The Jinn of the Feroze Shah Kotla Fort. Old Delhi, India.

On my first day in India, I explored the Feroze Shah Kotla Fort with a group from Stops Hostel.

The good travelers of Stops Hostel and our erudite tour guides, Vikas (yellow shoes) and Vivek  (white striped shirt). Guy on the far left is an site security guard. 

The Feroze Shah Kotla Fort was established in 1354 CE by the eponymous Sultan of Dehli. It’s crumbling remains occupy several acres in old Delhi. According to local folklore, it is the home to an invisible community of supernatural Jinn. It is believed that Jinn were initially drawn to the fort for its luxury but still occupy its crumbling structure. Now worshippers frequent the decaying fort to light fires and leave offerings for the Jinn.

One of the central buildings of the fort. The top floor used to be the most luxurious room in the compound. It is believed that the Jinn presence is most concentrated here. 

As characterized by Islamic mythology and theology, Jinn are supernatural creatures that inhabit an invisible spiritual realm but nevertheless take interest in the material world we occupy. Jinn come in three flavors: Gandhi (good), Mussolini (bad), and Switzerland (neutral). Collectively, Jinn comprise a causal apparatus for the possible outcome of ones fortune. According to Islamic mythology, Jinn have freewill, and are thus just like humans except without material cause. According to Islamic theology, the Jinn also have to face God on Judgment Day; the price of free will. 

Locals walking the ancient grounds of the Fort. 

Despite the Islamic origins of Jinn mythology, superstitious Hindus have incorporated belief of the existence of Jinn into their religion and locals of all faith come to the fort to honor the Jinn and persuade the good Jinn to provide good fortune the bad Jinn to leave them alone. 

Two men paying homage to the Jinn in the ruins of the Feroze Shah Kotla Fort.

A shrine built to impress the Jinn. 

I can't say that I personally felt the presence of the Jinn. However, there was another sort of squatter inhabiting the old fort. Bats! And lots of them!