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In the Name of God بسم الله

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On 4/5/2021 at 5:29 PM, Dave follower of The Way said:

but I believe God is seperate from his creation. 

 

On 4/10/2021 at 1:10 AM, Shahrukh K said:

How ?

From where he brought all the material to create this universe ?

Rhetorically, lf l design a machine, am l that machine?

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On 4/4/2021 at 2:30 AM, 313_Waiter said:

Thanks for response brother. If we are to accept non-duality, I think the counter argument to the above question would be that whilst these philosophies have elements of truth, Islam is the most updated version of this truth where Rasulullah (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) inherited the knowledge of all of the Prophets (عليه السلام) before him (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم). Thus, Islam takes you to the Divine at a much faster speed than other religions like a highway compared to other long-winded roads. Further, other religions may have changed and may have corruptions like the trinity:

”Woe, then, to those who write the book with their hands and then say: This is from Allah, so that they may take for it a small price; therefore woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn.” (Quran 2:79)

What I don’t understand is that if only Allah exists (see bold), isn’t this in and of itself indicative of non-duality? If we (creation) are the act or attributes of Allah, we know in Shi’a philosophy His attributes are not separate from His essence, so again we arrive at non-duality. I have heard that Sufis even consider it a form of shirk to affirm one’s own existence! Also, wouldn’t duality be affirming two realities, the reality of God and the reality of God’s act à la creation? But reality has no boundary, concept, limitation etc. Please do correct me if I’m wrong dear brother as my knowledge is poor.

Yes they use the example of the snake and the rope:

Sheikh Sekaleshfar described it as such (in a lecture called la Ilaha illallah): someone goes to a clothing shop, he sees hats, pants, shirts, jumpers, sweaters. All the Sufi sees is one thing — thread. Thus creation is something measured- with shape size and other things we ascribe etc. It does NOT come from no-thing (nothing is not, does not exist!). All of these these creations / “existents” are a defined manifestation of a limitless reality - pure existence / existence qua existence / Allah / Hu/ Brahman / Necessary Being ... 

This was a difficulty I had. If I remember correctly Sheikh Sekaleshfar alluded to God existentiating existents from pre-eternity. Brother @eThErEaL (former member) explained that the period before and after creation is in and of itself a duality created in our mind! I have heard some (I think Alan Watts) even say that time is an illusion! This Q&A between the Imam al Ridha (عليه السلام) and Imran may shed some light:

Full debate can be found here: https://en.wikishia.net/view/Text:Imam_al-Rida's_(a)_Debate_with_Imran_al-Sabi (Special thanks to Br. @Ashvazdanghe.

 

Wallahu A’lam

Salam

“objects” (what you call created things) exist ONLY in relation to a “subject” (I.e. something that is mistaken for the True Self).  In other words, All of this “creation” exists in the apparent ignorance of Self.  Ignorance is only apparent and not real.  Ignorance itself is not a thing or a reality.  Ignorance is simply an appearance. In other words, God “apparently” ignores Himself = you and the world.   This is what the “Fall” is.  

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On 4/5/2021 at 2:17 AM, 313_Waiter said:

The “Big Bang” which scientists talk about could be one instance of such noise.

0ne, l disapprove of applying the word "noise" to Allah -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى).

Secondly, to use Genesis, when you consider something like the Breit-Wheeler Process, "Let there be Light" and every material thing derives from that (because what applies to electrons also applies to proton formation/creation) then how can you have 'noise?'

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1 hour ago, hasanhh said:

0ne, l disapprove of applying the word "noise" to Allah -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى).

I didn’t mean sound or noise in the sense of vibration, rather I meant what is meant by this verse: 

Quote

Verily, when He intends a thing, His Command is, "be", and it is! (36:82)

For christians, they could see this divine sound through this verse:

Quote

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1)

 

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1 hour ago, hasanhh said:

Rhetorically, lf l design a machine, am l that machine?

Designing a machine is not equivalent to bringing things out of no-thing, from no-thing. No-thing, by its very definition, has not existed, will not exist and cannot exist.

22 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

God is all powerful and created the universe from nothing by his powerful word

If we’re saying that creation is a manifestation of the Word, wouldn’t this be a sort of panentheism? Since in John 1 the Word was God. 

