Thursday, March 09, 2006

The Concept of Time in Islam.

Time in Islam is a creation. Just like a book, a pen, a computer, etc. Anything...

The thing is... since we are "within" this creation of Time, it is all we know. It's through this thinking that I understand ( just a tad) the nature of why we cannot even imagine infinity or eternity. We can at best guess and refer to it, but truly understand and perceive it? Never.
Well, maybe after this life.

Allah created time, hence he can do whatever He wants to with it, if you think of the above analogy of time being a creationit can be turned upside down, inside out, looked at backwards, changed, destroyed. He is beyond time, He is and always was. Another concept we cannot fathom simply because our entire existence is rooted in Time.

Even Athiests concede the Big Bang began from something infinitely small and infinitely dense. So basically they concede that Time and Universe was "created" from something infinite. But how can they explain it?

Coming from the Life of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) we know that on his Night Journey (Me'raj) when he was taken from Makkah to Jerusalem and then to the Heaven's. He (SAW) says he saw people in Hell as well as in Heaven... but how can that be if the Day of Judgement had not yet occurred? Nobody had gone to Jannah or Jahannam yet, or been judged yet... if we're looking at this through the logicality of Time itself.

But Just as the Me'raj was a miracle in itself which gives us the concept of a "time beyond time", a place where Time has no effect, similarly, Time has no effect outside this Universe of ours. Hence, he could see all those people in Heaven and Hell because their existence there did not depend on the Time on Earth.

So... what bearing does this have on our lives at present? What insight can we gain by understanding this?

This is nothing but a journey and a very, very short one at that when compared to eternity. The only time we can even geta glimpse of what we are really in for is at Death. So make the most of this life in terms of attaining the ultimate goal of Jannah. If you look at the greater scheme of things in this context, we are nothing. Our purpose on Earth is only to serve Him, and the only way to do that is through the service of His creation.

Because by serving His creation, you are ultimately worshipping Him. By going to work, being with your family, eating ,drinking, sleeping ,playing, fighiting, ... if all is done in the pursuit of justice and truth and to ultimately attain His pleasure, you will be successful.
Ibn Abbas narrated that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said:

"There are two blessings which many people lose: (They are) health and free time for doing good." (Bukhari 8/421)

and from the Qur'an, Allah (SWT) says...

"By (the Token of) Time (through the ages), Verily Man is in loss, Except such as have Faith, and do righteous deeds, and (join together) in the mutual teaching of Truth, and of Patience and Constancy." (103:1-3)

More on the Philosophy of Time...


Blogger Unknown put forth...

A better analysis of time in context of Islam. Also theory of relativity does not contradict this...

8:31 PM  
Blogger Nafisa bint Mahmoon put forth...

Wow. Very well written Masha Allah. May Allah SWT reward you. Please keep posting interesting things like this.

11:22 AM  

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