Unawareness—A Sly Threat

January 9, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

The Unawareness of Deniers

The inner state of those who deny Allah’s existence and cannot stand to have His name be remembered or mentioned is considered to be the final stage of unawareness. Such people, who flounder in denial, are unloved and condemned by Allah. In addition, they have many negative and unpleasant attributes.

Deniers are rebellious, arrogant, selfish, irritable, hypocritical, and unbalanced liars who are ready to engage in any wickedness. When it is a question of their gaining an advantage, they become so overwhelmed with worldly ambition that they no longer even recognize their own father or mother. Ignoring all limits that stand in the way of getting their own way, they resort to falsity, immorality, and lawlessness to overcome all obstacles.

Their consciences are shrouded, and so they have no sense of mercy, compassion, and pity. Having no sensitivity toward those around them, they live only for themselves and to satisfy the selfish desires and passions of their egos. Their minds are so clouded by unawareness that they never think about Allah or even remember His name:

When Allah, the One and Only, is mentioned, the hearts of those who do not believe in the Hereafter shrink back, shuddering.

Az-Zumar: 45

They deny the Hereafter’s existence and, to appease their consciences and justify their behavior, disparage religion and try to draw others down the same path. They are not aware of the wickedness they commit or of the eternal punishment awaiting them:

As for those who do not believe in the Hereafter, We have made their actions appear good to them, and they wander about blindly. Such people will receive an evil punishment and will be the greatest losers in the Hereafter.

An-Naml: 4-5

We created many of the jinn and humanity for Hell. They have hearts with which they do not understand, eyes with which they do not see, and ears with which they do not hear. Such people are like cattle. No, they are even further astray! They are the unaware.

Al-A‘raf: 179

As we see, deniers ignore the promised eternal punishment. Moreover, they are described in the Qur’an as being lower than animals, because they have been engulfed by unawareness. In other words, they are happy only when eating, drinking, and enjoying themselves, for they focus only on this world and are content to remain unaware of what is really important:

They know an outward aspect of this world’s life, but are heedless of the Hereafter.

Ar-Rum: 7

Such people think only of this worldly life, even though Allah has sent prophets and messengers, as well as holy books and believers, throughout history to warn them of the Day of Judgment, when they will have to account for themselves. They have been reminded of their sins and that these will not be forgotten on that day. They have heard what will happen to them if they do not obey Allah’s commands and prohibitions, continue to ignore His advice, and do not repent of their wicked and corrupt lives: they will be rewarded with Hell’s endless punishment. The only way to avoid all these is to heed His warnings and correct their attitudes, live in a way that earns His pleasure so that they will not disgrace themselves on the Day of Judgment. However, only some of them will listen:

Humanity’s reckoning has drawn very close to them, yet they heedlessly turn away.

Al-Anbiya’: 1

The unawareness of those who have gone astray

Some individuals do not practice Islam according to the Qur’an, but according to what they have learned in their community and from their elders. In other words, they have inherited a false religious tradition from their ancestors and named it “Islam.” For this reason, even if they read the Qur’an they interpret it incorrectly. They are unaware of the truth handed down in the Qu’ran and the sayings of our Prophet (saas), and thus cannot be considered true believers:

When they are told: “Follow what Allah has sent down to you,” they say: “We are following what we found our ancestors doing.” What, even though their ancestors did not understand a thing and were not guided!

Al-Baqara: 170

When they are told: “Come to what Allah has sent down and to the Messenger,” they say: “What we found our ancestors doing is enough for us.” What! Even if their ancestors did not know anything and were not guided!

Al-Ma’ida: 104

When they are told: “Follow what Allah has sent down,” they say: “No, we will follow what we found our ancestors doing.” What! Even if satan is calling them to the punishment of the Blazing Fire?

Luqman: 21

It is stated in the Qur’an that these people do not practice the commands and prohibitions Allah prescribed in the Qur’an, but those devised by their ancestors. It is obvious from the Qur’an that they are heretics following satan, who is drawing them toward the eternal punishment of Hell. They associate others with Him by valuing their ancestors’ religion more than true Islam, and their own traditions more than the Qur’an. As a result, satan has used their ignorance, bigotry, pride and lack of intelligence to lead them astray. In other words, their own attitudes cause them to stray from the true path and adopt a distorted ancestral religion known to them as “Islam.”

This ancestral religion is very different from the Islam described in the Qur’an. For example, they pray when something is bothering them or when they feel they have exhausted all other possibilities; sometimes they even pray to receive worldly favors to satisfy their egos. Even though they may know what is actually said in the Qur’an about prayer, they do not really practice it. In fact, they do not give proper thanks to Allah, but only for something of importance to them. They do not have a correct view of the Qur’an and therefore ignore the countless blessings that Allah has given them and for which they must thank Him.

