Ontology: An Argumentation
Dr. Tabei and Dr. Ghazipour
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful
The youth and the way they think are like a transparent, roaring stream of water which cannot admit stillness and motionlessness, for this reason, the youth are continuously searching and following a vivid understandment and perception of the world’s truths. To fulfil this roaring energy and desire of the youth to understand and perceive the truths of the world of Being fall on the shoulders of great men and women who have for years embarked to step on the directions of knowledge and perfection; those great men and woen who have submitted and devoted their conscience and consciousness to the deep truths of knowledge and religion.
The argumentation which follows has been conducted out of exaltation and perfection by two knowledgeable experts, that is to say, doctor Ghazipour and doctor Tabei.
It is hoped that the following argumentation will be wholly used by those who have always been searching and seeking the truth, the knowledge and the wisdom.
“I very much thank our two respected guests, doctor Tabei and doctor Ghazipour, who submitted their precious time to us in order that we learn from their knowledge, and who gave us the opportunity of the pleasure of their company. With your permission, let us raise some questions on the youth and the way they think.”
Question: “Please explicate the general principles of the Islamic ontology in a practical way.”
Dr. Tabei: “As a matter of fact, this question that you have just raised is so general, and covers a wide scope. In the Islamic tradition, we have a hadith told by His Holiness Imam Zein-ol – Abedin (Peace be upon him), saying that there are several Quranic surahs and verses which were came down from on high by Allah with regard to the matter of apocalypse: one is the surah of (Towhid) (=Monotheism) as well as several other Quranic verses in the surah of “Hadid”. Thinking about the surah of “Towhid” suggests mentally some points which had surely suggested mentally by people at the time when the prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammed (Peace be upon him and his family) lived. The question is this: “What is the meaning of this Quranic verse? “ The answer to this question is as follows: “Evergthing is hidden in the letter of “ه” (=His) in the phrase “بعبده”. Allah, in the Holy Quran, in the surah of “Asra”, verse one, says:
” سبحان الذی اسری بعبده لیلا من المسجد الحرام الی المسجد الاقصی الذی بارکنا حوله لزیه من آیاینا انه هو المسیع البصیر.”
, which means: “Exalted is He who took His servant by night from al – Masjid al – Haram to al – Masjid al – Aqsa, whose surroundings we have blessed, to show him of Our signs. In deed, He is the Hearing, the Seeing.”
In the above – mentioned Quramic verse, Allah has considered the prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammed (Peace be upon him and his family) as His own servant. In this Quranic verse, Allah did not say: “عبدنا” (=Our servant), instead, He said: “بعبده” (=His servant). As a matter of fact, by saying “His servant”, Allah gave the prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammed (Peace be upon him and his family) a privilege. In fact, Allah considered the prophet of Islam, as “His” own serrate, not as any other divine creature’s servant. As a matter of fact, Allah did personalize the position of the prophet of Islam. He, Allah, did not publicize the position of the prophet of Islam. Indeed, Allah relates the position of the prophet of Islam, to His own position. So, this personalization by Allah is considered as a specific situation and merit that were given only to the prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammed (Peace be upon him and his family). In this regard, Islamic mystic Sufis say that everything is hidden in the letter “ه”. This Arabic letter, that is to say, “ه” (=His) in this Quranic verse refers to Allah Himself and nobody else. The word “Allah” belongs to the old Arabic, and had had a specific meaning, too. It means an Almighty Single Being which covers all other things in the world of Being. Indeed, in comparison with Allah, we, human beings, are nothing at all. This Almighty Single Being creates both a feeling of fear and hope inside the hearts of human beings. Allah’s aim is to cultivate the human being. For those human beings who do not believe this saying, Allah, again explicates the matter and says: “I am a Single, Complete, Exclusive Being.” In Arabic language, there are two words: one is the word” احد” (Ahad), and the other is the word” واحد” (Vahid). The word” احد”(=a single, complete, exclusive being) differs from the word “واحد” (=lacking the company of others) in that, the word “احد” (Ahad) refers to a complete, independent being, which is not combined, and which is not consisted of different single parts stuck together, this kind of being is considered as a complete, independent being.
To understand the word “احد” (Ahad) better, we have to refer to one of Allah’s attributes, that is to say, the word “صمد” (Smad) which means “solid” (=filled inside), some being which is not combined, and which is not consisted of different, separate parts stuck together. This kind of being is considered as a complete, independent, self – sufficient being. To understand the word “احد” (Ahad) better, we have to refer to one of Allah’s attributes, that is to say, the word “صمد” (samad) which means solid (=filled inside). The world of being needs no reasoning’s. It, in fact, has its own specific reasoning’s of itself, which is beyond our understanding. If we need to give reasons for the world of being, we will become disappointed, because it is so specific and definitive that does not need any reason or proof.
The world of being is placed in front of nothingness; in other words, it is compared with nothingness. Nothingness is nothing. In the world which nothing exists, there is nothing but nothing; besides, we are not able to imagine this nothingness, because in nothingness nothing exists, that could be compared with the world of being in which different varieties of things exist. As soon as we imagine nothingness, we have given it a spice of being, which is logically and mentally wrong. The world of being is necessarily without any boundaries. But an interesting question is raised here: Can this very world of being, in which we are living, have another world of being in it? If the world of being is supposed to have another world of being in it, there has to be a world of nothingness between these two worlds of being, which is indicative of the defect of the two worlds of being, since the world of being does not at all produce any world of nothingness, and this surely means that there is a defect in the world of being as well as its creator, that is to say, Allah! So, this reasoning is totally rejectable in the framework of a logical judgement. Also, we cannot separate a world of being from our world of being. In other words, our world of being cannot at all be divided into its component parts. Why? Because the condition for the divorce between any world of being would be a world of nothingness, which is wrongly believed to exist between the two worlds of being.
