PDA

View Full Version : If God is Omnicient....



DavidK565
09-15-2010, 07:12 AM
Ok, so as someone who does not follow a particular religion very closely, the reasoning behind certain behaviors in all religions kind of eludes me.

I've spending a little bit of time reading other posts on these boards and notice all of the practices that Muslims follow in their daily lives.

What strikes me as strange though, is if God/Allah is an immortal being that knows all and knows what's in your heart (and some would argue that he also knows your fate and where you'll be spending your days when you die), then why are the ritualistic practices necessary?

This applies to ppl of all religions and I don't mean to offend with my terminology. For example, praying 5 times a day. I'm assuming it's in the Qu'ran, but WHY is it in there? Doesn't God already know the he is loved and praised? Or he should at least already know (whether your pray or not) whether what you feel in your heart for him is genuine.

It seems that the major religions are fundamentally similar. All of them lead people to strive to be better people. To give to charity, to live wholesome lives, to praise God. It seems that the only differences are how people go about doing these things. Different rituals, different methods. Jews don't eat pork, fast on Yom Kippur and don't eat bread during passover. Christians go to Midnight Mass and eat communion, (and bunnies lay eggs on Easter). And Muslims fast on Ramadan, pray 5 times a day and all this other stuff. But all those things are different methods of achieving the same ultimate goal. Is it all really necessary?
Reply

Login/Register to hide ads. Scroll down for more posts
'Aleena
09-15-2010, 07:26 AM
members.tripod.com/saif_w/curious/why_do_we_need_to_worship_god.htm
Sorry m not allowed to post links.
Reply

Muslim Woman
09-15-2010, 08:34 AM
Salaam/Peace

Originally Posted by DavidK565
if God/Allah is an immortal being that knows all and knows what's in your heart (and some would argue that he also knows your fate and where you'll be spending your days when you die), then why are the ritualistic practices necessary?
God is not depending on our worship or it's not like that if we stop worshipping , God will suffer or die or be a loser. It's for our own sake that we will obey our Creator .

U may read an article of our convert br Dr. Bilal Philips


Why Did God Create Mankind?


“I have created the jinn and humankind only for My worship.” (Quran 51:56)

..In the Quran, God says:
“Glorify the praises of your Lord...” (Quran 15:98)
In glorifying God, man chooses to be in harmony with the rest of creation which naturally glorifies its Creator. God addresses this phenomenon in many chapters of the Quran.

For example, in the Quran, God states:

“The seven heavens and the earth and whatever is in them glorify Him and there is nothing which does not glorify His praise. However, you do not understand their glorification.” (Quran 17:44)


..A slave is one who is expected to do whatever his master wills. Consequently, worship, according to the final revelation, means ‘obedient submission to the will of God.’ This was the essence of the message of all the prophets sent by God to mankind. For example, this understanding of worship was emphatically expressed by Prophet Jesus (the Messiah or Jesus Christ),
“None of those who call me ‘Lord’ will enter the kingdom of God, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.”

http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/336/viewall/
Reply

tango92
09-15-2010, 10:29 AM
in paralell, if god is omniscient why doesnt he just throw the bad guys into hell straight away? it is to show the people first hand their actions, othewise you would argue it is unfair to be punished for something you havent done.
Reply

Welcome, Guest!
Hey there! Looks like you're enjoying the discussion, but you're not signed up for an account.

When you create an account, you can participate in the discussions and share your thoughts. You also get notifications, here and via email, whenever new posts are made. And you can like posts and make new friends.
Sign Up
Al-Indunisiy
09-15-2010, 01:53 PM
Originally Posted by tango92
in paralell, if god is omniscient why doesnt he just throw the bad guys into hell straight away? it is to show the people first hand their actions, othewise you would argue it is unfair to be punished for something you havent done.
Bravo! I've never thought of that.
Reply

syed_z
09-15-2010, 02:23 PM
Hello... thanks for the question.

