Fate and Destiny (Al-Qadaa wa Al-Qadar)
There has not been a topic that is more likely discussed, argued and debated as that topic of Al-Qadaa wa Al-Qadar. Thatâ€™s because everyone wants to debate it, whether one is knowledgeable or ignorant about it. And a question that is always asked is whether everything happening to us is pre-destined? So why there is the call to Account then? And can I do anything that is not by the will of Allah? The questioning goes even further; if this is the truth, where I can not do anything except what Allah has determined for me, why would Allah punish me by sending me to Hell? Is it just to be called to Account in the Hereafter?
You will find that, this question is asked only by those who have transgressed against their souls and disobeyed Allah. On the other hand, you will not find anyone saying, that since everything is pre-determined by Allah, then why will Allah bless me with the Jannah
? Definitely, that is a question that you never hear. You always hear people saying that the call to Account is unjust, because our actions have already been pre-destined by Allah.
) has given man the freedom of choice throughout his life. From here came the debate; that is some people would think that the freedom of choice given to man conflicts with the consent of Allah in His universe, which is very far from the truth.
And those people refer to Al-Ayaat Alkarima
<<But ye will not, unless Allah wills; for Allah is full of Knowledge and Wisdom>>
Ayah 30 from surat Al-Insan
They also refer to the words of Allah (SWT) to Al-Rasool (PBUH)
<<Verily,you (O Muhammad PBUH) will not be able to guide whom you like, but Allah guides whom He wills>>
Ayah 56 from surat Al-Qasas
And Allah also says
<<For Allah leaves to stray whom He wills, and guides whom He wills>>
Ayah 8 from surat Fatir
So, if those are the Ayat and this is the will of Allah, how are we called to Account on the Day of Resurrection?
Here we can say that Allah (SWT) has what He wills in His creation. There is nothing in the universe of Allah that can be considered to be exempt from his decree. This is the mere truth that we start with, and we can add to this the fact that the people are themselves contributing to their destruction. And that they will deserve either the punishment or the mercy of Allah according to their own deeds, as Allah (Jalla Jallaloh)
<<Verily Allah will not deal unjustly with man in aught; it is man that wrongs his own soul>>
Ayah 44 from surat Yunus
Universe and Choice
created the whole universe on the basis of choice. There are creatures that had the option to choose only once and their choice was to be oppressed. And there are others who have chosen to be given the right of successive choice so that each of them would have the freedom of choice throughout his life (Al-Hayat Al-Donya
There are Angels that Allah did not inform us of how they have been created. They glorify Allah day and night and they never disobey what Allah has decreed. As Allah (Jalla Jalaloh) says
<<They (the angels) glorify His Praises night and day, they never slacken (to do so)>> Ayah 20 from Surat Al-Anbiyaâ€™a
And Allah (SWT) also says
<<(angels) who disobey not, (from executing) the Commands they receive from Allah, but do that which they are commanded>>
Ayah 6 from surat At-Tahrim
Those are the angels that Allah (SWT) keeps in charge for whatever He wills throughout the universe. There is an angel in charge of every single thing in the universe according to the Will of Allah (Jalla Jalaloh). Among those angels are the Lifters of the Throne and the ones nearest to Al-Haqq
(SWT). There are also the uppermost angels, the angels of death, the angels that are in charge of man, like Al-Hafaza Al-Keram
who write down manâ€™s acts, and many other angels.
All creatures except man and Al-Jin
have deliberately chosen to be oppressed.
If we read what Al-Haqq (SWT) says,
<< Truly, We did offer Al-Amanah (the Trust) to the heavens, and the earth, and the mountains, but they declined to bear it and were afraid of it, but man bore it. Verily, he was unjust (to himself) and ignorant (of its results)>>
Ayah 72 from surat Al-Ahzab
Then we will know that the heavens, the earth, the mountains and all other creatures were offered Al-Amanah, which is the freedom of choice. That is they were offered to be free to choose and to be able to obey or disobey. But all those creatures except man and Al-Jin refused the offer of choice. They all said to Allah that they canâ€™t handle themselves nor Al-Amanah and they asked Allah to make them oppressed.
And if Allah (SWT) had not informed us about that in His book the Quraâ€™an, we would not have known that the offer of choice was there for all His creatures, that they refused to carry Al-Amanah that man has accepted and that they preferred to be oppressed.
