Q. Assalamualaikum I am Adam Khan, I am a Mechanical Engineer by Profession. First, I congratulate you for the beautiful speech you had delivered. Now my question is, ‘Water’ is called by different names in different languages – Like in English as ‘Water’, the Hindi as ‘Pani’, in Tamil as ‘Tanni’ – Similarly if God is either called ‘Ram’ or ‘Jesus’ – it is not one and the same ?

A. (Dr. Zakir): The brother had posed a question that – ‘Water’ in different languages can be called as ‘Water’ in English, ‘Pani’ in Hindi, ‘Tanni’ in Tamil – Similiarly God is one – Can we not call him by ‘Ram’ or ‘Jesus’, etc. (Peace be upon him)? I mentioned in my talk, the Holy Qur’an says, in Surah Isra, Chapter No. 17, Verse No. 110… (Arabic)…‘Say call upon Him by ‘Allah’ or by ‘Rehmaan’ by whichever name you call upon him, to Him belongs the most beautiful names’ You can call Allah Subhana Wa Taala  by any name, but it should be a beautiful name, and it should not conjure a mental picture – It should contain the qualities of Almighty God. And the same message in repeated in Surah Taha, Chapter No. 20, Verse No. 8, in Surah Araf, Chapter No. 7, Verse No.180, as well as in Surah Al Hashr Chapter 59, Verse No. 24 which says… ‘To Allah belongs the most beautiful names’. You can call him by any name, but it should not conjure up a mental picture. Regarding your question that ‘Water’ is called by different names in different languages – and I know about it  – In English its called as ‘Water’ in Hindi as ‘Pani’, in Tamil as ‘Tanni’ in Arabic its called as ‘Mayae’, in Surah Al Ambiya, Chapter 21, Verse No.30, In Sanskrit its called as ‘Apah’, – in Bhagwat Gita, Chapter No. 7, Verse No. 4. In shudh Hindi it’s called as in ‘Jal’, In Gujrati as ‘Jal’ or ‘Pani’, in Marathi ‘Pani’, It’s called as in Kannad, its called as ‘Nir’, in Telugu as ‘Nirr’ and Malayalam is ‘Vellum’. Various languages you can call. I gave you only 10 examples – Qur’an gives 99 attributes to Allah Subhana Wa Taala. But there is no objection if you call ‘Water’ in any language, as long as it is water – in any language. But it should be water – it should not be something else. For example, if suppose someone comes and tells me that… ‘I have been advised by my friend that – every day in the morning, I should have one glass of  ‘Pani’. I know ‘Pani’ means water So I understand what he saying. But then he continues… ‘But when I have that one glass of pani, I feel like vomiting’ I ask him why do you feel like vomiting? So he tells me… ‘because the water stinks –  It is yellowish in colour. Later I realized that what he is talking is not ‘Paani’, it is ‘Urine’. So somebody told him that you have one glass of urine – But the name he gave was ‘Pani’. So you now call water by ‘pani’, ‘tani’, ‘maya’ ‘apa’, ‘pani’ no problem – but it should be ‘water’. You can call ‘water’ by any name – but anything else besides  ‘water’,  neither can you call it ‘water’, neither can you call it ‘pani’, neither can you call it ‘tanni’, neither can you call it ‘Mayae’.  ‘Water’ as ‘water’ you can call – But ‘something else’ as ‘water’, you can’t call. People may think that what an ‘illogical example – even an ignorant person can make out the difference between Urine and water. Only a fool will not know the difference between urine and water. And I agree with him, that ‘even an ignorant person knows the difference between urine and water’. Similarly those people who know the concept of Almighty God, the correct concept – they say that ‘these people who worship false gods, they are not only ignorant, they are foolish. Can’t they differentiate between a true God and a false God? You give it any name, but if it’s a true God, you can give it the name of God. If its not a true God, you are giving false god, the name of God – Aren’t they foolish?.