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The chapter you are about to read reveals a crucial secret of your life. You should read it very attentively and thoroughly for it concerns a subject that is liable to make fundamental changes in your outlook on the external world. The subject of this chapter is not just a point of view, a different approach, or a traditional or philosophical thought: it is a fact which everyone, believing or unbelieving, must admit and which is also proven by science today.

The Secret Beyond Matter

Those who contemplate their surroundings conscientiously and wisely realize that everything in the universe - both living and non-living - must have been created. So the question becomes, "Who is the Creator of all these things?"

It is evident that the creation that reveals itself in every aspect of the universe cannot be an outgrowth of the universe itself. For example, no insect could have created itself, nor could the solar system have created or organized itself. Neither could plants, humans, bacteria, red-blood cells, nor butterflies have created themselves. As this book explains throughout, any possibility that all these could have originated "by chance" is unimaginable.

Therefore, we arrive at the following conclusion: Everything that we see has been created, but nothing we see can itself be a "creator." The Creator is different from - and superior to - all that we see, a Superior Power Who is invisible to our eyes, but Whose existence and attributes are revealed in everything that He creates.

This is where those who deny Allah's existence are led astray. They are conditioned not to believe in Allah's existence unless they see Him with their own eyes, forced to conceal the actuality of creation manifested all throughout the universe, and to claim that the universe and all the living things it contains have not been created. In order to do so, they resort to falsehoods. As explained earlier, evolutionary theory is one key example of their lies and vain endeavours to this end.

The basic mistake of those who deny Allah is shared by many others who don't actually deny His existence, but have wrong perceptions of Him. These people, constituting the majority of society, do not deny creation, but have superstitious beliefs about Allah, most believing that Allah is only "up in the sky." They tacitly and falsely imagine that Allah is off behind some very distant planet and only occasionally interferes with worldly affairs. Or perhaps He doesn't intervene at all: He created the universe, and then left it to itself, leaving us humans to determine our fates for ourselves.

Still others have heard the fact that Allah is "everywhere," as revealed in the Qur'an, but cannot understand exactly what this means. Superstitiously, they think that Allah surrounds all matter like radio waves or like an invisible, intangible gas. (Allah is certainly beyond that.)

However, this and other notions that cannot clarify "where" Allah is (and perhaps deny Him accordingly) are all based on a common mistake: They hold a groundless prejudice that moves them to wrong opinions about Allah.

What is this prejudice? It concerns the existence and nature of matter. Most people have been conditioned to assume that the material universe we see is itself the true reality. Modern science, however, demolishes this position and discloses a very important and imposing truth. In the following pages, we will explain this great reality to which the Qur'an points.

The World of Electrical Signals

All the information we have about the world is conveyed to us by our five senses. Thus, the world we know consists of what our eyes see, our hands feel, our nose smells, our tongue tastes, and our ears hear. We never believe that the external world can be other than what our senses present to us, since we've depended on those senses since the day we were born.

Yet modern research in many different fields of science points to a very different understanding, creating serious doubt about the "outside" world that we perceive with our senses.

For this new understanding, the starting point is that everything we perceive as external is only a response formed by electrical signals in our brain. The red of an apple, the hardness of wood - moreover, one's mother, father, family, and everything that one owns, one's house, job, and even the pages of this book - all are comprised of electrical signals only.

On this subject, the late German biochemist Frederic Vester explained the viewpoint that science has reached:

Statements of some scientists, positing that man is an image, that everything experienced is temporary and deceptive, and that this universe is only a shadow, all seem to be proven by current science.14

To clarify, let's consider the five senses which provide us with all our information about the external world.

How Do We See, Hear, and Taste?

brain electtic

Even at the moment when we feel the light and heat of a fire, the inside of our brain is pitch dark and its temperature never changes.

brain, matter

Bundles of light coming from an object falls upside-down on the retina. Here, the image is converted into electrical signals and transmitted to the centre of vision at the back of the brain. Since the brain is insulated from light, it is impossible for light to reach the centre of vision. This means that we view a vast world of light and depth in a tiny spot that is insulated from light.

The act of seeing occurs in a progressive fashion. Light (photons) traveling from the object passes through the lens in front of the eye, where the image is refracted and falls, upside down, onto the retina at the back of the eye. Here, visual stimuli are turned into electrical signals, in turn transmitted by neurons to a tiny spot in the rear of the brain known as the vision centre. After a series of processes, these electrical signals in this brain center are perceived as an image. The act of seeing actually takes place at the posterior of the brain, in this tiny spot which is pitch dark, completely insulated from light.

Even though this process is largely understood, when we claim, "We see," in fact we are perceiving the effects of impulses reaching our eye, transformed into electrical signals, and induced in our brain. And so, when we say, "We see," actually we are observing electrical signals in our mind.

All the images we view in our lives are formed in our centre of vision, which takes up only a few cubic centimetres in the brain's volume. The book you are now reading, as well as the boundless landscape you see when you gaze at the horizon, both occur in this tiny space. And keep in mind that, as noted before, the brain is insulated from light. Inside the skull is absolutely dark; and the brain itself has no contact with light.

An example can illustrate this interesting paradox. Suppose we place a burning candle in front of you. You can sit across from it and watch this candle at length. During this time, however, your brain never has any direct contact with the candle's original light. Even while you perceive the candle's light, the inside of your brain is lightless. We all watch a bright, colourful world inside our pitch-dark brain.

R. L. Gregory explains the miraculous aspect of seeing, which we take so very much for granted:

We are so familiar with seeing, that it takes a leap of imagination to realize that there are problems to be solved. But consider it. We are given tiny distorted upside-down images in the eyes, and we see separate solid objects in surrounding space. From the patterns of simulation on the retinas we perceive the world of objects, and this is nothing short of a miracle.15

The same applies to all our other senses. Sound, touch, taste and smell are all transmitted as electrical signals to the brain, where they are perceived in the relevant centres.

The sense of hearing proceeds in the same manner. The auricle in the outer ear picks up available sounds and directs them to the middle ear; the middle ear transmits the sound vibrations to the inner ear by intensifying them; the inner ear translates these vibrations into electrical signals and sends them to the brain. Just as with the eye, the act of hearing takes place in the brain's hearing centre. The brain is insulated from sound just as it is from light. Therefore, no matter how noisy it may be outside, it is completely silent inside the brain.

brain electtic

Stimulations coming from an object are converted into electrical signals and cause effects in the brain. When we "see", we in fact view the effects of these electrical signals in our mind.

Nevertheless, the brain perceives sounds most precisely, so that a healthy person's ear hears everything without any atmospheric noise or interference. Your brain is insulated from sound, yet you listen to the symphonies of an orchestra, hear all the noises in a crowded auditorium, and perceive all sounds within a wide frequency, from the rustling of leaves to the roar of a jet plane. However, were a sensitive device to measure the sound level in your brain, it would show complete silence prevailing there.

Our perception of odour forms in a similar way. Volatile molecules, emitted by vanilla extract or a rose, reach receptors in the delicate hairs in the olfactory epithelium and become involved in an interaction that is transmitted to the brain as electrical signals and perceived as smell. Everything that you smell, be it pleasant or repugnant, is only your brain's perception of the interactions of volatile molecules transformed into electrical signals. The scent of a perfume, a flower, any delicious food, the sea, or other odours you like or dislike, you perceive entirely in your brain. The molecules themselves never reach there. Just as with sound and vision, what reaches your sensory centres is simply an assortment of electrical signals. In other words, all the sensations that, since you were born, you've assumed to belong to external objects are just electrical signals interpreted through your sense organs.