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7 hours ago, hasanhh said:
On 4/6/2021 at 2:59 AM, Dave follower of The Way said:

but I believe God is seperate from his creation. 

 

On 4/10/2021 at 10:40 AM, Shahrukh K said:

How ?

From where he brought all the material to create this universe ?

Rhetorically, lf l design a machine, am l that machine?

Today i am in my college for fluid mechanics exam i am a bit nervous. 
My friends and teachers are there.
Now I was sitting in the examination hall Fluid Mechanics paper in my hand and i know that i will not be able to answer a single question, i was sweating profusely, desperately trying to solve a numerical, it seems to me that i forgot everything  and then suddenly i woke up. It was so real that it took few seconds to realize that i am sleeping in my bed comfortably and it was only a dream. 
Dream was the creation of my mind, as long as i was sleeping the suffering and the dream seems real.
College building, my friends, teachers, question paper in my hand, the chair, desk etc are the creation of my mind everything is from me.

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6 hours ago, 313_Waiter said:

Designing a machine is not equivalent to bringing things out of no-thing, from no-thing. No-thing, by its very definition, has not existed, will not exist and cannot exist.

A question arises with this thinking. Would this not make Allah impersonal? The view of Allah and His Attributes in Islam bridges a gap between being too personal (ie like Jesus (عليه السلام) as divine according to Christians) and impersonal (advaita, stoicism and other sects/religions). However, if everything is part of Allah like the Shaivites who say Shiva (their view of the One God) decides to play a game (maya) to forget himself and experience through manifestation or creation and then remember himself again (enlightement/moksha), then this is an impersonal deity. The Advaitists are adamant that God is impersonal. Rupert Spira has many clips where he speaks of God as impersonal. If we say this is how it is with Allah, then that throws doubt concerning the sending of the Prophets (alaihum salam). This also causes doubts concerning prayer/dua. Rupert Spira again has mentioned in clips about prayer not being an accurate practice for realizing God. Because prayer to something impersonal would be useless no?

 

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36 minutes ago, MexicanVato said:

A question arises with this thinking. Would this not make Allah impersonal? The view of Allah and His Attributes in Islam bridges a gap between being too personal (ie like Jesus (عليه السلام) as divine according to Christians) and impersonal (advaita, stoicism and other sects/religions). However, if everything is part of Allah like the Shaivites who say Shiva (their view of the One God) decides to play a game (maya) to forget himself and experience through manifestation or creation and then remember himself again (enlightement/moksha), then this is an impersonal deity. The Advaitists are adamant that God is impersonal. Rupert Spira has many clips where he speaks of God as impersonal. If we say this is how it is with Allah, then that throws doubt concerning the sending of the Prophets (alaihum salam). This also causes doubts concerning prayer/dua. Rupert Spira again has mentioned in clips about prayer not being an accurate practice for realizing God. Because prayer to something impersonal would be useless no?

 

Good questions mashaAllah. I may not have the answer but I will take a guess.

Whilst God is near to “us”, He is also at the same time transcendent and nothing like us. So since God is Omnipresent and pervades all things, and these things seem to have a level of consciousness then God must be a conscious Being. In fact, the sufis day there is no living except The Living (al Hayy), also applying this to the rest of the attributes.

This reminds me that there is a Hadith Qudsi that says “I was a treasure, I wanted to be known, so I created”. Fakhr ad din al iraqi talked about the Lover, Love and Beloved, where Love is the essence of God, man is the Lover who sees his reflection in God and the Beloved (God) sees His reflection in man. When man cleans his heart he unites with the One and realises these divisions between Lover and Beloved were all an illusion.
 

Now when it comes to prayer, it may be seen as reconnecting with the divine source to “bring about” different outcomes. As in, if everything is happening by consciousness, through consciousness and within consciousness, the sentient Source of all consciousness could very easily bring about different outcomes. 

I don’t know if I made sense.

Wallahu A’lam

 

Edited by 313_Waiter
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1 hour ago, Shahrukh K said:

Now I was sitting in the examination hall Fluid Mechanics paper

Bro how do you know I have a fluid mechanics paper?

