Dec 4, 2012

THE WORDS by Sheikh Bediuzzaman Said Nursi - Part 03

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This verse is general and unspecific, it does not specify in what way they shall be successful, so that each person may find what he wants in it. Its words are few, so that they may be lengthy. For the aim of some of those it is addressing is to be saved from the Fire. Others think only of Paradise. Some desire eternal happiness. Yet others seek only God’s pleasure. While others know their aim and desire to be the vision of God; and so on. In numerous places, the Qur’an leaves the words open in this way, so that they may be general. It leaves things unsaid, so that it can express many meanings. It makes it brief, so that everyone may find his share. Thus, it says, who shall prosper. It does not determine how they shall prosper. It is as if with this omission it is saying: “O Muslims! Good news! O you who fear God! You shall find prosperity through being saved from Hell. O righteous one! You shall find prosperity in Paradise. O you who seeks knowledge of God! You will attain God’s pleasure. O lover of God! You will experience the vision of God.” And so on.

Thus, out of thousands we have offered one example of each of the phrases, words, letters, and omissions demonstrating the comprehensiveness of the Qur’an’s words. You may make analogies and compare its verses and stories with these.

Another example, the verse,

Know then that there is no god but God, and ask forgiveness for your fault.66

This verse contains so many aspects and degrees that all the levels of saints have found their needs from it in all their spiritual journeyings and in all their degrees, and have found spiritual sustenance and a fresh meaning from it appropriate for their own level. For, since the Name of ‘Allah’ is a comprehensive Name, there are aspects of Divine unity within it to the number of the Most Beautiful Names: “There is no provider but Him! There is no creator but Him! There is no merciful one but Him!” And so on.

And, for example, among the stories of the Qur’an, the story of Moses (Peace be upon him) contains thousands of benefits, just like the Staff of Moses. There are numerous aims and aspects in the story, like consoling and comforting the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), and threatening the unbelievers, and censuring the dissemblers, and rebuking the Jews. For this reason it is repeated in many Suras. Although it expresses all the aims in every place it is repeated, only one is the main aim and the others are secondary.

If you say: How can we know all the meanings in the examples you have given, which the Qur’an intends and points to?

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66. Qur’an, 47:19.



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We would reply: Since the Qur’an is a pre-eternal address, and sitting above and beyond the centuries, which, layer upon layer, are all different, addresses and instructs all of mankind lined up within them, certainly it will include and intend numerous meanings according to those varying understandings, and will make allusions to what it intends. The numerous meanings contained in the Qur’an’s words similar to those mentioned here have been proved in Isharat al-I‘jaz (Signs of Miraculousness) according to the rules of Arabic grammar, and the sciences of rhetoric, semantics, and eloquence and their rules. According to the consensus of those qualified to interpret the Shari‘a and the Qur’anic commentators and scholars of theology and jurisprudence, and according to the testimony of their differences, on condition they are considered correct by the sciences of Arabic and the principles of religion, all the aspects and meanings which are found acceptable by the science of semantics, and appropriate by the science of rhetoric, and desirable by the science of eloquence, may be considered among the meanings of the Qur’an. The Qur’an has placed allusions to each of those meanings according to its degree. They are either literal or significative. If significative, they are allusions to them in either the preceding context or the after context or in other verses. Some of them have been expounded in Qur’anic commentaries of twenty, thirty, forty, sixty, and even eighty volumes, written by exacting scholars, which are clear and decisive proofs of the extraordinary comprehensiveness of the Qur’an’s words. However, if in this Word we were to point out the allusions indicating alll the meanings together with their rules, the discussion would become extremely prolonged. So we cut it short here, and for part of it, refer you to Isharat al-I‘jaz.

Second Flash: This is the extraordinary comprehensiveness in its meaning. Yes, together with bestowing from the treasuries of its meaning the sources for all the interpreters of the Shari‘a, the illuminations of all those seeking knowledge of God, the ways of all those seeking union with God, the paths of all the perfected from among mankind, and the schools of all the scholars, the Qur’an has at all times been the guide of all of them and directed them in their progress, and it is verified unanimously by all of them that it has illuminated their ways from its treasuries.

Third Flash: This is the extraordinary comprehensiveness in its knowledge. The Qur’an has caused to flow forth from the oceans of its own knowledge, the numerous and various sciences of the Shari‘a, the multifarious sciences of reality (haqiqat), and the innumerable different sciences of sufism (tariqat). Similarly, it has caused to flow forth in abundance and good order the true wisdom of the sphere of contingency, the true sciences of the sphere of necessity, and the enigmatic knowledge of the sphere of the hereafter. One would have to write a whole volume to provide examples of this Flash, and so as mere samples, we point to the twenty-five Words so far



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written. Yes, the veracious truths of all twenty-five Words are only twenty-five droplets from the ocean of the Qur’an’s knowledge. If there are errors in those Words, they spring from my defective understanding.

Fourth Flash: This is the extraordinary comprehensiveness of the subjects it puts forward. Together with bringing together the extensive subjects of man and his duties, the universe and the Creator of the universe, the heavens and the earth, this world and the hereafter, the past and the future, and pre-eternity and post-eternity, the Qur’an explains all the essential and important topics from man’s creation from seminal fluid till when he enters the grave; from the correct conduct of eating and sleeping to the matters of Divine Decree and Determining; from the creation of the world in six days, to the duties of the wind blowing, indicated by the oaths of,

By the [winds] that scatter,67
and,
By the [winds] sent forth;68
from His intervention in man’s heart and will, indicated by,
comes between a man and his heart,69
and,
But you will not except as God wills,70
to,
And the heavens rolled up in His right hand,71
that is, to His holding all the heavens within His grip; from the flowers, and grapes, and dates of the earth described in,
And We produce therein gardens of date-palms and vines,72
to the strange truth expressed by,
When the earth is shaken to its utmost convulsion;73
from the state of the skies in,
Then He directed [His will] towards the skies and they were smoke,74
to their being rent with smoke and the stars falling and being scattered in infinite space; from the world’s being opened for test
and examination, to its closing; from the grave, the first dwelling of the hereafter, and then from the

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67. Qur’an, 51:1.
68. Qur’an, 77:1.
69. Qur’an, 8:24.
70. Qur’an, 76:30.
71. Qur’an, 39:67.
72. Qur’an, 36:34.
73. Qur’an, 99:1.
74. Qur’an, 41:11.



