We know that Shaytan gradually misguides mankind through waswaas (whisperings to commit acts of disobedience to Allah) but he does not use the same approach for everyone. People differ in their nature, personality and ways of thinking; what appeals to one, may not appeal to another. So Shaytan may seek to conquer someone by exploiting his love for money, while he may subdue another by his lust for fame, or might delude another by emotion. Shaytan has different ways to enter a man’s soul and misguide it; these doorways to a person’s heart are referred to as, ‘weakness.’
Imam Ibnul-Qayyim said, “The Shaytan flows through the son of Adam like blood, until it is as if he becomes part of him, so he finds out what he likes and prefers; once he knows that, he uses it against a person and enters into him through this door. He also passes this information on to his brothers and allies among mankind, so that when they want to achieve their wicked aims against one another they do so through means of that which people love and desire. Whoever tries to enter through this door will gain entry, and whoever tries to enter through any other way will find that the door is barred to him and he will not get what he wants.”
It is thus not the way of Shaytan to openly call one to disobedience. He will encourage negligence in prayers by whispering to the person to complete his worldly work before he leaves for prayers. After he has completed his work, Shaytan will remind him of food, and after that he will remind him of something else until the time of prayer has perished.
Similarly, if a person runs a business, Shaytan whispers to him that if he goes for prayer, he might miss some customers. However, if Shaytan finds man to be zealous in performing Salaat, he comes to him through different means in which he is weak. He whispers to him concerning his wealth and encourages him to unlawfully usurp the wealth of others and forbids him from paying Zakaat while telling him that this will bring him poverty and so on.
Ignorance, Ingratitude, Argumentativeness, Overstepping the limits, Carelessness, Pride, Doubt, Suspicion, Despair, Hopelessness, Recklessness, Haste, Inappropriate joy, Self-admiration, Wrong-doings, Oppression, Negligence, Miserliness, Covetousness, Extreme hostility in cases of dispute, Panic, Fear, Rebellion, Tyranny, Love of wealth are DOORWAYS OF SHAYTAN INTO A MAN’S HEART.
I ask Allaah to protect us and increase us in faith, righteousness and piety.