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The Ability to See the Signs of God


 

Man must think on how he came into being, what is the purpose of his life ..

By: Harun Yahya
IslamiCity* –

Say: “Praise be to God. He will show you His Signs and you will recognize them. Your Lord is not heedless of anything you do.” (Surat an-Naml: 93) 

In today’s society, people assess the Quran very differently from what is the real purpose of its revelation. In the Islamic world, in general, very few people know the contents of the Quran.

Some Muslims often hang the Quran on the walls of their houses within a decorative cover and elderly people read it from time to time. They assume that the Quran protects those who read it from “misfortune and trouble”. According to this superstition, they consider the Quran a sort of amulet against misfortunes. 

The Quranic verses, however, inform us that the purpose of the Quran’s revelation is entirely different from what is mentioned above. For instance, in the 52nd verse of Surah Ibrahim, God states: “This is a communication to be transmitted to mankind so that they can be warned by it and so that they will know that He is One God and so that people of intelligence will pay heed.” In many other verses, God emphasizes that one of the most crucial purposes of the Quran’s revelation is to invite people to ponder.

In the Quran, God invites people to reject blindly accepting the beliefs and values society imposes on them and to ponder by pushing aside all the prejudices, taboos and constraints on their minds.

Man must think on how he came into being, what is the purpose of his life, why he will die and what awaits him after death. He must question how he himself and the whole universe came into existence and how they continue to exist. While doing this, he must relieve himself of all constraints and prejudices.

By thinking, while isolating his conscience from all social, ideological and psychological obligations, the person should eventually perceive that the entire universe, including himself, is created by a superior power. Even when he examines his own body or any other thing in nature, he will see an impressive harmony, plan and wisdom at work within its design.

At this point again, the Quran guides man. In the Quran, God guides us as to what we should reflect on and investigate. With the methods of reflection given in the Quran, he who has faith in God will better perceive God’s perfection, eternal wisdom, knowledge and power in His creation. When a believing person starts to think in the way shown in the Quran, he soon realizes that the whole universe is a sign of God’s power and art, and that, “nature is a work of art, not the artist itself”. Every work of art exhibits the exceptional skills of the one who has made it and conveys his messages.

In the Quran, people are summoned to contemplate numerous events and objects that clearly testify to the existence and uniqueness of God and His attributes. In the Quran, all these beings that bear witness are designated as “signs”, meaning “tested evidence, absolute knowledge and expression of truth”. Therefore, the signs of God comprise all the beings in the universe that disclose and communicate the being and attributes of God. Those who can observe and remember will see that the entire universe is only composed of the signs of God.

This, indeed, is the responsibility of mankind; to be able to see the signs of God… Thus, such a person will come to know the Creator who created him and all other things, draw closer to Him, discover the meaning of his existence and his life and so prosper. 

Each thing, the breaths a human takes, political and social developments; the cosmic harmony in the universe, the atom, which is one of the smallest pieces of matter, is each a sign of God and they all operate under His control and knowledge, abiding by His laws. Recognizing and knowing the signs of God calls for personal effort. Everyone will recognize and know the signs of God in accordance with his own wisdom and conscience.

Undoubtedly, some guidelines may also help. As the first step, one can investigate certain points stressed in the Quran in order to acquire the mentality that perceives the whole universe as an articulation of the things created by God. 

God’s signs in nature are emphasized in Surat an-Nahl:

It is He who sends down water from the sky. From it you drink and from it come the shrubs among which you graze your herds. And by it He makes crops grow for you and olives and dates and grapes and fruit of every kind. . There is certainly a sign in that for people who reflect. He has made the night and the day subservient to you, and the sun, the moon and the stars, all subject to His command. There are certainly signs in that for people who use their intellect. And also the things of varying colors He has created for you in the earth. There is certainly a sign in that for people who pay heed. It is He who made the sea subservient to you so that you can eat fresh flesh from it and bring out from it ornaments to wear. And you see the ships cleaving through it so that you can seek His bounty, and so that perhaps you may show thanks. He cast firmly embedded mountains on the earth so it would not move under you, and rivers and pathways so that perhaps you might be guided, and landmarks. And they are guided by the stars. Is He Who creates like him who does not create? So will you not pay heed? (Surat an-Nahl: 10-17)

In the Quran, God invites men of understanding to think about the issues which other people overlook, or just dismiss using such barren terms as “evolution”, “coincidence”, or “a miracle of nature”.

