We are experiencing things that we have never known before: we are capable of radically modifying our environment, our species can regularly make others extinct and we are even technically capable of self-destruction.
Furthermore, it was during this same modern era that we experienced the most extensive wars and the most devastating suffering. No social order, no economic system has ever brought on such a large part of humanity such material misery in order, at the same time, to produce such vast wealth.
A world that is unhinging
The current economic crisis is situated in this novel situation. This is what makes it exceptional. The domination of the economy by finance destroys all possibility of reform.
Speculation, in deregulating all mechanisms of price formation is sinking the world under fire and blood. There is no longer any intelligible link between products, their value and their price. The global financial markets have become immense casinos where we make bets on the rise or fall of the price of raw materials. But these are rigged bets where the speculators win every time and the citizens, small consumers or small producers, are the eternal losers.
When markets are high, this causes immediate rises in the consumer price and makes consumers in northern countries poorer, while in the southern hemisphere, a rise in the price of grain automatically leads to unrest and hunger riots.
When markets are low, the operators are forced to sell their products at a loss: cotton, coffee, wheat, minerals… In the North, this reinforces monopolies and knocks out the small producers. In the Third World, this ruins the peasants who cede their lands to foreign multinationals for a crust of bread and then swell the masses of unemployed in the slums of the megalopolises of the South.
Stock market scandals have become a central phenomenon in the global economy. Today it is the speculators who define all the rules and it is no longer the rarity or the utility of goods, nor the sacred law of supply and demand which define the price of goods.
Speculation and debt are bringing the peoples of the world to their knees. In the North, it brings pauperization; in the South, entire populations are being starved. Only the financial oligopolies of industry and of raw materials are strengthened.
Most of the States of the planet, totally subservient to the interests of the large groups, are sometimes powerless but often consenting accomplices. The concentration of wealth and the constitution of banks “too big to fail” have made Nation-states slaves to financial markets which know how to exploit in their own deterritorialized interests the subjugation of the political elites.
The concentration of wealth: cause and evidence of the bankruptcy of the system
Each economic crisis arrives following an excessive concentration of wealth that unbalances the system. During the crisis of 1929, even if financial markets were much less speculative, the wealthy lost an enormous amount of money after the stock market crash. This made possible a redistribution of wealth and a relaunching of the economy.
From the thirties to the seventies, the globalization of the economy, the generalization of debt (from governments to households) and speculation led at the beginning of the eighties to the deregulation of financial markets which encouraged all kinds of fraud. The most recent financial monster created, the subprimes, took over the system and initiated the biggest financial, then economic crisis that the world has ever known.
In 2007, instead of letting certain financial groups disintegrate in order to redistribute wealth, western governments preferred to make the ordinary citizens pay to save the banks. It has to be said that by 2007, the financial oligarchies had acquired such power that they could orient in their favor all the decisions of political leaders.
As before the crisis of 1929, the world in 2007 was characterized by a concentration of unimaginable wealth. In the USA, 1/3 of the national wealth is concentrated among 1% of the population. In 2000, 50% of the population of the United States shared 2.8% of the national wealth. When half of the population has only 20% of national revenue, people do not buy enough to turn the wheels of an economy that desperately needs to limit its excessive debt.
From 2007 to 2012, the concentration of wealth did not decrease (as was the case after the crisis of 1929); on the contrary it accelerated. This was the headlong rush of the West: the financial elites took power, directed and controlled it. The politicians submit and carry out. And the collaborator-economists are the new oracles of modern times in charge of fooling their own people.
The most obvious solution would have been to prohibit speculation (which was prohibited in France up to 1885). But nothing happened. Financial mismanagement is not new; it has been a constant element since the emergence of financial capitalism even if it is only during these last few decades that it has developed on an unparalleled scale.
But when the West was expanding, there were still continents to conquer and the wealth of newly-colonized peoples could still be plundered; speculation and financial fraud were not sufficiently cumbersome to the point where they could put the system in danger.
In the current situation, this speculation is destroying the entire western economic and financial system. It will not collapse tomorrow morning, but from day to day, it shrivels and weakens. And today, a payment default in a small country like Greece or a simple geopolitical crisis in the Middle East could be fatal to it.