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2 hours ago, MexicanVato said:

Would this not make Allah impersonal?

By what is the meaning of "impersonal?"

Allah -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). does zillions of favors for His -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). creations, but He -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). has no favorites.

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9 minutes ago, hasanhh said:

By what is the meaning of "impersonal?"

Allah -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). does zillions of favors for His -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). creations, but He -(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). has no favorites.

There can be many meanings for impersonal but some are that Allah does not intervene or answer prayers. Another way of looking at it is just as fire-burns by nature without intending, an impersonal God creates or manifest the universe naturally. Meaning the act of creation just naturally happens. Some who believe in impersonal God do not believe he sends prophets etc. Many non-dualists believe in a impersonal God who manifest creation on His own screen so to speak.

I take the Islamic stance of Allah being neither too personal nor too impersonal. Allah sends Prophets (Alayhum salam) and answers prayers but he is not too personal like the anthropomorphists believe him to be.

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@313_Waiter

You might like this. It is from the book: The Naqshbandi Sufi Tradition Guidebook of Daily Practices and Devotions by Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani. I just received it today.

The Station of Extinction

The station of extinction, maqam al-fana, is one of the primary stations on the Path of the Sufi towards the state of perfection, maqam al-Ihsan. This station in fact is the first target of the seeker as he moves on the way of spiritual wayfaring, and while not the ultimate final destination, its attainment is considered the first foothold into the Garden of Sainthood- for one who reaches this has become of the Elect. It is for this reason that many identified this station as the final goal and declared that one who attained it had in fact achieved ultimate felicity, complete nothingness. Whereas in reality, this station, while of immense magnitude, is still a waystation on the ascent towards the Divine. For this reason the Naqshbandi Saints said, "Our Way begins where others leave off."

In the station of extinction, the servant of GOd leaves his very self behind, and in abandonment of all that pertains to selfhood is cut adrift in the oceanic realm of God's Reality. At that station, self-realization is achieved for the seeker has achieved the vision of Witnessing, aynu 'l-mushahadah, and is thus able to testify with true vision, as a witness of the One. When that is attained, the seeker is unable to identify him or herself as existent and sees all existence as a manifestation of the Oneness of God.

The Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم), who was the leader of humanity in seeking the Divine Presence, said, "I am the City of Knowledge and Ali is its gate." (At-Tirmidhi). In this statement is an affirmation of two realities:

  • The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) encompasses all knowledge granted to creation from the Lord of Creation.
  • Ali ibn Abi Talib (عليه السلام), the Lion of God, was chosen as the one through whom access to that knowledge was made possible. 

 

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@313_Waiter

Subhanallah! I am admiring the great Allamah Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Husayni Tihrani (Rahimahullah). He seems to have been a great Shi'i Mystic. I am reading 'Knowing the Imams Volume 5: Guardianship Monotheism and Guardianship=Exegesis of the Verse on Guadianship). Look at this excerpt below (the context was him refuting Wahabis and a people he call Shaykhis):

"The Mahdi (Baqiyyatullah), may his reappearance be hastened, is the perfect mirror to the Real. The Real has to be seen in that mirror. We should not be looking at the mirror itself, because the mirror has no essence of its own and we cannot see the Real without a mirror, because it is impossible. 

Thus, we have to search for and strive earnestly towards the Real via His Greatest Friend, the mirror to Him and sign of Him. 

It is God who is addressed and whispered to in prayers via the Imam, way, and path. Thus, even if we present what we need to the Imam, and address him in the second person, we must be careful not to think that he acts independently. We must always be aware that he is an intermediary, mirror, and sign. We should always bear that in mind. When we do so, we are actually addressing God, because a mirror qua mirror is not looked at for itself. It is only looked at pursuant to seeing the reflection in it. It is the reflection in it that is looked at for itself.

This is one of the most important points in mysticism and Monotheism: the multiplicity in this world is not inconsistent with the Unity of the Real's Essence, because His Unity is prime, whereas the multiplicity is secondary, a shadow, and a reflection. The question of Guardianship becomes quite clear in the fact that the Guardian is Monotheism itself. The Imam's power, greatness, knowledge, and comprehensiveness is the Real's Greatness, Knowledge, and Comprehensiveness is the Real's Greatness, Knowledge and Comprehensiveness, so there is no duality.

