Monday, 20 July 2020

Mystical Vision of Allah (Part 3)

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
وصلى الله على نبيه الكريم
وعلى آله واصحابه اجمعين

As I mentioned previously, there are quite a number of narrations, mostly attributed to sayyidina Ibn Abbas رضى الله عنهما, that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم saw his Lord in the form of a human. However, it must be acknowledged that the vast majority of these are either quite weak or else outright fabrications from the perspective of the sciences of Hadith. But when taken together, and combined with some of the more sound reports, along with certain passages we find in the Hebrew Bible where some prophets and seers beheld the Lord God in visions in the form of a man, we can reasonably conclude that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم must indeed have had a vision or perhaps even multiple visions in which he beheld the Lord Almighty in the form of a radiant, handsome youth. In one such report relayed by Imam Ibn al-Jawzi رحمه الله (d. 654 H), the Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم reportedly stated:

رأيتُ ربِّي تعالى في صورةِ شابٍّ أمرَدٍ عليهِ حلَّةٌ حمراءُ
I saw my Lord, Most High, in the form of a beardless youth, wearing a red garment
(al-‘Ilal al-Muntahiyah; v.1, p.35, #15)

As I’ve already explained, that is the “veil of form”, and not the actual Essence of Allah Most High. Shaykh Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani has reportedly written, in his book Sirr ul-Asrar, that this means Allah Most High manifests His glory upon some image or appearance, and it was such an appearance through which He interacted with the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم in a vision. And this phenomenon of Allah manifesting some of His glory onto an object external to Him is affirmed in the holy Quran, in the account of Him manifesting some of His glory upon a mountain, which caused the latter to crumble and the prophet Moses, who was beholding that act of manifestation, to swoon. Likewise, He manifested some of His glory in the holy valley of Tuwa in an audible voice with which He spoke to prophet Moses from the ‘burning bush’. The Quranic term for this phenomenon is تجلّى Tajalla (Surah 7:143).

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