Similarly, at the front of your tongue, there are four different types of chemical receptors that create the tastes of salty, sweet, sour, and bitter. After a series of chemical processes, your taste receptors transform these perceptions into electrical signals and transmit them to the brain, which perceives these signals as flavours. The taste you get when you eat chocolate or a fruit that you like is your brain's interpretation of electrical signals. You can never reach the object outside; you can never see, smell or taste the chocolate itself. For instance, if the nerves between your tongue and your brain are cut, no further signals will reach your brain, and you will lose your sense of taste completely.

Here, we come across another fact: You can never be sure that how a food tastes to you is the same as how it tastes to anyone else; or that your perception of a voice is the same as what another's when he hears that same voice. Along the same lines, science writer Lincoln Barnett wrote that "no one can ever know whether his sensation of red or of Middle C is the same as another man's."16


All we see in our lives is formed in a part of our brain called the "vision centre" which lies at the back of our brain, and which occupies only a few cubic centimetres. Both the book you are now reading and the boundless landscape you see when you gaze at the horizon fit into this tiny space. Therefore, we see objects not in their actual sizes existing outside, but in the sizes perceived by our brain.

Our sense of touch is no different. When we handle an object, all the information that helps us recognise it is transmitted to the brain by sensitive nerves on the skin. The feeling of touch is formed in our brain. Contrary to conventional wisdom, we perceive sensations of touch not at our fingertips or on our skin, but in our brain's tactile centre. As a result of the brain's assessment of electrical stimulations coming to it from the skin, we feel different sensations pertaining to objects, such as hardness or softness, heat or cold. From these stimulations, we derive all details that help us recognise an object. Concerning this important fact, consider the thoughts of B. Russell and L. J. J. Wittgenstein, two famous philosophers:

For instance, whether a lemon truly exists or not and how it came to exist cannot be questioned and investigated. A lemon consists merely of a taste sensed by the tongue, an odor sensed by the nose, a color and shape sensed by the eye; and only these features of it can be subject to examination and assessment. Science can never know the physical world.17

It is impossible for us to reach the physical world outside our brain. All objects we're in contact with are actually collection of perceptions such as sight, hearing, and touch. Throughout our lives, by processing the data in the sensory centres, our brain confronts not the "originals" of the matter existing outside us, but rather copies formed inside our brain. At this point, we are misled to assume that these copies are instances of real matter outside us.

"The External World" Inside Our Brain

brain electtic

As a result of these physical facts, we come to the following indisputable conclusion: Everything we see, touch, hear, and perceive as "matter," "the world" or "the universe" is in fact electrical signals interpreted in our brain. We can never reach the original of the matter outside our brain. We merely taste, hear and see an image of the external world formed in our brain. In fact, someone eating an apple confronts not the actual fruit, but its perceptions in the brain. What that person considers to be an apple actually consists of his brain's perception of the electrical information concerning the fruit's shape, taste, smell, and texture. If the optic nerve to the brain were suddenly severed, the image of the fruit would instantly disappear. Any disconnection in the olfactory nerve travelling from receptors in the nose to the brain would interrupt the sense of smell completely. Simply put, that apple is nothing but the interpretation of electrical signals by the brain.

Also consider the sense of distance. The empty space between you and this page is only a sense of emptiness formed in your brain. Objects that appear distant in your view also exist in the brain. For instance, someone watching the stars at night assumes that they are millions of light-years away, yet the stars are within himself, in his vision centre. While you read these lines, actually you are not inside the room you assume you're in; on the contrary, the room is inside you. Perceiving your body makes you think that you're inside it. However, your body, too, is a set of images formed inside your brain.

The same applies to all other perceptions. When you believe you're hearing the sound of the television in the next room, for instance, actually you are experiencing those sounds inside your brain. The noises you think are coming from meters away and the conversation of the person right beside you - both are perceived in the auditory centre in your brain, only a few cubic centimetres in size. Apart from this centre of perception, no concepts such as right, left, front or behind exist. That is, sound does not come to you from the right, from the left, or from above; there is no direction from which sound "really" comes.

Similarly, none of the smells you perceive reach you from any distance away. You suppose that the scents perceived in your centre of smell are those of outside objects. However, just as the image of a rose exists in your visual centre, so its scent is located in your olfactory centre. You can never have direct contact with the original sight or smell of that rose that exists outside.

new scientist kapağı

The findings of modern physics show that the universe is a collection of perceptions. The following question appears on the cover of the well-known American science magazine New Scientist, which dealt with this matter in its 30 January 1999 issue: "Beyond Reality: Is the Universe Really a Frolic of Primal Information and Matter Just a Mirage?"

To us, the "external world" is merely a collection of the electrical signals reaching our brains simultaneously. Our brains process these signals, and we live without recognizing our mistaken assumption that these are the actual, original versions of matter existing in the "external world." We are misled, because by means of our senses, we can never reach the matter itself.

Again, our brain interprets and attributes meanings to the signals that we assume to be "external." Consider the sense of hearing, for example. In fact, our brain interprets and transforms sound waves reaching our ear into symphonies. Music, too, is a perception formed by - and within - our brain. In the same manner, when we see colours, different wavelengths of light are all that reaches our eyes, and our brain transforms these wavelengths into colours. There are no colours in the "external world." Neither is the apple red, nor is the sky blue, nor the trees green. They are as they are only because we perceive them to be so.

Even the slightest defect in the eye's retina can cause colour blindness. Some people perceive blue as green, others red as blue, and still others see all colours as different tones of grey. At this point, it no longer matters whether the outside object is coloured or not.

The prominent Irish thinker George Berkeley also addressed this point:

First,... it was thought that colour, figure, motion, and the rest of the sensible qualities or accidents, did really exist without the mind;... But, it having been shewn that none even of these can possibly exist otherwise than in a Spirit or Mind which perceives them it follows that we have no longer any reason to suppose the being of Matter...18

In conclusion, we see colours not because objects are coloured or because they have a material existence outside ourselves, but because all the qualities we ascribe to objects are inside us, not in the "external world."

In that case, how can we claim to have complete knowledge of "the external world?"

Mankind's Limited Knowledge

One implication of the facts described so far is that actually, man's knowledge of the external world is exceedingly limited.

That knowledge is limited to our five senses, and there is no proof that the world we perceive by means of those senses is identical to the "real" world.

It may, therefore, be very different from what we perceive. There may be a great many dimensions and other beings of which we remain unaware. Even if we reach the furthermost extremities of the universe, our knowledge will always remain limited.

Almighty Allah, the Creator of all, has complete and flawless knowledge of all beings who, having been created by Allah, can possess only the knowledge that He allows them. This reality is explained in the Qur'an as follows:

Allah, there is no deity but Him, the Living, the Self-Sustaining. He is not subject to drowsiness or sleep. Everything in the heavens and the earth belongs to Him. Who can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows what is before them and what is behind them but they cannot grasp any of His knowledge save what He wills. His Footstool encompasses the heavens and the Earth and their preservation does not tire Him. He is the Most High, the Magnificent. (Surat al-Baqara: 255)

The Artificially Constituted "External World"

brain electtic

As a result of artificial stimuli, a physical world as true and realistic as the real one can be formed in our brain without the existence of physical world. As a result of artificial stimuli, a person may think that he is driving in his car, while he is actually sitting at home.

