By March 7, 2022 Read More →

Chapter Sa’d – Part 13

Part 13

Recap: The way God advises us to deal with our anger in the verses of the Quran, is to help us deal with ourselves in the best and softest way, because, as humans we are made in a way where we get to the point of wanting to take revenge.  God says that there is a purpose in the creation of anger i.e., we must cool down, and not burst out our anger on people that we are disappointed with.  The same goes with our relationship with God, i.e., we should not get disappointed with what is created for us, rather, we must use “the disliking of the event and anger” to ask God to help us overcome our anger.  Also, if you need something including food, ask God to release you from hunger.  We are made to have our material/body and spiritual/consciousness need to be met and satisfied here.  

We cannot avoid applying any of the rules that God prescribed to us for our benefit.  If someone does something wrong in the society, the judge must apply the law as it is stated, without being personal.  However, the Quran advises us to forgive, but at an individual level.  That is, we cannot forgive the right of the public without the public giving its consent.  In other words, when it comes to the society, you can forsake your right, but no one can forgive anyone on behalf of the society.

Prophet Job (peace be upon him) took oath to punish his wife who left him while he was ill and needed care, because God creates every type of conditions for our lives to train us for the future.  We must be loyal to everyone, in good days and bad days.  In society, that is the standard advice given to married couples to be loyal to each other.  We must also apply it within ourselves, parents, family, and friends.

We must get familiar with the vocabulary of the Quran, so we would know what it is talking about.  When you develop this vocabulary, you develop the conceptual understanding of the Quran.  Example: Giving pain is not the point, how do I handle this situation pertaining to my purpose of existence is the point.  The Quran does not provide anything in a structured way, such as belief in God (1), belief in Angels (2), belief in Prophets (3) …  In other words, you cannot go step by step learning these concepts, just like our human life does not work in that way.  In one day, you can encounter problems that need to be solved with lots of consideration.  Our life is dynamic, and we are trained accordingly with the teachings of the Quran.  The Quran is not an intellectual activity, it teaches us through real life experiences.

  • Our life is intermingled with many different experiences, and with emotional engagement.  

4:147 “Why would God cause you to suffer if you are grateful and believe in Him- seeing that God is always responsive to gratitude, all knowing?”

What is He going to do with giving us pain?

If I am honest to myself, I can understand my reality.

Anger is given to us to express it.  How? Physically?  If I just hit the person back, what do I gain?  From one aspect, God encourages us to practice tit for tat or “Qasas”, eye for an eye, i.e., retaliation.  At the same time, God says that anger is good for you.  Why does one verse say retaliate, and another says if you forgive, it is the best.  Qasas is for judges, and they are there for the public good, they cannot forgive the plaintiff on behalf of the complainant.  Judges cannot tell people to forgive each other and they cannot teach us through real life experiences.  Similarly, we individuals cannot judge on behalf of other people; people must judge themselves.  

  • Qasas is to be practiced in public life, not in personal life. 

When the Quran emphasizes retaliation, it is for public affairs.  Example: If A kills B, did he do something good?  No.  Some laws say to kill the murderer.  If killing is a bad action, why do you repeat the bad action?  Capital punishment must be abolished.  If A kills B in a war condition, should you give the death sentence to A?  If B doesn’t kill A, A will kill B.  Are you avoiding killing or encouraging the enemy to kill freely?  

What did the public prosecutor do to protect the rights of the people?  

If I intend to kill someone, I will say that the judge will kill me in retaliation.  If I kill another person, it means that I will be killed by the law, the consequence of my killing is that I am killing myself.  The public prosecutor is killing me.  Killing someone else means to kill myself.  We must be careful in understanding the message presented to us in the Qur’an.  In Islamic social life, retaliation is strictly practiced, and people were killed justly.  How about in 39 years of the Caliph rule, how many were killed in applying the law of Shari’a? I do not recall any retaliation during the first 39 years of Caliphates?  After the first four Caliphs, the Islamic social life transformed into kingdoms with self-appointed Sultans who did not follow the Islamic jurisprudence laws fully, but partially. 

  • The Quranic message clearly states that Qasas must be applied with no tolerance.  As a result, there is peace and security for people.

Can God really want us to suffer?

Well, I believe in God, and I am grateful to God and now God will not give me any pain anymore?  That is not true.  If you are grateful and believe in God, then you understand that everything which is created is for your education, to increase your level.  Just like Prophet Job was a good believer, but he was given opportunities to educate himself further about his reality (check out notes from Sad part 11 and 12).  Any pain is there as an invitation to increase one’s communication with God and acknowledging who I am and who my Lord is.  Anything is given to me for my benefit, where I will keep the awareness of God and be more grateful for all the bounties. 


  • Example: Have you remembered that your stomach is working because of God’s Mercy for you?
  • We believe in God, and we think that we are grateful, but that is not enough.  Again, how many times do you thank God for all the bounties?
  • God wants to increase His relationship with us and give us a little pain to alert us.  We are expected to thank Him.


