Belief in the Taqdeer or Divine Decree means believing that both the law of nature and the law of religion (Shariah) have been devised by Allah and He alone holds Supreme power over these laws which are operating in the universe. Allah has laid down the principles for every material or spiritual thing. According to these principles, certain actions lead to good results while certain other actions result in evil consequences as a matter of course.
Man is subject to Divine decree. If a human design is not in accord with the design of God, no amount of effort can succeed in putting it into effect; but when the time of the design of God arrives, that which had appeared most difficult becomes easily available.
Taqdeer should not be confused with predestination (as is understood in this Country) with the understanding that whilst everything is in the knowledge of Allah and that Allah alone holds Supreme power over these laws, Allah has also given mankind free will. This means that according to Islam, man is responsible for his own destiny, which although is in the knowledge of Allah, yet Allah will not interfere unless He desires to do so. Usually, it is only in special circumstances, where Allah may cause exceptional changes in these laws to produce miracles for the sake of His prophets and saints. However, these exceptional changes are never contrary to His known ways, His promises or His attributes.
This means that whilst everything has been determined by Divine Decree, yet this does not mean that one should not strive for one’s betterment or adopt means to avoid the calamities.
Divine Decrees are of two types; one may be described as suspended, and the other as absolute. The operation of a suspended decree may be averted by the Grace of God Almighty through prayers and alms giving. The operation of an absolute decree cannot be averted through prayer and alms giving, although God Almighty bestows some other benefit in return for them. In some cases God Almighty causes a delay in the operation of a decree.