What is the blazing fire?92:14 “So I warn you of the blazing fire.”
- Contradicting my human nature which is going against the guidance from my Creator. Then I will feel fire emotionally within myself, although apparently, I may pretend to be smiling. That is, the inside knows what is going on.
Comment: Believing in annihilation after death.
Yesterday went into annihilation if one does not believe that s/he belongs to an Absolute Being. Which kind of life this person must live then? This person will feel that his/her past went into annihilation and s/he is not proud of it because s/he sighs that I enjoyed for so many years and it is all gone. Example: once I was a young man, where is it? All gone. I am not sure about the future because I am living at this moment which is slippery as well. It is slippery because it is always going, and you cannot keep it.
Comment: That is always going to be the case regardless of whether you are feeling secure in your existence or not.
I am not going to lose my existence if I realize that I belong to an Absolute Being who is Eternal, and His Eternal Existence guarantees my Existence. If someone does not attribute his/her existence to the Eternal Being, what does s/he feel? Whatever s/he pretends to be, do not be misled as it is impossible to forget that life is going into annihilation and past went into annihilation. I cannot be proud of anything and enjoy myself now claiming that I enjoyed myself yesterday. So, what I enjoyed yesterday? It is gone, it is destroyed. For the person who does not attribute his/her existence to the Eternal Being, in whatever they do, it is gone, and we cannot retrieve it and get it back. It is obvious! Being proud of my yesterday does not give me any satisfaction at all now. Even if I am enjoying myself today, tomorrow it will be a yesterday and it will be gone. How can this person enjoy himself/herself? This person will suffocate between past and future and after death, s/he will be finished. No one can say after I die, I enjoyed my 10 years in the world. That does not mean anything.
Blazing fire encapsulates the heart. Heart is the representor of human feelings. All human feelings will be burning emotionally while in this world. Flame of the blazing fire goes up. They pretend to forget it or ignore it. When we are conscious of our existence now, we say “what are we doing?”
We study the Quran here and now. We have to watch out for the attitude: “As a believer, I believe in God and I am not subject to the fire because I will be rewarded”. People do not feel the blazing fire because they think that they are saved. As much as they are believers, they are saved still they may have some sort of concerns such as I am not a good believer such as a believing Muslim, Christian… Everyone has lots of shortcomings, mistakes, deficiencies and no one is perfect. Because of his deficiencies, s/he may think that s/he is subject to some sort of torture and punishment. What we must do here is to develop the consciousness and awareness that our existence belongs to a One who ever exists and is the Absolute One and is the Creator of the universe and It cannot be subject to time-space. That is what I belong to. In my treatment with It, I maybe a worst person i.e. I do not follow the rituals. If a person is a believer, s/he will say that my existence is secured but I am not in good terms with my Creator. This person always has hope that God will forgive me and treat me in the best way because his/her existence is secure. S/he may find a way to ameliorate his case because s/he has hope that s/he is going to be with his/her Creator. S/he is always with his/her Creator and his/her past is in the hands of the Creator, his future is in the hands of the Creator. S/he feels secure but his/her treatment with the Creator is not in good terms. However, his/her belief in God saves him/her. It does not mean that we should not observe religious requirements. We are talking about the psychological situation of any person who is a believer or not a believer.
Believer is a conscious believer, not simply that I believe in God and I do not know what It means. Believer is someone who has developed and worked on “I am a believer, and my existence belongs to an Eternal Being. Now, my existence is secure”. What is left is to make his/her relationship with the Creator better? What am I expected to do and how am I expected to deal with my life? That comes secondary.
