[Al-Quran 50:6-8] Have they not looked at the heaven above them - how We structured it and adorned it and how it has no rifts? And the earth - We spread it out and cast therein firmly set mountains and made grow therein [something] of every beautiful kind, Giving insight and a reminder for every servant who turns [to Allah].

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Human: Body or Soul?

No change should there be in the creation of Allah [Quran 30:30] 
Mission of the Messengers - XIV  


Abstract
The human is created from Earth, and is essentially its body. When the command granting life is breathed in, the body becomes alive. Death marks the end of life. Both the Quran and the Bible emphasize our earthly origins and return. The Quran also mentions the ‘ashab-ul-quboor’.  

The correct understanding of the significance of the human body is very important, as it concerns the permissibility, as well as the ethical and moral issues regarding abortions, organ harvesting and transplants, final rites of the deceased, genetic engineering of the living, and so on.  

For Muslims, Quran is the final revelation and the decisive word. We need to explore the text in detail lest we harm ourselves for an eternity.


Full Text

Preamble
Who are we? Are we our body or are we our soul or is it a combination of the two? Do we have an existence independent of our body? When we die, do we leave the body, or does life leave us? Who is the I we are so fond of? What are we made of? What do the scriptures say? 

The Bible and The Quran both inform us that we are made of dust:

[Bible, Genesis 3:19] In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread till thou return unto the ground, for out of it wast thou taken; for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

[Al-Quran, ar-Rum 30:20] And among His Signs (is) that He created you from dust then behold! You (are) human beings dispersing.

We all know that we have a body that is composed of earthly materials.  Religious people generally believe that they are a SOUL that is temporarily staying in the body.  Atheists do not believe in the existence of a SOUL. 

Jews, Christians and Muslims (People of the Book) shroud and bury the body of their dead. Hindus (Polytheists) burn many of their dead and crush the remaining bones into dust. More on Funeral Rites in References and Further Reading at the end of this post. 

From the Bible, we learn that the prophets Jacob and Joseph were concerned about their body after their death, and asked for it to NOT to be left in Egypt. From a saying attributed to Prophet Muhammad, we learn that breaking the bone of a dead person is similar to breaking the bone of a living person.

The Quran 30:30 clearly warns against changing the creation of Allah, especially humans:



The following explores the concepts as stated in the scriptures, with focus on the Quran and referring to the Bible, so as to get some clarity on the subject. The correct understanding of this concept is very important, as it concerns the permissibility, as well as the ethical and moral issues regarding abortions, organ harvesting and transplants, final rites of the deceased, genetic modification of the living, crossbreeding, building chimeras, and so on.  

For Muslims, Quran is the final revelation and the decisive word. Furthermore, the original Arabic text is preserved in pristine condition, in written form and orally, committed to memory in the minds of the huffaz. The Quran itself claims that it is explained in detail. As we refer to the prior scriptures and the hadith of Prophet Muhammad, the correct understanding must be based on what the Quran states directly or endorses indirectly. We need to explore the text in detail lest we harm ourselves for an eternity. 

NOTE: The difference between رُّوحُ and نَفْسُ is often lost in translations. In this post, translations of the Arabic word RUH are in dark purple bold letters, and translations of the Arabic word NAFS (Hebrew nephesh) are in light blue bold letters. 


RUH

فَإِذَا سَوَّيْتُهُ وَنَفَخْتُ فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِي فَقَعُوا لَهُ سَاجِدِينَ

[Al-Quran 15:29] So, when I have fashioned him and [I] breathed into him of My spirit, then fall down to him prostrating."

Ar-RUH, generally translated as spirit (Q32:9, Q97:4) or soul (Q17:85), is from the AMR (commands, decrees) of Allah: 


وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الرُّوحِ قُلِ الرُّوحُ مِنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّي وَمَا أُوتِيتُم مِّنَ الْعِلْمِ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا

And they ask you about the soul. Say: The soul is one of the commands of my Lord, and you are not given aught of knowledge but a little. 
[Al-Quran 17:85, Translator: Shakir] 

In Surah al-Qadr, we read:

تَنَزَّلُ الْمَلَائِكَةُ وَالرُّوحُ فِيهَا بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهِم مِّن كُلِّ أَمْرٍ

The angels and the Spirit descend therein, by the permission of their Lord, with all decrees
[Al-Quran 97:4, Translator: Pickthall] 

People believe that we are essentially our SOUL while the body is just a vessel that we inhabit temporarily. Contrary to popular belief, the Quran does not support this belief about the SOUL, or even acknowledge its existence independent of the body. It simply states that the RUH is from the commands of God.  

