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  • 5/8/2012

Letter of Imam Khomeini to Mikhail Gorbachev

part 2


The Holy Qur'an reprobates the fundamentals of materialistic thought and, addressing those who say: "We shall never believe in thee until we see God manifestly,"7 proclaims: "Vision comprehends Him not, and He comprehends all vision; and He is the Knower of subtleties, the Aware."8 I should not like to present here Qur'anic arguments concerning Divine Revelation, Prophethood and the Resurrection which rom your point of view are debatable. In fact, I do not wish to entangle you in the twists and turns of philosophical arguments, particularly those of Islamic philosophy. I will content myself by presenting one or two simple, intuitive examples of which even politicians can avail themselves.

It is self-evident that matter, whatever its nature, has no awareness of self. Consider a stone statue: each side is ignorant of the other side, whereas human beings and animals, we clearly observe, are aware of their surroundings. They know where they are and are aware of what goes on around them. There must be, then, an element in men and animals that transcends mater and is separate rom it, living beyond the life of matter. Intrinsically, man seeks to atain absolute perfection. He strives, as you well know, for absolute power over the world; he is not attached to any power that is defective. If he has the entire world at his command, he naturally feels inclined to have command of another world once he is informed of its existence. No mater how learned a person may be if he learns of some other branch of knowledge, he naturally feels inclined to atain mastery of that branch of knowledge as well. Therefore, there must be some Absolute Power and Absolute Knowledge to which man is attached. It is God we all seek although we may not be aware of it. Man strives to attain Absolute Truth, so that he may be annihilated in God. Basically, the desire for eternal life that is inherent in every individual is proof of the existence of an Eternal World to which destruction cannot ind its way.

Should Your Excellency desire further information on these maters, you may command those scholars of yours who are well-versed in this ield to study, in addition to the works of Western philosophers, the writings of Peripatetic9 philosophers, al-FarabT10 and Avicenna," peace be upon them. It will then become clear that the law of causation on which all knowledge depends is a rational, not sensible law.

Likewise, perception of general laws and concepts on which all reasoning rests is reached not by means of sensory experience but through rational argument.12 Your scholars may further refer to the IshraqT13 theosophy of SuhrawardT,14 and explain to you that the flesh, as well as any other material thing, is in need of Pure Light which has no material entity, that man's witnessing of his own truth does not take place by means of any sense organ. You may also have the scholars familiarize themselves with Transcendental philosophy16 of Mulla Sadra17 (may Allah be pleased with him and resurrect him with the prophets and the pious), so that it may become clear that the nature of knowledge is different rom the nature of mater and that intellect, far removed rom mater, cannot be restricted by the laws governing mater.

I won't tire you further by mentioning the works of mystics, in particular MuhyT'd-DTn ibn al-'ArabT.18 If you wish to make yourself acquainted with the doctrines of this celebrated mystic, send a number of your brilliant scholars, who are well-versed in this ield, to Qun'9 so that, by reliance on God, they may, ater a couple of years, glimpse the depth of the delicate stages of gnosis,20 which will be impossible for them to acquire without making such a journey.


The Supreme Leaders View of the Majlis

Imam Khomeini (r.a) and the Majlis

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