Question: Do we have to marry the people written in our qadar? Do we not have the right to choose our spouses?
Qadar means Allahu ta'ala's knowing beforehand the deeds we will do. Qadar is not different from our choice. When we choose someone, he/she will be our qadar. Because Allahu ta'ala foreknows all the events that will take place, He also foreknows what we will do. As is seen, qadar is Allahu ta'ala's foreknowing with His eternal knowledge the actions we will do by our free will and choice. It is not His compelling us to do preordained actions.
Delay of marriage
Question: If a girl is beyond the usual age of marriage and still unmarried, people say about her, "She has not been able to get married. It is her qadar." What is the role of qadar in this?
Everything happens by the will and preordainment of Allahu ta'ala. Getting married or not being able to get married is subject to Allah's will and preordainment. Allahu ta'ala creates means and causes according to His preordainment. For example, a girl prays, saying, "O my Lord, if marriage is good for me, bless me with marrying someone." If her prayer is accepted, she will get married. It is necessary to take precautions and apply the means leading to it. For instance, it is incorrect to marry an evil person and then to put the blame on qadar. Using his partial will, if man wills goodness to be created, he will earn blessings. If he wills evil to be created, he will become sinful. If he commits a sin, he will be punished for it. If he does a good deed, he will be rewarded for it. In other words, Allahu ta'ala does not compel anyone to sin. The Creator of those actions that man does by his partial will is not man himself. It is Allahu alone who creates voluntary actions, good, and evil.
Some people say, "If it was preordained that I would go into Hell, I will sin and then go to Hell. I am not to blame for it. My qadar is to blame." But Allahu ta'ala does not make anyone sin by force. Qadar is from Allah. However, He creates qadar after man uses his free will. For example, it is like this: "So and so will commit such and such sins by his free will."
Being unable to find a marriage partner
Question: I am a 30-year-old female who have not been able to get married, though having no ethical or physical faults and defects. People around me are gossiping about me, saying, "She has been left on the shelf." I am in this situation through no fault of my own. Is it from qadar, too?
The heretical sect called the Jabriyyah puts the blame on qadar. As for the Mu'tazilite sect, it denies the role of qadar. Everything happens by the will and preordainment of Allahu ta'ala. Qadar is always from Allahu ta'ala, whether it is good or bad, sweet or dismal. Qadar is Allahu ta'ala's foreknowing in eternal past the things that will take place. Qada' is His creating anything just compatibly with qadar when the time comes.
After one takes measures and applies proper means, if one is not blessed with the lot of marriage, it will be wrong to distress oneself because of it. "Nasibuke yusibuke," as the saying goes. It means, "If something was preordained for you, you will certainly obtain it."
In order to be freed from troubles, to perform acts of worship comfortably, and to refrain from prohibited things, it is necessary to make du'a (supplication, prayer) with patience. Our Master the Prophet stated, "Du'a is the weapon of a Believer" (Ibn Abi ad-Dunya).
In addition to it, it is declared in the Qur'an al-karim, "O you who believe! Seek help from Allah through patience and salat" (Al-Baqarah 153).
As is seen, patience, salat, and du'a are of great importance. Trouble befalls man because of his insistence on some things. One should take precautions but should not rely on precautions, for precautions cannot thwart Allah's decree. It is fard to submit to Allah's decree and preordainment and to believe in it. It is declared in a hadith-i sharif:
(Being pleased with qadar is a sign of happiness. Being displeased with it is a sign of unhappiness.) [Tirmidhi]
Hadrat Muhammad Ma'thum says:
Worries and grief that befall man come by divine will and preordainment, so he should be pleased with them. He should keep performing acts of worship, endure worries and diseases with patience, and expect welfare from Allah's grace. He should not expect anything from creatures and should know well that everything comes from Allahu ta'ala. He should make supplication and ask for forgiveness so as to be delivered from grief and troubles. No one can harm anyone except by His will and decree. Nevertheless, applying means is the way of prophets. He should also ask Allahu ta'ala to give effectiveness to means. (Vol. 1, Letter 72)
Is it qadar?
Question: Though a pious man proposed to me, I married a jobless and idle man simply because I was attracted to his physical appearance. He is not good-tempered, either. Now I am in trouble. Was my qadar so?
You made a choice and Allahu ta'ala created it. Using his partial will, if man wills goodness to be created, he will earn blessings. If he wills evil to be created, he will become sinful. If he commits a sin, he will be punished for it. If he does a good deed, he will be rewarded for it. Allahu ta'ala foreknows what we will do, and He wrote what He knew in al-Lawh al-Mahfuz. It is termed qadar. You do not do an action simply because it was recorded beforehand in al-Lawh al-Mahfuz. Rather, it was recorded in it because it was known that you would do that action. Therefore, it is wrong to do an evil deed and then to quote qadar as an excuse.