[There are incalculable proofs necessitating in absolutely certain form Divine unity and the affirmation of it, which neither accept nor permit the association of partners with God. Since hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of these are demonstrated in detail in the Risale-i Nur, here only three of them which necessitate Divine unity will be set out briefly.]
According to the testimony of the wise and discerning acts which are to be observed in the universe, creatures are made through the limitless attributes and Names of an All-Wise Sovereign, One Perfect and Mighty Whose knowledge and power are absolute.
Yes, it may be surmised certainly from the works in the universe, that their Maker possesses sovereignty and rulership at the degree of absolute dominicality, and grandeur and magnificence at the degree of absolute might, and perfection and self-sufficiency at the degree of absolute godhead; and that His activity and rule are absolutely without restriction or limit; these are understood clearly, and are visible. As for sovereignty, grandeur, perfection, self-sufficiency, absoluteness, comprehensiveness, unrestrictedness, and unlimitedness, they necessitate unity and are opposed to partnership.
The testimony to unity of sovereignty and rulership: This has been proved with complete certainty in numerous places in the Risale-i Nur. A brief summary is as follows:
The mark of rulership is independence, solitariness, and the rejection of interference; rulership necessitates these. Due to only a shadow of rulership, impotent men even, who by their natures are in need of assistance, reject the interference of others and preserve their independence. It is for this reason that there cannot be two kings in a country, or two governors of a province, two mayors of a town, or even two headmen of a village. If there are two of any of these, it leads to chaos; rebellions break out and law and order are overturned. Since a mere shadow of rulership in impotent men needy of assistance repels the partnership and interference of others to this extent, surely the rulership, which is in the form of dominicality, of an Absolutely Powerful One free of all impotence will in no way accept any partners or interference. He will reject it vehemently and angrily repulse from His court those who ascribe imaginary partners to Him. The All-Wise Qur’an’s severe threats against those who ascribe partners to God arise from this truth.
The testimony to unity of grandeur, magnificence, and glory: This too has been explained with brilliant proofs in the Risale-i Nur, and here a very brief meaning of it is alluded to:
For example, the magnificence and grandeur of the sun’s light leave no need for any weak lights near to it, nor does its light allow any other light an effect. Similarly, the magnificence and immensity of Divine power leave no need for any other force or power, and afford no other power a true effect or ability to create. Especially living and conscious beings, which are the points on which of all the dominical aims in the universe turn and where they are concentrated; it is impossible that they should be referred to others. It is also in no way possible that the fruits, results, and circumstances of man’s creation and of living beings, which are the origin of innumerable sorts of bounties and where the aims of their creation are manifested, should be referred to other hands. For example, it would be an affront to the magnificence of dominicality for an animate being to be truly grateful to anyone other than Almighty God for being healed from some minor ailment, or for some sustenance, or for guidance, and to praise and applaud the person extravagantly; the grandeur of the Godhead would be offended; the dignity of the Absolute Object of Worship affronted, and His glory, vexed.
How perfection points to the mystery of unity: Again this has been explained with brilliant proofs in the Risale-i Nur, and an extremely brief meaning of it is this: self-evidently, the creation of the heavens and earth necessitate an absolute power of utter perfection. The wondrous bodily systems of animate beings also necessitate an absolute power of utter perfection. The wondrous bodily systems of animate beings also necessitate a power of absolute perfection. And the perfection of an absolute power which is exempt from impotence and free of restriction necessitates unity. For to apply defect to perfection and restrict the unrestricted, and to make infinity finite, and reduce the strongest power to the weakest impotence means making an infinite power finite with something finite at a time it is infinite, and this is utterly impossible in five ways.
The testimonies to unity of unrestrictedness, comprehensiveness, and infinity: This too has been mentioned in detail in the treatises of The Illuminating Lamp. A summary of its meaning is as follows: since by spreading pervasively around their own works, the acts in the universe all show that they are comprehensive and unrestricted, unlimited and absolute; and since partners and participation place a restriction on the comprehensiveness and unrestrictedness, and limit the unlimitedness, destroying their nature and reality; most certainly partnership in those acts which are absolute and comprehensive is impossible and precluded. Yes, the very nature of unrestrictedness is opposed to partnership, for its meaning, even in finite, material, and limited things, is to spread, pervade, and permeate everywhere.
For example, if air, light, and heat, and even water, manifested unrestrictedness, they would spread everywhere. Since this aspect of unrestrictedness makes physical and limited things invasive, even if they are particular, surely true, universal unrestrictedness would afford such encompassment and pervasiveness to attributes that were both infinite, and free of matter, and unlimited, and free of defect, that there could be no possibility whatsoever of their accepting any partners or partnership.