The new challenge
The financial crisis which has become a global economic crisis doubles as a political and ideological crisis. Today, what opposes and what makes up the challenge of the real debates is no longer just the rich against the poor, nor the right against a so-called left, nor the North against the South, nor even one civilization against another. The real opposition is rather between those who live in denial and those who have understood the extreme gravity of the crisis that the world is going through. Furthermore, many think that it is not a crisis that we are going through but the death-throes of a system.
The ideological demarcation line is from now on drawn between those who are conscious that we must carry out a radical global reform and those who are sure – or who want to persuade themselves – that it is enough to adapt and know how to take advantage of this situation, in the hope of a better tomorrow.
Criticizing the liberal ideology that is responsible for this system and the capitalist system which vampirizes the world should not be understood as a response of the left or the anti-globalization movement. It is based simply on our Islamic ethics which requires social justice of us and on our spirituality which cannot accept a way of life that places in the center of the concerns of society only profit and money to the extent of making them into new idols to which we must all submit.
Neither liberal nor leftist
In any society and in any civilization, what makes sense is what is at its heart. What is at the heart of these societies of consumer goods? What is fundamental today and towards which everyone turns?
For the liberals of the right, it is Capital. There is no doubt that money is at the center of the logic of the system – whether we like it or not. This is a reality before which we must all bow, they tell us. When those have some and who know how to manage it will be entirely free to make it profitable, we will produce enough wealth for the good of everyone, they assure us. This is the liberal argument which puts Capital and its agents at the center of everything.
But isn’t Capital the accumulation of the wealth produced by the work of people? Thus, there is no Capital without Work. But what makes sense should normally be sufficient for itself. This is the reason that others consider the essential value is first of all Labor.
This is the belief of the Marxists and of the left in general, as it is only from Labor that the wealth of a society is produced. This would be what makes sense in our modern societies. We live well in the “society of Labor” they claim. It is around it that all social relationships are constructed. People define themselves by their professions, this is generally the first identity of the individual and this is what is supposed to enhance us in our modern societies.
For the leftists, the capitalists would unjustly appropriate the fruits of labor. A just distribution of the wealth produced by the workers (who are not all laborers but who all live on a salary, in general this covers the entire middle class). For that, the value of labor should be promoted and the rights of the worker should be protected. At the same time, control by Capital should be combated and it should be obliged to share its wealth.
For the Marxists, the subject of history is the proletariat, the worker exploited by the wealthy. It is at the center, as it represents the sacred value of Labor. When the proletariat is emancipated from the domination of the wealthy, they tell us, happiness can finally reign on earth.
But how can there be Labor without an investor, without money and without Capital which gives it the means to conduct business? Thus there is no Labor without Capital. Once again, how can we put the value of labor in the center when it is totally dependent on what it finds the most appalling: Capital.
Communist societies have attempted to resolve this serious dilemma by promoting “the dictatorship of the proletariat”. That is, subjugate the wealthy so that the State can appropriate their wealth and thus become the only holder of capital and the means of production. This produced only a capitalism of the State (of which China is a model), equally as unjust and exploitative of the interests of the poorest…
To summarize, there is no Capital without Labor and no Labor without Capital. In fact, neither Labor nor Capital can be separated from each other. Either one taken alone can be recognized as The central value of the system, since Labor and Capital are only two faces of the same coin and their opposition to each other is only apparent even if the leftist and liberal arguments promote (or oppose) one at the expense of the other.
In economic logic, Labor is in fact living Capital. And if the forces of Capital and Labor confront one another up to today, it is never to call into question the foundations and the ends of a materialistic system based on the eternal quest for profit, but uniquely to argue over the share of the wealth generated by this same system. The whole Marxist or liberal reformist arguments rarely call into question the foundations of this system.
Beyond the unequal distribution of wealth
Today, can we still remain at this point? Beyond the unequal distribution of wealth in our societies, which is evident, shouldn’t we go further? And on the basis of our religious references and of our conception of tawhîd shouldn’t we question a system that is no longer only economic, seeing that from now on it conditions our entire way of life?
In the same way, shouldn’t we cast a critical eye on those who say they oppose the injustices produced by this system (leftists, anti-globalizationists…) without questioning the foundations? We could also question the populist arguments seeking a scapegoat who would point a finger at a social class or a part of the population while avoiding criticism of the mercantilist society in all its aspects.
