Muslim Preachers and Teachers
Angels were created without lust and evil, the worst obstacles of humankind. Those who, despite their evil nature, remain pious excel angels in rank. Enthused by their purity angels denounced the human race, so God chose three angels to go to the earth and reform its inhabitants. One angel, espying the corruption, begged God to let him return. The other two, in their earthly form, gave in to lust and fell from grace. Thus God revealed to the other angels the superiority of the devout.
-Al-Hujwiri, "The Kashf al-Mahjub"
From "The Bounty of Allah," translated by Aneela Khalid Arshed. Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. Used with permission of The Crossroad Publishing Company, New York.