“Epileptic Symptoms” In The Biblical Prophets?

This is in response to this article by a Christian missionary.

    Muhammad’s 11 symptoms

    1. He experienced ringing in his ears, like bells

In their epileptic or psychotic fits which they interpreted as “prophetic” visions, Ezekiel heard “loud thundering noises” (Ezekiel 3:12f); Jeremiah heard “sound of the trumpet” (Jeremiah 4:19); Isaiah heard loud and shrill voices like “someone crying in the wilderness” (Isaiah 40:3).

    2. Sweat was on his forehead

During what he believed to be his “prophetic” experience, all the “bones” of Jeremiah “shook” (Jeremiah 23:9) and he appeared to others like a “drunken man.”

    3. His heart would beat rapidly

Isaiah’s heart “panted” (i.e., beat heavily) in his “prophetic” experience according to Isaiah 21:4.

    4. His face was red

Compare this with those whom the Old Testament regards as Prophets: The Old Testament Prophets bruised and bled themselves (see: I Kings 20:35-43) under the influence of what they regarded as their “prophetic” experience.

    5. He would breath heavily

Isaiah’s heart would falter and he would breathe heavily in what he believed to be his “prophetic” visions (Isaiah 21:4).

    6. He would suddenly fall down or lie down

In Abraham’s psychotic vision, he “fell face down” on the ground (Genesis 17:3). In his visions, which he claimed to be “prophetic,” Ezekiel would fall on his face (Ezekiel 1:28; 43:1-5; 44:4). When Peter and the disciples of Jesus underwent a psychotic vision, they “fell flat on the ground.” (Matthew 17:6)

    7. He wanted to be covered by a blanket

Old Testament Prophets covered themselves with rough and thick “garments of hair” and leather-girdles (Zechariah 13:4; II Kings 1:8).

    8. He would fall down unconscious

Daniel fell unconscious on observing a vision, which he claimed to be a “prophetic” experience (Daniel 10:8, 9f).

    9. His lips would move rapidly

Max Weber writes:

They [The Old Testament Prophets] screamed (karah) their prophecies aloud to the world, partly in indistinguishable words, partly in imprecations, threats, and benedictions with saliva running from their mouths (hittif “geifern” mean to prophecy), now murmuring or stammering.1

I had already indicated that Ezekiel suffered from paralysis of the limbs and of the tongue (Ezekiel 3:25f) — from which infirmities he is relieved only upon the pronouncement (which he believed to be “prophetic”) of the downfall of Jerusalem (Ezekiel 24:27; 33 22).

    10. He would snore like a camel

The comment of the bigoted author of the original post itself stated that this was not (i.e., in his opinion) a symptom of epilepsy. Thus there isn’t any need to further investigate it because he/she did not raise any objection here.

    11. He would sweat

See response to point 2. The dumb Christian repeated this point twice.

    All of the above (except snoring like a camel) are symptoms of epilepsy. So 10 out of Muhammad’s 11 symptoms may be epilepsy-related. .. 10/11

Now, I anxiously await the judgment of the Christian Zionists on the Old Testament Prophets since their prophetic experience turns out to be a mirror image of that of the Prophet Muhammad(P). For the Muslims, this in itself is the greatest proof of the fact that the Prophet Muhammad(P) represented the continuity of the Hebrew Prophetic tradition, which had been broken and contradicted by the false teachings of Christianity.

Cite this article as: Asif Iqbal, "“Epileptic Symptoms” In The Biblical Prophets?," in Bismika Allahuma, September 20, 2005, last accessed March 24, 2018, https://www.bismikaallahuma.org/islam/epileptic-symptoms-in-the-biblical-prophets/


  1. Max Weber, Ancient Judaism (NY, 1952), p. 287 []


  1. I have yet to see one single case of epilepsy which has resulted in the formation of a beautiful set of poetry…

    I guess the missionary speaking in all his tongues and blah blahs falling around on the floor spewing gibberish qualify as candidates for patients of epilepsy.

  2. The Christian Missionary is suffering from epileptic or psychotic fits or Islamophobia disease (should consult a doctor)

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