The Proof that Allah is Unlike any of His Creation
Extracted from Shefa by Judge Eyad, Translated by Ahmad Darwish, Presented by Anne Khadijah Stephens
All mankind should believe that the tremendous Greatness of Allah, His Beautiful Names and His attributes do not bear even the slightest resemblance to those qualities found in His creation. No created quality resembles Him not even the angelic universe. Allah tells us, "There is nothing like Him" (42:11).
His Essence is unlike all other essences and His Names and Attributes are unlike those of His created beings.
Remember, the attributes of created beings, are not independent, neither are they free from desires, whereas Allah is free from all this. He is Everlasting, as are His Names and Attributes.
By Allah, it is an excellent statement, made by the knowledgeable of realization, and reality who say Oneness, (Tawhid) is the affirmation of the Essence of Allah in which that Essence is unlike all other essences. He created and His Essence and attributes are never incapacitated.
Al Wasiti, may Allah have mercy on him, summarized the matter, and this too is Judge Eyad's goal. Regarding Allah he said, "There is no essence like His Essence. There is no name like His Name. There is no action like His action. There is no attribute like His attribute, all that can be said is the expressions (those of Allah and other than Allah) are similar only in their pronunciation."
The belief of the truthful followers of Prophet Muhammad, praise and peace be upon him, is that the Essence of Allah, which is not subject to time, is by far too majestic to have a quality which is timely, in the same way that any created essence lives in the confines of time does not escape from time, nor do they have any ancient attributes prior to time This is the belief of the people of the truth who follow the prophetic ways (sunnah) and the congregation of (Ahle Sunnat wa Jamat) the Companions, and those who follow them.
Imam Abu'l Kasim Al Qushayri commented and expounded upon the preceding saying, "This contains the total of all statements relating to the Oneness of Allah. How is it possible for His Essence to be like the essence of created things, which are confined by time when His Essence, is independent from time, location, dimension, the imagination of our reasoning, or any created substance with its characteristics by His very existence? And, how can His action resemble the action of any of His creation, when His action is not caused by it, rather, Allah is the Creator of it, nor is His action repelling an action of imperfection and is not derived from thoughts or desires. His action does not come through any created physical or non-physical cause, whereas the actions of His creation are created by Him (and maintained until its end by Him)."
Imam Al Juwayni said, "Whosoever stops at something that exists and which he is capable of understanding must know that it is a human production. Whereas whosoever takes the stand of pure negation of the Creator is an atheist. As for the believer, he/she admits it is impossible to perceive the reality of Allah.
Dhu'n Nun Al Misri gave an excellent explanation of the Words of Allah that read, ”There is nothing like Him" (42:11), "He is not to be questioned about what He does, but they shall be questioned" (21:23) and, "When We decree a thing, We only say: 'Be," and it is. (16:40). He said, "The reality of Oneness is that you understand the power of Allah is in things without stating the means, and that His action is the cause of everything, but this action is without cause. Whatever forms in your imagination about Allah, be sure Allah it is not that!"
These are precious, wonderful, precise words.
Judge Eyad concludes with the following supplication, "O Allah by Your Favor and Mercy, make us firm in the belief of Your Oneness, testifying to it and disconnection from disbelief, and prevent us from misguidance, and error that leads to atheism, and man-made faith."