But letâ€™s explain what is Al-Amanah. Al-Amanah is what another person leaves with you on a condition that he gets it back whenever he wants. He would leave Al-Amanah with you because you are trustworthy and this trust has to be without any written proof or any eyewitness. For example, if someone gave you some money and he got a receipt, a bank check or a money draft in return, it is not considered Amanah. It is considered a certified deposit. Also if someone left the money with you in the presence of some people, it is still not considered Amanah, but a witnessed deposit. It is called Amanah only if that trust was between the two of you, with no witness or proof. And Allah (TWT) offered Al-Amanah to the heavens, earth and mountains, but they all rejected it. Why? Because they felt they are incapable of returning it. That is because if someone left you some money as Amanah, you might hit some bad times and turn towards some of that money hoping that you can return it later. And you might even spend all the money, thinking that you will be able to return it by the time it is due. But actually when the time comes, you canâ€™t get the money and by this, you have wasted Al-Amanah. So man before bearing Al-Amanah thought that he would be able to return it and that he would follow the law of Allah and pay back His rights (SWT) by praying, thanking Allah, serving Him and doing all what Allah orders him.
When man started the journey of bearing Al-Amanah, that is this life (Al-Hayat Al-Donia), the devil - Al-Shaytan
- seduced him, so he started doing sins and believed in more than one God. Eventually, man started believing in and serving the stones, the sun, the moon, the stars, the animal and more. By doing that he wasted Al-Amanah, and by the time Al-Amanah is due, when death approaches him, he is to meet Allah unable to pay back Al-Amanah that he chose to bear.
Man and Al-Amanah
So we can see that man deliberately carried Al-Amanah, but did he bear it against the will of Allah (SWT)? Did he give himself the right to freely do or not to do, or did Al-Haqq offer him that freedom? Definitely man didnâ€™t give himself anything. Allah (SWT) with His mighty power and divine will gave man the choice, so He created him free to choose. And if Allah (Jalla Jallaloh) wanted to create him oppressed, it would have been that way. And for this Al-Haqq (SWT) draws our attention to that truth in his words (Jalla Jallaloh)
<<If We will, We could send down to them from heaven a Sign, to which they would bend their necks in humility>>
Ayah 4 from surat Al-Shuâ€™araa
And Allah (Galla Gallaloh) says
<<Have not then those who believed yet known that had Allah willed, He could have guided all mankind (to the Right)? >>
Ayah 31 from surat Ar-Raâ€™d
There hasnâ€™t been anyone in the universe getting anything except through the decree of Allah. The creatures who chose oppression got it by the will of Allah (SWT) and the creatures that are capable of choosing got that choice by the will of Allah (Jalla Jallaloh). So everything in the universe submits to the divine will of Allah, its Creator. The oppressed to obey and the free to disobey both got what they have by the will of Allah (TWT). None is exempt from Allahâ€™s decree. In this way man has been created free to choose, because Allah (SWT) wanted him to have this freedom and Allah being Al-â€˜Adl
- the Justice - would not oppress man to choose. Allah offered man the right of choice and he accepted it. And that offer was offered to him by the will of Allah.
Here the question to ask is, why was man created free to choose? And here we say that the oppressed creations of Allah (SWT) prove the majestic, oppressing and dominating qualities of Allah; that He is capable of oppressing who ever He likes to do what He wants. But there is also the loving quality of Allah (SWT) in His universe and this quality canâ€™t be proved except from a creation that approach Allah with love, not because they are oppressed to do that. A Creation that would serve Allah out of love and that obey Him because they love to obey Him. And to have this achieved, that creation has to be capable of believing and disbelieving, capable of obeying and disobeying. A creation that say â€œ O God I love You and for that I believe in You, not because I am oppressed but out of love, O God I love to obey You and for that I do it. God I will do all what You order me and will avoid what You forbade and God if I am capable of doing any sin, it is the lust of my soul and the evil among men and Al-Jin that makes sins alluring to me. But God, Your love in my heart is greater than that of the whole world and Allah, the Lord of the universe, all what You want me to do I will love to do because I love You Allah and I love to please You.â€
That is the real meaning of choice in the universe. Allah (SWT) does not want submitting figures but He wants humble hearts and that is why He wants man to come to Him with a loving heart. And faith - Al-â€˜Eman
- would examine your love for Allah, if the love for Allah in your heart is great, then your faith in His curriculum will be greater. But if His love in your heart is not that strong, then you will be far away from His curriculum.
