The Worship of Contemplation
One of the greatest blessings that Allah has bestowed upon humans is the human mind and its ability to reflect and understand. When a person uses that mind in the proper way according to its potential, he should be led directly to the truth of Allah’s oneness and strong desire to worship Him. Allah, glorified be He, says “So know that La ilaha illallah (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah)” Surat –Muhammad (19) In fact, the worship of contemplation strengthens righteousness and causes a person to abide by Allah’s commands and avoid His prohibitions.
All the prophets ( peace be upon them all) used to perform this worship. Prophet Muhammad ( peace be upon him) used to go to Ghaar Heraa, away from people to pray, remember His Lord and contemplate the universe, where the angel Jibreel, peace be upon him, was sent with the first ayat; verses, “Read! In the Name of your Lord Who has created(all that exists). He has created man from a clot ( a piece of thick coagulated blood)” Suratul-al Alaq (1-2)
Prophet Ibraheem(peace be upon him) used to contemplate the universe as he wanted to know Allah. The following verse shows how was the status of the prophet Ibraheem, Allah, the Almighty, says, ” Thus did we show Ibraheem the kingdom of the heavens and the earth that he be one of those who have Faith with certainty.” Suratul-An’aam
Contemplation is a gift from Allah to the slave. It is a chance to engage your soul and extract everything so that you can purify yourself and take control over your affairs. Al-Hasan al-Basri once said, “Contemplation is the key to Mercy. Don’t you see how a person contemplates and consequently repents?”
Al-Fudhayl ibn ‘Iyyadh said, “The speech of the believer is wisdom; his silence is contemplation and his vision is a lesson (for him). If you are like that, then you will not cease being in a state of worship.” Then he read the verse, “And I have not created Mankind or Jinn except to worship Me.” Surat Ath-thaariyat (56)
Throughout the whole Qur’an you will find that Allah, the Almighty, has ordered humans to contemplate. This worship is one of the characteristics of a believer ‘s mind which a disbeliever actually doesn’t have. The following verses will show the status of believers while performing this worship. Allah says,” Verily, in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and in the alternation of night and day, there are indeed signs for men of understanding, those who remember Allah standing, sitting, and lying down on their sides, and think deeply about the creation of the heavens and the earth,(saying): ” Our Lord! You have not created (all) this without purpose, glory to You! (Exalted are You above all that they associate with You as partners). Give us salvation from the torment of the Fire.” Suratu-Al-‘Imran (190-191).
On the contrary, Allah, the Almighty, informs that disbelievers don’t contemplate in heavens and earth- saying “Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, then We parted them? And We have made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe. And We have placed on the earth firm mountains, lest it should shake with them, and We placed therein broad highways for them to pass through, that they may be guided. And We have made the heaven a roof, safe and well-guarded. Yet they turn away from its signs (i.e. sun, moon, winds, clouds, etc.). And He it is Who has created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon, each in an orbit floating.” Suratul-Anbiya'(30-33) Allah, glorified be He, mentions in other verses that disbelievers will regret while being in the Fire due to not contemplating and then believing in Allah’s signs and acting accordingly, “And they(the disbelievers)will say: “Had we but listened or used our minds, we would not have been among the dwellers of the blazing Fire!” Suratul-Mulk (10)
Don’t we contemplate ourselves and that Allah has perfected our creation and that of the whole universe to suit man’s need- Allah, Azza wa Jall, says, “Allah is He Who has created the heavens and the earth and sends down water (rain)from the sky, and thereby brought forth fruits as provision for you;…” Suratu-Ibraheem (32). Do you think before if Allah does not send water anymore, What will happen to the whole universe?! Allah, the Almighty says, “Say (O Muhammad): “Tell me! If(all) your water were to sink away, who then can supply you with flowing(spring) water?” Suratul-Mulk (30)
Allah, Subhanahu wa Ta’la, says, ” And on the earth are signs for those who have Faith with certainty. And in your own selves. Will you not then see?” Surat Ath-thariyat (20,21) So, do we not contemplate within ourselves? Hasn’t the time come for us to sit with ourselves and ponder? To think deeply? Look at your eyes and ears and feel your heart pulses, Could you control these graces that Allah has bestowed upon you. Allah, the Almighty, says, “Say (O Muhammad): Tell me, if Allah took away your hearing and your sight, and sealed up your hearts, who is there- an ilah (a god) other than Allah who could restore them to you? See how variously We explain Ayat (proofs, evidences, signs, etc.), yet they turn aside.” Suratul-An’aam (46)
Sleeping is just as death. A sleeping person is not able to see, hear, eat or do anything as a dead body, then Allah, glorified be He, resends his souls again to wake up and resume his life. Allah, Subhanau wa ta’la, says, ” It is Allah Who takes away the souls at the time of their death, and those that die not during their sleep. He keeps those (souls)for which He has ordained death and sends the rest for a term appointed. Verily, in this are signs for a people who think deeply.” Surat Az-Zumar (42)
Subhana Allah! This verse contains many signs; some of them as follows. First, being awake after sleeping confirms resurrection. Second, while sleeping you may have a good dream that makes you very happy to the extent that you don’t want it to be just a dream. On the other hand, you may have a bad dream that makes you very sad or afraid to the extent that you want to wake up by any means. Of course, this is an evidence of being rewarded or punished in the grave. Third, nobody knows anything about the soul that is in our bodies; Allah, the Almighty, says,” And they ask you (O Muhammad)concerning the Rouh(the spirit/soul). Say: “The Rouh ( the spirit/soul) is one of the things, the knowledge of which is only with my Lord. And of knowledge, you (mankind) have been given only a little.” Suratul-Israa (85)
Contemplating verses of Qur’an, the universe, the creation and even ourselves will lead us to know Allah, love Him and worship Him sincerely.