In addition to what Sister Muslim woman has said i would like to share these words of Allah (swt) transmitted through Prophet (saw) , they are not in Quran, but you can find them in Hadith (Tradition) Literature known as Hadith Qudsi (Sacred) or Sacred Traditions. These are words of Allah (swt) but not included in Quran... these are as important for Muslims in Islam as much as every other saying of Allah and His Messenger...


"O sons of Adam, i did not create you for my own benefit, but that you benefit from Me as your God, for I am your saviour."

a saying of the Son in Law of Prophet Muhammad (Saw) helps us understand the above Words even better.....

Hazrat Ali (r.a) said "Oh People, Allah did not create mankind but that they know Him, for if they know Him they will worship Him and if they worship Him, they will benefit from His Grace."


The part of Knowing, and Worshiping and Benefiting, are connected, and if you understand them you will be able to understand that it is nothing but for our own Benefit that God created us, as He is Self Sufficient


This feeling of benefit cannot be explained in words, but can only be felt by the one who Truly believes that Allah (swt) is the One who cares the most for us.


(13:28) Such are the ones who believe and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allah. Surely in Allah's remembrance do hearts find rest.



Prophet Muhammad (saw) said that 'There is one part of body if it is good , the whole body will be good, and that is the heart.'


So you would know Allah (swt), once you struggle in life and you begin to realize that there is one mighty power out there that can help you and is the only one to help you and make everything easy for you. So every time you need to struggle in life, you invoke Allah (swt) , which makes you come close to Him.


(6:41) Lo, it is to Him alone that you cry and then, if He so wills, He removes the distress for which you had cried to Him.



Then there is Evil within ourselves, Evil within oneself struggles to take you towards misguidance and wrong path and vain desires at all times, however when you struggle back, and every time you make your Evil Self loose and each time you win, you come closer to your Lord and you begin to feel the Presence of your Lord.

This struggling whether in life or against one's own evil self, everytime makes you come close to your Lord, is when you begin to feel at peace within yourself, and then you want to worship Him more and would excel in doing good deeds, so you are always in that mode of feeling at peace, such a feeling you would never want to be away from.


(29:69) As for those who strive in Our cause, We shall surely guide them to Our Ways. Indeed Allah is with those who do good.



The Dooers of Good is this Verse are called Muhsinoon meaning those who have Ihsan which means.... as Prophet Muhammad (saw) said in a Tradition.....

"Ihsan means Fear Allah as if you can see Him, if you cannot imagine seeing Him, know that He Sees you."



The dooers of Good (muhsinoon) are always and mostly working and struggling in their daily lives, with the Feeling of Ihsan i.e that Allah is Watching at all times and there is no place, where He cannot see us. Which then in turn makes every action of their in to Worship, and every act that they do with pure intention, because Allah watches, becomes an Act of Worship , as Worship not only means Praying and Fasting etc.... for example if you go to get Education provided that you intend to use it for good, it is seen as a Worship and will be Rewarded. So peace and blessings keep descending by God and His Angels on the Souls of those who are struggling in the way of Allah and keep Remembering Him and keep Worshiping. This Peace and Blessings which they feel become source of inspiration to do more good and bestows on them tranquility, which in turn benefits them and you will never find them run after the World or its Materialistic things.... for their Hearts are at Rest .....


All of the above mentioned, is the Benefit which we can gain by knowing and worshiping Him, and such benefit can only be felt, and not expressed in words. Its a beauty and a Mercy from Allah (swt) for us.



Reply

DavidK565
09-15-2010, 02:26 PM
Originally Posted by tango92
in paralell, if god is omniscient why doesnt he just throw the bad guys into hell straight away? it is to show the people first hand their actions, othewise you would argue it is unfair to be punished for something you havent done.
I'm not expecting God to take any kind of action. Its not really about what he "does", rather what we think He knows. See what I'm saying? If people believe that He knows all, then it would stand to reason that all of these other things would be unnecessary.


