Agnosticism and Atheism Taoism The Holy Qur'an

Atheism Versus God

10 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS are nearer the day. Surely good works drive away evil works. This is a reminder for those who would remember.” (11:115). “Surely Prayer restrains one form indecency and manifest evil; and remembrance of Allah, indeed, is the greatest virtue. And Allah knows what to do.” (29:46). Another great benefit of sincere Prayer is that it is a means of attaining paradise: “And who are strict in the observance of their prayers. These are the heirs, who will inherit Paradise; they will abide therein.” (23:10-12). This means that those believers who are watchful over their prayers will enjoy the pleasure of close communion with God. Their Salat becomes the source of their comfort The Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him) is reported to have said: “The delight of my eyes lies in Salat.” Most people are busy in their worldly affairs and some are likely to forget or be negligent in the observation of their prayers at the proper time. If it is not possible to offer each of the five daily prayers at the prescribed time due to some genuine reason then two prayers may be joined at one time like the earl}’ and late afternoon prayers or sunset and night Prayers. Nevertheless no prayer should be missed. Should one fail to observe a prayer or prayers at the correct time due to forgetfulness or any other reason then the missed prayer or prayers should be offered as soon as possible. Particular attention should be paid to the offering of prayers: “Watch over Prayers, and the middle Prayer, and stand before Allah submissively”. (2:239). The five daily prescribed prayers are obligatory and as far as possible they should be performed in congregation. In addition there is Tahajjud prayer which is offered during the night and is to be completed before dawn. This prayer, though not obligatory, but is highly recommended due to its spiritual efficacy. Regarding this prayer the Holy Quran states: “And wake up for it in the latter part of the night as a supererogatory service AUDIENCE WITH ALLAH 11 for thee. It may be that thy Lord will raise thee to an exalted station.” (17:80). “Verily, getting up at night is the most potent means of subduing the self and of most effective in respect of words of prayer.” (73:17). Prayers should be performed with full attention and with the sole intention of winning the pleasure of God. There should be no ostentation. We read in the Holy Quran: “The hypocrites seek to deceive Allah, but He will punish them for their deception. And when they stand up for prayer, they stand lazily and to be seen of men, and they remember Allah but little, wavering between this and that, belonging to neither these or to those. And he whom Allah causes to perish for him thou shalt not find a way.” (4:143,144). “So woe to those who pray, but are unmindful of their Prayer. They like only to be seen of men, And withold legal alms,” (107:5-8). The consequences of failing to offer Salat is described in the following dialogue between the dwellers of paradise and the dwellers of hell. Those in paradise ask those who are in hell: “What has brought you into hell? They will answer We were not of those who offered Prayers, . .” (74:43,44). I conclude the first •section of my topic with a prayer of the Prophet Abraham: “My Lord, make me observe Prayer, and my children too. Our Lord! bestow Thy grace on me and accept my prayer.” (14:41). AMEN Atheism Versus God (Faizur Rasul) Atheism versus God is an age-old controversy. There have always been highly educated intellectuals who believed in the existence of God — Plato and his followers; and other equally highly educated intellectuals who disbelieved in the existence of God — Aristotle and his followers. In the ancient times there had been Stoics, a sort of religious, other worldly people, as well as Epicureans who were materialists, believing in the highest happiness in this world; though one of the top atheists of our day, Sigmund Freud believed happiness was not possible in this world because unhappiness comes from natural calamities, behaviours of other people and illnesses within ourselves, none of which is in our control (“Civilisation and Its Discontents”). In the Middle Ages John Calvin, John Huss and John Knox believed in a traditional God, while Voltaire, Rousseau and Tom Paine disbelieved. In the nineteenth century atheists, Marx, Darwin and Huxley had great tussles with the Church Fathers; and Charles Bradlaugh, M.P., President of Secular Society of Britain, challenged God in a public meeting to hit him with a thunderbolt in five minutes and proved God did not exist. Matters are still the same. There are Humanists and atheists in Britain and the West as well as Christians who believe in God. At present (1984) the top atheist in Britain is Professor John Allegro, philologist and author of many books; and the top believer in Britain is Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, the 4th Caliph of the Ahmadiyya movement in Islam, well versed in many languages and a great writer. Knowing that there are fanatics both among religionists and among atheists, we will try to convey both sides of the case impartially. Whether God exists or not is important because if there is God, and