Among the believer’s community, rather than emphasizing on the importance of belief and strengthening the belief, they provide the secondary matter (actions) and as a result, belief in God becomes external. That is, universe must have a Creator, and everything is created by Him, but this person does not feel the presence of His Creator in his/her existence. That is a great difference. Yes, to accept the fact that the universe is created by God is a necessary first step, but it does not give any confidence in one’s being. In the believer’s community, this belief in a Creator is taken for granted and not strengthened and established and brought down into his/her life right now. As if God is out there and I am created by Him. Just as if the laptop knows that it is created by an Engineer and it has nothing to do with the Engineer as it is working on its own. That is why the heart of that believer is not fully satisfied. What remains on this man? Rather than improving and perfecting and consolidating his belief in God that God is present in his life right now and his being belongs to Him, what s/he does goes into rituals to make his future secure. You should understand this psychological attitude. If you think God is up there and I am doing good work to sooth the wrath of God in me, what kind of relationship is this? What kind of pleasure can you get from your life if you fear God’s wrath only. Ignoring the consolidation of belief in one’s life and switching to rituals that I will be having a good relationship with God up there. That is not the solution. Solution is to consolidate and make sure under the evidence and signs to develop consciousness, improved, educated and trained consciousness that God is in my being. That is, I can see the Creator everywhere because I cannot exist by myself, I know that. I cannot breathe now by myself. I am given the ability by this God. In his/her presence, this person sees the presence of his/her Creator. Can you think that this person will go against the will of his/her Creator? No. That is why we always start from the end, not the beginning. It is easy to believe in God but bringing God down in one’s existence is the most important training I should do so that I will feel comfortable.
Even if I fight with my father, I know that he will not put me on the street. If I develop relationship with my father and feel that the father is next to me, can I do anything against his will? Can you do anything which will make him feel unhappy with your presence as a child? No. If you think that I am in the city and my father is at home, so I can do anything now. When you do not feel the presence of your Lord, then you think that you can do everything. Then, keep complaining that I am not a good child because father does not want me to smoke but I smoke. When the father is next to you, do you smoke? No.
We usually start from the wrong side of religion. Approach in the community is wrong that is why people are not satisfied and they easily fall into mistakes. Example: 16 years old high school kid tries smoking, at that moment he does not feel that his father is there. Brushing your teeth afterwards does not solve any problems. People jump into actions side of things: “Your father will get angry with you if you smoke”. But it is pleasant now with friends and the kid does not feel confident that father is next to him or within his/her existence. That is belief training, not reading any verse in terms of hereafter, but here and now. I must feel God right now, so I can feel very comfortable. It becomes easy then to refuse smoking.
Comment: You are not in good terms with your father, but you feel secure that he is not going to kick you out on the street.
That is against human nature. If you feel that your father is with you and your life belongs to him, then by taking care of your existence, you owe everything to Him. If this relationship occurs in his/her life, any human being will find it difficult to go against Its will, which is really his/her human nature. It will be very easy to prostrate before It. Let’s imagine that you are speeding while you are driving although you know that it is against the law and you will be punished by it. You still may speed. As soon as you see the cops by the road, what do you do? You slow down. That is very human nature. If It says, do not eat now, eat an hour later. It will be very easy for you to follow that because you are aware that It is taking care of you right now. But if the Creator God is up there and I am taking care of my life right now, is not effective. There is a distance. Challenge: whatever life you do, even if you make mistakes (everyone makes mistake) and you know that your father does not like it, when you’re with your father, can you do it easily?
Comment: People manipulate these relationships and turn it into habit. One may still smoke knowing that it is disapproved by father.
If you understand that your father takes care of everything and loves you, then as a human being you will feel grateful to Him. I know that He is giving this to me, He is providing everything to me, my being belongs to Him, He is always with me, I am always with Him. In my existence, I can see His action. He is operating on me right now. I breathe because of His Creatorship. I can see because of His Creatorship. I enjoy because of His Creatorship. This results in being grateful. Gratefulness does not occur by itself. It occurs alongside with your awareness of your consciousness of your Creator in your present life right now in everything. I am hearing because of Him, I am tasting because of Him and the whole universe is brought into your usage and everything is serving you. Gratefulness does not allow you to behave in such a way that in His presence you will smoke because “He will forgive me”. It is the classical defense of the people who emphasize on the action rather than belief. Example: if you smoke, your father will beat you. The fear will prevent you from smoking does not work. Respect works! Establish the awareness of God and respect of God. You can respect as much as you receive from It. It means you receive everything from It but how much are we aware of It?
Comment: There is a certain emotional emptiness even though I see the signs and blessings. What is the way of strengthening your emotional connection with God and building it up within you?