And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul
[Bible, Genesis 2:7 ; Transliteration

Who made good everything that He has created, and He began the creation of man from dust. Then He made his progeny of an extract, of water held in light estimation. Then He made him complete and breathed into him of His spirit, and made for you the ears and the eyes and the hearts; little is it that you give thanks. And they say: What! when we have become lost in the earth, shall we then certainly be in a new creation? Nay! they are disbelievers in the meeting of their Lord. Say: The angel of death who is given charge of you shall cause you to die, then to your Lord you shall be brought back. 
[Al-Quran 32:7 – 11, Translator: Shakir]   


Allah commands through His Words:  
He (is) the One Who gives life and causes death. And when He decrees a matter, then only He says to it, "Be," and it is. 
[Al-Quran 40:68

Mary conceived Jesus when she received the Command of Allah. Quran 3:4519:17 and 66:12 use the word ruh to convey what was breathed into Mary.  As explained in Virgin Birth, speech can be transferred wirelessly (breathed in).  


NAFS 
The Quran repeatedly mentions the NAFS.

God created the first humans from a single NAFS:
O mankind! Be conscious your Rab (Lord/Sustainer), the One Who created you from a single nafs, and created from her her mate, and dispersed from both of them many men and women. And be conscious of Allah Whom you ask, with it, and the wombs. Indeed, Allah is over you Ever-Watchful.  
[Al-Quran 4:1] 

As quoted in The First Humans, three ayaat inform us that it is God who has created human beings from a single NAFS. God is the Master Creator. He begins creation, and He delegates some of the creation tasks to some beings in His government, as indicated by The Creator I and The Creators We mentioned through various pronouns across the Quran. For difference between the two, please read the section similarly titled at the bottom. 


وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الْإِنسَانَ وَنَعْلَمُ مَا تُوَسْوِسُ بِهِ نَفْسُهُ وَنَحْنُ أَقْرَبُ إِلَيْهِ مِنْ حَبْلِ الْوَرِيدِ

We swear that We have created the human being and We know what his soul whispers to him. We are closer to him than even his jugular vein. 
[Al-Quran 50:16, Translator: Muhammad Sarwar] 

The information that the NAFS whispers to us indicates that the NAFS is not ‘the us’ but rather resides inside us.

The Quran describes three kinds or states of the NAFS as:
The NAFS-e-AMMARRA is the NAFS that urges us to evil.
The NAFS-e-LAWAMMA is the NAFS that we speak of as our conscience.
The NAFS-e-MUTMAINNA is the NAFS that is satisfied and contented with God, and God is pleased with it.   

Furthermore, it seems that our NAFS is in pledge, something that is removed from us daily, and what we risk losing permanently in the Hereafter:

And leave those who take their religion (as) a play and amusement and deluded them the life (of) the world. But remind with it, lest is given up to destruction a soul for what it (has) earned, not (is) for it besides Allah any protector and not any intercessor. And if it offers ransom - every ransom, not will it be taken from it. Those (are) ones who are given to destruction for what they earned. For them (will be) a drink of boiling water and a punishment painful because they used to disbelieve.
[Al-Quran 6:70

And those who believed and followed them their offspring in faith, We will join with them their offspring and not We will deprive them of their deeds (in) any thing. Every person for what he earned (is) pledged. 
[Al-Quran 52:21



كُلُّ نَفْسٍ بِمَا كَسَبَتْ رَهِينَةٌ 
Every soul, for what it has earned, (is) pledged,
[Al-Quran 74:38



The above slide is from the presentation: Rethink Genetic Engineering in the Light of the Quran. Whenever humans have tinkered with and attempted to make fundamental changes in the human body, and consequently messed up, they have been unjust to their NAFS, and thus suffer the physical consequences of Wronging the NAFS. Even sin and disbelief have been described in physical terms as a disease of the heart (qalb), rust upon the heart and lying sinful forelock. Does the NAFS contain the master-copy of our genome?