For example, this Manichean ideological concept of certain leftists which makes a wealthy man guilty by nature is in total contradiction with our Islamic values. What is certainly reprehensible is the manner in which we acquire wealth and how we behave with it. It is not the wealthy, nor wealth in themselves that are blameworthy.
Certainly, the wealth that man manages is a heavy responsibility before the Creator and few among the fortunate understand that the love for possessions should not invade their hearts. We also have a saying from the Prophet (May peace and salvation be upon him) which tells us that wealth abounds in Hell. But we also have another Hadith which warns us that poverty can lead to sinfulness, since in extreme need, the temptation to commit injustice and evil is often stronger.
Define the enemy
The liberal vision that claims to be reformist like the leftist thought that considers the solution is only to be found in a better redistribution of wealth are making a mistake and are misleading all the oppressed who, unjustly plundered, attempt to resist. The enemy is not the wicked capitalist and in any case, the solution does not reside in the cult of Labor which must be worshipped like a new god. The enemy is much more abstract, impersonal, global and worldly. This is the reason that it is very difficult to define. It is this system of the global consumption society where Labor and Capital form the two main pillars. What is in the center is this logic of profit, this system of the exploitation of Capital through Labor and consumption.
The capitalist, like the worker, the rich, like the poor, are at the same time actors and victims of this system which attempts to reach the whole planet, which takes over our lives and seduces our hearts. No-one has complete control over it, not even the wealthiest.
And it is not because some know better how to take advantage of the system they control. All our errors of judgment and analyses come from there, we are convinced that this system is evidently controlled by the dominators, those who know how to make a profit. The way in which the financial, economic and political elites manage this major crisis proves this to us every day. They don’t control much anymore; they submit to a system of which they themselves mechanisms of such complexity that the analyses and predictions of the economists are announced on one day only to be contradicted the next.
In this situation, the political right-left conflict is nothing but grandstanding. It focuses on the management of an alternative to power that no longer exists in order to create the illusion for the people that they still control their destiny. In civil society, the intellectual opposition between leftist and liberal remains superficial and has never called into question the essence of the system. Furthermore, from the colonial era until today, when new imperialist wars had to be justified, the members of the entire political panel, except for a few, were able to find a way to make their domination last and defend their common interests and privileges.
The consumption society that posed materialism as its principle and profit as its purpose is certainly the most deadly system that man has ever created. It is this invention, originally purely western, that is still globalizing at the expense of the poorest in the West and through the domination of all the peoples of the world.
The three categories that found this system
The current crisis is considered to be the worst since the emergence of industrial society. This crisis is not in any way comparable to the preceding ones as it the end of this infernal system. To understand how it functions, the three main categories on which it is founded should be defined:
– Labor: It is human wage labor which makes possible the creation of wealth. Capital can only be productive through living labor. But in industrial societies, it is totally secondary to know what is produced (bombs or tomato sauce), how something is produced (overexploitation of labor, job insecurity, child labor) and also what are the consequences (ecology, health, morale…). The ethic imperative does not exist; the purpose is the growth of invested capital. The wage worker participates in the cycle of exploitation without controlling it. He is an interchangeable, throwaway tool.
– Capital: Whoever possesses wealth (the capitalist) must make it productive, must increase it through wage labor and the production of consumer goods. Capital does not move to where people need it but where it hopes to get the best value. If it does not respect this rule, the blind law of competition will oblige the investor to submit to it.
– Consumer goods: They allow those who consume them to satisfy their needs but the objective of the production of consumer goods, in our system, is first to make a profit. The satisfaction of the needs of individuals is secondary in our merchant economy; the objective is only profit even at the expense of health of the consumer or of the environment.
These three elements are linked to form the cycle of Capital growth which is the central Subject. The wage worker, the consumer and the capitalist-investor are all subject to the injunctions of this cycle. For the first time in the history of humanity, we do not produce to provide for our needs but to submit to the doxa of this cycle of value.
What results is an incredible absurdity: people are transformed into simple appendices of an economy that has become autonomous and without any morality. In industrialized societies, this system of the eternal quest for profit has reduced all our human relationships (economic, social and cultural) to exchanges of goods, to labor and to money. The cult makes no exceptions, it sells itself also.