If someone says that I have a good intention about the Quran, it does not mean that s/he has studied every message in it and feel satisfied in that message. We must educate in belief matters but it takes stages. Can you be a physician without studying for 24 years? It does not mean that you must wait 24 years to get the satisfaction. Quran was competed in 23 years. That is, if you keep track of the Quranic training to understand the concept of the Quran, it takes 23 years. Without having any conceptual understanding of the teachings of the Quran, you cannot understand God. Worst scenario is people who think that they understand Arabic. The concepts of the Quran are not easy to understand, it takes time. It does not mean that I must wait 23 years to believe in God. No, it is a progress, and the person develops confidence by going through various stages. Just as after going through certain level of education, a physician knows how the body work as a physician for example. Before becoming a physician, the person went through certain stages and we must develop.
Emptiness comes from lack of confidence in one’s belief. It does not mean that s/he does not believe. God exist does not mean much. I believe that medical studies exist. If I believe in medical studies, it does not make me into a doctor. If someone does not believe in medical studies, he cannot start and will never be able to become a doctor. It is a gate into getting in touch with God. This universe must have a Creator. I am created by Him and let me see His Creatorship in my existence and the existence of everything. “Birds and planets are created by God.” How about your emotions, wishes, feelings, every single cell in your body and every single memory that comes to your mind, imagination…? Every single questioning and trying to get answers to it is created by It. If you want to get out of this emptiness, then question everything. Why am I concerned with this? Why are people saying this? What do I have to do? Become crazy of questioning everything. Child keeps asking questions and parents say submit yourself to God and when Ramadan comes, fast. I must build confidence in every sense where I feel obliged to be grateful to my Creator for every moment for everything. It takes time.
What is important?
Those people who are eager keep quoting verses from the Quran (we must call people to good and prevent the bad). Why? Because God says that we must do it. Instead, “Call people to the path of your Lord.” It means path, not the end. Register your child to the school so he will go to 1st, 2nd…class and on. Put them into the path. Path which leads to end (God), you do not reach the end at once, you must educate yourself. What is important here? Your Lord. It means you can call people to the path of someone based on how much you are aware of it, your Lord. Can I call someone to the path of the Lord that I am not aware of? If I am aware 1%, I can only call people to the path of what I am aware of. I cannot go beyond my capacity. If someone wants to call people to the path of Lord, he must first develop his understanding of Lord. So, I can call them as much as I am aware of my Lord. Can I teach someone Mathematics more than I know? Can I teach anything to anybody more than I know? No. People ignore that I must get to know my Lord and then as much as I am feeling confident of His presence in my life, I can present them that much. That is why, the language of the Quran is fine. “Call people to the path of your knowledge of your Lord.” It is very simple! We must be on the path to get to know God. You cannot be a first-year student and be a physician, you will kill people. That is what we are doing to our little ones. Leadership is important, but have you led yourself to the path? No education. Education is reduced to how you pray only, so ridiculous!
If we are sure that God is present in our existence, we feel grateful to Him. If I feel grateful to Him from myself not by force, then everything becomes so easy to do. It is like a corollary, necessary consequence of it. Do not worry about not following rituals properly. God is Merciful, do not worry about it. Some may say that you are calling people to sin. Instead of emphasizing on action, emphasize on the importance of belief training, education. Work on the verses of the Quran from belief training.
New generation are opening to all sorts of ideologies and parents are not qualified to satisfy them because they do not know. The next generation will not follow your tradition. You must prepare yourself so that when the next generation comes to you with lots of questions, you will be qualified to help them. Otherwise, we cannot really shape the mind of our child. The Muslim world is now suffering from it. “Islam is the fastest growing religion” they say. Instead, think of Islam as the fastest growing blood losing religion in the Muslim world. It is becoming fashion in most countries now accessible through mass media, the number of blogs of people who identify themselves as deists. The fastest deism is taking place in Saudi Arabia perhaps. Young generation says that religion cannot be like how they were presented through rituals only and they now say, “I have nothing to do with this religion.” They are secretly organizing their network as it is the only way to get out of cultural religion by opening and start questioning religion by themselves, rather than getting it from puppets of religion.
In Iran, for example, the fastest growing religion is Atheism. Religion is presented in a way that does not make sense. People cannot deny God, but they are aware that if I believe in God, it does not necessitate for me to be a Muslim. Believing in God is different from being a Muslim. Being a Muslim is reduced to whatever is practiced in the community which does not make sense. We must wake up!
