Archive for the ‘Adam and Eve’ Category

Dispropotionate expiation?

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

I have a question regarding fasting. I heard that if one were to intentionally break 1 day of their fast without any good reason then they would have to fast 60 consecutive days. Now when I heard this I was a little surprised as I never heard of such a thing. But when I looked it up on the internet I found out that it is a real thing.

Now I read it was from a hadith but a lot of hadiths out there aren’t authentic and have a lot of problems. This particular hadith in my initial opinion contradicts the Quran where Allah says that he doesn’t want to ‘burden us more than we can bear,’. And where the prophet says in a hadith that ‘this religion is easy and to not make it hard on yourself’. With that said, 60 days of fasting for only missing one fast is a little excessive for me and doesn’t seem like a fair thing. And I don’t think that that is something Allah wants for us.

So can you please clear up this issue for me and explain this hadith and this whole “60 day fast for only missing 1 fast type thing”?

Both Adam and Satan disobeyed a direct order from God. Yet, God forgave Adam and gave him a second chance, while He cursed Satan till the Day of Judgment. Why?

The difference between the two is that Adam recognized his error, regretted it and begged God to forgive him. Satan, on the other hand, refused to acknowledge that he did anything wrong and did not even attempt an apology to God. Adam knew his place; Satan deemed himself too big. Adam admitted his mistake; Satan argued with God. Adam bowed his head; Satan thumbed his nose. Adam submitted; Satan arrogated.

When you say “missed one day of fasting”, you’re not being accurate. Missing implies inability or forgetfulness. When one can fast but won’t, it’s not called missing, it’s called defiance. Missing is excusable; defiance is not.

That is why the expiation (“Kaffaara”) is different for each. The expiation for excusable breaking of the fast is one day of fasting later, or feeding a poor person a day’s worth of meals. The expiation of inexcusable breaking of the fast is to fast two consecutive months or feed sixty poor people. It is to teach the sinner humility before God. God does not benefit an iota from our worship. We do. It is in the best interest of the servant of God to be reminded of his place whenever he transgresses. If God leaves a sinner to himself, then know that the sinner is a lost cause, a hopeless case.

That is why the expiation, as harsh as it looks, is not disproportionate at all, nor unfair, nor contrasting God’s grace. Rather, it is tough love. A needed training of the believer who was headed the wrong way.

As for the hadeeth that tells us what the expiation is for inexcusable breaking of the fast, it was narrated by Abu-Hurayra and reported by Al-Bukhaari, Muslim, Abu-Daawood and Ibn Hibbaan. It is authentic. However, it is specific about mating during the fasting day. Scholars have concluded, however, that other inexcusable acts may be expiated the same way by analogy (Qiyaas). In other words, mating is just one example.

The expiation, according to this hadeeth is (a) freeing a slave, or, if not possible, (b) fasting two consecutive months, or, if not possible, (c) feeding of sixty poor persons.

The noble relationship between husband and wife

Sunday, April 15th, 2012

Assalaamu alaikum WR WB Akhi

I want to know the concept of Islam with regards to the relationship of Husband and wife in Islam.
We all know that Hawwa was created from Adam (PBUH). I heard some one saying that every girl on the face of the earth is created from her husband. Is this true according to Islam?
The ones who publish this concept do take the verse as their Daleel, which says that every thing is created with their pairs.
Is the bond of husband and wife so noble, which is already being predestined with a special treatment as they say?
Plz throw light Insha Allah
Fee Amanillah

Wa Alaykum Assalaamu wa Rahmatullaahi wa Barakatuh, Sister.

The relationship between husband and wife is indeed a noble one, but it is not predestined because it involves initiative from one and approval from another, both are freely made decisions.

God does say that He created all creatures in pairs, “And of everything We created pairs, that they may remember.” (51:49). A pair has two of a kind, each complementing the other and is not complete without it. That is the metaphor for marriage.

If every girl on earth was created from her husband, then how were the girls who remain unmarried created?! The notion that for every one there is a soul mate out there somewhere is sweet and romantic, but cannot be proven. Many people married more than once and had a happy marriage every time. How come those people have many soul mates?

Folks who interpret 51:49 and similar verses to mean an exclusive pairing of mates, are entitled to their interpretation, but you should recognize that it is nothing more than an interpretation. If God wanted to teach this notion, He would have explicitly stated it. In fact, what God says in 4:1 clearly refutes that theory. The verse says, “O people! Watch out for your Lord who created you from one soul and from it He created its mate, and He spread out from them many men and women.” (4:1) Only Eve was created from her husband. The rest of us were created from both of them.

Do Muslims have a covenant with God?

Monday, June 13th, 2011

The Jews believe that they have a covenant with God. Do Muslims believe they have a covenant with God? What does Islam say about God’s covenant?

God’s covenant with people has been the same since He created Adam. It is that we believe in Him alone, do not associate anything or anybody with Him in worship, uphold His laws, follow His Messengers, and honor His scriptures. That is Al-Amaana (the Trust) which God speaks about in this key verse,

“We offered the Trust to the heavens, the earth, and the mountains. They declined to carry it and were apprehensive of it. But man carried it; he is ever unjust and ignorant.” (33:72)

We volunteered for the job, but we haven’t done it too well!

