By Dr. Jamal Badawi
As a Daughter
1- The Qur’an ended the cruel pre-Islamic practice of female infanticide(wa’d):
Parents are duty-bound to support and show kindness and justice to their daughters.
When the female (infant) buried alive is questioned for what crime she was killed…. (At-Takwir 81:8-9)
2- The Qur’an went further to rebuke the unwelcoming attitude of some parents upon hearing the news of the birth of a baby girl, instead of a baby boy:
When news is brought to one of them of (the birth of) a female (child), his face darkens and he is filled with inward grief! With shame he hides himself from his people because of the bad news he has had! Shall he retain her on (sufferance and) contempt or bury her in the dust? Ah! What an evil (choice) they decide on! (An-Nahl 16:58-59)
3- Parents are duty-bound to support and show kindness and justice to their daughters. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
Whosoever has a daughter and does not bury her alive, does not insult her, and does not favor his son over her, Allah will enter him into paradise. (Ahmad)
Whosoever supports two daughters until they mature, he and I will come on the day of judgment as this (and he pointed with his two fingers held together). (Ahmad)
4- A crucial aspect in the upbringing of daughters that greatly influences their future is education. Education is not only a right but a responsibility for all males and females.
Prophet Muhammad said, “Seeking knowledge is mandatory for every Muslim”. (Al-Bayhaqi and Ibn-Majah) The word “Muslim” here is inclusive of both males and females.
As a Wife
1- Marriage in Islam is based on mutual peace, love and compassion, and not the mere satisfying of human sexual desire.
And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves that you may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts); verily in that are signs for those who reflect. (Ar-Rum 30:21)
(He is) the Creator of the heavens and the earth: He has made for you pairs from among yourselves and pairs among cattle: by this means does He multiply you: there is nothing whatever like unto Him and He is the One that hears and sees (all things). (Ash-Shura 42:11)
Marriage and Divorce
2- The female has the right to accept or reject marriage proposals.
Her consent is a prerequisite to the validity of the martial contract, according to the Prophets’ teaching. It follows that if an “arranged marriage” means the marrying of a female without her consent, then such a marriage may be annulled if the female so wishes:
Ibn `Abbas reported that a girl came to the Messenger of Allah, and she reported that her father had forced her to marry without her consent. The Messenger of God gave her the choice… (between accepting the marriage or invalidating it. (Ahmad)
Another version of the report states that the girl said: “Actually, I accept this marriage, but I wanted to let women know that parents have no right to force a husband on them.” (Ibn-Majah)
3- The husband is responsible for the maintenance, protection, and overall leadership (qiwamah) of the family, within the framework of consultation and kindness. The mutuality and complementarity of husband and wife does not mean “subservience” by either party to the other. Prophet Muhammad helped with household chores although the responsibilities he bore and the issues he faced in his community were immense.
The mothers shall give suck to their offspring for two whole years, if the father desires to complete the term. But he shall bear the cost of their food and clothing on equitable terms. No soul shall have a burden laid on it greater than it can bear. No mother shall be treated unfairly on account of her child, nor father on account of his child. A heir shall be chargeable in the same way. If they both decide on weaning by mutual consent, and after due consultation, there is no blame on them. If you decide on a foster-mother for your offspring, there is no blame on you, provided you pay (the mother) what you offered on equitable terms. But fear Allah and know that Allah sees well what you do. (Al-Baqarah 2:233)
Prophet Muhammad instructed Muslims regarding women,
“I commend you to be kind to women.” (Al-Bukhari) He said also, “The best of you is the best to his family (wife).” (An-Nawawi in his book Riyad As-Saliheen)
The Qur’an urges husbands to be kind and considerate to their wives, even if a wife falls out of favor with her husband or disinclination for her arises within him. It also outlawed the pre-Islamic Arabian practice whereby the stepson of the deceased father was allowed to take possession of his father’s widow(s) (inherit them) as if they were part of the estate of the deceased:
O you who believe! You are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should you treat them with harshness, that you may take away part of the marital gift you have given them, except when they have been guilty of open lewdness; on the contrary, live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If you take a dislike to them, it may be that you dislike a thing through which Allah brings about a great deal of good. (An-Nisaa’ 4:19)
4- Should marital disputes arise, the Qur’an encourages couples to resolve them privately in a spirit of fairness and probity. Under no circumstances does the Qur’an encourage, allow, or condone family violence or physical abuse.
