First Session: The Human Being
At dawn I presented myself, and after duly getting admittance, respectfully stood before his august presence, and took my seat upon being offered. Then he (as)moved to the closet whereto he often repaired in solitude. I also rose up and on being ordered, followed him. He entered the closet and so did I. He took a seat and I got down before him.
He said, "Mufaddhal! I feel that you have had a lengthy night because of your anxiety for the morrow." I affirmed his remark respectfully.
He began, "Allah (swt) existed before there was anything and He will exist eternally beyond eternity. May He be glorified in that He has made His revelation to us. To Him is due our deep gratitude because of His gift to us. He granted us eminence with exalted knowledge and distinguished us with brilliant status as the progeny of Hazrat Ali (a.s.), to surpass all creations with His knowledge, as a sacred trust with us of the subtleties of the Universe."
I requested permission to put in black and white all that poured down from his lips, as I had the necessary writing material with me, to which he graciously assented.
He said, "O Mufaddhal! The waverers failed to grasp the mysteries and causes underlying the genesis of the creatures, and their intellects remain unaware of the faultless ingenuity subsisting underneath the creation of the varied species of the sea and the land, the level and the rough.
They became disbelievers, and because of a deficiency of their knowledge and puerility of intellect, began quibbling inimically with Truth, so much so that they denied creativeness and claimed that all this universe was meaningless and vain, without any ingenious design on the part of a Designer or Creator - a purposeless non-entity without balance or poise.
Allah (swt) is far above what they attribute to Him. May they perish! flow misguided they are! In their misguided blindness and bewilderment they are like the blind people groping right and left in a well-furnished, well-built house with fine carpets, luscious articles of food and drink, various kinds of clothing and other necessities of essential use, all adequately supplied in proper quantity and placed with perfect decorum and ingenious design.
In their blindness they fail to see the building and its furnishing. They move about from one room to ,another, advancing and retreating. If by chance, any one of them finds anything in its place to supply a need, and not knowing the purpose for which it is set there and unaware of the underlying ingenuity, he might begin to reprimand the architect of the building in his offensive rage, whereas, as a matter of fact, the fault lies with his own inability to see.
This analogy holds good in the case of the sect who deny the creative factor and the argument in favour of Divine Design. Failing to appreciate the merit of their provision, the perfection of creation and the beauty of design, they start wandering in the wide world, bewildered by their inability to grasp with their brains the underlying causes and principles.
It so happens sometimes that someone among them is aware of a thing but in his ignorance of its reality, purpose and need, begins at once to find fault with it saying, "it is untenably wrong."
The followers of Mani (the man who founded the Zoroastrianism sect in the time of King Shapur son of Urdsher, who believed in the prophethood of Isa (a.s.), but denied that of Musa (a.s.), and who believed in the duality of divinity as the creators of all good and evil in the universe - one light as the creator of all good things, the other darkness, as that of beasts and harmful creatures) who, as the heretical bigots of devilry, have begun openly to propound their heresies. Besides these, some other misguided persons have also gone astray from the Divine favours, by merely declaring as untenable or impossible, certain facts.
It behoves the person, whom Allah (swt) has endowed with the gnosis of reality and whom He has guided to His faith, and who has been granted insight to ponder over the beauty of design underlying creation, and who is gifted with the expression of the merits of such things, on the basis of cogent reasoning and fine distinction. It behoves such a person to glorify the Almighty Allah consummately as his Lord for such celestial favours, and to pray to Him for an increase in gnosis and a steadfastedness therein, with lofty powers of expression thereof.
He (swt) says, "I shall increase My favours, if you are grateful and My chastisement is severe if you are ungrateful."
The structure of the universe is the foremost directive and argument for the existence of Almighty Allah - how the parts thereof have been set together and been possessed of elegant workmanship and design. An appropriate mood of contemplation with reason focused on individual parts will disclose that this universe is comparable to a house furnished with all articles necessary for human beings.
The sky is like a canopy; the earth is spread like a carpet, while the stars set in stratum upon stratum, appear as lamps alight in their places. The gems are treasured as if the house has lots of collections. Besides these, everything is readily available to meet individual needs. Man, in this world, is like the masterful owner of the house, having in his possession everything therein.
And there exist the different plant species available for meeting; individual needs - some as fodder for the animals, others as drugs for human beings; some merely for ornaments, some to supply fragrance to man for his recreation; some as drugs for animals, some as nutriment for man; some for birds only and others for the quadrupeds alone and so on. Different species of animals have been allotted functions for particular exigencies and interest.
We now start with a description of the creation of Man before you to learn a lesson there from. The first step in the creation of Man refers to the state when the embryo in the womb is adjusted, though it is confined within three distinct kinds of coverings and three kinds of darkness. The first being that of the outer wall, the second of the womb and the third of the placenta. This is a time when the embryo can neither manage its nutrition nor ward off any harm from itself.
The menstrual flow is diverted to serve him as nutriment, just as water carries nutriment to the plants. So this process goes on until such time as his constitution is perfected, the skin over his body gets tough enough to withstand the atmosphere -so that it does not receive any harm from the air - and his eyes get capacity to withstand light. When all this is accomplished, its mother gets labour pangs, which severely shake her to uneasiness, culminating in the birth of the infant.
With the birth of the infant, the menstrual flow which served as nutrition in the womb is diverted to the mother's breasts. Its taste is altered, as well as its colour, and it becomes a nutriment of quite a different kind, which exactly suits the temperament of the infant, as and when it needs the same, compared with the flow of blood.
Simultaneously with its birth, it starts moving and licking its lips with its tongue to indicate its desire for milk. It finds its mothers pair of breasts as luscious reservoirs hanging to provide nutrition for it. He gets its nutrition from milk in this way until such time as his body remains delicate, his organs and bowels soft and weak.
As he begins to move about and needs harder food to build up a stronger body, his molars appear to masticate food materials to facilitate digestion. He carries on with such nutriment till puberty.
The male grows hair on the face as a sign of manliness to gain honour as a man, thus over-stepping the stage of adolescence and likeness to females. A female keeps her face clean, lovely and hairless, to preserve her freshness and comeliness, as an attraction for the males in the service of the survival of the race.
Can you imagine the manner in which man, through these different stages, is led and perfected, can take place without a Designer and a Creator? Do you think if the menstrual flow had not been diverted to it while an embryo in the womb, would it not have been dried up just like the plants deprived of water?