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Intermediate Realm, the resurrection, and the Bridge, to eternal happiness; from the events of the past, and the creation of the body of Adam and the dispute of his two sons, to the Flood, and the drowning of the people of Pharaoh, and the major events of most of the prophets; and from the pre-eternal circumstance alluded to by,

Am I not your Sustainer?75

to the post-eternal occurrence expressed by,

Some faces that day will beam in brightness * Looking towards their Sustainer;76

all these fundamental, important subjects are explained in a way befitting the All-Glorious One Who administers the whole universe as though it was a palace, and opens and closes this world and the hereafter like two rooms, and regulates the earth as if it was a garden and the heavens as though they were a roof adorned with lamps, and beholds the past and the future as though they were two pages present in His sight like a single night and day, and looks on pre-eternity and post-eternity as though they were yesterday and tomorrow, in a form in which the two sides of a chain of events are joined together and touching in present time. Just as a master builder speaks of two houses he has constructed and arranged, and makes out the programme and list and index of the matters involved, so the Qur’an is fitting for the One Who makes the universe and arranges it, and writes out and displays the list and index and -if one may say so- the programme of the matters concerned with it. There is no sign of any artificiality or false display. And just as there is no trace of imitation or hint of any fraud, like speaking on behalf of someone else or supposing itself to be in someone else’s place and speaking, so too with all its seriousness, all its purity, all its sincerity, the Qur’an’s pure, shining, brilliant exposition declares: “I am the word and exposition of the Creator of the world,” just as the light of day declares: “I came from the sun.”

Indeed, apart from the Maker Who adorns this world with antique arts and fills its with delicious bounties and scatters bountifully over the face of the world together with these wonders of His art so many valuable gifts, and setting them in orderly lines spreads them out over the face of the earth, apart from this Bestower of Bounties, who else could the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition be fitting for - the Qur’an which fills the world with this clamour of salutation and acclaim, this resounding praise and thanks, and transforms the earth into a place for the recitation of God’s Names, a mosque, and place for gazing on the Divine works of art? Whose speech could it be apart from His? Who can claim ownership of it apart from Him?

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75. Qur’an, 7:172.
76. Qur’an, 75:22-3.





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Whose word could it be other than His? Whose light could the exposition of the Qur’an be, which solves the talisman of creation and illuminates the world, other than the Pre-Eternal Sun’s? Who has the ability to produce the like of it, and imitate it? In truth, it is impossible for the Artist Who adorns this world with His arts not to speak with man, who appreciates His art. Since He makes and knows, He surely speaks. And since He speaks, it is surely the Qur’an which is appropriate to His speech. How should a Lord of All Dominion Who is not indifferent to the way a flower is ordered remain indifferent to a discourse which brings all His dominion to a clamour of salutation and praise? Would He permit it to be attributed to others and be made as nothing?

Fifth Flash: This is the wonderful comprehensiveness of the Qur’an’s style and conciseness. It consists of five ‘Glows’.

First Glow: The Qur’an’s style has a comprehensiveness so wonderful that a single Sura contains the ocean of the Qur’an, which in turn contains the universe. A single of its verses contains the treasury of the Sura. And most of the verses are each a short Sura, while most of the Suras are short Qur’ans. Thus, this is a great favour and guidance and facilitating arising from its miraculous conciseness. For although everyone has need of the Qur’an all the time, either due to foolishness or for some other reason, they do not have the time to read all of it, or they do not have the opportunity. So in order that they should not to be deprived of it, each Sura is like a short Qur’an, and each long verse even has the rank of a Sura. Those who penetrate to the inner meaning of things agree that the whole Qur’an is contained in the Sura al-Fatiha, even, and the Fatiha in the Bismillah. The proof of this fact is the consensus of the scholars who have investigated it.

Second Glow: The verses of the Qur’an are comprehensive through their denoting and indicating all the categories of speech and true knowledge and human needs, like command and prohibition, promise and threat, encouragement and deterring, restraint and guidance, stories and comparisons, the Divine ordinances and teachings, the sciences related to the universe, and the laws and conditions of personal life, social life, the life of the heart, spiritual life, and the life of the hereafter. So that the truth of the saying, “Take whatever you want from the Qur’an for whatever you want” has become accepted to such a degree by the people of reality that it has become proverbial among them. There is such a comprehensiveness in the verses of the Qur’an that they may be the cure for every ill and the sustenance for every need. Yes, they have to be like that, because it is essential that the absolute guide of all the levels of the people of perfection, who continually rise in the degrees of progress, possesses this property.

Third Glow: This is the Qur’an’s miraculous conciseness. It sometimes



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happens that the Qur’an mentions the two ends of a long chain in such a way that it shows clearly the whole chain. And sometimes it happens that it includes explicitly, implicitly, figuratively, and allusively in one word many proofs of an assertion. For example, in the verse:

And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the variations in your tongues and in your colours,77

by mentioning the beginning and end of the chain of the universe’s creation, which forms a chain of signs and indications of Divine unity, the verse shows the second chain. It makes the first chain read it out. Yes, the first degree of the pages of the world which testify to an All-Wise Maker is the origin of the heavens and the earth, their creation. Next is the heavens being adorned with stars and the earth made to rejoice with living beings. Then the change of the seasons through the subjugation of the sun and the moon. Then is the alternation of day and night, and the chain of events within these. And so it goes on as far as the characteristics and distinguishing individual features on faces and in voices, the most widely spread loci of multiplicity. Thus, since there is an astonishing and wise order in the characteristics of individual faces, which are the furthest from order and most subject to the interference of chance, if it is shown that the pen of a most wise craftsman works there, surely the other pages, whose order is clear, will themselves be understood and display their Inscriber. And since the works of art and wisdom of a Maker are apparent in the original creation of the vast heavens and earth, Who positions them purposefully as the foundation stones of the palace of the universe; the works of His art and the impress of His wisdom will surely be most clear in His other beings. Thus, by exposing the concealed and concealing the obvious, this verse expresses a most beautiful succinctness.

Similarly in the verses from:

So give glory to God when you reach eventide .... till

And to Him belongs the loftiest similitude in the heavens and the earth; for He is Exalted in Might, Full of Wisdom,78

the chain of proofs which begins six times with the words, And among His signs..., And among His signs, is a sequence of jewels, a sequence of light, a sequence of miraculousness, a sequence of miraculous conciseness. I wish from the heart to display the hidden diamonds in these treasuries, but what can I do?, the discussion here does not support it. So postponing it to another time, I am not opening that door for now.

And for example:

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77. Qur’an, 30:22.
78. Qur’an, 30:17-27.

