The Lantern of Guidance
Chapter 1 Section 4
Creation of People’s Deeds
Allah Almighty has said:
But Allah has created you and your handwork! (Abraham’s words to idol worshipers)" (Koran [37:96])
The consensus amongst the Sufi Nation is that not only Allah created the physical aspects of the people but also created their deeds and actions as well. No individual has the ability to take part in any action unless by Its emanation of power. The seeker has no will power nor élan towards anything (object or desire) except upon Its foundation of creation and origination, “But ye will not, except as Allah wills” (Koran [76:30]). The created being is not the origin of its own actions; rather its actions though a subsidiary of its creation derived not from itself (but from the Creator). Therefore no matter what transpires of actions by a Being, good evil belief disbelief obedience or deviation, collectively all are exclusively under the jurisdiction of the Divine Fate & Decree (Qadhaa & Qadar). There is none whose actions or authority can impact It and vehemently Its far-reaching authority penetrates the depth of all things indiscriminately firmly and constantly, “It cannot be questioned for Its acts, but they will be questioned (for theirs)”. (Koran [21:23])
If you question: Since all deeds are Its creation then how can there be a final judgment? We, the unisonous Sufi Nation shall reply: This error and doubt is found because you compare the way and manner of actions of the Lord with that of the people! Since if this was applied to the slave under his owner’s complete control and was subjected by his owner to judgment of his unintentional actions, he (the slave owner) will be called unjust. If you wish for the veil of doubt and confusion to be removed stay afar from this comparison and know that the existence of the slave is the dominion of the Creator and no matter what It does in Its kingdom is appropriate and correct. Its Highness and Mighty Greatness though infinitely graceful (Latif) courteous and Its essence excessively endows gifts and favors (Fadhl), It is also the conquering subjugating Subduer (Qah-har) whilst just fair and equitable (‘Aadel).
Relative to Azal (Causeless Sempiternity) both gracefulness (Lotf) and subjugation (Qahr) are equal [1]. Since Lotf (Gracefulness) requires Zohoor (Manifesting Presence), and Qahr (Subjugation) also requires the Zohoor. However each manifestation to its own i.e. existence of believers vs. disbelievers and Paradise vs. Hell. Indeed based upon the Divine far-reaching wisdom profoundly each Sifat (Attribute) is given a manifested presence in concordance to its foundation and origination, formed from nonbeing into being, “Allah doeth what It willeth” (Koran [14:27]) “For Allah doth command according to Its will and plan”. (Koran [5:1])
The one who becomes the manifest of the Lotf (Grace) has originated from the Sifat (Attribute) of the Fadhl (Excessive endowments of gifts and favors) and the one who becomes the manifest of the Qahr (Subjugation and conquer) was guided to the Tariq (path) of justice.
Its endowment of gifts and favors (Fadhl) orthogonal to any reasoning cause or justification, Its justice (Adl) cleansed from any mistakes and gaps. And from this becomes clear that the actions of the slaves are not the cause for fortune or misfortune. Good recompense is the endowment of favors from the Lord (Fadhl) and final judgment Its justice (Adl).
Redha (Divine Consent & Assent) and Sakhat (Divine Wrath & Indignation) are two Sifat (Attribute) of the Qadim (Immemorially Preexistent & Ancient) immutable no matter what the deeds and actions of the people (in temporal and transient world). If Allah looks upon a slave with the eye of Redha (Divine Consent & Assent) it is easy for him to act like the dwellers of Paradise. And if Allah looks upon a slave with the eye of Sakhat (Divine Wrath & Indignation) then he will embrace the behavior of the dwellers of Hell.
These words do not imply that Mankind is absolutely without will. Rather people’s actions for the most part are under their own control. But they have no control on the will of the Lord (so if the Lord’s will goes against theirs, their will is void). Whatever a person knows and wills belongs to Allah, and all what he wills and knows nothing but the concrescence of what It powered and inescapably gathered to Be. And within the constraints of the Divine Will the person wills (some limited form of freedom of action). Therefore within the Divine Will both the person’s will and inescapable determinism are incubated.
Hasan Bin Ali (grandson of the Prophet) has been quoted, “Indeed Allah is not obeyed by the force of compulsion nor is disobeyed by the force of subdual and leaves not the slaves neglected (to do whatever they want)”. Man does not obey the Lord by the measure of any external force; the essence within himself that is inclined to be righteous. Man does not deviate because of an overwhelming subduing power to succumb to evil acts; his innate essence is inclined to be crooked as such. And concordant to this, Ja’far Sadeq (great grandson of the Prophet) said, “Man’s affairs are neither fully of free will nor fully deterministic but something in between”.
The Prophet was asked, “The medicines we use are they against the Divine Will?” and Peace Be Upon Him replied, “Preventing or avoiding the Divine Decree is a part of the Divine Will!” Again the prophet said, “You shall do acts that are easy for your creation”. (Or created so it is easy for you to do them. This could be a bad translation but Molawy versed:
Each person created for some undertaking
Thrown into his heart its appropriate loving
The past travelers of Path of Divine Love (Salek) cleansed their path from the dust and dirt of the doubts and confusions, bequeathed to future generations with clarity a path to step upon, follow their guidance leave behind the imaginations and misunderstandings. The Truth cannot be unearthed through arguments, lectures, authoring or schooling, except by the purification of the mind and polishing of the heart from the rust of the nature and lusts, and placing complete trust upon Allah (not counting upon luck and external factors).
And due to difficult nature of this argument the Shariah (Divine Law) suggests, “Once the conversations reach the issue of Qadar (Fate & Decree) halt and avoid further discussions”. Since the general public is not able to comprehend the intricacies of this topic, however some of the scholars are given firm understanding of this matter, “That is the Grace of Allah, which It bestows on whom It pleases: and Allah is the Lord of Grace abounding”. (Koran [57:21])
[1] Both Lotf (Gracefulness) and Qahr (Subjugation) are Sifat (Attributes) of the Beloved. These Sifat (Attribute) exist out of this transient universe, in another universe the Azal where there are no causes and no beginnings. In order for either opposite, grace or subjugation, to occur in this world, both need to be manifested into some kind of presence in physical temporal world. Therefore these two opposites grace vs. subjugation are of the same nature in comparison to Azal, the universe of causeless sempiternity, both are attributes of the Beloved and both are to be made Zohoor/manifest.

Background: Invasion of Haiti 1994. Photo by Jacob Holtz.

© 2004-2002,  Dara O. Shayda