The only world we know is the one that is designed, recorded, and made vivid there - in short, the one created and existing within our minds. Perceptions we observe in our brain may sometimes be coming from an artificial source.

We can illustrate this with an example:

First, imagine that by artificial means, your brain can survive apart from your body. And suppose a computer able to produce all kinds of electrical signals. Let us artificially produce electrical signals of the data relating to a given environment - including its sights, sounds and aromas. Finally, let's have electrical cables connect this computer to your brain's sensory centres and transmit the recorded signals. Perceiving these signals, your brain (in other words, "you") will see and experience the environment they represent.

This computer can also send to your brain electrical signals related to your own image. For example, if we send the electrical correlates of all senses such as hearing, sight and touch that you experience while sitting at a desk, you will assume that you're a businessman in his office. This imaginary world will endure as long as the computer keeps sending stimuli. Never will it become possible for you to understand that you consist of nothing but your brain. This is because all that's needed to form a world within your brain is the availability of stimulations to the relevant centres. It is perfectly possible for these stimulations (and hence, perceptions) to originate from some artificial source.

Along these lines, the distinguished philosopher Bertrand Russell wrote:

As to the sense of touch when we press the table with our fingers, that is an electric disturbance on the electrons and protons of our fingertips, produced, according to modern physics, by the proximity of the electrons and protons in the table. If the same disturbance in our finger-tips arose in any other way, we should have the sensations, in spite of there being no table.19

It's very easy indeed to be deceived into deeming perceptions without any material correlates as real. Often we experience this illusion in dreams, wherein we experience events and see people, objects and settings that seem completely genuine. But they're all merely perceptions. There's no basic difference between these dreams and the "real world"; both sets of perceptions are experienced in the brain.

Who is the Perceiver?

The "external world" that we think we inhabit is no doubt created inside our brain. Here, however, arises a question of primary importance: If all the physical objects we know of are intrinsically perceptions, what about our brain itself? Since our brain is a part of the material world just like our arms, our legs, or any other object, it too should be a perception.

An example will help illustrate this point. Assume that we perceive a dream in our brain. In our dream, we have an imaginary body, imaginary arms and eyes, and an imaginary brain. If, during our dream, we were asked "Where do you see?" we'd answer, "I see in my brain." Yet, actually there is no real brain to talk about, only an imaginary body, along with an imaginary head and an imaginary brain. The seer of the dream's various images is not the imaginary dreaming brain, but a being who is far beyond it.

Since there is no physical distinction between the setting of a dream and the setting we call real life, when in "real life" we are asked the same question of "Where do you see?" it would be equally meaningless to answer, "In my brain." Under either condition, the entity that sees and perceives is not the brain, which is after all only a hunk of nerve tissue.

So far, we have kept referring to how we watch a copy of the external world in our brains. An important result is that we can never know the external world as it actually is.

A second, no less important fact is that the "self" in our brains who observes this world cannot be the brain itself, which is like an integrated computer system: It processes data reaching it, translates it into images, and projects them on a screen. Yet a computer cannot watch itself; nor is it aware of its own existence.

atom ve nöron

The brain is a collection of cells made up of protein and fat molecules. It is formed of nerve cells called neurons. There is no power in this piece of meat to observe images, to constitute consciousness, or to create the being we call "myself".

When the brain is dissected to search for this awareness, nothing is found in it but lipid and protein molecules, which exist in other organs of the body as well. This means that within the tissue we call "our brain," there is nothing to observe and interpret the images, constitute consciousness, or to create the being we call "ourselves."

In relation to the perception of images in the brain, perceptual scientist R.L. Gregory refers to a mistake people make:

There is a temptation, which must be avoided, to say that the eyes produce pictures in the brain. A picture in the brain suggests the need of some kind of internal eye to see it - but this would need a further eye to see its picture… and so on in an endless regress of eyes and pictures. This is absurd.20

This problem puts materialists, who hold that nothing is real except matter, in a quandary: Who is behind the eye that sees? What perceives what it sees, and then reacts?

Renowned cognitive neuroscientist Karl Pribram focused on this important question, relevant to the worlds of both science and philosophy, about who the perceiver is:

Philosophers since the Greeks have speculated about the "ghost" in the machine, the "little man inside the little man" and so on. Where is the I - the entity that uses the brain? Who does the actual knowing? Or, as Saint Francis of Assisi once put it, "What we are looking for is what is looking."21

This book in your hand, the room you are in - in brief, all the images before you - are perceived inside your brain. Is it the blind, deaf, unconscious component atoms that view these images? Why did some atoms acquire this quality, whereas most did not? Do our acts of thinking, comprehending, remembering, being delighted, being unhappy, and everything else consist of chemical reactions among these atoms' molecules?

There is no sense in looking for will in atoms. Clearly, the being who sees, hears, and feels is a supra-material being, "alive," who is neither matter nor an image. This being interacts with the perceptions before it by using the image of our body.

This being is the soul.

The intelligent being reading these lines is not an assortment of atoms and molecules and the chemical reactions between them, but a soul.

The Real Absolute Being

We are brought face to face with a very significant question: If the world we confront is comprised of our soul's perceptions, then what is the source of these perceptions?

For an answer, consider that we perceive matter only in our imaginations, but can never directly experience of its counterparts outside. Since matter is actually a perception to us, it is something "constructed." That is, it must have been caused by another power - which means that in fact, it must have been created. Moreover, this creation must be continuous. If not, then these perceptions would quickly disappear and be lost. Similarly, a television picture is displayed only as long as the signal continues to be broadcast.

So, who makes our soul that continuously watches the stars, the earth, the plants, the people, our body and everything else that we see?

Very evidently, there exists a supreme Creator Who has created the entire material universe, and Who ceaselessly continues His creation. Since this Creator displays such a magnificent creation, surely He has eternal power and might.

This Creator describes Himself, the universe and the reason of our existence for us through the book He has sent down.

This Creator is Allah, and His book is the Qur'an.

The fact is, the heavens and the Earth - that is, the universe - are not stable. Their presence is made possible only by Allah's creation, and that they will disappear when He ends this creation. This is revealed in a verse as follows:

Allah keeps a firm hold on the heavens and Earth, preventing them from vanishing away. And if they vanished no one could then keep hold of them. Certainly He is Most Forbearing, Ever-Forgiving. (Surah Fatir: 41)

This verse is describing how the material universe is maintained under the might of Allah. Allah created the universe, the Earth, mountains, and all living and non-living things, and maintains all these under His power at every moment. Allah manifests His name al-Khaliq in this material universe. Allah is al-Khaliq, in other words, the Creator of all things, the Creator from nothing. This shows that there is a material universe, outside our brains, consisting of entities created by Allah. However, as a miracle and manifestation of the superior nature of His creation and His omniscience, Allah shows us this material universe in the form of an "illusion," "shadow," or "image." As a consequence of the perfection in His creation, human beings can never reach the world outside their brains. Only Allah knows this real material universe.

Another interpretation of the above verse is that Allah constantly maintains the images of the material universe that people see. (Allah knows best.) If Allah did not wish to show the image of the world to our minds, the entire universe would cease to exist for us, and we could never reach it.

That we can never directly contact the material universe also answers the question of "Where is Allah?" that preoccupies a great many people.