وَفِي الْأَرْضِ آيَاتٌ لِّلْمُوقِنِينَ
وَفِي أَنفُسِكُمْ أَفَلَا تُبْصِرُونَ


And in the earth (are) signs for those who are certain, 
And in yourselves. Then will not you see? 
[Al-Quran 51:20 - 21]   

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى 
الَّذِينَ يُزَكُّونَ أَنفُسَهُم بَلِ اللَّهُ يُزَكِّي مَن يَشَاءُ وَلَا يُظْلَمُونَ فَتِيلًا
انظُرْ كَيْفَ يَفْتَرُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ الْكَذِبَ وَكَفَىٰ بِهِ إِثْمًا مُّبِينًا

Do not you see [towards] those who claim purity (for) themselvesNay, (it is) Allah, He purifies whom He wills and not they will be wronged (even as much as) a hair on a date-seed.
See how they invent about Allah [the] lie, and sufficient is it - (as) a sin manifest.
[Al-Quran 4:49-50]


If the RUH is God’s command that grants life, the NAFS is neither pure nor a ‘spiritual’ component, then there doesn’t seem to exist a spiritual aspect of us: 

Those who avoid great sins and the immoralities except the small faults; indeed, your Lord (is) vast (in) forgiveness. He (is) most knowing about you when He produced you from the earth and when you (were) fetuses in (the) wombs (of) your mothers. So (do) not ascribe purity (to) yourselves. He knows best (he) who fears. 
[Al-Quran 53:32] 

In Surah ash-Shams, after drawing attention to the God’s amazing creations: Sun, Moon, Day, Night, Sky, Earth, the surah includes the NAFS in the list in these terms: 
By the Soul, and the proportion and order given to it; And its enlightenment as to its wrong and its right;- Truly he succeeds that purifies it, And he fails that corrupts it
[Al-Quran 91:7-10, Translator: Yusuf Ali] 

Q67:2 informs us that God created Death and Life to test us. Q2:28 and Q40:11 speak of two deaths and two lifes in sequence. Q7:172 informs us that the descendants of the Children of Adam witnessed their Nafs. Does it mean that every person is essentially his/her own body? The physical body (hardware) and the nafs (software)? 

What does it mean to purify the Nafs? What does it mean to corrupt it? And what does it mean to adhere to the Fitrat upon which Allah 'fatara' Humans (fitrata Allahi allatee fatara alnnasa AAalayha) and to not to make changes in the creation of Allah? Is it permissible to edit the genome; harvest and transplant organs; build chimeras; abort fetuses? Do we have sufficient clarity about our creation to confidently consider all or some of these as permissible? Or are these acts of corruption and crimes against creation? 

Proponents of life-extension technologies quote Q5:32 to state that saving a life is like saving all mankind. Doesn't the ayat contain the exception clause 'he who kills a soul other than (for) a soul or (for) spreading corruption in the earth then (it) is as if he has killed all [the] mankind'? Wasn't Adam attempting life-extension when he tried to achieve Immortality as per Q20:114-124? Wasn't Adam the most knowledgable person as he had been taught all the names by God Himself? Weren't the ancients mightier and more knowledgable than us? Were they not also committing crimes that were corrupting creation?     

And what exactly is death, the one that pre-exists this life, and the one that follows this life?  Can we risk disobeying God based on our ignorance of the scripture? 


And Allah created the heavens and the earth in truth and that may be recompensed every soul for what it has earned, and they will not be wronged.
Have you seen (he) who takes (as) his god his desire and Allah lets him go astray knowingly, and upon his hearing and his heart and puts over his vision a veil? Then who will guide him after Allah? Then will not you receive admonition?
And they say, "Not it (is) but our life (of) the world, we die and we live, and not destroys us except the time." And not for them of that any knowledge; not, they (do) but guess.
And when are recited to them Our Verses clear, not is their argument except that they say, "Bring our forefathers if you are truthful."
Say, "Allah gives you life, then causes you to die; then He will gather you to (the) Day (of) the Resurrection, no doubt about it." But most (of) the people (do) not know. 
[Al-Quran 45:22-26


BODY
The Quran speaks of your nafsyour heart, your face, your eyes, your hands, but it speaks about us or rather our body as 'you', except in the following four ayaat: 



Consider the following ayaat:
Indeed, (the) likeness (of) Isa near Allah (is) like (the) likeness (of) Adam. He created him from dust then He said to him, "Be," and he was. 
[Al-Quran 3:59

And among His Signs (is) that He created you from dust then behold! You (are) human beings dispersing. 
[Al-Quran 30:20

He (is) the One Who created you from dust, then from a semen-drop, then from a clinging substance, then He brings you out (as) a child; then lets you reach your maturity, then lets you become old - and among you (is he) who dies before - and lets you reach a term specified, and that you may use reason. 
[Al-Quran 40:67

