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Causing Human Beings to Forget Is The Means of Satan to Tempt Them


Causing Human Beings to Forget Is The Means of Satan to Tempt Them



Published in August 1, 2019

Translated by: Ahmed Fathy





1- human beings tend to forget, and this increases during the old age; yet, this topic is beyond the scope of this article.

2- Our topic here is about how Satan makes use of the human tendency to forget so that he would urge most people to forget about piety and the Lord God. Thus, instead of remembering their Lord God within adhering to piety, most human beings may be captured or ensnared by the devilish temptations; in that case, Satan causes them to forget the remembrance of the Lord God. Sadly, most human beings remain heedless and forgetful until the moment of dying when they will remember, but in vain, after it is too late for them.

2- In the points below, we provide an overview of forgetfulness or heedlessness as far as religion is concerned and how Satan makes use of the human tendency to forget so that he would tempt human beings.


Firstly: human beings and forgetfulness:

Even prophets/messengers of the Lord God experienced a measure of forgetfulness:

1- Moses said the following to the other prophet or good servant of the Lord: "He said, “Do not rebuke me for forgetting, and do not make my course difficult for me.”" (18:73).

2- Muhammad is addressed by the Lord God in the following verses: "We will make you read, so do not forget." (87:6); "...And remember your Lord if you forget..." (18:24).

Monotheistic believers and forgetfulness:  

1- They supplicate to the Lord God to forgive and pardon them in case they sin or forget: "...Our Lord, do not condemn us if we forget or make a mistake..." (2:286).

2- The Lord God addresses them here: "...And do not forget generosity between one another. God is seeing of everything you do." (2:237).

3- The pious, monotheistic believers remember the Lord God if they forget before the impulse of Satan drives them to sin: "Those who are righteous - when an impulse from Satan strikes them, they remind themselves, and immediately see clearly." (7:201).

Disbelievers and forgetfulness:

1- This is about devilish companions who cause them to forget totally about piety and the Lord God: "But their brethren lead them relentlessly into error, and they never stop short." (7:202).

2- This about forgetfulness and heedlessness of disbelievers in general.

2/1: About deniers of the Quran who believe in devilish hadiths/narratives: "Who does greater wrong than he, who, when reminded of his Lord’s Verses, turns away from them, and forgets what his hands have put forward? We have placed coverings over their hearts, lest they understand it, and heaviness in their ears. And if you call them to guidance, they will not be guided, ever." (18:57).

2/2: About warning the sinful ones: "And do not be like those who forgot God, so He made them forget themselves. These are the sinners." (59:19).

2/3: About those who deny the Resurrection and the Hereafter: "And he produces arguments against Us, and he forgets his own creation. He says, “Who will revive the bones when they have decayed?”" (36:78).

3- Within life-threatening situations and calamities, the polytheistic, disbelieving human beings adopt these stances.

3/1: They supplicate to the Lord God while forgetting about their gods and their disbelief: "In fact, it is Him you will call upon; and if He wills, he will remove what you called Him for, and you will forget what your polytheism." (6:41).

3/2: Once saved by the Lord God, they forget Him: "When some adversity touches the human being, he prays to his Lord, repenting to Him. But then, when He confers on him a grace of His, he forgets what he was praying for before, and he attributes rivals to God, in order to lead astray from His way. Say, “Enjoy your disbelief for a little while; you will be among the dwellers of the Hell-Fire.”" (39:8).

4- About the destruction of the polytheists who forget the Lord God's commands and prohibitions and indulge in sins; He destroys them because of their sins: "Then, when they forgot what they were reminded of, We opened for them the gates of all things. Until, when they delighted in what they were given, We seized them suddenly; and at once, they were in despair." (6:44); "Then, when they forgot what they were reminded of, We saved those who prohibited evil, and We seized those who did wrong with a terrible torment, because of their sinfulness." (7:165).

5- Forgetfulness of some of the People of the Book:

5/1: This is about Al-Samiri who made the golden calf for the Israelites to worship in Sinai: "So he produced for them a calf - a mere body which lowed. And they said, “This is your god, and the god of Moses, but he has forgotten.”" (20:88).

5/2: The sinners among them forgot the Lord God's Covenant; this is about the Israelites: "Because of their breaking their pledge, We cursed them, and made their hearts hard. They twist the words out of their context, and they forgot some of what they were reminded of..." (5:13); this is about Christians: "And from those who say, “We are Christians,” We received their pledge, but they forgot some of what they were reminded of...." (5:14).

5/3: The clergymen among the People of the Book urge others to adhere to virtuous conduct and righteousness but they forget to advise themselves: "Do you command people to virtuous conduct, and forget yourselves, even though you read the Book? Do you not understand?" (2:44).

6- The outcome in the Hereafter will be as per one's deeds: when the sinners forget about obeying the Lord God, He excludes them from His mercy: 

6/1: This is about the hypocrites: "The hypocritical men and hypocritical women are of one another...They forgot God, so He forgot them. The hypocrites are the sinners." (9:67).

