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Salvation Ark

The Prophet Mohamad (pbuh&hp) and his Progeny are the salvation for the world

Debate with an Atheist

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Debate with an Atheist

 

By
The Star of the Prophet's Family, Imam al-Qâsim bin Ibrâhīm bin Ismâ’īl bin Ibrâhīm bin al-Hasan bin al-Hasan bin Ali bin Abi-Talib, peace be upon them.

Translation of Munâžara ma’a Mulhid

In the name of Allah the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate…

[An Introduction to the Debate]
It was said that an atheist man had come to visit Egypt several times. He was attending the forums of its jurists and debaters and he was asking them about the questions of atheism. Some of them were answering him with weak responses. The others were insulting and snubbing him. Then al-Qâsim bin Ibrâhīm, peace be upon him, came to know about this man. He was hiding in a house in Egypt. Then, he sent the proprietor of the house to get him to the house so that he can meet him. Indeed, he did that.

 



Afterwards, when he entered the house, al-Qâsim, may Allah be merciful to him, told him: “I had been informed that you abused us, and you asked our jurists about your cases, intending to dominate them by your vicious tricks. This is because you discovered that its jurists are too weak to respond to you with the strong proofs of Allah, and to protect His religion. You spoke on the behalf of evil demon, Satan, accursed by Allah: {And he [I.e. Satan] said: "I will take a specified portion of your slaves}. (Q. 4:118).

The atheist said: “As I criticized them and accused them with ignorance, I will ask and test you now. So, if you answer and defend them, I shall consider you their leader, or else you will be considered just like them.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, told him: “Ask whatever you want, listen well, and be fair in judging. You must avoid stickling and being unfair and you must stop refusing to consider the necessaries and rational proofs. If you do so, I will answer you, I ask Allah to help me. In Allah I put my trust. Allah is sufficient for me. None has the right to be worshipped but He, in Him I put my confidence.”

[Proving the Existence of the Creator and Proving that the World was Created.]
Then the atheist told him at this time: “Tell me what is the indication of the evidence of the existence of the Creator?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The indication of that is the saying of Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He, in the Holy Quran: {O mankind! If you are in doubt about the Resurrection, then indeed We have created you from dust, then from a nutfa [i.e. mixed drop of male and female sexual discharge], then from a clot, then from a little lump of flesh - some formed and some unformed- so that We may show you. We cause whom We will to remain in the wombs for an appointed time, then We bring you out as infants, then (give you growth) that you may reach your maturation. Among you there is he who dies young, and among you there is he who is brought back to the miserable old age, so that he knows nothing after having come into knowledge. You see the earth barren, but when We send down rain on it, it vibrates, swells, and brings forth every beautiful kind. That is because Allâh. He is the Truth, and it is He Who gives life to the dead, and it is He Who is Able to do all things. And surely, the Hour is coming, there is no doubt about it; and certainly, Allâh will resurrect those who are in the graves} (Q. 22:5-7).

The existence of the evidence in these verses is that the human was at the beginning dust then he becomes a nutfa, then he becomes a clot. All these phases must have two possibilities: It must be either originated or pre-existent. If he is originated then being originated shall be considered the clearest proof of the existence of the Creator, for many reasons: one of them is that the Originator is logically related to His originated being. For example, the writing is logically related to its writer, and the composition is related to its composer. So, it is not possible, according to the sense and the logic, that writing exists by itself without the existence of a writer who wrote it. As well, an influence cannot be originated without the influencer.

Another one from them is that the originated did not exist before and was created afterwards. Therefore, there are only two possibilities in how he was originated: either he originated himself or someone else originated him.

So if he originated himself, this only has two possibilities, too: either he created himself while he was in nothingness, or he created himself while he was really in existence. So if he created himself while he was nothing, this shall be considered impossible because a one who does not really exist cannot originate himself while he was already nothing.

Or, he originated himself while he was already in existence, this shall be considered impossible too, because a one who already exists cannot originate himself, as he already exists. As there is no need for him to originate himself again because he already in existence. Therefore, it is impossible that the one creates or originates himself. So, the true and the correct possibility is that someone else other than him created him and this originator is pre-existent, not originated. As if he is an originated being he will be considered like the originated beings.

