Articles




 Science and Faith


None is the victor but God:





In our visit to Alhambra Palace in Granada, we found a phrase engraved on the walls which says: "None is the victor but Allah (The One True God)". My eyes burst into tears because the breeze of the Muslims’ glorious was around everywhere. I imagined yore days when Muslim scientists used to teach the Arabs and the western world medicine, pharmacy, geometry, astronomy, and poetry. Muslims had also established the first university all over Europe in Spain. Still in my imagination, I also experienced the days of Abdul-Rahman Ad-Dakhil [100], whose army girded Italy and France. I even imagined the days of Al-Mutassim[101], who set a whole army to defend a Muslim woman whose garment was raised by a Roman man after she cried "O Mutassim help"! I was surprised by the claim made by some people that abiding by the teachings of our religion holds us back. My wandering got distracted when the Spanish tour guide said: the phrase engraved on the wall means " None is the victor but Allah", in Arabic. If we have any Arabs here, let them emphasize that in a loud voice. I then shouted: Yes, none is the victor but Allah, and my heart jumped from joy.





 And a witness among the family testified:


The famous German writer, Sigrid Hunke, the author of the book "God's Sun over the Occident"[102] published in 1960, reproduced an essential and funny text. It discusses a situation that imitates the reality of many Muslims today.





The speaker that talked in the text was the bishop of Cordoba (Alvaro), which was during the era of the flourishing of Islamic culture.





He complained that many of his Christian brethren read the legends of Arab, and studied the writings of Muslim philosophers and scholars. It wasn’t to refute them, instead, it was to learn Arabic and to be able to argue eloquently proficiently, and with fine gustation. He said:





“Where, nowadays, is that un-specialized Christian who reads Latin interpretations of the Bible? Who amongst them, even studies the four Bibles? What a pity! The Christian young men knew nothing but Arabic language and literature! They profoundly studied Arabic references, exerting all their efforts, spending large sums of money to buy them, and compiling huge libraries. They told everyone that the Arabic literature is worthy of respect and admiration at that time, to the point that if anyone tried to convince them to plea with the Christian books, they would declare that these books never grab their attention. What a misfortune! Christians have forgotten their mother tongue; you would rarely find one in a thousand who could write a simple correct letter in Latin. Vice versa happened concerning Arabic, whether phrasing, writing, and composing. Some of them might even excel in competing with the Arabs themselves.”





Muslim scientists’ discoveries were the accredited ones during the middle centuries. Muslim scientists used to worship God (Allah) and draw nearer to Him with their knowledge, without any signs of contradiction between religion and science. Yet, most of them were scholars in their faith, as well as being scientists.





The Muslim scientists put an experimental, materialistic, and rational approach for research. It was different from the Greek practice, as they also put an independent scientific theory for knowledge.





Some great scientists won the Noble prize in medicine and physics without viewing any opposition between science and religion even in the modern age.





The religion vs science conflict never appeared across history, even in Judaism. For many ages, the dominance was always given to religion. The scientific development was slowly moving forward according to necessities only, or perhaps it was mixed with legendries and paganism.





However, this conflict appeared in the era of church domination, after nine centuries of Christianity's appearance.





The issue of religion vs science conflict was declared during the European boom era, and the firm stands of scientists were then against the church control.





Humans developed atheism in various forms, but the people of the previous scriptures declared it. This is because God's complicated distorted concept was put in these books; it opposes the simple concept that God has put naturally in people's hearts.





One of the reasons that encouraged people to Atheism and the demand of replacing religion with science was the unacceptable commands from both religious representatives and institutes that aimed at earning worldly and political benefits.





The world then suffered from deterioration in the moral, humanistic values, and intellect due to this struggle between religion and science.





Science in Qur’an:





God has mentioned many verses in the Noble Qur’an, which encourage stimulating the human mind, alerting senses, contemplation, and meditation.





Have they not considered how God begins creation and then repeats it? Indeed that, for God, is easy. Say, [O Muhammad], Travel through the land and observe how He began creation. Then God will produce the final creation. Indeed God, over all things, is competent. [103]





Indeed, in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day are signs for those of understanding. Who remember God while standing or sitting or [lying] on their sides and give thought to the creation of the heavens and the earth, [saying], Our Lord, You did not create this aimlessly; exalted are You [above such a thing]; then protect us from the punishment of the Fire. [104]





The first verses that were revealed have spoken on science generally, and the creation of the human being in particular. This excellent blending in the integration between science and faith is manifestly shown in many verses.





Recite in the name of your Lord who created (1) Created man from a clinging substance (2) Recite, and your Lord is the most Generous (3) Who taught by the pen (4) Taught man that which he knew not. [105]





We find here that the verses referred to looking at and contemplating the rain, along with the different colors of fruits, mountains, people, and animals, including a clear indication of the universality of science and knowledge in all its specialties, which made religion and science two integral parts.





Have you not seen that God sends down water from the sky? With it We produce fruits of various colors. And in the mountains are streaks of white and red—varying in their hue—and pitch-black. Likewise, human beings, animals, and livestock come in various colors. Only those fear God, from among His servants, who have knowledge. Indeed, God is Exalted in Might and Forgiving.[106]





 Why is the need for religion?


