Rafed English

The Problem of Bada' ( Revision)

Adopted from the book: "History and Human Evolution" by: "Martyr Murtadha Mutahhari"

In Islam there is an issue called bada' (revision). The concept of bada' has an apparent meaning which few would regard as acceptable. Some have even criticized the Shi''ah for believing in bada'. The meaning of bada' is revision in Divine Destiny ( qada'), meaning that God has not fixed a definite and final form for the course of human history. In other words, God says to man: "You yourselves are in charge of the fulfilment of Divine Destiny, and it is you who can advance, stop or reverse the course of history." There is no blind determinism either on the part of nature or the means of life or from the viewpoint of Divine Destiny, to rule over history. This is one way of looking at man, his history and destiny.

Therefore, as long as we do not understand the direction of evolution and man''s ultimate goal, we cannot speak of evolution and merely state that man is progressing; for then, immediately, the question arises: towards what? If we cannot answer this question, what right do we have to speak of evolution? Don''t we study history in order to open a way for the future? If by studying history we get only so far as to allow it to introduce itself without showing a way for the future, what is the use of history? But we see that the Quran surveys history in a way to show us the path for the future, and this is how it should be. Therefore, our discussion is related to the past up to the present, and then the future. The question of our duty and responsibility is determinable only when, after becoming familiar with the past, we gain an understanding of the future too.

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