In extreme cases, and whenever greater harm, such as divorce, is a likely option, it allows for a husband to administer a gentle pat to his wife that causes no physical harm to the body nor leaves any sort of mark. It may serve, in some cases, to bring to the wife’s attention to the seriousness of her continued unreasonable behavior (refraction), and may be resorted to only after exhausting other steps discussed in endnote.
If that mild measure is not likely to prevent a marriage from collapsing, as a last measure, it should not be resorted to. Indeed, the Qur’an outlines an enlightened step and a wise approach for the husband and wife to resolve persistent conflict in their martial life: In the event that disputes cannot be resolved equitably between husband and wife, the Qur’an prescribes mediation between the parties through family intervention on behalf of both spouses.
5- Divorce is a last resort, permissible but not encouraged, for the Qur’an esteems the preservation of faith and the individual’s right – male and female alike – to felicity. Forms of marriage dissolution include an enactment based upon mutual agreement, the husband’s initiative, the wife’s initiative (if part of her martial contract), the court’s decision on a wife’s initiative (for a legitimate reason) and the wife’s initiative without a “cause” provided that she returns her marital gift to her husband (khul` or divestiture).
6- Priority for the custody of young children (up to the age of about seven) is given to the mother. A child later may choose the mother or father as his or her custodian.
Custody questions are to be settled in a manner that balances the interests of both parents and the well-being of the child.
The article is an excerpt from the author’s “Gender Equity in Islam: Basic Principles”.
By: Abul A`la Mawdudi
How does one acquire knowledge of and belief in God, His Attributes, His Law and the Day of Judgment?
There are countless manifestations of God around us and in our own selves, which bear witness to the fact that there is One and only One Creator.
There are countless manifestations of God around us and in our own selves, which bear witness to the fact that there is One and only One Creator and Governor of this Universe and it is He Who controls and directs it.
These manifestations reflect the divine attributes of the Creator: His great wisdom, His all-embracing knowledge, His omnipotence, His mercy, His all-sustaining power – in short His attributes can be traced everywhere in His works. But man’s intellect and capacity for knowledge have erred in observing and understanding them.
Searching for Balanced Code of Life
Some men have argued that there are two gods, others have professed belief in a trinity, and still others have succumbed to polytheism. Some have worshiped nature and others divided the Creator into the gods of rain, air, fire, life, death and so on.
Similarly, men have put forward many erroneous notions about life after death; for instance, that man is reduced to dust after death and will not rise to life again; or that man is subject to a process of continuous regeneration in this world and is punished or rewarded in future cycles of life.
Even greater difficulty arises when we come to the question of a code of living. To formulate a complete and balanced code that conforms to God’s pleasure merely using human reason is an extremely difficult task.
Even if a man is equipped with the highest faculties of reason and intellect and possesses matchless wisdom and experience, the chances of his formulating the correct views on existence are slight.
And even if, after a lifetime of reflection, he does in fact succeed he will still lack the confidence that he has really discovered the truth and adopted the right path.
Need for Guidance
The fullest and fairest test of man’s wisdom, reason and knowledge might have been to have left him to his own resources without any external guidance. But this would have meant that only those with the determination and ability to find the path of truth would find salvation.
God, therefore, spared His human creatures such a hard test. Through His Grace and Benevolence He raised for mankind men from among themselves to whom He imparted the true knowledge of His attributes, revealed to them His Law and the Right Code of Living, gave them the knowledge of the meaning and purpose of life and of life after death and thus showed them the way by which man can achieve success and eternal bliss.
These chosen men are the Messengers of God – His Prophets. God has communicated knowledge and wisdom to them by means of revelation, and the book containing the Divine Communications is called the Book of God, or the Word of God.
The test of man’s wisdom and intellect therefore lies in this: does he recognize God’s Messengers after observing their pure and pious lives and carefully studying their noble and flawless teachings? A man of wisdom and common sense would accept instructions given by the Messengers of truth.
If he denies the Messengers of God and their teachings, his denial would signify that he was devoid of the capacity to discover truth and righteousness. He would fail his test. Such a man will never be able to discover the truth about God and His Law and life after death.
Faith in the Unknown
It is an everyday experience that when you do not know a thing, you look for somebody who does know. If you get ill and you cannot treat and cure yourself, you go to a doctor and follow his instructions without question. Why? Because he is properly qualified to give medical advice, possesses experience and has treated and cured a number of patients.
