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Offline Mubashir

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Listens or responds?
« on: April 20, 2013, 11:56:15 AM »
Salam All

What would be the correct translation/interpretation of Verse 2:186?

2:186 [Bilal] When My servants ask you concerning Me, I am indeed near. I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calls on Me. Let them also, willingly, listen to My call, and believe in Me, that they may walk in the right way.

2:186 [Asad] AND IF My servants ask thee about Me - behold, I am near; I respond to the call of him who calls, whenever he calls unto Me: let them, then, respond unto Me, and believe in Me, so that they might follow the right way.

We all know that each and every prayer is not fulfilled by Allah.  Although some of us may pray for years for some wishes to be fulfilled, but they are not.

So, does Allah listens or does He respond?

Thanks.

Offline optimist

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Re: Listens or responds?
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2013, 05:30:38 PM »
Salam All

What would be the correct translation/interpretation of Verse 2:186?

2:186 [Bilal] When My servants ask you concerning Me, I am indeed near. I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calls on Me. Let them also, willingly, listen to My call, and believe in Me, that they may walk in the right way.

2:186 [Asad] AND IF My servants ask thee about Me - behold, I am near; I respond to the call of him who calls, whenever he calls unto Me: let them, then, respond unto Me, and believe in Me, so that they might follow the right way.

We all know that each and every prayer is not fulfilled by Allah.  Although some of us may pray for years for some wishes to be fulfilled, but they are not.

So, does Allah listens or does He respond?

Thanks.
Salaam brother Mubashir,

Interesting question!  But take care, because superficial reading and understanding will make us run into confusion and trouble!

Firstly, let me quote verse 40:60 in which Allah says, : "Call on Me; I will answer you: but those who are too arrogant to serve Me will surely find themselves in Hell - in humiliation!" .   Please note the second part of the verse which states those people who are rebellious and do not obey Allah will be badly humiliated and enter Hell.  This whole verse makes it evident that prayer in reality is the opposite of “arrogance to serve Allah”.    It is pertinent to note a few verses earlier to this verse, in verse 40:50 it is stated “those who refuse observance of God’s laws, never have their prayers bring any results”.   The point should be clear here that calling out to God means obeying His orders and laws.   Kindly note the verse itself  you have quoted (2:186), the second part states “Let them also, willingly, listen to My call, and believe in Me, that they may walk in the right way”, i.e  we should have faith in Allah’s laws and obey Allah,  if we do this, Allah will certainly make our efforts bear fruit.  This is the real meaning of prayer and the acceptance of prayer: i.e. if you fulfill whatever is God’s requirement then He will fulfill your demands: this is God’s law.  He does not let anyone’s efforts in obeying Him go waste (11:115).  And nothing can be acquired without effort.  Man can get nothing but for which he has tried (53:39). 

The prophet was also asked to ‘pray’ in 18:26, “Tell them that I only call out to my Rab (Lord) and do not include anyone else with Him”, i.e. do not include anyone in His Supreme authority.  Here also it is clear that calling out to God means obeying his orders and laws without associating any partners with Him. If anyone or any group of people completely submit to Allah, Allah’s laws will bring the desired results for them. 

Allah says in 42:26, “And He listens to those who believe and do ‘saleh” deeds, and gives them increase of His Bounty”.  This means Allah responds to the call of those people who believe on His laws and work according to them.   In 7:55 Allah says, “Call your Sustainer with complete equanimity of heart and soul: so that the call comes from the core of your heart: remember that those who rebel against His laws and cross the limits (hudd), are disliked by Him”.  This also shows that by calling Him means obeying Allah.   The very next verse 7:56 states this, “do not create ripples in society after it has become smooth or calm ; and call out to God for banishing your problems and ills and for acquiring benefits; remember that those who maintain the balance in society, God’s benevolence is very near to them”.   We are connected to God’s laws.  When we call out to His laws and when we act according to His laws, then He answers our call by bringing the desired results that we have called for.

