The Destructive Effects
Of Evil Desires
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
One of the greatest reasons for man’s loss and the collapse of a society is found in a person following his evil desires. Imam Ash-Shatabi said: It’s called desires because is pushes a person in the abyss of Hell. Ibn Abbass said: Whenever Allah mentioned desires in the Quran its dispraised.
Allah said: They follow but a guess and that which they themselves desire, whereas there has surely come to them the Guidance from their Lord!
The misguided person is the one who follows his evil desires and turns away from the guidance of his lord. Therefore he oppresses his soul by rejecting the truth, since his desires has blinded him. Following evil desires is the main reason for misguidance. Allah said: Is it that whenever there came to you a Messenger with what you yourselves desired not, you grew arrogant? Some, you disbelieved and some, you killed.
For that reason Allah has explained the destructive effects of evil desires. He said: Have you (O Muhammad ) seen him who has taken as his ilah (god) his own desire? Would you then be a Wakil (a disposer of his affairs or a watcher) over him?. Plainly put, desires can blind a person, take away his hearing and result in him going astray. It’s a kind of Shirk. Some of the Salaf said: The worst deity worshipped on Earth is desires.
Evil Desires have Destructive effects.
Allah said: Have you seen him who takes his own lust (vain desires) as his ilah (god), and Allah knowing (him as such), left him astray, and sealed his hearing and his heart, and put a cover on his sight. Who then will guide him after Allah?
Allah placed desires in every man’s disposition of love and will in order for him to achieve what he wants. The Most Wise has proportioned the desires in man ,so either he goes to the right or to the left in his choices. When goes to right and follows the desire of love and will then we call it guidance and wisdom, but when he goes to the left it’s called desires and stupidity.
The reasons for following evil desires
- Not controlling your desires from early age
- A weak comprehension about Allah’s Rights
- A love for this World and the forgetfulness of the Afterlife
- Ignorance about the consequences of following evil desires
- People falling short in their obligations towards those who follow their evil desires. i.e not giving sincere advice.
Whoever wants Allah’s love and to feel at ease with his mind and have comfort in his heart then he must be attached to everything that Allah loves. Therefore he places Allah’s satisfaction over his, even though it’s difficult. Ibn Al-Qayyim said: The effect of Allah’s satisfaction over everything else is a person intends and does the things that Allah is pleased with; although it makes people angry. This is the methodology of the Prophets and Messengers. From among those Messengers who followed this path was Nuh, Ibrahim, Musa, Essa and Muhammad.
The importance of controlling desires and avoiding evil desires
Since Allah has tested man with desires he constantly struggles with having animal behavior with his instincts. He has two scales to judge by; the intellect and the religion. Rejecting the lustful temptation of evil desires is a MUST if a person wants to attain Allah’s love and peace of mind. This is considered among the greatest struggles. Abu Thar asked the Prophet about the greatest Jihad and He replied: “The fight against your soul and desires for Allah’s Pleasure.
Hasan Al-Basri said: The greatest Jihad you can perform is the battle against your desires.
Sulayman ibn Dawud said: Subduing your desires is more difficult than conquering one city.
Ibn Taymiyyah said: The Muslim must fear Allah and prevent his body from following evil desires. The mere thought of evil desires and evil lust has no consequence until it’s followed and acted by. When a person has the thought of evil desires then suppresses them this is considered worship of Allah and a righteous deed. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) saying: “The Mujahid is one who strives against his own soul.”
He ordered the fighting against the soul the same way he commanded to fight the one who calls others to disobedience; however the fight against the soul has a greater importance. This kind of Jihad is an obligation on every single Muslim and the Jihad for Allah’s religion is legislated on a party, therefore if they do it the duty is lifted on the rest. Remaining patient against the evil desires is among the greatest forms of patience.
The ways to cure the urge to follow evil desires
- Take the time to think that man hasn’t been created to follow his desires and act on the spot, but he has the ability to look at the outcome of his deeds before he does them.
- Think about the outcome of your actions before you embark on them. What can happen if you drink alcohol, watch that porn, talk to that girl, go to the night club, or smoke that joint?
- Think about the urge the desires arouse then you will realize that it really isn’t anything but a temporal pleasure that lasts only for a short period of time. Once you fulfill your evil desires you still have the sin recorded in your book against you in this life tomorrow.
- Compare the people who follow their desires without boundaries and those who restrict themselves. You will notice the one who has a higher status in the Dunya. For example look at Prophet Adam when he ate from the tree and look at Yusef when he avoided that shameful act of immorality.
- Remember the benefit of rejecting your desires and how it safeguards your honor and earns you a reward in the hereafter. 
- The only entrance the devil has into man is through the door of desires.
- Be aware that evil desires corrupts everything it mixes with.
- Remember that following evil desires and lusts contradicts the guidance Allah sent to the Messengers. He has divided the people into 2 categories: Followers of guidance and followers of desires. Allah said: But if they answer you not (i.e. do not believe in your doctrine of Islamic Monotheism, nor follow you), then know that they only follow their own lusts. And who is more astray than one who follows his own lusts, without guidance from Allah? He the Most High also said: And if you (O Muhammad Peace be upon him ) were to follow their (Jews and Christians) desires after what you have received of Knowledge (i.e. the Qur’an), then you would have against Allah neither any Wali (protector or guardian) nor any helper.
- Allah has made the similarity of the one who follows evil desire like a dog. He said: but he clung to the earth and followed his own vain desire. So his description is the description of a dog: if you drive him away, he lolls his tongue out, or if you leave him alone, he (still) lolls his tongue out.
- The people who follow their desires aren’t worthy of being followed. They aren’t leaders and worthy of being taken as role models.
- Rejecting the urges and desires gives the slaves body strength to worship Allah. 
Prepared and written by
Abu Aaliyah Abdullah ibn Dwight Battle
 [ An-Najm:23]
 ‘Aqebahtul Ittbah AlHawa, Muhammad Hamad Al-Faqee
 [ Al-Al-Jathiyah:23]
 Hilyatul Awliyah,vol2,249, graded as sahih by Imam Al-Albani in Saheehah 3/483
 Thamul Hawa ,pg 23
 Thamul Hawa pg 21
 Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1621
 Majmu 10/635
 Thamul Hawa, by Ibn Al-Jawzi pg 14-15
 Al-Araf: 176
 Refer to Rawadul Muhibbeen by Ibn Al-Qayyim pg 471