And it is impossible to consider these phases pre-existent. This is because they are happening one by one in the same time and in the same self. Therefore, if it was, despite all its different phases and times, pre-existent, then the dust is a nutfa, the blood, the clot, the bones and flesh and the human in the same state and in the same time. This is because the Pre-existent is the being who was not originated. It is a being who eternally exists and his existence has no beginning. But, if these phases exist altogether in the same time, as I have mentioned and explained previously--I mean—it must be dust, a nutfa, the blood, the clot, the bones and flesh and the human in the same state and in the same time. This is because the phases do not precede each other, as they are all pre-existent and everyone from them is as pre-existent as the other. Therefore, if it is impossible that all these phases exist together in the same time and state, and it was proven that the phase of dust precedes the phase of nutfa and the phase of nutfa precedes the following phase; then, it shall be considered originated and cannot be considered pre-existent. So, in case of the origination, we already explained that the originated is logically related to its originator.

The atheist said: “I did not deny that these phases are originated, and the visible being_ which is the body_ is pre-existent.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “I consider that you denied this matter because I see that it can never be separated from these phases, and it may never separate. Therefore, the judgment of visible being shall be the same of all the rest phases in being originated.”

The atheist said: “Why?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Before that _ I mean the visible being_ if it is pre-existent and the phases are originated. However, phases already occur in it and if you said that these phases are pre-existent but not originated in it, then you are contradicting yourself. This is because your saying ‘are pre-existent were not’, contradicts with your saying: ‘originated.’ And if there is a negative and affirmative of the same thing for the same states, then it shall be considered impossible.
As you said, they are being originated in it, although you had already alleged that it is pre-existent but it is still originating in it. So, if it was really like this--as you allege--then it really did not precede the origination, as the origination has become pre-existent. This is because the description of the body is pre-existent. So, if it was really its description so this shall be considered impossible, because the pre-existent can never be described that way, as it cannot be changed and this is clearly impossible because it contains describing the pre-existent as an originated being, and describing the originated being as an pre-existent one.”

The atheist said: “But you did not deny that these visible beings, that you mentioned, are the ones who caused the phases?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him said: “I did the same as you in your first allegation. As there is no difference between that if it is the doer, while it did not precede its deeds. Or if it is pre-existent and it did not precede its descriptions. This is because the doer precedes and antecedes his deed. As well, the pre-existent, that was not created, antecedes what did not exist. This is because in proving that the deed did happen to it, is proving that it is really originated. So, if it did not antecede its deed, so they are gathered together in the same state and the same thing is proven to be pre-existent and proven to be originated in the same state. That is clearly impossible.”

[The Theory of Primordial Chaos, Form and the Origination of a Thing by Itself]
The [atheist] said: “I only consider that a thing was originated from another thing, and did you not deny that the things are really creating themselves by themselves? And did you not deny that the original thing is the pre-existent?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “I strictly denied this. As the thing which is the origin must have the same phases, characteristics and forms of its branches. Am I right?

So, if it was like its branches then it shall be judged like them, as I previously and sufficiently mentioned. We find the form, the colours, the aspects, the characteristics which we were not able to find in it and the existence of a thing after it was nothing is the clearest proof that this thing is originated!

So, tell me about the form, from which origin was it originated. If you answered: ‘It is pre-existent,’ then you will be wrong because there are some possibilities that must be existing in it. Some of them is that if this form is pre-existent then it should be in the formed being that appeared with it or in this element which you call ‘Primordial chaos’. So, if it was in that formed being that appears with this form, then your allegation and your saying will appear to be corrupted. This is because we might find it different from the said form, even if it was in what you call ‘primordial chaos’. Then if it is in the formed being, so it must be have transferred from it to this to that. So, if you said it transferred so, you are wrong because the descriptions cannot be transferred, as the form is what is clearly seen. So, if it is transferable, then it must disappear at the time of the transfer and appear in the time of the staying.

And there is another possibility which is: If it was in the original and it was transferred to its branches, it has created a purpose and a goal to its transferring and if it has created a purpose and a goal to its transferring, then the thing from which this phases has been transferred shall rightfully considered originated.

And if you say that it is pre-existent but it is transferring, then this saying is wrong in its meaning, like the saying we previously explained, which is ‘It is pre-existent but it was originated.’ It has another meaning which is: ‘If you make all of the things in your intellect pairs of things, and you removed each one apart from its couple, then it will be decreased, it will reach an exact limit and it will get reduced and if you joined everyone to its couple it will increase and reach to an exact limit and it will abound. Don't you think that if it ended in a phase and it decreased then reduced or increased then abounded, then the abundance and being reduced are the evidences of its end? And if it is proven that it has an end, then it is proven to be originated!”

