Friday, February 2, 2007

Tawheed is What You Need

Tawheed is What You Need

Allah—our Lord--is One but not like a number.

Allah is God alone and there is no other.

Allah is without peers, partners, or parts.

Allah is free of time and has no start.

Allah was before any of the creations were.
Allah is not subject to time—like all the things that occur.

For time: it comes and it has to pass.
The present is now—but it can’t last.

The past has come and gone and the future’s yet to be.
Being defined by time is a fact of our reality.

Now time and change are both related:
Time measures change and is initiated.

God doesn’t change—for a change must begin.
It has to commence and it comes to an end.

Start and change apply to all the created.
And that’s what Imam Al-Junayd clearly stated.

Tawheed is What You Need

Now, the atheists, they have Allah's worse curse*:
For reason witnesses there is a Creator for this universe.

All the creation stands as proof manifest
That there is One God for all in existence.

Allah’s existence is confirmed by the sound mind.
But the sound mind knows that in it God’s not confined.

For God was before the colors, light, or darkness.
And God’s not a reflection or image grasped by the senses.

Allah is Unique—that is, completely Incomparable.
Totally different, God’s reality is unfathomable.

Allah is not a picture or form to imagine or conceive.
And this is an essential concept every Muslim has to believe.

Tawheed is What You Need

Allah was before the “here” or “there”
The “in” or “on” the “when” or “where”
Allah has no origin and has no compare.

Allah’s not like the bodies or their properties.
Allah has no shape, or form, or extremities.

Allah is not in motion nor is Allah still:
For all movement and rest exists by His Will.

Allah is Adh-Dhahir and Al-Batin.
Nothing exists above or under Him*--
Or to the front, rear, or sides
Allah needs no place in which to reside.

Allah’s not measured by a volume or quantity.
And Allah is not a material or ethereal entity.

Allah is not a light, soul or spirit.
Allah exists without a place—although mushriks hate to hear it.

Allah is greater than all human conception.
Unlike us, Allah is without time, place, or direction.

Allah is Al-Ghaniyy and Al-Qayyum.
Allah has no need for anything—including, space or room.

Allah has no consort, daughter, or son.
And Allah’s not a body out of which things come.

Allah wasn’t born—nor did Allah bear or sire.
Allah doesn’t sit or descend and Allah doesn’t tire.

No size, image, or limits—God’s not in a dimension.
Allah exists without a place—it’s a sign of God's Perfection.

Tawheed is What You Need

Allah knows what was, is, and all futurity.
Nothing is hidden from God or held in obscurity.

Allah has the Perfect Power and immutable Will.
Allah gives life and death and makes one well or ill.

Good and bad both happen by God’s Decree.
So, whatever God wills, it will certainly be.

All occurs by Allah’s Knowledge, Will, and Might.
The Creator of all has the Perfect Hearing and Sight.

Allah has Life without organs, flesh, or soul.
Allah is Eternal and doesn’t age, rest, or get old.

Allah is An-Nur—to the light of Faith God Guides.
But Allah’s not an illumination that fills up the earth and skies.

God is One—totally beyond compare or need.
This is the Message of all the Prophets—and the essence of Tawheed.

Swarth Moor

* Curse: (in Arabic: La^nah), which means to be distant from Allah’s acceptance and mercy.

* The masculine pronouns He/Him/His do not connote that God is a male or of any gender, for God absolutely does not resemble the creations. These pronouns are used as a means of speech in reference to the Creator.

The Creator is Greater

“Whatever one can imagine, the Creator is Greater.”

God gave us minds so that we could distinguish between right and wrong—truth and falsehood. Our minds can be used to understand what is proper to believe about God and what is not proper to believe about God. Consequently, we use our minds to know that idols, for example, do not deserve to be worshiped, because idols are something made by humans—idols are in need of the people who make them and give them their characteristics. That which is made by something else cannot be the Eternal Creator.

Similarly, the sun is not deserving of worship, for the sun is also not eternal—it is a creation--and is in need of someone else to give it its characteristics. Likewise, we should know that none of the creations should be worshipped. The Creator--and only the Creator--is deserving of worship.

The Creator is Incomparable--nothing is similar to God. God is not an idol, or a planet, or an animal, or a human, or a spirit, or a light, or a “force of nature”. God is not a body and has no shape or place. God is not similar to anything that we may see with our eyes or might imagine in our minds. We can use our minds to know what is correct to believe about God—but we cannot use our minds to imagine God.

