Lesson 8: Revelation and Prophethood Part 1
Throughout the world of nature, to the level of penetration of human awareness and knowledge, from the smallest particle to the largest stars and planets, every phenomenon, from the moment of the appearance of the phenomenon, grows according to special principles and laws, moves, seeks completion until, finally, reaches his or her final place.
This truth proves the fact that within every phenomenon there is an inclination and special pull which directs the phenomenon towards final completion. This universal law which is called 'the universal principle of guidance’ in our school of thought and action and includes the entire world of existence, which is the principle infrastructure of the world view of Islam, that is, monotheism, as the Source and based upon that, the Creator of the universe who is the Absolute Judge and Source of Knowledge and Wisdom and Eternity guides all of the creatures upon the way of completion, providing them with all of the means and possibilities for growth and completion.
The Holy Quran says,
'Our Lord is He Who gave unto everything its form and then guided it.’ (20:50)
It is because this that we say our world is the world of Divine law. Even people who deny the Source of the Creator believe that throughout the world of existence, there is one thing which rules and that is law.
These schools of thought make efforts to fill the vacuum created by dispensing with the belief in God with something in the name of the laws of the material world. As an example, the Marxists make efforts to introduce the contradictory laws of dialectics as the cause for being and completion in the world and replace God with that. They are negligent of the fact that assuming the correctness and accepting these laws is itself the best proof of His existence, not the other way around as they say that the existence of order in the universe does away with any need for a ruling Creator or a Power in Creation.
This universal law or universal principle of guidance acts in a uniform way in each kind of phenomenon in a proportion suitable to its structure. It is a fact that the universal law of guidance acts in a determined way in many phenomena like inanimate things or plants and even in many animate forms but within the human being we witness the fact that natural determination is broken or defeated. The law of attraction, forces stemming from a center, etc. discussed in physics are examples of the common laws whereby the earth, heaven, moon and sun are placed upon a determined course in a predetermined manner and in this way they continue their motion.
The special laws of plants which is to be discovered in the study of the physiology of plants are but a small example of a part of the extension of universal guidance. The wheat seeds, when placed within the heart of the earth, if the particular circumstances exist like sufficient humidity, the readiness of the earth, light and suitable temperatures blossom and bring forth new plants. Natural laws have determined the direction of the completion of these plants and all of its needs have been provided for it to grow as seed, sprout, leaf and flower and grow towards its final station.
In the world of animals, the common law of guidance operates in another way. The Creator of the world in this phase has given instinctive forces so that with the help of the determination of instincts, the natural life of their development is made clear and they are guided towards the final goal. An animal instinctively knows from the very first moments of life what it must do to remain alive and what it must eat. In addition, having learned from its teacher, nature, it knows what its food is. It knows what things are suitable and what are harmful. At times of sickness, it can even and that which will act as a remedy. Thus, in truth, instincts are the principle guides of the life of animals. Of course, recognizing the instinctive forces is done with the help of the senses.
We can conclude at this point that the law of guidance and determination of the way is a common law. Inanimate objects obey determined laws of physics and plants have their own special Jaws. Even though animals act and move based upon their own particularities, but, in general, they are condemned to following their own instinctive forces and in no way can they show opposition to the rule of their instincts.
But what about the human being? When the turn of the human being comes in complete amazement we realize that the form of the determining laws of nature to a large extent give off color and are obliterated. No one way has been determined for human beings. The human being is a creature who often in life is faced by a cross-roads - no determined law is imposed.
Even the pulling forces of instincts which play a basic role in leading and guiding animals when it comes to human beings even though their needs are greater than animals and more extensive, not only do instincts not increase their activities but rather they are weakened.
Not only can a new born human being not determine its own food or separate out that which is harmful but it cannot determine what is to be consumed and the way of consuming. It must be show to learn. The human being is the only animal which can confront instinctive forces and not act according to them. Even though the human being shares the same senses as animals, the extent of them in some animals is far greater than that in human beings.
This question now arises that if the universal law of guidance is a universal law and the entire world of existence falls in its realm, how is this guidance felt in human beings? By recalling the fact that the movement of human beings is not predetermined and that the instinctive drives are not sufficient as guides, how can this vacuum be filled? What force can fill the losses?
