Why Does God Allow Bad Things to Happen?


The Question

As’salaamu Alaikum,

Recently, I have followed a debate on a blog about whether Allah is interventionist, specifically as to whether He answers prayers, and if he is interventionist, why He allows bad things to happen to people.  I believe that Allah does answer our prayers, yet, by following this discussion, I realized that I do not have a good explanation for this belief, and I was hoping that you could address this topic.

Thank you,
Sister

The Answer By Imam Mustafa ‘Umar

Why does God allow bad things to happen?

Importance of the Question

Since you live in the 21st century, it is very probable that you have at least come across, if not been influenced by, what is known as “the problem of evil”. You might have heard it at school or work after someone was murdered: “How could God allow this to happen?!” You see it in articles and blog posts after the bombardment of an entire village: “What kind of God would allow these things to happen?!”

You will even find it in intellectual circles and philosophy books: “If there really were a perfectly good, all-knowing, all-powerful God, then there would be no evil and suffering in the world.”

This so-called problem is one of the most common arguments that skeptics use to deny the existence of God. They assume that they have found an Achilles heel in the religions that believe in God. The common picture we have in our minds is of the skeptic atheist calmly presenting a logical, intellectual, and scientific argument while the religiously-inclined defendant becomes emotionally charged and tries to beat around the bush. However, the strength of this argument does not, in any way, have to do with logic or rationale but rather is emotionally charged to the core and attempts to hijack any sensitive event it can find. Nor is it a new question. In fact, we find the angels asking something similar even before man was created: “When your Lord told the angels, ‘I am putting a deputy on earth,’ they said, ‘How can you put someone there who will cause damage and bloodshed, when we celebrate Your praise and proclaim Your holiness?’ but he said, ‘I know what you know not.’” Qur’an 2:30 In other words, God was asked, “Why would you allow this human, who will do bad things, to exist? Why not create someone who won’t do anything bad, like us?” The answer was, “I understand the wisdom in what I am doing, and you don’t.”

Exploding the Myth

That, in a nutshell, is the answer to the so-called problem. There is no logical contradiction between God being Infinitely Good, Infinitely Powerful, and allowing bad things to happen. The idea that the evil and suffering in the world present an unanswerable challenge to believers is finally being admitted by more open-minded researchers. Stump and Murray make the following confession in their book, Philosophy of Religion: The Big Questions: “The logical problem of evil has been severely criticized in recent years and is regarded in the contemporary literature on the subject as largely discredited. In brief, the problem with this argument is that it assumes something false. Specifically, it assumes that a good being would prevent every evil it can under any circumstances…Thus, at best, the logical problem of evil shows us that if God exists, the only evil that exists is evil for which there is some good reason.”

The rhetorical questions now change to inquisitive questions. Rather than blurting out, “How could God do that?! What kind of God does these things?!” the question now is “Why is the world this way and what wisdom lies in that?”

Life is a Test

The secret to understanding the issue is so simple that it often eludes us. Life is a test. Man has been given a limited free will to do good or bad. Look at the following statement of the Prophet: “The life of a believer is truly amazing. Everything that happens to him is good. This is only true for a believer and none else. If something pleasant happens to him, he is thankful and that is good for him. If something bad afflicts him, he is patient and that is also good for him.” (Muslim) Affliction is part of the test of life. If God were to interfere and prevent every bad thing from happening to each individual, it would be like taking the test away from a student. Saying that the bad that exists in the world is necessary does not mean that it is justified or praiseworthy. Believers are always commanded to enjoin the good and forbid the evil, which is another test in itself.

Wisdom is behind the scenes

Skeptics tend to focus on the negative aspects of things and claim that evil and suffering are ugly facts of life while believers try to see the bigger picture and find an explanation for the existence of such things. It is like someone who observes two people fighting and judges that both of them are in the wrong without thinking that one of them may be defending himself or standing up for justice. Evil is, to an extent, relative. A juicy hamburger may be a good thing for someone who’s hungry, but it’s definitely a bad thing for the cow that was slaughtered.