The Quran reiterates that we have been created from the Earth. Not only does it inform us of our earthly origins, it seems that the earth that was used to create us in this life is the same earth that will be put back together when we are resurrected: 

And they say, "Is it when we are bones and crumbled particles, will we surely (be) resurrected (as) a creation new." Say, "Be stones or iron. Or a creation of what (is) great in your breasts." Then they will say, "Who will restore us?" Say, "He Who created you (the) first time." Then they will shake at you their heads and they say, "When (will) it (be)?" Say, "Perhaps that (it) will be soon." (On) the Day He will call you and you will respond with His Praise, and you will think, not you had remained except a little (while). 
[Al-Quran 17:49-52] 

What! When we die and have become dust. That (is) a return far." Certainly, We know what diminishes the earth of them, and with Us (is) a Book guarded
[Al-Quran 50:3-4

(The) Day will split the earth from them, hurrying. That (is) a gathering for Us easy. 
[Al-Quran 50:44

(The) Day they will come out from the graves rapidly as if they (were) to a goal hastening,  
[Al-Quran 70:43


DEATH
Every soul (will) taste [the] death. And We test you with [the] bad and [the] good (as) a trial; and to Us you will be returned. 
[Al-Quran 21:35

Allah (is) the One Who created you, then He provided (for) you, then He will cause you to die then He will give you life. Is (there) any (of) your partners who does of that any thing? Glory be to Him and exalted is He above what they associate. 
[Al-Quran 30:40

Blessed is He in Whose hand is the kingdom, and He has power over all things, Who created death and life that He may try you-- which of you is best in deeds; and He is the Mighty, the Forgiving, 
[Al-Quran 67:1-2, Translator: Shakir] 


We [We] have decreed among you the death and not We (are) outrun,  
[Al-Quran 56:60

Death is a purposeful creation, and not a disease. We are caused to live, and then we are caused to die. Granting life and death are the domain of God. We humans can neither give life, nor are we permitted to take life, except in well-defined circumstances, such as animals for food, humans in state-declared warfare and capital punishment for murder.

Death being a state of being, it seems that the dead are conscious and able to experience and also communicate (though not with those still alive; see subtitle Barzakh below). Consider the following ayaat:  

And who is more unjust than he who forges a lie against Allah, or says: It has been revealed to me; while nothing has been revealed to him, and he who says: I can reveal the like of what Allah has revealed? and if you had seen when the unjust shall be in the agonies of death and the angels shall spread forth their handsGive up your souls; today shall you be recompensed with an ignominious chastisement because you spoke against Allah other than the truth and (because) you showed pride against His communications. 
[Al-Quran 6:93, Translator: Shakir] 

And even if We had sent down to them the angels and the dead had spoken to them and We had brought together all things before them, they would not believe unless Allah pleases, but most of them are ignorant.   
[Al-Quran 6:111, Translator: Shakir] 

Then how, when take them in death the Angels, striking their faces and their backs? That (is) because they followed what angered Allah and hated His pleasure, so He made worthless their deeds. 
[Al-Quran 47:27-28


OUR RECORD 
As per Q39:42, not only is the NAFS removed from the body at the time of death, but God also takes the NAFS whenever the body sleeps, and those who die in their sleep, God does not return their NAFS. What then is the thing that is removed from the body, only once, at the time of death? Is it our record of deeds?

Consider the following ayaat:  
And (for) every man We have fastened to him his fate in his neck, and We will bring forth for him (on the) Day (of) the Resurrection a record which he will find wide open
[Al-Quran 17:13

Then why not when it reaches the throat, And you (at) that time look on, And We (are) nearer to him than you but you (do) not see, Then why not, if you are not to be recompensed, Bring it back, if you are truthful
[Al-Quran 56:83-87

When receive the two receivers on the right and on the left seated. Not he utters any word but with him (is) an observer ready. And will come (the) stupor (of) death in truth, "That (is) what you were [from it] avoiding." And will be blown [in] the trumpet. That (is the) Day (of) the Warning. And will come every soul, with it a driver and a witness. "Certainly you were in heedlessness of this. So We have removed from you your cover, so your sight today (is) sharp." And (will) say his companion, "This (is) what (is) with me ready." 
[Al-Quran 50:17 – 23

And (the) Day will be gathered (the) enemies (of) Allah to the Fire, then they will be assembled in rows, Until, when they come to it (will) testify against them their hearing, and their sight, and their skins, (as) to what they used to do. And they will say to their skins, "Why do you testify against us?" They will say, "Allah made us speak, the One Who makes speak every thing; and He created you (the) first time, and to Him you will be returned." And not you were covering yourselves lest testify against you your hearing and not your sight and not your skins, but you assumed that Allah (does) not know much of what you do. And that (was) your assumption which you assumed about your Lord. It has ruined you, and you have of the losers. 
[Al-Quran 41:19 - 23


