This post consists of the following sections: ” God, duty, and consequence”, “lucky versus unlucky”, “sincerity to God”, “good versus evil (part 1)”, “good versus evil (part 2)” and “further reading”. If I capitalise a particular term, it is to signify the absoluteness of that term. For example, when I write Triangle, I am referring to a perfect triangle (or that which is absolutely triangular). When I write triangle, I am referring to an imperfect triangle (or that which is not absolute in its triangularity).
God, duty, and consequence
Consequentialist ethics or consequentialism is the ethical theory that the morality of an action should be based on whether the consequences of that action are good or bad. Deontological ethics or deontology is the ethical theory that the morality of an action should be based on whether the action itself is right or wrong under a series of rules. At best, consequentialists are right to prioritise maximally good consequences, but they are wrong in their belief that such a thing is possible independently of God. They are wrong because Perfection is impossible in imperfection, and if x is not perfect, then x is not as good as possible from an objective point of view. Thus, objectively speaking, without God/Perfection there would be no maximally good moments (let alone outcomes/consequences) because without God, perfection is impossible (making a maximally good moment or consequence impossible).
At best, deontologists are right to view good intent as being actually good, but wrong to believe that this can hold true independently of God. Good intent is only good when existence is Perfect. What good is good intent if it results in what is negative all things considered? And how is good intent always good if it is not always rewarded at least in proportion to how good it is? If my “good” intentions would lead me to hell, I’d be a loser in terms of goodness to persist with such intentions. I’d be unreasonable/evil. It’s not good to have “good” intent if the consequences of “good” intentions are negative/bad/evil. Given Existence (or God‘s existence), this is never the case. An existence that fails to reward good intent (even if it is an atom’s weight worth of good intent) is not Perfect because it lacks in its appreciation/love of good. It is not Perfect because it is neither Appreciative nor Loveable.
Being Appreciative of Goodness is a semantical component of being truly/absolutely good. Thus, it’s always good to have good intent, and never good to have any intent other than good. The greater/maturer and sincerer this good intent, the greater/maturer and more real/true/genuine/sincere the good. The Omnipotence and Omniscience is exclusively God’s. This means that every millisecond (or less, or more) we are at the mercy of God’s providence to the very last detail or atom’s weight (or less, or more). If you enjoyed x, or felt y, or looked at z, or thought about q, it was not done independently of the will of God. Whatever you willed, God willed you to will it. Whatever you did unwillingly, God willed you to do it unwillingly. Any truthful statement or proposition is true, because Existence/God/Truth makes it true. Any false statement or proposition is false, because it is in opposition to truth (or because Truth/Existence is such that it is false). Any false statement or proposition is false, because God willed (or is) other than what it describes. Any evil statement or person is evil, because it is in opposition to God/Goodness/Truth. God is never in opposition to God because God is Perfect and it is impossible for the Perfect to want to do imperfectly or to be imperfect. This does not mean that God never wills for others to will to be in opposition to Him. Evil is true of some imperfect beings, therefore, God has willed some beings to will to be evil (just as God wills for some beings to make contradictory statements willingly or unwillingly. Again, God does not make any contradictory statements, and God does not commit any evil. Such actions are only possible of imperfect beings. Such actions only harm the relevant imperfect beings (because the relevant imperfect beings get what they genuinely deserve and Justice is Good. This is Natural and that which is Natural is Good).
To me, when Perfection/God is not factored into deontology, then deontology is a naive theory at best, and a self-righteous theory at worst. It does not satisfy those seeking what is truly objectively good (God/Perfection or a truly perfect existence). It settles for something that is deficient in good by definition/objectivity. When Perfection is not factored into consequentialism, then consequentialism is a self-righteous theory at worst, or a naive theory at best. It does not satisfy those seeking the greatest good objectively.
Lucky versus unlucky
There are those whom God favours and those whom God doesn’t favour. Given God’s intent/will, might, and knowledge, the following is indubitably true:
Any good that befalls you is from God, and any evil that befalls you is from yourself… (Quran 4:79)
All things considered, the evil that befalls you, is from God/Truth determining that you are evil. You are evil (or qualify as evil) because you (not God or anyone else) chose/choose/would choose falsehood at the cost of Truth or truth; insincerity to God/Goodness or goodness, at the cost of sincerity to God/Goodness or goodness. Thus, objectively speaking, it’s good/just for harm, or a loss of good, to befall you. Thus, anything good (the punishment of evil included) is from God, and anything evil (insincerity to God/Goodness/Truth) is from ourselves. God is never insincere to God/Goodness/Truth in any way. This is only possible of imperfect beings.
…If any good befalls them, they say: “This is from God,” and if any evil befalls them, they say: “This is from you!” Say: “All is from God;”… (Quran 4:78)
If unrepentant evil was left unpunished or ignored, then it’s as if it isn’t wrong/evil/harmful/bad to be evil (what’s evil about evil if it doesn’t result in harm or a taking away from the maximum good?). Thus, it would be evil/irrational to leave unrepentant evil unpunished, and worse to reward it. This (rewarding unrepentant evil) is true of those who allow themselves to love or fawn after tyrants or disgracefully weak-willed individuals (like a slave to his evil master, or a mother to her unappreciative son, and by unappreciative, I mean he has the potential to reciprocate good, but wills not to. He recognises that he can, but won’t) because they praise, or love, or embrace, or accept evil . It is also true of those who allow themselves to harm/misguide others unjustly, precisely because they seek reward for evil intent (in this case their evil intent). They seek satisfaction or happiness via evil. They do not do or abstain from doing out of a fear/love of God/Justice. Rather, they do or abstain from doing because they are willing (with sufficient weight) to sacrifice a truly perfect existence for themselves. They are willing to embrace inconsistency/evil just so they can justify their evil/imperfections as opposed to reconcile them in line with perfection/goodness. There are also those who sit back taking everything whilst giving nothing in return when they are called on to reciprocate (because they knowingly take more from others than they are willing to give in return. Such people do not think consistency or justice to be goods/truths that ought to be adhered to and acknowledged. Evil strives in opposition to a truly perfect existence. Evil is rejecting and unappreciative of God/Goodness).
What would God do/gain with your punishment if you appreciated and acknowledged? God is Appreciative, Knowledgeable. (Quran 4:147)
He is the One who made you successors on the earth. So, whoever rejects, then to him is his rejection. And the rejection of the rejecters only increases the hatred of their Lord towards them. The rejection of the rejecters only increases their loss. (Quran 35:39)
It is good for evil to suffer or be sacrificed for good (because evil would sacrifice good for evil). Thus, if x chooses to hold onto his evil intent or his determination/persistence in sacrificing good for evil (see Genesis 4:7), and ignores all calls towards repenting/reforming by seeking Forgiveness and Mercy (which entails reconciling in line with a truly perfect existence, or reconsidering what it is to exist well in a sincere to goodness/truth manner), then objectively speaking, it’s good for him to suffer or be sacrificed for good. If the truth about a man is such that he would unjustly harm a woman for all eternity against her will whilst never reconciling under reasonable circumstances, then is it not just for him to be harmed by God for all eternity against his will? An eye for an eye, intent for intent, self-gratification/satisfication via harming others for self-gratification/satisfaction via harming others, genuine forgiveness for genuine forgiveness.