The internal contradiction
However, the crisis has revealed the limits of this system as this logic of capitalist exploitation carries in it an internal contradiction: on one hand, there always has to be a larger labor force to produce and feed this machine to generate profit. On the other hand, the omnipresent competition makes it necessary to constantly increase productivity. The result is a continual race in the use of ever more advanced technologies that make it possible to produce more for the same amount of labor, until the labor force has become “superfluous”.
Technological modernization thus makes it possible to produce goods that are increasingly less expensive (than the competition), but goods that are less expensive are necessarily goods that produce less profit.
This is the flagrant contradiction of this system which necessarily needs living labor to generate profit but which, to deal with the competition, is obliged to lower its prices and its profits) and to reduce the part of labor (human) in the manufacture of consumer goods.
To summarize, the less man (in favor of machines) participates in the manufacture of products, the more the prices can be lowered to respond to the competition. But the more the prices are lowered, the less value the products generate.
To continue to produce as much profit, this lowered value must be compensated for by increasing the quantity of products. The constant growth of production is thus an inevitable imperative. The consequences of this contradiction can be constantly postponed by an acceleration of growth and the opening of new markets, through the generalization of this logic everywhere in the world.
It is this globalization of capitalism that is accompanied by the westernization of the world and the generalization of competition to the entire planet. China, for example, was seen as a well of “growth” and we hope that in developing its internal market, it will be able to absorb all the products that a saturated West can no longer consume. Hundreds of millions of Chinese from now on model their manner of consumption, of dressing or of relaxing on those of the West. And they have already started to eye Africa… all the while preparing themselves, even now, for the next wars for the control of certain raw materials (petroleum, water, arable land, minerals) that are indispensable but increasingly rare.
But recent technological progress (miniaturization, computer revolution), which has made possible the systematization of industrial production, has made the planet too small and has accentuated this phenomenon of Capital growth. This has also led to a massive obsolescence of employment and a degradation of working conditions in industrial societies. In spite of the globalization of production, more people are increasingly becoming “superfluous”: the numbers of unemployed and those with precarious jobs are always growing in the North and entire populations in the South are excluded from globalization because they are considered to be insolvent.
The external contradiction
To this internal contradiction of the system should also be added an external contradiction: production activity cannot grow indefinitely because the resources of the earth are limited and the needs of those who are considered to be “solvent” (the consumers in the Occident and in the megalopolises of the South) are also limited; they cannot continue to stock up indefinitely with objects that are increasingly useless.
This cycle of production of goods (capital → consumer goods→ exploitation→ competition → loss of value→ over-production→ capital) should in principle repeat itself indefinitely in a world, which has come to an end.
Whereas the European or North American way of life makes the rest of the world dream, the wealth of 6 planets would be needed to allow the world to live the way the French live currently. We know very well that this manner of consuming and living cannot be generalized.
Now we come to limits. Our way of life based on frenzied over-consumption and systematic waste attempts to spread to the rest of the planet, which does not seem to tolerate our irresponsible acts.
Today we already have as many Chinese as Europeans in China who have European living conditions. Workshop of the world, China buys and stocks all the strategic raw materials for its stupendous economic development. In addition to the Western over-consumption that has endured for decades, all this leads to disrupting our climate while causing major ecological catastrophes. To summarize, this system of production of goods has reached its limits as a result of this double contradiction:
– one which is intrinsic to the capitalist system: with a lowering of profit on the goods produced with each technological advance which is accompanied by endemic structural unemployment
– and the other which is related to our world that has come to an end: with over-production necessary to maintain profits, facing limited resources and accompanied by unprecedented ecological and geopolitical crises.
The consequences: plunder
The double contradiction of this system has the following consequences:
This race for profitability in the end destroys all competition and creates gigantic oligopolies in each sector of activities that homogenize and distribute their products globally, thus imposing a mode of consumption and a unique, global cultural model. This is generalized junk food, the cultural westernization of the world, the concentration of powers.
This forces the over-production of consumer goods beyond real needs. Publicity, marketing, fashions, the generalization of waste or credit to promote consumption and the programmed obsolescence of products are the main means used by the system to allow the ceaseless flow of this over-production of consumer products, well beyond what is needed.
This over-production and this over-consumption exhaust natural resources and destroy our environment. The increasing rarity of certain natural resources (hydrocarbons, minerals, arable lands, water) are the cause of the major wars of these last few decades.
This race for profitability through technological modernization destroys jobs. Wage workers, to preserve their jobs, tolerate increasingly difficult conditions whereas others, the unemployed, are simply excluded from this system.