In this way, we will come to an understanding of a single unity in the whole existence of this world, which is technically called “the existential unity” Therefore, the Arabic letter “ه” (=His), in the above – mentioned Quranic verse, pertains only to divine prophets and Imams. It can also be argued that our world of being will attain different stations according to the stations already existing in human beings, mind and understanding. In this way, human beings will be able to perceive the different stations of the world of being according to their own different understanding. To give you an example, the Holy Quran says to materialistic scholars:
“لم یلد و لم یولد”
, which means: “He (=Allah) ahs never borne and has never been born.” On the other hand, the Holy Quran says to biological scholars: “Will anything be picked from the beings of your parents if you are plnysically separated from them?” The answer is: of course not. As a matter of fact, your own body has been separated from the body of your parents, but nothing has been picked from their bodies. But if it were so, nothing would remain for the body of a mother after a few childbirths. Therefore, the basis of the world of being is surely fixed and changeless. Again, the best proof for proving the Islamic ontology would be the very surah of “Towhid” (=Monotheism).”
Dr. Ghazipour: “Since our argumentation is that of philosophical, we need to have a common and more understandable language between us. Let me give you an example. Take this equivocal sentence: “(It is) good to execute him. put it another way, we can change it into this sentence. “Good, execute him?” The first sentence puts emphasis on executing the person, as if the person to be executed actually deserves to be executed, while the second sentence puts emphasis on the asker’s surprise whether or not the person to be executed, as if the person to be executed is a good person and thus does not deserve to be executed. The meaning (=impact) will change when we change our tone of voice. If there is no common language between us, we will surely fall unto a controversy over the word “grape” in English, “عنب” in Arabic, and “انگور” in Farsi, which all mean the same thing, a fruit, hence we will not understand one another. This very issue of Islamic ontology needs one of the vastest definitions to be clarified, and the way doctor Tabei is defining it is called to understand things out of the understanding of the meaning of their antonyms. But how? For the reason that all the world of being exists even what comes to understand exists, although through referring to the imagination or archetype. These things are classified by the category of “beings”, too. I have offen heard that people use the “universe” in place of “Allah”. There would be no difference if we say “God” or the “God of universe”. Why is it so? Because the concept of God or Allah is so vast and varied that can be applied to anything or any phenomenon in this world, so common people take ontology and theology as the same thing. Let us review only one proof in the Islamic ontology, since the argumentation is so widespread. That absolute being can be either God or God’s creature. Actually, we see the footstep of God in every creature or phenomenon. So, if we perceive a small sample, we will understand the whole, that is to say, God the Almighty, too.”
Dr. Tabei: “We have to reach an understanding of that absolute being. In order to understand and perceive this concept, we need to heed meticulously. On the basis of Islamic philosophy, Allah is considered as a kind of being which is “self – existent” or “reason – existent”, a being which needs a reason to exist. But following the Holy Quran, we say to Him “Allah”; why? because the word “Allah” does not have the rigid sound of philosophical terms, hence it can be understood better by human beings.”
Dr. Ghazipour: “What is more tangible for people, it becomes easier for them to perceive. For instance, it should be said to people that “Are you aware of your being or not?”; if they are healthy people, they will answer “yes, we are aware of our being.” We say to these people that other people are exactly just as you feel, just as you are. Other people have the same being as you do. Because as we feel our being and being alive, we also feel that other people have the same being as we do. Thus, in order to deal with Islamic ontology in a practical way, we should refer people to the same existential principles which exist in other people, those existential principles which have a direct and tangible relationship with the being and existence.”
Dr. Tabei: “Let me give our an example. You, doctor Ghazipour, and I are both Shiite Muslims, although it is natural that we may have differences of thought with one another. Now, assume that we, two, become one and set aside all our differences of thought. Now, compare us with Sunni Muslims. It is a fact that we, Shiite Muslims, have differences of thought with Sunni people. Imagine that we, Shiite Muslims, set aside all of our differences of thought with Sunni Muslims, and become one with them, reaching to a kind of unvarying Islmaic thought in which there is no difference between Shiite Muslims and Sunni Muslims. Also, imagine that we, Muslims, either Shiite or Sunni, set aside our differences of thought with Christians and Jews, and become one with them. In this way, we attain a religion which is very similar to the religion of the prophet Abraham (Peace be upon him). In this way, we come to a unification which has no limits, a kind of religion which is called a “Monotheistic” religion, or a religion which is very similar to the religion of the prophet Abraham (Peace be upon him). Then, we go to non – monotheistic religions like the ones found in the eastern parts of Asia; also, imagine that we, Muslims, set aside our differences of thought with them. As this process continues, we go to people who do not at all believe in God. For these people, we should prove that we do not have any differences of thought with them; that we are all human beings, and on the basis of some principles and rules, we should prove that we all have no differences and are one. This is the point where the issue of ontology will come to help all of us. Again, as the above – mentioned process proceeds, we go to the creatures which are called “jinnis”.
To persuade jinnis, we have to tell them that we have no differences, and we are one, and we have but a single creator. As this process goes forward, we go to divine angels, and we have to solve our problems with them, saying to them that we have no differences with them, and we all have but a single creator, that is to say, God, the Almighty. In the end, we go to God, the Almighty Himself, and we have to solve our problems with Him. That God, the Almighty is self – existent, and we , human beings are reason – existent (=dependent) will prove that all of us, human beings, as well as God, the Almighty are of one essence and soul. As doctor Ghazipour said, it is nothing, but unification in being, Pantheism, or unitism.
In the words of Sheikh Shabestari, the word “احد” (=shingle) turns into the word “احمد” (Ahmad); the letter “m”, which is between the word “احد” (Ahad) is the same as reason – existent, that we all depend on God, the Almighty.