A wise person once said: “Think of the things God created, and do not attempt to think of the Reality of God.” All the creations stand as proof that there must be a Creator. However, the creations and the Creator are not similar to each other. This is why Dhun Nun Al-Misriyy said: “Whatever you imagine, God is different from that.”

Muslims believe that God is not an image—but that God created all images and is not similar to any created thing. God existed before there was space; God is Eternal; God does not change. That being the case, common sense tells us that the Creator is not an object, has no form, and cannot be portrayed by a picture or an image. Furthermore, we know that God is Beginningless. God created both light and darkness. Our imaginations cannot come to conceive of something existing and there was no light or darkness—yet, we know God existed before the creations and neither light nor darkness existed. God was and there was nothing else. This indicates that God is completely beyond our imagination. These are also common sense proofs that show the claim that the human being has the alleged image of God is categorically false.

The great Muslim Scholars mentioned many statements that the Creator is far too great to be a product of the imagination. Among them is the saying of Muhammad Idris Ash-Shafi`iyy. He said: “Whoever seeks to know his Creator, and concludes that his Creator is something that his mind can imagine, then he is a mushabih [that is, a pagan who resembles God to the creations]. If he settles on pure non-existence, then he is an atheist. If he concludes that God exists, and admits that his mind can not conceive God, then he is practicing Tawhid [that is, Islamic monotheism—the belief in the Absolute Oneness and Perfection of God].”

Ibn `Asakir said: “God is not grasped with delusions or thoughts.” Imam `Ali said: “My Lord, the Glorified, is Al-Awwal [that is, God exists without a beginning]. God is not from anything, nor mixed with anything, nor deluded about, nor is God a human who would be sought, nor is God veiled, thus contained, nor did God exist after God had not been existing.”

Abu Ja`far At-Tahawi said: “Delusions do not reach God, nor is God encompassed by the minds.” Abu Bakr As-Siddiq, the first of the Muslim rulers after Prophet Muhammad, said: “Knowing that one can not imagine God is a knowledge in itself, and attempting to imagine God is polytheism and disbelief.”

The imagination is related to those things that are perceived by the senses. God cannot be compared to what we see in the creations—consequently, a picture of God cannot be formed by the mind. Furthermore, the person who worships an image in his mind is in reality no different from the idol worshipper. The idolater worships a shape he has formed with his hands, and the one who worships a mental image, worships a shape he has formed in his mind.

In summary, the Muslim Belief is the only belief that clears God from all imperfection. The Muslim Belief states clearly that God is absolutely Free-of-Need and that God is clear of having any created characteristics. Muslims believe in One, Perfect, Eternal, Incomparable God who has knowledge and power over all the creations. Muslims can demonstrate the validity of their Belief with sound rational proofs that anyone willing to listen to reason will recognize as being true.

God sent numerous Prophets throughout history. They all taught the same belief about the Creator: God is One and there is only one correct belief in God. God is Eternal and does not change—therefore, the correct belief in God does not change. The Prophets were all Muslim, and they were all men of great integrity who called the people to worship and obey their Creator. Adam, Noah, Abraham, and Moses were all Prophets, as was Jesus. Jesus instructed the people in the ways of worship, but his Divine Message was altered and corrupted by misguided men. About six hundred years after Jesus was on Earth, Prophet Muhammad—the last of the Prophets—renewed the call to believing in One Perfect Creator.

God gave all the Prophets miracles to prove to the people that they are truly Prophets. It is confirmed by numerous eyewitnesses that Prophet Muhammad performed hundreds of miracles, and these miracles have been carefully documented. The person who wishes to be safe in the Hereafter needs to follow the Divine Message for this era in human history—namely, the Divine Message Prophet Muhammad conveyed from God.

The Religion of the Prophets is one. There is One God and one true Religion--the Religion of Islam. For one to become Muslim, a person simply says:

“I bear witnesses nothing is worship except Allah, and I bear witness Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.”

May God guide us to the acceptable deeds and the good endings. And Allah knows best!

God Exists Without a Place

God Exists Without a Place

In the name of Almighty God

“Before there was place, there was a God.”

The true belief in God is not based upon blind faith. God gave the human beings minds by which they can distinguish truth from falsehood and delusions from reality. The true belief in God is supported by sound rational proofs, as well as, authentic Holy Scripture.

God is the Creator of all, and everything besides God is a creation. This includes, light and darkness, distance and direction, motion and stillness, time and place. God is Eternal and does not undergo changes. God is as God was. God created Heaven and does not reside in Heaven. God is not everywhere, for “every-where” (or every place) is created by God, and God does not need any of the creations.

