Creation: Why Not in Less Than 6 Days?

Question: I am a non-Muslim student. I read that the Muslim God created all things in 6 days. Is that true and what is the logic behind that? Isn’t he able to do that in a shorter time?

Answer: Salam, Rickery.

Thank you for your question.

First of all, I would like to state that there is no Muslim God or Christian God or Jewish God. There is only One God Who created all humans. Therefore, it is better to avoid the term, “Muslim God”.

Of course, by “Muslim God”, you mean God, according to the teachings of Islam. Indeed it is true that the Quran, which is the Book of God revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), mentions that God created the universe in “six days”. Read the following:

[Your Guardian-Lord is Allah, Who created the heavens and the earth in six days, and is firmly established on the throne (of authority). He draws the night as a veil over the day, each seeking the other in rapid succession. He created the sun, the moon, and the stars, (all) governed by laws under His command. Is it not His to create and to govern? Blessed be Allah, the Cherisher and Sustainer of the worlds!](Al-A`raf 7:54)

The well-known Quran translator and interpreter, Muhammad Asad, writes on the use of the word, “yawm” in the Quran, which is usually rendered “day”:

“The word yawm, commonly translated as “day” … is used in Arabic to denote any period, whether extremely long “aeon” or extremely short “moment”: its application to an earthly “day” of twenty-four hours is only one of its many connotations.” (M. Asad, The Message of the Quran)

The foregoing means that in the context of the above verse (7:54), “aeon” is a better translation that suits the context.

In the context of the creation of the universe, the word “day” in the sense of twenty four hours in our reckoning, is irrelevant. This is because we calculate a day on the basis of the earth rotating on its axis taking the duration of a day. So “six days” taken for the creation of the heavens and the earth can only mean six long periods of time or six aeons.

It is also worth noting here that the Bible also mentions “six days” as the time taken for the creation of the heavens and the earth: Read the Book of Genesis in the Old Testament of the Bible: Genesis 1:31, Genesis 2:1, 2.

“God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day. Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.” (Genesis 1:31, New International Version)

Indeed it is possible for God to create the heavens and the earth in a shorter period of time, say in six hours. But then your question would be: why doesn’t God create them in a still shorter time?

God has His own reason for choosing a particular way of creation or for taking a particular duration for creation; and we humans have no way of knowing it, unless God Himself reveals it to us.

But we can make a scientific study of the origin of the universe using our God-given analytical skills to figure out the logic behind it, as far as we can. But such an enterprise, I suppose, is quite beyond us in this context.

I hope this answers your question. Please keep in touch.

Salam.

Source: http://www.readingislam.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1258880810206&pagename=IslamOnline-English-AAbout_Islam%2FAskAboutIslamE%2FAskAboutIslamE

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Does the Qur’an Disrespect Women?

Question and Answer Details

Name of Questioner

Anonymous   – Afghanistan

 

Title

Does the Qur’an Disrespect Women?

 

Question

The Qur’an says that  a woman is like a field for you, so go to them in every way you like. Does that mean that the woman is an object for the man, and that the woman is only there for the man to have intercourse and fun with? Why is the woman a field for the man? Why does the Qur’an most of the time speak to men and not to women as well?

 

Date

10/Jan/2008

 

Name of Mufti

`Abdel Khaliq Hasan Ash-Shareef

Topic

Misconceptions

Answer

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.


All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.


Dear questioner, thank you for your question.
 
 

 

 

To understand the descriptions mentioned in the Qur’an correctly, one ought to understand the contexts and  topics in which these descriptions are mentioned, and above all understand the language of the Qur’an. As for the specific example you mentioned in your question, the Qur’an described women as a ’tilth’; it did not refer to them as an object. Rather, they were described as such in the context of stating what is permissible and impermissible between a husband and his wife during intercourse. Second, when the Qur’an uses ‘masculine address’ it does not exclude women nor does it degrade them in any way, as one of the original usages of  ‘masculine address’ in the Arabic language is to address a general mass that includes both men and women.
 