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...Send me therefore * O Joseph! O Man of truth!79

Between ..send me therefore and O Joseph! are these words: ...Joseph, that I may ask him to interpret the dream. So I sent him, and he went to the prison and said to Joseph... That is to say, although five sentences have been abbreviated and summarized in one sentence, it does not mar the clarity or hinder the understanding.

And, for example:

Who produces for you fire from the green tree.80

Here the Qur’an is saying in the face of rebellious man’s denials, who is as though challenging the Qur’an by saying, “Who will raise to life rotten bones?”, “Whoever created them in the first place, He will raise them to life. And that Creator knows every single aspect of every single thing. Furthermore, He who provides fire for you from the green tree, is able to give life to dry bones.” Thus, this sentence looks in numerous ways to the claim that man will raised to life, and proves it.

Firstly, with these words the Qur’an starts off the chain of bounties it lays before man, moves its forward, and calls it to mind. Having described it in detail in other verses, it cuts short the description here, and refers it to the intelligence. That is, “You cannot flee from the One Who gives you fruit and fire from trees, sustenance and seeds from plants, cereals and grains from the earth, and makes the earth a fine cradle for you filled with all your sustenance, and the world a palace in which is found all your needs - you cannot be independent of Him, or disappear into non-existence and hide there. You cannot enter the grave without duties to sleep in comfort not to be awoken.

Then it points out an evidence of the claim. With the words, the green tree, it implies: “O you who deny resurrection! Look at the trees! One Who raises to life and makes green in spring numberless bone-like trees which have been dead throughout winter, and in every tree even demonstrates three examples of resurrection through the leaves, blossoms, and fruit - the power of such a One cannot be challenged through denial or by considering resurrection improbable.”

Then it points out another evidence, saying: “How do you deem it unlikely that One Who extracts for you out of dense, heavy, dark matter like a tree, subtle, light, luminous manner like fire should give fire-like life and light-like consciousness to wood-like bones?”

Then it states another evidence explicitly; it says: “One Who creates the famous tree which while green produces fire for nomads in place of matches when two of its branches are rubbed together, and combines two opposites

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79. Qur’an, 12:46.
80. Qur’an, 36:80.



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like the green and damp and the dry and hot, and makes them the source of the fire - everything, even the fundamental elements, looks to His command and acts through His power. It cannot be considered unlikely of the One Who demonstrates that none of these is independent and acts of its own accord that He should raise up man from the earth once again, who was made from earth and later returned to the earth. He may not be challenged with rebellion.”

Then, through recalling Moses’s (Peace be upon him) famous tree, it shows that this claim of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) is also that of Moses (PBH). Lightly alluding to the consensus of the prophets, it adds one more subtle point to the phrase.

Fourth Glow: The Qur’an’s conciseness is so comprehensive and wonderful that when studied carefully it becomes apparent that sometimes, through some simple detail or particular event, it compassionately shows to simple, ordinary minds most extensive, lengthy, universal rules and general laws, like showing an ocean in a ewer. We shall point out only two examples of this out of thousands.

First Example: This is the three verses expounded in detail in the First Station of the Twentieth Word, which describe under the name of ‘the teaching of the Names’ to the person of Adam, the teaching of all the sciences and branches of knowledge with which the sons of Adam have been inspired. Through the angels prostrating before Adam and Satan not prostrating, they state that most beings from fish to angels are subjugated to human kind, just as harmful creatures from snakes to Satan do not obey man and are hostile to him. And through the people of Moses (Peace be upon him) slaughtering a cow, they state that the concept of cow-worship -which was taken from the worship of cows in Egypt and showed its effect in ‘the event of the calf’- was slaughtered by Moses’ knife. And through water gushing forth from the rock and springs flowing out and spreading, they also state that the rock layer which is under the soil layer acts as the source of both water springs and the soil.

Second Example: This is the whole and the parts of the story of Moses (Peace be upon him), which is frequently repeated in the Qur’an, and each of the repetitions of which is shown as the tip of a universal rule, with each repetition stating the rule in question. For example:

O Haman! Build me a lofty palace.81

Pharaoh is commanding his minister: “Build me a high tower so that I can take a look at the heavens and observe them. I wonder if there is a God who governs in the skies like Moses claims, who can be seen from their

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81. Qur’an, 40:36.



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disposition?” Thus, through the word ‘palace’ and this minor incident, it states a strange rule dominant in the traditions of the Egyptian Pharaohs, who, because they lived in the desert with no mountains, wanted mountains, and because they did not recognize the Creator, were worshippers of nature and claimed godhead; and worshipping fame, through displaying the works of their dominion perpetuated their name and constructed the famous mountain-like pyramids; and agreed to magic and metempsychosis, and had their corpses mummified and preserved in their mountain-like tombs.

And, for example:

This day We shall save you in your body.82

By saying to Pharaoh, who is drowning: “Today I am going to save your body which will drown,” it is expressing a death-tainted, exemplary rule of the Pharaohs’ lives, which was, as a consequence of the idea of metempsychosis and mummifying the bodies of all of them, to take them from the past and send them to be viewed by the generations of the future. And this present century a body was discovered which was the very body of Pharaoh, thrown up on the seashore where he drowned. The verse thus states a miraculous sign of the Unseen, that the body was to be borne on the waves of the centuries and cast up from the sea of time onto the shore of this century.

And, for example:

They slaughtered your sons and let your women-folk live.83

With an event in the time of a Pharaoh, the slaughtering of the sons of the Children of Israel and the sparing of their women and daughters, it mentions the numerous massacres which the Jewish nation has suffered every age, and the role their women and girls have played in dissolute human life.

And you will indeed find them, of all people, most greedy of life.84 * And you see many of them racing each other in sin and rancour, and their eating of things forbidden. Evil indeed are the things they do.85 * But they [ever] strive to do mischief on earth. And God loves not those who do mischief.86 * And We gave [clear] warning to the Children of Israel in the Book, that twice they would do mischief on the earth.87 * And do no evil nor mischief on the earth.88

These two statements of the Qur’an directed at the Jews, comprise the two fearsome general rules, that that nation hatches plots in human social life

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82. Qur’an, 10:92.
83. Qur’an, 2:49; 14:6.
84. Qur’an, 2:96.
85. Qur’an, 5:62.
86. Qur’an, 5:64.
87. Qur’an, 17:4.
88. Qur’an, 2:60.