[ The Theory of Passivity and the Appearance]
The atheist said: “You did not deny that the form of the palm and the fruit are passive in the seed, so if it exists and grows then will it appear!?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “This must be ignored, because if we follow the parts of the seed we will not find anything from what you alleged. Another saying is that if what you alleged is true, then it is possible that inside the human the form of a swine, dog or a jackass is passive and if this was really true, then the human is apparently human, but he is from the inside a dog, burro, swine and elephant! And if you said that, you shall be considered from the sophists.

So, if you wished we can talk about them, but they are proven to be too foolish to cite their sayings. Therefore, the rational people will not accept their sayings.”

The atheist: “How is it possible that the human is apparently human, but he is a dog, burro, swine and elephant from inside?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Like it is possible that the form of date and the palm exist passively inside the seed!”

The atheist said: “But there is a relation of similarity between the palm and the seed and the date, and there is no relation of similarity between the dog and the human.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “If there is a relation of similarity between the palm and the date and the seed despite of their different forms, then it shall be right that there is a relation of similarity between the human and the dog!”

The atheist said: “But the seed transforms to a palm and its form changes from the form of a seed to a form of a palm.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “As well as the human if he is separated to pieces, it is possible that he can be a dog in character, strength and primordial chaos, according to you. So, anything that you suggest in order to differentiate between them, I will use it against you, or I will bring you the same thing.

Another aspect is that if the form was in the origin itself, then the origin itself shall be considered the date because the date is known by its form, like all the formed beings. Therefore, its origin should be the date and this is completely unreasonable for all intellect because if it was that way, then being passive inside the seed should have been closer, more famous, and common. It should not have been impossible that the two forms exist together at the same time.”

The atheist said: “The seed is a date which has been formed by the primordial chaotic power. I mean if it is transferred then it transfers only to its tree, then to its fruit, then it returns to its origin, then it becomes a seed in the middle of it.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “If it was like this then, the nature, which is the origin, is a date according to the primordial chaotic power. You will believe in this if you believe in materialism. And if you are a dualist then you believe in the light and the dark. Therefore, if it had an origin, then accordingly, this origin must be the date by power because if it transforms and changed its forms, it becomes a date. This is considered a clear contradiction. Therefore, you will be obliged to believe that the absolute origin is: a date, a seed, a peach, an eggplant, etc. because it is possible, according to you, the transformation from a form to another.

Moreover, the judgment of the origins of the forms is different than the judgment of the branches. We will say a dictum regarding it, if it is Allah's will.”
The atheist said: “If you are correct in this and proven that judgment of the branches and of the origins are the same, then I will quit my sect because my suspicion regarding this topic became too great for me to stand.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Know that knowledge of things is in different ways. Some of them include:

- That which is known by sensing.
- That which is known by the self.
- That which is known by the intellect.
- That which is known by assumption and guesswork.

Those things which are known by sensing are known by five senses: hearing, sight, touch, smell, and taste. The hearing is the way of sensing the sounds and speech. The sight is the way of sensing colours and forms. The taste is the way of sensing flavours of food. The smell is the way of sensing odours. The touch is the way of the sensing softness and coarseness.

What is known by the self are shyness, fear, happiness, sadness, patience, frightfulness, joy, hatred and similar feelings like thinking, etc.

What is known by the intellect are two things: One is known by the intuition like praising the good and denouncing the ugly, doing good things, and thanking the benefactor; as well as denouncing the odium of the benefactor, unfairness and things alike to this such as the sciences of primitive intellect. The other aspect is extrapolating and conclusion, which is the result of the intellect like the knowledge of the maker and the science of amendments and accusing, as well as the knowledge of the truths of things.

Regarding what is known by assumption and guesswork, it is the judging of something without proof. This judgment could be right and could be wrong.

I would like to summarize all of this for you, so that it can be a help for us to understand the rest of our talk and to be one of the introductions that will be considered a reference for us. So, every one of these sciences cannot be obtained except by following its correct way. If you tried to get it without following its correct way, then it shall be very difficult for you and you will be considered like who is trying to get the knowledge of the science of colours by hearing, and to know the tastes by the sight.

Therefore, the only way to know the states of the bodies is the sight, and only the sight enables the human to sense the bodies. This is because the bodies must have exact descriptions, and they cannot be free from them, which may cause him to confuse and attempt to imagine them without knowing them. Whereas this is not possible, so it is proven that the bodies cannot be free from these descriptions and the judgment of their origin only must be like the judgment of their branches.”

