Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Why Should Allah Almighty Punish His Servants for Their Sins When Everything Happens as He Wills?

By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi, New Age Islam 12 September 2023 Both Good and Evil Only Take Effect When Allah Wills Them To, Not of Their Own Volition Main Points 1. It is crucial to differentiate between "God's Will" and "God's pleasure" to understand the subject in question. 2. The phrase "everything is from Allah" signifies that everything is subject to Allah's will, and both good and bad require Allah's will, intention, and consent for effectiveness. 3. Allah is the creator [Khaaliq] of all deeds including good and bad, while the creature is the perpetrator [Kaasib] of the deeds. ------ Question: Since Allah Almighty is the Creator of human acts, including both good and evil, and since man is completely reliant upon divine will and intention, why would man be punished on the Day of Judgment for his evil deeds? Allah Almighty says in the Quran, “And you do not will except that Allah wills - Lord of the worlds” (81:29). Why should the servant be held accountable for his conduct and punished when man is powerless to act contrary to God's will? He Almighty also says, “Wherever you may be, death will overtake you, even if you should be within towers of lofty construction. But if good comes to them, they say, "This is from Allah"; and if evil befalls them, they say, "This is from you." Say, "All [things] are from Allah." So what is [the matter] with those people that they can hardly understand any statement?” (4:78). When all things including good and evil are from Allah, then why His slaves should be held accountable for their evil deeds? He also says, “What comes to you of good is from Allah, but what comes to you of evil, [O man], is from yourself. And We have sent you, [O Muhammad], to the people as a messenger, and sufficient is Allah as Witness.” (4:79) According to this verse (4:79), good things come from Allah and bad things come from man. If this is the case, it contradicts the verse above (4:78), which states that everything, both good and evil, comes from Allah. Answer: It is vital to make a distinction between "God's Will" and "God's command and pleasure" in order to comprehend these verses. The phrase "everything is from Allah" therefore refers to the fact that everything is subject to the will of Allah Almighty. Good or bad, they are ineffective on their own; they both require the will, intention, and consent of Allah to be effective. The phrase “good is from Allah and evil is from your own self” refers to the fact that while Allah has commanded good and is pleased with it, He has not commanded evil and is not pleased with it. As a result, "good is from God" indicates that it is done at the direction and pleasure of God, and "evil is from your own self" means that you did it on your own initiative and at your own volition. Thus, the following is the meaning of the verses: • Both good and evil only take effect when Allah wills them to, not of their own volition. • Only when Allah wills does goodness take effect, and He also commands His servants to do good because it pleases Him. • When a man does something bad, it only happens when Allah wills it to happen. However, the All-Powerful does not tell His slaves to do it and is not pleased with it. To better grasp this, let's use an example. Imagine a father standing next to his child at a grocery store while outlining the advantages and disadvantages of each product. Then he clearly explains to his child that "if you choose such and such thing, I will be pleased" and "if you choose such and such thing, I will be angry." The child is then given the freedom to choose. Now that the father has given the child the freedom to choose any item in the superstore, the child can now choose anything. The child will not be able to select either the good or the bad thing if the father does not give him this option. [The verse “And you do not will except that Allah wills” conveys the similar idea that a servant is unable to do any action unless Allah grants him permission to do so.] If the child chooses the object that the father commanded and was pleased with, then the child's decision also reflects the father's will as well as his pleasure and command. However, if the child decides to do something that his father forbids, even though the father's will is unavoidably present in this decision, it is not the father’s will or his command. Allah is the creator [Khaaliq] of all deeds including good and bad, while the creature is the perpetrator [Kaasib] of the deeds. Whatever happens in the world, or will happen, follow the command and will of Allah and with His knowledge. There is a huge difference between creation and perpetration. No deed can be carried out without the permission and will of Allah Almighty. He created both good and evil deeds for the purpose of testing humans. Allah has endowed humans with intelligence, understanding and ability to pick out good from evil, commanding them to conduct good deeds and refrain from bad deeds. At the same time, He has given them the right to choose any deed but also informed them that He is pleased with the good deed and unhappy with the bad deed. Now when man perpetrates a good deed, the good deed comes into effect only with the permission of Allah and when man perpetrates a bad deed, that bad deed comes into effect with the permission of Allah. However, it must be made clear that Allah has commanded man to perform good deeds and refrain from evil. This answer demonstrates that man is neither the creator of his own actions nor is he hindered in making choices or exercising his free will. Man is completely free to make his own decisions and is the Kaasib [perpetrator] of his deeds. There are neither internal nor external constraints to hinder him from exercising his choices within the specified bounds since this neutralizes the distinction between morality and immorality, perfection and imperfection, right and wrong, and good and evil. Now, those who do good deeds will receive rewards, while those who do wicked deeds will suffer divine punishment. ----- A regular columnist with NewAgeIslam.com, Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi Dehlvi is a classical Islamic scholar [Aalim, Faazil and Mutakhassis Fi al-Adab al-Arabi wa al-Ulum al-Shariah] with a Sufi background and an English-Arabic-Urdu Translator. URL: https://newageislam.com/islamic-q-a/allah-almighty-punish-sins-wills/d/130653 New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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