Philosophically, we, human beings, are self – existent, too. Therefore, if we are supposed to solve all our problems with the world of being, we will be able to solve the problems of all people with the issue of “being” (=existence). Every thing in this world is in common existence (=being). In is for this reason that God, the Almighty, as an existential absolute, and as an absolute existence, too, does exist in the existence, in the world of being. God, the Almighty is omni – present, but His manifestation in the prophet Moses (Peace be upon him) and in the Prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammad (Peace be upon him and his family), and in other – worldly creatures is different. As for the prophet Moses (Peace be upon him), the Holy Quran, in the surah of A’raaf, verse one – hundred and forty – three, says:
“ولما جاء موسی لمیقاتنا وکلمه ربه قال رب انی انظر الیک قال لن ترانی ولکن انظر الی الجبل فان استقر مکانه فسوف ترانی فلما تجلی ربه للجیل جعله دکا و خر موسی صعقا فلما افاق سبحانک تبت الیک وانا اول المومنین”
, which means: “And when Moses [Peace be upon him] arrived at Our appointed time and His lord spoke to him, he said “My Lord, show me [Yourself] that I may look at you.” Allah said, “You will not see Me, but look at the mountain; if it should remain in place, then you will see Me. “But when His Lord appeared to the mountain, He (=Allah) rendered it level, and Moses [Peace be upon him] fell unconscious. And when he awoke, he said, “Exalted are You! I have repented to You, and I am the first of believers.”
On the other hand, the Holy Quran, with regard to the prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammed (Peace be upon him and his family) says that We take him up to the heavens in the night of “Me’raaj”, and showed him all the facts and truths of the world of being.”
Dr. Ghazipour: “Many people, with many differences of all kinds, have been created by God, the Almighty, but all of these people are all human beings, that is to say, their common aspect, and their very essence is that they are human beings, that is to say, humanity pervades in them, and all their differences which exist in them are secondary to their humanity, which is the common characteristic among them. This common characteristic, that is to say, their humanity, exists in all religions as well as in all human beings in the world, which can be referred to as a human principle. All creatures in the world of being are considered as secondary as compared to the existence of Godly principle; human beings are all manifestations of God, the Almighty.”
Dr. Tabei: “Hataf Isphahani, in one of his well – known Poems says:
I will sacrifice for You (=God) both my heart and soul, because You are soul of my soul, and I will sacrifice for you both my heart and soul many times/ I will sacrifice for you my heart, because You (=God) are nothing but my only beloved/ I will sacrifice for You (=God)/ If You (=God) intend to make a peace with us, this is our heart, take it, then/ And if You (=God) intend to make a war against us, this is our soul, take it, then/Last night, out of love and extacy, I, being Puzzled, was running here and there/ In the end, my desire to meet you, led me to your divine palace/ There, I saw an empty palace, which was luminous from your light/ Everywhere, in that divine palace, I saw a fire, which was like the fire Moses saw in Tour Mountain/ There, I saw an old man, a sage, who was striking a light, and all of his servants were assembled around him/ These servants were all good – looking, and were all sweet – spoken, who had small mouths / They were all playing lutes and lyres/ Everywhere was filled with the scent of flowers/ Everywhere candles were glowing/ In one corner, a beautiful, black – haired cup – bearer was sitting/ A cup – bearer who was sweet – spoken, singing a nice song / All the servants in that divine palace were all saying to the cup – bearer: “Your wish is our command”/ I, who was ashamed of being a Muslim, ran to a hiding Place, which was near them/ The Sage asked: “Who is this man?”/ “He is a restless lover”, they answered/ The sage ordered them: “Give him a cup of wine, although he is an uninvited guest/ The beautiful, black – haired cup – bearere poured some red wine in a cup and gave it to the man/ no sooner had he sipped it than he fainted, and lost his wisdom, his faith, and his belief/ He became so drunkard that he fell suddenly onto the ground/ In that state of drmkardness, all the parts of his body were saying/ There is no god, but Allah, He is one, and nothing exists but Him/ I will not depart You (=God), my friend, even if I am to be killed/ If, my Father, You want to tell me some advice to desert You (= Allah), I will not listen to your advice / I wish You (=Allah) told me some piece of advice regarding God/ I, myself, know well how I will be blessed, but since I have fallen in love with Allah, I have become helpless, and are not able to do anything/ In a church, I told to my Christian mistress: “My heart and soul are entangled in your love/ Are you not ashamed of your belief in Holy Trinity?” / Go and find the monotheism, one God/ Are you not ashamed of yourself, believing in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit?? / My Christian mistress opened her beautiful mouth, saying to me:/ “If you were well aware of the secret of unification, you would not charge me with paganism/ That Holy Trinity you are speaking of, is nothing, but the one and only God, the Almighty/ Because there is no god, but God, the Almighty; He is my one and only God, and no thing exists but Him/ Last night, I went to the wine – seller’s neighborhood/ My heart was flaring up with the fire of love/ when I reached the wine – seller’s neighborhood, I saw a party there going on, where the wine- seller was the host/ His servants were standing near him, and wine – drinkers sitting near him/ The wine – seller was sitting on a high place, some drunkards and some cupbearers were sitting in his presence; some drunkards were unconscious/ They were all pure – hearted people, Some were saying, “To your health”, some saying, “Same to you”/ They were all listening to the harpist playing a harp; they were all looking at the couplet; all hoping to embrace this and other world/ I, Politely, neared the wine- seller, saying, “O! You are God’s sign/ I am a restless lover, and in need of cure; Please, look at me, and heal me/ the old sage, the wine- seller, looked at me and smiled and said satirically to me: “O! Restless lover, wisdom be your servant / we do not perceive your state of mind/ I told him, “My heart is burning out of love, give me some wine, and heal my burning heart/ last night, the fire of love was burning me severely; I wish my last might were like my tonight” / He replied, smiling, “Here, take this cup of fine, but try not to drink much”/ I sipped the wine in one gulp, and , then, fell free from the ache of wisdom, and became