Reflections on the Mi’raj: Musa, the Prophet (ﷺ) and the vision of Allah (ﷻ)
The Prophet (ﷺ) seeing Allah (ﷻ) on his mi’raj, or heavenly ascension, has been something that has been disagreed about since the time of the companions. Qadi Iyad in his al-Shifa’ discussed these differences in detail. The majority of scholars who this faqir has come across that have discussed this issue have all said they believe the vision of Allah (ﷻ) that the Prophet (ﷺ) had, after passing the ‘lote tree of the furthest boundary’, was visual. Shaykh Abdul Qadir al-Jilani for example affirms this in his al-Ghunya. (See volume one, page 221 of al-Baz’s English translation by Sidi Muhtar Holland). Recently reflecting on this miracle of the Chosen One (ﷺ), it came to me that another possible example from the Qur’an can be found to confirm this:
And when Moses arrived at Our appointed time and his Lord spoke to him, he said, “My Lord, show me [Yourself] that I may look at You.” [Allah] said, “You will not see Me, but look at the mountain; if it should remain in place, then you will see Me.” But when his Lord appeared to the mountain, He rendered it level, and Moses fell unconscious. And when he awoke, he said, “Exalted are You! I have repented to You, and I am the first of the believers.” – 7:143
If We had sent down this Qur’an upon a mountain, you would have seen it humbled and coming apart from fear of Allah. And these examples We present to the people that perhaps they will give thought. – 59:21
Allah (ﷻ) in His infinite wisdom and divine uncreated speech gives us the similitude of a mountain, and uses the mountain to show its state when the divine presence is unveiled and manifested to it. The Qur’an if it were to be revealed to a mountain would have crumbled and split apart, likewise if Allah revealed Himself to a mountain the same would, and did happen. So following this, we can say the Qur’an was revealed to the Prophet (ﷺ), but he did not crumble, he was fashioned in a perfected form that enabled him to receive divine revelation, therefore can it not be said that if Allah (ﷻ) were to reveal Himself to His final messenger (ﷺ) that he would likewise have the strength to observe the divine vision?
And on leaving the divine presence, of all the prophets who could have come to meet him, who was there, but Musa (upon him be peace), the one who was not given this gift. As if to come and greet the one who was chosen above him to receive what he could not be given.
And to Allah we must return.