Just as it makes no sense to petition God without the Imam as intermediary, it also makes no sense to petition the Imam in the belief that he acts autonomously, as opposed to an intermediary and mirror to the Real.

In fact, petititioning the Imam and petititioning God are the same thing, not just figuratively but literally, because nothing but God exists. 

'Blessed be the name of Lord of Glory and Honour' (55:78).

These two sects (the Wahhabis and the Shaykhis) are both wrong, because it is both wrong to say that contingent beings, whether material or non-corporeal, cannot be mirrors, and wrong to say that they can act independently. Neither is correct, because there is a trace of the Real in the creatures. They have some of the Real's attributes because they are manifestations of the Real's Essence, Most Beautiful Names, and Most Sublime Attributes.

The Wahhabi school tends towards fatalism, and the Shaykhis tend towards free will; on the contrary, [the truth is] a matter between the two matters and level between the two levels. 

And that is the illumination of the Light of the Holiest Real in material and non-corporeal plurals.

The Wahhabis deny that the Real's Power and Knowledge is in all beings. The Shaykhis deny that the Real has power and knowledge in His Own Essence! Thus, both believe in the denial of Attributes and both have lost their way!"

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On 4/16/2021 at 1:38 PM, 313_Waiter said:

If we’re saying that creation is a manifestation of the Word, wouldn’t this be a sort of panentheism? Since in John 1 the Word was God.

Creation BY the word of God - i.e. God speaks creation into being - is not saying creation is a manifestation of the word.

It maintains the seperation between the creator and the creation.  I find the perspective that makes God and creation one unattanable.  The Bible teaches that God is seaking relationship with his creation.  He reaches out in love and care humans, offering help and comfort along with direction and challenge.  These are actions one being does toward another being.

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On 4/16/2021 at 8:12 PM, MexicanVato said:

A question arises with this thinking. Would this not make Allah impersonal? The view of Allah and His Attributes in Islam bridges a gap between being too personal (ie like Jesus (عليه السلام) as divine according to Christians) and impersonal (advaita, stoicism and other sects/religions).

I would suggest that God must be personal or it would be imposible for there to be any meaningful interaction between human persons and the divine.  The Bible makes it clear in the creation account in Genisis that God made human beings "in his own image, both male and female".  I can not have a meaningful relationship with a stone or a tree or even a pet cat or dog.  But I can have an amazing, living and active relationship of trust, love and understanding with the almighty creator God.  What a privilage and an honour!

Your coments about God's atributes in Islam (the 99 names???) bridging the gape between personal and impersonal is a helpful perspective.  In following Jesus I see the answer to the challenge is not to try and bridge that gap, because there isn't one.  God is personal and he shows that by becoming incarnate in Jesus the Messiah.  The trinity gives us the way that the creator God who is "other" from his creation has come and engaged and still engages with human created beings who are seperate from him.   Jesus the Messiah and the Holy Spirit bring us close to God.  Doesn't the Qur'an talk about those who are "brought near to God"?

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20 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

Creation BY the word of God - i.e. God speaks creation into being - is not saying creation is a manifestation of the word.

Wouldn’t God creating the world “by” the Word of God be the same as God creating the world “by” Himself? Since the Word was God according to the Bible we currently have.

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This is getting quite philosophical - I'm not good at philosophy! :grin:

The word 'by' here is introducing the vehicle of God's creative action.  God didn't 'think' the universe into existence, he didn't 'point' and the world appeared.  No his words have creative power because they are expressions of his very being his life giving source.

Doesn't the Qur'an have the same idea? God commands "Be!" and it is.  In Genesis we have God inviting the creation into existence with "Let there be ..."

It is the fact that God's words express his life giving nature that Jesus the Messiah is given the title Word of God.  One way we can see God's words in action is to look at the life, teaching, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus the Messiah.  We will also see God's words in action when Jesus the Messiah comes to judge all people on the last day.

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23 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

This is getting quite philosophical - I'm not good at philosophy! :grin:

I didn’t mean to be philosophical because I haven’t studied philosophy :). I have only read part of a book on the evidences for the existence of God.

