Article appeared Friday, February 1st, 2013 in The News Today, Bangladesh

The Revelation (264)

yousuf mahbubul Islam, PhD

Unlike the rest of creation, man has the ability to ask questions. Scientists use this ability to ask research questions and proceed to look for knowledge to validate their hypothesis. If validated, they can then testify to the truth of their hypothesis. During their time, prophets asked questions about prevailing superstitions, beliefs, the Creator and their personal attitude towards each. Having established the truth of the existence of the Creator for themselves, they then proceeded to establish protocols appropriate for the Being who has created us. Having worked out the truth, they then invited others to confirm the truth for themselves. Many of those who subsequently worked out the truth became followers or disciples. To confirm the truth of any belief system for ourselves, what could be a basic premise or hypothesis? For example, there is a common belief that lucky charms, stones or birthstones have power. The hypothesis to test could simply be that “lucky charms or birthstones have power”. To test the hypothesis, not only could we pose a multitude of questions, we could also set up laboratory experiments to confirm the hypothesis. Sample questions could be “does a lucky charm or stone know which illness or problem it is supposed to cure or fight?” Or is a birthstone aware of the person’s date of birth? Another question could be “how many illnesses or problems has the lucky charm or stone cured?” As a laboratory experiment, we could find sick animals and attach the lucky charm or stone to the animals and check what happens. A birthstone could be attached to animals born on the specific date to check what happens. Similarly, what hypothesis can we set up to test the role and gifts of the Creator in our lives? For example, there is a belief that it is the Creator who creates. A hypothesis could simply be the Creator creates when He wants. How could we test this hypothesis? For human babies, we know that the process starts when a sperm mates with an ovum. What questions could be asked regarding this? Sample questions could be: do a sperm and ovum know they are supposed to start the process of cell differentiation? If the matter was simply restricted to a sperm mating with an ovum; are all such occurrences successful? Is there any rule that can be applied? At the same time there are couples who try all their lives but are unsuccessful and there are couples who conceive unwillingly. Sometimes, even the best birth control techniques are unable to prevent conception. In addition, how was the birth of Jesus (pbuh) and the birth of the first humans Adam and Eve initiated? As consistent rules cannot be derived, there must be something else that determines when birth is initiated. The only explanation that matches all the occurrences and confirms the hypothesis is the Will of the Unseen Creator. The subsequent processes of birth cannot be random as all processes are highly complex and structured. For example, the structure of each eye is highly complex; in addition each is placed in a predetermined position in each baby. Using such and similar reasoning, each human being can establish the truth for himself or herself and subsequently place value on it. What could the Creator possibly want from His created human beings? In the most recent Revelation, the Qur’an, our Creator puts forward the example of Abraham (pbuh). “When he (Abraham) had turned away from them and from those whom they worshipped besides Allah We bestowed on him Isaac and Jacob and each one of them We made a prophet.” [19.49] Abraham used his intelligence to question and reject all forms of belief other than the belief in the Creator. The Creator was so Pleased that He made Abraham the Father of Believers and

gave him a son (Isaac) and grandson (Jacob) who followed his line of reasoning. Today, we have much more free access to knowledge and a variety of research methodologies. Should we then work out what belief in the Creator means, place our trust in Him and follow His Guidance rather than make up our own theories, superstitions and prohibitions?

6.151 “Say: "Come I will rehearse what Allah has (really) prohibited you from": join not anything as equal with Him; be good to your parents: kill not your children on a plea of want; We provide sustenance for you and for them; come not nigh to shameful deeds whether open or secret; take not life which Allah has made sacred except by way of justice and law: thus does He command you that you may learn wisdom.” 6.152 “And come not near to the orphan's property except to improve it until he attains the age of full strength; give measure and weight with (full) justice; no burden do We place on any soul but that which it can bear; whenever you speak, do so justly even if a near relative is concerned; and fulfill the Covenant of Allah: thus does He command you that you may remember.”
What can the Covenant be other than fulfilling obligations as a created being who has the faculties to understand the existence of the Creator and be grateful?

6.153 “Verily this is My Way leading straight: follow it: follow not (other) paths: they will scatter you about from His (great) path: thus does He command you that you may be righteous.” 6.154 “Moreover We gave Moses the Book completing (Our favor) to those who would do right and explaining all things in detail and a Guide and a Mercy that they might believe in the meeting with their Lord.” 6.155 “And this is a Book which We have Revealed as a Blessing: so follow it and be righteous that you may receive mercy:” 6.156 “Lest you should say: "The Book was sent down to two peoples before us and for our part we remained unacquainted with all that they learned by assiduous study."” 6.157 “Or lest you should say: "If the Book had only been sent down to us we should have followed its Guidance better than they." Now then has come to you a Clear (Sign) from your Lord, a Guide and a Mercy: then who could do more wrong than one who rejects Allah's Signs and turns away from it? In good time shall We requite those who turn away from Our Signs with a dreadful penalty for their turning away.” 6.158 “Are they waiting to see if the angels come to them or thy Lord (Himself) or certain of the signs of thy Lord! The day that certain of the signs of thy Lord do come, no good will it do to a soul to believe in them then if it believed not before nor earned righteousness through its Faith. Say: "Wait you: we too are waiting."”

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