02-06-2010, 11:08 PM

Icon41 Meaning of belief in al-Qadar (the divine will and decree)


Qadar means that Allaah has decreed everything that happens in the universe according to His prior knowledge and the dictates of His wisdom.

Belief in al-Qadar includes four things:

1 The belief that Allaah knows all things, in general and in detail, from eternity to eternity, whether that has to do with His actions or the actions of His slaves.

2 The belief that Allaah has written that in al-Lawh al-Mahfooz (the Book of Decrees).

Concerning these two matters Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
Know you not that Allaah knows all that is in the heaven and on the earth? Verily, it is (all) in the Book (Al‑Lawh Al‑Mahfooz). Verily, that is easy for Allaah [al-Hajj 22:70].
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Transliteration: 'Alam Ta`lam 'Anna Allāha Ya`lamu Mā Fī As-Samā'i Wa Al-'Arđi 'Inna Dhālika Fī Kitābin 'Inna Dhālika `Alá Allāhi Yasīrun

In Saheeh Muslim (2653) it is narrated that Abd-Allaah ibn Amr ibn al-Aas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: Allaah wrote down the decrees of creation fifty thousand years before He created the heavens and the earth.

And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: The first thing that Allaah created was the Pen, and He said to it, Write! It said, O Lord, what should I write? He said: Write down the decrees of all things until the Hour begins [Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4700; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood].

3 The belief that whatever happens only happens by the will of Allaah whether that has to do with His actions or the actions of created beings.

Allaah says concerning His actions (interpretation of the meaning):
And your Lord creates whatsoever He wills and chooses [al-Qasas 28:68].
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Transliteration: Wa Rabbuka Yakhluqu Mā Yashā'u Wa Yakhtāru

and Allaah does what He wills [Ibraaheem 14:27].
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Transliteration: Wa Yaf`alu Allāhu Mā Yashā'u

He it is Who shapes you in the wombs as He wills [Aal Imraan 3:6].
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Transliteration: Huwa Al-Ladhī Yuşawwirukum Fī Al-'Arĥāmi Kayfa Yashā'u

And He says concerning the actions of created beings (interpretation of the meaning):
Had Allaah willed, indeed He would have given them power over you, and they would have fought you [al-Nisa 4:90].
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Transliteration: Wa Law Shā'a Allāhu Lasallaţahum `Alaykum Falaqātalūkum

If your Lord had so willed, they would not have done it [al-Anaam 6:112].
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Transliteration: Wa Law Shā'a Rabbuka Mā Fa`alūhu

All events, actions and happenings occur only by the will of Allaah. Whatever Allaah wills happens, and whatever He does not will does not happen.

4 The belief that all things that happen are created by Allaah in their essence, their attributes and their movements.

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
Allaah is the Creator of all things, and He is the Wakeel (Trustee, Disposer of affairs, Guardian) over all things [al-Zumar 39:62].
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Transliteration: Allāhu Khāliqu Kulli Shay'in Wa Huwa `Alá Kulli Shay'in Wa Kīlun

He has created everything, and has measured it exactly according to its due measurements [al-Furqaan 25:2].
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Transliteration: Wa Khalaqa Kulla Shay'in Faqaddarahu Taqdīrāan

And Allaah tells us that the Prophet of Allaah Ibraaheem (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to his people:
While Allaah has created you and what you make [al-Saaffaat 38:96 interpretation of the meaning].
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Transliteration: Wa Allāhu Khalaqakum Wa Mā Ta`malūna

If a person believes in all these things then he believes correctly in the divine will and decree (al-qadar).

Belief in al-qadar as we have described it above does not contradict the idea that a person has free will with regard to actions in which he has free choice. He can choose whether to or not to do things that he is able to do of acts of worship or sinful actions. Shareeah and real life both indicate that people have this will.

With regard to shareeah, Allaah says concerning man's will (interpretation of the meaning):
That is (without doubt) the True Day. So, whosoever wills, let him seek a place with (or a way to) His Lord (by obeying Him in this worldly life)! [al-Naba 78:39].
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Transliteration: Dhālika Al-Yawmu Al-Ĥaqqu Faman Shā'a Attakhadha 'Ilá Rabbihi Ma'ābāan

so go to your tilth, when or how you will [al-Baqarah 2:223].
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Transliteration: Fa'tū Ĥarthakum 'Anná Shi'tum

And He says concerning mans ability (interpretation of the meaning):
So keep your duty to Allaah and fear Him as much as you can [al-Taghaabun 64:16].
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Transliteration: Fāttaqū Allāha Mā Astaţa`tum

Allaah burdens not a person beyond his scope. He gets reward for that (good) which he has earned, and he is punished for that (evil) which he has earned [al-Baqarah 2:286].
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Transliteration: Lā Yukallifu Allāhu Nafsāan 'Illā Wus`ahā, Lahā Mā Kasabat Wa `Alayhā Mā Aktasabat

These verses confirm that man has a will and the ability to do what he wants and not to do what he does not want.

With regard to real life, everyone knows that he has a will and the ability to do what he wants and not to do what he does not want. And he can distinguish between the things that happen when he wants them to, such as walking, and those that happen without him wanting them to, such as shivering. But the will and ability of man are subject to the will and decree of Allaah, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

To whomsoever among you who wills to walk straight.
And you cannot will unless (it be) that Allaah wills the Lord of the Aalameen (mankind, jinn and all that exists) [al-Takweer 81:28-29].
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Transliteration: Liman Shā'a Minkum 'An Yastaqīma, Wa Mā Tashā'ūna 'Illā 'An Yashā'a Allāhu Rabbu Al-`Ālamīna

But the entire universe is the dominion of Allaah, and nothing can happen in His dominion without His knowledge and will.

And Allaah knows best.