unconscious/ when I became conscious again, I saw just one thing; the other things were like lines and signs/ All of a sudden, I heard a voice saying in the sky/ “There is no god but Allah; He is the one and only; that is God, the Almighty”/ Open the eyes of your heart, so that you can see God’s soul, and to see what is not seeable/ If you stick to the land of love, every place will be like gardens to you/ If you do so, you will see every man of the world will be hopeful and full of love/ If you do so you will desire what you see, and you will see what you desire / If you do so, you will see the poor like the rich / If you do so, you will see the beggar of that world as a powerful king ruling the whole world/ If you do so, you will see the unveiled people going up to the sky, to God, the Almighty/ At the time of dancing and singing, you will see every single person dancing and clapping in the two worlds/ If you split the heart of any particle, you will see a shining sun inside/ If you give any of your belongings to love, yon will be surely blessed/ If you burn yourself with the fire of love, you will see that love is the elixir of your soul/ If you ignore this material world, you will see a boundless world belonging to God/ If you do so, you will hear what you have not heard before, and you will see what you have not seen before/ If you do so, you will be exalted to a position in which you will see only one and only God/ Only love the single God, so that you will be able to see oneness/ There is no god but Allah, the one and only God, only God, the Almighty/ O! People! The oneness manifests Itself from every where / If you do so, you will find a shining sun instead of a burning candle; the day is quite shining, but you are staying in a dark, dark night/ If you free yourself from the darkness of your being, you will see Him shining like a sun/ So, open the eyes of your heart to this divine garden of God, so that you can see the manifestations of divine water and flower/ The water in this divine garden is so colorful; look at all the colorful flowers in this divine garden/ Step on the road of union with your beloved, and be nothing, but gratified/ If you do so, all things will be easy for you, for in the presence of love, every hard thing will become so easy/ If you do so, you will come to a place where illusions and thoughts do not exist/ you will reach to a place where the angel Gabriel cannot reach/ So, if you intend to love this way, and go forward/ Those who are called” faithful people” are sometimes drunkard, sometimes unconscious, sometimes conscious/ From the wine, the dancers, the cupbearers, the wine house and other things/ Their intention is a hidden secret, which can be seen sometimes by their giving a small signal/ If you want to find out their secret, only know this/ There is no god but Allah, the one and only God, the only God, the Almighty.”
Dr Ghazi pour: “These common characteristics and aspects exist in all human beings as well as in all religions, and if we put an emphasis on these characteristics and aspects, a very appropriate domain for unification will be established for all human beings as well as for all religions; so we will start from this very point.”
Question: “Considering the statements of you two, our dear masters, we should first find out the common characteristics among human beings as well as, considering the fourfold relationships as Allameh Ja’fari states, find out the other common characteristics among human beings in order that we can build a human community upon them.”
Dr. Tabei: “According to Islamic hadiths, human beings are not allowed to ask about three things: 1. The origin, the essence, and the depth of God, the lmighty as well as the origin, the essence, and the depth of the world of Being; 2. The origin, the essence, and the depth of the Matter and its nature.
Generally speaking, the Matter is composed of atoms, and atoms have been known and clarified by modern sciences, that is to say, atoms can be split, and they can be divided into smaller particles, so, in this case, we can gain quantum particles, which, according to the theory of quantum, the willpower of human beings can create these quantum particles., in one interpretation, are called “Godly particles”.
- Also, the relationship between Existence and its nature can not be asked about by human beings.
Sometimes, human beings understand some certain thing, but they resist against understanding it. By the year 1480 A. D., nothing existed by the name of “the spiritual health “in medical and non – medical sciences. This term, that is to say, the spiritual health, did not also exist in the World Health Organization. By the year 1980 A. D., we saw the footsteps of the discipline of medicine in the sciences such as biology and psychology, but these footsteps were not much clearly seen, and this term was incomplete at that time. The only lost factor in the sciences of the time, that is to say, spirituality” by the year 1980 A.D., this term, spirituality, had no place at all in the discipline of medicine.
At that time, Russians had a very strong power an influence in the United Nations Organization. They, the Russians, did not allow this factor of spirituality to be raised in the medical polemics related to human beings’ welfare. They feared that if the issue of spirituality found its footsteps and were entered into the discipline of medicine, their long – standing efforts in propagandizing Communism would be put into question. But, after the disintegration of the former Soviet Union, this health factor, that is to say, spirituality, was added to the discipline of medicine; and, today, it is taught formally in universities around the world. As a matter of fact, this new health factor has opened new horizons for the discipline of medicine. This new factor, that is to say, spirituality, does, nowadays, exist in western countries and it is found in the center of western thoughts.
Nowadays, the west knows one thing well: the health factor of spirituality does really exist in the world, and it has to be accepted and added to the discipline of medicine; an idea that Russia today does accept as well. Even in aesthetic concepts and fields, we are able to find positive traces of the factor of spirituality. If we concentrate on aesthetic debates and mix them with the concepts “unity in profusion” and “profusion in unify”, a great deal of difficulties and problems will be resolved. If we mix the holy concepts of the Quran with the discipline of medicine, new ideas and thoughts will appear. With regard to ontology and anthropology, the Holy Quran says: “Wherever you are two persons, I [=Allah] will be the third one to interfere; and wherever yon are three persons, I [=Allah] will be the fourth one to interfere. “On Christianity, the Holy – three says:
“لقد کفرالذین قالوا ان الله ثالث ثلثه و ما من اله الا اله واحد و ان لم نیتهوا عماتیولون لیسمن الذین کفروا منهم عذاب الیم.”
