Search:
From the Archive
When Will Tarnishing the Image of Islam Come to An End?
The Ability to Renounce: You Either Worship God Alone or Be a Slave to your Fancies
Types of Preaching: Between Warning and Bringing Glad Tidings
Forced Displacement: A Historical Fundamental Overview
Religious freedom between Islam and fanatic Muslims
Fatwas: Part Twenty-One
The Weak, Poor Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Christians Have No Supporters at All!
Job and Fellowship Listing
A great German Muslim, God bless him!
Separating Spouses- A Detailed Answer
Questions about fanatic fatwas and my fatwas
When Soldiers Oppress The Unarmed Egyptian Nation, One Should Say: Poor, Poor Egypt!
We said it before:
Fatwas: Part Fifteen
"...Were It Not for God's restraining People by Means of Others..." (Quran 22:40)
A retired Constitutional lawyer has read the entire proposed healthcar
The Islamic consultation “Al- Shoraa”
Own Or Be Owned
WHAT IS THE MEANING OF HOMELAND?
Women's Right to Aspire to the Presidency of Any Islamic State:
The Metaphysical Realm in the Quran

 

The Metaphysical Realm in the Quran

Published in August 24, 2017

Translated by: Ahmed Fathy

 

Introduction:

 We have received this question via email, and we quote it here followed by our reply:

 (...The Sunnites claim that hadiths ascribed to the Prophet Muhammad about topics related to the metaphysical realm (e.g., the alleged second coming of Jesus, the so-called Anti-Christ, Signs of the Hour, persons promised with Paradise, etc.) must be true as per these verses asserting that God might have inspired Muhammad with these hadiths (as per the understanding of Sunnite imams): "Nor does he speak out of desire. It is but a revelation revealed." (53:3-4); "...I do not know what will be done with me, or with you. I only follow what is inspired in me, and I am only a clear warner." (46:9). I'm still a new Quranist; I wonder at how Sunnites assume that as per these verses, the hadiths about the future and/or the metaphysical realm might be inspired by God into the mind of the Prophet; is this part of prophethood and prophecies?! Is There a difference between the Quranic terms '"prophet" and "messenger"? What do you think? How can views of Sunnites be refuted within your Quranist viewpoints? ... Thank you for your time ...)

 

 

OUR REPLY:

 

Firstly: basic notions:

1- These verses refer only and exclusively to the Quran as God's revelation to Muhammad: "Nor does he speak out of desire. It is but a revelation revealed." (53:3-4). For further details, we refer you to our article (in English) titled "A Practical Study: "It Is but a Revelation Revealed." (Quran 53:4)", found on this link: http://www.ahl-alquran.com/English/show_article.php?main_id=16993

As for thedifference between the Quranic terms '"prophet" and "messenger", we refer you to our article (in English) titled "Overlapping Concepts: ''Prophet'' and ''Messenger'' in the Quran", found on this link:

http://www.ahl-alquran.com/English/show_article.php?main_id=16368

2- Muhammad as a messenger and a prophet received some measure of knowledge about the aspects of the metaphysical realm ONLY within the Quranic verses. Likewise, the only religious legislations in Islam are found exclusively in the Quran. Muhammad never knew anything about the aspects of the metaphysical realm (of the past, the present, and future) away from the Quranic revelation.   

3- Some prophets/messengers were granted by God some measure of knowledge about the metaphysical realm and the unknown (of the present and near future) and God has commanded them to declare this to others; for instance, Joseph when he said to his two prison-cell inmates the following: "...No food is served to you, but I have informed you about it before you have received it. That is some of what my Lord has taught me..." (12:37), and Jesus when he told his people the following: "...And I inform you concerning what you eat, and what you store in your homes. In that is a sign for you, if you are believers." (3:49). Hence, God gives some measure of knowledge related to the metaphysical realm and linked to the unknown aspects of the future to some prophets/messengers He has chosen, as per this verse: "...Nor will God inform you of the future, but God elects from among His messengers whom He wills..." (3:179).

4- Some other prophets/messengers were NOT granted by God any knowledge about the metaphysical realm and the unknown aspects, and God has commanded them to declare this to others; for instance, Noah said to his people: ""I do not say to you that I possess the treasures of God, nor do I know the future, nor do I say that I am an angel. Nor do I say of those who are despicable in your eyes that God will never give them any good. God is Aware of what lies in their souls. If I did, I would be one of the unjust ones."" (11:31); likewise, Muhammad said to his people: "...I do not say to you that I possess the treasuries of God, nor do I know the future, nor do I say to you that I am an angel. I only follow what is inspired to me..." (6:50). This inspiration referred to in 6:50 is ONLY the Quranic text.