Hans Schwarz, the Professor of Theology, said: “Although science is critical, it can be used as a tool for destruction just as it is used in construction. As then, comes the role of faith, clarifying that the practical experiment cannot have all the answers.”





He also said: “Faith and knowledge need each other, and scientists should admit that they often use faith to be able to understand the deep relations between the natural phenomena they observe.”





Schwarz also viewed that scientists do not have all the facts and answers as they claim. The inquiries they face every day are the best evidence to that, especially those investigating the origin of life. One day, they would reach a conclusion, but it gets contradicted by somebody on another day.





Questioning the origin of our life and the purpose of living is one thing that science cannot answer. Instead, it has given the turn to metaphysics to provide the answer.





The Hiroshima accident and other disasters that occurred because of the scientific inventions have caused science to lose its innocence.





Karl Jaspers, the philosopher, along with others, have called science as a superstition.





We can conclude that it is impossible to answer the questions on the origin, purpose, and ethics of life and maintain scientific development, except by achieving conformity between science and religion.





 Atheism of the gaps, not God of the gaps:


I had a conversation with a Russian atheist who asked me many questions. One of which was: Can the Creator create a big rock that He cannot lift?





I was astonished by his question. The first time I read about atheists asking those types of questions was the day before I had this conversation with him[107], so it was an extraordinary coincidence.





However, whether my answer was yes or no to his question, it would show that the Creator is not Omnipotent (may He be Exalted to that).





I told him: Well, can you draw me a circular triangle?





He directly answered: You are manipulating with speech.





I told him: It was you who manipulated, not me. Your question has no meaning; it doesn’t make sense. The One Unique Creator does not do whatever doesn’t befit Him, may He be Exalted to that. Then I gave him a simple example to just clarify the idea for him.





I told him: Any priest or religious person does not go out naked in the street, despite his ability to do that, but he cannot go out in front of people that way such an action is not suitable for his religious rank.





God has the best example. He can do anything, but He only does what befits His Majesty and Glory.





He said: God does not exist; science is the only way to truth.





I proceeded: This statement is not a scientific release that is based on evidence and experimental observations. Thus, we cannot accept it as a fact. The truth is that we know things do not immerge without a cause, not to mention this vast populated universe and the creatures there that own an intangible sense and obey the non-materialistic mathematical theories.





He said: You! The believers adopt the "god of the gaps" principle[108]. When you fail to provide a scientifical explanation to anything, you present the deity as a cover to your ignorance and mental stupidity. At the same time, you cite this ignorance as an evidence on the existence of your god, i.e. whenever you find a gap in science, you attribute it to the deity.





I told him: Is referring to the plane manufacturer when misunderstanding the motor's mechanism considered a gap in our intellect? Despite that the plane manufacturer has no existence in any of the steps involved in operating the engine, he is still responsible for the mechanisms we know.





Science concluded that the universe evolved from nonexistence, while the same science taught us that matter does not perish and is not immerged from nonexistence, which troubled scientists. If the matter was not immerged from nonexistence, how come that the whole universe evolved from nonexistence? Here comes the role of religion that explains what science failed in explaining.





Our Deity is not a "god of the gaps" that evolved from ignorance, but He is the cause of every mechanism discovered by science.





I proceeded: You are the ones adopting the "atheism of the gaps" principle. You use your inability or lack of desire to observe the universal laws' origin as an evidence that this origin does not exist. This is an enormous gap of consciousness and logic, isn’t that the "atheism of the gaps"?





I continued: To explain the existence of a limited materialistic universe, we need an independent eternal source that is not subjected to matter. Only science can study sensible or visual things, and this means the things of limited physical properties. Hence, we cannot, in any means, explain the existence of the universe by science alone.





Nature, with all its properties, is nothing but one of the facts of the universe. It is not an explanation of the existence of the universe. All the laws discovered are not a disclaimer to the Inventor's presence; instead, it is a declaration to His creation.





For example, someone can monthly deposit a sum of money in a savings bank, then he’d go to the bank to receive the money he put with the profits at the end of the year. The accountant then tells him that the multiplication law that they used in calculating the sum was the one which generated the money for him.





If this person didn’t deposit his money, his balance would have been zero. Therefore, claiming that the laws of physics are the ones that originated the universe is the real foolishness. Theories and laws only describe the path of the things precisely, but they cannot develop anything from nonexistence.





The laws of motion can only describe the basketball path, but it is the hands of the player that moves the ball. Accordingly, laws need a form of existence that is influenced by a specific power, in a particular place and time. Therefore, without these elements, these laws are useless; instead, they will never exist.





 Religion provides us with what science cannot offer:


Learning science can help Humans create a rocket, but it cannot help with letting them taste the beauty of an art painting or value things. Science cannot help humans with acknowledging the evil and good. We know from science that a bullet can kill, but it cannot help us realize that it is wrong to use it for killing others.