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with their trickery, which shake human society. They say that just as it was that nation which made labour contest with capital; and through usury and compounded interest, made the poor clash with the rich, and caused the banks to be founded, and amassed wealth through wiles and fraud; so it was again that nation who, in order to take their revenge on the victors and governments under which they always suffered deprivation and oppression, were involved in every sort of corrupting covert organization and had a finger in every sort of revolution.

And, for example:

Then seek ye for death89

That is, “If what you say is true, seek death, but you won’t seek it!” Thus, through a minor incident in a small gathering in the presence of the Prophet (PBUH), it points out that the Jewish nation, which is most famous among the nations of mankind for its greed for life and fear of death, will not, according to its tongue of disposition, seek death till Doomsday, and will not give up its greed for life.

And, for example:

Thus they were stamped with humiliation and indigence.90

With this, it describes generally that nation’s future destiny. It is because of these fearsome rules governing the destiny and character of this nation that the Qur’an acts so severely against them. It deals them awesomely punishing slaps. From these examples draw analogies with the other stories and passages about Moses (Peace be upon him) and the Children of Israel. Now, there are very many flashes of miraculousness like the flash in this Fourth Glow behind the simple words and specific subjects of the Qur’an. A hint is enough for the wise.

Fifth Glow: This is the extraordinary comprehensiveness of the Qur’an in regard to its aims and subjects, meanings and styles, and its subtle qualities and fine virtues. Indeed, if the Suras and verses of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition are studied carefully, and especially the openings of the Suras, and the beginnings and ends of the verses, it will be seen that although it gathers together all the categories of rhetoric, all the parts of fine speech, all the classes of elevated styles, all the sorts of fine morality, all the summaries of the sciences relating to the universe, all the indexes of Divine knowledge, all the beneficial rules for individual and human social life, and all the luminous laws of the exalted physical sciences, not a trace of confusion is apparent. In truth, to gather together in one place this many different categories of knowledge and not to cause any dispute or difficulty can only be the work of an overwhelming miraculous order.

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89. Qur’an, 2:94.
90. Qur’an, 2:61.



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Then together with the order within this comprehensiveness, as is expounded and proved in the previous twenty-four Words, to rend the veils of the habitual and commonplace, which are the source of compounded ignorance, and to draw out the wonders concealed beneath them and display them; to smash with the diamond sword of proof the idol of nature, which is the source of misguidance; to scatter with thunderous trumpet-blasts the dense layers of the sleep of heedlessness; and to uncover and reveal the obscure talisman of being and the strange riddle of the creation of the world, before which human philosophy and science have remained impotent, is most surely only the wondrous work of a wonder-worker like the Qur’an - the Qur’an, which sees reality, is familiar with the Unseen, bestows guidance, and shows the truth.

If the Qur’an’s verses are considered carefully and fairly, it will be seen that they do not resemble a gradual chain of thought, following one or two aims, like other books. For the Qur’an’s manner is sudden and instantaneous; it is inspired on the moment; its mark is that all its aspects arrive together but independently from distant places, a most serious and important discourse which comes singly and concisely.

Yes, who is there apart from the universe’s Creator that could give a discourse concerned to this degree with the universe and the Creator of the universe? Who could step beyond his mark to an infinite degree and make the All-Glorious Creator speak according to his own whims, then make the universe speak the truth? Yes, in the Qur’an, the universe’s Maker is seen to be speaking and making others speak most seriously and truthfully and in elevated and true fashion. There is no sign at all to suggest imitation. He speaks and makes speak. If, to suppose the impossible, someone like Musaylima was to step beyond his mark to an infinite degree, and by way of imitation make the All-Glorious Creator, the Sublime and Majestic One, speak according to his own ideas, and the universe as well, there certainly would be thousands of signs of imitation and indications of falsehood. For when the contemptible assume the manner of the lofty, their every action shows up their pretence. So consider carefully these verses, which proclaim this fact with an oath:

By the star when it goes down! * Your companion is neither astray nor being misled * Nor does he say [aught] of [his own] desire * It is no less than revelation inspired!91



·THIRD RAY

This is the miraculousness of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition which is its giving news of the Unseen, preserving its youth in every age, and being appropriate to every level of person. This Ray has three ‘Radiances’.

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91. Qur’an, 53:1-4.



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• First Radiance: This is its giving news of the Unseen. It consists of three ‘Glistens’.

The First Glisten is its telling about the past, one part of the Unseen. Indeed, the All-Wise Qur’an mentions through the tongue of one whom everyone agreed was both unlettered and trustworthy the important events and significant facts concerning the prophets from the time of Adam till the Era of Bliss in a way which, confirmed by scriptures like the Torah and the Bible, tells of them with the greatest power and seriousness. It concurs with the points on which the former Books were agreed, and decides between them on the points over which they differed, pointing out the truth of the matter. That is to say, the Qur’an’s view which penetrates the Unseen sees the events of the past in a way over and above all the previous scriptures, and pronounces them right and confirms them in the matters on which they are agreed, and acts as arbiter between them, correcting in matters about which they are at variance.

However, the facts the Qur’an relates about the events of the past are not things that could have been learnt through the exercise of reason that they were communicated by it; they were rather transmitted knowledge, dependent on the heavens, on revelation. And as for transmitted knowledge, it is the domain of those who know how to read and write, and these were revealed to one known by friend and foe alike as knowing neither how to read nor how to write, and as being trustworthy; someone described as unlettered.

Also, the Qur’an tells of those past events as though it had actually seen them. For it takes the spirit and vital point of a lengthy event, and makes them the introduction to its aim. That is to say, the summaries and extracts which the Qur’an contains show that it sees all the past together with all its events. For just as someone who is an expert in some science or craft shows his skill and proficiency through some succinct words or a concise statement, so the summaries and spirits of events mentioned in the Qur’an show that the one who said them comprehends all the events and sees them, and, if one may say so, relates them with extraordinary skill.

The Second Glisten is its giving news of the future, which is another part of the Unseen. There are many sorts of this. The first sort is particular, and special to the saints and those seek the truth through illumination. For example, Muhyiddin al-‘Arabi discovered numerous instances of the Qur’an’s giving news of the Unseen in the Sura,

Alif. Lam. Mim. * The Roman Empire has been defeated.92

And Imam-i Rabbani saw many signs of the events of the Unseen and the

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92. Qur’an, 30:1-2.