God said: “Fighting is ordained for you, though you dislike it. You may dislike something although it is good for you, or like something although it is bad for you: God knows and you do not.” Qur’an 2:216

Being able to see the big picture often affects how we perceive what is good and bad. Someone with little foresight may claim that the injection of a vaccine into a patient, which contains traces of disease, is a bad thing while the injection of heroin, which leads to euphoria, is a good thing. Not being able to understand that the vaccine will help develop immunity to that disease or that taking heroin will develop into a drug addiction is due to a lack of medical knowledge and experience. The following principle is demonstrated in the Qur’an with the meeting between Moses and a man who was given direct knowledge from God about the unseen. Moses wanted to follow him and learn from him, but the man warned him, “You will not be able to bear with me patiently. How could you be patient in matters beyond your knowledge?” But Moses convinced him to let him tag along. Here is the rest of

The story:

“They travelled on. Later, when they got into a boat, and the man made a hole in it, Moses said, ‘How could you make a hole in it? Do you want to drown its passengers? What a strange thing to do!’…Then, when they met a young boy and the man killed him, Moses said, ‘How could you kill an innocent person? He has not killed anyone! What a terrible thing to do!’…Then, when they came to a town and asked the inhabitants for food but were refused hospitality, they saw a wall there that was on the point of falling down and the man repaired it. Moses said, ‘But if you wished you could have taken payment for doing that.’ He said, ‘This is where you and I part company. I will tell you the meaning of the things you could not bear with patiently: the boat belonged to some needy people who made their living from the sea and I damaged it because I knew that coming after them was a king who was seizing every [serviceable] boat by force. The young boy had parents who were people of faith, and so, fearing he would trouble them through wickedness and disbelief, we wished that their Lord should give them another child-purer and more compassionate-in his place. The wall belonged to two young orphans in the town and there was buried treasure beneath it belonging to them. Their father had been a righteous man, so your Lord intended them to reach maturity and then dig up their treasure as a mercy from your Lord. I did not do [these things] of my own accord: these are the explanations for those things you could not bear with patience.’” (Qur’an, 18:71-82). It was the lack of knowledge and foresight that led Moses to object to what the man did. Likewise, we find ourselves, as limited humans, in similar situations. However, we do have enough insight to see some of the wisdoms behind the general occurrences of bad things.

What good reasons could there be for evil?

1. Suffering and affliction often help return us to the obedience of God. God said: “We sent messengers before you [Prophet] to many communities and afflicted their people with suffering and hardships, so that they might learn humility. If only they had learned humility when suffering came from Us! But no, their hearts became hard…” (Qur’an 6:42-43) There is a lesson in the conversion of the famous rock star, Cat Stevens, now known as Yusuf Islam. He related the story himself: “After a year of financial success and high living, I became very ill. I contracted T.B. (tuberculosis) and had to be hospitalized. It was then that I started to think; what is going to happen to me? Am I just a body? Is my goal in life merely to satisfy this body? I realized this calamity was a blessing given to me by God and a chance to open my eyes, to learn ‘Why I am here, why I am in bed.’ I started looking for some of the answers.”

2. It differentiates between the good and bad people.

God said:

“Do people think they will be left alone after saying, ‘We believe’ without being put to the test? We tested those who went before them: God will certainly mark out which ones are truthful and which are lying.” (Qur’an 29:2-3) Upon analysis, we realize that the Prophets, who are the highest in rank in the sight of God, faced the most difficult tests of all people. Clearly, merit must be earned.

3. Affliction is necessary to experience its opposite feelings of joy and achievement.

God said: “With hardship comes ease. Indeed, with hardship comes ease.” (Qur’an, 94:5-6)

The appreciation of ease and comfort could only exist and be appreciated if the feelings of hardship also existed and were known or experienced. In Chinese Philosophy, the concept of yin and yang is employed to explain this phenomenon. Each part is necessary to understand the unity of the whole. They are in equilibrium: if one disappears, the other must disappear as well, leaving emptiness.

