By December 20, 2021 Read More →

Chapter Sa’d – Part 3

Recap: The deniers don’t find the message of the Prophet as fitting to their expectations and ambitions regarding societal values and their economic benefits; also they do not want to change their way of life.  They seem to be rejecting belief in God, but that is not the case for they do not bring in a proposition that will solve our existential problems.  Rather, they do not explain how to understand the existence of the universe.  Their interpretations explaining the cause of the existence of this universe are making the ideologies and philosophies of nowadays.

Philosophy is the discipline of asking questions, but they do not come up with any solution.  Religious studies present some understandings, but the Divine Speech is not studied seriously.  They don’t analyze the concept of God that the Quran presents.  Also, the people who represent Islam, do not talk about “Absoluteness of God” under the witnessing o the universe.  The truth is available to everyone, but that is not the case where it is searched for seriously, unfortunately. 

Some people justify their denial of belief in a Creator by criticizing religious institutions as if it is not worth repeating the “taken for granted” concept of “the universe is given existence by God”?  These people say why should I waste my time with religion, for the universe exists forever, or it must have a beginning and an end.   For example, how do we explain the existence of a particle or human feelings, intellect or consciousness then?  Is my human consciousness the result of random happenings of particles or the human brain.? What kind of random is it since there is no random order in the universe?

Do you look at your human consciousness like a machine and saying that it is working, rather than questioning: How come my human consciousness came into existence?  No one says that we don’t believe in science, rather they say that materialistic interpretation of the results of the scientific discoveries do not explain any existential question.  That is what we need, an explanation to our human existential questions.  Philosophers and Scientists say that” “We don’t need to take consideration of religion, because we will understand how matter works by itself.”  However, none of these interpretations explain our fundamental human existential questions. This is the main problem in society.

Question: What happened in the first 100 years that led the Muslim community to lose interest in studying the belief foundations?

Very briefly some history: People were seriously considering the Quran and the message it contained during the first few centuries.  Later, these people tried to understand the text (the Quran and the Hadith) by using their intellectual reasoning rather than imitating what the texts say.  They wanted to understand and use their reasoning to comprehend. They came up with a critical view of the hadith not making sense in its content, which had nothing to do with rejecting belief. Also, they were interested in the chain of narrators, including the text of the narrations from the Prophets.  But the religious leaders at that time wanted to take religion as a “packet” such as “We obey and apply to our life”.  They didn’t question anything themselves, and encouraged the same among people who follow religion.  Hence, everyone became sensitive to the reasoning attitude with religion.  As a result, due to the clash between reasoning people and literal people, some Muslim Philosophers in order to defend themselves, tried to rationalize religion. 

  • The Philosophers used rationalism (i.e., giving the reason the priority alongside with their  acknowledgment of an Absolute Source).  
  • The Classical religious scholarship did not use reason to understand the text. 

Classical scholarship gained popularity because:

  1. The public did not understand the critics/interpretations of the Philosophers thinking that they didn’t believe in the Quran because they did not literally follow the text.
  2. The administrative power (i.e., the Sultans) did not want people to “think and reason” because they did not want people to stop obeying them.  Sultans wanted people to obey what is there and never question anything more.

Additionally, the content of the hadith narrations was not seriously studied and critically analyzed, rather religious scholarship concentrated on the narrator’s chain. They were extremely diligent about the narrators and their reliability. They worked tirelessly and devoted their entire life to these studies.  How about the content of the hadiths, what does the content say? No hadith scholars seriously investigated it. This attitude of just accepting ideas/religion without questioning was welcomed by the general public.  Every person who recorded hadiths were like data collectors of our time.  And the Qur’an scholars generally studied the Grammar, eloquence, and the rhetoric of the Quran seriously.  Thus, the reasoning side became weak with an emphasis on: “We hear, and we obey”. That became a pattern, but why do you obey? Our religion says this, and it is not harmful.  Good, but the Quran and hadith contents cannot be understood and reduced to a general understanding.  Common people are not specialized in anything, they may be excused. Unless you are specialized, you have acquired some principles of thinking and reasoning, then you can speak and carry-on discussions.  Otherwise, what will you convey?!

For people who do not study the Quran seriously, they think that people who believe in God took that belief for granted and explain belief in God accordingly. “It is happening this way because God created it this way”. The flip side of this is the same: “The universe is happening like this because things are coming into existence by itself eternally”.  Materialists say the same thing about consciousness because it is happening this way.  How do Psychologists make sense of consciousness? They say that we have no way of explaining why consciousness exists though they try to reduce it to the actions of the brain basing their arguments mostly on speculations.  Everyone uses their consciousness including animals.  Animals also know what they are doing.  How do we explain our consciousness?  We don’t know the real nature of it, how it happens, and consciousness is happening with the created beings.  However, if we reduce our existence to only the body, then we cannot explain the existence of anything including consciousness.  For them, human being means body.

A: The universe is happening as it is because that is how matter functions.
B: It is happening because God created it this way. 

A and B are not equal, but the method used is the same. That is, one confirms religion, the other one denies religion and confirms his own religion.  The reality is that we have consciousness, and it must have something to do with ourselves.

In Physics, they are far beyond the other science disciplines that study the physical analysis of the universe. Physics is the fastest route to understanding the workings of the universe.  Biology is based on Physics.  Physics studies are related to what the universe is all about. However, they never give any possibility that there may be a Creator who is an Absolute Being and attributes the function of this universe to Him.  Every one of these disciplines is bound to declare their bankruptcy in explaining the source of existence of the universe, just like the Philosophers did to explain what the truth is.

Once existence happens, non-existence cannot interfere into existence for there is no such concept.  There is only existence that we experience.  “If God does not create, then the universe does not exist” is just a theory.  There is no sign of nonexistence, nor is there any sign in the Speech of God that says if God does not will after giving you the taste of existence, then He will stop giving it to you.”

38:8 “How can the message be revealed to him alone out of all of us?  In fact, they are in doubt about My messages.  In fact, they have not yet tasted My punishment”

Who is this one chosen to deliver the message, rather than all of us?  What makes this messenger special than any one of us?  That is the main concern of the objectors who ultimately deny the reality or the message.  The punishment is experienced in denial here and now.  I may be negligent to the message and my reality, that is my loss and punishment from not benefitting from this universe to secure an eternal future.

38:9 “Or, do they have the treasures of the mercy of your Lord, the Almighty, the Giver of all bounties?”

Do I think that I am sustaining my existence? Can I claim ownership over anything of this universe?

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