Friday, 25 September 2015

Fatalism in Islamic Thinking discussed by Mustafa Akyol

The meaning of fatalism:fatalism
Line breaks: fa¦tal|ism
Pronunciation: /ˈfeɪt(ə)lɪz(ə)m/

Definition of fatalism in English:


1The belief that all events are predetermined and therefore inevitable:fatalism can breed indifference to the human costs of war
1.1submissive attitude to events, resulting from a fatalistic attitude:he experienced a sense of fatalism that kept his fear at bay

Comfortable sitting on your chair? Ok now you are ready to read this article, an Op-Ed in the New York Times by Mustafa Akyol who discusses fatalism in Islamic thinking:

Islam's Tragic Fatalism


"Earlier this month, on the Muslim holy day of Friday, a horrible accident took place in Mecca near Islam’s holiest site — the Kaaba. A huge crane fell on the mosque that encircles the cube-shaped shrine, killing 118 pilgrims and injuring almost 400. This tragedy was the deadliest crane collapse in modern history, and thus it begged for an investigation. Yet, in a highly religious country, the technicians that operated the crane, the Saudi Binladen Group, had an easy way out. One of them spoke to the press and simply said: “What happened was beyond the power of humans. It was an act of God.”

To their credit, the Saudi authorities did not buy this argument...." 

Continue reading the article, in the New York Times here.

Good food for thot......but Wallahualam.

Comment from Syed Akbar Ali which I copy pasted from his latest blog post:

Friday, September 25, 2015

No Fatalism (qada' qadar) In The Quran

My Comments : The following is an essay from The New York Times titled 'Islam's Tragic Fatalism by the well known Turkish writer Mustapha Akyol.

Before that, another disaster happened in Mecca yesterday 24 September, 2015. There was a stampede and more than 710 people were trampled to death. 

Just two weeks earlier on 11th September, 2015 a crane crashed in Mecca and killed 117 people. 

An engineer from the crane operator, the Bin Laden group said that it was 'fate' - 'an act of "god" that caused the crane to crash. Meaning it was not their fault.

Mustapha Akyol says in his article that it has now come to light that it was indeed the contractor's fault. They did not observe some safety precautions.  It was not an act of "god".

The religious folks talk about two major sets of 'beliefs'. 

One is called The Five Pillars of Islam (prayer, fasting, pilgrimage, zakat money payments and reciting the shahadah).  

The shahadah and zakat as money payments are not found in the Quran (although the word zakat is mentioned numerous times in the Quran)

Other than mention of the word salat, the details of prayer are also not found in the Quran at all. 

The pilgrimage is also not fully detailed in the Quran.

Then the religious people also speak of the Six Articles of Faith ie belief in
  1. Allah
  2. the Messengers
  3. the Books
  4. the Malaaikah
  5. the Last Day and 
  6. qada' and qadar (predestination or fatalism). 
 Only the first five are found in the Quran. 

The sixth however is not found in the Quran. 

There is no qada and qadar (predestination or fate) in the Quran. The Quran does not speak about fatalism.

Here is a portion of  Surah 4:136 :

"and whoever disbelieves in Allah, His Malaaikahs, His books, His messengers, and the Last Day has certainly gone far astray."

Only five are mentioned : 1. Allah 2. Malaaikah 3. Books 4. Messengers 5. Last Day

The words qada and qadar cannot be found together in the Quran, especially carrying the meaning predestination or fatalism. 

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