Ista'aaza; Seeking Allah's Protection from Satan
Ista'aaza; Seeking Allah's Protection from Satan
Seyyed Abdul Hussain Dastghaib Shirazi
In my early childhood my granny used to tell us that when we had any fear of darkness or we found ourselves in any lonely place, we should recite Aaoozu billahi min ash Shaitan ir rajeem She told us that when we recited this, the Shaitan or the evil spirits, if they were around, would run away. She asked us to recite this whenever we came out of our home, while going to school or any other place. She also asked us to say these words before we said:
Bismillahir Rehman ir Raheem,
Before eating our food or commencing any work. Later on, during our theology classes at the school I learnt about the basics of Ista-Aaza.
Recently I have read a compendium of transcripts of 30 lectures, Sermons, given by the Shaheed e Mehrab Ayatolla Dasteghaib Shirazi. The erudite scholar has very skillfully encompassed all the aspects of Ista-Aaza drawing references from the authentic traditions and the Holy Book.
Without going into the technicalities, which are for the scholar and the researcher to delve in, the Ayatollah has given a very apt explanation of the concept for the layman to understand. What really surprises me is that every individual Muslim, from the very childhood, gets used to seeking, Ista-Aza --- Allah’s Protection against the machinations of the Satan. This is done as a force of habit cultivated through the instruction of the elders at home. But the details of the need for doing it are known to but a few.
A reading of the transcripts of the 30 lectures convinced me that they must be available to as wide a group of Muslims as possible.
Hence this translation! I pray to Allah that the translation gets published, gets widely circulated, and the Ajr goes to the Shaheed Dasteghaib. Insha Allah!
Real protection can come only from the Force that is all Pervading!
This work of Hazrat Shaheed e Mehraab Ayatollah Dasteghaib is presented under the title and style of "Ista-aaza. As is very evident from the title, the subject of the presentation is about seeking Allah’s Protection against the maneuverings of the Satan. With his high learning and knowledge of the Verses of the Holy Book and the Traditions of the Infallibles of the Prophet’s Family, he has delivered as many as thirty-five lectures on the intricate subject. He has elucidated the five aspects of Ista-aaza, namely piety or taqwa, Remembrance of Allah or Zikr, resignation on the wishes of Allah or Tawakkal, honesty of purpose or Iqlas and humility in supplication or Tazarro. The Ayatollah’s discourses on these topics are highly illuminating and interesting for those who peruse them.
To support his arguments, the author referred to the Verses, Traditions and tales with great skill. He has presented the facts in a very lucid language that the readers of all intellectual levels understand what he has conveyed to them.
The fact that has to be recognized is that the Ayatollah was the people’s guide ( Marja e Khalaeq) in his lifetime and therefore the world mourned him at the time of his martyrdom and thereafter too. The great works of the martyred Ayatollah are like the petals of a fragrant flower. These publications people have been buying for themselves and to gift to friends for deriving benefit from their reading.
The Martyr was himself a true practitioner of Ista-aaza. Throughout his life he struggled against the baser instincts (nafs e ammara) and to practice selfdenial.
This struggle of his was against the machinations of the Satan. In this struggle he was victorious. Therefore he introduces the Satan to his audiences in a very lucid and effective manner. He gives to the audience the ways of protecting themselves and seeking Allah’s Help to this end. The talks in this compendium are studded with thought provoking references. They are so interesting that the narrative retains the interest of the reader throughout the narrative and doesn’t tire them for a while! The interest increases as one makes progress with the reading!
I remember that once when an offset technician was photographing one of the Ayatollah’s books, he got engrossed in reading the contents. He has himself confessed that he was lost so much in reading the book that he forgot that the time for the closure of the studio that day had already come. Throughout the day he had not photographed even a page of the book! He said that on later days too, many a time he got engrossed in the contents of the book during the process of photographing it.
O Allah! Keep the Martyr’s spirit under the shadow of Your Munificence and also bless the spirit of his grandson with those of other martyrs!
THE FIRST TALKThe topic that has received the maximum attention in the Holy Quran and the traditions of the Prophet (a.s.) and his Vicegerents(a.s.) is Ista-aaza or seeking Allah’s help to protect one against the maneuverings of the Satan. This is done by saying the words aa oozu billahi mi ash shaitan ir rajeem.
But it is necessary that one should seek this protection from the depths of one’s heart. That is true Ista-aaza To highlight the importance of Ista-aaza, Allah says in the Holy Book:
Fa iza qarat al Quran fa ista az billahi min al Shaitan ir rajeem ( When you commence reciting the Quran, seek protection from Allah against the accursed Satan) During a prayer, it is mandated, that after saying the takbirat al ehraam (Allah o Akbar) one should say the Ista-aaza in a low tone. The commentators are of opinion that the Ista-aaza in this situation has to be in a low tone because it will be like the person wishing to keep himself hidden and at the same time escape from the machinations of the enemy (the Satan)! The pointer is towards the fact that the supplicant should seek protection against his mortal enemy who is waiting for an opportunity to overpower him. This is done best by quietly tapping the door of the Great Place of Succor!
ISTA-AAZA BEFORE COMMENCING A PRAYEROne most important time for Ista-aaza is the moment of commencement of a prayer. Whenever a person has to offer prayer to Allah, he should seek protection from Him against Iblees who is always bent on misguiding and taking him astray from the right path. Iblees makes his utmost efforts to destroy the good deeds of the human being that he is deprived of the rewards that he might earn. Atleast Iblees, or Satan, tries to make the person proud or deceitful about prayers.
For example, if one wishes to do the ablutions, he must do the Ista-aaza before commencing to do it by asking for Allah’s Protection against the accursed Satan. The ablution should be done only after doing Ista-aaza. You must have noticed that many a time the same ablution becomes the Satan’s area of operation that he puts many lurking fears or temptations in the mind of the person that make his entire prayer null and void. Therefore, Ista-aaza is one of the most important aspects of prayer that has to be performed in the truest sense, and implicitly, that Allah’s protection from the accursed Satan is assured.
ABSOLUTE NECESSITY OF ISTA-AAZA IN PERMISSIBLE AFFAIRSIn permissible (mustaheb), or day-to-day, affairs like eating food, drinking water or wearing the clothes, Ista-aaza is mandated. For example, at the time of wearing the clothes one should say Allahumma astarurati wa la tajal alshaitan lahu naseeba ( O Allah keep my private parts hidden and save them from the interference of Shaitan) In every situation, however lowly and futile, or elevated and likeable, one should seek protection from the Satan. While entering into the mosque, one should do the Ista-aaza lest the persistent Satan chases you even at that threshold! Even while going to a washroom it is required to do the Ista-aaza as follows:
Allahumma inni a-oozu beka min al khabeesil khabs ar rijs al khabs ash sahaitan ir rajeem ( O Allah I seek Your Protection from the accursed Satan and the defiled impurities)
SATAN AT THE THRESHOLD OF THE MOSQUEOne pious person said that he noticed Satan, in apocalyptic revelation, standing at the threshold of the mosque. He asked him " O accursed one! What are you doing here?" The Satan replied, " Some of my associates have been missed in these environs and I am waiting for them!" The pious person understood that they must be intelligent persons who have gone into the mosque and the accursed Satan was unable to follow them inside. They must have taken care to say the Ista-aaza before entering the mosque.
