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The seven heavens and the ascension

Printed From: IslamiCity.com
Category: General
Forum Name: Science & Technology
Forum Discription: It is devoted for Science & Technology
URL: http://www.IslamiCity.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=1838
Printed Date: 21 December 2014 at 7:18am


Topic: The seven heavens and the ascension
Posted By: Israfil
Subject: The seven heavens and the ascension
Date Posted: 09 August 2005 at 11:17pm

                                  In the name of God, the merciful, the compassionate:

                                  "Glory to Allah who took his servant got a journey by night from the sacred mosque to the farthest mosque whose precincts We did bless- In order that we might show him some of our signs: For He (Allah) is the one who hereth and seeth all things." Surah 17:1

                                  The ascension of the prophet was one of great importance in Islamic theology in which, many have understood it as both dream and revelation. However there are two kinds of Muslims on the position of this subject there are those who believe that this was indeed a physical body experience and the others who believe it was a mystical experience hence the following:

                                  The belief in the Ascension of the Prophet is general in Islam. Whilst the Asha'ri and the patristic sects believe that the Prophet was bodily carried up from earth to heaven, the Rationalists hold that it was a spiritual exaltation, that it represented the uplifting of the soul by stages until it was brought into absolute communion with the Universal Soul. (Ali, The Spirit of Islam, p. 447).

                                  The language in which God speaks to us is diversified based on each individual and how God speaks to us is diversified based on our own understanding. When we learn it is perhaps the same way the tools in which we learn from are both learned in diverse ways as well as our apprehension of them. For the prophet, the ascension was more of the ascension of knowledge of God. We can say that this experience was of the literal sense since the prophet has described various depictions (via Hadith) of heaven and hell and his experience in both.

                                  But what we can also do is take away is the ascension of knowledge of the heavens Muhammad ascended to and fro in reaching God at the end. To understand the ascension is to try to understand the seven heavens. Hadith states that Muhammad the prophet (peace be upon him) travelled through the seven heavens but, what does that really mean? Philosophically speaking according to Muslim philosophers God is everywhere and not in one place. As for the seven heavens when Muhammad reached the empyrean and in the presence of God there, he found God to be there.

                                  The ascension is not necessarily the bodily experience that we conceive it is but more so about knowledge. When one comes to the plateau in his own understanding of God then one reaches a blissful end which ascends the mind/soul to the empyrean. Muhammad was no great scientist, or thinker but his unity with God and his mission allowed him to be great through his discipline on the practice of Islam which in the end of his journey allowd him to ascend both mentally and physically to be one with God.

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                   




                                  Replies:
                                  Posted By: Apple Pie
                                  Date Posted: 11 August 2005 at 6:03pm

                                  Greetings Israfil,

                                   

                                  You seem to feel that sura 17 is discussing Islam’s “prophet”…

                                   

                                  Why do you feel this way..?

                                   

                                  Where is his name mentioned?

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                  Thanks…



                                  Posted By: Deus
                                  Date Posted: 11 August 2005 at 6:20pm

                                  And while you're at answering Apple Pie's question, answer these two as well (before someone else asks them):

                                  How do you know the sacred mosque is the one in Mecca?

                                  How do you know the farthest mosque is the one in Jerusalem?



                                  Posted By: Israfil
                                  Date Posted: 11 August 2005 at 8:27pm
                                  Subhan'llah for both your questions forgive me tonight as I'm not feeling too well, I will answer both your questions so look for them either this Saturday or Sunday.


                                  Posted By: half_a10
                                  Date Posted: 12 August 2005 at 12:30am
                                  Assalamu'alaikum warahmatullahiwabarakatuh.
                                  Actually, I'm surprised with apple pie and deus questions. I think I had heard hadith about Prophet(peace be upon him), had been brought from Mecca to Aqsa's mosque then ascended to meet Allah. But I'm not sure who was a 'rawi' for this hadith. InsyaAllah I will try to find that.


