Before we put forward this question, I admit that I understand that many of us are skeptical surrounding this issue and try to avoid it at all costs – and in all honesty I don’t blame you. I mean the word God has been thrown around like it doesn’t mean a thing at all –to the point that many of us have either rejected God in his entirety or are left with some strange distorted definition and understanding of who God is.
I mean God has went from some Zeus like man in the sky with a big beard, to Thor, to a half animal/half human creature, to Kanye west shamelessly producing a track titled “I am God” on his album YEEZUS, to Eminem then self proclaiming himself as the “rap God”, to a new brand of “I Am God” Clothing being released, and yes who could forget Justin Bieber and his believers.
So with all these misconstrued definitions of God, that quite frankly I don’t believe in either. So the least I could do is help clear the water and help us finally find out :
WHO IS GOD?
Well to begin, let’s start with the things we can all agree on.
First and foremost we’re here. We’re alive and breathing. We didn’t choose to be here, but we’re here. We were thrown into this world without a choice of the day we were born to the day we die, the colour of our hair, to our skin and eyes. We just began and we exist.
And like all things that begin to exist they require a cause. Things don’t just come out of nothing. And although at times we would wish they sometimes did… they don’t.
So on saying that, knowing the cause of “us” is crucial. And I don’t just mean the cause of your birth; I mean the cause of the beginning of this Earth to the origins of the entire Universe. Let’s say the “big bang” theory, although we are able to explain that we did have a beginning, as many leading cosmologists have affirmed, we are still left unanswered as to what was the cause of our beginning.
And before you lash out saying “Oh but we can’t see what happened before we began”… or ”Oh you can’t prove there was a cause or a Creator”. We say quite openly, neither can you “disprove a creator” for the very same reason. So really take your pick – there was either a creator or no creator. There was either a cause… or we came from nothing. Which of the two is more rational to you?
And by observing the reality of our world and existence, its order, structure and systems, I see no reason not to believe in a creator. The signs are clearly manifest of a designer, an intelligent maker, a fashioner, a programmer etc. and I’m sure many of you would agree with me that we are not a product of coincidence but a product of intelligence.
But then one may ask…“Where did this Creator come from – who created it? What was the cause of Him?”
And then what was the cause of his creator, and his creator and it would go on forever, and if it did go on forever we would most probably never have been created.
So for God to exist, He must exist without beginning, therefore not requiring a cause. He is the eternal – He who is and has been always in existence. He is independent from all forms of creation, not relying on or in need of anything or anyone. He should also be transcendent from His creation and not bound by any of the realms he had created – whether it is time, space or matter. For instance when Steve Jobs makes an iPhone he doesn’t become an iPhone. He is separate.
And of course we could also argue that He is One. This makes the most sense and it would also avoid any potential “created” non-eternal Gods. And it also reduces the possibility of conflict between disputing All Powerful Gods with conflicting interests.
Now most of this makes sense up to now – but we still don’t know who exactly is He? Which God is He?
Well if you agree with everything I’ve said up until now, you will realize that each of these God’s don’t fit into our established criteria and definition of God. They are all created beings, they are not eternal, they have not created anything, they are dependent, and they all sleep, rest and eat.
So who is the one and only true God?
Hmmm…. I present to you four verses.
“Allah is the One and only who deserves to be worshipped.
The Eternal and the absolute.
He does not beget nor was he begotten.
And there is none like Him.”
[Surah Al Ikhlas 112 The Holy Quran]
A God who is One and only, eternal, exists without a beginning, who was uncreated, and is unlike anything else. Allah.
A simple definition of God that is logical and rational.
He is one and only, free from partners, sons, or daughters. There is nothing like him, no man, no creature, nothing imaginable. He is the eternal, the independent; we all need Him yet He is free from need from anything or anyone else. He is the self-existing. Without beginning, requiring no cause for Himself, yet being the Absolute Cause, the originator and the Creator of everything else, that which we know and that which we don’t know.
He is the one who creates with ease, who simply says, “Be” and it is. He is the One who is perfect – although I don’t like using the word perfect, as our understanding of perfect would never encompass His true perfection. He is the one who is All Powerful and stays All Powerful, He who doesn’t reduce in status. So no He won’t just transform into a man and be limited by the realms that are subject to His authority. He doesn’t sleep nor rest. He is in control of everything and He is our guardian and protector, whereby nothing can benefit nor harm us unless he wills it. No matter the circumstances.
He is the All knowing, the All hearing and unlike our friend Kanye, He is the All seeing. Whereby nothing is remote from Him. And although He is the Greatest and above All, He is the one who is near to those who call – Him. Needing no intermediaries, intercessors, to keep us connected, for he is closer to us than we are to ourselves.
And He has given us everything us we need for us to know and to be close to Him. In the Quran.
IS IT REALLY HIS WORD?
Many of us would then argue that although these verses do provide a logical and sound concept of God, how do we know that the words we have read are in deed the words of God.
