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Sermon 179: Eyes cannot see Him…

Dhi`lib al-Yamani asked Amir al-mu'minin whether he had seen Allah, when he replied, "Do I worship one whom I have not seen?" Then he enquired, "How have you seen Him?" Then Amir al-mu'minin replied:

ومن كلام له (عليه السلام)

وقد سأله ذِعلبٌ اليماني فقال: هل رأيت ربّك يا أميرالمؤمنين؟

فقال(عليه السلام): أَفأَعْبُدُ مَا لا أَرَى ؟

قال: قال: وكيف تراه؟

Eyes cannot see Him face to face, but hearts perceive Him through the realities of belief. He is near to things but not (physically) contiguous. He is far from them but not (physically) separate. He is a speaker, but not with reflection. He intends, but not with preparation. He moulds, but not with (the assistance of) limbs. He is subtle but cannot be attributed with being concealed. He is great but cannot be attributed with haughtiness. He sees but cannot be attributed with the sense (of sight). He is Merciful but cannot be attributed with weakness of heart. Faces feel low before His greatness and hearts tremble out of fear of Him.

لاَ تُدْرِكُهُ الْعُيُونُ بِمُشَاهَدَةِ الْعِيَانِ، وَلكِنْ تُدْرِكُهُ الْقُلُوبُ بِحَقَائِقِ الاْيمَانِ، قَرِيبٌ مِنَ الاْشْيَاءِ غَيْرُ مُلاَمِس، بَعِيدٌ مِنْهَا غَيْرُ مُبَايِن، مُتَكَلِّمٌ بِلاَ رَوِيَّة، مُرِيدٌ بِلاَ هِمَّة، صَانِعٌ لاَ بِجَارِحَة، لَطِيفٌ لاَ يُوصَفُ بِالْخَفَاءِ، كَبِيرٌ لاَ يُوصَفُ بِالْجَفَاءِ، بَصِيرٌ لاَ يُوصَفُ بِالْحَاسَّةِ، رَحِيمٌ لاَ يُوصَفُ بِالرِّقَّةِ، تَعْنُو الْوُجُوهُ لِعَظَمَتِهِ، وَتَجِبُ الْقُلُوبُ مِنْ مَخَافَتِهِ.

Alternative Sources for Sermon 179

(1) Al-Kulayni, Usul al-Kafi, I, 98, 138;

(2) al-Saduq, al-Tawhid, 96, 320, 324;

(3) al-Saduq, al-'Amali, 205;

(4) al-Mufid, al-'Irshad, 131;

(5) al-Mufid, al-'Ikhtisas, 236;

(6) Sibt, Tadhkirah, 157.

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