Or is it that the Unseen is in their hands, and they write it down?1
Or, like Buddhists, who claim to be familiar with the Unseen, or the pseudo-intellectuals, who imagine their conjectures about its affairs to be certain, does what you said about the Unseen not appeal to them? That means they imagine that the World of the Unseen, which is disclosed to no one apart from the Divine Messengers, who receive revelation, and which no one has the ability to enter, is present and laid open before them, and that they obtain information from it and write it down. So do not be disheartened by the lies of these arrogant braggarts who have overstepped their mark to an infinite degree! For in a short while your truths will completely overturn their imaginings!
Or do they intend a plot [against you]? But those who defy God are themselves involved in a plot! 2
Or, like two-faced dissemblers and cunning atheists whose natures are corrupted and consciences rotted, do they want to deceive the people and turn them away from the guidance which they cannot obtain, to trick them, and so call you either a soothsayer, or possessed, or a sorcerer? Do they want to make others believe what they do not believe themselves? Don’t think of these insidious charlatans as human beings, don’t be saddened at their wiles and denials, and lose heart. Rather, increase your efforts! For they only deceive their own souls and harm themselves. And their successes in evil are temporary; it is a Divine stratagem, drawing them to perdition by degrees.
Or have they a god other than God? Exalted is God far above the things they associate with Him!3
Or, like the Magians, who imagined two separate gods called the Creator of Good and the Creator of Evil, or like the idolators and worshippers of causes, who attribute a sort of godhead to different causes and imagine each of them to be a source of support for them, do they rely on other gods and contest you? Do they consider themselves free of any need of you? That means they have become blind and do not see the perfect order and flawless harmony throughout the universe, which is as clear as day. For in accordance with the decree,
Were there gods other than God in the heavens and the earth, there surely would have been confusion in both,4
if there are two headmen in a village, or two governors in a town, or two kings in a country, order is turned upside down and harmony spoilt. But from a fly’s wing to the lamps in the heavens, such a fine order has been observed that it leaves not so much space as a fly’s wing for partners to be