I do not want to live. Allah did not ask me when He created me. Why does He force me to live?
We have to accept that it is not normal to get tired of living. That most people strive to live and survive is the clearest evidence of it.
Then, the fact that you are annoyed by the world life and want to commit suicide cannot be explained by normal psychology. Even if you do not accept it, you need to see a good psychiatrist and undergo a treatment.
You want Allah, who does not leave ants without a prince, or bees without a queen, to leave man, whom He elevated to the rank of vicegerency of the earth, unattended. Can it be possible?
You say "Allah did not ask me when He created me." Is it logical at all? You did not exist before Allah created you; why should He ask you? Nothing is said to a non-existent being; why should he be asked?
We should not forget that Allah does not ask us when He creates us and when he kills us. It is contrary to the character, nature, honor and dignity of man, who is weak, miserable and in need of Allah in every aspect, even only to imagine something like that.
A person who has some intelligence will accept that it is very ugly and useless for a shepherd to criticize Avicenna regarding wisdom, the president regarding politics and a general regarding military strategy, for a mouse to compete with man and an ignorant person to question Socrates regarding philosophy.
It is illogical to evaluate and to oppose the endless wisdom of Allah, who is the Creator of the universe and who has endless knowledge, power and wisdom, with man's insufficient intelligence.
We should not forget that it is the best choice to kiss the hand that you cannot bend and to surrender to it. Then, we need to kiss Allah's hand of mercy and wisdom so that He will be pleased with us.
We should know very well that Allah will not change the material and spiritual, the religious and scientific system for the sake of our objections, which are not even as effective as the wing of a mosquito.
As Badiuzzaman Said Nursi puts it, "Whoever criticizes Divine Determining is striking his head against an anvil on which it will break, and whoever objects to Divine Mercy will himself be deprived of it” “Hell demands people just as Paradise demands people.”
Then, everybody needs to save his own ship. Death is very close to us; it might come tomorrow or earlier; it can save us from the heavy responsibilities of life. For believers, death is like a discharge certificate. It is a ticket to Paradise. We need to show some more patience. Life is very short. There is no need to make it shorter by committing suicide.
The following words that Badiuzzaman Said Nursi said for sick people and that are valid for all of us show that the test of the world is not easy:
“Impatient sick person! The fact that those who come to this world continuously depart, and the young grow old, and man perpetually revolves amid death and separation testifies that he did not come to this world to enjoy himself and receive pleasure.
This means that man did not come to this world in order to live in fine manner and pass his life in ease and pleasure. Rather, possessing vast capital, he came here to work and do trade for an eternal, everlasting life.
The capital given to man is his lifetime. Had there been no illness, good health and well-being would have caused heedlessness, for they show the world to be pleasant and make the hereafter forgotten. They do not want death and the grave to be thought of; they cause the capital of life to be wasted on trifles.
Whereas illness suddenly opens the eyes, it says to the body: 'You are not immortal. You have not been left to your own devices. You have a duty. Give up your pride, think of the One Who created you. Know that you will enter the grave, so prepare yourself for it!'
Thus, from this point of view, illness is an admonishing guide and advisor that never deceives. It should not be complained about in this respect, indeed, should be thanked for. And if it is not too severe, patience should be sought to endure it.” (Lem'alar (Flashes), 206-207)
We ask our Lord, who has endless mercy, not to leave us on our own and to lead us to the good and the right, to the way to Paradise, to protect us from the evil of the soul and Satan and to cure all of our material and spiritual illnesses. Amin!
What are the negative effects of computer games and the internet on children? How can we eliminate these effects? Can you evaluate the issue in terms of the hereafter of the child?
What are the negative effects of computer games and the internet on children? How can we eliminate these effects? Can you evaluate the issue in terms of the hereafter of the child?
"He suddenly stood up and started to shout. He reacted too strongly because he could not kill the man who shot at him. He tried again. He sat down and stood up repeatedly, and tried to kill the person against him. He harmed his opponent seriously. When his opponent fell down drenched in blood, he burst into laughter. The incidents continued. He fought to death and did his best to harm his enemies. He did not stop playing though his mother called him several times. He was so engaged in the game that he was thinking of nothing but the game."
Similar incidents often occur in homes and internet cafes nowadays. Children and young people spend most of their time playing games on the computer. Parents allow computers because they think,''It is necessary to keep up with peers, innovations and technology; it will help my child in his/her studies.'' However, children generally use the computer to play games. Using the computer may start with a good intention but it deviates from the purpose in the course of time. 'Using computers without control", which is the common complaint of parents, is a very difficult problem to solve even for specialists.
How do computer games affect the subconscious of children and their lives in the future? Can games that could affect children positively be presented in a healthy way on the computer?
