Q. Shaitaan (Iblis) was thrown out by Almighty Allah on not obeying the orders. Thus Shaitaan is one entity, how can he be present at so many places at one given time to distort Muslims believers from doing their duties.
(Zakir Patel; Baroda)
Answer by Allama Syed Abdullah Tariq:
Adam was alone in the beginning and God created for him, his wife so that the human race could start and spread. Iblis is one person but being from Jinns, he may have his progeny. At which stage, Allah created his pair, is not known to us, as most other things about them are also unknown. We know that Iblis was the most learned and respectable of all Jinns before being expelled from the proximity of Allah. It does not necessarily mean that he was the lone person of his race when his expulsion came about. In one of the ayat, where his non-compliance is described, it is at the same time stated that he was from among (the race of Jinn), which indicates that there may have been others of his race at that time also, though not necessarily in high heavens. The relevant ayat is: “…they bowed down except Iblis. He was one of the Jinns and he broke the Command of his Lord.” (18:50)
Qur’an has used, the words ‘tribe of Shaitan, hosts of Shaitans, brothers of Shaitans and it informs us that the Shaitans are from both Jinns and humankind. See the ayat 7:27, 26:95, 17:27, and 6:112 etc. So there are and have been innumerable number of devils from among Jinns and human beings from day one.
Besides the above, it is possible for a Shaitan from Jinns to tempt and mislead more than one person from human beings even if they are at different places. Shaitan has not to be physically present near a man to allure him. Being a person whose basic constituent of the body is heat energy instead of matter, he can penetrate and infiltrate from a distance in different directions. The Qur’an tells us that he misleads by sending thought waves (Waswasa). He did not allure Adam by physically sneaking into the heaven from where he had been expelled. There was no question of his approaching near a place where from none other than Allah had debarred him. He allured Adam and Hawwa by sending thought waves. “Then began Satan to whisper suggestions to them bringing openly before their minds all their shame that was hidden from them (before): he said “Your Lord only forbade you this tree lest ye should become angels or such beings as live for ever.” (7:20). We have been warned thus:
“O ye children of Adam! Let not Satan seduce you in the same manner as he got your parents out of the garden stripping them of their raiment to expose their shame: for he and his tribe watch you from a position where ye cannot see them: We made the devil the protecting friends of those without faith.” (7:27)
This answer was given by Allama Syed Abdullah Tariq in the magazine www.islamicvoice.com