Channel: Jamal Badawi
Series: Jamal Badawi - Muslim Beliefs
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In the name of God, even ever since the Merciful, the creator and the Sustainer of the universe, I greet you with the greetings of all the prophets from Adam to Prophet Muhammad peace and blessings be upon him. Assalamu Aleikum, which means peace be upon you. Today we begin the second program in our new series on Muslim beliefs. And in today's program, we'll deal with the topic of unseen creatures. I'm your host, Hamad Rashid, I have a guest on the Islamic focus program, Dr. Jamal Badawi of St. Mary's University. Welcome to Islam focus, brother, gentlemen, welcome to last week we had a very interesting and least interesting for me program on angels. For the benefit of our
viewers who may not have seen our program last week, could you just to summarize their benefit to some of the points we touched on and dealing with the Islamic belief in angels? Okay, as we mentioned last time, one of the fundamentals articles of faith in Islam that the Quran speaks about, is to believe in the angels of God. And he said that those engines are creatures which are not seen by us. We mentioned that those creatures were created from light, we don't know exactly what's the nature of light. That's what the Quran about the prophet of Islam has indicated. But he said, however, that the fact that are created from light signifies the fact that not only that they are
non material, they are not in material form, even though they may appear in physical form, but also signifies that they are totally pure and absolutely sinless creatures. We mentioned also, that the position of the status of human beings could be higher than that of engines. In fact, we quoted the Quran where angels were commanded by God to bow down to the first creature, the first human Adam. And we indicated from that, that since angels are pure by their natures, they don't have a freewill, then they are good despite of themselves, whereas a righteous human being could be better than angels, because he has the temptation he has the evil inclination within himself. And he's got to
struggle against those evil forces. And as such, he could be in a higher status than those of angels. We also indicated that in terms of the functions of angels, that their basic and most important historical role was to bring revelation to different prophets throughout history, a function which ended with the mission of the last prophet, Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, and the revelation of the last holy book or scripture, the Quran. But despite of that, we also indicated that angels still do relate to our daily life to the land can find you and me and everybody else. And we said that God has assigned angels to keep track of our deeds, they record our deeds good or
bad, which would be part of our account and the Day of Judgment, that they are also particularly interested in keeping company of the pious, when they supplicate pray or recite the Scripture, recite the Quran, for example, they like to listen to them, they enjoy that.
We indicated that also angels do provide support and help for believers at the time of adversity and difficulty. In fact, they are constantly praying for the welfare of the believers. And above all, the constantly encourage us and prompt us or inspire us to do good things that would be pleasing to God. And finally, we ended by saying that the practical implication of belief in angels is that when you feel the company of those pure, sinless creatures, it is an encouragement to us to do good. It reminds us of our deity and awaken our moral consciousness. Okay, well, now, that's a good summary of the Muslim belief. And as regards angels. What about the question of other unseen creatures? Do
Muslims also believe that there are other unseen creatures as angels? Oh, yes. No doubt about that. I got the chart here that perhaps summarize
the answer to that question. First of all, when you talk about God's creatures, perhaps you can classify these into two main groups, the seen and the unseen. All right.
Now, the creatures that are seen, can be classified also into two major groups.
The humans and others, by others mean animals animate inanimate objects.
The humans which of course, the most important creature of God, according to the Quran, can be divided into two basic groups, believers and unbelievers, I just use an abbreviation here, believers and unbelievers, that's as far as the scene creatures are concerned. Now for the unseen creatures, there are, again two basic groups that the Quran speaks about. One is the engine, the engines as a category, and this is the subject that we have covered in the first program of this new series. The second, which is today's topic, are the Jin gi n.
I know some people might wonder what the word Jin mean, is there any equivalent in English?
To my understanding, there is no single word in English that would give the proper and complete meaning of jinn as understood by Muslims except to say that they are unseen creatures. However, that is closest to the minds and the words that are common in English. We can subdivide also jinn into two main groups, believers and unbelievers, that's again an abbreviation.
Now, believing jinn would be just as good as engines,
in a sense, or as good as, let's say believers who are humans that sense, we can make an analogy between believing and believing human beings.
The unbelieving jinn, however,
are the ones that we usually refer to as Satan's, and also a term that appears in the Quran about the first of those unbelieving jinn, at least a place that appears in the Quran. But that's the equivalent of Satan. The word Satan also is used in the Quran in the Arabic equivalent shaitan a shaitan. When you use certain capital S, or at least, you're talking particularly about the first of those Satan's The one who tempted Adam and Eve, in paradise. Now, the Legion of Satan, his descendants and his helpers until today, are called sometimes Satan's plural or devils.
