4.4 The Revelation of the Koran
He longed to know the truth, the secret of this great universe, this vast creation, but all he could do was pray and wait for the Great Power that guided his heart to show Itself so that perhaps the truth would be revealed to him.
Mohamed was approaching forty years of age, of mature judgment and with a deep, penetrating mind. One day he began to have a strange vision, a vision that he saw clearly again and again. He felt this was the truth behind this gross world of matter. He prayed to know more and to perceive more. For six months he continued to have this vision of a reality beyond and greater than the material world; a vision of Allah, the Creator of everything and Ruler over everything. Again and again this vision of the truth appeared to him until he began to fear for his sanity. He confided in Khadija. Wise and perspicacious, she reassured him, saying that he was “the Truthful”. Allah would never visit him with insanity or let anything tamper with his being. She saw how truly good her husband was, and that such goodness would not be rewarded by insanity, but she had no suspicion that Allah was preparing His chosen Messenger for the great and terrible mission that awaited him.
Mohamed's dreams began to be an accurate picture of reality. Whatever he saw in a dream took place in real life when he woke up, so that he would realize that what he was experiencing was no madness, that the power that gave him these dreams had the ability to foretell and shape events.
One day, while asleep in the Cave of Hira, Mohamed saw an angel with a writ in his hand. The angel said,
"I cannot read," said Mohamed.
The angel squeezed him in a constricting embrace, then let him go.
"Read," he said again.
"I cannot read," repeated Mohamed.
The angel squeezed him again, then let him go, saying,
In fear lest he be squeezed again, Mohamed said,
"What do I read?"
"Read in the name of your Lord who has created, created man from a clot, Read and your Lord is the Most Gracious, Who has taught with the pen, taught man what he did not know." (96:1-5)
These were the first verses of the Koran to be sent down. Mohamed read them. They became engraved upon his heart and the angel left.