Islamic Creed | Correct Aqidah

Creed of Islam. Pillars of Iman. Tauhid. Eman. Tawhid. Touheed. Thowheed

51. Can Allah be seen? Does God have an image?

with 12 comments

Does God have an image? How can we worship God without an image or idol?

Any image we create is a reflection of creation, even if it’s a mixed image. e.g.: Unicorn doesn’t exist, but all of its parts exist. Images of Gods are distorted: In Sri Lanka, Buddha looks like a Sinhalese, in Cambodia – a Cambodian, in Japan – Japanese. So, who is he? Hindu Gods look Indian. People create God in their image. Jews didn’t make images of God, because of clear commands against image making. Synagogues have no images, but their texts refer God with human weakness. Islam rejects all these.

Muslims believe that one can know/understand Allah thru His attributes. This understanding of attributes is enough for a Muslim. We don’t need pictures.

(Quran Chapter 42. Shoora ayat 11)

… There is nothing like unto Him, and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer

Can Allah be seen? Did Prophet Muhammad see Allah during Mi’raj?

No human, including prophets could see Allah. Here are two Quranic verses.

(Quran Chapter 7. Al A’raaf ayat 143)

And when Moosa (Moses) came at the time and place appointed by us, and his Lord spoke to him, He said: “O My Lord! Show me (Yourself), that I may look upon You.” Allaah said: “You cannot see Me, but look upon the mountain if it stands still In its place Then You shall see me.” so when his Lord appeared to the mountain , He made it collapse to dust, and Mûsa (Moses) fell down unconscious. Then when He recovered his senses He said: “Glory be to you, I turn to You In repentance and I am the first of the believers.”

(Quran Chapter 6. Al An’am ayat 103)

No vision can grasp Him, but his grasp is over all vision…

And, three Hadeeths:

  1. Ayesha told Masrouq (a Tabioun): “…whoever tells you that Muhammad saw his Lord has lied” (Sahih Muslim 1/337, 1/339)
  2. Abu Dharr asked the Prophet if he saw his Lord during Miraj, Prophet replied: “There was only light, how could I see Him?” (Sahih Muslim 1/341). This phrase “how could I” implies he didn’t see Allah.  Please see the next hadeeth for an explanation of “There was only light”.
  3. Aboo Musa Ash’aree narrated from Prophet: “Surely, God does not sleep nor is it befitting for Him to sleep.  He is the one who lowers the scales and raises them.  The deeds of the night go up to Him before the deeds of the day and those of the day before those of the night, and His veil is light” (Sahih Muslim 1/343)

In the Hereafter, Muslims can see Allah

(Quran Chapter 75. Al Qiyaamah ayat 22-23)

Some faces that Day shall be Naadirah (shining and radiant). Looking at their Lord (Allaah);

Narrated Abu Huraira: The people said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Shall we see our Lord on the Day of Resurrection?” He replied, “Do you have any doubt in seeing the full moon on a clear (not cloudy) night?” They replied, “No, O Allah’s Apostle!” He said, “Do you have any doubt in seeing the sun when there are no clouds?” They replied in the negative. He said, “You will see Allah (your Lord) in the same way…[Sahih Bukharee 9/532].

Note: Prophet is referring only to the ability to see Moon, not comparing Allah to Moon. Also, Allah’s veil is light, not Him. Some crooked minds will twist these things and say Allah is like moon (or Sun).

Here is a final proof: Ibn ‘Umar narrates the Prophet said: “The Day Of Resurrection is the first day any eye will look at Allah, the All-Great and All-Glorious” [Collected by Daraqutni & Darimi]

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Written by S Ibrahim

Mar 13, 2010 at 10:33 pm

12 Responses

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  1. Quote:
    “Allah has the most perfect image. Soorah is a Sifah of Allah,”

    is this correct?

    Hasan

    Aug 4, 2010 at 2:42 pm

    • The human beings have finite knowledge, finite life, finite senses. Allaah is infinite (ever living, knows all, etc). So, it is illogical for the finite to try to comprehend / understand the infinite. If i saw a person/place only for a few seconds, how can i say that i understand that person/place very well?

      Br. Hasan, Who expressed / made the statement “Allah has the most perfect image”? If it is from an authentic hadeeth, we beleive in it and shouldn’t get into an discussion on how or why. If that statement was expressed by a human being, please seek proof for that.

      Sifah means attribute (“property” in IT term). I believe you meant Quran by the term “Soorah”. Qur’an is the speech of Allah, and speech is an attribute of Allah.

      Imam Ibn Abil-‘Izz identified the view of the leading scholars of hadeeth and Sunnah as being that “Allaah has been speaking from eternity if, when and as He wills to speak. He has been speaking in words which have sounds that can be heard. As a whole, His speech is eternal, even though a particular sound is not itself eternal.” (Commentary on the Creed of at-Tahawi, p. 97)

      Allaah spoke to Moses: “And I have chosen you so listen to what is revealed.” (20: 13)

      “Among them are those to whom Allaah spoke.” (2:263)

      Also, please refer 4:164, 7:144, 42:51, 20:11 and 20:12.

