Hamza Yusuf quoting stories from past 'scholars' about demon, free-minds jinn, etc is like me quoting a Harry Potter book to prove there are wizards in the world! Fairy tales are fairy tales no matter the source.
The Contradicting Jinn
Jinn can the following logical deduction based on looking at a problem step by step and judging this by the Qur’anic truths and not what our devoid of wisdom ancestors have given us including falsely and unashamedly attributing them to the Messenger. Remember, that to deny a false story attributed to the Messenger is not the same as denying the Messenger so do not get caught out by this; have faith in Allah, His Qur’an and your Allah given intellect. Also, a scholar can question the ‘strength’ of a hadith in Bukhari which he finds lacking in either the chain of narrators or the validity of the hadith itself by whatever criterion they may adopt, then they are questioning the integrity of Bukhari. If this can be done by any scholar, then we have the right to question every hadith based on the knowledge we get from the Qur’an.
Step 1: The Qur’an Says It Has No Contradictions and Many Will Try To Mislead You.
4:81 They express verbal allegiance, “Obedience!” But when they go away from you a party of them spends the night in planning other than what you tell them. God records what they plan by night. But, ignore them and put your trust in God. For God is enough as Trustee. [6:106]
4:82 Will they not then, try to understand this Qur’an? If it were from other than God they would have found in it much contradiction and inconsistencies.
Step 2: The Qur’an Is Guidance for Mankind.
2:185 The month of Ramadhan has been chosen for this collective training since this is the month in which the Qur’an was revealed, a Guidance for mankind [insaan], clearly explaining the ‘why’ of every Rule. And it is the Criterion of right and wrong.
Step 3: Angels Sent as A Messenger To Angels, Man Sent As A Messenger To Men.
17:93 "Or unless you have a dazzling house of gold or unless you climb into the sky. But, nay, we will not believe your climbing unless you bring a written book that we can read." Tell them, “Glorified is my Lord! Am I more than a human, a Messenger?"
17:94 Yet whenever guidance came to people, nothing kept them from believing as much as this objection, "Would God send a mortal man as His Messenger?"
17:95 Say, "If angels walked about and dwelled on the earth, We would have sent an angel from the heaven as Messenger." [43:60]
17:96 Tell them, "God suffices as witness between me and you. Surely, He is fully Aware of His servants." [The outcome through His laws will prove who is right]
Step 4: We Have Arabic Words Translated Into English Except For Those When Deception Is Involved.
6:130Ya maAAshara aljinni waal-insi alam ya/tikum rusulun minkum yaqussoona AAalaykum ayatee wayunthiroonakum liqaa yawmikum hatha qaloo shahidna AAala anfusina wagharrat-humu alhayatu alddunya washahidoo AAala anfusihim annahum kanoo kafireena
Yusuf Ali translation
6:130. "O ye assembly of Jinns [Arabic] and men[English]! Came there not unto you apostles from amongst you, setting forth unto you My signs, and warning you of the meeting of this Day of yours?" They will say: "We bear witness against ourselves." It was the life of this world that deceived them. So against themselves will they bear witness that they rejected Faith.
We may interpret Jinn as invisible creatures that are NOT HUMAN, MANKIND, INSAAN but if the Qur’an is guidance for mankind and Allah only sends messengers to their own kind, then it brings up a gross contradiction to these two clear verses by interpreting jinn in this way. It is difficult enough sometimes as the same word can have more than one meaning, but if we look for contradictions in our understanding as well cross referencing with other verses, then we can narrow down the interpretations closer to the truth. The four points listed above leaves us with only one conclusion; Jinn cannot be other than human beings. Let me repeat, since the Qur’an is Guidance for mankind, revealed to a man to deliver to men [male and female], to be addressed and followed by men, then when it says “jinns and inns”, it cannot mean another creature [invisible beings] and man. We can understand them as nomadic, uncivilised or better still, secluded, isolated peoples which will be explained in more detail.
6:130 O You, assembly of the nomads and the urbanites! Did not Messengers come to you from among yourselves, conveyed to you My messages and warned you of the meeting of this your Day? They will say, "We testify against ourselves.” Pursuit of only the worldly life preoccupied their hearts and minds. They will bear witness against themselves that they disregarded the truth.