Outer space made up of glorious and interconnected galaxies, the planets and the stars, the boundless blue sky, the bright blue oceans that move one deeply, the green fields, the majestic mountains thousands of meters high and the lovely animals living in them all. And all the people born into such a wondrously created world.
People encounter this extraordinary world the moment they first open their eyes after being born. The order in the universe is determined down to the finest degree, and you cannot change it, even by a millimeter; the moment you do, the system will collapse. The level of oxygen in the air is adjusted to be at just the right amount for humans and animals to breathe. The Sun, the moon, the stars, the delightful animals, the flowers, the plants and the lovely-smelling fruits and vegetables that emerge from the immaculate soil are all placed at our disposal. So have you ever wondered what the point behind the creation of this wondrous universe is? Since all this majesty and exquisitely precise design could not have appeared by chance, and are placed at our disposal alone, there must be a reason for it, mustn’t there?
There is only one answer to that question: Love. The sole aim behind the creation of the universe is love. The whole reason behind it is for man, the steward of this astonishing world, to develop a sincere love in his heart for God, his Creator, for him to properly appreciate His might and greatness. A great love for God and for His creations grows in the heart of the believer who grasps the greatness and might of God and feels deeply His infinite mercy. God is the One Who bestows the great blessing of this love in the believer’s heart:
As for those who have faith and do right actions, the All-Merciful will bestow His love on them. (Surah Maryam, 96)
It is no coincidence that a person should feel a great love for God and His creations in his heart. No matter what one does, one cannot produce that sincere love in one’s heart purely by one’s own endeavors. God is the One Who creates and gradually enhances this fine feeling. God reveals in the Qur’an that He bestowed great sensitivity to love on the Prophet John:
… We gave him judgement while still a child, and tenderness and purity from Us – he had taqwa – (Surah Maryam, 13)
Love and faith are intertwined. As the believer grows in faith, as he attains depth in faith, he begins to see God everywhere he looks. He sees a bird with glorious plumage and he praises and thanks his Lord. He sees a lovely flower and immediately gives thanks to God. He tastes delicious foods and offers up sincere thanks to God. He listens to music and is amazed by God’s creation and the effect it has on his soul. He never forgets God for a moment. He now lives a very different life, one closely bound to God and filled with a deep, abiding love and bond of affection. When the believer takes a step toward God, God takes one toward him; the believer’s entire being overflows with love of God. Even the cells in one’s body know that love. With their trust in God and faith and fortitude, believers enjoy an exceptional comfort. This is the greatest blessing bestowed on the believer. Only those believers who live and feel that deep- rooted love in their hearts would know this feeling.
God loves His servants very much and wants them to love Him above all else. God is the One Who creates man from a single cell, gives him hands, eyes and ears and breathes His own spirit into him. God is the One Who bestows countless blessings on him starting from his first breath until his very last. God is the One Who causes his heart to beat without him realizing it and equips his body with the most wondrous systems. God is the One Who allows us to eat and drink. He is the One Who gives us sleep and heals us when we are ill. All that God asks from His servants in return is love. Believers direct all the love in their hearts to God first, and from Him to other people and other living things, yet God comes before all else. Deniers, however, forget God and turn their love directly towards other people, but they never find the reward they seek.
Some people set up equals to God, loving them as they should love God. But those who have faith have greater love for God. If only you could see those who do wrong at the time when they see the punishment, and that truly all strength belongs to God, and that God is severe in punishment. (Surat al-Baqara, 165)
God is the One Who accepts all repentance (Tawwab), the Forgiver (Gafur), and the Most-Compassionate (Rahman); these names show how much our Lord loves, protects and is merciful toward His servants. God, Who created man, created him with all his weaknesses; He knew that people would make mistakes, but He shows His mercy by giving them the opportunity to repent. God always approaches His servants with compassion. His love, affection and mercy reflected on man are infinite. The believer feels this at every moment of his life. He turns to God with a sincere love at every moment.
Anyone who does evil or wrongs himself and then asks God’s forgiveness will find God Ever-Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Surat an-Nisa’, 110)
Were it not for God's favor to you and His mercy . . . and that God is Ever-Returning, All-Wise. (Surat an-Nur, 10)
While believers live their lives in peace, security and joy, with their hearts overflowing with love, deniers experience the punishment of forgetting God in the form of suffering with loveless hearts. They do not love themselves or others nor do they look on the creations in the universe, the skies, the oceans or the flowers, with love. A grim lovelessness that grows stronger by the day burns their bodies. Their very cells know their lovelessness, their rebellion and lack of submission, and the millions of cells in their bodies rebel against that. Their lower-selves run rampant, they become ever more selfish and spoiled and they fall into the worst debasement. They experience only an ersatz love, based entirely on self-interest, and fail to realize they never found real love.
No real love can ever form in the heart of someone who does not love and appreciate God as is His due; that is because God will not place that sincere love in his heart. Without love, the body becomes ill. A lack of trust in God, a lack of compassion and the absence of love devastate such a person. A person who loses love is like a tree which rots from the inside. Such a person would be like a barren tree that yields no fruit, with withered branches, slowly falling apart from the inside. Someone with no love of God is thus abandoned to Hell while still in this world. An unbeliever would never taste the joyous love, compassion and sensitivity that a believer feels in his heart. He will thus know the reward for turning his back on our Lord, the Bestower of all blessings, by never finding the love he seeks, either in this world or the next.