The trial and test
PROF G R MALIK
There is a long hadith reported by Musnad Ahmad of which a part reads:
Allah grants this world to those whom He loves as well as to those whom He does not love but as far as piety and the behaviour that proceeds from it is concerned, He grants this only to those whom He loves.
The Arabic words used for ‘world’ and ‘piety and the life-style that proceeds from it’ are ‘dunya’ and ‘deen’. ‘Dunya’ is the superlative degree of ‘inferior’ in Arabic whereas ‘deen’ is a vast and multi-dimensional term denoting that kind of conduct in life which is determined by an ever alive consciousness of one’s being in the presence of God as well as the consciousness of being accountable to Him in the life-after-death.
A common misconception current not only among unlettered and not-so-educated people but also among well-read individuals is to treat worldly wealth as necessarily a sign of God’s favour. In some cases it may be so but to equate worldly welfare with God’s favour runs counter to the Islamic world-view. The pivotal idea around which this world-view revolves is that this world is a place of trial and test. The Divine scheme allows a limited freedom of choice to man in the brief sojourn in this world. The very purpose of the test and probation will be defeated if this world’s favours were granted only to those who surrender their freedom of choice to God and live their lives according to what He has revealed through His prophets and if these favours were withheld from those who follow paths different from the one prescribed by Allah. In accordance with the requirement of a fair test, therefore, Allah grants this world’s favours to those who turn to Him as well as to those who turn away from Him; He gives this world to those who worship none but Him and also to those who worship all but Him.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 1 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 1 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 2 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST
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