Islam Under Scrutiny by Ex-Muslims

Allah’s Countenance

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  • Allah looks like Adam, King, deity, unlike one-eyed Dajjal, speaks Hebrew, Jesus Allah's Spirit, Wears Hijab & speak from behind, sleepless, will show face after death and on judgment day.


     

    We already read about some of the outstanding features of Allah: such as His likes and dislikes His temperament, his residential whereabouts…and so on. In this part of the essay (part 7) we shall analyze a few extra features of Allah, particularly His visage and His resemblances.
     
    The most important aspect of Allah is that He has many identities. In reality, Allah is recognized by the ‘Islamic names’ of Him. One feature of Allah is that He looks like a human being (see part 1, which contradicts the amorphous nature of Allah, described in detail in part 6), in fact like Adam—an Arabic Adam, to be more precise. Since, so far, no one has ever seen a real Allah, so, to visualize Allah we must develop a mental picture of Him through His various names. We also learned that Allah, really wears a hijab or veil to hide His face from the human.

    In this part we describe the other important features of Allah’s, such as: His sleepless face, His appearance of a deity, a scorching fire that Allah is and His true a polyglot nature.

    Let us start at the beginning.

    Allah likes the finest names

    The Qur’an tells us that the finest names belong to Allah; we must call Him by those names (7:180) 

    YUSUF ALI: The most beautiful names belong to Allah: so call on him by them; but shun such men as use profanity in his names: for what they do, they will soon be requited. [Q 7.180]

    However, the Qur’an does not tell us that Allah also has a few terrible names (Sunaan Ibn Majah, 5.3861). Such as: The Relenting (al–Tawwab), The Strong (al–Qawiyy), The Forceful (al–Shadid), The Distresser (al–Dar), The Destroyer (al–Mumitu), The Witholder (al–Mani’u), The Odd (al–Witr)

    We just have to imagine how Allah would look when He does really behave according to those terrible names. 

    Here are few ahadith which promise paradise just for memorising the ninety–nine names of Allah. 

    Just learn the ninety-nine names of Allah to go to Paradise…(Sahih Bukhari, 3.50.894)

    Volume 3, Book 50, Number 894: Narrated Abu Huraira:

    Allah's Apostle said, "Allah has ninety-nine names, i.e. one-hundred minus one, and whoever knows them will go to Paradise."

    Allah has ninety-nine Names, i.e., one hundred minus one, and whoever believes in their meanings and acts accordingly, will enter Paradise…(Sahih Bukhari, 8.75.419)

     

    Volume 8, Book 75, Number 419: Narrated Abu Huraira:

     

    Allah has ninety-nine Names, i.e., one hundred minus one, and whoever believes in their meanings and acts accordingly, will enter Paradise; and Allah is Witr (one) and loves 'the Witr' (i.e., odd numbers).

     

    Allah looks like Adam

    In part 1 of this essay we read that Allah does really look like Adam. Here is more information on this countenance of Allah. 

    Allah breathed His spirit (image of Allah?) in His newly created man (Adam) and commanded the angels to prostrate before the newly created man…38:72

    Sahih Muslim says that Allah created Adam in His resemblance…(Sahih Muslim, 40.6809)

    Book 040, Number 6809:

    Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, created Adam in His own image with His length of sixty cubits, and as He created him He told him to greet that group, and that was a party of angels sitting there, and listen to the response that they give him, for it would form his greeting and that of his offspring. He then went away and said: Peace be upon you (Sic)! They (the angels) said: “May there be peace upon you and the Mercy of Allah, and they made an addition of Mercy of Allah". So he who would get into Paradise would get in the form of Adam, his length being sixty cubits, then the people who followed him continued to diminish in size up to this day.


    Allah looks like a King

    In part 2 of this essay we read  that Allah declared that He is (was) a king, mightier than many Arab kings who had ruled Arabia before Muhammad was born. Since Allah is a King His countenance must be like a King. 