Computer games can be dealt with in two categories. Firstly, games that can be a means of developing skills, understanding life and inculcating moral values;secondly, games that do not enrich imagination, do not contribute to the world of thought, and that encourage violence and immorality.
The positive effect of games on the mental, bodily and spiritual development of the child depends on the content of the game and the amount of time spent playing games. This amount of time must not be very much or very little. It is possible to establish a balance regarding the issue by educating the child about using time efficiently. Children who spend their time doing unnecessary things can do the same thing when they grow up. To sum up, it is necessary to teach the child the importance of time one way or another.
Time spent unnecessarily in front of a computer screen causes children and young people to be inactivated. This increases stress in children. This inactivity causes accumulation of energy in especially active children and affects their behavior negatively. Discharging the energy from the body through sportive activities is helpful in terms of growth, development and learning to share. Exercise also helps to release growth hormone. Besides, time spent in front of a computer screen deprives children and young people of taking part in cultural activities like useful games, studying, sports, etc.
Most parents complain that their children cannot express themselves well and that they cannot communicate clearly with others. When you ask your child a question, you get either a very short or a predictable answer. Time spent playing computer games has an important effect on it. We see that violence in computer games is increasing day by day. Game industry regards everything permissible in order to attract children. Images and videos that are not suitable for their age cause the subconscious of the children to be shaped. Anxiety, fear, inclination to violence, sudden outbursts and regarding violence ordinary occur in children who are exposed to videos and images containing violence for a long time. The reactions of the children who watch violent films and play violent games change in time; they use more violence against their friends and the people around. They push and kick people when a slight disagreement occurs. Anxiety and sleeping disorders occur in children who are affected by harmful videos and images; their personal is affected negatively.
The anomalies mentioned above are seen more frequently in preschool children since the causes and effects of the behavior involving five senses are not questioned by them. The following incidents can be given as examples regarding the issue: "A 3,5-year old child who used to watch violent films practiced what he saw on TV and stabbed his brother to death. A child who thought he was a cartoon film hero jumped off the seventh floor with the intention of flying. In France, a child who could not be successful in computer games developed epilepsy." Unfortunately, we often hear about similar incidents. We need to provide our children with useful alternative games in order to fill the subconscious of our children with positive qualities like goodness, doing favors, compassion, charity and altruism.
Harmful games prevent children from learning their national culture hence causing cultural erosion. In those games, cultural values of foreign nations are often used; symbols of different faiths are placed in the subconscious of children and our children are affected by them without noticing them. Through these games, Islam is presented like a boogeyman and Muslims are shown like terrorists and targets to be hit.
The children who became computer game addicts are alienated from their environment. These children, who have difficulty in finding friends, become prisoners of computers and are isolated from the community. From then on, the only friend of the child is the computer; even if the child spends some time with his friends, he cannot get rid of the feeling of loneliness. Parents need to provide their children with activities appropriate for their development and to balance the time spent for computer games.
The bad characters shown in many computer games play a negative role in the formation of the child's personality . The messages given in these kinds of games like trying to be strong and powerful, ignoring lives of others, killing in order to live, despising moral values, ignoring feelings of others, not appreciating the people around and categorizing people affect the personality of the child negatively.
Games affect attention and learning too. The images changing frequently on the computer screen cause the child to be distracted, triggering lack of concentration. Besides, too much light might cause epileptic seizures in children.
In conclusion, computer games cause children to tend to regard everything in life as a game, to daydream all the time, to be mentally busy with the theme of the game even after the game, to convey this theme to the games with his friends and to his attitudes, and to reduce his family relationships and the time he spends with his family.
It is not possible to ignore the benefits of computers, which is a reality of this age. What is ideal is to benefit from the positive aspects of computers and to be protected from its negative effects. It is necessary to establish a balance between the time allocated for real games for the child's development and for virtual games. Games
- in which children can take part actively,
- that pedagogues and counselors recommend
- that enable the child to develop a consciousness of history and adopt his own cultural values,
- that support attention and development of reasoning,
- that enables the child to develop qualities like sharing, team spirit, charity, altruism, honesty and diligence,
- that arouse curiosity, facilitate learning and enable a child to love learning,
- that are possible to play with the parents,
- that enables the child to obtain the consciousness of duty and responsibility,
- that develop the ability to imagine, think and invent
need to be preferred.
When the organs like the eyes, ears, etc, which are among the important bounties given to man by the Creator, are kept busy only for entertainment in front of the computer screen, it means they are be used contrary to their purpose of creation. Therefore, the vital responsibility of the parents is to ensure that their children use their faculties like seeing, hearing, feeling and reasoning properly and positively.
What are the most important hadiths that can guide our daily life?
Actually, every hadith guides our lives. In this regard, we should benefit from relevant hadiths and verses in every issue (which is) related with our life.
