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If we think of the absence of human choice, then we have to think of the absence of act of creation because human beings choose and God creates what they have chosen.
It is important to pay attention to the above statement so we can avoid the following pitfalls:
- If I would not have used my freewill, would God still have created it?
- Can we say that God’s decision is dependent on my choice?
- We cannot change God’s decision.
- I have to worry about exercising my freewill effectively.
Example: When I move an object from point A to point B, it may seem that the object got moved because of my action.
- As far as creation is concerned, if I use my freewill to move the object from point A to point B the result is created by the Creator. We all know that in order to create a movement in a moment the whole universe needs to be created. It is not our freewill which is given existence to the whole universe. It is The Creator God who is operating in this world.
- In my sphere of freewill (space-time where I experience my freewill), when I think of the matter in contrast with God’s decision and my freewill, I have to think of them at the same time together.
False Question: What would happen if the object gets moved from point A to point B?
- If I do not think of my usage of freewill, I cannot think of God exercising His Absolute freewill.
- I have to connect my exercising of my freewill with His Absolute freewill because my freewill is given to me by Him to be used freely by me.
Correct Reasoning: I have chosen to move the object from point A to point B. The result is created by God.
- I am just using my freedom to make the choice.
- I am not given the power to create the existence of this action of motion.
Note: Whatever happens in this world, we have to think about its happening within the space-time dimension.
Recap: Any action takes place within space-time. Space-time means “act of creation”. If there was no “act of creation”, we would have no space-time.
SPACE= The appearance of the act of creation within our perception.
TIME= The execution of the act of creation.
- We have to be conscious that: I choose and He creates.
- If I think about the absence of my choice, I have no right to speak about His act of creation. As far as the sphere of my freewill is concerned I have to think of both of them together. The order of His act of creation does not change. My using the freewill and His act of creating takes place together. As if one asks if I do not sow the seed does the tree grow? It is the order of the act of creation that the tree is created together with the seed. Thinking of the absence of the seed does prevent me asking if God creates the tree or not without the seed. It is God’s choice to establish the order within which He always creates the tree with a seed. I am observing His order and I am expected to think within His order.
There are two types of Divine Determining-
1/ Evident: The way the universe is created i.e. the laws of the act of creation.
2/ Theoretical: Things that we do not know. Unexpected events that we never anticipate.
In both 1 and 2, we have to bear in mind that: In the laws of creation, there is no change. God keeps His order.
While I am consciously exercising my freewill, it may seem as if prayers become redundant. Prayer is not redundant because:
a) In reality, our execution of freewill is nothing but prayer.
b) As we pray verbally, we train our emotions/feelings.
For example: You are determined to get up in the morning for Fajr prayer. You may even say: “Oh God! I cannot do this, it is beyond my power. You do it for me, I know only You can. Oh God! Please enable me to get up in the morning”.
- We are confirming/establishing our reality. This is supplication.
- Supplication is acknowledging our reality.
- When you acknowledge your reality, you train your feelings.
- While I am praying, I am acknowledging my weak point and consolidating my weak point with the prayer. That is how creation is taking place.
- The prayer/supplication is not making God do something for you but on the contrary, it is reestablishing your reality before God.
- This acknowledgment of my reality is the purpose of prayer.
- The way I am created enables my freewill to execute the result in the form of a choice.
How can I transform my usage of freewill into Worship of God?
The Purpose of prayers is not to sign a contract with God, the contract is within your awareness of the fact that while exercising your freewill you are not creating but asking the Creator to create it for you.
- Physical side of human experience: The more I workout, the stronger my muscles get.
- Non-physical side of human experience: The more I pray the stronger my abilities to exercise my freewill get.
Example: A student may have a hard time concentrating in class. He prays: “Please Allah! Help me concentrate”.
- By doing so, he is supporting his freewill and his ability to grow: That is the creation of God.
- The response of the prayers lies within itself.
Analogy: A student in a Math class is learning new topics. After leaving the class, the student is expected to do the exercises to fortify his comprehension of the subject. The more exercises the student does, the faster he/she will solve the problems and the easier the topic becomes for the student.
- Similarly, every event/exercise in our life is a form of prayer. The more we pray, the more we realize our reality.
- The more we acknowledge our reality, the more we understand that we have to ask God to create it.
- How can I ask him? By using my freewill:
- If I am aware that while I am exercising my freewill in fact I am asking God to create the result for me. This is a form of worship.
- If I think that I am asking the change, luck or nature, this is the worship of them.
- We ought to exercise our freewill to make our abilities stronger.
Example: If I am firmly determined to wake up at Fajr, I have to set up an alarm. If I follow the order with consciousness, then it becomes a worship of God.
