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Is it possible to attain perfection through any religion other than Islam?
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In order to clarify the answer to the above question, we must study certain arguments such as the reasons behind incompleteness and deficiency of other religions and the arguments supporting righteousness and superiority of Islam over other religions:

A) Deficiency of existing religions (other than Islam):


Before explaining the reasons for deficiency of existing religions in the world, we need to mention two points:
First point: When we talk of deficiency or incompleteness of other religions, we do not actually mean that whatever exists in those religions is false and void and that no true statement or premise is found in them. In fact, we mean to say that there are doctrines in those religions which are unacceptable and cannot reflect the entire image of reality.
Second point: In this short study, we will study the deficiencies of the world’s two most important religions i.e. Christianity and Judaism. The validity and value of other religions which are less popular and less credible will be known after we have examined the credibility of the two aforementioned religions.

Christianity


The arguments which prove that Christianity cannot be the entire image of truth are as follows:
1. Gospel is not mutawatir[1] and does not have an authentic chain of transmission:
Prophet Jesus (as) was from the children of Israel (Banu Israel); he spoke Hebrew and proclaimed prophethood in Bait al-Muqaddas (Jerusalem). The people of that city also spoke Hebrew and none but a few unknown people embraced his religion. However, a few people from Bait al-Muqaddas who knew Greek language dispersed in various cities of Asia Minor and called on people to accept Jesus’ religion. They wrote books in Greek language and then they handed the books over to the people of Greece and Rome telling them: Jesus said this and did that. Indeed, those who had seen Jesus and had witnessed his conducts and had heard him were settled in Palestine.

Gospel is not mutawatir[1] and does not have an authentic chain of transmission

They did not accept Jesus as prophet. They said the anecdotes or stories written in the name of Jesus were fabricated. Those who had accepted the scriptures and stories were people from distant places who had not been to Jerusalem nor had they seen Jesus or knew his language. Neither the writers refrained from writing those false stories nor did the readers ever try to reject them as false stories.

First point: When we talk of deficiency or incompleteness of other religions, we do not actually mean that whatever exists in those religions is false and void and that no true statement or premise is found in them. In fact, we mean to say that there are doctrines in those religions which are unacceptable and cannot reflect the entire image of reality.


For example, in the Gospel of Matthew, it is written that when Jesus was born, a few people from the Majusids came from the east and enquired: Where is the Jewish king who has just been born? We have seen his star in the east. The people did not show them the place of the king. All of a sudden, they saw the very star appearing and moving in the sky until it stopped over the place where Jesus was living. Then they learnt that he was living in that house. They wrote such a story in the Gospel, a story which is definitely fabricated. They were not afraid of the consequences of their act because they did not write the books in Hebrew to be understood by people of Jerusalem (Bait al-Muqaddas). They wrote it in Greek language for Greeks. We are certain that no astrologer is of the view that a star is born with the birth of every individual and that the star moves over his head. Neither Majusids believe in such a thing nor do the followers of any other religions.

The second reason indicating incompleteness of Christianity involves contradictions and distortions in the Gospel


As well, we say that ancient Christian scholars were not unanimous about crucifixion of Jesus. It is written in some versions of Gospel that Jesus was never crucified. In addition, if a person is killed in a city, the killing incident never remains hidden from public eye especially, if it is a public execution. However, since Gospel had been written in Greek and the Greeks were not living in Jerusalem to know about the death or execution of Jesus, the writers of Gospel wrote of their own free choice whatever they deemed expedient. They never cared about what they wrote. Three hundred years after Jesus, they set up an assembly of scholars who consulted about how to do away with the differences or discrepancies existing in the scriptures. They decided to choose four Gospels out of various copies of Gospels and to consider their materials as valid discarding the rest of the numerous copies. The fact that he was still alive was rejected and considered as unofficial. [2]

A third reason showing the incompleteness of Christianity is the inconsistency of Christian beliefs with the principles of logic and reason


2. The second reason indicating incompleteness of Christianity involves contradictions and distortions in Gospel. For further information, refer to “The Way to Prosperity” authored by Allamah Sha’rani[3], “Izhar al-Haq” by Fazel al-Hindi and “Quran wa Kitabhai Asmani Digar” authored by Shahid Hashemi Nejad.
3. A third reason showing the incompleteness of Christianity is the inconsistency of Christian beliefs with the principles of logic and reason. For example, they believe that God, the Son was incarnated; he is the one who takes responsibility for the sins and errors committed by others and he shall bear the pain of crucifixion as atonement for their sins. In the Gospel of John it is said that God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. Because God did not send His son to the world to govern it; He sent him so as to save the world through him. [4]

Judaism

When it comes to Judaism, it suffers from the same problem because, firstly, there are three versions of Torah:
1. The Hebrew version which is considered valid by Jews and Protestant scholars.
2. The Samaritan version which is considered valid according to Samaritans (an ethnic community from Bani Israel).
3. The Greek version which is considered valid by Christian scholars other than Protestants.
The Samaritan version includes only five books, the Book of Moses, Joshua and Judges as well as other Books of the Old Testament. The time duration and the distance between birth of Adam until Noah's Flood is 1656 years in the first version, 1307 in the second version and 1362 in the second version. Therefore, none of the three versions can be valid. In fact, one of them must be valid and authentic and it is not known which. [5]

Secondly, there are statements in Torah which are not acceptable to human reason. For example, God has been introduced as human being who walks, sings, tells lies and deceives others because he told Adam to “eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil because when you eat from it, you will certainly die” but Adam and Eve ate from that tree and they did not die but they got acquainted with good and evil. [6]
Another example is the story of God wrestling with Jacob. The story is mentioned in Torah. [7]

there are statements in Torah which are not acceptable to human reason. For example, God has been introduced as human being who walks, sings, tells lies and deceives others because he told Adam to “eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil because when you eat from it, you will certainly die” but Adam and Eve ate from that tree and they did not die but they got acquainted with good and evil. 

Islam


B) The Reason for Truthfulness and Superiority of Islam
1. Islam is a living, dynamic and eternal religion because the main miracle of Islam is the Quran which is the book of logic and knowledge. Unlike the prophets’ miracles which were tangible, the Quran is an intangible miracle. It is for the same reason that it is a living book, self-dependent and not reliant on the presence and life of the Prophet of Islam, peace be upon him and his family. That is why the miracle of Islam is everlasting and eternal.
In addition, the Quran keeps challenging all the people of the world telling them to produce a verse or a chapter similar to that of the Quran. This challenge proclaims the everlastingness of Islam:

“And if ye are in doubt as to what We have revealed from time to time to Our servant, then produce a Sura like thereunto.” [8]


2. The Quran has not been tampered with; it is a non-distorted book, a book in which no change of any form has taken place. Not only has God promised to safeguard it against any changes or alterations [9] but the Person of the Prophet (pbuh) attached special importance to memorizing the Quran. First of all, he ordered the scribes of revelation to write down the verses and chapters. Secondly, he and his companions continuously encouraged people to memorize the Quran. In the era of the Holy Prophet (pbuh), there were people who were known as memorizers of the Quran. Thirdly, they persuaded people to recite the Quran. That is, the words of the Quran should be recited with the verbal and oral characteristics as they have been revealed. It is not only reading and understanding the Quran that count but reciting it in the way it should be recited is also of paramount importance. [10]

The Quran has not been tampered with; it is a non-distorted book, a book in which no change of any form has taken place


All this has caused the Quran to remain immune to distortion.
3. The third way indicating the righteousness of Islam is the finality of the Prophet of Islam; because the religious texts of Islam [11] emphasize that the Prophet of Islam (pbuh) is the Last of All Prophets and that no other prophet will come after him.
In all human communities, the last instruction of a manager or employer should be enforced or put into practice. As the new instruction is put into practice, the previous instructions get automatically null and void.

The fourth point that has to be taken into consideration is the comprehensiveness of Islam as a complete religion with teachings covering various psychological, individual, social, material and spiritual aspects of man’s life


It is not mentioned in the religious scriptures of other religions that their prophet is the last prophet of God. In fact, there are glad-tidings and predictions regarding the coming of the Prophet of Islam (pbuh). [12] That is to say, they have implied that they are provisional.
4. The fourth point that has to be taken into consideration is the comprehensiveness of Islam as a complete religion with teachings covering various psychological, individual, social, material and spiritual aspects of man’s life. In order to get a precise understanding of the comprehensiveness of Islam and the superiority of the religious concepts of Islam, we must make a comparative study of the contents of the holy scriptures of Islam and other religions. In that case, the superiority and comprehensiveness of Islamic teachings in ideological subjects (monotheism and divine attributes), individual and social ethics, law, economy, politics, governance etc. will be made clear.

It is not mentioned in the religious scriptures of other religions that their prophet is the last prophet of God. In fact, there are glad-tidings and predictions regarding the coming of the Prophet of Islam (pbuh)


5. Fifth point: Among the existing religions in today’s world Islam is the only religion that has a living and reliable history. Not only have historians recorded the history of Islam but they have also recorded the details of the childhood period of the Prophet (pbuh) whereas other religions do not have a documented and reliable history. It is for the same reason that some Western thinkers maintain doubt if Prophet Jesus (as) was ever born and if it were not for Muslims’ Quran to mention the name of Jesus and those of other prophets, perhaps Christianity and Judaism as well as their prophets would not have been known to such a degree nor would they have been officially recognized in human societies. [13]

Among the existing religions in today’s world Islam is the only religion that has a living and reliable history. Not only have historians recorded the history of Islam but they have also recorded the details of the childhood period of the Prophet (pbuh)

[1] Reported by a significant, though unspecified, number of narrators at each level in the chain of narration, thus reaching the succeeding generation through multiple chains of narration leading back to its source.
[2] Sha’rani, Abul Hasan, The Way of Prosperity, p. 187 – 188, 197 – 221, Saduq Library Publications, third edition, Spring 1363 (1984).
[3] Ibid.
[4] Gospel of John, 3: 16-17
[5] The Way to Prosperity, 206, and 207.
[6] Bible, Genesis, Chapter II and III
[7] Ibid. Chapter 32 verse 25.
[8] Al-Baqarah: 23
[9] Al-Hijr: 9
[10] The Way to Prosperity, pp. 22, 24, 25, 215.
[11] Al-Ahzab, 40; Sahih al-Bukhari, vol.4, p. 250.
[12] The Way to Prosperity, pp. 226 – 241; Gospel of John, 14: 17 “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another 1aHelper, that He may be with you forever (his order and Shari’ah is not abrogated).
[13] Collections of Works, vol.16, p. 44.

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مَن شَرُفَت هِمَّتُهُ عَظُمَت قِيمَتُهُ.
He whose ambition is lofty his value is heightened.