Well first and foremost the Quran isn’t just any book. It was revealed 1400 years ago, as direct revelation from God to the final prophet Muhammad (pbuh) an unlettered man who could not read nor write. The most eloquent piece of literature to befall mankind, revealed at a time where poetry was rife and to a population housing the best of poets, only to leave them speechless and at a loss for words. With melody, rhyme, rhythm and rhetorical devices that even to this day shake the hearts of Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
With even the Prophet’s arch enemies acknowledging that the book is something special. Even to this day, the Quran remains incomparable and stuns humanity with its accurate references to science and history – From accurate descriptions of the human embryo to historically accurate references to the different rulers in Egyptian dynasty. Proving itself error free and a marvel beyond the level of any other author, musician or songwriter.
And no matter how many times people will try to discredit the Quran on its authenticity, it remains standing.
And most importantly, it is a book pertaining the answers to life’s greatest mysteries from our overall purpose of existence, why we are here and what happens once we die.
And to those that doubt it is from God, the challenge is simple – bring forth something that can compare. And if you can’t, bring ten chapters like it and if still you can’t bring a single chapter like it! Even if it were like the shortest chapter being a mere three lines!
“…Then let them bring an announcement like it if they are truthful” 2:34
“…If men and jinn should combine together to bring the like of this Quran, they could not bring the like of it…” 17:88
“…Bring ten forged chapters like this…” 11:13
“…Bring a chapter like this…” 10:38
“…Produce a chapter like it and call on your witnesses besides Allah if you are truthful.” 2:24
A challenge directed from Allah to every poet, every rapper every lyricist on the face of this planet. Now although this challenge has been attempted multiple times throughout the past, History has witnessed that no man has been able to rival the Quran
But does this challenge still stand today. Well we could surely put it to the test.
And who better to choose than today’s best– the self proclaimed “Rap God” Eminem. Dubbed the best of his time. And I’m sure many would agree that He is the best lyricist and rapper alive today, being incomparable with anyone in his league.
Now if we compare the works of Allah with those of Eminem we are left with this.
“This slickety, gibbedy, hibbedy hip hop…rappidy rap, Packing a Mac in the back of the Ac, pack backpack rap, yep, yackidy-yac-yac. The exact same time I attempt these lyrical acrobat stunts”
Look content wise…no comment…. however we can’t deny that lyrically he is impressive, he has rhythm, rhyme, style, alliteration and assonance. A short video online indicates that in one of his songs he almost made every second, to third word rhyme.
But how does he compare with the Qurans smallest chapter of 3 verses – Surah Al Kawthar.
Now in just ten words, Allah is able to use over 30 linguistic and rhetorical devices including:
- Multiple Meaning
- Grammatical shift
- Word order and Arrangement
- Conceptual Relatedness (Intertextuality)
- Choice of words & Particles
- Semantically Orientated Repetition
- Rebuke and contempt
Along with many more.
What is important to note, is that the Quran is in its own league. It doesn’t fit in any of the known classes of poetry, nor prose, rather is a fusion of both, being in its own unique literary form. It is unmatched, incomparable and unlike anything before it. While almost all other forms of poetry are replicable once given the blueprint and are in most instances inspired by poetry of the past.
What’s also important to note is that the linguistic devices in the Quran, aren’t just thrown about randomly but rather precisely selected and positioned in their most perfect and suitable moments.
For instance Allah would use palindromes, and not just randomly but to strategically describe the terms “glorify your Lord” and “the orbiting of planets”. As though both processes are occurring continuously non stop one after another.
The shortest chapter also contains a rhetorical device that no one can compete against nor replicate – prophesy. At the end of the first verse, Allah promises Muhammad (pbuh) that he would be given abundant good, His status would be great, He would be remembered, His nation would be great etc. at a time when he was at one of the lowest points of life, in terms of small number of followers and a low social status. He had even just lost his son and his enemies were taunting him with a cut off lineage and progeny, yet Allah was promising him abundant good. Such was the prophesy of the Quran – and today we see it’s fulfillment.
With the Quran being the most recited, memorized and practiced book across the entire world with over 1.7 Billion followers today from all walks of life. I challenge anyone to bring me a book that is revered as much as the Quran that has caused as much change for the better in such short time. If every scholarly book were to be completely wiped out from the face of this Earth, the Quran would be the first to return word for word. I mean we’ve all watched the book of Eli – (SPOILER ALERT!!!) audience were amazed by a movie made depicting a blind man who memorizes the entire Bible, despite the fact that this is a common occurrence in the Muslim world away from Hollywood.
Now all this, might leave you saying “Hey Cool Story Bro” nice techniques etc.
But what’s important is that the Quran not only amazes the minds of great authors, but does something which many others can’t do. That is give meaning to life; offer an objective code of morality, explaining why we are here and where we’re going.
While almost all other poetry cannot be compared in terms of its substantial benefit to society and the individual, for instance my teacher once taught me that eating M&M’s is fine, but listening to them will destroy your mind.
So what God teaches us is that each and every one of us is being tested. We are here for a purpose we weren’t created for mere play. We are being tested in our obedience to God and His rules, for those that believe there is reward and those that don’t and are arrogant there is punishment. It’s really difficult to fit this all into a short video, so I apologies for anything I’ve missed, but we leave the rest to you. Find out who God is today and His true Message for the world. Read.