So, although they know that Allah exists, they ignore such verses as “Worship Allah and do not associate anything with Him” (Surat an-Nisa’: 36) and fall into the sin of association. They are so unaware of reality that they think that on the Day of Judgment, when everything will be revealed, Allah will accept their claim that they never committed such a grave sin:

On the Day We gather them all together, We will ask those who associated others with Allah: “Where are the partner-deities for whom you made such claims?” Then they will have no recourse but to say: “By Allah, our Lord, We were not idolaters.” See how they lie against themselves and how what they invented has forsaken them!

Al-An‘am: 22-24

… Turning toward Him. Fear (and respect) Him and perform (the obligatory) prayer. Do not be among the idolaters, those who split up their religion and form into sects, each faction exulting in what it has.

Ar-Rum: 31-32

As these verses reveal, the fact that they happily accept the perversity of those idolaters who divide their religion into sects show just how unaware they really are. Although they know their errors and understand what is right, they refuse to accept the truth out of a strong desire to continue being guided by their own passions and desires.

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Unawareness—A Sly Threat

December 31, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Continuation

Unawareness, as briefly defined in the introduction, is the condition of those people who are either unaware of Allah’s existence and the Hereafter, or, if they are aware, do not have the requisite sense of responsibility. As a result, they are unaware and careless. Sometimes, believers can become temporarily unaware due to a transient forgetfulness or distraction. In the case of unbelievers or those who ascribe equals to Allah, this can be a life-long condition that affects every aspect of life.

Many people do not wonder why they were created; rather, they dally in the desires of their egos and therefore lead empty and useless lives. Following the logic of “living for the moment,” they seek to attain only the best and to enjoy as many of the world’s pleasures as they can. For them, what counts is making the best of their time, imagining that “we only have one life.” Thus, they try to fill their allotted days with as much pleasure and enjoyment as possible. They know they are going to die, and yet they are unaware of the eternal punishment awaiting them in Hell. And because they cannot conceive of Allah’s supreme power, they underestimate just how severe this punishment will be. (For details, see Harun Yahya’s Death, Resurrection, Hell). Some of the related verses areas follows:

If only you could see those who do wrong at the time when they see the punishment, that truly all strength belongs to Allah , and that He is severe in punishment.

Al-Baqara: 165

That Day no one will punish as He punishes, and no one will shackle as He shackles.

Al-Fajr: 25-26

When they are flung into it (Hell), they will hear it gasping harshly as it seethes. It all but bursts with rage. Each time a group is flung into it, its custodians will ask them: “Did no warner come to you?”

Al-Mulk: 7-8

Hell will suffice as a Searing Blaze! As for those who reject Our Signs, We will roast them in a Fire. Every time their skins are burned off, We will replace them with new skins so that they can taste the punishment. Allah is Almighty, All-Wise.

An-Nisa’: 55-56

Most unaware individuals know of Allah’s existence but do not have an accurate knowledge of Islam. Therefore, they do not submit to Him. As a result, their lack of absolute trust in Him causes them to experience deep pain and sorrow when confronted with difficult and distressing situations. The smallest anxiety is enough to upset their lives, and they are known for their pessimism, unhappiness, and depression.

They pass long periods doing useless and meaningless things, which they call “being busy.” But this “useless busyness,” which makes them feel so important and indispensable, is just an empty distraction that fans the flames of their unawareness. In the Qur’an, Allah describes these vain distractions:

It may be that those who are unbelievers will wish that they had been Muslims. Leave them to eat and enjoy themselves. Let false hope divert them. They will soon know.

Al-Hijr: 2-3

Unawareness is like an insidious disease that engulfs those who have forgotten Allah and the Hereafter, that anesthetizes the mind and shrouds the intelligence. This drowsy unawareness prevents them from understanding the realities that assail and await them. Despite their power to see and hear, such people can no longer accurately interpret and judge what they see and hear. In fact, it shrouds their minds to such an extent that they spend all of their time trying to satisfy the endless desires of their egos. They can think of nothing else, for they have already transformed their desires and passions into deities:

Have you seen him who has taken his whims and desires to be his deity? Will you, then, be his guardian? Do you suppose that most of them hear or understand? They are just like cattle. Indeed, they are even further astray!

Al-Furqan: 43-44

One important aspect of unawareness is its ability to alienate people from reality and cause them to live in a dream world. For example, young people always think of the future and may feel happy thinking that their dreams will come true. As they get older, their dreams become more restricted and they try to relive them through souvenirs and reminders. Older people can easily find many memories to share with their loved ones, and retelling their memories lets them relive the excitement or sorrow of that moment.

With their minds fully occupied by dreams and memories, they have no room for those realities that deserve their full attention: the Hereafter, the Garden, and Hell. They are not connected to Allah, either in what they think or feel, and conceive of reality as just an unwanted, indistinct, dark space between dreams and memories. When reality somehow finds its way into their minds, they immediately stop thinking about it and return to their daydreams.

Unawareness can be compared to how people with poor eyesight see the world through an indistinct haze. They cannot see anything clearly or in detail until they put on their glasses. Only after doing that will they become aware of how little they could see without their glasses. Perhaps they had not seen anything at all.