Conclusion

It should be patently clear that the inability to see the wisdom behind something should not be a cause of criticizing that thing. Of course, the final word on all of this is that God knows best.

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37 Comments

  1. Ruh says:

    MashaAllah, brilliant article. JazakumAllahu khairan ustadh!

  2. Matin says:

    Alhamdullilah very good explaination…may Allah reward you!

  3. Asifa says:

    Jazakallah for the article

  4. Qas says:

    MashaAllah, amazing clarity. I think everyone can attest they have heard all of the ayats and hadiths in the article before, but the way that the Ustadh beautifully wove them together was brilliant. JazakaAllah khair.

  5. mike says:

    Alhamdulillah,
    What an articulate explanation of the true nature of Allah (swt). Personally, I think this argument is rather logical, but then again thats why I accepted Islam.. Thanks for the post!

  6. Asad says:

    Eloquent and well-reasoned.

  7. Bob says:

    Of course, the simpler explanation is that there is no god, and good and bad things happen randomly, like the weather.

    Which of course you cannot deny is true.

  8. UK resident says:

    Jazak Allah Khayr for that article and for all your efforts in helping us to understand our deen and increase our iman.

    One of the main things Allah swt has taught us is the importance of justice for everything. Bob if your suggesting that there is no God and good things and bad things just happen randomly (like the weather) then where is the justice in that- what about people who have been wronged by others in this world, those who are murdered etc- surely they will get justice. Although your answer seems on the surface to be simplier, actually it is not simple and it suggests that man is a significant as dust as our life has no meaning. Rather, in fact God has honoured mankind, and has given us the free will to choose how to live our life. With that freedom and honour comes responsibility towards our Creator and His creation. In my opinion, if a person chooses to deny the existence of the creator, then this is because they do not want the responsibility towards Allah and His creation. May Allah guide us all to what is good.

    Also, Bob you said that we cannot deny that your statement is true. However, it is absolutely false so we do deny it. But, also thank you for your contribution and we hope that Allah guides you to the truth if you are sincerely seeking it.

  9. sister says:

    jazakullah for this post… may Allah reward you fr your efforts ameen.
    can someone give me more info on the Imam’s new book please? where can we purchase it from?

    jzk

  10. Bob says:

    UK Resident – are you saying your god controls the weather? Because this essay says he does not, he simply lets it happen. So random things DO happen, which as I said, you cannot deny.

    My free will is not an issue when I get struck by lightning.

  11. Anam Majeed says:

    Hello to Bob, and Assalamulaikum to all:
    Here are my two cents about this whole matter.
    Good and bad things are relative. There are some things that are ‘more good’ than others, and some things that are ‘more bad’ than others, and still others which most people would label as ‘overwhelminingly bad’ or ‘good’.
    It may seem that these things occur on a random basis, but that is based on the limited perceptions of the human observing or encountering these events.
    With the weather – for example, it may seem like it has been randomly getting warmer in the winter, or there is an increased incidence of hurricanes this past decade, or that the sun shines more strongly in Australia: while at first glance these things may seem ‘random’, further observation, scientific study, pattern analysis, and logical deduction can pinpoint certain causes or reasons for why the weather is behaving as it is. (With regards to the sun shining more strongly in Austrailia, this is of course due to the hole in the ozone layer right above that particular area on Earth, which is, of course, due to the increased freon (CCl4) emissions from aerosol sprays and the like during the past 50 or so years. None of which is random, but entirely due to the free will of human beings who mass produced it. Obviously, a hole in the ozone wasn’t the intended effect, but this just goes to show you, that hole certainly wasn’t random).

    Even from day to day, relatively ‘ordinary’ weather changes, we can find patterns and predictors. If the weather is randomly sunny one day or randomly cloudy another day, the randomness of such an assertion is due to the geographical position, technological capacity, and the understanding of the individual observing it. Obviously there is a metereological basis for all of these occurrences, hence making it not so very random at all. The very fact that we can predict the weather brings into question any inherent ‘randomness’.

