Amongst his astonishing plots; is that he [Shaytan] investigates a person until he learns which of the two temperaments dominates him/her:
The temperament of zeal and courage, or the temperament of reluctance, hesitancy and weakness.
If he finds that the temperament of reluctance and weakness dominates a person, he embarks upon discouraging them and weakening their resolve towards their obligations. He makes obligations feel burdensome and lightens their abandonment until they are completely abandoned, or at least decreased and neglected.
And if he finds that the temperament of zeal and diligence dominates a person, he starts to belittle the obligations for that person, and deludes them into thinking that they are not enough, and that they need to bolster obligations with overemphasis or additions.
So he abates the first and overemphasizes with the second. As some of the Salaf said:
Allah did not order an obligation except that the Shaytan has two injunctions:
Either towards negligence and laxity,
Or towards exceeding the bounds and extremism.
And he does not mind which of the two he triumphs with.
Published: Mar 07, 2016
Translator: Abu Abdul-Waahid, Nadir Ahmad
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