Rafed English

Tradition of Myrobalan Fruit (Hadith al-Halila)

Tradition of Myrobalan Fruit (Hadith al-Halila) by : Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (a.s.)


Says Qur’an:

Allah affirms that there is no god but He; and so do the angels, and those with knowledge, He is established in justice. (3: 19)

Such is the claim of the Qur’an. So when we come across the atheistic people or those who seriously believe in the Theory of Evolution and deny the existence of any Creator of this Universe and its paraphernalia we attribute it to their lack of knowledge either inherent or acquired.

Again, says Qur’an:

“Your God is one God.” (16: 7),

“Allah-there is no deity but He, Living the Eternal.” (2: 257)

This is the assertion of the last Book of Allah revealed to Muhammad (S). But for an explanation of the verses of the Qur’an we must refer either to Muhammad (S) himself to whom it was revealed or to those about whom he did direct us to refer to.

Said Muhammad (S): I am the City of knowledge and ‘Ali is the gate of it.

After ‘Ali (A) we have a chain of his children and grand children towards whom we must look for inspiration and guidance in all our affairs.

Now in an age when people have either denied the very existence of One God or have lost faith in His attributes such as Omnipotence, Omniscience etc., we present a conversation that took place in the 2nd century of Islamic era between Hazrat Imam Ja’far al-As-Sadiq {A), the sixth in the series of the twelve Imams of the House of Muhammad (S), and a philosopher-cum-physician from India who was a staunch votary of atheism.

Needless to say that the intellectual caliber of the Imam was highest in that age as he had his knowledge from Allah. What needs our close attention is the fact that nearly 1200 years ago the mind of a man like us could argue so forcefully that not many intellectual giants that survived during this long period could have attained that standard.

However the counter arguments of the Imam (A) convinced the atheist about the Existence of Allah, His Oneness and other attributes so much so that he embraced Islam.

How true it is:

An Imam excels all other persons both in knowledge and piety. The intellectual caliber of an Imam shall always remain the highest irrespective of the age in which he survives. The reason being simple that he is deputed by Allah to guide the people, and Allah can not depute a person with lesser knowledge to guide those superior in knowledge.

With this book in hand the Muslims in particular and the other non atheistic people in general can help eradicate atheism from the surface of the globe.

To achieve our goal we need not use force. We can do it peacefully with the help of our 'aql (reason) and achieve splendid success.

Regarding 'aql suffice it to quote an anecdote. This relates to our common ancestor-Hazrat Adam (A).
An Anecdote
The Last Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (S) about whom says Qur’an:

“And we sent thee to mankind at large, to announce and threaten. But most of the people understand not.” (34: 29)

passed on 'ilm (knowledge) to his Vicegerent ‘Ali who relates:

Jibrael-al-Ameen (Gabriel, the Trustworthy) called on Adam and said to him:

“Allah had commanded me that I leave it to your discretion to pick and choose one thing out of the three and leave the remaining two.”

Adam (A) asked: “O Jibrael ! What are those things?”

Jibrael said: “These are ‘aql (Reason), haya (Modesty) and deen (Faith).

Adam (A) expressed: “I pick and choose 'aql (Reason).” Jibrael said to the other two (haya and deen):

“Both of you go back.”

The two (haya and deen) replied: “Allah has ordained us to adhere to 'aql wherever it may be.”

Jibrael, saying: “Well you know your position best,” rose back to the firmament.

Is it not representative of the distinctive personal character of Adam (and Eve too)? We can certainly say that it scuttles the theory of a Godless universe. And it does retard the theory of the 'evolution' of man from a 'larva' for a sensible person?

The people of the world today are almost in the grip of a 'Godless cult' and there is an imminent danger of mankind at large due to the serious challenge of atheism.

Let the Muslims in particular and non-Muslims in general turn to Islam as presented by Muhammad and Ahlul Bayt 'alaihim us Salaam' and live in peace here and gain salvation in the hereafter.

Syed Farzande Raza
Chief Organizer
Majlisul Muslemeen
14.H, Rizvia Colony
Karachi 18, Pakistan
3rd Shaban, 1383
l0th December, 1963
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Oh, Allah may Thy peace be upon Muhammad (S) and his descendants

This little book which I give to the public is the translation of Hadith al-halila, the tradition of the Myrobalan fruit. It has come down to us from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (A) the sixth of the twelve immaculate Imams of the house of the Prophet Muhammad (S). He (A) lived in the middle of the second century of Islamic era.

After the most tragic massacre of the third Imam Husain (A) who fought against the hostile forces of ungodly Omayyids for the protection of the faith of Islam, and the holy principles, which his grand-father, the Prophet (S) had laid down for the guidance and progress of man and fell a martyr to the cause, at Karbala, the whole family of the Prophet especially the Imams took to seclusion.

They preferred peacefully preaching Islam to taking any part whatsoever, in the secular and tribal dissensions then rife in Arabia. “In the midst of misery and unhappiness they followed truly and faithfully the precepts of their ancestor and found consolation in intellectual pursuits.

Their ardent love of knowledge, their passionate devotion to the cause of humanity, their spirit looking upwards far above the literalness of common interpretations of the law shows the spirituality and expensiveness of Islam.

The definition by Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (A) of science or knowledge gives some idea of their faith in the progress of man”. “The enlightenment of the heart is its essence, truth, its principal object; Inspiration, its guide; Reason, its acceptor; God its Inspirer, and words of man, its utterer”.

