Understanding The Prophet's Life
From Issue: 1012 [Read full issue]
Ibn Abbas reports: 'A man said to the Prophet: "Whatever God wills and you will". The Prophet said to him: "You have set up an equal to God. It is what God alone wills".' [Ahmad, Ibn Majah, al-Nasai]
The Prophet is clearly teaching us to place the will of any person as completely secondary to God's will. This is the proper Islamic attitude. The Prophet wanted to inculcate this point in the minds of his companions and followers. Thus, he points to the fact that the conjunction 'and' signifies partnership without ranking; thus it makes whatever it joins together as equals. In this, it is different from the word, 'then', which signifies a secondary position. Thus, then makes the wish of a person subservient to God's will.
All this obviously applies to things in which people's wishes or actions play an actual part. Needless to say, there are things no one other than God can influence. These may not be attributed to anyone other than God, even if we use the conjunction, 'then'. To attribute them to anyone in addition to God signifies that God cannot accomplish them on His Own. This detracts from God's ability. Hence, we should be very careful. In fact, it is always better to speak of God's will as being the ultimate, without adding anyone as involved.
"Al-Adab al-Mufrad with Full Commentary: A Perfect Code of Manners and Morality" - Adil Salahi