10 Nov Resurrection and The Hereafter: Part 23
Second Part of the Addendum (Part.2)
Similarly, attributes the existence of which is proven and self-evident by virtue of their traces throughout the cosmos, attributes such as Absolute power, all-embracing will, and comprehensive knowledge, bear witness with all of their proofs to the life and necessary existence of the Living and Self-Subsistent Being. They attest His everlasting life, one shadow of which is enough to illumine the whole of the cosmos, and one manifestation of which suffices to give life to the hereafter, together with all of its particles.
The Divine attribute of life is also connected with the pillar of belief in the angels, and proves it by way of indication. For the most important of all goals of the cosmos is life, and animate beings constitute the most widespread form of creation, with its specimens multiplied on account of their value; they constantly animate the hospice of this world with the coming and going of their caravans. Further, the globe, which is filled with so many species of animate beings, is being constantly emptied and refilled as these various species are renewed and multiplied, and animate beings are created in multiplicity even in the vilest and most corrupt substances, so that there is -as it were- a constant resurrection of microbes. Finally, consciousness and intellect, which are the distilled essence of life, and the spirit, which is its subtle and stable substance, are also created everywhere on the globe in the utmost multiplicity, so that it is as if the globe were animated and caused to rejoice by life, intellect, consciousness and spirit. If we take into consideration all of the foregoing, it is totally impossible that the heavenly bodies, which are subtler, more luminous, greater and more significant than the globe, should be dead, rigid, lifeless, and dumb.There must, then, exist and be provided with the property of life, conscious and animate beings that animate the skies, the suns, and the stars, bestow upon them their vitality, manifest the result of the purpose for the creation of the heavens, and receive address from the Glorious Creator. These creatures, of a nature suited to the heavens, are none other than the angels.Similarly, the innermost essence of life symbolically proves the pillar of belief in the prophets. For the cosmos was created for the sake of life, and life is in turn one of the supreme manifestations of the Living, Self-Subsistent and Eternal One. It is one of His most perfect designs, one of His most beauteous arts. Further, the eternal life of God shows itself only through the sending of messengers and the revelation of books. If there were no books or prophets, then eternal life would remain unknown. When a man speaks, he is recognized to be alive.
Similarly, it is the prophets and revealed books that make manifest the words and decrees of the Being Who, from behind the world of the unseen that is veiled by the cosmos, speaks, talks, and emits His commands and prohibitions. Just as the life existent in the cosmos bears decisive witness to the necessary existence of the Living and Eternal One, so too does it point to and indirectly confirm the pillars of belief in the sending of messengers and the revelation of scriptures, for these are the rays, the manifestations, and the relations of that eternal life. And especially the messengership of Muhammad -Peace and blessings be upon him- and the Qur’anic revelation, since they are like the very spirit and intellect of life, their veracity is as indisputable as the existence of this life.
Life is, then, the distilled essence of the cosmos; consciousness and feeling are the distilled essence of life; the intellect is the distilled essence of consciousness; and the spirit, finally, is the pure and unsullied substance, the stable and autonomous essence, that lies at the heart of life. So, too, the life of the Prophet Muhammad -Peace and blessings be upon him- in both its outer and its inner aspects is the distilled quintessence of life and the spirit of the cosmos, and the messengership of Muhammad -Peace and blessings be upon him- is the pure and distilled essence of the feeling, the consciousness and the intellect of the cosmos.
Rather, the life of the Prophet Muhammad -Peace and blessings be upon him- in its outer and inner aspects is, as the centuries have borne witness, the very essence of the life of the cosmos, and the prophethood of Muhammad -Peace and blessings be upon him- is the very light and essence of the consciousness of the cosmos. The Qur’anic revelation is also the spirit of the life of the cosmos and the intellect of its consciousness.
If the light of the messengership of Muhammad -Peace and blessings be upon him- were to depart from the cosmos and vanish, the cosmos would die. If the Qur’an were to depart, the cosmos would lose its sanity, and the globe would lose its sense and its head. Its dizzy, uncomprehending head would collide with a planet, and the end of the world would result.
Life also looks to the pillar of belief in Divine Determining, and proves it indirectly. Because, since life is the light of the Manifest World, and it dominates it, and is the result and aim of existence, and since it is the most comprehensive mirror of the Creator of the universe and the most perfect sample and index of dominical activity, and -let there be no mistake in the comparison- is like a sort of programme, for sure, the mystery of life necessitates that the creatures in the World of the Unseen, that is, the past and the future, that is, that have been and will come, are predisposed to conform to order, regularity, being known and observed, specific individual existence, and the creative commands, which are their lives in one respect.
The original seed of a tree and its root, as well as the seeds contained in its fruit and final outcome, all manifest a sort of life, no less than the tree itself; indeed, they bear within themselves laws of life more subtle than those of the tree. Similarly, the seeds and roots left by last autumn, before the present spring, as well as the seeds and roots that will be left to subsequent springs after this spring has departed – they all bear the manifestations of life, just like this spring, and are subject to the laws of life. In just the same way, all the branches and twigs of the cosmic tree each have a past and a future. They have a chain consisting of past and future stages and circumstances. The multiple existences and stages of each species and each member of each species, existing in Divine knowledge, forms a chain of being in God’s knowledge, and both its external existence, and its existence in God’s knowledge, is a manifestation of universal life that draws all the aspects of its life from these meaningful and vital Tablets of Divine Determining.
The fact that the World of Spirits -which is one form of the World of the Unseen- is full of the essence of life, the matter of life and the spirits, which are the substances and essence of life, demands and requires of a certainty that past and future -which are another form of the World of the Unseen and its second segment- should also receive the manifestation of life.
In addition, the perfect order, the meaningful circumstances and vital fruits and stages inherent in the existence of a thing within God’s knowledge, also demonstrate the manifestation of a sort of life. Such a manifestation of life, which is the light emitted by the sun of eternal life, cannot be limited to this manifest world, this present time, this external existence. On the contrary, each world receives the manifestation of that light in accordance with its capacity, and the cosmos together with all its worlds is alive and illumined through it. Otherwise, as the misguided imagine, beneath a temporary and apparent life, each world would be a vast and terrible corpse, a dark ruin.
One broad aspect of the pillar of faith in Divine Determining and Decree is, then, understood through the mystery of life and is established by it. Just as the life and vitality of the Manifest World and existent, visible objects becomes apparent from their orderliness and the consequences of their existence, so too past and future creatures -regarded as belonging to the World of the Unseen- have an immaterial existence and sort of life, and a spiritual presence in God’s knowledge. The trace of this life and presence is made manifest and known by means of the Tablet of Divine Determining and Decree and through all the stages and circumstances of their external lives and existences.