Monday, August 9, 2010

Proof of Divinity

A professor from a prominent business school had invited me to take a guest lecture in his school and to share my experiences of setting up business with the students.

While I was discussing the pedagogy of my proposed lecture with him, the chief faculty of the B-school came in for some work. As a protocol, this gentleman introduced us.

The chief faculty was interested in my business and asked for my business card. When he saw my card he could recognize it as he had visited my retail store many a times and had high regards for it. It made me happy that he held my business in high esteem.

He said that his institute was really lucky to have a capable person like me to take up a session and he added that he was sure it would be quite enriching for his students.

I was surprised at this gentleman’s appreciation for me and wondered how he could judge my capabilities although he had hardly known me. I realized that he gauged my capabilities on the basis of enterprise which I created.

 The important result here is that either in your presence or absence you are recognized by the work you have done. And that is why Holy Quran has mentioned this on various occasions that all creations of Almighty Allah are Signs of His existence. He is Omnipresent, and can be seen through His creations.

Let us try to understand this through the following ayahs of Surah-e-Sha’ura:

(In the following ayah the community of Saleh (A.S) insists on seeing a miracle to believe him)
•“Tum bhi to aakhir hamare hi aise aadmi ho puss agar tum sachhe ho to koi mo’ajiza hamare paas la dikhao” – (Surah-e-Sha’ura, ayah 154)

“(You are naught but a mortal like ourselves; so bring a sign if you are one of the truthful.)”

•“Saleh (A.S) ne kaha yehi oontani mo’ajiza hai ek baari uske paani peene ki hai aur ek muqarar din tumhare paani peene ka hai.” – (Surah-e-Sha’ura, ayah 155)

“(He said: This is a she-camel; she shall have her portion of water, and you have your portion of water on an appointed time.)”

“Us per bhi un logon ne us ke paaon kaat daale aur us ko maardala phir khud pashemaan hue phir unhain azaab ne le daala – Beshak us main yaqeenan ek badi ibrat hai aur un main ke bahotere imaan laane waale bhi na the.” – (Surah-e-Sha’ura, ayah 157-158)

“(But they ham-strung her: then did they become full of regrets. But the Penalty seized them. Verily in this is a Sign: but most of them do not believe.)”

Here Saleh (A.S) on the insistence of his community displayed a miracle of a she-camel but his people rejected and killed it and hence were doomed and destroyed.

Before coming to any result let us see couple of more ayahs which will give us more proper and logical understanding.

Let me mention here two ayahs of Surah-e-Ankaboot:

•“Gharaz Ibrahim (A.S) ki qaum ke paas un baton ka uske siwa aur koi jawab na tha ke baaham kahne lage usko maar daalo ya jala kar khaak kar daalo aakhir wo kar guzre, to Khuda ne unko aag se bachaliya usmain shak nahin ke duniya daar logon ke waste iss waaqae main Qudrat-e-Khuda ki bahot si nishaniyan hai.” – (Surah-e-Ankaboot, ayah 24)

“(So naught was the answer of his people except that they said: Slay him or burn him; then Allah delivered him from the fire; most surely there are signs in this for a people who believe.)”

The above ayah refers to the incidence of fire during the time of Ibrahim (A.S).

•“Aur Hum hi ne Qaroon wa Firon wa Haaman ko bhi halaak kar dala haanlaake un logon ke paas Musa (A.S) waaze wa roshan mo’ajize le kar aaye phir bhi yeh log rooe zameen main sarkashi karte the aur Hum se nikalkar kahin aage na badh sake to Hum ne sab ko unke gunaah ki sazaa main le daala.” – (Surah-e-Ankaboot, ayah 39)

“((Remember also) Qarun, Pharaoh, and Haman: there came to them Moses with Clear Signs, but they behaved with insolence on the earth; yet they could not overreach Us. So each We punished for his sins)”

The above ayah refers to two prominent signs given to Musa (A.S) by Allah, one was ‘Yade Beza’ and the other was ‘Asa’, and as per the order given by Allah, he had displayed these signs in front of Pharaoh and his people to convey Allah’s message. And when they rejected these signs they were doomed.

 Now, when we see all the above ayahs, we find that every prophet came with clear Signs of Allah’s divinity. And when his community misbehaved with these signs it was doomed and destroyed. The other thing worth understanding here is that whichever creations we behold in our surroundings are Signs of Allah’s Existence and whatever the prophets had were Signs of Allah’s Divinity.

So while all the prophets had the clear signs of Allah’s divinity with them, Rasool (SAW), the last prophet, must also be having these signs, so let us try to find out.

In the following ayah from Surah-e-Nisa, Allah (SWT) has said:

•“Ae logo usmain to shak hi nahin ke tumhare paas Parvardigaar ki taraf se deen-e-Haq ki dalil aa chuki aur Hum tumhare paas ek chamakta hua Noor naazil kar chuke hai..” – (Surah-e-Nisa, ayah 174)

“(O mankind! Indeed hath come to you (an undeniable) Proof from your Lord, and We have sent down unto you a Manifest Light.)”