And had it not been motivated by labour pangs after it had been matured for birth, would it not have been buried in the womb just as living infants used to be buried in the earth? Had it not been supplied with the suitable kind of milk, would it not have starved to death? If it had not been fed with nutriment suited to his temperament capable of perfecting his body, and it' his teeth had not been cut at the proper time, would it not have been difficult for him to feed, masticate and digest his food? And if he had not passed through the milk-infancy, would not his body have suffered in strength and been incapacitated for any kind of work resulting in a permanent charge on his mother to keep her busy with only his nature and upbringing, without time to look to a second child?
Had not his face grown hair at the proper time would he not have stayed in the form of adolescents and the figures of females, without any dignity or prestige like the eunuchs who have a repulsive look in the absence of a beard?
Who else then is it, Who created man from nothingness, and Who became the Architect of His Worth, Who is Ever-vigilant to supply his needs from time to time?
If abiogenesis (spontaneous creation without specific design) can be admitted under such conditions of regularity, then purposeful generation and definitely balanced creation can be the result of error ad perplexity, since these two are opposed to abiogenesis.
Such a statement is highly absurd that order and rectitude should come about without a Creator, and disorder and impropriety of design and fate should suppose a Creator. He is an ignoramus who says this, because anything produced without design will never be exact and proportioned, while disorder and contrariness cannot co-exist with orderly design. Allah (swt) is far above what the heretics say.
And in case an infant was born with mature intellect, he would have been bewildered in this world so strange to his, in an unrecognisable environment abounding with animals and birds of varied forms all around, which would be focussed to his vision every moment of the day.
Consider it in the manner of a man migrating to another country from the prison of one country. If he has a perfect intellect, you will see him perplexed and astounded. he can neither learn the foreign language soon enough, nor acquire the etiquette and decorum of the place. On the other hand, one who is taken as a prisoner to a strange land in his early days when his intellect is immature, will soon learn the language, etiquette and manners of the place.
Similarly, if a child had been born with mature intellect, he would have been astounded on opening his eyes and seeing such varied assortment, different kinds of forms, and distinctive imagery of unity and disunity. For a long time, he would not have understood as to whence he had come and where he had arrived and whether all that he was seeing was a dream.
Then, if he had been born of mature intellect, he would have felt disgusted and degraded on finding himself being carried about in the lap, being fed with milk, being wrapped up in bandages(the manner of the Arabs) and being laid in the cradle - all these proceedings being necessary for the infants because of their soft and delicate bodies.
There would not have been, if they had been born with a mature intellect, this sweetness, nor that sweetness, nor the considerations for the infants in the minds of the adults which springs generally from fondling the untutored children because of' their artlessness creating a particular attention for them. As such he is born in this world without an understanding for anything, quite unaware of the world and what lies therein. He views all these things with his underdeveloped brain and inadequate understanding, and so does not feel perplexed.
His intellect and understandings by degrees, slowly from time to time, little by little develop, so as to introduce him gradually to the things around and to accustom his brain accordingly in order to habituate him thereto without further need for curiosity and wonderment, thus enabling him to seek his sustenance serenely with understanding and planning, to bend his efforts thereto and to learn the lessons of obedience, error and disobedience.
And behold! There are other aspects of the matter. If the infant had been born mature intellect with an understanding of his functions, there would have been few occasions for the sweetness felt in the nature of the offspring, and the exigency, under which the parents find a full time pre-occupation with the affairs of the young ones, would not have arisen.
Love and affection, felt for ordinary children, following the inconvenience undergone for their sake, would not subsist between the parents and their offspring. Because of their mature intellect, the children would not have needed parental care. A separation would have taken place just after birth of the infant from its parents. Even a mother or a sister would have been strangers to him and as such within wedlock limits.
Don't you see that everything big or small has been created on a flawless plan without fault or error?
Just see the advantage that accrues to the children from weeping. There is a fluid in the child's brain which, if not i drained off, may cause trouble or illness, even the loss of an eye. The discharge of the fluid from its brain leaves it healthy and the eyes brighter. The child is benefited by weeping, while his parents in their ignorance, try to prevent his weeping by catering for his wishes, not knowing the benefits thereof.
There are similar other advantages which the atheists fail to grasp and if they could have grasped them, they would not have denied the existence of such benefits therein. The gnostics understand what is unintelligible to such deniers. It so happens sometimes that the creatures know not the wisdom thereof, though it is within the knowledge of the Creator.
The saliva dripping from the mouths of children may cause serious derangements if not allowed to flow. This can be seen in the case of those with an excess of saliva, who sink down to the level of idiots, imbeciles and fools, and succumb to other diseases like paralysis - general and facial. Almighty Allah has ordained that this fluid should be discharged by way of the mouth to keep him healthy in later age.
Providence has granted this boon, of the profundity of which they are ignorant. They are allowed this respite to acquire a knowledge of the wisdom underlying therein, so as to become gnostic, and had these people appreciated all these boons, they would not have stayed in sin for so long. So all ('raise and Glory is due to Him. How Grand is His Beneficence. His blessings are for all whether deserving or undeserving. He is far exalted above what these misguided persons say.
Just consider the male and female organs of copulation. The male organ is capable of stimulation and increases in order to spawn the uterus with sperm - that beings its function, being itself incapable of developing the foetus and as such requiring the transfer of the sperm to the uterus of the female - a deep receptacle fit to preserve efficiently the two seminal fluids, to develop the foetus by expanding proportionately with the increase in its sire, to prevent any pressure on it, to preserve it till it is strengthened and is toughened. Is it not so designed by a Deep-seeing Designer?
Have all these works of ingenuity, or these elegant proportions come about by themselves? Allah Almighty is far exalted above the heresy of the polytheists.
Just consider the various organs of the body, the functions each one is required to perform and the perfection of design that underlines each of them.
Both hands are meant to handle business, both feet are meant for locomotion, the eyes are to see with, the mouth is to take in food, the stomach is to digest it, the liver is to extract its nutrition for distribution to the various parts of the body after manufacturing the same into blood, bile, lymph and phlegm, the orifices of the body are meant to eliminate waste products, d you shall find that every organ, exactly fitted to perform and you its specific functions, is constituted with perfect design." I said, "Master! Some people believe that all this is the outcome of the function of nature - each organ coming into existence as and when required by nature."
