Tanveer on Predestination
would like to comment on your article, "predestination".
main theme of your article circulates about the following issue:
leads astray whomsoever he will and guides whomsoever he will."
have pointed out that at some places Allah says man is in full control of
his destiny and at some places it says nothing is in his control, an
apparent contradiction, according to your point of view.
are many places in Quran where it is said that Allah guides whomsoever He
wills. But His will is not blind, there are some criteria for His will
which are clearly stated in Quran.
take an example. Suppose, there are two persons. One who trusts and
believes what you say and the other one who does not trust or believe what
you say. The one who trusts and believes you, is more likely to act upon
an advice that you would give him sincerely. The one who does not trust or
believe you, he is less likely to act upon your advice however sicere it
might be. e.g. You do not trust or believe Muhammad. That is why you do
not follow him and will not follow him untill you begin to trust or
believe his words. So there is no point for Muhammad to give you advice
untill you believe him. Because even if he does give you any advice, you
are not likely to follow it.
is how Allah gives guidance. His guidance is for those who believe
Him and trust His words. This is one of His criteria for giving guidance,
and is pretty logical.
For We had certainly sent unto them a Book, based on knowledge, which We
explained in detail,- a
guide and a mercy to all who believe.
guidance and good news for the believers,
Beside Allah? They say: They have failed us; but we used not to pray to
anything before. Thus
doth Allah send astray the disbelievers (in His guidance).
: Now, surely, sincere obedience is due to Allah (alone) and (as for)
those who take guardians besides Him, (saying), We do not serve them
save that they may make us nearer to Allah, surely Allah will judge
between them in that in which they differ; surely Allah
does not guide him aright who is a liar, disbeliever.
the above verses, you can see that Allah does not select people randomly
or blindly whom to guide and whom to lead astray. He has set some
criteria, just like you have implicitly set some criteria
in your mind.
when it comes to believing, man has the initiative and full choice whether
to believe or not? If He decides to believe, he can benefit from
guidance. If he choses to disbelieve, he cannot benefit from guidance.
Say: (It is) the truth from the Lord of you (all). Then
whosoever will, let him believe, and whosoever will, let him disbelieve.
Lo! We have prepared for disbelievers Fire. Its tent encloseth them. If
they ask for showers, they will be showered with water like to molten
lead which burneth the faces. Calamitous the drink and ill the
the law of guidance can be stated as:
you believe me , then I shall guide you."
the "if" part of the sentence is in full control of man. He has
full choice. "Then" part is not in his control, it is decided
according to his choice of "if" part.
is how all laws of predestinations are laid.
has choice of taking initiative or choosing what to do. For every action
of his, there is a pet result or consequence, which is not under his
another example. You have choice whether to put your hand in fire or not.
But if you put in it, then to be burnt or not to be burnt is not in your
you hit a table with your fist. For every quantity of force, there is a
fixed resultant reaction force that will be exerted on your hand. For
every action force of yours, there is a predestined reaction force, that
you cannot change. You can only change your action force. The reaction
force is determined by your action force.
every action of yours, you have IKHTIYAR, for every reaction of your
actions, you are under JABAR. So at the same time, you have ikhtiyar as
well as you are under jabar.
Thank you for providing your
insight on the question of predestination. (jabr and ikhtiyar)
Your explanation is correct.
You actually are describing the Newton's Third Law of Motion that states
for every action there is an equivalent and opposite reaction. However the
objects that react have no will of their own. Fire burns and if I put my
hand in it, it will burn my hand. Fire cannot decide not to burn. Its
nature is to burn. Fire is not smart. It is dumb and it has no will of its
own. As humans we have superior intelligence to everything else around us
and we can bend the laws of the nature. I can wear a glove and protect my
hand from burning. I defy the laws of the nature. According to the nature
you and I should not be talking together now as each one of us in a
different part of the world. But we break the laws of the nature and
converse with each other while you are in one part of the world and I am
in another. According to the nature we cannot fly; but we build airplanes
and fly. We humans have demonstrated that our will is superior to the will
of the nature. As a matter of fact nature has no will at all. Nature
follows natural laws stupidly. The Earth rotates around the Sun but it is
not thinking and it has no will of its own. The Sun is burning and giving
its light and energy but it is not thinking and it is not doing it
voluntarily. It is clear that our will as humans is superior to the will
How this natural law can compare to the
will of God that according to Muhammad is quite arbitrary and superior to
our will? Quran says:
leads astray whomsoever he will and guides whomsoever he will."