SAYING THE ISTA-AAZA BEFORE STIRRING OUT OF ONE’S HOUSEIsta-aaza is absolutely essential when one is going out of the residence. At that time Satan awaits for the person outside. One should do the Ista-aaza and recite the following supplication at the moment of emerging out of the house: Bismillahi wa billahi aamanto billahi tawakkalto alallaha wa la haula wa la quwawata illa billa ( In the name of Allah and with His Help I am proceeding on my errand. I have absolute Faith in the Great Allah and there is no power besides Him.
In the Holy Quran it is said with great emphasis that:
Innahu yarakum huwa wa qabeela min haisu la taraunahum inna jaaalnal shaitana auliya lil lazeena la yumenoon ( Shaitan and his group watch your actions intently and you remain oblivious of their activity. You must consider him (the Satan) your enemy because We have made the satans the friend of the faithless.) Only one thing can save you from Satan the accursed. That is Ista-aaz. Besides Allah’s Protection there is no way of saving oneself from the machination and subterfuges of the Satan.
THE PROPHET OF ISLAM (A.S.) EXHORTED BY ALLAH TO DO ISTAAAZAMan wishes to have access to the Presence of Allah but the Satan tries his best to prevent him from achieving this end. He puts so many hurdles and impediments in the way of men that it becomes impossible to reach the desired destination. The one and only way of precluding this risk is to seek Allah’s protection against Satan.
Allah has ordered the Prophet (a.s.) Qul Rabbe aaoozobeka min hamazat il shayateene wa aaoozubeka rabbin yahzaroon Say O Prophet! ‘O Allah! I seek your protection from the fears of the satans and their dominance on my heart and spirit.’
Similarly in the verse "Maoozatain" Allah says Minsharril waswaasil khannas Therefore when the enemy is so powerful and strong, we should not be complacent and unmindful of him. We should gather all our faculties and plan to save ourselves by seeking the Protection of Allah. Otherwise, one would find to his surprise that the place where he was prostrating himself for long was, in fact, the Satan’s abode and in his ignorance he thought that he was prostrating to god. When, in such a situation, he uttered ‘ O god!" in actual fact he had been submitting himself to Satan!
WORSHIPPING THE SATAN THE WHOLE LIFEA fable is narrated in Muntaqib al Tawareeq. My mentor, Ustad Ali al Haeri, told in one of his lectures, " In a village of the Isfahan province a rustic villager was in the last throes of his life. The pious person of the village was requested to say the talqeen, or pronounce the creed to the dying person to repeat it.
During the talqeen when the sick person said la ilaha il Allah to bear witness to the Unity of Allah, from a corner of the room a sound came-'Sadaqat abdi- My creature you say the truth!' When the sick man said, 'Ya Allah- O God!' Then again the sound came from the same corner of the room,' labbaek abdi!- My creature I am here!' The pious person asked, ' Who are you that calls?' The reply was, ' I am the person's creator whom he had worshipped all his life! I am Satan!'
Yes! It is a fact that the man worshipped Satan his entire life. He was always responding to the call of the Satan. His tongue spoke at the Satan's orders. His eyes saw things in response to the Satan's wishes. His heart responded to Satan's wishes. When throughout his life the person was at the beck and call of Satan, then at the time of the talqeen whether he said 'Ya Rab' or 'Ya Iblees' his respondent can only be Satan. Even if the curtains got raised in the person's last moments, and he was repentant, even then he would get only disappointment! Of what use will be this repentance!
O believers! Try to be steadfast in doing the Ista-aaza. Don't underestimate your enemy, the Satan! Don't be under the illusion that only repeating the words 'Aaoozu billahi min al shaitan ir rajeem' is sufficient. Remember! Unless you understand the purport of these words and mould your actions as per the Commandments of Allah, the Ista-aaza will not be of any utility.
DURING QAZAWAT OR DELIVERENCE OF JUSTICE, PRIVACY WITH NA MAHRAM
In the Traditions of the Ahl al Bayt, particular attention is drawn for Ista-aaza in the following delicate situations:
OR STRANGE FEMALES, WHILE IN A FRENZY OF ANGER
Qazawat: The qazi or judge has to say the Ista-aaza when he adjudicates a case and gives his judgement.
Qilwat ba na-mehram: When a person is alone with a strange and young woman, it is imperative that he seeks Allah's protection from Satan (Ista-aaza) because in such a situation the accursed Satan makes his utmost effort to lead the person astray.
Frenzy of anger: When a person is in a frenzy of anger, his blood boils and the Satan dominates him with full force. Because Satan is created fiery and rare (lateef) , he enters into the person of the man with great stealth. We quote here the example of Hazrat Nooh (a.s.) to explain our point. The Satan says, ' In his frenzy of anger a man for me is like a ball in a child's hand!' You must have seen that a child throws the ball whichever way he wants, wherever he wants! In the same Satan overpowers men in frenzy of anger and makes them commit taboo (haram) acts. There is no wonder if the Satan makes persons commit acts of kufr (infidelity) in a frenzy of anger! Only those lucky persons escape from such situations who have Allah's particular Blessing because they say the Ista-aaza in such situations.
Bismilla hir Rehman ir Raheem Qul rabbe aaoozubeka min hamazatish shayateene wa aaoozubeka rabbe ain yahzaroon
To summarize the last talk, momineen must give importance to Ista-aaza and, in accordance with the Nass-eQurani ( the categorical Quranic Injunction), in all conditions, seek Allah's Protection from the machinations of Satan. The Satan, and his ilk, have never left man to his own scruples, nor will they ever do it. They always strive to prevent man from doing any good deed. Whenever man tries to do good, they create impediments in his efforts.
In certain circumstances the efforts of the satanic forces are redoubled. These situations are when one delivers justice, when one is alone with a young strange woman and at the moment when a person is in a rage of anger. As illustrated in the previous talk, Satan tries all the subterfuges to destroy the human being.
THE SATAN'S TRAP OR BAITThis evening we shall consider three good deeds of men that the Satan makes the best efforts to nullify. They are:
Ahad : Promises or resolutions.
Nazr : Or offerings.
Sadaqa : Or charity.
When a person resolves to Allah for performing a certain act and to give a nazr (offering) after its fulfillment in accordance with the norms of fiqh, the Satan tries all the subterfuges at his command to prevent him from offering the promised nazr!
Similarly when one wants to give a sadaqa in Allah's way, Satan tries his level best to prevent the person from giving it. It has been oft recorded that when a person puts his hand in his pocket then Satan, and his numerous retainers, cling to the person's hand and put all sorts of fears in his mind. As the Holy Quran warns Ash shaitan yaadakum al faqra wa yamurukumbil fahsha- Al Baqra 268 The Satan threateneth you with poverty and enjoineth on you sordidness.
