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Home » Faith and Creed » Allaah

The Categories of Al-Iradah (intent)

What are the categories of Al-Iradah (intent)?

Al-Iradah is divided into two types:

1. Iradah Kawniyyah. 2. Iradah Shariah.

So that which falls under the meaning of Allaahs Will is Iradah Kawniyyah, while that which falls under the meaning of (His) Love (for something) is Iradah Shariah. An example of Iradah Shariah is in the Words of Allaah, the Most High:

{Allaah wishes to accept your repentance.} [an-Nisa 4:27]

Because here, the verb, {} wishes means loves. It does not mean that He wills it, because if the meaning was: Allaah wills that He accepted your repentance, He would have accepted the repentance of all of His creatures, and this is something which cannot be, because the majority of the sons of Adam are disbelievers, therefore:

{wishes to accept your repentance.} [an-Nisa 4:27]

Means that He loves to accept your repentance and it is not necessary that due to Allaahs Love for something it will happen, because the far-reaching Divine Wisdom might necessitate that it should not happen.

An example of Iradah Kawniyyah is in the Words of Allaah, the Most High:

if Allaahs Will is to keep you astray. [Hud 11:34]

Allaah does not love to make His worshippers go astray, therefore, it is not correct for the meaning to be: If Allaah loved to make you go astray rather the meaning is : If Allaah wanted to make you go astray.

But it remains for us to say: What is the difference between Iradah Kawniyyah and Iradah Shariah with regard to the occurrence of the matter in question? We say: Regarding the Kawniyyah, that which is wanted must come to be, if Allaah wills something to happen, then it must happen:

{Verily, His Command, When He intends a thing, is only that He says to it, Be! and it is!} [Ya-seen 36:82]

But as for Iradah Shariah, that which is wanted might come to be and it might not come to be: Allaah might desire and love this thing, but it does not occur, because what is loved might take place, and it might not.

If someone said: Does Allaah will that sins be committed? We say: He wills it to be, but He does not love that it should be. This is because Iradah Shariah means love, and Allaah does not love sins, but He wills them to be, so everything in the heavens and the earth is by Allaahs Will.

Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-`Uthaymeen
Fataawa Arkanaul-Islaam p.136 DARUSSALAM
Other subjects of interest:

Revealed Books
The Prophets and Messengers
The Last Day
The Divine Decree
Jinn And Devils

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