He (as)said: "Just ask them whether the nature which functions in such a well-planned and well-ordered fashion possesses knowledge and power or is it devoid of also of intelligence and reason, without power and without knowledge?
If they admit that it possesses knowledge and power, then what obstructs them from a belief in the Creator? What we say 's that all things are created by One Who is Master of Knowledge and Power. They say that there is no Creator and yet admit that nature had done this with ingenuity and plan. As such nature is the cause of their creation, while they deny the Creator.
If they say that nature produces such things without knowledge and power - not knowing what it is doing nor the power to do it - in connection with the type and having design and ingenuity that subsists in all phenomena, it is inconceivable that something may be performed without the corresponding power to do it and without a knowledge thereof. As such it is obvious that the action emanates from an Omniscient Creator, Who has laid down as only a method among His creation through his Omniscience, which these people call nature. In other words, Almighty Allah has ordained a method to produce everything according to its definite cause and principle.
As for instance, a seed needs water to sprout - no rain no corn; a child is born by the union of man and woman, and without this procedure of union and insemination, no child can be born: water evaporates to cause a cloud, the cloud is moved about by air to give rain; there can be no rain without such a process.
These atheists took at these causes and nature as the real Creator, denying the existence of the Creator above all these. This is manifest error, seeing that water is lifeless, and unless it is enlivened by the Life-giver, how can it produce corn? And how can the sperm which is without intelligence, develop into an infant, unless energised by the Omnipotent to create a head out of one part, hands and feet from other parts, bones from yet another part and heart and liver from another? Other forms of creation can be considered accordingly.
Just consider the nutrition supplied to the body, and the ingenuous plan underlying it. just note that on the arrival in the stomach, the food is processed into chime of the physicians and the extract is transferred to the liver by fine capillaries forming a network in that organ. The stomach is constituted as a rectifier for transfer of material to the liver in rectified form, to prevent injury to that delicate structure.
The liver then takes up the extract of the nutriment taken in, and by an inscrutable ingenuity, changes it into blood to be pumped by the heart to all parts of the body by means of blood vessels, in the manner of irrigation channels seen in gardens and fields supplying water to any place required to be irrigated. All waste products and toxic wastes are carried off to organs designed to eliminate them, e.g. the gall bladder, the intestines, sweat glands of the armpits and thighs etc. The bile matter goes to the gall bladder, some matter goes to the spleen and the moisture goes to the bladder.
Just consider the ingenuity that has gone into the building up of the body! How well are these organs co-ordinated! How the vessels, the intestines and the bladder etc. are organised to collect the waste products of the body so as to prevent them from being scattered all over the body to cause disease and decrepitude.
Glory be then to Him Who created these organs according to a remarkable plan and design. All Praise is due to Him, Who is worthy of it".
I said: "Please master! Explain to me the gradual development of the body stage by stage till its perfection."
He (as)said, "The first stage of this development is the embryo in the womb - invisible to the eye and inaccessible to the hand. Its development proceeds apace, till he is perfected in body with all organs and parts complete in every detail, the heart, the liver, the intestines and all working parts, the bones, muscles, fat, the brain tendons, blood-vessels, the cartillages etc. are all fully developed.
He enters this world, and you see how he develops on together with all his organs in proportion, preserving at the same time all his features without any addition or diminution. There is no disjunction of the part to accredit any insertion of flesh or elimination of any redundant matter. The body progresses on while retaining its well-knit form, till its maturation, whether his life span is lengthened or shortened earlier.
Is not his profound planning and ingenuity elegantly designed by the Omniscient designer?
Just consider the excellence of man's creation over the animals. He stands erect and sits squarely to enable him to hold things in his hands, to acquire them with his organs, to work to plan. If man had been hunched like animals, he could not have performed the tasks he does now.
The five senses are specifically superior to those of animals in point of constitution and efficiency so as to endow him special merit thereby.
The eyes are set in the head as if a lamp set on a lamp post to enable him to see everything. They are not set in the lower parts of the feet to safeguard against injuries or accidents during work or movement, which would have ailed them and impaired their efficiency. Had they been set in the middle part of the body like the belly, the back or the breast etc., it would have been difficult to revolve them or to see things by sudden turning. The head is the cynosure the best place for these senses in suitability compared with any other organ.
The senses are five in number to respond to all kinds of stimuli and to leave no stimulus undetected.
The eyes are so constituted as to distinguish between colours. The colours would have been meaningless without such ocular proficiency, since these colours exist as a means whereby things may be distinguished from one another, or the eyes may get recreation there from.
The ears are set in the head to detect sounds, which would have been meaningless without such auricular proficiency. Similar is the case with other senses - without proficiency of the sense of taste, all tasteful foods would have been dull; without the sense of touch the sensation of heat, cold, softness, hardness, would just as well have been non-existent; and without the sense of smell, all scents would have been inert.
And vice versa, if there be no colours, the eyes would be ineffective. Without sound, the ears may as well be nonexistent. So just consider how it has been ordained that there is a definite correspondence between the sense organ and the sensation-stimulus inter-acting mutually. We cannot hear with our eyes, nor distinguish colours with our ears, nor smell except our nose, and so on.
Then there are media interpolated between the sense organ and the sensation stimulus, without which the link cannot be established. As for example, in the absence of light to reflect colour, the eyes fail to recognise colour, and without air to set up sound waves, the ears would not be able to detect any sound.
Can it be then hidden, from one who has been endowed with sound reason and one who utilises his intellect correctly, after all the details I have given about the inter-connection between the sense organs, the sensation stimulus, and the media linking them to complete the process, that all this has been planned and executed by the Omniscient Almighty Allah.
Can such propriety, such ingenuity come about spontaneously? How can nature by itself perceive how the eye or the ear is to be constructed, and what functions each is to perform and what medium is to suit each as a means for correct apperception in order to create each? Is it conceivable in the insensate nature, unless the Almighty Designer plans them on the basis of perfect Omniscience?
Just consider the case of a person who has lost his eyesight and the loss he suffers in his day-to-day working. He cannot perceive his foothold, whether his feet fall in a depression or on an elevation, nor can he see ahead, nor can he recognise colours, nor can he appreciate a pleasing or a forbidden face. He will not be able to know hollow ground, nor know an enemy with a drawn sword, nor can he undertake any of the handicrafts like writing, business or trinket-making. His brain does suggest certain ways to enable him to move about or take his food, without which he would be little better than a stone at rest.
