For Additional-Info. regarding the Subject-Matter:
Allah is not Imageless – Permanent Committee
What I have to present is a very simple, concise, Treatise on the nature of Allah’s Existence, the splendor of His Exclusivity, and the magnitude of His Dominance over All-Things. I have taken upon myself to write something such as this, as a result of sitting in a class at NYC’s MECCA-Center on `Aqīdah/Islāmic-Theology, in which the Instructor (Amin Muhammad of Atlantic City, NJ) teaching this Class mentioned some Things about Allah that didn’t sit right with me at all, in spite of this person mentioning Textual-Evidence from Various-Sources. The Premise of this Class was centered upon Literal & Allegorical/Figurative aspects of Revelatory-Texts (the Qur’ān in particular), which highlight some Sifāt (Characteristics/Qualities) of Allah, in which persons (both classically, as well as contemporarily) have expressed Various-Madhāhib/Religio-Postures about. But, with me being me, the Position & Justification that he gave for his Theological-Stances weren’t good enough for me. So, of course, I had decided to take Pen-to-Paper, and here we are, with this Treatise, concerning the Nature of Allah.
My Objective, however, is not to call people out, or declare at-Takfīr (Blasphemy) upon any Muslim. Rather, it is only an honest, unbiased, simple, Attempt to clarify some Aspects of Allah’s-Nature, especially for those Muslims who may be Reverts/Non-Arabic speaking Muslims, and/or persons (both Muslim & Non-Muslim alike) who may legitimately be Oblivious/Ignorant to this Millenium-Old issue, concerning Allah’s-Nature: to make it plain. Everyone has Opinions, about who Allah is, how does He manifest His Divine-Qualities, what is the Extent, if any, of His Qualities , etc. This Treatise is not about this. It’s simply a Platform, to display Specific-Things which Allah establishes for Himself, in both the Qur’ān & Sunnah/Prophetic-Tradition, about Himself/His Divine-Nature.
It is my Sincere-Hope that anyone & everyone may be able to benefit, in some way, from whatever I’ve written in this Treatise. I’m hopeful that this could inspire/empower others to, in fact, seriously study this subject matter, more extensively, for their own selves, in order to theologically empower & liberate one’s self, from the theological dominance of others, who may or may not have your best interests at heart. As Muslims, we owe it to Allah,then, to ourselves, to be theologically safe & free from theological flaws, mistakes, personal opinions of others & just stick to authentic stances, based upon authentic texts, from both the Qur’an & Prophetic-Tradition.
By the way, just for enforced Personal-Clarification: I am a Non-Sectarian Muslim, which means that I am not partial, nor biased, towards or against any particular `Aqīdah/Theological-School, Hizb/Sectarian-Group, Madhab/Legal-School, etc.
The Nature of Allah:
Allah is: Uncreated, Eternal, Divine, Perfect…completely unlike anything which has ever been, or ever will be, created. When describing Allah, firstly, it is of the Utmost-Importance to stay within the Authentic-Parameters of the Qur’ān & Sunnah/Prophetic-Tradition, in regards to what Allah attributes to Himself, as well as to what Extent Allah goes to elaborate on certain and/or specific, Attributions about Himself. When it comes to how He exist, He in fact exists in an Eternal-Context. Meaning, He exists without having a Beginning or an Ending-This is the absolute basis of His dominance over all else which exists, aside from Himself.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.112, V.2; 42, V.11)
Allah is Absolutely-One/Singular, Completely/Ultimately-Unique, etc. This highlights His Divinity, His Exclusive-Right to be worshipped, at All-Times & in All-Places. This is important, because, when people commit themselves to Worship/take on Acts of Worship, they must be sure that it is Allah who is the Object of their Worship, and no one else whom exists. The best example of this is ash-Shahādah, itself. ash-Shahādah is the Religious-Testimony of Faith for Muslims.
It confirms 2-Things:
a. Our recognition/acceptance that there is no one who is worshipworthy, except Allah.