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communicating of them through the ‘disjointed letters’ at the start of some Suras, and so on. For scholars of the Batiniya School, the Qur’an consisted from beginning to end of information about the Unseen. We, however, shall indicate some which are general. These too have many levels, one of which we shall discuss. Thus, the All-Wise Qur’an says to God’s Noble Messenger (Peace and blessings be upon him):93

So patiently persevere, for God’s promise is true.94 * You shall enter the Sacred Mosque if God wills, with minds secure, heads shaved, hair cut short, and without fear; * He it is Who sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth, so it should prevail over all religion.95 * But they, after this defeat of theirs will soon be victorious, * within a few years. With God is the decision.96 * Soon will you see, and they will see * which of you is afflicted with madness.97 * Or do they say: “A poet! We await for him some calamity [hatched] by time?” * Say: “Wait, then. And I shall wait with you!”98 * And God will defend you from men.99 * But if you cannot, and of a surety you cannot.100 * But they will never seek it.101 * We shall show them Our signs on the furthest horizons and in their own selves, so that it becomes clear to them that this is the Truth.102 * Say: If the whole of mankind and the jinns were to come together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support.103 * God will produce a people whom He will love as they will love Him, lowly with the believers, mighty against the rejecters, fighting in the way of God, and never afraid of the reproaches of such as find fault.104 * And say: Praise be to God, Who will show you His signs, so that you shall know them.105 * Say: He is the Most Merciful; we have believed in Him, and in Him have we put our trust. Soon you shall know which [of us] it is that is in manifest error.106

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93. Since these verses which give news of the Unseen have been expounded in numerous Qur’anic commentaries, and also due to the haste imposed on the author by his intention to have this work printed in the old [Ottoman] script,* they have not been explained here and those valuable treasuries have remained closed. [*See, page 375, footnote 1 above. -Tr.]
94. Qur’an, 30:60.
95. Qur’an, 48:27-28.
96. Qur’an, 30:3-4.
97. Qur’an, 68:5-6.
98. Qur’an, 52:30-1.
99. Qur’an, 5:67.
100. Qur’an, 2:24.
101. Qur’an, 2:95.
102. Qur’an, 41:53.
103. Qur’an, 17:88.
104. Qur’an, 5:54.
105. Qur’an, 27:93.
106. Qur’an, 67:29.



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God has promised to those among you who believe and act righteously that He will of a surety grant them inheritance [of power] in the land, as He granted it to those before them; that He will establish in authority their religion, which He has chosen for them; and that He will change [their state] after their fear, to one of security and peace.107

The information about the Unseen which many verses like these give turned out to be exactly true. Because it was given by one who was subject to many criticisms and objections and could have lost his cause through the tiniest mistake, and was spoken unhesitatingly, and with absolute seriousness and confidence in a way that confirmed its authenticity, this news of the Unseen demonstrates with certainty that the one who gave it had received instruction from the Pre-Eternal Master, and then he spoke.

The Third Glisten is its giving news of the Divine truths, cosmic truths, and the matters of the hereafter. The Qur’an’s expositions of the Divine truths, and its explanations of the cosmos, which solve the talisman of the universe and riddle of creation, are the most important of its disclosures about the Unseen. For it is not reasonable to expect the human reason to discover those truths about the Unseen and follow them without deviating amid innumerable ways of misguidancå. It is well-known that the most brilliant philosophers of mankind have been unable to solve the most insignificant of those matters by use of the reason. Furthermore, it is only after the Qur’an has elucidated those Divine truths and cosmic truths, which it points out, and after man’s heart has been cleansed and his soul purified, and after his spirit has advanced and his mind been perfected that his mind affirms and accepts those truths, and he says to the Qur’an: “How great are God’s blessings!” This section has been in part explained and proved in the Eleventh Word, and there is no need to repeat it. But when it comes to facts concerning the hereafter and Intermediate Realm, the human mind certainly cannot rise to them and see them on its own. However, it can prove them to the degree it sees them through the ways shown by the Qur’an. It is explained and proved in the Tenth Word just how right and true are these disclosures of the Qur’an about the Unseen.

• Second Radiance: This is the Qur’an’s youth. It preserves its freshness and youth every age as though newly revealed. In fact, the Qur’an has to have perpetual youth since as a pre-eternal address, it addresses at once all the levels of mankind in every age. And that is how it has been seen and is seen. Even, although all the centuries are different with regard to ideas and capacity, it as though looks to each particularly, and teaches it. Man’s works and laws grow old like man, they change and are changed. But the rulings and laws of the Qur’an are so firm and well-founded that they

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107. Qur’an, 24:55.



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increase in strength as the centuries pass. Indeed, this present age and the People of the Book this age, who have more than any other relied on themselves and stopped up their ears to the words of the Qur’an, are so in need of its guiding address of,

O People of the Book! O People of the Book!

that it is as if it addresses this age directly, and the phrase O People of the Book! comprises also the meaning of O People of the Modern Science Books!108 It delivers its shout of,

O People of the Book! Come to common terms as between us and you109 to the ends of the world with all its strength, all its freshness, all its youth.

For example, modern civilization, which is the product of the thought of all mankind and perhaps the jinn as well, has taken up a position opposed to the Qur’an, which individuals and communities have failed to dispute. With its sorcery it impugns the Qur’an’s miraculousness. Now, in order to prove the claim of the verse:

Say: if the whole of mankind the jinns were to gather together...,110

we shall compare the foundations and principles which civilization has laid in the form of dispute, with the principles of the Qur’an.

At the First Degree: The comparisons and balances which form all the Words from the First to the Twenty-Fifth, and the verses at their heads which form their truths, all prove with the certainty that two plus two equals four the Qur’an’s miraculousness and supremacy in the face of civilization.

At the Second Degree: Like the proofs in the Twelfth Word, it is to summarize a number of principles. By reason of its philosophy, present-day civilization accepts ‘force’ as the point of support in the life of society. It takes as its aim ‘benefits,’ and considers the principle of its life to be ‘conflict.’ It considers the bond between communities to be ‘racialism and negative nationalism.’ While its aim is to provide ‘amusements’ for gratifying the appetites of the soul and increasing man’s needs. However, the mark of force is aggression. And since the benefits are insufficient to meet all needs, their mark is that everyone tussles and jostles over them. The mark of conflict is contention, and the mark of racialism, aggression, since it thrives on devouring others. Thus, it is because of these principles of civilization that despite all its virtues, it has provided a sort of superficial happiness for only twenty per cent of mankind and cast eighty per cent into distress and poverty.