In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are Signs for people of intelligence: those who remember God standing, sitting and lying on their sides, and reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth: “Our Lord, You did not create this for nothing. Glory be to You! So guard us from the punishment of the Fire. (Surah Ali-‘Imran: 190-191)

As we see in these verses, people of understanding see the signs of God and try to comprehend His eternal knowledge, power and art by remembering and reflecting on them, for God’s knowledge is limitless, and His creation flawless.

For men of understanding, everything around them is a sign of this creation.

Source: Harun Yahya

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Posted by on December 25, 2007 in Articles

 

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Ultimate manifestation of God`s grace


 

The Quran represents the ultimate manifestation of God`s grace to man, the ultimate wisdom, and the ultimate beauty of expression – in short, the true Word of God.

By: Muhammad Asad
IslamiCity* –

READ in the name of thy Sustainer, who has created – created man out of a germ-cell! Read – for thy Sustainer is the Most Bountiful One who has taught [man] the use of the pen – taught man what he did not know. (Quran 96:1-5)

With these opening verses of the ninety-sixth surah – with an allusion to man’s humble biological origin as well as to his consciousness and intellect – began, early in the seventh century of the Christian era, the revelation of the Qur’an to the Prophet Muhammad, destined to continue during the twenty-three years of his ministry and to end, shortly before his death, with verse 281 of the second surah:

And be conscious of the Day on which you shall be brought back unto God, whereupon every human being shall be repaid in full for what he has earned, and none shall be wronged. (Quran 2:281)

Between these first and last verses (the first and the last in the chronological order of their revelation) 1 unfolds a book which, more than any other single phenomenon known to us, has fundamentally affected the religious, social and political history of the world. No other sacred scripture has ever had a similarly immediate impact upon the lives of the people who first heard its message and, through them and the generations that followed them, on the entire course of civilization. It shook Arabia, and made a nation out of its perennially warring tribes; within a few decades, it spread its world-view far beyond the confines of Arabia and produced the first ideological society known to man; through its insistence on consciousness and knowledge, it engendered among its followers a spirit of intellectual curiosity and independent inquiry, ultimately resulting in that splendid era of learning and scientific research which distinguished the world of Islam at the height of its cultural vigor; and the culture thus fostered by the Qur’an penetrated in countless ways and by-ways into the mind of medieval Europe and gave rise to that revival of Western culture which we call the Renaissance, and thus became in the course of time largely responsible for the birth of what is described as the “age of science”: the age in which we are now living.

“How shall I behave in order to achieve the good life in this world and happiness in the life to come?” However often individual Muslims may have misread this answer ..

All this was, in the final analysis, brought about by the message of the Qur’an: and it was brought about through the medium of the people whom it inspired and to whom it supplied a basis for all their ethical valuations and a direction for all their worldly endeavors: for, never has any book – not excluding the Bible – been read by so many with a comparable intensity and veneration; and never has any other book supplied to so many, and over so long a span of time, a similarly comprehensive answer to the question, “How shall I behave in order to achieve the good life in this world and happiness in the life to come?” However often individual Muslims may have misread this answer, and however far many of them may have departed from the spirit of its message, the fact remains that to all who believed and believe in it, the Qur’an represents the ultimate manifestation of God’s grace to man, the ultimate wisdom, and the ultimate beauty of expression: in short, the true Word of God.

Introduction to “The Message of the Quran” by Muhammad Asad

Note:

1 – It is to be borne in mind that, in its final compilation, the Qur’an is arranged in accordance with the inner requirements of its message as a whole, and not in the chronological order in which the individual surahs or passages were revealed.


