Atheism/ Agnosticism

quranpicgreenIt is because of you yourself, O man, because of your disobedience and your going against the command of Allaah, that calamities befall you, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. And He pardons much” [al-Shoora 42:30].

To understands the concept of evil, let's study there following verse of the Qur'aan: al-Nisa’, 4:78.

Al-Haafiz Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) says: The words “And if some good reaches them” [al-Nisa’ 4:78] mean: abundance and provision, of fruits, crops, children and the like. This is the meaning of the words of Ibn ‘Abbaas, Abu’l-‘Aaliyah and al-Saddi.

“they say, ‘This is from Allaah,’ but if some evil befalls them” [al-Nisa’ 4:78], i.e., drought, famine, lack of fruits and crops, or death of children, and so on – as Abu’l-‘Aaliyah and al-Saddi said.

“they say, ‘This is from you (O Muhammad, peace be upon him)’”, i.e., because of you, and because of our following you and following your religion, as Allaah said concerning the people of Pharaoh (interpretation of the meaning):

“But whenever good came to them, they said: ‘Ours is this.’ And if evil afflicted them, they ascribed it to evil omens connected with Moosa (Moses) and those with him” [al-A’raaf 7:131]

As Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And among mankind is he who worships Allaah as it were upon the edge (i.e. in doubt): if good befalls him, he is content therewith; but if a trial befalls him he turns back on his face (i.e. reverts to disbelief after embracing Islam). He loses both this world and the Hereafter." [al-Hajj 22:11]

“Say: ‘All things are from Allaah’” [al-Nisa’ 4:78], i.e., everything happens by the will and decree of Allaah, which applies to the righteous and evildoer, to the believer and disbeliever, alike. ‘Ali ibn Abi Talhah said, narrating from Ibn ‘Abbaas:

“Say: ‘All things are from Allaah” i.e., both good and bad."

Al-Hasan al-Basri said something similar.

Then Allaah said, addressing the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), although this message is also for mankind, that the answer to this question is: “Whatever of good reaches you, is from Allaah”, i.e., by the grace, bounty, kindness and mercy of Allaah.

“but whatever of evil befalls you, is from yourself” i.e., from you, and because of your own actions, as Allaah says elsewhere (interpretation of the meaning): “And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. And He pardons much” [al-Shoora 42:30]. Al-Saddi, al-Hasan al-Basri, Ibn Jurayj and Ibn Zayd said: “is from yourself” means, because of your sins.

Qataadah said: “Whatever of good reaches you, is from Allaah, but whatever of evil befalls you, is from yourself” [means] it is a punishment, O son of Adam, for your sins. And he said: We are told that the Prophet of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to say:

“By the One in Whose hand is my soul, no worry or grief or hardship befalls a believer, not even a thorn that pricks him, but Allaah will expiate some of his sins thereby.” (End quote. Tafseer al-Qur’aan il ‘Azeem (2/361-363).)

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) wrote:

"Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Whatever of good reaches you, is from Allaah,” [al-Nisa’ 4:79], i.e., what reaches you of victory, provision and well being, comes from Allaah, a blessing that He has bestowed upon you; even if it is because of your good deeds, He is the One Who has guided you, helped you, made things easy for you, blessed you with faith and made it attractive to you, and has made disbelief, evil and sin hateful to you.

At the end of the saheeh hadeeth qudsi that was narrated by Abu Dharr from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), he tells us that his Lord, may He be blessed and exalted, said:

“O My slaves, they are merely your actions which I am recording for you, then I will requite you for them. Whoever finds it to be good, let him praise Allaah, and whoever finds it to be otherwise, let him blame no one but himself.”

According to the saheeh hadeeth: “The best prayer for forgiveness is to say:

‘Allaahumma anta rabbiy laa ilaaha illa anta, khalaqtani wa ana ‘abduka wa ana ‘ala ‘ahdika wa wa’dika ma astata’tu, a’oodhu bika min sharri ma sana’tu aboo’u laka bi ni’matika ‘alayya wa aboo’u laka bi dhanbi, faghfir li fa innahu laa yaghfir ul-dhunooba illa anta

(O Allaah, You are my Lord and I am Your slave, You have created me and I am faithful to my covenant and my promise (to You) as much as I am able. I seek refuge with You from the evil of that which I have done. I acknowledge before You all the blessings You have bestowed upon me and I confess to You my sin. Forgive me for there is no one who forgives sin except You).’

Whoever says this during the day believing in it with certainty and dies that day before evening comes, will be one of the people of Paradise, and whoever says it at night believing in it with certainty and dies before morning comes will be one of the people of Paradise.”