we live and arrange our world affairs as if there is no God, we will be sitting on a volcano and vice versa; maybe we are already sitting on a volcano. A modern atheist usually begins by saying that primitive man imagined about gods and worshipped them when he was assailed by natural phenomena like storms, deluges or earthquakes. This ancient idea of polytheism developed gradually into monotheism in later ages as human intelligence became more sophisticated. As no primitive man ever told a modern atheist ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 13 what he imagined, the atheist imagined what primitive man was supposed to have imagined . . . Against this the Muslims learned from the Quran that God had sent Prophets to all peoples and told of a single, monotheist God, the One, but peoples subsequently took to polytheism which can be verified. The Chinese originally believed in monotheism and became polytheists later. Over two thousand and five hundred years ago the Chinese Taoists were Monotheists;’ ‘Toa is really nothing but that which you Westerners call ‘God’. Tao is One, the beginning and the end. It embraces all things and to It all things return”. (From “The Rhythm Of Life”; the same as in the Quran of 7th century). The original Veda (2000 B. C.) is monotheistic, but the Hindus took to polytheism in later ages. Akhnatonian monotheism (1375-1358 B.C.) in Egypt was suppressed subsequently by the priesthood who took to polytheism. Muslims believe that the Book containing the revealed words and phrases of God is the Quran, and the universe containing the things and events created by God is also a “Quran”; these two Qurans will always tally and support each other; what the one Quran says will happen in the other universe. Though all religion and scriptures came originally from God, but have become interpolated subsequently and God abrogates them in the Quran. This makes the Quran as the world scripture, Islam as the world religion and the Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him) as the world Prophet. The Christendom of both Christians and later, Secularists, ridiculed all that. We will quote from various well-known authors the excerpts favourable and unfavourable to the Quran, Islam and the Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him). The first translation of the Quran in English by Alexander Ross in 1647 says in the Introduction, to his “Christian readers”: “There being so many Sects and Heresies banded together against the Truth, finding that Mahomet wanting to the muster, I thought good to bring it to their Colour, that so viewing thine enemies in their full body, thou maist the better prepare to encounter, and I hope overcome them. It may happily startle thee, to find him so to speak English, as if he had made some Conquest on the Nation; but thou wilt soon reject that fear, if thou consider that this is his Alcoran (the Ground-work of the Turkish Religion), hath been already translated into almost all languages in Christendom ̂ at least, the most general, as the Latin, Italian, French, &c.), yet never gained any Proselyte, where the Sword, its most forcible, and strongest argument hath not prevailed. . . Thou shalt find it so rude, and incongruous a composure, so farced with contradiction, blasphemies, obscene speeches, and ridiculous fables . . . though it hath been a poyson, that hath infected a very great, but most unsound part of the Universe, it may prove an Anti-dote, to confirm in thee the health of Christianity.” The Introduction of George Sale’s translation of the Quran in 1734 says: “I 14 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS imagine it almost needless either to make an apology for publishing the following translation, or to go about to prove it a work of use as well as curiosity. They must have a mean opinion of the Christian religion, or be but ill grounded therein, who can apprehend any danger from so manifest a forgery. I shall not here inquire into the reasons why the law of Mohammed (peace be onhim) has met with so unexampled areceptionin the world (forthey are greatly decieved who imagine it to have been propagated by the sword alone), or by what means it came to be embraced by nations which never felt the force of the Mohammedan arms, and even by those which stripped the Arabians of their conquests, and put an end to the sovereignty and the very being of their Khalifs: yet it seems as if there was something more than what is vulgarly imagined in a religion which has made so surprising a progress. . .and also to enable us effectually to expose the imposture. . .The Protestants alone are able to attack the Koran with success; and for them, Providence has reserved the glory of its overthrow.” After reading Sale’s translation of the Quran, historian Edward Gibbon (1737-94) says this: “In the spirit of enthusiasm or vanity, the Prophet rests the truth of his mission on the merit of his book; audaciously challenges both men and angels to imitate the beauties of a single page; and presumes to assert that God alone could dictate this incomparable performance. This argument is most powerfully addressed to a devout Arabian, whose mind is attuned to faith and rapture; whose ear is delighted by the music of sounds; and whose ignorance is incapable of comparing the productions of