“The ‘spirit’ is a quality that makes us the intelligent and passionate beings that we are”
Spirit gives meaning and purpose to the world through wisdom, growth, beauty, glory, and elegance; this is the knowledge that little has been communicated to us [17:85]. However, we are able to recognize the spirit by looking at the origin and purpose of life. Thus, first and foremost is to ask ourselves what the source of human life is and what its final end is. The Quran told us that spirit emanates directly from the Divine spirit. Hence, the affinity of the human to the Divine is defined as spiritual.
Theory of Human Body can be derived from two sources which are between creation and evolution. The theory of creation can be simply said has been shared by Monotheistic follower. On the other hand, the Evolution theory is widely embraced by natural scientist. In summary, the human body is generally made of earthly matter and what sets human apart from animal are moral, intellectual and spiritual capacities [38:71-72].
As human spirit is directly from the divine spirit it comprises of knowledge, justice, compassion, wisdom, peace, love, creativity, patience, gratefulness. These qualities empowered human being to assume the most honored mission as being Divine Vicegerent (Khalifah) on earth [2:30]. Nonetheless, human being is susceptible to committing excess by making mischief and shedding blood on earth as being claimed by angel, but Divine did not refute it but to reveal the human quality as the last intelligent creature to come to life in the universe [2: 31-33].
The Obvious enemy
Iblis is the first creature that objects to bow to Adam by mere saying his first racist argument ‘I am better than he’. He refused and was arrogant. Angel objection focus on human experience while Iblis’s objection was base exclusively on physical qualities. He neglected the elevated mission of humans that convince the angels to bow. Iblis is self-centered [38: 78-85].
Mission of human to serve the Divine became clear by the open enmity expressed by Iblis toward humanity. Thus, men have to applied his innate qualities to his earthly environment and use his acquired power in ways that improve the overall human condition and uplift the human spirit.
Human being is a trustee of earthly domain – the moral agent to make the world a better place. Human has been granted a lot of the resources in the world [31:20]. However, humanity must keep in touch with its source and must commit itself to the universal principles of right, justice and compassion. Angel mission is taking care of, and maintaining the universal order. Jinns made of fire, capable of influencing human through whispering their ideas and thought but deprive any power to translate their wishes and hope without human agency. This capability led pledge to lure people to wrongdoing except those who are given to remembrance and obedience of God.
Thus, human attributes is a unique combination of solid matter of the universe along with the divine spirit that stems directly from God, albeit in finite form. They have been given intelligence, the power of choice, and the ability to translate their choices into reality within the earthly domain and to be truthful to their purpose and mission to serve God and embrace His will [38:71-72]. In pursuing truth, right and justice, moral discipline and self control must be developed to avoid excess and succumb temptation.
Divine is the source of our life. Yet understanding Divinity is more challenging for human reason than comprehending human life but Quran does give description of His attributes that suit His Majesty. Through His most beautiful names, God reveal himself in the Quran in a way that comprehensible to human physical limitation.
The order of infinity and finitude
Although human attributes is directly stems from Divine attributes, the distance between intentions and actions immediately disappears in the Divine order [39:67]. This however, does not mean that the divine will is lacks of structure and this can be proved in His creation as it is impossible for the universe to remain stable in its orderly place without being well structured. The Divine will is free, but Divine freedom embraces necessity, either in the form of orderly, structured Divine acts or in self-imposed commitments.
Spiritually connected and engaging divine
All Divine attributes can be observed in human form except self-sustaining and life-giver. He has divided his compassion to a hundred portions; he kept 99 portions and sent down one to earth. Quran describe the relationship of god to the universe in human life in particular, in more intimate and engaging ways. In contrast, humans are not linked in any organic or spiritual way with the objects they create or produce. The engaging Divine attributes can be understood as the Quran remind us that god’s creation cannot persist, not even for a moment, without being continuously willed and cared for by the Divine [35:41]. The universe itself is the manifestation of divine attributes and qualities. Thus, by knowing the creation should lead to knowing the Creator. Divine can be appreciated by observing the knowledge, wisdom, justice and compassion displayed by human beings. Furthermore, the hands of God made apparent for those who often seek his pleasure and struggle to follow his wisdom and guidance and human should be aware that they can be cut from the divine source through mischief, arrogance, selfishness and injustice.
by Omar Mokhtar
was summarized from Chapter 1 & 2, The Quranic Narrative [ Luoay M. Safi ]