Second Chapter

Concerning Proofs of the Divine Unity

[ The traveller who had been sent to the world in order to attain faith, who journeyed through the whole cosmos in his mind in order to ask all things concerning his Creator, to seek his Sustainer in every place and find his God, with the utmost certainty, at the point of Necessary Existence — this traveller said to his intellect: “Come, let us depart on a new journey in order to behold the proofs of the unity of our Necessarily Existent Creator.”

They set out together. At the First Stopping-Place, they saw four sacred truths prevailing over the whole cosmos, truths that self-evidently necessitated the unity of God.]

THE FIRST TRUTH: Absolute Divinity

The absorption of each class of men in a mode of worship dictated by their innate dispositions; the species of worship engaged in by other animate beings, as well as inanimate beings, through the performance of their essential functions; the way in which all material and immaterial bounties and gifts in the cosmos become means inciting men to worship and thanks, to praise and gratitude; the fashion in which all the manifestations of the Unseen and epiphanies of the spirit, revelation and inspiration, unanimously proclaim the exclusive fitness of one God to receive worship — all of this, in most evidential fashion, proves the reality and dominance of a single and absolute Divinity. If the truth of such a Divinty exists, it can in no way accept partnership. For those who respond to Divinity —that is, the fitness to be worshipped— with thanks and worship, are the conscious and animate fruits on the highest branches of the tree of the cosmos. If others were able to gratify and place under their obligation those conscious beings in such fashion as to make them turn away from and forget their true object of worship —Who may, indeed, be swiftly forgotten, because of his invisibility— this would be in such utter contradiction to the essence of Divinty and its sacred purposes that it could in no way be allowed. It is for this reason that the Qur’an so repeat edly and with such vehemence refutes polytheism and threatens the polytheists with Hell-fire.

THE SECOND TRUTH: Absolute Dominicality

The ubiquitous workings of a wise and compassionate hidden hand throughout the cosmos, especially in animate beings and their nurturing and development, everywhere in the same fashion and yet in a totally unexpected form, must be, without doubt, the emanation and light of an absolute dominicality and a decisive proof of its reality.

An absolute dominicality cannot accept any partnership for since the important aims and purposes of dominicality, such as the manifestation of its beauty, the proclamation of its perfection, the revelation of its precious arts and the display of its hidden accomplishments, are combined and concentrated in particulars and animate beings, the slightest attribution to God of a partner, when entering even the most particular of things and the smallest of animate beings, will frustrate the attainment of those purposes and destroy those aims. Averting the faces of conscious beings from those purposes and the One Who conceived them toward causes will be totally opposed and hostile to the essence of dominicality, and absolute dominicality cannot in any way countenance it.

The abundant proclamations in the Qur’an of God’s sanctity and transcendence, its verses and words, even its letters and their shapes, are constant guides to God’s unity, made necessary by the mystery we have just expounded.

THE THIRD TRUTH: Perfections

The self-evident testimony to the existence of the truth of perfections given by all the exalted instances of wisdom in the universe, all its wondrous beauties, its just laws, its wise purposes, and in particular its testimony to the perfections of the Creator, Who brought forth the cosmos out of the void and then administered it in every way miraculously and beauteously, as well as the perfections of man, who is the conscious mirror of the Creator — such testimony is extremely clear.

There exists then the truth of perfections, and the certainty that the Creator Who fashioned the cosmos in perfection must Himself possess perfection. Further, the perfections of man, the most important fruit of the universe, vicegerent of the earth, the beloved and most valued object of His creation — these are also established as true. Therefore, to assign partners to God would be unacceptable and false, for it would condemn to destruction and perdition all of the perfect and wise beings we behold with our eyes; it would turn the cosmos into a vain plaything of accident, a place of amusement for nature, a cruel slaughterhouse for the animate, an awesome house of sorrows for the conscious; it would reduce man, whose perfections are visible in his works, to the level of the most wretched, distraught and vile animal; and it would draw a veil across the infinite perfections of the Creator that are reflected in the mirror of all beings, thus nullifying the result of His activity and denying His creativity.

Since assigning partners to God contradicts Divine, human and cosmic perfections and its denial of them has been established and explained in the First Station of the Second Ray (devoted to three ‘Fruits’ of Divine unity) with strong and decisive proofs, we refer our readers that work and cut short the discussion here.

THE FOURTH TRUTH: Sovereignty

Whoever looks at the cosmos with comprehensive attention, will see it to resemble a most prosperous and active kingdom, a city administered most wisely and ruled most firmly; he sees all things and all species obediently engaged in a particular function.

According to the military metaphor contained in the verse,

God’s are the armies of the heavens and earth,1

the prevailing creative commands, imperious orders, and kingly laws enunciated in those numerous armies, that extend from the hosts of the atom, the battalions of the vegetable kingdom, the brigades of the animal kingdom, to the armies of the stars, and embrace both the lowliest soldier and the loftiest commander — they all indicate self-evidently the existence of an absolute sovereignty and a universal authority.

There is then a truth of absolute sovereignty, and there can be no truth of assigning partners to God. For according to the decisive truth of the verse,

Were there to be in the heavens and earth gods other than God, verily they would be corrupted,2

if numerous hands all engage assertively in the same task, the result will be confusion. If there are two kings in one country, or even two headmen in one district, order will disappear, and administration be replaced by anarchy. But on the contrary we see everywhere such order, from the wing of the fly to the lamps of the heavens, from the cells of the body to the signs of the planets, that there is no possibility for the intervention of any partner in God’s affairs.

Sovereignty is, moreover, a station of dignity; to accept a rival would flout the dignity of sovereignty. The fact that man, who needs the assistance of many people on account of his impotence, will kill his brothers and offspring in the cruellest fashion for the sake of some petty, apparent and temporary sovereignty, shows that sovereignty rejects all notion of partnership. If so feeble a one acts thus for the sake of so petty a sovereignty, it follows that the Possessor of Absolute Power, the Master of All Creation, will never permit one other than Himself to participate in His sacred sovereignty, the means to His real and universal dominicality and Divinity.

Since this truth has been established with firm proofs in numerous places throughout the Risale-i Nur and especially the Second Station of the Second Ray, we refer the reader to those pages for further discussion of it.

Through witnessing these four truths, our traveller came to know Divine unity with the degree of certain and clear witnessing. His faith shone, and with all his power he said, “There is no god but God, He is One, He has no partner.” In brief allusion to the lesson he derived from this station, we said in the Second Chapter of the First Station:

There is no god but God, the One, the Unique, to Whose Unity and the Necessity of Whose Existence point the witnessing of the sublimity of the truth of the manifestation of absolute Divinity, as well as the witnessing of the sublimity of the comprehensiveness of the truth of the manifestation of absolute dominicality that requires Unity, the witnessing of the sublimity of the comprehensiveness of the truth of the perfections that arise from unity, and the witnessing of the sublimity of the comprehensiveness of the truth of absolute sovereignty, that prevents and contradicts the existence of any partnership.