A Conjectural Study of Spiritual Wisdom and Earthly Wisdom

*Addition of { } shows my words added on for clarification.

This article is mostly about ‘Umar bin al-Khattab and one of the great Roman emperors Heraclius. Both men had natural abilities that put them above many of their peers as their qualities stood out and made them natural leaders.

However, before we get into those details, let us pick up on something that has intrigued man for many centuries. That is the meaning of the New Testament verse, Matthew 5: 39.

“You have heard that it has been said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth’:

But I say unto you, that you resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also.”    Matt (5: 38-39)

These two verses but especially verse number 39 has been attacked through the centuries as being quite frankly, ridiculous. Verse number 38 is somewhat understood as being a type of ‘equalizer’ but verse number 39 has mystified many as to being too impractical for daily life. That is not the truth, however, if a real understanding of that verse is discussed.

The problem with verse number 39 is that there is little understanding given to that verse as it seems to hang out there in space without an explanation. Some have thought that this verse shows weakness in that a person gets no justice in life by following this verse or that a person should be docile in the face of evil. That simply is not the case. The problem with this verse is that there is no explanation about why a person should do what this verse suggests.

However, going with inside the New Testament to find a clue to how one can read this verse with understanding we have John (16: 8-13) with the emphasis being on verse number 13.

“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth {Prophet Muhammad (pbh)}, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak; and he will show you things to come.”

So with that in mind we can now see the verse found in Matthew chapter 5 verse number 39 taking on a great deal of meaning for those who seek to do the right thing and have a realistic hope in the Hereafter. Therefore, the meaning of this verse becomes clear only when it is put in an Islamic context. So let us take a look at what Islam says.

There must be a reason for the verse 39 found in Matthew chapter 5 if it is true and not a forgery of man. The value of that verse cannot be fully appreciated until a person realizes the difference between this earthly life and the Hereafter and actually believes in Salvation in the Hereafter as the ultimate goal of mankind. For example, the life of this world compared to the Hereafter in Paradise is like comparing the size of an ant with the size of our galaxy. Even physicists would be blown away by that comparison.

So verse number 39 when taken in its proper context revels something quite amazing when understood properly from the Islamic point of view, just as it was expressed in verse 13 coming from John chapter 16. That is, that man can get a greater and deeper understanding about the truth by listening to and believing in Prophet Muhammad (pbh). So let us try and get a proper understanding of that verse.

‘Umar bin al-Khattab was a very astute companion of Prophet Muhammad (pbh) who showed a lot of common sense, foresight and deep spiritual understanding. He even acknowledged that Abu Bakr was more knowledgeable than he was but that is another story. ‘Umar believed in justice very strongly but he also was very high on the respect of the human being in relationship to other human beings and he also had knowledge from the Prophet (pbh) about some of the workings of the Hereafter of which man should take note. Notice how one of ‘Umar’s sayings gives us a clue to verse 39 from Matthew. But that clue is hard to understand without further enlightenment upon the issue.

A saying from Caliph ‘Umar – “The best way of punishing the one who does not fear Allah in his dealings with you is that you should fear Allah in your dealings with him {that person}.”

What does he mean by punishing one who obviously is arrogant, ignorant and thinks more of himself in his daily quest for worldly affairs? Isn’t the One God responsible for dishing out punishments? Yes, but He has charged man with ‘upright behavior’ and failure to live up to this behavior, as mankind originally swore to in His Presence in the beginning, has dire consequences!

Now we must go deeper into the understanding of verse 39 of Matthew.

Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger as saying, “He who has done a wrong affecting his brother’s honor, or anything else, must ask his forgiveness for it now before he will have neither dinar nor dirham {before he passes away}. {But if he does not do this} If he has done any good deeds the amount of his wrongdoing will be subtracted from them, but if he has done no good deeds, it will be taken from the other’s evil deeds and put upon him {the wrongdoer}.”    (Bukhari)

Abu Huraira told that Allah’s Messenger (pbh) asked if they knew who the poor one {meaning here the ‘unfortunate one’} was and received the reply that among them the poor one was the person who had neither dirham {money} nor goods. The Messenger (pbh) said, “The poor one among my people is he who will bring on the Day of Resurrection prayer, fasting and Zakat, but will come {in a state of} having reviled this one {person}, aspersed that one {person}, devoured the property of this one {person}, shed the blood of that one {person} and beaten this one {person}. Then this one and that one {of the mistreated people} will be given some of his {the one who mistreated} good deeds; but if his good deeds are exhausted before he pays what he owes {to the ones who were wronged} some of their sins will be taken {away from them} and cast upon him {the wrong doer} and he {due to the balance of deeds being too light or now non-existent and the sins being left causing him to receive his record of ‘life’ in his left hand} will be cast into hell.”     (Muslim)

Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “On the Day of Resurrection rights will be paid to those to whom they are due, retaliation even being taken for the hornless sheep from the horned sheep.”      (Muslim)

‘Umar said when he was on the pulpit: You people must be humble towards one another, for I heard Allah’s Messenger (pbh) say, “He who is humble for Allah’s sake will be exalted by Allah {in His Eyes on the Last Day of Judgment}, for though he considers himself lowly he is great in the eyes of men; but he who is proud will be abased by Allah, for though he considers himself great he is lowly in the eyes of men to such an extent that he is of less value in their estimation than a dog or a pig.”

Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “No one will enter Paradise without being shown {what could have been} his place in Hell, which will cause him all the more gratitude if he has done evil, and no one will enter Hell without being shown {what could have been} his place in Paradise, which will be a cause of grief to him if he has done good.”       (Bukhari)

Abu Musa reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying that when the Day of Resurrection comes Allah will hand a Jew or a Christian to every Muslim and say, “This is your means {way of escape} from Hell.”       (Muslim)

Ibn ‘Umar reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “When the inhabitants of Paradise come to Paradise and the inhabitants of Hell come to Hell, death will be brought and placed between Paradise and Hell, then slain. A crier will call, “Inhabitants of Paradise, there is no death, and inhabitants of Hell, there is no death.” This will add joy to the inhabitants of Paradise and grief to the grief of the inhabitants of Hell.”     (Bukhari and Muslim)

“This Our Record speaks about you with truth: for We were wont to put on record ALL that you did.”     Q (45: 27-29)

He it is Who made you vicegerents in the earth. Now, whoever disbelieves shall himself bear the burden of disbelief … Q (35: 39)

It is such as obey Allah and His Messenger, and fear Allah and do right, that will triumph. Q (24: 52)

Those who reject Faith and deny Our Signs will be companions of the Hell-fire.              Q (5: 10)

To be sure there are many other hadiths and Quranic verses that can be added to the list to give one an understanding of why there should be ‘good character and dependence on the One God’ in dealing with one’s fellow man as he was ordered to do in the beginning.

So the understanding of the words of Jesus (pbh) are not frivolous or empty of meaning but convey a message of truth but only when put in their proper context thus showing that when the records are understood, they are one! To do this man does not have to turn to older texts like the Old and New Testaments and study comparative religion but to do as the Master (pbh) had ordered and that was to seek out wisdom and real truth from the prophet that would come after him – Prophet Muhammad (pbh)!

Heraclius is another man who showed wisdom but who he chose to serve not by his wishful thinking but by his actions is found in what he did. For what he accomplished was it for the sake of the One God or was it for his own benefit? Allah Alone Knows for sure.

Heraclius is ranked among the great Roman emperors of all time. He was deemed wise and a very shrewd person who led a once defeated and crumbling empire back to a level of prominence. His brilliant strategies in overcoming the pagan Persian Empire gave Rome some breathing space after Rome’s humiliating defeats by the Persians. Perhaps his best known accomplishment was in returning the so-called ‘true cross’, a holy Christian relic, to Jerusalem amidst lots of pomp and ceremony.