b. Our recognition/acceptance that Muhammad (Peace be upon him) is the Messenger of Allah, to be followed in All-Things, regarding the Proper-Way to be Obedient to Allah.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.47, V.19; Chpt.33, V.21)
His Names & Characteristics-
Any & all of Allah’s names & characteristics serve as Direct-Indicators of His Qualities, which are: Uncreated, Eternal, Divine, Absolute, Unlimited, Complete, Perfect & Positive, just like He is.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.7, V.180)
There are very detailed things which are impossible for Allah, and before people get crazy, let me explain them-
a. It’s impossible for Allah to be created, age, or die-
Allah explains in detail, how this is an impossibility.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.112, V.2)
b. It’s impossible for Allah to be Multiple-
Allah is one, without being divided. He is perfectly individual.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.112, V.1; Chpt.2, V.163)
c. It’s impossible for to Allah to have Parents or Children-
Allah makes it crystal-clear that it is not from His divine-integrity to have parents or children.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.112, V.3)
d. It is impossible for Allah to be Dependant upon anyone or anything-
Allah needs nothing from anyone or anything, and, everyone & everything needs Allah.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.2, V.255; Chpt.31, V.26)
e. It is impossible for Allah to be a Tyrant-
This is based upon what Allah says about himself.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.18, V.49; an-Nawawī)
f. It is impossible for Allah to be Selfish or Cheap-
Allah gives of what he wills, how He wills, to whom He wills.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.5, V.64)
g. It is impossible for Allah to be Defeated/Subdued-
Allah can never be defeated or conquered by anyone or anything.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.6, V.28; Chpt.38, V.65)
h. It is impossible for Allah to have any Negative-Names, Negatives-haracteristics/Qualities. Allah is in possession of the best Names, Characteristics/Qualities, which are: Eternal, Positive, and Perfect, just as He is.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.2, V.286; Chpt.20, V.8; Chpt.7, V.180)
a. Allah has a Nafs/Persona-
This is solely based upon the Fact that Allah does in fact describes Himself, in the Qur’an, as well as Muhammad (Peace be upon him), in the Sunnah, as having an actual Nafs/persona, not to be compared, or confused with the similitude of the Nafs/persona of any created thing.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.5, V.116; as-Suyūtī)
b. Allah has a Face/Eyes-
This is solely based upon the fact that Allah does in fact describes Himself: within the Qur’ān, as well as Muhammad (Peace be upon him) via the Sunnah describing Him as having an Actual/Real-Face. This isn’t at all to be compared or confused with the Similitude of the Face of any Created-Thing.(Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.52, V.48; 55, V.26 & 27; as-Suyūtī)
c. Allah has a Voice/Speech-
This is solely based upon the Fact that Allah does in fact describes Himself, in the Qur’an, as well in the Sunnah, as having an Actual/Real-Voice/Speech, not to be compared or confused with the Similitude of the Voice/Speech of any Created-Thing.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.4, V.164; as-Suyūtī)
d. Allah has Hands/Fingers-
This is solely based upon the Fact that Allah does in fact describes Himself, in the Qur’an, as well as the Sunnah, as having actual hands, not to be compared or confused with the Similitude of the Hands/Fingers of any Created-Thing.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.38, V.75; as-Suyūtī; al-Bukhārī; Muslim)
e. Allah has Shins-
This is solely based upon the Fact that Allah does in fact describes Himself, in the Qur’an & the Sunnah, as having actual shins, not to be compared or confused with the Similitude of the Shins of any Created-Thing.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.68, V.42; as-Suyūtī)
f. Allah has Feet-
This is solely based upon the Fact that Allah does in fact describes Himself as having actual feet, not to be compared, or confused with the Similitude of the feet of any Created-Thing.(Bukhari & Muslim)
Now, at this point, I will have to explain why some Muslims would have a Serious-Problem with what I’ve just mentioned:
There have been, classically & contemporaneously, (various Persons, Groups, Schools, etc.) those whom have taken a Theological-Position that the Features which Allah describes Himself with are only “Allegorical”, and not Literal/Real. This is based solely upon Interpretations of Linguistic-Nuances of the Arabic-Language, as opposed to what Allah has actually mentioned about Himself, what Muhammad (Peace be upon him) has mentioned about Him, what his Companions (May Allah be pleased with them altogether), and what the general Consensus of Muslim-Scholars of as-Salaf (the first three generations of Muslims, relative to the revelation of the Qur’ān) have commented on concerning the features of Allah. In fact, classically, the vast majority of the Salaf (as-Shābah/the Companions & at-Tābi`ūn/the Followers) have always taken a Neutral-Stance, regarding the features of Allah, that they are what they are, as mentioned, in both the Qur’ān & Sunnah, without attempting to explain them, nor denying the reality that these features actually exists…this is known as at-Tafwīd/Theoligical-Neutrality.(al-Barbahāri)
However, Persons have deemed it necessary to do one of 2-Things:
a. Negate the Reality that Allah has described Himself with these Features, giving them a Figurative-Definition.
b. Attempting to give the Features of Allah Form/Structure.
In all reality, both are equally Theologically-Dangerous.
This Particular-Debate (over the Extent of the Reality or lack-thereof concerning the Features of Allah), has been a (recurring, theological/scholarly) Debate, for the past Thousand-Years amongst Muslims. But, that’s not my Concern, to get caught-up with the Differing Scholastic-Opinions of Others. My Point here is very simple: there’ so many things about Allah’s-Nature, which we, as Created-Things will probably never know.
But, it honestly doesn’t even matter, for the Following-Reasons:
a. If it were really that important for us, as Created-Things, to know in detail, regarding the Features of Allah, then, Allah would’ve most definitely extended the definition of what His features are/are not, either in the Qur’ān/the Sunnah.
b. Debating over whether Allah has these Features or not will not get you any further in one’s Individual Islāmic-Development. I view this as a Waste of Time, for People to go back&forth: debating, arguing, attacking one another, verbally, sometimes, even physically, over these Theological-Issues.
There must/should be no Doubt, to any Muslim, that when Allah mentions something in the Qur’ān, or within the Sunnah, that He is not at all attempting to be deceptive. I mean, really…do you really think/feel that Allah: the Creator/Lord of the Universe would just mention that He possesses Features, for Himself, just to throw us off & confuse us, to have us at one another’s Throats (figuratively & literally)?!!!
What type of God do you think/feel you’re worshipping?!!! Allah never plays Practical-Jokes upon His Creation, nor does He deceive people, nor does He insult anyone’s Intelligence. However, because we may possess some Deficiencies of our own, due to our Egos/Desires, Lack of Intellectual-Vision and just plain ignorance of the knowledge of Sacred-Texts: we have a Tendency/Propensity to overcompensate for the Fact that we don’t comprehend something about Allah, by attempting to define it by ourselves, which in turns leads us astray.