To believe in Destiny , both what is good and what is evil, is a matter of fundamental importance in the Religion.

Praise be to Allah.  May Allah raise the rank of Prophet Muhammad and protect his nation from that which he fears for them.

To believe in Destiny , both what is good and what is evil, is a matter of fundamental importance in the Religion.  This matter was mentioned in the Qur’an in many places, and the Prophet confirmed the matter of Destiny, over and above what was mentioned in the Qur’an.  .  The companions of the Prophet also highligthed the importance of Destiny, i.e., the importance of believing in it.  Among these companions, were the most prominent:  like our master ^Umar, and our master ^Aliyy, and ^Imran Ibn Husayn.  The most prominent of the followers of the companions, like al-Hasan al-Basriyy and others also concurred in that as did those who followed the Followers of the Companions–all in good will–and until the recent day.  All of them held the matter of believing in Destiny in very high regard, and all of them saw those who opposed in that matter as non-believers, i.e., they did not consider them Muslims.

Every companion and their followers believed everything that happens in this universe is by the Decree of Allah.  The existence  of the entities of things, their volumes, their doings, their motions, and their immobilities are all by the Creating and the Will of Allah, and not one of them differs on that.  They did not separate between good and evil–both happen by the Decree and the Creating of Allah.

It was narrated by at-Tirmidhiyy and others that our master ^Umar stood up delivering a speech in a place called al-Jabiyah on one of the four journeys he took during his caliphate to check on the people in the land of ash-Sham.  He opened his speech by praising Allah and thanking Allah.  Among the things he mentioned was:  “The one whom Allah guides shall not be misguided, and the one whom Allah misguides shall not be guided.”  There was a blasphemer in the audience who was not Arab (he was a dhimiyy[1]) who heard the speech of ^Umar.  He understood the statement of our Master ^Umar,  “the one whom Allah misguides shall not be guided.”  To this he uttered words in his own language denouncing ^Umar’s statement with words that mean,  “Allah does not misguide anyone.”

Our Master, ^Umar asked the translator what this man said.  The translator told ^Umar,  “This man said,  ‘Allah does not misguide anyone’.”  Our Master ^Umar told him,  “You have told a lie, you enemy of Allah.  Had you not been among the people of adh dhimmah, I would have enforced the due ruling on you.  It is Allah who misguided you, and Allah shall admit you to Hellfire if He willed.”

The saying of our master ^Umar, “Allah is the One Who misguided you,” is a proof to the creed of the Muslims from among the Companions.  This statement of our master ^Umar reflects the creed of the companions and those who followed him.  i.e., Allah is the One Who creates the guidance in the hearts.  For those whom Allah willed for them to be guided, to be believers, Allah creates the guidance in their hearts.  For those whom Allah willed to be misguided, Allah creates misguidance in their hearts.  Hence, Allah makes them blasphemers and misguided, although in that they do have a choice.  They believe, they choose the misguidance; however their choice is under the Will of Allah, and their misguidance is a creation of Allah.

The words of our master ^Umar, namely “Allah has misguided you,” is extremely explicit in highlighting Allah is the One Who creates the misguidance in the hearts of those whom He willed to be misguided.  Although the slave has a choice and he acquires that misguidance, Allah is the One Who creates the misguidance in their hearts.  Allah misguides whomever He willed to misguide–by His Will and His Creating, also the one whom Allah willed to be guided is guided by Allah’s Will and Allah’s Creating.  The statement of our Master ^Umar is explicit.  By virtue of that statement, inferring any other meaning would not be acceptable.

Then our Master ^Umar told him:  “Allah shall admit you to Hellfire, if He willed.”  He said “If Allah willed,” because our Master ^Umar did not know the status on which that person was going to die.  Our Master ^Umar did not know whether this person would change his creed, remain a Muslim and die as such, or whether he would die a blasphemer.  Since our Master ^Umar did not know what that man’s status would be at death, he said,  “If Allah willed.”

