We are the Ones Who Need Worship!
The Prophet (pbuh) says “World is the field of the hereafter.” Whatever one plants in this field called the world, Allah gives him harvest of that kind. People plant metaphysical/spiritual flowers in this world with their belief, good deeds, high moral qualities and they plant metaphysical/spiritual thorns with their unbelief, evil deeds, riots and low moral qualities. The harvests of both planting are going to be seen in the hereafter. Both gains and losses of these harvests are for people.
The following example was given in a conversation:
If all people open their eyes and benefit from sunlight during the daytime, the light of the sun does not increase. And if all people close their eyes to sunlight, its light does not decrease.
This example was given while explaining the statement of “the religion of Islam resembles the Sun; it does not die out by blowing. It resembles daytime; it does not turn into night by closing eyes.”
Are belief, knowledge, worship, God-Consciousness and high moral qualities not like that? People who have them become honorable and eminent people. If all people live deprived of them, those spiritual values do not lose anything from their values.
If all people appreciate a branch of science or if they deny it, the true value of that science neither increases nor decreases.
People need knowledge; yet knowledge does not need people. Even though all people are ignorant, superiority of knowledge does not change at all; its light is always superior to the darkness of ignorance.
One who learns knowledge earns a higher position. It happens firstly in his soul and heart. A knowledgeable, wise person is a superior, eminent person. The verse “Are those equal, those who know and those who do not know?” (az-Zumar, 9) clearly indicates this reality.
Being knowledgeable is useful also in worldly affairs. One who is knowledgeable and specialized in a field is promoted to position that he deserves; and he can have higher payment than others.
Worship, too, is like knowledge in a sense. People need worship. The value of worship does not change when people worship or not. Any increase or decrease in its value cannot be imagined.
Worship means obedience in a sense, and it is also a means of thank-giving.
Worshipping is a requirement of the creation of human beings and verses ordering people to worship invite them to “fit with their nature” in a sense.
Sight is in the nature of eyes; whatever it is to order an eye to see, it is the same to order a human being to worship. Yet the difference is that there is human’s free-will involved in the latter one. As a requirement of the worldly trials, humankind is set free to behave in accordance with their nature or not.
How does human nature command worship? At this point, I would like to report the following evaluation from Risale-i Nur collection:
“There is a passion for beauty and admiration for perfection and love for goodness in the true nature of the humankind.” The Flashes
Loving beauty comes from the nature of the humankind. We do not need to tire our minds and then make our minds up to start appreciating in order to love a beautiful landscape that we see. Our heart tends towards it with love right away.
It is the same about admiring a perfect masterpiece. It is a requirement of the human nature, too. Without asking who its master is, we firstly admire it and then wonder about the artist of it later.
Thanking for an offering, or thanking a person or being grateful for someone are also requirements of the human nature.
In this sense, worshipping our Lord, whose all attributions are infinitely perfect and whose all names are beautiful and all works are full of boons and goodness, is a requirement of the human creation.
As we said before, seeing is in the true nature of eyes. Eye receives its reward as soon as it looks at something; the image of the thing it looks at becomes manifest in it. If it looks at a mountain, it takes its image into it. If it looks at the Sun, it reunites with it.
In this sense, one who fulfills the duty of worship will have rewards, too. This reward is presented in the Quran, the words of Allah, as follows:
“O ye people! Adore your Guardian-Lord, who created you and those who came before you, that you may become righteous.” (al-Baqarah, 2:21)
At the beginning of the verse, the reason of worship, that is to say, the answer to the question “Why do we worship?” is given:
“Because He is your Lord.”
Religious service is the duty of servants. One is responsible for giving thanks and for worshipping his Lord, who turned him into a human being from a drop of water, disciplined his eyes to see, his ears to hear and his mouth to talk…
The reward of those who fulfill this natural duty is determined to be “reaching the level of taqwa (God-Consciousness)” in the verse.
Taqwa is divided into three:
Taqwa from shirk: Avoiding attributing partners with Allah.
Taqwa from disobedience: Avoiding sins.
Taqwa from masiwa: Keeping everything except for Allah away from the heart. (Making one’s love and fear exclusive to Allah. Loving all creatures only for the sake of Him.)
The issue of taqwa is mentioned in the second verse of surah al-Baqarah following surah al-Fatiha:
“This is the Book; in it is guidance sure, without doubt, to those who are God-Conscious.”