Similar is the case of a man deficient in hearing. He suffers loss on many counts. He has no relish for conversational talk nor a sense for pleasant or unpleasant sounds. People have difficulty in conversing with him, he gets annoyed with self. Though alive, he is like a dead man in respect of talking. Though present, yet he is like a man far away unaware of any news about.
The person devoid of intelligence is worse that cattle, for even the cattle do recognise many a phenomena unintelligible to him. Don't you perceive that these organs, systems, intellect and everything else required for his adjustment and without which he is at a serious disadvantage in point of perfection of his build, are duly provided? Have all these been produced without balance, power and knowledge? Certainly not! They are necessarily the outcome of definite Design and Planning of the Almighty Designer".
I asked, "Master! How is it that some people are lacking in those organs and systems, and undergo the losses that you have described?"
He (as)said, "It is for the admonition of the person lacking them and other people as well. The monarch admonishes his subjects in such ways and such admonition is hardly resented, rather it is appreciated as a stratagem and eulogised.
The people who are thus afflicted will be recompensed after death, provided they are grateful to Allah (swt) and turn to Him, so munificently that all the troubles undergone by them due to lack of such organs, will appear trivial in comparison. So much so that if after death they are allowed the choice to return to those troubled, they would welcome the opportunity to earn higher recompense.
Just consider the ingenuity and balanced design underlying the production of organs and systems in pairs or as single units. just consider the head which is created a single unit and it is but just appropriate not to have created it in more than one unit. A second head would have been only an additional weight, quite unnecessary, seeing that one piece comprises all the senses needed for man. Two heads would have meant two parts for men. So, if he used only one for talk, the other would have been redundant. To have used both simultaneously for the same talk would have been meaningless as no further purpose is served thereby.
A person would have been much handicapped in his business he has to transact, if he had been created with one, instead of a pair of hands. Don't you see that a carpenter or a mason would be unable to carry on his profession if one of his hands gets paralysed? And in case he tries to do his work with a single hand, he cannot perform it as dexterously and efficiently as with the help of both hands.
Just consider a man's voice and conversation, and the constitution of the organs concerned therewith. The larynx, which produces the sound, is like a tube while the tongue, the lips and the teeth mould the sound into letters and words.
Don't you see that a person who loses his teeth cannot reproduce the sound of the letter 's'; he who gets his lips cut cannot pronounce 'f', while a thick tongue cannot give the sound of* 'r'?. A bagpipe resembles it a great deal. The larynx is comparable to the pipe and the bag into which air is blown, corresponds to the lungs containing air.
The muscles controlling the lungs to produce sounds resemble the fingers pressing; the air of the bag into the pipe. The lips and the teeth which mould the sounds into letters and words correspond to the fingers on the orifices of the pipe giving rise to music and song. The larynx here has been regarded as an analogue to the bagpipe by way of explanation, whereas in reality the bagpipe is the instrument constructed on the pattern of the natural organ, the larynx.
The organs of speech portrayed here, suffice for a correct reproduction of the letters. These are, however, other functions accosted to these. The larynx, for instance, is so fashioned as to admit fresh air into the lungs for supply to the blood and heart, which if it fails even for a moment, would result in death.
The tongue is forged as to distinguish between the varied tastes of foods one from the other, the sweet from the sour, the purely sour from the sweetish sour, the saltish from the sweet. The tongue also helps to feel the pleasantness of water and food. The teeth masticate the food to make is soft enough for easy digestion.
They also hinder the lips from being sucked into the mouth. A person who has lost his teeth is seen to have loosely moving lips, The lips help to suck in water, so as to allow only calculated quantity of water to enter the stomach as required, not gorging down of its own accord and producing suffocation in the throat, or leaving to some sort of internal inflammation by virtue of its forceful flow. Moreover, the two lips serve as a door to keep the mouth shut at will.
We have explained to you the multifarious functions performed by them and the befits accruing from them, just as the same tool may serve different purposes. For instance, the axe which a carpenter can use and which may be used for digging the earth and for other purposes.
If you look at the brain, you will find it wrapped up in membranes one upon the other to protect it from injuries and movement. The skull protects it as a helmet against being shattered to pieces by a knock or percussion on the head. The skull is covered with hair like a fleecy covering, safeguarding it against heat and cold.
Who, then, except Almighty Allah endowed the brain with such security and protection, and Who made it the fountainhead of sense perception, and Who made the arrangements for its extra-ordinary protection in comparison with all other parts of the body because of its important status in the body economy?
Just consider the eye-lid, how it is fashioned as a screen for the eye with the eye-lashes like the strings, for raising and lowering the screen. ,Just notice how the eye-ball is set in a cavity shaded by the screen and hair.
Who has concealed the heart within the breast and covered it with a screen which you call the membrane? Who has arranged for its protection by means of the ribs, the muscles rind flesh interwoven in such a way as to prevent anything getting to it to cause an abrasion? Who has shaped the two holes in the throat - one for its production of the sound situated in proximity with the lungs and the other called the gullet leading to the stomach for entry of the food. And who has placed a flap, the epiglottis, over the hole leading to the larynx, to prevent food entering the lungs, which would cause death if" not thus managed? Who has caused the lungs to fan air to the heart indefatigably without rest to remove the toxins that would destroy it otherwise?
Who has shaped the sphincters, controlling the outlets of urine and stool, like the strings of a purse, to be opened or shut at will and not be dripping all the time, automatically resulting in a persistent nuisance in life?
Similarly there are matters which a computer may compute, but others which men have no knowledge of, are beyond computation.
Who has given such resilience to the muscles of the stomach that it has been commissioned to digest coarse foods? And who has made the liver soft and tender to accept nutriment in purified and rectified form and function more finely than the stomach? Can all these tasks be completed by anyone except the Omnipotent Almighty? Can you imagine that all this can be performed by inert nature? Certainly not! All this is the planning of the Almighty Omnipotent Designer, Who has the fullest knowledge and has the perfect Omnipotence in advance of creation. He is Allah, the All-knowing, Almighty.
Just consider why the tender marrow is kept protected inside bone tubes - just for the sake of protecting it against waste under the influence of the sun's heat which might melt it, or that of cold which might solidify it, which would blast life - the bone marrow being an essential ingredient supplying; the body's needs for energy.