 

In response to your question, Sheikh `Abdel Khaliq Hassan Ash-Shareef, an Egypt-based renowned scholar and da`iyah, says,

 


This is not the only way  Allah the Almighty described women in the Glorious Qur’an. Describing them in a certain way does not mean this is the only way they are described. Allah the Almighty says in the Qur’an:

 

[They are your garments and ye are their garments.] (Al-Baqarah 2: 187)
[How can ye take it (back) after one of you hath gone in unto the other, and they have taken a strong pledge from you?](An-Nisaa’  4: 21)
[And of His signs is this: He created for you helpmeets from yourselves that ye might find rest in them, and He ordained between you love and mercy. Lo! Herein indeed are portents for folk who reflect.] (Ar-Rum 30: 21)

As you can see, this  is not the only description of women in the Qur’an.
In addition, you have to understand the context in which they were described as a ’tilth’. Allah the Almighty says,[Your women are a tilth for you (to cultivate) so go to your tilth as ye will, and send (good deeds) before you for your souls, and fear Allah, and know that ye will (one day) meet Him. Give glad tidings to believers, (O Muhammad).] (

Al-Baqarah 2: 223)
To understand the context of this verse, you should  read the verse before it which states,[They question thee (O Muhammad) concerning menstruation. Say: It is an illness, so let women alone at such times and go not in unto them till they are cleansed. And when they have purified themselves, then go in unto them as Allah hath enjoined upon you. Truly Allah loveth those who turn unto Him, and loveth those who have a care for cleanness.] (

Al-Baqarah 2: 222)
Allah the Almighty described women as such in the context of talking about menstruation, stating what is permissible and what is not during intercourse between a husband and his wife. Therefore, you should not take this out of  context to draw such a generalization.
With regard to your question about why the Qur’an talks to men and not to women, it is said in the Glorious Qur’an,[And the believers, men and women, are protecting allies one of another; they enjoin the right and forbid the wrong, and they establish worship and they pay the poor-due, and they obey Allah and His messenger. As for these, Allah will have mercy on them. Lo! Allah is Mighty, Wise.] (

At-Tawbah 9: 71) Women are not excluded in any way whatsoever.
Moreover, one of the original usages of ‘masculine address’ in the Arabic language is to address a general group that includes both men and women.  Therefore,  one ought to understand the language of the Qur’an first before drawing any conclusions.
 

 

 

Related Questions

Are Women Equal to Men in Reward and Punishment?

The Status of Woman in Islam

Can Muslims Celebrate Christmas?

Are Women Inferior to Men?

Are Women Intellectually and Spiritually Inferior?

Was Eve Behind Adam’s Expulsion from Paradise?

The Reward of Women in Paradise

 
   

 

Allah Almighty knows best.

Source: http://www.islamonline.net/

Most Common Questions asked by Non-Muslims – 4

HEREAFTER – LIFE AFTER DEATH

 


Question

How can you prove the existence of hereafter, i.e. life after death?

Answer


1.   Belief in the hereafter is not based on blind faith?

Many people wonder as to how a person with a scientific and logical temperament, can lend any credence to the belief of life after death. People assume that anyone believing in the hereafter is doing so on the basis of blind belief.

My belief in the hereafter is based on a logical argument.


2.   Hereafter a logical belief

There are more than a thousand verses in the Glorious Qur’an, containing scientific facts (refer my book “Qur’an and Modern Science-Compatible or Incompatible?”). Many facts mentioned in the Qur’an have been discovered in the last few centuries. But science has not advanced to a level where it can confirm every statement of the Qur’an.

Suppose 80% of all that is mentioned in the Qur’an has been proved 100% correct. About the remaining 20%, science makes no categorical statement, since it has not advanced to a level, where it can either prove or disprove these statements. With the limited knowledge that we have, we cannot say for sure whether even a single percentage or a single verse of the Qur’an from this 20% portion is wrong. Thus when 80% of the Qur’an is 100% correct and the remaining 20% is not disproved, logic says that even the 20% portion is correct. The existence of the hereafter, which is mentioned in the Qur’an, falls in the 20% ambiguous portion which my logic says is correct.


3
.   Concept of peace and human values is useless without the concept of hereafter

Is robbing a good or an evil act? A normal balanced person would say it is evil. How would a person who does not believe in the hereafter convince a powerful and influential criminal that robbing is evil?

Suppose I am the most powerful and influential criminal in the world. At the same time I am an Intelligent and a logical person. I say that robbing is good because it helps me lead a luxurious life. Thus robbing is good for me.

