The fact is that owing mainly to errors of observation, it is often forgotten that the world is more good than evil. Take a thief. True, he commits theft. But against each theft, he does so many things which are good. Perhaps he meets people in a pleasant manner. He is generous and charitable. He serves his parents, and takes good care of them. If you count up in this way, you will find the good in each person preponderating over evil.
So also men taken individually do more good things than evil. The quantum of good or evil in the world would certainly give good an edge over evil. Possibly more than an edge. Why do people generally think the number of evil actions to be greater? This wrong impression is the product of two circumstances. One is the too patent fact that in terms of formal, professed belief and unbelief, certainly unbelievers would be found in a much larger number. The other circumstance is that most men suffer from one moral defect or another. Because of this, the quantum of evil seems larger.
But it is an illusion. These circumstances are not adequate proof that there is more evil than good in the world. Certainly, there may be more unbelievers. But the number of enlightened and convinced unbelievers is much less than appears on the surface. The so-called unbelievers are often such as have not really analysed or tested their beliefs. Many so-called Kafirs are not Kafirs in the eyes of God. They will yet have the chance to decide. Or, if this does not happen, their actions which they have performed freely and responsibly will be taken into account in determining their moral merit. Thus weighed can we say how many will turn out to be good men and how many evil? Altogether it seems there is more belief in the world than disbelief. Proportionately, therefore, it would be safe to say that there is more good in the world than evil.
The other circumstance too that all or most people suffer from some moral defect or other is open to question. In fact, this is not the way to judge the matter. The question is: Are most men good or bad? If most men are good, the quantum of good in the world is greater. If most men possess most of the good moral qualities, the good predominates. Keeping in view the total good of men in the world as a whole the evidence on the side of good will be found to be more incontrovertible.
Some people at this point interject and say that if most people are in for punishment of one kind or another, then what does it prove except that Satan has won and God has lost. But I would say: No, still God is the winner and Satan the loser. For, does not Islam say that ultimately, that is, after all accounts have been settled, all human beings will enter the Divine Garden:
And I have not created the Jinn and the men but that they may worship Me. (51:57)
This eventuality fulfilled-as it must be-who will think that any human beings who have-by trial and error-become images of their Creator, should still remain in Hell and not go to the Garden, which is the destiny of all good men and women? From other evidence also we know that a time will come when hell would be emptied of all its inmates, also that they will all have been admitted to the Garden. All will have become good servants of Allah. When this happens, where will Satan be? Do you think he will be sitting by himself alone, unlike the rest of the creatures? He also will join the others in the Garden after he has been cleansed of all evil. So he will after all be defeated in his personal aim to mislead human beings and will himself stand desatanised. Those who consider Satan as the winning party shall stand corrected when they find Satan in the Garden. Satan who has ceased to be Satan.
To turn to the question of the definition of the perfect man. The perfect man is free from sin to the extent that in after-death he finds himself equal to the requirements of the good life. “Requirements of good life” means to deserve the pleasure of God and to be safe from His displeasure. The good soul has enough good deeds to its credit to enable it to enter the Garden of Divine pleasure at once. The emphasis is on at once. The perfect man is ready to enter the Garden at once to which sooner or later, every soul will be admitted. The perfect man’s only distinction is that he will be among the first to enter.