We want to share a recommendation of Abu Dawud, which is one of the Kutub as- Sittah books, since we cannot quote all of the important hadiths that guide our lives.
Ibn al-Arabi stated the following about Abu Dawud's book named "Sunan":
“If a person knows the Qur'an and Abu Dawud's Sunan, it means that the person has obtained the beginning of the religious issues.” (1)
Abu Dawud, who became distinguished with his knowledge, personality and his book called “Sunan” in the period when he lived, states the following in an evaluation attributed to him (2):
Among all of these hadiths, only four of them are sufficient for a wise person;
1."The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions."Sahih al-Bukhari (3)
2."Part of a person’s goodness in Islam is his leaving alone that which does not concern him" (4)
3."None of you will have faith till he wishes for his (Muslim) brother what he likes for himself." (5)
4."Both legal and illegal things are evident but in between them there are doubtful things and most of the people have no knowledge about them. So whoever saves himself from these doubtful things saves his religion and his honor. And whoever indulges in these doubtful things is like a shepherd who grazes (his animals) near the Hima (private pasture) of someone else and at any moment he is liable to get in it. (O people!) Beware! Every king has a Hima and the Hima of Allah on the earth is His illegal (forbidden) things. Beware! There is a piece of flesh in the body if it becomes good (reformed) the whole body becomes good but if it gets spoilt the whole body gets spoilt and that is the heart." (6)
Shah Waliullah Dehlawi states the following about these four hadiths;
"...In order to perform prayers properly, the first hadith is sufficient.
- In order to prevent the precious life from being wasted, the second hadith is sufficient.
- To protect the rights of relatives, friends and neighbours is mentioned in the third hadith.
- The hesitations and doubts that can occur due to differences of evidences or disagreements of scholars are settled by the fourth hadith.
Thus, these four hadiths become like a master and a teacher in the eye of a wise person." (7)
These four hadiths, which Abu Dawud determined as "the essence of Islam" according to us, surround almost all fields of a Muslim's life.
The hadith "The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions" narrated by 'Umar bin Al-Khattab is the first hadith of Bukhari’'s book called 'Sahih', which is regarded as one of the soundest hadith resources. It should not be a coincidence that this hadith is mentioned right at the beginning of the book by Bukhari. Probably, Bukhari is giving a serious message to reader with the very first hadith:
"Have a sound intention in this deed of reading, which you have just started, and in all of the other actions and deeds in your life!" A few centuries later, Imam Nawawi also joined this message in his precious work called "Riyadhus-Salihin" and he included the hadith on 'intention' as the first hadith in his work.
In fact, the second hadith indicates gradualism together with the first hadith: The first step before deed- action is the soundness of the intention while the second step is the quality of the deed.
A Muslim person should observe quality in his deeds-actions based on this second step. He should give importance to content and quality in his preferences, and he should act in compliance with the principle of “being useful-being significant” according to the hadith.
The third hadith prevents “egoism” namely “selfishness”, which is perhaps one of the most important character problems of today. Surely, the reflections of this character problem on the social life are not pleasant.
The society which consist of people who say 'always to me', and who live with the philosophy 'the snake which does not touch me', who do not want things for each other, and who cannot share each other’s pain by heart are probably the clearest examples of these reflections.
Although there are different opinions and views related to the content of the hadith, the fourth hadith determines the attitude of Muslims in the face of problems by indicating the ease of practicing Islam clearly.
The formula of practicing Islam is given in the hadith clearly as keeping away from the issues about which there is no clear information and views.
It is also stated in the hadith that a person who keeps a way from this unclear field protects his religion and honor and it is stated that a person who enters this field is likened to a shepherd who grazes his sheep around this forbidden land.
There is no doubt that every hadith that is known to come from our Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in a sound way is very important for us. These hadiths include different topics, and each of them addresses one aspect of our lives.
In addition to this, as Abu Dawud points out, some hadiths contain more practical and concise prophetic wisdoms about understanding Islam and telling people about Islam. From this point of view, these four hadiths fulfill a very important duty of determining a Muslims' life philosophy individually and socially.
In order to attain a result, it is a very important step for the Islamic community to listen to and act in accordance with these four hadiths in order to reach the point that is desired or aimed.
1) Shah Waliyullah Dahlawi, Bustunul-Muhaddithin, translated by Koçkuzu, A. Osman, 195.
2) Ibnul-Athir, al-Jazari, Jamiul-Usul fi Ahadithir-Rasul, I, 190; Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali, Jamiul-Ulum wall-Hikam, I, 10; Dahlawi, ibid, 194.
3) Bukhari, Badul-Wahy, 1; Muslim, Imarah, 155; Abu Dawud, Talaq, 11.
