A Case Inbetween Two Concerns

Chapter Two : Al Quran Position Towards (inevitability) and (man’s Independence)

Now we shall try to explore Al Quran stance of the question of Inevitability. A first reading, AL Quran will acquaint us with two important points:

  • Al Quran denies the doctrine of inevitability in the way Al Asha'irah present.

  • AL Quran as well denies the doctrine of authorization in the way AL Mutazilah choose to believe.

In the first point, Al Quran clearly confirms the doctrine of free will; in the second it confirms the doctrine of man’s independence and freedom of choice.

These two points do not contradict each other; rather they integrate each other revealing a third doctrine that is neither the first approach nor the second. This is the doctrine that the progeny (A.S.) advocate. We shall declare that later.

Now we move to read the Quranic verses that pertain to both doctrines:

1. The Doctrine of Free Choice in Al Quran:

Hereafter we demonstrate the verses taken from the Book of Allah, which confirm the principle of free choice in man’s life. This is a dossier of verses we chose from a vast collection of the Book of Allah verses.

At the first place, Al Quran frankly and clearly determines the principle of assigning Allah’s command-ments to man; such an assignment of course would have no meaning if it does not affirm the principle of free choice.

The Sublime says:

[It is incumbent upon mankind to pay pilgrimage to the Holy House, for those who can afford to make the journey regarding their financial and physical ability] revised by translator. Al Imran v. 97.

[Fasting is decreed for you as it was decreed for those before you] AL Baquarah v. 183

[O, you who believe! When the call is proclaimed for the congregational prayer of Friday, then hasten to Allah’s remembrance, and quit your trade and every business]. Al- Jumah v. 9.

At the second place All Quran determines that:

Allah the Sublime did not assign to man his duties only after he had bestowed on him, brain, consciousness and the ability to distinguish things.

The Sublime says:

[Have we not made for him two eyes? And a tongue and two lips? And we did show him the two ways [of truth and falsehood] Al Balad- 8, 9, 10.

[Then We showed him the straight path, whether he chooses to be grateful or be in grateful and disbeliever]. Revised by translator Al Insan v. 3.

At the third place AL Quran states that: Allah the Sublime does not charge mankind with their duties only after He perfects His clue on them by giving them a previous note, and after sending His prophets heralding and warning them.

The Sublime says:

[And We do not chastise any people before we send a messenger (for guiding them to the right path] Al Isra'a v. 15.

[And say (O, Messenger), verily evident proofs have come to you from your Creator and Nurturer (to give you) insight about the truth, so whoever keeps his eyes closed on the truth will harm himself.] Al Ana'm v. 104. Revised by translator.

[And never your Creator and Nurturer did destroy a town before sending a messenger to recite to them our revelations, and we never destroy a land unless its population is transgressors] Al Qassas v. 59 revised by translator.

At the fourth place al Quran states that: Allah the Sublime does not force mankind to do things they can not do, He only assigns to them duties fit to their potency.

The Sublime says:

[Allah does not put a task on a person beyond his ability. Man gets reward for that good which he has done and he is punished for that evil which he has done] Al Baquarah v. 286.

All this emphasis on the fact that Allah never assigns to mankind their duties unless He enables them to distinguish things, sending to them heralding warning prophets; never asking them to do things over their potency; we say that all this emphasis never comes true unless accompanied by a recognition of free choice as a principle.

At the fifth place: Al Quran attributes man’s deeds and acts to him himself, it states that those deeds are what he has gained. Such a statement never proves true unless man is free to choose whatever he does according to his own free will. He is not a mere container for the acts that he produces the way those who advocate determinism claim. The Sublime says:

[And whatever befalls you people, it is the result of your own deeds.] Revised by translator. As Shu'ra v. 30.

[So woe be to them for what their hands have written and woe be to them for what they earn thereby.] Revised by translator. Al Baquarah v. 79.

[Aye, those who do evil and are encompassed by their sins, those are the inhabitants of the fire and they shall abide therein forever.] Revised by translator. Al Baquarah v. 81.

At the sixth place: Al Quran confirms the principle that man’s deed pertains to him including the sequences of such a deed (being good or evil), Reward or punishment for such a deed emphasize that it is attributed to him himself (which is part of the constitutional reward and punishment that Allah has programmed within the course of the universe); we say that all this may never come true unless man withstands the responsibility for his deeds, which is conditioned to his free choice.

[And say (O messenger!); verily evident proofs have come to you from your Creator and Nurturer (to give you) insight about the truth, so whoever keeps his eyes closed from the truth will harm himself.] Revised by translator AL Anam v. 104.

[Say (O, Messenger!); O men! The truth has come to you from your Creator and Nurturer; whoever is guided it is only to his own benefit, and whoever goes astray; it is only to his own loss.] Revised by translator. Yunus v. 108.

