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Does Shaitaan have control over the Prophet (saws)?

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)



One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

As per the hadiths below the Prophet (saws) states that while praying  Satan comes and puts him in doubts till he forgets how many Rakat he has prayed. This incident happened with the prophet (saws) himself. As far as I know Satan has no control over the Prophet (saws). How is it possible that Prophet (saws) forgot the amount of rakahs he prayed?


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Does Shaitaan have control over the Prophet (saws)?

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 2.313 Narrated by Abu Huraira

Allah's Apostle (saws) said, "When the Adhan for the prayer is pronounced, then Satan takes to his heels passing wind so that he may not hear the Adhan and when the Mu'adhdhin finishes, he comes back; and when the Iqama is pronounced he again takes to his heels and when it is finished, he again comes back and continues reminding the praying person of things that he used not to remember when not in prayer till he forgets how much he has prayed." Abu Salama bin 'Abdur-Rahman said, "If anyone of you has such a thing (forgetting the number of Rakat he has prayed) he should perform two prostrations of Sahu (i.e. forgetfulness) while sitting." Abu Salama narrates this from Abu Huraira.


Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.394 Narrated by Abdullah

The Prophet (saws) prayed (and the sub-narrator Ibrahim said, "I do not know whether he prayed more or less than usual"), and when he had finished the prayers he was asked, "O Allah's Apostle! Has there been any change in the prayers?" He said, "What is it?' The people said, "You have prayed so much and so much." So the Prophet bent his legs, faced the Qibla and performed two prostration's (of Sahu) and finished his prayers with Taslim (by turning his face to right and left saying: "As-Salamu'Alaikum-Warahmat-ullah"). When he turned his face to us he said, "If there had been anything changed in the prayer, surely I would have informed you but I am a human being like you and liable to forget like you. So if I forget remind me and if anyone of you is doubtful about his prayer, he should follow what he thinks to be correct and complete his prayer accordingly and finish it and do two prostrations (of Sahu)."

It is narrated that the Prophet (saws) once said that every person has a Shaitaan with him and when asked if he (saws) too had a Shaitaan with him, he said “Yes; but Allah has blessed me and my Shaitaan has become a ‘believer’”.


In light of the above narrations, it is evident that Shaitaan does try to sow discord and doubt in the believers minds; but he had no effect over the Messenger of Allah (saws). The hadith quoted where he forgets the number of rakahs prayed, is only to show us that he (saws) is no more than a human being and is liable to forget like the rest of us. And the wisdom behind his forgetting the number of rakahs is so that he (saws) could teach the believers how to act after this mistake in the salaah , and how exactly to perform the sajdah-sahu.


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.


Your Brother in Islam,






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