[The Reason of the Existence and Corruption of Things]
The atheist said: “However, they allege that the reason of the existence of things and its corruption is the movements of astronomy and the orbits of the planets. Some of them say that its reason is the dualism between the two natures, I mean the light and the dark. Others make different statements.

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The proof of the corruption of their saying is the word of Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He,: { Among you there is he who dies young, and among you there is he who is brought back to the miserable old age} (Q. 22:5); and His saying : {And he whom We grant long life We reverse him in creation (i.e. weakness after strength). Will they not then understand?} (Q. 36:68).

Therefore, if what they allege is really the reason of the existence of the human, then the human should never die while he is young, and his being is not to be corrupted with the existence of the reason of his being. Only if they acknowledge the reason of the corruption, shall they be considered like one who abandoned his sect and if they allege that the reason of his being and his corruption is pre-existent—whereas the thing if is corrupted in a state in which it had been good—then their reasons shall be judged as existent. But it is impossible that their reasons exist and one dies in childhood while this is brought back to the miserable old age and the other is he whom is granted long life - is reversed in creation. I swear to you that this is not rational and it is against the right way of thinking.”

The atheist said: “If they had followed this, then you would have been obliged to follow it too, as you alleged that Allah is the reason of the existence and corruption of things—as you obliged your opponents to follow it.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “This is not fair because we do not allege that Allah is the reason of the existence and corruption of things! However, we allege that Allah, Exalted be He, is the One who originated the thing and is the One who corrupted it without being obliged to do this. The proof of that is that Allah, the Mighty and Powerful, has no pretext in His actions. This is because His deeds are different in their states, and their descriptions are changeable. Therefore, if He acted by pretext, then anything should never change its state, because He, glorified and Exalted be He, is pre-existent, and the pre-existent if there was pretext for something , may never change or leave it. The change of the states of the things is the clearest proof that Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He, is not a reason and is not a thing.”

Then the atheist said: “May Allah bless you and your parents! You really explained to me what was too confusing for me to understand. I am going to ask you another case, if you responded to me like you did in this case, then I will convert to Islam.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “If you converted to Islam then it will be good for you. But if you insisted, then your insistence will never harm Allah. Ask whatever you want.”

[Affirmation of the Divine Oneness of the Creator]
Then the atheist said: “What is the proof that the Creator of the universe is one?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “This is because if there was more than one, then it is possible that every one of these creators is almighty and alive. Do you agree? So, if everyone from them is alive then it is possible that when someone from amongst them wants to originate something, then the other creator could prevent him from creating it and if his alleged colleague stopped him, then the stopped one shall be considered helpless, and his weakness is in-time creation! But if they stopped each other and their powers are equal, then corruption shall happen, and not one of them will be able to create anything. Every one of them shall be considered weak, as he could not achieve what he wants; whereas we find the world organized and well-coordinated. Consequently, this shall prove that the creator is not two or more than two.”

The atheist said: “But you did not deny that they may harmonize and agree with each other?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The agreement and the harmonization prove the origination of the one who intended to do them. This is because they do not agree unless if they are obliged to do so and the obliged is absolutely originated.”

The atheist said: “But they say that the creator of goodness never creates evil. As well, the creator of evil never creates goodness.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “This is considered irrational.”

The atheist said: “How?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “This is because this leads us to say the one who has never sinned is apologizing for his sin; and to believe that one human has never told the truth and has never lied has never followed right guidance and has never followed the wrong guidance. Don't you see that they are alleging that their plagiarism is right and that they want all the people to follow their dogma? Whereas the same thing does not cause evil and goodness, so tell me about those who are inviting people to join their sect? So, if they say goodness, then we say that goodness never goes astray, and if they say evil, then evil never follows the right guidance. Therefore, I wonder how could they invite people to join this dogma and who will they invite?”

The atheist said: “I swear that you have said a fluent word against them and I swear that this proves that they are wrong. But, they say that the world has evil and goodness. This shall indicate that they have two pre-existent origins.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Regarding goodness and evil, we find them in this world, however , this proves that the Creator of this world is one. The evidence of this is that evil and good are the result of the existence of an evil one and a good one and we’ve already proven them as originated, as we previously explained sufficiently. We explained that the origin and branches of the world are originated and the existence of the originated being requires another originated being. So, if the judgment of the doer is the same judgment of its deed, then the creator of the world is judged to be originated too, because this requires origination. Therefore, if it was like that, then every creator must have an creator who originated him till infinity. We’ve already proven this saying to be corrupted.

