10 Nov Resurrection and The Hereafter: Part 17
The Gate of Humanity, and the Manifestation of the Name of Truth
Is it at all possible that God Almighty, He Who is worshipped by right, should create man within creation as the most significant of all of His servants with respect to His absolute dominicality and with respect to His universal dominicality in all of His realms; that He should make him the most thoughtful recipient of His glorious address, the most comprehensive mirror to the manifestation of His Names; that He should create him as the most beautiful miracle of His power in the fairest of forms, in order to receive the manifestation of the Greatest Name, as well as that quality of the Greatest Name inherent in the other Names, in order for him to assess and perceive the contents of His treasuries of mercy; that He should make him an investigator of secrets equipped more than any other creature with balances and instruments; and He should make him the most needy of all creatures with respect to His infinite gifts, the one suffering most from annihilation and the one most desirous of immortality; that He should make him the most delicate, the poorest and neediest of animals, most wretched and subject to pain in his worldly life but most sublime in disposition, in the highest of forms and characters – is it possible that God Almighty should do all this with man and not send him to the Eternal Realm for which he is suited and fitted and for which he is longing?
Is it possible that He should thus negate the whole essence of humanity, act in a manner totally contrary to His own veracity, and perform an act of injustice that the eye of truth must deem ugly?
Again, is it at all possible that He Who rules justly, Whose mercy is absolute, should bestow on man such a disposition that he took up the Supreme Trust, from which the heavens and mountains both shrank, in order to measure and know, with his slight and petty measures and crafts, the all encompassing attributes, the universal workings, and the infinite manifestations of the Creator; that He should create him as the most delicate, vulnerable, weak and powerless of beings, while yet entrusting him with the regulation of all the vegetal and animal life upon earth, and causing him to intervene in their modes of worship and glorification of God; that He should cause him to be a representation in miniature of His cosmic processes; that He should cause him to proclaim His glorious dominicality to all beings, in word and deed; that He should prefer him to the angels and give him the rank of vicegerent – is it at all possible that God should bestow all of this on man and not give him eternal bliss, the purpose, result and fruit of all of these duties? That He should cast him down to low degree, as the most wretched, ill-fortuned, humiliated and suffering of all His creatures; or that He should make of intelligence, a gift from His own wisdom and a most blessed and luminous tool for the attainment of happiness, an inauspicious and sombre tool of torment for that wretch, thus acting in total contradiction to His absolute wisdom and in opposition to His absolute mercy? No, it is by no means possible!
In short: Just as we saw by looking at the identity papers of an officer in our comparison that his rank, duty, wage, instructions and equipment prove that he exists not for the sake of some temporary battlefield, but rather that he is proceeding to some permanent kingdom, for the sake of which he is exerting himself – so too those to whom truth and certainty have been unveiled are unanimously agreed that the subtleties inscribed in the book of man’s heart, the senses written down in the notebook of his intellect, the equipment contained in his essential character, are all turned towards Eternal Bliss; they have been given to man and fashioned in accordance with this ultimate goal.For example, if one servant and illustrator of the intellect called “the imaginative power,” is told that “you can have a million years of life and rule over the world, but in the end you shall become nothing,” it will react with sorrow instead of pleasure, unless deceived by vain fancy and the interference of the soul.
The greatest of transient things cannot, then, satisfy the smallest faculty of man.
It is, then, this disposition of man -his desires extending to eternity, his thoughts that embrace all of creation and his wishes that embrace the different varieties of eternal bliss- that demonstrates he has been created for eternity and will indeed proceed to eternity. This world is like a hospice for him, a waiting-room for the hereafter.
The Gate of Messengerhood and Revelation,and the Manifestation of “In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.”
Is it at all possible that errant doubts, no stronger than the wing of a fly, could close the path to the hereafter and the gate to Paradise that have been definitively opened by the Most Noble Messenger (Peace and blessings be upon him), with all of his might, relying upon the power of his thousand certified miracles as well as the thousands of decisive verses of the All-Wise Qur’an, a book miraculous in forty different ways – that Messenger whose words are affirmed by all of the other prophets, relying upon their own miracles, whose claim is affirmed by all of the saints, relying upon their visionary and charismatic experiences, and to whose veracity all of the purified scholars bear witness, relying upon their investigations of truth?
From the previous truths it has become apparent that resurrection is so firmly rooted a truth that not even a power capable of lifting up the globe, breaking it and casting it aside, could shake it. For God Almighty Himself affirms this truth in accordance with the meaning of all His Names and attributes; His Noble Messenger confirms it with all of his miracles and evidences; the All-Wise Qur’an establishes it with all of its truths and verses; and the cosmos itself bears witness to it with all the creational signs it contains and all the wise processes that take place within it. Is it at all possible that the Necessary Being should unite with all of His creation (excepting only the unbelievers) on this question of resurrection, and doubts feebler than a whisker and satanic insinuations should shake and uproot that exalted and firmly-rooted truth which resembles a mountain? No, by no means!
Beware, do not imagine that the proofs of resurrection are restricted to the Twelve Truths we have mentioned. The All-Wise Qur’an alone, that instructed us in these Twelve Truths, indicates thousands of other aspects of the matter as well, each aspect being a sign that our Creator will transfer us from this transient realm to an eternal one.
Again, do not imagine that the Divine Names which logically require the existence of resurrection are only those we have discussed – Wise, Generous, Merciful, Just, Preserver.
On the contrary, all the Divine Names manifest in the ordering of the cosmos logically require the existence of resurrection, indeed make it imperative.
Do not imagine, either, that the creational signs indicating resurrection are confined to those we have mentioned above. On the contrary, in the majority of beings, there exist different aspects and qualities that are like curtains opening to the right and the left: one aspect bears witness to the Maker, and the other aspect indicates resurrection. For example, the beauty of man’s being, fashioned as he is in the fairest of forms, demonstrates the existence of the Maker, while at the same time the fact that together with his comprehensive abilities, lodged in that fairest of forms, he soon declines and dies, demonstrates the existence of resurrection. Sometimes, if one looks at the same aspect in two different ways, one sees that it demonstrates the existence both of the Maker and of resurrection. For example, if one looks at the wise ordering, the just balance, the gracious adornment and the merciful favour inherent in most things, they are seen to demonstrate that they proceed from the powerful hand of a Wise, Generous, Just and Merciful Maker. So too, if one looks at the brief and insignificant life of the transient beings that are the manifestations of these qualities, despite their power and infinitude, the hereafter appears before one. In other words, all things silently recite and cause others to recite “I believe in God and the Last Day.”