“While the Omayyids discouraged the peaceful pursuits of mind, the children of Fatima (the Imams) with remarkable liberalism favored learning”.1

As a matter of fact, whatever success the Moslems achieved in the field of learning, science, or spiritualism, has had its foundation in the teachings of these Imams. None but these Imams were the authorized exponents of the Qur’an and the Hadithes (traditions) of the Prophet. When the Prophet saw that his time to leave this transient world had approached, he preached his last sermon and said, “I leave behind me two things for you, The Book of God (Qur’an) and my descendants (‘Itrat). If you shall hold fast to them you shall not go astray after me;

They (Qur’an and ‘Itrat) shall not be separated from each other, till they reach Hauz-i-Kauthar (fount of Kauthar) untidily.” 22

It will not be without interest, I am sure, to read this Hadith which shows the liberality of their teachings and proves the existence of One God so vividly. As it is admitted on all hands that belief in God, Who is the Creator of this universe and to whom every man is responsible for his actions in this world, essential for the moral and material progress of man, I hope this Hadith will supply him, much food for reflection, and lead him to the right path. The arguments are so perfect, so simple and logical. Besides, there is absolutely nothing to injure the susceptibilities of any man belonging to any caste or creed. It is equally edifying to the Muslims as well as non-Muslims. As the God preached it, it is not the God of only one nation, but is the, God of all worlds (Rabb-ul-Aalamin).

Perhaps the modern reader will find some of the arguments forwarded by the Imam in some contrast to the present day science, but it must be understood that the Imam intended to teach “God”, and not the science. The Imam, as far as science was concerned, simply followed the conceptions prevalent in the age to which he belonged.

Now I must admit that I have translated this Hadith from “Tauhid-ul-Aimma” by Molvi Syed Mohammed Haroon Saheb who has not only rendered this work into Urdu from Arabic but translated and written many other valuable works and thereby rendered a substantial service to the cause of Islam.

I must not also forget to thank my learned friend Mr. Alam Khan, G. B. V. C. for all the help he has given me in translating this Hadith and for many other valuable suggestions

And last but not the least; I have to tender my most cordial thanks to Mohammad Ja’far Haji Sharif Devjee and Ghulam Husein Saleh Hasan (Hami-e-Islam) of their most generous pecuniary help for the publication of this book.

I cannot but appreciate their kind feelings towards me, their zealous love for the diffusion of the teachings of the Imams, and the unostentatious services to the cause of religion; and pray that they may long be spared to the community.

Wali Muhammad C. Momin

25th April , 1918
Ahmadabad (Gujarat)
1. he Spirit of Islam.

2. Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim
Mufaddal bin ‘Umar al-Jau`fi wrote a letter to Hazrat Imam Ja’far al-As-Sadiq (A) that some people held the “No Allah” theory and contested among themselves with groundless arguments. He requested the Imam (A) to refute these atheists, as he (the Imam) had done on previous occasions.

The Imam replied, “In the name of the Most Merciful and the Most Compassionate Allah. May He the Almighty give us the good sense of ever remaining obedient to His will, drawing down upon us His pleasure and mercy.

Your letter with reference to those evils that have crept into our midst is in our hands You mention that these 'atheistically disputes' and controversies have become a menace to our religion (Islam), and you desire me to publish a book in condemnation and contradiction of them, as I have done (for antagonists and opponents of Allah) before.

Let us offer our thanks to Allah-the Most High for all His blessings to us, and for His Hujjat (proof) incomparable, and the justice of trial with which he tests His favorite as well as His ordinary slaves. One of the greatest and most important favors from Him is the establishment of convincing proof-deep in the innermost heart of each creature that 'He is'. Thus He has secured the vow of His ma'arefat (knowledge of His being) from all His creatures, and has sent (through His prophet) His sacred book Qur’an, which contains efficacious remedies for all doubts and suspicions.

Allah has done all this for man. He has neither left him nor any other thing dependent upon others save Him. He has directly proved Himself. He himself is indeed independent and the praised. By my life these men in their ignorance are losers, when they deny the existence of Allah in the face of all those perfect and clear proofs and signs which surround them.

The sky, the earth and the wonderful things pertaining to both, evince beyond all doubts, the existence of some creator. These men have opened for themselves a gate leading to a crime. They seek their relief in insatiable, incessant worldly pursuits. Their sensual desire has blighted the purity of their hearts. For their oppression and tyranny, Allah has abandoned them. Satan has assumed dominion over them. Thus Allah seals the hearts of the proud and the arrogant.

It is a matter of great surprise that man seeing in himself perfect creation, can still so unreasonably refute the theory of a perfect Creator. The structure of the body, the perfection of its design and its connection with some spiritual thing called the soul, reveal or manifest its creator to be of extraordinary wisdom and intellect. I vow by my life that these men have bestowed no thought upon the question, or else they must have observed this distinct and vivid perfection in creation, e.g. the design of the universe, and the knowledge that these things once were not in existence, should have called forth an unhesitating affirmation of a creator.

There is not a single thing that does not show signs of Allah Who created it. I write to you an account of the arguments I had with an atheist physician of India. He visited me frequently, always discussing his “No Allah” theory and placing forth all his arguments in support of it. Once while pounding halila (Myrobalan fruit), a new idea came to him. “This Universe”, said he suddenly, has existed for eternity before, and will still exist for eternity.

One tree grows and another withers; one in born whilst the other dies; and the link that binds them together existed in the past, and will exist in the future. Your claim to the divine knowledge is a baseless one, founded on no such actual proof as to justify the existence of Allah. It can only be called a belief, a belief inherited from your forefathers and traditions”.

Proceeding with the same force, he went on to say: “The existence of various things of the Universe whether real or not could only be determined through the medium of the five senses. Eyes with which we see, ears by which we hear, nose by which we smell and hands and feet with which we touch and feel”.

Continuing the chain of his arguments to the extent of his self-made principles, he said, “Now I have never known Allah through any of the above mentioned senses, and cannot therefore believe in Him. But I request that you will let me hear those arguments with which you convince others”. When he reached thus far I said: “I prove His existence by the inherent instinct of His being, which each man, whether an affirmed atheist or not, has in him”.