Here, as per the interpretation of the above ayahs, it is mentioned by many commentators that ‘Burrhaan’ (Proof from your Lord) refers to Rasool (SAW), on whom Holy Quran was revealed. While ‘Noorum Moobeena’ (Manifest Light) refers to guidance through Mawla Ali and rest of Imams from his lineage.

So, the fact is that Rasool (SAW) and Mawla Ali (A.S) and rest of Imams are the Proof of Allah’s Divinity. Now let us further understand this with more logical reasoning.

Let me first cover two important incidences pertaining to Kaaba and then we will try to connect the events and reach a conclusion.

let us see the following ayah from Surah-e-Baqra:

•“Baaz ahmaq log ye keh baithenge ki Muslamaan jis Qible Baitul Mukkadas ki taraf pehle se sajda karte the usse dusre qible ki taraf mudjaane ka kya baais hua. Ae Rasool (SAW) tum un ke jawab main kaho purab pachcheem sab Khuda ka hai jise chahta hai sidhe raaste ki taraf hidayat karta hai.” –
(Surah-e-Baqra, ayah 142)

“(The fools among the people will say: What has turned them from their Qiblah which they had? Say: The East and the West belong only to Allah; He guides whom He likes to the right path.)”

Allah says in the above ayah that East and the West belong to Him, then why did He change the Qibla from Baitul Mukkadas to Kaaba? This point is worth contemplating.

In the following ayah from the same Surah, Allah says:

“Ae Rasool (SAW) qibla badalne ke waaste beshak tumhara baar baar aasman ki taraf mooh karna Hum dekh rahe hai to Hum zaroor tum ko aise qible ki taraf pher denge ke tum nihaal ho jaao achha to namaz hi main tum Masjid-e-Mohtram Kaabe ki taraf mooh karlo aur ae Musalmaanon tum jahan kahin bhi ho usi ki taraf apna mooh kar liya karo..” – (Surah-e-Baqra, ayah 144)

“(Indeed We see the turning of your face to heaven, so We shall surely turn you to a Qiblah which you shall like; turn then your face towards the Sacred Mosque, and wherever you are, turn your face towards it.)”

It means that it was Rasool (SAW)’s wish that Kaaba should be a Qibla and Allah(SWT) fulfilled his wish as per the above ayah. Also, in the above ayah it has made mandatory for all Muslims to face the direction of Kaaba while offering their namaz. Historians say that this incidence took place in Medina, seventeen months after the event of Hijrat.

So why did Rasool (SAW) wish for the change in Qibla from Baitul Mukkadas to Kaaba?

Let me quote here one more incidence related to Kaaba, this happened few years before Rasool (SAW) announced his prophet hood and hence much before Kaaba became the Qibla.

It was Friday 13th of Rajab 30 Amulfeel, Hazrat Fatima binte Asad (A. S), the wife of Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) entered the precincts of the Kaaba and prayed to Allah saying "O'my protector ease my pain.' All of a sudden the wall of the Kaaba opened up and she, as if by some unseen force went inside the Kaaba and the wall closed. Ali (A.S) the youngest son of Abu Talib was born inside the Holy Kaaba. She stayed inside for three days. This incidence is well documented by many Islamic scholars and historians.

(Ref: Muhammad ibn Talha el-Shafei in Matalib-us-saool, page 11, Hakim in Mustadrak, page 483, Vol. III, El-Umari in Sharh Ainia, page 15, Halabi in Sira, page 165, Vol. I, Sibt ibn al-Jauzi in Tadhkera Khawasil Ummah, page 7, Ibn Sabbagh Maleki in Fusoolul Mohimma, page 14, Muhammad bin Yousuf Shafei in Kifayet al-Talib, page 261, Shablanji in Nurul Absar, page 76, Ibn Zahra in Ghiyathul Ikhtisar, page 97, Edvi in Nafhatul Qudsia, page 41, Mohaddith-e-Dehlvi in ‘Izalatul Kholafa’)

Apart from the above reference we find many other historians, sufi saints mentioning this event of birth of Mawla Ali in Kaaba. I am mentioning few such references:

•"No one before Ali was born in the Ka'ba. This was a distinction given to Ali in order to enhance his honor, rank, and dignity." (Ref: Nuru'd-din Bin Sabbagh Maliki in his Fusulu'l- Muhimma, Fasl I, p.14)

•Khawja Moinuddin Chishti Ajmeri mentions this fact in his famous Quartet saying that “ When Ali was born inside the Kaaba the Sky and the earth was filled with a light and Angel Gabriel announced that a child was born in the house of God.”

•Maulan Rume in his Mathnawi writes, “ O' one who travels to Najef to visit the tomb of Ali must know the fact that the pearl of the Kaaba lies there to give us security because of our intense love for him.”

•Masoodi the famous historian writes in his book of history Muruj el Zahab, that Ali was born inside the Kaaba on the orders of Muhammad the Messenger of God.