There's a dotted line under unbelieving humans. The reason being is that the word Satan, not visiting just the word Satan, and Arabic means anyone who's rebellious against God. And as you know, there are there are human beings also are rebellious against God and as such, literally speaking in Arabic shaitan or Satan's are devils
are rebellious creatures, whether they are of the unseen world like gin or whether they are the among the human beings that perhaps, I hope would clarify some of the confusion that sometimes arise with respect to the terms used, about what religion means it means both believing an unbelieving spirit, good and evil spirits boss. explain this a little bit more time on the on the agenda. This is probably a term that's not that familiar to a lot of the viewers of the of the press, it would be helpful if you could talk a bit more about the nature of jinn and what they are created from Ilan last time. Angels were created from light what what what about the jinn Okay, Jen are created from
smokeless fire according to the Quran that particularly appears in chapter 15, verses 26 and 27.
We don't know of course, when you talk about smokeless fire, nobody knows. What is the exact nature of that fire just as we don't know again, what is the exact nature of light of which engines are created, but it's of course, it signifies the fact that there are non material basically, that they have capacities and abilities which far exceeds those given to the humans in terms of the speed of the movement just like engines also do.
In fact, the Quran indicates that,
like human beings, the jinn,
both believing and believing have a free choice they have a free will they can choose to obey God or to rebelled against them and in that sense, they would be similar to the human beings except that they are non material
Yeah, can we conclude from this than that? Because they have the freedom of choice that they're the agenda not all necessarily evil spirits as some people might think, right? That's correct. Absolutely. Because in fact, like you said, if they had the free, well, then some of them turn out to be good, some might turn out to be evil. So, jinn are not evil by definition, it's what they make of themselves. In fact, you find that in one verse in the Quran, for example, in chapter six, verse
130, it talks there about even those jinn receiving messengers coming to them to guide them, just as human beings also receive profits to guide them into the straight path. So yes, you're absolutely right, and this that they are not necessarily or even maybe if I cut you a couple of, or at least one quotation from the Quran might clarify the issue in
chapter 46, verses 29 through 32 trades.
Behold, we turn towards the that is the Oh, Mohammed, a company have been quietly listening to the Quran. When they stood in the presence there are they said, listen and silence. When the reading was finished, they return to their people, to warn them of their sense. They said, our people, we have heard a book revealed after Moses, which means that they were aware also previous scriptures reveal to different prophets.
We have heard the book revealed after Moses confirming what came before it, it guides mankind to the truth and to the straight path, or our people hearken to the one who invites you to God and believe in Him, He will forgive you your false and deliver you from a grievous penalty, if any, does not hearken to the one who invites us to God, he cannot frustrate God's plan on earth, and no protectors, can he have besides God, such humans wander in manifest error. So in that sense, then you can say that they are just like humans in a sense of being warned, and urged to use their freewill in the right direction.
Now, we talked a bit last time as well about the effect,
or how angels relate to us in our daily life. What about the question of Satan? How does he relate to our daily life, he does relate to our lives in the opposite way.
Play to our time. The angels, as you said last time, are like forces of good they are the pure, sinless spirits that are enticing us encouraging us to do what is good and to avoid what is evil.
The Satan relate to our life in a sense that he is doing the opposite job he's trying to destroy what the angels are urging us to do, is constantly urging us to commit a will to do sin to violate the teachings of God. And that since then, we can say that the unbelieving jinn are Satan's, are relevant to our life, not only as individuals it's relevant to the life of the entire
history of human beings. If you look into the history of human beings, you find that the basic struggle by individuals and groups nation civilization has constantly been this countervailing power of forces the forces of good and forces of evil which one predominate at a given point of time. All the ups and downs in human history, all the achievements, good achievements, as well as cruelty, all the
good acts, the evil acts, for individuals on the level of individuals levels of the groups
are all related,
again, to which of these forces get the upper hand at one time or the other. The Quran makes it clear, for example, in chapter seven, verses 20 through 21, that from the very beginning, even after the creation of Adam and Eve, the Satan, the big Satan, capitalists, played a major role to try to dissuade them from obeying God try to tempt them into disobey disobeying gods, but even when mankind came on earth, and as we said before, in a different program, we don't we don't live in it as punishment for that sin because there is no concept of original sin in Islam. But simply It was a lesson for Adam and Eve before coming to the earth where they were destined to sit in did not stop.