“How can you say so?” He asked. “The mind cannot know the existence of any thing through any medium but that of the five senses. Have you seen Allah, heard His voice, smelled Him, tasted Him with your tongue, or touched Him with your hands or feet? How could one realize Him?”

“Your denial of Allah, then is”, said I, “because, you have not felt Him with the senses given to us for knowing objects, I too have not felt Him with either of them. But my belief is as strong as your disbelief, both cannot be right; do you admit this?”

“Most certainly” he replied. “Either you are mistaken or I am”.

“Very well”, said I, “If you are right, there is no danger for me in threatening you with Allah's displeasure for your disbelief”.

“No”, said he, “You shall be in no danger.”

“If I am right”, asked I, “Do you not think that you will suffer the punishment for your disbelief, and I shall receive a reward, for being away from your opinions?”

“Quite possibly” he replied.

“Will you tell me”, I asked, “which of us is the wiser, granting the possibility of both the situations?”

“Oh”, He replied. “Your belief is a presumption, a groundless assertion, while mine is a truth, based upon common sense. I do not perceive Him by my senses, therefore He does not exist”.

“When your senses”, said I “could not perceive Allah, you disbelieved Him, While I, on the contrary, believed in Him, because my senses failed to discern Him. The very theory that made you disbelieve, compelled me to believe in Him”.

“How is it possible?” he asked.

“Because”, I replied, “things are 'murakkab' (compound, made of parts). Every murakkab possesses shape and color that attracts the senses. Therefore, that which is felt or known by the senses, having shape and color, cannot be Allah.

Your argument for disbelief is foolish, because Allah cannot be like any of the things perceived by the senses, nor can He be said to bear any resemblance to anything which has to undergo an ordeal of change and decay. For, everything is under the one and the same law-the law of transformation and decline. Allah, our creator cannot be perceivable by the five senses you mention; for, He is not a thing-which is murakkab or created. ……………If He was visible to the eye, and perceivable to the senses, He would have resembled the things that are visible and perceivable to the senses on account of their being murakkab and created, and in that case He would no longer have remained a creator”.

“What nonsense you talk?” said he. “No, I cannot believe unless I perceive by any of these five senses”.

Since he so persistently adhered to this theory, the folly of which I strove to point out, I said, “I charge you then for the very defect you accused me of. Your claim is without reason and proofs also. Your arguments are too on the same lines, as, you thought, were mine; and for which you had such an aversion”.

“How can I be held liable for the same defect as you?” he asked.

“You, in the beginning”, replied I, “falsely reproached me with this that my claim to the knowledge of Allah was purely traditional and had no actual basis for the fact. That imputation is now applicable to you, because you persist in the theory, that a thing not known through the medium of the senses is not existent, though strong evidence proves it otherwise. You disregard the arguments, and all messages from Allah through the prophets and the favored ones of Allah tell me, 'have you visited every corner of this world?'“

“Of course not”, he said.

I went on. “Have you ever ascended or visited this sky, which you behold with your eyes, or been in the depths of the earth? Have you traversed the world, dived in every sea, and moved through the atmosphere? To presumptuously deny the existence of an Omniscient, Omnipotent Creator, you must have been to all these places”.

“No, he said, “You know I have never”.

“Well”, I said, “How can you say that He is not in those places where neither you nor your senses have ever been?” Perhaps, He may be living there”.

“I cannot be certain” he said. “Perhaps a person of extraordinary intelligence may reside in one of those places”.

“As”, I went on, “you have admitted the probability of a creator, you will, I hope, be convinced to admit the certainty. From flat denial you have come to doubt, from that perhaps to faith”.

“This doubt”, he said, “is the result of the question you put about the places that my senses have not seen, but I am at a loss to understand how a thing can be said to exist unless felt by them”.

“Well, I explain this, and bring you to a belief through the medium of this halila”.

“Oh yes”, he said. “Try. The halila will be very suitable for it is one of the fruits of medical science, in which I am well versed”.

“I take the halila”, I said, “Because it is nearest to us. Had anything else been there instead, it could also have proved Allah's existence”.

“Everything murakkab is created. Creation shows a creator. That, which was not is, and that which is, is destroyed by Allah. Allah made it and destroyed it. Tell me do you see this “halila? “

“I do”, he said. “Can you see”, I asked, “what is in its interior?”


“Then there must not be a stone in this one”, I said, “for you do not see it with your eyes”.

“How can I say that?”he replied; “but there may not be one”.

“Nor”, I persisted, “a kernel hidden under the shell nor color within?”

“I know nothing”, he replied, “both may be absent”,

“I am sure”, I said, “you will at once admit that it can be had in India, for all Indian physicians agree on this point”.

“They may be wrong in their opinion”, he said, “I do not admit it”.

“All right”, said I. “but you at least believe that this fruit grows in some part of the world”.

He said “This earth is like that and I have seen that place where it grows”,

I said, “Will you believe by the presence of this halila that there are other halilas, which you do not see with your eyes?”I asked,

“No”, he replied obstinately. “This may be the only one of its kind in the world,”

Seeing him thus willfully bent upon ignorance, I asked him, what he thought the halila to be? Whether it was a product of a tree or it had come into existence by itself?

“I am not foolish to say that it has come into existence by itself. It is emphatically the product of a tree”

“Then, you admit”, said I, “the existence of a tree which you have not seen”

“Yes” he said “But add that the halila tree like all other things has self-existed for all eternity. Can you refute this belief of mine?”

“Yes”, I said, “in connection with the halila, have you seen the tree from which this one came? Do you now it perfectly well?”

“Yes”, he answered,

“Did you see the halila before it came into existence?”

“No, how could I?”

“Then perhaps”, said I “it might have happened thus:

“When you saw the tree first, it had no halilas. But next time you saw it, it had. Will you therefore believe that the halilas came into existence from the state of non-existence?”