4) Ibn Majah, Fitan, 12; Tirmidhi, Zuhd, 11.
5) Bukhari, Iman, 7; Muslim, Iman, 71.
6) Bukhari, Iman 39, Buyu 2; Muslim, Musaqat 107; Abu Davud, Buyu 3.
7) Dahlawi, ibid, 194.
Is it possible for man to live without a religion?
The existence of irreligious people show that man can live without a religion. However, a community cannot live without religion as a whole.
It can be said that the feeling of religion, that is, the feeling of worshipping a transcendent being who has endless power over all beings exists in the nature of man. There is nobody who is not under the influence of this feeling. Therefore, those who do not find the true God find wrong gods. They start to worship the sun, moon, stars, stones, trees, etc. This is also a kind of religion.
“Then seest thou such a one as takes as his god his own vain desire? Allah has, knowing (him as such), left him astray, and sealed his hearing and his heart (and understanding), and put a cover on his sight. Who, then, will guide him after Allah (has withdrawn guidance)? Will ye not then receive admonition?” (al-Jasiya, 45/23) The verse above shows that the people with no religion take their own desires as their god like idolaters and the members of other wrong religions hence they have the religion of irreligiousness.
When man's life since his existence on the earth is viewed, it will be seen that he never lived without a religion. The studies of anthropology, psychology and sociology have proved this fact. No nation with absolutely no religion has been found in the studies of human history; when any race or community was studied, it was seen that there was a religion and the idea of a god though simple and wrong there.
Man, who has material and spiritual elements like the spirit and body, has struggled to maintain his material existence on the one hand, and worshipped the sun, the moon and stars in the sky, the fire, animals and some beings he regarded as holy on earth in order to satisfy his feeling of belief, which is his spiritual food, on the other hand. This absolute unity of faith seen in the people who were of different races, eras and countries and who did not know one another proves that the idea of religion is universal and belief in Allah is an inborn characteristic. (see Ay, Mehmet Emin, Çocuklarımıza Allah’ı Nasıl Anlatalım, p. 13-14, Timaş Publications, İstanbul, 1994)
The verse “To every people (was sent) a Messenger” (Yunus, 10/47) in the Quran points out that communities cannot live without religions and prophets. In addition, the Quranic verses narrating the quest of the creator by Hz. Ibrahim (Abraham) and finding Him (see 6/76-79; 21/58-67; 26/70-82) show clearly man's need of religion and that he can know Allah through the spiritual feelings in his nature.
Having probably seen that the feeling of religion is an indispensible characteristic, Plutarch, a Greek ethicist, states the following: “Travel throughout the world; you will find places without walls, literature, law and wealth but you will not be able to find places without temples and gods.” Accordingly, the need to be attached to a temple and god is seen as a common characteristics existing in the nature of man. (Mürsel, Safa, Bediüzzaman Said Nursi ve Devlet Felsefesi, p. 90- 91, Yeni Asya Publications, İstanbul, 1980)
Attracting attention to the fact that communities cannot live without religion, Mehmet Akif Ersoy, the poet, expresses the necessity of religion socially in the following lines:
“Five or ten irreligious people appear in all communities. It is normal but an irreligious nation is impossible.
The individuals of which nation has no feeling of religion?
Look at the biggest nations; their religion is stronger than anything.” (Safahat (Third Book), Hakkın Sesleri, p. 258, 9 May 1329/1913)
As man looks at this nature and think, he will realize that he will not be able to live idly. Even the most irreligious people need to take refuge. For, man is weak; therefore, he needs to take refuge in a power that will protect him from endless enemies and meet his needs. Besides, he wants to satisfy the desire of eternity in his heart. The only one that can satisfy all of his needs is Allah, the Omnipotent.
What is the Wisdom behind making Wudu before going to bed and What are its Scientific Benefits?
It is sunnah to make wudu before going to bed.
In a hadith, the Prophet said to Bara b. Azib,
“When you want to go to bed to sleep, make wudu as you would for the prayer, then lie on your right side…” (Bukhari, h.no: 6311; Ibn Hajar, Fathul-Bari, 11/109)
There are material and spiritual benefits of making wudu before sleeping. Some of them are as follows:
- Man can die while he is asleep as well as while he is awake. Having wudu, which is a weapon of a believer, means to attain Allah by girding oneself with the weapon of belief and Islam if one dies while sleeping.
- According to what Ibn Abbas reports, people are revived by their position in their death. The soul of a person who dies having wudu goes to the Gathering Place in a spiritually clean state.
- Preparing for death and pulling oneself together is a kind of spiritual cleanliness made with the consciousness of belief and worshipping.
This cleanliness is much more important than bodily cleanliness.
