Can it be proved with certainty that the Holy Quran is true in its claim that God reveals some aspects of the unseen to those whom He chooses? Can it be shown to the sceptic that the faith in the unseen is not merely an illusion or wishful thinking, but is founded on reality and can be rationally demonstrated? Answers to these questions have to be fully supported by factual and scientific evidence. This exactly is the purpose of this treatise and the reader will find ample proof of the validity of revelation as a dependable means of the transfer of knowledge in the following chapters.
In accordance with the message delivered in Surah Al-Hijr verse 22 (Chapter 15), man's horizon is forever expanding; the unknown is forever being transferred into the known. This realization creates an unquenchable thirst for the quest of knowledge. It is a message of hope and pride, as well as a lesson in humility.
The message of humility relates to the ever-growing awareness of man of his knowledge being so small by comparison to what he does not know, as though it were a mere dot or less than that on the endlessly vast canvas of eternity. What we know today is perhaps a billion times more than what we knew a thousand years ago. What we shall know a thousand years from now, may well be a billion times greater than what we know today. Yet even that would be insignificantly small when compared to the limitless unseen treasure-house of God's knowledge.
As the voyage of discovery accelerates its pace, the limitations of the five senses become more apparent. Vast spectra of life and sound exist beyond the reach of our normal perception. If we could improve our ability to perceive them, we would see many new colours and hear many new sounds. Again the colours and shapes of things we see are viewed very differently by some other animals. The vision of the material world, the perception of colour, smell and taste, differ so much from species to species that every reality turns into a relative reality. This does not, however, result in functional failure in the vast animal kingdom. Perceptional differences promote life and its functions at all levels, rather than impede them. The different visual perceptions of vultures, honey-bees and squids are perfectly suited to their respective requirements. Squids and insects see things in different configurations as compared to humans, because it is essential for their survival to perceive them as either much bigger or much smaller than they actually are. So the faculty of perception varies from species to species. But the human eye does not remain confined within its potentials. Aided by the most advanced electronic devices, man's perception has advanced by astronomical proportions.
This article is excerpted with permission from Revelation, Rationality, Knowledge and Truth