    I think the point being made here is that God controls the weather and God lets it happen. They don’t have to be mutually exclusive. If God designed the weather to manifest a certain way under certain conditions (thereby controlling it through design), He can also obviously let it proceed, so to say, as it it would logically proceed under its scientific course, or not. Because God is Omnipotent , there is no stopping Him from changing the progression of one scientific phenomenon to another. This doesn’t even have to be in an obvious, ‘miracle-esque’ fashion (ie, abruptly turning water into wine), but in a method which human beings can rationalize through science and measurement.
    The weather isn’t a human being with free will. A person may be tested through the mechanism of free will within other people, or through biological processes that ultimately may lead to bad weather, volcanoes, earthquakes, etc. Just like human beings have been designed with frontal cortexes and neurons and muscles wherein to make decisions, choose, and act, so have wind systems, mountains, bodies of water, etc, except the latter obviously don’t have free will, but certainly act based on design.
    Now, we still can’t find explanations for everything. The fact of the matter is, scientists still do not know what caused the Big Bang, or the initiation of the universe, depending on what theory you are partial to. And yet, it is one of the greatest questions of our time. The inability to take it as mere randomness, the almost compulsive desire to unearth the design behind everything, this practically defines our modern age. It is this design which causes organic and non organic objects to function, seemingly randomingly at times, and at others, not so much. There were environmental phenomena, or acts found within nature which struck our human predecessors as ‘random’, although modern science has successfully established a cause and effect relationship for these events. Similarly, our very investigation and research into seemingly random phenomena is proof that we don’t altogether believe that they in fact, occur at random, and is also an admission of our lack of facts and scientific progress with regards to those certain occurrence.
    Back to the origin of the Universe itself, the chances of this event, the subsequent particles of matter rearranging themselves to form certain gases, and those then forming organic gases, and so on and so forth are something like 1 over 10 to the power of 59 or something humungous to that effect. This is in terms of atoms and even sub-atomic matter coming together to form basic molecules, and then all of this eventually coming together in the precise way and within the right environment to ultimately yield the staggeringly diverse arrangement of matter that constitutes human life as we see it. And even millions of years ago, there had to be some pretty huge coincidental molecular collisions to even create the rudiments of this ball that we call Earth.
    In that sense, the simpler explanation is, is that there is a God/ There has to be a Designer Who created these elaborate and intricate designs….mathematically, it’s a harder sell to believe that it happened by chance, I mean the probability equations (when you factor in the millions of molecules and conformations) produce just insane numbers.
    I apologize for rambling. I hope you can understand a little something of my opinion, but again I apologize for being wordy and all over the place.

  12. ConvertOf2Years says:

    Umm yeah…weather does not happen “randomly”. If you reflect on the seasons, the animal and plant life that rely on rain that may come only twice a year in the driest parts of the world, that our planet orbits the sun on a determined path and all of this is hanging in PERFECT balance…I hardly see how these things happen completely by chance. Go check out ‘Life in the Undergrowth’ by BBC and see how ‘random’ all of this really is.

  13. AbdelRahman says:

    Shaykh Mustafa puh-leese come to Chicago! This article was a great example of how you can help a community with relevant problems that the youth are facing in all spheres of their lives.

    We need you HERE!

    Please contact Orland Park Prayer Center through www,op-pc.org (about 20 miles south of downtown Chicago). My dear brother Ahmed Mustafa eseentially runs the place alhamdulilah. It’s a very progressive(not in that way) masjid, the youth are at the forefront in leading the community in doing khayr mA.

    Imam Suhaib has given khutbah there before, He can attest to the community they have there and the work they’re doing insha Allah.

    I really hope you are still considering a position as imam for a masjid. I can give you more information if you e-mail me at abdelrahmanmurphy@gmail.com, jazak Allah khayr!

  14. Dahlia says:

    mA, thank you for this wonderfully concise explanation. I have heard of the problem of evil before, and I found this to be a convincing response to that theological movement.