- Some prayers and dhikrs are also advised in this hadith, which orders wudu.
The sleep of a person who cleans himself, prays and makes dhikr is like a kind of worshipping. The dreams that he sees usually come true; Satan cannot play tricks on this person.
From this point of view, it is possible to say that wudu makes sleeping efficient.
- “Wudu” (ablution), which is an Arabic word, lexically means cleanliness.
It is important for man to clean the organs of wudu, which are dirtied by various reasons during the day, and to go to bed in a clean state in terms of both cleanliness of the body and the bed.
This action is notable in terms of preventive medicine.
- A perfect wudu is related to mouth, nose and tooth cleanliness along with the cleanliness of the known wudu organs.
In terms of health, it is a known fact how important it is to wash the mouth, nose and teeth when one goes to bed and gets up (as in tahajjud prayer and morning prayer).
The meticulousness of the people who take care of their health in washing these organs though they do not make wudu and perform prayers is another proof of how important making wudu while going to bed is. (cf. Ibn Hajar, ibid)
- According to a narration, the Prophet said,
"If a person sleeps without washing his dirty hands and something (an illness) happens to him, he should condemn himself only." (For this hadith, which exists in all Kutub as-Sitta books except Nasai, see Naylul-Awtar, 8/188)
From the expression of this sound hadith, it is also possible to understand how important "making wudu before sleeping" is in terms of health.
The full text of the related hadith is as follows:
“When you want to go to bed, make wuduas you would for prayer;then, lie on your right side and say,
“O Allah! I have submitted myself to You, I have turned my face to You, committed my affairs to You, and depend on You for protection out of desire for You and out of fear of You. There is no refuge and no place of safety from You but with You. I believed in the Book You have revealed, and in the Prophet You have sent.” If you say it and sleep and if you die that night, you will die on the religion of Islam. Let them be your last words before you sleep.” (Bukhari, Daawat, 7)
Another hadith regarding the issue is as follows:
"A person who has difficulty in sleeping should make wudu before going to bed and read the following supplication:
“O Allah, stars have set, eyes have rested; You alone are the Ever-Alive, and the Self-Subsisting Source of all beings; neither slumber nor sleep overtakes You. Make my night comforting for me, and bring sleep unto my eyes.” Then, he should read Muawwizatayn (chapters of al-Falaq and an-Nas) and sleep." (see Haysami, 10/178)
Why does Allah give people so much hardship like torture, cruelty, brutality, disability, blindness and rape?
“That which is on earth we have made but as a glittering show for the earth, in order that We may test them - as to which of them are best in conduct. Verily what is on earth we shall make but as dust and dry soil (without growth or herbage)."(al-Kahf, 7-8)
As it is stated in the verses above and similar verses, the world is exactly a testing place. This is a complete test. The deeds and outcomes we evaluate originate from this environment of testing. In this environment of testing, a believer or an unbeliever is not given a privileged position. Sad things and joyful things exist together.
What is bad is not the possibility of doing bad deeds but doing bad deeds itself. For instance, a person’s being fair and just is understood when he has the opportunity to be cruel and to oppress but he does not do so.
Therefore, in a world where only opportunities to do good deeds are present, doing good deeds is not regarded as something valuable. When we consider all of the grades of good and beautiful, honesty and justice, it is clear that there will also be the opposites of them. The point that needs to be judged at this point is people’s misusing their ability to do endless good deeds, and doing bad deeds instead.
There are so many good and charitable servants of Allah. The existence of these good servants in terms of quality is also the cause of the creation of this world of testing. In other words, many people make themselves bad in this test, and many people display the good things in themselves thanks to this test.
However, Allah states that with His mercy He will grant boons that will please in their eternal life those who are oppressed and wronged in this test
What we need to do is to surrender to the divine mercy and to wait for the great day of religion. On this great day, the one who is punished will be punished fully and the one who is rewarded will be rewarded fully.
This worldly life may be a short life but since that person denies his Lord, who is eternal, his denial necessitates eternal punishment. Similarly, in this short life, a person who accepts and believes in his Lord attains eternal mercy.
Man was created in a nature that tends to develop and change like a nucleus and an egg; his rank is not fixed like angels and animals. The conditions, circumstances and situations that will trigger and activate this development in man were necessary.
The development of an egg that is a candidate to be a bird and a seed that is a candidate to be a tree cannot develop everywhere and in all circumstances. The egg needs to remain under a chicken or an environment like that of a chicken.
A seed needs the environment under the soil. Otherwise, they will rot and be destroyed.
Can it be regarded as a torture for a seed to be thrown into the ground, buried in the darkness, to crack as a result of being given water so that it will be transformed into a tree and to have the blessings such as leaves, flowers, fruits, tastes, smells and colors? No sane person can say that it is wrong for the seed and that it is not in compliance with wisdom and mercy.