, which means: “They [Christians] said, “God is one of [these] three persons [the Father, the Son, or the Holy Spirit], and they definitely became unfaithful [by saying this], while there is no other god except the single God. And if they [Christians] do not stop saying this, they will be given a painful retribution for having such a belief.”
Elsewhere, in proving the righteousness of Islam, the Holy Quran, in chapter “Mojadeleh”, verse seven, says:
“الم تر ان الله یعلم ما فی السماوات و ما فی الارض مایکون من نجوی ثلاثه الاهو رایعهم و لاخسمر الاهو سادسهم و لا ادنی من ذلک و لااکثر الاهومعهم این ماکانوا ثم نیبئهم بما عملوا یوم القیامه ان الله بکل شیء علیم.”
, which means: “Have you not considered that Allah knows what is in the heavens and what is on the earth? There is no private conversation three, but hat He is the fourth of them, nor are there five but He is the sixth of them – and no less than that and no more except that He is with them [in knowledge] wherever they are. Then He will inform them of what they did, on the Day of Resurrection. Indeed, Allah is, of all things, Knowing.”
That is to say, I, Dr. Tabei, am present; Dr. Ghazipour is present, too, and God, the Almighty I present as well. If means that when, for example, Dr. Ghazipour and I converse, God, the Almighty, that is to say, the third one who is present, sets our mental neurons in a way that we both know one another and we will come to an agreement by the inspiration of God, the Almighty. And if this threefold relationship did not exist, no relationship between human beings would happen; so, God, the Almighty acts like a connector among human beings who converse with one another, among those who want to make a relationship between themselves, among those who want to perceive one another well. In this regard, let me give you a medical example. Assume that a physician, a Pharmacist, and a patient are in a relationship. Now, assume that God, the Almighty has inspired the pharunacist to make certain kind of medicine; and the pharmacy cist makes that medicine inspired by God, the Almighty. If the pharmacist had no common understanding with the Physician, they both could not make a medical student understand that this kind of medicine was good for, say, the stomachache of the patient. And, thus, the patient, too, could not rely on the physician’s prescriptions as well as the pharmacist whether or not this kind of medicine was really good for his or her stomachache.
Therefore, the physician, the pharmacist, and the patient have to know that they are all guided and led by God, the Almighty, that is to say, one person, that is to say, the pharmacist makes the medicine; the other person, that is to say, the physician prescribes the medicine; and a third person, that is to say, the patient trusts the pharmacist and the physician, and, therefore, takes the medicine. If this common understanding and cooperation did not exist between these three people, the patient would not re-gain his or her health. The deep truth is that the pharmacist makes his or her medicine with the permission of God, the Almighty; the physician prescribes the pharmacist’s medicine with the permission of God, the Almighty; and ultimately, the patient takes the medicine with the permission and in the name of God, the Almighty in order to be healthy and well.
Let me gine you another example from the “Komeil” prayer. In the Komeil prayer, there is a statement saying: “O one Who His name is like a medicine; and the uttering His name is healing. “So, if the patient takes the medicine that has been made by the pharmacist, and prescribed by the physician, he or she will become healthy and well; this process is called “healing”. As long as the holy name of God, the Almighty is uttered by the patient, this acts as a “medicine” for the patient. And if the patient utters God’s name more deeply, it acts as “healing.”
Dr. Ghazipour: “The medical example you just mentioned can be applied to the general ruels and principles of the world of existence.”
Question: “What do you mean by the “holy name” you just mentioned?”
Dr. Tabei: “In order to better understand this, let me give you another example. What will happen if you put a flower in front of a sheep? If this flower is eatable in terms of color and smell and quality, the sheep will surely eat the flower. Otherwise, the sheep will ignore and will not eat the flower. But if you put the same flower in front of a child, what will happen? The child will surely play with if for a while to know what the flower is. The child does not act like the sheep. This is for sure. But what will happen if we give this flower to a sculptor? The sculptor will surely try to make a flower statue like the flower he has been given, and will work days and nights on the quality, color, and the texture of the flower. Now, what will happen if we give this flower to a biologist? The biologist will surely work months on the flower’s composition, texture, chemistry and its physical characteristics in order to know and discover the flower better and better, so that he or she will be able to find out the philosophy of the flower’s fertilization, and so on and so forth. Now, if we give this flower to a biochemist, he or she will surely work on the flower years and years to find out all the simple and compound chemical formulas that exist in the flower in order to find out the quality of chemical reactions existing inside the flower. This has been a very crystal-clear example in order to understand the “holy name” I just mentioned. Now, if we give this flower to the prophet of Islam, His Holiness Muhammed (Peace be upon him and his family), for instance, he, with this flower in his hand, will step into the final stage of knowing God, the Almighty.
On the other hand, if this flower is given to a small child, he or she will surely play with it for hours, and will shed the flower. Therefore, we gome to this conclusion that the factor of “existence” does exist everywhere in this world of being, but the existence’s manifestations and appearances, as well as its intensities, depend on capacities and talentedness of human beings who are trying to know God, the Almighty better.”
Dr. Ghazipour: “The word”خدا” (=God, Allah) in Faris language means something that is coming repeatedly by itself, without the help of other things , so everyone in this world finds out the existence of God, the Almighty out of what exists in themselves.”
Dr. Tabei: “Generally speaking, Satan has got four different appearances and conditions: 1. Satan, sometimes, says to God, the Almighty that it will surely come to seduce people, that is to say:
“قال فبعزلاعونیهم اجمعین”, which means: “He swore and said to Allah for the veneration and dignity of all their [faithful] companions.”
- In the words of Sufi mystics, Satan is sometimes called “the dog of the divine teacher”, who seduces human beings in order that those human beings, who are more faithful and purer in terms of faith, reach the position of God, the Almighty.