Originally Posted by Muslim Woman
God is not depending on our worship or it's not like that if we stop worshipping , God will suffer or die or be a loser. It's for our own sake that we will obey our Creator .
This is an interesting notion. So if you're doing it for yourself, and you're doing it to show your obedience to God, then if you DON'T do all of these things, you can't be punished for it, right? Theoretically, if you're a good person in your heart and God knows that, then you shouldn't be any less rewarded in the afterlife....

Woodrow had pointed out in another thread that its like a debt sheet, with good and evil deeds. And you try to get as much good credit as you can. Should any of that matter when your life is finally over?
Reply

DavidK565
09-15-2010, 02:44 PM
syed_z, Thanks for your explanation. So if I'm understanding correctly, the benefit comes from the feeling that one gets when they do these things, and that draws them to God, which makes them want to do more of those things. And just to be clear, those who do good deeds such as helping others or, as you said, getting an education and doing something beneficial with it, all count as Worship to god? So if that's the case, then isn't it only required that one live a good life and do the right thing? Or does praying make it easier to do the right thing, when otherwise we wouldn't know what to do?

(Also, do you have these sayings and stuff memorized, or did you have to look them up?)
Reply

Zafran
09-15-2010, 02:48 PM
I'm not expecting God to take any kind of action. Its not really about what he "does", rather what we think He knows. See what I'm saying? If people believe that He knows all, then it would stand to reason that all of these other things would be unnecessary
God knows everything - but humans dont - thats why we pray to God so that we can come near to the truth that knows everything - the truth being God.

This is an interesting notion. So if you're doing it for yourself, and you're doing it to show your obedience to God, then if you DON'T do all of these things, you can't be punished for it, right? Theoretically, if you're a good person in your heart and God knows that, then you shouldn't be any less rewarded in the afterlife....

Woodrow had pointed out in another thread that its like a debt sheet, with good and evil deeds. And you try to get as much good credit as you can. Should any of that matter when your life is finally over?
This all depends on how you define a good person - a beliver in God will not just believe but also act upon his or her belief to get nearer to God.
Reply

Zafran
09-15-2010, 03:01 PM
Originally Posted by DavidK565
syed_z, Thanks for your explanation. So if I'm understanding correctly, the benefit comes from the feeling that one gets when they do these things, and that draws them to God, which makes them want to do more of those things. And just to be clear, those who do good deeds such as helping others or, as you said, getting an education and doing something beneficial with it, all count as Worship to god? So if that's the case, then isn't it only required that one live a good life and do the right thing? Or does praying make it easier to do the right thing, when otherwise we wouldn't know what to do?

(Also, do you have these sayings and stuff memorized, or did you have to look them up?)
The prophet Muhammad pbuh and the Quran were sent to guide people - In Islam these are the sources that tell us how to get closer to God. Another thing is that Deeds on there own are worth nothing if they are not backed up by the intentions for doing them to get nearer to Allah swt. The best way to get closer to God is by following the Quran and the prophet Muhammad pbuh as they were sent By God.

Another thing you have to understand is, that its the mercy of God that lets people in to heaven as no one can truly be good - But God will reward the people who strived to do Good if they followed the signs he sent (the prophet and the Quran)
Reply

syed_z
09-15-2010, 03:04 PM
Originally Posted by DavidK565
syed_z, Thanks for your explanation. So if I'm understanding correctly, the benefit comes from the feeling that one gets when they do these things, and that draws them to God, which makes them want to do more of those things. And just to be clear, those who do good deeds such as helping others or, as you said, getting an education and doing something beneficial with it, all count as Worship to god? So if that's the case, then isn't it only required that one live a good life and do the right thing? Or does praying make it easier to do the right thing, when otherwise we wouldn't know what to do?

(Also, do you have these sayings and stuff memorized, or did you have to look them up?)
No problem , any time. And yes all those are considered as acts of worship, according to Islam, actions will be judged by intentions, as said Prophet Muhammad. So even if an act goes wrong, while your intention was pure and good and to Please God, you do not get the blame for it, Allah will not punish you.