God is not in us, for God is not contained. God is not a material or spiritual being. God is not a body and does not have the characteristics of bodies. God is not divisible—consequently, God does not have parts and does not sire children. God is absolutely different from the creations. Whatever one imagines, the Creator is completely different.

The Muslims believe that God is clear of all imperfection. It is the unanimous belief amongst the Muslims that the Creator exists without a place. This was the belief of the Prophet Muhammad, who lived 1,400 years ago, the early generations Muslims (As-Salaf), and the later generations of Muslims (Al-Khalaf). The Muslim Scholars and Sages mentioned many statements declaring that God is free of residing in a place.

Prophet Muhammad said: “God was and there was nothing else.” Imam `Ali said: “God was and there was no place; and God is as God was.” Zayn Al-`Abideen said: “Glory be to God, the One Who no place contains You [that is, God].” Also, he said about the Creator: “No place surrounds You.” Ja`far As-Sadiq said: “Whoever believes that God is in something or on something or from something commits polytheism (shirk). Because if God were in something, God would be contained, and if God were on something, God would be carried, and if God were from something, God would be a creation.”

The later Muslim Scholars (Al-Khalaf) also declared that God exists without a place. Ahmad Ar-Rifa`i said: “The ultimate knowledge about God is to know that God exists without a how [kayf] or a place.” Fakhr-ud-Deen Ibn `Asakir said: “Allah existed without a place and willed for the existence of time. God is not bound to time and is not designated with place.” Al-Ghazali said: “Allah, the Glorified, existed without a beginning and there was no place. God is not a body, indivisible particle [“atom”], or bodily characteristic; God is not on a place or in a place.”

Muslims believe that Allah (the name of the Creator in the Arabic language) is not a body. Abu Hasan Al-Ash`ari said: “Whoever believes God is a body is ignorant of his Lord and is a non-believer.” Imam `Ali said: “Whoever believes our God is limited is ignorant of the Creator who is worshipped.” Abu Ja`far At-Tahawi said: “God is clear of all boundaries, extremes, sides, organs, and instruments. The six directions do not contain God as is the case with all the created things.”

It is the belief of all Muslims that God is not a body and does not occupy a place. God is Free-of-Need (Al-Ghaniyy and As-Samad). Places are other than God—they are creations, and God is not in need of any of the creations. God existed before the places existed. God is Perfect. God did not change from existing before and without a place to existing within and in need of a place. God is not contained. God is not dependent on anything.

The Holy Qur’an (the Muslims’ unchanged book of Scripture) declares that Allah existed before any of the creations (57:3), that Allah does not need any of the creations (3:97), and in Ash-Shura, 11 (42:11) the Qur’an says: “There is absolutely nothing whatsoever that is similar to God.” From the Qur’an, the sayings of Prophet Muhammad, the numerous sayings of the Muslim Scholars, as well as, the sound rational proofs, the Muslims can demonstrate that the Creator does not reside in a place, for created things exist in places, and God absolutely does not need or resemble any of the creations.

The seeker of truth should be aware that there are extremists who claim to be Muslim, but say that the Creator has body parts and exists above the ceiling of Paradise (Al-`Arsh). These people reach this misguided conclusion because they insist on distorting the meanings of the Qur’an. It is enough to mention to such people that the renown interpreter of Qur’an, Fakhr-ud-Deen Ar-Razi, said: “Allah is clear of being in a place or direction, or on al-`Arsh or al-Kursiyy.”

Also, there are those who claim to be Muslim, but they teach a doctrine of racial hatred in the name of Islam. On the one hand, they claim that white people are evil by nature, but on the other, they claim that God was born to a white woman in the year 1877! It is enough for these people to mention that the Qur’an says what means: “God does not give birth and God was not born. God is Incomparable and has no equal.”

Islam is a religion of moderation in both its practices and in its beliefs. Muslims believe in the existence of God while at the same time, recognizing that God is absolutely different from the creations. Muslims use their minds to recognize the existence of God, while at the same time, Muslims are certain that God cannot be encompassed by the imagination. It is essential that one understands that the Lord of creations is not similar to the creations. Muslims believe that God alone deserves to be worshipped, and that God sent many Prophets throughout history to guide people to the truth. Prophet Muhammad is the last of the Prophets—and God gave him miracles to prove that he was truthful.

The real success is based on being a God-fearing person who prepares him or herself for the inevitable reality of death by following the authentic Laws of God. The beginning of guidance is having the correct belief in the Creator and testifying with the Declaration of Faith to enter the fold of Islam. To become a Muslim, one simply says: