Bismillah Hirahaman Niraheem
One of the major areas of shirk wherein people have gone astray in shirk is in the area of Al-Uloo or transcendence of Allah-the concept of Allah being above and beyond HIS creation. When asked the question “Where is Allah”, many muslims of today answer that Allah is everywhere. This is a wrong concept.
How the concept of Allah being everywhere started
When the philosophical books of India, Persia and Greece were translated during the Golden Age of the Abbaasid Empire, the concept of Allah being everywhere and in everything was introduced into philosophical circles and became a foundation principle in the creed of Sufi orders. Eventually it gave way to philosophical school known as the Mutazilah(the Rationalists) during administration of Abbaasid Caliph, Mamoon. During the reign of Caliph al-Mutawakkil, the Mutazilah philosophy was officially condemned.
Clear Proof of The Prophet(SWS) Hadith
Mu’aawiyah ibn al-Hakam said, “ I had a servant girl who used to tend to my sheep in the area of Mount Uhud, near a place called al-Jawwaareeyah. One day I came to see them only to find that a wolf had made off with a sheep from her flock. Since I, like the rest of Aadam’s descandants, am prone to do regrettable acts, I gave her a terrible slap in her face. When I came to Allaah’s Messenger (SWS)with the story, he considered it a grave thing for me to have done. I said, ‘Oh Messenger of Allah (SWS) couldn’t I free her?’ He replied, ‘Bring her to me’, so I brought her. He (SWS) then asked her, ‘Where is Allah?’ and she replied, ‘Above the sky.’ Then He asked her, ‘Who am I?’ and she replied, ‘You are Allah’s Messenger.’ So he said, ‘Free her, for verily she is a true believer.’”[Sahih Muslim Vol.1,No.1094]
When testing the faith of others, the logical question to ask would be “Do you believe in Allah?” The Prophet (SWS) did not ask that question, because most people at that time believed in Allah. Because the pagan Makkans of that time believed that Allah was somehow present in their idols and thereby a part of creation, the Prophet (SWS) wanted to determine if her belief was confused and paganistic like other Makkans or clearly unitarian and according to the divine teachings. Hence, he asked a question which would determine whether she knew that Allah was not a part of His creation or whether she believed that God could be worshipped in creation.
Her answer that Allah is above the heavens has to be considered by true Muslims as the only valid answer to the question “Where is Allah?” because the Prophet (SWS) ruled that she was a true believer on the basis of it. If Allah is everywhere as some Muslims today still contend, the Prophet (SWS) would have had to correct her answer, “ Above the sky” , since whatever was said in his presence which he did not reject is considered, according to Islamic Law, Prophet (SWS) not only accepted her statement, but he also used it as a basis for judge her to be a true believer.
Courtesy : Islamic Studies Book1 by Bilal Phillips