We recognize things by their qualities. When told that such and such a person is honest, truthful, upright, wise, courageous, etc., we need not see him with our eyes because we know about him already. When told that there is an object with a flat surface, four legs, about a meter high, etc., we realize it must be a table. We know things by the description of their qualities. Similarly, we know God by His qualities.
While many people believe in God, their concepts of Him differ significantly. Muslims believe in one eternal, unique, absolute and perfect God who is the Creator and Sustainer of all that exists. They acknowledge that He is the origin of all occurrences and that He alone is divine. His perfect attributes are unlike those of man or any other being and nothing resembles Him, so He cannot be compared to any aspect of His creation. He is in no way a part of His creation, nor is any of it a part of Him. His existence was never preceded by nonexistence, nor will it ever come to an end. And His existence is not bound by any location or direction, as these too are aspects created by Him for the physical universe. (He is “above” His creation in the sense that He is beyond it and suPerior to it in essence, existence and status)
His attributes or qualities are discernible in two ways: through created things and through His revelation. The more we observe and analyze the created world, the more we will become conscious of the power, wisdom, knowledge and mercy that are involved in its creation. In the same way, the more we study and understand the revelation (It can be confirmed historically that the only divine revelation still completely intact and unaltered by man to this day is the Qur’an) the better we can appreciate the qualities of God. However, in both cases study of the cosmic world and of the revelation we need to remain rational, logical and unprejudiced.
Author : Syed Iqbal Zaheer