One God concept helps to move on

One God concept helps to move on

Submission to One God results in individual freedom and dignity

By Khwaja Mohammed Zubair (Reflections)

Published: Wed 24 Jun 2015, 12:08 AM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 3:16 PM

The declaration that ‘there is no God but Allah’ is the essence of Islam. It means that God has no partner (sharik) and this is expressed by the Arabic word Tawheed, ‘oneness’ and ‘unity’, which in the Islamic context means ‘the oneness of God.’

This is a fundamental doctrine encompassing the oneness of God in every sense of the expression. Nothing can rival Him as a source of power or love. There is no one worthy of worship other than God. He is not an abstract concept. He is always near us; He cares for us and we owe our existence to Him alone.

Almighty Allah says in the Quran: “Allah — there is no deity except Him, the Ever-Living, the Sustainer of (all) existence. Neither drowsiness overtakes Him nor sleep. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. Who is it that can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows what is (presently) before them and what will be after them, and they encompass not a thing of His knowledge except for what He wills. His Kursi (chair) extends over the heavens and the earth, and their preservation tires Him not. And He is the Most High, the Most Great.” (Quran 2: 255)

In these marvelous verses, Allah describes Himself as The Only One — Most Powerful and Ever-Living. Tawheed is the bedrock of Islam and it states that it is Allah who has created the universe with whatever is in it and administers it. What we deduce from the operation of the universe and call ‘natural laws’ are, in fact, Allah’s regular ways of creating things and events and administering the universe.

Chapter 112 of the Quran, titled Ikhlas, gives us the essence of monotheism. Not only does it tell us about the oneness of God, but it also makes it clear what the oneness of God means.

This chapter presents the concept of God, purified of all human interpolation, for, prior to the advent of Islam, tampering with the sacred text had caused this concept of God to be distorted for all would-be believers.

God is not many. God alone is the Creator and Sustainer of the universe, including human beings. He is the sole possessor of all powers. He is Omniscient, Omnipotent, and Omnipresent. That is, although invisible to the naked eye, He knows everything, He sees everything, He has full control over everything and is present everywhere. All depend on him. He depends on none. He, in his own being, is all-powerful. He begets not, nor was he begotten. He is such a unique being who has no equal or comparison. All kind of oneness belongs to this Almighty Being. The concept of One God is the actual beginning point and also the source of all Islamic teachings.

By believing in one true God, man is saved from worshipping many false gods. Tawheed enables man establish a direct link between him and God.

Belief in Tawheed makes man humble and modest instead of being proud and arrogant. It is because belief in one God implies that man is His humble servant and that modesty alone befits him. Believers know that they must submit to God, on whom they depend utterly. Submission to one God results in individual freedom and dignity, for all human beings then become equal and all deserve our respect.

There is only one God and all of us are servants of the same God. Belief in the oneness of God helps the individual to live in unity with others. Belief in one Creator gives a sense of oneness with all creation.

Belief in one God gives the believers confidence, for, they trust in God and believe that nothing can happen unless God wills. Life and death are entirely in His hands. They remain content because they believe that power; wealth and success come from God alone. He gives them to whom He thinks fit and takes them away from whom He pleases. Tawheed thus brings about a unique blend of submission to God and human dignity and freedom.

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “Your Lord is One. You are from Adam and Adam was created from dust. An Arab is not superior to a non-Arab, nor a white person over a black person, except for his/her piety and righteousness.”

Syedna Ali Ibn Abu Taalib, the fourth Caliph, is reported to have said: “He is being but not through the phenomenon of coming into being.

He exists but not from non-existence. He is with everything but not physical nearness. He is different from everything but not by physical separation. He acts but without the accompaniment of movements and instruments. He is the One, only such that there is none with whom He keeps company or whom He misses in his absence.” In Islam, Allah is known by His names and attributions and the manifestation of these names in the universe.

(The author is a former Khaleej Times staffer)

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