When Allah created the first Nabi, Adam, He ordered all the angels to prostrate before Adam as a sign of obedience. All the angels prostrated except for Harith bin Murrah who refused for he considered himself superior to Adam. He forgot that it was Allah, his maker, who had elevated Adam above all. Because of his haughtiness Harith bin Murrah became Iblees, the Shaitan, and set a precedent of enmity and opposition. Arrogance and jealousy are the root of all evil and have caused the downfall of the prominent and the mighty.
It is a tradition of Allah that in every age there will be present an enemy who opposes the Maula. The greater the Maula the more severe the enemy. Rasulullah (SAW) said that every Nabi had one enemy whereas he had two.
The enemy appears in different forms in different ages and uses different means and media to lure the faithful away from their belief. Sometimes he is an outsider who declares a war against the truthful; and sometimes he is an insidious insider who plots treacherously; sometimes he dons the attire of modernism and sometimes he appears in the garb of a well-wisher. Sometimes he is one of the close aides; and sometimes he is a part of the close family.
The uprising of the enemy brings in a churning phase in which the chaff is separated from the wheat and the non-believer is differentiated from the believer. It is a time for the faithful to reaffirm their faith and a time to introspect. Allah says in Quran, “Do men think that they will be left alone on saying, “We believe”, and that they will not be tested? We did test those before them, and Allah will certainly know those who are true from those who are false.”
Opposing the Maula, challenging his position and obstructing mumineen from the path of truthfulness is the mission of Iblees which is carried on by like-minded devils in every era. The history of Anbiya Kiraam, Aimmat Tahereen and Doat Mutlaqeen is replete with such instances.
When the Islamic Caliphate returned to Maulana Ali (SA), Muawyah, the son of Abu Sufyan, refused to surrender to him and started a campaign of deceit and falsehood. He took the aid of cunning people like Amr bin Aas whose aim was only to gain wealth and riches at the cost of Deen and Akherat. History revels clearly that the pure and the faithful who believed in Deen and Akherat flocked towards Maulana Ali (SA) while the corrupt, the sinful and those who desired the material world joined Muawyah. Muawyah’s refusal to cede Shaam (where he was the governor) to Maulana Ali (SA) who now was the rightful owner of the entire Islamic world, led to the battle of Siffeen; the bloodiest battle fought in the history of Islam. One day during the battle, Amr bin Aas showed a wound he had sustained in the battle to Muawyah. Muawyah tried to console him by saying that the wound he had received was in the cause of Allah and Allah would reward him. Upon hearing this, Amr remarked sarcastically, “Don’t deceive me; if I had really wanted Akherat I would have gone to Ali instead.”
Similar was the case of Dajjal, the ruthless enemy who revolted against the 12th Imam, Maulana Qaim (SA) in North Africa. Those who joined his army were thugs, ruffians and people of barbaric origins. Their motive was not to fight for any truth or rightness but to pillage and plunder the kingdom of Imam. Dajjal terrorized the entire kingdom of Imam and mumineen were put through immense hardships and subjected to atrocities. Dajjal and his rioters took one city after another, until only the capital was left untouched. Imam Mansoor (RA) went in his pursuit and fought for a number of years before capturing him and cleansing his kingdom from his cruelties.