What Is Life?
Man's existence in this world and the creation of this entire universe are not mere accidents or products of a fortuitous nature. This universe, every single atom of it, manifests and leads us to the realization of a Loving, Merciful and All-powerful Creator. Without a Creator, nothing can exist. Every single soul knows that he exists and that his existence is dependent upon a Creator he knows for sure that he cannot create himself. Therefore it is his duty to know his master, the Creator.
Man is a unique creature. God establishes man as His representative or deputy to govern over all other creatures in this world. He is endowed with the faculty of reason which sets him apart from all other animals. Together with this faculty to discriminate and discern, man is given the freedom (free-will) to choose for himself a way of life worthy of his position as God's representative or to fall lower than the lowest of all animals or creations. Man is born pure and sinless and is given the choice to do righteous deeds or indulge in sins.
The Creator, out of His abundant Love and Mercy for mankind has not left us in darkness to discover the right path by trial and error alone. Coupled with our intellectual capability to reason, our Creator bestowed upon us Divine Guidance that outlines the criterion for truth, knowledge, as well as the reality of our existence in this world and the Hereafter.
From the beginning of mankind, our Creator sent prophets to convey His revelation and to invite human beings to the path of true peace and obedience to the One True God. This is Islam. This message is conveyed towards successive generations of man through the different prophets, all inviting mankind to the same path. However all the earlier messages or revelations from God were distorted by people of later generations.
As a result of this distortion, pure Revelation from our Creator was adulterated and polluted with myths, superstitions, idol worship and irrational philosophical ideologies. The religion of God in a sense was lost in a plethora of religions. Human history is a testament of man's drift between light and darkness, but God out of His Abundant Love for mankind has not forsaken us.
When mankind was in the depths of the Dark Ages, our Creator sent His final Messenger, Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, to redeem humanity with the final revelation which represents the ultimate and permanent source of guidance for the whole world.
Criteria For Truth:
The following criteria can best serve as a gauge to find out the authenticity of the last revelation (the Qur’an) as words of God.
1. Rational Teachings: Since our Creator bestowed reason and intellect upon us, it is our duty to use it to distinguish the truth from falsehood. True, undistorted revelation from God must be rational and can be reasoned out by all unbiased minds.
2. Perfection: Since our Creator is all perfect, His revelation must be perfect and accurate, free from mistakes, omissions, interpolations and multiplicity of versions. It should be free from contradictions in its narration.
3. No Myths or Superstitions: True revelation is free from myths or superstitions that degrade the dignity of our Creator or man himself.
4. Scientific: Since our Creator is the Creator of all knowledge, true revelation is scientific and can withstand the challenge of science at all times.
5. Factual Prophecy: Our Creator is the Knower of the past, present and future. Thus His prophecies in His revelation will be fulfilled as prophesied.
6. Inimitable by Man: True revelation is infallible and cannot be imitated by man. God's true revelation is a Living miracle, an open book challenging all mankind to see and prove for themselves its authenticity or veracity.
Abdullah M. Al-Rehaili