They will put a fear in the mind of the person that after doing the charity he will be left with nothing and render him penurious. Sometimes they put a fear in the mind of the person that after doing the charity if he gets some urgent need for personal expense, then from where he will get help! Therefore they persuade the person to refrain from doing charity in the way of Allah.
DON'T BRAG AFTER DOING CHARITYAnd, despite everything, one has given a charity, then Satan tries his level best to render the good deed null and void and thus the person doesn't qualify to get Reward for the good turn. To achieve this end, Satan would use all his skills to persuade the person to publicly brag about his charitable act. For example, Satan will put in the mind of the person to tell to the beneficiary of the charity, ' It was I who came to your rescue in time of need! None else would have helped you!' Or Satan would make him belittle the receiver of the charity by saying, ' Take this money now. But please don't come to me for help again!" Therefore, Allah categorically says in the Holy Quran:
La tabtalu sadaqatekum bilmanne wal aaza Render not your charities worthless by obligation and injuries (laid on them)- Al Baqarah 264 In a nutshell, Satan is a mortal enemy of men and always schemes to make their good turns go in vain. Therefore, they too have to render Satan's mean efforts ineffective!
SATAN SETS HIS SIGHTS ON THE HEARTS OF PEOPLEIn all commentaries, and particularly in Majma al Bayan, it is narrated from the Holy Prophet (a.s.) that Satan always has an eye on the heart of a momin. When he finds the person busy in prayer, he flees. The Prophet (a.s.) has said, ' Satan has put a halter on the hearts of men. But when man remembers Allah, Satan escapes from him. When a person ignores remembrance of Allah, Satan would swallow his heart.' ' Satan plans to swallow the heart of a momin. But when the momin remembers Allah, Satan runs away from him.'
Satan chases a person till the end. This subject has received great importance in the Holy Book. Allah takes an oath from man that he will not become a follower of Satan. In clear terms Allah has described Satan as the sworn enemy of man:
O progeny of Adam(a.s)! Have we not warned you not to become the followers of Satan. Definitely, he is your open enemy. Allah has thus forbidden man not to befriend, Satan, his enemy since creation and warned from becoming his follower.
WHAT IS SATAN? WHY HAS HE BEEN CREATED?Two topics have always been the subjects of discussion--- what is Satan and what is the purpose of his creation? Also, what could be the strategy to save oneself from his machinations and to dispel the fears that Satan creates in the hearts of human beings. These topics need discussion at length, The dissertations on the topics are neither comprehensible for the layman nor are necessary for him. Therefore, they are dealt here in brief to give the basic understanding to the common man.
WHAT IS THE USE OF KNOWING ABOUT SATANResearchers are of opinion that if there is fear of a housebreak in a neighborhood, then the person with good commonsense would look for as many persons as possible to confront the brigands. He will also ensure that the doors and windows are securely locked from inside the house. He will place suitable hurdles on the way by which the burglars might access the house. But, to the contrary, if the person spends lot of time in investigating about the brigands about their numbers instead of fortifying his place, it might become too late to meet their assault.
Therefore, what is necessary for you is to find the ways of guarding against Satan. Trying to find out about his creation, his ways of creating fears in the human beings would be a purposeless exercise. The duty of a person is to guard against Satan in all events.
Now that the Muqbir e Sadiq (the Truthful Messenger) has informed that Satan is the sworn enemy of the humans since creation of man, you should not waste time in futile talk and, instead, search for ways of warding him away. However, since these questions about Satan are oft repeated, the matter is dealt here in brief:
SATAN HAS BEEN CREATED WITH FIRE AND IS A RARE CREATUREAlthough man is mad of the four elements---- fire, water, soil and air---- but the content of soil is prominent in his make-up. This gives volume and weight to the human body. Therefore the power of comprehension and action in a human being are limited.
Contrary to this, Satan is made of fire, with the fire and air being predominant components in his make-up. Therefore Satan is absolutely rare (lateef) and light and, therefore, has a very wide range of actions and mobility in his control. Man thinks that he has great faculties at his command but Satan has such incredible capabilities that he can become so small as to easily pass through a tiny crevice. He can also become so huge as to entirely encompass a vast place! The distances that a man can travel over a month with difficulty, Satan can traverse in the time taken to blink the eyes once! The heavy weights that man is incapable of lifting, Satan can lift effortlessly!
In Surat al Naml Allah has made a reference towards this fact while narrating the story of Hazrat Sulaiman (a.s.) the throne of Bilqees: Qaala ifreetum min al jinna ana aateeaka behi qabla an taqooma mim maqaamek wa inni alaihi laqawi un ameen Said an audacious one among the jinn' I will bring it unto thee ere thou risest up from thy place; for verily I am strong (enough to do it) and I am (also thy) trusted one.'
SATAN CAN SEE USThere is an objection that if Satan exists, then why men are unable to see him? This is an invalid objection. Human eyes cannot see rare things. They can only visualize things that have volume. Can we see the air that is absolutely rare. Can we see the waves of the wind, although we feel them blowing. The human eye is made of soil and it can only see the voluminous things. Therefore the Holy Quran says:
Innahu yarakum huwa wa qabeelau min haisu laa taraunahum He and his troops look at you from such a place where you cannot see them. Yes! At certain times the satans can make themselves visible to people. Many prophets such as Hazrat Nooh (a.s.), Hazrat Yahya (a.s.), Hazrat Mohammed (a.s) and many men of high piety have seen Satan and even now some pious persons must be there who have this experience.
THE CREATION OF SATAN & THE FELICITY OF MANAs far as the purpose for Satan's creation, the Omnipotent Allah creates whatever He desires to. The raison d'être (hikmat) for creation of Satan requires a detailed discussion which will be out of place here. But, in a nutshell, the creation of Satan (and his ilk) is to test the felicity of the human beings. When men ward away the subterfuges of Satan, they ear a place in the Heaven and those who are misled by him, will be Hell bound!
Allah has ordered men to do charity. Satan asked people not to do charity lest their horde of wealth diminishes! Those who have wisdom and strong faith snub Satan and tell him,' Allah says:
Wa ma anfaqtum min shai in fahua yaqlaqhu wa huwa khair ur raazeqeen Whatever you spend, We shall replenish. We are the Best of Providers. If you are steadfast in determination and patience like a mountain, then wisdom and knowledge will take you to such a place that it becomes evident if you were irresolute, the Satanic fears would sway your feet! It is the existence of Satan that proves the felicity of men of piety and wisdom who are steadfast despite all the stratagems of the accursed one!
THE PURPOSE OF CREATION OF SATAN IS TO PUT MEN TO TESTWe all talk of Allah and the Day of Judgement. But do we really have a strong faith is a moot question! It is only Satan (and his ilk) that is a touchstone for testing the humans.