As mentioned at the start, many cannot comprehend Allah's power and so, imagine Him as present somewhere in the heavens and not really intervening in worldly affairs. (Allah is certainly beyond that.) This logic is based on the assumptions that the universe is an assembly of matter and Allah is "outside" this material world.

However, just as we can never reach the material universe, neither can we have full knowledge of its true essence. All we know is the existence of the Creator Who brought all these things into being - in other words, Allah. To express that truth, great Islamic scholars like Imam Rabbani have said that the only absolute being is Allah; and that all the rest, except Him, are shadow entities.

That is because the world we see is entirely in our minds, and to directly experience its counterpart in the external world is totally impossible.

That being so, it would be wrong to imagine that Allah is "outside" of a material universe that we can never attain.

Allah is surely "everywhere" and encompasses all. This reality is explained in the Qur'an as follows:

... His Footstool encompasses the heavens and the earth and their preservation does not tire Him. He is the Most High, the Magnificent. (Surat al-Baqara: 255)

What! Are they in doubt about the meeting with their Lord? What! Does He not encompass all things? (Surah Fussilat: 54)

The fact that Allah is not bound with space and that He encompasses everything roundabout is stated in another verse as follows:

Both East and West belong to Allah, so wherever you turn, the Face of Allah is there. Allah is All-Encompassing, All-Knowing. (Surat al-Baqara: 115)

Why is it not then that when it (soul) comes up to the throat, and you at that time look on, We are nearer to it than you, but you see not. (Surat al-Waqia: 83-85)

Material beings cannot see Allah; but Allah sees the matter He created in all its forms. In the Qur'an, this fact is stated thus: "No vision can grasp Him, but His grasp is over all vision." (Surat al-An'am: 103) That is, we cannot perceive Allah's existence with our eyes, but Allah has thoroughly encompassed our inside and outside, our vision and thoughts. We cannot utter any word except with His knowledge, nor can we even draw breath.

maddenin gerçeği

If one ponders deeply on all that is said here, one will soon realise this amazing, extraordinary situation by oneself: that all the events in the world are but mere perceptions…

In the course of our lives, while we watch perceptions we assume to be the "external world," the closest being to us is Allah Himself. The secret of the following verse in the Qur'an is concealed in this reality: "It was We Who created man, and We know what dark suggestions his soul makes to him: for We are nearer to him than [his] jugular vein." (Surah Qaf: 16) When a person thinks that his body is made up of "matter," he cannot comprehend this important fact. If he takes his brain to be himself, then what he accepts as the "outside world" will begin at about 20 to 30 centimetres away. But when he conceives that everything he thinks of as matter is only perceptions in his mind, any notions such as outside or inside, far or near lose all their meaning. Allah has encompassed him and He is infinitely close to him.

Allah informs men that He is "infinitely close" to them with the verse " If My servants ask you about Me, I am near…" (Surat al-Baqara: 186). Another verse relates the same fact: "Surely your Lord encompasses the people." (Surat al-Isra: 60)

Man is misled if he thinks that the being closest to him is himself. Allah, in truth, is even closer to us than ourselves. He has called our attention to this point in the verse "Why is it not then that when it (soul) comes up to the throat, and you at that time look on, We are nearer to him than you, but you see not." (Surat al-Waqi'a: 83-85) People, however, remain unaware of this phenomenal fact because they cannot see it with their eyes, as revealed in the verse.

On the other hand, it is impossible for man - who is nothing but a shadow being, as Imam Rabbani put it, - to have any power independent of Allah. The verse "But Allah has created you and your handwork!" (Surat as-Saffat: 96) shows that everything we experience takes place under Allah's control. In the Qur'an, this reality is stated in the verse " When you threw, it was not your act, but Allah's. " (Surat al-Anfal: 17) whereby it is emphasised that no act is independent of Allah. Since we humans are shadow beings, we ourselves cannot be the ones who perform any act. However, Allah gives us shadow beings the feeling that we act by ourselves. In reality, it is Allah Who performs all acts.

A person may not want to concede this reality and may keep thinking of himself as independent of Allah; but this changes nothing.

Everything You Possess is Intrinsically Illusory

It is clear, scientific, and logical that we are not in direct contact with the "external world," only with a copy of it that Allah perpetually presents to our soul. Nevertheless, people are unwilling to think of this.

If you consider this issue sincerely and boldly, you'll soon realize that your house, the furniture in it, your car, your office, jewels, your bank account, wardrobe, spouse, children, your colleagues - in fact, all else that you possess - resides in your mind. Everything around you that you see, hear, or smell - in short, perceive with your five senses - is a part of this "replica world," including the voice of your favourite singer, the hardness of the chair you sit on, a perfume whose smell you like, the sun that warms you, a flower's beautiful colours, a bird flying past your window, a speedboat moving swiftly on the water, your fertile garden, the computer you use at your job, your hi-fi with the most advanced technology in the world...

This is the reality, because the world is created only to test man. All through our limited lives, we are tested with perceptions whose original sources we can never reach, which are intentionally presented as appealing and attractive. This fact is mentioned in the Qur'an:

Fair in the eyes of men is the love of things they covet: Women and sons; Heaped-up hoards of gold and silver; horses branded [for blood and excellence]; and [wealth of] cattle and well-tilled land. Such are the possessions of this world's life; but in nearness to Allah is the best of the goals [to return to]. (Surah Al 'Imran: 14)

Most people cast away religion for the lure of property, heaped-up wealth, hoards of gold and silver, jewels, bank accounts, credit cards, designer clothes, late-model cars - in short, all the forms of prosperity they either possess or strive to. They concentrate on this world only, forgetting the Hereafter. They are deceived by the fair and alluring face of the world, and fail to keep up prayer, give charity to the poor, and perform worship that will make them prosper in the Hereafter. They make excuses, saying, "I have things to do," "I have ideals," "I have responsibilities," "I haven't enough time," "I have tasks to complete," "I will do them in the future." They devote their entire lives to trying to prosper in this world only. In the verse, "They know but the outer [things] in the life of this world: but of the End of things they are heedless." (Surat ar-Rum: 7), this misconception is described.

The reality dealt with in this chapter is very important, for it renders meaningless all lusts and boundaries. Verifying this fact makes it clear that everything people toil to possess, their wealth amassed with greed, their children they boast of, their spouses they consider to be closest to them, their dearest friends, their bodies, their superior rank which they hold, the schools they have attended, the holidays they celebrate - all are nothing but mere shadows. Therefore, all the efforts they expended and the time they spent proves unavailing.


Some people unwittingly make fools of themselves when they boast of their wealth and properties, or of their yachts, helicopters, factories, holdings, manors and lands as if they can ever have direct contact with their original possessions. Those well-to-do who cruise ostentatiously up and down in their yachts, show off with their cars, keep hinting at their wealth, suppose that they rank higher than everyone else. In what kind of state would they find themselves, once they realize that they are boasting of nothing but images in their own minds?

In many of their dreams, they in fact find themselves possessed of grand houses, fast cars, precious jewels, rolls of banknotes, and loads of gold and silver. In their dreams, too, they enjoy a high rank, own factories with thousands of workers, possess the power to rule over thousands, and wear clothes that command everyone's admiration. But just as boasting about one's possessions in a dream often subjects one to ridicule, he is sure to be equally ridiculed in this world for boasting of images he relates to. After all, what he sees in his dreams and what he relates to in this world are both merely images in his mind.

