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Verse 29: Value What you Possess

In previous verses the author mentioned the various capabilities with which man has been endowed. He also encourages man to appreciate and value these qualities by using them to comprehend the truths of creation and, ultimately, fulfil his purpose in being created. In this verse he also makes it clear that failure to do so will inevitably lead to oblivion. Al-Dai al-Ajal Syedna al-Muaʾyyad al-Shirazi RA points out that the cosmos and all that it encompasses was brought into being [...]

2019-11-15T15:30:31+03:00November 15th, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 28: Comprehend the Intellect Bestowed upon you

It was explained in the third verse, that al-ʿAql al-Awwal achieved enlightenment by comprehending his own self. He became aware of his strengths and recognised his limitations. In this verse, man is directed to comprehend his intellect and his soul so that he too may reach the same conclusion: the omnipotence of the Creator and the impossibility of ever comprehending Him. Al-ʿAql al-Awwal was able to acknowledge his Creator of his own accord. However, this is not the case for [...]

2019-11-04T08:41:00+03:00November 4th, 2019|Blog|

Verse 27: Mesmerised and Confounded

The surest sign that one has enlightened his soul and has indeed comprehended the truths of Creation is in being left confounded and perplexed by the majesty of Allah Taʿālā. This is the intended outcome of all learning and the greatest proof of being learned. Though knowledge is usually sought to dispel confusion and increase understanding, in this instance the hallmark of wisdom is to affirm that the intellect is incapable of perceiving the greatness of the Creator. His greatness [...]

2019-10-12T09:00:36+03:00October 12th, 2019|Blog|

Verse 26: Hasten to Enlighten Your Soul

In verse eight, Syedna Taher Saifuddin RA calls upon mankind to enlighten his intellect with the rays of divine revelation. He directs him to enlighten his soul with the light of knowledge, thereby establishing that only knowledge derived from divine revelation has the potential to illuminate the soul. The precedence given to the development of the intellect is justified by the fact that a man’s intellect allows him to differentiate between right and wrong, between acquiring knowledge that benefits him [...]

2019-09-22T12:21:50+03:00September 22nd, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 25: The Gifted and the Acquired

We have already in passing commented upon in the last paragraph of the commentary to verse 24, to the two aspects of ʿaql, namely that which is gifted and that which is acquired. Gifted, naturally refers to that potentiality in man which is inherent and not acquired. It finds place in man as an act of Allah. The acquired aspect bears reference to the capacity of that substance—potentiality to rise and in the ultimate analysis to be emancipated through the [...]

2019-09-18T10:18:52+03:00February 26th, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 24: Know Him do not Disown Him

The suggestion contained in verse 23 is now more explicitly given expression to. Man who has seen manifested the power of Allah should desist by a deliberate act of will to deny the Creator. Once again the verse exclaims the natural, the obvious reaction of the author 'glory be to the master.' Man who has been endowed with the priceless gift of ʿaql has to comprehend the virtues of the gift and through its exercise know his Creator. He should [...]

2019-09-18T10:18:52+03:00February 25th, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 23: Glory be to Allah

In this verse we find, so to say, the culmination of the thought process of the preceding verses and the concepts contained in them. Commencing with the concept of ʿaql, we were guided to the concept of the existence of the Creator and the majesty of His power. The human intellect has been counselled, to ponder critically and precisely, without confusion, without tiring and without boredom into the whole subject of creation. The author then exclaims 'glory be to Allah [...]

2019-09-18T10:18:52+03:00February 22nd, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 22: Ponder Critically

  We have seen that within every element of creation there is a motivating force referred to as 'power.' We have further seen, that the motivating force or power in the ultimate analysis is related back to the original attribute of power of the First Creation i.e. the energy provided for, and, or given by Allah. The author exhorts us to think seriously, critically and precisely on the secrets of this power. In other words, the thought process and approach [...]

2019-09-18T10:18:52+03:00February 21st, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 21: The Pivot

The power of the Creator is the pivot, the focal point. We have already seen that atomic energy relates back to the atom. The enabling energy in the atom is the creation of Allah. The use of the word 'power' leads us to consider the philosophic notion, that the first created were endowed with three principal attributes, viz. life, knowledge and power. Life, in the sense of an extant living being, knowledge of itself and power or ability. In an [...]

2019-09-18T10:18:52+03:00February 20th, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|

Verse 20: Acknowledge Your Master

Verse 20 completes the idea developed in the previous verse. It says that when through a consideration of the atom man has gained knowledge of the existence of the Creator and acknowledges His supremacy, then man must so preserve the state of his ʿaql that he is not led away or prevented from faithfully treading the glorious path leading towards perfection, by temptations or by a self-seeking disbeliever. This verse, though apparently complementary to verse 19, is in itself pregnant [...]

2019-09-18T10:18:52+03:00February 19th, 2019|Blog, Philosophy|