In Short: Both the sovereignty, and the grandeur, and the perfection, and the comprehensiveness, and the unrestrictedness, and the infinity of the thousands of general acts and the hundreds of Divine Names whose manifestations are to be seen in the universe are extremely powerful proofs of Divine unity and the affirmation of it.
Also, a superior force wants to overrun its surroundings in order to become activated, scattering other forces. Similarly, it is apparent from all the works of dominicality and manifestations of the Names of the Godhead that their forces are so extraordinarily overwhelming that if it were not for general sovereignty and absolute justice, which prevent them, they would have overrun all beings. For example, is it at all possible that the universal power which creates all the poplar trees on the earth and administers them, should not take under its control the individual trees like walnut, apple, and apricot, which have become interspersed among the poplars, and not regulate them and dominate them, or that it should hand them over to other forces? Yes, in all species of creatures, and even in each individual, a governing force and power are felt which clearly have the capacity to overrun the whole universe and subjugate all beings. Certainly, such a power would not accept partners of any sort, nor permit partnership.
Also, for the owner of a fruit-bearing tree, the matter of greatest importance is the fruit at the tips of the tree’s branches, and for future planting, the seeds in the hearts of its fruits, rather that are the hearts of its fruits. If the tree’s owner has any sense, he will not make his ownership go for nothing by handing over the fruits to someone else. In exactly the same way; the elements, which are the branches of the tree called the universe, and the plants and animals, which are at the tips of the elements and are like the flowers and leaves of the tree, and human beings, which are the topmost of the leaves and flowers, —the owner of the tree would in no way hand over to other forces the worship and thanks of those fruits, which are their most important fruits and the result of their creation, and especially their hearts, the all-encompassing seeds of the fruits, and their faculties of memory, which are known as the ‘outer heart,’ so negating the sovereignty of His dominicality, and cancelling also his fitness to be worshipped.
Also, since the aims of dominicality are centred in the particulars at the extremities of the sphere of contingency and multiplicity, and even in the states and circumstances of those particulars; and since they are the source of the thanks, gratitude, and worship, which are extended and look to the One True Object of Worship; for sure He would not hand them over to others and so nullify His wisdom, and by nullifying His wisdom, annul His Godhead. For the most important dominical aim in the creation of beings is to make Himself known to conscious beings, and loved, and praised and extolled, and to attract their gratitude to Himself. It is because of this subtle mystery that, in order to demonstrate that the bounties and acts, universal and particular, at the extremities of the sphere of multiplicity, like sustenance, healing, and particularly guidance and belief, which result in thanks, worship, gratitude, love, praise, and worship, are directly the works, bounties, gifts, and acts of the universe’s Creator, the Monarch of all beings, the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition repeatedly ascribes sustenance, guidance, and healing to the Necessarily Existent One, stating that the bestowal of them is His alone and restricted to Him, and strongly rejecting the interference of others.10 Yes, the One Who bestows the bounty of belief, which wins for a person an abode of bliss, can surely only be the One Who creates the abode of bliss and makes belief the key to it. It could only be His bounty. Nobody could shut up this largest window opening onto the True Object of Worship by bestowing an equally great bounty; no one could block up this most important means to Him, or steal it.
In Short: The most particular events and fruits at the tips of the tree of creation testify to Divine unity and the affirmation of it in two ways:
Firstly: The aims of dominicality in the universe are gathered together in those fruits and events and their aims are centred on them, and most of the manifestations of the Divine Names and their determinations, and the results of and benefits in the creation of beings are gathered together in them. In this respect, each of them therefore declares: “I am the property, act, and work of the One Who created the whole universe.”
The Second Way: Since the hearts of those particular fruits, as well as man’s memory, which in a Hadith is called “the outer heart,”11 are concise indexes of most species of beings, and small maps of them, and bear the meaning of seeds of the tree of the universe, and are subtle mirrors of most of the Divine Names; and since hearts and memories, which are all similar and bear the same stamp, spread pervasively throughout the universe; they look to the One who holds the whole universe in the grasp of His power, and they each declare: “I am the work and art of Him alone.”
To Conclude: With regard to its benefits, a fruit looks to its tree’s owner. With regard to its seed, it looks to all the parts, members, and nature of the tree. And with regard to the stamp on its face, it gazes on all the fruits of the tree, whose stamp is the same. Together they declare: “We are all the same and we have one maker. We are the property of a single person. Whoever made one of us, made all of us.” In exactly the same way, in regard to the stamps on the faces of the living creatures at the extremities of the sphere of multiplicity, and especially the stamps on man’s face, and his index-like heart, and the results of his nature and his being a fruit, they look directly to the One Who holds the whole universe in the grasp of His power, and testify to His unity.
The Second Matter Necessitating Divine Unity
This is the fact that in unity are an ease and facility which render it necessary, while in associating partners with God are difficulties to the point of its being impossible. This truth has been explained and demonstrated with brilliant and decisive proofs in many of the treatises of what Imam ‘Ali (May God be pleased with him) called The Illuminating Lamp, especially in the Twentieth Letter, in detail, and in the Fourth Point of the Thirtieth Flash, briefly. It has been demonstrated with most powerful proofs that if all things are attributed to one single Being, the creation and regulation of the universe are as easy as the creation and regulation of a tree; and the creation and making of a tree are as easy as the creation and making of a fruit; and the origination and management of the spring are as easy as the origination and management of a flower; and the admininstration and raising of a species containing numerous members are as free of trouble as the administration and raising of a single individual.
Whereas if, on the way of associating partners with God, all things are ascribed to causes and nature, the creation of a single individual is as difficult as that of a species, indeed, of many species; and the creation and decking out of a single living flower as difficult as the creation and decking out of the spring, or many springs; and the creation, making, raising to life, administering, nurturing, directing, and regulation of a tree as difficult as those of the universe, or even more difficult.
Since the reality of the matter has been thus proved in The Illuminating Lamp, and since as we see plainly before us, together with the very highest degree of art and the greatest value there is a superabundance of beings; and together with being wondrous machines with numerous miraculous components and members, all living creatures come into existence in absolute profusion infinitely easily with extraordinary speed just like striking a match; it demonstrates necessarily and self-evidently that the profusion and ease arise from unity and from their being the works of a single Being. Otherwise, it would not be cheapness, abundance, speed, ease, and value; a fruit that is now obtained for five para would not have been obtainable for five hundred lira 12 or would have been so rare as to have been unobtainable. And the creation of living beings, which resemble regular machines that work like setting a clock or turning on an electric switch, would have been so difficult as to have been impossible, and some animals who come into existence together with all their bodily systems and vital conditions in a day, or an hour, or a minute, would not have come into existence in a year, or a century, or perhaps ever at all.
It is proved in a hundred places in The Illuminating Lamp, so decisively as to silence the most obdurate denier, that if all things are ascribed to the Single One of Unity, they are as easy, swift, and cheap as a single thing. Whereas if causes and nature are given a share as well, the creation of a single thing becomes as difficult, slow, unimportant, and expensive as all things. If you want to see the proofs of this truth, you may refer to the Twentieth and Thirty-Third Letters, the Twenty-Second and Thirty-Second Words, the Twenty-Third Flash, which is about nature, and the Thirtieth Flash, which is about the Greatest Name, particularly its Fourth and Sixth Points which are about the Names of Single and Self-Subsistent respectively. There you will see that it has been proved with the certainty of two plus two equalling four. Here, only one of those hundreds of proofs will be alluded to, as follows:
The creation of things is either from non-existence, or from the elements and other beings in the form of composition. If attributed to a single Being, that Being is bound to have all-encompassing knowledge and power that prevails over all things. In this way, the giving of external existence to things whose forms are present in His knowledge or who exist as knowledge, and bringing them out of apparent non-existence, is as easy and simple as striking a match or spreading a special liquid over invisible writing in order to reveal it, or transposing an image from photographic film to paper.Through the ‘command of “Be!” and it is,’13 the Maker brings into external existence from apparent non-existence things whose plans, programmes, and shapes and proportions are present in His knowledge.
If it is in the form of composition and art, and not creating from non-existence and nothing, and in the form of gathering together from the elements and surroundings, it resembles the members of a regiment mustering at the call of a bugle after having dispersed to rest, and the soldiers collecting together in regular and orderly fashion, and in order to facilitate this exercise and preserve their positions, the whole army being like the power, law, and eye of its commander. In exactly the same way, as though they were the power, law, and officials of the Monarch of the Universe, the minute particles under the command of that Monarch —together with the beings with whom they have contact— are mobilized according to the principles of His knowledge and determining and the laws of His pervasive power. In order to form a living being, they assume a specified measure and proportion, which resembles an immaterial mould specified by Divine knowledge and determining, and there they stop.
If things are referred to different hands and causes, and to nature, then as all the reasonable agree, no cause can in any way create from nothing and non-existence. For causes do not possess comprehensive knowledge and all-pervading power, and non-existence would not be only apparent and external, it would be absolute. And absolute non-existence can in no way be the source of existence. It which case, creation would be in the form of composition. But if in the form of composition, the particles of a fly or a flower could come together only with innumerable difficulties after collecting the body of a fly and parts of a flower from all over the earth and passing them through a fine sieve. Even having come together, since there would be no immaterial moulds existing as knowledge to preserve them in orderly form without dispersing, physical, natural moulds, in fact moulds to the number of their members, would be necessary so that the particles that had come together could form the bodies of those living creatures.