Then Allaah says: “but whatever of evil befalls you”, such as humiliation, fear and defeat, such as what befell you on the day of Uhud, “is from yourself”, i.e., because of your sins and errors, even though that is already decreed and ordained for you, because the divine decree is not a justification for anyone, and will not be accepted by against Allaah, or by people. If it were permissible for anyone to refer to the divine decree to justify what he does of bad deeds, then no wrongdoer would be punished, no mushrik would be fought, no hadd punishment would be carried out, and no one would refrain from wronging anyone else. This would cause a great deal of mischief and corruption in both religious and worldly affairs, which is something that no one can dispute, whether on a rational basis or on a shar’i basis." [Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (8/113-114)]

Al-‘Allaamah al-Sa’di (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:

"Allaah tells us of those who do not know, who turn away from that which the Messengers brought, who are opposed to them: that if something good comes to them, i.e., abundance, a lot of wealth, many children, good health, they say: “This is from Allaah”, but if something bad comes to them, i.e., drought, famine, poverty, sickness, death of children and loved ones, they say: “This is from you (O Muhammad, peace be upon him)”, i.e., because of what you have brought to us, O Muhammad; they regard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) as a bad omen as others like them regarded the Messengers of Allaah as bad omens, as Allaah tells us that the people of Pharaoh said to Moosa:

“But whenever good came to them, they said: ‘Ours is this.’ And if evil afflicted them, they ascribed it to evil omens connected with Moosa (Moses) and those with him” [al-A’raaf 7:131]

And the people of Saalih said: “They said: ‘We augur ill omen from you and those with you’” [al-Naml 27:47]

And the people mentioned in Soorat Yaa-Seen said to their Messengers: “They (people) said: ‘For us, we see an evil omen from you; if you cease not, we will surely stone you…’” [Yaa-Seen 36:18].

Just as the people of disbelief think alike, so too their words and deeds are similar. This applies to everyone who attributes the occurrence of bad things or the loss of good things to what the Messengers brought or to part of it; that comes under this stern criticism.

Allaah says in response to them: “Say: ‘All things”, good and bad, “are from Allaah”, i.e., by His will and decree and creation.

Then Allaah says: “Whatever of good reaches you”, i.e., in your religious and worldly affairs, “is from Allaah” who is the One Who bestows them and makes it easy to attain them by facilitating their means.

“but whatever of evil befalls you”, in your religious and worldly affairs, “is from yourself”, i.e., because of your sins and what you have earned, and what Allaah forgives is greater.

Allaah has opened to His slaves the gates of His kindness and has bid them enter by His grace and bounty. He has told them that sins prevent His bounty, so if a person does them he should not blame anyone but himself, because he is the one who has prevented the grace and bounty of Allaah from reaching him." [Tafseer al-Kareem al-Rahmaan (p. 188)]

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked:

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And if some good reaches them, they say, ‘This is from Allaah,’ but if some evil befalls them, they say, ‘This is from you (O Muhammad, peace be upon him).’ Say: ‘All things are from Allaah’” [al-Nisa’ 4:78], then in the next verse He says (interpretation of the meaning): “Whatever of good reaches you, is from Allaah, but whatever of evil befalls you, is from yourself”. How can we reconcile between them?

He replied:

"They may be reconciled by noting that the first verse refers to the decree of Allaah, i.e., it is from Allah; He is the one who decrees it. The second verse refers to the cause i.e., whatever of evil befalls you, you are the cause, and the One Who decrees evil and decrees the punishment for it is Allaah." [Liqaa’aat al-baab il-Maftooh (no. 15, question no. 15)]

And Allaah knows best.

nightblackblueIt is part of the justice of Allaah that He does not punish any people until He has first sent a warning to them and unless there is evidence against them. Allaah does not treat anybody unfairly. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “… And We never punish until We have sent a Messenger (to give warning).” [al-Israa’ 17:15].

In his tafseer (commentary) on this aayah, Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: “These words, ‘…And We never punish until We have sent a Messenger (to give warning)’ tell us of the justice of Allaah, may He be exalted, and that He does not punish anyone until after He has established evidence against him by sending a Messenger to him.

This is like the aayaat (interpretation of the meaning): ‘… Every time a group is cast therein [into Hell], its keeper will ask, “Did no warner come to you?” They will say, “Yes indeed; a warner did come to us, but we belied him and said: ‘Allaah never sent down anything (of revelation), you are only in great error.’”’ [al-Mulk 67:8] and:

‘And those who disbelieved will be driven to Hell in groups, till, when they reach it, the gates thereof will be opened (suddenly like a prison at the arrival of its prisoners). And its keepers will say, “Did not the Messengers come to you from yourselves, - reciting to you the Verses of your Lord, and warning you of the Meeting of this Day of yours?” They will say: “Yes, but the Word of torment has been justified against the disbelievers!”’ [al-Zumar 39:71]…”

A person who has never heard of Islam or the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), and who has never heard the message in its correct and true form, will not be punished by Allaah if he dies in a state of kufr (disbelief). If it's asked what his fate will be, the answer will be that Allaah will test him on the Day of Resurrection: if he obeys, he will enter Paradise and if he disobeys he will enter Hell. The evidence (daleel) for this is the hadeeth of al-Aswad ibn Saree’, who reported that the Prophet of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:

“There are four (who will protest) to Allaah on the Day of Resurrection:

  • the deaf man who never heard anything,
  • the insane man,
  • the very old man,
  • and the man who died during the fatrah (the interval between the time of ‘Eesaa (Jesus, upon whom be peace) and the time of Muhammad SAWS (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).

The deaf man will say, ‘O Lord, Islam came but I never heard anything.’

The insane man will say, ‘O Lord, Islam came but the children ran after me and threw stones at me.’

The very old man will say, ‘O Lord, Islam came but I did not understand anything.’

The man who died during the fatrah will say, ‘O Lord, no Messenger from You came to me.’