And why is this circulation of blood confined in the blood vessels, except that it should function in the body and not flow off? Why are these nails fixed on fingers, except that they afford protection against damage and help in better efficiency, for without them the presence of flesh alone would not have enabled man to pick up things with a pinch, to use a pen for writing or to thread a needle?
Why is the ear patterned intricately as a prison-house, except that the sounds may be carried to the membrane for detection without damage thereto by the violence of air impact?
Why is this flesh woven over man's thighs and buttocks, except that he may not be inconvenienced by the hardness of the floor in sitting, as is the case of a person of thin and emaciated constitution, unless something intervenes between him and the floor to tone down in hardness, like a cushion or a sofa?
Who has created the human race as man and woman? It is he Who ordained the race to flourish by the method of the union of the two sexes or at least to maintain its numerical strength, through the differentiation of the two sexes.
And who made him the progenitor of a generation? Surely it was He Who implanted hope in him. Had not this desire surged in his breast, why should there have been an urge to mutual union. Look at the living beings reproduction among whom it is not conditioned by union and sexuality, but is effected by a certain stage of development of the female. They have no differentiations of male and female at all. Can anyone, for instance, tell between the female and male of a wasp?
And who gave him organs for action? Surely He Who made him a worker. And who made him a worker? Sure He Who created him needy, for man would not have worked if he had no need to fulfill. If he did not need to satisfy his hunger, why should He have laboured, why should he have taken to business and industry?
Had he no need to safeguard his body against heat and cold, why should he have learnt sewing, needle manufacture, spinning, weaving, cotton growing etc. And in the absence of all this, of what use would have been the organs of action and the fingers? And who created him needy? Surely he Who has created for him the factors of neediness. And who created for him the factors of neediness? Surely He Who took upon Himself the responsibility for supplying the needs.
Who endowed him with intellect? Surely He Who made reward and chastisement as essential for him. He would not need intellect if he were not responsible for reward and punishment. The Almighty Creator endowed him with intellect to distinguish between good and evil, having decided upon reward and punishment as essential to him - to get the reward for goodness and chastisement for evil.
The animate beings which are not subject to reward and punishment have no sense of good and evil, nor do they know the distinction between the forbidden and the lawful, the condemned and the approved types of action. They recognise, however, the factors needed by them for survival of their species or individuality. As for instance, the bird has the necessary recognition of an eagle as a bird of prey, and so at its very sight takes to speedy flight; car a deer knows well that the lion would tear him up, so at its mere sight, it flees for life.
Who has endowed him with strategy and percipience,' Surely He Who has gifted him with energy. And who has gifted him with energy? Surely He Who has ordained justification of conduct on him. Who helps him in all these undertakings, in which his plans fail? Surely He Who deserves our highest gratitude.
Just consider what I have explained to you. Can there be such orderliness and method in the absence of planning? Certainly not! Allah Almighty is far exalted above what these people say.
Supposing you found one shutter of a door having a latch fixed to it. Can you imagine it to have been fixed without any purpose? Surely you will conclude that it is there to be joined to the other shutter for a definite advantage. Similarly you will find a male creature as one individual of a pair created for the female individual for union to preserve the race.
May Allah (swt) destroy those who claim to be philosophers, but are so purblind in their approach to such wonders of creation and constitution that they deny in the creation of the universe the design of the Almighty Designer and the Will of the Master Planner.
Just look with respective eyes at the great boon of Allah, the Almighty, in the relief of trouble after taking in food and drink. Is it not an elegance of plan in the construction of a house that the lavatory should be in a secluded part thereof? In the same way, Allah the Almighty has made the orifice for the excreta of man in a secret place. It is not in the open nor has it prominence, but is so situated as to be perfectly hidden by the junction of the thighs and the buttocks with their flashy matter. When a man needs to answer the call of' nature and assumes the requisite posture of sitting, the orifice allows the excreta to escape.
Just consider the teeth set in the mouth of man. Some are sharp, which incise and sunder the food. Others are flat which chew and pulverise. Since both types are required, he is supplied accordingly.
Just consider and appreciate the ingenuity underlying why it is proper to have the hair cut and the nails pared. They grow and increase and so need to be clipped. As such they are devoid of sensation to avoid pain to man. In case the clipping thereof had resulted in pain, they would ether have been left to grow inordinately and become burdensome, or pain would have been inflicted in clipping."
I asked, "Master! Why were they not so designed as not to thrive to an extent that their clipping would be necessary?"
He (as)said, "There are, indeed, numberless boons of Allah the Almighty to His creatures known to them, and which if they knew, they would be grateful for.
Know that the troubles and ailments of the body are relieved through these hairs coming out of the pores. The fingers get relief of their ailments through the nails. That is why a weekly clipping of nails, shaving of head and removing of redundant hair must be effected, so that the nails and hairs should grow fast and relieve ailments and troubles. Ailments remain confided in the body otherwise with consequent pains and diseases.
No hair growth is allowed on parts of the body where they would harm man. If hair had grown inside the eyes, he would have been blinded. If they had grown inside the mouth, would not water and food have been hindered? If they had grown on the palms of hands, would not the sense of touch have been impaired and would not the same have interfered in the proper discharge of many a task, and the recognition by proper touch.
There is great ingenuity underlying keeping certain spots of the body hairless. Could nature have the percipience of such subtleties or can such well-designed plans be attributed to it? Woe betide these atheists and their dullness. This affair of creation, and see how error and harm of the beasts and other animals, whose procreation depends upon copulation, are similarly instanced.
You see that their entire bodies are covered with hair, with the exception of the particular parts for the same reasons. So consider this affair of creation and see how error and harm of methods have been avoided while rectitude and benefit have been secured.
When these followers of Mani and those of their ilk tried to impugn the belief in purposeful creation, they found fault with the growth of hair on the pubis and armpits. They failed to grasp that such growth was due to the moisture flowing to those parts. The hair grows there just as grass grows at a place where water collects. Don't you see how spots are prepared to collect waste products and hold them?
Yet another strategy underlying it, is that, it affords one more discomfort a man has to undertake, relating to his body, and he is, so far as he is kept busy with the cleanliness of his body and the removal of his hair, prevented from perpetrating acts of greed, cruelty, conceit and impudence, for which he may not get the opportunity.
Just consider the saliva in the mouth and see the wisdom underlying it. It is so composed as to ensure constant flow to keep the throat and the palate moist, not to allow dryness therein that they may lead to death. Without it the food would not he chewed nor would it flow down. All this is obvious and supported by observation. And know that this fluid is derived from food and getting down aids the action of the gall-bladder.