23 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

Doesn't the Qur'an have the same idea? God commands "Be!" and it is.  In Genesis we have God inviting the creation into existence with "Let there be ..."

Yes, the Qur’an repeats the phrase ‘“Be!” and it is’ many times. However, I don’t think the Qur’an means to imply that there was nothing aka non-existence and that God addressed non-existence (which by definition, does not exist and cannot exist) and brings it into existence from the logos; where the logos is like a builder that is separate from the building. Here’s The Study Qur’an’s Tafsir of the verse in question:

Quote

2:117 “the Originator of the heavens and the earth. When He decrees a thing, He only says to it, “Be!” and it is.”

 

Decrees translates qaḍā, which can also mean “to accomplish,” “to complete,” or “to judge.” The creative command Be! is also found in 6:73; 16:40; 36:82; 40:68. In each case, all that is necessary to bring a thing into being is for God to say Be! In connection with the previous verse, similar language can also be found with regard to Jesus’ creation in 3:59: Truly the likeness of Jesus in the Sight of God is that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him, “Be!” and he was; and 19:35: It is not for God to beget a child. Glory be to Him! When He decrees a thing, He only says to it, “Be!” and it is. For some commentators such as al-Rāzī, the command Be! is meant to convey the ease and power by which God creates, requiring no preparation, practice, or effort. This view rejects the idea of a sequence of (1) a thing’s nonexistence, (2) God’s saying Be! and (3) its existence, since one cannot address nothing, and if something exists, it does not need the Be! in order to exist. Others say Be! neither precedes nor follows the creation of a thing, but is coterminous with it (Q). This verse is also understood as confirming that God knows things prior to their creation, and hence before their existence (Q).

 

This latter idea is expanded upon by Ibn ʿArabī and many members of his school, who explain that God says Be! to the forms (or “immutable essences,” al-aʿyān al-thābitah) in His Knowledge, meaning His Knowledge of His own Qualities and Attributes. That is to say, God knows what He will create and brings His Will and Power to bear upon that object of knowledge in order to create it by saying Be! Being within God’s Knowledge, it is not nothing, but neither is it yet created, nor does it possess existence. Ultimately, these views converge on the unity of God’s Knowledge, Will, and Power as His inseparable Attributes and on God’s complete self-sufficiency in relation to what He creates. Be! (kun) also corresponds to the Biblical fiat lux (“Let there be light,” Genesis 1:3) and serves to emphasize the fact that the existence of everything comes from God and His Will and that human beings do not have the power to bring anything into being out of nothing.

 

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@MexicanVato

I was thinking that if creation is an expression of the Divine, and we can have relationships with creation, why can’t we have a personal relationship with the Supreme Existence under a non-dual worldview?

There are beautiful poems by Rumi, Hafez and other great poets that speak of such a relationship.

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2 hours ago, 313_Waiter said:

@MexicanVato

I was thinking that if creation is an expression of the Divine, and we can have relationships with creation, why can’t we have a personal relationship with the Supreme Existence under a non-dual worldview?

There are beautiful poems by Rumi, Hafez and other great poets that speak of such a relationship.

Can you give an example of such a relationship? 

The danger here is that some mystics ended up giving up shariah (such as forsaking salat) because they claim they had reached perfection or some experience of non-duality. I think this is attributed to some of the Isma'ili mystics as well. 

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, MexicanVato said:

Can you give an example of such a relationship? 

Something like this poem by Ibn Arabi (he espoused Only God exists and so I believe he was non-dual):

Quote

Listen, O Dearly Beloved

Listen, O dearly beloved!
I am the reality of the world, the centre of the circumference,
I am the parts and the whole.
I am the will established between Heaven and Earth,
I have created perception in you only in order to be the object of My Perception.
If then you perceive Me, you perceive yourself.
But you cannot perceive Me through yourself.
It is through My Eyes that you see Me and see yourself,
Through your eyes you cannot see Me.


Dearly beloved!
I have called you so often and you have not heard Me.
I have shown Myself to you so often and you have not seen Me.
I have made Myself fragrance so often, and you have not smelled Me,
Savorous food, and you have not tasted Me.
Why can you not reach Me through the object you touch
Or breathe Me through sweet perfumes?
Why do you not see Me? Why do you not hear Me?
Why? Why? Why?