He will accept their promises of obedience, then word will be sent to them to enter the Fire. By the One in Whose hand is the soul of Muhammad, if they enter it, it will be cool and safe for them.”

According to another report, he said: “Whoever enters it, it will be cool and safe for him, and whoever does not enter it will be dragged to it.” (The hadeeth was reported by Imaam Ahmad and Ibn Hibbaan, and deemed saheeh by al-Albaani, Saheeh al-Jaami’, 881).

Everyone who hears the message of Islam in a sound and correct form and rejects it, will have evidence against him. Whoever dies without having heard the message, or having heard it in a distorted form, then his case is in the hands of Allaah.

Allaah knows best about His creation, and He will never treat anyone unfairly.

And Allaah is All-Seer of His slaves.

lovelysceneIsn’t it irrational to believe in God?

  • Being rational means being a moral thinker.
  • Being a moral thinker means believing in Allah.
  • Only the irrational disbelieve.

God says, {Say thou: "This is my way: I do invite unto Allah, - on evidence clear as the seeing with one's eyes, - I and Whoever follows Me. Glory to Allah and never will I join gods with Allah."} (Qur'an, Surah 12, Verse 108)

The signs of his existence are everywhere. Look deeply at your self, look at your fingertips can you create that?

If God exists who created him?

In your question you first grant that God is a Creator and then you ask who created him, making him both creator and the created in the same sentence, which is a contradiction.

Secondly, the question is meaningless as you imagine the Creator as subject to laws which govern his creatures, he created space & time and is necessarily transcendent in relation to both.

In this sophistry of yours your are like those dolls that seeing they move by strings, imagine that the human who made them must also derive his motion from the action of those springs. God is the *uncaused causer*.

Aristotle followed the chain of causality tracing the chair from wood, wood from the tree, the tree from a seed, & the seed fro the planter. He had to conclude that this chain which regresses into infinite time must have begun with an ‘uncaused’ cause, a primum mobile in no need of a mover, a creator who has not been created. This is the same thing we assert of God.

This question can only occur to a distorted mind. God is the one that substantiates existence. Just as saying that light indicates day & it would be a lopsided argument to claim that day proves the existence of light.

The German Philosopher Immanuel Kant realized in his Critique of pure reason, that the mind cannot comprehend infinite realities and that it is by nature fitted only to apprehend particulars. It is incapable of apprehending such a universal or total existence as that of divinity. Just as our thirst for water is proof that it exists, our yearning for justice is proof to us that a Just being exists.

Allah is the proof, which is in no need of another proof. He is the self-evident Truth; and He is the evidence that substantiates everything. He is manifest in order, precision, beauty & regularity; in tree leaves, in the feathers of a fawn, in the wings of the butterfly, in the fragrance of flowers, in the chanting of the nightingale, in the harmony of planets & stars which makes up that symphonic poem we call the universe. The Qur’an spares us all these arguments with a few, expressive words. It says without sophistry & in a decisive clarity the beautiful words found in Surah Ikhlas,

{Say (O Muhammad (sal-Allaahu 'alayhi wa sallam)): "He is Allâh, (the) One. Allâh-us-Samad (the Self-Sufficient master, whom All creatures need, He neither eats nor drinks). He begets not, nor was He begotten; "And there is none co-equal or comparable unto him."} (Qur’an, Chapter 112, verses 1-4)

Why is He one?

The entire universe is built out of one material and according to a unified plan. The 92 elements in the Mendelev table are built from hydrogen and in the same manner in which stars & suns flame-up in space; namely, by fusion & the emission of atomic energy.

All forms of life are built of carbon composites- they are all charred when burned- according to 1 anatomical plan. An anatomy of a frog, a rabbit, a pigeon, a crocodile, a giraffe, & a whale reveals the same anatomical structure in all. The same arteries, veins, cardiac chambers, & bones correspond in all of them. They all breathe, breed, die, & are born in the same way.

What is so strange, then, in asserting that the creator is one? Does he suffer from a deficiency to need completion? It is the imperfect only who multiply. If there were more than one god, they would fall among themselves, each taking his own creation to his side and the world would be ruined. To God is sublimity & compelling-attributes, which brook no associates.

If God preordained my deed, why should he judge me?

Your deeds are foreknown to Allah in his Records but they are not preordained for you against your will. They are only preordained in His prescience just as you may foresee, in the light of your knowledge, that your friend will commit fornication and she actually goes on to do it. Have you compelled her to do it? Or was it a foreknowledge, which came true, founded on your comprehension of the situation.

The cause of your confusion is that you conceive freedom to be absolute, the same freedom as doing what you wish in the world. Allah says in the Qur’an, {Thy Lord does create and choose as He pleases: no choice have they (in the matter): glory to Allah. And far is He above the partners they ascribe (to Him)!} (Qur'aan, chapter 28, verse 68)

Allah will not judge you for that which you have no control over, but you will be judged for the decisions you willingly took.

{Whoever disbelieved In Allâh after his belief, except Him who is forced thereto and whose heart is at rest with faith, but such as open their breasts to disbelief, on them is Wrath from Allâh, and theirs will be a great torment.} (Qur'an, chapter 16, verse 106).