If you take Allah's name with implicit faith, then why you don't have confidence in His promises. If, unfortunately, you have accepted the fears that Satan has put in you mind, then you will be rendered a momin only in the namesake. If you have a strong belief in the existence of the Heaven, then why you don't make a sincere effort to earn a place in it! Why don't you try to avoid going to the Hell as Retribution for the evil deeds committed under the spell of Satan!
Wa ma kaana lahu alaihim min sultanin illa lenalama mai yaumenu bil aakhirate mimman huwa minha fi shak And there is not for him any authority over them , save that We would know (distinguish) him who believeth in the hereafter, from him who is in doubt concerning it.----Saba 21
You see that a particular lady has claims of piety. Satan approaches her in the garb of a human being and says, ' Madam! You have become old-fashioned and retrograde! You have covered yourself in such a clumsy chadar (shawl)'. When you happen to see the lady a second time, she will not look much different from gentlemen! Satan creates such doubts, fears and changes in the human beings.
Definitely, the purpose of the creation of Satan is to test the human beings as to their determination to be steadfast on the right path. Those who are fickle minded and susceptible to be led astray by Satan are also tested by Satan! Thus Allah gets a proof of who is momin (pious) and who is fajir (hypocrite.)
ALLAH'S PROMISE & SATAN'S PROMISEIt is a human failing that man gives more credence to Satan's promises. Satan prevents him from spending in the way of Allah by creating unfounded fears in his heart. The thought is generated in the man's mind that what he would do if a more important need for expenditure arises soon and he would be without the money that he was giving for the good cause now. .
But man forgets Allah's promise and goes back on spending on good causes. He remains in the service of Satan and is carried away, spending huge amounts for name and fame, hearing his name mentioned on the radio, television and the newspapers! When Allah exhorts people to be kind to their poor neighbors, needy relatives and to help them monetarily, they make an excuse that their financial status doesn't permit doing any such charity. But when Satan dictates about expense on worldly activities, they spend without giving a second thought!
ALLAH'S CALL & THE CALL OF SATANSatan has been created with the sole purpose of testing the human beings. He encourages opening of cinema houses and trains satanic men and entangles the two- legged animals in his bait.
Doesn't the call of 'Haiaalal falah' (come for the good act) emanate from the mosque in the vicinity of cinema halls at the time of Maghrib Prayer? These two situations are in the immediate neighborhood of each other to test the people as to who are righteous and who are going astray! Who knows/ The Day of Reckoning might be tomorrow! For that Day the right to get Reward and Retribution is being earned by men today!
SATAN NEVER THRUST HIS WILL ON PEOPLE FORCIBLYSatan can never force anyone to do misdeeds. He has no such faculties. He can only operate through creating doubts in the minds of persons and tempting them to go astray with his subterfuges. Satan says' Wa ma kaana alaikum min sultan- I have no suzerainty over you!' The Satan's job is only to create doubts and fears in the human mind. If a person goes to the mosque, it is with his own conviction and decision. When he goes to the cinema theatre, it is his own choice and decision. It is the fault of the man who is tempted by Satan to make decisions that make him a sinner. On the Day of Judgement when people surround Satan and blame him for leading them astray, he will give a simple and clear reply that he did not drag them into the Hell. They had themselves decided to act the way they did! Satn would then ask men to curse themselves rather than cursing him!
Wa ma kaana li alaikum min sultanin illa an dawatukum fa astajabtum li fala talumooni wa loomuwa anfusakum I had no authority over you except I called you and ye responded unto me: so blame me not but (rather) blame yourselves.
Bismilla hir Rehman ir Raheem Wa qul rabbe aoozu beka min hamazaatil shayateen wa aaoozu beka rabbe ain yahzaroon And say thous ' O my Lord! I seek refuge unto Thee from the (evil) prompting of the satans' ' I seek refuge unto Thee O my Lord! From their access to Me.'-- -Al Muminun 97,98
THE JEALOUS NATURE OF IBLEESBecause of his jealous nature, Iblees has been exiled from the Heaven. He cannot bear man, whom he thought inferior in comparison to himself, attaining nearness to Allah. Satan has expressed to Allah, ' You have made me with fire and have created Adam (a.s.) with soil. Fire is superior to soil and your ordering me to prostrate before Adam (a.s) is gross injustice!' Despite all this, man reaches august position and Satan has been repudiated by Allah thus,' Get away from here! You are inferior and contemptible. You have no right to brag about your superiority here!'
The human being wishes to achieve nearness to the Creator through prayer. But Satan tries with all his faculties and stratagems to create hurdles in the way of the person's progress towards the goal. This he does to satisfy his instinct of jealousy. Satan is such an accursed creature that if he is unable to cause major impediments to the efforts of the person, he will satisfy himself even with small disturbances to the man. For example, if Satan is unable to turn a person into an infidel or hypocrite, he will satisfy himself with making the person commit lesser sins.
JEALOUS & PROUD HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THE HEAVENHazrat Ameer al Momineen (a.s.) says in the Sermon of Qazeaa in the Nahj al Balagha: ' O people! Satan has rendered himself accursed because of his jealousy. Beware, you too might get involved in jealousy meet the same fate as Satan. Allah banished Satan from the Heaven because of his jealousy. He earned the displeasure and ire of Allah because of his pride and jealousy. How will you expect to achieve Heaven if you too are proud and jealous! When the mentor of the angels, Iblees, was sent out of the Heaven because of his pride and jealousy, how can ordinary mortals like you dream of entering the Heaven if they practice these undesirable traits. "
Satan was busy supplicating to Allah for long years but for one act of pride he earned the displeasure of Allah to be banished from the Heaven for all time. It must be remembered, therefore, that pride and greatness is only for Allah! Allah says,' Magnificence and Greatness only suit Me! You humans! What use your bragging? Conceit and pride are not your raiment. Talking big doesn't suit you. All men in the eyes of Allah are beggars and needy. Allah says,' Worship Me that there is no god other than Me!'
If man becomes proud and conceited, he will become a partner of Satan!
THE WISH F IBLEES FULFILLEDIt is narrated that when Satan was ordered out of the Heaven, he submitted to Allah in the following manner: ' O Allah! What has happened to my supplications offered over a long span of seven thousand years?' Allah replied, ' We shall reward you what you ask for as a compensation for your prayers.'
Satan said, ' O Allah! Give me respite till the Day of Judgement.' Allah replied, ' You are given the respite!'
Satan said, ' My second wish is that I am given the faculty to create doubts and fears in the hearts of the human beings.' This wish of Satan too was also granted. In granting this wish Allah had a strategy in view. Hazrat Adam (a.s) beseeched Allah thus,' O Creator! You have not only provided respite to this formidable enemy of my progeny till the Day of Judgement, you have also given him faculty to cause fears and temptations in the hearts of poor progeny! They will be helpless at the mercy of Satan! Allah said, ' O Adam (a.s.)! Don't be disturbed! With every Satan there will be an angel created by us., These angels will help your progeny to guard against the trap set by Satan.'