Here two issues must be studied. First, the needs of human beings so that it becomes clear what needs one has in one's lifetime. Second, the power and possibilities of human beings until it becomes clear what power human beings have in order to meet their needs.
All human beings despite of an of the differences that they have with one another as to shape, color, environment, civilization, culture and quality of life, all have one purpose which is behind their efforts in life and that is to reach well-being. What is this well-being that all are searching for? Even though opinions differ among the various groups and human societies in interpreting this ideal, all agree that in order to reach happiness, we must follow a way and laws and its guidelines. It is here that once again we reach the point that we began our discussion. The laws refer to that very leader of phenomena which rules over one's destiny.
Yes. The Human being, like other phenomena, in order to follow the way towards completion and in order to reach the final goal that is commonly known as wellbeing, it is one with the well-being of society, the importance and role of these universal guidelines will become more clear.
Now this issue arises, how can we find this way? How will we discover and recognize these laws? These laws are imposed upon other phenomena but the human being is not like other animals to hang its head and quietly follow the way nature has chosen for it. We know that nature has not done this in relation to human beings.
We have said that the laws of human beings cannot be unconscious. A human being is not blindly guided by instinct. The human being is a conscious being. He or she must recognize the way. Here we reach one of the most sensitive and important needs of human beings, that is, the necessity for consciousness and recognition. Yes. Human beings want to have well-being, that is, reach the highest of completions and in order to attain this, they must take the way or well-being because nature has not determined any certain way for them. To find the way of well-being means to discover its laws and find the clear and distinct guidelines which cannot be wrong. Thus before anything else, human beings need to have recognition, recognition of the way, of the laws.
What does the human being want: well-being. What is the way towards well-being: understanding the laws and universal guidelines.
Every phenomenon in finding its completion develops needs which have been met in nature in the best possible way. There is no creature which needs a certain kind of food and the need not be met by nature. We have realized that human beings need the sense of recognition. Now let us see how that need is met. In order to attain consciousness and have recognition, tools and a source for recognition is necessary. Without sight, things visible cannot be seen. Without the sense of hearing, nothing can be heard. What tools or source for attaining recognition and consciousness are placed at the disposal of a human being? How are his or her needs met?
In order to attain consciousness and the sense of recognition which is the most necessary and basic need he or she has, tools must be placed at his or her disposal. The most important of these are: The sense and experience; the intellect and the ability to think.
All of the achievements of the human being in the area of experimental science and also in the human sciences is responsible for these two. The human being with the senses and experiences of objective phenomenon understand something by direct witnessing. With the help of the intellect and thoughts of the truth, the non-sensibles are discovered by means of their effects and signs.
The eyes, ears and remaining senses are like an ocean which spreads from our inner self to the outside and makes us conscious of the world around us. But many things cannot be directly sensed by the eyes or ears but the human being with the air of the intellect by means of the signs seen come to know of their existence. For instance, you know a teacher who gives lessons is literate and has knowledge and consciousness but you do not see his or her knowledge or literacy. Why do we say so and so is a scholar?
As a result of his or her words or lessons because our intellect tells us that a person who is not literate, cannot teach others so they gain literacy. The human being with the help of the senses, experiences and the intellect understands a great many things. But in spite of all of this, we have to ask ourselves if the human being by only making use of these tools can meet all of his or her needs? Based upon the law of universal guidance, can the way to well-being and completion be attained with the help of consciousness and the sense of recognition? Or is there a need for outer ways and guidelines?
1. The law of universal guidance is a law which exists throughout nature.
2. The universal law includes .all of the phenomena whether they be animate or inanimate, even animals who move according to their own desire but in totality are condemned to their instincts.
3. The human being is the only creature which is not condemned completely to the 'predetermined guidance' and can even confront the tremendous pull of the instincts.
4. What does the human being want? Well-being. What is the way? Recognition of the laws and universal guidelines.
5. Because the needs of all phenomena are met in nature, the human being needs tools in order to develop the sense of recognition.
1. What is the universal law of guidance?
2. Can the existence of a law in the world of nature make the world needless of God?
3. How does the universal law of guidance work in plants and animals?
4. Taking the needs of human beings into consideration, how does the universal law of guidance relate to him or her?