Saturday, 27 September 2014

Q & A: Someone asked, “If God is perfect, then why are certain things, for example the eye, imperfect?”

(Original Source:

Someone asked: On the point about the creator having no imperfections, how does that square with imperfections in the creation?  Our eyes are wired back to front, for example, and there are other numerous biological anomalies brought about via natural selection - you may be tempted to argue that these are imperfections by design to challenge our faith or somesuch, but that’s stretching pretty far. I mean where’s the challenge?  What divine test does the wiring of our eyes represent?

Answer: Eyes cannot be perfect. If they were wired as you would like, you could say why the wires? If not the wires, you could say why can’t I see smaller things? Why can’t I see further? The possibilities are not limited, but no matter what the specification is, it will still be imperfect, because an eye is something limited, no matter how powerful it is. Your request for perfection therefore, implies that the impossible is possible. It is like a request for a part that is larger than its whole. The question rather becomes: “Why that limit and not another?” and the answer is always, “It is as Allah had willed it. He willed that limit and not another.” This has no bearing on the assertion that Allah Himself is perfect, or on His existence. It might be a test, and it might not, but it certainly seems that you are challenged by it in terms of faith. When Muslims say that Allah is perfect they mean that He has no needs. This means He has no obligations to create someone’s eye with a particular specification, or to test someone or not test him. If you say that He must create different wiring then you are saying that He has needs, which contradicts perfection.

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