Similarly, in matters of law you accept whatever a legal expert says and act accordingly.
In educational matters you trust in your teacher. When you want to go to some place and do not know the way, you ask somebody who knows it, and follow the way he points out. In short, the course that you adopt in your day-to-day life about matters which you do not or cannot know is that you approach someone who does know about them, accept his advice and act accordingly. You make every effort to select the proper person.
But from then on you accept his advice unquestioningly. This kind of belief is called “belief in the unknown (Al-Ghayb)”.
Belief in Al-Ghayb signifies that you get knowledge of what was not known to you from one who knows. You do not know God and His real attributes. You are not aware that His angels are directing the machinery of the whole Universe according to His orders, and that they surround you on all sides. You have not the proper knowledge of the way of life through which you can seek the pleasure of your Creator. And you are in the dark about the life to come.
Such knowledge is given to you by the Prophets, who have had direct contact with the Divine Being. They are the persons whose sincerity, integrity, trustworthiness, godliness and absolute purity stand as irrevocable witnesses to the truth of their claim to knowledge.
And above all, the wisdom and force of their message makes you admit that they speak the truth and deserve to be believed and followed.
This conviction of yours is Belief in Al-Ghayb. Such a truth-discerning and truth acknowledging attitude is essential for obedience to God and for acting in accordance with His pleasure; for you have no other medium than God’s Messengers for the achievement of true knowledge, and without true knowledge you cannot proceed on the path of Islam.
The article is an excerpt from the book “Towards Understanding Islam” by Abul A`la Al-Mawdudi.
By Abdul-Rahman Al Sheha
Qadaa´ and Qadar are two Arabic words usually translated as ‘fate’, ‘destiny’, or ‘pre-ordainment’. Many of these English words lead to incorrect belief in this concept, so the original Arabic terms have been retained in order that one understand them in their true sense.
This is to believe that whatever Allah wills comes to be, and whatever He does not will does not come to be.
To have iman (belief) in Qadaa´ and Qadar is to believe that Allah always knew everything before its came into being, and what will happen to them afterwards. He then brought them into existence, all in accordance to His Knowledge and Measure. Allah says:
Verily, We have created all things with Qadar. (Al-Qamr 54:49)
Everything which occurred in the past, is occurring in the present, and will occur in the future in this universe was known to Allah before it came to be. Then Allah brought it into being, all in accordance to His Will and Measure. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said:
“A person is not a Muslim until he believes in Qadar, its good and its evil effects – until he knows that whatever happened to him would have never missed him, and what did not happen to him would never have occurred.” (At-Tirmidhi)
The belief in Qadar means to believe in four things:
1- To believe that Allah always knew everything the creation would do, and there was never a time in which He did not know.
2- To believe that Allah wrote all of this in the ‘Preserved Tablet’ (Al-Lawh Al-Mahfudh). The Prophet said:
“The first thing which Allah created was the Pen, and He said to it, ‘Write.’ It responded, ‘What should I write?’ He said, ‘Write everything that will occur until the Day of Resurrection.’” (Abu Dawud)
3- The belief in the Will of Allah which always comes to be, and his Absolute Ability and Power over all things. This is to believe that whatever Allah wills comes to be, and whatever He does not will does not come to be.
4- The belief that there is no creation in the earth or in the heavens except that Allah created it. There is no Creator, Lord or Sovereign other than Him.
This belief is not in opposition to the fact that one must do everything in his means to achieve things. For example, if someone wants children, he must fulfill those means which allow him to achieve this goal, such as marriage. But after fulfilling these means, he may be granted the results he hoped for –which are children – or he may not, all according to the Will of Allah.
The reason for this is that the means are not the true causes of things, but rather the true cause is the Will of Allah. These means that we strive to fulfill are also from the Qadar of Allah, and for this reason, the Prophet explained to the Companions when they asked him:
“‘O Messenger of Allah, do the verses and supplications we recite, the medicine we take to cure ourselves, and the various shields we use to ward harm change the Qadar of Allah?’ (He replied,) ‘They are from the Qadar of Allah.’” (At-ta`liqat Ar-Radiyah)
Fruits of Belief in Qadaa´ & Qadar
Through the belief in Qadaa´ and Qadar, one benefits in the following ways:
1- It strengthens his dependence upon Allah (in achieving results) after fulfilling its means.