human genius. The harmony and copiousness of style will not reach, in a version, the European infidel: he will peruse with impatience the endless incoherent rhapsody of fable, and precept, and declamation, which seldom excites a sentiment or an idea, which sometimes crawls in a dust, and is sometimes lost in the clouds. The divine attributes exalt the fancy of the Arabian missionary; but his loftiest strains must yield to the sublime simplicity of the book of Job, composed in a remote age, in the same country, and in the same language. If the composition of the Koran exceeds the faculties of a man, to what superior intelligence should we ascribe the Iliad of Homer, or the Philippics of Demosthenes?” (Quoted from The Koran, interpreted by A. J. Arberry, George Allen & Unwin.) From the preface of Rev. J. N. Rodwell’s translation of The Koran, 1861: “In close connection with the above remarks, stands the question of Muhammad’s sincerity and honesty of purpose in coming forward as a messenger from God. For if he was indeed the illiterate person the Muslims represent him to have been, then it will be hard to escape their inference that the Koran is, as they assert it to be, a standing miracle. But if, on the other hand, it was a Book carefully concocted from various sources, and with much extraneous aid, and published as a divine oracle, then it would seem that the author is at once open to the charge of the grossest imposture, and even of impious blasphemy. The evidence rather shews, that in all he did and wrote, ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 15 Muhammad was actuated by a sincere desire to deliver his countrymen from the grossness of its debasing idolatries — that he was urged on by an intense desire to proclaim that great truth of the Unity of the Godhead which had taken full possession of his own soul — that the end to be attained justified to his mind the means he adopted in the production of his Suras •— that he works himself up into a belief that he had received a divine call — and that he was carried on by the force of circumstances and by gradual increasing success, to believe himself the accredited messenger of Heaven.” Because of the great successes of science and its euphoria in the last century and part of this, the people in Europe believed science could tackle everything, make the world better, save mankind and answer all questions; God was dead; science killed Him . . . This is no longer true. There are eminent scientists who disbelieve in God and there are other eminent scientists who believe in God. Biologist J. B. S. Haldane, Physicist J. D. Bernal, Biologist J. S. Huxley and others do not believe in God, but Medical Physiologist D. Horrobin, Nuclear scientist Walter Heitler (Swiss), Astronomist F. Howell and others believe in God. Science cannot prove or disprove the existence of God, because science can only deal with matters that are measurable. Heroes And Hero-Worship, is the name of a book by Thomas Carlyle, who was the first Englishman who was favourable to the Quran and the Prophet: “The Hero As Prophet, Mahomet: Islam (1841)” . . . “We have chosen Mahomet not as the most eminent Prophet, but as the one we are freest to speak of. He is by no means the truest of Prophets; but I so esteem him a true one. Farther, as there is no danger of our becoming, any of us, Mahometans, I mean to say all the good of him I justly can. It is the way to get at his secret: let us try to understand what he meant with the world; what the world meant and means with him, will then be a more answerable question. Our current hypothesis about Mahomet, that he was a scheming Impostor, a Falsehood incarnate, that his religion is a mere mass of quackery and fatuity, begins really to be untenable to any one. The lies, which well-meaning zeal has heaped round this man, are disgraceful to ourselves only . . .” “Very curious: if one sought for ‘discrepancies of national taste’ here surely were the most eminent instance of that! We also can read the Koran; our Translation of it, by Sale, is known to be a very fair one. I must say, it is as toilsome reading as I ever undertook. A wearisome confused jumble, crude, incondite; endless iterations, long-windedness, entanglement; most crude, incondite; — insupportable stupidity, in short! Nothing but a sense of duty could carry any European through the Koran. We read in it, as we might in the State-Paper Office, unreadable masses of lumber, that perhaps we may get some glimpses of a remarkable man. It is true we have it under disadvantages: the Arabs see more method in it than we . . .” 