It is mentioned in the holy Qur'an that Satan was the one that defied God. If so where did his minions come from?

Can devils mate and reproduce? Are the number of devils increasing as the population of Earth is increasing? In short, can someone describe the life of devils?


In the Arabic language, Shaytan is derived from Shatana, which means the far thing. Hence, the Shaytan has a different nature than mankind, and his sinful ways are far away from every type of righteousness. It was also said that Shaytan is derived from Shata, (literally 'burned'), because it was created from fire. Some scholars said that both meanings are correct, although they state that the first meaning is more plausible. Further, Siybawayh (the renowned Arab linguistic) said, "The Arabs say, 'So-and-so has Tashaytan,' when he commits the act of the devils. If Shaytan was derived from Shata, they would have said, Tashayyata (rather than Tashaytan).'' Hence, Shaytan is derived from the word that means, far away. This is why they call those who are rebellious (or mischievous) from among the Jinns and mankind a `Shaytan'.

Allah said,

And so We have appointed for every Prophet enemies ـ Shayatin (devils) among mankind and Jinn, inspiring one another with adorned speech as a delusion (or by way of deception) (6:112).

In addition, the Musnad by Imam Ahmad records that Abu Dharr said that the Messenger of Allah said,

O Abu Dharr! Seek refuge with Allah from the devils of mankind and the Jinns. Abu Dharr said, "I asked him , `Are there human devils' He said, Yes.''

Furthermore, it is recorded in Sahih Muslim that Abu Dharr said that the Messenger of Allah said,

" The woman, the donkey and the black dog interrupt the prayer (if they pass in front of those who do not pray behind a Sutrah, i.e. a barrier). Abu Dharr said, "I said, `What is the difference between the black dog and the red or yellow dog' He said,

The black dog is a devil."

Also, Ibn Jarir At-Tabari recorded that Umar bin Al-Khattab once rode a Berthawn (huge camel) which started to proceed arrogantly. Umar kept striking the animal, but the animal kept walking in an arrogant manner. Umar dismounted the animal and said,

"By Allah! You have carried me on a Shaytan. I did not come down from it until after I had felt something strange in my heart.''

This Hadith has an authentic chain of narrators.

So, shaytaan are among mankind and Jinns and also, some other creatures mentioned above. It is merely the title for the rebellious and mischievous ones of them.

Regarding one who defied Allah, it was Iblees and yes, progeny of Iblees live among Jinn kind. Allah says (Interpretation of meaning):

“Will you then take him (Iblees) and his offspring as protectors and helpers rather than Me while they are enemies to you?” [al-Kahf 15:50]

They dwell in ruins and unclean places.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “These toilets are haunted (inhabited by devils), so when anyone of you goes to the toilet let him say, ‘A’oodhu Billaahi min al-khubthi wa’l-khabaa’ith (I seek refuge Allaah from the male and female devils).” Narrated by Abu Dawood, 6; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Silsilat al-Ahaadeeth al-Saheehah, 1070.

They will also face death, for they are included in the words of Allaah (interpretation of the meaning):

“Whatsoever is on it (the earth) will perish” [al-Rahmaan 55:26]

  • -1 doesn't really answer the question, sorry. – Ansari Jun 25 '12 at 19:58
  • @Ansari really? I think there are some common points in your answer and mine. The extra thing I say is sources of Shaytaan and to know that we have to understand what Shaytaan means itself. Hence, I answered. Do you have any suggestion as to how I can improve or show the parts? – Abdullah Jun 25 '12 at 20:01
  • My comment was from a "focus" point of view - the question asked 1) where does the plurality of shayatin come from and 2) can they reproduce. The last part of your answer describes their life, which is the last question OP asked and it's something I overlooked. But prior to that your answer isn't exactly on-topic – Ansari Jun 25 '12 at 20:03
  • 1
    @Ansari 1) Shayatin are among Jinn, Mankind, and also some creatures. I provided evidences for that from Qur'an and Hadeeth. 2) Reproduction. I used the al-Kahf 15:50 ayah. 3) I also gave some evidences about their dwelling place as the questioner asked and also that they will perish. – Abdullah Jun 25 '12 at 20:06

Shayateen (or devils) can indeed mate and reproduce. Allah SWT alludes to that in Surat Kahf when He talks about Iblis and "his offspring.". His minions include those among the jinn who have allied themselves to him instead of being Muslims. We don't really have numbers on the jinn population or whether it's increasing or stagnant or decreasing, but we do know they are a parallel creation and they reproduce. Allah SWT alludes to their reproduction in Surat Rahman where He says there will be those in heaven whom no human nor jinn has touched, and also in numerous ayaat where He talks about creating things in pairs and having spouses from among themselves. He SWT refers to them dying as well, in Surat Fussilat - meaning they do reproduce to keep their kind alive somehow. We do know however that typically their lifespans are longer than ours.


Those who follow Iblis from jinn and men are shaitans as well. So being a shaitan is much more like carrying a title rather than being a unique creature. Some of these shaitans are of higher (devilish) degree and they are called Ifrits.


Allah does mention about Satan's 'offspring' in the Quran. Also some scholars, ** I DO NOT KNOW HOW TRUE THIS IS,** SAY sATAN HAS BOT THE MALE AND FEMALE REPRODUCTIVE ORGANS ON HIS LEGS.

Allah Knows Best.

  • Do you have any evidence to support your claims? – Sassir Feb 18 '19 at 10:00

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy