Chapter 12 : Chapter On Attribute of Essence (sifat Al-dhdhat) of Allah H 284, Ch. 12, H 1

Ali ibn Ibrahim has narrated from Muhammad ibn Khalid al-Tayalisi from Safwan ibn Yahya from ibn Maskan from abu Basir who has said the following.

"I heard abu 'Abdallah (a.s.) saying, 'The Exalted, the Glorious, Allah, our Lord, is Eternal. Knowledge is His self even if there is nothing to be known. Hearing is His self even if there is nothing to be heard. Seeing is His-self even when there is nothing to be seen. Power is His self even if there is nothing to feel the power.

When He brought things into existence the perceptible objects became the objects of His knowledge, His hearing applied to audible objects, His seeing to visible objects and His power to the objects that feel power.'"

Abu Basir adds; "I further asked, 'Has Allah always been in motion?" He replied, "Allah is High Exalted above that. Motion is an attribute that is created through action."

I asked, "Did Allah always have the ability to speak?" He replied, " Speech is a created attribute and not an eternal one. Allah, the Majestic, the Glorious, existed when there was nothing able to speak."

H 285, Ch. 12, h 2

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Muhammad ibn al-Husayn from ibn abu 'Umayr from Hisham ibn Salim from Muhammad ibn Muslim who has said the following.

"I heard abu Ja'far (a.s.) saying, 'Allah, to Whom belong Might and Majesty, existed when nothing else existed. He eternally knows whatever comes into being. His knowledge of things before their coming into existence and afterwards is exactly the same.'"

H 286, Ch. 12, h 3

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Muhammad ibn al-Husayn from Safwan ibn Yahya from al-Kahili who has said the following.

"I wrote to abu al-Hassan (al-Kazim) (a.s.), praising Allah in my letter as, 'All praise belongs to Allah to the limit of His knowledge.'" He wrote back to me, "Do not say, "To the limit of His knowledge because there is no limit to His knowledge. Instead say, "All praise belongs to Allah to the limit of His pleasure."

H 287, Ch. 12, h 4

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Sa'd ibn 'Abdallah from Muhammad ibn 'Isa from Ayyub ibn Nuh, who wrote to abu al-Hassan (al-Thalith (a.s.) asking him about Allah, the Majestic, the Glorious.

"Did He know all things before creating and giving them being, or did He not know until He brought them into existence or until He willed their creation and existence? Did Allah come to know what He created during the process of their creation and what He originated during their being originated?"

The Imam wrote in reply in his own handwriting, "Eternally Allah has had full knowledge of all things, before as well as after their creation."

H 288, Ch. 12, h 5

Ali ibn Muhammad has narrated from Sahl ibn Ziyad from Ja'far ibn Muhammad ibn Hamzah who has said the following.

"I wrote to the man (Imam (a.s.), 'Your followers differ about the knowledge of Allah. There are those who say that before creating all things Allah had eternally full knowledge of them. Others say that we should not say so because His knowing is like His action.

If we prove that His Knowledge is eternal we have also established another thing eternal along with Him. May Allah take my soul in service for your cause, if you would consider it proper, kindly enlighten me in this issue so that I would have a firm stand and do not waver therefrom."

He wrote in his own handwriting, "Eternally Allah , the Most Holy, the Most High has had the Knowledge of all things."

?? and Allah's Positive Attributes such as His knowledge are the same as His Essence without any duality between His Essence and His Positive Attributes).' "

H 289, Ch. 12, h 6

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad from al-Husayn ibn Sa'id from al-Qasim ibn Muhammad from 'Abd al-Samad ibn Bashir from Fudayl ibn Sukkarah who has said the following.

"I asked abu Ja'far (a.s.), 'May Allah take my soul in service for your cause, if you would consider it proper please enlighten me about whether Allah, Majestic is Whose face, had knowledge of His Oneness before He brought the creation into existence?

Your followers differ on this issue. There are those who believe that Allah did have knowledge of His Oneness before He created anything. Others say His knowledge is His action.

Thus, now Allah has come to know that before He created things there had been nothing besides He Himself. They say that if we believe in the eternal knowledge of Allah of His Oneness, we have established another thing eternal along with Him.

If you would consider it proper please enlighten me in this issue so I may not waver here and there." He wrote, "Allah, the Blessed and Exalted has always had the Knowledge of all things." (See Hadith No. 294 - 53)

Chapter 13 : Another Chapter of The Previous Chapter H 290, Ch. 13, h 1

Ali ibn Ibrahim has narrated from Muhammad ibn 'Isa ibn 'Ubayd from Hammad from Hariz from Muhammad ibn Muslim from abu Ja'far (a.s.) who has said the following about being eternal.

"He, Allah, is One, the Self-sufficient. He is One and only One without any multiplicity in different meaning." The narrator said that I further inquired, "May Allah take my soul in your service, certain people in Iraq think,

that Allah hears with something different from what He sees with, and He sees with something different from what He hears with." The Imam replied, "They have said a lie and have become atheists for considering Allah similar to other things.

Allah, the Most High, indeed is above all things. He is All-hearing and All-seeing. He hears with what He sees, and sees with what He hears." The narrator has said that he further asked, "Those people are also of the opinion that Allah is All-seeing in the same sense and in the same way as they perceive." The Imam said, "Allah is High Exalted above all such things. Only such things are perceived, which has the attributes of created things. Allah is not created."

H 291, Ch. 13, h 2

Ali ibn Ibrahim has narrated from his father from al-'Abbass ibn 'Amr from Hisham ibn al- Hakam, who about the debate with an atheist (see Hadith No.225 - 6), has said the following. "He asked Imam abu 'Abdallah (a.s.), 'Do you say that He is All-hearing and All-seeing?' Abu 'Abdallah said, "Allah is All-hearing, All-seeing.

He hears without any organ and sees without any instrument. He Himself hears and He Himself sees. When I say He Himself hears I do not mean thereby that He is One and His self is something different. I only try to express what I have in my mind to answer a question and help you understand the answer. So I say, "His whole self hears. This does not mean that His whole has parts.

In our perception whole consists of parts. It is to make you understand and express my thoughts. It all amounts to saying that He is All-hearing, All-seeing, All-knowing and All-aware, without any multiplicity in the meaning."