The first obligation of the covenant is made clear in this verse:

“When your Lord took from the children of Adam – from their loins – their descendants and made them testify of themselves, [saying to them], “Am I not your Lord?” They said, “Yes, we have testified.” [This] – lest you should say on the day of Resurrection, “Indeed, we were of this unaware.” (7:172)

The belief in the One God is in our DNA!

Whenever God sent a Messenger to a people, He had them testify that they would uphold the Covenant. That is why many scriptures are called Testaments. There are many verses in the Quran which speak about that, for instance:

“And [recall] when God took the covenant of the prophets, [saying,] “Surely whatever I give you of the Book and wisdom and then comes to you a messenger confirming what is with you, that you [will] indeed believe in him and support him.” [God] said, “Have you acknowledged and taken upon that My commitment?” They said, “We have acknowledged.” He said, “Then bear witness, and I am with you among the witnesses.” (3:81)

Thus, the Covenant was taken by all prophets and part of it was that all future prophets must be followed.

“And [recall] when We took the covenant from the Children of Israel, [enjoining upon them], “Do not worship except God; and to parents do good and to relatives, orphans, and the needy. And speak to people good [words] and establish prayer and give alms.” Then you turned away, except a few of you, with refusal.” (2:83)

The covenant included God’s moral teachings as well as theological fundamentals. The Children of Israel were one of the earliest people who did not uphold the Covenant.

“And [mention, O Muhammad], when God took a covenant from those who were given the Book, [saying], “You must make it clear to the people and not conceal it.” But they banished it behind their backs and exchanged it for a small price. Then how wretched is what they purchased!” (3:187)

The covenant included spreading the word of God to all, but people have hidden it, or worse, altered it.

What do people get when they stick to their end of the Covenant? God explains clearly in this verse,

“And God had already taken a covenant from the Children of Israel, and We delegated from among them twelve leaders. And God said, “I am with you. If you establish prayer and give alms and believe in My messengers and support them and loan God a goodly loan, I will surely remove from you your misdeeds and admit you to gardens beneath which rivers flow. But whoever of you disbelieves after that has certainly strayed from the level road” (5:12)

We get the company of God! We get expiation of our sins. We get the ultimate reward in the Hereafter. May God enable us to uphold His Covenant and not deviate from the level road.

In case you’re wondering whether Christians were exempted from the Covenant, I invite you to read Mathew 5:17-20, in which Jesus (PBUH) is reported to have said that any talk about him abolishing the law is nonsense, that the law stands as long as the heavens and the earth stand, and that those who do not uphold the law will not enter the Kingdom of God. The law of God has been, and always will be the same, and it applies to all people without exceptions. Upholding it is the covenant we made with God.

God reminds Muslims in the holy Quran of their covenant with God. He says,
“And remember the favor of God upon you and His covenant with which He bound you when you said, ‘We hear and we obey’; and watch out for God. Indeed, God is much Knowing of that within the bosoms.” (5:7)

Was the Garden of Adam and Eve the same as the Garden of Paradise?

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

I read a scholar’s opinion that the Garden where Adam and Eve briefly lived and committed their sin was not the same as the Garden of Paradise. I’m sending you the full text of the opinion. What do you think?

The scholar is right when he says that there has been a wide disagreement on this matter. That is natural, since God did not tell us and neither did His Messenger. Therefore, any opinion about it is a guess.

That said, the evidence used in the text you sent me is quite weak and easily refutable. I personally see the evidence is stronger that it was the same Garden, as God ordered the angels to prostrate to Adam (2:34, 7:11, 17:61, 18:50, 20:116) and the angels live in heaven. And after the sin of Adam and Eve, God tells them to “descend from it, both of you” (20:123) and that the earth will be their residence and provision for a while (2:36, 7:24).

What is the point of life on earth?

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

A non-Muslim friend of mine asked me..”Since Muslims don’t believe in original sin, what is the point of humans?” What should I have answered her?

Muslims believe in the original sin; they just don’t believe it was inherited.

Her question reflects three fallacies,

  1. That Adam and Eve were sent down to earth as punishment.
  2. That sin is inherited.
  3. That sin cannot be expiated by human effort, hence the need for a sinless savior.

The first fallacy ignores the obvious question: Did Adam and Eve regret what they did? Did they apologize to God? Did He accept their apology? If not, that would be unfair because He made them capable of sinning. If, on the other hand, they did apologize and He accepted, then the sin was forgiven and no punishment is necessary.

The second fallacy goes against all logic.

The third fallacy contradicts God’s fairness, since the sin was human, its expiation must also be human.