- In another appearance and condition, it can be said that God, the Almighty has bestowed the willpower on human beings, so that Satan comes to seduce them, showing them the way which leads to wrongdoings; so , it will be our duty to practice both the evil and the goodness, and finally we will choose the way which leads to the goodness. The three above – mentioned appearances and conditions of Satan are said to be positive appearances and conditions, and we, human beings are able to make use of them in many positive ways.
- In the fourth appearance and condition, Satan says that it will ride on the back of human beings, will take them by their necks, and will take them wherever it wants to go. In this regard, Ferdowsi, the great epic Poet of Persia, says: “You [=Allah] are the ups and downs of this world/ I do not know what you are, but I know one thing: You are everything which exists in this world of being.”
The Second Session of Argumentations between Dr. Tabei and Dr. Ghazipour
Question: “Why do these seeming conflicts and antitheses exist in the world? What would cause these conflicts to happen?
And is there really a principle by which, considering that principle itself, we can answer such question?”
Dr. Tabei: “Your questions are that of difficult philosophical questions. Generally speaking, there is an absolute matter; there is an absolute good; and on the basis of that absolute good, some relative things, some relative issues can also exist. For instance, there are absolute life and absolute science which belong only to God, the Almighty. Following this absoluteness, some subordinate issues in relation to that absoluteness will come into existence, which are all relative. We have an absolute life as well as a living absolute. For instance, the human being’s life, in an absolute manner, is composed of life and death in a recurrent manner, which are both proportional to one another. For instance, billions of bodily cells are coming into existence at the time we are speaking, and billions of bodily cells are dying right now, too, but that aesthete matter stays unchanged, and other matters in relation to that absoluteness will also exist, which are all relative. These matters and questions are debatable and can be ultimately answered. It is like saying that there exists the divine predestination which, in itself, is absolute, and that this divine predestination is on the basis of rules and principles which God, the Almighty has put in the universe, which is flowing and transmissible all the time. On the other hand, considering the divine predestination, there exists a personal human destiny which follows that divine predestination, which is also flowing and transmissible all the time. Let me give you another example. If we ask a sociologist about the matter of death, he or she will answer that death is beautiful, because if there were no death at all, the word would fill with a great number of men and women, and consequently life would become difficult to live. It is a natural thing that society has to be composed of children, infants, adolescents, young men and women as well as old men and women. So, we will come to this conclusion that the matter of death in this life is a good phenomenon.
In the Holy Quran, chapter “Malak”, verse two, God, the Almighty says:
“الذی خلق الموت و الحیاه لیبلوکم ایکن احسن عملا وهو العزیز الغفور”
, which means: “[He] who created death and life to test you [ as to] which of you is best indeed – and He is the exalted in Might, the Forgiving.”
In other words, both life and death have been created under a general divine system, and they both are relative and their relations are crystal clear, too. God, the Almighty, in the Quranic chapter of “Malak” says: “سبح اسم ربک الاعلی”, which means God, the Almighty is refined of doing anything bad or ugly. The Holy Quran repeatedly says in this Quranic verse that do not forget this: worldly creatures are not bad or ugly in themselves; all these worldly creatures ae all proportions which exist under an absolute good, which is beautiful and meaningful”.
Question: “What is your opinion about the principle of absorption? This principle, in the Holy Quran and in Islamic cultures, is called “طلب” [= desire].”
Dr. Tabei: “In the Quranic chapter of “Al – Rahman”, either after verses dealing with heaven and hell, there is a Quranic verse in the form of a refrain whose conventional meaning is as follows: “How good God, the Almighty’s [Quranic] verses are!”
All the world of being is working with a systematic order. In this systematically ordered world, nothing has been created uselessly, and if someone wants to manipulate this systematically ordered world without the permission of the owner of this system, that is to say, God, the Almighty, the system will be completely ruined and destroyed; on the other hand, manipulating this system of order with the permission of its owner, that is to say, God, the Almighty, will lead to change it in the best way. Therefore, in several cases which we observe and hear in the words and actions of great Islamic scholars and Sufi mystics as well as in the Holy Quran, there is a saying which says:به اذن الله” [= with the Permission of God, the Almighty]. Let me give you two related examples:
- The example of the marriage; 2. The example of beheading a halal meat animal. These two examples are good examples in which the phrase “with the permission of God, the Almighty” must be used. Otherwise psychological disorder and kinds of disorder will follow, causing these two actions to become transient and less joyful. But if these two actions are done with the permission of God, the Almighty, there will be long – lasting blessings and joys.
Let me give you another example. In the act of masturbation, the doer of this action usually does the act without the permission of God, the Almighty, that is to say, he or she does not have God, the Almighty in their mind, hence it will be considered as an unbecoming and indecent act. Let me give you another example. This example would be about Jesus Christ (peace be upon him). It is said that Jesus Christ (Peace be upon him) had a miraculous power to make dead people alive with the permission of God, the Almighty. Jesus’s want and request from God, the Almighty to make dead people alive does not mean that he was not able to make dead people alive, of course, he really was able to do that. This means that someone like Jesus Christ (Peace be upon him) never did such a miraculous action without the permission of God, the Almighty, the owner and the ruler of that systematically ordered world I just mentioned. Someone like Jesus Christ (Peace be upon him) did not allow himself to ignore God, the Almighty when doing such a miracle.”
Dr. Ghazipour: “With regard to the principle of absorption, and for the reason of the integrity, completeness and wholeness which are ruling over the world of being, it cam be said that if human beings are able to be parallel with this integrity, completeness , and wholeness which are ruling over the world, they will be able to receive and absorb all the signals, messages, and energies which are constantly being sent by the world of being. In addition to that, they will be able to temper with the universal phenomenon with the permission of God, the Almighty. If human beings are in harmony with the universe’s signals, messages, energies, and principles, which all have their own specific and complicated harmony themselves, they will be able to achieve the very same thing that the principle of absorption has emenated its radiation. So, it will be in this way that human beings can, like Jesus Christ (Peace be upon him) who could make dead people alive, achieve and gain their desires and wishes.”
