God consciousness (Taqwa) in Islam
[ January 01, 2016 ]
When the word fear is used in an Islamic context it refers to taqwa or being God conscious. Taqwa is a central concept that we find running through the passages of the holy Quran especially in the verses that deal with individual behavior and social relations. Some of the common translations of taqwa in English are piety, heeding or being God fearing. Each of these only gives a partial meaning for taqwa.
Better for a god conscious muslim to define it is as an attitude which combines elements of caution, God fearing and above all being God conscious.The first benefit of having the moral quality of being God conscious (having taqwa) is guidance. In the second chapter of the holy Quran it says that the holy Quran is guidance for those who are god conscious. Many people read holly scriptures but do not benefit from them because their hearts are not receptive and they are not God conscious. Secondly, the holy Quran mentions God consciousness as something that helps us have proper vision, wisdom and knowledge. An example of this is found in a beautiful verse in the holy Quran (8:29) “O ye who believe! If ye fear Allah, He will grant you a criterion (to judge between right and wrong), remove from you (all) evil (that may afflict) you, and forgive you: for Allah is the Lord of grace unbounded.” Similarly, the holy Quran mentions that knowledge and vision is related to taqwa “Be God conscious and the Almighty Allah will increase your knowledge wisdom.” Third, the Quran mentions piety as one of the preconditions for the blessing of ease and a way out of problems and tribulations in life in (65:4) “or those who fear Allah, He will make their path easy.”
There is no wonder that the holy Quran constantly mentions the quality of God consciousness as something which is very essential and that one should not die without being in the state of submission to the will of the Almighty Allah as this is something that one should take as a provision for the eternal journey .If this quality spread among people there would be perfect peace.
Then in the following verse it also says “If any one fears Allah, He will remove his ills, from him, and will enlarge his reward.” Fourthly, God consciousness is mentioned in the holy Quran as a prerequisite for forgiveness of our sins. For example the holy Quran says “Whoever is God conscious God will forgive his sins and give him/her an abundant reward.” Fifth, God consciousness is a precondition for receiving mercy in the holy Quran “My mercy includes everything so I will grant it to those who are God conscious.” It is also related to ultimate victory in chapter 7 in the Quran “The ultimate destiny is for those who are God conscious.” Finally, taqwa is related to ultimate bliss not only in this life but in the hereafter. An example from the holy Quran “Truly those who are close to God there is no fear on them and they should not greave, including those who believe and practice God consciousness. To them is the good tiding in this life and hereafter.” There is no wonder that the holy Quran constantly mentions the quality of God consciousness as something which is very essential and that one should not die without being in the state of submission to the will of the Almighty Allah as this is something that one should take as a provision for the eternal journey .If this quality spread among people there would be perfect peace.
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