By November 17, 2019 Read More →

Chapter Hashr – Part 4

Hashr, part 4

Recap: We covered the meaning of the Sovereign (al-malik), the Holy One (al-kuddus), and the Source of Peace (as-salaam) in part 1, 2 and 3 of these series.  Trying to understand the meaning of the verse below:

“It is God save whom there is no deity other than Him,
-the Sovereign, the Holy One, Source of Peace, Granter of Security, Guardian over all, the Almighty, the Compeller, the Supreme;”
Glory be to God, who is far above what they associate with Him.  God is far above anything they consider to be His partner.”  59:23

In this session, we will focus on the meaning of the Believer (al-mu-min).

What is mu’min (Believer)?

  • Root meaning of mu’min comes from “amina” which means to protect and give security to someone.
  • Al-mu’min means the one who gives/prepares security.

Al-mu’min can also be used as an attribute of the Creator of the universe.  That is, as a One that gives security or is the source of security.  In other words, security is provided by the One who is the Creator of the universe.

Which kind of security does the Creator of the universe give us as the Creator of the universe?  Is He a guard?

Comment: All your needs will be met.

Yes, as being the Provider of everything.

Comment: Being protected from danger, distraction and anxiety.

From the Source of your existence what would you like protection from?

Comment: I need protection from falling into meaninglessness.

This is a fine-tuned understanding of protection.  Example: You may get into an accident and then the Creator says that I told you follow the traffic rule. Traffic rules have meaning. You yourself can deduce the meaning from it.

Comment: I need inner peace where my heart requires serenity.

If someone does not find meaning in his/her existence, then there is no point in existing because there is no meaning to anything.  This is true for human beings, however for a tree (for example), I do not know because I am not a tree and I cannot speak on behalf of a tree.  That is, I do not know what is going on in the existence of a tree.  So, talking as such is pointless.  Nevertheless, we can compare according to our observations, i.e. as far as I am aware of something, then I can speak about it.  Bottom line, we are looking for meaning in our existence.

  • If you need meaning in your existence, that isn’t that like inner peace?

Can you describe what do you understand from inner peace?

People talk a lot about inner-peace, but we need to understand deeply what does inner-peace mean?

Comment: Inner peace to me means whatever happens by God’s decree, I need to be at peace with it.

Well, if you are aware that it is God’s will, then you must be more at peace with that.

The aim of this class is to redefine all the vocabulary we are familiar with.  We can use this kind of expression “God’s will” in our prayers, but not while we are reasoning what we mean by “God’s will”. We are understanding and exercising what we mean by our expressions in prayers.  As a result of which, we can be rationally convinced and consistent in our existence.

  • Do not escape your responsibility by saying “God’s will”.

“He is the Grantor of inner-peace”.  What does inner peace mean to you?
Example:  If you want a burger, then you tell the chef what you need.

How do I understand “inner peace” so I will ask my Creator: “In your verbal explanation/declaration of your guide (scripture) to human questions, you say that I am “mu’min”?  Yes, I understand that you must be mu’min.  This is a serious matter i.e. we cannot talk on behalf of God (example, saying, you are like this).  Although, I have not seen You but I understood that the Creator of this universe must be al-mu’min.  That is my conclusions after gathering my evidence from my experiences in the universe.”  In other words, imaan or belief is your conclusion.  I have concluded in this world that the Creator of this universe must be “al-mu’min”.  Belief is your conclusion satisfied with your humanity, not a “copy-paste” matter.  Copy-paste matter is “knowledge”, a learned concept.

If God comes here and asks you what do you want me to give you, what would you ask?

Whatever you can imagine, and wish is within your ability.  This ability is given to you by your Creator, as a ‘security deposit’.  Example: If I write a book, can I transfer knowledge more than I know?  No.  Whatever I write in the book is within my capacity of knowledge.  Whatever you can wish is within the capacity of your Creator.  Whatever created you, it must be within its capacity.  Example I ask myself: I have the ability to think.  People say that you are the product of nature.  I say: Whatever you mean by nature, is nature the source of my thinking capacity since I am its product?

Example: I have the sense of loving, sense of fear and sense of needing security.  Some people claim: “We are the product of nature.”  Do you have any sign that nature may have capacity for the sense of security, fear and love?  How do you define nature?  If nature does not have the capacity to think, then how can I be the product which does not have the capacity to think while I do?

Comment: Are you trying to say that “nature” is same as “evolution”.

Whatever is not clearly defined, it becomes hard to accept either be it in religious text or philosophical book.  With the word “evolution”, think about, how can things evolve themselves?

