By April 24, 2019 Read More →

Chapter Ma’un – Part 5

The objectives of the Quran are to teach me what I cannot know here.  The Quran explains to me what is beyond the sphere and capacity of this world.  In other words, that which is not available to human beings within this world, is what the Quran educates me about.

This universe refers to another type of existence.   Since I cannot experience it, so how can I know about it?  Analogy: this universe is an art, is the artist in the art?  No.  Similarly, we never experience the Artist of the universe.  Artist is not in the universe.  The universe is just an act where the Artist introduces Itself to me providing evidence of its existence in Its art. I, as a human being, can only logically deduce from the art that it must have an Artist Who is able to give existence to the art with all of its qualities.

The Speech of God uses vocabulary from this universe, but the content of the Speech refers to the Source of the universe which is not from here.  The vocabulary refers to the Source of Existence of this universe and It is not here, but that Source is what I need to have an answer to my human existential questions.  How can I develop my perspective of the Source of my Existence?

This world refers to something beyond my scope of experience.

Example: “Orphan” means something that has no guardian.  That is how I define it within my limited scope of this world.  But it must mean something more precise.  Just like the previous verses, we should wonder: “Why is the Quran telling me to be kind to orphans and to feed the needy?  I recognize that I have this sense in me already.

  • The Speech of God lets me know that: “I am guiding you about something beyond your capacity.”
  • Otherwise, without this news, I just have a humanitarian approach to the world and my existence. As a humanitarian follower, I do not know how to use myself in order to fulfil the purpose in my existence. I use my humanity to fulfill my own satisfaction by using the senses and feelings as if they are my own property.  Then, I end up distorting God’s teaching which is teaching me what my feelings refer to.

107:3 “and does not encourage the feeding of the needy.”

“Not feeding the needy/orphans as we understand in our worldly oriented culture” is that what the text means?  What is it then?  Previously, we defined “orphan” as anything which does not have defense against harsh treatment.  Example: the sun is an orphan within my capacity because I can insult it.  Can the sun defend itself?  No.   In my treatment of it, it is an orphan.  Let us take another example, if I put fire in the forest, then isn’t forest an orphan in my treatment of it?  A very obvious example is the relationship between child and parents: “Can the child defend himself/herself from the hands of his/her parents?” We can keep going with examples.  Another neglected insect such as an ant is defenseless by itself and I am free to do whatever I want with it.  However, if I am aware that the ant has an Owner and it is someone’s property, then I cannot insult it and treat its Owner’s work in an unjust way.

  • The Artist of the universe recommends or requests: “Give the due right to my work/property.”

How do I treat the Quran?  What do I expect from the Creator of the universe to tell me from the book?

Everything in this universe is countable and represented by a number.  However, if something is coming into existence from an infinite source, then there is no number to describe it in the universe.  Hence, mathematicians use the “infinite” sign.

  • The Source of Existence of my feelings is infinitely larger than my capacity which means I cannot put a limit to my capacity to love.

The Quran does not reduce the meaning of my existence to my feelings only but more than that, to all my experiences.  Quran teaches me how to benefit from myself and the universe as much as I can.  Otherwise, Quran would be read as a secular book bringing in no new dimension to my being.

Why are you reading the Quran?

Is it to get proud or brag of things you already know?  All my capacity is given to me to reach something beyond my worldly practice, especially their meaning.  I already feel the need for Eternal Happiness, so why does God tell me that?  I need to be told how I can utilize myself in the best possible way to reach Eternal Happiness.  After all, I am a human being riding on the donkey of my physical body, not the other way around.

Example:  when I eat food, what is the food for my human side?  Does food provide satisfaction for my existence?  What satisfies me as a human being?  Is it the physical substance of the food?  Perhaps, the qualities manifested in its physical body?

  • Eating food is a way to lead me to answer my human questions when I go into the meaning side of it.
  • When people lose confidence in getting answers to their human questions, they just ignore the universe i.e. the meaning pertaining to my existence that can be attained from eating food.

Every feeling has a meaning in their existence.  If something is meaningful for me, only then it can be satisfactory for my human side.  If the universe is meaningful then it must be a means to satisfy my human side.  How is that possible?  How can a transient thing satisfy my eternal expectations?  That is where I need guidance from the Quran that nothing of this universe satisfies me, but everything points to an Infinite/Permanent Source.

The answers that I derive from the Quran must be meaningful for me.  In order for something to be meaningful, the answers must be consistent with my human capacity.

  • Meaningful means must make sense to not only my mind, but also my heart must be satisfied as well.

Everything is provided and given to me.  I cannot be proud of anything given to me.  Example:  I am a good man, I appreciate beauty.  Rather, all these feelings are given to me to confirm that they are not from me and for that, I need guidance.

Do I feel the need for guidance from my Creator?

When I am hungry, who can prevent me from eating?  Do I need guidance from my Creator to eat?  No.  I need guidance with what understanding I get from the act and studying the process of eating.  Hungeràfoodàtasteàmeaningful meaning-> manifested qualities – > Absolute Qualities of the Creator.

There is no room to make the Speech of God redundant.  I need to understand the Speech of God within its own scope of objective.

My reality here is such that I love the beauty of this world.  I need a reminder to keep me in check by making me self-reflect:  Are you lost in the world?

My approach to the Speech of God must always be: “Why do you tell me this?  What is the purpose in telling me this?  “Give me a satisfactory and meaningful explanation that I would use my sense of appreciating the beauty the way I am made.  I do not need encouragement about loving a rose.  I need a meaningful explanation of the sense of love within my humanity.  Why do I have this sense of love?  What does it mean for me to have a sense of love?  Give me satisfactory meaningful answer for me as to make my life meaningful.”  No one needs guidance to love something beautiful for the sake of it.

 

 

 




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