The Ash’ari & Mu’tazilah Dialogue on Divine Will

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Dr. ‘Abd al-Hakim Sherman A. Jackson posited the following dialogue. 

A Mu’tazilah would say, “Glorified be Allah (s.w.t.) Who is Above committing evil.” 

An Ash’ari would reply, “No, glorified be Allah (s.w.t.) in Whose Dominion nothing occurs without His Permission.” 

The Mu’tazilah would ask, “Does Allah (s.w.t.) Will that He be disobeyed?” 

The Ash’ari would reply with, “Could Allah (s.w.t.) be disobeyed against His Will?” 

The Mu’tazilah would respond, “If Allah (s.w.t.) Denies me guidance, and Decrees my perdition, does Allah (s.w.t.) Commit a good or an evil act?” 

The Ash’ari would say, “If Allah (s.w.t.) Denies you something that belongs to you, then Allah (s.w.t.) Commits an evil act.  But if Allah (s.w.t.) Denies you something that Belongs to Him, then Allah (s.w.t.) simply Singles Out for His Mercy whomever Allah (s.w.t.) Pleases.”


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