But Satan as well as his legions from among humans and unseen creatures keep always pushing and imploring humans to destroy themselves and to commit all kinds of Acts. We find examples of that, for example, in China
To in the Quran, verse 268, and chapter eight, verse 18, Chapter 16, verse 63, maybe if I just pick one, I may that might give you some kind of indication about the role that sits in place. The first condition is,
and chapter two, verse 268. It says, the evil one, which literally, as it appears in Arabic, shaitan, Satan, David, one, or Satan, threatens you with poverty, that is whenever you want to do some acts of charity says, I don't do it, because you might get poor, yes,
and continues and bids you to conduct unseemly, God promises you His forgiveness and boundaries, and God cares for all and he has knowledge of all things. So there is a clear warning fasciae that the role played by Satan is very dangerous and we have really, to be aware and to take all kinds of precautions against his evil prompting, or given the evil nature of shaitan or Satan. And the fact that we're one in the Quran to be careful is there are there any directions or any references in the Quran that we can turn to to show us how we might be able to be successful or how what precautions we can take to protect ourselves isolate ourselves or insulate I guess would be a better word
insulate ourselves against the the, the evil of Titan or shutdowns.
I think the first thing that we have to keep in mind is we have to realize that he's our enemy, he and his associates allegiance are our enemy. One should know his friends from his enemies from the beginning. That's why you find the Quran puts it very clearly, in a shaitan. Allah Komodo, Satan is indeed your enemy. So take him for an enemy that appears, for example, in chapter 35, verse 16, this kind of enmity has been expressed, according shaitan. For example, as it appears in the Quran in chapter seven, verse 16, and chapter four, verse 117, that after he was cast out of Paradise, he was quoted as saying that, alright, now, I'll stand in the way of those people who annoy humans,
of protecting themselves, I try always to dissuade them, I try to order them whatever is even so he has already undertook on himself to to dissuade humans from following the path of God.
That's why the Quran makes it clear to us it makes a warning, in fact to us that you should not obey Him not only taking offense, but you should not really obey or listen to him. One quotation, for example, in chapter seven, verse 27, it says,
Are you children of Adam, directing that to all humanity, let not sit and seduce you, in the same manner, as he got your parents out of the garden, stripping them of their remnant, to expose the shame, for he and his tribe, watch you from a position where you cannot see them. We made the evil ones are Satan's friends only to those without face. So this is the first thing that one can keep in mind by way of precaution. The second thing is that it's not only that we should take this precaution, but you should be aware of all the tricks and deceptions played by Satan or Satan's.
Seldom, Satan comes to one and says, what I this is an evil thing, do it, do the thing do the bad thing. He doesn't present it as good. He always tried to present it in a way that looks attractive and somehow seductive to attack the human to do it. This is why you find in some verses in the Quran. For example, in chapter six verse 142, and 24
verse 21, we find that there is a constant reminder to us not to follow what what is shaitan or the steps of Satan which means that he tries to draw us a bit by bit not to tell us that this is something but but to draw us in a gradual and sneaky manner.
In addition to these two precautions, the other thing that the Quran also implores us to understand is to know that obedience to sit in, at the expense of obedience to God is tantamount to actually worshipping Satan. I'm not talking about worship in a ritual sense. Of course, you hear I heard, for example, recently about the so called Church of Satan in Toronto and there are other places where there's actually rights to worship Satan. But in the broad Islamic meaning of worship, worship does not just mean ritual but obedience and submission.
And is an act actually part of worship of Satan. One of the very interesting quotation I find in the Quran about this Satan worship in a variety of forms, is in chapter 36 verses 59 through 62. And the trees did I that means God did it.
not enjoying on you, children of Adam,
that you should not worship Satan, for he was to you an avowed enemy,
and that you should worship me that worship God for that this was the straightaway.
But he did lead astray, a great multitude of you.
Did you not then understand? This is the hell are the Hellfire, of which you were repeatedly warned? embrace you the fire this day, that's within the Day of Judgment, for you persistently rejected truth. So obedience to Satan is tantamount to rejection of the truth, which are some of the main precautions that the Quran provides for us as humans, as to how we can resist those evil promptings. What about
the power of
Satan, the Satan, or, or Satan, and all of the all of the other Satan and all of the other Satan's that work along with him? Do they? Is it fair to say that they have no authority over us that we're not compelled to follow them? They can't force us to do things against our will? Absolutely. Absolutely. In fact, I had time I could have quoted this unfold in the Quran. For example, in chapter 91, verse seven, and eight, says when a woman is her where her and hammer have wood, what are our taqwa that God has created the human being in the most
perfect and complete form. And it adds an E inspired into the human man or woman, the knowledge of guidance, and the knowledge of the long past. In other words, without even being guided by prophets, or scriptures, each human being has the potential for believe or not believed for good and evil. And in that sense, then we could say that Satan would have only power and authority over those who obey Him over those who gave him the opportunity to dominate on them. Let me put it this way, just like saying, if we are capable as humans, to disregard the commands of God, this obey Him and obey Satan. We are for sure, as capable of this obeying Satan and following the path of Gods by full obedience
and submission to which is the meaning of the word Islam. Now, the Quran
that we should not have any notion, for example, that, oh, I could not do good because the devil made me do it. Like some students, for example, don't answer properly the light for me at the end of the test, oh, Satan made me do it. No, it says it didn't make you do you let him cause you to do it. Let me cut from the graphics on in chapter 16, verses 98 through 100. It says, when you do read the Quran, seek God's protection from Satan, the rejected one. And then last is this. No authority has he over those who believe and put the trust in the Lord, believe and put your trust in God, Satan would have not searched in the last verse 100 to take his authority is over those only who take him
as a as Patreon and those who join partners with God in worship, or in obedience. So in that sense, then it's up to us whether we should give him this authority or not. In fact, there is a verse in the Quran in chapter 72, verse six, which indicate that in the past, some of the humans who used to think that Satan's have tremendous powers and they tried to go to devils or evoke their help, or support for them, that those devils only increase their folly. As the Quran puts it, that they started dominating them more and making them more dependent on them that might relate to another issue that perhaps you can come to an A next year's or something like the the whole issue of magic
and sorcery, evil spirits and spells and all that sort of thing.
