Thursday, February 4, 2010

Resurrection: In the Name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

 "Those whom they invoke other than the Creator can create nothing. Rather they are themselves created. They are dead and lifeless, lacking all feeling and awareness, and they do not know when they will be resurrected."Qur'an (Koran) 16:20-21

"There are two views concerning the pleasures of this world," writes Sayyid Lari in his book, Resurrection, Judgement and the Hereafter. Lari continues, "Man can construct a solid barrier against the danger of the dissolution of his inward personality only when he attains religious belief and certainty... the conviction that our sorrows and joys... are rather moving towards Him." With this knowledge we shall enjoy the everlasting blessings and mercies of God, the infinite source of all grace.

In the other view, "Today we witness a growing wave of corruption, injustice and cruelty in countries which are well developed with respect to education, economics and judicial organization. Such is the extent of the moral decay in those countries... unable to take the place of the basic element of faith in taming the rebellious inclination of the soul to deviance and sin." In Lari's view, it is in part modern science that "has expelled man from certain spheres of thought he used to inhabit... insofar as he is ignorant and lacking in belief, it is harmful." A belief in the afterlife, in this view, tames the stubborn sullenness of a soul. It tames the impulse towards over-abounding pleasures of all kinds in the light of the belief that justice and order are to prevail for all those aware of their dwelling in this temporal realm. Man's residence on earth is "like that of a passing caravan."

To Lari's mind, the one who "quits his bodily form, which was simply the expression of his transitory life, and is freed from this narrow realm, the gateway to another world is opened before him, bounties are placed before him..." unlike the enjoyments of this world. Thus, then in the teaching of the afterlife, the attitude toward material enjoyments will not be the same, once this is realized. Yet the person of haste, will remain unaware, anxious and perpetually distressed in regards to his possessions. Those who fall into the worship of possessions, or of persons of this world, are bound to this as a goal, god-like, and will not find the inner peace and joy that all men must seek so as to relieve themselves of the otherwise despairing acquisition and possession of people and things. All are freed then from worry and anxiety, resting in sure faith of the world hereafter. "[Do] not become over-attached to anything on this earth... Once it frees itself... it will in fact be the master of the universe."

"Whoever believes and reforms himself shall never be prey to fear or to sadness," Qur'an 6:48. The one who has realized the "unique and valuable advantage" of acceptiong the principle of an afterlife, knows that his future is fundamentally about his own conduct and deeds. He is the one who bases his conduct on truthfulness, avoids hypocrisy, engages in acts of purity and sincerity. He knows the Judgement and the raising of the Last Day may come at any time, so he prepares for his journey towards eternity.

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