    In verse 114:1–3 Allah truly says that He is the King of mankind:

    YUSUF ALI: Say: I seek refuge with the Lord and Cherisher of Mankind, The King (or Ruler) of Mankind, The god (or judge) of Mankind,-  [Q 114.001 -003]

    Let us read the following hadith from Sahih Bukhari in which Allah declares His Kingship on earth (Sahih Bukhari, 9.93.479) 

    Volume 9, Book 93, Number 479:  Narrated Abu Huraira:

    The Prophet said, "On the Day of Resurrection Allah will hold the whole earth and fold the heaven with His right hand and say, 'I am the King: where are the kings of the earth?" '

    Even when Allah is the King of this earth He is scared of a human king like the Shahan Shah of Iran. Allah finds Shahan Shah of Iran His implacable enemy. That is why Allah hates the name Shahan Shah…(Sahih Bukhari, 8.73.225). 

    Let us read the hadith and try to visualise how Allah looks like as a King. 

    Volume 8, Book 73, Number 225:  Narrated Abu Huraira:

    The Prophet said, "The most awful (meanest) name in Allah's sight." Sufyan said more than once, "The most awful (meanest) name in Allah's sight is (that of) a man calling himself king of kings." Sufyan said, "Somebody else (i.e. other than Abu Az-Zinad, a sub-narrator) says: What is meant by 'The king of kings' is 'Shahan Shah."

     

    Jesus is the word and spirit of Allah; Allah look like Jesus

    We already read that Allah admitted that Adam looked like Him (or the other way round, if you do not mind). Now, in verse 15:29, Allah says that He had breathed His spirit into Adam. In verse 4:171 Allah also claims that Jesus Christ was also a spirit from Him (i.e., born out of Allah’s spirit). The natural derivation from all these incredible feats of Allah will be that Allah must look like Jesus Christ (or Jesus must have looked like Allah). 

    Let us read these two verses. 

    YUSUF ALI: "When I have fashioned him (in due proportion) and breathed into him of My spirit, fall ye down in obeisance unto him." [Q 15.29]

    YUSUF ALI: O People of the Book! Commit no excesses in your religion: Nor say of Allah aught but the truth. Christ Jesus the son of Mary was (no more than) a messenger of Allah, and His Word, which He bestowed on Mary, and a spirit proceeding from Him: so believe in Allah and His messengers. Say not "Trinity" : desist: it will be better for you: for Allah is one Allah: Glory be to Him: (far exalted is He) above having a son. To Him belong all things in the heavens and on earth. And enough is Allah as a Disposer of affairs. [Q 4.171]

    A hadith in Sahih Muslim tells us that Muhammad had confirmed Jesus Christ was born through the spirit of Allah…(Sahih Muslim 1.43).

    Book 001, Number 0043:

    It is narrated on the authority of Ubadah b. Samit that the messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) observed: He who said: "There is no god but Allah, He is One and there is no associate with Him, that Muhammad is his servant and His messenger, that Christ is servant and the son of His slave-girl and he (Christ) His word which He communicated to Mary and is His Spirit, that Paradise is a fact and Hell is a fact," Allah would make him (he who affirms these truths enter Paradise through any one of its eight doors which he would like. 

    In a footnote, ‘Abdul Hamid Siddiqi, the translator of Sahih Muslim writes: 

    The word “spirit” used for Jesus does not carry him a step beyond the limits of humanity, for Adam also it has been said, “I breathed my spirit into him (Qur’an xv. 29). In fact, according to the Holy Qur’an, the spirit of God is breathed into everyman: Then he made him complete and breathed into him of His spirit and gave you hearing and sight and hearts (xxxii.  9). The epithet, ruhum–minhu, “a spirit from Him,” does not imply that the soul of Allah was incarnated in Jesus; it only signifies the eminence of Christ as it has been explained by the famous commentators of the Holy Qur’an , Ibn ‘Abbas, Ibn Jarir, Ibn Kathir (Siddiqi, 2004, p 26, footnote 68).  

    If we were to believe ‘Abdul Hamid Siddiqi then the Qur’an must be wrong. For, the Qur’an clearly says that Allah sent Gabriel to implant His spirit (read part 2 of this series) into the womb of Mary. Elsewhere, Allah says that His spirit is actually His soul. Therefore, Jesus was surely from the soul of Allah, a special provision which Allah has exclusively reserved for Prophets like Adam, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad,…and so on.  

