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A popular Hindi saying is: "Wahi hota hai jo manzoor-e-khuda hota hai". Literally translated, it means "Only that happens which has the permission of God".

Is this literally believed to be the truth in Islam? Or is it believed that some things happen without his permission also -- possibly by free-will or by the will of Shaitan?

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I have quoted some of the text from here

{Say, “Nothing will happen to us except what Allah has decreed for us; He is our Protector.” And in Allah let the believers put their trust. Say: “Do you wait for us (any fate) except for one of the two best things (martyrdom or victory)?} (At-Tawbah 9: 51-52)

By watching the subduing turns of fates – which are beyond our free will – and discerning God’s work in outcomes, whether sweet or bitter, our emotions are regulated and kept from becoming intense or exaggerated.

This moderation is characteristic of wise and experienced people, who are temperate in their joy and sadness, and their overall reactions, meeting that which is pleasant or unpleasant with calm feelings. This is the gist of God’s words:

{No calamity happens on the earth or in yourselves but it is inscribed in the Book of Decrees, before We bring it into existence. Verily, that is easy for Allah, In order that you may not grieve for what has escaped you, nor rejoice in what has been given to you; Allah likes not prideful boasters.} (Al-Hadid 57: 22-3)

The aim is not prevention of the natural sensations of pain or pleasure; rather, it is restraint of overwhelming indulgence, whether excessive joy whose ecstasy may distract from what is right or excessive grief whose agony may crush the will.

Update#1:

So, no, nothing happens without HIS permission. Whatever good or bad happens, happens with ALLAH's permission. It doesn't mean HE wills it upon you. It just because of whatever you have been doing and you have brought it upon yourselves and HE has allowed it to happen. There's a Quranic Ayat about this exact same thing, I will search and update the answer accordingly.

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    I agree with you as you submitted those those Surahs verses. Actually all worldly situations arise by the will of Allah alone. / Even if some situations be related to the Satan, but even that would be by the intention and permission of Allah. Dec 14 '15 at 9:47
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There are two types of thing happening in this world. One, that is controlled by God directly and noone has any control over them except Him. Others are what happens through actions of humans under the laws made by God. Since, a person is involved in these actions, he is responsible for the outcome. E.g. We know fire burns. Its a law that God has made. If we throw a paper in fire then we are responsible for the burning of that paper. Ofcourse, God has ultimate control and he can cause the fire, not to burn the paper. When something like this happens, we treat it as a miracle, as it goes against the natural order of the world and only God has the power to circumvent this natural order.

Since the laws have been made by God, we can say that ultimately everything happens by the will of God. On a more superficial level, humans do have control to choose based on his own will and thus, the whole concept of heaven and hell makes sense.

My personal variation of the quote is

"When something has happened, it is exactly what God has willed"

(Jab koyi cheez ho chukti hai, to wo wohi hoti hai, jo Allah nay chahi hoti hai)

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