Priviliges to Man
When Al-Haqq (TWT) created man, the creature that will come to Him out of love, Allah wanted to make him a leader of the universe to reward him for choosing to be obedient. Allah also wanted to prepare man for the difficult test that will hit him throughout his life (Al-Hayat Al-Donia). That is because the lust of the soul together with the whispers of the devil - Al-Shaytan - and the appeal of disobedience will need strength and power so that man does not fall into sins. So Allah gave man a universe to serve him, a universe that has everything that man would need to save his life and to keep it going. The sun provides him with warmth and brightens his day so that he can go on building the universe as Allah ordered him. The earth provides him with the food, not only the essential elements for manâ€™s life, but also gives him the luxury of choice. It produces different kinds of food from which he can select what he likes; a lot of vegetables and fruits with distinct tastes, cattle that provides the meat to eat and the wool to wear. In this universe man also has the water from the sky - the rain - to save his life and to give life to animals and plants that serves him. And in that way Al-Haqq has provided man a universe with all the elements of life in it, so that he does not get distracted by those elements and forgets to serve and obey Allah, the provider of life. That universe is the first privilege that Allah (SWT) specified to man who is capable of choosing.
The second privilege is that Allah created all those elements of life subject to man. They can not stop doing their role in life, the sun can not say that it will rise today and not tomorrow, the moon can not suddenly leave the sky and disappear, the wind can not go far from the earth and prevent man from life, and the earth can not say it will not blossom the plants. Everything that serves man in the universe performs its role perfectly.
And that oppressed universe is the unchanging universe, the good universe that never tires anyone or ruins anything. Its rules are rigid and continuous and it is all done by the decree of Allah so that man feels safe about his existence and survival. In that way man is not busy with the timing of the sunrise nor is he worried to find a way to get the water from the sky. He is not responsible of the succession of the night and day nor does he need to find out the ways to maintain the atmosphere around the earth. Allah relieved man from all those responsibilities so that he is not distracted by the universe, from the Creator of the universe.
Ayat for the People
Then came the third privilege; Al-Haqq (SWT) wanted to show man that there is a God capable of everything, Allah who created man and everything in the universe for serving man and who also created the universe. He made things that are millions of times stronger than man and that no one can claim creating it, serve man. For example, the sun with all its strength and power, all people gathered cannot claim that they made nor created it. It can burn the whole universe and man doesnâ€™t have any way to prevent its harm. But then Al-Haqq made the sun provides us with all what we need and with His wisdom, knowledge and precision in His creation prevented its harm from reaching us. Another example is the sea, it can drown the whole universe but Allah (SWT) made it provide us with the different kinds of fish, food to eat, jewelry to wear as in pearl and coral. He made it carry our ships from one country to another and prevented its harm from reaching us.
A third example is the earth that can shake powerfully and destroy man and all what he has built, but Allah (SWT) submitted it and made it calm for us, to be able to live on it.
And then Al-Haqq (Jalla Jallaloh) gave us the fourth privilege, our senses, the ears to hear, the eyes to see, the tongue to talk and all the senses that makes us aware of our surroundings. And Allah also gave us the mind that is capable of distinguishing. All these things that serve us cannot be created by man, and so man should know that there is a tremendous power out there that had created this universe and it is above all our strength and power. Al-Haqq (Jalla Jallaloh) says
<<And Allah has brought you out from the wombs of your mothers while you know nothing. And He gave you hearing, sight and hearts that you might give thanks (to Allah)>>
Ayah 78 from surat An-Nahl
All the Ayaat in His universe that show that He (Jalla Jallaloh) is the Creator - Al-Khaliq
-, Al-Haqq (SWT) made them clear and obvious so that the human brain does not get tired of searching for it or trying to reach it. He (SWT) did not make His Ayat unknown or hidden nor did He make them hard to reach but He (SWT) made everyone able to see and watch them easily with no effort done. We see the sun, the moon, the stars, the plants, the earth and we breathe the air. We see that Ayat Allah draws our attention as if it is presenting itself and announcing its Creator with out any effort done from our side.