In the following verse, qualities of God-Conscious people are listed as follows:
“-Who believe in the Unseen,
-Who are steadfast in prayer,
-and who spend out of what We have provided for them (who give zakat out of what We have provided for them).”
Reaching the level of God-Consciousness (taqwa) results in a stronger faith and more perfectly performed worship such as prayers and zakat. Such a believer reaches the level that “Allah is pleased with him.” This level is superior to all levels.
Being honored with this is a reward itself. Yet, it is not all. Allah endows upon those servants of His with whom He is pleased infinite boons and blessings in the land of never-ending happiness.
In another Quranic verse about God-Conscious people, their qualities are listed as follows:
-Those who spend (freely), whether in prosperity, or in adversity;
-who restrain anger, and pardon (all) men
-And those who, having done something to be ashamed of, or wronged their own souls, earnestly bring God to mind, and ask for forgiveness for their sins
-And are never obstinate in persisting knowing ly in (the wrong) they have done. (Aal-i-Imran, 134-135).
All of those are the qualities of believers who have reached spiritual maturity. That is to say; the fruit of worship is God-Consciousness and the reward of God-Consciousness is reaching such a superior level.
A servant who elevates and sublimes spiritually with God-Consciousness pleases his Lord. However, one should keep in mind that Allah is free from everything; He does not need anything. This elevation and subliming of a human being are benefits and perfection for that human being itself. Allah neither needs his elevation, nor is He harmed by his degradation. In both situations, the result only affects that human being. Both gain and loss are for him.
“It gets every good that it earns, and it suffers every ill that it earns.” (al-Baqarah, 286)
It is necessary to ponder over it. A blessed hadith says:
“I was a hidden treasure. I wished to be known and created creatures.” (Ajluni, II, 132).
Allah existed and there was nothing else. One of Allah’s names is as-Samad, which means everything needs Him and He does not need anything.
Everything that we see today, from stars to the Sun, from mountains to seas was all but non-existent. Allah created them.
And Allah does not need their existence.
Then He created the living beings. He endowed upon them eyes and ears.
And Allah does not need their sight and hearing.
Later, He created human beings and endowed upon them minds and hearts. He blessed them with the gift of contemplating the beauties in the realm of existence and believing in the One who created them all.
And Allah does not need to be comprehended by minds and to be believed in by hearts.
In short, Allah needs neither the creatures He created nor does He need what they do, because He is the One who created them and their works.
Let us make it a bit clearer through some examples:
He created both the Sun and light. In this sense, Allah needs neither the Sun nor does He need its light.
He created both trees and fruits. In this sense, He needs neither trees not their fruits.
He created both stomach and its function of digestion. In this sense, He needs neither stomach nor digestion.
We can carry these three examples which are in the realm of physical materials to the realm of metaphysics.
Allah created both the mind and comprehension. In this sense, He needs neither the mind nor its comprehension.
Allah created both the heart and the gift of believing in it. In this sense, Allah needs neither the existence of the heart nor its belief.
Allah needs neither the heart’s belief nor worship which means the practice of that belief.
Allah’s perfection is infinite. Infinity can be thought neither to increase nor to decrease. If all people become believers who are spiritually mature, His perfection/maturity does not increase at all. And if all people turn into Pharaohs, His perfection/maturity does not decrease.
They are the human beings that win or lose. These verbs cannot be juxtaposed with Allah.
Contemplation and belief are the greatest needs of the human soul. With these, one can become a real human being and find perfection. Otherwise, he leads a life of plants and animals. He wrongs his own soul by wasting his large capital on trivial things and he makes losses, degrades himself and as the Quran puts it, he becomes “like an animal, even inferior to it.”
Allah does not lose anything due to his degradation and He does not need his elevation, either. Both of them are for the human being only.
- While performing prayer, there are always things that come to my mind involuntarily, I think about something; does this invalidate my prayer?
- Could you give detailed information about delusion? How can I get rid of it?
- Why do people still not believe though they see realities?
- What is salah (prayer)? Why is salah (prayer), which consists of a few acts, is so much important in Islam?
- Is one asked if he wanted to be created and tested?
- How appropriate is it to say, "Allah will forgive" and not to worship?
- Is Allah- God forbid- a sadist since He allows animals to be savaged?
- How can we strengthen our faith? Could you give information about the increase and decrease of faith, investigative faith and imitative faith and the importance of faith?
- Why does Allah threaten those who abandon worshipping to send to Hell?
- Can the prayer of a Christian be accepted?