If anybody can put forward a single logical argument as to why it is evil for me, I will stop immediately. People usually put forward the following arguments:

   a.    The person who is robbed will face difficulties

Some may say that the person who is robbed will face difficulties. I certainly agree that it is bad for the person who is robbed. But it is good for me. If I rob a thousand dollars, I can enjoy a good meal at a 5 star restaurant.

   b.    Someone may rob you

Some people argue that someday I may be robbed. No one can rob me because I am a very powerful criminal and I have hundreds of bodyguards. I can rob anybody but nobody can rob me. Robbing may be a risky profession for a common man but not for an influential person like me.

   c.    The police may arrest you

Some may say, if you rob, you can be arrested by the police. The police cannot arrest me because I have the police on my payroll. I have the ministers on my payroll. I agree that if a common man robs, he will be arrested and it will be bad for him, but I am an extraordinarily influential and powerful criminal.

Give me one logical reason why it is bad for me and I will stop robbing.

   d.    Its easy money

Some may say its easy money and not hard-earned money. I agree completely that it is easy money, and that is one of the main reasons why I rob. If a person has the option of earning money the easy as well as the hard way, any logical person would choose the easy way.

   e.    It is against humanity

Some may say it is against humanity and that a person should care for other human beings. I counter argue by asking as to who wrote this law called ‘humanity’ and why should I follow it?

This law may be good for the emotional and sentimental people but I am a logical person and I see no benefit in caring for other human beings.

   f.     It is a selfish act

Some may say that robbing is being selfish. It is true that robbing is a selfish act; but then why should I not be selfish? It helps me enjoy life.

1.    No logical reason for robbing being an evil act

Hence all arguments that attempt to prove that robbing is an evil act are futile. These arguments may satisfy a common man but not a powerful and influential criminal like me. None of the arguments can be defended on the strength of reason and logic. It is no surprise that there are so many criminals in this world.

Similarly raping, cheating etc. can be justified as good for a person like me and there is no logical argument that can convince me that these things are bad.

2.    A Muslim can convince a powerful and influential criminal

Now let us switch sides. Suppose you are the most powerful and influential criminal in the world, who has the police and the ministers on his payroll. You have army of thugs to protect you. I am a Muslim who will convince you that robbing, raping, cheating, etc. are evil acts.

Even if I put forth the same arguments to prove that robbing is evil the criminal will respond the same way as he did earlier.

I agree that the criminal is being logical and all his arguments are true only when he is the most powerful and influential criminal.

3.     Every human being wants justice

Each and every human being desires justice. Even if he does not want justice for others he wants justice for himself. Some people are intoxicated by power and influence and inflict pain and suffering on others. The same people, however, would surely object if some injustice was done to them. The reason such people become insensitive to the suffering of others is that they worship power and influence. Power and influence, they feel, not only allows them to inflict injustice on others but also prevents others from doing likewise to them.

4. God is Most Powerful and Just

As a Muslim I would convince the criminal about the existence of Almighty God (refer to answer proving the existence of God). This God is more powerful than you and at the same time is also just. The Glorious Qur’an says:

“Allah is never unjust
In the least degree”

        [Al-Qur’an 4:40]

5.     Why does God not punish me?

The criminal, being a logical and scientific person, agrees that God exists, after being presented with scientific facts from the Qur’an. He may argue as to why God, if He is Powerful and Just, does not punish him.

6. The people who do injustice should be punished

Every person who has suffered injustice, irrespective of financial or social status, almost certainly wants the perpetrator of injustice to be punished. Every normal person would like the robber or the rapist to be taught a lesson. Though a large number of criminals are punished, many even go scot-free. They lead a pleasant, luxurious life, and even enjoy a peaceful existence. If injustice is done to a powerful and influential person, by someone more powerful and more influential than he, even such a person would want that person perpetrators of injustice to be punished.

7. This life is a test for the hereafter

This life is a test for the hereafter. The Glorious Qur’an says:

“He who created Death
And life that He
May try which of you
Is best in deed;
And He is the Exalted
In Might, Oft-Forgiving”
          [Al-Qur’an 67:2]

8. Final justice on day of judgement

The Glorious Qur’an says:

“Every soul shall have
A taste of death:
And only on the Day
Of Judgement shall you
Be paid your full recompense.
Only he who is saved
Far from the Fire
And admitted to the Garden
Will have attained
The object (of life):
For the life of this world
Is but goods and chattels
Of deception.”
          [Al-Qur’an 3:185]

Final justice will be meted out on the Day of Judgement. After a person dies, he will be resurrected on the Day of Judgement along with the rest of mankind. It is possible that a person receives part of his punishment in this world. The final reward and punishment will only be in the hereafter. God Almighty may not punish a robber or a rapist in this world but he will surely be held accountable on the Day of Judgement and will be punished in the hereafter i.e. life after death.

