Ibn al Qayyim: Shaytan and his troops

Ibn al-Qayyim said that a person rises in his closeness to Allah until:

“…there remains only one obstacle from which the enemy calls him from, and this is an obstacle that he must face. If anyone were to be saved from this obstacle, it would have been the Messengers and Prophets of Allah, and the noblest of His Creation. This is the obstacle of Satan unleashing his troops upon the believer with various types of harm: by way of the hand, the tongue, and the heart. This occurs in accordance with the degree of goodness that exists within the believer. So, the higher he is in degree, the more the enemy unleashes his troops and helps them against him, and overwhelms him with his followers and allies in various ways. There is no way around this obstacle, because the firmer he is in calling to Allah and fulfilling His commands, the more the enemy becomes intent upon deceiving him with foolish people. So, he has essentially put on his body armor in this obstacle, and has taken it upon himself to confront the enemy for Allah’s Sake and in His Name, and his worship in doing so is the worship of the best of worshippers.”

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