Last Friday sermon was based on a discourse about the Promised Messiah’s (on whom be peace) understanding of the Holy Qur’an, Quranic commandments and Unity of God which was by virtue of completely devoting himself to the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). This is because neither the concept of Unity of God can be understood without the agency of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) nor knowledge of the Holy Qur’an. This is why it is essential that after understanding the concept of لا الہ الا اللہ one must understand the concept of محمد رسول اللہ . Indeed, the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was the true personification of understanding لا الہ الا اللہ . Today Huzoor presented some extracts of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) about Unity of God, its reality and how could one be truly called موحد (a believer of One God).
Elucidating Surah Al Nas, the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) wrote:
‘I wish to explain that in this Surah first God Almighty has stated: رب الناس ‘The Lord of mankind’ and then has stated: مالک الناس ‘The King of mankind’ and in conclusion has stated: الہ الناس ‘The God of mankind’ which is the real objective of man and what he seeks. الہ signifies One Who is worthy of worship, Who is intended and is sought. لا الہ الا اللہ signifies that save Allah there is none worthy of worship, is not intended and is not sought! True Unity of God is that none is deemed worthy of praise and glory save Allah the Exalted.’ (Ruadad Jalsa, Ruhani Khaza’in, Vol. 15, p. 618)
‘Unity of God is truly realised when His Being alone is the focal point of all aspirations and antidote of all ailments. This is what is meant by لا الہ الا اللہ . Sufis have understood the word الہ to mean Beloved, One Who is intended and is worthy of worship…Unless a person completely adheres to this, love and greatness of Islam cannot be instilled in him.’
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said about the excellent teaching of Islam:
‘Muslims were granted grace of God through Islam as brought by the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Whichever perspective one may take, Muslims have every reason to be proud and gratified. The God of Muslims is not stone, tree, animal, star or a dead person, on the contrary it is the All-Powerful God Who created the heavens and the earth and all that is between them; Who is Living, the Self-Subsisting and All-Sustaining. The Prophet of Muslims is the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) the expanse of whose Prophethood extends to the Day of Judgement. His Prophethood is not lifeless, rather, its fruits and blessings are fresh and can be found in every age and are a testimony to his truthfulness in every age. Therefore, God has also set forth these proofs, beneficences and blessings in the current age and has given the proof of his Prophethood by sending the Promised Messiah and his message is for the entire world. It is stated: ‘Say, O mankind! Truly I am a Messenger to you all from Allah…’ (7:159) and it is also stated: ‘And We have sent thee not but as a mercy for all people.’ (21:108). The Book granted to Muslims was so conclusive and definitive that: ‘…there is no doubt in it…’ (2:3) and ‘Therein are the everlasting teachings.’ (98:4) and ‘…verses that are decisive in meaning…’ (3:8) and it is: ‘…the Balance…’(42:18) and ‘a guardian…’ (5:49). Thus, the religion of Muslims is perfect and complete in every way and has been given the seal of: ‘…This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed My favour upon you and have chosen for you Islam as religion…’ (5:4).
How regrettable is it then that Muslims remain unfortunate in spite of this and do not partake of the fruits and blessings of the perfect faith which is a source of gaining God’s pleasure. In fact majority of them rose in denial when God Almighty established a movement to revive these fruits and blessings. And raised slogans of ‘Thou art not a Messenger…’ (13:44) and ‘you are not a believer’. Remember that mere verbally professing Unity of God does not garner these blessings, which are generated from verbal professing as well as its other requisites, that is, good works. Indeed, Unity of God is an excellence which should be adopted by every true Muslim and God-fearing person, however accomplishment of Unity of God has another aspect as well and that is Divine love, that is, love of God.
