Saudi TV Debate: Should You Go to a Psychiatrist or Have Quranic Verses Recited?
A Saudi TV debate dealt with the question whether people suffering from psychological problems should go to a psychiatric clinic or to someone who would recite Quranic verses over them. Psychiatrist Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi said that Freud, who, he claimed, "went to New York and founded psychiatry there," had taken "all the basics of psychiatry" from Muslim scientists. Family consultant Dr. Zahra Al-Moabi rejected the need to go to psychiatric clinics, saying: "If someone is not cured by the Quran, he cannot be cured at all." The debate aired on Rotana Khalijiyya TV on October 14, 2018.
Following are excerpts:
Interviewer: How come people here find it easy to go to a person who treats them by reciting Quranic verses, but find it very difficult to go to a psychiatric clinic?
Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi: These are our traditional norms. The sad thing is that psychology and psychiatry were founded by Arab Muslim scientists.
Interviewer: I didn’t know that.
Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi: Yes. Avicenna and Rhazes founded medicine…
Interviewer: We’re talking about psychiatry…
Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi: Yes. The Jews were not allowed…
Panel member: They were Muslim, but not Arab.
Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi: Muslim and Arab.
Interviewer: No, Rhazes and Avicenna were not Arabs…
Panel member: None of these people was an Arab.
Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi: They weren’t, but some of these people were Arab. But what I’m asking is: Who let the Jews into facilities of medicine? America, Canada, and Europe. Until 50 years ago, no Jew was allowed into any facility of medicine. Freud was the first one. He went to New York and founded psychiatry there. He took all the basics of psychiatry from the Muslim scientists. Then he founded psychiatry, even though he was a neurologist, not a psychiatrist.
Dr. Zahra Al-Moabi: In Islam, in the shari’a, and in the hadiths of the Prophet Muhammad, there is a supplication: “Allah, I take refuge in You from anxiety and sorrow.” It talks about depression.
Dr. Jamal Al-Tuwairqi: Right.
Dr. Zahra Al-Moabi: “I take refuge in You from weakness and laziness.”
Interviewer: So should a person turn to someone who will recite Quranic verses to him, or should he go to a psychiatrist?
Dr. Zahra Al-Moabi: I use incantations on myself. Besides, you have the Quran, which is the book of healing.
Interviewer: But what if a person suffers from a psychological problem?
Dr. Zahra Al-Moabi: If someone is not cured by the Quran, he cannot be cured at all.