While in power, this strong and wise Caesar brilliantly made inroads against state-corruption while he improved Rome’s military efficiency and government run agencies. Besides being a very efficient leader, he was also sharp witted and had a depth of insight in dealing with people. We will see, as Allah Wills, how adept he was in finding out things from a lengthy hadith narrated by Ibn ‘Abbas.

Ibn ‘Abbas said Abu Sufyan b. Harb {formerly a bitter enemy of the Prophet (pbh)} told him the following by word of mouth. During the period of peace between Allah’s Messenger (pbh) and me {a representative of the pagan peoples of Makkah} I went off {on a journey}, and while I was in Syria a letter was brought from the Prophet (pbh) to Heraclius. Dihya al-Kalbi brought it and handed it to the governor of Busra who handed it to Heraclius. Heraclius asked whether there was anyone there belonging to the people of that man who asserted that he was a prophet, and when he was told that there was, I was summoned along with some members of Quraish {from Makkah}. We entered the presence of Heraclius who made us sit in front of him and then asked, “Which of you is most closely related to this man who asserts that he is a prophet?” When I said that I was, they made me sit in front of him and made my companions sit behind me. He then called for his interpreter and said, “Tell them I am asking this man about this one who asserts he is a prophet, and that if he lies to me, they must accuse him of falsehood.” (Abu Sufyan swore by God that if he had not been afraid of his falsehood being reported, he would have lied to him {by slandering the Prophet}.

He {Heraclius} said to his interpreter, “Ask him about the nature of his lineage among them,” and I replied, “He is a man of high lineage among us.” He asked, “Has there been any king among his ancestors?” and I replied that there had not been any. He asked whether we had suspected him of falsehood before he said what he has said {making the claim of being a prophet}, and I replied that we had not. He asked whether he was followed by the nobles among the people or by the weak ones and I replied that he was followed by the weak ones. He asked whether their numbers were increasing or diminishing, and I replied that they were increasing. He asked whether any apostatized from his religion after accepting it through displeasure with him, and I replied that they did not. He asked if we had fought with him, and I replied that we had. He asked the nature of our fighting with him, and I replied that it had its ups and downs, he neither getting the better of us nor we getting the better of him. He asked if he employed treachery, and I replied that he did not, but added that during that period we did not know what he was doing. I swear by God that he did not give me an opportunity of inserting a word except on this occasion. He asked if anyone had said what he was saying before him, and I replied that no one had.

He then told his interpreter to say to me, “I asked you about his lineage among you and you asserted that he had a high lineage among you; and messengers are commissioned thus from the high families of their people. I asked you whether any of his ancestors had been a king and you asserted that none had, for if any of his ancestors had been a king, I would have considered him to be a man who was seeking the kingdom of his ancestors. I asked you about his followers whether they were weak people or nobles, to which you replied that they were weak ones, and such are the followers of the messengers. I asked you whether you suspected him of falsehood before he said what he has said {the claim of being a prophet from God}, and you replied that you did not, so I recognized that he was not one to avoid falsehood about men and then go and lie about God. I asked you whether any of them apostatized from his religion after accepting it through displeasure with him, to which you replied that none had, and thus is faith when its cheerfulness mingles with hearts. I asked you whether they were increasing or diminishing, to which you replied that they were increasing, and thus is faith till it is complete. I asked you whether you fought with him, and you asserted that the war between you and him had its ups and downs, he sometimes getting the better of you and you sometimes getting the better of him; now thus messengers are tested, after which the issue turns out in their favor. I asked you if he employed treachery and you asserted that he did not; now that is how the messengers are, not employing treachery. I asked you whether anyone had said what he was saying before him, and you asserted that no one had done so, for if someone had said this before him, I would have said he was a man who copied something said before his time.”

He then asked what he commanded us and we replied, “He commands us to observe prayer, pay Zakat {once a year poor-tax}, {keep} ties of relationship, and chastity.” He then said, “If what you say is true, he is a Prophet. I knew he would come forth but did not think it would be from among you. If I knew I could get to him, I would like to meet him, and if I were with him, I would wash his feet. His kingdom will certainly reach what is under my feet.” He then called for Allah’s Messenger’s letter and read it.    (Bukhari and Muslim)

As one can see, Heraclius was a sharp customer when it came time to asking questions and getting to the facts. However, all the wisdom in the world can’t hold a candle to one’s actions and true intentions if one is swayed by worldly charms and not spiritual ones.

Some Muslims believe that Heraclius went so far as to read the Quran. However, that is just wishful thinking. Heraclius was not a coward or wishy-washy individual but he didn’t have the courage of his convictions. Rather he enjoyed his ‘pomp and ceremony’ and decided to hang on to an earthly kingdom as his actions went on to show that he chose to be a world figure rather than putting his trust in the truth.

It is historically stated that he discussed the possibility of following the new religion of Islam but was put off by the priest-class and decided that discretion was a better part of valor. If he valued truth and his very soul so much, why didn’t he, as chief kingpin, do something about it especially when he had a direct message from the Prophet (pbh) himself? And here is the message he received:

Ibn ‘Abbas told that the Prophet (pbh) wrote to Caesar {Heraclius} summoning him to Islam. He sent Dihya al-Kalbi with his letter to him and ordered him to hand it to the governor of Busra for him to convey it to Caesar. Its contents were:

“In the Name of Allah, The Compassionate, The Merciful from Muhammad, Allah’s servant and messenger, to Heraclius chief of the Byzantines. Peace be to those who follow the guidance. To proceed: I send you the summons to accept Islam. If you accept Islam you will be safe, and if you accept Islam, Allah will bring you your reward twofold; but if you turn away, you will be guilty of the sin of your followers. “O people of the Book, come to a word which is common between us and you, that we should worship only Allah, not attribute any partner to Him, or take one another as lords apart from Allah. But if they turn away say, “Testify that we are Muslims.”    (Bukhari and Muslim)

The message is simple enough but it is not just an ordinary message because it came from the true representative of the Creator Lord, the same Creator Lord Who created the very soul of Heraclius and put him in his position on the planet that He created.

Notice that Heraclius is promised Safety and a Double Reward but notice also that IF HE TURNED AWAY, HE WOULD BE GUILTY OF THE SIN OF HIS FOLLOWERS. A huge burden or test laid on his shoulders to be sure but he chose to go his own route as do many and all that got him with all his earthly wisdom and prowess was nothing good at all!

People can argue the point but it is fruitless when the Messenger of the Creator Lord told him point blank of the rewards and the crime that he would inherit. It can be shown from Heraclius’ actions that he was not about to follow ‘reality’ due to his battles that took place between his various armies and the new state of Islam that was rising up.

Well, he got what he valued the most (worldliness) because he went down that pathway of resisting the new spiritual and truthful power on the block which was Islam – such a tragic choice for him. That was his choice and though he is dead, his soul still lives but he, like Pharaoh at the time of Moses (pbh), had his choice and so he chose. So that is that.

‘Umar bin al-Khattab, on the other hand, was not engrossed in pomp and ceremony but was driven to be obedient to the One God in all the ways of his life. He was a tireless champion of truth in deed, word and action. However, one thing he said still seems to puzzle many people or else they seem to take it as backing off his determination to solidify Islam. That is a mistake. Here is what he is reported to have said:

“I wish there was a wall of fire between us {the Muslims} and the Romans, so that they could not enter our territory nor could we enter theirs.”

Some might suggest that after so many battles and a famine and a plague that broke out, that Islam was going to be just a regional player. How utterly absurd that is!