“Why not?” I believe it, “but I say, what went to make a halila was already in the tree, which in due course of time got united and formed a halila”.

“Had you seen the seed from which the halila sprang up?” I asked.

“Yes I had”, he replied.

“Does it sound perfectly consistent to you to say said I “that the roots, branches, bark, leaves and all the fruits, which combined together, weigh many tons, were lying concealed in so small a seed?”

“No”, said he. “I cannot understand how all these things could be concealed in one seed”.

“Will you admit that they could not be present in the seed, but came into existence afterwards?”

“Yes”, he said. “But I do not say that they we created by some one, and you cannot prove it to me”.

“Why not?” said I, “if I show you a design or a painting you will have to believe that it was done by some one”.

“Yes”, he said.

“Does it not strike you that this halila is made upon a fixed standard-special?

Color, special size, special seed, special taste-some portion of its kernel is soft, while the rest hard-one portion coalescing into another has formed a compound-there is a layer over layer, body over body, and color over color? It has a hard material enveloped by a soft one. Its structure is composed of particles allied together. Its yellow color has a whitish tinge. It has a skin to preserve it from external influences. Roots to convey moisture. Leaves that preserve it from the sun lest it be burnt and scorched to ashes, or the cold, lest it be reduced to thinness and lose its vigor”?

“Would it not have been better”, asked he, “to cover the seed with leaves?”

“Allah was the best judge”, I replied, “Had it been covered with leaves as you suggest, the air without, which gives it strength and vigor would not have reached it. It could not have been influenced by the cold which makes it robust. The sun would have had no power to ripen it. It would have gone rotten. These different influences proportionately divided, held to bring the fruit to perfection designed by the powerful wisdom of Allah- the Almighty”.

“The seed in its rudimentary state”, said I “was neither kernel nor shell. It had neither color nor taste. It was only water”.

“Yes”, he said, “this I know”.

“If Allah”, said I, “had not strengthened the drop of water, which was no bigger than a mustard seed, suggested its shape, proportionately divided its particles, how could that very small drop of water have reached its present state of development? How could it have assumed its present form, uncombined as it was with shell or particles? Presume some development. But it would be in size and bulk and should only have consisted in the increase of water. It could not have scientifically assumed its present shape- it would have had no definite shape”.

“You prove to me”, he said, “beyond all doubts, the existence of some one who has created these things. Your arguments about the tree's growth, its development, its mode of bearing fruit, the shape of that fruit, have convinced me. But why make it a distinct creator? Why not say these things have created themselves of their own accord!”

“Because”, replied I, “the design points to a perfect intelligence. Does it not?”

“Yes, it does”, He admitted. “It is obvious”.

“Then”, I asked, “Do you think it consistent to say that perfect intelligence and wisdom came into existence from non-existence?”

“No”, he replied.

“Do you not know”, I asked, “that this halila is 'haadith', i.e. it did not exist before, but came into existence afterwards? And that it also perishes, and returns to non-existence.

“Yes, I do know this”, he replied “This halila may be haadith. But I did not say that its creator was 'haadith', and that he could not create his own being. It is possible that he may be 'haadith', or he may be 'Wajib-ul-wujud' (self-existing from all eternity)”.

“A little while ago”, said I, “you admitted that the creator could not be 'haadith', but the 'halila' was 'haadith'. Tell me then, how the fruit which is a created thing (haadith), created itself. When you declare halila fruit to be a created thing, it necessarily follows that you do not think it to be its own creator. If, however, you resume your old standpoint of argument, persisting in saying the fruit to be its own creator, you are admitting what at first you denied, You have possessed consciousness of perfect intelligence, though the proper name and its attributes are not known to you.”

“How is it”, he asked, “that I now admit what I first denied?”

“It is thus:” I replied. “When you admitted the existence of some wise and perfect intelligence, you admitted Allah. But called it by the name of 'halila', instead of calling it Allah. If you had used but a little discretion and reflection, you must have realized that the halila had no power to create or design itself”.

“Have you other proofs besides this?” he asked, “or this is all?”

“I have many”, I replied. 'Will you tell me why this halila which you say to have created itself, is so insignificant and powerless a thing that it can not save itself from being plucked, squeezed and devoured?”

“Because it has only the power of creating itself” he said.

“If you are inclined to persist in your obstinacy, do so; but at least assure me as to when this halila created itself-whether it did it before it came into existence, or afterwards? If you say afterwards, your assertion is absurd. Because it is impossible for a thing to create its own self when it was already created. The purpose of your assertion would be that the halila made itself twice. It would mean that its first endeavors consisted in creating itself, and when it was quite ready and created, it created itself again. This is the most absurd and impossible theory-the acquisition of what is already acquired (tahsil-e-hasil).

If you say that it created itself before it came into existence, it is really stupid. Because it was absolutely nothing before it came into existence. How is it possible for a non-existing thing to create another thing? You consider my belief in an existing thing that creates another non-existing thing as absurd. But you do not consider your own, as to the non-existing thing having the power to create an already existing thing, as absurd and stupid. Be yourself the judge, and tell me whose theory is absurd and irrational”.

“Yours”, said he, “is the most correct”.

“Then why do you not accept it?” said I.

“I do accept” he replied. “I am quite clear about the truth and veracity of the fact that the things, including halila, are neither created by themselves nor depend on themselves for their growth and functioning. But a doubt arises in my mind that the tree may perhaps be the creator of the 'halila'; because 'halila' is the product of the tree”.

“Well”, asked I, “who made the tree then?”

“Another halila”.

“This is all the same” said I, “Rather fix a limit. Else our arguments must go round and round in a circle, having no goal or termination. If you want to come to any conclusion believe the creator to be Allah, and terminate the chain of arguments. If you prefer your own belief for the sake of not arriving at a final decision I will question you once more upon it.”