For several decades, it was only the globalization of the capitalist system and of consumerism that was able to compensate and hide this tendency to reduce the value of each consumer good produced (and thus of profits).
The headlong rush to financialization
Impoverished populations, the devaluation of “cheap” consumer goods, reduced profit margins: the opportunities for investment diminish in the “real economy”. The gains in productivity through high technology have paradoxically created a crisis for a system that has become global. The production of consumer goods not being sufficiently profitable,(lowered profits, lowered salaries, unemployment and thus lowered consumption), it was at this time that credit and over-indebtedness was generalized. Only finance (that is, the marketing of money) would make it possible for the owners of capital to make the profits that then became impossible to obtain in the real economy of the production of consumer goods.
The rise of neoliberalism from 1980 led to the deregulation of the financial markets in order to abolish any limits on the free circulation of capital and this set up a global debt economy. It was the only possible way of further extending this system, the foundations of which no-one wanted to seriously call into question, either the right or the left. Western societies, through the indebtedness of individuals and States, were thus able to maintain the illusion of prosperity.
This led to excessive dependence on financial markets and when a bubble explodes, governments and central banks have no other choice but to save the banks and the investors, resulting in a massive expansion of government debt. Today, they are asking taxpayers to participate in the reimbursement of this debt through austerity programs. The crisis is hitting all levels of society.
A powerless, complicit society
The parties and the unions in the West are powerless and today simply defend “the social accomplishments” of their corporations without ever raising the debate on the foundations of this production system. They claim only a better redistribution of the dividends to satisfy its electorate and its union members.
No-one dares to call into question a system which nevertheless built its prosperity on colonial infamy and which continues to collaborate with the authoritarian regimes of the South who sell off their resources in exchange for complicit but motivated silence.
The goods that the consumer society clamors for, the labor that alienates everything while being the primary claim of the outcasts, the money and its financial agents that authorize everything in its name, the State which is no longer sovereign and its political vassals, the economic experts who have become the new oracles of modern society: all these categories are at the service of this system of capital growth, the world-system that has been created by people, but which they no longer control and which today dominates them.
What this crisis revealed was the alienating nature, the central place and impersonal fetishized domination exercised by consumer goods, money and labor on the entire society. These categories are regarded as if they were gods that govern us. Today, everyone participates in it, from the simple worker to the wealthy businessman, even if it is evidently not in the same role nor with the same profits.
A system based on belief
Any system is based on belief and the consumer society is no exception. And wanting to criticize modern capitalism without mentioning the fetish of consumer goods is approximately the same thing as wanting to criticize a religion without mentioning God.
The criticism of the capitalist system based on our Islamic references should first be a spiritual criticism because this system is based on a belief in and on the cult of a false god.
Any society functions according to norms and beliefs that make sense. We believed that our Western societies, liberated of religion, would make some exceptions. This was a lie. Beyond religious systems, people need to believe; this is intrinsic to the human being.
In feudal societies, the naivety and piety of the people were manipulated by preaching submissiveness and the celestial promise of a better world in the hereafter for the benefit (very earthly) of the elites of those days, the clergy and the nobility. Afterwards, the grand deception of the philosophers of the Enlightenment was to make us believe that “liberated” Man could escape his condition of “worshipper”. But if Man indeed has freedom of choice in his beliefs, it is impossible for him to live without worshipping, as it is impossible for him to live without sleeping or eating.
The whole idea of tawhîd (unicity) in Islam is to orient this indispensable need for the exclusive worship of the Highest, as it is the only form of worship that allows the emancipation and liberation of Man. As soon as Man, in his pretension of being sufficient for himself, turns away from the All-Merciful, he begins to worship Idols and falls back into the exploitation and debasement of his condition.
In our modern societies, our capitalist system is not only an economic system, as they would like to have us believe. It is a vision of life, a social organization based on a system of beliefs, a “dîn” (a Koranic word poorly translated as “religion”) on which an economic system is based. When we say today that “the economic takes control over everything (the social, the political…), it simply denotes the fact that this system (in the sense that it embraces and controls all aspects of our lives) no longer feels the need to advance behind a mask.
