Predestination, chance and Mektoub in certain Muslim societies
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Keywords:Predestination, Mektoub, certain Muslim societies
Chance, qadha, qadar, predestination or free will caused many of the Al-mu’tazila time to flow before they were blacklisted by religious authorities. It should be remembered that Mutazilism, or Mu’tazilas also known as Al-mu’tazila, is an important school of Muslim theology (‘Aqîda) which developed from the 2nd century of the Hegira/8th century.
This current radically rejects divine anthropomorphism, refutes the idea that the Koran would be eternal and uncreated and gives a central place to the notion of human free will in its foundations. The Mu'tazilite theology develops in particular thanks to the translated works of Greek philosophy. The tools developed by the Greeks, logic, rational reasoning, are then remobilized by these Muslim theologians in synergy with the Muslim sources, Koran and Sunna.
In this work we are interested in the question of how the Algerian society apprehends, understands the concepts of qadar, qadha, mektoub and free will and integrates them into everyday life. To this end, we carried out a six-question survey that we distributed to around a hundred of our contacts and acquaintances. We also searched the bibliography for what the authors say about these concepts. We also searched the Quran for the verses relating to qadar and free will: a long list is thus established.
The term qadar has two meanings in the Quran: i) that which is written (predestined) and ii) the measure or just measure by which God does things. This second meaning is of course very different from the first; but many are those who amalgamate and confuse the two meanings.
The results concerning Algerian society can be generalized to North African societies but not to other nations where Muslim communities exist.
As of February 3, 2023, 16 people responded to the questionnaire out of approximately three hundred mailings among our relations, all age groups combined. The people contacted are either students or university teachers, in other words representing the intelligentsia of society. The percentage of responses is very low, not to say negligible (0.05%). One can wonder why this low percentage of response. By way of comparison, a colleague from a dissemination group had asked 273 recipients for a survey on the use of traditional dishes; he had only one answer: ours. There is therefore a serious problem with the acceptance of the concept of survey by Algerian society. The reasons for this are multiple and we could cite: i) distrust of the system, of the Other; ii) the fear of disclosing one's convictions (or simply one's opinion).
We must, in any case, take this situation into account and not expect survey results in line with conventional standards.
Georges C. Anawati, Louis Gardet, (1970) : « Introduction à la théologie musulmane, Vrin, Paris 1970.
Youcef Djedi (2011) : « prédestination ou prédétermination dans l’Islam ? De Friedrich à Max Weber » ; OpenEdition Journals n° 49-2 ; pp 259-274 ; ISBN : 978-2-600-01575-2 ; éditeur Librairie Droz
Maria de Cillis (2018) : « Les musulmans et le libre arbitre » ; Fondazione Oasis ; https://www.oasiscenter.eu/fr/musulmans-et-libre-arbitre ; consulté le 17 janvier 2023.
Louis Gardet and M.-M. Anawati (1949) : “ Introduction à la Théologie musulmane. Essai de théologie comparée” .
Georges Vajda (1973) : « le Kalam dans la pensée religieuse juive du Moyen Age » ; Revue de l'histoire des religions Année 1949 136-1 pp. 104-109.
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