Another aspect is that the difference between goodness and evil is not a proof of their being pre-existent, as their difference is not greater than the difference of the forms and the appearances. If we said that their difference indicates the difference of who created them, and made them different. So, if goodness and evil and the rest of the different things are pre-existent, then this is to be concluding defending the necessities.

Another aspect is that we see good aspect for meaning and another evil aspect for another meaning and we see goodness and evil together at the same time, then, when they are gathered together, they are many possibilities that must be existed in them. Either they were gathered by themselves or someone else gathered them. It would be impossible if they were gathered by themselves, because they are opposites, and the opposites are not to be gathered by themselves. This is because we witness their aversion, and that each one keeps away from the other. As this possibility is corrupted, then this proves that one gatherer gathered them.

Another aspect is that if the existence of goodness and evil proves that they have two pre-existent origins, the existence of four elements proves that they have pre-existent origins, and if it was like that then this proves that their evidence is a false proof.”

[The Wisdom of Creating the World]
The atheist said: “Then the world is not a pre-existent one, and it is not a mixture from two. But it is a creation of a pre-existent Creator. So, tell me: Why did Allah create this world?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “This saying is a branch of the origin. If you admit to believe the origin, I will tell you about it. Or else, I will debate with you about the origin.”
The atheist said: “What is this origin?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “It is that you know, by the evidences, that the world is originated, and it has an originator, then you must acknowledge that its Originator is One and Pre-existent. Then you must admit that He is Alive, Almighty and Wise in His Essence and Deeds.”

The atheist said: “You’ve already proven the existence of the Creator, and that He is One. So, what is the proof that He is Alive, Almighty and Wise?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The proof of this is that we already find His creation to be perfect, which cannot be achieved except by the Almighty, Alive, Wise and Omniscient. This is because of what we’ve already found in the perfect creation, and it is actually a truth. Then its Creator must be Alive, Almighty and Wise.”

The atheist said: “Therefore, must you find this Almighty and Wise Creator to be something else but a human?”

[Al-Qâsim] said: “No.”

[The atheist] said: “So you say he is a human?”

[Al-Qâsim] said: “This is because if I did not find anyone but a human, I am completely sure that this human can never do this. This is because he is a human, and we find the human to be too weak to do such a creation. As it is impossible for him to do it, then this shall lead us that there is another doer who is not a human. Don't you see that when we said that this creation can never be created except by an Almighty Wise one who is the only one who can do it, we continue to say this and to mention it. We can only keep continuing this, we cannot mention anything else but this.”

[The atheist] said: “You have told me a fluent saying regarding this topic, but if you permit me, can we return to my question?”

[Al-Qâsim] said: “Ask.”

[The atheist] said: “Why did Allah create the world?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Allah, Glorified be He, said: {Who has created death and life that He may test you as to which of you is best in deed.} (Q. 67:2) and He said: {And I created not the jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me} (Q. 51:56). Also, He said: {...and has subjected to you all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth; it is all as a favour and kindness from Him} (Q. 45:13).

He created us so that to worship him and so that he can test us and to exalt in highest degrees and the best grades.”

The atheist said: “So, what made Him create us? Did He need that creation?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Your saying ‘What made him...’ is unacceptable, as He is and will always be Omniscient who has never forgotten nor omitted. As for your saying ‘what made him...’, it is impossible because the motivation, the calling and the reintellecting only is needed by one who is inattentive. But for the one who does not neglect, it is impossible to motivate him to do something, as he never neglects nor forgets. And the proof of this is that inattention proves its origination and I previously proven that He is Pre-existent. Regarding your saying ‘did he need that create’, need is one of the characteristics of the originated. The pre-existent is too great to be described with it.”

The atheist said: “So, why did He create?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Regarding your saying ‘why did He create?’, I’ve already answered it and this in the two previous answers for this. Your statement ‘why’ indicates a question, and my saying ‘because’ indicates an answer.”

The atheist said: “What is wisdom in the creation of the world, and the creation of the tested ones?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The wisdom in that is that it is considered beneficence, or it leads to good, as He is Wise and He knows all that we know.”