Opening Chapter of the Quran – A prayer for guidance

Quran 1-7

In the name of God, the most gracious, The dispenser of grace: – All praise is due to God alone, the Sustainer of all the worlds, – The Most Gracious, the Dispenser of Grace, – Lord of the Day of Judgment! – Thee alone do we worship; and unto Thee alone do we turn for aid. – Guide us the straight way – The way of those upon whom Thou hast bestowed Thy blessings, not of those who have been condemned [by Thee], nor of those who go astray!

Second chapter of the Quran – Confirmation of guidance

Quran 1-5

Alif. Lam. Mim. –  THIS DIVINE WRIT, let there be no doubt about it is [meant to be] a guidance for all the God-conscious – Who believe in [the existence of] that which is beyond the reach of human perception, and are constant in prayer, and spend on others out of what We provide for them as sustenance; – And who believe in that which has been bestowed from on high upon thee, [O Prophet,] as well as in that which was bestowed before thy time: for it is they who in their innermost are certain of the life to come! – It is they who follow the guidance [which comes from their Sustainer; and it is they, they who’ shall attain to a happy state!

Muhammad Asad translation available with explanatory notes at IslamiCity Comprehensive Quran Search

 
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Posted by on December 25, 2007 in Articles

 

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An Urgent Petition to God!

 

1


 

I am suggesting that we suspend all appeals for a moment, and appeal to the One who hears all prayers, who knows all events and who has power over all things ..

By: Imam Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad
IslamiCity* –

I am heartbroken that we are witnessing so many trials and atrocities committed against Muslim and non-Muslim peoples and we are seemingly helpless to stop it. We are protesting, begging, appealing, and threatening boycotts, writing letters to politicians, and asking the creation to help us, feed us, accept us, love us, tolerate us, befriend us, be just to us, to listen to us, send aid to us, to dialogue with us. Yet, the destruction continues unabated. The atrocities mount, the injustices continue by us, and against us. The annihilation and murderous rampage in Lebanon is just the latest in a long list of human savagery against its own kind. 

I believe that the matter is beyond us, that it requires intervention by One who never sleeps, who hears every prayer, who keeps every promise, who is Just, and commands justice and who has power over all matters. It is the way of Prophets that in times of urgency, they call upon Allah ; that they acknowledge their wrongs, and turn to Him. Starting with the Prophet Adam and his wife; “Oh our Lord, surely we have wronged our own souls and if you do not forgive us and have mercy upon us, then surely we shall be amongst the losers.”1 The Prophet Jonah ; “And he cried out in the darkness, there is no God but thee, glory to Thee, surely I have been among the wrong doers.”2 Thus Allah said of him; “And had he not been of those who glorify (Me) he would have dwelt in his belly until the day that they are resurrected.”3 

And our Lord heard the cry of the pleading woman from above seven heavens: “Verily Allah has heard the word of the woman who argued with you regarding her husband and she complained to Allah, and Allah heard your discourse, surely Allah is the All Hearing and All Seeing.”4 The Prophet Zakariyya , called upon His Lord and asked for a son in old age: “Oh Lord grant me from you a righteous progeny, verily You hear prayers; and the angels called him while he was praying in his niche (saying) verily Allah gives you glad tiding of Yahya as a confirmation and a word from Allah.”5 

I am ashamed to my Lord that we seem to be asking for everyone’s help, when we have a Lord who merely has to say “be” and it becomes a reality. I am suggesting that we suspend all appeals for a moment, and appeal to the One who hears all prayers, who knows all events and who has power over all things. For a moment, instead of press conferences, boycotts, and pleas, we should turn our attention to Allah . I am confident that if we show Allah that we are willing to change, that we put our trust in Him, and turn collectively, to Him for help, He will help us. If we demonstrate to Allah that we are patient with adversity, surely our Lord is a Good Lord; He will send glad tidings upon us. “So give tidings to the patient, those who when affliction befalls them they say; “Surely we are from Allah and surely to him we shall return, upon such are the salawaat from their Lord and such are those who are rightly guided.” 