This latter kind of freedom is real and the evidence for its reality is our innate, intuitive sense of it. We feel bad for the wrong we commit and good for the good. But all our actions are within the sphere of Divine Will. We find in the Qur'an,

{But you cannot will, unless Allâh wills. Verily, Allâh is ever All-Knowing, All-Wise.} (Qur'an, chapter 76, verse 30)

That is Allah, he who can to whatever he wishes. he created both predestination & free-will. Only such a God is worthy of worship! Compulsion is not a part of Divine law. The evidences,

{If we will, we could send down to them from the heaven a sign, to which they would bend their necks in humility.} (Qur'an, chapter 26, verse 4)

{And had your Lord willed, those on earth would have believed, all of them together. So, will you (O Muhammad) then compel mankind, until they become believers.} (Qur'an, chapter 10, verse 99)

Fate & predestination should not be conceived as a forcing of people to what is against their natures; on the contrary, Allah destines each human being to a fate which corresponds to his intentions- He wills him to what he himself really wills and he desires for him what he himself desires. There is no duality here.

{In their hearts is a disease; and Allah has increased their disease: and grievous is the penalty they (incur), because they are false (to themselves).} (Qur'an, chapter 2, verse 10)

{But to those who receive guidance, He increases the (light of) guidance, and bestows on them their piety and restraint (from evil).} (Qur'an, chapter 47, verse 17)

Why did the ‘all-loving’ God create evil?

We say that Allah is all-merciful and good- he did not enjoin evil. Allah wanted us to be free and freedom necessitates error; it would be meaningless if it did not allow us the right to trial, error, and right judgement with the unrestricted choice between sin and is the rule, disease the exception.

We can discern a benevolent aspect in almost everything. Sickness bequeaths immunity, suffering engenders hardiness, fortitude, & endurance; earthquakes relieve the pent-up pressures inside the earth preventing its crust from blowing up & restoring mountains to their places; volcanoes spew up minerals & other hidden resources thus covering the land with rich soil. The ancient wisdom holds true:

“Out of the snakes poison comes the antidote”.

Health glitters as a crown on our heads that is only known when we are ill, it is also impossible to know beauty but for ugliness or know their normal without the abnormal.

As Imaam al-Ghazali said,

“The universe’s imperfections are the essence of its perfection just as the curving shape of the bow is the essential feature…”

Evil sort out men & reveal their true nature, tribulations and trials are tests which determine our degrees in the sight of Allah.

This world is but one play that has many deaths; this is not the end of the story but it’s beginning. It is inadmissible to judge a play on the testimony of just one act or to reject a book because its first page did not appeal to us. The judgement in both cases is incomplete. The entire significance of any such work can only be known at its end. We now ask you, what have you done to deserve paradise on earth? Evil in the universe is like the shaded specs in a painting; if you come very near to the painting, you will see these parts as defects and faults in it; but if you draw back a distance and take a general view of the painting as a whole, you will discover that the shades are necessary & indispensable. How far and just is the artist! Allah sends the winds and makes the river flow but a greedy captain may overload his ship with people & goods & when it sinks, he curses fate and destiny. What is Allah’s fault here? He sent a benevolent wind and caused the river to flow smoothly but greed and avarice turned this good into evil. In a nutshell, with such fine beautiful words we end this section.

'All good is from Allah, and all evil: the consequences of the whispering of satan.'

What about those who were not reached by the Qur’an or a miracle so they believe?

You have based your question on a false premise; many messenger were sent with the same message some we know & some we don’t. Allah sends intimations to everything,

{And your Lord inspired the bee, saying, "Take your habitations in the mountains and in the trees and in what they erect.} (Qur'an, chapter 16, verse 68)

This inspiration maybe a revelation, a Book delivered by Gabriel, or an illumination caused by Allah in a person’ heart. It can be a state of ‘relief’, in a mental disposition, an insight into truth, or an understanding of things. It can take the shape of reverence towards and fear of Allah aswell as an attitude of piety. Indeed no-one that ever ‘tunes-up’ their senses will be deprived from receiving a favour from Allah. But those who block their ears & hearts will have no benefit from any number of books, Messengers, or miracles. Some have lived in the time of Moses and saw him with their own eyes parting the sea with his staff; others lived in the time of Jesus and witnessed how he raised the dead. We see that sometimes belief & disbelief do not hinge upon miracles. Obdurate non-believers just called these miracles 'fabricated sorcery’. Allah blesses whomever He wills of his creature with His mercy and He is accountable before NONE for his decisions.

Indeed only such a God is worthy of worship! He, who can do whatsoever he wishes and he has no one to answer! He may send warnings to some but not to others. A mere fearful glance at the sky and the true conviction of monotheism by the primitive negro may make him a Muslim. A closer consideration of the creed of such primitive Negroes reveals that they had messengers and revelations like our own. We know,for instance, that:

The Mau May tribe believes in a God called ‘Magabe’ & describes him as a single being neither begotten nor begets and that has no equal or like.

Niam Niam people believe in a single divinity they call ‘Mbole’ who according to their sayings, moves everything in the jungle, visits the evildoers with thunderboilts, and rewards the virtuous with livelihood, blessing and security.

The Shylock tribe, we also know, believes in Jok, a single deity whom they describe as both invisible & manifest. He abides in the sky and He is the creator of everything.