THE ANGELS TOO HAVE POWER OF INSPIRATION (ILHAAM)Whenever Satan creates doubts in the hearts of men, the angels inspire virtue in their heart. Satan says, ' Don't go to the mosque!' The angel encourages the person to go there. Satan encourages the person to commit certain sins that he can make reparation later on. The angel says that the person might die before he expresses his repentance for the sins. And even if he expresses repentance there is no guarantee of acceptance by Allah.
Give attention to your own hearts! Whether there are thoughts of good or of evil in your heart, you will always have doubts about these thoughts! When Satan upbraids you to commit a sinful act, the angels guide you against it. If Satan tries to prevent you from doing a good turn, the angels encourage you to go ahead with it.
AT THE CROSS-ROADSMan is therefore at the cross-roads! Either he loses himself in the valley of greed and vanity or is guided by the angels to the path of virtue and salvation. Allah has created man with the faculty of making his own decisions for his actions. Allah has categorically said in the Holy Quran, ' Allah is never unjust with men. It is the men who do injustice to themselves.' Wa ma kaana lillahi leyazlimahum wa lakin an naasa kanu anfusahum yazlemoon
THE DOOR FOR REPENTANCE IS ALWAYS OPENAllah has further said,' If We had imposed Iblees over your progeny and has given him respite till the Day of Reckoning, we have kept the doors of repentance open for you progeny too'. If men are caught in the web of the accursed Satan, they can express repentance like their ancestor, Adam (a.s.) and seek forgiveness from Allah. Remember that Adam (a.s.) after doing repentance reached the august status of Prophet-hood and was one of the choicest of Allah. Allah says:
. In allaha astafa Adam wa Nooha wa aale Ibrahim aale Imran ala aalemeen Repentant men too can achieve the status of tawwabeen (penitents) and become the dear ones of Allah. Allah, as such says:
In Allaha yuhibbul tawwabeen Allah likes the penitents
ALLAH'S BLESSING IS FOR MEN TILL THE ENDAll the people of the previous epochs had the doors of repentance open for them. But the conditions for acceptance of their penitence were very severe. It is the felicity of the presence of the Last of Prophets (a.s.) that his people, who are called the ummat-e-Marhooma, have a very wide door for repentance available to them. This concession is because their Prophet (a.s.) is Rehmat lil Aalameen ( the Blessing for All the Worlds) and Tauba, and its acceptance, too is one of the aspects of blessing. Bihar al Anwaar, volume three, quotes a tradition of the Prophet of Islam (a.s.)," Every person who repents for his past sins one year before his death, will be pardoned." Then said," One year is too long a period. If a person repents for his sins a month before his death, he may be pardoned." The Prophet (a.s.)
further added, " One month too is rather a long period. If the person repents a day prior to his death, his sins might be pardoned." The Prophet (a.s.) then said, " A day too is a long time. If the person repents at the moment of death, in the Barzaq (the interregnum) or before Izraell looks into his eyes, the person might be pardoned by Allah." It proves that if a Muslim repents even while he is dying, he stands a chance of getting pardoned for his sins.
Blessed is the heart that is busy in the Remembrance of Allah. Can the Blessing be more encompassing than what the Ummat-e-Marhooma has been endowed with. Despite the evil presence of Satan and his temptations to men to commit sins, Allah's Blessings are unfathomable!
HASSAN BASRI ASKS A QUESTION & IMAM ZAIN AL ABEDEEN (A.S.) REPLIESIt is narrated that once during the Haj Hassan Basri said,
Al ajab kul al ajab fa man naja kaif naja
It is surprising how the one who was to be saved, got saved?
It is very surprising that man escapes from the clutches of the powerful Iblees."
This talk of Hassan Basri reached the Imam (a.s.) He said,
"al ajab kul al ajab man halak kaif halak
It is surprising how one who was to get killed, got killed
It is surprising that the unlucky person was deprived of the all pervading
Blessing of Allah that spreads over the entire Universe."
ILLNESS BEFORE DEATH IS A BLESSINGAfter spending a long life the time for departure has come nigh. Perhaps it is the kindness of Allah that men get afflicted with disease and remain in this stage for some time before death. In this time they prepare themselves to meet their Creator. This is, perhaps, the reason that sudden deaths are considered a calamity. One who remains in the deathbed for a period, say a month, and doesn't awake to the fact and forgets to express penitence for his past sins before dying will be a very unfortunate person.
Bismillahir Rahman ir Raheem Wa qul Rabbe aoozubeka min hamazaat il shayateene wa aaoozubeka Rabbe an yahdaroon- Al-Mumminun 97/98 Say thou: 'O my Lord! I seek refuge unto Thee from the (evil) promptings of the satans!' ' I seek refuge unto Thee O my Lord! From their access to me'
THE ONLY WAY TO SAFETY FROM SATAN IS ISTA-AAZAThe fears and hardships that man faces on account of Satan are not hidden from anyone. Everyone knows that Satan is the worst enemy of human beings. He doesn't leave the men alone till their last breath. His only purpose in the world is to see that man doesn't profess faith on Allah and the Hereafter. At least, Satan makes every effort to ensure that men veer away from doing good deeds and get attracted to evil acts.
The most important thing is that men make every effort to get rid of Satan and his ilk. But to get rid of such powerful and organized group of enemies is not an easy task. The Holy Quran prescribes the one and only remedy for the situation, that is Ista-aaza. There are clear indications in the Book saying,'Faistaiz billah- Seek Allah's protection', because it is not possible to reach the Truth without doing this.
THE KING'S TENT & THE FEROCIOUS WATCH-DOGI had cited an example that Satan is like a ferocious dog that lingers at the entrance to the king's tent. Whenever anyone tries to go to the presence of the king, the dog rushes at him with gnawing teethe. This is such a mean janitor that barring the close friends of the king, none other is safe. Only Allah's favorites can reach Him without let or hindrance from this enemy. Anyway, to enter the king's tent we shall have to seek protection from him from the evil dog. There is no other way than seeking Allah's help and protection from the accursed Satan to achieve His nearness! Only Allah's fury can contain the accursed Satan.
Therefore, it is absolutely necessary to seek Allah's protection that with His attention one can get protection from the mischief of Satan. In this regard the Holy Quran says:
Wa qul aaoozu Rabbaka min hamazat il shayateene wa aaoozubeka Rabbe an yahdaroon Say! O Habib! 'O Lord! I seek Your protection from the fears caused by the satans on my heart and soul!' Particularly in privacy and loneliness, saving oneself from the fears and temptations created by Satan is rather difficult. In such a situation one must call: 'Ya ghayas al mustagheeseen Ya malaaz al laaezeen O listener of the plaint of the plaintiff O provider of succor to the refuge seeker! Save me from the machinations of Satan.' If there is no protection of Allah, one cannot save himself from the onslaught of Satan's subterfuges.
