Friday, December 8, 2006

21)The Universe: a mere reflection of the Absolute.....

Imam Hasan, as quoted by Imam Sultan Mohammed Shah(Aga Khan 3) in his Memoirs, also uses the following brilliant metaphor:


'Allah is the sun; and the Universe as we know it in all its magnitude, and time, with its power, are nothing more than the reflection of the Absolute in the mirror of the fountain.'

Despite being nothing more than a weak reflection of the Absolute, the Universe, with all the objects and sequential events contained within it, is nevertheless part of the structure of truth as proposed by philosophical Ismailism. Consequently, it is worthy of intense study and contemplation.

Was it not the Prophet Mohammed who also said:

"One hour of contemplation on the works of the Creator is better than a thousand hours of prayer."

A thousand years ago, not much was known about the intricate details of scientific events. At the time of Pir Nasir Khusraw, earth, wind, air and fire were what made up the elements that made up the universe. It was also thought at that time that the earth, not the sun, was the center of the solar system. While some muslim commentators infer that a number of muslim scientists proposed that the sun was at the center of the solar system, it was Nicholas Copernicus, in 1543, who is widely credited with this discovery.

Today, a thousand years later, an unbelievable amount of intricate detail is known about how the universe, from a microscopic to a macroscopic level, operates under the rule of rational law. Whether it is that all the elements that make up living systems come from the nuclear cores of exploding supernovae(mature stars), or how the genetic material DNA replicates and passes on from one cell to its offspring, or how proteins(the workhorses of cells) are synthesised from DNA and RNA, or how electrons move along a metal wire to create electricity, or how earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, continental movements are all linked in the dynamic earth by the process of plate tectonics, or how gravity, electromagnetism, the weak nuclear force and the strong nuclear force make up all the known forces in the universe(that we know of so far), and much, much more, there is a plethora of facts that the sequential, cogitative, discursive intellect of man can feast on in his attempt to bridge the gap towards the timeless, instantaneous intellect that infuses inspired human beings like Prophets and Imams.


Islam, eminently logical, placing the greatest emphasis on knowledge, purports to understand God's creation:Aga Khan 4.
The God of the Quran is the One whose Ayats(Signs) are the Universe in which we live, move and have our being:Aga Khan 3