Know Your Enemy

Published On: 10 August 2023756 words5 min read

In the famous book The Art of War by Sun Tzu, he writes: “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”


Sometimes we cannot help but feel shocked and dismayed, bewildered and disappointed at how we Muslims have lost our sight and connection with reality.


We fight, and boy do we know how to fight. We attack, we curse, we bicker and contend, we disparage, throw physical and verbal blows, engage in conflict and debate like there’s no tomorrow… but not with a true and real enemy like you’d expect from a Muslim.


You see, we are busy, real busy. Busy fighting. But unfortunately it’s with ourselves and amongst each other.


We’ve lost sight of our true enemies. We’ve lost awareness of the devil and his influence. We’re oblivious to the attacks and agendas of those who wish our families and faith community’s misguidance, destruction and even death. We’re especially clueless as to the spiritual and ideological attacks of our enemies.


Why? Because we’re too busy fighting each other. And because we don’t know what we are meant to stand for and against. And because we no longer know who we truly are nor who Allah wants us to be. And because we haven’t learnt the basics of our religion and the noble identity and mentality that it can create in a human being.


We’re too busy with envy and jealousy about the house our sister lives in and the fancy furniture and clothes she owns. We’re too distracted by our hatred of the brother who betrayed us over a decade ago. We’re too focused on squabbling with our spouses about petty day to day disappointments and expectations. We’re busy filling out children’s ears and minds with bitter vitriol about ex spouses to ensure the children are confused and take sides.


Our minds are fixated on the need to be a hot-goss-hero and to be the first to relay gossip, slander and tending news about someone’s personal life.


Our tongues are occupied with the voicing of complaints and dissatisfaction with our local masjid and the Imam before we’ve offered help and support from our own selves.


We’re too caught up with family conflicts about who should inherit more of Baba’s wealth and property.


We’re too busy with chatter about that family’s successful business and casting assumption about where they got their money from.


All of this conflict, talk and mischief is nothing but distraction from what is most important and pure trickery of the devil, not to mention largely based on ego and insecurity.


It is all nonsense and waste in the big scheme of things, as death approaches, as the end of times creeps forth, as our accountability nears.


We weren’t sent here to fight each other. We are meant to collectively resisit and fight against a collective enemy as defined by Allah Himself.


“And Allah is most knowing of your enemies…” Quran 4:45


We will never conquer the enemy without so long as we do not defeat the enemy within.


An African proverb states: “If there is no enemy within, the enemy outside can do you no harm.”


So long as we do not overcome the evil within our own souls and so long as we do not vanquish the evil within our ranks, we will never be able to defeat the enemies that surround us.


And these enemies are thirsty for our blood, hungry for our innocent, desperate to see our families and communities torn apart and they await openly with their weaponry against us as well as in the shadows in ambush.


“And say to My servants that they should always speak (even when disputing with others) that which is the best. Satan is ever ready to sow discord among them. For Satan indeed is a manifest enemy for humankind.” Quran 17:53


Wake up. Be aware. Stop aiming your weapons at the wrong enemy. Remove your fellow Muslim from being the target of your offence.


Instead be brothers and sisters united in faith ready to protect and defend the Ummah against our true enemy.


Be allies of one another and not of the devil and his friends. Know your enemy.

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