For you My delights surpass all other delights,
And the pleasure I procure you surpasses all other pleasures.
For you I am preferable to all other good things,
I am Beauty, I am Grace.

Love Me, love Me alone.
Love yourself in Me, in Me alone.
Attach yourself to Me,
No one is more inward than I.
Others love you for their own sakes,
I love you for yourself.
And you, you flee from Me.

Dearly beloved!
You cannot treat Me fairly,
For if you approach Me,
It is because I have approached you.
I am nearer to you than yourself,
Than your soul, than your breath.
Who among creatures
Would treat you as I do?

I am jealous of you, over you,
I want you to belong to no other,
Not even to yourself.
Be Mine, be for Me as you are in Me,
Though you are not even aware of it.

Dearly beloved!
Let us go toward Union.
And if we find the road
That leads to separation,
We will destroy separation.

Let us go hand in hand.
Let us enter the presence of Truth.
Let It be our judge
And imprint Its seal upon our union
For ever.

 

From: Henri Corbin. Creative Sufism ‘Alone with the Alone: Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn Arabi, p. 174-75

https://blogs.harvard.edu/sulaymanibnqiddees/2017/05/14/ibn-arabi-my-beloved/


Here’s what William C Chittick (great writer on Sufism, Islamic philosophy and Ibn Arabi) wrote in his book “The Self-Disclosure of God Principles of Ibn Al-'Arabi's Cosmology“:

Quote

 

“The fact that God is with all things helps explain why He brings them from nonexistence in knowledge to existence in the cosmos. Sufis typically understand love as God's motive for creating the cosmos. Like others, Ibn al Arabi often refers to the famous Hadith Qudsi [a narration attributed to the Prophet Muhammad in which God is speaking] that speaks of God as a Hidden Treasure. The version he usually cites reads, “I was a Treasure but was not known, so I loved to be known; I created the creatures and made Myself known to them, so they came to know Me." But the Shaykh often reminds us that the object of love remains nonexistent, whether the love be human or divine.21 Of course, objections quickly arise when it is said that the object of love does not exist.

You may object and say: We loved sitting with a person, or kissing, or embracing, or intimacy, or conversation. Then we saw that it was achieved, but love did not disappear, even though there was embracing and mutual arrival. Hence, the object of love does not have to be nonexistent.

We would reply: You are mistaken. When you embrace the person, and when the object of your love had been embracing, or sitting together, or intimacy, you have not achieved the object of your love through this situation. For the object is now the continuance and permanence of what you have achieved. This continuance is nonexistent. It has not entered into wujiid, and its period has no end. Hence, in the state of arrival, love attaches itself only to a nonexistent thing, and that is its permanence.

How beautifully the Koran has expressed this with His words, He will love them and they will love Him [5:54]. For it employs pronouns of absence [Le., third person] and future tense verbs. Hence it ascribes love's connection only to that which is absent and nonexistent. And every absent thing is a nonexistent thing in a relative sense. (IT 327.8)”

29 minutes ago, MexicanVato said:

The danger here is that some mystics ended up giving up shariah (such as forsaking salat) because they claim they had reached perfection or some experience of non-duality. I think this is attributed to some of the Isma'ili mystics as well. 

Yes that’s true. They claim to reach “yaqeen” and give up shariah. Seyyed Hossein Nasr (and I assume other Sufis) has written against this.

Edited by 313_Waiter
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15 hours ago, 313_Waiter said:

Something like this poem by Ibn Arabi (he espoused Only God exists and so I believe he was non-dual):

The below should be of some interest to you. I took it from the same book cited above by Allamah Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Husayni Tihrani (Rahimahullah) [pg. 68-70]:

...Ali (عليه السلام) says in Khutbat al-Bayan ("The Explanatory Sermon"):

I am God's face, I am God's side, I am God's hand, I am the most exalted pen, I am the Guarded Tablet. I am the clear Book. I am the speaking Qur'an. I am Kaf Ha Ya 'Ayn Sad.

