Let us now try to understand the Allah revealed by Muhammad (saw) in the chapter al-Ikhlas, and see if Allah correlates with the god-concept in our minds…
KUL HU ALLAHU AHAD: Say: ALLAH is AHAD. Allah is the infinite, limitless and indivisible ONENESS.
ALLAHU SAMAD: Allah is SAMAD. Allah is the Absolute Self-Sufficient One, beyond any need or defect. Nothing can enter Him and nothing, no other form of existence, can come out from Him. Allah cannot be conceptualized!
LEM YELID: He begets not. No other form of existence has ever originated from Him, thus, there is no other.
LAM YULAD: Nor was he begotten. There is no other god or form of existence from which He could have originated.
LAM YAKUN LAHU KUFUWAN AHAD: There is none like unto Him. Nothing in the micro or macro planes of existence is equivalent or in resemblance of Him. He is AHAD.
All teachings pertaining to religion begin with the question: What is Allah?
Some answer this question by explaining the god they have created in their heads, and some by referring to the Allah disclosed by Muhammad (saw).
Since we are trying to delineate this topic according to the Allah taught by Muhammad (saw) let’s try and understand the teachings imparted to us by Muhammad (saw) in regards to who and what Allah really is. So that we can clearly see that Allah has nothing to do with the concept of god with which we have been indoctrinated for ages.
The AHAD ALLAH taught to us by Muhammad (saw) is:
Therefore, the One denoted by the name Allah, who is Ahad, is the possessor of the attributes above. That is:
The One denoted by the name Allah is AHAD…
The One denoted by the name Allah is HAYY; limitless, infinite, indivisible LIFE!
The One denoted by the name Allah is ALEEM; limitless, infinite, indivisible KNOWLEDGE.
The One denoted by the name Allah is MUREED; dimensional, limitless, infinite, indivisible WILL.
The One denoted by the name Allah is QADIR; limitless, infinite, indivisible POWER.
The One denoted by the name Allah is SAMI; limitless, infinite, indivisible PERCEIVER.
The One denoted by the name Allah is BASIR; limitless, infinite, indivisible, the only EVALUATOR.
The One denoted by the name Allah is KALIM; limitless, infinite, indivisible totality of MEANINGS.
It is imperative that we understand that all of these Names and their compositions, be it Ahad and Hayy; Aleem and Mureed; or Hayy and Qadir, all point to the same and only ALLAH.
That is, all of these expressions pertain to the same unique BEING. They are merely different compositional qualities and attributes of the same ONE.
Allah, as revealed by Muhammad (saw) is such a One that He is beyond concepts such as beginning and end; He is infinite, limitless and indivisible, He possesses infinite meanings, and illimitable will, He is infinite power, there is no other than Him, He has no inner or outer, no core or center. In short, Allah is AHAD, the ONE!
In attempt to prevent a common misunderstanding among those who may not be familiar with this topic, I’d like to make the following clarification. In various places in the Quran, the word ilah (god) is mentioned, such as our god or your god, immediately after which it is stated that this god is Allah. In this case, it is natural for one to think Allah is a god. However, these kinds of statements are for those who believe in the god concept. Just like the warning Allah does not sleep is an answer given to those who believe in a god that sleeps. In other words, it is telling them:
The god you believe in does not exist. It is only Allah that exists. Your god, our god, is one and only; it is Allah alone!
All of this is to help rid people from their god illusion and to recognize ALLAH.
Indeed, if one studies the Quran properly, one may see that such warning have always come addressing the dualists (mushrikun), who fragment the One Reality by worshipping gods they assume outside of ALLAH, in order to guide them back to the unity of ALLAH.