Qadariyah (or Qadarīya, Ḳadariyya, etc., also Qadarites or Kadarites) is an originally derogatory term designating early Islamic theologians who asserted that humans possess free will, whose exercise makes them responsible for their actions, justifying divine punishment and absolving God of responsibility for evil in the world. The term derives from قدر (qadar), "power". Some of their doctrines were later adopted by the Mu'tazilis and rejected by the Ash'aris.
Qadariya was one of the first philosophical schools in Islam. The earliest document associated with the movement is the Risala by Hasan al-Basri, which was composed between 75/694 and 80/699, though debates about free will in Islam probably predate this text.
According to Sunni sources, the Qadariyah were censured by Muhammad himself by being compared to Zoroastrians, who likewise deny predestination. It is reported in Sunan Abu Dawood: Narrated Abdullah ibn Umar: The Prophet said, "The Qadariyyah are the Magians of this community. If they are ill, do not pay a sick visit to them, and if they die, do not attend their funerals."
The medieval sources upon which information about the Qadariya is based include Hasan al-Basri's Risālat al-qadar ilā ʿAbd al-Malik (Epistle to ʿAbd al-Malik against the Predestinarians); anti-Qadari letters by Hasan ibn Muhammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah and Caliph Umar II; the work of the 9th-century Islamic scholar Khushaysh; the list of Qadarites by Ibn Qutayba, Ibn Hajar, al-Suyuti, Ibn al-Murtada and al-Dhahabi; scattered references to the Qadariya in the work of al-Tabari; and counter-Qadari polemics in the standard hadith collections of Sahih Muslim.
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