Some ignorant debaters and half-witted claimants to philosophy have, because of their deficient understanding and faulty knowledge, said, "It would have been better if the belly of man had been like a cloak to enable the physician to open it at will, observe its contents and poke his hand inside for medical treatment, and not as it is walled in, mysteriously hidden from the reach of eyes and hands. The internal disorders can now only be gauged by delicate symptoms of the examination of the urine, pulse etc., which are not above error ant doubt to the extent that such error in pulse and urine examination may lead to death."
Would that these ignorant claimants to philosophy and polemics had known, that it would have removed all apprehension of disease and death. Man would have been then infatuated with his immortality and healthfulness, which would have rendered him wilful and conceited. The open belly would have allowed the constant trickling of moisture, thus spoiling his seat, bed and nice dresses; in short, his whole living under the circumstances.
The stomach, the liver and the heart function properly because of vital heat, which would have been disturbed by the influence of the outside air acting through the belly under treatment, open to the reach of the eye and the hand. This would have resulted in death.
Don't you see that all hypothesis of the real nature of creation and constitution are far-fetched and preposterous?
Just consider the matter of feeding, resting and sex, which are ordained for him and the expediencies underlying them. Each of them is propelled by an urge, which give rise to a desire and an excitation therefore. Hunger demands food which supplies life and energy to the body and its substance. Sleep demands rest for the recuperation of the body to remove the fatigue.
If man were to take food just for the needs of his body without an urge from within forcing him to feed, it is possible that he might have given way to indolence because of lassitude or pressure, his body would have been emaciated leading to death, just as a man puts off taking medicine which he only needs to improve his tone. And this may have caused his death.
Similarly he may put off sleep in indolence and thereby emaciate his body, if he aimed only thereby the rest for his body and the removal of fatigue of his organs. If procreation were the sole aim of sexual union, it would not have been improbable on his part to slacken, with resulting decrease in population and final extinction, for there are people who have no desire for progeny nor any need therefore.
Behold, then, that very act concerning man's health and improvement has been reinforced by an insistent urge embedded in his nature prompting him thereto.
And know that the physical body has four faculties :
(1). The affinitive faculty - This accepts the food and pushes it into the stomach.
(2). The retentive faculty - This retains food for the natural processes to act thereon.
(3). The assimilative faculty - This processes food to take out its extract for distribution to the body.
(4). The eliminative faculty - This eliminates the waste products after the assimilative faculty has completed its function.
Just consider the adjustment made in the body among these our facilities. These have been organised to meet the bodily seeds as part of the Omniscient Design.
Without the affinitive faculty, how would he have exerted after cod, which is necessary for the upkeep and maintenance of its body?
Without the retentive faculty, how could the food have been retained in the stomach to be digested?
Without the assimilative faculty, how could the food have been processed to get the extract for supply to the body without disturbance?
And without the eliminative faculty, how could the waste products, given off by the stomach, have been eliminated regularly?
Don't you see how the Glorious Almighty Allah as ordained and appointed the faculties for the functions conditioning the Health of the body by His Consummate Skill and Supreme Will?
Let us illustrate it by an example. just imagine the body to be a royal palace, with his servants and dependents residing herein. 'there are employees engaged in its management. One of' them is entrusted with the task of supplying the provisions to the dependents. The second is charged with the task of' treasuring the same, so that it may be kept for conversion into nutrition. The third has to process it and distribute it. The fourth sweeps the waste products left over.
The monarch of the palace is the Omniscient Creator Almighty, the Lord of the entire universe. The palace is man's body, the dependents are the organs of the body, while the four facilities are employees.
You may, perhaps, consider the explanation given by me concerning the four faculties and their functions as redundant and unnecessary. Yet my explanation does not follow the pattern of the books given by physicians, nor does the tenor of my talk follow theirs.
Those people have made mention of the four faculties on the ground that it is needed in the medical art for healing. We mention it from the viewpoint of its need for invigorating the faith and reformation of the recusant minds, just like my comprehensive explanation and exemplification illustrating the Omniscient Design.
Reflect over the faculties embedded in the human psyche and the way they are organised to wit, deliberation, superstition, reason, memory etc. What would be a man's plight if he were deprived of the faculty of memory, and how much his life's affairs would be disturbed - his economic affairs, and his business. He would not have remembered what other people owe him and what he owes to others, what bargains he made, what he heard and what he said.
He would not have remembered who did him a good turn and who an evil one, what profited him and what harmed him. He would not have remembered the path traversed by him a numberless times. He would not have remembered anything even if he continued to learn a science all his life, nor would he have determined upon a belief or faith, nor could he have compared one thing with another by analogy. In fact, he would have been outside the pare of humanity altogether. Just see how profitable to man are these faculties. Leaving others, just deliberate on one and the place it occupies in our lives.
Even a greater boon that memory is forgetfulness, without which man would not found solace in any affliction, nor would ever have got clear of frustration, nor could have got rid of malice. he would have failed to relish anything of the world's goods because of insistent memories of affliction, nor could he ever have entertained any hope of weakening of his sovereigns attention of the envy of the envious. Don't you see how the contrary faculties of memory and forgetfulness have been created in man, each ordained with a definite purpose?
And those people, for instance the followers of Mani, who believe in two opposite creators of all the universe cannot in any case be expected to regard those two opposite entities as the creators of these two opposite faculties, for these two faculties possess the benefits which you see accruing from them.
Just consider the quality with which man alone is endowed and no other creature shares it with him - modesty. Without it, no cane would have shown hospitality to a guest, nor anyone would have implemented his promise, nor anyone's need would have been fulfiled, nor any goodness would have been achieved.
There are many obligations which are performed merely through modesty. He who gives up modesty, does not concede the rights of' his parents, nor the obligations of consanguinity, nor honour his trust, nor avoid impudence. Don't you see how all these have been endowed in man so fully as to benefit him and accomplish his affairs?
Consider the blessing of speech, with which he is endowed by Allah, the Almighty, which is the medium for the expression of his inner thought and his cordial feelings springing from his cogitation and with which also he understands the inner points of others. Without this faculty he would have been like quadrupeds, neither able to convey his own inner thought to others, nor to understand the words of the speaker.