Comment: You often cite as points of reference Sunday school teaching and Atheism being the fastest growing religion and loosing youth. The more I come to this class to try to learn, the more I feel that your challenge to us is to understand ourselves and the Creator better and develop that connection. How much does it matter that the fastest growing religion in Iran is Atheism? Does that matter to my connection with my Creator?
If you are aware of it, then it does not matter. This is just a red flag that you are aware that you are the product of “cultural religion” and it does not help you much. Your generation will never will be saved by the cultural religion. If that is the case, then what am I supposed to do you may ask? Then the alternative opens itself to you. Otherwise, people are very satisfied with themselves claiming to be Muslim or Jew… God does not make you a Muslim, you must choose to be a Muslim. Unless these people wake up, then they can be helped. This generation, forget about it. The next generation is coming up with questions and the questions open their minds to look for the truth, if they cannot find it, they say I do not know it (Agnostic), at least they would not dare to deny it. They will say that these people say something, and it does not mean that there is no truth.
Questioning mind always start with why do I exist? How do I exist? What is the meaning of my existence? Only starting with these questions and trying to find the answers, can the vacuum be dealt with. Everyone feels some sort of vacuum in their life which has degrees in one’s life. Becoming aware that this vacuum must be filled with serious and consistent study of the evidence that the universe brings. Vacuum is the result of lack of confidence in one’s own being. How can I deal with it? Pay attention to it. Look at the universe, question the universe and everything: Why do I like this bird? Why do I like daylight? Why do I like the moon at night? What does it mean for me? In the evening, moon light comes to you, question: how come it is provided for me? For what? It is a night lamp for me without disturbing me and at the same time not letting me be in deep darkness. Who is providing this? Someone knows me. I must be thankful. See the moon and say: “The One who created and arranged the moon is my Lord, I am very grateful to Him, He thinks of me in the best way much better than my father. He feeds me with whatever I need.” The sense of gratitude starts developing and improving in myself. As that occurs, the vacuum diminishes.
Comment: Having an Emptiness vs a perception of that emptiness. There will always be that emptiness. If you have hunger, you will always continue to strive.
You are on the way, but it does not mean that you have reached the destination. As you go on the way towards destination, you get closer and closer to It.
Comment: Size of your cup is also increasing. You are getting more and the need for more. The issue is what you make of that emptiness. Some people can choose to deny apparently, and some people can choose to question further. People can bring confidence in both ways while in tune with the reality and at the same time contradicting the reality.
- Everyone has emptiness to various degrees.
Comment: With every bite, I have thirst for two more.
To feel emptiness is better than not being aware of it. When you start becoming aware of Absolute Being, even one bite from the apple, if you really question it, you feel everything i.e. taste, color makes you closer to the presence of God in your life, so you become more grateful, this is Absolute Being. You are becoming aware of it because you feel that it is present in your existence and bringing apple to you with his own hands. Who is presenting to you the existence of the apple to you? No one can believe that apple is provided by chance. “Endless chances” as they claim, never fail at once! So it cannot be chance then. If you get closer to Absolute being, you feel less and less vacuum in your existence and you become more and more aware of details of vacuum.
The more you learn Mathematics, you become more aware of what you do not know of Mathematics. It is not the solution that I should not learn Mathematics. No one is perfect, and we are not expected to be perfect anyways. We must understand that. Perfectionism is the most effective enemy of human being, but we must be on the way. Start learning step by step.
People who are believing and not conscious of what they are believing in, how much they are affected by flame of blazing fire?
Quran speaks in black and white terms. If one wants to understand the Quran, its speech is addressing in black and white terms: Blank deniers and perfect believers. Paradise is the perfect place and Hell is worst place. “Blazing fire” is using the language for unbelief (kufr). When the Quran says unbeliever, it does not mean unbelieving people. The Quran speaks in a way where it objectifies things. I warn you to know that the idea of unbelief is the blazing fire, not the person. Example: The tribe of Samud and Pharaoh who are they? The Quran never mentions time and place. The point is not the people but what they did is described. The blazing fire is the result of unbelief, not the unbeliever. Unbelievers will go to Hell. Unbelief will go into the blazing fire. How much do I have it? I feel that much the effect of fire. Turn it into abstract form. Example: What makes a person a Jew? What makes a person a Christian? That is what the Quran is talking about. What makes a person an unbeliever? The idea of unbelief. The blazing fire is the result of unbelief. Unbelief includes the blazing fire. Hell is in lack of belief. If I do not develop myself 10%, there is Hell there. We must be aware that if anything disturbs me, then it is the lack of awareness and consciousness in my belief. It means that I must work on it, it is a sign calling me.