“Do question me”, said he.

“Is it not right”, I asked, “that the tree springs up from the halila, after the halila becomes extinct?

“Yes”, he replied.

“The tree lives about a hundred years after the death of halila, (which you think is the creator of the tree). Tell me then, who preserves the tree and makes it thick and strong? Who nourishes it, guards it and provides the leaves? Surely you must say that it was He Who created it. If you call the ‘halila' the creator, and say that a dead thing manages the above mentioned things, your words convey no meaning. Because the words 'creator' and 'guardian' mean one and the same, and it is impossible for a dead creator to be guardian. Moreover, the tree begins to grow only when the halila begins to dissolve and annihilate itself. When the tree attains full growth, the halila seed is dead. In this case tell me who remains to guard, nourish and design the tree?”

“That I cannot say”, said he.

“Why don't you believe”, I asked, “that it is Allah, the Almighty? Surely you can have no more doubts lingering in your mind”.

“I have some”, he said. “You have not yet given me convincing proofs of His existence”.

“If you will still persist in your absurd theory that existing things must be known through the medium of five senses, let me tell you that the senses can not know anything except through the mind's medium. The mind is the true guide. It is the mind which brings all things into close affinity. Your assertion is quite the reverse of this. You hold that the mind has no power whatsoever to know anything without the intermeddling of the senses-quite a wrong assertion”.

“Your argument is quite new”, he said, “Before I admit it, I must have details”.

“Then I begin to give you some.”

I said. “You must know that when one sense or even if all the senses become useless, ears deafened, eyes blinded, smelling power vanished, the mind alone regulates the respective functions of the senses. The mind only guides one to perform a particular thing or avoid it; and things done by its suggestion bring about a very wholesome result”.

“Your argument”, he said, “seems a very strong one, but explains it to me more distinctly and concisely”.

“Alright”, asked I. “Do you know that the mind survives the death of the senses?”

“Yes”, he replied. “But its feeling and knowledge of things vanish with the senses. For instance, ears can hear but not so the mind; it is deaf with the ears”

“Do you know’? Asked I, “that when a mother gives birth to a child, that child's senses have no power to act. The senses are quite unfit to perform any function at that period of life”.

“Yes, I do know” he replied.

“Tell me then”, said I “which of the senses suggested the child to cry for milk, and to be cheerful and jolly when it sucked it? Which of the senses excited the birds of prey, and the birds that feed on grain to supply their young ones with flesh and grain respectively? Why does one feed on flesh, and the other smaller kind on grain? Again regarding 'water fowl'-why are they able to swim, on the surface of the water, and those inhabiting the land drown and die when thrown into water?

When all the creatures have the same senses, how is it possible for the water fowl to derive greater benefits than the land fowl? Why do the birds of the air die, if kept in water for a short time, and the fish, those inhabiting the sea, die if kept out of water for a while? Do not these different characteristics of senses refute your theory of their all-powerfulness; and suggest a greater intellect, an intellect that has created these species of birds and fish, intentionally ordained that one should live on land and the other in water-that has created circumstances to suit their necessities? If senses were consistently powerful they would have shown a similarity of action in all the species. Also have you not observed the ant which has never seen water, begins to swim when thrown into it, and the strong and clever man who does not know the art of swimming, sinks down to the bottom, and comes to the surface a dead body?

Now if the theory that all things are known by the senses be correct, why does not the wise experienced stout man use his senses in order to save his life as the ant does? Do you not also know that the mind-the treasure house of wisdom-is present in a brute child as well as in a human-child? That it is the mind that suggests the child to cry for milk, the birds of grain to feed on grain, and the carnivorous to prey upon flesh”.

'I know only this” said he, “that the mind can only know things through the senses”.

“You still adhere to your argument in favor of the senses, though once you admitted that it is the mind that guides the senses. Very well; now I shall prove to you in connection with these senses that they are unable to know anything but external things. They can in no way know the existence of invisible things such as the Almighty Allah and the soul. It is for this reason that the Creator gifts us with a mind and establishes through its medium His 'Hujjat' (proofs of His existence).

He has created the senses that they may observe external conditions and argue in favor of Him. When the eye observed creation in all its parts, it drew the attention of the mind to it. The eye saw the celestial sky retained in a position without obvious support, their regularity of motion, rotation, and revolution,-they neither lacked behind that they come in closer proximity to us, nor preceded further that they might undergo any damage. Their distance from us remains unchanged and so their condition. They do not get old or decayed though centuries of successive nights and days have passed. Their corners or ends do not fall down.

The motion of the seven planets also depends on rotation of the sky. They change their places every day, every month, and every year. Some are very rapid; some are very slow in their movement, but none too slow in their movement, but none too slow. They all return to the same place after performing their fixed duties with unswerving some of them take their courses towards the North, and sometimes towards the South. They remain obscure during day and visible at night. The appearances of the Sun and the Moon at certain places at certain times as understood by those men well-versed in the Science of Astronomy, the men endowed with thinking power are surely not the results of any human experience or will. Nor do they think that the investigations, searches or researches of any human being can produce a like phenomenon.

Thus putting everything to severe test and scrutiny the mind reasons, and concludes that there must be some one Who has created this most wonderful Universe, Who has preserved the skies in their natural position, prevented them from falling down upon the Earth. Along with the skies he has created the planets and the stars. Again when the eye observed the earth to be convex, and informed the mind of its observation, the mind felt that the upholder of this Earth in its present form must be He who kept it in its fixed place and prevented it from slipping into space, and that He must be the same, Who retained the skies overhead in firm position. The mind also felt that if there had been no upholder of these things, the Earth with the weight of all it possesses such as mountains, trees, seas, sands, etc would have easily crumbled down.