9. What punishment can the human law give Hitler?

Hitler incinerated six million Jews during his reign of terror. Even if the police had arrested him, what punishment can the human law give Hitler for justice to prevail? The most they can do is to send Hitler to the gas chamber. But that will only be punishment for the killing of one Jew. What about the remaining five million, nine hundred and ninety nine thousand, nine hundred and ninety-nine Jews?

10. Allah can burn Hitler more than six million times in hellfire

Allah say in the Glorious Qur’an:

“Those who reject
Our signs, We shall soon
Cast into the Fire;
As often as their skins
Are roasted through,
We shall change them
For fresh skins,
That they may taste
The penalty: for Allah
Is Exalted in Power, Wise”
          [Al-Qur’an 4:56]

If Allah wishes he can incinerate Hitler six million times in the hereafter in the hellfire.

11. No concept of human values or good and bad without concept of hereafter

It is clear that without convincing a person about the hereafter, i.e. life after death, the concept of human values and the good or evil nature of acts is impossible to prove to any person who is doing injustice especially when he is influential and powerful.

Most Common Questions asked by Non-Muslims – 3

 

VAST DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ISLAM AND THE ACTUAL PRACTICE OF MUSLIMS

 

 

 

Question:

 

 

 

If Islam is the best religion, why are many of the Muslims dishonest, unreliable, and involved in activities such as cheating, bribing, dealing in drugs, etc.?

 

 

 


1.   Media maligns Islam

  1. Islam is without doubt the best religion but the media is in the hands of the westerners who are afraid of Islam. The media is continuously broadcasting and printing information against Islam. They either provide misinformation about Islam, misquote Islam or project a point out of proportion, if any.
  2. When any bomb blasts take place anywhere, the first people to be accused without proof are invariably the Muslims. This appears as headlines in the news. Later, when they find that non-Muslims were responsible, it appears as an insignificant news’ item.
  3. If a 50 year old Muslim marries a 15 year old girl after taking her permission, it appears on the front page but when a 50 year old non-Muslim rapes a 6 year old girl, it may appear in the news in the inside pages as ‘Newsbriefs’. Everyday in America on an average 2,713 cases of rape take place but it doesn’t appear in the news, since it has become a way of life for the Americans.


2.   Black sheep in every community:

I am aware that there are some Muslims who are dishonest, unreliable, who cheat, etc. but the media projects this as though only Muslims are involved in such activities. There are black sheep in every community. I know Muslims who are alcoholics and who can drink most of the non-Muslims under the table.


3.   Muslims best as a whole:

Inspite of all the black sheep in the Muslim community, Muslims taken on the whole, yet form the best community in the world. We are the biggest community of tee-totallers as a whole, i.e. those who don’t imbibe alcohol. Collectively, we are a community which gives the maximum charity in the world. There is not a single person in the world who can even show a candle to the Muslims where modesty is concerned; where sobriety is concerned; where human values and ethics are concerned.


4.   Don’t judge a car by its driver:

If you want to judge how good is the latest model of the “Mercedes” car and a person who does not know how to drive sits at the steering wheel and bangs up the car, who will you blame? The car or the driver? But naturally, the driver. To analyze how good the car is, a person should not look at the driver but see the ability and features of the car. How fast is it, what is its average fuel consumption, what are the safety measures, etc. Even if I agree for the sake of argument that the Muslims are bad, we can’t judge Islam by its followers? If you want to judge how good Islam is then judge it according to its authentic sources, i.e. the Glorious Qur’an and the Sahih Hadith.


5.   Judge Islam by its best follower i.e. Prophet Mohammed (pbuh):

If you practically want to check how good a car is put an expert driver behind the steering wheel. Similarly the best and the most exemplary follower of Islam by whom you can check how good Islam is, is the last and final messenger of God, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Besides Muslims, there are several honest and unbiased non-Muslim historians who have acclaimed that prophet Muhammad was the best human being. According to Michael H. Hart who wrote the book, ‘The Hundred Most Influential Men in History’, the topmost position, i.e. the number one position goes to the beloved prophet of Islam, Muhammad (pbuh). There are several such examples of non-Muslims paying great tributes to the prophet, like Thomas Carlyle, La-Martine, etc.

Answer:

 

Guidelines on how every Muslim should spend his day and night – 2

Guidelines on how every Muslim should spend his day and night. 

By Hakimul Ummah Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi 
( rahmatullahi ‘alayh )

 

 

 

16. Do not search for the faults of others. Do not have evil thoughts about anyone. Instead, look at your own faults and try to put them in order.