Can you say the same thing
about the fire? Can you say the fire burns whomsoever it will and cool
whomsoever it will?
I am afraid your
explanation, although correct and rational, does not answer the incorrect
and irrational contradiction that exists in the Quran regarding the
question of predestination. The way you explain it Allah must be a dumb entity like fire and
therefore speaking of Allah’s will is a moot statement.
You also said that God
guides those who believe in him and follow his mandates. I agree! Obviously those
who do not follow him and do not believe in him cannot be guided. That is
true and a fair statement. So it is again man who chooses to be guided and
not God. However the guidance of God is there for anyone who wants to
receive it. It is like saying the Sun will shine over anyone who comes out
of his room and bask in its rays. Can the Sun shine on one person and not
on another provided both of them get out and expose themselves to its
rays? Does the Sun choose where to shine and where not to shine? Again
this does not explain the verse (14:4) that says, "Allah leads astray
whomsoever he will and guides whomsoever he will."
You cannot have it both ways. Either people choose the guidance and
follow it or God chooses to guide whomever he will. This is elemental
This point is clear. However
let us make an example to make it clearer. God says do not kill. This is
the guidance. I can choose to not listen and go ahead and kill. God
already has given his guidance and it is universal. It is up to me to
accept it or to reject it. So guidance depends on my will and not on God's
will. He does not play games. He does not guide one person and then lead astray
another person. Divine guidance is not whimsical
but it is provided for everyone equally. It is the humans who choose to heed or
not to heed. Anything else would be unjust. If God were to guide some and
lead others astray he would be an unjust God unworthy of our praise. Therefore the guidance depends
on the will of humans and not the will of God. God does not play
favoritism and is not respector of persons. The verse 14:4 and all those
other verses that claim God acts arbitrarily are false. As a matter of
fact one can say that God's laws are established, predictable and
immutable laws and there are no exceptions. God cannot be whimsical as
Muhammad described him. Hence speaking of the will of God in guiding or
leading astray is absurd. Being guided or going astray is all in the hands
of the humans who can decide to follow or not to follow the divine
mandates. This is another proof that Muhammad was not a messenger of God
and he did not know what he was talking about.
Following him certainly will lead one astray, as it is obvious from
the deplorable state of his ummah.
Allah was Muhammad's own
alter ego. He created this entity. And this figment of his sick mind
actually reflected his own narcissistic traits. Muhammad wanted to do as
he pleased with no one to question his authority. Hence he fabricated this
imaginary god and through him he exerted his absolute control over his gullible
followers. No one could question him as his words received the divine
authority and became synonymous to the word of God. He created a perfect
tool to dominate everyone and do as he pleased. It is sad that 1400 years
later, a billion people cannot see the game that this man played on
them and blindly follow this evil and lunatic mad man.
May 8, 2003
Thanks for your response.
You are absolutely right that we are superior to other inanimate things or
other animate beings. Both of these do not have any choice, and
intelligence. But I do not agree with your point that you can defy nature.
None can change the laws of nature. What one can do, is that, one can
discover laws of nature, and can make use of this discovery.
You gave example of gloves.
I was expecting that example from you. By making and using gloves, you
have just discoved another law of nature, just like the one you discovered
earlier that fire burns. Now you discovered that there are some
substances, (again made by nature) that can work as fire-repellent or
retardents. What you have done is just made use of another law of nature.
That is what science does. It does not manufacture or creates any laws of
nature. It just discovers, what is the nature of things and how nature
works and makes use of these discovered laws to make inventions etc. In
other words, man and science learns from nature. What a paradox? Man is
more intelligent than nature but learns from nature. Man cannot create
something from nothing. He can only create something from something. Man
cannot even make nothing from something. Man has discovered that matter
can neither be created nor destroyed. It can only change forms. That
reminds me one more thing that once a person dies, his body just changes
form, the matter of his body is not destroyed. The actions seems
irreversible to us.
