Destiny is a decree of Allah SWT that has been determined for every creature He creates, including humans. Believing in the existence of destiny is included in the last pillar of faith, namely faith in qada and qadar.
Quoting from the book 13 Real Ways to Change Destiny by Jamal Ma’mur Asmani, et al., destiny in Arabic comes from the words ‘qadara, yuqaddiru, taqdir’ which means to estimate, determine, determine, compare and make power.
Based on the term tawhid, destiny is something that has been determined by Allah SWT since the time of eternity or the time before all of His creation was created.
Islamic teachings recognize two kinds of fate, namely the fate of the muallaq or fate that can still be changed through effort and the fate of the mubram which cannot be changed.
The destiny that has been determined by Allah SWT is stored in Ummul Kitab or Lauhul Mahfudz, as explained in His word through the Al-Qur’an surah Ar-Ra’d verse 39:
يَمْحُوا۟ ٱللَّهُ مَا يَشَآءُ وَيُثْبِتُ ۖ وَعِندَهُۥٓ أُمُّ ٱلْكِتَٰبِ
Meaning: “Allah abolishes what He wills and establishes (what He wills), and with Him is the Ummul-Kitab (Lauhul Mahfuzh).” (QS Ar-Ra’d: 39).
The decrees of destiny of Allah SWT are found in several other verses of the Qur’an along with the hadith of the Prophet SAW. The following are a number of postulates about destiny summarized from the book Guide to Knowledge and Wisdom by Ibnu Rajab and Allah’s Destiny is Never Wrong by Agus Susanto
Propositions about Destiny in the Qur’an
1. Surah Al-An’am Verse 59
وَعِندَهُۥ مَفَاتِحُ ٱلْغَيْبِ لَا يَعْلَمُهَآ إِلَّا هُوَ ۚ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا فِى ٱلْبَرِّ وَٱلْبَحْرِ ۚ وَمَا تَسْقُطُ مِن وَرَقَةٍ إِلَّا يَعْلَمُهَا وَلَا حَبَّةٍ فِى ظُلُمَٰتِ ٱلْأَرْضِ وَلَا رَطْبٍ وَلَا يَابِسٍ إِلَّا فِى كِتَٰبٍ مُّبِينٍ
Meaning: “And with Allah are the keys of all the unseen; no one knows it except He Himself, and He knows what is on the land and in the sea, and not a leaf falls except He knows it (also), and not a grain falls in the darkness of the earth, and nothing is wet or dry, but is written in a real book (Lauhul Mahfudz).” (QS Al-An’am: 59).
2. Surah Yunus Verse 61
وَمَا تَكُونُ فِى شَأْنٍ وَمَا تَتْلُوا۟ مِنْهُ مِن قُرْءَانٍ وَلَا تَعْمَلُونَ مِنْ عَمَلٍ إِلَّا كُنَّا عَلَيْكُمْ شُهُودًا إِذْ تُفِيضُونَ فِيهِ ۚ وَمَا يَعْزُبُ عَن رَّبِّكَ مِن مِّثْقَالِ ذَرَّةٍ فِى ٱلْأَرْضِ وَلَا فِى ٱلسَّمَآءِ وَلَآ أَصْغَرَ مِن ذَٰلِكَ وَلَآ أَكْبَرَ إِلَّا فِى كِتَٰبٍ مُّبِينٍ
Meaning: “You are not in a situation and do not read a verse from the Koran and you do not do a job, but We are witnesses to you when you do it. Your Lord does not escape the knowledge of even the size of a zarrah (atom) in the earth or in the sky . There is nothing smaller and nothing (nor) greater than that, but (everything is recorded) in a real book (Lauhul Mahfuzh).” (QS Yunus: 61).
3. Surah Al-Hadid Verse 22
مَآ أَصَابَ مِن مُّصِيبَةٍ فِى ٱلْأَرْضِ وَلَا فِىٓ أَنفُسِكُمْ إِلَّا فِى كِتَٰبٍ مِّن قَبْلِ أَن نَّبْرَأَهَآ ۚ إِنَّ ذَٰلِكَ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ يَسِيرٌ
Meaning: “There is no disaster that befalls on earth and (not even) on yourself except that it was written in the book (Lauhul Mahfuzh) before We created it. Indeed, this is easy for Allah.” (QS Al-Hadid: 22).
4. Surah Al-Hajj Verse 70
وَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا يَحْتَسِبُ ۚ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُۥٓ ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ بَٰلِغُ أَمْرِهِۦ ۚ قَدْ جَعَلَ ٱللَّهُ لِكُلِّ شَىْءٍ قَدْرًا
Meaning: “And give him sustenance from a direction that he does not expect. And whoever puts his trust in Allah, Allah will certainly fulfill his (needs). Verily, Allah carries out the affairs that He (wills). Verily, Allah has made provisions for everything. ” (QS At-Talaq: 3).
6. Surah Al-Furqan Verse 2
ٱلَّذِى لَهُۥ مُلْكُ ٱلسَّمَٰوَٰتِ وَٱلْأَرْضِ وَلَمْ يَتَّخِذْ وَلَدًا وَلَمْ يَكُن لَّهُۥ شَرِيكٌ فِى ٱلْمُلْكِ وَخَلَقَ كُلَّ شَىْءٍ فَقَدَّرَهُۥ تَقْدِيرًا
Meaning: “To Him is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth, and He has no children, and He has no partners in His dominion, and He has created everything, and He has determined its measurements as precisely as possible. ” (QS Al-Furqan: 2).
7. Surah Al-A’la Verses 1-3
سَبِّحِ ٱسْمَ رَبِّكَ ٱلْأَعْلَى. ٱلَّذِى خَلَقَ فَسَوَّىٰ. وَٱلَّذِى قَدَّرَ فَهَدَىٰ
Meaning: “Sanctify the name of your Lord, the Most High, who created and perfected (His creation), and who determines (each) measure and gives guidance.” (QS Al-A’la: 1-3).
Proposition about Destiny in the Hadith of the Prophet Muhammad
1. First Hadith
Ibnu Rajab quoted from Sahih Muslim that there was a hadith from Abdullah bin Amr RA from Rasulullah SAW who said:
“Indeed, Allah created the destinies of all creatures fifty years before creating the heavens and the earth.” (HR Muslim No. 2653).
2. Second Hadith
In Sahih Muslim there is also a hadith from Jabir RA that someone asked the Prophet SAW:
“O Messenger of Allah, today’s actions are in accordance with what? Are they in accordance with something that the pen has dried with and destinies are taking place with or are they in accordance with something that is to come?”
The Prophet SAW answered “No, but according to what the pens have dried and the destinies have taken place.”
The man said, “Then what was that for?” The Prophet SAW then said, “Do it, because everything is made easier for what was created for it.” (HR Muslim No. 2648).
3. Third Hadith
Based on a hadith narrated from Ubadah bin Ash-Shamit RA, the Prophet SAW once said:
“Indeed, the first thing Allah created was a pen, then Allah said (to the pen), ‘Write.’ Then from that moment on, something happened from what was destined until the Day of Judgment.” (HR Imam Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and At-Tirmidhi).
These are 10 postulates about destiny which show that Allah SWT’s decrees have been recorded in Lauhul Mahfudz since before His creatures were created, wallahu a’lam.