Comment: If I have developed 5%, at this stage I am 5% in non-Hell state. Blazing fire disappears there.
No one can be a 100% satisfied. Even the Prophet completed his perfection until 23 years of education. He is the most best chosen one as far as narration says. Noah preached his people 950 years. Success was that he did not include his wife and child. It means that no-one is expected to be successful in his mission 100%. Quran says 1000 years but 50 years, that means, he still did not complete it. Before reaching perfection, a little bit is left. It is a measure of time. 1000 centuries, 1000 years, 1000 days, 1000 hours or depending on your measurement, a period which will be perfect but still less. No one can reach perfection in his mission. That is, I cannot be perfect at all. Claiming perfection means that I will not be satisfied unless I am a perfect man. Then I always aim at being on the top floor and then I am not there and so I am not good enough. You have not started on the first floor. I must see myself where I am (first floor) and take one step to the second floor, not the 100th floor at once. That is why perfection is the enemy of human beings because it makes them fall into complete despair. When you look at the 100th floor, you may get disappointed. When you look at the first step, you say that I can do that. When you take the second step, the next step comes in and you get confidence that I can do this as well. Do not say that where I am now in relation to where I want to aim? Look at the step in front of you. That is why perfectionism is the enemy of human perfection.
Comment: If I am availing any opportunity in the best possible manner, do I not have the right to claim that I existed in the best state possible as oppose to saying that I have reached my best state.
I must try to utilize myself at the best level.
Comment: It is the ego that wants to get right up immediately. Remove the suggestion of the ego, then you will focus on the floor you are in.
What is ego, how am I going to take care of the ego? The more we realize our created-ness in every sense, the whole body is created, the nose is created, my eyes are created, feeling is created, day is created, moment is created, and any air molecule is created, and everything is created, the level of realization of created-ness removes the ego aside. Ego means claiming that God created me, but it is me who is successful. Here, created-ness in successfulness is ignored.
The more we realize that we are created, the better we remove what we mean by ego. It is a nice word but what do we mean by ego? “Hey, go away, I do not want you”. It is not a sweater that you remove. We must use a word that is practical for me, we need to understand the concepts. Ego means the opposite of not being aware of one’s created-ness at various levels. We can question everything. When you move your hand, how did you move it? My joints and system are there, and everything made perfectly. Who made it? It’s a conscious action. It is a grace of God. With the grace of God, I am moving my hand, how can you not be thankful? Thankfulness depends on degree.
92:15 “None should be cast to it but the most wretched,”
Unbelief itself is the most wretched one. Try to avoid it more and more. No one will be able to purify his spirit as it was given to him. Baby is created so sinless. When she reaches 15 years old, family is in trouble. That is the product of family. Baby was given in a perfect way, what have you done to it? We are spoiling ourselves and we need to go back to our babyhood. Can you be like a baby? You can by realization that I am totally dependent on my Creator. Baby is totally dependent on his/her Creator. S/he cannot order anyone and provide anything. For the baby in the physical world, Creator provides mom, dad for his/her service, who employs them for their service? God provides them to him/her. We are always a baby, who is providing air for you, for example?
The most wretched is the one who opposes whatever is true, looks for an excuse to reject it. Example: He is given orange but says that I bought it and paid for it. It is the result of my labor. His assignments are completed, and s/he says: “I worked for it for two days. “Shaqee” or wretched one, denies God’s grace. The worst ones are the people thrown into the blazing fire. We need to put this understanding into our practical life while we are here.
Tags: Al-Layl, Atheist, Blazing Fire, Conscious Being, Deism, Emptiness, Hajj, Kufr, Layl Series, Neediness, Perfectioninsm, Prophet, Religion, Unbelief, Vacuum, Youth