But man has discovered many
reversible reactions. That might take ones mind to the idea that in man's
case there may also be a possibility of his body matter to undergo
reversible reaction, provided the conditions of reaction are optimum. You
also gave example of airplanes. Here again, man made use of Newtons Law's
motion and gravity. Basically, Newton did not manufacture these laws. They
were always there even before Newton was born. Newton just discoverd them
and Wright brothers made use of these laws of nature. They both lerned
Now let us talk about how
law's of nature or Allah's laws were created. When it came to making laws,
Allah could have or according to you, nature could have made any laws of
His or its choosing. Once the laws were made. Allah (your nature) said
that nobody can change these laws. He ( or your nature) also said even He
himself or it itself will not change these laws. This does not mean that
He cannot do it but it is a matter of principles. For example, You have
the power to swear, rebuke or slander someone. But if you do not do it,
your self-imposed restriction is a matter of principle. You are a man of
principles. That is why nature also does not change its laws.Water remains
same H2O2, whereever you go.
Now there are two types of
laws of Allah. One are laws in theory and the other ones, laws in
practice. Laws in theory are inside Quran. Man has choice whether to abide
by them or not. But he has no choice on the outcome of his actions. The
others are laws in practice that are laws in the universe which people
like Newton discover. Here again, man has choice to abide by the laws or
go against them.
I give you an example.
Suppose the law is, if you put your hand in fire, it will be burnt.
Getting burnt is AZAB. Now there is also MAGHFARAT, which literally
means PROTECTION. When you wear gloves, you have sought MAGHFARAT, that is
another law of nature. Now, suppose you forgot to wear the gloves and your
hands are burnt, you still have a chance i.e FORGIVENESS. You can
attain forgiveness if you put some ointment on your hands. By taking
an ointment, you resort to yet another law of nature, by making use of
substances that have a soothing effect. Now what you need is TOBA, a
promise to yourself that you will never put your unprotected hand in the
This is how Laws of nature
and Laws of Allah work.
I said I break the
laws of the nature while that was a wrong statement. I should have said I
use one law of nature to overcome the limitations imposed on me by the
other. Thank you for correcting me.
However our discussion is
about predestination. You compared putting my hand into the fire to a sin,
or transgression, which would result in burning my hand and you compared
that to azab (punishment). Then you said I could use a glove that would
protect my hand and that is maghfarat and if my hand burns I could use
some ointment or medicament and that is like repentance (tobah).
What I do not understand is
how you compare the fire with God. Fire has no will of its own. Muhammad
said that Allah would guide anyone he pleases and lead astray anyone he
pleases. In your example we should say fire would burn anyone it pleases
and not burn anyone it pleases. However this is not what is happening. You
explained the obvious but you did not explain the whimsical nature of
Allah as Muhammad claimed. There is no evidence to prove that the laws of
the nature can be changed as you yourself so poignantly pointed out. We
use one law to overcome the limitation of the other laws. For example when
we fly we do not break the law of gravity but we use air as a cushion to
overcome the gravity. We basically ride over the air. The laws of the
nature are constant. There is no evidence that that anyone made these
laws. If you think every law must have a law maker and therefore there
must be a God then tell me who made the God. If God can subsist by itself
and is eternal why not accept that the laws are eternal and do not need a
maker? These laws are immutable, self-subsisting and eternal. Even if
there is a god that god must be subject to these laws. As a matter of fact
I believe that there is a Single Principe underlying the creation. With
this the notion of a god as a creator becomes redundant. But that is
another topic. Let us concentrate on predestination for now.
It makes no sense to believe
that God acts whimsically. It makes no sense that he guide one person and
refuse to guide another person. Men can accept the divine guidance or
reject it but the guidance should be there for anyone at anytime. Saying
that God leads astray some people is a stupid statement. I agree with your
analogy of fire burning hand and that one who transgress a law will have
to pay the consequences. But the choice is always with the man and not
with God. The nature of fire is to burn. It does not make any distinction
between the objects that it burns. It burns anything that contains carbon.
