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Islamic Spirituality & The Creation Plan Of God

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Man lives in this life with a number of desires that go to be unfulfilled. He is, by nature, an idealist and perfectionist, and always finds himself disappointed in the life of this world due to these unfulfilled desires. In order for man to understand himself and his true purpose, he needs to understand the creation plan of God. God has created this world as a test, and according to the results of this test, God will determine who will qualify for paradise, where all desires will be fulfilled. This test is happening on a day to day basis. God is putting us though unfavorable situation to see how we react in such instances. Do we choose, by our own free will to give positive responses to negative situations, upholding high moral character, or do we use our freedom otherwise. These situations in life are meant to develop man's character, on a gradual basis, only if we are conscious of that.

 

By Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

 

Man is an intellectual being. Being endowed with a mind – his greatest faculty – which is what differentiates him from inanimate things, plants and animals; true spirituality has to be able to address his mind. So, spirituality has to be based on contemplation or reflection or pondering – tafakkur and tadabbur as mentioned in the Quran – which has all to do with intellectual activity. Any kinds of spirituality attained at a level lesser than that of our minds is a reduced form of spirituality.

 

The existence of man is such a unique phenomenon that no other such example can be found throughout the vastness of the cosmos. Man is rightly called the ‘best of all creations’, which means the best and most meaningful ‘being’ among all the things created. Such a ‘meaningful being’ cannot have been created without a purpose.

 

We can say that the journey of spirituality begins with man’s urge to discover his purpose. Such spirituality is produced when man gives serious thought to questions pertaining to the ideology of life, such as, ‘Who am I?’, What is the purpose of my life?, What is this world around me?, Is my life governed by destiny or free will?, Why do I undergo negative experiences?, etc. In finding rational answers to his questions, a seeker receives spirituality at the mind or thinking level by obtaining a reason-based understanding of the plan that God has created man within.

 

The fact of the matter is that God – the Creator of man, has created man according to His plan. To become acquainted with this plan is necessary for a man to have a thorough understanding of himself – just as the workings of a machine can only be understood when we study the drawings of the engineer who made it. Besides the mind of the engineer, there is no other thing that can clarify what the machine is meant for. The case of man is the same.

 

The Creator of man has, therefore, created him according to a special Plan. His intention being that man must spend a period of trial in this present, imperfect world and subsequent to this, according to his deeds, he will earn the right to inhabit the perfect and eternal world, another name for which is Paradise.

 

The Creator of the world has created this world, as one half of a pair — the present limited world, in which we pass our lives after birth, is the first half; and the next eternal world where we live after death is the other half. The Creator of man has thus created him as an eternal creature and has divided his life into two stages — the pre-death period or the limited life in this world and the post death period or the eternal life after death. The limited period before death is meant to be a test for man, while the eternal period after his death will be the period for his reward or punishment, based on his performance in the test in this life. For the purpose of the test, God has given man freedom to do as he likes, as if there was no ‘free will’, the situation for the test could not have prevailed. God is getting all of man’s thoughts, speech and action recorded; and based on this record, which will be opened on the Day of Judgment; he will earn the right to either inhabit the perfect and eternal world, another name for which is Paradise or the eternal world of Hell. This is the scheme of existence for this world as devised by its Creator. The real aim of creation is to select those who are fit to inhabit the world of Paradise.

 

Those men and women who qualify in this test will be given a place in Paradise – where all their desires will be fulfilled. For those who fail in this test, they shall spend their lives in a state of eternal deprivation.

 

How does Man Qualify for Paradise?

 

According to the Creation Plan of God, human beings are placed in situations where they have to face hardships from time to time at every moment throughout their lives as part of their test. Difficulty, sadness and unfulfilled desires are integral part of the creation plan of the Creator. This arrangement is to remind man of the fact that the present world has not been made as a place of luxury and comfort, but rather as a period of trial and as such as will help determine whether he is eligible or not for the eternal life in Paradise. In fact, it is situations such as these that are the tests for man. Giving negative responses to negative situations leads to failing the test. On the contrary, giving positive responses to such situations leads to passing the test.

 

In the present world, man finds himself totally free. However, this freedom does not belong to him as a matter of right, but is rather a test paper. The first thing that man has to do to be deserving of Paradise is acknowledge the truth of One God, and surrender to him – not by compulsion, as does the rest of the world, but by his own choice. This surrendering before the truth of One God is without doubt the greatest sacrifice that any man can make. Acknowledging the truth of One God is, like making oneself smaller not only to God but to others as well. But this is the very virtue, which will raise man to the highest position. It will take him to the very entrance of Paradise.

 

The second important thing that man has to do to be deserving of Paradise is to lead a principled life. It is evident that when a seeker discovers the reality – of the one Universal God and learns the creation plan of his Creator, his life enters a new phase – that of the building of a positive personality according to spiritual principles given by the Creator. Generally what happens is that man’s character is moulded by his emotions – anger, revenge, jealousy, hatred, rivalry, etc. These are the negative feelings that shape man’s personality – thus resulting in the development of a negative personality in a person. But what man ought to do is to become disciplined in such matters. He should not build his character under the influence of external incentives, but by his own decisions he should establish it on the basis of higher principles. He will thus develop his personality on positive lines. This is what is called as divine character.

 

Therefore, the people of paradise will be those who discovered their Creator when He was yet unseen and living a disciplined life based on the principles laid down by Him, developed positive personalities. Their lives are thus God-oriented – with God as the giver and man merely as the receiver.

Edited by Tolerance101

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PropellerAds

A'salam alaykim, brother!

 

All these articles you have been posting really melt my heart! Where are you finding them? If there's a database, I'd love to see it. If not, keep posting anyway! Because even thought they don't get a lot of replies they are really, really appreciated. Thank God that you share them with us!

 

Peace

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