ISTA-AAZA SHOULD EMANATE FROM THE HEART AND NOT MERELY FROM THE LIPSTo gauge the reality of Ista-aaza, only saying aaoozu billahi min as Shaitan ir rajeem or saying its translation in one's own language is absolutely insufficient. Ista-aaza is a meaningful and spiritual condition that is conveyed by the words noted above. If Ista-aaza is prompted from the heart of the person, then only it will be effective. Otherwise, just uttering the words would make one the play- thing of Satan
THE THREE TYPES OF ISTA-AAZAThere are three ways the Ista-aaza is done:
1. There are persons who neither have the right spirit of doing Ista-aaza nor are they aware of the meaning of the words of Ista-aaza. But, all the same, as a force of habit, they utter the words: aaoozu billahi min al shaitan ir rajeem. Unless the Ista-aaza comes with feelings, understanding and from the heart, it becomes a satanic joke!
2. There are persons who know the meanings and purport of the words of Ista-aaza and are capable of saying them properly, but they haven't the right feelings in their heart and also their actions are in obedience of Satan. Such Ista-aaza will be for Satan rather than a submission to Allah for His protection against Satan!
3. There is a third group of persons who say the words of Ista-aaza from the depths of their hearts and are fully aware of their meaning, purport and spirit. These persons will be fully aware of the Greatness and Omnipotence of Allah. The Ista-aaza of these persons will always get the accepted by Allah.
SEEKING PROTECTION IN ALLAH'S OBEDIENCEThe deity of the sinners and Allah's disobedient persons is always the Satan. Such persons might curse Satan a thousand times to make a hypocritical show to others. To put the matter in more precise words, such persons outwardly say aa oozu billahi min al shaitan ir rajeem but their character is such that they make false allegations against others, use abusive language, trifle with the self- respect of others and reveal others' confidences. Such persons don't refrain from committing any minor or major sin and all the same utter the words of Ista-aaza! In practice their Ista-aaza becomes 'aa oozu bish shaitan min al Rehman, that would mean seeking protection of Satan to escape from Allah (Naoozu billah). On the lips of such persons are the words that in obedience to Allah they are seeking His protection, but their actions are all contrary to His Commandments. When the curtains of ignorance are raised from the hearts of such persons, they realize that all the time it was Satan who prompted them to utter the words aa oozu billah to ridicule their weak faith !
A SATANIC BOOK TO REFUTE SATANIt is said that a scholar of some repute thought of writing a book to warn the people about the treacherous and mean acts of Satan. During the same period a pious person met Satan in a state of apocalyptic revelation. He told to Satan, " O accursed creature! The time has come for your exposure! Such-and-such a maulana is will very soon writing a book about your nefarious acts!" Satan smiled derisively and said, " You are involved in a misunderstanding! This book is being written at my instance!" The pious person asked, " How is it possible?" Satan replied, " I had put doubts in the heart of the scholar that he is a person of high repute and he should make a show of his erudition. The person doesn't realize that although he has titled the book as ' Refutation of Satan', but his real intent is to make a show of his erudition and achieve name and fame!" In this way Satan tempts people to curse him and make them involuntarily utter' aa oozu billahi min al shaitan ir rajeem'.
THE POLITICS OF THE IMPERIALIST FORCESThe imperialist regimes maintain their agents in their settlements who are their instruments for attainment of the imperialistic ends. At certain times, for the sake of their political compulsions, they instruct the agents to criticize and abuse them, their imperialistic masters! All this is done as a camouflage for their nefarious political reality.
How wonderful is Satan's politics! He has the distinction of being the first politician ever! Satan can no doubt be called the mentor and leader of politicians of all times. Politics, in other words, means working behind the backs of the people. Satan, in this way, fools everyone and doesn't leave behind any footprints. The evil acts are committed by people at Satan's provocation, but they never realize that he is behind their actions!.
ISTA-AAZA IS FOR ESCAPE FROM SINS"O Allah! Give us courage to keep away from Satan, prevent ourselves from sinning and avoid committing crimes". This Ista-aaza with Allah keeps us away from sins and reins our tongues from abusive and harmful talk. Instead of using abusive language in anger, we should rather say aaoozu billa at such times of provocation! It is always advisable to seek Allah's protection and help against the machinations of Satan. In other words, the meaning of aa oozu billa is:
aa oozu be taa-at illah min taa-at il shaitan
I seek to come in the protection of Allah and escape from the evil of Satan
KEEPING THE HAND IN THE TIGER'S MOUTH AND TRYING TO ESCAPE FROM IT WITH ONE'S FEETIf a person keeps his hands in the mouth of a tiger and cries that he is very scared of the tiger and seeks the safety of an invincible fort to save himself from the animal attacking him! This is like the person who keeps crying for protection from Satan but is, in fact, submissive to and under his evil spell. As long as a person uses foul language, he is the follower and slave of Satan. In this condition his cursing Satan will be a stark lie. One should seek Allah's forgiveness (astaghfar) for the Ista-aaza that he had done hypocritically! The Ista-aaza of a foul-mouthed person, in the eyes of men of piety (irfaan) is tantamount to saying aaoozu bish shaitan, because he sometimes says aaooz and at others la haul, but his actions prove his falsehood.
If a tiger is chasing you, you will try to run into a fortified place of safety rather than going near it and putting your hands into it's mouth and keep shouting for help. Similar is the reality of Ista-aaza. It is seeking Allah's succor against Satan in His strong fortification!
A TRUE DREAM AND SATAN'S TREACHERYA DISCIPLE OF Sheik Ansari has said that when he was studying under him, one night he saw the accursed Satan in a dream. Satan was carrying some bridles in his hand. He asked Satan," Why are you holding these bridles in your hand?' He replied, " I put them in the necks of people and drag them! Yesterday I put a bridle around the neck of one Sheik Murtada Ansari and dragged him out of his house into the lane. But he escaped from me from the middle of the lane and returned home!"
When he awoke in the morning, he went to the Sheik and related to him the dream. The Sheik said, " Satan has told you the truth. The accursed one did try to tempt me with his glib talk. In fact, at home we needed certain things and I had no money handy at the time. I thought that from the Sahm e Imam I had with me a copy of the Holy Quran. I thought that I would sell it and use the money for my need as a loan to be reimbursed later. I took the copy of the Quran and went into the lane. While buying my needs a thought came to me why I was doing such a thing. I felt penitent, returned home and put back the copy of the Quran in its original place.
This incidence is quoted from the biography of the Sheik " Seerat wa Shaqsiat sheik Ansari- pages 88-89)
Some other persons have related the same incident in the following manner: When the Sheik's disciple saw the bridles in the hands of Satan, he noticed that one of the bridles was very strong and thick. When he asked the accursed Satan the reason for his carrying the bridles, he replied that they were for putting around the necks of people and dragging them. The person also asked, " For what purpose is the stronger and thicker bridle?" Satan replied, " This is for your mentor, Sheik Ansari. Yesterday I put it round his neck and dragged him into the bazaar. But he managed to free himself and escaped.' The person asked, " Which one of the bridles is for me?" Satan replied, " For you there is no need of a bridle. You can become my victim only with my sweet talk!"