Then Al-Haqq (SWT) demanded from us to look at the universe to see those Signs - Al-Ayat - so that we do not distract ourselves and get lost in searching for His Ayat in the universe, and so that we do not forget the Creator and spend all the time thinking about the creation. For the human brain in general with no required knowledge can see and recognize those Ayat easily. In that way Al-Haqq wanted to make us busy with Him and with His love, without getting lost in ambiguous Ayat in His universe.
Man and the Devil
Then there is the fifth privilege; before we start the period of test, Al-Haqq (SWT) wanted to teach us that we are going to be exposed to the seduction of Iblis
- Al-Shaytan. He (SWT) wanted us to know that Iblis' seduction is a lie and that he is our enemy. He (Al-Shaytan) deceives us with wishes that never come true and whispers to us with lies that has nothing to do with the reality and he tries to distract us from the path of love and obedience of Allah. So there was the experience of Adam and Hawaâ€™a
; Allah made them live in Heaven and allowed them to eat from all its fruits except for one tree, exactly in the same way Al-Haqq (SWT) allowed us so many things in this life and prevented us from the least.
Adam and Hawaâ€™a were allowed all the fruits in Heaven except that one tree, when Iblis - Al-Shaytan - came and tempted them to eat from it. Al-Shaytan lied and told them that the tree would give them eternity and an everlasting kingdom. Al-Shaytan witnessed what he promised them and it was a lie, but Adam and Hawaâ€™a believed him and they ate from the tree. Thereupon, instead of having the eternity, their nakedness was manifested to them. And instead of providing them with the everlasting money, the tree took away the sustenance of Allah that they used to get without any work or effort. So they descended to the earth to work hard and suffer for their living. That was an introduction to life on earth and to the lies that Iblis - Al-Shaytan - promises man to let him fall into sins and disobedience.
And for man not to fear Iblis, get overwhelmed by this fear and forget about serving Allah, He (SWT) informed him that Al-Shaytan is weak and that he cannot have power over man unless man listens to him and obeys him. And He (Jalla Jallaloh) told us that Al-Shaytan has no power to make us do what we do not want to do, for Allah did not give him the power of oppression to force us to disobey nor did He (SWT) give him the power of persuasion to convince us to do sins. Allah (SWT) says
<<I (Al-Shaytan) had no authority over you>>
-- Ayah 22 from Surat Ibrahim
That is Al-Shaytan has no strength to oppress or convince us with wrongdoing. Then Allah (Jalla Jallaloh) wanted to ease us from all this, so He told us that if we are sincere in serving Him and honest in our love to him then He (SWT) will save us from the evil of Al-Shaytan. And this is proved in His words (SWT)
<<[Iblis (Satan)] said: â€œ O my Lord! Because you misled me, I shall indeed adorn the path of error for them (mankind) on the earth, and I shall mislead them all. Except Your servants among them, sincere and purified (by Your grace).â€ Allah said: â€œThis (Way of My sincere servants) is indeed a Way that leads straight to Me. Certainly, you shall have no authority over My servants, except those who put themselves in the wrong and follow you)>>
Ayat 39-42 from surat Al-Hijr
And by those words Al-Haqq (SWT) wanted to tell us that whoever stays close to Him, serve and love Him sincerely will be safe from Al-Shaytan and that Iblis evil whispers will have no effect on him. But then if the human self weakens, Al-Haqq (SWT) informed us to seek protection - nastaâ€™eez
- from the wicked devil by Allah so that the evil temptation of Al-Shaytan would not approach us. In that Al-Haqq (Jalla Jallaloh) says
<<And say: â€œMy Lord! I seek refuge with You from the whisperings (suggestions) of the Shayatin (devils). And I seek refuge with You, My Lord! Lest they should come near me>>
Ayat 97,98 from surat Al-Muâ€™minun
And Allah (TWT) says
<<Verily, those who are Al-Mutaqun (the pious) when an evil thought comes to them from Al-Shaytan (Satan), they remember (Allah), and indeed they then see (aright)>>
Ayah 201 from surat Al-Aaraf
So by that, Al-Haqq (SWT) showed us the way to overcome Al-Shaytan, and all what we have to do is to nastaâ€™eez by Allah and be sincere in serving Him so that our minds do not get paralyzed with fear from Iblis and his seduction.
