papyrus, written in approximately 1550 BCE in Egypt, mentions cupping (Curtis, 2005). In the UK, the practice of cupping therapy also dates back a long time in one of their leading medical journals, The Lancet. It was named after this practice as it refers to the surgical instrument that can scrape the skin to perform a style of cupping.
'Hijama' in arabic is derived from 'hajm' which means 'sucking'. Cupping / Hijama is the process of applying cups to various points on the body and removing the air inside the cups to form a vacuum. In terms of following the Sunnah, the cupping that is referred to is 'Bleeding cupping'. It is the most frequently used, oldest and often the most effective method. A surgical instrument is used to scrape the skin and the cup is then applied to collect blood.
Types of Cupping / Hijama:
Bleeding cupping - Sunnah Cupping
Bleeding cuping or wet cupping as it is referred to sometimes, is the Sunnah method and is the oldest, most frequently used and often the most effective method of cupping. A surgical instrument is used to pierce the skin and the cup is then applied to collect blood. Most Muslim cupping therapist are trained for the Sunnah cupping points on the body. This is the area on the back, in between the shoulder blades, slightly towards the neck. There are other cupping points too, however for someone who just wants cupping done to follow the Sunnah, that is mainly the area that the therapist will apply the cups.
Moving Cupping or Massage Cupping
This is a great method of massage and is done by applying oil to the skin and moving the cup, by a weak suction, on the area to be treated.
A suitable herbal tincture is put into the cup and then suction is applied.
Dried mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) leaves, sometimes called by its Oriental name, Moxa, is a great warming herb. A needle is used, warmed by dried mugwort and then the cup is applied over the needle.
This is the least practiced method. It involves filling a third of the cup with warm water. Whilst holding the cup close to the client with one hand, it is brought to the point to be cupped and then burning cotton wool is inserted into the cup, then swiftly and simultaneously the cup is turned onto the skin. When performed properly, no water spillage occurs.
Discussion regarding Hijama with the vice chairman of the International Cupping Society - UK.*
Is Cupping / Hijama a cure for every disease?
Whoever performs cupping / Hijama on the 17th, 19th or 21st day (of the Islamic, lunar month) then it is a cure for every disease. [Sahih Sunan Abu Dawud - 3861].
Does Hijama help in cases of Sihr Magic?
Ibn Al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) mentions that the Messenger (saw) was afflicted with magic and was cupped on the head to treat it. He also mentions that Hijama is from the best of cures for magic if performed correctly (Zaad al Ma'aad).
In cases of Magic Sihr and possession many patients go from A to B searching for a cure and invariably they come across the Sunnah of Hijama. Some Raaqi's offer Hijama but do not really know the science of how one affects the other. Likewise many Hijama therapist offer Hijama as a cure for Sihr Magic but have no clue regarding the correct Sihr and the Hijama required to treat it. In the end many patients feel let down by both sides leaving them feeling disillusioned. Hijama Clinic is unique in that it is one of the very few places in the UK that actually knows how to apply both the knowledge of Ruqyah and Hijama.
Is Hijama painful?
Hijama is not painful, however to give you and idea it is probably similar to having a blood test. Hijama is not as intrusive as a blood test though as it does not penetrate the veins.
I am not a muslim can I benefit from the therapies mentioned on your website?
Absolutely, please get in touch with us and we would be glad to assist.
Much research information regarding cupping can be obtained from the following websites:
1) 'Cupping: From a biomechanical perspective' by L.M. Thama, H.P. Leea,b,_, C. Lua (Journal of Biomechanics) June 2005 (http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jbiomech)
2) 'Cupping' by Subhuti Dharmananda, Ph.D., Director, Institute for Traditional Medicine, Portland, Oregon (http://www.itmonline.org/arts/cupping.htm)
3) Ancient Chinese Technique of Cupping Offers Pain Relief Without Drugs or Surgery (http://www.NaturalNews.com/020253.html)
4) 'Massage Cupping Therapy for Health Care Professionals' By Anita J. Shannon, LMBT (http://www.massagetoday.com/archives/2004/02/04.html)
5) 'Cupping Therapy' by Ilkay Zihni Chirali (http://www.cuppingtherapy.co.uk/19103.html)
6) The Complete Guide To cupping Therapy By Dr Tamer Shaban (http://www.cuppingtherapy.info)
*Disclaimer: Please note Hijama Clinic takes no responsibility for information contained on external links from this website. Views expressed by individuals and organisations on their own webpages or on external sites they link to, are not necessarily those of Hijama Clinic.