So, a suitable environment is required for a seed to be a tree,
Similarly, there is a need for an environment so that man will reveal the ores in his nature. This environment is the life in the world. Man’s nature, which could not develop in Paradise, was sent to the world, which has the conditions that will enable him to develop.
Such an environment was necessary for man to show which one of the positive or negative features potentially placed in his nature he would prefer. Otherwise, the ranks of human beings would be fixed like those of the angels and animals; They would not have the ability to ascend and descend.
It is clear what a great blessing and mercy is for man to be buried in the earth so that these great and endless blessings will be revealed.
Is life a distilled essence of the universe?
- That life is a distilled essence of the universe can be explained as follows:
The creation of the universe, its various parts being formed like that, shows –in terms of wisdom- that it is a system that paves the way for the conditions of life to form and life to exist.
For instance, as it is indicated in the Quran, the last stage in the creation of the universe is the creation of the conditions of life on earth - in terms of its being suitable for the conditions of life and living of humans.
As Badiuzzaman Said Nursi puts it,
“The earth was spread out and became suitable for human beings to live after the heavens were straightened and arranged; thus, the earth was created after the heavens.” (İşarat-ül İ'caz, p. 188)
Allah, who does everything based on wisdom, regarded the principle of gradualism and development as sunnatullah and created the parts of the universe in the form of overlapping circles that pave the way for each other based on this principle.
The arrangement of the various parts and organs of the universe in a way that will produce life within this system of creation enabled “life to form as anessence distilled from the universe”.
“Yes, just as life is the distilled essence of the universe; and consciousness and sense perception are distilled from life and are the essence of life; and intelligence too is distilled from consciousness and sense perception and is the essence of consciousness; and spirit is the pure, unsullied substance of life, its stable and autonomous essence.” (Sözler, p. 109-110)
It is possible to see the hierarchic, wise system of creation from the statement above.
- Life is an essence distilled from the universe in the material filed; similarly, it is a factor in the spiritual field that paves the way for thanks to be distilled, which is Allah’s real purpose in creating the universe.
“Indeed, just as the All-Wise Quran shows thanks to be the result of creation; so the universe, which is a mighty Quran, shows the most important result of the world’s creation to be thanks.
For if the universe is observed carefully, it is seen from the way it is arranged that everything results in thanks; each looks to thanks to an extent and is turned towards it.
It is as though thanks is the most important fruit of the tree of creation, and gratitude is the most elevated product of the factory of the universe.
The reason for this is as follows:We see in the creation of the world that its beings are arranged as though in a circle with life as its central point. All beings look to life, and serve life, and produce the necessities of life.
That is to say, the One who created the universe chose life from it, giving it preference.
We see that He created the animal kingdom in the form of a circle and placed man at its center. Simply, He centered the aims intended from animate beings on man, gathering all living creatures around him and subjugating them to him. He made them serve him and him dominant over them.
That is to say, the Glorious Creator chose man from among living beings, and willed and decreed this position for him in the world.” (Mektubat, p. 364)
It means living beings are in the center of the circle of the universe and conscious human life is at the center of the circle of the living beings.
Human life is the essence of the essences distilled from many filters.
Why is the protection of life so important?
Islam, which gives the right to live to all human beings without discrimination, does not only take measures to prevent the violations against this right but also renders it a duty of the community to ensure minimum life conditions and basic needs with the system of mutual assistance and solidarity.
Man –whether a believer or not- is Allah’s slave and a nice entrusted being. Therefore, he has honor and he deserves respect. It is the basic understanding of Islam not to discriminate among people in terms of being humans and to regard them as beings having equal rights, duties and values.
Value of Man
Man has a special, honorable place among created beings. What makes man honorable among other beings must be the divine spirit Allah breathed into him while creating him. The following is stated in the Quran regarding the issue:
الذي احسن كل شيئ خلقه و بدا خلق الانسنان من طين * ثم جعل نسله من سلالة من ماء مهين*
ثم سويه و نفخ فيه من روحهه
“He Who has made everything which He has created most good: He began the creation of man with (nothing more than) clay, And made his progeny from a quintessence of the nature of a fluid despised: But He fashioned him in due proportion, and breathed into him something of His spirit...” (as-Sajda, 32/7-9)
Thanks to this spirit man has in him, he is superior to angels and he is the vicegerent of Allah on earth. That man is the vicegerent of Allah is stated as follows in the Quran:
اذ قال ربك للملائكة اني جاعل في الارض خليفة و
“Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: ‘I will create a vicegerent on earth.’...” (al-Baqara, 2/30)
Allah granted man honor and value by making him the vicegerent on earth. With this property, man will obey the decrees of the holy books sent down through prophets and the natural laws in the universe; and he will apply them; he will benefit from the endless boons of the Creator, worship and thank Him. This is the purpose of the creation of man.To sum up, the duty of man as the vicegerent is to act in accordance with Allah’s will and to be happy. Allah Almighty wants this; He sent prophets and holy books for this purpose.
