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Intro to Islam October 29

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Religious Studies
Liyakat Takim

Started on: 10/29/2013 4:06:00 PM Last saved on: 11/10/2013 6:11:00 PM C LASS N OTES FOR : 2Q03 McMaster University, Fall 2013 T UESDAY , O CTOBER 29, 2013 MUTAZILI Rationalists Good and evil are independent of revelation; we all know what is good and evil even if we do not know God; Emphasized Justice and reasoning Believed in Free Will; B ELIEFS; - If something co-exists eternally; then it compromises the concept of oneness of God; - Fivo TAWHIDples o JUSTICE (ADL) o Grave Sinner o Punishment and Rewards (promises and threats) o Enjoining the good and oppose evil T AWHID A NTHROPOMORPHISM - It means the human qualities of God - Is God like a human being? - The Qur‟an has anthropomorphic verses o The Hand of God o The Face of God o These ideas are anthropomorphic; - Problem; if God is human like? Then he needs „space‟ anything which has a hand occupies a space and it needs something - How do we explain this? o For Mutazili – Anthropomorphism was not to be taken literally o For Ibn Hanbal (Bila Kayf) – Do not ask what kind of face he has, but just that he has one, do not ask. A TTRIBUTES - Power - Creator - Knowledge - Sustainer - Issue: are these attributes part of him or separate from him? 1 Started on: 10/29/2013 4:06:00 PM Last saved on: 11/10/2013 6:11:00 PM - Do they co-exist with God? Then you have God and his attributes (two things co-existing) and only God can exist eternally. - Issue that Mutazili were trying to avoid was duality; o What the Mutazili‟s did is that God acknowledged into his essence. TWO TYPES OF ATTRIBUTES o Argued this on reason;  Essence (attributes of God)  Essential – Life (can‟t have a dead God…)  Power (can‟t have a God who is powerless…)  Can‟t have a God without Knowledge  Attributes of his essence  “Justice”  “Mercy”  Attributes of Action  Creator or creation is not an essential part of God; o Sometimes he creates and sometimes he does not create  Sustainer o God sometimes sustain and sometimes he does not, but these are not part of his essence; JUSTICE (ADL) – STRICT INSISTENCE ON G OD ‟S JUSTICE - The Principle of Justice means that whoever has been wrong has to be punished; - Whoever has done good has to be rewarded; - You emphasize the justice of God; that there is hardly any room for „mercy‟ of God; - There‟s something over and above God‟s justice, which is God‟s mercy. - Although it is true that God is just, it reduces the MERCY of God; - What happens when the mercy of God is downplayed? It makes people in despair; - God‟s mercy is emphasized in the Quran; - Different levels of heaven and hell because not all human beings perform the same; - God is more merciful than he‟s just? o “Never ever despair of God‟s mercy” o One of the major sins is to despair of God‟s mercy; o Then you are denying one of God‟s essential and important attributes, which is mercy. - Limitations on God; as we are telling him what he should be and should not be; - Question of Evil that arises; o Can God do evil? o If we talk of God‟s justice, how do we explain injustice? Evil? Theodicy; How do you explain evil things happening?  That suffering is not something that is evil, but an opportunity to develop - Mutazili – If we insist that God is just, then he cannot do evil; evil was imputed or attributed to human beings and God was spared from Evil; o In the case of people suffering; God is making people suffer he‟s giving them an opportunity to develop themselves to develop an attribute of patience; etc. o By the principle of Justice, the Mutazili also rejected intercession: (Shafa‟a)  Intercession goes against the principle of Justice;  Interce
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