First of all, the ‘soldiers of God’, not spreading truth through the sword but being constantly harassed by Heraclius’ soldiers, were not going to go on a holiday. Secondly, the plight of a believer being killed in battle means he will be given Paradise which is worth more than anybody can dream about in their wildest dreams. Finally, what is to be afraid of when by all accounts, when all the battles fought between Rome and the Muslims during the end of the reign of the first Caliph and ‘Umar’s Caliphate shows one material thing. That thing is that when all the battles are added up as to the numbers of soldiers put in the field on both sides, one gets an amazing fact. The Roman soldiers were highly skilled and trained and they invariably outnumbered their Muslim counterparts by 4 or 5 to one or even more. Yet the Romans soldiers were still being soundly defeated, thrashed and pushed back time and time again.

So what could this desire for a ‘wall of fire’ possibly mean? If one understands that ‘Umar was very wise and insightful as well as being well versed in the teachings of the spirit of truth – Prophet Muhammad (pbh), then one may get some insight as to his expression.

Apparently, he was looking at the future and how deceptive the world could be and even how ‘water runs downhill’ or the state of affairs of how things congeal or the state of entropy. Whatever one calls it, it can be seen from history when history is studied objectively and not with prejudice. That may not make much sense now but with guidance from hadith material it starts to make a lot of sense.

Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “Among the nations before your time there have been inspired people, and if there is one among my people he is ‘Umar.”    (Bukhari and Muslim)

1. Abu Sa’id al-Khudri reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “A time is coming to mankind when a party will go to fight and be asked if there are among them any who were companions of Allah’s Messenger; and when they reply that there are, they will be given victory. Then a time is coming to mankind when a party will go to fight, and when they are asked if there are any among them who associated with the companions of Allah’s Messenger (pbh) and reply that there are, they will be given victory. Then a time is coming to mankind when a party of people will go to fight, and when they are asked if there are any among them who associated with those who associated with the companions of Allah’s Messenger (pbh) and reply that there are, they will be given victory.”     (Bukhari and Muslim)

2. ‘Imran b. Husain reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “The best of my people are my generation, then their immediate followers, then their immediate followers. After them there will be people who give testimony without being asked, who will be treacherous and not to be trusted, who will make vows which they do not fulfill, among whom fatness will appear.” A version has “They will swear oaths without being asked to do so.” (Bukhari and Muslim) A version by Muslim on the authority of Abu Huraira says, “Then people who like plumpness will succeed them.”

3. Abu Sa’id reported God’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “You will certainly follow the practices of your predecessors span by span and cubit by cubit so that if they were to enter a lizard’s hole you would follow them.” He was asked if he meant the Jews and the Christians and he replied, “Who else”?    (Bukhari and Muslim)

4. Hudhaifa said, “People used to ask God’s Messenger (pbh) about good, but I used to ask him about evil from fear that it might overtake me. I said, Messenger of Allah, we were in a state of ignorance and evil, and then Allah brought us this {goodness of Islam}. After this good will any evil come?” On his replying that there would, I asked whether after that evil any good would come, and he replied that there would but that it would contain some duskiness. I asked what that would consist of and he replied, “People will follow a Sunnah other than mine and give guidance other than mine, so you will find in them both something to acknowledge and something to reject.” I asked whether there would be any evil after that good and he replied, “Yes, there will be people who summon others at the gates of Jahannam (Hell Fire) into which they will cast those who respond to them.” I asked Allah’s Messenger to describe them to us and he said, “They will be of our stock and speak like us.” I asked what command he had to give me if that happened in my time and he replied, “You must adhere to the community and the leader of the Muslims.” I asked what I should do if they had neither community nor leader and he replied, “Withdraw from all those factions even though you should have to cleave to the root of a tree till death overtakes you in that state.”     (Bukhari and Muslim)

1. In the first and second labeled hadiths we notice a prophecy that will extend beyond the life of ‘Umar. One would rightly think that because of ‘Umar’s intuitive insight and the knowledge that he gained from his holy Prophet (pbh) that he understood the state of affairs. We do know that he was not lazy or willing to let things just lie around without putting a great deal of faith and effort into his policies of governing. So, indeed work plus putting one’s faith in Allah and His Prophet (pbh) did pay off.