In verse 2:214 Quran mentions about the messenger and those with him had to suffer and go through great difficulties and finally they were forced to cry "When (will come) the help of Allah?".  The answer given by Allah was “Ah! Verily, the help of Allah is (always) near!”.   The help and support from Allah will not decent all on a sudden on a fine morning.  We have to work patiently for it.   However, since the messenger and the believers are on right path,  and they are working according to Allah’s laws, no matter what happens, finally they shall succeed, which is a promise binding upon Allah.   

“God has promised those of you who have attained to faith and do “saleh” deeds that, of a certainty, He will cause them to accede to power on earth, even as He caused [some of] those who lived before them to accede to it (24:55)

In this regard, it may be noted that when prophet Moses and his brother Haroon prayed to God, Allah answered, "Accepted is this your prayer! Continue, then, both of you, steadfastly on the right way, and follow not the path of those who have no knowledge [of right and wrong]."(10:89).   Obviously if the acceptance of prayer meant only that  whatever you have asked for is given to you, (or you will get it), then after that there was no need for any effort . But here it has been said that your prayer has been accepted, therefore, be steadfast in your program.  This makes it obvious, that prophet  Moses and his brother Haroon were told only that their prayers are according to God’s laws, and now they should strive to achieve those ends with steadfastness and they would  surely succeed.

The makes it clear that calling out to God means obeying his orders and laws.  Prophet  muhammed was also asked to ‘pray’ in 72:20,  “Tell them that I only call out to my Rab (Lord) and do not include anyone else with Him i.e. do not include anyone in His Supreme authority.

This is all for now

Regards,
Optimist

PS: The Qur’an also relates the things similar to what we mean by ‘dua’ in the ordinary sense, for instance, “Oh Sustainer, (Lord), protect us from our faults and transgressions, give solidarity to our feet and give us success over the nation of kafireen”.   These are prayers (dua) are actually a manifestation of the intensity of the wishes.  When a person/ or a group of people submit to such prayers earnestly, it will create revolutionary changes in the condition of the people.  Allah will not change the condition of any people unless they change what is in themselves.  Remember this Quranic truth always. 
The meaning which was lost in all our divisions will not be understood until our perceptions become untainted -  Allama Iqbal

Offline Mubashir

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Re: Listens or responds?
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2013, 03:58:13 AM »
Thanks for your detailed reply Optimist. I do understand that what you seem to be saying "first deserve then desire". Or, if once we follow Allah's laws, He does His share by granting results.

As you pointed out there is another dimension of prayers which are expression of our wished. Prayers of certain Messengers are mentioned in the Quran for example the Messenger Zakaria for a heir and Allah granting his wish.

Thought I can share the following short speech with you which may help us further understand the issue:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKLz52dL1v0&feature=youtu.be&t=4m31s

Offline optimist

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Re: Listens or responds?
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2013, 04:06:18 PM »
Salaam!

As far as God talking to Prophets in response to their prayers is concerned, it does not happen with ordinary human beings. God does not talk to anyone except the prophets.  Prophet-hood is quite different from ordinary human matters.  We cannot understand anything about it.  We can only understand the message that they have brought to us.

Regards,
Optimist

PS: Here is another revolutionary prayer from Quran.  And those who pray, "Our Lord! Grant unto us wives and offspring who will be the comfort of our eyes, and give us (the grace) to lead the righteous." وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا 25:74 Imagine what revolutionary changes likely to create in the character of people who sincerely aspire to become leaders (Imam) to lead the righteous.  Quran is trying creating a society in which each and every Muslim aspires and sincerely tries to become at the forefront.  This Quranic prayer uses the law of attraction to change people.  Prayer purifies, enlightens and at last transforms those who submit themselves to it.  Hope how Allah laws respond to one's prayer is more clearer now.
The meaning which was lost in all our divisions will not be understood until our perceptions become untainted -  Allama Iqbal

Offline Truth Seeker

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Re: Listens or responds?
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2013, 03:23:34 PM »
Salaam Mubashir,

It seems you have already asked this question before. Please see link below.

http://quransmessage.com/forum/index.php?topic=776.msg2868#msg2868


Offline Mubashir

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Re: Listens or responds?
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2013, 03:46:00 PM »
Oh! Thanks for the reminder Truth Seeker. Looks as if I need to change my batteries. The memory is beginning to go!!