Albert Einstein, the famous physicist, said: “Science can never be a source for morals, there is no doubt that there are morals for science, but we cannot talk about the scientific principles for morals, as it’s a failure. Every attempt in trying to submit morals to the laws of science and equations will surely fail.”





Emmanuel Kant, the well-known German philosopher, said: “Ethical evidence for the existence of a deity has been established under justice. A good person should be rewarded, while a bad person should be punished, and this shall never take place except on the existence of a superior origin that reckons every person for his deeds. Also, the evidence is established in compliance with the capability to gather virtue and happiness, for they can only be gathered under who is Super Natural, which is All-knowledgeable, All-Powerful. This superior origin that overcomes nature represents the Deity.”





The Russian atheist said: Okay, but for me, the existence of the benefits behind the deity's idea made humans falsely think of the god's presence to attain these benefits.





He proceeded: If the rainbow is a reflection of sunrays on the rain, it is wrong to say that our benefit in enjoying the rainbow scene urges us to think of a creator's existence. The discovery of science about the mechanism that showed the rainbow refuted a creator's existence.





I told him: Let’s say you were walking in the street and lost your cellular phone, then you found a public telephone, and you wanted to use it to call your wife. Will using your cellphone while discovering the mechanism of its operation form be an evidence of a manufacturer's nonexistence to that phone? Or is that public phone a real existence that has an actual manufacturer? The presence of benefit does not disclaim the existence of the manufacturer. Instead, it supports it.





Enjoying the beautiful rainbow scene, and discovering the mechanism that shows the bow does not disclaim the Creator's existence who created the sun and sent down the rain.





He said: The atheist doesn’t harm others, and doesn’t encourage anyone to do evil deeds as some do in the name of religion.





I told him: Religion calls to abide by good deeds and avoiding bad deeds. Thus, some Muslims' bad manners are attributable to their culture or religious illiteracy, as well as being apart from the true religion. Haven’t you heard of the worldly attempts to establish communalism that lead to killing millions of Muslims and Christians? How can you say that the refutation of deity doesn’t urge a person to do evil deeds?





One of the communist philosophers said: “We thought we could be better without a deity, and that we can maintain humanity, but we were very wrong, for we destroyed the concept of god as well as destroyed the society itself.”





He said: Describe the Creator to me.





I said: I shall give you an example just to clarify. First, I want you to describe for me an intangible thing such as an "idea". Give me its weight in grams, length in centimeters, chemical construction, color, pressure, shape, and figure.





He said: Of course, it is impossible.





I told him: To describe an intangible thing, we should use terms and descriptions that differ a lot from the words we use in science, let alone describing the Creator of the whole universe.





He said: I feel that the idea of faith resembles bedtime stories or beautiful visions that only release the person's distress, nothing else.





I told him: These beautiful visions are way better than the nightmare of atheism that you are living in. Be with your One Unique Creator Who provides life and death, and mind nothing else.





He said: The doctor provides life and death when he decides either to treat or neglect his patient; hence, when the killer holds back from killing his victim, he would have provided him life.





I then mentioned this verse to him:





Have you not considered the one who argued with Abraham about his Lord [merely] because God had given him kingship?  When Abraham said, "My Lord is the one who gives life and causes death," he said, "I give life and cause death."  Abraham said, "Indeed, God brings up the sun from the east, so bring it up from the west."  So, the disbeliever was overwhelmed [by astonishment], and God does not guide the wrongdoing people. [109]





I told him commenting: Do you know what the punishment of God to this man was? God has sent to him one of the weakest and tiniest creatures, a mosquito, that entered his nose, reached his brain, and made him die. It was to prove that no matter how much a person is powerful and tyrant, he remains incapable of protecting himself from the tiniest creatures of God.





The Russian atheist proceeded: But the Creator had to ask for my opinion before creating me! How come that the Creator forces someone to a life that he does not want to live?





I told him: If God wants to take His creations’ opinion in creating them, they must exist from the first place. How can humans have an opinion while they are in nothingness? The issue here is the issue of existence and non-existence. The human attachment to life and his fear for this life is the most significant evidence of his satisfaction with this blessing.





The grace of life is a test for human beings to distinguish the wicked and indignant person from who is satisfied with his Lord, to possess the place of dignity in the Hereafter.





He said: You said that at the beginning of human creation, a covenant was made between the Creator and the humans who have testified for Him of Oneness and Lordship, but I do not remember that.





I said: Don’t you have your eyes looking to the sky forcibly when you are subject to horror or fear?





Don’t your hands rise without knowing to ask for help from this hidden power that exists in heaven?





He said: Yes.





I was starting to hear a tone of grief in his voice.





I told him: So, you remember, but in bad times. You are a believer in fact, but you must remember Him in good times and bad times so that you get to attain the perfect faith.





This Russian atheist surprised me when I told him that I was going to my office to bring him a copy of my book "The original concept of the God" by telling me that he had to leave the mosque instantly since the time specified for visiting the mosque was finished according to the program of the tourism office he was following. The tour guide was waiting for him in the mosque hall, but at a far corner. When I got the book and came back again, I entered the hall and he wasn’t there, so I started looking for him everywhere. The tour guide told me he was there at another corner. When I looked at where he pointed, I found him getting up from a Muslim-like prostration position while weeping a lot. I was astonished, and then the tour guide told me joking: What have you done to the man?





