There was a great king in the desert who was born a Bedouin among people struggling to survive. He was struck by the annunciation of his mission in a traumatic initiation that marked him with the light and the fire of the angels. People would say when they came in contact with him they would have to hide their eyes from the blinding light of his eyes. His power came from his utter submission to the divine will and his inspiring this submission in those who followed him.
There's a sense of dedication to the
Being of God - to such an extent that one is prepared to do anything
to serve the divine will. So, it represents an incredible force
which transformed unruly people into one of the greatest civilizations
that the world has ever known. Mohammed is described as being
such an overwhelming king; the majesty of his being was so impressive
to the people who came in touch with him, because he was invested
with this tremendous divine power which we've been talking about
in Sufism. And of course it meant destroying all our projections
upon representations of God that are not God Himself but just
representations, and then our attachment to these idols - the
destruction of the idols.
You see, Mohammed had two tutors; one was a Jewish rabbi and the other was a Christian monk. And he was very impressed by the religion of Abraham, which is the one God, whereas his people were worshipping different Gods and fighting each other because of their loyalty to their God. And then the others were loyal to their God, and so they were fighting and disputing about who is the greatest God. And you know, Allah means: the One we adore. Al-luh. 'Luh' means to adore. The One we worship. Now, one has to be very careful that this power does not lead to intolerance, which it does amongst people who are, as Pir-o-Murshid said, not followers of the Prophet but followers of the followers of the followers of the Prophet. But the power behind it is the power of God.
Muhammad wanted to preserve the transcendence. There was too much of a tendency to reduce God to the qualities of Christ, or even the body of Christ, whereas the being of God can´t be reduced to just those qualities, even though they may be perfect. So he restored the balance. You remember those words of Jelal-ud-din Rumi when he says, "To the one who´s lost in the Divine Imminence, I reveal my transcendence; and to the one who´s lost in the Divine Transcendence, I reveal my imminence". So that´s what Muhammad was doing: to remind people not to reduce their idea of God to their image of Christ.
So we have in Christ the being of God becoming more and more human; and in the being of Muhammad, and in Islam generally, the will of God, the direction, intention, coming through more and more strongly.