By May 27, 2015 Read More →

The Principles of Reading the Quran – Part 2

People of the cave never felt bad for staying in a cave for a long time, only the outside observers pitied them. Although aware of the mass culture, the people of the cave chose to live with their own worldview. It may seem that they were isolated from the rest of the society. Regardless of how many people they were, they never felt alien to this universe. The reason is that they found the purpose of their existence and were living in the presence of their Lord.We have to apply the principles of reading the scriptures into our daily lives. Let us take the example of the people of the cave as described in the Qur’an as well as in the Torah. You are one such person; think of yourself as being in the cave. We need to learn how to align our situation as that of the people of the cave.

  • Similarly, we need to establish our own cave where we gain absolute freedom i.e. freedom of existence. As a result, nothing will influence us.
  • My cave is that I belong to the Eternal One who is Absolute.
  • Their dozing off signifies the sign of resurrection i.e. my human reality (consciousness) never dies, but the universe is subject to perishing.
  • My human nature is not subject to transience but my physical body is.

The guidance that we get from the scripture refers to Eternity. As pointed out in principle #4, we should never extract worldly meanings from heavenly revelations: It is never about being good but always seeing the Creator as the source of that goodness. Nature of the revelation is such that it comes from an Eternal Source. We cannot reduce the meaning as being confined to this universe only. The Source presents guidance in terms of Eternity which is not only applicable to this transient universe but also goes beyond this universe and gives an Eternal dimension to our existence.

Example: we do not need God to tell us that we need to clean ourselves. It is in our nature that we desire to be clean.

  • How can I turn this worldly looking advice into a heavenly cause/Source and establish my relationship with the Creator? Eventually, our Creator loves cleanliness; He is letting us know that the sense of cleanliness in us is from Him.
  • While I am cleaning myself, I have to connect this action to my Source as an acknowledgment: this sense of cleanliness is given to me by my Creator; the ability to clean myself is from Him; I have to be clean in His name. My Creator is the cleanser (mutahhir).
  • Worship is attributing the act of our actions to Him.

Everything that we do should be done to acknowledge Him. After all He is the Giver of all our senses. That is the difference in cleaning oneself as an Atheist or as a believer (worshipper of God). We need to read the scripture in order to understand our own reality.

  • Purpose of revelation is to put us in contact with the Creator and act in His name and acknowledge Him.
  • While living in this universe, we need to attribute all activities to Him that is called God consciousness.

We need to have a vertical relationship with the Creator. As pointed out in principle #5, we shalt always see God in everything: There is always a sign to be read in the creation. Example: As a farmer, I grow vegetables. While farming, I need to be conscious of the act of the Creator in everything.

  • As a result, my perception of every event will change; I will respect His order and acknowledge His act of creation.
  • While watering the plants, I am praying to the Creator to give me a healthy harvest.
  • I am not a farmer anymore but I am an observer confirming my reality.

Anytime that we see names of produce mentioned in the scripture, through these examples the Creator introduces Himself to the reader so that we may observe, reflect and attribute qualities to Him only. That is the nature of the scripture accenting that there is always a sign to be read in creation.

How can I see Him in illness?

Illness is created for you; while experiencing illness, the sense of disliking illness is given to you in order to look for a solution. The illness makes you realize that you are in need of a healthy life and you THINK: Who can provide that for me?

If someone has never thought of the Source of his health, suddenly when he becomes sick, he questions the source of the illness: Where did it come from? The illness is not a test but a guidance prompting us to reflect on the Source of the health and the Source of the illness. Both health and illness are coming from the same Source to remind us that health is from Him. We need to use both opportunities to find the purpose of our existence.

  • Analogy: A good teacher gives us tests to check our knowledge, not to punish us.
  • Similarly, our Maker reminds us of our reality to teach us the purpose of our existence.

We first have to establish a world view (how we see existence and the universe) before interpreting events and deal with our situation. Bottom line, the universe is a school; we are being trained here, to realize the purpose of our existence.

Principles (usool) of reading the Revelation


6/ Thou shalt never read stories in the Revelation!

  • It is always about something you are doing right now.
  • Do you see anything in creation without purpose? Everything is created with wisdom. Interpretations to events is peculiar to our capacities, whatever wisdom we find out is our personal conclusion.
  • In the chapter of the people of the cave (sura Kahf), Khidr represents the unseen (ghaib)/that which we do not know and will never know.
  • We have to be in search of the unseen. When we interpret an event, we have to bear in mind that there is always another side to what we understand (ghaib), which is why no one can claim the Absolute Truth.

7/ Thou shalt never turn prophets into worldly wise men! They always train us to read the heavenly meanings.

  • What is the purpose in their teaching as far as the purpose of my life is concerned? They train us how to live in this world by establishing a vertical connection with our Creator.
  • I am here to improve my potentialities into abilities. The soul needs to be trained to become acquainted with the Source: the more you learn how to acknowledge the Creator, the better you become conscious of the Creator. The school of this universe is to acknowledge the Creator as the Wise One, the Loved One…
  • The Prophets are here to teach to us the vertical dimension of our reality.

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