Those who had rejected will be conveyed to them: “God’s hatred towards you is greater than your hatred towards yourselves, for you were invited to acknowledge, but you chose to reject.” (Quran 40:10)
Let not those amongst you who have been blessed with abundance refuse to give to the relatives, the needy, and those who have immigrated in the cause of God. Let them pardon and forgive. Would you not like God to forgive you? God is Forgiving, Compassionate. (Quran 24:22)
…the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlements, a debtor was brought to him owing ten thousand talents. Since the man was unable to pay, the master ordered that he be sold to pay his debt, along with his wife and children and everything he owned. Then the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Have patience with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. He grabbed him and began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ So his fellow servant fell down and begged him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you back.’ But he refused. Instead, he went and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay his debt. When his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed, and they went and recounted all of this to their master. Then the master summoned him and declared, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave all your debt because you begged me. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had on you?’ In anger his master turned him over to the jailers/torturers, until he should repay all that he owed. (Matthew 18:23-34)
God’s domination over evil is absolute. Our domination over evil (as opposed to our embrace of it, or succumbing to it) ought to be with as much depth and breadth as possible. Of course, this is provided that we want goodness with as much depth and breadth as possible (which we would do if we are rational). There is no end to the depth and breadth of this possibility (just as there is no end to Infinity), but how much we are sincerely willing, is another matter (can/possibility and will are not the same thing). The more willing we are, the morally better we are. The morally better we are, the better off we are (or the better we exist).
And We said: “O Adam, reside you and your mate in the paradise, and eat from it bountifully as you both wish, and do not come near this tree, else you will be of those who have wronged.” (Quran 2:35)
Wronged = Za-Lam-Miim = wrong, iniquity, injustice, oppression, tyranny, suppression, repression, unfairness,
To my understanding, irrationality, insincerity to Truth/God/Goodness, and evil, are all from the same tree. They are the cause of all instances of meaninglessness, death, oppression, rape, repression, dementia , depression, anxiety, AIDS, cancer, unwanted headaches, Ponzi schemes, and so on. One should not willingly take good from God and give/be evil/wrongful or unappreciative in return. If one thinks they are better or better off as a result of this, they are wrong/evil/irrational. A being that is in opposition to God, may or may not be forgiven (has Forgiveness been sincerely sought? Has one truly repented?). To my understanding, the descriptions of hell in scripture are metaphorical. That we are not lacking in imagination of the horrors that can be inflicted upon us, or upon another, is perhaps an indication of how evil some beings can choose/consent to be, and in correspondence to this, how far God’s wrath can go. To be on the receiving end of Wrath, is to be in hell.
And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear Him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)
Hell = γεέννῃ (geennē)
Noun – Dative Feminine Singular
Strong’s Greek 1067: Of Hebrew origin; valley of Hinnom; ge-henna, a valley of Jerusalem, used as a name for the place of everlasting punishment.
If one is evil in any way or on any level, then this is ultimately rooted in one’s insincerity to Being/Truth/God. Such insincerity is only possible of imperfect beings, and it is rooted in falsehood or the rejection of Truth/Goodness. Statements such as “I am better off committing injustice”, “I am better off being evil”, “it’s good and wise to be bad/evil”, “triangles have six sides”, are all from the forbidden tree (to my interpretation of scripture). Such thoughts are inconsistent/evil/wrong and they are in opposition to Truth/Perfection/God.
He (Satan) swore to them: “I am giving good advice.” So he misled them with deception; and when they tasted the tree, their evil became apparent to them… (Quran 7:22)
It would be wrong/unreasonable/immoral/evil of x to view or treat that which he believes to be good, as being less good than he genuinely believes it to be. If I believe x to be good for/to me all things considered (by all things considered I mean I have considered all premises and semantics that I have access to), then it would be wrong of me to deny or deprive myself of x. If I believe my father to be morally good, it would be evil/wrong/irrational/immoral of me to view him or treat him as though he is morally evil/bad/wrong/corrupt. We know Existence is Perfect (just as we know triangles are triangular). This is not an interpretation that can turn out to be wrong (as is the case with people we interpret as being evil/good). Once understood, this is an understanding that can only be denied via insincerity to reason/semantics, or insincerity to Truth. There doesn’t seem to be a need to tell people to have faith in triangles being triangular (most people accept this and act like they believe that triangles have three sides). But there does seem to be a need in telling people to be faithful/true and fair to God/Goodness (as opposed to evil, treacherous, and unappreciative towards Him).
A triangle cannot be four-sided, and God cannot be imperfect. It would be objectively evil for us, and of us, to view/treat God as evil or imperfect relative to our sincerest conception of Goodness or Perfection (call our sincerest conception of Goodness/Perfection “P”). In other words, if I genuinely think that true perfection = P, and I do not view P as my true god/ideal (by god/ideal here I mean that which one worships and prioritises above everything else), then I’m evil. You do not sacrifice or compromise service/commitment to P for anything or anyone when you are fair/good/reasonable/sincere to God. Clearly, a priori speaking, rejecting God’s Godliness/Perfection (or rejecting the goodness of the truly good) is the root of all evil.
And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. (Mark 10:18)
Sincerity to God
We are aware of the semantic of Omniscience. We are also aware of experiments such as the double slit experiment or the delayed choice quantum eraser. If you are unaware of theses experiments, I recommend the following YouTube videos:
Though I’m not a scientist, my very brief research into this matter suggests that the above two videos are accurate in conveying what was observed with regards to these experiments (which to my interpretation implies Existence knows what we are going to choose before we choose it).
Your god is God; whom there is no god but He. His Knowledge encompasses all things. (Quran 20:98)
With God’s omniscience/knowledge in mind, consider the following verses:
And your Lord said to the angels: “I am placing a successor on earth.” They said: “Will You place in it he who would make corruption in it, and spill blood; while we glorify/celebrate by Your Glory, and exalt/sanctify to You?” He said: “I know what you do not know.” And He taught Adam the names, all of them, then, He presented/exposed them to the angels and said: “Inform Me of the names of these if you
had been ones who are sincere.” (Quran 2:30-31)
They (the angels) said, “Glory be to You, we have no knowledge except what You have taught us, You are the Knowledgeable, the Wise.” He said, “O Adam, inform them of their names.” When he informed them of their names, He said, “Did I not tell you that I know the unseen of the heavens and the earth, and that I know what you reveal and what you conceal?” (Quran 2:32-33)
And We said to the angels: “Yield/prostrate to Adam,” so they yielded except for Iblees, he refused and was arrogant, and became of the disbelievers/rejecters. (Quran 2:34)
Iblees = Ba-Lam-Siin = despair, give up hope, become broken (in spirit), mournful, become silent/confounded/perplexed, unable to see right way or course, repent/grieve.
Refused = Alif-Ba-Ya = refuse/refrain/abstain voluntarily, held back, disagree/reject/dislike/disapprove/hate, incompliant/unyielding/resistant
Rejector/disbeliever = Kaf-Fa-Ra = to conceal, to cover, to reject, to disbelieve, to be thankless, unthankful, ungrateful, to disown, deny, faithless, black horse, dark night, tiller/farmer
Arrogant = Kaf-Ba-Ra = dispute/contend with someone for superiority in greatness, to self-magnify, behave proudly/haughtily/insolently, consider oneself excellent, to exceed the actions of others, to boast
One can only reject something after being meaningfully aware of it, not before. One can only reject x with active/conscious intent. From this, is born: to reject/disbelieve because this is a conscious decision made by a person (source PRL, root Ka-Fa-Ra).
Good versus evil (part 1)
As seen in the previous section, verses 2:30-34 of the Quran highlight what was said in the first two sections of this post: Objectively speaking, the greater one’s sincerity to God, the morally better one is. Objectively speaking, the morally better one is, the better off one is (or the better one exists).
