Man has been sent to this world as a guest with a special responsibility, and endowed with important potentials. He has been assigned important duties corresponding to these potentials, and strongly urged to carry out those duties and gravely threatened if he fails to do so. In order to make the mystery of ‘being the best pattern of creation’ more comprehensible, we will here summarise the essentials of the worship and duties required of man, which we already elaborated in another treatise.
Man’s worship consists of two aspects. One is implicit and concerns reflection and consciousness. The other is visible prayer, done in direct supplication in the presence of God.
The first aspect is that man confirms submissively the sovereignty of His Lordship over the creation, and observes in amazement the works of His beauty and perfection.
He then attracts the attentions of his fellow beings to the intricate, ornamented works of art that consist in the manifestations of the sacred Divine Names. He also measures in ‘units’ of due perception and discernment the jewels of the Lord’s Names, each of which is a hidden spiritual treasure, and evaluates them with grateful appreciation of heart.
Then he makes a close study of the pages of creation, the sheets of heavens and earth, each of which is a missive of Divine Power, and contemplates them in great admiration.
Afterwards, as he gazes in amazement and admiration upon delicate ornamentation and refined skills in creation, he ardently wishes to know their Beautiful Creator and yearns to enter His presence, where he hopes to be received into His favour.
The second aspect is that man turns towards his Majestic Creator, who wants Himself to be known through the miracles of His artistry. The man unburdens himself to Him in sincere belief and tries to acquire knowledge of Him.
Then he discerns that a Compassionate Lord wants Himself to be loved through the beautiful fruits of His Compassion. In response, he makes himself loved by Him by devoting his love and adoration to Him.
He also sees that a Generous Provider nourishes him with the best and dearest of His material and spiritual favours. He responds to him with gratitude and praise, expressed through all his works, acts, lifestyle and, if possible, all his senses and faculties.
He then observes that a Lord of Beauty and Majesty manifests Himself in the mirror of beings, and draws attentions to His glory and perfection, and His Majesty and Beauty. So he says in response, ‘God is great beyond compare’, and ‘Glory be to God (from all defects and what people of ignorance wrongly attribute to Him)’, and he prostrates before Him in wonder and adoration.
He also notices that One of Absolute Wealth displays His limitless treasure in an infinitely generous fashion. In response to this, he glorifies and praises Him and, displaying his need, he asks Him for His favours.
Then he observes that the Majestic Creator has arranged the earth like an exhibition, where He is displaying all His matchless works. He too appreciates them in response, and says, ‘What wonders God has willed and created!’, confirms their beauty and says, ‘God bless them’, shows his wonder and says, ‘Glory be to God’, and expresses his admiration saying ‘God is great beyond compare’.
Also, he sees that the Unique One demonstrates His Oneness in the whole of the creation through His particular signs and His peculiar decrees, and also His inimitable stamps and seals which He has put on each one of His creatures. He inscribes on everything the signs of His Oneness, and raises throughout the world the flag of His Unity, thus proclaiming His Lordship. To this the man responds with belief, affirmation, admission of and testimony to, His Unity, devotion and sincere worship.
By all such types of worship and reflection man may attain true humanity. He may demonstrate that he is the best pattern of creation, and through the grace of faith, become a trustworthy vicegerent of God on earth.
Now, o heedless man, who goes in the direction of the lowest of the low by misusing his will, although he has been created as the best pattern of the creation, listed to me! See how ugly the face of the world is which turns towards passions and desires, while the other face which turns towards the Hereafter is extraordinarily beautiful.
The true spirit of the world of the heedless:
Do not invite me to the world.
I have come there, only to find it evil and transient
Heedlessness is a veil that hides the light of the Truth.
All things, the whole of creation, are mortal, and full of harm.
Existence, indeed I put it on; but it goes to nonexistence, full of misfortunes.
As to life, I have experienced it, but I have tasted so many torments.
Intellect is a means of retribution; eternity is the cause of sufferings.
Lifetime has passed in vain fancies, and the ideal has never been.
Deeds are only for show, and expectations result in disillusionment.
Reunion always ends in separations, remedies are identical with ailments.
Everywhere is in darkness, friends are all alone and unprotected.
Human voices are cries of death; living beings are doomed to annihilation.
Sciences change into whims, philosophy is absurd and full of defects.
Pleasures are, in essence, sorrows; existence is enveloped by non-existence.
The true spirit of the rightly guided:
I have found the True Beloved One, and
Heedlessness has disappeared, and the light of the Truth has re-emerged.
Existence is a proof for Divine Essence, and life is a mirror reflecting God.
Intellect is the key to treasures; transience is a door to eternity.
The spark of self-attainment has died, but the Sun of Beauty always shines.
Mortality leads to reunion; sorrows are, in essence, pleasures.
Life consists in pure actions only; Eternity is pure life.
Darkness is a thin membrane enclosing light; death is the start of true life.
All things are sincere friends; all voices are glorifications of God.
Every particle in creation is glorifying and praising God.
Need is the treasure of richness, and in helplessness lies perfect power.
If you have found God, know that all things are subjected to you,
If you are a slave of the Owner of all beings, then His property is also yours;
If you are egotist and claim self-ownership, know this is endless trial and tribulations.
And also it is infinite torment, which is impossible to bear.
If you are truly a slave of God, you will find an infinite delight;
In being so you find limitless rewards to taste, and it brings infinite bliss.
‘Glory be to You! We have no knowledge saving that which You have taught us. Certainly You, only You, are the Knower, the Wise’.
O my Lord: Relieve my mind, and ease my task for me; and loosen a knot from my tongue, that they may understand my speech.
O God, bestow peace and blessings on Muhammad, his pure, unique essence, who is the light revealing all the mysteries, the manifestation of light, the point upon which manifestations of God’s Majesty are centred, the pivot around which the world of His Grace and Beauty revolves. O God, for the mystery of him in his relation to You, and for his journeying towards You, secure me from my fears, protect me from falling, diminish my sorrows and purify me of my passions. Be with me, take me away from myself unto You, favour me with effacement from myself, do not leave me obsessed with my self, veiled by my feelings, and unveil to me every mystery.O Eternally Living and Self-Sustaining, O Eternally Living and Self-Sustaining, O Eternally Living and Self-Sustaining! Have mercy upon me and have mercy upon my companions and Have mercy upon all believers and all the people of the Qur’an. Amen. O Most Compassionate of the compassionate, O Most Generous of the generous!
The conclusion of their call will be: ‘All praise is due to God, the Lord of all the worlds.’
R.N. Collection (23rd Word)
A Commentary On The Contemporary World
- By Bediuzzaman Said Nursi
- Category: Issue 4 (October - December 1993)
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