03 Nov Tawhid (God’s Oneness).Part1
All religions revealed to the Prophets have the same essence.
Over time, however, the original message was misinterpreted, mixed with superstition, and degenerated into magical practices and meaningless rituals. The conception of God, the very core of religion, was debased by anthropomorphism, deifying angels, associating others with God, considering Prophets or godly people as incarnations of God (Jesus Christ, Buddha, Krishna, and Rama), and personifying His Attributes through separate deities.
The Prophet rejected such theological trends and restored the conception of God as the only Creator, Sustainer, and Master of all creation to its pristine purity. Thus, as John Davenport puts it:
“Among many excellencies of which the Quran may justly boast are two eminently conspicuous: the one being the tone of awe and reverence which it always observes when speaking of, or referring to, the Deity, to Whom it never attributes human frailties and passions; the other the total absence throughout it of all impure, immoral and indecent ideas, expressions, narratives, etc., blemishes, which, it is much to be regretted, of too frequent occurrence in the Jewish scriptures.”
Tawhid, Divine Unity and Oneness, is clearly observed throughout the universe.
If we look at ourselves and our environment, we easily discern that everything depends upon this principle. For example, our bodily parts cooperate with each other. Each cell is so connected with the whole body that the One Who created it must be He Who created the body. Likewise, each element comprising the universe is interrelated and in harmony with each other element and the universe as a whole.
Given this, the only logical conclusion is that the same Creator Who created the particles created the universe, and that the motion of subatomic particles is the same as that observed in the solar system.
Everything originates from “one” and returns to “one”:
We originated the first creation, so We shall bring it back (to its former state) again (21:104).
A tree, for instance, grows out of a seed or a stone and finally results in a seed or a stone. This strict obedience to the One Who established that order explains why the universe is so orderly and harmonious.
•As the Creator, One, All-Omnipotent and All-Knowing, operates it directly, how could it be otherwise?
As the Qur’an reminds us:
Each god would have taken off what he created, and some of them would have risen up over others. Had there been gods in Earth and heaven other than God, they both would have been in disorder. (21:22)
Tawhid is the highest conception of deity that God revealed to us through His Prophets, among whom were Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad.
Over time, people deviated from the pure teachings after their Prophets died. Turning to polytheism or idolatry, they relied upon their own faulty reasoning, false perceptions, and biased interpretations to satisfy their lusts. Such a course is impossible with a tawhid-based system, for this requires that they obey only the One Supreme God’s commandments.
‘Ali Ibn Abi Talib is reported to have said:
The foremost in religion is God’s knowledge, the perfection of His knowledge is to testify to Him, the perfection of testifying to Him is to believe in His Oneness, the perfection of believing in His Oneness is to regard Him as pure, and the perfection of His purity is to deny all kinds of negative attributes about Him.
He is infinite and eternal, self-existent and self-sufficient. As stated in the Qur’an:
He is God, One, needy of nothing and Everlasting Refuge; He begets not, nor is He begotten; and there is none like unto Him. (112:1-4)
There is nothing like or compared unto Him. (42:11)
Vision perceives Him not, and He perceives all vision; and He (alone) is the All-Hearing and All-Seeing. (6:103)
In the words of ‘Ali:
He is Being but not through the phenomenon of coming into being. He exists but not from non-existence. He is with everything but not by physical nearness. He is different from everything but not by physical separation. He acts but without the accompaniment of movements and instruments. He is the One, only such that there is none with whom He keeps company or whom He misses in his absence.
God’s Attributes cannot be transferred or present in another, since they are infinite. One who cannot keep himself alive cannot give life to others. One who cannot protect his own power cannot govern the vast universe. The more one reflects, the clearer it becomes that all divine powers and attributes must exist in only in that one particular being.