I replied: I did nothing, he just asked me many questions and I answered him. So, the tour guide told me: The visitor told me in your absence that he was very impressed, and that he always wanted to be a believer, but he had many unanswered questions in his mind, and he finally found them. I then told the tour guide: Praise be to God, all that is attributable to the Guidance of God. God certainly knows that this person is a good man and that he is looking for the truth; therefore, He facilitated him to come to this place.





The proactive and teleological cause:





Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali [110] describes that existence (a book, for example) has four causes:





-      The materialistic cause: The ink, and the paper from which the book was formulated.





-      The explicit cause: The shape in which the book was formulated.





-      The proactive cause: The compiler, the papermaker, and the printer operator.





-      The teleological cause: The reason behind the compilation of the book.





However, the atheists ignored the teleological cause, considering that it is beyond the scientific scope since none can tell the reason for the invented thing except its inventor.





They also considered that believing in it is against science. Thus, everyone agreed to believe that the creation of the whole universe has no cause.





In fact, everything a person does regarding any activities and everything in the universe of incidents compiles both the mechanism and teleology.





For instance, when we drink a cup of water, we use the mechanism of holding the cup to drink and relieve our thirst.





Also, we use the plane using the mechanism of riding to reach a particular place.





One day, an atheist told me: admitting the existence of a creator disables the sense and logic.





I told him: The role of the mind is to judge things and accredit them. Thus, the mind's inability to realize the purpose of human existence, for example, does not cancel its role, instead, it gives a chance for the religion to tell him about what the mind failed to realize, like informing him about his Creator, and the origin and purpose of life. Therefore, he then tends to understand, judge, and accredit this information. Accordingly, admitting the presence of a creator has disabled neither the sense nor the logic.





Ibn Al-Tufail [111] said in the story of Hay Ibn-Yaqzhan:[112]





“The mind, with its first innate ideas, can perceive the truth in relation to the first principles, and realize from them the existence of God. As for the mysteries of existence, creation, and the Creator, which are hidden from us by blocking the unseen, it is unable to realize their true nature, because the senses do not realize the purpose of things. We see that the mind can perceive the universal laws and derive the universals and consciousness by the causes if only freed from arrogance.





Moreover, the mind cannot reach the details and parts that the religion presents, which are considered a second-degree fact, and it should be accepted based on the big facts. Even the mind that is also capable of realizing God's existence is unable to discover His essence. I do not think that it has anything to do with the scientific research to continue with persistence in searching for the essence of God. There is nothing like unto Him[113]. This is not only because the senses do not perceive it, but because no scientist can know everything about the reality of a single fly and its properties. How is he expected to know about God’s essence? Does a human, who does not know the substance, does not know how he knows and does not know how to perceive it, desire to realize the truth of God?”





I remember a comment that an atheist said one day: science has reached the fact that the computer resembles the human mind and the reason for that is:





-      First: All worldly things that have forms and systems can be emulated.





-      Second: the brain consists of matter and system.





-      Third: Accordingly, the brain can be emulated.





-      Fourth: the brain is a computer.





I told him: You are just like the one who says that the computer realizes the information that’s put in, or like a person who says that the TV can perceive whatever programs it presents.





The difference between both is the perception of the human mind and his feelings towards what he does.





From worshipping the universe to worshipping the Lord of the universe:





One of the manifestations of the controversy between religion and science in ancient Greece is that Greek prescriptions forbade studying astronomy, which hindered the scientific development because of worshipping the creations of the universe.





The city-states system in Ancient Greece hastened the failure of ancient religion, for the rising certainty that the gods of the city were unable to protect them. People’s faith in these deities and their blending with foreign traders spread doubts, myths, and illusions among the citizens. The legends of the ancient local gods continued among the naive peasants and city residents, at the time in which science reached its peak point.





Therefore, science in ancient Greece did not develop except after some of its free thinkers stopped sanctifying the universe's creations.





However, the mistake they made was when they considered atheism as a necessity for applying science.





The story of Prophet Abraham, peace be upon him, in the Qur’an teaches that giving up the worship of the universe does not mean refuting the existence of a creator to the universe. It is a call to worship the Lord of the universe. [114]





Thus, We showed Abraham the empire of the heavens and the earth, that he might be one of those with certainty. (75) When the night fell over him, he saw a planet. He said, "This is my lord." But when it set, he said, "I do not love those that set" (76) Then, when he saw the moon rising, he said, “This is my lord. “But when it set, he said, “If my Lord does not guide me, I will be one of the erring people.” (77) Then, when he saw the sun rising, he said, “This is my lord, this is bigger.” But when it set, he said, “O my people, I am innocent of your idolatry. (78) I have directed my attention towards Him Who created the heavens and the earth—a monotheist—and I am not of the idolaters.”[115]





Why did we fall behind?