Bismilla hir Rehman ir Raheem Innal lazeena attaqau iza massahum taaefun min al shaitane tazakkaru fa iza hum mubseroon Verily those who guard (themselves against evil) when an evil thought from the Satan afflicteth them, they become mindful (of God and get awakened) then lo! They are forthright.-Al-Aaraf 201
THE MEANING SHOULD BE MANIFESTED BY THE WORDSIsta-aaza is one of the important one of the important aspects of the faith and is obligatory on every Muslim. As already been mentioned, earlier, it should be from the depths of the heart of the person and not just the repetition of the words through the mouth. Quran wants people to---fa astaiz billah--- seek Allah's protection. This means that the words should not be repeated as a force of habit like the parrots. The reality requires one to seek freedom from the accursed Satan and submit to Allah for His help. If these two objectives are achieved, then the Ista-aaza is really Ista-aaza! Otherwise it will just be an exercise in futility. In a nutshell, when the words of the Ista-aaza are uttered, it should be in the true spirit required of him.
When we consider carefully the spirit of Ista-aaza, we find that it has five well- defined aspects: 1.Taqwa or piety.2.Tadakkar or remembrance of Allah. 3. Tawakkal or trust in Allah. 4. Iqlas or sincerity. 5. Aajizi or humility towards Allah.
When all these four aspects are practiced by a person, his Ista-aaza will be accepted by Allah. Then the accursed Satan will remain a long distance away from the person whether he says aaoozu billahi min al Shaitan ir rajeem or not. In other words, when Satan comes to a momin he becomes scared of man as an ordinary human being gets scared of the company of Jinns.
SATAN RUNS AWAY FROM THE MEN OF PIETYThe examples of aspects of Ista-aaza are briefly explained from the Holy Quran.
Innal lazeena attaqau iza massahum taaef min al shaitan tazakkar wa afahum mubseroon When the men of piety have any fear from Satan, then they busy themselves in prayer and they instantaneously get enlightened. Therefore, the very first condition for keeping oneself safe from form Satan is to become pious. Those who adopted piety, busy themselves in prayer whenever they fears of Satan in their hearts. They get enlightened that Satan created the fears. They also realize that because of their prayer Satan had fled and that they are in the protection of Allah. The ayat mentioned above is a pointer to the believers towards adoption of piety and remembrance of Allah.
NEED FOR TRUST ON ALLAHAllah says in the Holy Quran:
"Wa iz qarat al Quran fa astaiz billah min al shaitan ir rajeem. Innahu laisa lahu sultanun alal lazeena aamanu wa ala rabbehim yaywakkalun" " While reciting the Quran seek Allah's protection from the accursed Satan./ O believers! On those who trust (tawakkal) in Allah, Satan has no influence or control."- An-Nahl-98 &99
One who has trust in Allah , Shaitan will have no control on him. Satan can influence only those who who don't trust on Allah and all their confidence is on material and worldly aspects of their lives. If the same person has trust on Allah, then Satan becomes helpless in his maneuvers. When a person doesn't trust Allah from the depths of his heart, then all his pleadings for protection will be of no avail. According to the verse quoted above, Satan would gain ascendance over him. In the later verse of the Quran there is a reference towards this aspect:
"innma sultanahu alal lazeena yatawal launahu wal lazeena hum behi mushrikoon "Verily, his authority is only over those who befriend him and those who associate others with Him"- An-Nahl 100 One who has forgotten the Munificent Allah and befriended Satan, he has no concern for Ista-aaza or seeking protection from Satan.
SATAN HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE SINCERE PEOPLEAnother important aspect of Ista-aaza is sincerity. This saying of Satan is recorded in the Holy Quran: Qala beizzateka laghwainahum ajmaeena ala ibadeka minhum al mukhliseen" By Your Honor O Sustainer! Excepting your sincere creatures, I shall tempt (lead astray) everyone else."
The purport of sincerity (Iqlas) has been explained at various places in the Holy Quran. As the need arose, we have referred to this aspect in our talk and there is further need to stress on this aspect. Thus it is established that the Ista-aaza of only the persons sincere to Allah is appropriate. Since Satan has no influence on such persons they are those who escape from his machinations.
DO WE HAVE THE CAPABILITY OF PIETY (TAQWA) AND RMEMEBRANCE (TAZAKKAR) OF ALLAHAfter living long years we have not drawn any benefit from knowledge of the Faith. May Allah protect us from compounded ignorance ( Jahl e Murakkab). We have earlier said that the first aspect of Ista-aaza is Taqwa or piety. One who has not adopted taqwa, will not be able to escape from Satan. Only with piety one can keep out of the clutches of Satan. A woman who can come to the bazaar wearing indecent dress is satanic from head to toe! And the man who chaperons such a woman in public can never escape from the attention of Satan.
It goes to prove that one who doesn't save himself from the illegitimate (Haram) can never prevent himself from the influence of Satan. If a person dwells in a usurped house, he cannot escape from the Satan unless he quits the occupation of that house. If a person is in habit of doing taboo things, he cannot do Ista-aaza.
ILLEGITIMATE SUSTENANCE IS THE BIGGEST IMPEDIMENT IN THE WAY OF ISTA-AAZAThhe important aspects of Ista-aaza are absolute piety and total abstinence from taboo things. Having taboo (Haram) food renders the entire body of the person satanic. He becomes attached to Satan because Satan's blood flows in the veins of the person. The tongue with which such a person says aa oozu billahi min al shaitan ir rajeem, is in fact, the tongue of Satan. The reason for this is that the person has drawn nutrition from satanic food.
Shaheed eTaani ( Martyr the Second) says in 'Israr as Salath' that the Prophet of Islam (a.s.) has said," Allah sees your hearts and not your faces" This proves that mere talking and arguing might have some effect on people but for Allah nothing has any weight other than the absolute facts. Therefore, about the sacrifices that we make in the way of Allah, the Holy Book categorically says:
" The meat and the blood of these sacrifices doesn't reach Allah. The only things that reaches Him is your Taqwa (piety)."
UNTIL THE LAST VESTIGES OF HARAM ARE NOT REMOVED ISTA- AAZA IS NOT POSSIBLEAs long as even one morsel of haram food is in the body of a person, he is himself like the Satan. Beating drums seeking protection from Satan is his hypocrisy. As long as he is not able to shake away the influence of Satan from his person, all his prayers are mere pretences.
About rizq-e-halal ( legitimate food) there are several traditions of Ahl al Bayt (a.s.). Rizq e Halal is like a seed on which the quality of the plant will depend. Care must beexertcised pure and good seed to ensure the health and sturdiness of the tree.
Allah says in the Holy Quran: "Ya ayyuhal naas kulu min al tayyebate ma razaqnakum wa la attabaoo qutuwat ash shaitan" O people! Eat pure and halal food and don't tread the footprints of Satan. "
ABSTAIN FROM DOUBTFUL FOODWhen one has doubt about the food being halal, he should rather abstain from eating it. Avoid using haram food and clothes. The use of these will have such deleterious effect on the person that he becomes the victim of fears and doubts.