Then God said, “Let Us make Adam in Our image, after Our likeness (Genesis 1:26)
We created you, We shaped you, and then We said to the angels: “Yield to Adam;” so they yielded except for Iblees, he was not of those who yielded. He (God/Perfection) said: “What has prevented you from yielding when I have ordered you?” He (Iblees) said: “I am better than him, You created me from fire and created him from clay!” He said: “Descend from it, for it is not for you to be arrogant here; depart, for you are disgraced.” He said: “Grant me respite until the day they are resurrected?” He said “You are of the ones granted respite”. He said: “Because You have misled me, I will stalk for them on Your straight path. Then I will come to them from between their hands, and from behind them, and from their right, and from their left; You will not find most of them to be appreciative.” He said, “Get out from this, you are despised and banished. As for those among them who follow you, I will fill hell with you all” “Adam, reside with your mate/pair in the paradise, and eat from wherever you please; but do not approach this tree or you will be of the wicked/unjust.” (Quran 7:11-19)
To go against God/Goodness/Truth, is to be insincere to God. To be insincere to God, is to be genuinely/sincerely evil. None should disobey God or go against Perfection unless they genuinely want to be harmed against their will and against their best interest. None should go against God unless they want to wrong themselves. It is absurd/evil/bad/wrong/inconsistent/corrupt for any one to want such a thing, and it is only hypothetically possible of imperfect beings. God does not will/allow any one to wrong Him (including Himself), but wills/allows others to wrong themselves. Satan and Adam are two such examples. The former wronged on two layers (did not prostrate to Adam, and misled Adam) whilst the latter wronged on one layer (ate from the forbidden tree). Whilst Adam disobeyed God and then sought forgiveness and mercy, Satan disobeyed God and then sought respite from God instead of forgiveness. There is no mention of Satan seeking forgiveness from God in the Quran. I doubt that there is any such mention in the Bible, or in any other credible religious scripture.
Abraham said to his father, Azar: “Will you take idols as gods? I see you and your people clearly misguided.” Thus We showed Abraham the kingdom of heavens and earth, so that he will be of those who have certainty. When the night covered him, he saw a planet, and he said, “This is my Lord.” But when it disappeared he said, “I do not like those that disappear.” So when he saw the moon rising, he said, “This is my Lord.” But when it disappeared he said, “If my Lord will not guide me, then I will be amongst the wicked people!” So when he saw the sun rising, he said, “This is my Lord, this is greater/bigger.” But when it disappeared he said, “My people, I am innocent of what you have set up.” “I shall turn my face to the One who created the heavens and the earth, as a monotheist, and I am not of the polytheists (those who set up partners or imperfects as equals with God).” (Quran 6:74-79)
“And how can I possibly fear what you have set up; yet you do not fear that you have set up partners with God, for which He has not sent down upon you any authority! So which of our two groups is more worthy of security/faith if you know?” (Quran 6:81)
Security/faith = ا م ن = Alif-Meem-Nun = become/feel safe/secure, state of security/safety, trust, become quiet/tranquil in heart/mind, become free of expectation of evil or free of an object of dislike/hatred, promise/assurance of security/safety, become trustful/faithful/confident, to believe/acknowledge it, manifestation of humility/submission.
And We said to the angels: “Yield to Adam.” They all yielded except for Iblees, he refused. So We said: “O Adam, this is an enemy to you and your mate/pair. So do not let him take you out from the paradise, else you will have hardship…” But Satan whispered to him, he said: “O Adam, shall I lead you to the tree of immortality and a kingdom which will not waste away?” (Quran 20:116-120)
Immortality = Kh-Lam-Dal = To remain/stay/dwell/abode, to remain or continue incessantly/always/endlessly/forever/perpetually, to adorn another with ornaments, to be slow in becoming hoary (when advanced in age), endowed with perpetual vigour.
Waste away = Ba-Lam-Waw = Try, prove or test by good or evil. To become old and worn out, wear and tear, withered, decayed. Not caring, minding, heeding, regarding or paying attention. Conferring favors, benefits or blessings. Swearing oaths, covenants. Informing, acquainting, revealing, manifesting, making apparent, evident, clear or plain. Competing, striving or hastening.
But Satan whispered to them, to reveal to them what was not apparent to them of their bodies; and he said: “Your Lord did not prohibit you from this tree except that you would become angels, or you would be immortal.” (Quran 7:20)
Kingdom/Angel = Miim-Lam-Kaf = to rule/command/reign, be capable, to control, power/authority, king, kingdom.
Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband/man, who was with her, and he ate it. (Genesis 3:1-6)
He (Satan) swore to them: “I am giving good advice.” So he misled them with deception; and when they tasted the tree, their bodies became apparent to them, and they rushed to cover themselves with the leaves of the paradise; and their Lord called to them: “Did I not prohibit you from that tree, and tell you that Satan is your clear enemy?” They said: “Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves and if You do not Forgive us and have Mercy on us, then we will be of the losers” (Quran 7:21-23)
Deception = Gh-Ra-Ra = deceived, beguiled, inexperienced or ignorant in affairs, act childish, exposed to perdition or destruction without knowing, danger, hazard; deficiency of, imperfect performance of; vain things, vanities
Tasted = Thal-Waw-Qaf = to taste/experience/try/perceive. One who tastes, cause to taste.
Bodies = Siin-Waw-Alif = to treat badly, do evil to disgrace, be evil/wicked/vicious, ill, anything that makes a person sad and sorrowful, bad action, mischief and corruption, sin, evil doer, wretched or grievous, vex, annoy. su’atun (pl. suat) – corpse, external portion of both sexes, shame, abominable, foul, unseemly, ugly.
…He Said, “Did I not tell you that I know the unseen of the heavens and the earth, and that I know what you reveal and what you were hiding?” (Quran 2:33)
…she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her man who was with her, and he ate. And the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; so they sewed together fig leaves and made loin coverings for themselves. (Genesis 3:6-7)
O Children of Adam, We have sent down for you garments to cover your bodies, and as an ornament; and the garment of awareness is the best. That is from God’s signs, perhaps they will remember/revere. (Quran 7:26)
Ornament = Ra-Ya-Shiin = to fit feathers (to an arrow), do or attain good, to rectify/aid/strengthen his condition. rishun – adornment, feather, fine clothing, source of elegance and protection, plumage, ornament, beauty.
Awareness = Waw-Qaf-Ya = to protect, save, preserve, ward off, guard against evil and calamity, be secure, take as a shield, regard the duty. muttaqii – one who guards against evil and against that which harms and injures and is regardful of his duty towards human beings and God.
Ittaqaina (prt. f. plu. vb. VIII): Take as shield.
Muttaquun/Muttaqiin (acc./ plu. of Muttaqii): Atqaa (elative): Most dutiful and guarding against evils.
Taqiyyann (act. plc. m. sing. acc.): One who carefully guarded against evils.
Taqaatun (v. n.): Observing duty.
Taqwaa (n.): Protection; Warding off evil; Observing duty; Abstinent; Observing the Divine ordinances in every walk of life.
