How Does God Permit Infinite Ugliness and Awesome Calamity?
Question: The creation of devils, who are pure evil, and their harassing the people of belief, and many people not believing and going to Hell because of them, appears to be terrible and ugly. How does the mercy and beauty of the Absolutely Beauteous One, the Absolutely Compassionate One, the Truly Merciful One, permit this infinite ugliness and awesome calamity? Many people have asked about this question, and it occurs to many people.
Answer: In addition to the minor evils, there are numerous universal good purposes in the existence of Satan, and human attainments and perfections. Yes, however many degrees there are from a seed to a huge tree, the abilities lodged in human nature are more numerous. There are degrees from a minute particle to the sun. For these abilities and potentialities to develop, action is required, a transaction is necessary. The action of the mechanism of progress in such a transaction is brought about through striving. And striving occurs through the existence of evil spirits and harmful things. Otherwise man’s station would have been constant like that of the angels. There would have been no classes in human kind, which resembles thousands of species. And it is contrary to wisdom and justice to abandon a thousand instances of good so as to avoid one minor evil.
For sure the majority of people embrace misguidance due to Satan, but importance and value look mostly to quality; they look to quantity little or not at all. If someone has a thousand and ten seeds which he buries, and under the earth the seeds undergo a chemical reaction as a result of which ten become trees and a thousand rot, the profit the man receives from the ten seeds which have become trees certainly reduces to nothing the loss he suffers from the thousand rotted ones. In exactly the same way, through the struggle against the soul and Satan, the profit, honor, enlightenment, and value for human kind gained by ten perfect men, who are like stars, certainly reduce to nothing the harm caused to mankind through the people of misguidance embracing unbelief, who are so base as to be thought of as vermin. Since this is so, Divine mercy, wisdom, and justice have permitted the existence of Satan, and allowed him to molest men.
By M. Fethullah Gulen