This is so because the people are of four categories:

1.  The people who are born believers, live as believers, die as believers, and are resurrected as believers.

2.  The people who are born blasphemers, live as blasphemers, die in a state of blasphemy, and are resurrected as blasphemers.

3.  the people who are born believers, live as believers, die in a state of blasphemy, and are resurrected as blasphemers.

4.  The people who are born blasphemers, live as blasphemers, die as believers, and are resurrected as believers.

People are of these four categories.  The fact that a person might live an entire lifetime in a state of blasphemy, and then become Muslim just before death and die as a believer, made our Master ^Umar tell this blasphemous person,  “if Allah willed, He will admit you to Hellfire.”

This is a confirmed saying about our Master ^Umar and similar statements were mentioned about other Companions.   All these similar statements revolve around the same meaning:  “Allah guides whomever He willed, and Allah misguides whomever He willed.”

It is not confirmed that any of the companions said opposite to that.  The Companions did not differ about the fundamentals of the belief, because differences in the matters of the creed are harmful.  The Companions differed about some of the rules of fiqh.[2] In one example, the ijtihad of Abu Bakr differed from the ijtihad of ^Umar in a case pertaining to fiqh.  However, this difference in opinion is not harmful.  Rather, it contains a facility to the people and is a mercy to for people.  However, in the fundamentals of the Belief, none of the companions differed in opinion, because if certain fundamentals one opposed, then in fact, one opposed the creed of the Prophet, and as a result would be a blasphemer.  Among such cases is the belief in Destiny.  However, there are other cases where there is allowance for a difference in opinion among the scholars who have attained the status of being mujtahids.  This is due to the mercy of Allah on the people.  Sometimes it would be easier for one to imitate or follow the ijtihad of one particular mujtahid, then to follow the ijtihad of another mujtahid.

So if a person followed in that regard, a matter which is more easy for him, this is not a wrong thing to do.  In addition to this is the fact that the ijtihad of a particular mujtahid might change after a certain period of time.  That mujtahid might make a different ijtihad about the same case at another time.  This also is not viewed by the scholars as something wrong, rather, it reflects the vastness of the mental ability for that mujtahid.

Our Master ^Umar held different opinions regarding a case of inheritance concerning whether the grandfather and the brothers were heirs.  Who would inherit if a person died, and the only relatives who survived him were his grandfather and his brothers, i.e., he did not have a living father, nor children, nor a wife.  In this case, the ijtihad of our Master Abu Bakr was different form the ijtihad of Imam ^AliyyAbu Bakr made his ijtihad that the grandfather would be considered the heir and would inherit the entire sum of money.  he said this because the grandfather, on the father’s side, would stand in the place of the father; by the same analogy, the grandfather would receive the entire inheritance

As to Imam ^Aliyy, he said the grandfather and the brothers share the inheritance.  So the ijtihad of Abu Bakr was different from the ijtihad of ^Aliyy, although neither of them saw the other person as wrong in his ijtihad.

As to our Master ^Umar, he did not hold one opinion about the case–he had different opinions of how to distribute the inheritance among them. This case occurred in one of the years, and he judged according to his own opinion.  The following year, the same case arose, and he judged it in a different way from the way he judged the case the previous year.  some people asked him,  “O Master ^Umar, you judged the same case differently last year.”  He told them,  “The judgment I made last year was based on my ijtihad last year, and the judgment I made this year, was made on my ijtihad this year.”

It also happened that Imam ^Aliyy made different ijtihads with regards to the same case, as did other highly prominent Companions other than ^Umar and ^Aliyy.  As mentioned, this is in reference to those who have attained the level of ijtihad among the Companions and not all the companion shave attained the level of being mujtahids.  To the contrary most of them did not attain that level.

Those who had attained that level of being mujtadhid applied their own ijtihad themselves although one of them would not see the ijtihad of the other mujtahid as incorrect.  However, if one of them made an ijtihad, and then realized he had missed a confirmed hadith of the Prophet–one he had not heard about–and as a result of this his ijtihad was wrong, he quits that ijtihad and abides by the saying of the Prophet.  The mujtahids were not stubbornly adhering to their opinions. They did not use statements like,  “I have made the judgment, so how can I go back and retract that statement?”  Rather, if one had not heard a hadith about the Prophet another Companion had heard, he would quit his own ijtihad and adhere to the saying of the Prophet.  In such a situation they would say,  “That was only an opinion of mine.”