Similarly, when people realize the reality, the way they react to the worldly events they experience should make them feel ashamed. Those who fight fiercely with each other, swindle, take bribes, commit forgery, lie, covetously withhold their money; who do wrong to others, who curse and beat them, who are full of passion for office and high rank, who envy and try to show off, who exalt themselves above all others - all will feel disgrace when they realize that they have committed all of these deeds in an illusion.

Since Allah creates the entire universe and reveals it to every human being individually, the Ultimate Owner of all possessions in the world is Allah alone. This fact is revealed in the Qur'an:

But to Allah belong all things in the heavens and on Earth: And He it is that Encompasses all things. (Surat an-Nisa': 126)

It is hugely foolish to cast away religion for the sake of passions whose original objects one can never reach, and thus lose eternal life.

At this point, it's important to grasp that the truth we are considering does not mean that all the possessions, wealth, children, spouses, rank and position one possesses and longs for will vanish in the future, and so are meaningless. Rather, it predicates that in fact, people have no direct contact with any of their possessions. They are merely perceptions they watch from within their brains, composed of images that Allah shows to test them. As you see, there's a big difference between those two propositions.

Although someone might not want to acknowledge this fact right away and would prefer to deceive himself by assuming that all his possessions really exist, he must finally to die. When he is resurrected in the Hereafter, everything will become clear, and "sight will be sharp." (Surah Qaf: 22) On that day, he is apt to see everything much more clearly. If he has spent his life chasing after imaginary aims, however, he will wish he had never lived, and say "Ah! Would that [Death] had made an end of me! Of no profit to me has been my wealth! My power has perished from me!" (Surat al-Haqqa: 27-29) On the other hand, a wise man should try to understand the great reality of the universe here on this world, while he still has time. Otherwise, he will spend all his life running after dreams and face a grievous penalty in the end. In the Qur'an, the final state of those people who run after illusions (or mirages) on this world and forget Allah, our Creator, is stated as follows:

But the unbelievers, their deeds are like a mirage in sandy deserts, which the man parched with thirst mistakes for water; until when he comes up to it, he finds it to be nothing: But he finds Allah [ever] with him, and Allah will pay him his account: and Allah is swift in taking account. (Surat an-Nur: 39)

Logical Deficiencies of the Materialists

From the start, this chapter has clearly stated that matter is not absolute, as materialists claim, but rather a shadow that Allah creates out of nothing and whose original we can never reach. In an extremely dogmatic manner, materialists resist this evident reality which destroys their philosophy, and bring forward baseless counterclaims to refute it.

George Politzer, for example, an ardent Marxist and one of the twentieth century's biggest advocates of the materialist philosophy, gave the "bus example" as the greatest evidence proving that he could reach the original of matter. According to Politzer, even idealist philosophers run away when they see a bus about to run them over, and this proves that they do confront the actuality of matter.22

Samuel Johnson, another famous materialist, was told that one can never reach essential matter, and tried to "prove" that he could make contact with the essence of stones by giving one of them a kick.23

A similar example is given by Friedrich Engels, the mentor of Politzer and along with Marx, the founder of dialectic materialism. He wrote that "if the cakes we eat were mere perceptions, they would not stop our hunger."24

There are similar examples in the books of famous materialists such as Marx, Engels, Lenin, and others along with impetuous sentences such as, "You understand the existence of matter when you are slapped in the face."

The disordered comprehension that engenders such examples arises from materialists' interpreting the explanation "We cannot reach the original of matter" as involving the sense of sight only. They think that perception is limited to sight, and that touching can get us directly to the essence of matter. A bus knocking a man down makes people say, "Look, it hit him! Therefore, he confronted the original." They don't understand that all the perceptions experienced during a crash - hard metal, the force of collision, pain - are in fact formed in the brain.

The Example of Dreams


The World In Dreams

For you, reality is all that can be touched with the hand and seen with the eye. In your dreams you can also "touch with your hand and see with your eye", but in reality, then you have neither hand nor eye, nor is there anything that can be touched or seen. There is no material reality that makes these things happen except your brain. You are simply being deceived.

What is it that separates real life and dreams from one another? Ultimately, both forms of living are brought into being within the brain. If we are able to live easily in an unreal world during our dreams, the same can equally be true for the world we live in while awake. When we wake up from a dream, there is no logical reason not to think that we have entered a longer dream called "real life". The reason we consider our dream a fancy and the world 'real' is only a product of our habits and prejudices. This suggests that we may well be awoken from the life on earth, which we think we are living right now, just as we are awoken from a dream.

The fact is, whichever of the five senses we take as a starting point, we can't ever actually reach the original of the external world that exists outside. A significant evidence of this is the way we imagine the existence of things that in fact do not exist in our dreams. In dreams, we can experience very realistic events. We can fall down the stairs and break a leg, have a serious car accident, get stuck under a bus, or eat a heavy meal and feel satiated. Events similar to those experienced in daily life are experienced in dreams too, with the same persuasiveness and rousing the same emotions.

A person who dreams of being knocked down by a bus can open his eyes in a hospital - again in his dream - and realise that he is disabled. But all this would remain a dream. Also, he can dream of dying in a car crash, that angels of death retrieve his soul, and his life in the Hereafter begins.

The images, sounds, feeling of hardness, pain, light, colours - all the feelings pertaining to the event he experiences in his dream - are perceived very sharply. They seem as natural as the ones in real life. The cake he eats in his dream satiates him, although it is a mere perception, because feeling satisfied is a perception too. At that moment, however, this person is lying in his bed. There are really no stairs, no traffic, no buses, no cake, because the dreamer experiences perceptions and feelings that don't exist in the external world. The fact that our dreams give us events with no physical, external correlates clearly reveals that the "world out there" is one whose true essence we can never know. We can learn the true nature of that world only from the revelation of Almighty Allah, Who created it.

Those who believe in the materialist philosophy, the Marxists in particular, are enraged when informed of this reality. They quote examples from the superficial, ignorant reasoning of Marx, Engels, or Lenin and else make emotional declarations.

However, they should realize that they can make these declarations in a dream as well. They can dream of reading Das Kapital, participating in meetings, and even feel the pain of getting involved in a fistfight. When asked - in their dream - they will think that what they see is absolute reality, just as they assume that everything they see while awake is absolutely real. But they should know that everything they experience - be it in a dream or in their daily lives - consists of only perceptions whose "real" source they can never reach.

The Example of a Shared Nervous System

Let us consider Politzer's car crash example: If the injured victim's nerves travelling from his five senses to his brain, were connected in parallel to another person's - Politzer's, for instance - then at the instant the bus hit that person, Politzer, sitting at his home at that same time, would feel the impact too. Politzer would experience all the sensations experienced by the person undergoing the accident, just as the same song will issue from two different loudspeakers connected to the same tape recorder. Politzer will hear the braking of the bus, feel its impact on his body, see the sights of a broken arm and spreading blood, suffer the aching fractures, experience entering the operation room, the hardness of the plaster cast, and the feebleness of his healing arm.

Just like Politzer, every other person connected to that man's nerves would experience the accident from beginning to end. If the man in the accident fell into a coma, so would everyone. Moreover, if all the perceptions pertaining to the car accident were recorded in some device, and repeatedly transmitted to someone, the bus would knock this person down again and again.

But which one of these two buses hitting those people is real? To this question, materialist philosophers have no consistent answer. The correct answer is that all of them experience the car accident, in all its details, in their own minds.

