In addition to all other normal conditions of man, ingrained in his nature, is the quest for a Transcendental Being for Whom there is a longing in his heart of hearts. The effect of this quest begins to be felt as soon as a child is born. As soon as it is born, it exhibits a spiritual characteristic which is that it leans towards its mother and entertains a natural affection for her. As its senses develop and the flower of its nature blooms, this attraction of love, which is inherent in it, begins to exhibit itself patently. It finds no comfort anywhere except in the lap of its mother. If it is separated from its mother and is put at a distance from her, its life becomes bitter, and though a heap of bounties may be placed before it, it finds its true comfort only in its mother’s lap and nowhere else. Then what is this attraction that it feels towards its mother?
In truth, it is the same attraction which is vested in a child’s nature for God. Every exhibition of affection by a person in fact proceeds from that very attraction, and the restlessness of a lover which a person experiences is in truth a reflection of that very love, as if he takes up diverse things and examines them in search for something that he has lost and whose name he has forgotten. A person’s love of property, or children, or wife, or his soul being drawn towards the song of a sweet-voiced singer, are in fact all in search of the lost Beloved. As man cannot perceive with his physical eyes the Imperceptible Being Who is latent in everyone like fire and yet is hidden from everyone, nor can he find Him through the exercise of his imperfect reason, he has been subject to many errors in his understanding of Him and through his errors he renders to others that which is His due. God Almighty has mentioned an excellent illustration in the Holy Qur’an that the world is like a great hall paved smooth with slabs of glass and a current of water flows underneath them which runs very fast. A person looking at the slabs of glass wrongly imagines them to be water also and is afraid of walking upon them as he would be afraid of walking upon water, though in reality, they are only glass but very clear and transparent. Thus, these great objects in heaven like the sun and the moon etc. are transparent like glass and are worshipped by mistake. Behind them, there is a Higher Power at work which is flowing swiftly like water. It is the mistake of those who worship created things that they attribute to the glass all this activity which is being manifested by the Power behind it.
Note: This excerpt is taken from the book “The Essence of Islam Vol 1 pages 137,138”
The original book can be free download here: