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Articles Section > Two Parallel Systems [Physical + Spiritual] by Imam Kalamazad Mohammed Sahib [Based on Hazrat Mirza Sahib's Writings]

Two Parallel Systems [Physical + Spiritual]:
by Imam Kalamazad Mohammed Sahib
based on Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib's writings

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(This is Our) way with Our messengers whom We sent before thee, and thou wilt not find a change in Our course (The Holy Quran, 17:77).

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, the Mujaddid of the 14th Century Hijrah, has identified a general law operating in the whole universe when he explains that there are two systems operating side by side in Allah’s creation – a physical system and a closely related spiritual system; the former, in fact, being a manifestation of the latter which is hidden, except to discerning spiritual eyes.

In Taudhih-i-Maram, he has given a somewhat detailed example of this in his tafsir (commentary) of chapter 91 of the Holy Qur’an. An explanation of the first seven verses is given below.

By the sun and his brightness! And the moon when she borrows light from him! And the day when it exposes it to view! And the night when it draws a veil over it! And the heaven and its make! And the earth and its extension! And the soul and its perfection!

Mirza Sahib explains:

"… all the splendours that have been listed with the various oaths have all been assembled in man. Thus the soul of a ‘perfect man’ contains within it the brilliance of the sun and its rays, the characteristics of the moon in being able to acquire benefit from others, and for his own good, acquire light (wisdom) from another source of light (wisdom). Man also has the characteristics of daylight. Just as in daylight labourers and workers are able to carry out their duties properly, in the same way the seekers of truth and those who tread the path of peace, by following the example of the ‘perfect man’, are able to carry out their religious functions with ease and comfort. Such a man, like daylight, can reveal himself with clarity and holds within himself all the characteristics of daylight. The ‘perfect man’ also bears resemblance to the pitch darkness of night. This is explained by the fact that despite the aloofness and separation from desires of the self that he acquires through the Grace of God, he sometimes reverts to those things that constitute human rights under Divine Wisdom and Guidance. Such desires are apparently opposed to and are a hindrance to the spiritual light, such as the functions of eating, drinking and resting, duties towards wives, love and care of the children. The ‘perfect man’ carries out these duties and for a little while accepts this darkness for himself, not because he is inclined towards such darkness, but because Almighty God directs him towards these things, so that he may gain a little rest from the exertions and endeavours in the path of the spirit and, having rested, be prepared to carry on with the burden of his efforts. A Persian poet expresses this in a single verse:
‘Trainers sew the eyelids of a falcon
Only to unstitch them again.’

So such people, if they indulge in bodily comforts and needs after undergoing anxiety and mental fatigue, it helps their feeble bodies to be refreshed and become fit and gain enough strength and energy to accompany the spirit on its course once again. After this somewhat baser indulgence, man is able to cover many stages of spiritual progress. Besides this, the human soul has many other finer qualities resembling the night which have been discovered through the researches carried out in the fields of astronomy and astrology. Similarly, the soul of the ‘perfect man’ bears resemblance to outer space. Just as the boundaries of space are so extensive and limitless that nothing can fill it, in the same way the reasoning powers of these noble souls have extensive capacities within them, and, despite the fact that they acquire a vast amount of knowledge and truths, they still cry out ma’arafnaka (I do not know). Just as the canopy of space is dotted with bright stars, so the soul of the ‘perfect man’ also bears a strong resemblance to the earth. The best kind of soil has the characteristic that, when it is ploughed, sown and irrigated and all the care and attention that it needs has been given to it, then it yields far more than any other plot of land, and the fruit produced from such a land is finer and sweeter and more delicious than other crop of fruit; in its quantity and quality it cannot be excelled. A similar thing happens to the soul of the ‘perfect man’. When Divine commandments are sown into the heart of such a person, he prospers wonderfully, and good deeds, like plants, emerge from those seeds. The fruit of these ‘plants’ is so wonderful and delicious that anyone who looks at it is reminded of the Divine power of God and has to say:

‘All praise is due to God!
All praise is due to God!’

The verse in the Holy Qur’an, And the soul and its perfection (91:7) clearly indicates that ‘perfect man’ in his inner self and nature is a universe, and all the manifestations, characteristics, and qualities of the great universe are found in him on a smaller scale. In the verses mentioned earlier, Almighty God started with the characteristics of the sun and ended with a reference to the earth which is our place of abode and briefly referred to the characteristics of everything that falls within these two regions; these were referred to by way of oaths. After that, the verses mentioned the soul of the ‘perfect man’ so that it should be understood that the soul of the ‘perfect man’ combines in itself all the various splendours which are present individually in all the things that have been mentioned by way of oath" (pp. 40-43, Iqbal Ahmad’s translation).

Also, in explaining the following sentence from 2:25 of the Holy Qur’an, And give good news to those who believe and do good deeds, that for them are Gardens in which rivers flow …, he says that the Holy Qur’an has likened faith to gardens, and good deeds to water. That is, just as gardens need water not only to exist but also to flower and bear fruit, so, too, man’s faith (garden) needs to be sustained by good deeds (water) in order for man to achieve falah (success), or perfect self-actualisation or a complete flowering of all the hidden talents that Allah has reposed in him.

In the following extracts, in a tafsir (commentary) of 86:11-12, Mirza Sahib amplifies the theme of two co-existing and mutually related systems operating in the universe and draws many profound, enlightening and pertinent conclusions from this Divine arrangement.

He says:

"In short, in the laws of nature, you can observe that Allah has made two parallel systems – one physical and the other spiritual. Whatever arrangements are provided for the physical are also furnished for the spiritual.

