Path towards Enlightenment (962)
Welcome to another episode of our weekly series titled “Path towards Enlightenment” which is an endeavour to make you and us familiar with an easy and fluent explanation of God’s Final Scripture to all mankind, the holy Qur’an that was revealed to the Last and Greatest of all Messengers, Prophet Mohammad (blessings of God upon him and his progeny).
We continue from where we left you last week and today we will complete the explanation of Surah Zaariyaat. Here are Ayahs 54 and 55:
“So turn away from them, for you will not be blameworthy.
“And admonish, for admonishment indeed benefits the faithful.”
If you remember last Friday in our explanation of the previous Ayahs of this Surah we said the insults hurled by the misled should not dampen us or stop us from carrying out our mission, since from time immemorial tyrants and wrongdoers have always opposed the truth. It is actually lack of faith and satanic tendencies that make disbelievers ridicule Prophets, Imams, and Saints.
The Ayahs that we recited to you now tell the Prophet of Islam and the believers to turn away from disobedient disbelievers, since you have fulfilled your mission of guidance and carry no blame concerning discharge your duties. Ayah 55, however, commands the Prophet that irrespective of the disbelievers’ obstinacy or their unfounded accusations against him, he should continue to admonish, since admonition strengthens the faith of the believers in view of the fact that it is a reminder of God’s favours. Admonishment is also a warning against the consequences of disobedience and holds out hope of guiding people towards Divine Mercy of the All-Forgiving Lord.
These Ayahs teach us that:
- Prophets are duty-bound to proclaim the Divine message to the public, but don’t carry any blame if the intransigent disbelievers do not respond to their invitation towards monotheism and virtue by refusing to believe.
- We should not expect all people to believe, but should strive to the best of our ability with earnest hope that many will believe.
- Among the characteristics of the believers is to heed admonishment.
Now we invite you to listen to Ayahs 56, 57 and 58 of the same Surah:
“I did not create the jinn and the humans except that they may worship Me.
“I desire no provision from them, nor do I desire that they should feed Me.
“Indeed it is Allah who is the All-Provider, Powerful, All-Strong.”
Here the Almighty Creator says the goal of creation should never be ignored by the creatures, since nothing has been created in vain, and the purpose of creating the human race and the invisible species called jinn by granting them the gift of the intellect and speech, is that they should solely worship Him. In other words, the actual meaning of worship is not just the performance of rituals or a few prescribed formal prayers recited by the mouth. Real worship means surrender of the ego, self-control, and discipline, so that we act only in consonance with the expressed Will of Allah as was practically shown by the Prophet, the Imams, and the virtuous religious scholars.
The Prophet’s 6th Infallible Heir, Imam Ja’far as-Sadeq (AS), has said: “Allah created mankind and granted the faculties of observation and contemplation so as to acquire knowledge with which man understands the manifestation of Divine Power and then submits to Him.”
The Ayahs that follow, that is, 57 and 58, mean to say that one may not imagine that the Almighty Creator is in need of the worship and deeds of jinn and mankind. As a matter of fact Allah the Exalted is neither in need of provision nor food, since He is the Needless and all creatures are in need of Him. He is the Absolute Provider, the Omnipotent, and the Omniscient. All creatures are in need of His Grandeur and Lordship while He is Needless of everything, which means our worshipping of God is to our own benefit.
These Ayahs teach us the following points:
- The purpose of creation is not in vain and the lofty goal is the correct way of worshipping the Almighty Creator which is not limited to performance of rituals but requires proper cognizance and whole-hearted submission to Divine Will by creatures bestowed with the gift of the intellect and the power of speech, such as mankind and the invisible species called the jinn.
- Allah the Exalted is not in need of our worship; rather, it is we who need to worship Him in the proper way for our own benefit in order to attain perfection and the rewards which He has reserved for the believers.
- We should strive to earn our livelihood but should not forget that the Source of sustenance is the Almighty Creator.
Now in conclusion of this week’s episode, let us listen to Ayahs 59 and 60 that mark the end Surah Zariyaat as well:
“So indeed the lot of those who do wrong (now) will be like the lot of their (earlier) counterparts. So, let them not ask Me to hasten on [that fate].
“Woe to the faithless for the day they are promised!”
These Ayahs which sum up the contents of the Surah, including the accounts of the afflictions that befell the disobedient nations of the past, mean to say that those who do not worship the One and Only Creator and indulge in disbelief, atheism, and polytheism by refusing to tread the path and purpose of creation, are sinners, similar to their sinful predecessors.
In answer to the disbelievers’ derisive question as to the time of Divine torment to be sent down upon them, these Ayahs address them, saying the time of your punishment shall arrive and you need not hasten, for it will indeed woefully strike you as promised.
From these Ayahs we learn that:
- Disobedience of Divine commandments is to one’s own doom and eternal damnation.
- Divine Mercy and Divine Wrath are based on the Almighty Creator’s infinite knowledge and wisdom, which means the rashness and irrationality of the disbelievers have no effect on the time of His decision.
- Our fate depends on our deeds, whether good or bad, the consequences of which are reward and punishment.