The wisdom of the Qur’an, however, takes as its point of support ‘truth’ in stead of force, and in place of benefit has ‘virtue and God’s pleasure’ as

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108. Ehl-i Mekteb, those educated in modern secular schools, as opposed to Ehl-i Kitab. [Tr.]
109. Qur’an, 3:64.
110. Qur’an, 17:88.



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its aims. It considers ‘the principle of mutual assistance’ to be fundamental in life, rather than conflict. In the ties between communities it accepts ‘the bonds of religion, class, and country,’ in place of racialism and nationalism. Its aims are to place a barrier before the illicit assaults of the soul’s base appetites and to urge the spirit to sublime matters, to satisfy man’s elevated emotions and encourage him towards the human perfections. And as for the truth, its mark is concord, the mark of virtue is mutual support, and the mark of mutual assistance, hastening to help one another. The mark of religion is brotherhood and attraction. And the result of reining in and tethering the evil-commanding soul and leaving the spirit free and urging it towards perfection is happiness in this world and the next. Thus, despite the virtues present-day civilization has acquired from the guidance of the Qur’an in particular, and from the preceding revealed religions, in point of fact it has thus suffered defeat before the Qur’an.

Third Degree: Of thousands of matters, we shall point out only three or four by way of example. Since the Qur’an’s principles and laws have come from pre-eternity, they shall go to post-eternity. They are not condemned to grow old and die like civilization’s laws. They are always young and strong. For example, despite all its societies for good works, all its establishments for the teaching of ethics, all its severe discipline and regulations, civilization has been unable to contest the All-Wise Qur’an on two of its matters, and has been defeated by them. These two matters are:

Be steadfast in performing the prayers, and give zakat,111

and,

God has permitted trade and forbidden usury.112

We shall describe them, this miraculous victory, by means of an introduction. It is like this:

As is proved in Isharat al-I‘jaz, just as the source of mankind’s revolutions is one phrase, so another phrase is the origin of all immorality.

First Phrase: “So long as I’m full, what is it to me if others die of hunger.”

Second Phrase: “You work so that I can eat.”

Yes, the upper and lower classes in human society, that is, the rich and the poor, live at peace when in equilibrium. The basis of that equilibrium is compassion and kindness in the upper classes, and respect and obedience in the lower classes. Now, the first phrase has incited the upper classes to practise oppression, immorality, and mercilessness. And just as the second has driven the lower classes to hatred, envy, and to contend the upper classes, and has negated man’s tranquillity for several centuries, so too this century,

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111. Qur’an, 2:43, etc.
112. Qur’an, 2:275.



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as the result of the struggle between capital and labour, it has been the cause of the momentous events of Europe well-known by all. Thus, together with all its societies for good works, all its establishments for the teaching of ethics, all its severe discipline and regulations, it could not reconcile these two classes of mankind, nor could it heal the two fearsome wounds in human life. The Qur’an, however, eradicates the first phrase with its injunction to pay zakat, and heals it. While it uproots the second phrase with its prohibition on usury and interest, and cures that. Indeed, the Qur’anic verse stands at the door of the world and declares usury and interest to be forbidden. It reads out its decree to mankind, saying: “In order to close the door of strife, close the door of usury and interest!” It forbids its students to enter it.

Second Principle: Civilization does not accept polygamy. It considers the Qur’an’s decree to be contrary to wisdom and opposed to man’s benefits. Indeed, if the purpose of marriage was only to satisfy lust, polygamy would have been contrary to it. But as is testified to by all animals and corroborated by plants that ‘marry’, the purpose and aim of marriage is reproduction. The pleasure of satisfying lust is a small wage given by Divine mercy to encourage performace of the duty. Since in truth and according to wisdom, marriage is for reproduction and the perpetuation of the species, since women can give birth only once a year, and can be impregnated only half the month, and after the age of fifty fall into despair, and men can impregnate till a hundred years old, and thus one woman is insufficient for one man, civilization has been compelled to accept numerous houses of ill-repute.

Third Principle: Unreasoning civilization criticizes the Qur’anic verse which apportions to women one third [in inheritance]. However, most of the rulings concerning social life are in accordance with the majority, and mostly a women finds someone to protect her. As for the man, she will be a burden on him and will have to combine efforts with someone else who will leave her her means of subsistence. Thus, in this form, if a woman takes half of the father’s legacy, her husband makes up her deficiency. But if the man receives two parts from his father, one part he will give to maintaining the woman he has married, thus becoming equal with his sister. The justice of the Qur’an requires it to be thus. It has decreed it in this way.113

Fourth Principle: Just as the Qur’an severely prohibits the worship of

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113. This is part of my court defence, which was the supplement for the Appeal Court and which silenced the court. It is appropriate as a footnote for this passage. I told the court of law: Surely if there is any justice on the face of the earth, it will reject and quash an unjust decision which has convicted someone for expounding a most sacred, just Divine rule which governs in the social life of three hundred and fifty million people in the year one thousand three hundred and fifty, and in every century, relying on the confirmation and consensus of three hundred and fifty thousand Qur’anic commentaries, and following the beliefs of our forefathers of one thousand three hundred and fifty years.





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idols, so it forbids the worship of images, which is a sort of imitation of idol-worship. Whereas civilization counts the representation of forms as one of its virtues, and has attempted to dispute the Qur’an in this matter. But represented forms, whether pictorial or concrete, are either embodied tyranny, or embodied hypocrisy, or embodied lust; they excite lust and encourage man to oppression, hypocrisy, and licentiousness. Moreover, the Qur’an compassionately commands women to wear the veil of modesty so that they will be treated with respect and those mines of compassion will not be trodden under the feet of low desires, nor be like worthless goods for the excitement of lust.114 Civilization, however, has drawn women out of their homes, rent their veils, and corrupted mankind. For family life continues through the mutual love and respect of man and wife. But immodest dress has destroyed sincere respect and affection, and has poisoned family life. While worship of the human form in particular has shaken morality in appalling fashion, causing the abasement of man’s spirit. This may be understood from the following: to look lustfully and with desire at the corpse of a beautiful woman who is in need of pity and compassion destroys morality; so too, to look lasciviously at the representations of dead women, or of living women, for they are like little corpses, shakes to their very roots the elevated human emotions, and destroys them.

Thus, together with assisting human happiness in this world, all of thousands of matters of the Qur’an like the above three examples also serve eternal happiness. You can compare other matters to these.