REST IN PEACE
What does the phrase Rest in Peace really mean? What are we wishing or praying for the dead? It seems that there is an intermediate existence, after death and before resurrection, in the graves:


يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَتَوَلَّوْا قَوْمًا غَضِبَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِمْ

 قَدْ يَئِسُوا مِنَ الْآخِرَةِ كَمَا يَئِسَ الْكُفَّارُ مِنْ أَصْحَابِ الْقُبُورِ


O you who believe! do not make friends with a people with whom Allah is wroth; indeed they despair of the hereafter as the unbelievers despair of those in tombs
 [Al-Quran 60:13, Translator: Shakir] 

Our earthly residence is further confirmed:
Have not We made the earth a receptacle (For the) living and (the) dead, 
[Al-Quran 77:25 – 26

And not equal (are) the living and not the dead. Indeed, Allah causes to hear whom He wills, and not you can make hear (those) who (are) in the graves
[Al-Quran 35:22

From Genesis 47:2930, we know that Jacob asked to be buried in Canaan. Why not Egypt where he died?
From Genesis 50:25 we learn that Jacob’s son Joseph asked for his bones to be taken away from Egypt when God liberates the children of Israel. Why?

From the Quran, we learn that the Pharaoh, who drowned in Exodus, and his people are routinely shown the Fire:
The Fire; they are exposed to it morning and evening. And (the) Day (will be) established the Hour, "Cause to enter (the) people (of) Firaun (in the) severest punishment." 
[Al-Quran 40:46]  

Q102 (Surah at-Takathur) informs us that we will surely see Hellfire when we reach the graves. Q19:68-72 informs us that each one of us must come to the Fire. From Q7:40 we learn that the guilty will not be able to escape and ascend to the gates of the sky/heaven until the camel passes through the eye of the needle, and from Q15:44 we learn that Hell has seven gates. There are seven permanent lava lakes on Earth. (A video of a lava lake at National Geographic) We learn from Q18:98-100 that when the promise comes to pass, Hell will be exposed to view. Several ayaat across the Quran inform us that the mountains will be removed then. Q78:20-22 explicitly states that when that happens, Hell is lying in wait.   

Lo! as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they wrong themselves, (the angels) will ask: In what were ye engaged? They will say: We were oppressed in the land. (The angels) will say: Was not Allah's earth spacious that ye could have migrated therein? As for such, their habitation will be hell, an evil journey's end; Except the feeble among men, and the women, and the children, who are unable to devise a plan and are not shown a way. As for such, it may be that Allah will pardon them. Allah is ever Clement, Forgiving. Whoso migrateth for the cause of Allah will find much refuge and abundance in the earth, and whoso forsaketh his home, a fugitive unto Allah and His messenger, and death overtaketh him, his reward is then incumbent on Allah. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful. 
[Al-Quran 4:97-100, Translator: Pickthall] 


BARZAKH, THE BARRIER
In Surah al-Mominoon, we learn that there is a definite barrier (barzakh) that separates the realm of the living and the dead. It cannot be crossed at will. Only once do the living cross the barrier, and that is at the time they are given death, thereby transferring to the realm of the dead. The Believers are advised to pray:

Say: O my Lord! if Thou shouldst make me see what they are threatened with: My Lord! then place me not with the unjust. 
And most surely We are well able to make you see what We threaten them with. 
Repel evil by what is best; We know best what they describe. 
And say: O my Lord! I seek refuge in Thee from the evil suggestions of the Shaitans; And I seek refuge in Thee! O my Lord! from their presence. 
Until when death overtakes one of them, he says: Send me back, my Lord, send me back; Haply I may do good in that which I have left. By no means! it is a (mere) word that he speaks; 
and before them is a barrier until the day they are raised
[Al-Quran 23:93-100, Translator: Shakir] 



-------------------------------------------------------------


THE CREATOR  I and THE CREATORS WE

بَدِيعُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ
 أَنَّىٰ يَكُونُ لَهُ وَلَدٌ وَلَمْ تَكُن لَّهُ صَاحِبَةٌ
 وَخَلَقَ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ وَهُوَ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ

Originator (of) the heavens and the earth. 
How can be for Him a son while not (there) is for Him a companion, 
and He created every thing? And He (is) of every thing All-Knower. 
[Al-Quran 6:101


The Quran uses various words to inform us that it is Allah who has conceived, designed, originated, created and increases in creation, governs, sustains; and it is Allah to whom the Kingdom of the heavens and earth belongs. Therefore, Allah is the only Deity (ilah) and He alone is worthy of worship. Everything else is created, and no matter how great a task any created being may be entrusted with, everyone and everything, except Allah, is created and is serving Allah. 