2- One becomes pleased with whatever results, which in turn produces peace of heart and spiritual satisfaction. There is no room left for stress, worry, or sadness felt due to the outcomes of affairs. Allah says:
No calamity befalls on the earth or in yourselves but is inscribed in the Book of Decrees, before We bring it into existence. Verily, that is easy for Allah. In order that you may not be sad over matters that you fail to get, nor rejoice because of that which has been given to you. And Allah likes not prideful boasters. (Al-Hadid 54:22-23)
3- It eases the effects of calamities faced by humans. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
“The strong believer is better and more beloved to Allah than a weak believer, and in each one there is good. Be keen to do what benefits you and seek help in Allah, and do not be neglectful in doing so. And if any mishap befalls you, do not say, ‘If only I had only done such and such,’ but rather say, ‘This is the Qadar of Allah, and whatever He Wills He does,’ for indeed (the saying of) ‘if’ opens the door for Satan’s works.” (Muslim)
4- It increases one’s reward and wipes away sins. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
“No Muslim is fatigued, is stricken with illness, feels stress, worry, sadness, or harm, not even a thorn which pricks him, except that Allah forgives sins through it.” (Al-Bukhari)
Belief in Qadar is not, as some mistakenly think, a call to put one trust in Allah without striving or fulfilling the means, for as the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him ) himself replied to a person who asked him:
“‘Should I leave my camel untied and trust in Allah?’ He said, ‘Tie it and trust in Allah.’” (Ibn Hibban)
The article is an excerpt from the author’s book “How to Become a Muslim”.
By Dr. Jasser Auda
“When people praise you for what they assume about you, blame yourself for what you really know about yourself. The most ignorant is the one who denies what he really knows about himself and believes what others assume about him.”
While journeying to God we will be put to many tests. One of those tests pertains to people’s praise for what they assume about you. This word of wisdom answers the following question: how does one deal with people’s praise?
People’s praise may change one’s rituals from being done to please God to being done to please people.
People’s praise is a serious issue. A man was mentioned before the Prophet and another man praised him greatly. The Prophet said,
“Woe on you! You have cut the neck of your friend.” The Prophet repeated this sentence many times and said, “If it is indispensable for anyone of you to praise someone, then he should say, ‘I think that he is so-and-so,” if he really thinks that he is such. God is the One Who will take his accounts (as He knows his reality) and no-one can sanctify anybody before God.” (Al-Bukhari)
In another tradition, the Prophet said: “When you see those who shower (undue) praise (upon others), throw dust upon their faces.” (Muslim)
People’s praise may change one’s rituals from being done to please God to being done to please people, earn their praise or avoid their criticism. It also discourages one to do more good deeds if he feels that he is perfecting his actions or that he has done many good deeds which attracted people’s praise.
Another negative aspect of praise is that it makes one overlook his flaws and, instead, look at his merits.
In this word of wisdom, Sheikh Ibn `Ata’illah says: “When people praise you for what they assume about you, blame yourself for what you really know about yourself.” People praise you based on their assumption about you. But you know yourself better. You know that you are suffering from many flaws.
Notice that when the Sheikh talked about the beginnings he advised us to discover our flaws. The Sheikh said: “Trying to discover the flaws within you is better than trying to discover the worlds hidden from you.”
If you are highly praised by people, you should discover your flaws and blame yourself for what you know about it. You should feel ashamed because people are praising you for things which are not in you. You should pray to God to forgive your sins and conceal your flaws.
This is reminds us of what Imam `Ali (may God be pleased with him) when he described the Companions (may God be pleased with them) in his famous sermon: Imam `Ali said: “If someone praises one of them, he says, “I know myself better than others (know me), and my Lord is more knowledgeable of me than myself. O God, don’t take me to task for what they say, and make me better than what they think of me, and forgive me for those sins which they are unaware of.”
According to Imam `Ali’s description, when someone praised one of the Prophet’s Companions, he responded to him saying: “I know myself better than others (know me)”, i.e. I know myself and others think good of me. This is the same meaning given by Ibn `Atta’illah. Then the Companion adds: “And my Lord is more knowledgeable of me than myself”, i.e. God is more knowledgeable of my flaws, sins, and mistakes than myself. Finally, the Companion ends his response by praying to God: “Make me better than what they think of me.” They think good of me, so make me better than this. “O God, forgive me for those sins which they are unaware of.” God does not reveal things which we do not like and which we cannot tell people about.