Thus, the ascribing of all things to a single Being is so easy as to be necessary and the attributing of them to numerous causes so difficult as to be impossible and precluded. Similarly, if all things are ascribed to the Single One of Unity, they become valuable, full of art, meaningful, and powerful to the utmost degree at the same time as being infinitely cheap. While if, on the way of associating partners with God, they are ascribed to numerous causes and nature, they become valueless and completely lacking in art, meaning, and power, as well as being infinitely expensive.
For since a man who joins the army becomes connected with its commander-in-chief and he relies on him, he gains the potential moral support of the army, if it is necessary. And since the power of the army is his reserve force, he acquires a physical strength far exceeding his individual strength. And since because the army carries them, he is not compelled to carry the sources of that significant strength of his and his ammunition, he will be able to carry out superhuman works. Despite being a single private soldier, he may capture an enemy field-marshal, or compel all the inhabitants of a town to migrate, or capture a citadel. His works will be extraordinary and of great worth.
If, however, he leaves the army and remains on his own, he will lose that miraculous moral strength, power, and force, and be able to perform only insignificant, valueless works in accordance with his personal strength like a common irregular soldier. His achievements will diminish proportionately.
In exactly the same way, since on the way of Divine unity everything becomes connected with the All-Powerful One of Glory and relies on Him, an ant may defeat the Pharaoh, a fly vanquish Nimrod, and a microbe subdue a tyrant. So too a seed the size of a fingernail may bear on its shoulders a tree the size of a mountain, and be the source of all the tree’s parts and members and their workbench. All particles, too, through that connection and reliance, may perform innumerable duties in the formation of bodies, which are of innumerable sorts and arts. The works in which those miniscule officials and tiny soldiers are employed are infinitely perfect and of the highest art and value. For the one who makes them is the All-Powerful One of Glory; it is He Who put the works in their hands, making them a veil. Whereas if attributed to causes on the way of associating partners with God, the works of the ant would have been as insignificant as the ant, not an atom’s worth of value would have remained in the particle’s art, and everything would have lost all value both in meaning and physically so that no one would give a farthing for the vast world.
Since the reality is this; and since as we see with our own eyes everything is infinitely valuable, and full of art, and meaningful, and powerful; most definitely there can be no way other than the way of Divine unity. If there was, it would be necessary to change all beings, empty the world into non-existence, and then refill it with meaningless junk, so that a way could be opened up to associating partners with God.
So now you have heard a brief summary of only one of the hundreds of proofs which elucidate the affirmation of Divine unity in the Risale-i Nur, which in the words of Imam ‘Ali (May God be pleased with him) is Siracü’n-Nur (The Illuminating Lamp) and Siracü’s-Sürc. You may make analogies with this for the others.
The Third Matter Necessitating Divine Unity
Since, together with the extraordinary art in the creation of things, especially in living beings, a seed is a small sample of the fruit, a fruit is a miniature specimen of the tree, a tree is a summary index of the species, and the species is a concise map of the universe and in meaning is its seed, and each of these is a comprehensive point and a droplet gathered together and distilled from the universe according to the principles of knowledge and balances of wisdom; the one who created any one of them must be the one who created the whole universe. Yes, the one who creates the seed of a melon is self-evidently he who created the melon; it is impossible and precluded that it should be anyone other than him.
Yes, we look and see that all the atoms in blood are so orderly and perform so many duties that they are not inferior to the stars. All the red and white corpuscles in blood work with such a degree of consciousness in protecting and feeding the body that they are more efficient than the best commissaries or bodyguards. All the cells of the body manifest such orderly processes and incomings and outgoings that their administration is more perfect than the best-run body or palace. All plants and animals bear such a seal on their faces and such machines in their chests that only one who created all of them could situate those seals and machines in their places. And all the species of living beings have spread over the face of the earth in such orderly fashion and have intermingled with the other species having mutual relations with them, that one who could not simultaneously create, administer, regulate, and raise all those species, and not place that veil on the face of the earth, and not weave that most ornate, artistic, living tapestry with its warp and weft of the four hundred thousand plant and animal species — one that could not do all these could not create and administer a single species. If analogies are made with these for other things, it will be understood that in respect of creation and bringing into existence, the universe is a whole that may not be split up into parts, and in respect of dominicality and management is a universal whose division is impossible.
This third necessitating factor has been explained and proved decisively and brilliantly in many of the treatises of The Illuminating Lamp, and especially in the First Stopping Place of the Thirty-Second Word, demonstrating that like reflections of the sun, a proof of unity and its affirmation is reflected and represented in everything’s mirror. Making do with those explanations, we are here cutting a long story short.