2:117 informs us that Allah is بَدِيعُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ

7:54 informs us that اللَّهُ الَّذِي خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ 

35:1 informs us that الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ فَاطِرِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ 

If we look at the usage of these words across the Quran, we find that 'badee' and 'fatara' are used exclusively as the acts of Allah, while 'khalaqa' is used for Allah and other beings. I think 'badee' refers to creation of something from nothing (primordial matter), and 'fatara' refer to separating and detailing the original design of all creation (software).    

Quran search results: 

Moreover, wherever the act of creation is referred to using the root letters [kha-lam-qaf], it seems to imply creating something from something: humans are created from 'teen', jinns are created from 'naar', and probably [kha-lam-qaf] implies and/or allows for creation after a set pattern. Even where Jesus' miraculous ability to create a bird from 'teen' is mentioned, the root [kha-lam-qaf] is used, and it is clearly mentioned that Jesus was able to do so by Allah's permission. 

I understand that in the grand governance of the heavens and earth, Allah has created some beings with mighty powers and entrusted some of the task of creation [kha-lam-qaf] to them. It seems that they are also entrusted with preparing the scriptures. However, Al-Quran 10:37 clarifies:

وَمَا كَانَ هَٰذَا الْقُرْآنُ أَن يُفْتَرَىٰ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ
 وَلَٰكِن تَصْدِيقَ الَّذِي بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَتَفْصِيلَ الْكِتَابِ
 لَا رَيْبَ فِيهِ مِن رَّبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

And not is this the Quran, that (it could be) produced by other than Allah
but (it is) a confirmation (of that) which (was) before it and a detailed explanation (of) the Book,
 (there is) no doubt in it, from (the) Lord (of) the worlds. 

So, I infer that the acts of creation, and the preparation and revelation of the scriptures are all done under the instruction, guidance, supervision and control of Allah. Creation belongs to Allah and the scriptures are from Allah for our guidance. Al-Quran 2:252 states:
These (are the) ayaat (of) Allah, 
We recite them to you in [the] truth
And indeed, you (are) surely of the Messengers.  

However, that does not make these beings gods, nor do they ask to be taken as 'ilah' instead of Allah. Rather, they reiterate across the Quran that there is only one God (ilah). They do not make themselves known to us by their names or forms. In Al-Quran 37:164-166, they state:

وَمَا مِنَّا إِلَّا لَهُ مَقَامٌ مَّعْلُومٌ
وَإِنَّا لَنَحْنُ الصَّافُّونَ
وَإِنَّا لَنَحْنُ الْمُسَبِّحُونَ

"And not among us except for him (is) a position known. 
And indeed, we surely, [we] stand in rows. 
And indeed, we surely, [we] glorify (Allah).

As for polytheism, it is stated very clearly in the Quran that those who the polytheists take as their gods are nothing but Jinns (dJinns or genies), and that the Jinns are not the creators, nor do they have any such power or ability to make them worthy of any deification, worship or obedience.

In fact, in the story of Adam, whom Allah created Himself, the Quran is very clear that Adam was honoured because of the knowledge that Allah endowed him with, and those with lesser knowledge were asked to submit/prostrate to Adam. When Iblis was questioned why he didn't obey God, Allah is quoted thus: He said, [Al-Quran 38:75]

قَالَ يَا إِبْلِيسُ مَا مَنَعَكَ أَن تَسْجُدَ لِمَا خَلَقْتُ بِيَدَيَّ
 أَسْتَكْبَرْتَ أَمْ كُنتَ مِنَ الْعَالِينَ

"O Iblis! What prevented you that you (should) prostrate to (one) whom I created with My Hands? Are you arrogant or are you of the exalted ones?"  

Surah al-Jinn is very clear about the condition of the Jinns, how the secrets of the heavens are protected and they prevented from it, and that whenever Allah sends any message through a chosen messenger, Allah ensures that the messenger and the messages are well-guarded, protected, brought and delivered.  

And Allah knows best. 


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References and Further Reading:

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