  15. Mustafa Umar says:

    Bob, I think your weather point has been sufficiently answered already. As for thinking that it’s “simpler” to not believe in God, I suggest you read this article: http://mustafaumar.com/?p=14

  16. Abul-Hussein says:

    AS

    One of the reasons for coming into Islam (reverting) was due to the explanation regarding evil it is created and controlled by Allah (swt). In Christianity evil is understood as a being something independent of “God” hence religious scholars say the notion of evil in Christianity is influenced by Manicheanism (Zoroastrianism). In other words, two forces operate in the Universe, the god of good and that of evil and they battle for control of the human being.

    In any event, one thing that seems important here in a discussion of making sense of evil is that the intellect only comprehends matters in a confined set of parameters. What Surah Kahf teaches us is that Allah (swt) created the Universe in wisdom which may not be manifest to intellect nor understandable through system manifest law and order. What is termed random then is another sphere of order, incomprehensible at face value but not out of the order of things or else it would be impossible to identify, categorize and name and would be an argument for the impotence of Allah (swt). Since, Allah (swt) is not impotent he is in control of affairs (Rabb) and because he is All-Wise all things in the Universe having purpose. If we accept this then randomness is within the system of created things has a purpose. Evil then is relative in the larger scale. Determining evil has been a point of debate among scholars for some time what Surah Kahf teaches is that what we comprehend as evil may indeed have another face on another tier of reality hence human intellect is limited and still humans stand accountable for choices in front of shariah. Freewill then needs evil as a choice but the intellect can not determine completely and independently what evil is and is not this is the role of Shariah and this even is only a drop of the knowledge that is with Allah (swt).

    Allahu Al’am Wa Al’a Wa Aleem

  17. Bob says:

    Anam Majeed said:

    “The very fact that we can predict the weather brings into question any inherent ‘randomness’.”

    So, what you are saying is we can predict what Allah will do?

  18. UK resident says:

    Thank you for your reply Bob. Yes God does control the weather- He has complete power over all things. As Anam Majeed and ConvertOf2Years say these things may appear as random to us, but if we look at the science of all that is happening, then we will see that the universe has been created in perfect balance and that everything has a purpose and an order. This perfect balance is ordained by Allah and everything in creation,including the weather,cannot do anything without the Will of Allah. I apreciate that it can be difficult to accept these facts straight away. Allah swt tells us in the Holy Quran that this religion is for those that think about His signs, those who reflect on creation, and those whose hearts are open.
    Kind regards

  19. Dornubari Blythin says:

    Masha’allah one of the best and comprehensive explanations I have read. I know this in my heart but also find it difficult to explain to people not following a faith and sometimes people of other faiths.
    Insha’allah this will help.

  20. Anam Majeed says:

    To Bob-
    No…because the weather is not God.
    To be unable to predict something does not immediately make it random, but if we can predict something, then it’s definitely not random. You cannot compare the weather with God. My point was simply that the weather doesn’t happen at random, I was just using your example. It doesn’t have a baseline ‘will’ of its own to behave as it does, it depends on different factors. Human beings cannot quantify God. Apart from this being impossible based on our theology, it would ruin the fun, so to speak.

    We can’t predict a lot of things, but that doesn’t label them as random off the bat. We can’t predict what will happen tomorrow, but tomorrow we can say that what happened wasn’t random, based on the progression of events which led us to ‘tomorrow’.
    Also, I’m afraid you are getting caught up in semantic arguments…it’s rather a waste of time, because those can be made for nearly everything.

  21. Bob says:

    Anam Majeed:

    You are saying the weather is not random, since we can predict it. If it is not random, God must be directing it. Every drop of rain, every strike of lightning.

    Therefore, when I get hit by lightning, it must be God’s will? And when the TV weatherman tells me it will rain, he knows the Will of God?