The atheist said: “How could He be considered wise when He created a creation that He afflicts with all kinds of pains, and He tests with different kinds of trials? Tell me about the wisdom in this, and who witnesses it?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Regarding your question, ‘How could He be considered wise when He created a creation that He afflicts with all kinds of pains?’, the wisdom in this is that we already have witnessed that pains can lead to good.

An example of this is the hitting of boys which is done by the educators. Another one is the cupping, phlebotomizing, and the drinking of hateful medications. All these lead to beneficence and to a thing that is considered good in the intellect. As we witnessed that these pains leads to this result, so all is done by Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He, like death, illness, affliction, etc., have a wisdom in their creation, and they are all perfectly coordinated, as all of them lead to goodness.”

The atheist said: “What is the proof of that all of them lead to good?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The evidence of this is that they are all deeds of the wise one and it has proven to be right that the wise one only does these things which praises the health, safety and goodness and denounces sadness, evil and sickness, as the one who invites the others to goodness, is considered a wise one and he knows what we know.

Regarding your saying ‘Why did he test them with trials that most of them fail to pass?’ we say regarding this—and there is neither might nor power except with Allah—that the tests, orders and prohibitions of Allah only lead to goodness. Whoever fails, the reason of this is that they decided to fail and lose. As they did not obey Allah, Exalted be He, and did not follow His order, they did not stop doing the things that He asked them not to do. But if they stop doing what He prevented them from, they obey His orders, this should have led them to great victory. Therefore, one who fails and loses because he wanted to fail. The reason of failure and loss is not Allah, Exalted and Glorified be He.
For example, I will tell you about something we know, a sage of our sages, when he gave his slaves dirhams, told them: ‘Trade with this money. If you succeed, and you did not spoil it, then I will grant you the sum which is sufficient for you. But if you did not do this, I will punish you.’ Afterwards, some of them obeyed him while the others disobeyed him. Then the guilt is not to be his, as they obeyed him. But it is their mistake when they decided to disobey him. This saying and the grant of their master is only considered wisdom, as he did not invite them except to goodness, as if it was like this. Then Allah is Wise, Wise in His tests, orders and preventions.”

The atheist said: “Allah knows their destiny, but we do not know this.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Knowledge and ignorance do not beautify the good or uglify the bad. This is because if the reason of it being good is that the one who orders to do it while he knows he does it, then this shall be considered bad, as the order is beneficence and it leads to that which the ordered one is ignorant. But if this is not to be considered ugly (or bad) because of the ignorance of the commander of it, then this is because he ordered and invited to goodness. Even if he is ignorant of what the ordered one shall become afterwards, this proves that there is no difference between the commander of goodness and the inviter to goodness who is ignorant of what the commanded will become.

Another thing is that if the test is ugly because it is known to be very hard to pass, then the granting of the intellect shall be considered uglier, as it is being hard when it exists, and it deserves the praising or invective according to it. Whereas the granting of the intellect according to all the nations—whether they believe in oneness or they are atheists—is considered a good grant. This should prove that the test, creation and order to goodness are all considered good, and it is known that this can be obeyed or disobeyed.”

The atheist said: “So why did He mix goodness with evil? Why did he make someone rich, and another poor or someone ugly and another handsome?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The life of this world is nothing but a house of testing and trial, and the truth of the exam is that it is created inside it. He orders him with something which is hard for his nature and He watches him to know if he obeys or disobeys.”

Therefore, if Allah creates one who is easy for the nature to obey, then he orders them with easy and light orders, then this shall be considered a joy not a test. Whereas the life of this world is a house of test, then the right and correct way of well-coordinating is that He mixes evil with goodness, the avail with the harm, the beloved with the hateful, evil deed with the good deed, and the pleasant appearance with the ugly appearance. This is because this lifetime is a house of test. But if all things are pleasant, then the life of this world is to be considered a house of reward and if all is hateful, then the life of this world is to be considered a house of punishment, and it is described as the house of punishment and rewards.

And I want you to know that if the reasons of this are unknown, then it can be possible and this is because, first of all, if you already have proven that He is wise in His Essence and Deed, then you’ve proven that all of His deeds are wise. Then this will be enough for you and you will not need to know His reasons. For example, of what we witness, if we checked some tools of a maker’s equipment, and we found that some of them are curved, others are flatted, some are small, others are big, some are thick, and others are light; then we judged the maker not to be wise. Therefore, we are considered to be ignorant as we do not know the wisdom, and how to identify it correctly.