So is the case with the art of writing which is a means for knowing the histories of the bygone people and for transmitting those of the existing people for the generations to come. Through the same, achievements of science and literature are preserved in books for ages. Through the same, are preserved the discussions and account between one man and another. Without this art, one age would have been cut off completely from another; nor would any news have been received from those who are away from their native lands.
Sciences too would have been extinct. Information on morality and etiquette would have been lost and a serious damage in the affairs of mankind would have ensued as also in the religious teachings and the traditions, which people need to know, and the knowledge thereof would have been impossible.
You may, perhaps, think that this need has been fulfiled by man with the help of his own design and intelligence. It is not inherent in the nature of man. The same is the case of speech and language, for this too is a matter of terminology and resolution, determined by the people according to their mutual understanding of talk. That is why different groups have different languages and scripts, for instance, the Arabic, the Syrian, the Hebrew, the Roman etc., each of which is different from the other, each having decided upon its own terminology of language and words.
He who makes such a claim, the answer will be that though in both these matters man's planning and action have played a role, yet the means whereby his planning and action achieve the goal, is a gift from the bounty of Allah Almighty, underlying therein. Supposing he had not been gifted with the tonnage for speech, or the intellect had not been bestowed on him to guide him to such activity, he could never have been able to talk, and if he had not been blessed with the palm and the fingers, it would never have been possible for him to write.
You should learn a lesson from the animals in this behalf, who lave neither the power to speak nor the power to write. As such it is the principle laid down by the Almighty Creator for man's fundamental nature as a special boon, for which whoever is grateful shall get the heavenly rewards, while whoever denies will be ignored, for Allah Almighty is independent of the whole universe.
Consider the matters of which knowledge has been vouchsafed to man and those of which he has not been given the knowledge. fie has been vouchsafed the knowledge of all these matters that lead to his good in respect of faith as well as his earthly life.
The gnosis of Allah Almighty Creator is attainable by means of the arguments and evidence available in the existence of creation. So is the knowledge of matters obligatory on him, for instance, justice towards all human beings, kindness to parents, honouring trust, sympathy towards the down-trodden etc.; the knowledge and admission of which all nations possess naturally as a matter of fact, whether in agreement with us or against us.
Similarly he has been given the knowledge of those things which are beneficial to his worldly life, for example agriculture, horticulture colonisation, cattle farming, drawing water from the wells and the springs, herbal research for medical purposes, mining for different kinds of precious stones, diving in the sea, the different kinds of planning for hunting animals and birds, fishing, industry, trade and business methods and many other things which need it long detail, wherein lies the fulfilment of the affairs of man's worldly life, the betterment of his religious and mundane affairs. Such knowledge is made available to him as is best in his interests.
Matters, knowledge whereof is out of his reach, nor does his position demand it, are not made known to him, for example, the knowledge of the unseen, of matters that have to happen in future or some of the affairs that happened in the past, those pertaining to what lies in the oceans and in the vast expanse of the universe, or within the minds of people, the contents of the uterus etc. People who have claimed knowledge thereof had their claims stultified by the events following them contra wise.
So just see, that the knowledge of things given to man is essential for his worldly and religious affairs. he has been prevented from knowing unnecessary things to impress him with his worth and his deficiency in both these, lies his good. Just consider why man has not been given the knowledge of his life span.
If he knew the period of his life on earth to be short his whole life would have been embittered, for knowing this he would have awaited the moment of death. His condition would have been like a man whose assets have all been lost or are very soon to he lost. And he might be feeling his poverty and neediness. How afraid would he be at the expectation of the destruction of his assets and the resultant indigence, the sorrow and chagrin he would feel at the prospect of death would be far greater than that at the prospect of destruction of his property, for he who loses his property ever entertains the hope that he might get more in return and that will provide him solace to his mind.
On the contrary, he who is convinced of the end of his life will much more be frustrated. In case he had a long life span to live, this confidence in his survival would have given him undue confidence. He might be overwhelmed by pleasures and debaucheries under the impression that he would offer penitence in the last days of life remaining for the present in his pleasure pursuits. This is a matter which Allah Almighty does not want from nor like in His creatures.
Supposing you have a servant who continues to offend you throughout the year and hopes to be pardoned against a day's or a month's services. Surely you would not like it and this servant will not rank with a righteous servant who is ever ready to do your bidding.
You may raise an objection to this by saying whether it does not happen that a man treads the path of disobedience, then he is penitent and his penitence is accepted. Our reply to this is that this happens only when a man is overpowered by his libido to an irresistible extent, but all the time he is not determined on his obedience under the impression to express penitence later on while indulging in passions for the moment. Allah Almighty does not forgive him out of His Infinite Mercy.
But in the case of one who is determined on disobedience as long as he will, expecting forgiveness at a later stage, he is trying thereby to deceive Him, Who cannot be deceived, thinking of getting the most of the pleasures of the moment while expecting to be forgiven because of his later penitence. There is this aspect of the matter, too, that because of a certain pattern of life of indulgence in pleasures which might not allow him even the occasions for penitence particularly in old age, when the physical body has undergone a good deal of weakness preventing him from working up to his expectations.
And he who seeks pretexts in submitting his penitence, it may not be possible for him under a sudden onslaught of death and so he may leave the world impenitent. He may be like a debtor who is competent to pay his debts but puts off from time to time till death overtakes him, his assets get destroyed and his debts will stand against him. as such it is in the fitness of things that the knowledge of man's life span be kept a secret from him so that he may expect death to come at any moment and under that suspense, to evade transgression and adopt righteous action.
You may raise another objection that now that his life span is a secret from him and he is ever in suspense about his death, he commits evil deeds and unlawful acts. Our reply to this is that the Planning is in accordance with the situation prevailing now. If in spite of all this a man does not refrain from evil, it is a sign of his temperamental perversion and his hard heartedness. There is no error in the planning if a patient after being fully apprised of the benefits of certain medicines and the de-merits of certain malevolent matters, does not avail of the information by disregarding the physician's directions. The physician is not to be blamed but the patient who declined to follow the physician's direction.
In spite of the suspense about death which he has because of his ignorance about his life span, he does not desist from transgressions. Fie would be steeped in evil and heinous unreasonable sins, in case he gets a full knowledge of his life span and survival. As such the suspense about death in any case is better for him than his confidence in a long life.
