Similarity Between Light and Prayer

I’ve often tried to explain my views about destiny, or fate as many like to call it. In a recent conversation with a friend, we touched on the subject of prayer and it led me to again consider my views about the purpose of prayer if destiny is supposedly pre-written in line with the mainstream views of destiny. In other words, is my fate sealed because the outcomes have been decided regardless of my actions, or are we simply missing the point? That’s when the similarities between prayer and a typical beam of light occurred to me.

A normal beam of light will simply light up an object, whereas a slightly more intense beam of light will possibly heat it up. Yet an even more intense beam of light could change the shape of the object, or even cut through the object, if not entirely incinerate the object. So it stands to reason that just existence of something is not necessarily a finite definition of its purpose or impact.

I think the same is true with prayer. If said lightly and without conviction, it serves a limited purpose, if any at all, like those solar powered garden lights that light up nothing more than the casing in which they exist. For the same reason, I believe the prayer of the oppressed person is so much more powerful, because the oppressed person usually turns to Allah at a point when they’ve given up reliance on anything and anyone else. So the intensity, sincerity and conviction with which they pray results in it triggering those effects that Allah has already ‘configured’ in this universal law that governs our existence, often referred to as fate, or destiny, or taqdeer. Hence there being no need for Allah to directly intervene, because these laws that Allah has established already intervenes simply because Allah said ‘Be’, and it is. So trust that handhold that you have with Allah, and stop doubting it. The doubts weaken our prayer while the trust strengthens it.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Penelope says:

    I am curious – what do you make of Musa’s (RA) encounter with Khidr in Sura Kahf (ship, boy, and wall) in context of predetermination and fate?

    1. Very interesting question. I think it’s also a manifestation of the same universal laws that I referred to. Whether Allah ordained it at that specific moment in time, or whether it was part of the bigger plan from the start is probably knowledge that rests with Allah only. If we consider the way each scenario played out, none of it violated the natural laws that we know of. Those things that do violate the natural laws are often considered miracles, which is a very different debate altogether. But to answer your question, I think it was simply a demonstration of the very same cause and effect that governs our lives throughout history including the present day, with the added benefit of proving to us that assumptions are never sufficient to determine the worth of someone’s actions.

      What I mean is, if we had to judge the actions of Khidr without knowing the background to the story, nor the true outcomes, we could easily judge him to be unjust, crazy, or even a spiteful person. So the number of lessons that can be extracted from that story just seems to grow the more I think about it. It demonstrates the value of tough love, of wisdom, of not assuming the obvious is all there is to a story, of trust, of patience, etc. I’m starting to ramble. Sorry. 🙂 One last thought on this is that the laws of predetermination and fate governs (more than anything else) our choices/responses to the situations or opportunities that present themselves. Those responses of ours results in situations/opportunities presenting themselves to others. How it all plays out on a grand scale is what we often write off as fate or destiny, when in fact it really is just a combination of choices across the human race that is resulting in the events that we experience. I hope that makes sense. 😐

      1. Penelope says:

        Makes perfect sense. Although to say that ” the laws of predetermination and fate governs (more than anything else) our choices/responses to the situations or opportunities that present themselves” implies that our available choices are, in of themselves, predetermined and finite…which then begs the question of free will. I read your posting on free will…in my mind, I am still trying to connect the dots between predetermination, free will within God’s Will, and eschatology.

      2. The available choices/opportunities/options are finite. However, we have the ability of reason, logic, intelligence, and free will (to name a few) to choose between the available choices. The one we then choose out of the available choices is what determines the outcome for us, but it won’t change the potential outcomes of each of the other choices that were available. So the free will is limited to our capabilities, knowledge, and available options to us under the specific circumstance that we find ourselves in. However, just because we can’t control external factors, like the weather or how someone else chooses to act, doesn’t mean we don’t have free will, it just means that we have limitations to the free will that we have. In short, we can choose how we wish to respond or act, but the result of our choice is predetermined based on a law that is established. The more we know about that law (i.e. experience/knowledge) the more likely we are to choose options that are beneficial, rather than making ill-informed choices that leads to problems.

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