Today what dominates the world is the god of profit. Certainly, the profit motive has always been a part of human life but what is new today is that it has become the central value to the exclusion of all others. Nothing, no system of values can put a limit on this frenetic quest for profit. We are living in the total global supremacy of this ideological belief.
What makes sense in our modern societies is no longer God, it is not even Man (as our dear republicans, seculars and other humanists pretend); it is only profit.
The sacred, always at the center
So that the process of the creation of added value can operate full-time, our modern societies have made “labor” and “consumption” sacrosanct. All our social relations, all our education and all our political institutions function around the imperative of “Labor” and “increased consumption”. We live in the “society of work”, the “society of consumption”, the society of “Growth”, for the glory and supremacy of the sacred machine for the growth of “Capital”.
As during the feudal era, the credulity of peoples is exploited so that they continue to be submissive and the new elites pursue the manipulation without any scruples. Before we worked and consumed according to our real needs. Today we bow to work… only to preserve our jobs. And we over-consume… only to follow fashion and “be like the others”.
We no longer work to live, we live to “Work”. We do not consume to fill our needs; we create new needs to “encourage” consumption.
The essential thing is to work and to consume in order to feed “the beast”, this machine for producing profit. The worst thing is that this alienation is perceived as a privilege to be protected because we all dread being excommunicated from the society of work and of consumption, these outcasts from the North and from the South, these rejects that the system no longer considers to be human.
We are made to worship things (cars, houses, computers, telephones…) to justify the fact that we spend our days making them and our weekends and evenings consuming them. All our social relations are distorted and revolve around these mercantilist relations of buying and selling. We ourselves become a form of consumer goods (that sells its labor force) in the service of the system.
This is the fetishism of consumer goods, it’s when “things” become the center of our lives … taking the place of God. This is real adoration, a religion that advances behind a mask and imposes its standards to satisfy this one and only god that makes sense for our economic and political elites: the eternal quest for increasingly greater profits.
Against the “civilization of money”: Islam
Today, the modern system of production of goods exposes its failure in broad daylight. It is a general collapse: a financial collapse (since 2007), an ecological collapse (Fukushima, disrupted climate…), a collapse of the society of work (job insecurity, structural unemployment…), and a collapse of politics (democratic crisis) and of the regulatory State.
If this system has not yet collapsed completely, it is essentially due to credit. In the face of increasing difficulties in the growth of Capital through the production of goods, recourse to credit was inevitable. Credit, which is profit consumed before having been earned, can postpone the moment at which the world-system reaches its limits, but it cannot do away with it.
The “civilization of money” cannot create human and social civilization. The demand of liberal reformists or Keynesian economists that capitalism should be reformed, should start over again and become more just, is an illusion. The problem is not just in the poor distribution of wealth. It is ethical, philosophical and spiritual.
In modern societies, the moral codes are often what remains of the Christian faith, but faith, in western societies that claim to be enlightened, has become a personal affair that makes no commitments; it is no longer a system that structures social life.
This has been described as an advance in the emancipation of western Man. But this way of life today generates schizophrenic individuals who sometimes respect moral values in their private lives and generally recognize the destructive laws of profit and competition only in their professional lives, which will, however, model the lives of others.
If Islam is under debate today, if the attacks against this faith have been multiplied, if they take pleasure in attacking the Prophet (May peace and benediction be upon him and his progeny), it is because Islam continues to define itself as a system of life (dîn) which in a more or less conscious manner clashes head-on with this “civilization of money”.
Beyond all the analyses of this iniquitous system that manages all aspects of our lives including our beliefs, the issue of the alternative will come up.
And the alternative to this global, total world system can only be a global, total world system. Islam which proposes a system of life and a vision of death is a global, total and radical alternative world system. Islam proposes a system of belief; it defines its time-space around tawhîd. Because what makes sense is what is placed at the center. But around the Center and in the name of the Center, it organizes a world along the principles of Justice and respect for creation, but always in the name of the Creator and nothing else.
This is the reason that Islam could never submit itself to a system that places the quest for profit above ethics, it could never accept a model of society that subjugates people to the limitless imperatives of profitability and we could never accept to turn away from the worship of the Highest for the worship of things.
Islam embraces and refuses to be embraced, Islam integrates and refuses to be integrated because Islam aligns, limits and orients our entire daily lives towards one single purpose: the exclusive worship of one God, the All-Forgiving, the All-Merciful.
But Only God is Knowledgeable of all things.