"Genie" is a term derived from the Arabic "Jinni" and while we have a brief article on their Islamic origin here, we’re going to take this time to elaborate a little more.
A jinni is a mischievous or even malevolent spirit that can take the form of any animal or person, and is said to have magic powers. I’m sure that isn’t news to all of you Disney fans out there, but did you know they have their own separate Jinn community?
It’s true! They have their own laws, customs and kings (presumably way more fun than ours, with Robin Williams singing constantly).
Despite having all that fun stuff going for them, they seem to spend most of their time trying to tempt humans into wicked acts. In the 13th century the Islamic scholar Ibn Taymiyyah deemed the Jinn “ignorant, untruthful oppressive and treacherous.” According to Taymiyyah, much of what a lay person would perceive as “magic” was actually the Jinn hard at work, messing with us. This makes us here at By The Gods! glad that we have Never had a friend like them.