Thus, while the human being is an individual, because of the comprehensiveness of his nature, his universal consciousness, and all-embracing imagination, he is like a species. A law that governs and is in force in the species is also in force in the human individual. Since the All-Glorious Creator has created man as a comprehensive mirror, for universal worship, and with an exalted nature, even if the spirit-truth which is present in each individual causes the individual’s outer form to change hundreds of thousands of times, with the Sustainer’s permission, it will not die but will continue, departing as it came. In which case, at God’s command and with His permission and through His making it permanent, the human individual’s spirit, which is the conscious element and living part of him, is immortal.
• FOURTH SOURCE: Consider the laws that govern in species, which to a degree resemble the spirit, and since they both issue from the World of the Divine Command and Will, with regard to their source, are to a degree appropriate for the spirit, and only lack a perceptible existence. Study them and it will be seen that if those commanding laws were clothed in external existence, each of them would become the spirit of the species. And the laws are always permanent; they are always perpetual and constant. No change or transformation affects the laws’ unity, or spoils them.
For example, should a fig-tree die and be dispersed, the law of its formation, which is like its spirit, will continue in its tiny seeds; it will not die. And so, since even the most commonplace and weak commanding laws are thus connected to permanence and continuance, the human spirit must be connected not only with permanence and immortality, but with all eternity. For according to the Qur’an’s glorious decree of:
Say: The Spirit (comes) by command of my Sustainer,1
spirit too is a conscious and living law which has come from the World of the Divine Command, and which Pre-Eternal power has clothed with external existence. That is to say, just as the unconscious laws which proceed from the Divine attribute of will and the World of the Divine Command are always, or mostly, enduring, so is it even more definite that the spirit, which is a sort of brother to them, and like them is a manifestation of the attribute of will and comes from the World of the Command, manifests immortality. It is also more worthy of it, because it is existent, it has an external reality. And it is more potent, more elevated, because it possesses consciousness. It is also more enduring than them, and more valuable, because it is living.