From the “Reliance of the Traveller, A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law”
a7.2 Unlawful knowledge includes:
(1) learning sorcery, since according to the most reliable position, it is unlawful, as the vast majority of scholars have decisively stated;
YUSUFALI: They followed what the evil ones gave out (falsely) against the power of Solomon: the blasphemers Were, not Solomon, but the evil ones, teaching men Magic, and such things as came down at babylon to the angels Harut and Marut. But neither of these taught anyone (Such things) without saying: “We are only for trial; so do not blaspheme.” They learned from them the means to sow discord between man and wife. But they could not thus harm anyone except by Allah’s permission. And they learned what harmed them, not what profited them. And they knew that the buyers of (magic) would have no share in the happiness of the Hereafter. And vile was the price for which they did sell their souls, if they but knew!
Fortune Teller Faces Beheading in Saudi Arabia
(April 1) — A popular Lebanese TV personality who hosted a show where he predicted the future and gave callers advice is awaiting execution in Saudi Arabia for witchcraft, his lawyer said this week.
Ali Hussain Sabat is the former host of a popular call-in show that aired on the Beirut-based satellite TV channel Sheherazade. On the show, he answered callers’ questions about the future and dispatched general advice on life questions.
Under Saudi Arabia’s strict interpretation of Islam, that’s considered sorcery — a crime punishable by death. The Saudi religious police burst into Sabat’s hotel room in the city of Medina in 2008 and arrested him while on a Muslim pilgrimage to the kingdom. A Saudi court convicted Sabat last year and sentenced him to death.
In Saudi Arabia, most executions are carried out by beheading the victim with a sword, often in a public square. They’re most commonly carried out on Thursdays, the last day of the work week there.
Sabat’s lawyer, May el-Khansa, told several news agencies Wednesday that she believes her client will be executed within 48 hours. She’s appealing to Lebanese authorities, including the country’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, to intervene.
“It is very important that we save the life of this one person,” el-Khansa told Agence France-Presse. “He is not a criminal.” She added that Sabat’s family is in shock and that his elderly mother is seriously ill, with doctors saying the stress of her son’s ordeal has brought her to the brink of death herself.
The 46-year-old Sabat is the father of five children.