The real objective and purpose of the teachings of the Holy Qur’an is to deem God Almighty as the One, without any partner that He is, also by virtue of love for Him. This has indeed been the goal of the teaching of every Prophet of God (may peace be on them all). Just as لا الہ الا اللہ gives the teaching of Unity of God, it also teaches to attain the highest point in love of Unity of God. And as I just mentioned, it is such a beautiful and meaningful phrase that its example cannot be found in the entire Torah and Gospels. No other book in the world has given such perfect teaching. الہ means a Beloved Who is worshipped. Thus the reality of Islam perfectly fulfils the concept of love. Remember, Unity of God without the element of love is flawed and incomplete.’
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said the standard of a believer regarding the reality of Unity of God:
‘Those who turn to the authorities or seek rewards and titles from them are in awe of them as one should be in awe of God. They become their aficionados and this is a factor that eliminates level of Unity of God and makes man distant from his real objective. Prophets of God (peace be on them all) have taught that there should be no conflict between Unity of God and worldly means, each should have its own place and the ultimate outcome should be Unity of God. The Prophets wish to teach man that God alone is the Provider of all honour, comforts and needs and if anyone is made equal to Him then it is obvious that when two strengths collide, one has to be destroyed. Thus, it is imperative that Unity of God is established. Worldly means should be utilised but should not be considered the be all and end all. It is Unity of God that generates love of God and man comprehends that all profit and loss is in the hands of God, He is the true Benefactor and every single particle of matter is through Him and there is none other in between. When man attains this pure stage, he is called موحد (a believer of One God). Thus one stage of appreciating Unity of God is that man does not make gods of stones, men or anything else and loathes the very idea and the other stage is that he does not rely too much on worldly means. The third stage is where one removes one’s own self and one’s wishes from the context and negates them. Sometimes man considers his own ability and capacity and assumes that he achieved such and such good work owing to his capacity. Man has such reliance on his capacity that he attributes everything to it. Man becomes a موحد when he negates his own capacities.
However, question arises here that as experience has shown generally people commit some kind of sin or the other. Some commit big sins; others commit average sins while others are embroiled in minute sins like niggardliness or hypocrisy and other such sins. Man cannot reclaim his light unless he is free of sins. There are many commandments given by Allah the Exalted some of which cannot be undertaken by all. For example Hajj is obligatory on a person who can afford it, has safe passage and has provided for his dependents back home. If he fulfils these and other such conditions, then he can go for Hajj. Similarly there is Zakat which is obligatory on one who fulfils its criteria and changes can also be made in Salat. There is one thing in which there can be no change: لا الہ الا اللہ محمد رسول اللہ . This is the essence and the rest are its details. Unity of God cannot be accomplished until one observes one’s worship of God. This signifies that one who utters لا الہ الا اللہ محمد رسول اللہ is true in his utterance when he proves through his practice that for him there is none other than Allah Who is worthy of worship, worthy of being intended and being sought. When his faith and practice make this evident then he is truthful before God Almighty when he makes this utterance. Borne of his faith, all material things become inconsequential for him and he utters لا الہ الا اللہ and its second part محمد رسول اللہ which is by way of example because example and illustration makes things clearer. Prophets of God (peace be on them all) come as examples and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was the most perfect example of all excellences because in him were the examples of all the Prophets.’
Once a question was raised in an assembly of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) that since Judaism also taught Unity of God, what more did Islam have to offer? The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said:
‘There is no concept of Unity of God among the Jews, what they have is a mere shell of Unity of God and mere shell cannot avail anything. The reality of Unity of God cannot be understood without understanding its stages. It is not sufficient to simply utter لا الہ الا اللہ even Satan can say this much. It is no good unless man practices the truth of لا الہ الا اللہ . Where is this aspect among the Jews? Why don’t you tell us? The fundamental aspect of Unity of God is that man does not do anything against the Word of God and no act of his should be contradictory to love of Allah the Exalted. That is, he should be completely devoted and absorbed in the love of Allah the Exalted. This is why it signifies that save Allah the Exalted I do not worship anyone, I do not have any Beloved and do not consider anyone worthy of obedience.