I swear by Allah, in whose hand is my soul, I believe that if we as a global Muslim community, call upon Him, He will answer our prayers. I am advising that we all repent to Him, and instead of collecting signatures, we collect trash from the street, sandwiches for the needy, money for the children in Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq, Darfur, Watts, Harlem, and the ghettoes of Europe, Africa and Asia. Instead of political discourse during our Jum’ah prayers should we talk about Allah. We should glorify His Holy name, we should praise Him, call upon Him, pray together and beg him for mercy, for forgiveness, for change. Surely Allah hears those who praise Him

I was inspired to write the following supplication, and I am confident that if millions of us around the world, say this or something similar to it, with sincerity, we shall see a change in our condition very shortly. We have nothing to lose and so much to gain. Wa Allahu Must’taaan, a bihi tawfiq

Imam Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad

Quranic Notes:

  1. 7:23 Al-Aaraaf
  2. 21:87 al-Anbiyaa
  3. 37:144 As-Saaffaat
  4. 58:1 al-Mujaadila
  5. 3:37-38 al-Imraan

Duaa for Global Change

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that there is no God except You and that Muhammad is your Messenger, 

Yaa Allah, I have wronged my own soul and I beg for your forgiveness, 

Yaa Allah, we the Muslims have wronged ourselves and if You do not forgive us and have mercy on us, then surely we shall be of the lost.

Yaa Allah, we believe in You, and in Your Book that you have sent, and in Your Prophet that you have dispatched to mankind,

Yaa Allah we bear witness that we are all paupers compared to you and that You are without need.

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that there is no mercy except Your mercy. 

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that there is no safety except that which You grant, that there is no refuge except that which You give. 

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that there is no humanitarian aid except that it comes from Your khazaa’in (storehouses), send sustenance to our hungry for you are Khairul Raaziqeen (the Best Sustainer).

Yaa Allah we bear witness that no one has power greater than Your power, 

Yaa Allah, we bear witness than none is to be feared except You, yaa Rabbanaa, free us of our fear. 

Yaa Allah we reject the tyrants and believe in you; for you are the Just, and you command justice, send justice to our suffering.

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that no one holds our future in their hand except You, we entrust our affair to You, oh wisest of the Wise, free us from our dependence except upon you.

Yaa Arrahmaan You are the Guardian of those who believe, guard us, 

Yaa Haadi, You are the Guide and without You there is no guidance, guide us, 

Yaa Allah, make us so that we do not ask except of You.

Yaa Allah, it is You that hears every cry, make us so we do not beg except from You.

Yaa Allah make us so that we do not seek to be loved, except by those whom you love, and show us the path to Your love.

Yaa Muqallib al-Quloob, turn our hearts to You, and make our faith firm in Your Word and in Your promise for surely Oh Beneficent One, you do not break Your promise. 

Soften our hearts so we shall not be stingy, free us of greed, free us of consumerism, free us of our addiction to the marketplaces, free us of our attachment to this world.

Yaa Allah, make us so that we do not seek to be accepted by anyone except You, 

Yaa Allah, make us so that we see Your signs and believe in them, and make us not of those who turn a blind eye to Your signs

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that there is no life except that which You granted, and that no soul is taken except that You send for it, 

Yaa Allah, we bear witness that there is no glory except Your Glory, that there is no healing except Your Healing, heal us yaa Rabb, heal our hearts, heal our communities, heal our wickedness, heal our dependence on other than You, Glorious and forever Exalted be Thy Name. 

Yaa Allah, You are the Lord of the East and the West. 

Yaa Allah, you are the Lord of the righteous and the wicked. 

Yaa Allah, you are the Lord of the Arabs and the Jews, 

Yaa Allah, you are the lord of the Lebanese, you are the Lord of Israelis, 

Yaa Allah, You are the Lord of the Iraqis, you are the Lord of the Iranians, You are the lord of the Kurds.

Yaa Allah, You are the Lord of the Sunnis, you are the Lord of the Shiites, you are the Lord of the Christians, and You are the Lord of the Muslims.