The Islamic civilization succeeded in showing the freedom of mind and intellect. Islam itself was responsible for establishing an international civilization shared by many people from different ethnic backgrounds, still, it also played a crucial role in developing the intellectual and cultural life in an unprecedented wide range. Eight hundred years ago, the Arabic language was the scientific and scholarly language that spread worldwide. Why, then, did we fall back now?





I was having a conversation with a Muslim friend whose daughter failed in the general secondary test. The girl was known for her negligence in education and study, also, this incident came across my friend’s mother’s severe illness. Due to the nature of her job, my friend was unable to stay with her mother to take care of her. Moreover, the girl's failure necessitated her to restudy the syllabus at home, so it was a good chance for the girl to stay with her grandmother since she could not join a college that year.





I was surprised when my friend kept telling people that God caused her daughter to fail to stay with her grandmother during her illness.





I told her then: This is strange, was God the cause of your daughter’s failure or negligence in studying?





She answered: Haven’t you seen how God facilitated that perfect timing for my daughter’s failure with my mother’s illness?





I told her: And your Lord does injustice to no one [116], God will not wrong your daughter to make things easy for you, with His predestined knowledge, God knew that your daughter is careless and that she will not pass the exam, but He did not force her to fail. If your daughter were diligent, God would have arranged other ways to care for your mother.





I then remembered one of my mother's stories that she told me when I was young, and I do not know its source, but it has many true aspects.





The story says: “In Andalusia, when the countries were under the ruling of Islam, one of the tyrant rulers wanted to conquer it, so he sent a spy to get him news about the armies and the capabilities they have. As soon as he entered one of the cities, he found a little boy at the town's edge. He was sitting under a tree crying, for he was used to striking two birds with one arrow, but that day he couldn’t hit but one bird only, so he considered that as a failure because of a sin he made. The spy said talking to himself: if these were their kids, how would their men be like? The spy returned from the city to the ruler telling him: You will not be able to face those men, but wait until they get overwhelmed by sins and misdeeds so as you can be able to enter these countries.”





It was Satan who caused them to slip because of some [blame] they had earned. [117]





The critical point here is that we do not fall behind because of sins only, but because of the insistence on denying our negligence and wrongs.





Overcoming our enemies and achieving success in life should be preceded by overcoming oneself, striving it to strengthen its faith, beware of sins, take the legitimate causes, confess the misdeeds, and always renew the repentance to achieve targeted goals.





Ibn Al-Qayyim said[118]: “Beware of yourself, you will never suffer any affliction except from it. Therefore, do not make peace with it. I swear to God that no one shall respect it until he abases it, and none shall honor it until he humiliates it, none shall reconcile it until he breaks it, and none shall comfort it until he exhausts it, and none shall assure it until he frightens it, and none shall rejoice it until he grieves it.”





Conclusion:





We conclude that in the Islamic civilization, the so-called religion vs science conflict was not an issue, instead, some Muslim physicists, astronomers, and mathematics scientists considered themselves in a state of worship to God.





The West has developed in knowledge and science when they abandoned the false beliefs based on their distorted religion. Therefore, they succeeded when they neglected these novelties, started adopting science and logic, and stopped indulging in the occultations drawn from the clergy's thoughts.





Despite their turning to science in the right way, they lost their values, morals, and the purpose of their existence, by disregarding to adopt the true religion.





For Arabs, it was the contrary; they fell behind when they left the true religion and turned to science in the wrong way when they blindly chased and imitated the western pattern of thinking.





If we have a real and robust urge to retrieve the past glories, we should correct this situation and rearrange our priorities. We have the right beliefs and religion that encourage science through the correct spiritual, reasonable, and logical means and refutes myths and novelties. Thus, we have the basis; it only lacks the structure to rebuild the civilization.





 The Upright Religion


But those who believe, love God more: 





During a visit to one of Hong Kong’s distinguished attractions, we found people flocking to pray to Buddha statue and present offerings to it. I wondered how Gautama used the word “Buddha” in the context of the term “Prophet” which refers to a person who is enlightened by a divine revelation. He told his followers: “I am not the first Buddha and will not be the last”. When the Buddhist feels a lot of fear, he resorts to the power in the sky to ask for help.[119]





In the middle of the crowd, while I was thinking about these people's beliefs, I heard my husband saying clearly and loudly: There is no God but Allah, I laughed and told him: Lower your voice, there are people around us. He said: Believe me, I cannot keep my voice down; I cannot control myself.





So, I said to myself: Glory be to God, who created and taught intact hearts His supplication and I remembered the verse: But those who believe are stronger in love for God[120], and I was so happy.





He has commanded that you worship none but Him. This is the upright religion:





Looking at different cultures and civilizations, foreign languages, and beliefs, we find common grounds, concerning values, ethics, and human meanings, also, our problems, challenges and ambitions look a lot alike. People do not share only values, ethics, human purposes, and historical backgrounds, but the origin of religions and beliefs as well. We all meet at Adam; Adam indeed had one religion and one faith. But humans created the differences between religions and beliefs.