6/2: This is about those who forget about believing in the Lord God's Book only without any other discourses besides it: "He will say, “Just as Our Verses came to you, and you forgot them, today you will be forgotten.”" (20:126).

6/3: This is about those who forget about the Last Day and the Lord God's Divine Book: "Those who took their religion lightly, and in jest, and whom the worldly life deceived. Today We will forget them, as they forgot the meeting on this Day of theirs, and they used to deny Our Verses." (7:51).

6/4: This is about those who forget about the Last Day: "And it will be said, “Today We forget you, as you forgot the encounter of this Day of yours. Your abode is the Hell-Fire, and there are no supporters for you." (45:34); "So taste, because you forgot the meeting of this Day of yours; We have forgotten you; so taste the eternal torment for what you used to do." (32:14); "...Those who stray from God’s Path will have a painful torment, for having forgotten the Day of Judgment." (38:26).

7- This is about the polytheistic, forgetful disbelievers and sinners on the Last Day.

7/1: Upon Resurrection, they will forget about their disobedience recorded by the Lord God: "On the Day when God resurrects them all, and informs them of what they did. God has kept count of it, but they have forgotten it. God is Witness over everything." (58:6).

7/2: Upon Judgment, their gods/deities will disown them: "They will say, “Glory be to You. It was not for us to take any allies besides You. But you gave them enjoyments, and their ancestors, until they forgot the Remembrance, and became ruined people.”" (25:18).

7/3: After they enter into Hell, the Lord God will remind them of their ridiculing the monotheistic believers: "But you made them a target of ridicule, until they made you forget My remembrance; and you used to laugh at them." (23:110).


Secondly: types of forgetfulness:

Temporary forgetfulness:

 This type is experienced by the pious believers who remember piety and fear of their Lord God soon enough.

1- Let us exemplify this within these two cases.

1/1: Concentration during prayers within piety and reverence: this is part of the features of winners among the monotheistic believers: "Successful are the believers. Those who are humble in their prayers." (23:1-2). Satan and his devil do their best to cause believers to forget concentration, piety, and reverence during their daily prayers; it is rare to find those who keep their concentration during all their prayers; they forget and get distracted momentarily because of Satan. In contrast, one never gets distracted or forgetful while watching attentively a movie or a football match (or any other sports). The believers who are keen on keeping their concentration during prayers succeed in this endeavor sometimes, and in some other times, they fall into the trap of temporary forgetfulness and momentary distraction.

1/2: Those pious believers who fall into the trap of temporary forgetfulness because of Satan remember the Lord God soon enough and stop their sinning if they are about to commit a sin; they seek refuge in their Lord God against Satan the outcast: "And when a suggestion from Satan assails you, take refuge with God. He is Hearing and Knowing. Those who are righteous - when an impulse from Satan strikes them, they remind themselves, and immediately see clearly." (7:200-201).

2- The Quran mentions some prophets/messengers who fell into the trap of temporary forgetfulness because of Satan.

2/1: This is about Adam who sinned as he was deceived by Satan: "And We covenanted with Adam before, but he forgot, and We found in him no resolve." (20:115).

2/2 This is mentioned within the Quranic story of Joseph: "And he said to the one he thought would be released, “Mention me to your master.” But Satan caused him to forget mentioning him to his master, so he remained in prison for several years." (12:42).

2/3: This is mentioned within the Quranic story of Moses: "Then, when they reached the junction between them, they forgot about their fish. It found its way into the river, slipping away." (18:61); "He said, “Do you remember when we rested by the rock? I forgot about the fish. It was only the devil who made me forget it. And so it found its way to the river, amazingly.”" (18:63).

2/4: The Lord God has said the following to Muhammad: "When you encounter those who strive against Our Verses, turn away from them, until they engage in another topic. But should Satan make you forget, do not sit after the recollection with the unjust people." (6:68).

Gradual forgetfulness:

 Satan is perseverant in his role to tempt, misguide, and whisper evil, and he never despairs or gets bored; he never tenders his resignation or go on a vacation. The pious believers are saved from the traps of Satan by remembering the Holy Name of their Lord God; if they do not, Satan and his devils misguide them step by step so that they forget the Lord God gradually until Satan controls and dominates their souls. Let us exemplify this in the following points.

Following the footsteps of Satan the Devil: this warning against following the footsteps of Satan, the obvious sworn arch-enemy of the humankind, is mentioned explicitly here.

1- About permissible and prohibited food items: "O people! Eat of what is lawful and good on earth, and do not follow the footsteps of Satan. He is to you an open enemy." (2:168); "...Eat of what God has provided for you, and do not follow the footsteps of Satan. He is to you an outright enemy." (6:142).

2- About adherence to peace: "O you who believe! Enter into peace, wholeheartedly, and do not follow the footsteps of Satan; he is to you an outright enemy." (2:208).

3- About sinning and immorality: "O you who believe! Do not follow Satan’s footsteps. Whoever follows Satan’s footsteps - he advocates obscenity and immorality..." (24:21).

This idea of following the footsteps of Satan is mentioned implicitly here.

