Explanations of the three questions asked by the former teacher (hoja) are to be found in various parts of the Risale-i Nur. For now we shall just make brief allusion to them.
H i s F i r s t Q u e s t i o n : Muhyi’l-Din al-‘Arabi said in his letter to Fakhr al-Din Razi: “To know God is different to knowing that He exists.” What does this mean and what did he intend by saying it?
Firstly: In the introduction to the Twenty-Second Word, which you read to him, the comparison and example showing the difference between the true affirmation of divine unity and its superficial affirmation point to what was intended. While the Second and Third Stopping-Places of the Thirty-Second Word and its Aims, elucidate it.
And secondly: Muhyi’l-Din al-‘Arabi said that to Fakhr al-Din Razi, who was a leading authority on theology, because the explications of the tenets of belief and the existence of the Necessary Existent and divine unity offered by the authoritative scholars of the principles of religion and theology were insufficient in his view.
Yes, the knowledge of God gained through theology does not afford a complete knowledge and a complete sense of the divine presence. However, when gained through the method of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, it affords both complete knowledge and a total sense of the divine presence. God willing, all the parts of the Risale-i Nur perform the duty of an electric lamp on that light-filled highway of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition.
Furthermore, however deficient in Muhyi’l-Din al-‘Arabi’s view the knowledge of God was that Fakhr al-Din Razi obtained by means of theology, the knowledge of God attained on the Sufi way is similarly deficient in relation to the knowledge obtained through the legacy of prophethood directly from the All-Wise Qur’an. For in order to attain a constant sense of the divine presence, the way of Muhyi’l-Din al-‘Arabi said: “There is no existent save He,” going so far as to deny the existence of the universe. As for the others, again to gain a constant sense of the divine presence, they said: “There is none witnessed save He,” entering a strange state as though casting the universe into absolute oblivion.
However, the knowledge of God obtained from the All-Wise Qur’an affords a constant sense of the divine presence, but it neither condemns the universe to non-existence, nor imprisons it in absolute oblivion. It rather releases it from its purposelessness and employs it in Almighty God’s