So if that's the case, then isn't it only required that one live a good life and do the right thing? Or does praying make it easier to do the right thing, when otherwise we wouldn't know what to do?
Yes praying does make it very easy for one to do the right thing, because Allah (swt) says in Quran..

(8:29) O you who have attained to faith! If you remain conscious of God, He will endow you with a standard to discern the true from the false...

(8:24) ....and know that God intervenes between man and (the desires of) his heart...



By us praying to Allah and invoking Him, and His response is, that He increases the Consciousness inside of us, which then blocks our desires which might conflict with our following God's commandments, and then we are able to see what is right and what is wrong, as well as do what is the best thing to do.


and no, i have not memorized most of it. I have to look up as well. Only some i have memorized because Quran and Hadith literature, is a lot.
Reply

Lynx
09-16-2010, 06:42 AM
well i imagine the acts of worship create the personality that God wants (or at least that's the idea behind the actions). So it's not so much that the rituals prove one loves god, it's more like the acts of worship help cultivate the type of personality God expects.
Reply

Muslim Woman
09-16-2010, 08:49 AM
Salaam/Peace

Originally Posted by DavidK565
if you DON'T do all of these things, you can't be punished for it, right?

Wrong . God is our creator and He created heaven for those who worshipped Him alone without partner . He created hell to punish who disobeyed Him.

He gave us free will . Now , it's up to us - follow the right or wrong path.

And God Almighty Knows Best.
Reply

tango92
09-16-2010, 09:25 AM
Originally Posted by DavidK565
I'm not expecting God to take any kind of action. Its not really about what he "does", rather what we think He knows. See what I'm saying? If people believe that He knows all, then it would stand to reason that all of these other things would be unnecessary.

for sure, i would have no problem accepting my fate because i believe god knows all. others may not think the same. God is the most powerful. he could just as easily create us, put thoughts into our head that weve lived our life and chuck is in the fire anyway. does an all powerful being have any need to decieve any1 when no harm nor benefit can be bought to him?


a last scenario. i am a father, i know my kids inside out. i know one of them will steal money from me to buy candy. can a crime be punished before it has been committed?

This is an interesting notion. So if you're doing it for yourself, and you're doing it to show your obedience to God, then if you DON'T do all of these things, you can't be punished for it, right? Theoretically, if you're a good person in your heart and God knows that, then you shouldn't be any less rewarded in the afterlife....

you could be a really intelligent person, intelligence alone wont pass an exam for you. you need to put in the work.
God doesnt want to see how good we are (after all weve all been created with a certain level of "goodness") rather how good we can become so to speak. free will is something we all have in equal proportion, our physical properties are different. it would be unfair to judge someone based on innate physical characteristics no?

which is why our judgement will be based on how we used our free will to strive with what he have.
Reply

DavidK565
09-16-2010, 04:06 PM
Originally Posted by Muslim Woman
Salaam/Peace

Wrong . God is our creator and He created heaven for those who worshipped Him alone without partner . He created hell to punish who disobeyed Him.

He gave us free will . Now , it's up to us - follow the right or wrong path.

And God Almighty Knows Best.
Thank you for your response, Muslim Woman. I have a question about this line of thinking though.

Along these lines, you're saying God gave us free will. But at the same time, God is saying that while we have a choice, there is a clear-cut, severe, permanent punishment for making the wrong choice. That's not exactly "free-will" is it? Sure, we have the choice to make, but knowing the consequences, there would only be one option. And to that end, why give humanity free will if the end result could be eternal punishment for not following His exact orders? As someone else said, God doesn't need us, or our praise, so how can that be?

