God and the World
Looking for God? Get Reasonable!
The created world is ruled by a set of laws. Whether in the quarks of atoms or the most distant galaxies, the single celled creatures or the most complicated biological organisms, all submit to the will of the all-powerful Creator who operates through these laws. The Qur’an says:
“And He created everything and determined it with [precise] determination” (25:2)
Thus, everything that takes place in the universe is according to divine decree. However, it does not mean that God necessarily approves of everything that takes place.
There are two aspects to God’s will. One is what He wills to take place and what actually takes place in existence. The other is His legislative will. This is what He enjoins upon human beings and directs them to do out of their own free will, and this is what pleases Him. God has enjoined belief in Him upon every person. Yet, it is also His will that some people will choose to believe and others will not. He has decreed and granted man the free will to believe in Him or to refuse. Although He wants the unbeliever to believe in Him and is not pleased with unbelief, He does not compel him but allows him to decide for himself. He also allows each person to decide whether or not he will obey His injunctions. But He has informed us that there will be consequences either way. Our Creator would not be just unless He held humankind to certain codes of conduct during their lives and made them accountable for their actions.
The created world in both its animate and inanimate aspects functions best when it is allowed to take its natural course, following the Creator’s laws without human interference. When humans interfere by opposing His laws, disturbances arise. Similarly, man’s physical, moral and spiritual systems work for the best results only when he follows the laws conveyed to him from his Lord. When he chooses to apply them, he remains in harmony with nature; when he chooses otherwise, he creates chaos. The Qur’an teaches mankind how to maintain this harmony and earn the approval of his Creator, to whom he will eventually return. The more knowlcdgc one acquires of his Lord and the more acutely aware of Him one becomes, the more he turns toward God, trusts in Him, depends upon Him, seeks His assistance and strives to please Him.
The created world is not in its final form, and artistic expression does not cease. The universe is constantly undergoing change, development and reorientation. It is in an ongoing state of adjustment and transformation. Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, sandstorms, droughts, floods and tsunamis occur on earth as well as innumerable major events throughout the cosmos. God continues to develop His universe. As the Qur’an says:
“Every day Heis [involved] in a matter” (55:29)
This world is a but stepping stone to the next: a new world of new qualities, new dimensions, new laws and exciting new possibilities. Prophet Muhammad reported that his Lord said, “I have prepared for My righteous servants what no eye has seen, no ear has heard and what has never occurred to a human heart” (Narrated by al-Bukhari and Muslim) In the Qur’an, God has informed us of another creation and another existence, and that the present one is in itself a clear proof that He can create and re-create as He wills:
“Did We fail in the first creation? But they are in confusion over a new creation” (50:15)
The new creation is the only logical conclusion to the drama of worldly life, for it is the means by which the universal balance found in every aspect of creation will be restored. It is only in this future existence promised by the almighty and merciful Creator that the injustices of the present world will be fully compensated and equilibrium maintained. Reason and logic reject the allegation that conscious intelligent beings could be left without information regarding such a crucial matter. God has gifted every element of His creation with some kind of guidance, and man is no exception. It is for this reason that He revealed directives through prophets and scriptures, concluding with the Qur’an.
Author : Syed Iqbal Zaheer