The same principle applies to our other examples. If the sensory nerves of Engels, who felt the fullness in his stomach after eating a cake, were connected to a second person's brain, that person would also feel full after Engels finished the cake. If the nerves of materialist Johnson, who felt pain in his foot after delivering a sound kick to a stone, were connected to a second individual, that person too would feel himself kick the same stone and feel the same pain.

So, which cake or stone is the real one? Again, materialist philosophy falls short of giving a consistent answer. The correct, consistent answer is that Engels and the second person have both eaten the cake and are satiated in their minds; both Johnson and the second person have fully experienced kicking the stone - again, in their minds.

In our previous example, let's make an exchange: Connecting the nerves of the man hit by the bus to Politzer's brain, and the nerves of Politzer, sitting in his house, to brain of that accident victim. In this case, Politzer will think that a bus has hit him, but the man actually hit by the bus will never feel the impact and think that he is sitting in Politzer's house. The very same logic can be applied to the examples involving the cake and the stone.

All this reveals how dogmatic materialism actually is. Its philosophy is founded on the assumption that nothing exists except matter. The fact is, however, that no one can ever experience any direct contact with matter and thus be justified in claiming that everything consists of it. The universe we contact is the universe that we perceive in our minds. The famous British philosopher David Hume expressed his thoughts on this point:

For my part, when I enter most intimately into what I call myself, I always stumble on some particular perception or other, of heat or cold, light or shade, love or hatred, pain or pleasure. I never can catch myself at any time without a perception, and never can observe any thing but the perception.25

We can never step outside these perceptions and encounter matter as it "really" is, so it is wholly nonsensical to construct any philosophy regarding matter as an absolute entity we can experience directly. As a theory, materialism is totally unfounded, right from the outset.

The Formation of Perceptions in the Brain is Not Philosophy, But Scientific Fact

Materialists claim that what we have stated here is a philosophical view. But the plain scientific fact is, we cannot interact with the "external" material world, but only with a world in our brain. This is not a matter of philosophy. All medical schools teach in detail how images and feelings form in the brain. Facts proven by twentieth-century science, and by physics in particular, clearly show that we can never reach the originals of physical matter; and that in a sense, everyone is watching the "monitor" in his brain.

Everyone who believes in science, be he an atheist, Buddhist, or of any other belief, must accept this fact. Even the materialist who denies the existence of Allah cannot deny scientific reality.

That Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, George Politzer and others were never able to comprehend such a simple, evident fact is still startling, even though their level of scientific understanding was primitive and insufficient. Our highly advanced science and technology make it even easier to comprehend this explicit fact. Materialists, on the other hand, are paralyzed with their fears of even partially comprehending this fact and thereby, realizing how completely it demolishes their philosophy.

The Materialists' Great Fear


Turkish materialist writer Rennan Pekunlu says that "the theory of evolution is not so important, the real threat is this subject", because he is aware that this subject proves that we cannot reach the original matter, the only concept in which he has faith.

For a while, Turkish materialist circles mounted no substantial backlash against the subject examined in this book - that matter is perceived in the brain. This gave us the impression that we hadn't made our point clearly enough, that it needed further explanation. Yet before long, it became apparent that materialists did feel quite uneasy about the popularity of this topic and moreover, felt a great fear about it all.

After a while, materialists started loudly publicizing their fear and panic in their publications, conferences and panels. Their agitated, hopeless discourse implied that they were suffering a severe intellectual crisis. The collapse of the theory of evolution - the basis of their so-called scientific philosophy - had already come as a great shock. Now they experienced an even greater one, as they realized that they were losing their belief in the absolute supremacy of matter, which for them was a greater mainstay than even Darwinism. They declared that for them, this issue is a tremendous threat that totally demolishes their cultural fabric.

One who expressed the materialist circles' anxiety and panic in a most outspoken way was Renan Pekunlu, an academician and writer in the periodical Bilim ve Utopya (Science and Utopia) which has assumed the task of defending materialism. Both in his articles in Bilim ve Utopya and in the panels he attended, Pekunlu presented our book The Evolution Deceit as the number-one threat. What disturbed Pekunlu even more than the chapters invalidating Darwinism was the section you are currently reading. Pekunlu admonished his handful of readers not to let themselves be carried away by the indoctrination of idealism and to keep their faith in materialism. He used Vladimir I. Lenin, leader of Russia's bloody communist revolution, as a reference. Advising everyone to read Lenin's century-old book Materialism and Empirio-Criticism, Pekunlu only repeated Lenin's counsel to "not think over this issue, or you will lose track of materialism and be carried away by religion." In an article for the aforementioned periodical, Pekunlu quoted the following lines from Lenin:

Once you deny the objective reality [that is] given us in sensation, you have already lost every weapon against fideism [reliance on faith alone], for you have slipped into agnosticism or subjectivism - and that is all that fideism requires. A single claw ensnared, and the bird is lost. And our Machists [an adherent of Machism, a modern positivist philosophy], have all become ensnared in idealism, that is, in a diluted, subtle fideism; They became ensnared from the moment they took "sensation" not as an image of the external world, but as a special "element." It is nobody's sensation, nobody's mind, nobody's spirit, nobody's will.26

These words explicitly demonstrate the fact that Lenin found alarming and wanted to expunge, both from his own mind and the minds of his "comrades." It disturbs contemporary materialists too, in a similar way. But Pekunlu and other materialists suffer a yet greater distress because they know that this certain fact is now being advanced in a way that's far more explicit convincing than a hundred years ago. For the first time, this subject is being explained in a truly irrefutable way.

Still, nevertheless, a great number of materialist scientists take a superficial stand against the fact that no one can reach matter in and of itself. The subject covered in this chapter is one of the most important and most exciting that a person can ever run across. It's fairly unlikely that these scientists would have faced such a crucial subject before, but the reactions and the stance they employ in their speeches and articles still hint at how shallow and superficial their comprehension really is.

Some materialists' reactions show that their blind adherence to materialism has somehow impaired their logic, making them far removed from comprehending the subject. For instance, Alaeddin Senel - like Rennan Pekunlu, an academician and a writer for Bilim ve Utopya - said, "Forget the collapse of Darwinism, the real threatening subject is this one," and made demands implying " prove what you tell," sensing that his own philosophy has no basis. More interestingly, this writer has written lines revealing that he can by no means grasp this very fact which he considers such a menace.

For instance, in one article where Senel discussed this subject exclusively, he accepts that the brain perceives the external world as an image. But then he goes on to claim that images are divided into two categories: those having physical correlates and those with none; and that we can indeed reach the physical correlates of images pertaining to the external world. In support of this assertion, he writes, "I do not know whether or not the images in my brain have correlates in the external world, but the same thing applies when I speak on the phone. When I speak on the telephone, I cannot see the person I am speaking to, but I can have this conversation confirmed later, when I see him face to face."27

By this, he actually means that if we doubt our perceptions, we can look at their origin and check its reality. This is an evident misconception, however, since it's impossible for us to reach matter itself. We can never get outside of our minds to reach what is "outside." Does the voice on the phone have an objective correlate or not? We can confirm that by meeting the person we spoke with. However, this confirmation too is experienced in the mind!

In fact, these writers also experience the same events in their dreams. For instance, Senel may dream that he speaks on the phone, then have this conversation confirmed by the person he spoke to. Or Pekunlu may, in his dream, feel he's facing a serious threat and advise others to read century-old books by Lenin. But no matter what they do, these materialists can never deny that the events they've experienced and the people they talked to were nothing but perceptions to them.

