The Origins of the Universe

In Search of the Existence of God

First, I will present a central theme, and then I will give seven a rguments based on the Holy Qur’an, the holy scripture of the Islamic religion in proof of the existence of God. I quote from the Holy Qur’an: Eyes cannot reach Him but He reaches the eyes. And He is the I n c o m p rehensible, the All- Aware. (Ch6:V.104) Most scholars and philosophers, who have written about the history of humankind of the basis on anthropology or archeology, believe that the idea of God has evolved during the last 10 to 12 thousand years. Contrary to this belief, the Holy Qur’an says that as God is the Creator of this universe and the Creator of life on our planet, so it is He Who initially revealed about Himself. He did not create humankind and leave them alone wondering whether there was a creator or not. He created them and then guided them to Himself. Many scholars suggest that idea of God has evolved over time from different gods to one God. Muslims believe that God has revealed Himself through the prophets and messengers of God. God has shown 8 The Review of Religions – March 2004 By Naseem Mahdi – Amir and Missionary-in-Charge of Canada In Search of the Existence of God [The following is based on a presentation delivered by Mr Naseem Mahdi, Amir and Missionary Incharge Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Canada at the XXIIIrd World Religions Conference held October 4, 2003, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. Representatives from eight faiths i.e. Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Native Religions and Atheism deliberated at the conference with their understanding on the theme ‘In Search of the Existence of God’. Over 700 delegates from diverse religious background attended the event, including national and provincial leaders, local dignitaries, university officials and students. Representatives of different faiths were guided to draw their presentation entirely from their respective Holy Scriptures and faith traditions, and comparisons with other faiths were only allowed to promote better understanding and respect. His countenance and put His love in the hearts of people. So God did not need to be discovered but revealed Himself. Now, I will present some verses from the Holy Qur’an to prove the existence of God: And that is Our argument which We gave to Abraham against his people. We exalt in degrees of rank whomso We please. Thy L o rd is indeed Wise, All- Knowing. (Ch.6: V.84) And We gave him Isaac and Jacob; each did We guide aright, and Noah did We guide aright aforetime, and of his p ro g e n y, David and Solomon and Job and Joseph and Moses and Aaron. Thus do We reward those who do good. (Ch.6: V.85) And We guided Zachariah and John and Jesus and Elias; each one of them was of the virtuous. (Ch.6: V.86) And We also guided Ishmael and Elisha and Jonah and Lot; and each one did We exalt above the people.(Ch.6: V.87) On the basis of the fore mentioned verses, Muslims believe in all the previousprophets. Some 28 are mentioned in the Holy Qur’an. But r e a l l y, there were some 124,000 prophets sent to humankind in the past, according to a saying of the Holy Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (on whom be peace and blessings of Allah). The Holy Qur’an says that God sent prophets to every nation and land. There were prophets not only in the Middle East, but everywhere else – amongst the natives of North and South America, the aboriginals of Australia, in China and so on. As such Muslims believe in all those prophets. Muslims believe in all the religions which are based on the revelation of God. The argument as a proof of the existence of God in these verses is that all those people, whether they are living in North America or Australia or in the Middle East or in Africa, or any other part of the world have a concept of God. All those prophets, who presented to them the concept of God were indeed credible people and their 9 In Search of the Existence of God The Review of Religions – March 2004 lives were pure and no one could ever challenge their integrity. If all those people said that there is one God Who has spoken to them, is it possible that all of them were lying? Or had a greed for something? And that their proclamations were a total fabrication and based on falsehood? Certainly not. So when we witness this idea of God among different nations, and we realise that all those prophets who were signifying humankind that God has revealed to them, God has spoken to them, and they even presented His spoken words, one cannot say that the testimony of all these prophets is a fabricated falsehood. In our daily lives we make decisions on the basis of testimonies. A judge makes a decision and sometimes it could be capital punishment, or life imprisonment etc. He says that the testimony before him is credible. So if before us is the testimony of so many people in the last 6000 years, starting from Adam(as), Abraham(as), and Moses(as) and Jesus(as) and so on, and all of them have spoken that there is one God, Who has spoken to them, it is not fair for us to simply reject the testimonies of so many credible people of so many different nations and lands of the world. The next verses are: Blessed is He in Whose hand is the kingdom, and He has power over all things; (Ch.67: V.2) Who has created death and life that He might try you -which of you is best in deeds; and He is the Mighty, the Most Forgiving, (Ch.67: V.3) Who has created seven heavens in harmony. No incongru i t y canst thou see in the creation of the Gracious God. Then look again: Seest thou any flaw? (Ch.67: V.4) Aye, look again, and yet again, thy sight will only return unto thee confused and fatigued. (Ch.67: V.5) In these verses another powerful a rgument for the existence of God is presented. We see a universe that is so flawlessly constructed. It is impossible that it has just come into being by way of