Allah Almighty, who is the creator of the realms, created everything in the best form. (see as-Sajda, 32/7) Allah, who is the best creator, (see al-Muminun, 23/14) created the first man in the best form and all human beings in the best form and perfectly. Allah states the following for man in the Quran:
لقد خلقنا الانسان في احسن تقويم
“We have indeed created man in the best of molds.” (at-Tin, 95/4).
Indeed, man is the most beautiful creature. The phrase “ahsani taqwim” (the best mold) mentioned in the verse includes all kinds of material and spiritual beauties. The straightness of his height, the uniqueness of his posture, having mind, intellect and thought, having the ability to speak and write, having the ability of art, the property of being able to discriminate between the beautiful and the ugly, the good and the bad, etc. are some of those beauties. (1)
According to the Islamic belief, man is equipped with perfect mental, bodily, ethical and spiritual abilities and faculties. He is born in a clean form with the ability to elevate materially and spiritually. Man, who is created with these abilities, can ascend to climaxes. He has such an honor. Hz. Ali uttered the following nice poem for man:
"You have the cure in you but you are not aware You have the problem in you but you cannot see
You think you are something small
But the biggest realm is wrapped in you."(2)
Sheikh Ghalib, the great poet, expresses Islam’s understanding of man as follows:
"Look at your personality in a nice way; you are the essence of the realm,
You are man, who is the pupil of the eye of the beings." (3)
Erzurumlu İbrahim Hakkı states the following in his work called Marifetnâme:
“Human body is the small realm and human spirit is the big realm. The like of everything created in the realm exists in human body. Human body and spirit is a sample of the whole realm.” (4)
Thus, he emphasized the value of man.
Allah states the value He gave man as follows in verse 70 of the chapter of al-Isra:
و لقد كرمنا بني ادم و حملناهم في البر و البحر و رزقناهم من الطيبات و فضلناهم على كثيرممن خلقنا تفضيلا
“We have honored the sons of Adam; provided them with transport on land and sea; given them for sustenance things good and pure; and conferred on them special favors, above a great part of our creation.”
Importance Given to Human Life
Great importance is given to security of life, in other words, right to live, in Islam and it is stated that human life is untouchable.
In Islam, “protection of life” has the most important place among the basic values called “religious necessities”. Furthermore, it is possible to say that these five basic principles, which are listed as the protection of the religion, life, mind, lineage and property, are related to the protection of life directly or indirectly.
In some cases, the protection of life comes before the protection of religion, which is in the first place, in the list of those values. As a matter of fact, the practices like the permission of committing some forbidden deeds to save human life, and the obligation of committing those forbidden deeds in some cases emphasize the importance given to human life.
Precautions in order to Protect Human life
The religion of Islam puts the right to live, which is the most natural right of man, under the guarantee of law and imposes some material and spiritual sanctions in order to ensure full respect to the right to live. We can list them as follows:
When man’s being sent to the world is narrated, the opposition of angels stating that man will cause mischief and shed blood on earth is mentioned. (see al-Baqara, 2/30)
Indeed, after a while, the first shedding of blood occurred due to the hatred and jealousy between Hz. Adam’s two sons. The incident is narrated with similar expressions in the Old Testament too. (see Genesis, 4/1-8; al-Maida, 5/27-31)
It is stated in the Quran that killing a person is a serious crime like killing all people and that to save a person’s life is a lofty and valuable act like saving all people:
انه من قتل نفسا بغير نفس او فساد في الارض فكانما قتل الناس جميعا و من احياها فكانما احيا الناس جميعا
“...If any one slew a person - unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land - it would be as if he slew the whole people: and if any one saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people...” (al-Maida, 5/32)
In the religion of Islam, retaliation (qisas) is essential related to the crimes of killing and wounding people.