Who, then, can confirm the correlates of the images in the brain? The shadow beings whom people watch in their visual centres? It is impossible for materialists to find any "outside" source that can confirm information outside of the brain.

If someone concedes that all perceptions are formed in the brain, but still assumes that one can step "out" of this world of perceptions and have them confirmed by the "real" external world, this reveals this person's limited perceptive capacity and distorted reasoning.

However, the facts related here can easily be grasped by anyone of normal understanding and reasoning. In relation to everything we have said, every unbiased person will understand that it isn't possible for one's senses to reach the external world. Yet blind adherence to materialism apparently distorts people's reasoning capability. Contemporary materialists display severe logical flaws just like their mentors who tried to "prove" that they could reach the original of matter by kicking stones or eating cake.

This is no astonishing situation. The inability to understand - that is, interpret the world and events with decent reasoning - is a trait common to unbelievers. In the Qur'an, Allah particularly states that they are "a people without understanding." (Surat al-Ma'ida: 58)

Materialists Have Fallen into the Biggest Trap in History

The panicky atmosphere sweeping materialist circles in Turkey, of which we've mentioned only a few examples here, shows that materialists face utter defeat. Modern science has proven that we cannot reach the original of matter, and put this forward in a clear, straightforward, forceful way. Materialists see that the material world, on which they base their entire philosophy, lies beyond a perceptual boundary they can never cross. In the face of this fact, they can do nothing. Throughout human history, materialist thought has always existed. Being assured of themselves and their philosophy, materialists revolted against Allah Who created them. They maintained that matter is eternal, that none of it could possibly have had a Creator. While denying Allah out of their arrogance, they took refuge in matter alone, with which they held themselves to be in direct contact. So confident were they of this philosophy that they believed that no arguments could ever disprove it.

That is why this book's facts regarding the real nature of matter so surprised these people. What we've related here destroyed the very basis of their philosophy and left no grounds for further discussion. Matter, on which they based all their thoughts, lives, arrogance, and denial, suddenly vanished. No human being has ever seen matter as it "really" is, so no philosophy can be based upon it.

One of the attributes of Allah is His plotting against the unbelievers. This is stated in the verse; "They plot and plan, and Allah too plans; but the best of planners is Allah." (Surat al-Anfal: 30)

Allah entrapped materialists by making them assume that matter is an absolute existence and in so doing, humiliated them in a way never seen before. Materialists deemed their possessions, status, rank, the society they belong to, the whole world to be absolute. Moreover, by relying on these, they grew arrogant against Allah. By being boastful, they revolted against Him and added to their unbelief. While so doing, they relied on a total conviction in the absoluteness of matter. Yet so lacking are they in understanding that they fail to realize that Allah compasses them round about. Allah announces the state to which the unbelievers are led as a result of their thick-headedness:

Or do they intend a plot [against you]? But those who defy Allah are themselves involved in a Plot! (Surat at-Tur: 42)

Theirs is most probably the biggest intellectual defeat in history. While growing arrogant of their own accord, materialists have been tricked and suffered a serious defeat in their war against Allah by bringing up something monstrous against Him. The verse "Thus have We placed leaders in every town, its wicked men, to plot [and burrow] therein: but they only plot against their own souls, and they perceive it not" (Surat al-An'am: 123) announces how unconscious these people who revolt against our Creator are, and how they will end up. In another verse the same fact is related as:

Fain would they deceive Allah and those who believe, but they only deceive themselves, and realise [it] not! (Surat al-Baqara: 9)

While trying to plot, unbelievers do not realize the very important fact that everything they experience is really experienced in their brains, and all the plots they devise are simply formed in their brains, just like every other act they perform. Their folly has let them forget that they are all alone with Allah and, hence, are trapped in their own devious plans.

Just like those unbelievers of bygone days, those living today face a reality that will shatter the basis of their devious plans. With the verse "...feeble indeed is the cunning of Satan" (Surat an-Nisa': 76), Allah has stated that these plots were doomed to end with failure the day they were hatched, and gave the good tidings to believers with the verse "...not the least harm will their cunning do to you." (Surah Al 'Imran: 120)

In another verse Allah states: "But the unbelievers, their deeds are like a mirage in sandy deserts, which the man parched with thirst mistakes for water; until when he comes up to it, he finds it to be nothing." (Surat an-Nur: 39) Materialism, too, offers a mirage for the rebellious; when they have recourse to materialism, they find its philosophy to be nothing but deceptive. Allah has deceived them with such a mirage, and beguiled them into perceiving matter as an absolute. All those eminent professors, astronomers, biologists, physicists and all others, regardless of their rank and post, are simply deceived and humiliated because they took matter as their god. Assuming matter, whose essence they can never reach, to be absolute, they based their philosophy and ideology on it, grew involved in serious discussions, adopting a so-called "intellectual" discourse. They deemed themselves wise enough to argue about the truth of the universe and, more seriously to interpret Allah with their limited intelligence. Allah explains their situation in the following verse:

And [the unbelievers] plotted and planned, and Allah too planned, and the best of planners is Allah. (Surat Ali 'Imran: 54)

One may possibly escape from some plots in the world; but Allah's plan against the unbelievers is so firm that there is no avoiding it. No matter what they do or to whom they appeal, never can they find any helper other than Allah. As Allah informs in the Qur'an, "they shall not find for them other than Allah a patron or a help." (Surat an-Nisa': 173)

Materialists never expected to fall into such a trap. Having all the means of the twenty-first century at their disposal, they believed they could grow obstinate in their denial and drag others into disbelief. This ever-lasting mentality of unbelievers and their end are described as follows in the Qur'an:

They plotted and planned, but We too planned, even while they perceived it not. Then see what was the end of their plot! - this, that We destroyed them and their people, all [of them]. (Surat an-Naml: 50-51)

This, in another sense, is what the fact stated in the verses comes to mean: Materialists are now told that everything they own is actually in their brains, and therefore, everything they possess has been rendered valueless. As they witness their possessions, factories, gold, money, children, spouses, friends, rank and status, and even their own bodies - all of which they deem absolute - slipping away from them hands, in a sense, they are destroyed. They come face to face with the fact that Allah, not matter, is the only absolute.

Realizing this truth is doubtless the worst possible thing for the materialists. That matter in which they place such faith, is separated from them by an impenetrable frontier is, in their own words, tantamount to "death before dying" in this world.

This leaves them all alone with Allah. With the verse, "Leave Me alone, [to deal] with the [creature] whom I created [bare and] alone!" Allah has called our attention to the fact that each human being is, in truth, all alone in His presence. (Surat al-Muddaththir: 11) This remarkable fact is repeated in many other verses:

"And behold! You come to Us bare and alone as We created you for the first time: you have left behind you all [the favours] which We bestowed on you..." (Surat al-An'am: 94)

And each one of them will come unto Him on the Day of Resurrection, alone. (Surah Maryam: 95)

This, in another sense, is what the fact stated in the verses comes to mean: Those who take matter as their god have come from Allah and returned to Him. They have submitted themselves to Allah, whether they want to or not. Now they wait for the Day of Judgement, when each one of them will be called to account, however unwilling they may be to understand it.

