Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IV (may Allah have mercy on him), offered to people of all nationalities, faiths and beliefs the opportunity of raising questions and issues that were of interest to them. Presented below are answers to some questions that were raised in sessions held in London. Compiled by Amatul Hadi Ahmad.
Questioner: My question is about acquiring faith. I think that people come to believe in God through faith rather than through scientific proof and I wondered how Islam helped people to acquire that faith?
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad: I think the scientific proof is there but, unfortunately, most people are prejudiced in favour of atheism. This is because believing in something that you cannot see, you cannot touch, cannot feel in any way is very difficult. As people become more educated, the more they think that mysteries [exist], of course they do, but to believe in a mystery over and above other mysteries is more difficult. This is what they say. This is what they claim but it is inaccurate.
The mystery of creation is a mystery that you must either understand or reject. The evidence, however, is so powerful that you cannot reject it. One’s mind is incapable of understanding it, yet the principle of evidence is given precedence over the principle of faith. As far as human faith is concerned, it could not have visualised these mysteries to have happened ‘naturally’. There are objections against this belief that are repeated all over the human scientific experience – yet they have to believe what they see.
This is the only principle that can help people to realise the existence of God scientifically because if you remove God, no existence is possible – which is the problem. If one considers the issue from different scientific angles, one will reach the same point. According to the science of Entropy, everything must disappear altogether from existence, may be in many trillions of years, but whatever energy exchange takes place, it loses a part of that energy in a form which is irretrievable. It, therefore, dissipates into space, into thin air. Every time the process of recreation of a universe takes place, in the form of a big bang or whatever you may believe, the universe which comes into being is slightly less than the universe that had died before it. This principle has to be understood in minute detail. The result would be that, call it trillion into trillion years, ultimately, the whole universe must come to an end – there should be nothing left.
Visualise now eternity – had the existence of the universe become impossible eternally before, you and I should not have been sitting here! This is the greater objection that the scientists should face – and many scientists do face it and say that they are driven to believe in the existence of God because of this – there is no way out.
The question then arises, ‘Does God also lose His energy or does He not’? This question was addressed by Aristotle, and Aristotle, who lived many thousands of years ago, was wiser than the scientists of today. He calculated philosophically and logically that because existence of anything is not possible without a first cause, that because the existence of created things is not possible because they lose energy – in action we lose energy – hence, the first cause would be conceived in a manner such that it does not lose energy.
That is exactly the Qur’anic vision of creation with the ‘word’, a concept that is also found in the Bible. The word is not action – the word is vision or wish for something. God is not created so He must have some attributes that are not created. Created attributes are not the attributes of the Creator. There is a divide between the two. If that is not true then the Creator must also have been created. Hence, logically if we begin with the concept of a Creator, He must be different from whatever He created. Our arguments are based on our experience of the creation. The nature of the Creator we do not know.
Hence, according to the Qur’an the nature of the Creator is such that He visualises a thing and it begins to be and finally comes into being in its complete form – the energy is balanced in such a manner that nothing is lost. For instance, if you bring together matter and anti-matter, the result is zero. This, therefore, is a vision of God to create something out of nothing. Without losing His energy at all, He realises a thing in two separate areas out of non-existence and both are created in their own zone while no extra energy is required for their creation through their coming together.
Similar rational arguments can be given in favour of God as believed in religion. There are, however, many areas of further discussion and objections against this view. I do not have time to repeat everything that I have already stated on this subject on previous occasions but I would refer you to my book, [Revelation, Rationality, Knowledge and Truth] in which this and related issues have been discussed at length. I think the rational community of the world will agree that this is the dilemma we are facing. We must believe in God or not believe in our own existence – that is the issue. This is the only dilemma. If we deny the existence of God, we must also deny our own existence and that we cannot! Both are linked inseparably.