Saturday, March 1, 2008

332)Allegories in Nature: "....a Cosmos full of signs and symbols that evoke the perfection of Allah's creation and mercy"; Quotes of Aga Khans.

"Islam does not perceive the world as two seperate domains of mind and spirit, science and belief"(Aga Khan IV, McMaster University Convocation, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, May 15th 1987)

“Muslims believe in an all-encompassing unit of man and nature. To them there is no fundamental division between the spiritual and the material while the whole world, whether it be the earth, sea or air, or the living creatures that inhabit them, is an expression of God’s creation.”(Aga Khan IV, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA, 13 April 1984)

Allah alone wishes: the Universe exists; and all manifestations are as a witness of the Divine Will"(Memoirs of Aga Khan III, 1954)

"Once man has thus comprehended the essence of existence, there remains for him the duty, since he knows the absolute value of his own soul, of making for himself a direct path which will constantly lead his individual soul to and bind it with the universal Soul of which the Universe is, as much of it as we perceive with our limited visions, one of the infinite manifestations. Thus Islam's basic principle can only be defined as mono-realism and not as monotheism. Consider, for example, the opening declaration of every Islamic prayer: "Allah-o-Akbar". What does that mean? There can be no doubt that the second word of the declaration likens the character of Allah to a matrix which contains all and gives existence to the infinite, to space, to time, to the Universe, to all active and passive forces imaginable, to life and to the soul"(Memoirs of Aga Khan III, 1954)


I beleive that signs and processes in the external world are harbingers of the mysteries and realities of the spiritual world. Mowlana Hazar Imam mentioned as much in eloquent language at an Institute of Ismaili Studies convocation in 2003:

"The famous verse of 'light' in the Qur'an, the Ayat al-Nur, whose first line is rendered here in the mural behind me, inspires among Muslims a reflection on the sacred, the transcendent. It hints at a cosmos full of signs and symbols that evoke the perfection of Allah's creation and mercy"(Aga Khan IV, 19th October 2003, London,U.K.)

Some examples, IMHO, of "a cosmos full of signs and symbols" include:

1)The presence of invisible dark matter and dark energy, which makes up by far most of the matter in the universe and whose physical presence can only be inferred by its gravitational effect on visible matter, which makes up less than 5% of all matter in the universe; the common belief is that if something is not amenable to the senses of perception it must not be there and cannot be real. Well, dark matter makes up 25% of our universe and dark energy 70% and neither of these is visible to the eye. Only a mere 5% of our universe is visible to us. The message is, just because you cannot see it with your physical eye does not mean it is not there. The same may be said about the world of spirit;

2)Particles of matter and their anti-matter counterparts. Each particle of matter in the universe has its own, specific anti-matter partner, which can be situated anywhere in the universe but whose behaviour is intimately connected to its corresponding matter particle. When a matter particle undergoes any change its corresponding anti-matter particle responds to this change no matter where it physically is in the universe. When these two opposing matter particles come together they annihilate each other and create a 'poof' of energy(light). Here one sees the interchangeability of matter and energy(light) and the allegory that this 'ayat'(sign) can represent:

"Islam does not perceive the world as two seperate domains of mind and spirit, science and belief"(Aga Khan IV, McMaster University Convocation, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, May 15th 1987)

3)Quantum mechanics, which describes the microscopic and submicroscopic universe and does not follow the rules that the macroscopic universe follows, demonstrates a blurring between the worlds of existence and "non-existence" and is forced to use probabilities and not certainties to describe the properties of matter:

4)Ubiquitous processes in nature like Photosynthesis and Protein Synthesis, IMHO, reflect deeper truths when one studies them sequentially:

In Photosynthesis, green plants capture uv light from the sun, convert it into chemical energy in the form of well-known high-energy molecules, then use this energy to power a reaction where carbon dioxide is extracted from the atmosphere and combinedwith water to create food or nourishment(carbohydrate or sugar), releasing oxygen back into the atmosphere. The image of taking light from the sun and using it to create nourishment in the form of food can be a symbol of the light(noor) of Imam providing spiritual nourishment to an impoverished individual human soul or community of souls:

In Protein Synthesis the specific instructions for making a protein in the cell's interior come from the master DNA molecule in the nucleus, which literally is at the geographical center of that protein's universe. A protein's function is totally dependent on its 3-dimensional structure, which in turn is totally dependent on its unique and specific amino acid sequence, which itself is entirely dependent upon coded instructions from the DNA master molecule in the nucleus. In a very real way the master DNA molecule is the celestial essence of that protein. We can see in this ayat(sign) of Protein Synthesis a symbolism speaking to the hierachy of spiritual knowledge and that while there may be(and is) beauty in the physical universe, the real story and beauty lies at the level of its Celestial Essence:

I think there are many other examples in nature, many of which have been discovered by the rational intellect of man during the 20th century.

Easy Nash aka easynash

The Qur'an itself repeatedly recommends Muslims to become better educated in order better to understand God's creation: Aga Khan IV(2007)
The Quran tells us that signs of Allah's Sovereignty are found in the contemplation of His Creation: Aga Khan IV(2007)
This notion of the capacity of the human intellect to understand and to admire the creation of Allah will bring you happiness in your everyday lives: Aga Khan IV(2007)
Islam, eminently logical, placing the greatest emphasis on knowledge, purports to understand God's creation: Aga Khan IV(2006)