Sometimes people’s praise takes away the reward promised by God for a certain good deed. Because this praise is actually the reward that one was seeking, as his intention was not to please God, but to please people. This is an utter hypocrisy.
The Sheikh says: “If the believer is praised, he should feel ashamed of God that people praise him for things which are not in him. The most ignorant is the one who denies what he really knows about himself and believes what others assume about him.”
Should I leave what I know for sure about myself and believe what people assume about it? This is a sign of ignorance and conceit.
In some other cases, people’s praise is glad tidings for the believer. Abu Dhar (may God be pleased him) reported: It was said to God’s Messenger (peace be upon him): What is your opinion about the person who has done good deeds and the people praise him? He said: “It is glad tidings for a believer (which he has received in this mortal world).” (Muslim)
Therefore, the servant should thank God for that, and should not be self-conceited. He also should not believe what people assume about him and forget his own flaws.
We pray to God to conceal our flaws, grant us humility, and give us glad tidings in this world and the next.
For them there is the glad tiding (of happiness) in the life of this world and in the life to come… (Yunus 10:64)
The article is excerpted from “Some of Al-Hikam Al-Ataiyyah” (The Path to God: A Journey with Ibn `Ata’illah’s Words of Wisdom In the Light of the Quran, the Prophetic Tradition, and Universal Laws of God- By Dr. Jasser Auda
By Abdul-Rahman Al Sheha
The rights of wives concerning their husbands are many and may be summarized as follows:
A wife is entitled to receive a dowry from her husband which a marriage contract is void without it. The dowry is not to be forfeited but after the completion of a marriage contract she may forfeit her right as Allah says in the Qur’an:
And give to the women (whom you marry) their dowry with a good heart, but if they, of their own good will, remit any part of it to you, take it, and enjoy it without fear of any harm (as Allah has made it lawful). (An-Nisaa’ 4:4)
A husband is required to provide, within his means and limits, all essential and basic requirements of his wife , children and entire household. Allah (Exalted be He) says in the Qur’an:
Let the man of means spend according to his means and the man whose resources are restricted, let him spend according to what Allah has given him. Allah puts no burden on any person beyond what He has given him. After a difficulty, Allah will soon grant relief. (At-Talaq 65:7)
To encourage generosity towards the wives, Islam has named this financial support as charity which is rewarded greatly by Allah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said to Sa`d ibn Abi Waqqas:
“No amount you spend on your family seeking reward from Allah but that He will reward you even if it is a bite of food you put in your wife’s mouth.” (Al-Bukhari)
A wife has a right to take a reasonably required amount from her husband’s property for herself and her children without her husband’s knowledge if he spends miserly on them according to the hadith wherein Hind bint `Utbah said: “ O Messenger of Allah: verily Abu Sufyan is a miser and doesn’t give me enough for myself and my child except that I take from his wealth without his knowledge, so he (peace be upon him) said:
“Take what is reasonably enough for you and your son.” (Al-Bukhari)
Companionship & Intimate Relationship
One of the most important rights of a wife is to secure from her husband a satisfactory level of intimate relationship and a fair amount of time with him.
This right of the wife and family members must be fully maintained since a wife needs an affectionate husband to take care of her and fulfill her basic needs. As related by Jabir when the Prophet said to Jabir: “Did you marry O Jabir?” I said: Yes. He said: “Virgin or matron (i.e. woman previously marries)?” I said: a matron. He said: “Why didn’t you marry a virgin so that you could play with her and she could play with you or you make her laugh and she makes you laugh?” (Al-Bukhari)
Protection of All the Secrets of the Wife
A husband must not disclose any of his wife’s deficiencies or shortcomings, keeping all what he sees and hears from his wife as a secret that should not ever be disclosed.
The intimate relationship between a husband and wife in Islam is cherished and protected.
Marital relationships are sacred relationships according to Islam, as we read in the instructions of Allah’s Messenger:
One of the worst positions in the sight of Allah on the Day of Requital is that of a man who will have an intimate relationship with his wife, and then spread the secrets of his spouse to the public.” (Muslim)
Equality and Fairness
The husband who is married to more than one wife must provide equally to all of his wives, offering them the same or comparable housing conditions and clothing.