At that time we should leave the wisdom to the competent sages and we must admit that they do not do anything of these except for a purpose of wisdom that they well know. We should know that the flatted and the curved, each pair from them is good for an exact usage, while the other cannot be used to do the work which is used by the first. At this time, we are considered to be putting the wisdom in its competent place. So, I want you to know this and to recognize it well, as you will find it every time we mention the creation of Allah, Exalted and Glorified be He.

However, all of Allah’s deeds are goodness, or leads to beneficence, then He, Exalted and Glorified be He, does it all wisely, as all of these are considered good according to the intellect.

So, if you asked ‘Why did He put the sense of identifying goodness in the intellect?’ I will tell you that one does the good deed because it is good. However, if he did not do the good deed, he will keep considering it a good deed in his intellect. Then he does not stop doing the ugly deed as he considers it ugly in his intellect and this saying is already considered ugly.”

[Sending the Prophets and the Wisdom of Divine Law]
The atheist said: “You’ve already said a fluent word, but I wish to ask you some more questions.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Ask.”

The atheist said: “What is the proof that the Creator has a messenger?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The evidence of that is that the Creator is Wise and a Benefactor to His creation. According to our intellect, we find that thanking the benefactor is a duty; whereas this is a duty according to our intellect, and Allah is Wise and a Benefactor to His creation. Then to complete His Grace, He sent messengers to them with evidences that obliged the intellect to follow them so that they show them how to thank Him. As the way of thanking Him is not to be known by the intellect, self, senses, nor assumption. However the possibility of accepting it is put inside the intellect. Then He sent with them evidences and miracles with which He proves their sincerity.”

The atheist said: “If you said that the intellect does not know the Divine Law of the Prophets, then you will seem like who says that they are unreasonable.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Regarding your saying that the Divine Law of the Prophets are unreasonable, as its way is not to be found inside the intellect; I did not completely deny its existence in the intellect. But I explained to you, saying that if its way is not to be found in the intellect, then the possibility of accepting it already exists in intellect.”

The atheist said: “How is that possible?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “I am giving you an example from what you witness: When a master orders his slave to build a house, to cut a tree, to give something to Abdullah or to hit Zaid; as he orders him with these, it is put inside the intellect of the slave so that if he obeys his master, then this shall be considered good, but if he disobeys him, then this shall be considered ugly, as following the commands of his master leads to a good reward, and the said reward is to be given to the slave. Therefore, the intellect accepts all the commands whatever are their states, and it does not exclude any of them. If this command is what is being well understood in the intellect, you may find that walking to some place is good according to the intellect. If walking has a good meaning according to the intellect, these which the intellect knows understand their wisdom. Then the intellect admits that the commander only orders him to do the good deeds, and he does not prevent him to do anything except if is ugly according to him.”

The atheist said: “So, tell me about the prayer, fasting, and the rest of Divine injunctions. Do they have an origin in the intellect in that they are branches of it?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Yes, as I told you previously, it is like walking to an exact place, and to give something to Abdullah or to hit Zaid. All of these things do not have an origin according to the intellect, but they are to be obeyed only as they are considered the commands of a sage. The wisdom in this is that the commander only orders this to see if the commanded will obey, so that he rewards or punishes him for it. Especially if the commander does not really need what he commands the commanded to do, but he only does it to test them and to show their deeds. Therefore, commanding it is considered to be good, the same is in all the Divine Laws.”

The atheist said: “Tell me about how were their miracles.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “It is something unusual; it is contrary to the usual habits, it does not leave the ordinary habits unchanged. So, if someone of them comes, then his people ask him: ‘What is the proof of your sincerity?’ He answers that Allah changes their ordinary habits in specified matters to others. At this time they know that he is sincere and they will be obliged to believe him. This is the way of all the miracles. This represents the difference between the true prophet and the fake one who alleged to be a prophet, and between the honest one and the liar.”

[The Wisdom of Death and the Resurrection]
The atheist said: “But till now, there remains another suspicion in my heart, and I would like for you to eliminate it with your fluent proofs and explanations.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Tell me about it, for Allah's sake.”

The atheist said: “Tell me about Allah, Exalted and Glorified be He, and why does He make the human die and turn to dust after He had created him, made him speak, and made him a sign for His wonderful wisdom after this amazing form! Why does he annihilate all the universe?! So, if you see a human who builds a building, then he destroys it without a reason, will he be considered to be wise?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “It is not the way you think it is. So, if you see a human who builds a building for the winter, then when the summer comes he demolishes it to build another building for the summer, will he be considered to be wise?”