Dr. Tabei: “Since there is no Common literature and language among human beings, there will not be a correct, and sound understanding of the word “universe””. For instance, His Holiness Noah (Peace be upon him) said: “I will start my actions with the name of God, the Almighty, so my ship will start moving forward; I will say the name of God, the Almighty, and my ship will stop moving. “Of course, it is not just saying the holy word of “God, the Almighty”; it is because His Holiness Noah (Peace be upon him) had been in harmony with the signals, messages, energies, and principles of the universe. As a matter of fact, a person whose prayed – for wish is granted by God, the Almighty is the same as the principle of absorption we mentioned above. In the beginning and in the end, we have the absoluteness of unification, and in between, there is no absolute profusion. Instead, we have a kind of profusion which which has been engrossed in the unification which is going on and flowing every moment in the whole world of being. It is important to note the point that the “Jalali” [=Glorious] names of Allah cause the profusion engross in the unification manifest in the profusion. The glorious names of Allah begin with praises to God, the Almighty, that is to say, “تسبیح”, and the beautiful names of Allah begin with acclaiming Him. All worldly creatures acclaim God, the Almighty, but human beings are not able to notice this. As the Holy Quran says in the chapter of “Asraa”, verse forty – four:
“تسبح له السماوات والارض و من فیهن وان من شیء الا یسبح بحمده ولن لاتفقهون تسبیحهم انه کان حلیما غفورا”
, which means: “The seven heavens and the earth and whatever is in them exalt Him. And there is not a thing except that it exalts [Allah] by His praise, but you do not understand their [way of] exalting. Indeed, He is ever Forbearing and Forgiving.”
Every name of God, the Almighty can be considered as one of the Creation’s principle. When we say: “O Healer!.” When we are sick, and we do not say, instead: “O God!”, because the word “God” or “Allah” encompasses both life and death simultaneously, so our praying may refer to death, so we use the word “Healer” which the act of healing is in it. The word “الرحمان” [=the Compassionate] is a word of appearance, and the word “الرحیم” [=the Merciful] is a word of essence. These two words of appearance and essence come into existence with the factor of blessing and were developed, and with the word of “the Merciful”, they reached the state of perfection. Those worldly creatures which made use of the blessing of the word “the Compassionate”, were manifested by God, the Almighty, as the Holy Quran says:
“هوالذی یصلی علیکم و ملائکته لیخرجکم من الظلمات الی النور و کان بالمومنین رحیما”
, which means: “It is He who confers blessing upon you, and his angels [ask Him to do so] that He may bring you out from darknesses in to the light. And ever is He, to the believers, Merciful.”
The worldly creatures who did not make maximum use of the blessing of God, the Almighty’s compassionateness, He, thus, make them repent with the word “تواب” [=the repenters], and a “Merciful acceptant of repentance”. If the degree of our wrongdoings exceeds a simple, mental wrongdoing, and the wrongdoer does a wrong action, God, the Almighty will forgive him or her with the two words of “the Forgiver”, and “the Merciful”, that is to say, God, the Almighty will forgive them because He is the forgiving and the Merciful. Now, that God, the Almighty has forgiven his servants, He intends to enter them into the Paradise. In this state, servants of God’s, the Almighty become ashamed and here, God, the Almighty uses the word “غفار” or “غفور” [=ever Forgiving]. And when those effects of badness and evil which existed in the minds of God’s servants as well as the feeling of shame and badness are eliminated in them, God, the Almighty becomes a Merciful being who is ever Forgiving. Now, the man changes from the state of badness into a zero, neutral position. What will happen now? At this stage, God, the Almighty manifests Himself to His servants with the name “Ever Affectionate”, and with a higher degree which is called “Affection”, which belongs to “Ashab-e-yamin”[=people of faith], and after that, comes the stage of those who belong to “Ashab-e- Berr” [=People of Goodness]. Now, there exist a few servants of God, the Almighty, to whom He manifests Himself to them with the word of “Beloved”. With the appearance of the divine and, holy name of “Beloved”, with which God, the Almighty manifests Himself only to few people, no man is able to claim that he or she is a human being.
In contrast to the name of Beloved, these human beings reach the stage of “Repentance “[=those who repent], and they, along with the divine and holy name of “Beloved”, will be ultimately salivated. The word “Beloved” has been repeatedly used in the Quranic chapter of “Qisas” [=the stories], and the reason is that God, the Almighty, in these Quranic verses, wants to make people afraid in order that they become believers of Him. At this stage, the divine word changes into “A Beloved Who is the Merciful”. We all know that knowledge is a divine blessing and guidance, and generally speaking, every human being knows nothing. Animals, too, have knowledge about their actions, but they do not consciously aware that they have knowledge about their actions. If the human being did know that they have knowledge about things, in this case, it was called insight and wisdom. And if the human beings do know that they have knowledge, it is called insight and wisdom, too, and this is the principle of man’s life. God, the Almighty has put the knowledge in creatures, the first stage of which is the knowledge about a clear essence, without considering its mental image. For instance, someone knows that he or she does not know something. Every creature, in deed, is seeking perfection, and after that he or she compares him or herself with the perfection he or she has perceived, hence they come to this conclusion that they are imperfect human beings. For example, a little child compares him or herself with his or her father or mother, hence he or she wishes that they will be like their parents. But, it should be noted that the sort of conformity in childhood would be that of “illusory” perfection. After this stage of childhood, the kind of conformity, say, in forty years of age, will be that of “intellectual” perfection, and after this stage, say, in seventy years of age, the sort of conformity will be that of “hearty” perfection.”
Question: “Please illucidate your point of view about con formity.”