A saint or a villain burn alike! Fire is dumb. It lacks any intelligence
or will. Therefore this analogy does not explain the verse 14:4 that says,
“Allah leads astray whomsoever he will and guides whomsoever he
will." (14:4). This statement is a dumb statement. It is clear that
Muhammad had no clue of divine mysteries and his idea of God was that of a
despot ruler. Someone like Saddam Hussein who would do as he pleased and
would reward anyone beyond his merits and punish anyone as he willed and
there was no authority above him to question him or stop him. It is said
that Saddam used to jail and kill those who laughed at the jokes make
about him. Isn't this how Muhammad envisioned his Allah? What Quran says
will happen to those who ridicule Allah? Muhammad’s brain was not
evolved enough to understand beyond that. He had a primitive mind. God to
him was just a whimsical despot given to ire and to pleasures – one who
would be pleased if you worshipped him and offended if you ignored him.
This man did not have any understanding of the spiritual realm. His
paradise and hell are all physical places. His brain capacity was
extremely limited. All he knew was physical pleasure and pains and with
that he tried to manipulate his foolhardy ignorant followers. The idea of
Jabr or god’s will, overriding the laws of the nature is the proof that
he was a man of little comprehension and no insight into hidden mysteries
Dear Tanveer: these are not
slanders. These are the facts. Muhammad was insane and there is nothing
intelligent in anything he wrote or said. Let us continue with this debate
and I will prove it once again that all my charges against Islam and its
author stand. I hope you too finally realize that you are beating a dead
horse and Islam is not your ticket to salvation. Islam in not a religion
and Muhammad was not even sane let alone a prophet. This is not difficult
to see. More and more people are seeing it and soon Muslims will be viewed
as the ignorant people of the world. They will be despised and humiliated
for following a terrorist and belonging to a cult that promotes hate. Do
not accept this humiliation.
Please continue to refute my
claims against Islam. Let us keep this debate alive.
May 9, 2003
God is not whimsical
at all. Let me give you an example.
You make friend whom
you will or please and do not make friend whom you will or please.
But you do no do so by
following your whim. Your WILL has some criteria. You have implicitly set some
criteria in your mind that these are the kind of people you will make
friends and those are the kind you will not make friends. You are not
whimsical at all. But you have conciously or unconciously made some
criteria in your mind. One thing about you is that you never declare your
criteria to all the people.
Now when God says, he
guides whom He wills and leads astray whom He will, He is not
whimsical at all. He has some criteria whom to guide and whom not to
guide. He always abide by the same criteria, no whim at
all. Unlike you, He has also declared His criteria, so that there be no doubt.
One of the criteria you can verify in your daily life. He always guides
those who believe in Him. You will find no one who is guided by
someone who does not believe in the guide. You can try to give
someone guidance but he will never be guided untill he believes what you
are saying. The same is with God's guidance. His guidance (Quran)
is for everyone but only those are guided from it who believe in it.
Take your example. You read Quran (the guidance) but you do not
believe in it. So you are not recieving any guidance from it. That is a
living proof. You will only recieve any guidance from it when you will
believe in it.
So Allah's guidance is
for all. But Allah's will's one of the criterion is that
only those are guided who believe in Him and in His guidance. And you will
never find any change or whim in this criterion. Suppose I do not believe
in your words, you can never be a cause of guidance for me untill I start
believing in what you say. This is the immutability of this law. Just look
around and find a single person who is guided by someone whom he does not
believe. You will never find one.
Your problem is
that you have read Quran in bits and pieces so you do not have full
perception of any of the concept given in Quran. You have read Allah
guides whom He wills but you have not read the criteria.
Take another example
of your reading in bits and pieces. You have touched upon the nature of
paradise in your recent response. All the discription of paradise given in
Quran is as an example, parable and similitude, just to make people
understand what it may be like.
Take an example of a
man living in the most backwad part of Africa. He has never listened about
Computer. Now you want to explain him what is computer like. You cannot
say to him it has hardware and a software. You may go in detail and
tell him it has a keyboard and a mouse and a monitor and so on. Will he
understand? You are actually making things complicated for him. However,
if you would try to explain him by giving examples using things around
him, he might be able to have a little idea about that.
