Du‘aa’ (supplication) changes Fate
Fatwa No: 35295

  • Fatwa Date:8-3-2012 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 15, 1433
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Question

What is Fate? What are the things that change Fate? Does Du‘aa’ (supplication) change Fate? Is there a relation between Fate and choosing a wife?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

Fate means that everything that occurs has been decreed in advance by Allaah The Almighty. The Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said that the evil eye is a reality, and that if there was something that advances Fate it would be the evil eye, yet it is in conformity with Fate. [Muslim]

Commenting on this Hadeeth (narration), An-Nawawi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said that everything that occurs has been decreed in advance by Allaah The Almighty, and that there is nothing— including the evil eye— that counteracts it. Fate is established by Sharee‘ah (Islamic law) texts and the consensus of Ahlus-Sunnah. This is understood from the words of An-Nawawi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him.

There is nothing— including Du‘aa’ (supplication)— that can change Fate. However, this may only be relevant to conditional Fate. For example, Allaah The Almighty may decree that if a person maintains good relations with his kindred, he would live for forty years; if not, he would live for thirty years. This is not conditional in relation to Allaah The Almighty for He Knows what will happen. No changes affect Fate in relation to Allaah The Almighty. However, this type of fate is conditional in relation to the angels of death, age or livelihood; therefore, it can be changed. Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {Allaah eliminates what He wills or confirms, and with Him is the Mother of the Book.} [Quran 13:39]

Therefore, the texts that talk about the change of Fate mean that it can be changed in relation to the angels, not Allaah The Almighty. The texts mentioned that maintaining good relations with one's kinsfolk, treating one's parents kindly, doing good deeds and Du‘aa’ can change Fate. Du‘aa’ is the main thing that can change Fate. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said that kind treatment increases one's lifespan, that Du‘aa’ changes Fate and that a person is deprived of provision because of his sins. [Ahmad, At-Tirmithi and Ibn Maajah]

As-Sindi quoted Al-Ghazzaali  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him as saying that making Du‘aa’ to avoid adversities is included under Fate. Du‘aa’ is a means of avoiding adversities and bringing mercy, just as a seed is a means of growing plants, and an armor is a means of protecting a person from arrows. This is understood from the words of Al-Ghazzaali  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him.

Of course, choosing a wife is included in the meaning of Fate that has already been decreed by Allaah The Almighty. However, a man should follow the instructions laid down by the Sharee‘ah when he chooses his wife. The Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said that a woman is chosen as a wife for four reasons: her wealth, her lineage, her beauty and her religiousness. He ordered men to choose religious women as wives. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Allaah Knows best.

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