If there is a category of people who, despite their suspense about death, are indolent and do not profit by advice, there is another category who profit by the advice, abstain from sinfulness and act righteously. They give to the needy and the indigent in charity of their nice possessions. It would not have been justice to deprive this category from getting the benefit thereof.
Just consider the dreams and the ingenuity underlying them. There are dreams that come true and dreams that do not come true, all mixed up.
If all dreams are true all men would have been prophets. If all dreams were untrue they would have been useless, rather redundant and meaningless.
The dreams are sometimes true which benefit a person in his life's business, under their guidance, or to avoid, the loss of which he has been informed thereby. They are mostly untrue lest man may come to depend on them.
Just consider those things which you see present in the world supplied to meet human needs.
The earth to build houses, iron for industry, wood for building boats etc. Stone for use as grindstone, copper for utensils, gold and silver for business transaction, gems for treasure, corn for food, fragrant articles for pleasure, medicines to heal the sick, the quadrupeds as beasts of burden, dry wood as fuel, ashes for chemicals, sand for the benefit of the earth and can one count all these things which are numberless?
Do you think that if a man enters a house and sees it supplied with all human needs, the whole house full of treasure and everything placed with a definite purpose, can he imagine all those things have been arranged by themselves without anyone to plan it? Then how can any rational being suggest that this world and all this contents have come by themselves?
Learn a lessons from the things that have been created to meet human needs and the great ingenuity underlying them. Corn has been produced for him but he has been entrusted with the duty of grinding, kneading and cooking. Wool has been produced for him which he must gin, spin and weave. The tree is made for him but he must sow the seed, irrigate and supervise it. The herbs have been created as medicines for him but he must find them, mix them and compound them.
Similarly you will find all things made by the creator to meet human needs in a way that no plan of man could work sufficiently their action and use thereof. The need and the situation for it has been left to him in his own interest. If Almighty Allah had got performed all these items and he has nothing to do by way of his activity, he would have begun to move on the earth on all fours and the earth would not have been able to bear his burden. Man would not have had a happy life if all his needs had been fulfiled without effort and, nor would he have enjoyed such a thing.
Don't you see that a guest staying for a time with ail his needs being fulfiled by the host steadily, without any effort on his part to secure eatables, drink, bedding or seating, gets tired of leis idleness and inactivity. he seeks some engagement, what would have been his condition if his inactivity were lifelong? This then is ordained for man to occupy his limits to transact his business in his own interests, lest idleness and inactivity cause him ennui.
Moreover he should be prevented from such undertakings as are outside his capacity, and which have no advantage for him even if' completed.
Know that a man's basic need is food and water. See the planning that has gone therein.
Man needs water more than bread, because he can bear hunger longer than thirst. fie needs water for drinking, ablutions, washing clothes, watering quadrupeds, irrigation of crops. Water, therefore, is provided in abundance without need to purchases it to save man the need for search. Bread must be obtained with effort and planning to keep man busy with his occupation and to hinder him from pride and conceit and useless undertakings.
Don't you see that a child in his early age is sent to a teacher for instruction to keep him away from playing away all his time, which may lead him or his kin to trouble. Similarly if man were left unoccupied, he would have taken to pride and conceit and would have indulged in actions likely to harm him grievously.
That a man born and nurtured in the lap of luxury under conditions of opulence and plenty of his kinfolk, is likely to fall into such conduct, illustrates the point.
Know why one man does not resemble another, like the birds and animals etc., having likened one with the other. You see a herd of deer and a swarm of partridges each resembling the other without much difference among them, whereas men, as you see, have distinctive features and constitutions, so much so, that no two men correspond to the same pattern.
The reason is the need each individual has to be recognised personally by his particular build and physiognomy, as they have to conduct business among themselves which does not concern animals. Don't you see that the mutual resemblance among animals and birds does them no harm? Not so in man, for if by chance a pair of twins become alike in shape, people feel a great deal of confusion in dealing with them. What must be given to one is handed to the other by mistake. One is held up in place of the other in retribution.
It so happens in other matters as well through resemblance. Human resemblance can be even more harmful. Who then, has provided such niceties and perfections, which stagger imagination? Surely He Who created all these, Whose Grace extends to all things.
Will you believe a person who says that a picture on the wall, which you see, has come into being of itself without the aid of an artist? Certainly not! You will laugh at him. How then can you believe that a living man with faculties of speech and movement can come into being of himself, while you are not prepared to entertain such belief in regard to a lifeless picture?
Why does it so happen that the bodies of men do not grow beyond a certain limit despite the fact they continue living and to feed? What is this due to if not to Deep Percipience?
The Almighty Allah has so ordained that each species of living beings should have a definite limit of growth - no bigger nor smaller. They continue to increase up to that limit and then stop growing, even though feeding continues without. If it were not so ordained they would have continued to grow till their bodies would have grown out of recognisable limits
Why is it in the case of human beings in particular that movement and activity create fatigue in them and they avoid fine industries just because his needs like clothing etc., require more exertion? If man did not suffer hardness and pain, how could he have evaded evil deeds, prostrated before Allah (swt) or sympathised with the people?
Don't you see that no sooner a man is inflicted with pain, than he turns in perfect humility towards Allah (s.w.t.), supplicating for restoration of his health before his Creator and opens his hands in munificence? If man had felt no pain in being beaten, how could the governments have reformed the recusants? How could have children been taught sciences and arts? how could the slaves have been made to submit to their masters willingly?
Is there no admonition in all this for Ibn Abi Al Auja and his companions who deny Purpose, and the followers of Mani who deny the ingenuity underlying labour and pain?
Supposing only males or only females had been created in living beings, would not their species have become extinct? It is thus to preserve their species, that a mixture of males and females is brought into being in the right proportion.
Why is it that when men and women reach puberty, the man alone grows a beard? Is it not in accordance with set Design? This is because the man is created as the lord and the woman as house keeper. The woman is the supervisor of man's interests and his sweetheart. Man, as such, is bestowed with a beard to give him prestige and honourable lordly appearance. The woman is allowed beauty and freshness instead as attractions for union.
Don't you see the flawless merits that this creation acquires by the Design of the Almighty Allah? Everything is according to a definite measure. Nothing is given which is not needed."
It was now afternoon, my master rose for prayers telling me to come to him the next day, God willing.
Overjoyed with the information received, I returned with a grateful heart for Allah (swt) for the boon bestowed on me.
I had a very pleasant night due to the valuable instructions bestowed on me by my master.