1- Taking advantage of sins/disobedience of guided human beings to increase their disobedience: "Those who reverted after the guidance became clear to them - Satan has enticed them, and has given them false hopes." (47:25); "Those of you who turned back on the day when the two armies clashed - it was Satan who caused them to backslide, on account of some of what they have earned..." (3:155).

2- Taking advantage of sins/disobedience to urge human beings to deny the Lord God's Verses: "Then, evil was the end of those who committed evil. That is because they rejected God’s Verses, and used to ridicule them." (30:10).

3- Eventually, this gradual forgetfulness becomes permanent and it dominates the soul/heart as sins and disobedience continue; this makes the faces of sinners blacken on the Last Day as they will be screened from the Lord God's mercy: "...Their hearts have become corroded by what they used to earn. Not at all. On that Day, they will be screened from their Lord. Then they will burn in Hell." (83:14-16).


Thirdly: permanent, deep-seated forgetfulness within generations because of the terrestrial religions and their deep-rooted notions:

 The Muhammadans believe in laughter-inducing types of falsehoods, lies, and myths, labeled as fiqh and hadiths, which are inherited from the past centuries; they are deemed by them as deep-rooted notions/traditions came from the ancestors/forefathers; adhering to such traditions makes them forget the Divine Quranic Truth.

1- This is about disbelievers on the Last Day: "They had found their parents astray. And rushed along in their footsteps." (37:69-70).         

2- The Qorayish tribesmen denied the Quran and adhered to traditions inherited from their ancestors: "And when it is said to them, “Come to what God has revealed, and to the messenger,” they say, “Sufficient for us is what we found our forefathers upon.” Even if their forefathers knew nothing, and were not guided?" (5:104); "But they say, “We found our forefathers on a course, and we are guided in their footsteps.”" (43:22). It is a general Quranic rule about the polytheistic sinners: "Likewise, We sent no warner before you to any town, but the wealthy among them said, “We found our forefathers on a course, and we are following in their footsteps.”" (43:23). Within any given society dominated by the affluent, corrupt ones who monopolize wealth, power, and authority, the affluent classes manipulate and maintain the terrestrial religion to serve their purposes of keeping the status quo; hence, they reject the Celestial, Divine Religion and stick to the terrestrial, earthly one.

3- Satan, who is the fabricator of all terrestrial religions, has caused them to forget the Truth with the passage of centuries: "And when it is said to them, “Follow what God has revealed,” they say, “Rather, we follow what we found our ancestors devoted to.” Even if Satan is calling them to the torment of Hell?" (31:21).

4- We find an excellent example of the role of Satan in misguiding others by forgetfulness in the Quranic story of Abraham with his people.

4/1: The role of Satan the Devil is mentioned within the speech of Abraham addressed to his disbelieving father: "O my father, do not worship the Devil. The Devil is disobedient to the Dominant Lord. O my father, I fear that a torment from the Dominant Lord will afflict you, and you become an ally of the Devil.”" (19:44-45).

4/2: It is mentioned implicitly within the dialogue between Abraham and his people and how they adhered to religious deep-rooted notions inherited from their forefathers: "When he said to his father and his people, “What are these statues to which you are devoted?” They said, “We found our forefathers worshiping them.” He said, “You and your forefathers are in evident misguidance.”" (21:52-54); "When he said to his father and his people, “What do you worship?” They said, “We worship idols, and we remain devoted to them.” He said, “Do they hear you when you pray? Or do they benefit you, or harm you?” They said, “But we found our ancestors doing so.” He said, “Have you considered what you worship, you and your ancient ancestors? They are enemies to me, but not so the Lord of the Worlds." (26:70-77).

 If some Quranists would repeat the words of Abraham to those who venerate, deify, and worship the mausoleum dedicated to any 'saint' (e.g., the mausoleum of Hussein in Cairo, Egypt), they will consider the Quranists as violators of their religious deep-rooted notions inherited from their 'holy' ancestors. These two Quranic verses apply to those polytheists: "They had found their parents astray. And rushed along in their footsteps." (37:69-70).


Lastly: how to save oneself from the temptations and whispers of Satan and his devils:

1- By remembering the Lord God and reading His Book, the Quran, while seeking refuge in Him against Satan the outcast: "When you read the Quran, seek refuge with God from Satan the outcast." (16:98).

2- By seeking refuge in the Lord Allah against the whispers of Satan the outcast: "And when a suggestion from Satan assails you, take refuge with God. He is Hearing and Knowing." (7:200); "When a temptation from the Devil provokes you, seek refuge in God; He is the Hearer, the Knower." (41:36).

3- By seeking refuge in the Dominant Lord God against the whispers of all devils: "And say, “My Lord, I seek refuge with You from the urgings of the devils. And I seek refuge with You, my Lord, lest they become present.”" (23:97-98).

4- The pious, monotheistic believers have no devilish companions; in contrast, the devilish companions misguide disbelievers/polytheists and convince them they are 'guided'; the difference is emphasized here: "He [i.e., Satan] has no authority over those who believe in their Lord and rely on Him. His authority is only over those who follow him, and those who deify him within their polytheism." (16:99-100). As always, the Lord Allah says nothing but the Absolute Truth.

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