Maulana Wahiduddin Khan | Creation Plan of God | Al-Risala September, 1987, Pg. 3

There is a Hadith in which Prophet Mohammad relates a conversation between Satan and one of the prophets. This tradition is of some length, but we reproduce here its most salient point:

When Satan asked the Prophet where he would seek refuge from his onslaughts, the latter replied that when he felt the slightest influence of Satan, he would seek refuge in God. God’s enemy said, “You have spoken the truth, that is the way to save yourself from me.” “Tell me,” said the prophet, “how is it that you are able to overpower the son of Adam?” Satan replied, “I seize him when he is angry, or in the grip of carnal desire.” (Al-Zuhd wa al-Raqā’iq by Ibn al-Mubārak, Hadith No. 1471)

How vulnerable is man to the attacks of Satan when he falls a prey to fits of fury or overwhelming desires. It is then that Satan exploits man’s weakness to turn his footsteps away from the path which would lead him straight to Paradise and to set his foot on the downward slope to the raging inferno of Hell. Once on this slippery descent, it is well-nigh impossible for a man to retrace his foot­steps.

Man should be ever wary of his own baser instincts, for, if they exist, it is at the instigation of the devil. Every strong craving, every fit of anger is a dangerous pitfall set there in front of man by Satan. The only way to avoid such perils is to turn to the Almighty and seek His help in all sincerity. Then the devil is sure to be balked of his prey; it is God and God alone who can snatch man from the clutches of Satan.