16 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS . . . “Yet I should say, it was not unintelligible how the Arabs might so love it. When once you get this confused coil of a Koran fairly off your head, and have it behind you at a distance, the essential type of it begins to disclose itself; and in this there is merit quite other than the literary one. If a book comes from the heart, it will continue to reach other hearts; all art and authorcraft are of small amount to that. One would say the primary character of the Koran is this of its genuineness, of its being abona-fide book …” We will quote here from the Outline of History, (1920) pages 607-8, by H. G. Wells who dislikedthe Prophet butlikedlslam; andfrom The Adventures Of The Black Girl In Her Search For God, pages 73-74, by Bernard Shaw (1932) who liked the Prophet for reasons other than the Muslims have. “Islam to this day has learned doctors, teachers, and preachers; but it has no priests. It was full of the kindliness, generosity and brotherhood; it was a simple and understandable religion; it was instinct with the chivalrous sentiment of the desert; and it made its appeal straight to the commonest instincts in the composition of ordinary men. Against it were pitted Judaism, which had made a racial hoard of God; Christianity, talking and preaching endlessly now of trinities, doctrines and heresies no ordinary man could make head or tail of; and Mazdaism, the cult of the Zoroastrian Magi, who had inspired the crucifixion of Mani. The bulk of the people to whom the challenge of Islam came did not trouble very much whether Muhammad was lustful or not, or whether he had done some shifty and questionable things;- what appealed to them was that this God, Allah, he preached, was by the test of the conscience in their hearts a God of righteousness, and that the honest acceptance of his doctrine and method opened the door wide, in a world of uncertainty, treachery, and intolerable divisions, to a great and increasing brotherhood of trustworthy men on earth, and to a paradise not of perpetual exercises in praise and worship, in which saints, priests, and anointed kings were still to have the upper places, but of equal fellowship and simple and understandable delights such their souls craved for. Without any ambiguous symbolism, without any darkening of altars or chanting of priests, Muhammad had brought home those attractive doctrines to the hearts of mankind.” And Shaw: “Six hundred years after Jesus, Mahomet founded Islam and made a colossal stride ahead from mere stock-and-stone idolatry to a very enlightened Unitarianism; but though he died a conqueror, and therefore escaped being made the chief attraction in an Arabian Chamber of Horrors, he found it impossible to control his Arabs without enticing and intimidating them by promises of a delightful life for the faithful, and threats of an eternity of disgusting torment for the wicked, after their bodily death, and also, after some honest protests, by accepting the supernatural character thrust on him by the childish superstition of his followers; so that he, too, now needs to be rediscovered in his true nature before Islam can come back to earth as a living faith.” ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 17 The Meaning of the Glorious Koran, (1934) is an explanatory translation by Muhammed Marmaduke Pickthall. He has written in his Foreword: “The AIM of this work is to present to English readers what Muslims the world over hold to be the meaning of the words of the Koran, and the nature of that Book, in not unworthy language and concisely, with a view to the requirements of English Muslims. It may be reasonably claimed that no Holy Scripture can be fairly presented by one who disbelieves its inspiration and its message; and this is the first English translation of the Koran by an Englishman who is a Muslim. Some of the translations include commentation offensive to Muslims, and almost all employ style of language which Muslims at once recognise as unworthy. The Koran cannot be translated. That is the belief of old-fashioned Sheykhs and the view of the present writer. The Book is here rendered almost literally and every effort has been made to choose befitting language. But the result is not the Glorious Koran that inimitable symphony, the very sounds of which move men to tears and ecstasy. It is only an attempt to present the meaning of the Koran-—• and per adventure something of the charm — in English. It can never take the place of the Koran in Arabic, nor is it meant to do so. Prof Arther J. Arberry writes in his book The Koran Interpreted (The World Classic, 596, Oxford University Press, (1964).) “The Koran, the Sacred Book of Islam, comprises in its 114 Suras or chapters the total of revelations believed to have been communicated to the Prophet Muhammad, as a final expression of God’s will and purpose for man. These revelations were supernaturally received, in circumstances of a trance-like nature, over a considerable number of years intermittently the first Sura (XCVT) dating from about A.D. 610 and the last shortly before Muhammad’s death in A.D. 632. It is uncertain whether the whole of the text was committed to writing during the Prophet’s lifetime; he himself is said to have been illiterate, and merely to have ‘recited’ the words he heard out of heaven …” “Apart from certain orthographical modifications of the original somewhat primitive method of writing, intended to render unambiguous and easy the task of reading and recitation, the Koran as printed in the twentieth century is identical with the Koran as authorized by Uthman (the 3rd Caliph) more than 1300 years ago.” “In making the present attempt to improve on the performance of my predecessors, and to produce something which might be accepted as echoing however faintly the sublime rhetoric of the Arabic Koran, I have been at pains to study the intricate and richly varied rhythms which •— apart from the message itself— constitute the Koran’s undeniable claim to rank