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A Tale of the Evil Eye

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Once upon a time, a man lived on the island of Socotra. He was a registered criminal etched in the islanders’ fear memories. The reason was that he was a man with an evil eye. That was his evil eye, which had a curse brought about by a malevolent glare. People used to give gifts and presents to him in order to avoid his evil eye. If he looked at something and compared it to something else, that thing would perish. Consciously or unconsciously, that man forgot to mention the Lord’s name when he looked at things. Indeed, what he did to people and their properties was terrible and could not be described at all.
The tales of the evil eye were very popular in those days. It was said that some of those people, who had evil eyes, could not control themselves. As it was told too, neither their families nor their children could even protect themselves from the harm of their evil eye and the high disasters they exerted.
One day, the man with the evil eye went away until he reached a remote village. Because he was a stranger, one of the villagers met him and invited him on the same day, making him a welcome guest in his house. The man with the evil eye accepted the man’s invitation. At his host’s house, the man found that the villager was living with his wife and a young child. When he looked at the child playing, the man was impressed by the beauty of the child’s hair and was amazed at his good nature. Suddenly, and without warning, the child began crying for no known reason.
The host man and his wife did not understand why their child was unusually crying! Despite their best efforts to stop his crying and screaming, it got more intense and continued throughout the day. With all her ways and means, the mother tried her best to entertain her child. After he could not do anything, she told her husband that bug bites might have bitten their child, and she didn’t know what to do for her child.
At that time, as the child’s behavior got more intense and continued throughout the day, the man with the evil eye noticed that he had drilled the ones who hosted him. He decided to help them. After telling them that an evil eye had a curse brought about by a malevolent glare. He pitied them and felt ashamed of their honor and hospitality for him, and he requested that the woman take the child to recite an exorcism (verses of the Holy Quran) to protect the child from an evil eye.
The woman gave him her child, who was crying hopefully and in a miserable condition. Once the man with the evil eye began reciting for a short time, the child stopped crying and screaming. The man gave the child back to his mother’s lap. For a short time, the child went into a deep sleep, so his mother moved him to his rocking bed. The husband and wife were shocked at what had just happened to their child. Soon, they understood that the trouble in which their child was caught was caused by the stranger, the man with the evil eye, who stayed at their house as a guest since no one else had seen their child that evening except him.
Though the owner of the house kept silent. He never had a crush on his guest or fired him, which was not in line with their customs and traditions. They kept it quiet and said that whatever the man with the evil eye did to them, he was still our guest and had a right over them, and that would all be over by the early morning. Then that unwelcome guest felt that he had to leave immediately.
In the morning, the man continued his journey until he reached his destination. After taking what he needed, he came back to his village. On the way back, he saw two beautiful girls. One of those two beautiful girls had long, silky hair that fell on her back and shoulders. He kept looking at her carefully and said something to himself without mentioning the Lord’s name.
When that girl woke up and lifted her head off the pillow, she felt a headache. However, the two hair strands remained on the pillow she slept on.
In the morning, while the man with the evil eye was walking in his village between the neighborhood’s houses, he stopped to look at a newly born cow. That cow was dairy with a color, pleasing the beholders. No sooner had he crossed the street; he heard a scream from where the cow was, announcing that the cow belonged to the so-and-so who had passed away.
In the evening, all the villagers gathered to say that their disasters prevailed and increased greatly because of the man with the evil eye. Then they decided to banish that man from their village for the safety of themselves and their properties. Some of them said that they must have killed him because of what his evil eye did. Some others suggested that they must have ripped out his evil eye to eliminate all its evil. Eventually, they agreed that they should first take him to everyone who had been harmed due to his evil eye to mention the Lord’s name over him when treating him. After that, they would provide him with all he needed, including food and money to leave their homes. Before doing so, he had to swear an oath to mention the Lord’s name wherever he saw something on the road. The entire group participated in resolving that issue. They threw him out of the village between midnight and the following midday, and then they believed they were born again.

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