Satan Chained Up in Ramadan

It has been said that during the holy month of Ramadan, Satan is chained up. But if Satan is restricted, does that mean people will not have temptations and will not make any wrongdoing?

In the Khutba Shabaniyah, the Holy Prophet (PBUH) enumerated the aspects of the holy month of Ramadan, one of which is: “(In this month) the devils are chained up. Ask God not to let them dominate you.”

Two things are deduced from this saying: First is that devils are restricted in this month. The second thing is that while they are restricted, they can still dominate and have influence over those who fast.

The Quran portrays Satan as being very weak and underlines that Satan and his aides have no dominance over servants of God. When Satan threatened to lead people astray, God said he won’t have influence over the (good servants who obey God) and that he can only have influence over those who follow him.

With regard to the above-mentioned part of the Khutba Shabaniyah, some believe that the devils being chained up means that the qualities of Ramadan and those who fast restrict the devils. Therefore, the devils could be more restricted for some and less for some others.

Ramadan is a great opportunity for strengthening oneself spiritually. It is a month in which the Holy Quran has been revealed. It is a month in which there is the night of Qadr. It is a month in which worshiping God is different. As the Hadith goes, even a faithful’s breathing and sleeping are acts of worship in Ramadan. Reciting a verse of the Quran in this month is equal to reciting the entire Quran. That is why Satan cannot infiltrate the hearts of the fasting faithful who are worshiping God at any moment.

In other words, the hearts of people who fast, due to their fasting and due to the virtues of Ramadan, are full of God’s light and remembrance and Satan yields to such a heart. Now if the fasting person fails to strengthen himself spiritually and fails to remember God all the time, the light of his heart will be weaker and that opens up the path for Satan’s infiltration. God says in verse 36 of Surah Az-Zukhruf: “If anyone withdraws himself from remembrance of (Allah) Most Gracious, We appoint for him an evil one, to be an intimate companion to him.”

On the other hand, the Holy Prophet (PBUH) has been quoted as saying, “Verily, Satan flows through the human being like the flowing of blood. Make his passage narrow by means of hunger.”

So fasting and experiencing hunger in Ramadan helps one narrow Satan’s passage to one’s heart. That is why eating little and fasting occasionally throughout the year has been recommended.


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