Yaa Allah, you are the Lord of the British, you are the Lord of the Americans, you are the Lord of the French, and You are the Lord of South Africa, 

Yaa Allah, You are the Lord of Malaysia, You are the Lord of India, You are the Lord of Pakistan, you are the Lord of Chechnya,.

Yaa Allah, You are the Lord of Bosnia, You are the Lord of the Philippines

Yaa Allah, you are the Lord of Darfur, You are the Lord of New Orleans, You are the Lord of Indonesia, and You are the Lord of Afghanistan, 

Yaa Allah, there is no creature in this universe except that You are their Lord and Master and to this we bear witness, 

Yaa Rabbil Aalameen. Bring relieve to those who are suffering.

Yaa Allah, there is no man or woman who walks, crawls, rides, or flies upon this earth except that they will come before You on the Day of Judgment. 

Yaa Allah, change the hearts of those who kill the helpless, of those who persecute the blameless, and of those who imprison the innocent. 

Yaa Muntaqim, if you avenge the innocent, then You are the Lord of the innocent, if You punish the wicked, then surely they are Your servants, and if You forgive them for surely you are the Forgiving and the Merciful

Yaa Mutakabbir, rid me of my arrogance, rid us of our arrogance, for the arrogant shall not be granted entry into Your Garden

Yaa Malikul Mulk, you are the King of Kings, you give Your Kingdom to whomever you please, and You take it away from whomever You please, and You exalt whom You please, and you belittle whom you please and it is You who has power over all things.

Yaa Allah, it is You who turns the night into day and it is you who turns the day into night and it is You who takes life from the dead and it is You who take death from the living and you sustain whomever You please without measure.

Yaa Allah, the sun and the moon is under Your command, the wind and the rain move by your decree, and the heat of the sun compares naught to the heat of the hell fire.

Yaa Rabb, save us from the torments of hell, from the pain of death and from the punishment of the grave

Yaa Allah, make us not a trial for those who do not believe in you and forgive us for our sins, verily You are the Knower and the Wise

Yaa Allah, join the hearts of the believers for if we spend everything that was on the earth, held a thousand conferences, and uttered a thousand slogans, it would not join our heart, but is You and only You, who joins hearts

Yaa Allah erect us as brethren in faith, upon pillars of light on the day when neither money nor our children will benefit us naught, except he who comes to You with a clean heart. 

Yaa Allah, our condition is bleak, we have disobeyed Your commands, we benefit from usury and withhold charity, we live in luxury and desert your houses of worship, we emulate the arrogant and despise the poor. 

Ya Allah, We have been fooled into believing that we can change our condition without changing ourselves

Yall Allah, guide our scholars, and blind the tyrants, for whoever is blind in this world, he shall also be blind in the next world. 

Yaa Allah, we have acknowledged our wrongs, we have repented for our actions and we have learned that it is you we must ask for help in our time of need, for surely You are the Hearer of all supplication.

Help us oh Lord of the worlds, guide us in our time of ignorance, and shower Your mercy upon the victims of unwarranted bloodshed for none despairs of Your Mercy except those who have gone astray.

Yaa Allah, disable the bombs of tyranny, the weapons of wickedness, and the car bombs that don’t care, we seek refuge in you from the punishment of the grave, from the punishment of hell, from the trials of life and death, and from the trials of the Anti-Christ.

Yaa Allah, when thy servants ask us about You, we shall say that you are close, that You answer the call of the caller when he calls upon You, and we shall seek you, and we shall believe in You, that perhaps You will guide us aright.

Yaa Allah, extend Your peace and Your blessings to Your last Prophet Muhammad ibn Abdullah, the truthful one, and to his family, as You have extended such to Ibrahim and the family of Ibrahim. For amongst the entire universe, You are the Praiseworthy and the Majestic.

And our last cry shall be Praise to Allah, Lord of all the worlds

Your humble and needy servant, Abu Laith Luqman ibn Abdulkarim Muhammad Ahmad

 
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Posted by on December 22, 2007 in Articles

 

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