I am Alif Lam Mim

I am the Ta in the chapters that begin with Ta Sin Mim (al-Tawasim); I am the Ha in the chapters that begin with Ha Mim (al-Hawamim). I am titled Ya Sin. I am the Sad in al-Saffat. I am the Sin in chapters that begin by praising God (al-Musabbihat). I am the Nun and the Pen; I am the Table of Generosity. I am Gabriel's friend; I am he about whom God's Messenger (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said:

"There is no hero [but Ali.]" I am praised by [Chapter 76]:

Hal ata; I am the great tidings. I am the straight path. I am the first. I am the last. I am the manifest. I am the hidden...

Beware of finding these points unbelievable. What would be unbelievable would be if the Imam did all these things autonomously. 

However, if he is the mere mirror, and the perfect sign of the Real, and these actions are the manifestation of the One's Essence appearing in the mirror that is [the Imam's] existence], they cannot be considered to be unbelievable. If according to true Monotheism, any action is through God, then what is the difference between a small act by the Imam, such as ripping away the Gate at Khaybar, killing 'Amr Ibn 'Abd Widd, Marhab, and the heroes of Quraysh at the battles of Khaybar, the Confederates (al-Ahzab) and Badr; and a great act, such as Noah's flood, sending the poisonous wind to 'Ad, and so on? In all cases it is the Real's doing. 

In his al-Isharat (Remarks), Avicenna says:

When [a gnostic] finishes his mortification and attains [his goal and desires, which are joining the Holiness Creator], his soul (sirr) appears shiningly before the Real, and the sublimest ecstasies pour copiously onto it; he rejoices at the trace left in himself by the Real; he sees himself and sees the Real and is torn between the two...

Next, he leaves himself and sees only the Holy. Even if he does not see himself, he only sees his observation, not his self with alll its embellishment. That is when he has arrived...

 

And after that, he says:

Mysticism begins with tafriq [the mystic's separating from everything that distracts him from the Real], nafd [shaking himself to cast off the effects of those distractions such that he does not pay them any more attention to perfect his soul to abstract it from anything but the Real], tark [cutting himself off from and forgetting everything to reach God], and rafd [rejecting all pleasures to reach the Real].

Khawajah Nasir al-Din al-Tusi, May God be pleased with him, says by way of explanation of the above that when the mystic cuts himself off and connects with the Real, he believes himself to have power over everything, knowledge of everything and a will that cannot be opposed by contingent being.

In fact, everything that exists issues and effuses from him.

At that point, the Real has become his sight by which he sees, his hearing by which he hears, his power by which he acts, his knowledge by which he knows, and his existence by which he exists. 

At that point, the mystic actually has God's manners (akhlaq); this is what the Shaykh means by:

"Mysticism is devoted to all attributes-the Real's attributes for the soul that truly desires."

After that, the gnostic sees through his inward eyes; that is, he sees this and similar attributes as plural when measured against plurality, but singular when measured against their single origin, because the Essential Itself is his essential power, and his essential power is His Will, The same applies to all his other attributes. 

Nothing else has any inherent existence. There are no attributes distinct from His Essence; they are all one thing, as God, the Honorable and Exalted Says:

"God is only One God" (4:171).

So He is He. There is nothing else; this is what ending up at One means. At that point there remains no describer or thing described, no wayfarer or wayfared, no knower or thing known. This is standing (wuquf).

 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, MexicanVato said:

I am the first. I am the last. I am the manifest. I am the hidden...

Salaam brother, thanks again for sharing these great esoteric gems. I feel that the way we can understand this (if it is a true hadith) is by saying this does not refer to Imam Ali (عليه السلام) in the sense the perfect reflection of the Absolute, but rather it is referring to the ‘true self’ that is God Himself. Where we see that everything is happening within consciousness, by consciousness and through consciousness.

As we know God ascribes such traits to Himself:

“He is the First and the Last, the Manifest and the Hidden” (57:3).


Perhaps we can understand Jesus’s saying “Before Abraham was, I am” in a similar manner (if he really did say it).