The [atheist said]: “Yes.”

[Al-Qâsim], peace be upon him, said: “And why?”

The [atheist said]: “This is because the one that he built for the winter has nothing to do in the summer. As well the one, that he built for the summer does not serve him in winter.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “It is the same with Allah, Exalted and Glorified be He. He created the life of this world for testing. So, when its time finishes, He annihilates it and rebuilds it again, {He may repay those who do evil with that which they have done and reward those who do good with what is best} (Q. 53:31). This is not to be considered out of wisdom. But the wisdom is not to miss the punishment and the reward.”

The atheist said: “People of other religions talked about the declaration of Divine Oneness, Divine Justice and the Messengers, yet all of them doubt whether the dead will he be resurrected or not. And everyone of them says a word regarding this. So, if you prove this to be affirmed and tell me how it happens, no question will remain in my heart and I shall believe in My Lord.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Regarding the proof that it is affirmed, I found Allah, Exalted and Glorified be He, to be Wise. He has tested His creation. He has commanded them and has forbidden them. Therefore, everyone who says that this test should be eliminated invites to neglect. Then this neglect shows that Allah is not Wise and it shall be possible to say that the world is pre-existent. As there is no difference between one who is not wise who creates this wonderful creation, and the deed which occurs without a doer. As the things originally exist, so they shall be considered pre-existent which does not have a maker.

As this saying is considered to be irrational, it deserves to be ignored. Then it shall be correct that Allah is Wise, and that the Wise One does not omit his creation. So the existence of the commanding and the forbidding is inevitable. As well as the existence of the one who obeys and the one who disobeys, and it is from the wisdom of the intellect that he can differentiate between the protected friends (al-awliyâ`) of Allâh and the enemy. However, we find His protected friends and His enemies to be equal in the life of this world. Consequently, among His enemies there are rich and healthy ones and sick and poor ones too. The same are the states of the protected friends. Whereas their states in the life of this world are equal, and the differentiating between them is inevitable. Then it is to be proven to be a must the existence of another life. In which the differentiation between them shall be done, after their resurrection. As thee states shall include all—the protected friends and the enemies. As He, Glorified and Exalted be He, said: {Shall We treat those who believe and do righteous good deeds like those who corrupt (mufsidûn) on the earth? Or shall We treat the God-conscious (muttaqûn) like the persistent sinners?} (Q. 38:28).

Regarding your saying: ‘Tell me about how will it be?’ Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He, created the spirit of the human and he made it the life for the human body, just like the barren earth. But when water is sent down to it, it is stirred to life and growth. The same happens in the case of the spirit and the body. If the spirit is in the human then it becomes alive and moving, each one is mixed with the other.”

The atheist said: “How is it possible that the spirit mixes with the body, although the body is a dust?”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “And how is it possible that the water mixes with the barren earth if it is already a dry and dead?”

The atheist said: “First it rains on it, or it runs in it. Then the parts of the land will be connected by the water which that is mixed with it, then it is stirred to life and it moves.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “The same is with the spirit. It is sent to this dust, then it mixes with it and makes it connected. At this time the human lives and moves. Do not you know how the beginning of creation of the human was? Do not you know that he was dust, then when Allah mixed it with his spirit, it became alive. So, the beginning of the creation of the human shows you its end. Do not you know His, Exalted be He, saying :{He will give life to them whom created them for the first time! And He is the All-Knower of every creation! He Who produces for you fire out of the green tree, when behold you kindle therewith} (Q. 36:79-80).

The atheist said: “But there is no relation between dust and spirit. As we know.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Do you know that there is a relation between fire and the green tree?”

The atheist said: “Yes, and they are a group from the four elements, and one from these is the fire.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Allah is the Greatest! So do you know that between the fire and the other three, there is a relation?”

The atheist said: “No.”

Al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, said: “Then how is it possible that they are gathered whereas it is possible for the fire to be gathered with the water and for the earth to be gathered with the winds? Then it is to be possible for the spirit as well.”

Then the atheist said: “I declare and believe that there is No God but Allah, and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and that all what was sent with him is the truth. I say that if any nation did not follow you it will be miserable.”

Then he converted to Islam, and became a good Muslim and he was visiting the Imam, prince of believers, al-Qâsim, peace be upon him, to learn the Divine Law of Islam from him.

The debate is finished and May Allah grant peace and blessings to our Prophet Muhammad and his pure and noble progeny.


























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