chance. View a movie on deep sea life, visit a conservatory of butterflies, look at an aquarium of different type of fish 10 In Search of the Existence of God The Review of Religions – March 2004 or look at the environment around you. Look at any specie on earth: all are so beautiful and are spectacular creations. Can they all be a consequence of mere chance or spontaneous creation? Therefore, in this verse God asks us, look at my creation, and you will not find any f l a w. Moreover, if we just look at our own lives and our own bodies, we notice that there is indeed a whole universe within our bodies. For instance, how our eyes function how our liver functions, how our kidneys and hearts function and so on and so forth. Hence, God says, think about those creations of God, you need not to look far away to those Galaxies and the Milky Ways, but look within yourself and around you, how is it all possible without a Creator? In the 1940’s and 1950’s, the word ‘God’ was a taboo for scientists, and most of them were atheists, but in the last 20-30 years, when the scientists’ knowledge has increased, they are coming very strongly to this conclusion that there must be someone, whether we call him ‘Allah’ or ‘God’ or ‘Primatama’ or whatever, but there is some ‘superpower’ who is controlling this universe. Next, I present to you the following verse: And those who take Allah and His Messenger and the believers for friends should rest assured that it is the party of Allah that must triumph. (Ch.5: V.57) If we study the lives of all these prophets, one thing is common, that they were persecuted and prosecuted. Just imagine how Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) was mocked and how he was dragged through the streets. Think about Moses (peace be upon him), how he was rejected by the Pharaoh of the time. Think about Muhammad (peace be upon him) who rejected by his people and heavily persecuted by the Makkans. I n v a r i a b l y, all of them emerg e d successful in the final analysis. The first 300 years after Jesus, on whom be peace, for the Christians were the time of persecution. But later, we all know, and up till today we know that how God has blessed them and how they have become the masters of this world. Similar is the story of Jews or the Muslims etc. How is it possible that this is all just by chance and it was only a 11 In Search of the Existence of God The Review of Religions – March 2004 coincidence that all the prophets (without exception) were, in the final analysis, victorious? And all their enemies were defeated? Indeed it is a convincing argument in favor of the existence of God A l m i g h t y. God was certainly behind them all the way. It was really the force of God, Almighty working for the final victories of His chosen prophets. The Pharaoh is reported in the Holy Qur’an as: Saying, ‘I am your Lord, the most high.’ So Allah seized him for the punishment of the H e reafter and the pre s e n t world.’ (Ch.79: VS.25-26) Further God says in the Holy Qur’an: And when My servants ask thee about Me, say: I am near I answer the prayer of the supplicant when he prays to Me. So they should hearken to Me and believe in Me, that they may follow the right way. (Ch.2:V.187) The argument here is the acceptance of prayer. There are so many people in this very hall today that can give this testimony that they have prayed to God and that their prayers were accepted. Whether they are Christians or Jews or Sikhs or Hindus or Muslims or belong to any other religion. I can give you my own testimony and the testimony of my community, the Ahmadiyya Muslim community. We are strong believers in the power of prayers. On a daily basis we pray. We often pray for the most difficult things in our lives and we have seen, how God has resolved those diff i c u l t problems. If there were no God, Who was listening to those prayers and Who was solving those diff i c u l t problems? And then Allah says: Allah strengthens the believers with the word that is firmly established, both in the present life and in the Hereafter; and Allah lets the wrongdoers go astray. And Allah does what He wills. (Ch.14:V28) God communicates not only with the humankind but also with other 12 In Search of the Existence of God The Review of Religions – March 2004 creations. All that He has created, He can communicate with them. That communication is on a daily basis. God has communicated to earlier prophets and He communicates with humankind even today. In that communication, at many times, He gives us the knowledge of the unseen. He tells us what happened in the past that was not known to us. He told Prophet Muhammad (on whom be peace) that the dead body of the Pharaoh was preserved. This fact was not known to the people of the time of Prophet Muhammad (on whom be peace). It was only discovered during the last century that the dead body of the Pharaoh of the time of Moses (peace be upon him) was found preserved. God spoke to him and he made so many prophecies and the Holy Qur’an is full of prophecies of Latter Days. We find the prophecy of Jesus Christ in the New Testament, we find many prophecies from the Old and New Testament and the Holy Qur’an about the future. If we see these prophecies being fulfilled today, how were those people able to make those prophecies if God did not communicate to them and did not exist? So this is indeed a strong argument that God exists and He tells His chosen ones and prophets what will happen in the future. My last point is: And as for those who strive in Our path We will surely guide them in Our ways. And verily Allah is with those who do good. (Ch. 29:V.70) God says that if you come to Him and if you strive and if you want to know Him, pray to Him and He will guide you. Even if an atheist, addresses God and says to God: ‘O God if you ever existed, I want to come to you!’ I am sure He will guide the atheist, to Himself. 13 In Search of the Existence of God The Review of Religions – March 2004