Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
(i.e. having peers exorcise u, wearing taweez’s to protect u from the jinn and evil, reading a certain number of verses of the Quran in conjunction with some of these other treatments, drinking water or tea that has the ink from Quranic verses in it) Islamic and to what extent are they just cultural/superstitious? The impression I have is that a lot of this falls into the latter. (Like the concepts are often Islamic but the practice is not always).
In fact, most prevalent practices of this type have sound bases in the Qur’an, Sunnah, and practice of the early Muslims (salaf). At the same time, people’s understandings and practices are often clouded by ignorance.
Islamically, we have to distinguish between taking means and believing that means have an effect. It is our Shariah duty as believers to take the normative means that Allah has put at our disposal, on both the material and spiritual planes.
At the same time, it is our Imani-duty to be firmly convinced that it is Allah who created the means, and that it is only Allah who creates the effects. In this vein, one of the great Damascene scholars used to say, “Taking the means is obligatory, and denying they have effect is obligatory. Whoever relies on means has associated partners with Allah. Whoever negates means denies the Wisdom of Allah”
The mistake ignorant people make is to believe (both on the material and spiritual planes) that means have an effect. Whoever thinks this has a fundamental misunderstanding of basic Qur’anic realities, for Allah Most High has said, “Allah has created you, and all you do.”