The Denkas believe in a single God, Nialok, whose name literally means ‘he who is in the sky’ or the sublime.

Allah says, {Verily! those who believe and those who are Jews and Christians, and Sabians, whoever believes In Allâh and the Last Day and do righteous good deeds shall have their reward with their Lord, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.} (Qur'an, chapter 2, verse 62)

Even the Sabeans will have their wages from Allah, the most high.

{And to Allâh belong the east and the west, so wherever you turn yourselves or your faces there is the face of Allâh (and He is High above, over his Throne). Surely! Allâh is All-Sufficient for his creatures' needs, All-Knowing.} (Qur'aan, chapter 4, verse 115)

Allah knows what is in the heart.

The coming of miracles is always accompanied by an increase in the severity of punishment for those who disbelieve after seeing them. Happy indeed are those who believe in revelation without witnessing any miracles. And woe to those who see them but persist in disbelieving. Allah sayings the Qur’an that he will only punish those who he warned beforehand through his message,

{Whoever goes right, Then He goes right Only for the benefit of his own self. And whoever goes astray, Then He goes astray to his own loss. No one laden with burdens can bear another's burden. And we never Punish until we have sent a Messenger (to give warning).} (Qur'an, chapter 17, verse 15)

The peculiar aspect of this question, in this connection is the deceptive pretence of belief an pity for those unreached by the Qur’an. The questioner is endeavouring to persuade us of an argument, for which they personally do not have any proof. Thus their reasoning is in need of mending.

Paradise & hell

What we first need to learn is the fact that we are not insignificant in the eyedoorparadisehells of Allah. Didn’t He command the angels to bow for us? Didn’t He promise us the inheritance of the earth and the heavens?

Although our bodies may be like grains in the wide, spacious world, but don’t we comprehend this universe with our minds, realizing its law and defining the orbits of its planets & stars? Thus our deeds do necessitate accountability. Allah knows they lie in their promise of improvement. We are definitely not dealing with a transgression limited to a point in time but one that continues through time and after time itself has ended. We are really confronting a psyche that carries within itself its eternal evil. Hence, everlasting torment is only equitable for such souls. If they were admitted to Paradise they would not be able to enjoy it. Didn’t they disdain peace while on earth? Torments in the hereafter are not a form of tyranny Allah exercises over His creatures but a kind of purification enlightenment, correction & mercy. Allah does not punish the believer who has knowledge him; he only visits his torment on the obdurate disbeliever with whom all means of guidance and acquainting with the faith and all explanations of it have failed. It is Allah’s law that they should taste the minor punishments of this world to be roused from their torpor and frightened out of their deafness & slumber ‘so that they may return to the right path’. If all such approaches fail, with the disbelievers persisting in their attitude, there remains only one option open: to inflict the promised torments on him so that he may come to know the truth. Acquaintance with the truth is the essence of mercy. Should Allah neglect those obstinate disbelievers in their blind ignorance, He would be unjust- far removed is He from this.

Question: Would Allah be just if He treated both sinners and sinned against, murderers & murdered in the same manner throwing up a tea party for all on the Last day? Is justice synonymous to equalling wrong & right? To those that find it impossible for Allah to inflict punishment we may say: Doesn’t He actually inflict suffering on us in the world? Aren’t old age, sickness, cancer….etc. basic forms of torment? Who created the microbe? Aren’t these all warnings that the True One God  does as he wishes without being account able to anyone?

Religion in just an opium for those who want to help their guilt(s)

Those who ask this question are referring to materialists and their Ideas and is an extremely erroneous accusation. Firstly Islaam stresses work and not laziness, watchfulness, attentiveness, alertness, self-questioning & heeding of conscience in every deed and word; this is not the way of opium-eaters!!

Islaam in its quintessence is rationalistic. It accepts dialogue & argument & encourages the use of mind as reasoning. In more than one place we find in the Qur’an, Allah asking rhetorically,

‘Don’t they reason?', ‘Don’t they understand?’ (Q: The spoils:22, The pilgrimage:40)

"Let me explain the problem science has with God." The atheist professor of philosophy then pauses before his class and asks one of his new students to stand.

straightpathjannahProfessor: "You're a Muslim, aren't you, son?"


"Yes, sir"

Professor: "So you believe in God?"



Professor: "Is God good?"


"Sure! God's good"

Professor: "Is God all-powerful? Can God do anything?"



The professor grins knowingly and considers for a moment. "Here's one for you. Let's say there's a sick person over here and you can cure him. You can do it. Would you help them? Would you try?"


"Yes sir, I would"

Professor: "So you're good...!"


"I wouldn't say that"

Professor: "Why not say that? You would help a sick and maimed person if you could in fact most of us would if we could... God doesn't."

(No answer)

"He doesn't, does he? My brother was a Muslim who died of cancer even though he prayed to God to heal him. How is this God good?  Hmmm? Can you answer that one?"

(No answer)

The elderly man is sympathetic. "No, you can't, can you?" He takes a sip of water from a glass on his desk to give the student time to relax. "In philosophy, you have to go easy with the new ones."

"Let's start again, young fella."

Professor: "Is God good?"


"Er... Yes"

Professor: "Is Satan good?"



Professor: "Where does Satan come from?"


