SHAFAQNA – Yes God exists. The nature of God is not physical and therefore cannot be perceived using physical sense perceptions. How do we know that?
When Moses asked God that he would like to see him directly, he meant using his physical eyes, what was God’s reply? God said, “Look at the bush!” When Moses looked at the bush, the bush bursts into flames and Moses fainted. That is a piece of information for us from God that Divine nature is beyond the physical realm and physical sense perceptions cannot be used to perceive God. How then are we to see God if Divine nature is beyond our physical sense perception? Do understand that faith is defined as believing in something one cannot see the reward of which is to see what one believes. For people who possess faith, it is enough that God leaves clues that say that He exists and that we follow the clues, laws and tenets that lead to God.
Can God be perceived? Answer is yes he can but not using the physical organs of perception. Firstly, one must understand that God lies beyond the physical realm and cannot be perceived using the five sense perceptions. We can use the following and this very much encouraged: that we worship God as if we see Him and if we don’t see us Him, nonetheless He sees us. Key words here are “as if”.
Imagination and imagery is the link between humans and the Divine. God is metaphysical in nature. Light is metaphysical in nature. “God is the light of the heavens and the earth”, the Qur’an says. Can we see light? Light is used as a medium to see but is itself invisible. So “where” does God exist? God exists in our hearts. How do we know that? God says in an Islamic text, the Qur’an.” My heavens and my earth cannot contain me, but the heart of the faithful can contain me.” Each one of us possesses the capacity to see God within our hearts. We use the “Eye of the Heart” or ‘aynal Qalb to see what our physical eyes cannot see. How do we know the heart can see? Can we see when our eyes are closed? Answer is a resounding “yes!”
Do we not see things when our eyes are closed during sleep? The imaginal world within each of us is the real world. The physical world is a subset of the imaginal world. Our heart is the seat of imagination. All of creation is God’s imagination. The creation exists in God’s imagination.
Therefore all of creation is God’s recreation. The creation is fleeting because it is different at every moment: No two moments are the same. God lies beyond the physical realm and when we die our imagination lives on. God is veiled beyond layers of the realms: the realm of light, the realm of the subtle meaning heat, the realm of mineral, the realm of vegetation, the realm of animal.
The first layer which is light constitutes the link which makes us “closer to God then the vein in the neck.” Man embodies all the above and since light is one of our constituents. God is within us. The heart can perceive the metaphysical. Within our records, Plotinus the Gnostic prayed, fainted while he prayed and when he regained consciousness he said he saw, “Light, light everywhere.”
The Islamic tradition records this question which was posed by Sufi Saint Abdul Qadir al Jilani (1077–1166 CE), “Why did God create the creation?” God replied to Abdul Qadir al Jilani when he posed this question,” I was a Hidden Treasure, and I wanted to be known so I created the realms so that I be known.”
By Najman Hussain for Shafaqna