amongst the greatest literary masterpieces of mankind . . .” “This task was undertaken, not lightly, and carried to its conclusion at a time of great personal distress, through which it comforted and sustained the 18 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS writer in a manner for which he will always be grateful. He therefore acknowledges his gratitude to whatever power or Power inspired the man and the Prophet who first recited these scriptures. I pray that this interpretation, poor echo though it is of the glorious original, may instruct, please, and in some degree inspire those who read it.” We read in What is Sufism? (page 11) by Martin Lings, (George Allen & Unwin, 1975.) “The great Andalusian Sufi, Muhyi’d-Din ‘Arabi, used to pray a prayer which began, ‘Enter me, O Lord, into the deep of the Ocean of Thine Infinite Oneness’, and in the treatises of the Suftis this ‘Ocean’ is mentioned again and again, likewise by way of symbolic reference to the End towards which their path is directed. Let us therefore begin by saying, on the basis of this symbol, in answer to the question ‘What Is Sufism?’: From time to time a Revelation ‘flows’ like a great tidal wave from the Ocean of Infinitude to the shores of our finite world; and Sufism is the vocation and discipline and the science of plunging into the ebb of one of these waves and being drawn back with it to its Eternal and Infinite Source.” “If it be asked, with reference to our basic symbolism, what for does the tidal wave take, the answer is that it takes above all the form of a book, namely the Quran …” “One of the characteristics of the Quran as the last Revelation is that at times it becomes as it were transparent in order that the first Revelation may shine through its verses; and this first Revelation, namely the Book of Nature, belongs to everyone …” Frithjof Schuon writes in his book Understanding Islam: “The Quran is, like the world, at the same time one and multiple. The world is a multiplicity which disperses and divides; the Quran is a multiplicity which draws together and leads to Unity. The multiplicity which draws together and leads to Unity. The multiplicity of the holy Book — the diversity of its words, sentences, pictures and stories—fill the soul and then absorbs it and immutability by a sort of divine ‘cunning’!” Maurice Bucaille, a French scientist writes in his book La Bible, le Coran et la Science (The Bible, The Quran and Science), (pages 8, 9 and 150-51:) “It was in a totally objective spirit, and without any preconceived ideas that I first examined the Quranic Revelation. I was looking for the degree of compatibility between the Quranic text and the data of modern science. I knew from translations that the Quran often made allusion to all sorts of natural phenomena, but I had only a summary knowledge of it. It was only when I examined the text very closely in Arabic that I kept a list of them at the end of which I had to acknowledge the evidence in front of me: the Quran did not contain a single statement that was assailable from modern scientific point of view.” ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 19 “I repeated the same test for the Old Testament and the Gospels always preserving the same objective outlook. In the former I did not even have to go beyond the first book, Genesis, to find statements totally out of keeping with cast-iron facts of modern science.” “On opening the Gospels, one is immediately confronted with a serious problem. On the first page we find the genealogy of Jesus, but Matthew’s text is in evident contradiction to Luke’s on the same question. There is a further problem in that the latter’s data on the antiquity of man on earth are incompatible with modern knowledge.” “The Quranic Revelation has a history which is fundamentally different from the other two. It spanned a period of some twenty years and, as soon as it was transmitted to Muhammad by Archangel Gabriel the believers learned it by heart. It was also written down during Muhammad’s life. The last recension of the Quran was effected under Caliph Uthman starting some twelve years after the Prophet’s death and finished twenty-four years after it. They had the advantage of being checked by people who already knew the text by heart, for they had learned it at the time of the Revelation itself and had subsequently recited it constantly. Since then, we know that the text has been scrupulously preserved. It does not give rise to any problem of authenticity.” “The Quran follows on from the two Revelations that preceded it and is not only free from contradictions in its narrations, the sign of the various human manipulations to be found in the Gospels, but provides a quality all of its own for those who examine it objectively and in the light of science i.e. its complete agreement with modern scientific data. What is more, statements are to be found in it (as has been shown) that are connected with science: and yet it is unthinkable that a man of Muhammad’s time could have been the author of them. Modern scientific knowledge therefore allows us to understand certain verses of the Quran which, until now, it has been impossible to interpret.” “The comparison of several Biblical and Quranic narrations of the same subject shows the existence of fundamental differences between statements in the former, which are scientifically unacceptable and declarations in the latter which are in perfect agreement with modern data: this was the case of the Creation and the Flood, for example. An extremely important complement to the Bible was found in the text of the Quran on the subject of history of the Exodus, where the two texts were very much in agreement with archaeological findings, in the dating of the time of Moses. Besides, there are major differences between the Quran and the Bible on the other subjects: they serve to disprove all that has been maintained — without a scrap of evidence concerning the allegation that Muhammad is supposed to have copied the Bible to product the text of the Quran.” 