By looking deeply into peoples’ beliefs, we discover that most nations with different religious symbols and inheritance, still believe that there is a Creator for the universe, and they seek refuge to him when facing hardships. This confirms that these religions and beliefs had historical origins that emanates from one original right religion, and what people currently have from the religious heritage contains “monotheism”, which is the belief in One God and unifying Him in worship. There are many proofs in these religions, and their sacred books indicate that their roots and origins go back to the doctrine of “monotheism”.





I remember when my son did voluntary work in his summer vacation where he spread the message of Islam. He was studying engineering at that time. He once told me that while he was talking with a Hindu, it occurred to him that he believes in One and Only God, but he turns to Him by supplication to others. The Hindu told him: We buy our gods according to our capabilities; whoever has money buys a golden god, and the poor buys a wooden god. My son was surprised, then asked him: When you are on a plane, and a problem happens, and after that, you discover that you are probably going to die, what do you do? He replied: We seek refuge to the One God who is in the sky. My son told him: Why don’t you seek refuge to Him every day so that your hearts are unified to what is best for you?





When my son told me this story, I remembered Emran ibn Hossain's story, when Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, asked the father of Emran: How many gods are you worshipping today? He replied: seven, six on earth and one in the sky. The Prophet said: Which one of them do you adore and fear? He said: The one in the sky. Then the Prophet said to him: Leave the ones on earth and worship the one in the sky, so al Hossain accepted Islam.[121]





I was pleased and told my son: Glory to God, who guided you to this answer.





And when they board a ship, they supplicate Allah (the Creator), sincere to Him in religion. But when He delivers them to the land, at once they associate others with Him.[122]





...He has commanded that you worship not except Him. That is the upright religion, but most of the people do not know.[123]





I will not forget a Hindu visitor's answer when I asked her about why she was feeling scared while talking to her about the original concept of God.





She said: I am afraid to discuss the issue with you because you might be a god yourself. You have a lot of knowledge. God can come in the form of human or maybe an animal to teach us a particular lesson; perhaps He showed up in your form.





Then I had mixed feelings between wanting to laugh, saddened about her way of thinking, and astonished from the condition those people have reached.





I told her: how strange is this! I can’t imagine my father or my husband in the form of an animal or any other creature. How can you accept this image for God, the Creator, may God be exalted above that?





I now remember the story of a Hindu visitor who came with his daughter and her husband, who were Muslims. The daughter’s eager tears wishing that her father would embrace Islam are still in my memory.





He had already accepted an offer from me to embrace Islam when I answered a question he was always thinking of. He said: I am convinced with Islam, but I feel that when I become a Muslim, this action will bear a lot of disrespect and disaffection to my parents who passed away.





I told him: Have you forgotten the right of your Creator, who created you, portrayed you and honored you, gave you money and kids? If your parents have thrown themselves in water to drown, would you throw yourself with them? Your future is with your Creator, not with your parents. If your parents had the chance to return to life, they would have advised you with Islam. Before he pronounced Shahada (first step to embrace Islam), I emphasized the importance of believing in the resurrection day, leaving the concept of reincarnation; this is one of the essential points that we should concentrate on.





He asked: why?





I told him: No school or university administration accepts that anyone else but its students to complete the exam for themselves when the time of the exam is over. Life is your exam paper.





If we look at the harmony between human bodies and their souls, we would conclude that it is impossible to make these souls live in animal bodies. They cannot wander between plants and insects, not even in human beings.





God distinguished human with mind, knowledge and made him a successor in the earth, differentiated him, honored him, and elevated him above most of His creatures. God will never humiliate human beings. Day of Judgment, heavens [Paradise] and Hellfire represent the Creator's Justice when sins and good deeds of humans are weighed.





Then shall anyone who has done an atom's weight of good, see it and anyone who has done an atom's weight of evil, shall see it. [124]





Among the beautiful stories that one of our distinguished scholars told us was about a Hindu travelling for the first time in his life. He put his small god in his luggage with the rest of his stuff. When the plane landed, he unfortunately lost his bag. He went to the airport’s lost and found desk to report about the incident. When they asked him about what was in the bag, he was ashamed to tell them that his god was inside. This embarrassing situation was a turning point in his search for truth and understanding the fatal mistake he was making all his life by worshipping what does not harm or benefit, other than Allah (The Creator). He embraced Islam; he then knew that losing his bag that day, was good luck not bad luck as he thought in the beginning.





Your God is One God:





Since human appeared on earth, since Adam’s era, God, the Lord of the universe sent messengers. He chose the most pious and devoted person in his people to be a prophet and judge between them, to remind them with sincere servitude to the One and Only God. Whenever people twist the message of previous messengers, deviate from the right path and worship others, God would send a new messenger to lead people and bring them back to the right direction. These messengers would direct them again to worship Him alone.





The Creator sent one clear, simple message to all nations and one way of salvation. The message is: Believing in One God, worshipping Him alone. The messenger’s existence among his people was considered as a lamp that enlightens the way to his followers. The messenger clarified for them the meaning of achieving the salvation, by following the messenger’s teachings and his acts in worshipping God alone, not as some wrongly understand and make their messenger a mediator between them and God.