The mind with the eye's help decided that the creator of the Earth must be He Who created the skies….. Then again the ear heard the noise of boisterous whirl-winds, and that of soft and pleasant breezes. The eye saw that the former uprooted mighty trees, demolished strongest buildings and swept sand hills to the ground carrying them from one place to another. Though the eye observed all these movements, it could see none who performed them. The ear could hear no one. Nor could any of the senses detect His presence. The eye could not see the air because of its extent; hands could not hold it, because it was not solid. The eye, the ear and the senses could know nothing without the mind's assistance.

It was the mind that said that there was someone who controlled all these things. When the senses conveyed their impressions to the mind, the mind sensibly thought that the wind did not blow of its own accord. It thought, if it blew of its own accord, it would blow on continuously and would not pause. Because it is proved in science of natural philosophy that a natural force does not stop, unless resisted by some stronger force, Again it would not have demolished one thing and left another unmolested, and pulled down one tree and not the next one- it would have over one portion of land and not another.

Cogitating thus, the mind concluded that someone controlled the wind, moved it or stopped it just as He pleased, sent or withdrew its currents from whomsoever He liked again when the mind saw that the wind was connected with the sky and its wonders, it unhesitatingly decided that the creator of the wind is He Who has created and upheld the skies, earth and all their wonders. Likewise when the eye, the ears and other senses united, informed the mind of an earthquake, it reflected upon the quaking of a mighty earth, with its mountains, seas and other great appurtenances, and upon the fact that the earth is one solid body without fissures or disunited parts, yet one part shakes and the other remains unaffected, demolishing buildings on one hand. and not on the other; and as a result it concluded that the One Who shook one portion of the Earth and saved the other is He Who moves the wind and controls the air withholding them or not, according to His pleasures.

He is the designer and organizer of the skies and the earth and all things pertaining to them. The mind guessed for certain that it was quite impossible for the Earth to quake by itself. Because being naturally firm it should never have shaken at all.

And if it was not naturally firm, it’s hold have never ceased shaking. Because the natural condition of every thing always remains immutable. Thus it was proved to the mind that He Who created and designed the earth shakes any portion of it or not. Again the eye observed another wonderful sign of Allah's existence in the cloud which by His order hangs like smoke over-head between the Earth and sky. It does not possess a body to collide with mountains.

It passes through trees without shaking or sticking to them. It often passes through caravans, and when it is dark and thick obscures their way. Despite its light appearance it carries vast quantities of water. Its qualities are beyond description. It carries immense thunderbolts, lightning, snow, hail, dew (congested) so much so that the human imagination cannot fully comprehend its secrets or its wonders. It soars very high in the regions of skies - sometimes it is seen in a scattered state. Sometimes in united position.

Its movements depend upon the wind that is regulated by the will of Allah. Through its influence, it sometimes rises high and descends low, not letting of course quantity of water, it holds, fall down upon the Earth. When it does, it pours down in showers. Many a time we see it passing overhead covering cities, towns and places without letting even a drop of water fall down. When it has spread over hundreds of miles of land, it begins to rain drop by drop, and sometimes in torrents from the same quantity of water. Sometimes it rains so continuously that reservoirs, tanks, lanes and rivers overflow, and roads are flooded, and mountains of water seem to stand before the eyes. Sometimes it rains so violently that the ears get deafened with its roar and thunder.

With this rain, Allah revives the dry land, changes its color and clothes it in green verdure, the grass which is the fodder of beasts, begins to spring up. After it ceases raining, the clouds disperse, and gradually become invisible none can say where they have gone to these observations were no sooner conveyed to the mind, by the eye, then did the mind begin to reflect over them.

It thought that if these movements and functions of the clouds had come into existence of themselves and were not regulated by any perfect wisdom, it could not have been possible for the cloud to carry half the weight of water. And that if the cloud poured down the rain by itself it could not have gone further from its place, and it would not have rained drop by drop, but on the contrary would have poured all the water down all at once on the spot, because it is destitute of intelligence, and cannot foresee the result of raining all at once on the same spot.

In this case the mind thought that the buildings would have collapsed, vegetable product ruined, one portion of the land would have been over-irrigated, and the other would have been left dry and barren. Thus thinking, the mind concluded that the creator of all these things must be one and the same. Because had there been more than one say two or three, there must have arisen differences and disagreements in so long a period with regard to the regularity of these functions. Some would have been slower than others. Some lofty things would have lowered down, and lower things would have taken higher places.

Some planets (in contradiction to prescribed rules) would have risen instead of setting and some set instead of rising. In short, the unity of design, so manifest in the creation, convinced the mind of the fact that the creator of all the obvious and obscure things and wonders of the universe is He, Who has been existing from all eternity before anything was created. He is the creator and upholder of the sky, the creator and designer of the Earth, and the creator of all the things I have just mentioned and other things too numerous to enumerate.

Again, the eye observed succession of nights and days following each other with no possible change in the regularity and condition. It saw them merging one into another in regular hours, their peculiarities of light and darkness, their varying shortness and length. It saw the stars and planets unaffected by these successions of days and nights, the approach and departure of the different seasons, their commencement and end unvarying. And the mind with that instinctive sense given to it by Allah-Almighty, realized beyond all doubts, that the creator of all this perfect wisdom must be One Omnipotent, Omniscient, Eternal, Allah.

If there existed more than one creator, each creator would not have considered the other's creation worth anything, and would have tried to excel the others in design. Thus, instead of regularity and uniformity there would have been disorder and tumult…. Also the ears heard the message of Allah through the apostles, which verified the conclusion of the mind. The ears heard evidence as to Allah the Creator having neither a wife nor a son nor a partner and the message went to the mind for it to realize the truth”.

“What you described” said he, “are very wonderful things - things I had never heard before. Still I hesitate to accept, what you have said, unless you give me some more convincing proofs”.

