Is it qadar to remain in quarantine?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Hz. Umar gave the best answer to that question.  

Hz. Umar set off for Damascus. When he stopped somewhere to rest, he was informed that there was an epidemic in Damascus. He gave up his intention to go there and got on his mount to return. The people with him asked him, “O leader of the believers! Are you running away from what Allah had ordained?” He answered as follows:

“Yes, we are running from what Allah had ordained to what Allah had ordained. Do you not agree that if you had camels that went down a valley having two places, one green and the other dry, you would graze them on the green one only if Allah had ordained that, and you would graze them on the dry one only if Allah had ordained that?” (Bukhari, Tibb, 30; Muslim, Salam 98)

So, it is also qadar to take measures in order to be protected from epidemics.

The answer the Caliph Umar gave to the question "Are you running away from what Allah had ordained?" is a clear analogy showing that returning does not mean changing what Allah had ordained but that acting cautiously is Allah's command. For, man has to avoid anything that harms and destroys him.

However, everything happens based on Allah's qada and qadar. Nevertheless, man will be held responsible by Allah if he does not take measures. Returning or not returning is included in what Allah had ordained.

Thus, all deeds of a person take place within the framework of qadar but it does not mean he should give up taking precautions and act unwarily.   

As a matter of fact, the Prophet (pbuh) states the following: 

"If you hear of an outbreak of plague in a country, do not go there; but if the plague breaks out in a place while you are in it, do not leave that place." (Bukhari, Tibb 30; Muslim, Salam 100)

Accordingly:

- It is necessary not to enter a place where there is an epidemic and not to exit such a place in order to escape from that disease. That is one of the important rules of our religion related to preventive medicine. It is called quarantine in modern medicine. 

- It is mustahab to consult scholars (scientists) and people with the feeling of responsibility related to the issues concerning a country and the people living there. It is necessary to act in accordance with the decisions that are made.

- It is permissible to make analogies and to act accordingly. 

- It is one of the duties of the administrators to avoid things that will cause the destruction of individuals and the society and to take precautions to prevent it.

- It is a necessity of our religion to act in accordance with the decisions that are made by a committee of experts and authorities related to the issues that affect public health like epidemics.

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