April 29, 2021 at 7:08 am
Allah is very kind and merciful. How could Allah let animals suffer?
There are sick and injured animals and animals being eaten alive in the wild. What is the Allah’s scheme behind this.
Why would Allah allow this?
1. Could it be that animals are being tested just like humans and bad animals are punished in this World or they may be punished in the life afterwards?
2. Could it be that they do not suffer and seem like they are suffering?
3. Perhaps animals are created as a part of our test environment and in reality they don’t exist or suffer?
The same question extends to suffering or dying young children.
I am surprised that this topic is not addressed in Quran or anywhere else in Islam (that I know of)
April 29, 2021 at 9:30 am
Quran tells us the knowledge which is required for our good. Extra knowledge Allah didn’t not bother to tell us.
Since we know God is just, we can assume that He will compensate Evey being for all their sufferings.
In the greater plan of God the reward to so very great as compared to sufferings. We see only a part of His grand plan.
God is merciful but not like a mother. He has to run His plans.
April 29, 2021 at 12:07 pm
Mostly herbivores in the wild live a life under constant fear of being eaten by beasts. Anyone who has kept dogs or cats know that animals have emotions.
My question is why would a compassionate God create such a scheme of things where animals and human suffer.
If the answer is that God will compensate them , even then how can a compassionate God make his creations suffer and then compensate them. If a human being “has power” not to make his kids suffer would he/she still make them suffer and then compensate them.
Now saying that God knows better. Then this saying is not compatible that Islam is rationale and logical. What is the rationale and logic of animal and human sufferings?
April 29, 2021 at 12:51 pm
Brother Sohail. Human suffering and children suffering perhaps I can understand and form some justification. We are here for a test and Allah knows the future, so perhaps suffering is either a test or punishment for our past or future acts, but animals are not being tested or may not go to heaven to my knowledge.
I am trying to find logic, without questioning Allah’s scheme or any impact on my faith. Any and everything is possible with Allah. It is just search of knowledge and better understanding of the creator.
At the end I agree with brother Irfan’s statement. Allah only revealed the knowledge necessary for us to pass our test. He did not send all the knowledge and answer to everything.
April 29, 2021 at 1:06 pm
He is not compassionate in the sense we take its meaning. He is compassionate the way He is and He tells about it in Quran.
He chose to create a test, allowed suffering and decided to compensate it.
April 29, 2021 at 2:04 pm
And I believe the compensation will be exponentially more than the sufferings… InshaAllah, for those who remain steadfast.
April 29, 2021 at 1:54 pm
Rationality and logic doesn’t imply that we can know everything. In fact it implies quite the opposite. This is no different in other fields of knowledge such as math and science. One key difference is that in those subjects we can express unknowable ideas as fancy symbols such as infinity and iota, while in metaphysics and religion such ideas must be expressed in words.
Just like in math and science we infer many things based on what we know with certainty, we infer certain things in religion as well. There exists no direct observational evidence for the Big Bang, however, we can infer it with the expansion of the universe using the Hubble’s law. If Big Bang is too far fetched, you might be surprised to know that even universal gravity is not a conclusively proven idea. In fact there exist anomalies and discrepancies that go completely against the popular concept which provides the very foundation for many scientific ideas.
“God knows better” is not just an attitude amongst the religious community – it also equally exists in the scientific community. Granted that in those communities it’s expressed in more secular terms, for example, the popular motto in Quantum Mechanics, “Shut up and calculate!”
In any field of knowledge, the key is to understand and appreciate the boundaries of our knowledge. Without a firm grip on this very concept, one can neither be a good scientist nor a good student of religion.
In conclusion, the purpose of religion is to warn us humans about a huge incident that’s about to occur – the day of judgement. It’s purpose is not to reveal God’s scheme about everything in this universe or in the afterlife. There are certain things that have been given to us along with their evidences, certain others that we can infer, yet others that we can discover, while a great many that we won’t know in this life.
April 29, 2021 at 1:58 pm
Well stated Faisal 🙂
April 30, 2021 at 7:01 am
The point is that suffering of humans and animals is not compatible with our idea of a compassionate God. So if our claim is that our religion is logical and reasonable then we can’t pick and choose.
