Ahmadiyya Priangan Timur


Sunday, 15 February 2015

God's Beauty and Beneficence

God's law of nature and the book of nature, which have been in existence since the creation of man, teach us that to establish a strong relationship with God it is necessary to have experienced His Beneficence and His Beauty. As pointed out before, by beneficence is meant instances of the moral qualities of God Almighty which a man might have personally experienced in his own being. For instance, God may have become his Guardian when he was helpless and weak and an orphan. Or God may have fulfilled his need at a time of want; or God may have helped him at a time of great sorrow; or God may have guided him without the intervention of a preceptor or guide in his search after God.

By His beauty are also meant His attributes which appear in the guise of beneficence, for instance, His perfect Power or His Tenderness or His Kindness or His Rububiyyat or His Compassion, or His general Rububiyyat and those common bounties which are available in large numbers for the comfort of man. There is also His knowledge which a person obtains through Prophets and thereby saves himself from death and ruin. Also His attribute that He hears the supplications of the restless and fatigued ones. Also His excellence that He inclines towards those who incline towards Him, even more so. All this is comprised in God's Beauty. The very same attributes when they are experienced by a person become His Beneficence with reference to him, though they are only His Beauty with reference to others

When a person experiences in the shape of Beneficence those Divine attributes which constitute His Beauty his faith is strengthened beyond measure and he is drawn towards God as iron is drawn towards a magnet. His love for God increases manifold and his trust in God becomes very strong. Having experienced that all his good is in God, his hopes in God are strengthened. He continues to incline towards God naturally, without pretence and affectation, and finds himself dependent upon God's help every moment and believes firmly through the contemplation of Divine attributes that he will be successful, because he has experienced in his own person many instances of God's grace, favour and generosity. Therefore, his supplications proceed from the fountain of power and certainty and his resolve becomes extremely firm and unshakable.

In the end, having observed Divine favours and bounties, the light of certainty enters with great force into him and his ego is altogether consumed. On account of the frequent contemplation of the greatness and power of God, his heart becomes the House of God. As the human soul never leaves his body while a person is alive, in the same way, the certainty that enters into him from God, the Mighty and Glorious, never leaves him. The Holy Spirit surges inside him all the time and he speaks under the instruction of this very Spirit. Verities and insights flow out of him and the tent of the Lord of Honour and Majesty is ever set in his heart. The delight of certainty, sincerity and love flows through him like water whereby every limb of his is nourished. His eyes exhibit the brightness of nourishment and his forehead reveals its light. His countenance appears as if it had been washed by the rain of Divine love and his tongue partakes fully of this freshness. All his limbs exhibit a brightness, as after a spring shower an attractive freshness is revealed in the branches, leaves, flowers and fruits of trees.

The body of a person on whom this spirit has not descended and who has not been refreshed by it is like a corpse. This freshness and joyousness cannot be described in words and can never be acquired by the dead heart which has not been refreshed by the fountain of the light of certainty. On the contrary, it stinks. But the one who has been bestowed this light, and inside whom this fountain has burst forth, exhibits as one of his signs that all the time and in everything, in every word and in every action, he receives power from God. This is his delight and his comfort and he cannot live without it.

[Review of Religions-Urdu, Vol. I, pp. 186-187]

Perfect praise is offered for two kinds of excellences, fullness of beauty and fullness of beneficence. If anyone possesses both these excellences, one's heart becomes enamoured of him. The principal function of the Holy Qur’an is to display both these excellences of God, so that people may be drawn towards that Being Who has no equal or like, and should worship Him with the eagerness of their souls. For this purpose, in the very first chapter, it sets out the excellences of the God to Whom it invites people. That is why this chapter opens with Alhamdulillah, which means that all praise belongs to the Being Whose name is Allah. In the idiom of the Qur’an, Allah is the name of the Being Whose excellences have reached the perfection of beauty and beneficence, and Who suffers from no deficiency. The Holy Qur’an in vests the name of Allah with all attributes and thus indicates that Allah comprehends all perfect attributes. As He comprises every excellence, His beauty is obvious. By virtue of this beauty, He is named Light in the Holy Qur’an as is said:  
Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth.
al-Nur, 24:36
This means that all light is but a reflection of His light.

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