    We can, therefore conclude that Allah, most probably, looks like Jesus Christ. Extend this further—and what conclusion could we make about Allah’s countenance during Muhammad’s time? The answer should be obvious to anyone.

     

    Allah wears a hijab, He speaks from behind a veil

    In previous part (part 6) of this essay we noted Allah’s fixation with veil (hijab). Not only that He has forced all Muslim women to undergo this torment of being veiled, from head to toe with uncomfortable, ugly and potentially dangerous Bedouin garb, Allah Himself wears veil, even though we very well know that Allah is not a female.

    We read in the Qur’an that Allah spoke directly with Moses but did not show His face (Allah hid His face with hijab); when Moses looked at the mountain where Allah was hiding, the mountain crumbled and Moses fainted; Moses was the first to believe in Islam (7:143). 

    Another verse confirms that Allah, does indeed wear hijab and He speaks from behind His hijab. Sometimes Allah prefers to send messengers (like Muhammad) to convey His messages. Allah never speaks directly; that is, face to face, without any hijab (42:51). 

    Is it possible then that Allah might look like any of those hijabi women we observe in the streets of some countries in the Middle East, especially in Saudi Arabia? 

    It is also interesting to note that almighty, all–knowing Allah cannot communicate with His faithful followers—He had to send messengers (like Muhammad) to deliver His messages.
     

    Arabs are the chosen people of Allah; Allah resembles an Arab

    It is quite simple to understand this countenance of Allah. Allah dearly loves the Arabs and He chose them over all other races, making them the best pedigree in the human race. The Arabs must be the special creation of Allah. Does Allah look like an Arab, especially an Arab from Saudi Arabia and from the Quraysh stock? Let us read from ibn Sa’d, the famous biographer of Muhammad. 

    (Note: this narration about the superiority of the Arabs is quite lengthy. I shall quote a small portion.): 

    …Abu Damarah al–Madani Anas Ibn ‘Iyad al–Laythi informed us; he said: Ja’far Ibn Muhammad Ibn ‘Ali informed us on the authority of his father, Muhammad Ibn ‘Ali ibn Husayn Ibn “Ali Ibn Abi Talib, who said: Verily the Prophet said: God divided the earth in two halves and placed (me) in the better of the two, then He divided the half in three parts, and I was in the best of them, then He chose the Arabs from among the people, then He chose the Quraysh from among the Arabs, then He chose the children of ‘Abd al–Muttalib from among the Banu Hashim, then he chose me from among the children of ‘Abd al–Muttalib (Ibn Sa’d, vol  I, p 2).

    Allah looks like a deity

      Here is a Qur’anic verse which says that Allah is the only deity to be worshipped. This means that Allah’s countenance must be like a deity—just like any supreme idol. The only difference is that Allah is the only idol to be worshipped. We have already seen this idol in nothing but in the stone/s of Ka’ba. 

      YUSUFALI: And question thou our messengers whom We sent before thee; did We appoint any deities other than (Allah) Most Gracious, to be worshipped? [Q 43.45]

      Here is a hadith to elaborate more on this. 

      Allah was a deity…(Sunaan Abu Dawud, 1.1.0169)

      This hadith is not available online. So I shall quote from the print version of Sunaan Abu Dawud vol.I, Hadith number 169:

      ‘Uqbah b. ‘Amir said: We served ourselves in the company of Messenger of Allah (may be peace on him). We tended our camels by turn. One day I had my turn to tend the camels, and I drove them in the afternoon. I found the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) addressing the people. I heard him say: Anyone amongst you who performs ablution, and does it well, then he stands and offers two rak’ahs of prayer, concentrating on it with his heart and body, Paradise will be his lot by all means. I said: Ha–ha! How fine it is! A man in front of me said: The action (mentioned by the Prophet) earlier, O ‘Uqbah, is finer than this one. I looked at him and found him to be ‘Umar b. al-Khattab. I asked him: What is that, O Abu Hafs? He replied: he (the Prophet) had said before you came: If any one of you performs ablution, and does it well, and when he finishes the ablution, he utters the words: I bear witness that there is no deity except Allah; He has no associate, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the servant and His Messenger, all the eight doors of Paradise will be opened for him; he may enter (through) any of them.