He is to spend equal time with each one of them. Any injustice in this regard is strictly prohibited as the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said:
“He who has two wives and does not treat them both equally will appear on the Day of Requital while he is half paralyzed.” (An-Nasa’i)
Fair and Kind Treatment
A husband must extend just treatment to his wife and household. A husband must demonstrate care, kindness and solve any problem within his means, while forbearing the deficiencies and shortcomings of his wife seeking the Pleasure of Allah in both worlds.
A husband should consult with his wife concerning their life and future needs and plans. He is required to secure and provide for his wife and household all means of peaceful environment at home and outside. The Messenger of Allah said:
Those believers who have the most complete faith who possess the best of character, and the best among you are those who are the best to their wives.” (At-Tirmidhi)
Protection and Preservation
By all the abilities available, a husband must not place or expose his wife or family members to any immoral situation or evil environment. This is based on the instructions of the verse of the Qur’an:
O you who believe! Save yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe, who flinch not (from executing) the Commands they receive from Allah, but do (precisely) what they are commanded. (At-Tahrim 66:6)
He must protect the private wealth and property of his wife and must not use any of her personal funds or possessions without her prior approval. He must not engage in any transaction concerning his wife’s finances, without her consent.
The article is an excerpt from the author’s Human Rights in Islam and Common Misconceptions.
By Dr. Ahmad Al-Khalidi
The Satan was and is still the most dangerous enemy of Mankind. Allah the Lord, the King and the Ilah (God) of Mankind warns every human being, male or female, young or old, against the danger and wickedness of the Satan.
Allah is so merciful to Mankind that He allotted a whole chapter of the Qur’an, and lots of verses as well as a number of dialogues with Iblis (Satan) to disclose its danger to believers so that they may beware its deception and misleading steps:
Man is Allah’s Vicegerent on earth. He is given the free will to do whatever he wills whether it is good or evil.
Say: I seek refuge in the Lord of Mankind, The Sovereign of Mankind,
The God of Mankind, From the evil of the retreating whisperer,
Who whispers (evil) into the breasts of Mankind, From among the jinn and Mankind. (An-Nas 114:1-5)
Dialogue between Allah and Iblis
This dialogue shows the extent of Man’s value and honour to Allah (Exalted be He) who is the Most Merciful to Man. It also reflects the nature of conflict between Iblis (the cursed) and Adam’s posterity and that the battle with the Satan is hard and continuous. Furthermore, this dialogue sheds light on the consequence of arrogance in the Hereafter.
Baz (2007) mentions that three models of Allah’s creatures are well portrayed in this dialogue: “the angel as a model of complete submission and extreme obedience to Allah, the Satan as a model of absolute disobedience as well as the doubled nature of Man.”
Allah created Adam, human beings’ father, from clay, then He imaged him as a human being; then He commanded the angels to prostrate for Adam because of his knowledge.
So, the angels, as elucidated by (Al-Qarny: 2007: 188), “prostrated to Adam in obedience to Allah and honour to Adam but not a prostration of worship . However, Iblis refused to prostrate to Adam as he bears arrogance in itself; consequently, it was dismissed out of the Mercy of Allah. Hence, the Satan threatened to take revenge from Adam and his posterity. That is why Allah warns believers against the Satan and commands them to take it an enemy:
Verily Satan is an enemy to you: so treat him as an enemy. He only invites his adherents, that they may become Companions of the Blazing Fire. (Fatir 53:6)
Righteous Young Muslims should be aware, careful and alert lest the Satan seduce them as it hates chaste and good mannered YMs; therefore it does its best to wrong and mislead them so as to commit shameful acts.
O ye Children of Adam! Let not Satan seduce you, in the same manner as He got your parents out of the Garden. (Al-A’raf 7:27)
However, Al-Saboni (2002:364) classifies human beings in regard to Satan into three categories:” The first category is protected and secured by Allah; so the Satan cannot mislead nor seduce them, they are the Messengers and Prophets (peace be upon them).
The second category is that “the satans roam round ; they are the common believers; when they fall in a sin or disobedience , they repent and return to Allah; so Allah wipes away their sins.” And the third category is “in the hands of satans like a ball in the hands of boys. They are the disbelievers and boastful people”.
