UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Topic initiated on Tuesday, November 21, 2006 - 2:24 PM
|Wahdahu la shareek|
Our God tells us that people in other ages have also been expressing surprise over oneness of God: “Has he (the prophet) made the gods (all) into One God? Verily this is a curious thing” (38:5) But the Qur’an especially invites intellectuals among men to use their wisdom: “This (Qur’an) is a Message for mankind in order that they may be warned thereby, and that they may know that He is the only one God and that men of wisdom may heed.” (14:52)
According to Islamic monotheism, God is He who has created not only human beings and animals but all universe. He alone, without a partner in His God-ship, is the Creator, Sustainer and Destroyer of all His creation. Those who can think of gods from different points of view of different creation, actually do not believe in God at all. It is only their intellectual way of saying that instead of One God being the Creator, human beings have created a God for themselves.
The naturalists claim that every phenomenon in this universe can be ascribed to nature and its laws. A believer goes a step further. What is nature and who ordained its laws? The creator of nature and ordainer of its laws is our God. Besides nature comprises of matter and energy but there is something beyond nature and energy in life. The creation of bodies is attributed to nature but who created life and consciousness in bodies? Nature cannot explain life. Qur’an asks the disbelievers to reflect upon the phenomenon of life and death:
“How can you disbelieve in Allah? Don’t you realize that you were dead and He gave you life? Then He will give you death, then again will bring you to life (on the Day of resurrection) and then unto Him you will return”. (2:27)
There is a stage between the process of creation of man when a metaphysical thing or soul or consciousness is associated with the matter and energy of his body. When it is taken away he dies. Death is an undeniable phenomenon of life. Everyone who lives, dies. What is death? Is it merely a failure of machinery run by nature? Suppose a young and healthy man meets with an accident and encounters a head injury causing his death. The doctors diagnose the clotting of blood as the cause of death. They say if the operation has been performed a little earlier, the man could have been saved. What is the problem now? The machinery is new and healthy. Remove that clot now and replace all that which has deteriorated and start his heart beat by a pacifier. But it is beyond dispute that once dead, he can not be brought back to life in this world. The creator of this life, which no one else can create, is God.
When you looks into a mirror you see only the body of yourself. You have never seen the real yourself who feels, enjoys and grieves through the medium of that body. The God of this universe who created you shall one day take him away. God can not be seen through this material body. He can only be realized by a redeemed soul. Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) told us: “One who realizes his own self shall ultimately realize his Lord”.
Realization of one’s own self can only be achieved through proper recognition of one’s relationship with his Lord, the relationship of a bondsman or woman who loves and submits with all his self to his or her Lord who created him/her with a purpose. Unless you know the purpose of your existence and your proper relationship with others of creation, you can not really understand the right of a human being over other creations. But before that I must discuss the subject of One God or many gods.
One God or Many Gods
We, as well as other beings are all a part of this universe.
As there can not be two presidents or Prime ministers of a country, two M.Ds or managers of a company or organization, there can not be more than one God of this universe. The God of men can not be different from the God of other creations of this universe. He condemns us to hell in this world if we ignore the laws laid down by him in the universe. The human habitats come to disasters when they disturb the ecological balance for their greed. Our God has instructed us:
“And the firmament, He raised high and He has set up the balance. In order that you may not transgress (due) balance. And observe the weight with equity and do not make the balance deficient. And the earth, He laid down for the creatures”. (55:7-10) Were there different gods for different creatures, they could never have maintained the due balance in the universe that is necessary for its existence. God of all universe declared: “ There is no god along with Him. Had there been many gods, each would have governed his creation and some would have tried to overcome others! Glorified is Allah above all that they attribute to him”. (23:91)
You should also ask the differences about one God among different groups of mankind. God says that all nations were guided and told of truth but people have distorted truth. Had not the creation of mankind been for a specific purpose, which demands the liberty of human’s actions, the differing groups would have been set right by force.
“Mankind were but one community. Had it not been for a Word that went forth before from your Lord, it would have been settled between them regarding what they differed”.
“Have they chosen earthly deities? And (can) these deities restore the dead to life? Had there been other gods in heaven and earth besides Allah, there would have been ruin in both. Glorified is Allah, the Lord of the Throne, above those (falsehood) they ascribe to Him. None shall question Him about His works but they shall be questioned. Have they chosen other gods beside Him? Say: ‘Bring your proof. Here is the Reminder (the Qur’an) for those with me and the reminder for those before me. But most of them know not the truth, so they are averse’. (21:21-24)
All the earlier scriptures, even in their interpolated form, testify to one God, as the Qur’an has claimed but man-made works have invented other gods and partners beside Him.
Purpose of Creation
God of the universe is the greatest. But greatness is a relative word. Unless there are others who are lesser, there can not be a ‘greatest.’ Moreover, greatness would merely be a word if it is not recognized, or better still, realized in its possessor. For the realization of greatness of the Greatest, it was essential that there were others capable of realizing Him. So He created and the main target of His creation were beings of such intellect and wisdom that would be capable of realizing Him. Again, the recognition and realization would have no meaning unless those beings were granted the liberty of choice between the submission to and rejection of the truth. This leads us to the logical conclusion that the creation of human beings was the ultimate purpose of all creation. After the human beings were granted the liberty of choice, it would also be essential that those fulfilling their purpose of creation should be distinguished from those who fail. The earthly life is the testing ground before placing the worthy and unworthy in their respective abodes in the real and eternal life. The other beings in this world are to make possible the existence of the human. God created other living and non-living things so that each human being could survive for an appointed time till his transfer to the other world. So brother, our God is the same God who created animals and others for our benefit. He established and maintained a balance between all his creation. The balance is based on His divine laws, which are not to be transgressed. Man may tame and use the animals for his benefit as he may tame other forces of nature. Man’s diet has been destined as only the living beings but distinction has been made by the creator Himself between different living-beings according to their grades and class. The animals are superior to plants which can be sacrificed for them while plants and animals both can be sacrificed for man. Not all but only the prescribed and permitted animals can be sacrificed for man in a prescribed manner which includes thanking God for His permission.
God who created man did not leave him alone to come out of darkness through mere intellectual conjectures and discussions. He sent exact guidance to mankind in all ages and places in their respective languages through His chosen ones, the prophets. Although the previous scriptures even in their present form, verify what I have described earlier, His last and unadulterated Word informed us: “It was not in sport that We created the heavens and the earth and all that lies between them. Had it been Our will to find a pastime We could have found one near at hand if We were to do it”. (21:16-17)
“Do you not see how Allah has subjected to you all that the heavens and the earth contain and lavished on you both His visible and unseen favours? Yet some would argue about Allah without knowledge or guidance or illuminating scriptures”. (31:20)
“He has made the night and the day and the sun and the moon, subservient to you: the stars also serve you by His leave. Surely in this there are signs for men of understanding. And what He created for you in the earth, is of various hues: surely in this there is a sign for people who remember. It is He who has subjected to you the ocean, so that you may eat of its fish and bring up from it the ornaments with which to adorn your persons. And you see the ships ploughing their course through it. (All this He has created) that you may seek His bounty and render thanks to Him”. (16:12-14)
“It is Allah who provided you with cattle, that you may ride on some and eat of the flesh of others, many benefits you have from them, that you may satisfy through them a desire) in your hearts (of transporting goods to places). On them and on ships you are carried. And He reveals to you His signs (and proof of His oneness in all the above things). Which then of the signs (and proofs) of Allah do you deny”? (40:79-81)
(syed Abdullah Tarique)