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  • In April 2001, Christianity Today published an article titled “Is the God of the Christians the same as the God of the Jews and the same as the God of the Muslims? The author thought “While the God of the Christians may well be the God of the Jews He cannot be the God of the Muslims.” I was outrages at this and wrote to CT (they didn’t even acknowledge) pointing out “Is God the Creator and is the Creator God? If both answers are Yes (what else can they be?) then, the Creator is God and there is only one God, call Him what you will. It is the concept of God wherein we differ. Muslims only know of God what He has tols us through His Messengers and Prophets. We can neither add nor subtract to what He has said.
  • One can see from this concept of being unique and nothing being like Him that an image is impossible.
  • This is how one’s understanding of what a Muslim is required to do develops. He wants to be a servant of God. Allah tells us in the Qur’an: I have created mankind and Jinn (devils) to worship Me.
  • Allah in different scripts.Islam and Muslims developed a beautiful way of writing and geometric patterns as art forms – a few examples follow.
  • Allah is He besides Whom there is no god, the Everliving, the Self-subsisting by Whom all subsist; slumber does not overtake Him nor sleep; whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth is His; who is he that can intercede with Him but by His permission? He knows what is before them and what is behind them, and they cannot comprehend anything out of His knowledge except what He pleases, His knowledge extends over the heavens and the earth, and the preservation of them both tires Him not, and He is the Most High, the Great. There is no compulsion in religion; truly the right way has become clearly distinct from error; therefore, whoever disbelieves in the Shaitan and believes in Allah he indeed has laid hold on the firmest handle, which shall not break off, and Allah is Hearing, Knowing. Allah is the guardian of those who believe. He brings them out of the darkness into the light; and (as to) those who disbelieve, their guardians are Shaitans who take them out of the light into the darkness; they are the inmates of the fire, in it they shall abide.

Transcript

  • 1. “Images of God”
    by
    Daud R Matthews
    IT Manager (ret’d)
    15/10/2010
    DeLisle Catholic Science College
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  • 2. Introduction
    In Islam there are no images of God.
    If a person tries to form an image of God in their mind they should immediately ignore it
    Similarly, there are no icons, statues, idols or pictures etc. (We pray with our eyes open.)
    In Islam, it is not the ‘person’ and God’s ‘interaction’ which produces an ‘image’ in human life, but our search for the ‘Will of God’. ‘Image’, in Islam, has to be searched for in this framework. We have been told we have been created to worship Him. We seek to serve Him and come close to Him. Hence, ‘Will’ is defined as Guidance (hidayah) and the nearest thing to an ‘image’, in Islam, are God’s characteristics or attributes (sifaat).
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    The basic teaching of Islam about God?
    Islam teaches that there is one, and only one, God Who is the Creator and Controller of the entire universe. He is unique in every respect, and there is nothing which bears any likeness to Him. He is the Knower of all things, and has full power over the whole of creation. He does not stand in need of anything at all, while everything is totally dependent on Him. He possesses all the perfect qualities, and mankind should worship Him, and Him alone.
  • 4. Islamic Concept of One God: Tawheed
    Although “monotheism” may be one way to describe tawheed, the Islamic concept of "One God" can be understood on different levels: Muslim scholars frequently divide tawheedinto three categories or degrees:
    Belief in Allah’s Divine Lordship (over Creation)
    Belief in Allah’s Divine Nature (worthy of all worship - Deity/ilah)
    Belief in the Names and Attributes of Allah
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  • 5. Tawheed
    Tawhid-ul-Rububiyyah (Oneness of Allah’s Lordship):
    is to believe in Allah’s Omnipotence; He Alone is the Originator of creation, He gives life and death, He is the Sustainer, Provider, Nourisher, Cherisher etc. of all His creation
    Tawhid-ul-Uluhiyyah (Oneness of Worship/Ibadah):
    is the sincerity of devotional acts e.g. Salah (Prayer), Sawm (Fast), Zakah (obligatory charity), vows and sacrifice
    Works of the heart [amaal al qulub] or worship of the heart—Love for Allah sincerely and Glorification and fear and hope, humility and abasing oneself before Allah, aspiring and dread, consciousness of Allah [taqwa] and reverence, reliance and dependence, repentance, contrition, patience and thankfulness, submission and contentment are all works of the heart
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  • 6. Tawheed
    Tawhid-ul-Asma’ wal-Sifat (Oneness of Allah’s 99 Names and Attributes):
    is to talk of Allah’s Names and Attributes in the same manner He and His Prophet (peace be upon him) did; giving Him the same Names and Attributes He gave Himself: free from comparison, not likening Allah’s Attributes to those of His Creation, no distortion of the meaning, or denial of Allah’s Attributes
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  • 7. Tawheed
    The Arabic word tawheedmeans “unification” or “asserting oneness.” In Islam, tawheedrefers to the divine oneness and uniqueness of Allah.
    Muslims refer to God as Allah because it is what the Creator calls Himself in the Holy Qur’an. The name Allah is not used exclusively by Muslims, however. Jews and Christians in the Arab speaking world also refer to God as Allah.
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  • 8. Belief in Allah’s Divine Nature (TawheedUloohiyyah)
    Since Allah is the only God, only He is worthy of worship. In Islam, there is no such thing as an intercessor or intermediary. Each Muslim develops his or her own personal relationship with Allah by praying directly to Him and through other acts of worship such as giving to charity, reading the Holy Qur’an, and making Pilgrimage / hajj. Worship should be accompanied by full submission and obedience to Allah.
