In the world that we live in, a person comes across beauties wherever he looks. He observes the things that he sees with great admiration. The human body with its flawless Creation, millions of kinds of plants, the sky full of clouds tons in weigh and many more things are created in an aesthetic way to give pleasure to the soul. Many details that a person feels by his senses other than his sense of sight give him pleasure, whether it is a nice smell, a taste or a nice rhythmic music.
A fruit hanging from a tree branch appeals to everyone with its splendid smell and taste. Similarly the structure and colors of a flower at different tones are exceptionally delightsome. Or a beautiful human face wins the admiration of everyone. Or a nice house and a top model car are the means demanded in this world. A person admires these and much more during his lifetime and wants to own them. However, he becomes surprised after he looks at these things mentioned later on. Because he sees that all these beauties have lost their meaning and even turned into a condition that he does not even want to see.
For example, a fruit slowly begins to blacken in a little while after being picked, and loses its beautiful smell. Then it decays and beings to give off a bad smell. A person brings flowers, which attracts her with its vibrant colors and charming smell and puts them in a vase; but one day later the colors of the flowers begin to fade and lose its liveliness and freshness. After 2-3 days the flowers are all blackened and decayed. A person would have difficulty in even recognizing someone whom he thinks has the most beautiful face in the whole world, after 60 years. That beautiful person has grown old, her face is full of wrinkles and her hair is all white. In short, there is no trace of her previous beauty. The house is worn out, the car’s model is out of date and some parts of it tend to rust. As a result, everything that people see around have a tendency to wear out in a short amount of time.
This comes as “a natural process” to most people. But there is a very deep meaning hidden in here. Everything around us give us an important message by continuously being destroyed, getting old and decaying. This message is the fact that the world is a temporary and deceitful illusion.
The most important of all is that all of the animals, plants, human beings, meaning all living beings in the world are mortal. Another reason for someone not realizing this great fact is that new human beings and animals are born to replace the dead and new crops grow in nature every year. Someone who does not realize this truth values temporary things too much and risks a great deal for them. He lives with the desire to “own” the things he wants. But Allah is the only Owner of all. Living beings exist for as long as He wills and dies or disappears at the moment He wills.
Allah revealed several examples in the Qur’an for people not to be deceived by this specious side of the world and to think about this truth:
The metaphor of the life of this world is that of water which We send down from the sky, and which then mingles with the plants of the earth to provide food for both people and animals. Then, when the earth is at its loveliest and takes on its fairest guise and its people think they have it under their control, Our command comes upon it by night or day and We reduce it to dried-out stubble, as though it had not been flourishing just the day before! In this way We make Our Signs clear for people who reflect. (Surah Yunus, 24)