“Well”, said I, “when you feel yourself unable to refute or find fault with my descriptions, and begin to water in your arguments I am confident your mind will very shortly assure you Insha’Allah (if Allah wishes), of the truth that the senses can know nothing without the help. Now tell me have you ever experienced a dream in which you were eating something and relishing its pleasant taste”

“Yes”, said he.

“Have you ever dreamt” I asked, “that you are laughing or weeping bitterly, traveling in known or unknown countries, recognizing those countries you had seen or known?”

“Yes” he replied, “I had had many such dreams”.

“Have you ever”, I asked, “seen in your dreams relatives parent or brothers that had died long ago, and identified them as you did in the life time”

“Why not” he exclaimed “I have experienced many such dreams.”

“Well then”, said I, “which of your senses felt the dead man and pointed him out to the mind that it could recognize him and converse with him Which sense relished the food, recognized the countries known or unknown, through which it traveled? Which sense wept and laughed?”

“I am confounded” he said, “I cannot reply, which of my sense (in this sleeping state) did the above things. In fact when one is asleep, he is like one dead, and in that condition, it is quite impossible for the senses to feel, know, see or hear anything.”

“Tell me”, asked I, “when startled, you woke from your sleep. Did you not recollect your dream sufficiently to narrate to your relations and friends, forgetting nothing?”

“Yes”, he replied. “Sometimes I have seen a thing in a dream and the same thing again in a waking state.”

“Alright”, said I, “which of the senses imbued you with the memory of what you saw when those senses were asleep?”

“None of the senses”, said he “seem to have had any hand therein.”

“Can you not see now” said I, “that it is the mind that sees all these things, remembering (in a dreaming state) when all the senses have ceased working? Don't you know that the mind has been endowed with reason, by means of which Allah establishes His Hujjat?”

“What I see in a dream” said he, “is unsubstantial like a Surab' (mirage), which from a distance appears to be real water, but on approach is discovered to be only sand.”

“How do you make comparison, when in your dream you relish different tastes?” I queried.

“Because”, he replied, “when I approached that ‘Surab', I discovered only sand, and when I awoke I discovered nothing of that which I had seen in dream.”

“Well” asked I, “if I give you an example of what you may have enjoyed in a dream, and which may have made you uneasy, will you believe in the reality of dreams?”

“Yes, why not?” He replied.

“Tell me”, said I, “have you ever in a dream lived with a woman familiar or unfamiliar?”

“Many times”, said he.

“Did you not feel then”, asked I, “exactly the same sensation derived from the satisfaction of carnal appetite in the waking state, and were not the traces left the same?”

“This refutes the argument regarding the 'Surab'. Because the latter is quite unreal-when one approach, it fades away. But here the case is quite contrary. The action in the dream leaves behind traces to prove the reality of sensation.”

“The dreamer”, he said, “sees the same things that his senses in a state of wakefulness have witnessed.”

“Very well”, said I, “you strengthen my argument, when you admit the mind's ability to comprehend and identify the things of which the senses (no longer working} have no remembrance. Why did you first assert that the mind even with the help of the senses and in the state of wakefulness has not this power, and that they are the senses only which comprehend all these things? Will you tell me who (when the senses were out of work) gave this power to mind that has neither ears nor eyes? Because now you admit that it was the mind that saw the woman and enjoyed the pleasure of her company even though the senses were not at work?”

“It is foolish to admit the knowledge of the mind when the senses are sleeping and to deny it, when the senses are waking. A man of reason must believe that the mind is the king, and prime administrator of the senses. However foolish he may be, he cannot be ignorant of the fact that the hand cannot extract the eye, nor amputate the tongue, nor can have any senses any power to deal with any part of the body without its permission, suggestion and contrivance.

Allah has created the mind to be the regent of the body, and the body can only feel, see or hear, through its agency. If the mind conceives retreat, the body can not advance and vice-versa. It is only through its medium the senses work. They are obedient to its orders. If the mind prohibits them to act, they at once obey its command. It is the mind on which sorrows prey, and joys enliven. Despite the loss or derangement of the senses, the mind remains intact. But if the mind gets out of order the senses share the same fate, the eyes do not see properly, the ears do not understand,”

“I scarcely believed”, said he, “that you would be able to deal with these difficult questions without being confounded. Your arguments are so elegant as to appear irrefutable”.

“Listen”, said I, “and I will more firmly convince you, as to the truth of what I have narrated, and of the things you have seen in your dreams”

“Do so”, he exclaimed, “I am not a little astounded your eloquence.”

“When you think of any calling”, asked I, “or devise plans to build or erect something, do you not deliver order to that effect?”

“Yes”, He replied.

“While devising such plans, and forming designs of non-existing things, do you make any of your senses the partner of the mind that creates them?”

“No”. He replied.

“Is it not visible”, said I, “that things done in compliance with the mind's mature judgment, are of a high order?” (Then is it not proved that it is the mind that knows all the things and not the senses?).

“I think so”, he said. “But please go on with your arguments. I am now anxious to throw off doubts and accept the truth.”

“So much the better”, said I. “Tell me if there are any astronomers in your native place?”

“You do not seem to be acquainted with the extent of astronomical knowledge possessed by my countrymen.” he said. “I don’t think there is a nation to surpass us in this particular science.”

“Well, tell me”, asked I, “how they acquired this knowledge of astronomy, for this knowledge cannot be acquired through the medium of the senses, but through profound thought and deep reflection?”

“Yes”, he replied, “it is true. Some wise and learned persons prepared tables of such importance, which generation after generation in successive order have followed. When an inquiry is made, the movements and the positions of the Sun, Moon and Stars are considered. They state which of the visible stars are ill-omened, and which of the invisible ones are auspicious. They are so well versed in this science that they rarely err in their calculations. People take their children to these astrologers, and they calculating from the movements of the planets, predict events and incidents occurred or to occur in the child's life.”