Witness of Allah
Then there is the sixth privilege; Al-Haqq (SWT) made us witness Him since we were still in the world of dispersion, and by that He put the instinct - fitra
- of belief in our souls and so we became with that fitra believers of Allah the Creator - Al-Khaliq
, the Magnificent - Al-â€˜Azim
. And that witness was necessary so that man would not come on the Resurrection Day arguing as he always does and deny knowing Allah. And although we cannot see Allah, whenever His name is mentioned to anyone he finds Allah familiar to him and close to his soul. It is the fitra of belief that Allah (SWT) plants in us before we come to this world and start our experience with the choice that Allah wanted for us and that we willingly accepted. He (SWT) says
<<And (remember) when Your Lord brought forth from the Children of Adam, from their loins, their descendents (or from Adamâ€™s loin his offspring) and made them testify as to themselves (saying): â€œ Am I not Your Lord?â€ They said: â€œYes! We testify,â€ lest you should say on the Day of Resurrection: â€œVerily we have been unaware of this.â€ Or lest you should say: â€œIt was only our fathers before us who took others as partners in worship along with Allah, and we were (merely their) descendants after them; will You then destroy us because of the deeds of men who practiced Al-Batil (men who are futile committing crimes and sins, invoking and worshiping others besides Allah)?â€>>
Ayat 172, 173 from surat Al-Aâ€™raf
We have showed so far that we were created with the privilege of choice that Allah wanted for us and that we have accepted. And this Ayah Al-karima approves that same concept,
<<But ye will not, unless Allah wills; for Allah is full of Knowledge and Wisdom>>
Ayah 30 from surat Al-Insan
That is first Allah wants for us to be free to choose and our choice comes out of His divine will (SWT). And Al-Haqq (Jalla Jallaloh) guarantees this choice in His creation of the universe and in His Ayat in the universe as well as in the journey of life, so that nothing distracts us from serving Allah, which is the main reason behind our creation, and so that nothing stops us from loving Allah who arranged this life for us.
When Al-Haqq (SWT) sent His messengers to show us the right path that we should follow, it was all out of His love to us. He loves us so much that he did not want to trouble us with looking for the truth, that the creator is Allah, nor with trying to find out what He (SWT) wants us to do. So there have been the messengers to inform us that the Creator - Al-Khaliq - is Allah and that He wants us to love and serve Him using a moderate defined law; a law that the messengers have applied before the creation of Allah. By this law Allah spared us the confusion of searching for Him, the Creator and finding out what He wants from those whom He created.
Yet, the human choice was not an infinite choice. It was limited in what to do and what is not permissible by the law of Allah.
Al-Qadaa wal Qadar: Arabic-pronounced words meaning Fate & Destiny.
Jannah: Arabic pronounced word meaning Paradise.
SWT: Arabic pronounced praise for Allah, Sobhanaho wa Taâ€™alah.
Al-Ayat Alkarima: Arabic pronounced word meaning the generous verses in Quraâ€™an.
PBUH: Praise for Prophet Mohamed, Peace Be Upon him.
Gallah Gallaloh: Arabic pronounced praise to Allah.
TWT: Tabarak wa Taâ€™alah; praise to Allah pronounced in Arabic language.
Al-Hayat Al-Donia: Arabic pronounced word meaning this life we are living.
Al-Haqq: Arabic pronounced name of Allah meaning the Truth.
Al-Hafaza Al-Keram: Arabic pronounced name for the angels that writes down manâ€™s good and bad deeds in a book.
Al-Jin: Arabic name for creatures that are invisible to man. Satin is one of Al-Jin.
Al-Shaytan: Arabic pronounced word meaning the devil.
Al-â€˜Adl: Arabic pronounced name of Allah meaning the Just.
Al-â€˜Eman: Arabic pronounced word meaning Faith.
Al-Khaliq: Arabic pronounced name of Allah meaning the Creator
Iblis: Arabic pronounced name for the devil, Satin
Hawaâ€™a: Arabic pronounced name for Eve, the mother for all people.
Nastaâ€™eez: Arabic pronounced abv. for: Aâ€™ouzo beAllah men Al-Shaytan Al-Rajiim
fitra: Arabic pronounced word meaning pure instinct.
Al-Khaliq: Arabic pronounced name of Allah meaning the Creator.
Al-â€˜Azim: Arabic pronounced name of Allah meaning the Magnificent.