5- We read repeatedly in the Quranic text about Muhammad in particular that he did not know the future or the unknown, and this refutes the 10.000+ hadiths ascribed falsely to him about future events and predictions, past events, and other items related to the metaphysical realm, and if one believes in such false hadiths, one thus rejects the Quran and disbelieves in it. God has commanded Muhammad to declare the following: "Say, "I have no control over any benefit or harm to myself, except as God wills. Had I known the future, I would have acquired much good, and no harm would have touched me. I am only a warner, and a herald of good news to a people who believe."" (7:188); "Say, "I am not different from the other messengers; and I do not know what will be done with me, or with you. I only follow what is inspired in me, and I am only a clear warner."" (46:9); "Say, "I do not know whether what you are promised is near, or whether my Lord will extend it for a period." The Knower of the Invisible; He does not disclose His Invisible to anyone.Except to a messenger of His choosing..." (72:25-27).   

6- Some aspects of the metaphysical, unknown realm (i.e., the invisible, some future predictions, and some events of past) are now made now by being mentioned in the Quran by God; we notice that God has reminded Muhammad many times that he never knew about such aspects as he never witnessed them. For example, God says the following to Muhammad after the story of Noah: "These are some stories from the past that we reveal to you. Neither you, nor your people knew them before this..." (11:49). God says the following to Muhammad after the story of Joseph: "This is news from the past that We reveal to you. You were not present with them when they plotted and agreed on a plan." (12:102). God says the following to Muhammad within the story of Mary: "These are accounts from the Unseen, which We reveal to you. You were not with them when they cast their lots as to which of them would take charge of Mary; nor were you with them as they quarreled." (3:44). God says to Muhammad that he never witnessed events related to ancient prophets in the past eras: "You were not on the western side when We decreed the command to Moses, nor were you among the witnesses. But We established many generations, and time took its toll on them. Nor were you among the people of Madian, reciting Our verses to them. But We kept sending messengers. Nor were you by the side of the Mount Al-Tur when We proclaimed. Rather, it was a mercy from your Lord, that you may warn people who received no warner before you, so that they may take heed." (28:44-46).

7- Accordingly, telling tales about the metaphysical realm that are never mentioned in the Quran is spreading mere myths and definitely an act of disbelieving in the Quranic text as God's Word. Muhammad himself had no right to predict anything or to talk about past events he never witnessed; e.g., he was asked many times about the Hour (i.e., the Last Day), and he did not respond until answers have been provided in the Quran, while God asserts in these verses that Muhammad never knew the future in this world and the next. We would like readers to contemplate these verses: "They ask you about the Hour, "When will it come?" Say, "Knowledge of it rests with my Lord. None can reveal its coming except He. It weighs heavily on the heavens and the earth. It will not come upon you except suddenly." They ask you as if you are responsible for it. Say, "Knowledge of it rests with God," but most people do not know." (7:187); "They ask you about the Hour, "When will it take place?" You have no knowledge of it. To your Lord is its finality. You are just a warner for whoever dreads it. On the Day when they witness it-as though they only stayed an evening, or its morning." (79:42-46). Thus, Sunnite imams and authors in the Middle-Ages fabricated myths and lies about the metaphysical realm (i.e., issues related to the invisible, the unknown, and the future) and ascribed such falsehoods forcibly to Muhammad after his death. For instance, there are tens of hadiths about the Last Day or the Hour, apart from 10.000+ hadith about future events, predictions, past events, non-human creatures like angels, devils, and Jinn, the so-called intercession or mediation of Muhammad, and the myth of the ascension to heaven by some prophets like Jesus and Muhammad, etc. We assert here that authors, propagators, and defenders of, and believers in, such myths are the real arch-enemies of Muhammad and the Quran.    