But finally, I'd like to add one more thing that even in case we make a mistake, in case we sin, we disobey God or follow the steps of Satan as the opposite. Instead, we should not so our hair, our hands, and the answer is you know, there is no hope. The Quran says that we have always to keep remembering God and try to correct ourselves. Even the first mistake by Adam and Eve, according to the Quran was forgiven already. And that's why there is no Original Sin. The Quran for example, in chapter three, verse 37, in chapter 20, verses 120 and 121 indicates that Adam and Eve both of them repentance for God, and that repentance was accepted. So whenever we fought we have to remember
again that you should not be more dominated and give up any hope of ridding ourselves from the control of this evil forces. So there is no defense in Islam. We can say the devil made me do it. No.
Okay, I'd like to.
I'd like to have your comment for a minute on some of the conditions that
we may create.
Or there may exist, though that
provide more opportunity for Satan to exercise some kind of influence or control over our life.
Could you comment a bit on those? Sure, sure. The first thing, of course, is this belief in God, the lack of belief in God, the rejection of his existence, rejection of his divine attributes
unthankful attitude and disgraceful attitude towards his bounties and blessing that he has endowed the humans in all forms which are countable. It's just beyond any
counts. This is one way of really getting the domination of Satan, you find reference to that, for example, in the Quran in chapter 19, the chapter on Mary called Mary, verse 83. There's a similar statement also in chapter 59, verse 16, that disbelieve in God is one of one way of making friends with Satan.
The second thing that when Keep in mind, should keep in mind is that by having close friendship with those on who's on whom there is God's wrath, people who are really disobeying God and challenging his authority is one way also of having set and getting more influence on us that appears, for example, in chapter 58, particular in verse 19.
And this, of course, is a reference to the bad influence that we get when we get too close to people who are ungodly in their attitudes.
The third thing that the Quran reminds us of is to forget God's not to remember him, in fact, and nowadays, it seems that people have time for every conceivable type of activity, but to remember God and follow his path, for example, in chapter 46.
So in chapter 43, verse 36, it says, If anyone withdraws himself from remembrance of God, Most Gracious, we appoint for him and even one or Satan, to be an intimate companion of him. Such even ones really hinder them from the past, but they think that they are being guided. So this is one of the things that we
have to keep in mind. And finally, the Quran itself provides a blueprint as to how to respond to this kind of prompting that you should always remember God, again, for short, this time, I'll just give you the number of verses in chapter seven verse two, or one. And in chapter 23, verse 98, which implore us that whenever there is any evil prompting, we should seek refuge in God and remember him and that would be enough to rid ourselves from those pressures if we have the determination to do it. Okay, Robert Jamal, in the minute or so that we have left on the program? I think a question. I'd like to get your response to a question I'm sure a lot of people must have in their minds. Why
were jinn created in the first place.
Just like the creation of angels also as human beings, we are both material and spirit. We have the capability to be good or bad. The angels are doing the jobs, they are prompting us towards good without the jinn without Satan's or evil creatures in particular, not audience without evil creatures, or even jinn. We would not be tested, we would not really have had any challenge if we are always prompted to do good, there is no challenge there is no fun in life.
Ultimately, our decision as human beings to use this God given freedom of choice and God given spirituality to overcome those evil prompting and follow the right path.
Brother Dima, we've exhausted the time available for our program. today. I want to thank you for being our guest to talk about this most interesting subject. I want to thank you the viewers of the Islamic focus program for watching. That's our program. See you next time. Assalamu alaikum Peace be upon you.