Just as present-day civilization stands defeated before the Qur’anic principles concerning human social life and in reality is bankrupt in the face of the Qur’an’s miraculousness, so too it has been proved decisively in the previous twenty-five Words through the comparisons between European philosophy and human science, which are the spirit of civilization, and the wisdom of the Qur’an that philosophy is impotent and the wisdom of the Qur’an miraculous. The impotence and bankruptcy of philosophy and miraculousness and wealth of Qur’anic wisdom have been proved in the Eleventh and Twelfth Words; you may refer to those.

Furthermore, just as present-day civilization is defeated before the miraculousness of the Qur’an’s wisdom in regard to learning and actions, the same is true for literature and rhetoric. The comparison of the literature and rhetoric of civilization and those of the Qur’an is that of the dark grief and hopeless wailing of a motherless orphan and the low and uproarious song of a drunkard, and the yearning, hopeful sorrow of an elevated lover arising from a temporary separation and patriotic songs urging victory or war and high self-sacrifice. For in regard to the effects of its styles, literature and rhetoric

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114. The Twenty-Fourth Flash of the Thirty-First Letter about the veiling of women has proved most decisively that Islamic dress is natural for women, and that to cast it aside is contrary to women’s nature.





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produce either sorrow or joy. And sadness is of two sorts. It is either a dark sorrow arising from the lack of friends, that is, having no friends or owner, which is the sorrow produced by the literature of civilization, which is stained by misguidance, enamoured of nature, tainted by heedlessness, or it is the second sorrow. This arises from the separation of friends, that is, the friends exist, but their absence causes a yearning sorrow. This is the guidance-giving, light-scattering sorrow which the Qur’an produces. Joy, too, is of two sorts. One stimulates the desires of the soul. This is the mark of civilization’s literature in the fields of theatre, cinema, and the novel. While the other joy silences the soul, and is subtle and mannerly, innocently urging the spirit, heart, mind, and subtle faculties to attain to sublime matters, to their original home and eternal abode, and their companions of the hereafter; it is the joy the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition produces. It fills man with eagerness for Paradise and eternal happiness and the vision of God’s beauty.

Thus, the vast meaning and mighty truth which the verse,

Say: If the whole of mankind and the jinns were to gather together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support115

expresses, is imagined by those of scant intelligence to be an impossible supposition for the purposes of uttering an exaggerated piece of eloquence. God forbid! It is not an exaggeration, nor is it an impossible supposition; it is an absolutely truthful piece of rhetoric, and possible and actual.

One aspect of its being in this form is this: if all the fine words of man and jinn which do not issue from the Qur’an and do not belong to it were to be gathered together, they could not imitate the Qur’an. And they have not been able to imitate it, for they have been unable to show that they have. The second aspect is this: civilization, and science and philosophy and European literature, which are the products of the thought and efforts of mankind and the jinn and even satans, remain in the very pits of impotence before the decrees, wisdom, and eloquence of the Qur’an. Just as we showed in the examples.

• Third Radiance: It is as though the All-Wise Qur’an is every century turned directly towards all the classes of humanity, and addresses each particularly. Indeed, since the Qur’an summons all mankind with all its classes and instructs them in belief, the highest and most subtle science, and in knowledge of God, the broadest and most luminous branch of learning, and in the laws of Islam, which are the most important and various of the sciences, it is essential that it should instruct every class and group appropriately. What it teaches, however, is the same; it does not differ. In which case, there have to be different levels in the same lesson, and according to its degree, every class takes its share from one of the veils of the Qur’an. We

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115. Qur’an, 17:88.



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have given many examples of this, and they may be referred to. Here we shall only indicate one or two minor points, and the share of understanding of one or two classes. For example:

He begets not, nor is He begotten * And there is none like unto Him.116

The share of understanding of this of the ordinary people, which forms the most numerous class: “Almighty God is above having mother and father, relatives or wife.” While the share of a middle class: “It is to deny the divinity of Jesus (Peace be upon him), and the angels, and anything which has been born.” For although denying something impossible is apparently purposeless, according to the rules of rhetoric, a necessary statement is intended, which gives it purpose. Thus, the purpose of denying son and begetter, which are particular to corporality, is to deny the divinity of those who have offspring and parents and equals; and it is to show that they are not worthy of being worshipped. It is because of this that Sura al-Ikhlas is beneficial for everyone all the time. The share of a more advanced class: “Almighty God is above all relations which suggest giving birth and being born. He is exempt from having any partners, helpers, or fellows. His relations with all beings are those of Creator. He creates through His pre-eternal will with the command of “Be!,” and it is. He is far beyond having any relation which is contrary to perfection, or is compelling, necessitating, or involuntary.” And the share of understanding of a higher class still: “Almighty God is pre-eternal and post-eternal, He is the First and the Last. Neither in His essence, nor in His attributes, nor in His actions, has He in any way any equal, peer, like, or match, or anything similar, resembling, or analogous to Him. Only, in His acts, there may be comparisons expressing similarity:

And God’s is the highest similitude.”117

You can draw analogies with the above for other classes, which all receive different shares, like those who have attained knowledge of God, the lovers of God, and the truly sincere.

A Second Example:

Muhammad is not the father of any of your men.118

The share of understanding from this of the first class: “Zayd, the servant of God’s Noble Messenger (Peace and blessings be upon him), whom he also addressed as ‘my son,’ divorced his stately wife because he did not find himself equal to her. On God’s command, the Messenger (PBUH) took her. The verse says: ‘If the Prophet calls you son, it is in respect of his Messengership. In regard to his person, he is not your father, so that the women he takes should be unsuitable for him.’”

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116. Qur’an, 112:3-4.
117. Qur’an, 16:60.
118. Qur’an, 33:40.



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The second class’s share is this: “A great ruler looks on his subjects with paternal compassion. If he is a spiritual monarch ruling both outwardly and inwardly, then since his compassion goes a hundred times beyond that of a father, his subjects look on him as a father and on themselves as his real sons. A father’s view cannot be transformed into that of a husband, and a daughter’s view cannot be easily transformed into the view of a wife, so since the Prophet’s taking the believers’ daughters would seem inappropriate, the Qur’an says: ‘The Prophet (PBUH) acts kindly towards you with the eye of Divine compassion, and treats you in a fatherly manner. In the name of his Messengership, you are like his children. But with regard to his human person, he is not your father so that his taking a wife from you should be unfitting.’”

