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Miracles Cannot be Denied

by Fethullah Gülen on . Posted in Essentials of the Islamic Faith

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The noble Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings, declared that he was a Prophet and, to prove his Prophethood, presented the glorious Qur'an and nearly 1,000 miracles. Their occurrence cannot be denied, for even the most obstinate unbelievers only charged him with sorcery. Unable to deny the miracles, they took them to be—God forbid!—sorcery to justify their unbelief and continued misguidance of their followers.

His miracles have been confirmed and reported unanimously by the Hadith authorities. A miracle is the Creator's confirmation of his Prophethood, as it says, in effect: "You have spoken the truth." If a person claims in the ruler's presence that the ruler appointed him or her to such and such a position, the word "Yes" uttered by the ruler proves this claim. Further, if the ruler changes his usual practice and attitude at that person's request, it only further confirms such a claim. In the same way, the noble Messenger, upon him be peace and blessings, claimed that he was the envoy of the Creator of the universe, Who, in turn, changed His unbroken order when necessary so that His envoy could perform a miracle to prove his claim.

Denying miracles amounts to denying God's existence, Muhammad's Prophethood, upon him be peace and blessings, as well as the Qur'an's Divine authorship. Such a denial is absurd and meaningless, for while one piece of evidence proves a claim, its denial requires an overall investigation throughout time and space. For example, if you claim that there are black swans, all you have to do is produce one. But if you claim that this is impossible, you must show all swans from the beginning to the end of time. So, the nonexistence of something is almost impossible to prove. Those who deny miracles, which billions of believers, as well as hundreds of thousands of saints, scholars and scientists, have confirmed since the Prophet's claim of Prophethood, are like those who say that since one door of a magnificent palace with 1,000 doors is closed, the palace cannot be entered.

Almost all Prophets worked miracles. For centuries, millions of Jews and billions of Christians have confirmed the miracles of Moses and Jesus, respectively. When compared to other Prophets, what shortcoming do they find in Prophet Muhammad that causes them to deny his miracles?

The creation of Adam, Eve, and Jesus are miracles, for they were not born according to God's law. Although currently entangled in materialistic notions, science one day will have to attribute the origin of life to a Divine miracle. Besides, it is highly questionable whether it is scientific to label as myth the beliefs, concepts, or events that science cannot explain.

Science is based on theories and develops through trial-and-error investigations of those theories. Many now-established facts were once considered false, and many once-established facts are now known to be fallacies. Moreover, we unquestionably accept the existence of many things that we cannot prove scientifically. Denying miracles is unscientific, insofar as such a judgment or conclusion must be based on concrete proof. No one can deny, whether based on science or not, the miracles of the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings.

Some regard miracles as being against reason and logic. However, our reason and intellect cannot grasp everything in existence. Also, no two people have the exact same intellectual capacity. So, in order to decide something reasonable or not, whose intellect will judge? The Qur'an declares: Whomsoever We will, we raise in degrees. Over every man of knowledge is one who knows better (12:76).

The magnificent order, harmony, and purposiveness in existence decisively point to One with absolute knowledge, will, and power. That One, God the Creator, does what He wishes, for He is not bound by the laws He established for the universe. Therefore, He can change them or even act and create without any laws if He so wishes. Given this, we should try to discover those laws, as God gave us an intellect to do just that, not to judge His acts. Human intellect is limited, and we all know that what is limited cannot judge that which is not limited.

Time varies or changes according to the dimensions of existence and place. For example, time measurements differ from planet to planet. The finer or more refined matter is, the quicker its time and movement, as indicated that our spirit travels must faster than our physical body. Also, our imagination can travel through all spheres within a few seconds.

Just as each person is unique in regard to power, there is a great difference between each species' capacity. We are far more powerful than ants or bees, but they can do things that we cannot. Also, invisible things or beings like angels and jinn, and even storms and gales, may be far more powerful than human beings. So all physical and intellectual powers and capacities are included in a single, absolute Power. If that Power can do whatever It wishes, why should we not believe in miracles?

We witness and even experience certain events that we regard as miraculous, for the law of causality cannot explain everything. Furthermore, modern physics asserts that whatever exists is a wave in continuous motion, meaning that we cannot say that what exists now will exist in the same manner even one second from now. Therefore, the law of causality is only a veil covering the Divine operations so that people do not directly attribute certain disagreeable things and events to God. And so it is the affirmation, not denial, of miracles that is really reasonable and scientific.