Life Is a Journey Not a Destination

The journey of our soul

The Quran states that all human souls were created at the same period of time (Quran 7:172). The period of soul’s creation was long before the development of the physical body. As the physical transformation occurs during the embryonic phase, the human body receives the soul. It is important to realize that, the Quran teaches us that our life is a journey, not a destination. As a result, Muslims believe that the earthly life is part of an infinite journey of the soul.

What is a soul?

Quran 17:85. “…And they ask you about the soul. Say: The soul is one of the commands of my Lord, and you are not given aught of knowledge but a little.”

Though Allah allowed us very little knowledge about how a soul can be defined, He elaborated in the Quran on how He empowered our soul with different qualities. As can be seen in the Quran, Allah equipped our soul with a physical body for specific time with the specific purpose to serve as His envoy on the earth (Quran 2:30). As God’s envoy, our responsibilities include submitting to One God, taking care of not only the other human beings, but also the animals, the plants and the environment of the earth.

Souls are born in innocence

It must be remembered that, according to the Quran, the human souls are born in a state of innocence and purity. This is because Islam does not endorse the belief of original sin. As the children grow up and reach an age when they understand the difference between right and wrong, and they know the meaning of transgressing moral boundaries, then their bad actions are considered to be as sinful. Human beings are equipped with the unique ability to choose, a faculty to reason and have access to Divine guidance. These tools help them to serve out their intended purpose, to do good and to avoid sins.

Life Is a Journey Not a Destination. The natural predisposition.

Soul’s natural predisposition to goodness

Allah created humans with an innate spiritual goodness and an awareness of the Divine (Quran 91:7-9 and 7:172). As can be seen in the Quran, Allah allowed some of His own spirit to enter mankind during the process of creation of souls (Quran 32:9 and 38:72).

Consequently, the Quran describes this spiritual goodness and the awareness of Divine as the “natural predisposition” (Fitrah) of human souls. In the Quran, Allah not only urges humans to align their actions to the primordial nature of goodness, He also warns them against altering the natural predisposition given to them by God.

Quran 30:30. “Orient your face towards the true religion in an upright manner, in the primordial nature from God, upon which He created humanity. Let there be no alteration in the creation of God. That is the upright religion; however most people do not realize it”

The people who nurture their primordial goodness are described in the Quran as the successful ones while the people who suppress the God-given primordial goodness, are the one who reap failure. (Quran 91:7-9).

Quran 91:7-9. “..By the soul and the One who fashioned it in proportion, guiding it to the understanding of the piety and the sin. Surely successful is the one who causes it to grow in purity. And surely failed is the one who causes to suppress it”

Souls are separated from the body at death

Once death separates the body from the soul, the body disintegrates and the soul continues it’s journey. The soul enters a temporary interim period when the righteous souls rest comfortably and the unjust souls get some taste of their evil deeds. So, all the human souls who have passed away, are currently living through this interim period in their eternal journey.

The arrival of the Judgement Day

The interim period will end with the arrival of Judgment Day when Allah will recreate physical bodies of all humans. In fact, Allah will give different parts of human body the ability to communicate. Human bodies will act as witnesses against human actions during their life on the earth. Consequently, Hands will witness about the actions they were used for, legs will witness where they were lead to. Allah, as the All Knowing Creator, knows about all deeds and actions even before they are carried out. For the sake of fairness during judgment, the human body will be asked to be a material witness for their actions.

The eternal journey of the soul.

The eternal journey of the soul

In due time, the Day of Judgement comes to an end. Then the souls will continue their journey to the eternity. Finally, their state of happiness or sadness will depend on whether their good deeds outweigh their bad deeds and whether their bad deeds receive Divine Mercy and Forgiveness. The power of ultimate forgiveness belongs only to God. As His creation, Muslims believe in Allah’s infinite mercy and in His power of forgiveness.

Quran 6:12- “…To whom belongs whatever is in the heavens and earth?” Say, “To Allah.” He has decreed mercy upon Himself….”

The Divine Mercy

To summarize, the highest hope for the Divine Mercy leads Muslims to do good towards all creations, try to avoid sinful acts and seek Allah’s forgiveness and Mercy throughout their lives.

Allah Knows the best

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