- They are foolish. For example, if you want to buy some gold – If there’s a person who comes and wants to sell his gold jewelry to you, and he says, ‘this is 24 Carat Sona’. You know that ‘Sona’ in Hindi, means ‘Gold’ – In Arabic, it is ‘Zahaba’- You know it very well. But even after knowing that ‘Sona’ in Hindi is for ‘Gold’, yet you will not just buy it like that – You will verify whether the ‘Sona’, what he is calling ‘24 Carat Sona’, – is it actually 24 Carat Gold or not? You will not just buy it off. What will you do? You will go to a goldsmith, and verify whether it is actually ‘24 Carat Sona’ or not. And after verifying with the ‘touchstone’ – you know I gave the example of ‘touchstone’ in my talk – he tells you ‘it is fake’. Though the Jewelry was glittering – But all that glitters is not gold. You will verify before buying the ‘Sona’, whether it is actually ‘Sona’ or not. Why? – Because you have to pay money for it. You Know – You do not want to loose – Because you know if you loose a thousand Rupees. …. or ten thousand Rupees. – It is precious. So why don’t you do the same, when anyone says ‘this is God? – You check it up with the touchstone. Which is the touchstone? – Surah Ikhlas, Chapter No. 112, Verse No. 1 to 4 which says… (Arabic)… ‘Say He is one and only’. (Arabic)…. Allah the Absolute and Eternal. (Arabic)… He begets not nor is He begotten.(Arabic…..) There is nothing like Him’. So anyone says ‘this is God’, you first check it up with the ‘touchstone’ whether actually He is God or not. If he fits in that definition, we have got no objection, accepting that person who they are calling as ‘Almighty God’. For example, suppose some lunatic – he says that ‘Muhammed (Peace be upon him) – he is Almighty God’. – A lunatic, if he says that. You know we Muslims we love our beloved Prophet Muhammed (Peace be upon him) – We love him – we will do anything for him – we obey him. Even the Non-Muslims – Michael H. Hart when he wrote a book on “Hundred most influential people in the world, – No. 1 he gave to the last and final messenger, Prophet Muhammed (Peace be upon him). Yet…. Yet- inspite of that, we use the touch stone – Surah Ikhlas. Though we respect him maximum, amongst all the human beings -yet, we check with the touchstone –  ‘Surah Ikhlas’. (Arabic)… ‘Say He is Allah, one and only’. Is Muhammed – one and only? (May Peace be upon him). Allah has sent several messengers he is not the only messenger. We agree, he is the last and final – But Qur’an says, we have to believe in all the messengers – do not differentiate in the belief of the messengers. Second is …(Arabic)…. ‘Allah the Absolute the Eternal’. We know that our beloved Prophet Muhammed (Peace be upon him), he was a great human being – But he was not Absolute and Eternal. He toiled, he worked hard – His biography tells us that, he was even stoned many times – he prayed to Almighty God. he was not absolute the Eternal.  Third test is (Arabic…) ‘He begets not, nor is He begotten’. We know that he was born in Mecca, he had a father and mother, by the name of Abdullah and Ameena – He had parents. He had children also – Fatima (may Allah be pleased with her), Ibrahim (may Allah may pleased with him) – he had. He was begotten and he also begetted. So he is not Allah Subhana Wa Taala for sure. Though we Muslims, we love our Prophet, we respect our Prophet, No Muslim in his true senses will ever say that Prophet Muhammed is Almighty God – Never! You know why? Because Allah Subhana Wa Taala has seen to it, that the Islamic creed, the ‘Shahadah’ says…. (Arabic)… ‘There is no God but Allah, and Prophet Muhammed is the messenger of Allah’. We say this 5 times a day, minimum – In the ‘Adhan’, In the ‘Iqamah’, before ‘Salah’, we always say ‘There is no God but Allah and Prophet Muhammed (Peace be upon him), is the messenger of Allah’ – He is the servant of Allah. To see to it – No one however much you may love, he may not equate him to Allah Subhana Wa Taala. So whoever you are saying is ‘Almighty God’, you use the touchstone – Whether it be Jesus,  whether it be Ram, whether it be Krishna, whether it be  Buddha, whether it be  Mahavir – use the touchstone – I have given you the touchstone. On the day of the judgement, I can give ‘Shahadah’ to Allah Subhana Wa Taala that the thousands of people that were present here, I showed them how to use the touchstone. Now the God that you worship… the God that you worship – you apply this formula of ‘touchstone’ to that God. If it passes the touchstone, even I agree, He is Almighty God. If it does not pass, then you cannot call him God at all – Hope that answers the question.

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