In the shortest possible words how will you describe the beliefs of Ashaira and Mu’tazila. During the time of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal which sect considered Qur’an as ‘created’ (makhlooq)?
The Mu’tazilites were a group of Muslim thinkers led by a Wasil ibn `Ata. They were known for their beliefs in the concept of free will and religious ideologies based on rationalism. Their staunch beliefs in the unity of God earned them the appellation Ahl at’Tawhid wal A’dl (i.e. Disciples of God’s Unity and Justice). One of their major concepts, and most controversial, was that of the Qur’an being created. This was contrary to the Traditionist’s position on this issue, as they believed the Qur’an to be uncreated. Though the Mu’tazilites achieved some prominence in Islamic history their movement began to die out with opponents such as Ahmad ibn Hanbal. However, an even greater rival emerged from their very own ranks. Al Ash’ari, whom the Ash’arite movement is named after, left the Mu’tazilites and realigned himself with the more orthodox doctrine. His was an attempt to bring the Mu’tazilites closer to the orthodoxy. Still, many of al Ash’ari’s concepts overlapped those of the Mu’tazilites with some differences. Such was the concept of free will in which he denied man possessed, yet believed that people had control over their obligations. Al Ash’ari is credited with developing a system of Islamic religious thought. This system, based on reason and rationality, gained widespread popularity and still affects the Islamic world today.
I hope I have clarified the issue.
God knows best.