      Muawiyah said: rabi’ah b. Yazid narrated this tradition to me from Abu Idris on the authority of ‘Uqbah b. ‘Amir. 

    Allah speaks Hebrew

      Allah is a polyglot; there should not be any doubt on this. The Qur’an attests this truth. Allah sent the Qur’an in Arabic because Muhammad was an Arab. Ibn Sa’d writes that Abraham’s son Ismail was the first person to speak Arabic. So Allah started speaking Arabic since this time. Before this, the language of the Arabs was Hebrew. Naturally, Allah spoke Hebrew during that period. If we extend this logic then we might say: during Jesus’ time Allah must had spoken Syriac–Aramaic, because that was the tongue of Jesus’ people. Then when Allah sent Muhammad as His Messenger Allah again started to speak Arabic. Is it then funny that Allah frequently changes His native tongue? 

      Let us read the interesting passage from the Sirah (biography of Muhammad). 

            Isma’l Ibn ‘Abd Allah Ibn Abu Uways al–Madani informed us: My father narrated to me on the authority of Abu al–Jarud al-Rabi Ibn Quray’, he on the authority of ‘Uqbah Ibn Bashir that he asked Muhammad Ibn ‘Ali: Who was the first person to talk in Arabic? He said: Isma’il Ibn Ibrahim, may Allah bless them: when he was thirteen years old. He (Uqbah) said: O Abu Ja’far what was the language of the people before that? He said: Hebrew. He (’Uqbah) said: In what language did Allah reveal his message to His apostles in those days? He said: In Hebrew (ibn Sa’d, vol I, p 43). 

    Dajjal is one-eyed, Allah is not (Allah has two eyes)

      Allah is very meticulous about his appearance. When Muhammad learned that Dajjal (anti–Christ) has one eye, he was perturbed as to the number of eyes of Allah. But, as we saw before, that Allah, in all its physical appearances looks just like a human being, Muhammad assured his followers that unlike the Dajjal, Allah has two eyes.  

      Let us read these ahadith to picture a true countenance of Allah.

      Dajjal is one eyed, Allah is not...(Sahih Bukhari, 4.55.554) 

      Volume 4, Book 55, Number 554: Narrated Abu Huraira:

      Allah's Apostle said, "Shall I not tell you about the Dajjal a story of which no prophet told his nation? The Dajjall is one-eyed and will bring with him what will resemble Hell and Paradise, and what he will call Paradise will be actually Hell; so I warn you (against him) as Noah warned his nation against him."  

      The Dajjal is one-eyed but Allah is not one-eyed. Between Dajjal’s eyes will be written “Kafir”…(Sunaan Abu Dawud, 3.37.4302) 

      Sunaan Abu Dawud, Vol. III, Hadith Number 4302

      Anas b. Malik reported the Prophet (may peace be upon him) as saying: No prophet was sent who had not warned his people about one-eyed liar. Beware! He will be one–eyed, but your Lord the Exalted, is not one–eyed. Between his eyes will be written “Infidel” (Kafir)

    Allah’s eyes are not like two floating grapes; Dajjal’s eyes are

      Please read the following ahadith to imagine how Allah might look. 

      The Raja (anti-Christ) is short, hen-toed, woolly-haired, one eyed, an eye-sightless and neither protruding nor deep-seated. Allah is not one eyed…(Sunaan Abu Dawud, 37.4306) 

      Book 37, Number 4306: Narrated Ubadah ibn as-Samit:

      The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: I have told you so much about the Dajjal (Antichrist) that I am afraid you may not understand. The Antichrist is short, hen-toed, woolly-haired, one-eyed, an eye-sightless, and neither protruding nor deep-seated. If you are confused about him, know that your Lord is not one-eyed.  

      Ad-Dajjal is blind in the right eye. But Allah is not one-eyed, he is not hidden from you…(Sahih Bukhari, 9. 93.504) 

      Volume 9, Book 93, Number 504: Narrated 'Abdullah:

      Ad-Dajjal was mentioned in the presence of the Prophet. The Prophet said, "Allah is not hidden from you; He is not one-eyed," and pointed with his hand towards his eye, adding, "While Al-Masih Ad-Dajjal is blind in the right eye and his eye looks like a protruding grape."  

