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NUMBER OF SHAYATEEN

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Respected Mufti Sahab

Assalam o Alaikum

Quran speeks of one Shaitan i-e Iblees? Then how come Shaitan effects billions of people at the same time? We believe only Allah SWT is omini-present, right. Then Shaitan doesnt have the power to be present at more than one place at one time. Then how come he misguides billions at the same time?
If Shaitan is one, and rest are his disciples– then how many does he have? how did he make them believe in him and not in Allah.. As far as my knowledge, Quran mentions that Allah only gave Iblees the permission to try to misguide humans.. not to his disciplines.

Please clarify this confusion.

Jazaak Allah

Answer
Bismillah

Al-jawab billahi at-taufeeq (the answer with Allah’s guidance)

Iblees (Shaitan) is from the Jinn and has children and many disciples:

Allah Ta’ala says,

“Will you then take (Iblees) and his offspring as protectors in preference to Me, although they are an enemy to you.” (18:50)

Their exact number is not known.

Jinns can be Muslims and non-Muslims:

Allah Ta’ala says,

“I did not create the Jinn and mankind except to worship Me.”(51:56)

“Say (O’ Muhammed): It has been revealed to me that a group of Jinn listened and said; ‘Indeed we have heard a marvellous Qur’an. It guides unto righteousness so we have believed in it, and we will never make partners with our lord'” (72:1-2)

“And indeed there are amongst us, Muslims and amongst us, wrongdoers. As for those who accept Islam, they have sought out the right path. And, as for the wrongdoers, they will be firewood for Jahannam.” (72:14-15)

Jinns can thus be Muslims or non-Muslims. However, due to their fiery nature the majority of them are non-Muslims. All these non-Muslim Jinns form a part of the army of the most famous Jinn, Iblees- the Shaitan. Consequently, these disbelieving Jinns are also called Shaitans (devils).

Iblees has been given respite up to the Day of Resurrection:

Allah Ta’ala says,

“Verily! You are of those allowed respite, up to the day of the time known. (Iblees (Shaitan) said: “By Your Might, then I will surely mislead them all, Except Your chosen slaves amongst them (faithful, obedient, true believers of Islamic Monotheism).” (38:80-83)

Iblees has his throne in the sea, and he sends out his dispatchments of Shaytan to aggravate people. The dearest of them to him is the one who causes the most fitna (tribulation).

One of his workers comes and tells him, “I did not leave (my victim) until I brought about separation between him and his wife.” Iblees draws him near and says to him, “Yes, You (are the best). (Muslim)

And Only Allah Ta’ala Knows Best.

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Moulana Qamruz Zaman
London, UK

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This answer was collected from MuftiSays.com, based in London (UK). It is one of the fruits of Darul Uloom London. Many ‘ulama are involved in answering the Q&A on the site, including: Shaikul Hadeeth Mufti Umar Farooq Sahib, Mufti Saifur Rahman Sahib, Mufti Abdullah Patel Sahib, Maulana Qamruz Zaman Sahib, Mufti Abu Bakr Karolia Sahib.

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