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The Great Tragedy of Azazeel 24 January 2006

Posted by MOZAFFAR in MOZAFFAR, Spirituality, Theology.


God created Azazeel beautiful. So knowledgeable. So pious. So wise. So zealous.

It is said of him that he was also appointed to be a keeper of Paradise, and a ruler of a lower heaven.

But, God announced that He would make a deputy on the Earth.

You would think that the Angels would be most qualified to fulfill this role, considering that they — as God’s Blessed Devotees– do whatever it is that He tells them to do. At the most, they question Him, but beyond that, they do not even have the ability to disobey. Anyone else would surely cause bloodshed.

If not the Angels, you would guess that this Jinn — Azazeel — already balancing so many responsibilities, could easily add this new responsibility to his cv. I’m sure Azazeel felt that he was most worthy of this honor. Unlike the angels, the Jinn may disobey God. Thus, their voluntary devotion is worth so much more because it is indeed voluntary. And, Azazeel was the best of the best of these Jinn.

No. God knows what we do not know.

So, as we know, God appointed this responsibility to this foolish creation, Man. This forgetful Insan, who — by design — needs intimacy and interaction. This Man, who takes on commitments without thinking of their consequences, becomes God’s Deputy.

So, we wonder about what could have been. Imagine Azazeel continuing in his service to God, perhaps as Man’s own deputy, perhaps as Man’s most devoted advisor.

But, we know what happened. This beautiful, pious, wise, zealous, knowledgeable Azazeel …broke.

None of the prostrations, none of the knowledge, could help save Azazeel from his one tragic flaw: kibr. This kibr, this inflated sense of self-importance, motivated Azazeel to do something that no Believer should ever do.

He gave up.

Whereas before he may have dedicated himself to tireless zealous service to God. Now, he was hell-bent on proving God wrong.

His beauty was gone. His knowledge now served a different aim, one simple aim.


He was now hell-bent on pulling God’s most devout servants among the humans down to Hell with him. Who cares about those who already reject God; they aren’t worth the effort.

Rather, he is waiting behind the bushes to jump on the Straight Path and give you a taste of that sweet, sweet poison that he himself drank — kibr.

And, throughout all of this, Azazeel could have (should have) done one simple thing. This one simple thing takes 1 second on the tongue, but may weigh a ton on the heart.

He could have just asked for forgiveness. But, that’s how it works, doesn’t it? When we get seduced by that inflated sense of self-importance, we can’t bring ourselves to apologize, even to God.

We know him no longer as Azazeel. But, now we know him by his nickname. Iblis. The one who gave up and became distant. This creature who had so much potental to do such great things, is now our open enemy.

It’s the echo of Narcissus. Once a beauty; now a beast.

A’udhubillahi Min al-Shaytan, al-Rajeem.

I seek refuge in God from Satan, the Accursed (or Stoned).

May God Bless you.



1. The Turk - 25 January 2006

It truly is a tradegy. Azazeel had such potenial but is let astray by his pride. However, why must we suffer his stupidity. He knew Allah(swt) and his power. He challenges Allah(swt) and Allah(swt) accepts. This one of the issues I have a problem with it. We are pawn being played? Why must we suffer the earth and its vagaries? And why did Allah(swt) simply not explain his situtation? Allah(swt) simply says something to the effect you do not what I know. Yes, all the angels knew that. They were simply asking why? Thats my question today and I’ll ask it when I die; I believe but I still must ask why? I don’t understand… Why must we all suffer the earth? Why can’t we all just stay and live in heaven. Why must heaven be earned?
Why must we face hellfire? Why can’t we have our cake and eat it too?

2. bdr - 25 January 2006

Enjoy your writings. Keep up the great work.

3. hikm - 25 January 2006

I believe it was Albus who informed me in a bookshop in masr qadima that there was/is a difference of opinion as to whether or not Iblis is a jinn or an angel. I would appreciate some clarification.

4. mozaffar - 25 January 2006

Salams all,

Thank you for your posts.

To The Turk – Ultimately — ultimately — the answer to the “Why did God choose this route,” will be “Because God chose this route.” That is the essence of the Islamic outlook, isn’t it? Surrender.

This answer may be the most unsatisfying or satisfying. But, to add a bit of complexity to the situation, we can say that a recurring thread in the Qur’an regarding questions, is the importance of satisfying questions (as opposed to simply answering them). According to the narrative in al-Baqarah, it seems that God satisfied the Angels question. They asked, He answered, and they did not ask further. In another place in the same Surah, the Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) also needed his heart satisfied (in seeing how God creates life from the dead).

The second issue in your post, and I have a forthcoming (Insha Allah) blog on it relates to the issue about God’s interaction with us, and our interaction with God. Simply, we have to keep the two perspectives distinct. There is a “God-perspective” so to speak, and there is our perspective. From the “God-perspective” everything is already known and set. From our perspective, our destiny is the result of our own choices. These are two different paradigms, two different perspectives. When we mix them, we get a lot of questions, and few answers.

But, it does get more complex as we look at both perspectives deeper (because, for example, our choices are commonly reactions to what God puts in our environment). But, I’m laying out this particular layer above as the foundation.

To bdr — much appreciated. Feel free to comment, critique, etc..

To hikm — If we take the text of the Qur’an as is, God identifies Iblis as a Jinn (for example in 18:50). But, in the historical sources, we’ll find that there is some mention that the jinn themselves may have originally been a special type of angel. I don’t know if that view is supported in the Traditional sources or if its taken from outside sources, like the Isra’illiyat.

I hope these responses help.  Feel free to comment further if necessary.

May God bless you all.

Omer M

5. eteraz - 28 January 2006

Iblis is a victim.

6. Mzazeel - 27 June 2007

شكرا لك

7. * Nafs * - LI Islamic Forum - 6 September 2007

[…] / Azazeel is his previous name bro…. http://www.***************/forum/showthread.php?t=23556 https://othermatters.wordpress.com/20…dy-of-azazeel/ http://www.tasawwuf.org/writings/ser…e_humility.htm and even […]

8. ammad azhar - 6 June 2008

brother u never know about azaeel,
azazeel is very helpfull for any man of god he playing very great role for human,


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