      Allah is not one-eyed and Dajjal is blind of the right eye and his eye is like a floating grape…(Sahih Muslim, 41.7005) 

      Book 041, Number 7005:

      Ibn Umar reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him). made a mention of Dajjil in the presence of the people and said: Allah is not one-eyed and behold that Dajjal is blind of the right eye and his eye would be like a floating grape. 

    Allah is not hidden from us; He is fire; worship Him if you do not want to be touched by fire

      We read before that Allah is a fire. In the hadith, quoted below Allah approves fire worshipping, since He is fire. 

      If you do not want to be touched by fire then: worship Allah, never associate anything with Allah, establish prayer, pay zakat and do good to your kin…(Sahih Muslim, 1.13, 14, 15, 16

      Book 001, Number 0013:

      It is narrated on the authority of Abu Ayyub that a man came to the Prophet (may peace be upon him) and said: Direct me to a deed which draws me near to Paradise and takes me away from the Fire (of Hell). Upon this he (the Holy Prophet) said: You worship Allah and never associate anything with Him, establish prayer, and pay Zakat, and do good to your kin. When he turned his back, the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) remarked: If he adheres to what he has been ordered to do, he would enter Paradise. 

    Allah has a sleepless-face, he does not sleep; He likes insomniacs

    The Qur’an recommends Muslims to sleep as little as possible, and to devote the major part of the night in prayer and supplicating to Allah. Allah is not at all concerned that His slaves might be afflicted with insomnia which will lead to ill health. The early morning cacophony of prayer call even exhorts that prayer is better than a sound sleep. Here are two verses from the Qur’an which encourages Muslims to forgo sound sleep at night. 

      The true believers sleep very little at night…51:17 

      YUSUFALI: They were in the habit of sleeping but little by night, [Q 51.17]

      Allah loves those who seek forgiveness during the last hour of night…51:18 

      YUSUFALI: And in the hour of early dawn, they (were found) praying for Forgiveness;  [Q 51.18]

    Why Allah does not encourage His slaves to have a sound sleep at night? The answer is quite simple: Allah does not sleep at night, so He does not want the Muslims to sleep at night—or sleep as little as possible.  

    Here is a hadith from Sahih Muslim which tells us that one of the five attributes of Allah is that He does not sleep either at night or during the day. Naturally, this means that Allah has a sleepless face. 

    Another hadith in Sunaan ibn Majah reveals that Allah does not sleep. 

    Let us read these two interesting ahadith. 

      One of the five attributes of Allah is that He does not sleep…(Sahih Muslim, 1.0343) 

      Book 001, Number 0343:

      Abu Musa reported: The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) was standing amongst us and he told us five things. He said: Verily the Exalted and Mighty God does not sleep, and it does not befit Him to sleep. He lowers the scale and lifts it. The deeds in the night are taken up to Him before the deeds of the day and the deeds of the day before the deeds of the night. His veil is the light. In the hadith narrated by Abu Bakr (instead of the word" light") it is fire. If he withdraws it (the veil), the splendour of His countenance would consume His creation so far as His sight reaches. 

      Allah does not sleep…(Sunaan Ibn Majah, 1.195). 

      Sunaan Ibn Majah, Vol. I, Hadith Number 195

      Abu Musa (Allah be pleased with him) is reported to have said, “Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) got up amongst us (to address us) regarding four things. He said, “Verily, Allah sleeps not; nor does it behove Him to sleep. He lowers the scales and raises them. The deed (done during) the night is presented to him before the deed of the day and (so is presented) a deed of the day before the deed of night. His veil is the Light. If He would remove it, the august splendour of Allah’s Countenance would burn everything of His creation to which His Glance reaches. 

      Modern-day Islamic scholars, such as Drs Hilali and Muhsin Khan quoting Fath al–Bari states that Allah neither sleeps nor eats (Hilali and Khan, 1996, p. 142). 