“What concern”, I asked, “have the movements of planets, with the lives of children that their parents take them to astrologers.”

“Because”, he replied, “each child's birth corresponds with a planet's movement, If this were not so, the astrologers would make mistakes. They calculate the movement-day, month and year-in which the child is born, and are correct in their conclusions.”

“If this be really true”, said I, “You have described a science so wonderful, that none other can be compared to it or more worthy of respect; for the incidents and the accidents of a person's life from birth to death are known through its means. Do you think the knowledge of this science is an innate one, born with every person?”

“No”, he said, “I do not think it is so”.

“Then, let us think”, said I, ''as to how this knowledge was acquired. And let us use if it be correct to say that all people cannot acquire it, though all are born in connection with the movements of the planets and stars. I am ready to grant that only few people learn and master the science. But the question is how did they learn or master it-specially the knowledge which declares one star to be ill-omened and the other to be auspicious? How have they fixed the time, hour and degrees, the slow or rapid movements of the planets and the stars, their exact position over or below the Earth; and their predictions which you mention? How have they gathered them? I believe that any of the creatures inhabiting this globe are so advanced as to penetrate the secrets of the visible and invisible Universe”.

“You may not believe”, said he. “But that they have done so, I am positive about it”.

“When you assert”, said I, “that all the Earth's inhabitants are born in conjunction with the movements of the stars and planets, the wise man (Hakim) who first discovered the science of astronomy must have been born like-wise.”

“Of course”, he exclaimed, “he must be included in the category of the human race.”

“Then does not your reason guide you to the fact that these planets and stars existed before the birth of that wise man, who, as you say discovered the science of astronomy, and was born in conjunction with the movements of the stars and planets?”

“Indeed”, said he, “the planets and stars must have existed prior to his birth”.

“Tell me” said I, “how could the wise inventor of the science learn the method of calculating the stars without a master to teach him? If you say that he had a master, then that master must have existed before the existence of the stars. And indeed must be He, Who established the rules and regulations for those movements, on which you say the events of a life are based, and from which the future of a new born child is foretold. Taking this for granted, the wise man inventor of the science- must have been the follower and pupil of that master, who had existed before the stars, and had created them-the wise man-in conjunction with the movements of certain of them.

Then He who established the science, was He who lived before the stars, the Creator of them and the people born according to their movements. Presupposing the age of the wise man to be ten times that of the Earth, he must have had the same observation of the stars as we have now. They must have twinkled over-head as they down-where lay the difference between him and us? How did he know the exact calculation whilst we do not? Had he special power to go nearer to this very high firmament, and more closely study the secrets of the stars, their position and movements; learn, which of them eclipse the Sun and the Moon; which are consistent with the birth of children; which are ill-omened and suspicious, rapid or slow, and many other things, such as the length of time they are concealed under the Earth, and the exact hours of their appearance and disappearance?

How chances it that a human being has so great a knowledge of things heavenly, since deep reflection cannot give it to him and his senses cannot reach so far? How did he invent the method of calculation by which is known the movement of the Sun and Moon, and the knowledge--which among the seven planets suspicious or ill-omened; the exact position of these luminaries, and correct judgment as to which was rising or a setting one? How could he-on the surface of the Earth-study that which was in the heavens? How could he see those stars which are made invisible by the Sun's blinding luster? If you suggest that he flew up to the skies, my mind still perplexes me, for even then he could not master the science without a teacher; when one cannot master an earthly science thus, how can he master a science not of the Earth?”

“I do not even recollect”, said he, “of hearing of a human being going up to the skies”.

“Perhaps”, I suggested, “the wise man may have done so, and you may not be aware of it”.

“I would not accept its truth “, he said, “from any source”.

“I agree with you there”, I said, “but let us suppose the fact of the wise man's ability to climb up to the skies. In that case we shall have to believe that he performed incredible journeys, visited every star and planet, staying with them as they set or rose till he had gained fullest knowledge about those functions; and as some of the planets take as much as thirty years to complete their rotation, he must necessarily have stayed with them for the prescribed period however long it may have been in order to fully collect all information. Let us take all this for granted also, that he not only ascended to the skies, but he traveled in company with each and every luminary, till he had become fully acquainted with their habits.

Still however, his observations could not be called complete until he had studied those stars under the Earth. In this he must take the same amount of time, that he took in observing the heavenly stars, for the movements of the stars beneath the Earth cannot be said to be the same, and to master the science to its present accuracy of calculation he must miss no point of knowledge. To know the period of time these stars remain invisible, whether by day or by night, is very necessary; besides, the question must be settled fully and for ever as there was only one wise man to do it. If there had been more than one wise man, they must have differed in their calculations. Now really does not strike you that it is only you who can hold the idea of a wise man, who dived down into the depths of the seas, and penetrated through the darkness of the Earth; who floated along the shies, clinging to the stars and the planets and acquiring the knowledge of their movement and doing the same to stars under the Earth!”

“I do not hold”, said he “the opinion that any man can ascend the skies, or dive to the bottom of the seas, or penetrate the interior of the Earth.”

“As you don't hold this opinion”, said I, “tell me then how could the wise man (whom you think to be inventor) learn the science of Astronomy? How could he complete his researches in connection with it when he came into existence long after the creation of the stars he knew all about?”

“In face of your arguments” he said, “it does not seem prudent or wise to say that this science was invented by a being of this Earth?”

“Then”, said I, “you admit that this science can only be known to one cognizant with the ins and outs of heaven well as Earth?”

“If I do so”, he said, “I must admit Allah, who you say is the creator of heaven and earth.”

“Have you not told me”, I asked, “that the calculations based on Astrono

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