Can I have a chance to select or change the person whom I am going to marry by praying?

Details of the Question
I heard that the person whom we are going to marry had been decided beforehand by fate (qadar). In this case, is it possible for us to change the person whom we are going to marry?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

As man/woman does not know his/her fate, he/she wants everything that is permissible and legal whether his/her wish had been written or not in his/her fate. Allah who knows and thinks us better than us and who knows our fate, past and future, and who decides better of what is useful for us, shall give the best, the most beautiful and useful things as we want in our prayers to us. We are ill; needy thus just like a doctor who knows the sorrow of his patient, Almighty Allah gives what we want and desire according to our needs. Sometimes a person wants richness, as Allah knows that His servant will go astray, and then He does not give him/her richness however He gives him/her a strong faith, peaceful family, a healthy body and protects him/her from many calamities and troubles. So, prayer has been responded but with the most proper way.     

How does a prayer change the fate? Our beloved Prophet Muhammad says the following:

“Only prayer changes the fate. Only good deeds prolong one’s life.  A person is deprived of sustenance only because of having committed sins.”

In another hadith, the same subject is explained as follows:

“Being cautious and carefulness does not affect the final decision of Allah. However, the prayer affects the calamities that were sent and not sent. A calamity is sent but the prayer prevents it and continues to resist it till the Doomsday.”1 

Changing the course of the fate by prayer is explained as follows:

Here what changes is not the fate (Qadar), but the Qada. Fate (Qadar) is the decision given for something and Qada is the execution of it. That is to say, a man prays sincerely, Almighty Allah rewards that man by eliminating a possible calamity that may happen to him. Here what changes is not the Fate (Qadar), but the cancellation of the Fate (Qadar) without being executed.

Let us come to your question: Imagine that your fiancé or fiancée has some wrongs or deficiencies in his/her religion. If he/she does not pray, drinks alcohol, gambles, ignores his/her family then you can pray so that he/she can be saved from this moral calamity; God willing, your sincere prayer saves him/her from this situation. In the meantime, you should not ignore the factual prayer as described such as getting personally involved, talking as much as you can. You can also practice the things yourself that you want to observe on him. You can set yourself as an example with your behavior and attitudes. You can act in a manner which can be envied and imitated.

1 at-Targhib wa’t-Tarhib, 2:481-482.

Mehmed Paksu

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