Then the man and his wife heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the breeze of the day, and they hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. The Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” “I heard Your voice in the garden,” he replied, “and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.” “Who told you that you were naked?” asked the Lord God. “Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” And the man said, the woman whom You gave me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate it. Then the Lord God asked the woman, “What is this you have done?” “The serpent deceived me,” she replied. “and I ate.” (Genesis 3:8-13)
They said: “Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves and if You do not forgive us and have mercy on us, then we will be of the losers!” He Said: “Descend some of you to some others as enemy; and on the earth you will have residence and provisions until the appointed time.” He Said: “In it you will live and in it you will die, and from it you will be brought forth.” (Quran 7:23-25)
O Children of Adam, do not let Satan tempt/test you as he evicted your parents from the paradise; he removes from them their garments to show them their bodies. He and his tribe see you from where you do not see them. We have made the devils as allies for those who do not believe. (Quran 7:27)
And if they commit immorality, they say: “We found our fathers doing such, and God ordered us to it.” Say: “God does not order immorality! Do you say about God what you do not know?” (Quran 7:28)
Good versus evil (part 2)
Clearly then, being morally good is rooted in being sincere to Truth/God/Goodness, whilst being morally evil is being insincere to God/Truth/Goodness. Put differently, to be good is to do in line with a truly perfect existence or being, and to be evil is to do in opposition to it (or to reject its value). Your god is God; whom there is no god but He. His Knowledge encompasses all things (Quran 20:98). To reject His value, is to be semantically/objectively inconsistent/evil/unreasonable/corrupt/disordered.
To my understanding, there are two primary layers of acknowledgement (or rejection). One is the a posteriori (empirical matters), the other is the a priori (matters of pure reason). There is nothing wrong with doing unto others as you would truly do unto yourself. This is consistent. If you are willing to lie, or deceive, or withhold information because you genuinely think it’s beneficial to the person you are doing it to and your intent is good (and by this I mean you are not trying to benefit evil people. For example, you don’t fully tell the four year old how he came to be in this world), then consistency would have you not complain when you are deceived in proportion. If you are deceived, and the person who deceived you says “I was trying to benefit you”, then you have to assess whether they’re telling you the truth or not. Again, this is where you’d have to be consistent. If the evidence they give to you is the sort of evidence you’d expect someone else to accept from you (or if you have had experiences where you’ve given this sort of evidence to someone else and you accepted that they accepted this evidence from you), then you should accept their claim. Suppose you still choose to punish them because you think they harmed you despite you believing them to have had good intent. Doing so would mean that you do not value good intent, and such an attitude is irrational/evil. Either you think all acts of deception, lies, or the withholding of information as being only done with evil in mind, or you think that sometimes they are done with good in mind. If you believe in the former, then you should never deceive, lie, or withhold information. What you can never rationally afford to do is to reject the goodness of good intent (no matter how large or small the good intent at hand).
Why have good intent towards someone who does not value good intent? Would you want goodness or happiness for one who does not value goodness or happiness? Should you feed someone who does not want to be fed (despite it looking like they’re starving)? Would you have good intent towards one who values evil intent? Wouldn’t it be good intent on your part for you to have evil intent towards those who value evil intent? Clearly, it’s good to treat evil like it’s evil (which means harming it), and it’s good to treat good like it’s good (which means benefitting it). It would be inconsistent/evil of you to try and benefit someone whom you know does not (and will not) appreciate good intent. Where you were harmed by another who lied to you (despite it being the case that the liar had good intent), then you being harmed is simply the will of God (because God is Omnipotent and Omniscient), but not the will of the liar because the liar wanted to benefit you. And if you would punish the liar whilst believing him to have had good intent, then you are surely evil for doing so. How would God treat your good intent towards yourself when you punished another for his good intent towards you?
If it is the case that one has been wronged by another, then he should perhaps punish the one who wronged him (unless of course the one who was wronged has been forgiven by another for committing a more serious sin (if not equally serious) as the one committed against him and he accepted the forgiveness of this other. If he would accept forgiveness for himself of proportion/standard x, then consistency would have him forgive the sins of another against him of at least equal or lesser proportions). Of course, underlying all this is whether he genuinely thinks forgiveness to be a good thing here or not. If the one who wronged him is not seeking forgiveness, but is instead threatening to cause further harm, then punishment is clearly warranted. If it seems that he is repentant but is not explicitly asking for forgiveness because he is ashamed, then forgiveness is good (genuine repentance means the sinner is no longer evil. If he is no longer evil, then he no longer deserves punishment. With some people they have to have the punishment before genuine repentance clicks into place and holds). If he is profusely begging for mercy because the just retribution for his transgression would utterly ruin him, then forgiveness is good provided that he would genuinely appreciate being forgiven (despite him coming across as pathetic. One can be pathetic but pitiable. One can also be pathetic but not pitiable). It would be evil for him not to appreciate being forgiven. Again, why have good intent towards someone who does not and will not appreciate your good intent towards them?
Even if the wronged is such that he would never forgive himself had he committed a sin like the one committed against him, if he thinks it good to forgive the sinner (perhaps because he thinks the sinner as morally inexperienced, and he interprets that the sinner’s valuing of goodness and seeking of forgiveness is sincere), then he should forgive. It would be a generous act on his part, and if he is generous, then God appreciates generosity towards any level of genuine resemblance to Goodness (and we are all dependent on God’s generosity for our well/good-being). It’s the sort of action that would help the “wronged” individual in this case increase with regards to moral worth (or resemblance to Goodness). I say “wronged” in quotation marks because the “wronged” individual was never objectively wronged because what had happened to him was the will of God. This does not mean that the wrongdoer who has sought forgiveness for his wrongdoing didn’t do wrong. If a man harms you for no good reason, then he has done wrong. You recognising this are then responsible to find him and make him pay (unless of course you think it good to forgive him for reasons already outlined, or unless of course you don’t care that much about justice or goodness). If you do not try and make him pay, then you have not valued justice as much as you could have. Which means you have not prioritised good over evil as much as you could have. How much you should prioritise good over evil, depends on how well you want to exist (or how good you want to be). Some are not as passionate about being good as others. Can they be blamed for this when they have no complaints or regrets about being less well off than others? Is it possible for them to have no regrets about being less well off than others? Is it possible for them to have no desire for being better or better off? Anything that results in a loss of good is bad/evil for us. Anything that results in the failure to gain a potential good is bad/evil for us provided that our failure to gain/attain it causes us negative feelings such as regret (if what you want is good all things considered but you do not output the appropriate and adequate amount of sincerity to God/Goodness to attain it, then you will not attain it).
Since it is guaranteed that we are better off genuinely believing in Existence being Perfect in all possible circumstances, it is evil/bad/harmful for us to view Existence as evil. Put differently, it is harmful for us to take anyone other than God as our god. Furthermore, it is disgraceful to put ourselves ahead of that which is Perfect. If we were to be better off by favouring a lesser good over a greater good, an imperfect over the Perfect, or by viewing Existence as imperfect, then this would be a case of Existence/God being unjust. It would be a case of us being better off by being unfair to someone (in this case God). It would be an objective instance of evil occurring in Existence (which would amount to Existence being both imperfect and evil/absurd/contradictory). It would be a case of God rewarding that which is unfair to Him. A case of evil being good and good being evil. A case of imperfection being closer to Perfection than God. A case of God being imperfect (non-God). It is we who are imperfect whilst God is the one who is Perfect. Thus, if you think non-God being x is generous, or merciful, or honourable, or beautiful, or good, then pure reason dictates that x is not that which no greater than can be conceived of objectively in terms of goodness, generosity, mercy, honour, or beauty precisely because x is not God. This means that had you been such that you sufficiently understood, or tasted, or witnessed, the goodness of God, you would clearly feel/see/recognise/understand the non-God being x that you witnessed as being good/beautiful as lesser in goodness/beauty than God. This is a matter of pure reason. Whether it’s perfection for one to be blessed/privileged to have experiences that colour in this matter of pure reason or not, is another matter. The closer one can get to being absolutely in awe of Existence, the better off they are.