How much grace am I receiving from my God and returning to Him?  Look into how everything is perfectly working, your kidney, stomach, lungs, brain, hands…  We cannot really count it.  When we are ignorant of things, God, because of His Mercy, gives us a reminder and says: “you see you have been using the kidneys perfectly working, now there is a pain which is a reminder: do you understand that you have been blessed with so much Mercy, Compassion, and blessings?”  If we experience something undesired, ultimately it is good to fulfill the purpose of our being in this world.  Similarly, if a part of a land starts shaking, it is to let us know that it does not have to be smooth all the time, in other words, someone has dominion over it and is operating over it.  The Earth says: “I am dependent on someone else’s will, it is a grace that I am smooth here most of the time.”  This is news for me to thank how the Earth is subjugated to my service.

None of the undesired events happen because God is angry with us or is taking revenge with us, rather, He wants us to be grateful and be a believer in God, or He wants to increase our situation, to make us realize more that we are in need of Him.  

  • Without Him, I cannot guarantee my life.  
  • Without Him, I cannot have perfect happiness in this world.  

“Shakiran” literally means “being thankful”, but for what?  “‘Aleeman” literally means “knows what He is doing”.

When we have pain, rather than complain that He is punishing me, what is He going to gain by giving me the pain, thinking that this is nothing but His Mercy, helping us to understand our reality.  Benefit from it to say sorry:I have not realized that you have been so gracious, now you are reminding me, please I am going to take lessons from it, and I am going to repent from my negligence, and not being thankful for all the grace God favored me.  Please take it away from me.  I hope I learned something.”  I am communicating with God now, my Creator and I understand that He has been very gracious to me, and I wasn’t grateful to Him, I was not communicating with Him with endless thanking and being grateful to Him.  I must try to use every opportunity for communication with God.  Please note that if one is consistent with thankfulness, is there any guarantee that one will not experience pain?  Never!  One can never complete this journey of fulfilling the purpose of one’s existence.

In Islamic tradition, it is common to hear that when someone is stricken with something undesired, s/he becomes more aware of his/her reality, and God is being more tight/harsh to Him, because the Creator wants us to improve our position and relationship with Him on an endless level.  That is why all the Prophets are given a difficult and hard life. Example: In Mecca, the life of the Prophet (pbuh) was always troublesome as far as His relationship with people is concerned (not with God).  We see that he was always in trouble because he needed to learn and educate himself to become more perfect (there is no end in perfection).  In Medina, hypocrites and Jewish tribes caused some problems.  Did he stop?  Never.  Every person under his administration who suffered with something, that became the Prophet’s pain. He was conscious that he is responsible for it and must take care of it as an Administrator.  He provided for the needs of the people, and at the same time strived to spread the message around the people.  The neighboring tribe accepted to join the Administration, but did they learn all the things that God is teaching humanity?  No.  Therefore, he had to educate these people, so they could educate their people.  His mission is to strive to spread the message of God as much as possible.  Every act of spreading the message came down with lots of resistance.  None of the Prophets ever sit one day and said I have no problem today.

How about us?  When we are faced with a minor problem occasionally, and we are given healing, we think that we are fine now because I have no problem in my life.  I take everything for granted and carry on with my life.  Am I really struggling to spread the message?  No.  I do nothing.  Although I am blessed with all the religious resources (understanding the Quran) around, I do not bother about looking into why would the scholars work on such writings?  I may take my belief in God for granted and take lightly the responsibility of conveying the message of God.

How much am I striving to take on the responsibility of spreading the message that I am blessed with?  If I am comfortable in my life and not having any psychological depressions, stresses, and problems, it is only because of the message that the Prophet brings to humanity.  Did I also try to make other people enjoy this comfort?  Think about it!

Whatever comes from our God that we call “suffering” and “pain”, we need it.  Not because God is angry with us, rather He is Compassionate and wants us to remember Him and His grace.  So that the more we are thankful, He will be more thankful for our thankfulness. God’s being thankful for our thankfulness is described in the Qur’an “God is thankful, original word is “shakiran.” 

Again, we have no right to complain about anything.  This verse is letting us know to follow the same path as God in all our endeavors.  Example: I am angry, and I want to take quick revenge.  The verse says what am I going to do by punishing this man?  God says to Prophet Job: “I am giving everything back to you so be grateful to me and follow forgiveness like Me to people.  If you took an oath that you are going to give 100 sticks to someone you were angry with, you must do it but in the softest way because you are not going to gain anything by really punishing them.  Take 100 grass and hit it at once.  This is the way God teaches us that we are not going to gain anything by giving punishment to someone (the responsibility of a public prosecutor is different).  The other person must understand that this is not out of anger, rather out of Mercy reminding me of His Compassion to let me know of my mistakes as God does.  In other words, if you are thankful and believe in God, then you fulfill your responsibility.  What am I going to gain by giving you pain or taking revenge?  I will gain nothing but just calm down my anger.  By forgiving you may gain more comfort. However, God’s giving suffering is not out of anger.

The Quran speaks to me in my conditions, teaches me and educates me within my conditions.  If someone tries to stop the message which gives a perfect comfortable happy pleasant life, then that is disturbing to your spirit.  That is why the Prophet asks for help to spread the message of God to needy people.  We are all in need of spiritual comfort.  That is why all the Prophets struggled to spread the message of God.  As a result, tribes were destroyed because they were stopping the message from being spread.  Nevertheless, most of us are spiritually starving, that is why the Prophets came to cater the needs of the spiritual hungry people.  

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