Belief cannot be rhetoric.  Belief must be clearly defined and then it becomes security for you.  Human needs (security, fear and love) want to be satisfied.  I want to secure my needs because my Creator gave me this need and so He must secure it.  “You gave me the need to secure it and so it is a promise from You because you say that I am the Grantor of security.”  I can only expect my Creator to give me security about my human needs.  Let us list what human needs are.

  1. The need for companionship. (There are billions of galaxies and I gave consciousness to you, what else do you need? All the birds are your companions, are you not satisfied with it?  The Creator is always in your community, isn’t He the Creator of your senses and body…?  You are with God always, air, trees…  Don’t you speak to birds, how beautifully you are made.  When you see a familiar cat, don’t you say how are you and caress it?  Isn’t that community?)
  2. The need for nourishment. (Farms are full of fruits/vegetables, isn’t an apple tree (its fruit) enough for a year?)
  3. The need for good health. (Aren’t we all healthy? Of course, if you eat unhealthy food, then you will be in trouble.  When we feel unhealthy, the hospitals are ready for you to go. Ultimately, the medical studies all are gathered from the order of the universe. Likewise, drags are created within the order of the universe, we can investigate and find them out. We know that this world is a transient world. The plane of our existence in this world goes fast and then starts to slow down when it wants to land i.e. you are getting ready to go into another type of creation.) We are created in a world where we die, there seems to be no way to escape from death. The universe declares that it cannot preserve our life, but we still need not to lose our life. The security for my existence and life must be provided. That need of security is what we really search for.
  4. Meaning/Purpose of life. (All questions/concerns are answered, and the problem is not to get the answers, rather to have the right question. Questions must be answered, and answer is not from the universe itself but from someone else.  I must concentrate on my duties: “what are my questions so I will receive answers, those answers will give me meaning/make sense to me.”)

We are not essentially aware of what to ask God to give us which is not already given to us.  The things we ask for are already given.  We need to ask what we need that the already created world cannot have the answer to. We must ask a one who can give the answer to me which is the Source of Existence (SOE) of my needs. This SOE must be only the one who is the one who can create the universe. Example: asking the richest man for $100 is absurd.  Rather, ask for something valuable like a property to invest in.  Let us ask our Creator something that is not given to me in this world but the desire to have it is given to me in this world by Him: “Give me Eternal Existence, a satisfactory and happy Eternal Existence.”

  • “Give me an opportunity so I will be secure in my existence until beyond my death.”

Prayer: “Oh God, my mother is ill, give her health.”  Hospitals are already in existence.  Ask something which is worth for the Creator to write a check for you i.e. “Eternal Happy Existence”.

What should happy Eternal Existence have?

We are needy and we are trying to get security from our Creator as a satisfaction for my needs.

Our needs are a source of challenge for us.  I need this, how can I get this?  What is the answer for my questions?  Questions are needs.  Challenge is in our being created and in our not being able to satisfy our needs by ourselves.  Example: “Yes I need food, but I cannot provide food by myself, unless it is provided by my Creator.” And they are already provided in this world. But when I consume them they disappear and when I die I will never get it from the universe, I will be out of the existence of this universe. Before I die I know one day I will be out of this universe. But my needs must be satisfied eternally, that is what I need. Who can guarantee the eternity for me? Only the One Who gave you the need for eternity. Only this One can grant you security of existence. Now, you can ask Him for eternity.

  • Combine need and satisfaction together.
  • We are so impotent!

If I find myself in the middle of an orchard, I must first admit that I am in need of these foods.  So that, I go and get it.  If I did not have the need, then food would be meaningless.  What makes food precious is our need for it.  We are needy and as a result we look for the Source of satisfaction for our needs. What satisfies my needs?  I did not create my needs, no one else can create them.

Existential needs are to keep our existence eternal.  I am a conscious being and I am conscious of my existence.  You want to exist, and you want to be conscious of your existence.  Consciousness must be aligned with life so I must exist and I must have life so I will experience my consciousness and other elements of my consciousness.

We need to be secure in our existence, life and all equipment of life (seeing, hearing, thinking…).  Also, I must have a satisfied life, existence and meaning, so I can say that I live for a right purposeWhat is the right purpose?  The ultimate purpose of our consciousness is to be fully aware of my Source of Existence.  Who is that One that gave me existence?  My desires?  My life?

Don’t you want to be with It and say that you are the One who gave me birth.  Our ultimate purpose of our desires is to exist eternally and have a happy life.

Let’s say if you come here and whatever you want is provided, but you do not know who provides them and who is interested in giving you existence?  Don’t you feel selfish if you do not inquire about the Provider of all your bounties?  Tell me who you are, why are you doing all this for me!?  Have you thought about it:Who gave you existence with all these qualities?”  Using things without wondering who is doing this favor to me?  How do you know that I wanted?