There are many verses and hadiths regarding the issue. As a matter of fact, The following is stated in the Quran:
يا ايها الذين امنوا كتب عليكم القصاص في القتلى الحر بالحر والعبد بالعبد والانثى بالانثى فمن عفي له من اخيه شيئ فااباع بالمعروف و اداء اليه باحسان ذالك تخفيف من ربكم و رحمة فمن اعتدى بعد ذلك فله عذاب اليم
“O ye who believe! The law of equality is prescribed to you in cases of murder: the free for the free, the slave for the slave, the woman for the woman. But if any remission is made by the brother of the slain, then grant any reasonable demand, and compensate him with handsome gratitude, this is a concession and a Mercy from your Lord. After this whoever exceeds the limits shall be in grave penalty.” (al-Baqara, 2/178)
و لا تقتلوا النفس التي حرم الله الا بالحق و من قتل مظلوما فقد جعلنا لوليه سلطانا فلا يسرف في القتل انه كان منصورا
“Nor take life - which Allah has made sacred - except for just cause. And if anyone is slain wrongfully, we have given his heir authority (to demand qisas or to forgive): but let him not exceed bounds in the matter of taking life; for he is helped (by the Law).” (al-Isra, 17/33)
Many words and practices of the Prophet (pbuh) (5) are regarded as evidence that punishment by retaliation is legitimate. The Messenger of Allah stated the following regarding the issue:
و من قتل عمدا فهو قود
“... The penalty for a person who kills deliberately is qisas (retaliation). ”(6)
The imposition of punitive sanctions against the unjust attacks at the security of the lives of people, in other words, rights of living of the people are arrangements made in accordance with the importance given to the safety of people.
In addition, the principle of punishing a murderer by the state, and after an objective and fair trial, not by the relatives of the person who was murdered is adopted.
All this is an expression of the importance given to the protection human life from a different viewpoint.
Even during the state of war, the right of killing the enemy is very limited in Islam; the killing of those who do not actually participate in the war like women, children, clerics and elderly men is forbidden; and the right of living of the prisoners of war is protected.
It is clear that the cases of actual state of war, execution of the sentence and legitimate defense are excluded from this prohibition.
Along with worldly sanctions like qisas and diyah (blood money), there are also some spiritual (otherworldly) sanctions for killing a person in the religion of Islam.
It is stated in the Quran that killing people without a legal reason will bring about Allah’s wrath and curse and hence a very severe spiritual responsibility:
و من يقتل مؤمنا متعمدا فجزاؤه جهنم خالدا فيها و غضب الله عليه و لعنه و اعد له عذابا عظيما
“If a man kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell, to abide therein (For ever): And the wrath and the curse of Allah are upon him, and a dreadful penalty is prepared for him.” (an-Nisa, 4/93)
The Prophet (pbuh) addressed all Muslims as follows in the Farewell Sermon:
فان دماءكم و اموالكم و اعراضكم عليكم حرام كحرمة يومكم هذا في بلدكم هذا في شهركم هذا...
“Just as this day, this month and this city is sacred, so too are your lives, property and honor sacred; they are protected from all kinds of violation; that is, they are under the responsibility of the community and the guarantee of law…”(7)
Thus, he stated that man’s right to live was untouchable.
He stated the following in another hadith:
اجتنبواالسبع الموبقات ..... و قتل النفس التي حرم الله الا بالحق....
“Avoid seven destructive things…. One of them is to kill a person that Allah renders haram except for justified cases….” (8)
The Property of the Right to Live According to Islam
The religion of Islam regards the life of every person, no matter what his belief, color, race and social status is, as an untouchable value and tries to prevent all kinds of attacks on and dangers to human life in the most effective way.
Therefore, Islam does not give people the right to commit suicide, which means to end one’s own life, and regards it among major sins; it states that such a person will be punished severely in the hereafter just because of committing suicide no matter what his belief and deeds are.
To sum up:
Man, who is equipped with perfect mental, bodily, ethical and spiritual faculties and abilities, is born in a clean state and suitable for all kinds of material and spiritual elevations.
In our religion, great importance is given to man’s security of life, in other words, the right to live, and it is stated that human life is untouchable. Some material and spiritual sanctions have been imposed in order to ensure full respect to the right to live.
As a result of the principle of “the protection of life”, which is one of the basic purposes of the religion of Islam, it is strictly forbiddenfor a person both to kill another person unjustly and to commit suicide.
for more information please click on the links given below;
1) Hamdi Yazır; Hak Dini Kur’an Dili, VII,.5025. Eser Publications, İstanbul, 1971.
2) Yazır, VIII, 5936.
3) Abdülbâki Gölpınarlı; Şeyh Galip Divanından Seçmeler, p.10. İstanbul, 1971.
4) Erzurumlu İbrahim Hakkı; Marifetnâme, p. 97. Sadeleştiren, M. Fuad Başar, İstanbul, 1984.
5) For instance, see Bukhari, Diyat, 6, 8, VIII, 38; Muslim, Qasama, 6, II, 1302-1303.
6) Ibn Majah, Diyat, 8, II, 880.
7) Bukhari, Ilm, 37, I, 35; Muslim, Hajj, 147, I,, 889.
8) Bukhari, Wasaya, 23, III, 195; Muslim, Iman, 144, I, 91.
(Şükrü ÖZBUĞDAY, Member of the High Board of Religious Affairs)