Fiqh al-Akbar Commentary (al-Maghnisawi)

6. Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar_Allah created people Pure…

Allah Created People Pure

_Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar – pp.115-120

Section: Fiqh al-Akbar: “khalaqa Allahu ta`ala… `ilmuhu wa sifatuhu.”

Notes:

  • Allah created human beings free from unbelief (kufr).
  • Allah created human beings free from belief (iman).[1]
  • The belief is ‘acquired’ (= iman kasbi).
  • Allah addresses people in their maturity.[2]
  • Rejection (= juhud, which is rejecting something knowing it to be true) of faith is by the wilful act of humans not Allah’s.
  • Rejection by a person entails or means Allah abandons the person.
  • Belief is through one’s own choosing by affirming with the tongue and having conviction in the heart (janan) but with Divine fiat/gratia (= tawfiq [assistance/aid/help]).[3]

 **

  • Fitrah = natural faith or disposition (khilqah).[4] It is what human beings have been created on prior to any sensation or contact with the external world.
  • The environment and upbringing change the fitrah of a person (e.g. they become Jews, Christians, secularists, etc).[5]
  • All people are the progeny of Adam (AS).[6]
  • The covenant (mithaq) was taken from all whether as human beings or in a disembodied state.[7]
  • Allah has caused us to forget the mithaq as a text.
  • This world is a place of test requiring belief in the unseen.
  • Remembering the covenant would obviate the need for a test and hence preclude the need for Messengers.[8]

 **

  • Allah did not create the believers as believers or disbelievers as disbelievers.

 **

  • Allah does not compel or force.
  • Allah affirms the choice and desire of the servant, i.e. He realises their will and intent, satisfaction and love for them.[9]
  • Iblis was not actually an unbeliever before becoming a renegade against Allah.
  • Allah pre-eternally knew all these events and choices.
  • Compelling someone to believe would make commanding them to believe meaningless.
  • Compelling someone to believe would make commanding them to adhere to the primordial covenant meaningless.[10]

 

  • Allah knows a person who disbelieves as an unbeliever while he is in a state of unbelief without any change in Him
  • Allah knows a person who believes as a believer while he is in a state of belief without any change in Him.
  • Allah loves the believer without any change in Him.
  • Change = a property of originated beings.
  • If the knowledge of Allah were changeable it would be originated. > This would imply that Allah is a locus (mahall) for originations (hawadith).[11]
  • Allah knows who will believe or not believe with His eternal knowledge.
  • Allah does not act based on his knowledge (which would compel human beings).
  • He permits servants to act freely and with their free choices incur either punishment or reward.[12]


[1] See al-Maghnisawi, Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar, pp.115-116. Cf. also Kitab al-Wasiyyah, art. 6 as cited in Wensinck’s The Muslim Creed, pp.190-191 & 217.

[2] Meaning His (SWT) commands and prohibitions now directly apply to him/her.

[3] See al-Maghnisawi, Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar, p.116. In the text it is: harmonising the will of the servant to the qada’ and qadar of Allah – the Good and the evil as well as the bliss (sa`adah) and misery (shaqawah) of a person.

[4] Which is interpreted as iman fitri (natural faith) as opposed to iman kasbi (acquired faith) the latter being the type of faith characterised or adopted and taken on throughout one’s life when he/she responds to Allah’s message or signs. See al-Maghnisawi, Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar, p.119.

[5] See Bukhari, Sahih, no.1296 and Muslim, Sahih, no.4803.

[6] See `Ali al-Qari, Sharh Minah al-Rawd al-Azhar, p.146.

[7] See Q. 7:172.

[8] Cf. Q. 58:6.

[9] See al-Maghnisawi, Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar, p.120.

[10] See `Ali al-Qari, Sharh Minah al-Rawd al-Azhar, p.148-149.

[11] See al-Maghnisawi, Sharh Fiqh al-Akbar, p.120.

[12] See `Ali al-Qari, Sharh Minah al-Rawd al-Azhar, p.152.

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