The good attributes mentioned in the previous paragraph are only truly maximal (or absolutely true) of God. If you show mercy to all at all times (including to those who don’t truly deserve it), then this is not being truly maximally merciful because it lessens the maximum mercifulness of mercy in the following way: Mercy is supposed to be beneficial, but showing mercy to that which does not deserve it would mean perfection is nullified. The deprivation or loss of perfection is the opposite of beneficial (meaning that mercy is not maximally beneficial, and by extension not as merciful as hypothetically possible). Again, showing mercy to that which has not genuinely repented or sought mercy, is evil/unreasonable/wrong. It undervalues good by overvaluing evil. It undervalues benefit or well-being by overvaluing harm or being evil.
Perhaps some people hate themselves more than they ought to (because they undervalue their own goodness, or they overestimate the good they ought to have achieved). Some hate themselves far less than they ought to (or like themselves more than they ought to).
Those who had rejected will be told: “The hatred of God towards you is greater than your hatred of yourselves, for you were invited to believe, but you chose to reject.” (Quran 40:10)
They seek to deceive God and those who believe, but they only deceive themselves without noticing. In their hearts is a disease, so God increases their disease, and they will have a painful retribution for what they have denied. (Quran 2:9-10)
So whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it. Whoever does an atom’s weight of evil will see it. (Quran 99:7-8)
Who will lend God a loan of righteousness/goodness that He may multiply it for him many times over? God collects and He distributes, and to Him you will return. (Quran 2:245)
Whoever comes with a good deed, he will receive ten times the like of it, and whoever comes with a sin, he will only be recompensed its like; they will not be wronged. (Quran 6:160)
And they swore by God in their strongest oaths, that if a warner came to them, they would be the most guided of all nations, but when a warner came to them, it only increased their aversion! Arrogance on the earth, and evil scheming. But not encompass the evil scheming except its own people… (Quran 35:42-43)
If we or God want to be better off by being unfair to someone, then we’re absurd/irrational/evil. God does not wrong anyone (including Himself). God does not allow q to be unfair to p without q suffering some grief (provided that q knows he was being unfair). If we are q and God is P, it would be imperfection and evil on P’s part to wrong Himself, just as it would be imperfection and evil on q’s part to wrong himself. Where q is wholly innocent of evil (like P), God/Existence is such that no harm or loss of potential good can touch him. This is right/righteous/fair/beautiful/consistent/honourable/loveable/perfect. It’s evil for P to be unfair to q just as it’s evil for q to be unfair to P, purely because it is evil/bad/wrong/irrational/inconsistent/disordered/unfair of either P or q to view God/Existence/P as imperfect. It is semantically/meaningfully inconsistent/contradictory.
P can never view God/Existence as imperfect because God is Perfect and P is God. Us being unfair to P, or q, or anyone else, is exclusively evil/bad of us and bad/evil for us, because us being unfair in relation to P does not result in P suffering a loss of good against His will and against His best interest (being Perfect). It does not result in Perfection being compromised or unsatisfied:
Do not be saddened by those who rush into rejection. They will not harm God in the least… (Quran 3:176)
It only results in us suffering a loss of good or being deprived of a potential greater good because that is what’s truly/rightfully/rationally required to satisfy P/Perfection/Justice/God.
If any good befalls you it grieves them, and if any bad befalls you they rejoice with it. If you are patient and God-conscious, their planning will not harm you at all. Over all they do God is Encompassing. (Quran 3:120)
Where we are suffering or unhappy/unfulfilled in any way, then either we are being deservedly tested and struggling with the test (to look at it somewhat positively in relation to ourselves) or we are being deservedly punished (to look at it negatively in relation to ourselves). The former is somewhat positive in that it can lead to something good for us (though because we are suffering to get to this something good, it entails we are being punished. I think this is true of Adam (see 2:30-39, 7:11-14, 15:27-41, and 17:61-65). To have gotten something good without suffering is to have passed the test without difficulty (I think this is true of the angels who prostrated to Adam at 2:34), or to have not been tested at all because no test was necessary to instantiate improvement or solidify goodness/evil in the being at hand). The latter is negative in that it is pure punishment (as in no good will come to us from our suffering. If my suffering satisfies another, then good/benefit has come to the other, whilst evil/harm has come to me). Given Perfection/Truth/Reality, where the other who draws pleasure from my suffering is sincere to God and I am insincere to God, then I have wronged myself and the one who draws satisfaction/pleasure from my suffering has not wronged himself. Where we are both insincere to God but ultimately I am less evil than the other, then my suffering that satisfies the other will not alter the fact that all things considered, I am less of a loser in goodness than this other. The other has exploited my evil (insincerity to God) and has drawn benefit from this, but ultimately, whether by my hands or by the hand of another, he will suffer more than me and I will enjoy being/existing more than him because ultimately, I am better than him in the eyes of Goodness/Truth/God/Reality. To recall scripture, Satan exploited Adam’s potential insincerity to God instead of trying to be Adam’s supporter towards sincerity to God.
So when Jesus sensed their rejection, he said, “Who are my supporters towards God?” The disciples said, “We are God’s supporters, we acknowledge God and we bear witness that we have peacefully surrendered.” (Quran 3:52)
O you who acknowledge, be God’s supporters, as Jesus the son of Mary said to his disciples: “Who are my supporters towards God?” The disciples said, “We are God’s supporters.” Thus, a group from the Children of Israel acknowledged, and another group rejected. So, We supported those who acknowledged against their enemy, and they were successful. (Quran 61:14)
Satan refused God’s command to prostrate to Adam even after Adam informed all the angels (of which Iblees/Shaytan/Satan was one of them) of that which he was supposed to inform them of per God’s command. Satan got his reason for why God had chosen Adam to be the successor on earth (as did all the other angels) instead of him.
Whoever desires the harvest of the Hereafter, We will increase for him his harvest. And whoever seeks the harvest of this world, We will give him therefrom, and he will have no share in the Hereafter. (Quran 42:20)
Let those who seek to purchase the Hereafter rather than this world fight in the cause of God. And whoever fights in the cause of God and is killed or attains victory, then We will grant him a great recompense. (Quran 4:74)
…But when fighting was decreed for them, a group of them feared the people as much as they feared God or even more so. They said, “Our Lord, why did You decree fighting for us? If only You would delay for us till another time.” Say, “The enjoyment of this world is little, and the Hereafter is far better for those who are God-conscious; you will not be wronged in the least.” (Quran 4:77)
…From among the people is he who says: “Our Lord, give us from this world!” But in the Hereafter he has no part. And some of them say: “Our Lord, give us good in this world, and good in the Hereafter, and spare us from the retribution of the Fire.” (Quran 2:200-201)
God is Almighty, therefore, for one to be irrational/evil in Existence is for one to wrong oneself and no other. Yes, we can be unfair to others (including God), but we can only harm others if God wills others to be harmed. The Omnipotence is God’s and God’s alone. Not an atom’s weight (or more or less) occurs independently of His Will or Preference. We do not possess an atom’s weight in relation to Him. Whatever God does/wills is perfection. We cannot will anything independently of God. If I decide to torment another and succeed in doing this, then this is God testing/punishing the one I am tormenting. If I am reasonably under the impression that the one I’m tormenting does not deserve to be tormented (or I cannot determine whether he deserves to be tormented or not), then I am choosing to be evil/irrational. This means that God is punishing/testing evil (the one I’m tormenting) whilst allowing/willing me to more firmly/genuinely/sincerely/determinedly consent to what I want (being evil). This of course means that when the time is right, I will suffer the wrath of God for choosing/consenting to be this way. It is unwise for one to allow themselves to entertain absurdity/evil, worse for one to commit to the absurdity/evil they are entertaining.