That is how we are in
this world. Very backward and primitive in mind. We cannot understand how
the life would be like in the hereafter. So Allah has tried to explain us
using analagies and similitude. Exactly what's the paradise like we cannot
understand just like a primitive-mind african cannot understand what is
computer. Look what the Quran says about paradise:
" no person
knows what delights of the eye are kept hidden (in reserve) for them - as
a reward for their (good) deeds."32/17
of the PARADISE which is promised unto those who keep their duty (to
Allah): Underneath it rivers flow; its food is everlasting, and its shade;
this is the reward of those who keep their duty, while the reward of
disbelievers is the Fire. "13/35
a Parable of the PARADISE which the righteous
are promised: in it are rivers of water incorruptible; rivers of milk of
which the taste never changes; rivers of wine, a joy to those who drink;
and rivers of honey pure and clear. In it there are for them all kinds of
fruits; and Grace from their Lord. (Can those in such Bliss) be compared
to such as shall dwell for ever in the Fire, and be given, to drink,
boiling water, so that it cuts up their bowels (to pieces)? "47/15
It is neither Allah
nor Muhammad who is primitive but it were the people who they are talking
to. They cannot understand without physical parables and similitudes. What
is the exact nature of paradise nobody in this world can understand. All
would be his assumptions and theories. What Allah has given in Quran, the
nature of paradise, that is just a parable and similitude.
You have written in
some of your articles that you believe in God. Not in Muslim's or
Jew's. I would very much like to know what are the characteristics of God
in which you believe. Does He have any characteristics at all? Your mind
is, of course, not primitive. What is your vision of paradise? Since
criticism is the easiest thing, you will find every layman criticising his
government, criticising life, circumstances, time, boss, and so on. What will
be more edifying for me from you, would be the alternative
concepts or ideas about society, life etc. that you have
in your mind for the world.
You are right. I choose my friends and there are
people that I do not choose as friends. I am not God. I am a human and as such I am biased. There are all sorts of people out there and I tend to
pick as friends those whose values are similar to mine. But God is the
creator of all beings. He could not have created some people and then
dislike them. He cannot play favoritism. That is utter injustice.
He should like everyone the same.
Quran says, “Many are the Jinns and men we have
made for Hell” (7.179). Then it
adds that because they are like cattle and do not understand. Since God is
the creator he should have given these “many Jinns and men”
understanding. He has deliberately deprived them from understanding and
now he is punishing them. This verse also makes it clear that he
purposefully has made some men and Jinn to become fuel for Hell. In verse
4:35 we read that “Thus doth Allah, seal up every heart -
of arrogant and obstinate Transgressors." And in verse 45.23
we read: “Then seest thou
such a one as takes as his god his own vain desire? Allah has, knowing
(him as such), left him astray, and sealed his hearing and his heart (and
understanding), and put a cover on his sight. Who, then, will guide him
after Allah (has withdrawn Guidance)? Will ye not then receive
Here we have the description of an unjust god. If
Allah is the creator of the people he should have given them understanding
and make his revelation clear. That is not the case at all. The revelation
of Allah to Muhammad is anything but clear. The Quran is a hodgepodge of
absurdities and incongruencies. That book is illogical, confused and
contradictory. So Allah has failed to make his revelation clear. According
to the Quran only those who are gifted with understanding will understand
that book. However we see that the most learned and knowledgeable people,
since the time of Muhammad, have rejected that book and the least
intellectually equipped people have accepted it. Take for example the
subject of Paradise and Hell that you tried to explain. These are physical
places as they are described in the Quran.