Unaware people also have a similar (but more serious) type of conception deficiency: they cannot properly appreciate Allah’s existence, splendor, and honor. But when they approach Him with a true heart, pray to Him, contemplate Him, and respect the boundaries He has set for humanity, He may remove this deficiency so that they can obtain a clear understanding of reality.

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Harun Yahya – Heedlessness

December 27, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Introduction

The happy and joyful movements of a small child amuse people. The hard decisions and reactions to events that are so important to adults, such as economic crises, natural disasters, wars, and oppression, have no meaning for them. As long as they are not hungry or thirsty or have lost a toy, they live in contentment, unaware of what is going on around them. And as long as they are content, they unconsciously go on sleeping, playing, and laughing.

However, although it may not be obvious at first, many people are hardly different from children when it comes to their level of awareness. This characteristic is especially evident in their lack of appreciation for such important matters as Allah’s (God’s) existence and the Hereafter, the purpose of their creation, the certainty of death, and the account they will give to Him in the Hereafter for every action or thought while alive.

Most people live according to their own desires and intentions, unaware of Allah’s commands and prohibitions, even though He informs us of them through clear signs. They only want to enjoy the world’s pleasures, be happy, and satisfy their own egos. They pursue its temporary allurements to the exclusion of all else, working all their lives to get what they want. Their greatest worries are that their efforts be in vain and that they will lose what they already have.

However, this short life and everything pertaining to it will one day come to an end. Unaware of the eternal punishment awaiting all those who lived their lives without making any attempt to please Allah, they head toward the Day of Judgment—a day of great fear and distress for them. But they continue to desire the world’s transitory allurements and worry only about losing them.

This unconscious, insensible, and uninterested attitude, which they insist upon following despite His clear evidences, commands, and warnings, is known as “unawareness.”

Allah has created blessings, including their own bodies and many beautiful things wherever they may look, to remind human beings of His existence. At every moment and in every place, we see that creation is imbued with countless wonders:

In the creation of the heavens and Earth, and the alternation of the night and day, and the ships that sail the seas to people’s benefit, and the water that Allah sends down from the sky–by which He brings the ground to life when it was dead and scatters about in it creatures of every kind–and the varying direction of the winds, and the clouds subservient between heaven and Earth, there are Signs for people who use their intellect.

Al-Baqara: 164

Think of everything that happens and everything you see while you are awake. When you get up and look in the mirror, you see your body regenerated after a long sleep and notice how it continues to function perfectly without your interference. You see your body just as it was yesterday—your symmetrical and esthetically shaped body that started from the division of a single cell and now contains about 100 trillion of them; your body in which hundreds of complex functions occur in a perfect sequence of which you are not even aware.

But most people pay no attention to these facts. When looking in the mirror, all they see is what their face generally looks like or if their hair is combed. They think of nothing except work, school, or what they are going to do that day. Thus they fail to realize that every new day offers them another opportunity to draw closer to Allah. Perhaps this will be their last opportunity to do so, for this might be their last day on Earth. Most people, who cannot appreciate the value of this opportunity, generally busy themselves with trying to please only themselves or others. We can explain this with the following example:

Think of a general knowledge quiz. The winner will win a great deal of money. How will the contestants behave during the contest? Will they look around distractedly instead of listening to the questions and thinking of the answers? Will they criticize the host’s shirt, tone of voice, or hairstyle? Instead of concentrating on the answer, will they think about what they are going to do or wear tomorrow?

Quite the contrary. The contestants would listen carefully to the host and try to use the limited time in the best possible way. They would concentrate on coming up with the answers by being interested in nothing except the matter at hand. If they were to engage in the type of meaningless behavior just cited, then we would think that they are bewildered, have a closed mind, or are irrational; in other words, unaware.

But many people have fallen into a far more serious state of unawareness: a way of life that is completely divorced from Allah’s commands and prohibitions. This condition is caused by their unawareness that He created them only to serve Him.

Unawareness poses a severe threat to everyone who is careless and fails to submit to Allah sincerely. Such people continue to be unaware of their true situation until they begin to sincerely abide by the Qur’an’s commands and prohibitions and do their best to remain aware at all times. Therefore, all readers of this book should acknowledge the possibility that they could have a certain degree of unawareness within themselves and realize that no one is immune to or safe from this insidious danger: Allah says in the Qur’an: “No indeed! Truly humanity is unbridled, seeing himself as self-sufficient” (Surat al-‘Alaq: 6-7). After people set aside their imaginary immunity and accept the Qur’an as their guide, they can analyze their situation, try to correct their errors and mistakes, and eventually overcome their unawareness. The main reason why people persist in their unawareness, thereby allowing it to grow stronger every day, is that they are content with their own supposed perfection.

This book aims to familiarize readers with the idea of unawareness in the Qur’an and to warn them against this insidious threat, help them determine if they have fallen into a state of unawareness or ignorance and show them to escape it, and call upon believers to be careful and alert at all times in order to avoid satan’s traps.

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