Short Answer: For a true believer it is not at all a problem to recognize The Dajjal. And yet several believers may get confused by his trickeries and fall victim to his ploys. That is to say, Allah will enable the believers to read the word “kafir” through their insight even if they don’t know Arabic or are illiterate; but the non-believers even when they are literate will not be able to read it. So to escape from the guiles of Dajjal, we must be firmly rooted in our faith and practice of Islam.
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Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said:
“Since the birth of Adam till the advent of the Judgment Day there is no fitnah (tribulation) much greater than that of Dajjal.” (Muslim)
He has also said:
“No Prophet was sent but he warned his people about the one-eyed liar (i.e. Dajjal)…” (Bukhari)
The very name Dajjal refers to a person who would mislead and deceive the people by lies and all kinds of confusing stratagems. There are several sayings of the Prophet to warn the believers about his evil, so that they can know him by his features.
Description in Hadith
It is said that his left eye is covered with a thick piece of flesh making him “one-eyed” and the word “kafir” is written between his eyes. And note:
“This will be read by every believer, literate or illiterate.” (Muslim).
This means that for a true believer it is not at all a problem to recognize him. And yet several believers may get confused by his trickeries and fall victim to his ploys. That is to say, Allah will enable the believers to read the word “kafir” through their insight even if they don’t know Arabic or are illiterate; but the non-believers even when they are literate will not be able to read it. So to escape from the guiles of Dajjal, we must be firmly rooted in our faith and practice of Islam.
Beware of his Paradise
Again, in another hadith the Prophet has said:
“Dajjal is one-eyed, blind or defective in his left eye, with thick hair. He will have with him a paradise and a hell, but his hell will be a paradise and his paradise will be a hell.” (Muslim).
Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said:
‘I know what Dajjal will bring with him: he will have two rivers flowing. One will clearly look like water and the other will clearly look like blazing fire. If any one of you sees that, let him choose the river which looks like fire, then let him close his eyes and lower his head and drink from it, for it will be cool water.’” (Muslim)
The Prophet left his ummah on a clear path; and most certainly he has not only warned us against the fitnah of Dajjal, but also taught us how to seek Allah Almighty’s help in getting protection from it.
The Prophet instructed us how to seek refuge with Allah in our salah from four things:
“O Allah, I seek refuge with You from the torment of the grave, I seek refuge with You from the fitnah of Dajjal, and I seek refuge with You from the trials of life and death. O Allah, I seek refuge with You from sin and debt.” (Muslim)
Another teaching of the Prophet in the matter is that we should recite the ten opening verses of Surah Al-Kahf against Dajjal. The Prophet said:
“Whoever among you sees him (Dajjal), let him recite against him the opening verses of Surah al-Kahf.” (Muslim). According to another report the final verses of Surah Al-Kahf should be recited.
It is also noteworthy that the Prophet has said:
“Whoever recites Surah al-Kahf on Friday, it will be a light for him from one Friday to the next.” (Saheeh al-Jaami’ al-Sagheer)
Every Muslim should strive to read this Surah, and to memorize it and read it repeatedly, especially on Friday.
May Allah Almighty help us, guide us and protect us from all kinds of fitnah including that of Dajjal!
Allah knows best.
I hope this helps.
Salam and please keep in touch.
(From Ask About Islam archives)
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