Does Allah Guide Us to Islam, Or is it Solely the Result of Our Own Efforts?

22 May, 2019
Q Assalamu alaykum wrwb! I am a Hindu by religion and I was introduced to Islam a few years ago by someone very close to me as a person. I have learnt a lot from the person as well as through self-exploration. Islam teaches us not to believe in things blindly. To question the things that creates doubt in our minds. That is why Allah made us Humans and gave us an intelligent, palpable brain, we can ask questions and increase our knowledge as well as imaan. My question pertains to a very simple yet perplexing query. It is said in Quran that Allah swt only guides those who He wills to and He leads astray those who He wants to. Since I have been trying to learn about Islam and increase my knowledge and Imaan through my own efforts (reading Quran, doing dhikr, following Islamic rules, fasting on Ramadan, learning arabic, being grateful to Allah etc) is it true that it is Allah swt who is guiding me towards such things? Is It indeed Him who wanted me to get introduced to this beautiful religion or was it just a matter of coincidence that I came across it? I hope these questions are answered so that my imaan increases twofold. Jazakallah khair.

Answer

Short Answer: Allah guided you. He did this by making you meet the person who introduced you to Islam. This was Allah’s blessing upon you. He sends such chances to all among mankind. However, how you responded, via self-exploration and pursuit of knowledge, facilitated His further help. Had you chosen to ignore the inclination to find answers to your questions, He would have let you go back to misguidance. But you strove in His path, and that is why He granted you higher ranks of faith. I pray that you continue this noble journey of getting closer to Allah, sister. May Allah bless you!

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Asalaamu alaykum, and thank you for sending in your question to our website.

Congratulations, my sister! From your question it seems that you converted to Islam from Hinduism. It is also very praiseworthy that you strive to increase your faith (iman). I ask Allah to grant you beneficial knowledge of Islam and high ranks.

Your question is a very pertinent one. Every Muslim should be careful about what you have asked. That is, when a human being is guided to Islam, is it solely from Allah? Or are they in control of this guidance, because of their own proactive efforts?

Allah is the sole source of guidance to Islam

There are a few things we need to address, to answer all your questions. The first is that Allah is the only “source” of guidance. That is, guidance cannot come from anywhere else besides Him. All other apparent ‘sources’ are just the means that He uses to send His guidance.

Allah says in the Quran:

And say: ‘The truth is from your Lord.’ Then whosoever wills, let him believe; and whosoever wills, let him disbelieve.”  [18:29]

In order to convey this guidance to mankind, Allah used two primary means. (i) He periodically appointed men to be His Prophets and messengers. (ii) And next, He gave them scriptures that would remain after their demise, to guide mankind.

Verily, We showed him the way, whether he be grateful or ungrateful.”  [76:3]

Allah has shown mankind the clear way to the right path. As the above verse of the Quran states, it is now up to each human being, to choose how they respond.

Do they reject this guidance, or do they accept it and submit to Allah?

Limited free will and the ability to act

Sister, Allah has given us limited free will. This free will enables us to do one of two things:

(i) Seek the right path, and do good deeds.

(ii) Reject the truth when we see it, and commit sins.

Our free will has limits, however, since Allah is ultimately in total control of the universe. Nevertheless, He has allowed us to choose between and act upon either one of the above two options.

This is the whole point of the test of the life of this world. To see who seeks and submits to guidance, and who chooses to go astray.

The journey of faith is a two-way relationship

Once a human being chooses to seek and act upon true guidance, Allah responds similarly. His help and aide comes, commensurate with the human being’s sincerity:

While as for those who accept guidance, He increases their guidance and bestows on them their piety.”  [Quran 47:17]

This is why, once you accepted Islam, you became inclined to learn more & study further.

Allah’s response for those, however, who reject His guidance and willfully disobey His commands, is the opposite:

Truly, Allah guides not him who is a liar, and a disbeliever.”  [Quran 39:3]

He lets the willful rejectors of truth go astray.

Bottom-line: being guided, and remaining firm upon guidance, is from Allah. Because He was the One Who sent this guidance to mankind in the first place.

However, we have the free will to choose to act upon this guidance. Or to choose to reject it.

Allah then responds to our choice accordingly. He either helps us gain higher ranks in faith, or to remain astray, based upon what option we chose. That is, either He grants us further conviction and higher ranks of good deeds. Or He lets us go astray and remain floundering in darkness, lost in this world.

He does not guide the person who does not strive to be guided, nor submits. Instead, He lets them go astray, as they have chosen so themselves.

Based on the above analyses, you should know that it was Allah Who guided you. He did this by making you meet the person who introduced you to Islam. This was Allah’s blessing upon you. He sends such chances to all among mankind.

However, how you responded, via self-exploration and pursuit of knowledge, facilitated His further help. Had you chosen to ignore the inclination to find answers to your questions, He would have let you go back to misguidance. But you strove in His path, and that is why He granted you higher ranks of faith.

I pray that you continue this noble journey of getting closer to Allah, sister. May Allah bless you!

And Allah knows best.

I hope this helps.

Salam and please keep in touch.

Please continue feeding your curiosity, and find more info in the following links:

https://aboutislam.net/counseling/ask-about-islam/errors-hindu-scriptures/

From Hinduism to an Illustrious Scholar of Hadith

Islam Gave Me What I Was Looking For