  22. Anam Majeed says:

    Yes to both of your questions. That’s what the article is addressing, why getting hit by lightning doesn’t have to be construed as an evil thing and why God allows it to happen.
    And yes, if there are cloud formations about two days away from where the weatherman is stationed, and he says, “Looks like it’s the Will of God that it will rain in two days” he would not be uttering an incorrect statement.

    • ummi says:

      Sister r u also a scholar, do u also have a web site?
      Mustafa Umars article enriched me and I am really enjoying your conversation with Bob

  23. Bob says:

    Anam Majeed:

    God will let ‘bad’ things happen, but since it serves His purpose, it is a good thing?

    If I let a child run into the street to be hit by a car, am I not being evil? Or am I helping God by letting him be crushed?

    In other words, why doesn’t God have the simple human decency to do good deeds well within his reach?

  24. **** says:

    ‘In other words, why doesn’t God have the simple human decency to do good deeds well within His reach?’

    The simple answer to your question is He could if He wanted to. He could make it so that nothing bad ever happened. Even after doing all this, people will still make claims that Allah doesn’t exist. There are many many things in our universe which proves the existence of Allah.How is it that a drop of water, can change into blood, then in to a mass of body and finally become a human being?

    Once you’ve taken away all the distractions of life, start thinking deeply, and connected with your soul – you will find something there.

    Also, don’t forget – Allah has given you a conscience. If you let that child run in to a car when you could’ve stopped him, then this is something you have decided to do. This situation has been placed in front of you to see what you choose to do.

    Peace

  25. UK resident says:

    Dear Bob

    Things may happen which appear to us to be bad, but they are a mercy from Allah. If a person is facing a trial then Allah is either giving them the opportunity to remember Him and ask of Him, or that He is purifying that person and removing their bad deeds so that they may enter Paradise.

    If you see a child about to be crushed by a car and you are in a position to stop this, then your test from Allah is that you stop it. If you choose not to then a sin will be on you, and the child will live in the eternal bliss of paradise. If you deny the existence of Allah then what you are saying is that people can get away with crimes that they commit if the fallible law system does not find them, and that innocent victims have lost their lives for no reason- in fact the innocent victim will find his reward with Allah.

    You cannot compare Allah’s qualities to our qualities as He is The Greatest and He is the Most Gracious Most Merciful and He knows all thigs. There is no God but Allah and He is The Everlasting. Whether you worship Him or not, He is the Greatest and He is the One that gives you each breath that you breathe.

    Theres not much more to say really, because we could carry on like this. For a Muslim we worship Allah in this World and we ask for His Mercy and His Paradise in the next, and in return He has provided us with an honourable life where we can ask Allah for anything we want and we live a wholesome happy and positive life with no addictions, no alcohol damage, no adultery or fornication, no cheating lying or deception, and in the next life we are promised Paradise.

    It would be better for you if you made a conclusion based on real information. For this i would advise that you read the whole Quran, as it is the word of Allah and there is nothing like it- it has remained unchanged for over 1400 years which is a miracle in itself as Allah has ordained that will be protected as it is a guidance for Mankind (not just Muslims).

    I pray that Allah guides you if you are sincerely seeking the truth.

    Kind regards

    UK resident

  26. Abdellatif (Abu Omar) says:

    Bob:

    Let me quote you, “If I let a child run into the street to be hit by a car, am I not being evil? Or am I helping God by letting him be crushed?

    In other words, why doesn’t God have the simple human decency to do good deeds well within his reach?”

    Let’s follow the logic of the first statement of yours that I quote here: why must the event you describe be evil? Do we know what that child would’ve become had he lived? Maybe he would’ve grown up to be a serial killer and by letting him die as a child God saved many innocent people.

    As for your second statement, again, by assuming that every seemingly tragic event is not “humanly decent” you blame God for not changing it. The supposition is that you know the outcome of every event and their interrelationships and that the “humanly decent” thing to is what? Save the child and let him become the serial killer.