- When I am exercising my freewill, I have to realize that I am obeying God’s order. If I am conscious of it, my ordinary actions become worship.
- When you say Bismillah before starting anything, you are acknowledging that you are conscious of God’s order. We are internally created with the ability to strengthen our feelings. The more we exercise our freewill consciously, the more aware we become of ourselves.
- Our development is God’s response to us.
In terms of our attitude towards natural calamities such as an earthquake, our duty is to acknowledge that earthquakes happen with the will of God based on the established order of the universe.
- The order is the choice and decision of the Creator. You are acknowledging that you cannot protect your life; the Creator of the universe is operating on it.
- I have no power to interfere with the order of the universe that is the purpose of existence.
- To seek refuge with God from calamities means that I acknowledge that I cannot guarantee anything. That is the purpose of prayer.
- The purpose of the prayer is not to guarantee the results but it is to use our freewill:
- to acknowledge my reality.
- to acknowledge the power of my Creator.
- to strengthen the relationship between me and my Creator.
Prayers also foster our awareness. Through prayers, I am making progress in my worship of God. My language and feelings are fostered as such that: I realize that I cannot guarantee my life in this world. Prayers are accepted through your creation:
- The more you pay attention to something, the more your ability to get it develops and you are on your way to follow the order. This is growth!
- If you are not paying attention to something, it means that you are praying not to develop this ability.
- In and of itself, prayer is an hoice. Example: “I am in need of Paradise. How can I get it?”
- You are bringing the need of the reality that you need to enter Paradise. You are needy and you need God’s mercy coming down to you.
- You are acknowledging it and your consciousness becomes brighter. Your awareness develops.
- The prayer has its own response within itself. See verse below:
Your Sustainer says: “Call unto me and I shall respond to you”. (40):60
- Our Creator has created us in a way that our biological clock gets adjusted to our daily schedule. For example: if I go to bed at a specific time every day, I will automatically get sleepy around that time every day.
- Similarly, we also have a spiritual clock which encompasses our emotions, feelings and consciousness. We need to adjust them according to our awareness of existence.
Never abandon prayer; because that is the only way we develop our consciousness of worship. Your purpose of existence is to acknowledge what you are. You have to relate your existence to the existence of the universe.
- I am here to acknowledge my reality:
- I am created.
- I am needy.
- I am totally dependent.
- I cannot create anything.
- In this universe, we are given the capacity to introduce our real Owner to our human side.
- All needs are given to us to enable us to know that we are in need of a Creator. That is worship.
- We are here to get to know who my Lord is. How can I practice my worship of reality here?
- Our duty is to introduce our soul (rooh) to its source (Lord). That is the covenant and we are here to exercise it.
- Whether I acknowledge God or not, I still obey the order. Similarly, if a person commits suicide, while attempting the means he is still obeying His order in the creation.
- My responsibility is to become aware of my reality.
- Every time I put my reality into practice and become aware of it, I am improving my awareness of my Creator. This increases my imaan/belief: That is why I have to constantly remind myself of who I am.
- If I do not improve my awareness of God, it means that I am not acknowledging God and yet I am using all the tools provided by Him. I am not working on the covenant.
Therefore, we cannot say that if I did not choose a thing, it would still be created because God decided to create that thing. We do not know what God has decided. We cannot speculate about God. What I witness here is this: I choose and He creates within the order He has put in this universe. I have to ask Him to create what I want to be created within the order He has put in the universe.
- Whether I am conscious or not, I am still asking something to be created.
- Attitude of the believers: Anything that I choose is created within the order. The order has been established by a conscious being.
- Attitude of the unbelievers: This is not the order created by God; it’s the order happening by itself.
- If you want to be rich, you have to acknowledge that you cannot be rich by yourself. You need someone to give wealth to you. By obeying His order, you are expected to be aware that you are worshiping Him.
- Any kind of prayer is enhancing our awareness of our reality.
- Only through acknowledgment, we fulfill our worship.
- There is no way we can get out of following the order of the universe: Everything we do is the obedience of the order.
- To be aware or not to be aware is my choice.
- We are here to develop our relationship with our Creator.
But we should never forget that we do not know the order in its entirety. There is always a room for “Theoretical Divine Determination”.
- We can never comprehend the order in its entirety.
- Example: A person gets invited to a dinner at a restaurant. He is happy and he eats the food which was spoiled.
- I would never know whether I followed the order in its entirety. I can only follow the order that is known to me to the best of my abilities.
- We should never judge God. We may think that He is not accepting our prayers but in fact He is responding in a way that we may not realize.
- God always responds within the order of creation.
Tags: Destiny, Divine Determining Series, Freewill, Nature, Qadar