Al Awal – The First

He whose existence has no beginning or a starting point, exist from eternity. He who is prior and superior to all things that have ever come into existence, all the things are from Him and at His will.

“He is THE FIRST and the Last, the Evident and the Hidden: and He has full knowledge of all things.”
(57:3) The Holy Quran
From the root a-w-l which has the following classical Arabic connotations:
to be first, principle, to be before
to come back to, to return
to precede, to be the first part
to be foremost
“When you ponder the order of existence and consider the ordered chain of beings, God is first with respect to it… Whenever you ponder the order of wayfaring and observe the states attained by those journeying towards Him, He is the last, for He is the final point to which the levels of the ‘knowers’ ascend, the first beginning was from Him; and to Him is the return and destination.” AL Ghazali
Allah (swt) is, quite literally, the First. He was before anything was. He is also the Last because He is our destination and He remains when everything else goes away. There are deeper meanings here too. We prioritize things before Allah (swt), and then we wonder why we feel a spiritual void. We may wonder why bad things happen, why we cannot seem to get something right or why nothing satisfies us despite our pursuit of material means.
Allah (swt) is, quite literally, the First. He was before anything was. He is also the Last because He is our destination and He remains when everything else goes away. There are deeper meanings here too. We prioritize things before Allah (swt), and then we wonder why we feel a spiritual void. We may wonder why bad things happen, why we cannot seem to get something right or why nothing satisfies us despite our pursuit of material means. To know that Allah (swt) is al-Awwal (the First) is to see Allah (swt) before seeing anything else, because even the physical means start with Him.
In the Qur’an, Allah (swt) asks, “So where are you going?” (Qur’an, 81:26)
So we need to ask ourselves – where are we going?
Everything leads to Him

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