In this particular case, the fact is we have no reasonable answer regarding the creation of especially animals’ suffering by a compassionate God .
For us muslims, maybe we can accommodate your answer. But how do you explain this to a non muslim or an atheist or agnostic. Our whole claim of a compassionate God is challenged!
April 30, 2021 at 8:18 am
Sohail, I like your comment that we need to remain consistent about whether it is a logical and reasonable religion or not. I gave it a little thought and the answer was clear.
The logic and reason is there when a command is issued for us to follow. A command that will help us being successful in this World and afterlife. But, Allah has not elaborated much beyond those commands. Regarding animals there is simply no info. Just like animals, Allah has not elaborated on everything, such as, why he made Jinns, why 7 universes, etc.
Regarding atheist, whatever force they belive created the universe also decided the fate of animals. So I do not see any point of discussion with them.
Regarding agnostics, they are illigocal to start with and they are lost. They should work on figuring ouy their primary issue before questioning anything else.
April 30, 2021 at 8:02 am
There’s absolutely no challenge to the concept of the Most Compassionate God. The misconception only arises out of lack of knowledge, as it very well can to an ignorant person in any field of knowledge.
Instead of standing on the sidelines and criticizing, if an atheist or an agnostic is willing to spend his time and effort in understanding the scheme of God as He himself has presented it, then no such doubts remain.
In the world of philosophy this doubt is called the Problem of Evil and it has been discussed and debated in the academia for many centuries. Yet, how come there exist many intellectuals including modern day scientists who are still theists? Not only that but there are several examples of atheists turning theists once they spend the required effort to understand the big picture. A relatively recent notable example that comes to mind is Francis Collins, former head of the Human Genome Project. It’s surely not because they’re not aware of the so-called problem or they just want to slide it under the rug in their frenzy to believe; it’s because they know enough to be able to understand and appreciate the solution.
I leave you with the following post that will help in understanding the scheme of God and provide the proper perspective required to evaluate such problems in. I highly recommend that you watch the videos a few times.
May 9, 2021 at 2:58 am
Not knowing does not mean not existent. we know not what God do with animals, the objections can only be arisen if God has told, he would not deal with them with justice and will not compensate them for their suffering.
let’s wait to see, what God will do with them
May 23, 2021 at 1:54 am
Whatever Allah has created in the universe is merely a means to an end. All of us being His creations are working towards achieving that end in His workshop (the universe) as workers and resources. Since Allah is our Master and the Creator He has all the rights to use His creations in whatever manner He deems fit and that’s why whatever comes in the way to achieve His end goal is destroyed. However, He compensates those who suffer hardship and other loses far more than what one deserves – that’s what makes Him Rahman and Raheem. He did tell us in the Quran that there is an End Goal but did not tell us what it is, probably because its so obvious only if we ponder in the universe, the history, the trend based future projections, and the roles all that exists is playing. We can see everything including humans and animals are playing a role in the creation process – we are all creating and innovating stuff, some simply as fillers like the mass and the others have more complex roles like as reactors, replicators, makers and even designers who needed a free will (and a guidance to use it right) to effectively play their role.
That’s my theory which helps me under the problem of evil and my role on Earth better.
June 7, 2021 at 6:57 am
I found the following article quite useful on how to process suffering in this world from an Islamic perspective: https://yaqeeninstitute.org/mohammad-elshinawy/why-do-people-suffer-gods-existence-the-problem-of-evil
Excerpt from the article’s conclusion:
“A Muslim, on the other hand, reflects on the universe to find that all of it points to God’s Greatness and Wisdom while being cognizant that a finite creature like the human being can never fully comprehend the Greatness of God nor His Wisdom. Extending that to the “problem of evil,” a Muslim’s general confidence and trust in God’s Wisdom is sufficient, even if he or she does not know the details of how this wisdom plays out in this life or the Hereafter. Just as a Muslim does not deny God’s attributes due to not completely grasping their details, a Muslim consistently treats God’s Wisdom in the same way. A Muslim does not deny God’s Wisdom precisely because they have the humility to accept that they cannot fully comprehend God’s decrees.”