Why and how God created Satan

Satan

(Arabic shaiṭān). As a generic term, S. describes a kind of genius of the old Arab. Pandaemonium, in the determined form, S. is synonymous with Iblis (Arabic Iblīs, perhaps from the Greek diabolos) the proper name for the devil as an individual. Whether Satan is an angel or a demon (Arabic jinn) is controversial, arguments for both can be found in the Koran. Iblis appears there in two episodes that have parallels to apocryphal Christian traditions. After God created Adam from clay, He commands the angels to prostrate themselves before him. All obey, except for Iblis, who cites the reason for his refusal that he is superior to Adam because, in contrast to Adam, he is created from fire (Suras 38:69 - 77, 15:26 - 34). Therefore, pride and disobedience to God are considered to be Iblis ’essential traits; the disobedience is also explained by Iblis ’belonging to the demons. On the other hand, Islam. Mysticism understood this refusal as the strict observance of another prohibition, namely to worship other beings besides God. The punishment S. will be postponed until the Last Judgment. Until then he can seduce people (Suras 38:79 - 85, 15:36 - 43, 17:61 ff.). Iblis then leads Adam and Eve to eat from the tree of immortality in the garden of Eden, contrary to God's commandment (Suras 2: 35-39, 20: 116-123). Therefore he is considered to be the tempter of the people and as such becomes arab. referred to as shaiṭān. Numerous legends have come down to us about his attacks on people as well as on the prophets (in the case of Satan. Verses). It is often equated with the human instinctual soul (arab. Nafs). The symbol. Stoning S. is one of the rituals of pilgrimage.

Literature:
Awn, P. J .: Satan's Tragedy and Redemption. Iblis in Sufi Psychology, 1983. - Beck, E .: "Iblis and Mensch, Satan and Adam", Le Muséon 89 (1976), 195 - 244. - Nünlist, T .: Demon belief in Islam. An investigation with special consideration of written sources from the premodern period (600 - 1500), 2015.

Author:
Prof. Dr. Gottfried Hagen, University of Michigan, Turkish Studies

Source: Elger, Ralf / Friederike Stolleis (eds.): Kleines Islam-Lexikon. History - everyday life - culture. Munich: 6th, updated and expanded edition 2018.