As many prophets and messengers that God sent to different nations, were mentioned in the Qur’an (such as Jesus, Moses, Abraham, Noah, David. Salomon, Ismael, Isaac, Joseph, etc.…), others weren’t. Therefore, the possibility that other famous religious teachers such as the Hindu Lords Rama, Krishna, and Gautama Buddha were prophets of God cannot be outrightly negated.  But these people used these symbols for polytheism.





While some people are arguing that God did not send them a messenger or a prophet as he sent Prophet Muhammad to Arabs, the Holy Qur’an asserts the opposite of this as God said:





And We have already sent messengers before you. Among them are those [whose stories] We have related to you, and among them are those [whose stories] We have not related to you. And it was not for any messenger to bring a sign [or verse] except by permission of God. So, when the command of God comes, it will be concluded in truth, and the falsifiers will thereupon lose [all]. [125]





He also said:





Indeed, We have sent you with the truth as a bringer of good tidings and a warner. And there was no nation but that there had passed within it a warner. [126]





Here, the greatness of Islam prevails in its simplicity and inclusivity. The term “Islam” is not connected with any person or place, or a particular group, but it reflects a relationship with God Almighty.





I remember when I was the only Muslim among all my classmates in a French class. The French teacher, who was a catholic, told me: I love Islam.





I said: why?





He said: Muslims worship one God, they have one sacred book, and they pray towards one direction (Qibla). I admire this religion a lot.





I was then so pleased and proud of this great religion. That moment was my starting point to dedicate my time and effort to study the right way to present Islam. I wanted to change the typical dialogues between advocates that drive away from Islam rather than attract. Islam is the religion of natural disposition, comprehensive and straightforward, but is presented in a complicated way, almost wrong. I liked a saying that I once heard which said: Islam is a good product, but whoever does the marketing for this product is a failure.





During a visit of an Argentinian to our center, he surprised me by saying: I only have five minutes here, and before I go, I want in only three minutes to know the difference between a Muslim and a Christian, so that I have time to take some photos of the mosque.





I said to myself: What should I say in these three minutes. I was confused for a while, but I felt a sudden power to answer the Argentinian swiftly.





I told him: Do you have in Argentina among Christians, someone raised in a Christian family and got baptized and when he grew up, he said: I am not convinced that God has a son, for me, He is one. Jesus is only a Prophet, and I resort to God directly in supplication, and I don’t resort to Jesus?





He said: There are many, and I am one of them.





I said: So, you are Muslim without knowing it.





He seemed astonished and said: Amazing! so am I a Muslim?     





I said: Yes, but you must accept Muhammad peace be upon him as the last Messenger from God because you heard about him from me here.





He said: yes, I accept. When I entered this center, my maximum hope was to know the difference between a Muslim and a Christian, but I wasn’t expecting to get out of this place as a Muslim. Thank you for enlightening my path.





I told him: Praise and thanks to God alone who guided us to the true religion.





Logic comes from God, and complications come from humans:  





I was once making a German language presentation about Islam to many Germans who were visiting our center. One of them asked me: If Islam is that simple and logical as you are saying, why do Muslims cause all these political problems?





His question was in front of the group, and I had to deal with it so that his attack would not ruin the calm dialogue. 





I told him immediately: For your information, I will die alone. I will be resurrected alone. I will meet my Creator alone, without my family and money.





I shall meet God with answers to three questions: who is your God, your religion, and who is your messenger? God will be waiting for my response which is: “Allah” the Creator is my God; my religion is believing in Him and worshipping Him alone without any mediator; my Prophet is Muhammad the last messenger. By recognizing Muhammad as his final messenger, I have realized all messengers who were before him, and this is a must and obligation to every Muslim.





The Messenger has believed in what was revealed to him from his Lord, and [so have] the believers. All of them have believed in God and His angels and His books and His messengers, [saying], “We make no distinction between any of His messengers.” And they say, “We hear and we obey. [We seek] Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the [final] destination.[127]





Say, [O believers], "We have believed in God and what has been revealed to us and what has been revealed to Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and the Descendants and what was given to Moses and Jesus and what was given to the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and we are Muslims [in submission] to Him." [128]





I told him: You too, every person on earth, will meet God alone, life is short, death is coming for us suddenly. When will we learn to differentiate between political problems and religion? Isn’t it time for us to know how to decide our priorities?





The man calmed down, and the group applauded.





After that, I told them: I want to ask you a question. It is known that every nation and people have habits, traditions, whims, and novelties.





I continued: How can a simple person like me here, or another in China, Germany, South America, or Africa, primarily differentiate between the simple religion of God, and the traditions and whims of the place where he is, before reading any religious book?





They tried to guess, and after they failed to give me the right answer, I told them: You all know something called the common sense. So, everything logical is from God, and everything complicated is from humans.





They all laughed hard, and some of them applauded again.                      





I told them: For example, if a religious scholar whether Muslim, Christian, Hindu or from any other religion told you that the universe has a Creator, One and Only, without any partner. He doesn’t come to earth in the form of humans or animals, nor a stone or an idol, that we must worship Him alone, resort to Him alone in hard times, this is the religion of God.





