Shaykhul-Islām Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728H)
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Indeed the enmity between man and Shaytan is old, commencing from the time that Adam (alayhi as-salam) was created – from the time that he was ordered to prostrate to him. Shaytan refused, became arrogant and hence disobeyed His Lord. His arrogance and pride led him to commit a whole host of sins, it made him expend every effort in misleading the children of Adam and made him beautify and embellish sins such that they accepted them and eagerly committed them. Due to this, Allah, the Exalted, revealed the books, sent the messengers and enjoined his servants to various injunctions and admonitions in order to secure them from the evil of Shaytan. In the light of his advice, profound injunctions and severe warnings, mankind became separated into two groups: a group who were guided and a group who deserved to be misguided. The group who were guided are the inhabitants of Paradise and the group who were misguided are the denizens of the Fire. The inhabitants of Paradise are the Awliya of the Most Merciful and the denizens of the Fire are the awliya of Shaytan.
Whoever takes Shaytan as an ally instead of Allah has certainly sustained a clear loss. [An-Nisa] (4): 119]
Presented to the reader is the book [al-Furqan bayna Awliya ar-Rahman wa awliya ash-Shaytan] at a time in which Shaytan has overcome the majority of mankind and knowledge of the differences between the Awliya] of the Most Merciful and the awliya of Shaytan is seldom found.’ In it, the author explained, in detail, the most important differences between the two categories of awliya, tackling the subject from various different angles and thoroughly refuting those who have gone astray in this matter. he discussed the issue of miracles and furnished the principles he laid out with examples of miracles performed by both groups of the awliya. Furthermore, he clarified some of the most important aspects of the muslim belief, in all of this depending entirely upon the book, Sunnah and understanding of the Salaf, may Allah have mercy upon him and reward him well.
Shaykhu’l Islam Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728H) was a leading Muslim scholar in the history of Islam and a Mujtahid in his own right. His breath of learning and depth of understanding was accepted by all of his peers and many of his biographers stated that he clearly suppressed the vast majority, if not all of the scholars of his time. He was a prolific writer and skilled orator. He was deeply religious and unwavering in his adherence to Islam and the Sunnah and repudiating all those that opposed it.