The Qur’an states that belief in God does not emanate from external sources. It is integral to human nature. But this nature is double-sided, a trait that becomes apparent when disaster strikes. The chapter Yunus (Jonah) of the Qur’an refers to this reality: Whenever any trouble befalls a person, he prays to Us all the time, lying on his side, sitting or standing; but when We remove his trouble, he goes on his way as if he had never prayed to Us for the removal of his trouble. Thus it is that the doings of the transgressors are made to look fair to them. (10:12)
This means that when all is well, a person may deny God’s existence, but when there is a calamity and he is unable to deal with it, he feels that he is helpless, his inner nature, consciously or unconsciously, calls out at that point to God. In times of crisis, he admits that there is a superior power and that, without the help of this power, he cannot hold his own on this earth. There are ups and downs in everyone’s life. Everyone suffers some kind of unwanted situation, but such moments are moments of discovery. To be Wise and find ‘God’s Will’ in situations is the surest way to find God.
This is true not only of those who deny the existence of God; even believers may have this kind of experience. It is but natural that a believer may at times feel that his conviction in God has weakened or has even been forgotten. But then he receives some kind of shock in his life, physically or mentally. This serves as a reminder of God, after which he re-discovers his Lord. His faith is restored. God created man with great intellect; man is able, therefore, to discover God through ratiocination, through the study of books or through the observation of nature. Man is fully competent to discover God by using his capacity to think. But it is also a fact that when a person finds himself in conditions of comfort and luxury, and when he enjoys every convenience, he forgets his Lord. Consciously or unconsciously, he develops the belief that he is the master of his own destiny; that he can make what he wills of his life on his own, through his own efforts. It seems then that he has set aside his belief in God.
God created man with great intellect; man is able, therefore, to discover God through ratiocination, through the study of books, or through the observation of nature. Man is fully competent to discover God by using his capacity to think. Then comes some kind of misfortune or calamity and it is this sad experience that makes him realize that he is helpless, that he is not the master of his own destiny; there are powers other than himself that have the upper hand. But this crisis comes as a blessing in disguise, for it causes him to rediscover his Lord. Through this crisis, his faith is firmly re-established. It is the sad testimony of history that, in times of crisis, a man remembers his Lord. But when the crisis is over and an order has been restored, he forgets everything and refuses to learn a lesson from it.