Allah Judges Iblis
Allah said to Iblis (the cursed) why it did not prostrate to Adam; though it is Allah who ordered it and Allah’s order is obligatory. Then Iblis (the dismissed and the cursed) said that it was better than Adam; as Allah created it from fire while He created Adam from clay. Actually this is a false analogy; because mud is the source of plants and fruits that provide Man with food and other benefits; while fire is a means of destruction and torture.
(Allah) said: “What prevented thee from prostrating when I commanded thee?” He said: “I am better than he: Thou didst create me from fire, and him from clay”. (Al-A`raf 7:12)
So, Allah ordered Iblis (the cursed) to go down out of paradise humiliated; as he has no right to be arrogant in His honor’s surrounding and at the same time for he refused His obedience.
(Allah) said: “Get (Iblis) down from this (paradise): it is not for thee to be arrogant here: get out, for thou art of the meanest (of creatures).” (Al-A`raf 7:13)
Then Iblis asked Allah to give it respite till the Resurrection Day.
He said: “Give me respite till the day they are raised up.” (Al-A`raf 7:14)
Allah suspended the Satan so as to make the tradition of trial take place and the conflict between good and right on one hand and between evil and falsehood on the other hand to occur.
(Allah) said: “Be you among those who have respite.” (Al-A`raf 7:15)
Iblis Threatens to Mislead Adam & His Posterity
Al-Jaza’iri (1997 Vol. II : 166) says “Since Allah misguided Iblis; it would sit for Adam and his posterity in Allah’s straight path, which is Islam, as it is the path that leads the person who follows it to the pleasure of Allah“.
He said: “Because thou hast thrown me out of the way, lo! I will lie in wait for them on thy straight way”. (Al-A`raf 7:16)
Then Iblis swore that it would sit for Adam’s posterity in their four directions , into their wishes, passions, anger, and to prevent the majority from being grateful to their Lord and to make them disbelievers and ungrateful to Allah.
Then will I assault them from before them and behind them, from their right and their left: Nor wilt thou find, in most of them, gratitude (for thy mercies). (Al-A`raf 7:17)
So, Allah commanded Iblis to go out of the Garden dismissed, humiliated and scorned and swore that who obeys Iblis (the cursed) and disobeys Allah would be deprived of His pleasure, burnt, and humiliated in His fire.
Allah drives Iblis and his followers away from the Garden.
Al-Sa’di (2001 Vol. I :411) says, “there is warning for all those who follow the Satan from Human Beings and Jinns that Allah will fill Hellfire from all the misled followers of the Satan” and this is considered a clear warning for all those who follow the Satan and leave the Most Merciful.
(Allah) said: “Get out from this, disgraced and expelled. If any of them follow thee,- Hell will I fill with you all.” (Al-A`raf 7:18)
Unlike the angels whose job is only to obey their Lord, worship Him, and glorify Him, man is authorized to be Allah’s caliph (Vicegerent) on the earth. He is given the free will; so that he can do whatever he wills whether it is good or evil. That is why the Satan threatens to mislead Adam and his Posterity so as to persuade them to disobey Allah and to be its followers.
That is why, Allah, the Beneficent and the Merciful, sent His Messengers to Mankind and revealed His Books to guide them to the right path that leads to Paradise and to warn them against the steps of the Satan that lead to Hell.
– Iblis was and is still the envious enemy of Man; as Allah honored Adam and commanded the Angels and Iblis to prostrate to him.
– The Satan announced its enmity to Adam and his posterity and promised to mislead them with all means and ways.
– Muslims should take the Satan a clear enemy so that they may not be exposed to its deception and seduction which eventually lead to Hell Fire.
– The Satan’s weapon by which it misleads man is mere whispering and ornamentation.
– Disobedience of Allah leads to Allah’s wrath, hence to dismissing the disobedient creatures (Man or Jinn) from his Mercy and Gardens.
The enmity of Iblis (the cursed) to Adam and his posterity, the danger of envy and arrogance on one’s psychological health, the danger of Iblis and its posterity on Man, immunity from Satan can be through Allah’s remembrance and being grateful to Him, the falsehood of the Satan’s wrong analogy between fire and mud, Allah’s disobedience pleases the Satan, Allah’s disobedience causes punishment in this world and in the other world, and warning young Muslims against Satan’s whispering is a psychological therapy.
Dr. Ahmad Muhammad Al khalidi is Researcher and translator, E L teacher and lecturer, an old member in the presentation to Islam committee.