I so often speak to you about social and political matters important to Muslims in the world today. These are of extreme importance given the threat to Islam that secular materialism and decadent Western culture present to the right belief and practice of Islam in the world today. Today, though, I will speak again about the subject that is my greatest love, and that is to speak about Allah. I have spoken before about the unimaginable greatness of Allah. I would like to tell you a few more facts that illustrate His greatness is beyond even the widest parameters of our word ‘great’. Even when we say ‘greatest’ it is almost impossible for that word to go beyond human concepts of greatness, and somehow does not really approach the God concept of greatness. To get some grasp of greatness at the level of Godhood I often like to use the facts of modern science to give some clear objective measure to the very vague subjective concept of greatness.The last time I spoke about the greatness of Allah in relation to scientific facts I told you about how Allah had created 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (ten thousand billion billion) stars and solar systems that we can ‘see’ with telescopes and other scientific instruments. That gave some idea of Allah’s greatness on the largest scale, His created universe. Today I want to discuss Allah’s greatness at the other end of the scale the smallest rather than the largest. When Allah first brought the physical existence into being He did so out of nothingness. Before the material universe there was no space, no time, and no matter. When Allah Willed it His Created Light appeared at a point scientists call a singularity, a point so small it has no size at all. Allah transformed His Created Light into the smallest bits of matter we know of, the sub-atomic particles. They are called sub-atomic because they are smaller than atoms, and in fact three very special particles different make up all the different atoms. The three sub-atomic particles that make up everything in the physical existence, you, me, animals, plants, oceans, the Earth, and stars are called protons, electrons and neutrons. They are like the most basic building blocks which are used to make up all the things which Allah desires to have in His physical universe.
Since Allah’s powers are unlimited He could have created His physical universe any way he wanted, but when we read His Physical Creation like a book, as He instructed us to do so we could know Him better, this is what we find. The stars and the universe are very big so they are quite easy to see, but the protons, electrons, and neutrons Allah created are very small, so difficult to see. To give some idea how small the basic building blocks of all material things are we can consider a grain of sand that we might find at the beach. One grain of sand is very tiny, so we can wonder how many protons, electrons, and neutrons, it takes to make up one grain of sand. I doubt anyone knows exactly how many it would take but at a science website on the internet I found a pretty good estimate. It seems there are about 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (ten billion billion billion) sub-atomic particles in a grain of sand. That is even greater than the number of stars in the observable universe.
If there are then ten billion billion billion protons, electrons, and neutrons in one grain of sand how many would there be in the whole planet Earth? Since a grain of sand doesn’t weigh very much I could go through a fairly exact mathematical process and find out how many grains of sand in a kilogram, then how many there would be in a metric ton. Then multiply that times the weight of the earth which is about 6,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (six thousand billion billion) metric tons then multiply that times the number of sub-atomic particles in a grain of sand, ten billion, billion billion and I would get an answer close to exact, but now that the numbers are so huge I am just going to make an estimate because we have a lot further to go until we can discuss what all this means in relation to the true greatness of Allah. So I will estimate the total number of protons, electrons, and neutrons that make up the planet Earth to be about 60,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (sixty thousand billion billion billion billion billion billion). But we are not done yet, that was just the planet Earth, but what about how many sub-atomic particles make up our solar system, the Earth, all the other planets, the sun, the moons, the asteroids, the comets, the meteorites and whatever else is out there. Then finally we have to ask how many of those tiny sub-atomic particles make up the whole of the physical universe that we can see. Finally we get to the number 600,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (six hundred billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion) as the number sub-atomic particles that Allah created to make up the whole of the physical universe (just the small part that we can actually see). Actually there is a shorter way to write this number, it could be written as 6 times 10 to the 83rd power, which means 6 with 83 zeros after it.
At that original singularity, a point so small it had no size, Allah created more than six hundred billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion protons, electrons, and neutrons which He would later use as the basic building blocks to make all the things He wanted to exist in His physical universe. Doesn’t that number just stagger you? Isn’t that number so far beyond our comprehension that it leaves us totally dumbfounded? We can write it and we can say it but we can have no idea at all what it really means.
I say to you my dear Muslim brothers and sisters, the real greatness here lies not even in the completely astonishing numbers of tiny particles of matter Allah created from nothingness but in the fact that at every instant of time Allah knows exactly what each one of those six hundred billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion particles is doing AND Allah is constantly sending messages by light from outside of space and time to tell each and every one of those particles exactly what He wants it to do to play its part in the successful completion of His plan for all of His Physical Creation. Allah does all of this and His greatness is so unlimited that to do all that takes not the tiniest part of His effort. Allahu Akbar!
P.S. Dear brothers and sisters, I know this was quite a difficult explanation, and I apologize that I could not make it any simpler; but the importance of understanding the TRUE greatness of Allah makes the effort to understand worthwhile. To know Allah in this objective way allows a much greater intimacy with Him to develop. Just as Allah’s Essence is unknowable, the extent of His Attributes is virtually unimaginable. Oh Allah, I love you so very much!