Divine Justice or the Problem of Evil
Now that we have understood this section, let us go back to the benefits of suffering for the individual.
Benefits of Suffering
It is only through suffering and difficulties that one can attain true happiness and prosperity. The Qur'an says: "......But Lo, with hardship goes ease; Lo, with hardship goes ease; so when you are relieved, still toil, And strive to please your Lord " (94:5-8).
Hegel says: â€œDisputes and evil (`suffering,' to be precise) are not imaginary; they are quite real and with open eyes they are steps for evolution and goodness. Struggle is the law of progressâ€.
Human attributes are evolved and made in the battlefield and riot of the world, and one can reach high perfection only through hardship, responsibility and distress. Life is not for satisfaction, but for evolution.
` Ali ibn Abi Talib said in one of his famous letters to `Uthman ibn Hanif, his governor in Basra, that living in comfort and delicateness and avoidance of difficulties ends in weakness and debility, and on the contrary, living in rough conditions makes a mall powerful and agile and transfers Ills existential essence towards refinement. He also reproaches him, in the letter, for having had a dinner with the rich who had allowed no poor for the evening. He then gives the example of trees in forests and gardens. Although constant care is taken of garden trees, yet the deprived tree of the forest has a better quality.
This is why when God is kind to somebody he inflicts him or her with difficulty and suffering. (Exactly the opposite of what most people think) Imam Muhammad Baqir said: "Allah (God) helps his believer and sends him hardships like presents which a man sends for his family."
Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq said: "When Allah loves His slave He drowns him in the sea of suffering. "
Like a swimming tutor who throws his new student into the water and makes him struggle and learn swimming, Allah does the same to perfect his beloved slaves.
If one reads a whole lifetime about swimming, one will not learn how to swim. We have to go into the water and struggle with the danger of drowning, and then we will learn swimming.
"The most difficult lives are possessed first by the prophets, then those who come after them in virtue."