If a religious scholar, Muslim, Christian or Hindu, told you that God incarnates in any form, we must worship and resort to Him through a person, prophet, priest, idol, or saint, this comes from humans, don’t listen to him.





I continued: For instance, it is enough to visit India, and say between the crowds, the Creator is One. They would then reply in harmony, yes, the Creator is One. I told the group: and this is what is written in their books.[129]





But they disagree, fight, could even slaughter each other, over one point which is the form and shape that God comes through to earth. For instance, the Christian Indian says: God is one, but He is incarnated in the trinity (the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit). The Hindu Indian says: God is one but he comes in the form of an animal or a human or an idol.





I told them: If you think carefully, you will find that all problems and differences between religious sects, religions themselves, exist because of the mediators that humans put between them and their Creator. For instance, Catholic and Protestants denominations, and Hindu sects all disagree about communicating with God, not on the concept that God Himself exists.





If they all worship the God directly, they would be united.





Say (O Muhammad): O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians): Come to a word that is just between us and you, that we worship none but God, and that we associate no partners with Him, and that none of us shall take others as lords besides God (the Creator). Then, if they turn away, say: Bear witness that we are Muslims.[130]  





I continued: In addition to this, you must know that the religion of God is clear and logical, no mysteries in it. If I want to convince you that Prophet Muhammad is god whom you must worship, I should put so much effort to convince you, and you will never be convinced.





You might ask me how is Muhammad a god while he eats and drinks like us? I would say that you are not convinced because it is a mysterious concept and riddle; you will understand it when you meet God. This example proves that God's right religion must be free of mysteries; mysteries only come from humans.





I added: The religion of God is also free of charge. Everyone has the freedom to pray and worship in the houses of God without paying any subscription to get a membership. Humans create the rule of having to register and pay money in any place of worship.





But if any religious scholar told me that I should pay charity directly to people to help them, then the rule comes from the religion of God.





In God’s religion, people are equal, like the teeth of a comb. There is no difference between Arab or foreigner, white or black, only by piousness.





If you were told that any mosque, church, or temple is for whites only while black people have a different place, then this is a rule created by humans.





I told them: Honoring women and raising their status is an order from God, but oppressing them is what humans chose to do.    





One of them asked: Then why is the Afghani Muslim woman oppressed?





I told him: Do you think that Buddhist or Christian women in Afghanistan live in paradise?





If the Muslim woman in Afghanistan is oppressed, so is the Hindu, Buddhist, and Christian woman; this is people's culture; it has nothing to do with the true religion of God.  





I added: the right religion of God is always compatible and in harmony with natural disposition. For instance, any smoker or alcoholic asks his kids to stay away from smoking and alcohol, because he is deeply convinced about the danger they cause to health and community.





When the religion forbids alcohol, for instance, this is an order from God. But if the religion forbids milk, it is not logical; everyone knows that milk is good for health. His mercy and kindness in His creation allowed us to eat good things and prohibited us from eating bad things.





Another example, head cover for women and decency for men and women are an order from God, but the details of colors and designs are from humans. The rural atheist Chinese woman and the Swiss Christian rural woman are both committed to covering their heads, based on that decency is a natural disposition.





This is how we can differentiate between right and wrong before we read any religious book.





Terrorism, for instance, is common in different forms in the world, among sects of all religions. I lived long in Africa, and I know that there are Christian sects that kill and practice horrific forms of oppression and violence in the name of religion and the name of God. They represent 4% of the world’s Christian population. While who performs terrorism in the name of Islam represent 0.01% of the Muslim population. Terrorism is not limited to this, but is also common among Buddhist, Hindus, and other religions.





We can never accept that the media highlights bad examples of Muslims and good examples of non-Muslims. It is unacceptable that they call the Muslim who kills others a terrorist while calling the non-Muslim who kills others mentally ill.





I talked to a French journalist about the same issue: In media, you play a dangerous role in misreporting Islam's image through your continuous persistence in publishing these bad examples of Muslims.





He said: Excuse me, but we only publish the truth, not fake news.





I said: I don’t claim that your news is fake, I’m saying that when you allocate an article in your news magazines to talk about bad examples of Muslims, you should give another part to talk about others. When you call the Muslim killer a terrorist, you should also call the non-Muslim killer a terrorist.





He said: A lot of what you are saying is correct.





Set your face steadily to the true religion:





Say, Come, I will recite what your Lord has prohibited to you. [He commands] that you not associate anything with Him, and to parents, good treatment, and do not kill your children out of poverty; We will provide for you and them. And do not approach immoralities – what is apparent of them and what is concealed. And do not kill the soul which God has forbidden [to be killed] except by [legal] right. This has He instructed you that you may use reason.[131]  





And do not approach the orphan’s property except in a way that is best until he reaches maturity. And give full measure and weight in justice. We do not charge any soul except [with that within] its capacity. And when you testify, be just, even if [it concerns] a near relative. And the covenant of God fulfill. This has He instructed you that you may remember.[132]



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