The confusion of the Quran is clear from the very
topic of hell and fire and the day of resurrection that is so often
repeated in the Quran. Muhammad keeps talking about a day when Allah will
gather everyone on the Day of Judgment and resurrect them from their
bones. Even the Arabs derided at this foolish thought. The idea of a
physical hell and Paradise that he drilled on them was outlandish. People
had difficulty accepting these idiotic concepts. In fact these absurd
beliefs do not facilitate the understanding of the afterlife but hinder
it. Is it that Islam is catered to the most stupid people bereft of
intelligence and knowledge? You say that these quranic descriptions of the
hell and paradise are allegorical, meant for the consumption of the least
intelligent people. Why in the whole Quran there is not a single
description of the afterlife for the intelligent people then? You say we
should not take the resurrection, the hell and paradise literally. That is
the way many Muslims such as Sufis thought. However do we have any
indication in the Quran that these descriptions are not literal? No we
don’t. That is what you say and what the Sufis said. Now the question
that begs an answer is who is entitled to interpret the real meanings of
these childish concepts? Would a wise god give guidance to people in
riddles and expect them to interpret it according to their own
understanding? In that case why we need the guidance in the first place? A
book of guidance should guide clearly and unequivocally and should not be
open to interpretations and conjectures. If the paradise and hell in the
Quran are parables, Muhammad should have given first the description of
the real thing and then clarify it further with examples. Where is the
real description of hell and paradise?
Back to our subject of predestination: It is clear
that the concept of predestination is absurd and unjust. No amount of
rationalization and explanation on behalf of the Muslims will make this
clear. It is extremely simple. Quran says that Allah leads astray whomever
he pleases. Quran says that Allah has placed a seal over the hearts of
those who transgress. “Thus doth Allah, seal up every heart - of
arrogant and obstinate Transgressors." (4:35).
In the verse 45.23
Muhammad says that Allah will leave one astray, and seal his hearing and
his heart (and understanding) and put a cover on his sight.” Isn’t
this absurd? Why Allah does not open the eyes of those who
transgress and guide them instead? Why he does not lift the seal from
their hearts and make them understand? This Allah is obviously not the
loving creator of this universe. Is this how you treat your children if
they transgress your orders? Is this how you treat your dog if he disobeys
you? This kind of response is fit for extremely narcissist people such as
Saddam who had not problem killing his son- in-law or anyone else who
disobeyed him. Muhammad was also a narcissist and his imaginary God
reflects his personal thoughts. He depicts his Allah according to his own
mental disposition. Such characteristics are fit for mentally deranged
people like Saddam, Hitler or Stalin and not for the maker of this
universe. We do not need other proof to realize Islam is nothing but a
ploy of a narcissist to fool the gullible and dominate the foolhardy.
No my friend, I
read the Quran in its entirely and that was when it dawned on me that this
cannot be the work of any god. Before that, I used to read it in bits and
pieces, just as most Muslims do. And I used to think that there must be
some explanation somewhere in the Quran that will clear it all. So when I
came across the blatantly stupid verses I was not too alarmed as I kept
telling myself, I have not read the whole Quran and I should not take
things out of context. It was when I read the Quran in Arabic with the
help of its English translation that I realize what a hoax is this book.
That was when I realized that the violence, intolerance and plain
stupidity is the context of the Quran. .
You asked me what
is my understanding of God. I have written about it in these articles if
you care to know.
have said that islam is not a ticket to salvation. That also reminds me
that you have not studied Quran at all. If you have studied, you have not
contemplated. There is no concept of salvation in Quran. The concept of
salvation is in today's christianity and Hinduism etc. According to Quran
the objective of life is FAUZ and FALAH, not salvation.”
Thousands of people will read this debate. When I write
I try to use words that can be easily understood by everyone. Salvation is
something most people do underrating even if they are not familiar with
Islam and the concept of falah. To avoid confusing you I should have used
“ticket to parades” instead. Actually ticket to salvation was a slip
but it clarifies the point I tried to convey. Now my question to you is
have you read the entire Quran? Are you familiar with all the absurdities
and stupidities in that book and despite that do you still believe in it?
I have more respect for those Muslims who do not know the Quran and defend
it than those who know it and defend it. I know wonderful Muslims who
think Quran is such wonderful book without every having read it. I was
among the first category of people and most of my relatives, friends and
loved ones fall into that category too. I do not blame them. Ignorance is
not a sin. I however have a different view of those who have read the
Quran, have seen the brutality of it, are familiar with the violence and
hate that it preaches and still defend it. I hope you fall within the