Bismillah hir Rehman ir Raheem Innal lazeena attaqau iza massahum taaefun min ash shaitane tazakkaru wa fa za hum mubseroon"
"Verily those who guard (themselves against evil) when an evil thought from the Satan afflicteth them, they become mindful ( of God and get awakened ) then lo! They see (aright)" A summary of the discussions of the previous evenings is that the main purpose is to escape from the clutches of Satan and attain the protection of Allah. The main plank for achieving this is taqwa or piety. Abstention from Satan is possible when a person implicitly follows the mandated practices and avoids haram acts. If the person is careless about these things, then escape from Satan is impossible. His example will be like that of a person who is willfully combating with a wild animal but keeps crying that he wished to escape from its clutches.
Keep reiterating - "aa oozu billahi min al Shaitan ir rajeem"-" I wish to escape from Satan and come under the protection of Allah", but if you are unaware of the aspects of Ista-aaza, and therefore are not complying with them, then the entire exercise will be futile. Innal lazeena attaqau : The people who are in the process of escaping from sinful acts, and Satan tries to overwhelm them, they instantaneously busy themselves in the remembrance of Allah. With the felicity (baraka) of this act, the curtains of thoughtlessness are raised from their eyes and they comprehend the evil schemes of Satan very clearly. Thus they are able to save themselves from the evil bait of Satan.
It is only the persons of piety who are able to save themselves from the effects of Satan. Otherwise, the evil influence of Satan is always around! We have mentioned that piety is a very important tool concerning our food habits. Our food, or nutrition, is like the seed of plants. The type of food one takes nourishes good or satanic tendencies in a person. If the seed is satanic, then the body acquires evil tendencies. If a haram morsel goes down the throat, then the control over the body will come into the hands of Satan. Till the time that morsel remains in the body, Satan too will occupy it. It is mentioned in the traditions that eating one haram morsel of food, the effects will remain in the body for forty days and, during this period, the prayers of the person may not be answered.
WE ARE HELPLESS & POWERLESSIf someone gives a serious thought to the facts he would cry out," Amman mujeeb al muztar-O Allah! What shall we do" The foods we consume take us to darkness. There is no light in them that can give nourishment to our spirits. Our tongues too are influenced by these foods that we utter falsehoods and abusive language. We indulge in misguiding games and play. Backbiting has become our habit. All our limbs and organs have been exposed to the effects of haram and unsavory (makrooh) foods. The body has therefore become insensitive to the instinct of remembrance of Allah. The limbs and organs have thus turned into the playthings of Satan.
THE PURITY OR OTHERWISE OF FOODOne type of haram food is najis (impure) food. If impure food goes down the throat, Satan will transmit his effect throughout the body. Even babes in arms should not be fed with najis food. One should not think that a child is innocent and free from the incidence of the rules of Shariah. Remember, the adults are bound with the requirements of the Shariah and it is their duty to take care to nourish their children with pure food. When a child is brought up on najis food, he will develop negative and un-Islamic tendencies as he grows up. It is to be borne in minds that only animals can take Najis food. The occasion when one is required to abstain even from Halal food is when he is fully sated and can eat no more at that moment. Over-eating is a taboo and a satanic trait.
IDENTIFY THE HARAM MORSEL OF FOODA thing that comes to you in an illegitimate manner is haram or taboo. If one acquires bread by cheating someone or he has usurped it from someone, or has bought it from the proceeds of usury, or has consumed without the knowledge or permission of the rightful owner, then he has contravened the rules of Shariah. This is a haram act.
The next in line of impure foods is the murdar or the meat of an animal that has not been slaughtered properly as required by the Shariah. This applies also to those animals eating of whose meat is permissible in the Islamic Shariah. For example, if a person, while slaughtering an animal, doesn't intentionally say the words Bismillah before putting the knife to the throat of the animal, eating of such meat is taboo. Allah says in the Holy Quran, "Don't eat that thing on which Allah's name has not been uttered". Therefore if a halal animal is slaughtered without saying Bismillah, consumption of such meat is forbidden. Syed Taoos has recommended application of this verse to all foods, although the verse pertains only to animal foods. Syed Taooks says," All the eatables that are prepared without taking the name of Allah before commencing the preparation, I don't partake of! How can a momin eat the bread that has been cooked by the baker without taking the name of Allah."
THE BAKERS OVEN & SATANIC TUNETimes have changed in a funny way. If Syed Tawoos was living today, he would recall the days when the baker would come to the oven and recite the Hadeet e Kisa and offer prayer before commencing his work. Today the bread is baked listening to blaring music! They cook the bread accompanied by satanic music. We consume those morsels infused with satanic temperament!
The Seventh TalkBismillah hir Rehman ir Raheem Innal lazeena attaqau iza massahum taaefum min ash shaitane tazakkaru fa iza hum mubseroon- Al-ARAF 7.201 Verily those who guard (themselves against evil) when an evil thought from the Satan afflicteth them, they become mindful (of God and get awakened) then lo! They see (aright)
BE SATAN'S ANTAGONISTSWe have said that till a person doesn't maintain a distance from Satan, the true spirit of Isti-aaza will not manifest in him. The person who indulges in sinning is Satan's subordinate. Allah says: Fattakhazuhu adu-un Deem him your enemy He is your enemy from the beginning. You too should reciprocate with enmity. Don't befriend him. But if you commit sins, it will be obedience to your enemy, the Satan. And obedience is a component of friendship. Always beware that your treacherous enemy is keeping an eye on you. No man is safe from him for a single moment. If you think that you are safe from him, it is nothing but complaisance.
DOES SATAN SLEEPSomeone asked a pious scholar whether it is mentioned in any traditions about Satan sleeping and taking rest. The learned scholar smiled and gave a very interesting reply, " If that accursed creature ever slept, I would have some respite!" When you sleep, the accursed Satan is fully awake. He never sleeps. He always guards over men and looks for opportunities to bring harm them. Innahu yarakum huwa wa qabeela min haisu la taraunahum He, and his retainers, watch over you from such a place that they can see you and you can't see them
YOU MUST REMAIN FORTIFIEDWhat shall men do, then? When the enemy is so powerful and stealthy and can attack through hidden means, it becomes our duty to become fully armed and fortified against Satan. When the enemy is looking for your slightest fault or negligence, then you too must guard against him fully armed. The ammunition for men against Satan is taqwa or piety. Adopt piety to meet the onslaughts of Iblees!
MOMINS ARMS- MUSTAHEBAT (THE NON-MANDATORY PRAYERS) & TARK E
Offering non-obligatory prayers, to the best of one's physical capabilities, is very effective for warding off the enemy, Satan. Similarly, abstaining from doing or using things, although permissible but not desirable, is very useful. Tark e ghaflat or avoidance of carelessness too might help. The more a person is careless
MUKROOHAT OR ABSTINENCE FROM UNDESIRABLES
Share this article