    You see, most people know their limitations and try not to judge others, let alone God. But, since you already indicated you don’t believe in God, what is the argument you’re making? That he’s not “humanly decent?” (astagfar Allahu Al’atheem) Or that He allows bad/evil things to happen? (astagfar Allahu Al’atheem) But wait Bob, if you don’t believe in God, who are you blaming for all these evil things? He doesn’t exist, right?

  27. shakib says:

    I am reminded of similar questions about the dualism of predistination and free will answered by jeffery lang using the notion of God’s ability to be outside the time-space limits we are in. it is difficult to understand a God’s will who is not bound by the laws he has created or the grammar we use to gleam off the timeless messages he inspires in our heart, to bring us closer to him. that is the ultimate purpose of life. God’s forewarns us of a future by talking in past, or talks of a past that hasn’t happened yet, revealing His omnipotence, allowing humans only experiential knowledge of Divine providence.

    Allah (swt) did not create anything for sports, as he reveals in the Quran, then why does He not interfere for the thousands of starving in Gaza or why does He choose a fragile mother of three to test in bagram, the belly of the beast so to speak? the answer is not simply one of experimental design, it is profoundly spiritual for both the sufferers and those who come to inflict it or witness it. I think the dichotomy of living a life that has unforseen consequences even if you did nothing yourself to earn your misery/reward, makes it all the more meaningful when you see yourself time-bound by an obligation to serve God, no matter what.

  28. Jeanine Jibawi says:

    Thank you for this explanation.
    Jazak Allah khayr.

    “It should be patently clear that the inability to see the wisdom behind something should not be a cause of criticizing that thing. Of course, the final word on all of this is that God knows best.”

  29. Mustafa Umar says:

    Sister,
    Actually, it was a small pocket-sized compilation of 40 hadith with brief commentary. The money was raised, it was printed, and distributed for free in Orange County, CA. If anyone knows a publisher who would be interested in printing it to make it available on a larger scale, please let me know.

  30. Shuaib Mwima says:

    Thanks very much for the article, I went through a hard time with someone who alleged falsehood in my life, things have turned arround and I use whatever allegations they throw at me to own my advantage. the article has helped me as A Moslem and none moslems. May God bless you

  31. smh says:

    salaam, jazakallakhair, good article. i had an argument with a friend today about this and felt really depressed because i couldn’t explain “the problem of evil” to her, and thus couldn’t really explain why I believe in Allah. this has helped.

  32. Nuraini says:

    I think the popular notion of good and evil is as per the perception of our material body: Good = what causes us comfort and pleasure; Evil = what causes us pain and suffering. Whereas, when you consider the soul, and a Creator beyond this material universe from which it came, and that material things in this universe at its smallest level are a function of natural laws of physics and thus mean nothing in themselves, then you will understand that Good = what brings a closer distance to Creator and; Evil = what takes us further from Creator.

    It this way one would immediately see that no matter what happens in life then, whether extremely pleasurable or horrific, means nothing in itself, but its meaning can be good or evil depending on whether you use it to become closer or further from God.

    I reflect on the many other living things in this world, many of which are threatened and killed or suffer in the millions either in natural cycles or by humans, all the insects and wildlife and grass and weeds and trees, and we consider this to be ‘natural laws’ – it is only humans who think of all living things we should be exempted from such natural laws, and when we go through the ups and downs experienced by every thing in nature, we think some of it is an ‘evil’ when it happens to us.

    This is not to say that we should be cruel to one another, but just to point out that we don’t usually have perspective when we judge what is good and evil. Things like the Holocaust are undoubtedly evil, not actually because of the amount of suffering involved, but because they are things that were the result of so many people being so far from their Creator, and perhaps caused many more to die or survive in such distance as well. But for those who suffered who, because of their suffering became closer to their Creator and died in that state, surely for them despite the evil of their oppressors, they have obtained the greatest good, from exactly the same material event.

  33. Ahmed says:

    Mashallah, what an explanation!
    Inshallah I will not mind that bad things happen to me
    And will continue to have faith in Allah as one day
    There is happiness to come.

  34. Ahmed says:

    Mashallah.

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