Now if we connect both the incidences logically it seems that since Kaaba being the birth place of Mawla Ali, from whom Imamat was to start, Rasool (SAW) wished that it should become a Qibla for all Muslims. Again it was to establish Mawla Ali’s rank, status and dignity in Islam. The other message which both the incidences convey is that the way all Muslims have to face the direction of Kaaba for their namaz, every Muslim will have to follow Mawla Ali and Imams through his lineage for divine guidance.

Let us move back to Quran and we may further find some incidences that would substantiate our result.

As per the ayah from Surah-e-Aal-e-Imran:

•“Phir jab tumhare paas ilm (Quran) aa chuuka us ke baad bhi agar tum se koi (Nasrani) Isa (a.s) ke baare main hujjat kare to kaho ki achha maindaan main aao Hum apne beton ko bulaae tum apne beton ko, Hum apni aurton ko bulaae tum apni aurton ko, Hum apni jaanon ko bulaae tum apni jaanon ko, uske baad Hum sab milkar Khuda ki baargaah main gid gidaae aur jhooton per Khuda ki la’anat kare..” – (Surah-e-Aale-Imran, ayah 61)

“(…If any one disputes in this matter with thee, now after (full) knowledge hath come to thee say: “Come! Let us gather together, - our sons and your sons, our women and your women, ourselves and yourselves. Then let us earnestly pray and invoke the curse of God on those who lie.)”

The above ayah is also referred to Ayah-e-Mubahila. As per the traditions mentioned by prominent historians the ayah was revealed when the Christians of Najran had contested Prophet Muhammad's claims to Prophethood and upon the instructions in the above Ayah, a confrontation of sorts was arranged where there would be a settlement of affairs.

As outlined in the verse, each party to the event was to bring their women, their sons, and Anfusana, their nearest of kin and of kind.

The Christians brought a great delegation of clergy and learned scholars whereas Prophet Muhammad summoned Hazrat Ali, Bibi Fatima, and his grand-children Hassan, and Hussain. He took Hussain (A.S) in his arms, and grasped Imam Hasan’s hand in his own, ask Janab-e-Fatima to follow him and Hazrat Ali to follow her.

As the Christian delegation saw these Five Purified souls approach, they quickly conferred among themselves and pleaded to call off the Mubahila at their vision of these Holy Spirits. They agreed to not question the nobility of the Prophet and his message again. A treaty was drawn up by Hazrat Ali to seal this agreement and the Muslims were never troubled by these Christians again.(Ref: Imam Fakhruddin Razi in Tafseer-e-Kabeer, Vol II, P 73, Allama Zamakhshari in his 'Tafseer-e-Kashshaf')

Saad bin Abi Waqas also relates that when the Ayat-e-Mubahila was sent down, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) called Imam Ali (a.s), Bibi Fatimah (s.a), Imam Hassan (a.s) and Imam Hussein (a.s) and said ’O my Allah, these are my Ahl-ul-Bayt’. (Sahih Muslim, Vol.2, Page 287).

From the above we conclude that while every prophet was given ‘Signs of His Divinity’, and they had shown these signs in front of disbelievers to convey their message, the way Musa (A.S) did in front of Pharaoh, Mohammed wa Aale Mohammed themselves were ‘Proof of His Divinity’ as we just saw that their mere presence in front of Christians of Najran at Mubahila was enough. Their divine faces and holy spirits forced the Christians to agree for the treaty.

Allah (SWT) has not spared people who rejected the ‘Signs of His Divinity’ as we saw in this article, then would He spare who rejects the ‘Proof of His Divinity’?
Rasool (SAW) has that is why said:

•“And behold whoever dies with the enmity towards Aal-e-Mohammed it shall be written on the Day of Judgment between his eyes that, ‘He should despair of Allah’s Mercy…’
(Ref: This is from the Sermon Asma which has been reported by all the Islamic authorities, Zamakhshari in his Tafseer, Imam Sa’labi in Tafseer-e-Kabeer )

And let me end my article with ayah from Surah-e-Furqaan:

•“Aur un logon ne duniya main jo kuch nek kaam kiye hai Hum un ki taraf tawwajjo kareinge to Hum us ko goya udti hui khaak bana kar barbaad kar denge.” – (Surah-e-Furqaan, ayah 23)

“(And We shall turn to whatever good deeds they did (in this life), and We shall make such deeds as floating dust scattered about.)”

When we think on the above ayah, it seems that the people who would reject the “Proof of Allah’s Divinity” i.e. people who would not have love for Mohammed wa Aale Mohammed, their good deeds would not be considered and their future would be doomed and destroyed.

 We can thus conclude that whatever we see that are ‘Signs of Allah’s Existence’, whatever prophets brought were ‘Signs of Allah’s Divinity’, while Mohammed wa Aale Mohammed themselves are ‘Proof of Allah’s Divinity’ and that is the reason so much importance is given to follow and love them as Allah’s mercy is concealed in love for them. So My Lord! Do have mercy on me on that Day of Judgment and keep me in the company of people who acknowledge Your Divine Proofs. Aamin.

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