"The student falters. From... God..."

Professor: "That's right. God made Satan, didn't He?"

The elderly man runs his bony fingers through his thinning hair and turns to the smirking, student audience. "I think we're going to have a lot of fun this semester, ladies and gentlemen". He turns back to the Muslim.

"Tell me, son. Is there evil in this world?"


"Yes, sir"

Professor: "Evil's everywhere, isn't it? Did God make everything?"



Professor: "Who created evil?"

(No answer)

Professor: "Is there sickness in this world? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All the terrible things - do they exist in this world?"

The student squirms on his feet.



Professor: "Who created them?"

(No answer)

The professor suddenly shouts at his student. "WHO CREATED THEM? TELL ME, PLEASE!"

The professor closes in for the kill and climbs into the Muslim's face. In a still small voice, "God created all evil, didn't He, son?"

(No answer)

The student tries to hold the steady, experienced gaze and fails. Suddenly the lecturer breaks away to pace the front of the classroom like an aging panther. The class is mesmerized. "Tell me, he continues, How is it that this God is good if He created all evil throughout all time? The professor swishes his arms around to encompass the wickedness of the world. All the hatred, the brutality, all the pain, all the torture, all the death and ugliness and all the suffering created by this good God is all over the world, isn't it, young man?"

(No answer)

"Don't you see it all over the place? Huh?" Pause. "Don't you?" The professor leans into the student's face again and whispers, "Is God good?"

(No answer)

"Do you believe in God, son?"

The student's voice betrays him and cracks, "Yes, professor. I do"

The old man shakes his head sadly, "Science says you have five senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. You have never seen God, Have you?"


"No, sir. I've never seen Him"

Professor: "Then tell us if you've ever heard your God?


"No, sir. I have not"

Professor: "Have you ever felt your God, tasted your God or smelt your fact, do you have any sensory perception of your God whatsoever?"

(No answer)

Professor: "Answer me, please"


"No, sir, I'm afraid I haven't"

Professor: "You're AFRAID... you haven't?"


"No, sir"

Professor: "Yet you still believe in him?"



Professor: "That takes FAITH!"

The professor smiles sagely at the underling. "According to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says your God doesn't exist. What do you say to that, son? Where is your God now?"

The student doesn't answer. "Sit down, please." The Muslim sits...Defeated.

Another Muslim raises his hand. "Professor, may I address the class?"

The professor turns and smiles. "Ah, another Muslim in the vanguard! Come, come, young man. Speak some proper wisdom to the gathering."

The Muslim looks around the room. "Some interesting points you are making, sir. Now I've got a question for you. Is there such a thing as heat?"

Professor: Yes, the professor replies. There's heat.


"Is there such a thing as cold?"

Professor: "Yes, son, there's cold too."


"No, sir, there isn't"

Professor: The professor's grin freezes. The room suddenly goes very cold.

The student continues. You can have lots of heat, even more heat, super-heat, mega-heat, white heat, a little heat or no heat but we don't have anything called 'cold'. We can hit 458 degrees below zero, which is no heat, but we can't go any further after that. There is no such thing as cold, otherwise we would be able to go colder than 458, You see, sir, cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Heat we can measure in thermal units because heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, sir, just the absence of it"

Silence. A pin drops somewhere in the classroom.


"Is there such a thing as darkness, professor?"

Professor: "That's a dumb question, son. What is night if it isn't darkness? What are you getting at...?"


"So you say there is such a thing as darkness?"

Professor: "Yes..."


"You're wrong again, sir. Darkness is not something, it is the absence of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light but if you have no light constantly you have nothing and it's called darkness, isn't it? That's the meaning we use to define the word. In reality, Darkness isn't. If it were, you would be able to make darkness darker and give me a jar of it. Can you... give me a jar of darker darkness, professor?"

Despite himself, the professor smiles at the young effrontery before him.

"This will indeed be a good semester. Would you mind telling us what your point is, young man?"


"Yes, professor. My point is, your philosophical premise is flawed to start with and so your conclusion must be in error...."

The professor goes toxic. "Flawed...? How dare you...!


"Sir, may I explain what I mean?"

The class is all ears.

Professor: "Explain... oh, explain..."

The professor makes an admirable effort to regain control. Suddenly he is affability itself. He waves his hand to silence the class, for the student to continue.

"You are working on the premise of duality",

the Muslim explains.

"That for example there is life and then there's death; a good God and a bad God. You are viewing the concept of God as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, science cannot even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism but has never seen, much less fully understood them. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing. Death is not the opposite of life, merely the absence of it."

The young man holds up a newspaper he takes from the desk of a neighbor who has been reading it.

"Here is one of the most disgusting tabloids this country hosts, professor, Is there such a thing as immorality?"

Professor: "Of course there is, now look..."


"Wrong again, sir. You see, immorality is merely the absence of morality. Is there such thing as injustice? No. Injustice is the absence of justice. Is there such a thing as evil?"

The Muslim pauses.

"Isn't evil the absence of good?"

The professor's face has turned an alarming color. He is so angry he is temporarily speechless. The Muslim continues.

"If there is evil in the world, professor, and we all agree there is, then God, if he exists, must be accomplishing a work through the agency of evil. What is that work, God is accomplishing? Islam tells us it is to see if each one of us will, choose good over evil."