8- Thus, any narratives about the metaphysical realm outside the Quran is definitely disbelief in the Quran and rejection of it by enemies of Muhammad, who invented such myths from their own minds/imagination and ascribed such falsehoods to Muhammad after his death. Accordingly, the earthly, man-made religions of the Muhammadans are based on myths of metaphysical realm as they assume that its narratives are divinely revealed by God. The follower of such false religions impose their myths on others and prohibit their discussion, while punishing 'heretics' or 'apostates' by the penalty or threat of putting them to death to force them to believe in, and not to reject, these myths. This is why when earthly, man-made religions dominate within a given society, myths spread within it, while deniers are threatened to be killed, and this leads inevitably to the fact that ignorance reigns supreme all over life aspects. This occurred to Europeans when they were dominated by the Catholic Church in the Middle-Ages and also to the Muhammadans when they have been dominated by the Ibn Hanbal Sunnite doctrine, then Sufism, then Wahabism now.            

 

Secondly: brief analysis of the metaphysical aspect of the Quranic stories:

 The metaphysical realm in the Quran includes various sides, as it includes Quranic stories, epithets, qualities, deeds, and features of God (described in a figurative sense to make us understand them), creatures of Barsakh nature (i.e., cannot be seen by humans) such as devils, angels, and Jinn, and finally, verses describing the Hour, the Last Day, Hell, and Paradise. These metaphysical aspects in the Quranic text is part of our belief, as true, pious believers must believe in the entirety of its text, NOT to believe in it partially while rejecting some verses, for instance. This belief in the metaphysical and unseen aspect is part of the Islamic faith as per the Quranic description of the pious believers who believe in the Quran wholeheartedly: "This is the Book in which there is no doubt, a guide for the righteous. Those who believe in the unseen, and perform the prayers, and give from what We have provided for them." (2:2-3). This type of belief/faith is submitting to God's revealed knowledge in the Quran about the metaphysical realm, though we cannot see/touch it or perceive it with our senses while we are alive on Earth. Let us quote some examples from the Quranic verses about the metaphysical ream in the Quranic stories, which differ a great deal from the way human beings write history and its events.

  The metaphysical aspect of the Quranic stories about past events: Of course, Quranic stories about past events vary, as they include stories of prophets/messengers and their peoples and some peoples away from stories of prophets/messengers; e.g., Sheba in 34:15-21, People of the Cave in 18:9-26, and Zu Al-Qarnayn in 18:83-100, and we have tackled such stories a lot in our previous articles.

 The metaphysical aspect of the Quranic stories about future events:

1- Some of the stories tackles event of the near future that occurred years later during the lifetime of Muhammad; let us quote the following examples.

1/1: The victory of the Byzantines after their being defeated by the Persians at first: "The Byzantines have been defeated. In a nearby territory. But following their defeat, they will be victorious. In a few years. The matter is up to God, in the past, and in the future. On that day, the believers will rejoice. In God's support. He supports whomever He wills. He is the Almighty, the Merciful. The promise of God-God never breaks His promise, but most people do not know." (30:2-6).

1/2: What the Quran narrates about the people of Muhammad (i.e., the Qorayish tribe) and what occurred to them after the death of Muhammad because of  their rejection and denying of the Quran; this rejection has been proved by the crime called Arab conquests, as they later on were punished by civil wars and resulting warring factions and divisions. The Quranic prediction of this is found in verses revealed in Mecca, and they were realized years later: "Say, "He is Able to send upon you an affliction, from above you, or from under your feet. Or He can divide you into factions, and make you taste the violence of one another. Note how We explain the revelations, so that they may understand." But your people rejected it, though it is the truth. Say, "I am not responsible for you." For every happening is a finality, and you will surely know." (6:65-67). Please ponder deeply on this verse: "For every happening is a finality, and you will surely know." (6:67).

1/3: Another future prediction in the Quran (that took place once Muhammad died) is the one about some of his so-called companions who were adamant in hypocrisy; i.e., those among his contemporaries who were more disbelieving than the hypocrites whose deeds and words expressed and exposed their disbelief and hatred: "Among the Desert-Arabs around you there are some hypocrites, and among the inhabitants of Yathreb too. They have become adamant in hypocrisy. You do not know them, but We know them. We will punish them twice; then they will be returned to a severe torment." (9:101). Thus, Muhammad never knew those ones adamant in hypocrisy and lived around him in Yathreb and they never showed their hatred toward Islam (i.e., the Quran) and Muhammad; Muhammad was no mind-reader nor did he knew what lied in their hearts. Apparently, these ones adamant in hypocrisy got nearer to Muhammad and obtained his trust while concealing their true feelings very carefully so as not to lose their stature in Yathreb, until Muhammad died. Once he died and the Quranic revelation stopped, they showed their true colors and led other Arabs into the crime, which violates the Quranic teachings, called Arab conquests, and we mean by our words here the four pre-Umayyad caliphs who are deified by Sunnites as the 'wise' caliph, but deemed by Quranists as mere cunning criminals, murderers, and thieves. God has exposed their hearts and intentions in 9:101, and how they will be punished/tormented twice during their lifetimes and will enter into Hell; this means they will die without repentance and will adhere to their disbelief and aggression until they die. This applies to all Arabs who participated in the crime called Arab conquests, with its resulting major civil war.       