The Importance of the Subject

It is of the utmost importance to understand correctly the secret beyond matter explained in this chapter. Mountains, plains, flowers, people, seas - briefly everything we see and everything that Allah informs us in the Qur'an that exists and that He created out of nothing is created and does indeed exist. However, people cannot see, feel or hear the real nature of these beings through their sense organs. What they see and feel are only their copies that appear in their brains. This is a scientific fact taught at all schools of medicine. The same applies to the book you are reading now; you can not see nor touch the real nature of it. The light coming from the original book is converted by some cells in your eyes into electrical signals, which are then conveyed to the visual centre in the back of your brain. This is where the view of this book is created. In other words, you are not reading a book which is before your eyes through your eyes; in fact, this book is created in the visual centre in the back of your brain. The book you are reading right now is a "copy of the book" within your brain. The original book is seen by Allah.

It should be remembered, however, that the fact that the matter is an illusion formed in our brains does not "reject" the matter, but provides us information about the real nature of the matter: that no person can have connection with its original. Moreover, the matter outside is seen not just by us, but by other beings too. The angels Allah delegated to be watchers witness this world as well:

And the two recording angels are recording, sitting on the right and on the left. He does not utter a single word, without a watcher by him, pen in hand! (Surah Qaf: 17-18)

Most importantly, Allah sees everything. He created this world with all its details and sees it in all its states. As He informs us in the Qur'an:

… Heed Allah and know that Allah sees what you do. (Surat al-Baqara: 233)

Say: "Allah is a sufficient witness between me and you. He is certainly aware of and sees His servants." (Surat al-Isra': 96)

It must not be forgotten that Allah keeps the records of everything in the book called Lawh Mahfuz (Preserved Tablet). Even if we don't see all things, they are in the Lawh Mahfuz. Allah reveals that He keeps everything's record in the "Mother of the Book" called Lawh Mahfuz with the following verses:

It is in the Source Book with Us, high-exalted, full of wisdom. (Surat az-Zukhruf: 4)

… We possess an all-preserving Book. (Surah Qaf: 4)

Certainly there is no hidden thing in either heaven or Earth which is not in a Clear Book. (Surat an-Naml: 75)


The subject we have explained so far is one of the greatest truths you will ever read in your lifetime. Proving that everything we see and refer to as "the material world" is actually in our minds, that we can never have direct experience of the material originals existing outside, is important in comprehending the existence of Allah and His creations and to understanding that He is the only absolute Being.

The person who understands this will realize that the world is not the sort of place that most people surmise. Not an absolute place with an exterior existence, as supposed by those who wander aimlessly about the streets, get into fights in pubs, show off in luxurious cafes, brag about their property, or who dedicate their lives to hollow aims. The world is an image we see in our brain, whose original we can never reach. All of the people cited above watch these perceptions in their minds, yet are unaware of this.

This very important concept undermines the materialist philosophy that denies the existence of Allah. This is why materialists like Marx, Engels, and Lenin panicked, became enraged, and warned their followers "not to think over" this concept when told about it. Such people are so mentally deficient that they cannot even comprehend the fact that perceptions are formed inside the brain. Assuming that what they watch in their brains is the "external world," they cannot comprehend obvious evidence to the contrary.

This unawareness is the outcome of the lack of wisdom Allah gives to disbelievers. As it is said in the Qur'an, the unbelievers "have hearts wherewith they understand not, eyes wherewith they see not, and ears wherewith they hear not. They are like cattle-nay more misguided: for they are heedless [of warning]." (Surat al-A'raf: 179) You can explore beyond this by using the power of your personal reflection. Concentrate your attention, and ponder on how you see the objects around you and feel their touch. Think heedfully, and you can feel that the being that thinks and reads this book at this moment is only a soul, who watches the perceptions called "matter" on an inner screen. Anyone who grasps this has moved away from the domain of the material world that deceives a major part of humanity and has entered the domain of authentic existence.

This reality has been understood by a number of theists or philosophers throughout history. Even though the Wahdatul Wujood view has deviated from the truth by misunderstanding this reality and rejecting the existence of all creation, great scholar Imam Rabbani set the right measure on this subject. According to Imam Rabbani, all beings are "shadow beings" relative to Allah.

Islamic intellectuals such as Imam Rabbani, Muhyiddin Ibn Arabi and Mevlana Cami realised this fact from the signs of the Qur'an and by using their reason. Some Western philosophers like George Berkeley have grasped the same reality through reason. Imam Rabbani wrote in his Mektubat (Letters) that the whole material universe is an "illusion and supposition (perception)" and that the only absolute being is Allah:

Allah... The substance of these beings which He created is but nothingness... He created all at the sphere of senses and illusions... The existence of the universe is at the sphere of senses and illusions, and it is not material... In real, there is nothing in the outside except the Glorious Being, (Who is Allah).28

However, the number of those who have understood this fact throughout history has always been limited. Great scholars such as Imam Rabbani have written that it might have been inconvenient to tell this fact to the masses and that most people would not be able to grasp it.

However, in the age we live in, this fact has been made empirical by the body of evidence put forward by science. For the first time, the fact that matter is not absolute and our knowledge of it is extremely limited is described in a concrete, clear, and explicit way.

For this reason, the 21st century will be a turning point when people in general will comprehend the Divine realities and be led in crowds to Allah, the only Absolute Being. In the 21st century, materialistic 19th-century creeds will be relegated to the trash-heaps of history; Allah's existence and creation will be grasped; facts like spacelessness and timelessness will be better understood. Humanity will break free of the centuries-old veils, deceits, and superstitions enshrouding us.

It's not possible for any shadow being to impede this inevitable course.


14. Frederick Vester, Denken, Lernen, Vergessen, vga, 1978, p.6.

15. R.L.Gregory, Eye and Brain: The Psychology of Seeing, Oxford University Press Inc. New York, 1990, p.9.

16. Lincoln Barnett, The Universe and Dr. Einstein, William Sloane Associate, New York, 1948, p.20.

17. Orhan Hancerlioğlu, Dusunce Tarihi (The History of Thought), Istanbul: Remzi Bookstore, 6.ed., September 1995, p.447.

18. V.I.Lenin, Materialism and Empirio-criticism, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1970, p.14.

19. Bertrand Russell, ABC of Relativity, George Allen and Unwin, London, 1964, pp.161-162.

20. R.L.Gregory, Eye and Brain: The Psychology of Seeing, Oxford University Press Inc. New York, 1990, p.9.

21. Ken Wilber, Holographic Paradigm and Other Paradoxes, p.20.

22. George Politzer, Principes Fondamentaux de Philosophie, Editions Sociales, Paris 1954, p.53.

23. Orhan Hancerlioglu, Dusunce Tarihi (The History of Thought), Istanbul: Remzi Bookstore, 6.ed., September 1995, p.261.

24. George Politzer, Principes Fondamentaux de Philosophie, Editions Sociales, Paris 1954, p.65.

25. Paul Davies, Tanrı ve Yeni Fizik (God and The New Physics), translated by Murat Temelli, Im Publishing, Istanbul 1995, pp.180-181.

26. Rennan Pekunlu, "Aldatmacanin Evrimsizligi", (Non-Evolution of Deceit), Bilim ve Utopya, December 1998 (V.I.Lenin, Materialism and Empirio-criticism, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1970, pp.334-335).

27. Alaettin Senel, "Evrim Aldatmacasi mi?, Devrin Aldatmacasi mi?", (Evolution Deceit or Deceit of the Epoch?), Bilim ve Utopya, December 1998.

28. Imam Rabbani Hz. Mektuplari (Letters of Rabbani), Vol.II, 357, Letter, p.163.

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