2. In hadiths number 3 and 4 one can get some insight that is fairly simple but accurate. In these hadiths we are using what is called ‘hindsight’ because history has left a footprint that we can follow. Hadith number 3 with an understanding of hadith number 2 tells us that eventually, and sooner than one would like, the Muslims will start to go through periods of entropy and become like the people of the past who let their religion go on a slide. Of course ‘Umar did not know the exact times and exact particulars but the evidence is there.

3. In hadith number 4 we are given a vague but important condition which we can actually see. This condition is not a one-off but a developing one (span by span) which is closely associated (in time) with a hint of the rise of ‘terrorism’ by those who have no depth in understanding true Islam.

An understanding of the expression ‘People will follow a Sunnah other than mine and give guidance other than mine, so you will find in them both something to acknowledge and something to reject’ has to be looked at very closely especially when connected to the saying of ‘Umar: “I wish there was a wall of fire between us {the Muslims} and the Romans, so that they could not enter our territory nor could we enter theirs.”

It has been reported that a saying from one Muslim scholar went something like this: ‘The Arabs have a religion without a people and the West has people without a religion’. This rather drastic and faulty expression does, however, give a clue to what is going on. Unfortunately, I can think of no term to use except an imperfect one and that term is ‘pseudo-Islam’. This rather inaccurate term does express the psychological feeling that one can express by saying “What is wrong with the West” (Rome)? And “Why is it wrong to copy a highly advanced civilization?”

First of all, not all copying is harmful. When one finds a way of doing things bringing more efficiency and less of a burden then why not implement that something if it has no negative impact on the Prophet’s Sunnah? Ever since the so-called West (Rome) climbed out of its backward shell and made advances in engineering, science and whatnot, their civilization was on the ascent in earthly matters anyway.

However, the above hadiths do NOT pertain to the use of just advanced methods or procedures of and by themselves. The following saying gives us a clue. “People will follow a Sunnah other than mine and give guidance other than mine, so you will find in them both something to acknowledge and something to reject.”

Along with the advances of the so-called West (Rome), came certain events such as colonization. And with colonization came the spreading of certain ideas that various nations have picked up on after the period of the Industrial Revolution. So starting from the 18th century or thereabout until the present time, before the age of so-called ‘terrorism’ related in hadith number four, Islamic lands have been presented with certain values that appeared as a Sunnah foreign to the religion of Islam and people have found in them something to acknowledge and something to reject.

The modern era of today removes all kinds of doubts and shadows from the above hadith. One can see various things like judges wearing wigs for whatever reason and certain so-called ‘humane’ laws supplanting Islamic Shariah.  A look at life in general features quiz and game shows which are like their western counterparts except that Arabic is used instead of English, news programs that feature the modern dressed and stylish woman as a news anchor and even comic books with imaginary Muslim super heroes. That is just the top of the iceberg. Many more examples can be given but this is an article and not a book.

The big attraction of Rome (the West) appears to be the slogans of free thought and freedom as in ‘let freedom ring’, ‘be what you can be’, and ‘march to the tune of the current drummer’. All that seems to represent is unbridled freedom – the freedom to even marry whom one chooses even if it is from the same sex – thus leaving the ‘dark ages’ behind and entering into a euphoric feeling of self-development. Compounding this contagious disease or illusion is the fact that science promises us an unbridled future of greatness and that one day it will be in man’s grasp to reach out and conquer the stars and even life expectancy itself such that with or without cryogenics, man could possibly have a life expectancy of thousands and thousands of years.

It does appear that in every age that man has existed in, the so-called ‘gods’ keep repeating their errors until…!  But that is life.

The importance here in this article is that ‘Umar was not afraid of confronting Rome or running out of soldiers to fight that empire. What the astute, wise and intuitive servant of Allah was worried about has and is coming to pass. Having a ‘wall of fire’ between the Islamic lands and ‘Rome’ (west) is not practical and definitely going against the Divine Decree but such was his love for The Prophet (pbh), Islam and the Muslims that one can understand his feelings and why he uttered such a statement. For a further discussion on ‘Umar bin al-Khattab see the article, Comparative Religion: Its Strengths and Weaknesses

This is article number seven and it seems to me just the right time to quit. However, there are some last words that should be said and even an apology to be made.

The importance of religion is for Salvation and to build common sense. Religion is not about mystery building or wild-eyed conjecture. I know that in my writings there are some things that are difficult to understand and those who have no common sense might veer off the pathway and land in a ditch. So I repeat that the best of ways was shown by Prophet Muhammad (pbh) in his way of life as he gave ‘life’ to those who would try to put their trust in Allah and follow the Sunnah of the Prophet (pbh) to the best of their ability.

1. When will come the great signs leading up to the coming of Jesus the son of Mary (pbh)?

The best answer and the only one I can think of is that Allah Alone Knows and we should be satisfied with that.

Is this the time when Allah’s Wrath will be seen?

The answer to that is definitely NO! According to the knowledge found in the hadith material, Allah’s Wrath will be on the Last Day of Judgment. This is the time when even that great soul of Jesus the son of Mary (pbh) will express himself to the sea of troubled humanity, whose souls are under unbelievable terror and stress, as saying, “I am concerned with myself, I am concerned with myself. Go to Muhammad.” Little it is that most people comprehend about the Greatness of Allah!

2. Concerning the mentioning of the soul.

This is a difficult subject to be sure because no man knows much about the soul to begin with. Therefore, it is best not to dwell on that subject and its mysteries because that would be just guess-work and foolish guess-work no doubt. Talking about the Messiah-soul, for example, under scriptural analysis is perhaps alright if it is backed up by scripture and shows harmony and unity amongst the scriptures of the People of the Book. Other than that, it is best to leave that subject alone.

3. Concerning the time periods for man on Earth or the time of Noah (pbh).

In my estimation, man has in one way, shape or form been on this Earth for millions of years and Noah (pbh) lived over 30,000 years ago. That is only my estimation. It is well to note one very important thing. It is Allah Who Controls Time, Space, Condition and Place. He and He Alone is responsible for causing man to remember and causing man to forget – for His Own Reasons and for man’s sanity. For example, many years ago, some believed the world was created in 4,004 BC. And lately, some believe that Noah’s boat was floating around 4,800 BC or something on that order.

Without recognizing the Awesome Power of Allah and that He is in control at all times, some have tried to manipulate time according to their own understanding even to placing dinosaurs co-existing with man. That indeed is far off the mark.

In one or two of my books I put in a geological test for the time frame of the existence of Noah (pbh). So, let those who want to test it, let them test it. Whatever the outcome, the importance of Islam lies in its calling people to Salvation and not mystery building. Gaining knowledge is very good but applying it to the remembrance of The One God is better.

However, what I must apologize for is the piece called, The Wall, that I put in my last book, The Great Sacrifice of Jesus the Christ. The only apology I offer for that is that I tried to ‘bait’ some people into looking for that object. Its existence, and it does exist, means to me that it just exists but it is yet another example of man being completely taken aback from his possible conceited knowledge of himself and not understanding true history very much.

The best way to end this article is by giving advice from the Prophet (pbh). Much is the advice man can study. Here is just a very minute example but still poignant for our topic.

Az-Zubair b. ‘Adi said, “We went to Anas b. Malik and complained to him of what we were suffering from al-Hajjaj,(the cruel governor of Iraq) and he replied, “Show endurance, for no time will come to you which will not be followed by one that is worse till you meet your Lord. I heard this from your Prophet (pbh)       (Bukhari)

Ibn ‘Abbas reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “Love the Arabs for three reasons: because I am an Arab, the Quran is Arabic, and the inhabitants of Paradise will speak Arabic.”      (Baihaqi transmitted it in Shu’ab al-iman – understood with caution)

Ibn ‘Umar reported Allah’s Messenger (pbh) as saying, “When you see people who revile my companions say, “Allah’s curse be on your worst ones”    (Tirmidhi)