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The importance of Surah al-Ikhlas (The Purity) - Part 2

”Qul huwa’llahu ahad”?

Tawhid {monotheism} is the most fundamental principle of all heavenly religions and the prophets (PBUH) have come to eliminate the effects of polytheism, disbelief and idol-worship and to invite mankind toward God.

Tawhid is the spirit and kernel of the teachings of the prophets (PBUH). Not only beliefs but also laws and morality revolve around the axis of tawhid.

Tawhid is the frontier between faith {iman} and disbelief {kufr}, and entering the fortress of faith without acknowledgment of tawhid is not possible: ”Say, ‘La ilaha illa’llah {There is no god but Allah}’ to attain success (4) "and ”La ilaha illa’llah is My fortress; so, whoever enters My fortress is safe from My wrath.”?(5)

This surah consists of the purest monotheist beliefs; hence, this surah is called Surah al-Ikhlas {Chapter: Purity}. This surah refutes the Christian belief in the Trinity, the polytheism of the Jews as well as the belief of the Arabs during the pre-Islamic period of ignorance who regarded the angels as the daughters of God.

Tawhid means the purification of mind and action from any form of polytheism and associating partners with God; neither theoretical polytheism nor practical ostentation. Instead, both the motive and the action itself must be only for the sake of God.

That is, He is One and has no substitute; He has neither similitude nor equal; He has neither limbs nor parts.

That is, He is the Worshipped Being {ma‘bud} who is unique in everything. Thus, His Essence is beyond the comprehension and understanding of man.

The reason behind His Oneness is that if there were also another ”God”?, this ”God”? would also have been supposed to send prophets to mankind to recognize and obey ”Him”?!

The reason behind His Oneness is that at the time of danger, all human beings focus only on the One Being and their hearts testify to the fact that only One Being gives hopes to man amid all difficulties.

The reason behind His Oneness is the harmony between the heaven and the earth, the universe and man, and the precise and orderly relations among all creatures.

If you would ask three painters to draw a single rooster, for example, asking one of them to draw its head, the second one to draw its body, and the third one to draw its tail or feet, there would be no harmony among the three drawings when you place them together; one might be big while the other one might be small; one may have a dark color while the other one may have a light color.

Yes, the harmony existing between the sun, moon, earth, water, wind, soil, mountain, desert, sea, and others, on one hand, and the needs of man, on the other, signifies that there is only One Creator.

The human being inhales oxygen and exhales carbon dioxide. On the contrary, a plant absorbs carbon dioxide and releases oxygen. In this way, the needs of man and other livings creatures are met, and this harmony is the secret behind the life of men and plants.

The needs of an infant are met through the love and affection of its parents, and the weariness of the day is removed through sleep at night. The water of the eye (tears) has been created salty and the water of the mouth (saliva) fresh. In this way, the salty water cleanses the eyes while the fresh water prepares the food for the processes of chewing and digestion.

Instead of dying, the infant is taught to suck and even before it is born, its milk has been made available in the breasts of the mother. The food of some birds is located along the teeth of whales in the sea. And everyday, animals are satisfactorily provided with food.

During the Battle of Jamal, a Bedouin Arab asked Hazrat ‘Ali (A.S) about the meaning of tawhid. The soldiers complained to him, saying that it was not the time for such questions. Nevertheless, the Imam (A.S) explained to him the meaning and interpretation of tawhid, and then said: ”It is for this very meaning (of tawhid) that we are now fighting.”?(6)

Yes, the struggle of the followers of truth throughout history has been for the sake of hoisting the banner of tawhid.


(4): Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 1, p. 202.

(5): Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 3, p. 13.

(6): Tafsir Nur ath-Thaqalayn, vol. 5, p. 709.

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