And further, how can anyone be certain which rituals are the ones that need to be followed? That really comes down to a conscious decision as well, but can one be punished for following Christian or Jewish practices as opposed to Muslim ones?
Reply

IslamicRevival
09-16-2010, 04:37 PM
Originally Posted by DavidK565
And just to be clear, those who do good deeds such as helping others or, as you said, getting an education and doing something beneficial with it, all count as Worship to god?

So if that's the case, then isn't it only required that one live a good life and do the right thing? Or does praying make it easier to do the right thing, when otherwise we wouldn't know what to do?
As Muslims we submit to Allah (God) and follow whatever Allah and his beloved Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him taught us. Every good action is for the sake of Allah, Evey good deed we do with sincere intention will take us one step away from the hellfire and one step closer to our desired goal, Jannat (Paradise) InshAllah (God willing)

Praying to Allah, bowing your head down and submitting to Allah will no doubt strengthen you, Seek refuge in Allah and he will no doubt help you in overcoming your nafs (desires). It is much easier to do the right thing when you pray 5 times a day, every day. Prayer is a shield, a shield from the devil (Shaytan)

Without this shield, we are vulnerable and when we are vulnerable, Shaytan (The devil) will find it much easier to succeed in leading us astray.

May Allah, The most High, The most Supreme Forgive us All

Ameen
Reply

Woodrow
09-16-2010, 05:14 PM
Originally Posted by DavidK565
Thank you for your response, Muslim Woman. I have a question about this line of thinking though.

Along these lines, you're saying God gave us free will. But at the same time, God is saying that while we have a choice, there is a clear-cut, severe, permanent punishment for making the wrong choice. That's not exactly "free-will" is it? Sure, we have the choice to make, but knowing the consequences, there would only be one option. And to that end, why give humanity free will if the end result could be eternal punishment for not following His exact orders? As someone else said, God doesn't need us, or our praise, so how can that be?

And further, how can anyone be certain which rituals are the ones that need to be followed? That really comes down to a conscious decision as well, but can one be punished for following Christian or Jewish practices as opposed to Muslim ones?
It is somewhat difficult to understand how a person who believes in Allaah(swt) and is aware of the consequences of disobedience could knowingly and conscientiously disobey.

Perhaps, arrogance is a reason. A person gets to thinking they are so great they are immune to any punishment of they feel that they have done so much good they surly would not be punished for yielding to a couple temptations.
Reply

Muslim Woman
09-16-2010, 05:23 PM
Salaam/Peace

Originally Posted by DavidK565
That's not exactly "free-will" is it?
God gave us intelligence , conscience and a fixed period of time. We can take a decision and do wrong thing . God won't punish us right away. He will allow us some time to see if we repent and goes back to Him. To take a decision , to do a work - we have to be responsible for our own deeds . Free will means choose between right and wrong .



If we worship God alone , then we will get rewards specially on the Judgment Day. The disbeleivers will get rewards for all their good deeds in this life only. Rebelling agaisnt God and demand the ' same ' rewards as the believers in hereafter - I hope u don't want to say that's free will .
Reply

tango92
09-16-2010, 05:52 PM
Originally Posted by DavidK565
That's not exactly "free-will" is it?
i remember my teacher in yr 6 discussing this with us. it comes down to this, when you believe very strongly then in reality you dont have a choice. you will certainly obey God and if your belief is that strong you would love to do so because you can see paradise at the end of the line.

nonetheless, your understanding of free will requires more development. humans have the power to overide instincts, it is what makes us human. we will always have free will even if someone holds you at gunpoint and forces you to do something, you always have the option to take the bullet instead. im sure many have done so in the past. yeilding to the gunman simply results in a more favorable outcome, ie living.

now an animal has no such choice. a pidgeon will always flee when startled, it has no choice.
Reply

Hey there! Looks like you're enjoying the discussion, but you're not signed up for an account.

When you create an account, you can participate in the discussions and share your thoughts. You also get notifications, here and via email, whenever new posts are made. And you can like posts and make new friends.
Sign Up

IslamicBoard

Experience a richer experience on our mobile app!