2- There are Quranic future predictions that took place soon during Muhammad's lifetime, and we quote few examples below. 

2/1: God predicts certain words of the ignorant once who actually said them and deserved such Quranic rebuke: "The ignorant among the people will say, "What has turned them away from the direction of prayer they once followed?" Say, "To God belong the East and the West. He guides whom He wills to a straight path."" (2:142).

2/2: About the debate among Arabs at the time about the number of the People of the Cave: "They will say, "Three, and their fourth being their dog." And they will say, "Five, and their sixth being their dog," guessing at the unknown. And they will say, "Seven, and their eighth being their dog." Say, "My Lord knows best their number." None knows them except a few. So do not argue concerning them except with an obvious argument, and do not consult any of them about them." (18:22).

2/3: About the debates of disbelievers who will deny resurrection: "And they say, "When we have become bones and fragments, shall we really be resurrected as a new creation?" Say, "Even if you become rocks or iron. Or some substance, which, in your minds, is even harder." Then they will say, "Who will restore us?" Say, "The One who originated you the first time." Then they will nod their heads at you, and say, "When will it be?" Say, "Perhaps it will be soon."" (17:49-51). 

2/4: About stances of hypocrites among the so-called companions who were contemporaries of Muhammad: "They will swear to you by God, when you return to them, that you may leave them alone. So leave them alone. They are a disgrace, and their destiny is Hell; a reward for what they used to earn." (9:95); "Then there are those who establish a mosque to cause harm, and disbelief, and disunity among the believers, and as an outpost for those who fight God and His Messenger. They will swear: "Our intentions are nothing but good." But God bears witness that they are liars." (9:107).

3- There are Quranic future predictions that are repeated in all eras; e.g., features and descriptions of disbelievers who spend money to repel people away from God's Path (i.e., the Quran and/or monotheism in general), predicted 14 centuries ago by God in the Quran, and this type of persons will go on existing as Satan never resigns from his post: "Those who disbelieve spend their wealth to repel from God's path. They will spend it, then it will become a source of sorrow for them, and then they will be defeated. Those who disbelieve will be herded into Hell." (8:36). This verse applies to the oil-revenues-rich Saudis in our era, who spend $ billions to spread and impose Wahabism as if it were Islam; they will be defeated and lose in this world and the next.

4- Of course, Quranic stories have their unique features; unlike history written by human beings who focus on names of people, events, details, locations, eras, etc., we see that the Quranic stories focus ONLY on the moral lessons drawn from them and NOT on details of time and place and names of persons. Besides, no human history can predict the future or tackle the metaphysical realm known only to the Omniscient God. Historical accounts/narratives written by human beings are always relative that might be true or untrue in part or as a whole, unlike the case with the Quranic Absolute Truth by God in its sharia legislations, stories, and metaphysical aspects, as the Quran registers and records even hidden intentions and stances of some people as well as intrigues. Plots, and schemes, in a unique way than can never be paralleled by history written by people. Yet, the Quranic text never cares to write names of persons, as the focus and emphasis is on examples of human beings that will continue to exist till the end of days in all eras (e.g., hypocrites, (dis)believers, the unjust retinue of the affluent classes, etc.).       

5- Finally, we advise readers to read and ponder deeply on the Quranic Chapter 12 that contain the story of Joseph, as an example of the metaphysical realm related to past events, and then to read and ponder deeply on the Quranic Chapter 9 that records events about the lifetime of Muhammad and the Yathreb dwellers shortly before the death of Muhammad. We cannot help but notice the absence of most names in both Quranic Chapters, as we read about human examples and the Quranic recording of their deeds, words, and hidden intentions and feelings, by Allah the Omniscient, glorified be His Holy Name.  


The views and opinions of authors whose articles and comments are posted on this site do not necessarily reflect the views of IQC.