[Allah does not put a task on a person beyond his ability. Man gets reward for that (good) which he has done and he is punished for that (evil) which he has done.] Al Baquarah v. 286.

At the seventh place: Al Quran confirms that man is rewarded and punished in this mundane world, such an act is conditional to his responsibility for his deeds; the responsibility itself is conditioned to his free choice.

The Sublime says:

[Allah has given an example: some people who lived peacefully in their town and provision came to them in abundance from everywhere, but they did not value the bounties of Allah, and Allah (due to their ingratitude) made them experience and taste hunger and fear.] Revised by translator. An Nahl v. 112.

[So we sent down upon the evil doers a plague from heaven, because of their rebellion against Allah’s command.] Revised by translator, Al Baquarah v. 59.

[Corruption has been spread through out the world in sea and land on the account of men’s wrong deeds.] Revised by translator. Ar Rum v. 61.

At the eighth place: Al Quran determines that man will be rewarded and punished for his good and evil deeds on the Day of Judgment. We have already stated that reward and punishment are related to free choice; they are never correct without choice:

[And they will be paid for what they did, and Allah better knows what people do.] Revised by translator. Al Zumar v. 70.

At the ninth place: Al Quran confirms that Allah the Sublime punishes or rewards everyman according to his deed, never punishing anybody for somebody’s else wrongdoing.

The Sublime says:

[And no one shall bear the burden of another person’s sin.] Al Anam v. 164.

At the tenth place: Al Quran states that man on Dooms Day will repent his ill deeds which he had committed in this mundane world.

Repentance signifies and confirms free choices of man; for he cannot repent a thing he had not chosen.

[O, you who believe! If a spiteful person with a private motive brings you on item of news, try to verify it before making any decision lest you many unknowingly harm other people and then become remorseful of what you have done.] Revised by translator Al Hujurat v. 6.

[And they will hide their remorse when they see the torment but it shall be judged about them fairly and they will not be dealt with unjustly.] Yunus v. 54.

At the eleventh place: Al Quran states that; man’s deeds decide his destiny turning him thus a winner or a looser.

The Sublime says:

[And by the soul and the one who created it and gave order and perfection to it, inspiring it both with evil and with good; (by all these oaths) the winner is the one who had not polluted it with sin and corruption and was deprived from the Grace of Allah.] Revised by translator. As Shams v. 7-10.

At the twelfth place: Al Quran states that the change which Allah the Sublime brings about in the life of people and nations, (A change as enormous as enrichment, annihilation, allurement, torment or deception) is only a result of their deeds, this does not come true unless man enjoys his full freedom.

The Sublime says:

[Allah will not change the inside and facial condition of people until they change what is inside them (of good and evil) themselves.] Revised by translator. Ar Ra'd v. 11.

[That is so because Allah will never change the bounty that He has bestowed upon people unless they change themselves (by rebellion)] Al Anfal v. 53.

At the thirteenth place, al Quran states that, Allah in this mundane world gives mankind some of or all that they ask (according to their deeds they way He chooses). If giving is done by Allah the Sublime (according to His will and desire), demand – on the other hand – comes from man. Giving (from Allah) comes responding to man’s request. All this has no meaning unless man is free to choose his demands.

[Whoever whishes the temporal quick – passing worldly life, We easily grant him such things for whom we will, afterwards, provide hell; he will reside in it despised and rejected. And whoever desires the good of the hereafter and strives for it wholeheartedly while he is a believer (On the Day of Judgment), then such people are the ones whose efforts will be appreciated (with the test reward).

To both groups, these and those in this world, we bestow from the bounties of your Creator and Nurturer; the bounties of your Creator and Nurturer are not spared from anyone.] Revised by translator. Al Israa v. 18 – 19 – 20.

At the fourteenth place: Al Quran states that Allah the Sublime does not do mankind injustice, rather, it is they who do themselves injustice; the verses that indicate this fact in the Book of Allah are nearly eighty verses, all of them clearly authenticate the principle of man’s free choice; punishing man with the most sever torment and punishment for doing something he had no will in is a kind of injustice which Allah the Sublime is too dignified and Great to commit:

The Sublime says:

[Creator and Nurturer is never unjust to His human creatures.] Fussilat v. 46.

[Allah did not treat them unjustly, but they did unjust to themselves.] At Taubah v. 70.

[And whoever brings about an evil deed, will only be recompensed the like of it; And they will not be treated unjustly.] Revised by translator Al Anam v. 60.

[And everyone will be paid fully for what he has done and they will not be dealt with unjustly] An Nahl v. 111.

[We did not treat them unjustly, rather they did themselves injustice.] Revised by translator. Hud v. 101.

[We did not do them wrong, but they did themselves wrong.] Revised by translator An Nahl v. 118.

[We did not do wrong to them but they did themselves wrong.] Revised by translator. Az Zukhruf v. 76.