 

I had a topic about a similar hadith a while back: 

There are also some hadiths about Hazrat Ali (عليه السلام) executing a capital punishment on Ghulāt calling him God (after warning them to desist). So we need to be wary of shirk. I was thinking about why it is such a big sin if the Ghulāt were merely seeing the Real within Imam Ali (عليه السلام). Perhaps it is because they were taking their false ego as their God and not differentiating between multiplicity and Divine Unity; they were only calling the illusory God. Share your thoughts brother inshaAllah. 

Edited by 313_Waiter
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On 4/10/2021 at 7:27 AM, PureExistence1 said:

Assalamualaikum,

Thanks for the tag.. what I know, I only know from something I learned a long time ago, and I can't give you an exact source for it. I know this is a very poor answer!

Anyway, what I had learned at some point either from a lecture, or conversation with my mentor sister, cant remember which, is that these things that are "najis" for us, are of no consequence to Allah(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى), as He is above and beyond these kind of things, but for the health and spiritual advancement and whatnot of humans, Allah(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) has made these things najis for us. For Him, it's neither here nor there, if you get what I'm saying. In regards to Allah(سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى), its not relevant. 

Its kind of like how ingesting excrement is forbidden for us, but it has been made the method of nourishment for plants and even for some animals. Its not relevant or najis or forbidden for them, but for us it is.

(Not sure how good of an example that is:/ )

Sorry, I'm in a big hurry right now. I'm very pressed for time, but I didn't want to let this tag slip by me like I have in the past with some other tags.

Walaikum Salaam wrb,

JazakAllah Khayr for this, it really helped.
 

I guess what I don’t understand is that if one way or another all things reach perfection (from a cosmological perspective- where God is perfection and the world reflects God; keeping in mind only God really exists) , does not one descend into a sort of “existential nihilism”? What I mean is that whether one sins or does not sin, keeps away from najasa or does not keep away from najasa, are they not reaching a level of perfection (albeit coupled with a level of ignorance)? In this sense is there anything really morally wrong (sure, x is distancing you from God, but you are still a certain distance close to Him, metaphorically speaking)?

Sorry if I didn’t make any sense.

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2 hours ago, 313_Waiter said:
8 hours ago, MexicanVato said:

 

Salaam brother, thanks again for sharing these great esoteric gems. I feel that the way we can understand this (if it is a true hadith) is by saying this does not refer to Imam Ali (عليه السلام) in the sense the perfect reflection of the Absolute, but rather it is referring to the ‘true self’ that is God Himself. Where we see that everything is happening within consciousness, by consciousness and through consciousness.

Wa alaikum salam wa rahmatullah,

Yes, I do not think this is just something designated for Imam Ali (عليه السلام). This is the concept of the perfect man. The Muhammadin Light. 

2 hours ago, 313_Waiter said:

There are also some hadiths about Hazrat Ali (عليه السلام) executing a capital punishment on Ghulāt calling him God (after warning them to desist). So we need to be wary of shirk. I was thinking about why it is such a big sin if the Ghulāt were merely seeing the Real within Imam Ali (عليه السلام). Perhaps it is because they were taking their false ego as their God and not differentiating between multiplicity and Divine Unity; they were only calling the illusory God. Share your thoughts brother inshaAllah. 

Yea in another thread I started a topic on 'Who are the extreme Shi'a'. I suggested we differentiate between those that worshiped the Imams from those arifin who use language that is outside of orthodoxy. Taking Imam Ali (عليه السلام) or other Imams as gods or independent beings that act outside of the will of Allah is falsehood. I believe these narrations are suggesting the perfect man. The Muhammadin light can be considered and I hate equating it to buddha nature.. I only say that for the sake of explaining it somewhat, but buddhism is devoid of divinity and this is their error. Islam is full of the divine which is Allah and solely Allah's. But the Nabi (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) being the first creation is the passing of this fitra to all of creation. Fitra is none other than one's natural tendency to submit to the Creator who is free from limitation and is the God of Imam Ali (عليه السلام) and al-Mustafa (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم). 

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On a similar note, it is surprising the many muslims that do not accept that there is esoteric meanings in Islam. Even the syllables at the beginning of some chapters of the Qur'an are indication of Divine Mysteries. Even if one wants to say we dont know the meaning, that even more so indicate mysticism. However, my view is always congruent in the orthodoxy of Shi'a view of Allah being unlike creation. 

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