So in the course of time, Cain brought some of the fruit of the soil as an offering to the Lord, while Abel brought the best portions of the firstborn of his flock. And the Lord looked with favour on Abel and his offering, but He had no regard for Cain and his offering. So Cain became very angry, and his countenance fell. “Why are you angry,” said the Lord to Cain, “and why has your countenance fallen? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you refuse to do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires you, but you must master it.” Then Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let us go out to the field.” And while they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. (Genesis 4:3-8)
Recite for them the news of Adam’s two sons in truth. They had both made an offering, and it was accepted from one of them, and not accepted from the other. He said, “I will kill you!”; he (the other) said, “God only accepts from the God-conscious. If you stretch your hand to kill me, I will not stretch my hand to kill you, for I fear God, the Lord of the worlds. I want you to have both my sin as well as your own sin, and you will then be among the dwellers of the fire. Such is the reward of the wicked.” So he found it in himself to kill his brother, and he killed him. He thus became one of the losers. (Quran 5:27-30)
Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is more than I can bear.” (Genesis 4:13) … Lamech (a descendent of Cain) said to his wives…”I have killed a man for wounding me, a young man for injuring me. If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times.” (Genesis 4:23-24)
You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a Jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on their children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me (Exodus 20:5)
Now then, why do you test/tempt God by placing on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear? (Acts 15:10)
Say: “He is able to send retribution from above you or from below your feet, or He will make you belong to opposing factions, then He will let you taste the might of each other.” See how We dispatch the signs, perhaps they may understand. (Quran 6:65)
You cannot will anything except if it is also willed by God, the Lord of the worlds. (Quran 81:29)
Compare a man who loves giving away things, to a man who loves stealing things. Both do what they do because doing what they do gets them high (like a drug addict). The giver gives to the rich, the poor, the tyrant, the oppressed, the good, the evil, and so on. He does not discriminate. His desire/addiction is to give away as much as possible. The same is true of the stealer in that he does not discriminate between who he steals from. Clearly, neither do what they do for the sake of a truly perfect existence.
When the stealer successfully steals from those who are evil/insincere towards Goodness/God, he is doing in line with Goodness, but he is not good. This is because he did not have God/Goodness in mind when he stole. Rather, he had himself in mind mostly independent of Good. This does not mean that what he did didn’t benefit him at all. He still got high. This is a cheap gain in comparison to what he could have gained had he been more ambitious in serving Existence/Being/God/Goodness willingly. In other words, he could have gained more had he been more ambitious in being good or resembling Goodness. Had he prioritised God or Goodness less cheaply, then God would not have been satisfied with only granting him a cheap gain.
To some imperfect beings, being good may only be about them getting a cheap high. Their view of good is subjective whilst not objective because their view is objectively inadequate in relation to what it is to exist well in relation to themselves. A truly perfect existence semantically/rationally entails Goodness/God being committed to or devoted to with as much depth and breadth as possible. To serve other than God or to strive for other than a truly perfect existence, is to be worthy of a lesser state of being (nervousness, anxiety, meaninglessness, depression, humiliation, crippling pain, seeing your child suffer etc.) the worst of which is hell.
The addict stealer that I discussed two paragraphs ago is perhaps not worthy of being hated like Satan or the Pharaoh that oppressed the Children of Israel. To my understanding, both Satan and Pharaoh came to be completely unappreciative and rejecting of God (the latter of which claimed himself to be god). Pharaoh is perhaps more controversial because despite him rejecting all the signs prior to being drowned, the following happened:
We helped the Children of Israel cross the sea, and Pharaoh and his soldiers followed them out of hatred and animosity. But when drowning overtook him, he said, “I acknowledge that there is no god except the One in whom the Children of Israel acknowledge, and I am of those who have peacefully surrendered.” (Quran 10:90)
Let’s shift our focus from the addict stealer to the addict giver. When the giver gives to those who are fair/sincere/rational towards Goodness, then he is doing in line with Goodness. Perhaps we can ascribe more goodness to the giver than the ATM machine on the grounds that the giver was at least intentionally benevolent towards himself, whereas the ATM machine had no intent whatsoever. In any case, the ATM machine is doing what God wants it to do (as does a sincere to God man who gives money to the morally good because he loves financially supporting those who are fair/sincere/rational towards Goodness. The difference is that the man gives money willingly, whereas the ATM machine does not have any will). The giver is also doing what God wants him to do. Both the ATM and the giver are serving God/Goodness; but unlike God and the man, they are not serving God willingly because their intention was not to serve God (the ATM had no intention at all, and the giver’s intention was more about serving his imperfect addict self than the serving of God). Of course, neither the ATM nor the giver are oppressed (unless of course God had cursed the giver to give against his will. The ATM machine is insentient, therefore it is not susceptible to being oppressed). If one truly serves God, then one would not be oppressed. But if one chooses to serve a tyrant like Pharoah at the cost serving God, then the will of God is that such a one be oppressed by Pharoah. Without God, there is no good (anything good is from God). With God, goodness is full, extensive, and constant.
Now consider a man named x who only loves willingly giving away money to y, but y only loves willingly stealing money from x. Neither will ever be fully satisfied until one fully sacrifices their habit for the other. y would deprive x of his potential to be fully satisfied because x cannot fully willingly give due to the fact that a part of what he could have willingly given to y has been willingly stolen from him by y. Where a giver (such as x) is such that he loves depriving all stealers (such as y) of his wealth and he is able to enforce this, then in this equation he is fully satisfied (provided of course he enforces against the stealers and gives to those who willingly seek from him). Once the stealers change to seekers, then they too can be fully satisfied in this equation (provided that their full satisfaction is contingent on their receiving from the giver). If this giver is exposed to a rejector (someone who politely rejects the giver’s providence because he doesn’t value what the giver is giving, or simply because he doesn’t respect the giver), then either the giver is full satisfied to not provide this rejector from his wealth, or he is not. Where he is fully satisfied, he remains fully satisfied in this equation (because he loves not giving money to rejectors as much as he loves giving money to seekers). The rejector is also happy too because he was sincere to truth when he stated he doesn’t want what the giver’s giving. Obviously, if the rejector is lying to himself, then it is his loss until he changes from a rejector to a seeker. Since this giver does not care if the seekers or rejectors are good or evil, this giver is either amoral or self-righteous.
Except whom your Lord has mercy upon; and for that He has created them. And the word of your Lord came true: “I will fill Hell with the jinn and the people together!” (Quran 11:119)
Say, “My Lord would not care about you except for your imploring. But you have denied, so it will be your destiny.” (Quran 25:77)
imploring = Dal-Ayn-Waw = to seek, desire, ask, demand, call upon, invoke, ascribe, cry out, call out to, pray, supplicate, petition, require, need, summon, invite, assert, succour. (e.g. ‘daAAa‘ in phonetic search engine).
Adopted son (adiya, pl. of da‘iy).
Only God is Self-Sufficient, therefore, only God can truly afford to be Self-Righteous. There’s righteousness (where one does not worship getting high, their culture, or their nation at the cost of worshipping/serving God), and then there’s self-righteousness (where one thinks truth and goodness are meaningfully possible independently of God. Or where one thinks “I’m generous, whilst the Existence/Being that has given me the means to be generous to others, is not generous. Or where one thinks “my nation is better than nation x because my nation has more wealth and technological accomplishments than nation x). As clearly implied in the Quran (and highlighted by pure reason), we do not know what each nation reveals or hides. A nation that we consider as being lesser than us (because as far as we can see, they seem less sincere to God/Goodness/Truth than we are), may be better than us. In any case, the love of God is the source of righteousness, truth, goodness, happiness, love, and more (if your love of God is genuine, then so is God’s love of you. If your love of God is cheap or deceptive, then so is God’s love of you). The hatred of God is the source of unrighteousness/evil/falsehood/corruption, misery, hatred, and more.