20 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS “When a comparative study is made between the statements connected with science to be found in the collection of ‘Hadith’, which are attributed to Muhammad but are often of dubious authenticity (although they reflect the belief of the period, and the data of a similar kind in the Quran, the disparity becomes so obvious that any notion of a common origin is ruled out.” “In view of the level of knowledge in Muhammad’s day, it is inconceivable that many of the statements in the Quran which are connected with science could have been the work of a man. It is moreover, perfectly legitimate, not only to regard the Quran as an expression of a Revelation, but also to award it a very special place, on account of the guarantee of authenticity it provides and the presence in it of scientific statements which, when studied today, appear as the challange to explanation in human term.” The real snag or hurdle for atheists and rationalists of all sorts is the Revelation of God, that God speaks to His chosen Messengers. We have said it before and we need to repeat it here that the great success of science and therefore its euphoria in the nineteenth century and after made scientists and intelligent intellectuals believe that science could answer everything, cure human problems, save mankind, if given time. This is no longer true. Since the atomic science the measurements of things on which science depends, has become almost impossible, and this curtails the pretence of science. Says Bernard Shaw: “A laboratory may be a fool’s paradise or a pessimist’s inferno: it is made to order either way. Its door may be shut against metaphysics, including consciousness, purpose, mind, evolution, creation, choice (free will), and anything else that is staring us in the face all over the real world. It may assume that because there is no discovered chemical difference between a living body and dead one, only a difference of behaviour, there is no difference. It may rule out all the facts that are incompatible with physicist determinism as metaphysical delusions. In short, it may reduce itself to absurdity in the name of science with a large S.” (Everbody’s Political Whafs What?, 1944, page 190). Professor David F. Horrobin has written: “The difficulties were summed up by Heisenberg in his famous Uncertainty Principle formulated in 1927. . . There is a barrier to knowledge beyond which it seems impossible to go, not for any practical reason but for a theoretical one which cannot be avoided. Man cannot know all there is to know about the atom andits constituents.” (Science Is God, page 74). So if man cannot know all about matter, then there is less likelihood to know about things beyond matter — Revelation of God — for example. In one of Bernard Shaw’s books, discussing human affairs he came to a point and said, “that is as far as our minds can go”. H. G. Wells in his last years during the 2nd World War wrote a little book called The Mind at the End of Its Tether. Both these statements imply that there is a “region” where ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 21 our rational intelligence or mind cannot penetrate. When we are talking about God’s Revelation, we are talking about informations of prophecies coming from that unseen “region” to His chosen Messengers or Prophets among us. We are to narrate concisely of the universe, how it came about, its purpose and its end, with information from the Quran and the “Hadith” or the Tradition of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him): “God was a Hidden Treasure and He wished to be known.” To know of God or to deny His existence man with his consciousness had to be created, and therefore the universe was the paramount necessity, though only for a “term stated” •— tempory — so is man. Man is to know of God, serve Him and return to Him, in the Hereafter, that Unseen Region we mentioned above. Man is on trail here, to earn his passage to Paradise in the next world. This can be done by following the directions of the Creator God. Just as we follow the directions of the maker of any machine, for instance, to get the best result. The directions of God, the Hereafter or the Judgement Day and live righteously in this life. In this way man can earn his ticket to Paradise in the next world and an equitable society or Humanist society will result in this world. God created man from the “essence of clay” and then his progenies from “spilled sperm-drops”. At present (1984) most of Messrs Spilled Sperm- Drops”, politely called mankind, instead of following God’s directions, follow and live by their own caprices or whims, which have brought about an inequitable, uproarious and murderous world. Many a Mr Spilled Sperm- Drop grows up as God’s adversary, then becomes toothless, shrivelled, old duffer, clean forgotten he had once pleaded the case against God, before he is dragged back to God by the Angel of Death. This is the case against mankind. Now we will quote one or two paragraphs out of many on each subj ect from the Quran. (The Koran, interpreted by A. J. Arberry, published by George Allen & Unwin Ltd, 1955). God On God. In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate Say: ‘He is God, One, God, the Everlasting Refuge, who has not begotten, and has not been begotten, and equal to Him is not any one.’ (Quran 112). God, there is no god but He, the Living, the Everlasting. Slumber seizes Him not, neither sleep; to Him belongs all that is in the heavens and the earth. 22 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS Who is there that shall intercede with Him save by His leave? He knows what lies before them and what is after them, and they comprehend not anything of His knowledge save such as He wills. His Throne comprises the heavens and earth; the preserving of them oppresses Him not; He is the All-high, the All-glorious. (Quran 2:255). God On Creation. God is He who raised up the heavens without pillars you can see, then He sat Himself upon the Throne. He subjected the sun and the moon, each one running to a term stated. He directs the affair; He distinguishes the signs; haply you will have faith in the encounter with your Lord. It is He who stretched out the earth and set therein firm mountains and rivers, and of every fruit He placed there two kinds, covering the day with the night. Surely in that are signs for a people who reflect. And on the earth are tracts neighbouring each to each, and gardens of vines, and fields sown, and palms in pairs, and palms single, watered with one water; and some of them We prefer in produce above others. Surely in that are signs for a people who understand. (Quran 13). God On the Creation of Man. O men, if you are in doubt as to the Uprising, surely We created you of dust then of a sperm-drop, then of a blood clot, ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 23 then of a lump of flesh, formed and unformed that We may make clear to you. And We establish in the wombs what We will, till a stated term, then We deliver you as infants, then that you may come of age; and some of you die, and some of you are kept back unto the vilest state of life, that after knowing somewhat, they may know nothing. And thou beholdest the earth blackened, then, when We send down water upon it, it quivers, and swells, and puts forth herbs of every joyous kind. That is because God — He is the Truth, and brings the dead to life, and is powerful over everything, and because the Hour is coming, no doubt of it, and God shall raise up whosoever is within the tombs. (Quran 22:5). We created man of an extraction of clay, then We set him, a drop, in a receptacle secure, then We created of the drop a clot; then We created of the clot a tissue; then We created of the tissue bones; then We garmented the bones in flesh; thereafter We produced him as another creature. So blessed be God, the Fairest of creators! Then after that you shall surely die, then on the Day of Resurrection you shall surely be raised up. (Quran 23:10-15). God On This Life. The present life is naught but a sport and a diversion; surely the Last abode is better for those that are godfearing. What, do you not understand? (Quran 6:32). O men, God’s promise is true; so let not the present life delude you, and let not the Deluder delude you concerning God. (Quran 35:5). 24 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS God On Death. Every soul shall taste of death; you shall surely be paid in full your wages on the Day of Ressurection. Whosoever is removed from the Pure and admitted to Paradise, shall win the triumph. The present life is but the joy of delusion. (Quran 3:181). Say: “Death’s angel, who has been charged with you, shall gather you, then to your Lord you shall be returned.” (Quran 32:10). God On The Quran. What, do they not ponder the Koran? If it had been from other than God surely they would have found in it much inconsistency. (Quran 4:84). This Koran could not have been forged apart from God; but it is a confirmation of what is before it, and a distinguishing . of the Book, wherein is no doubt, from the Lord of all Being. (Quran 10:39). God On Resurrection Day. What, does man reckon We shall not gather his bones? Yes, indeed; We are able to shape again his fingers. Nay, but man desires to continue on as libertine, asking, ‘When shall be the Day of Resurrection?’ Upon that day the recourse shall be to thy Lord. Upon that day man shall be told his former deeds and his latter; nay, man shall be a clear proof against himself, even though he offer his excuses. (Quran 75:5-10) What, does man reckon he shall be left to roam at will? Was he not a sperm-drop spilled? Then he was a blood-clot, and He created and formed, and He made of him two kinds, male and female. What, is He not able to quicken the dead? (Quran 75:35-40). ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 25 God On Paradise And Hell. Surely those who say, ‘Our Lord is God’ and then go straight, no fear shall be on them, neither shall they sorrow. Those are the inhabitants of Paradise, therein dwelling forever, as a recompense for that they have been doing. (Quran 46:11). Upon that day when the unbelievers are exposed to the Fire ‘You dissipated your good things in your present life, and you took your enjoyment in them; therefore today you shall be recompensed with the chastisement of humiliation for that you waxed proud in the earth without right, and for your ungodliness.’ (Quran 46:19). As for the evildoers, for them awaits a painful chastisement; but as for those who believe, and do deeds of righteousness, they shall be admitted to gardens underneath which rivers flow, therein dwelling forever, by the leave of their Lord, their greeting therein: ‘Peace’. (Quran 14:27). God On the Prophet Muhammad. Proclaim: ‘O mankind, I am the Messenger of God to you all, of Him to whom belongs the kingdom of the heavens and of the earth. There is no god but He. He gives life, and makes to die. Believe then in God, and in His Messenger, the Prophet of the common folk, who believes in God and His words, and follow him; haply so you will be guided.’ (Quran 7:58). Muhammad is not the father of any one of your men, but the Messenger of God, and the Seal of the Prophets; God has knowledge of everything. (Quran 33:40). 26 REVIEW OF RELIGIONS Those who disbelieve and bar from God’s way, God will send their works astray. But those who believe and do righteous deeds and believe in what is sent down to Muhammad — and it is the truth from their Lord •— He will acquit them of their evil deeds, and dispose their minds aright. That is because those who disbelieve follow falsehood, and those who believe follow the truth from their Lord. Even so God strikes their similitudes for men. (Quran 47:2). God On Religion. The true religion with God is Islam. (Quran 3:16). No compulsion is there in religion. Rectitude has become clear from error. So whoever disbelieves in idols and believes in God, has laid hold of the most firm handle, unbreaking; God is All-hearing, All-knowing. (Quran 2:58). Whatever affliction may visit you is for what your own hands have earned; and He pardons much. (Quran 42:29). God charges no soul save to its capacity; standing to its account is what it has earned, and against its account what it has merited. (Quran 2:286). To Him shall you return, all together God’s promise, in truth. He originates creation, then He brings it back again that He may recompense those who believe and do deeds of righteousness, justly. And those who disbelieve •—• for them awaits a draught of boiling water, and a painful chastisement, for their disbelieving. (Quran 10:4). The sending down of the Book is from God, the All-mighty, the All-wise. (Quran 45:1). ATHEISM VERSUS GOD 27 Surely those who believe, and do deeds of righteousness, there await them Gardens of Bliss therein to dwell forever •—• God’s promise in truth; and He is the All-mighty, the All-wise. (Quran 31:6). Today I have perfected your religion for you, and I have completed My blessing upon you, and I have approved Islam for your religion. (Quran 5:5). Now we shall cite three prophecies made 14 hundred years ago which have been fulfilled in the present age. Two of them are in the Quran (words of God), and one from the Hadith (information from God told by the Prophet in his own words): The first is concerning Pharaoh who was drowned in the Red Sea while pursuing the Israelites who were lead by Prophet Moses during the Exodus. God says in the Quran: “And We brought the Children of Israel over the sea; and Pharaoh and his host followed them insolently and impetuously till, when the drowning overtook him, he said, ‘I believe that there is no god but He in whom the Children of Israel believe; I am of those that surrender.’ “Now? And before thou didst rebel, being of those that did corruption. So today We shall deliver thee with thy body, that thou mayest be a sign to those after thee. Surely many men are heedless of Our signs.” (10:90) Maurice Bucaille says in his book La Bible, le Quran et la Science (The Bible, the Quran and Science, page 241): “The connection of these lesions with the deterioration whose sources have been mentioned above renders the correct preservation of the mummy of the Pharaoh somewhat problematical, unless precautionary and restorative measures are taken very soon. These measures should ensure that the only concrete evidence which we still possess today concerning the death of the Pharaoh of the Exodus and the rescue of his body, willed by God, does not disappear with the passage of time. It is always desirable for man to apply himself to the preservation of relics of his history, but here we have something which goes beyond that: it is the material presence of the mummified body of the man who knew Moses, resisted his pleas, pursues him as he took flight, lost his life in the process. His earthly remains were saved by the will of God from destruction to become a sign to man, as it is written in the Quran. Those who seek among modern data for proof of the veracity of the Holy Scriptures will find a magnificent illustration of the verse of the Quran dealing

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