                                  Posted By: Israfil
                                  Date Posted: 13 August 2005 at 10:07pm

                                  Salaam,

                                  Here is my response to you Deus:

                                  First we should note that the sacred mosque was the the Qibla which was Makkah, which was aforetime Jerusalem but since the fall out with the Jews it was told that the Qibla which one prays now is Makkah. Beit-ullah which is the Kabbah or which surrounds it is the sacred mosque. The fasrthest mosque in which the Night Journey speaks of is the damaged temple which is in Jerusalem.

                                  How we know about the Sacred mosque is:

                                  It is reported that the Prophet Muhammad said, "There are only three mosques to which you should embark on a journey: the sacred mosque (Mecca, Saudi Arabia), this mosque of mine (Madinah, Saudi Arabia), and the mosque of Al-Aqsa (Jerusalem)."

                                   

                                  Also another Islamic website offers this:

                                  The Arab grammarians classify masjid as "ism makan", i.e., "name of location"; it indicates the place where an action takes place. Masjid being derived from the root sa-ja-da (to prostrate), it means "place of prostration". Since a place of worship is a place where believers prostrate to God, "masjid" is a general term to designate any place of worship without any religious distinction. Later, this word was used to designate Islamic places of worship in particular, i.e., the mosques.

                                  The Prophet's(P) night journey was from "the inviolable place of worship" (al-Masjid al-Haram) to "the farthest place of worship" (al-Masjid al-Aqsa). The former is certainly located in Makkah, but what about the latter? The reference to Allah blessing its surroundings (... whose precincts We did bless) suggests a location in the "Holy Land" (cf. 21:81; 7:137; 34:18). Neal Robinson states:

                                  The [Muslim] tradition which identifies it [i.e., al-Masjid al-Aqsa] with the Temple Mount in Jerusalem makes admirable sense in view of the fact that the 'place of worship' (masjid) whose destruction is evoked in v. 7 [i.e., 17:7] is clearly the Temple.[2]

                                   

                                   



                                  Posted By: Israfil
                                  Date Posted: 13 August 2005 at 10:08pm
                                  Applie pie are you referring to Shu'aib?


                                  Posted By: Apple Pie
                                  Date Posted: 14 August 2005 at 7:14am

                                  Originally posted by Israfil

                                  Applie pie are you referring to Shu'aib?

                                  No.

                                  Tell us why you think sura 17 is referring to Islam's prophet, when his name is not even mentioned anywhere in the entire sura...

                                  Thanks...



                                  Posted By: Israfil
                                  Date Posted: 14 August 2005 at 1:55pm
                                  Well perhaps you can tell since Surah 17 (The Night Journey)refers to Muhammad whose is the servant of Allah. Obviously when this Surah was revealed to Muhammad it was also revealed along w ith his vision in the Night Journey. Now if you are you looking for specifics then I can list those as well.


                                  Posted By: Apple Pie
                                  Date Posted: 14 August 2005 at 3:13pm

                                  Originally posted by Israfil

                                  Well perhaps you can tell since Surah 17 (The Night Journey)refers to Muhammad whose is the servant of Allah. Obviously when this Surah was revealed to Muhammad it was also revealed along w ith his vision in the Night Journey. Now if you are you looking for specifics then I can list those as well.

                                  We are looking for Islam's "prophets" name in this sura...

                                  Where is it....?



                                  Posted By: Israfil
                                  Date Posted: 14 August 2005 at 9:54pm

                                  So you are looking for  "Muhammad" in this Surah, well the name does not appear but it does mention the night journey in which ahadith speaks of:

                                  "Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah that he heard Allah’s Apostle saying, "When the people of Quraish did not believe me (i.e. the story of my Night Journey ), I stood up in Al-Hijr and Allah displayed Jerusalem in front of me, and I began describing it to them while I was looking at it." Bukhari vol.5:226 p.142"

                                   

                                  During the Night Journey: When I [Mohammed] left him (i.e. Moses) he wept. Someone asked him, ‘What makes you weep?’ Moses said, ‘I weep because after me there has been sent ( as Prophet ) a young man whose followers will enter Paradise in greater numbers than my followers.’ Bukhari vol.5:227 p.146

                                   




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