Sunday, August 23, 2009


Question: Anyone want to explain to me why dualism is not a viable wayof looking at things?

As there can be no two leaders of a nation or organization, no two kings or presidents, there can not be two gods. God has to be one and only one to have complete authority and freedom, to be omnipotent, omniscient, all-powerful.
Observation of nature leads one to reasonably assume that there is a guiding force (a pattern-imposing force as V would put it) which creates with such clockwork precision and beauty, encoded programming and replication,and so on and so forth. Even things/events/creatures which do not appear as nice/pleasant/beautiful have the underlying clockwork precision and infallible programming. All that must emanate from a deity, and only one deity, because two or more would eventually have differences, and thus would no longer be able to co-exist. As they themselves would be immortal/eternal (our concept of God being uncreated and thus from forever till forever), they would eventually seek out to destroy each others work and all created things would come to an end. For things to be as beautiful, wonderful, precise and orderly as they are, there has to be only one God.
Considering the above premise to be true, how does one explain the continuous war between good and evil. My answer is FREE-WILL and its misuseby both humans and djinns.
Remembering that God is omnipotent, omniscient, all-powerful leads us to theunderstanding that inspite of a grand and vast celestial plan, he has the time and the ability to be a personal deity for each and everyone of his creatures...He created all, He knows all, He cares for all, and He respondsto all.
Why God allows some to suffer while others enjoy a luxurious life, He Himself best knows, though I have attempted to answer that question before (link below). The problem is that we try to judge God without having a complete knowledge of what exactly is going on. The story of Moses and Khizr aptly illustrates this short-coming:
Chapter 18 (Kahf) Translated by M. Pickthal
65 Then found they one of Our slaves, unto whom We had given mercy from Us,and had taught him knowledge from Our presence.
66 Moses said unto him: May I follow thee, to the end that thou mayst teachme right conduct of that which thou hast been taught?
67 He said: Lo! thou canst not bear with me.
68 How canst thou bear with that whereof thou canst not compass anyknowledge?
69 He said: Allah willing, thou shalt find me patient and I shall not inaught gainsay thee.
70 He said: Well, if thou go with me, ask me not concerning aught till Imyself make mention of it unto thee.
71 So they twain set out till, when they were in the ship, he made a holetherein. (Moses) said: Hast thou made a hole therein to drown the folkthereof? Thou verily hast done a dreadful thing.
72 He said: Did I not tell thee that thou couldst not bear with me?
73 (Moses) said: Be not wroth with me that I forgot, and be not hard upon mefor my fault.
74 So they twain journeyed on till, when they met a lad, he slew him.(Moses) said: What! Hast thou slain an innocent soul who hath slain no man?Verily thou hast done a horrid thing.
75 He said: Did I not tell thee that thou couldst not bear with me?
76 (Moses) said: If I ask thee after this concerning aught, keep not companywith me. Thou hast received an excuse from me.
77 So they twain journeyed on till, when they came unto the folk of acertain township, they asked its folk for food, but they refused to makethem guests. And they found therein a wall upon the point of falling intoruin, and he repaired it. (Moses) said: If thou hadst wished, thou couldsthave taken payment for it.
78 He said: This is the parting between thee and me! I will announce untothee the interpretation of that thou couldst not bear with patience.
79 As for the ship, it belonged to poor people working on the river, and Iwished to mar it, for there was a king behind them who is taking every shipby force.
80 And as for the lad, his parents were believers and we feared lest heshould oppress them by rebellion and disbelief.
81 And we intended that their Lord should change him for them for one betterin purity and nearer to mercy.
82 And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the city, andthere was beneath it a treasure belonging to them, and their father had beenrighteous, and thy Lord intended that they should come to their fullstrength and should bring forth their treasure as a mercy from their Lord;and I did it not upon my own command. Such is the interpretation of thatwherewith thou couldst not bear.
Link of a previous answer:
M, you responded: "a child is not born based onFREE-WILL.................nor will it die, based on FREE-WILL..............a person may choose many things, but there are many things that will happen, regardless of CHOICE." And, in another post, you write: "we is just ants, following well wornpaths.............."
See, this is exactly what I've also been (trying) to say all along, that is,that we are sent here for a fixed period(trial), that we have freedom of choice (free-will), that everything is already programmed/paths or roads already mapped/decreed (that is all happens exactly as God has decreed) regardless of choice, because all possible choices are already pre-programmed and consequent paths mapped.
We both belief that there is a Creator, we both believe that we do not have much control ( if any) over what happens, and we are too tiny (peanuts) inthe cosmic scale of things to be able to comprehend God.
R, coming back to your point, you seem to believe that Satan/Lucifer is in control /has domain over planet Earth, and God is somehow incapable of intervening, unable to stop him from perpetrating evil. I believe that even Satan is on a licence from God, and all that he is able to do is suggest evil ideas to humans, whereas we are endowed with intellect, conscience/ morality, and freedom of choice. It is upon each of us, as individuals, to choose to do good or evil, and the world is shaped by the consequences of our collective actions, not because God is unable to intervene, but because God has programmed (decreed) all possible outcomes. Birth, death, disease, health, poverty, wealth, and so many other things are not in our direct control, and we naturally worry, fret and dismay over our helplessness, and then try to find explanations why the all-loving, ever-merciful deity does not intervene and put an end to suffering. Ofcourse, there are many human conditions that worry me just as much as theyworry you all as well, but are we qualified to judge God? The proof that God is able to intervene is to be found in the experiences of those who pray and have their prayers answered. Since most choose not to pray, atleast directly to God, and since sometimes God also chooses to not grant us that which we pray for, it is indeed difficult to establish such interventions scientifically/empirically.
There are a myriad of faith systems out there, and in the absence of a direct means of communication with God, how is one to arrive at the correct set of beliefs, if I may put it that way.
We've discussed earlier why I believe the Quran is divine revelation, so I don't think repetition is necessary.
As you know, we muslims pray five times a day, and we start with recitation of the first seven verses of the Quran. The key prayer is verse 6: ehdinassirat al mustaqeem meaning Show us the straight path! I'd like to share theprayer with you
Translated by M.Pickthal
1 In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
2 Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds,
3 The Beneficent, the Merciful.
4 Master of the Day of Judgment,
5 Thee (alone) we worship; Thee (alone) we ask for help.
6 Show us the straight path,
7 The path of those whom Thou hast favoured; Not the (path) of those whoearn Thine anger nor of those who go astray.

The above oft-repeated seven verses are a reminder that we need to keep learning, to keep praying, and to ever be wary of being misled by the whisperings of Satan and the myriad of philosophies, and to remember that on the basis of our intellect alone we will not be able to reach anywhere, and that we are always in need of divine guidance and help. Hope I've been able to clarify why dualism doesn't appear viable to me, and why I believe what I believe.

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