The professor bridles. "As a philosophical scientist, I don't vie this matter as having anything to do with any choice; as a realist, I absolutely do not recognize the concept of God or any other theological factor as being part of the world equation because God is not observable."

"I would have thought that the absence of God's moral code in this world is probably one of the most observable phenomena going",

the Muslim replies.

"Newspapers make billions of dollars reporting it every week! Tell me, professor, do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey?"

Professor: "If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, young man, yes, of course I do."


"Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?"

The professor makes a sucking sound with his teeth and gives his student a silent, stony stare.


"Professor, Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor, are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you now not a scientist, but a priest?"

Professor: "I will overlook your impudence in the light of our philosophical discussion. Now, have you quite finished?" the professor hisses.


"So you don't accept God's moral code to do what is righteous?"

Professor: "I believe in what is - that's science!"


"Ahh! SCIENCE!",

the student's face splits into a grin,

"Sir, you rightly state that science is the study of observed phenomena. Science too is a premise which is flawed..."

"SCIENCE IS FLAWED..?" the professor splutters.

The class is in uproar. The Muslim remains standing until the commotion has subsided.


"To continue the point you were making earlier to the other student, may I give you an example of what I mean?"

The professor wisely remains silent. The Muslim looks around the room.

"Is there anyone in the class who has ever seen air, oxygen, molecules, atoms, the professor's brain?"

The class breaks out in laughter. The Muslim points towards his elderly crumbling tutor,

"Is there anyone here who has ever heard the professor's brain... felt the professor's brain, touched or smelt the professor's brain?"
"No one appears to have done so",

The Muslim shakes his head sadly.

"It appears no one here has had any sensory perception of the professor's brain whatsoever. Well, according to the rules of empirical, stable, demonstrable protocol, science, I declare that the professor has no brain!"

The Muslim sits...Because that's what a chair is for!!!

Iran   MazandaranCongratulating the Atheist

Normally, when I meet an atheist, the first thing I like to do is to congratulate him and say, "My special congratulations to you", because most of the people who believe in God are doing blind belief - he is a Christian, because his father is a Christian; he is a Hindu, because his father is a Hindu; the majority of the people in the world are blindly following the religion of their fathers. An atheist, on the other hand, even though he may belong to a religious family, uses his intellect to deny the existence of God; what ever concept or qualities of God he may have learnt in his religion may not seem to be logical to him.

My Muslim brothers may question me, "Zakir, why are you congratulating an atheist?" The reason that I am congratulating an atheist is because he agrees with the first part of the Shahaadah i.e. the Islamic Creed, ‘La ilaaha’ - meaning ‘there is no God’.

So half my job is already done; now the only part left is ‘illallah’ i.e. ‘BUT ALLAH’ which I shall do Inshaa' Allah. Whereas, with others (who are not atheists) I have to first remove from their minds the wrong concept of God they may have and then put the correct concept of one true God.

Logical Concept of God

My first question to the atheist will be, "What is the definition of God?" For a person to say there is no God, he should know what is the meaning of God. If I hold a book and say that ‘this is a pen’, for the opposite person to say, ‘it is not a pen’, he should know what is the definition of a pen, even if he does not know nor is able to recognise or identify the object I am holding in my hand. For him to say this is not a pen, he should at least know what a pen means. Similarly for an atheist to say ‘there is no God’, he should at least know the concept of God. His concept of God would be derived from the surroundings in which he lives. The god that a large number of people worship has got human qualities - therefore he does not believe in such a god. Similarly a Muslim too does not and should not believe in such false gods.

If a non-Muslim believes that Islam is a merciless religion with something to do with terrorism; a religion which does not give rights to women; a religion which contradicts science; in his limited sense that non-Muslim is correct to reject such Islam. The problem is he has a wrong picture of Islam. Even I reject such a false picture of Islam, but at the same time, it becomes my duty as a Muslim to present the correct picture of Islam to that non-Muslim i.e. Islam is a merciful religion, it gives equal rights to the women, it is not incompatible with logic, reason and science; if I present the correct facts about Islam, that non-Muslim may Inshallah accept Islam.

Similarly the atheist rejects the false gods and the duty of every Muslim is to present the correct concept of God which he -the atheist- shall Inshaa' Allah not refuse. (You may refer to my article, ‘Concept of God in Islam’, for more details)

Qur'an and Modern Science

The methods of proving the existence of God with usage of the material provided in the ‘Concept of God in Islam’ to an atheist may satisfy some but not all.

Many atheists demand a scientific proof for the existence of God. I agree that today is the age of science and technology. Let us use scientific knowledge to kill two birds with one stone, i.e. to prove the existence of God and simultaneously prove that the Qur’an is a revelation of God.

If a new object or a machine, which no one in the world has ever seen or heard of before, is shown to an atheist or any person and then a question is asked, " Who is the first person who will be able to provide details of the mechanism of this unknown object? After little bit of thinking, he will reply, ‘the creator of that object.’ Some may say ‘the producer’ while others may say ‘the manufacturer.’ What ever answer the person gives, keep it in your mind, the answer will always be either the creator, the producer, the manufacturer or some what of the same meaning, i.e. the person who has made it or created it. Don’t grapple with words, whatever answer he gives, the meaning will be same, therefore accept it.