The hypocrites seek to deceive God, while He is deceiving them; and if they stand/rise to uphold salat, they do so lazily, only to show the people; they do not remember God except very little. (Quran 4:142)
Did you not see those who were told: “Restrain your hands, and hold the salat, and give zakat.” But when fighting was decreed for them, a group of them were concerned towards the people as they would have been concerned towards God or even more so. And they said: “Our Lord, why did You decree fighting for us? If only You would delay for us until another time.” Say: “The enjoyment of this world is little, and the Hereafter is far better for those who are God-conscious; you will not be wronged in the least.” (Quran 4:77)
Hatred is not a negative attribute if it can be satisfied. If I hate x whilst being justified in my hatred for x, and I make x suffer, then I am satisfied purely because I hate x and have made him suffer. Justified self-satisfaction is good. Inversely, love is not a positive attribute if it can’t be satisfied. If you love x but find that you cannot access x, or attain x, or be with x, and find your deprivation of x to cause you sadness or grief, then it would have been better for you to have not loved x. Also, if you love that which harms you (such as an abusive husband/father/government or any other thing/being that causes you losses in terms of goodness), then love is not a positive attribute. Both love and hatred could be good or evil. It is all dependent on what one loves and hates. The love of God is righteous/good/reasonable/fair, whereas the hatred of God is unrighteous/evil/irrational/unfair. If you or God were to put you ahead of God in any way whilst you are sufficiently aware of God, then both you and God would be necessarily imperfect and necessarily evil. If you were not aware of God, then you would be necessarily imperfect, but not necessarily evil.
When you have completed your rites, then remember God as you remember your fathers or even greater. From among the people is he who says: “Our Lord, give us from this world!” But in the Hereafter he has no part. (Quran 2:200)
“Our Lord, and let us submit to You and from our progeny a nation submitting to You, and show us our rites, and forgive us; You are the Forgiver, the Merciful.” (Quran 2:128)
Rites = Nun-Siin-Kaf = to lead a devout life, be pious, be godly, worship/serve God, sacrifice, slaughter an animal by way of sacrifice, act of worship/servitude, performers/observers of such acts, rite of devotion, to wash and purify, to apply oneself.
It is unacceptable for q to put himself, his family, his friends, his nation, his culture, or his “religion” ahead of a truly perfect existence/being (God). It is unacceptable for him to settle for an imperfect existence at the cost of a perfect existence. Unacceptable in the sense that he deserves to suffer some loss of goodness, or to be deprived of potential greater goodness. Obviously not all imperfect beings should be deprived of all goodness. Some men and women are better than others. Them not being God makes them imperfect; it does not make them evil all things considered. It does not make them unworthy of being appreciative and in awe of Existence. It does not make them unworthy of being satisfied, fulfilled, and happy. If one being is less in awe of Existence than another, then that being is less blessed and privileged than the other. This does not mean that that being is not blessed or privileged at all. All things considered, q is happy. All things considered, q’s happiness is not as comprehensive or durable as the more blessed, but it is still happiness nonetheless. q is happy with Existence to some degree, and God is happy for q to be happy to the degree that He has determined for q (which was/is/will be contingent on what q knowingly and willingly consents to and commits to by way of goodness; which is dependent on how sincere q was/is/will be to Goodness/Truth/God).
…God is pleased with them, and they are pleased with Him. These are the party of God. Most assuredly, the party of God are the winners. (Quran 58:22)
If x has not and is not committing to absurdity/inconsistency/irrationality, then x is not evil. And if x is not evil, then x is not suffering. As implied in the previous paragraph, it takes absurdity/evil to choose a lesser good ahead of a greater good. Faced between being granted a happy mortal life, or a happier immortal life, a rational person would choose the latter whilst an irrational person would choose the former. Worded this way, it may not seem crystal clear to all as to whether the irrational person committed evil or not. Again, it takes evil to sacrifice a greater good for a lesser good. In this sense, the irrational person is evil in that he thought existence or existing to be such that less happiness is better for him than more happiness (though it may seem nobody would be this stupid/irrational, it is not hypothetically impossible for an imperfect being to be this irrational). His punishment will come in the form of him not being better off all things considered (though calling it punishment is controversial when no negative feelings are experienced by this being who is unaware of what he has missed out on) and may also come in the form of him being on the receiving end of negative feelings such as regret and powerlessness to get what he wants when his life draws near to its end (this is punishment because it is a negative feeling or state that is experienced).
Let’s look at a clearer and more potent example of evil. A rapist who rapes a woman in order to satisfy himself, prioritises himself (an imperfect being) ahead of God (the truly perfect being/existence) and ahead of the woman whom he does not believe himself to be morally superior to, but does believe himself to be physically superior to. He obviously did not have God sufficiently in mind when he raped (otherwise either the fear of God would have stopped him or the love of God would have prevented him), nor did he have the woman’s best interest at heart (he believed this would result in the woman being on the receiving end of what she did not want and was not good for her). He sought to satisfy himself by harming another against her will. Clearly, it can be perfection for him to be harmed against his will. It can be perfection for him to be raped. Where he is unrepentant, it is perfection for him to be harmed against his will. He sought to satisfy himself at the cost/sacrifice of Perfection. Where he does not repent or feel bad about this, one should not feel bad about seeing him suffer (including himself, but he is evil and unreasonable, so he will feel bad about seeing himself suffer). Should one feel good about seeing him suffer? Yes. If the rapist genuinely felt good about seeing himself “suffer”, you’d think ending his
suffering enjoyment would be a good thing. How are you going to exact vengeance on that which wants what you’re putting it on the receiving end of?
Individuals who view themselves as ‘smart’ or ‘wise’ or ‘right’ for not sufficiently committing to a truly perfect existence, are self-righteous on some level. The worst of these are in open enmity to God. They somehow want to balance a horrible view of existing and Existence, with existing well. Their naiveté and misguidance is not equal to that of a child whom you may feel inclined to forgive or be patient with; it is evil of the unforgivable sort. Naive is not the right word to describe such men given that they are fully aware of how evil their view of existing and Existence is. Such men are firm or heavy/weighty in their commitment to sacrificing a truly perfect existence for themselves, or their forefathers, or their nations, or their “religious” beliefs, or their “scientific” beliefs. They actively and passionately pursue this sacrifice and try to present it as reasonable/wise/right/good/true/perfection. Such men would betray God/Truth/Good and reason, whilst claiming to have done so in the name of God/Truth/Good and reason. Such individuals treat/present what is good as evil, and what is evil as good. Evil/falsehood is what they preach, and evil/liars/hypocrites is what they attract. Put differently, insincere to God is what they preach, and the insincere to God is who they attract. They knowingly serve imperfection whilst claiming it is perfection. They are of similar form to the following whom Jesus spoke of:
‘Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let enter those who are trying to. Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are. Woe to you blind guides! You say, “If anyone swears by the temple, it means nothing; but if anyone swears by the gold of the temple, he is bound by his oath.” You blind fools! Which is greater: the gold, or the temple that makes the gold sacred? You also say, “If anyone swears by the altar, it is nothing, but if anyone swears by the gift that is on the altar, he is bound by his oath. You blind men! For which is greater, the gift or the altar that makes the gift sacred? So whoever swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. And whoever swears by the temple swears by it and by him who dwells in it. And whoever swears by heaven swears by the throne of God and by him who sits upon it. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel! Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and the plate, that the outside also may be clean. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness. So you also outwardly appear righteous to others, but within you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and decorate the monuments of the righteous, saying, “If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.” Thus you witness against yourselves that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers. You serpents, you brood of vipers, how are you to escape being sentenced to hell?’ (Matthew 13-33)
He said: “Descend from it, for it is not for you to be arrogant here; depart, for you are disgraced.” (Quran 7:13)
Arrogant = Kaf-Ba-Ra = dispute/contend with someone for superiority in greatness, to self-magnify, behave proudly/haughtily/insolently, to hold oneself above a thing.