Answer: “Our mind operates by a few systems of perception. For instance, when the fetus is inside its mother’s womb, it has no perceptions, and since the fetus is living in a watery world of its mother’s womb, it does not perceive warmth, coldness, hotness, and the like. In this condition, all the perceptions of the fetus are working, but they exist in a static and stand – still condition. With regard to this example, Ibn-e Sina, a well – known Persian scientist and physician of the fourth and fifth century A. D, has called the fetus’s condition as “hanging” or “the hanging man”. This hanging man, that is to say, the fetus, do have knowledge about him or herself, while when the fetus comes in to being and is born it will have knowledge about it’s self, and will start crying, will open its mouth, and step by step, new ways of getting knowledge will happen to it, starting to get knowledge from the outside environment by its eyes, by its ears, by its hands and feet, and the like. At the beginning of the childbirth, the child becomes puzzled by the outside environment, and it only feels things around it, and with the help of its different feelings, it gets out of the state of ifs puzzlement, founding out its self, and will have, step by step, knowledge about its environment and steps into the course of perfection and evolution.
The first thing to make a relationship with the environment on the part of the newly – born child is that the child starts crying; in other words, by the act of crying, the newly – born child tries to make a relationship with the environment around it. And then, in a gradual way, it steps into the world of evolution and perfection, and it starts crying by the age of two, which indicates that its needs are not so deep. The child also starts babbling, but if this bubbling occurs along with its crying, it should be noted that this need is basic and has to be immediately realized by its parents. By five months of age, the child has usually no memory; for this reason, it forgets everything easily. From seven to eight months of age, the child gets its memory; it keeps the received in formation in its memory, and the child, later on, makes use of this received in formation in a gradual manner. At this stage of growth, the child makes something in its mind and contrasts it against something against its outside environment, which becomes a mental image. For instance, the child makes a tree in its mind, which shows that there actually is a tree in the outside world. Thte first phase for creating the mental image would be in the form of illusions which are not in full conformity with something existing in the outside world; for this reason, something in the outside world, which is called, say, a pine tree, while the child draws it on a piece of paper, may not be similar to the real pine tree which really exists in the outside world; this shows that there is the child’s illusion that has ordered him or her to draw it on a piece of paper. For this reason, children, and generally speaking, almost all adult people, like caricatures very much. This is because all men, in general, including children make use of their illusion, so their mental image would not be in conformity with the real thing which really exists in the outside world. In a similar manner, children face with outside creatures and things with the very same illusion in their mind, receiving in formation. Animals, too, follow the similar pattern, that is to say, they follow and live their life with their illusions in their mind. At the age of five, the mental image nears to the real and visual thing, hence the conformity between these two increases and, therefore, imagination comes to existence in all men. The basis of arts and empirical sciences would be on imagination, in a way that, step by step, sciences and bodies of knowledge such as mathematics and philosophy come into existence and make the arts scientific. For instance, someone has flown his or her imagination and, thus, has invented, say, the lever in order to carry things easier. Then, a mathematician comes onto the scene and creates the mathematical rules and principles appropriate for this lever and makes this invention scientific. Therefore, all the things that have been imagined by man, will one day turn into sciences by, say, philosophy, logic, and mathematics. In the study of language, too, we have a specific grammar and syntax. In the study of music, we have scientific, musical notes. And in the study of poetry, we have scientific poetical rhyme and meter. Now, let me give you another example. In constructing buildings, the construction worker wants to build a roof or ceiling. Then, an engineer. comes and operates some scientific calculations and extracts the appropriate rules and principles for building roof or ceiling. Therefore, reasoning, in this construction, would be that of a rule of thumb, an empirical rule, that is to say, whatever you see in the outside world, you begin reasoning it in your mind. The trend of science in human beings would be in a manner that they, on the basis of those things they do not still have, seek and reach ultimately the science. Present knowledge leads to acquired knowledge. With the present knowledge, man knows that they do not know any thing. Animals, too, follow their instinctive rules and principles in , say, building their homes and nests. For instance, bumble bees make their six – sided hives, while they have no conscious knowledge about making it; they make their hives out of their God – given instinct. God, the Almighty opens the doors of His inspiration and blessing to those people who have always tried hard to get the acquired knowledge. God, the Almighty opens the doors of this blessing to those great men and women who have constantly tried hard to find different kinds of science.
These great people face with a conceptual and unusual anatomy; hence they always keep thinking of God, the Almighty; so, God, the Almighty comes to help them by inspiring them in order that they can manage things without even a prior knowledge. With regard to this the Holy Quran, in chapter “Naml”, verse sixty – two, says:
“امن یجیب المظطر اذا دعاه و یکشف السوء و یجعلکم خلفا الارض ء اله مع الله قلیلا ماتذکرون”
, which means: “Is He [not best] who responds to the desperate one when he calls upon Him and removes evil and makes you inheritors of the earth? Is there a deity with Allah? Little do you remember.”
It means that there comes a time when man becomes desperate and disappointed, and God, the Almighty opens the doors of His blessings to desperate and disappointed men. This can also be applied to the issue of science, where God, the Almighty decides to bestow the science on great men and women. This kind of science is called “the inherent science”, that is to say, a kind of science that has been inspired to the mind of some great men and women without being instructed by instructors. There are four particular persons mentioned by the Holy Quran, who had been called “knowledgeable men”; these men were “Qaroun”, “Haroun”, “Sameri”, and “Bal’am-Ba’our”. These Persons were not given the divine knowledge by God, the Almighty; instead, God, the Almighty bestowed His knowledge on the prophets Noah and Elias (Peace be upon them)”.
Dr. Ghazipour: “His Holiness Imam Ja’far Sadiq (Peace be upon him) says:
“العلم نور یقذفه الله فی قلب من یشاء””, which means: “Science and knowledge would be like a light which is shined by Allah on the heart of anyone He wishes.”