Scientific Facts Mentioned in the Qur'aan

For details on this subject please refer to my book, 'The Qur'an and Modern Science - Compatible of Incompatible?'

Theory of Probability

In mathematics there is a theory known as ‘Theory of Probability’. If you have two options, out of which one is right, and one is wrong, the chances that you will chose the right one is half, i.e. one out of the two will be correct. You have 50% chances of being correct. Similarly if you toss a coin the chances that your guess will be correct is 50% (1 out of 2) i.e. 1/2. If you toss a coin the second time, the chances that you will be correct in the second toss is again 50% i.e. half. But the chances that you will be correct in both the tosses is half multiplied by half (1/2 x 1/2) which is equal to 1/4 i.e. 50% of 50% which is equal to 25%. If you toss a coin the third time, chances that you will be correct all three times is (1/2 x 1/2 x 1/2) that is 1/8 or 50% of 50% of 50% that is 12½%.

A dice has got six sides. If you throw a dice and guess any number between 1 to 6, the chances that your guess will be correct is 1/6. If you throw the dice the second time, the chances that your guess will be correct in both the throws is (1/6 x 1/6) which is equal to 1/36. If you throw the dice the third time, the chances that all your three guesses are correct is (1/6 x 1/6 x 1/6) is equal to 1/216 that is less than 0.5 %.

Let us apply this theory of probability to the Qur’an, and assume that a person has guessed all the information that is mentioned in the Qur’an which was unknown at that time. Let us discuss the probability of all the guesses being simultaneously correct.

At the time when the Qur’an was revealed, people thought the world was flat, there are several other options for the shape of the earth. It could be triangular, it could be quadrangular, pentagonal, hexagonal, heptagonal, octagonal, spherical, etc. Lets assume there are about 30 different options for the shape of the earth. The Qur’an rightly says it is spherical, if it was a guess the chances of the guess being correct is 1/30.

The light of the moon can be its own light or a reflected light. The Qur’an rightly says it is a reflected light. If it is a guess, the chances that it will be correct is 1/2 and the probability that both the guesses i.e the earth is spherical and the light of the moon is reflected light is 1/30 x 1/2 = 1/60.

Further, the Qur’an also mentions every living thing is made of water. Every living thing can be made up of either wood, stone, copper, aluminum, steel, silver, gold, oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen, oil, water, cement, concrete, etc. The options are say about 10,000. The Qur’an rightly says that everything is made up of water. If it is a guess, the chances that it will be correct is 1/10,000 and the probability of all the three guesses i.e. the earth is spherical, light of moon is reflected light and everything is created from water being correct is 1/30 x 1/2 x 1/10,000 = 1/60,000 which is equal to about .0017%.

The Qur’an speaks about hundreds of things that were not known to men at the time of its revelation. Only in three options the result is .0017%. I leave it upto you, to work out the probability if all the hundreds of the unknown facts were guesses, the chances of all of them being correct guesses simultaneously and there being not a single wrong guess. It is beyond human capacity to make all correct guesses without a single mistake, which itself is sufficient to prove to a logical person that the origin of the Qur’an is Divine.

Creator is the Author of the Qur'an

The only logical answer to the question as to who could have mentioned all these scientific facts 1400 years ago before they were discovered, is exactly the same answer initially given by the atheist or any person, to the question who will be the first person who will be able to tell the mechanism of the unknown object. It is the ‘CREATOR’, the producer, the Manufacturer of the whole universe and its contents. In the English language He is ‘God’, or more appropriate in the Arabic language, ‘ALLAH’.

Qur'an is a Book of Signs and Not Science

Let me remind you that the Qur’an is not a book of Science, ‘S-C-I-E-N-C-E’ but a book of Signs ‘S-I-G-N-S’ i.e. a book of verses. The Qur’an contains more than 6,000 verses, i.e. ‘signs’, out of which more than a thousand speak about Science. I am not trying to prove that the Qur’an is the word of God using scientific knowledge as a yard stick because any yardstick is supposed to be more superior than what is being checked or verified. For us Muslims the Qur’an is the Furqan i.e. criteria to judge right from wrong and the ultimate yardstick which is more superior to scientific knowledge.

But for an educated man who is an atheist, scientific knowledge is the ultimate test which he believes in. We do know that science many a times takes ‘U’ turns, therefore I have restricted the examples only to scientific facts which have sufficient proof and evidence and not scientific theories based on assumptions. Using the ultimate yardstick of the atheist, I am trying to prove to him that the Qur’an is the word of God and it contains the scientific knowledge which is his yardstick which was discovered recently, while the Qur’an was revealed 1400 year ago. At the end of the discussion, we both come to the same conclusion that God though superior to science, is not incompatible with it.

Science is Eliminating Models of God but not God

Francis Bacon, the famous philosopher, has rightly said that a little knowledge of science makes man an atheist, but an in-depth study of science makes him a believer in God. Scientists today are eliminating models of God, but they are not eliminating God. Surah Fussilat:

"Soon We will show them our signs in the (farthest) regions (of the earth), and in their own souls, until it becomes manifest to them that this is the Truth. Is it not enough that thy Lord doth witness all things?" [Al-Quran 41:53]