TIS NOT EVEN A QUESTION
According to the 2011 Canadian census, nearly 8 million people or about a quarter of the Canadian population, have no religious affiliation. Compared to the 2001 census, this figure has increased by 16.5%.
This means that irreligiousness is fast spreading in our country, and more and more people are turning away from God. This could be due to a number of reasons, one of which is that people are not able to connect at a personal level with God.
Being Ahmadi Muslims, it is our responsibility to tell the world about the personal God. He is living still as He lived before, and He speaks to His people as He did before, and He shows miracles today as He did before.
With respect to this argument for the existence of God, many atheists make the argument that we cannot believe in God because we don’t see Him and thus we do not have evidence for His existence. This argument implies that seeing God with one’s eyes is the only sufficient type of evidence for God’s existence.
In many ways, this argument is self-defeating as there are many things in our world which we believe in even despite there being no direct way to “see” them. There are some things which we believe to exist based on different kinds of evidence. To insist that something exists only if we can verify it by a single certain sense is completely illogical and would be called madness in most cases. For example, to insist that the existence of an aroma or a fragrance be verified through sight would be madness, when we know that its existence must be verified through different senses, particularly the sense of smell in this case. Hence, the evidence for the existence of God comes to us through different senses and means. One of the most potent means of discovering God’s existence is through His Prophets, who give us a significant amount of that evidence.
In the Holy Quran, Allah says:
That is, “Eyes cannot reach Him but He reaches the eyes. And He is the Incomprehensible, the All-Aware”. [6:104] In other words, we ourselves cannot reach God; it is He who reaches out to us through His Prophets. He speaks to them, tells them things of the unseen, grants them prophecies, shows signs in their favour, destroys their enemies, and so on.
As individuals however, we can experience God through prayers. In his book, Ten Proofs for the Existence of God, Hazrat Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmood Ahmad (ra) writes, “When an individual supplicates to Him in a state of anxiety, God accepts their entreaties. And this is not specific to any particular period, rather it is true for all times” (p. 31-32). This is stated in the Holy Quran as well:
That is, “And when My servants ask thee about Me, say: ‘I am near. I answer the prayer of the supplicant when he prays to Me. So they should hearken to Me and believe in Me, that they may follow the right way’ [2:187].
The reality is that most people believe in God because their prayers are accepted. Technical proofs or arguments for God’s existence are not relatable for most people. Instead, it is this proof of a personal God which enables them to believe.
Atheists ask: How can you tell if prayers are being fulfilled or if it is just chance or co-incidence? Hazrat Mirza Basir-ud-Din Mahmood Ahmad (ra) responds to this question by pointing out that the Promised Messiah and Mahdi (as) proposed an empirical proof for the existence of God. Explaining this proof, he writes:
“He suggested a set of patients suffering from a serious malady ought to be selected and divided
into groups. One set of patients ought to be treated and cared for by doctors, whereas he would
pray for the second lot and from this it could be seen as to which patients made the better
recovery. What doubt can there be in such a test?” (Ten Proofs, p. 32-33)
This is just a hint of the irrefutable evidence that the Promised Messiah (as) has presented for the existence of God. Despite all this evidence, if atheists still seek more evidence, they are invited to find Him by praying directly to Him. Hazrat Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmood Ahmad (ra) explains that those people who have a sincere desire to find the truth should fall prostrate in prayer to God by saying:
“O’ God, if indeed You exist and if, as those who believe in You say, then You are possessed of
infinite power—then have mercy on me and guide me to Yourself, and fill my heart with faith
and belief so that I may not be left deprived” (Ten Proofs, p. 44)
Huzoor (ra) writes that if they do this for 40 days with sincerity and a pure heart, God will certainly guide them and He will manifest Himself to them.