The Quran guided us to the simple, logical answers to those fallacies. For refuting the first one, God told us quite clearly that the purpose for Adam and Eve was to go to the earth! He says,
“And God said to the angels, ‘I am setting up in the earth a deputy'” (2:30)

For refuting the second fallacy, God asserts the obvious,
“No bearer of burden shall bear the burden of another.” (6:164)

For refuting the third fallacy, God says,
“And they say, ‘None will enter Paradise except one who is a Jew or a Christian.’ That is [merely] their wishful thinking, Say, ‘Produce your proof, if you should be truthful.’
Nay! Whoever submits his face to God while being a benefactor shall have his reward with his Lord. And no fear shall there be upon them, nor shall they grieve.” (2:111-112)

I’ve wondered about original sin is… “Why create humans knowing full well that they’re going to commit this original sin? Seems pretty cruel.”

It would be cruel if He did not make them able to avoid it, did not warn them of Satan being their sworn enemy, did not guide them to the way to apologize and repent or did not accept their apology and forgive them. But He did all that!

So, why did He put them through this trial in the first place? To give them a dress rehearsal of what will happen when they go on the job they volunteered for: life on earth! They needed to know first hand that violating God’s commands carries dire consequences, that Satan wishes them failure, that they are vulnerable to sin, but that God is merciful and will forgive them if they turn to Him and ask His forgiveness.

Why should we bear Adam and Eve’s sin?

Monday, May 18th, 2009

A lot of people completely miss the story of Adam and Eve. The popular understanding is that we are here in this tough life as a result of the original sin. The Quran clearly says different. We are here because it is the job we volunteered for!

God says in the holy Quran, “We offered the trust to the heavens, the earth and the mountains and they refused to carry it. Man carried it.” (23:72)

After that, God told the angels, “I am setting in the earth a deputy.” (2:30) So, we were tasked to be on earth whether Adam and Eve sinned or not. And being tasked to earth is the “trust” we agreed to undertake. The only reason Adam and Eve were put in the Garden first is to give them a “dress rehearsal” for life of earth! By the end of their experiment with Satan and the forbidden tree, they learned four things: that the Garden of God is a wonderful place, that Satan wishes them failure and will lie and deceive them, that disobedience to God carries heavy consequences and that God accepts apologies! All crucial lessons to learn when they move to their job location.

The original sin was forgiven. We do not inherit our parents sins, or anybody else’s sin for that matter. We are responsible only for our own sins.

How is individual salvation achieved in Islam?

Wednesday, August 15th, 2007

Salvation means different things to different people. Most Christians, for instance, think of salvation as an expiation of the original sin of Adam and Eve. They believe the original sin was not forgiven, that Adam and Eve descended to earth as punishment for it, that all of us their children are born in sin as a result and that a sinless savior is the only way to expiate this sin; that no amount of repentance, supplication and good deeds can substitute for a savior.

Islam narrates the story of Adam and Eve with some fundamental differences from the Biblical story. The Quran makes it clear that the original sin did occur. Adam and Eve felt remorse afterward. God looked upon them with grace and inspired Adam and Eve to repent and ask Him for forgiveness. They did and He forgave them. Original sin gone!

The Quran repeatedly asserts that “no bearer of burden shall bear the burden of another” (35:18). Thus, no one is born in sin and no one is tasked with saving humanity.

Now, why did God send Adam and Eve down to earth even though He forgave them? It wasn’t a punishment. It was their assignment for which He created them in the first place. He says in the holy Quran, “And when your Lord said to the angels I am setting up in the earth a deputy.” (2:30)

So, why did God place Adam and Eve in the Garden first? IMHO, because He wanted to teach them about Satan, temptation, sin and its wages, repentance, supplication, and His forgiveness, all lessons they will need to learn and heed when they go to their assignment: Life on earth.

So, is there an individual salvation in Islam? Sure. But our savior is not a person; it’s our faith and good deeds. God promises to answer our supplications, accept our repentance from sin and reward us for our faith and good deeds. Salvation in Islam is not delivery from the original sin, it’s the escape from God’s punishment of Hellfire and the attainment of God’s reward of Paradise in the Hereafter.

Why is God invisible?

Saturday, March 10th, 2007

Why is God invisible? If He were visible, everybody would believe in Him.

It is true that everybody would believe in God if they could see Him, but it is not true that they would obey Him. Case in point is Satan. Satan believes in God but has chosen to disobey His command. Angels are in total obedience to God not because they see Him but because they have no free will and thus they keep their original nature of submission to God.

It is also likely that Adam and Eve saw God when they lived in the Garden, but look what happened. Seeing is believing but seeing is not obeying.

In my humble opinion, the wisdom behind not seeing God is that seeing Him is the ultimate pleasure reserved in Paradise for the believers, as the Qudsi (holy) Hadeeth stated.

Have we evolved from apes?

Sunday, March 4th, 2007

Evolution is one of God’s natural laws. Evidence of evolution was before our eyes long before Darwin made his studies of the species. We see a caterpillar evolve into a butterfly. We see a planted seed evolve into a palm tree. We see a fertilized egg evolve into a baby.

That said, it is not necessary for everything to evolve. God has applied another one of His laws, creation, to bring about some creatures. Man was one of those. The story of the creation of Adam is spelled out clearly in the Quran.