Therefore, we questioned every sort of creature from every corner of the cosmos and whatever was questioned, from the particles to the stars in the First Stopping-Place, and from the creation of the heavens and the earth to the individual features in faces in the Second Stopping-Place, everything demonstrated through the tongue of its being the seal of unity; everything testified that God is One.
You saw this for yourself. There is, then, nothing in any of the creatures in the universe on which the possibility of God having any partners could be constructed. That is to say, since to claim that God does have partners is purely arbitrary and meaningless and is an ‘abstract claim’, it is pure ignorance and unqualified stupidity.
Thus, nothing remained for the representative of the people of misguidance to say in the face of this. The only thing he could say was: “What indicates that God has partners is the configuration of causes in the cosmos. It is that everything is tied to a cause. So that means that causes have an actual effect, and if they have an effect, are not they able to be God’s partners?”
The Answer: Effects have been tied to causes because Divine will and wisdom require them to be so, and so that great numbers of the Divine Names may be manifested. Everything has been tied to a cause, but we have decisively proved in numerous places, including many of the Words, that “causes have no actual power with which to create their effects.” So, for now we shall just say this:
Among causes human beings are self-evidently the most superior, and have the greatest power of choice and the most extensive ability to control and direct other causes. And among the most obvious of man’s actions over which he exercises choice are eating and the powers of speech and thought. Furthermore, all these faculties are extremely well-ordered, wonderful, and purposeful chains. But of the hundred links in these chains only one is subject to man’s power of choice.
For example, in the chain of actions concerning food, which stretches from the nourishment of the body’s cells to the forming of fruit, only moving the jaw and chewing the food is subject to man’s choice. And in the chain of speech, only exhaling air and blowing it into the mould of articulated letters. And while a word in the mouth is a seed, it becomes like a tree; in the air it yields the fruits of millions of the same word and enters the ears of listeners along with millions of others. Man’s imagination can barely reach this metaphorical shoot, so how should the short arm of choice reach it?
Since among causes man is the most superior and has the greatest power of choice and yet his hands are thus tied from real creation, how should other causes, such as inanimate creatures, animals, the elements, and nature have any real power of disposal over other causes? Each of those causes is