      Imam Ghazali, the most respected and trusted Islamic scholar wrote Ihya Ulum Ed-Din to propagate the glory of Allah and the methods by which a devoted Muslim could be close to Allah. Many Muslims even consider this book as second only to the Qur’an. Imam Ghazali postulated that a true believer must get used to sleepless nights. He said that the surest approach to reach the nearness of Allah is not to sleep at night or to sleep very little. Here are a few excerpts from this celebrity of Islam. (Ghazali, Tr. Fazl-ul-Karim, 1993, vols. ii, iii and iv). 

      The weapons to fight passion are: 1. to eat little 2. to sleep little 3. to speak when necessary 4. to keep patience at the trouble of people. (Ghazali, vol. iii, p59)  

      The fort of religion has four walls viz: 1. solitude 2. silence 3. hunger 4. sleeplessness. These four walls prevent the devil from entering the fort. (Ghazali, vol. iii, p67). 

      Sleeplessness makes the heart bright, pure and radiant. (ibid

      Allah loves three types of men: 1. one who sleeps little 2. one who eats little 3. one who takes little rest. (Ghazali, vol. iii, p71) 

      If anyone seeks Paradise, he should not sleep at night; he who fears God takes rest at dawn. (Ghazali, vol. iv, p353) 

      Ali said, “The signs of religious men are the following: their color turn yellow as an effect of passing sleepless nights, their eyes turn yellow as an effect of shedding tears, their lips become dry as an effect of fasting and the signs of God-fearing people appear on them.” (Ghazali, vol. iv, 354) 

    Imam Ghazali even describes how a believer should lie down to sleep to reach Allah. 

      Here are Ghazali’s specifications of sleeping positions for the pious Muslims. (Ghazali, vol. ii, p20). 

      To lie with belly up is to sleep like the prophets.

      To sleep on the right side is the sleep of the worshippers.

      To sleep on the left side is the sleep of the rulers.

      To sleep with face down is the sleep of the devil. 

      Imam Ghazali is completely correct on the virtues of sleepless nights for the Muslims. His idea is in full conformity with the Qur’an as explicated above. 

    Allah’s countenance will be visible as clearly as the sun or the moon

      Here are a few ahadith where Muhammad guarantees that people will see Allah’s countenance just like they see the moon on a cloudless sky. 

      People will see Allah in His own form on the resurrection day just the way they see the sun and the moon on a clear day; the Christians and the Jews will be sent to hell (long hadith)…(Sahih Muslim, 1.0349, 0352

      You will see Allah like you see the full moon…(Sahih Muslim, 4.1322, 1323

    Allah will show His face only after your death

      Challenged by the pagans, Muhammad was quick to realise his folly in attempting to describe his version of Allah which he could never let them see or observe. So, his ruse was very simple. Exasperated, dispirited, Allah ruefully told the pagan Meccans that people will see Allah after their death. Mind you, Muhammad had already confirmed that Allah will not meet the non-Muslims, He will show His face only to those who convert to Islam or born into it. 

      Here is a hadith which says none will be able to see Allah until one dies (very long hadith)…(Sahih Muslim, 41.7000

      And here is a Qur’anic verse which tells Allah will veil Himself from the unbelievers and only the believers will see His countenance…83:15 

      Allah will veil Himself (i.e., He will not show His face) from the unbelievers on the resurrection day); only the believers will see the face of Allah…83:14–15 

      YUSUF ALI: By no means! but on their hearts is the stain of the (ill) which they do! [Q 83.14]

      YUSUF ALI: Verily, from (the Light of) their Lord, that Day, will they be veiled. [Q 83.15]
       

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    >>> Chapter 8 : Allah is Dictatorial, Racist and Misogynistic



    Abul Kasem is an Bengali ex-Muslim and academic. He has contributed in Leaving Islam - Apostates Speak Out and Beyond Jihad Critical Voices from Inside. He has also written extensively on Islam in various websites and is the author of four e-Books: In the Name of Allah, Root of Terrorism ala Islamic Style, Sex and Sexuality in Islam, Who Authored the Quran? and Women in Islam. Mr. Kasem leaves in Sydney, Australia. He can be contacted at [email protected].

     
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