Thus, whoever holds these two systems as his guide and strives and struggles in his affairs will make rapid advance and his knowledge will become extensive. In every way, each physical task of his will become a manifestation of spiritual matters as our Holy Prophet (pbuh) said: ‘This world is the field of the Hereafter.’

In the physical system we can see that physically, the farmer, in spite of all kinds of proper exertion and endeavour, is still dependent upon water from the heavens, and if, in addition to his labours and efforts, heavenly water does not fall on his crops, then his harvest will be destroyed and his labour will have been wasted.

Similarly, the same law operates in the spiritual world. Man can reap no benefit from dry, formal faith if heavenly rain does not descend and with powerful signs wash away the pollution from his heart and purify him. And this is what the Holy Qur’an alludes to when it says: By the cloud giving rain, and the earth opening with herbage (96:11-12).

Many people in their ignorance question the necessity for oaths by Allah, Most High, and end up having to repent for their own hasty judgement. To take an oath really means to establish evidence on a solid foundation. In the affairs of worldly governments, too, we can see that on many occasions, the determination of a court matter hinges on oaths. Likewise, Allah, Most High, swears by heavenly water in pointing out the similarity between the physical and spiritual systems and He presents this fact as testimony that just as the verdure of the earth and the luxuriance of the fields depend upon water from above and unless there is heavenly rain there can be no greenery on earth and the earth will become dead – in fact, wells will become dry, too – and the earth will be convulsed and will head for destruction and people will die of hunger and thirst, and men and animals and even birds and beast, etc. will feel the effects of the resulting drought, so, too a self-evident system obtains in the spiritual world.

Remember that faith without heavenly rain, which descends in the nature of converse with Allah, can never form the basis for salvation or for genuine peace. Those people (who claim) that they can achieve salvation without heavenly rain or without the assistance of one sent by Allah and therefore they have no need for any purifier or commissioned one from Allah, should create water in their own homes. What need do they have of heavenly water?" Malfuzat, vol. 10, pp. 397-399.

In Malfuzat, vol. 8, pp. 304-305, he explains that the counterpart of physical rain in the spiritual realm is really Divine revelation which is the source of all worldly knowledge, philosophical, scientific, spiritual; and just as wells become dry physically, so, too, the wells of worldly knowledge dry up or become stagnant, polluted and filthy if the purifying and vivifying rain of Divine revelation does not descend from above. In short, everything on earth depends for its existence upon Divine sustenance from above, as the Holy Qur’an tells us: And in the heavens is your sustenance, and that which you are promised (21:22); and, Know that Allah gives life to the earth after its death …(57:17) by sending rain, physically and spiritually.

In Chashmah-i-Ma’rifat, p. 102, Mirza Sahib points out that revelation will never be contrary to the laws of nature for there is a perfect consonance between the words of God and His works. This is why in the Holy Qur’an Allah, Most High, first swears by physical things and then presents spiritual matters, the clear inference being that the physical things are a verification of deep spiritual truths. This, he goes on to say, is a criterion for judging the veracity of a holy book, or if any scripture is contrary to the laws of nature, then it cannot have come from God.

Everything that Allah has created works according to a Divinely-appointed system and what deeper purpose, one may well ask, do these parallel systems serve? It is that the fear of God and the appreciation of His majesty should be generated in our minds through our knowledge of the sciences and through this we may delve deeper into the hidden spiritual truths to which these sciences point, as he says:

"Just as Allah, Most High, wants people to fear Him, so, too, He wishes that the light of scientific knowledge be born in them and through this they may transcend the boundaries of spiritual insight, because deep knowledge of the external world creates true fear in the heart on one hand, and on the other, worship of God is also born because of this knowledge. There are many unfortunate people who are so engrossed in worldly sciences that they are far removed from the appreciation of Divine decrees and thus fall into doubt concerning the very existence of Allah, Most High.

There are some, too, who believe in Divine decrees but relinquish the search for scientific knowledge. The Holy Qur’an has taught us both kinds of knowledge and in a perfect manner, too, for it wants man to be steeped in true scientific knowledge and inclines him to it because through this the fear of God is born within him. And in the measure knowledge of God grows in us, so, too, in the same way, the majesty of God and love for Him will be generated in our hearts. Man is taught to live according to the laws of Divine decrees so that thereby the attributes of reliance and dependence on Allah may be born and through complete resignation to His will he will become the beloved of God and will obtain true peace and tranquillity which are the aim and object of salvation" (Malfuzat, vol. 1, pp. 223-224).

Finally, in his tafsir (commentary) of Those who remember Allah standing and sitting and (lying) on their sides, and reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth: Our Lord, Thou has not created this in vain! Glory be to Thee! Save us from the chastisement of the fire (3:190), Mirza Sahib reveals in its clarity the true purpose of these two systems:

"If you wish to be successful, use your intellect in all your affairs, ponder and meditate. The Holy Qur’an has repeatedly emphasised the importance of deliberation and planning in our lives.

Ponder deeply on the hidden book and on the Holy Qur’an and cultivate a pious disposition. When your heart is purified and you make use of sound thinking in your work and you also walk along the paths of righteousness, then from a union of these two attributes is born such a condition that the following words spring with conscious realisation from the heart: Our Lord, Thou hast not created this (that is, the world) in vain! Save us from the chastisement of the fire (3:190).

At this time the realisation comes to mind that this creation is not in vain but really serves as a testimony of the truth and the verification of the real Creator so that all kinds of arts and sciences which serve religion may become manifest" (Malfuzat, vol. 1, p. 66).


Articles Section > Two Parallel Systems [Physical + Spiritual] by Imam Kalamazad Mohammed Sahib [Based on Hazrat Mirza Sahib's Writings]


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