Since equate of the Companions did not stay with the Prophet all the times, each one of them would not hear everything the other Companions, heard.  Rather, they had things which occupied them.  So it used to be while one was with the Prophet, another was running about doing his errands.  So one of them could have heard from the Prophet that which the others did not hear.  However, out of their keenness to learn the knowledge, upon returning, they would ask,  “What did the Prophet say in our absence?”

Also out of the keenness of those who heard the hadith of the Prophet, and out of their keenness to deliver the knowledge, whenever they met a companion who was absent from the session of the Prophet, they would initiate the spreading of the knowledge by telling that person,  “We heard from the Prophet ‘this and that’; and he said ‘this and that.’”  This was out of their keenness to deliver that which is good.  They used to cooperate with one another on such good matters.

Our Master ^Umar had a friend with whom he agreed not to miss the session of the Prophet at the same time.  If ^Umar was busy, the other one would be present; and if the other was occupied, ^Umar would attend the session.  Then, when they met together, the one who was present would inform the one who was absent about what he learned.  This reflects the extent of their keenness to acquire and deliver the knowledge, and this is a trait of goodness.

To summarize, the companions did not differ about the fundamentals of the belief.  All of them adhered to the same creed, and included in the creed is the belief in Destiny–both what is good and what is evil.  They believed the one who holds the conviction that evil is not created by Allah is a blasphemer. They also believed the one who had the conviction evil is not by the will of Allah,” as a blasphemer.

The faction of the Mu^tazilah is an example of such a misguided group. They are known as the Qadariyyah from the conception they were known by the name the Qadariyyah, because they negated the qadar, i.e. Destiny.  The Prophet told about them before they emerged.  In a hadith related by Abu Dawud, the Prophet said:

إِنَّ لِكُلِّ أُمَّةٍ مَجُوسًا وَإِنَّ مَجُوسَ أُمَّتِي يَقُولُونَ لا قَدَرَ فَإِنْ مَرِضُوا فَلا تَعُودُوهُمْ وَإِنْ مَاتُوا فَلا تَشْهَدُوهُمْ

<<every nation has a majus group among them, and the majus group among our nation are those who do not believe in the Qadar.>>  The Prophet said that to dispraise their creed which was similar to the creed of the majus.  The majus believe this universe has two creators:  one for evil and one for good; therefore they believe the happening of evil is not by the decree of Allah.  Those Qadariyys are similar to the majus because they believe the happening of evil is by the will of the slave–despite the will of Allah.  This is why the Prophet labeled them:  the majus of this nation.

In another hadith, the Prophet explicitly stated those who deny the Qadar were blasphemers.  In the sahih hadith related by at-Tabariyy, the Prophet said:

صِنْفَانِ مِنْ أُمَّتِي لَيْسَ لَهُمْ فِي الآخِرَةِ نَصِيبٌ الْقَدَرِيَّةُ وَالْمُرْجِئَةُ

which means:  <<Two groups among my nation do not have a stake in Islam (meaning they are not Muslim):  the Qadariyy and the Murji’a.  Although the Qadariyys used to label themselves as Muslims, in this hadith the Prophet sated they were blasphemers.  Our of Allah’s mercy the Prophet warned us of the blasphemy of the Qadariyyah group before they appeared among the people.

We ask Allah to protects from this innovation and from any other innovation of misguidance and to end our lives successfully.  We ask Allah that by the Prophet, sallallahu ^alayhi wa sallam.

Allah is clear of all non-befitting attributes, and Allah knows best.

[1] A dhimiyy is a non Muslim who enjoys living among the Muslims and having their protection with a specific agreement.

[2] Fiqh refers to the judgements of the actions of the slaves of Allah