17. You should be very particular in offering your salaat in the proper manner, at the proper time and with great concentration.

18. Always occupy yourself in the remembrance of Allah either with your heart or tongue. Do not be neglectful in this regard at any time.

19. If you experience any satisfaction in taking the name of Allah and your heart feels happy over this, then express your gratitude to Allah.

20. Speak in a nice and humble way.

21. Set aside specific times for all your different tasks and abide strictly to these times.

22. Consider whatever regret, sorrow or loss you may experience to be from Allah. Do not be despondent. Instead, think that you will be rewarded for this.

23. Do not think about worldly matters, calculations, profits and losses, etc. all the time. Instead, think about Allah.

24. As far as possible, try to help and benefit others irrespective of whether it be in worldly affairs or Dini matters.

25. Do not eat and drink too little to the extent that you become weak and fall ill. Nor should you eat and drink too much to the extent that you feel lazy in carrying out the different acts of ‘ibadah.

26. Do not have any desire or greed for anything from anyone except Allah. Do not allow your mind to wander towards any place thinking that you will be able to gain certain benefit or profit from there.

27. Be restless in your quest for Allah.

28. Be grateful for the favours that are bestowed  upon you irrespective of whether they are plenty or few. Do not be depressed with poverty and destitution.

29. Overlook the faults and mistakes of those who are under your control.

30. If you learn of any fault of someone, conceal it. However, if the person plans to cause harm to someone else and you learn of it, then warn the other person beforehand.

31. Be in the services of guests, travelers, strangers, ‘ulama, and the pious servants of Allah.

32. Choose the company of the pious.

33. Fear Allah all the time.

34. Remember  death.

35.  Set aside a certain time daily wherein you should think about all your actions for that day. When you remember any good action, express gratitude. When you remember any evil action, repent.

36. Don’t ever speak a lie.

37. Don’t attend gatherings that are contrary to the Shari’ah.

38. Live with bashfulness, modesty and fornearance.

39. Do not be conceited by thinking to yourself that “I have a such-and-such qualities in me”

40. Continue making du’a to Allah to keep you steadfast on the straight path.

 

Guidelines on how every Muslim should spend his day and night

Guidelines on how every Muslim should spend his day and night.

By Hakimul Ummah Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi 
( rahmatullahi ‘alayh )

Everyone spends his life-span but a pertinent question is: who fulfils the right of living?

Animals bereft of wisdom and intelligence also pass their lives. However, a human being endowed with wisdom and intelligence spends a much more excellent and superior type of life. Similarly, a disbeliever  also passes the days of his life wandering in the darkness of misguidance and deviation. However, his life is quite different from that of a Muslim who lives a secure, smooth life in accordance with the guidelines of divine revelation. The day and night of a disbeliever is spent in spiritual darkness whereas a Muslim spends his day and night in spiritual light. Hence, a pertinent question arises: how should every Muslim spend his day and night so that his life could easily be distinguished from that of a disbeliever ?

Every Muslim should spend his day and night as follows:

1. Acquire knowledge of the Din according to your needs. You could acquire this knowledge either by reading a book or by asking the ‘ulama.

2. Abstain from all sins.

3. If you commit any sin, repent immediately.

4. Do not hold back in fulfilling anyone’s right. Do not cause anyone physical or verbal harm. Do not speak ill of anyone.

5. Do not have any love for wealth nor any desire for name or fame. Do not concern yourself with extravagant food and clothing.

6. If someone rebukes you for your mistake or error, do not try to justify your action. Admit your fault and repent.

7. Do not embark on a journey without any dire necessity. This is because many unconscious and unintended acts are committed while on a journey. Many good deeds are missed out, there is a shortcoming in the different forms of dhikr (remembrance of Allah), and you are unable to accomplish your tasks on time.

8. Do not laugh excessively nor talk excessively. You should take special precaution in not talking with ghayr mahrams (those with whom the observances of purdah is incumbent) in an informal way.

9. Do not go about repeating or mentioning an argument that may have taken place between two persons.

10. Always be mindful of the rules of the Shari’ah in everything you do. 

11. Do not display laziness in executing any act of ‘ibadah.

12. Try and spend most of your time in seclusion.

13. If you have to meet and converse with others, meet them with humility and do not display your greatness.

14. Associate very little with rulers and those who hold high positions.

15. Stay very far from the irreligious people.

 to be continued…