      Seyed Ibrahim

      Aug 5, 2010 at 11:10 am

  2. “I believe you meant Quran by the term “Soorah””

    I think he meant, suurah (shape or form) ?
    Here is the link:
    http://forums.islamica.. [Edited]

    Hasan

    Aug 7, 2010 at 3:33 am

    • A couple of points, Br. Hasan

      1. I prefer books & degree courses to learn anything, including Islam. That’s why i’m pursuing B.A. (Islamic Studies). I’m not a fan of forums or google to learn serious things. Nor do i prefer random learning. Here is why http://seyedibrahim.wordpress.com/2009/06/08/methodology-of-seeking-knowledge/

      2. If you are wondering “why, then, you have this blog on Aqeedah?”, the answer is for those who want a quick overview of Aqeedah with some proofs. As you could see, i mention the stuff, give references to Quran & Hadeeths and move on, without arguments (points & counter-points). That doesn’t mean i don’t know the arguments of various groups, and responses to them from Islamic Scholars. Here is an Aqeedah 101 Book http://d1.islamhouse.com/data/en/ih_books/signal/en_The_Fundamentals_Of_Tawheed.pdf

      3. “Soorah is a Sifah of Allah” when translated means “Shape is an attribute of Allah”. The basic principle when it comes to understanding Allah’s attributes is that they are not like the attributes of humans. There are verses which talk about “Allaah raising over the throne”, “Allaah’s Hands” etc. Please see the posts starting with 100. As for this statement “Soorah is a Sifah of Allah”, it is a refutation to those who believe that Allaah can’t have shape because “you & I have a shape. And, Allah isn’t like us”. The problem with this argument is they also say Allaah exists, and we say “You & I exist, right”. So, would they say “Allaah doesn’t exist”, “Allaah doesn’t live”? As i said earlier, The basic principle when it comes to understanding Allah’s attributes is that they are not like the attributes of humans. Just because the attributes of human & Allaah have the same name doesn’t mean they are the same.

      Seyed Ibrahim

      Aug 7, 2010 at 10:07 am

  3. Do you agree that anything that has a “shape” will also have a physical limit (or size), because of its shape.

    Aļļah is not specified or created, and is definitely eternal; it must be true that Aļļah exists without shape and physical limits.
    …….
    Having a certain shape means that there must be someone who specified it.

    Quran:
    [Ta-Ha 20:50] He said, “Our Lord is One Who gave everything its proper shape, then showed the path.”
    …. [Edited]

    Hasan

    Aug 8, 2010 at 5:27 am

    • I’m not interested in prolonged discussions on any topic, and this blog isn’t for advanced learners of Aqeedah. But, i just wanted to point out that you are taking some wordly logic (a “shape” will also have a physical limit) and applying to Allaah (Allaah is not specified or created), and you quote a verse (Our Lord is One Who gave everything its proper shape) which neither confirms nor denies if God has a shape.

      Other Brothers & Sisters, I have not yet studied about this topic (shape). And so, it is inappropriate for me to talk about that. May be it will come up in further semesters. But, as i have stated earlier, i prefer to learn from classes of scholars.

      Seyed Ibrahim

      Aug 12, 2010 at 12:43 am

  4. Al quran clearly says that he has face,hands ( 55:27,28),(38:75),(5:64) AND Sahih al buhari 4848 muslim 5084 says he has feet.And also Buhari 2826 says allah laughs. And alquran 42:01 claims he has image.

    sulfikar ali

    Aug 23, 2010 at 4:39 pm

  5. Akhi Seyed, Jazaka Allahu khairan for this excellent blog! I just came across it and it is a much needed topic that needs to be taught as Aqeedah and Tawheed are the basics of Islam.

    I just have one comment to make and that is the Soorah (image) is one of the attributes of Allah which is mentioned in authentic ahadith of the Prophet peace be upon him, and all the scholars of Ahl Assunnah affirm that attribute for Allah, so we believe in it and don’t ask questions about how, nor do we compare this attribute of Allah to the attributes of His creation. We believe in this attribute of Allah just as we believe in all His other attributes, and we don’t ask how nor do we compare His attributes to our attributes.

    Baaraka Allah feekum!

    HadithCheck

    Nov 24, 2011 at 9:25 am

    • Akee/Ukhtee,

      Soorah (image) is one of the attributes of Allah which is mentioned in authentic ahadith of the Prophet peace be upon him, and all the scholars of Ahl Assunnah affirm that attribute for Allah

      A sincere request: Please let me know atleast one hadeeth, and one quote of a scholar on Soorah. As stated earlier, i dont deny or affirm Soorah (or anything for that matter) without proofs.

      Jazakallahu Khairan.

      Seyed Ibrahim

      Nov 24, 2011 at 10:24 am

  6. You have misunderstood the Quran, Have a look at this article and let me know what you think
    ……………

    Ahmed

    Dec 19, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    • Saw your post. We agree that God can’t be seen in this world.

      https://islaamiccreed.wordpress.com/2011/07/30/seeing-allah-day-of-resurrection/

      I have clearly mentioned the hadeeth from the most authentic hadeeth source for seeing the God in the Hereafter.

      Narrated Abu Huraira: The people said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Shall we see our Lord on the Day of Resurrection?” He replied, “Do you have any doubt in seeing the full moon on a clear (not cloudy) night?” They replied, “No, O Allah’s Apostle!” He said, “Do you have any doubt in seeing the sun when there are no clouds?” They replied in the negative. He said, “You will see Allah (your Lord) in the same way…[Sahih Bukharee 9/532].

      Seyed Ibrahim

      Jan 1, 2015 at 9:52 am


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