We need to get to know the Source of our Existence.  Everything (your consciousness) is secure, for what?  In order to get into a relationship with your Creator so you can get to know who is providing you with all favors.

  • Even a dog appreciates the favor from his/her owner by wagging the tail. That is, you are serving me, and I am thanking you for that.

We need to get to know the Source of our Existence (SOE).  Yes, my consciousness is secure, for what?  As a human being your status is not like a dog but you want to get into a relationship with your Creator so you will know who is providing you with favor and bounties.

Verse from the Quran: “The day will come, and they will rise with shining faces looking at their Lord.” (Chapter Qiyamah, 75: 22-23.)  That is the ultimate aim of existence, otherwise what is the point of existing in a meaningless way.  This desire of seeing a “dear friend” is a sign that you appreciate all the favor bestowed on you.

Ultimate aim of existence is to get to know the SOE who is providing all this to you?  Search for it.  Rather than saying, “Give me eternal existence my Creator,” get to know the SOE of you and the universe so that you will have a friendly, appreciative relationship with Him.

God is the source of security through giving you all venues and opportunities to get to know Him.  All other means He gave you (feelings, body, senses…) is to get to know Him.  No one wants to lose their memory and feelings.  They are all given to you.  He gave us all these in order to acknowledge the Source of all these bounties.

Mu’min is used as the title of a believer.  “I am the mu’min and you are the Mu’min i.e. we have a connection.  This desire and need is given to you by me in order to search and seek and look for me.  As we get to know the SOE, we become a believer and close to the One who gives us the capacity of recognizing our needs i.e. belief.

“I have a generous Creator”, that is manifestation of the name of God which is al-mu’min.

I want eternal existence to get to know who my Lord is in a personal experience, not only a logical conclusion that He must exist.  In this transient world, we will burn out to be with the Source of Existence.  The need to be with the “dear friend” is still there but s/he is not there anymore because the graveyard just has his/her flesh and bone.  Don’t you feel that this need of being with the “dear friend” or SOE must be satisfied?  Al-mu’min guarantees that this need must be satisfied because I am the One who gave you the need for it.  Before the answers, questions must be asked.  Before the source of satisfaction, need must exist and have the need for eternal existence.  If you are not thirsty, water means nothing.

If you do not have the feel for love and affection for your “dear friend”, then that dear friend means nothing.  Here in this world, manifested form, you want to see the SOE but life comes to an end and you are not in this type of creation anymore.   All your desires are not satisfied here.  Who gave me the desires?  Was He torturing me by not giving it to me in this type of creation here on earth?  Why did you give me this desire and not satisfy it?  That must be your struggle, a strong desire:Since you created me with this desire, then you must provide me with answers”.  You must be thirsty for your existential questions!

The need must be there then answer will come.  We must be conscious believers then the desire to see God must come.  “I am thirsty to be with you my God”.  Trying to get to know and confirming the Necessity of the Source of your Existence requires one to be thirsty.

He can secure your answer for you, how?

You must be a strong believer so you can say that I want to be with You.  “If you are a believer, then I am the mu’min. That is, I secure answers for you, don’t worry about it.”

“If you are a believer, I am the Grantor of security”.  If you have the question, then answer comes from Him.  I really want to see the Source of my Existence.

Classic scholarship says: “Aren’t we going to know God in the hereafter? The Qur’an says, yes you are.” But how do we know that this promise must be fulfilled? While we are reasoning, we have to avoid using copy-paste language.

Createdness is my existential reality in this world, Creatorship is from my SOE.  Hunger is my reality here and food is from my SOE.  Desire for love is my reality here, loveable things come from SOE.  Sense of hunger is experienced within my already existing being (it is with me, given to me, the way I am programmed).  In other words, from our side, the need is with me, the way I am programmed, while the satisfaction of our need is from Him.  We have to first be a believer in being together with the SOE as He will be the One to answer all my needs.  Who is He?  The Source of my Existence.

If I do not have the desire to know who put the food on the table knowing my needs, then I just open the food without checking in for the sender.  However, as a human I inquire who put food on the table?  Who knew me?  Who knows my desire?  Without wondering who is the Provider of food, will my eating be human?

Secular civilization encourages to use the universe, benefit and exploit the world without questioning who provides all this.  If you read a book by a notorious atheist person, do the same food experiment on him/her, wouldn’t human instinct care to inquire the sender of the food?  This tells us that humanity cannot be without belief, but human endeavor can pretend to have unbelief.









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