Disgraced = Sad-Gh-Ra = to be small/little. saaghirun – one who is small/little/subdued/abject or in a state of subjection. saghiir – small. asghar – smaller. saghaar – vileness, contempt, humiliation. sagurat – he felt inferior and humble, became discouraged and meek, to make small(er), or little(r), lessen, minimise, reduce, diminish, decrease, belittle, deride, ridicule, debase, demean
He said: “Grant me respite until the day they are resurrected?” (Quran 7:14)
Respite = Nun-Za-Ra = to see, look at, glance, gaze, observe, behold, consider, regard, listen to, be patient towards, wait, contemplate, grant respite, put off, scrutinise, show kindness, examine, search, reflect. nazara – the look with affection, to perplex, dazzle.
Resurrected = Ba-Ayn-Tha = Removal of that which restrains one from free action. Anything that is sent. Rousing, exciting, putting in motion, or motion. Incited, urged, instigated or awoke. Raising/rousing (e.g. of the dead to life). Sleepless or wakeful. Hastening, quick, swift in going, impelled or propelled.
He said, “You are granted respite.” (Quran 7:15)
He said: “Because You have misled me, I will stalk for them on Your straight path.” (Quran 7:16)
Misled = Gh-Waw-Ya = to err, deviate or go astray, unmindful, neglectful, inattentive, inadvertent, inconsiderate, heedless, forgetful; be misled/seduced, disappointed, journey in the darkness, went far away therein; darkness, intensely black, the deepest black; the first part or state of youth; the belly
Stalk = Qaf-Ayn-Dal = to sit down, remain behind, to hold back, to tarry, lie in wait, sit still, remain unmoved, desist, abstain, refrain, lurk in ambush, set snares, neglect, act of sitting, foundations/bases, women who are past child bearing age, elderly spinsters past child bearing age, one who sits at home, one who sits still, seat or place of sitting, station, encampment.
Straight = Qaf-Waw-Miim = stand still or firm, rose/stand up, managed/conducted/ordered/regulated/superintended, established, made it straight/right, maintain/erect/observe/perform, set up, people/community/company, abode, stature/dignity/rank. aqama – to keep a thing or an affair in a right state.
Path = Sad-Ra-Tay = a path which is even, wide enough and can be trodden without difficulty. A road/way/path, long sword.
“Then I will come to them from between their hands, and from behind them, and from their right, and from their left; You will not find most of them to be appreciative.” (Quran 7:17)
He said, “Get out from this, you are despised and banished. As for those among them who follow you, I will fill hell with you all!” (Quran 7:18)
Despised = Thal-Alif-Miim = to drive off, banish, blame, despise, disgrace, scorned, repay/requite, frighten/terrify, vice/fault/defect.
Banished = Dal-Ha-Ra = To drive away, repel, to remove, turn off, discard, banish.
So he (Satan) misled them (Adam and his pair) with deception; and when they tasted the tree, their bodies became apparent to them, and they began to cover themselves with the leaves of the paradise; and their Lord called to them: “Did I not forbid you from that tree, and tell you that the devil is your clear enemy?” (Quran 7:22)
Began = Tay-Fa-Qaf = begin/start to do something, to take to doing something, to set about, commence/initiate, continue uninterruptedly.
Cover = Kh-Sad-Fa = Adjoin or put together, to men, make a thing double putting one piece upon another, cover with a thing, have two colors, to lie (as though to sew one saying upon another, and thus, embellish it).
Leaves = Waw-Ra-Qaf = to put forth leaves. waraqun is both sing. and pl. and is substantive noun from the verb waraqa. auraaq al-rajulu – the man became rich. warqun – leaves, foliage, sheet of paper, sheet of metal, coinage, wealth, prime and freshness of a thing, young lads of a community, beauty of a thing.
Paradise = Jiim-Nun-Nun (root of jinn) = veiled/concealed/covered/hid/protected (e.g. cloth, armour, grave, shield), invisible, become dark/posessed, darkness of night, bereft of reason, mad/insane/unsound in mind/intellect, confusedness. Become thick/full-grown/blossom, herbage, garden. Spiritual beings that conceal themselves from the senses (including angels), become weak and abject, greater part of mankind, devil/demon, people who are peerless having no match or equal, a being who is highly potent, sometimes refers to kings because they are concealed from the common folk
They said, “Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves and if You do not forgive us and have mercy on us, then we will be of the losers!” (Quran 7:23)
Losers = Kh-Siin-Ra = To suffer loss or diminution, to be deceived/cheated/beguiled/circumvented, to err/go astray/deviate from/miss the right way, to perish or die, make a thing defective or deficient, destroy or cause to perish, remove/alienate/estrange someone, to be treacherous/ignoble/mean, to be unfaithful, ungenerous, small/little/weak (among mankind), refuse invitation from another.
He said, “Descend some of you to some others as an enemy; on earth you will have residence and provisions until the appointed time.” (Quran 7:24)
He said, “In it you will live and in it you will die, and from it you will be brought forth.” (Quran 7:25)
Note that in Genesis 2:23 Adam called his mate/pair “woman”, then, after the serpent deceived her and she gave Adam of the fruit, he called her “Eve” (Genesis 3:20). Also note the following verses that imply God’s messenger as being the exact opposite of the devil:
He is the One who sent His messenger with the guidance and the system/religion of truth, so that it will manifest it above all other systems/religions, even if those who set up partners (with God) dislike it. “O you who acknowledge, shall I lead you to a trade that will save you from painful retribution?” “That you acknowledge God and His messenger and strive in the cause of God with your money and your lives/souls. This is best for you, if only you knew.”
But the devil whispered to him, he said, “O Adam, shall I lead you to the tree of immortality and a kingdom which will not waste away?” (Quran 20:120)
It’s almost as if the devil/serpent was like a false prophet to Adam and his mate/pair. See Quran 25:20, 25:31, and 6:112.
Also, note that when Adam and his pair were in paradise, there is no indication that they had rivers flowing beneath them. Further note that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (see Genesis 1), and that hell was not mentioned as being created in the beginning.
Other things that might be worth noting include the angels describing Mary as the woman whom God chose over the women of the worlds (Quran 3:42), and her being the only one described by name as having a river flow beneath her (Quran 19:24), and that this was conveyed to her by “Our” spirit that was sent to her that had taken the form of a man in all similarities (Quran 19:16-19, 19:24). Further note that Israel is described as being God’s first born child (Exodus 4:22) and in the Quran, the Children of Israel are described as having being God’s most favoured people (Quran 2:122). Finally, to my understanding, only two people have been explicitly described as being messiahs: Jesus son of Mary (Quran 9:31) and King Cyrus of Persia (Isaiah 45:1).
He will then forgive your sins, and admit you into paradises with rivers flowing beneath, and beautiful mansions in the gardens of Eden. This is the greatest triumph. (Quran 61:12)