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  • 9. Passages from the Qur'an on theAsma al-Husna(The 99 Names of God)
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    • Say: And God's alone are the attributes of
    perfection; invoke Him, then, by these, and stand
    aloof from all who distort the meaning of His
    attributes.” Al-A'Raf 7:180, tr. Asad
    • “Invoke God, or invoke the Most Gracious: by
    whichever name you invoke Him, He is always the
    One -- for His are all the attributes of perfection.”
    Al-Isra 17:110, tr. Asad
  • 10. Shirk – Associating Partners with Allah
    The greatest sin in Islam is to engage in practices which contradict or compromise tawheed. This direct or indirect association of partners with Allah is referred to as shirk. The one sin Allah tells us He will not forgive.
    Shirk can take many forms. Praying to idols, praying to saints or prophets, practicing magic, fortune telling, believing in superstitions, and believing that amulets protect one from harm are all examples of actions which contradict the Oneness of Allah.
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  • 11. Allah
    Caligraphic script - MaghrabiKufic - Kufic (Samarqand)
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  • 12. A BismillahBy al-Qandusi, from his remarkable 12-volume Qur'an (completed 1849)
    A BismillahIn the form of a bird appearing to drink
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  • 13. A BismillahStylized Arabic Calligraphy
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  • 14. JillidiwaniA larger version of diwani.
    Composition by Muhammad 'izzat al-Karkuki
    O Prophet! We did indeed send you as a witness and giver of happy news and a warner and caller to Allah with His permission as a shining lamp. Surah 33:34
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  • 15. And say, My lord increase my knowledge
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  • 16. Andalusianmaghribi script
    Fragment of a page from the Qur'an, copied on coloured silk
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  • 17. Kufic LetteringAlternation and juxtapositioning of a supple, cursive style with rigid, angular kufic lettering. The combination of stylized floral ornamentation, geometric interlacing and the richness of the polychrome treatment highlight the individual words and invocations
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  • 18. Naskhi and ta'liq script
    Top: The help from Allah and victory is near.
    Middle (Persian): [taking a glance for Allah’s sake]
    Bottom: Allah’s names
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    The Shahadah: Testimony of Faith
    La ilahaillalla Muhammad-arRasoullulah
    There is no god but Allah and Muhammad (pbuh) is His Messenger
  • 20. Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Rahim
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  • 21. Allah is my Lord and I do not share Him with anybody
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  • 22. Allah is the Light of heaven and earth
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  • 23. There is no God but You, indeed I was among the cruel ones
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  • 24. Allah is sufficient for me, there is no God but Him, on Him do I trust, and He is the Lord of the Great Throne
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  • 25. Allah wishes ease for you and not the difficulty
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  • 26. A BirdBringing a message to the mystic AbdelqadarJilali, known as the 'White Hawk'. Calligram in relief on an unidentifiable ground.
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    99 names of Allah
    99 names of Allah woven on a hand made carpet
    And there falls not a leaf but He knows it.
    Surah 6, Ayah 59
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    99 names of Allah
    99 names of Allah woven on a hand made carpet
    Quran: 2:255 - Ayatul-Kursi
    Allah is He besides Whom there is no god, the Everliving, the Self-subsisting by Whom all subsist; slumber does not overtake Him nor sleep; whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth is His; who is he that can intercede with Him but by His permission? He knows what is before them and what is behind them, and they cannot comprehend anything out of His knowledge except what He pleases, His knowledge extends over the heavens and the earth, and the preservation of them both tires Him not, and He is the Most High, the Great. There is no compulsion in religion …
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    99 names of Allah
    99 names of Allah woven on a hand made carpet
    Surely Allah has power over all things.
    Surah 29, Ayah 20
  • 30. Al-Rahim: The Merciful
    "And ordain for us that which is good, in this life and in the Hereafter: for we have turned unto You." He said: "With My punishment I visit whom I will; but My mercy extends to all things. That (mercy) I shall ordain for those who do right, and practise regular charity, and those who believe in Our signs;-
    Al-Qur'an 7:156 (Al-Araf [The Heights])
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  • 31. Al-Wadud: The Loving
    "But ask forgiveness of your Lord, and turn unto Him (in repentance): For my Lord is indeed full of mercy and loving-kindness."
    Al-Qur'an 11:90 (Hud [Hud])
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  • 32. Al-Ghafur: The Forgiving
    “He has only forbidden you dead meat, and blood, and the flesh of swine, and that on which any other name has been invoked besides that of Allah. But if one is forced by necessity, without wilful disobedience, nor transgressing due limits,- then he is guiltless. For Allah is Oft-forgiving Most Merciful.”
    Al-Qur'an, 2:173 (Al-Baqara [The Cow])
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  • 33. Al-Salam: The Flawless and the Giver of Peace
    “Allah is He, other than Whom there is no other god;- the Sovereign, the Holy One, the Source of Peace (and Perfection), the Guardian of Faith, the Preserver of Safety, the Exalted in Might, the Irresistible, the Supreme: Glory to Allah! (High is He) above the partners they attribute to Him.”
    Al-Qur'an 59:23 (Al-Hashr [Exile, Banishment])
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    99 names of Allah
    99 names of Allah woven on a hand made carpet
    Allah is He besides Whom there is no god, the Everliving, the Self-subsisting by Whom all subsist. Surah 2, Ayah 255
  • 36. Thank You
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  • 37. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah
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  • 38. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 39. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 40. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 41. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 42. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 43. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 44. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 45. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 46. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 47. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah
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  • 48. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 49. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 50. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 51. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 52. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 53. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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  • 54. Beautiful Names (Attributes) of Allah Cont’d.
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