Maulana Wahiduddin Khan | Speaking Tree Website | March 06, 2017
One of the three astronauts who traveled in the Apollo 15 American spacecraft was Colonel James Irwin. He later described the magic of that moment, in August 1972, when he set foot on the moon. It was an ecstatic experience, he said, to feel oneself in God’s presence, to feel so close to Him that His greatness appeared before one’s eyes. Colonel Irwin did not look on his voyage to the moon as a voyage of mere scientific discovery; it had given him new spiritual life as well.
Colonel Irwin’s experience was not a unique one, for in truth all that God has created is so wonderful that one has only to gaze upon it to become lost in the wonders of what He has fashioned. The face of the Creator shines continually in the perfection of his creation. But by observing the world around us from an early age we become accustomed to it; we take it so much for granted that we fail to perceive its uniqueness. Wind and water, trees and birds – all the wonders of nature are a mirror of perfection, reflections of the beauty of the Lord. But we are too familiar with them to realize how extraordinary they are. Only in unfamiliar circumstances, such as when a man sets foot on the moon, does one wake up to the wonders of the world; only then does the sight of the spectacles of creation arouse in one an awareness of the presence of the Creator. But we too can experience God’s presence, like Colonel Irwin did, just by observing the world around us. The trouble is that people do not look on the world with true wonderment, the way someone on the moon for the first time is awestruck by the spectacle that meets his eye. If we were to look with the same awe on this world, then we would live on earth as if we were in God’s presence; we would continually see Him, feel Him, all around us, and act as if we knew that He was watching over us.
When we behold a magnificent machine for the first time, we immediately become aware of the skill of its manufacturer. In the same way, if we observe the world, and ponder over the wonders it contains, then the Creator Himself will appear before us; we will gaze on creation and see there the face of the Lord.
The moon was a new sight for Colonel Irwin. That is why, struck by its magnificence, he was able to experience there the presence of God. In order to see God in His creation, we too have to look at
everything – not as old and familiar – but new and exciting; we have to look at things as if we are seeing them for the first time. There is no greater discovery than the discovery of God, no greater realization than to feel Him everywhere. When this realization is awakened, then everything becomes a reflection of His glory. The sunshine will portray His light, the trees His beauty. One will feel His gentle touch in the winds as they caress one’s body. As one prostrates oneself before Him, it will be as though one has cast oneself at His feet. God is, indeed, everywhere, but only those who are blessed with vision can behold Him.