The third group would understand it like this: “You should not claim a connection with the Prophet (PBUH), and relying on his perfections and trusting in his fatherly compassion, commit errors and faults.” Yes, many people are lazy because they lean on their elders and guides. They even sometimes say: “Our prayers have been performed.” (Like some ‘Alawis)

The Fourth Point. Another group would understand a sign from the Unseen from this verse, as follows: The Prophet’s male children would not remain at the degree of ‘men’ [rijal]; in consequence of some wise purpose, his descendants would not continue as men. Since through the use of the term ‘rijal’ it indicates that he is the father of women, his line would continue through women. And, Praise be to God, Fatima’s blessed descendants, like Hasan and Husayn, the radiant moons of two luminous lines, continued the physical and spiritual line of the Sun of Prophethood.

O God, grant blessings to him and his Family.

(The First Light here reaches a conclusion with Three Rays.)

SECOND LIGHT

The Second Light comprises Three Beams.

·FIRST BEAM: According to the testimony of thousands of brilliant scholars of rhetoric and the science of rhetorical style like Zamakhshari, Sakkaki, and ‘Abd al-Qahir Jurjani, there is in the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition as a whole a pleasant fluency, a superior correctness, a firm mutual solidarity, and compact proportionateness, powerful co-operation between the sentences and parts, and an elevated harmony between the verses and their aims. And yet, while there are seven or eight significant factors that might mar or destroy the harmony, co-operation, and mutual support, and the fluency and correctness, they do not mar them, indeed, they give strength to the fluency, correctness, and proportionateness. Only, those causes have exerted an influence to some extent and taken others out of the veil of the order and fluency. But just as a number of bumps and



excres

·

·

·

·



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cences appear on a tree, not to spoil the harmony of the tree, but to produce fruit which will be the means for the tree reaching its adorned perfection and beauty; in just the same way, these factors stick out their knobbly heads in order to express meanings which will enhance the Qur’an’s fluent word-order. Thus, although the Perspicuous Qur’an was revealed part by part like stars over twenty years in response to the circumstances and needs, it possesses such a perfect harmony and displays such a proportionateness that it is as though it was revealed all at once.

Furthermore, although the circumstances which prompted the Qur’an’s revelation were all different and various, its parts are so mutually supportive that it is as though it was revealed in response to only one of them. And although the Qur’an came in response to different and repeated questions, it displays the utmost blending and unity, as though it was the answer to a single question. And although the Qur’an came to explain the requirements of numerous diverse events, it displays such a perfect order that it is as though it explains a single event. And although the Qur’an was revealed through Divine condescension in styles appropriate to the understanding of the innumerable people it would address, whose circumstances were different and diverse, it displays such a fine correspondence and beautiful smoothness of style that it is as though the circumstances were one and the level of understanding the same; it flows as smoothly as water. And although the Qur’an addresses numerous classes distant from one another, it possesses such an ease of exposition, such an eloquence in its word-order, such a clarity in its manner of expression that it is as though it is addressing a single class. Even, each class supposes that it alone is being addressed. And although the Qur’an was revealed in order to guide and lead to various aims, it possesses such an perfect integrity, such a careful balance, such a fine order that it is as though the aim was one.

Thus, while these are all causes of confusion, they have been employed in the Qur’an’s miraculous manner of exposition, in its fluency and proportionateness. For sure, everyone whose heart is without disease, whose mind is sound, whose conscience is not sick, whose taste is unimpaired sees in the Qur’an’s manner of exposition a beautiful smoothness of style, a graceful harmony, a pleasing proportionateness, a unique eloquence. All the clear-sighted see that the Qur’an possesses an eye that sees the whole universe together with its outer and inner aspects clearly before it as though it was a page; that it turns the page as it wishes, and tells the page’s meanings as it wishes. Several volumes would be necessary if we were to explain the meaning of this First Beam together with examples, so sufficing with the explanations and proofs of this fact in my Arabic treatises and in Isharat al-I‘jaz, and in the twenty-five Words up to here, I have only pointed out here these features of the Qur’an in it as whole.



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·SECOND BEAM

This concerns the miraculous qualities in the Qur’an’s unique style in the summaries and Most Beautiful Divine Names, which it shows at the ends of its verses.

REMINDER: There are many verses in this Second Beam. These are not only examples for the Second Beam, but for all the preceding examples and Rays. It would be extremely lengthy to explain them all giving them their due, so for now I am compelled to be brief and succinct. I have therefore indicated very concisely all the verses which form examples of this mighty mystery of miraculousness, and have postponed detailed explanation of them to another time.

Thus, the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition mostly mentions summaries at the conclusion of its verses which either contain the Divine Names or their meanings; or refer the verse to the reason in order to urge it ponder over it; or they comprise a universal rule from among the aims of the Qur’an in order to corroborate and strengthen the verse. Thus, in the summaries are certain indications from the Qur’an’s exalted wisdom and certain droplets from the water of life of Divine guidance, and certain sparks from the lightning of the Qur’an’s miraculousness. Now I shall mention briefly only ten of those numerous indications, and point out a concise meaning of only one of numerous truths, which are all one example out of many. Most of these ten indications are found together in compact form in most verses and form a true embroidery of miraculousness. Furthermore, most of the verses we give as examples are examples of most of the indications. We shall point out only one indication for each verse, and shall just point lightly to the meanings of those verses given as examples in the preceding Words.

• First Quality of Eloquence: With its miraculous exposition, the All-Wise Qur’an lays out, spreads out before the eyes, the acts and works of the All-Glorious Maker. Then it extracts the Divine Names from those works and acts, or it proves the basic aims of the Qur’an like the resurrection of the dead and Divine unity. An example of the first meaning is this:

He it is Who has created for you all things that are on the earth, then He turned His will to the heavens and ordered them as the seven heavens, for He has knowledge of all things.119

And an example of the second part:

Have We not made the earth as a resting place * And the mountains as pegs? * And [have We not] created you in pairs? * .... until, Verily the Day of Sorting Out is a thing appointed.120

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119. Qur’an, 2:29.
120. Qur’an, 78:6-17.




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In the first verse it describes the Divine works, and sets out the mightiest of them, which testify through their order and aims to knowledge and power, like the premises of a conclusion, or a momentous aim. Then it extracts the Name of All-Knowing. In the second verse, as is explained briefly in the Third Point of the First Ray in the First Light, it mentions Almighty God’s mighty acts and works, then concludes the resurrection of the dead, which is the Day of Sorting Out.

• Second Point of Eloquence: The Qur’an unrolls the woven fabrics of Divine art and displays them to the human gaze. Then, in the summaries it passes over the weaving within the Divine Names, or else refers them to the reason.

The first example of these:

Say: who is it that sustains you from the sky and from the earth? Or who is it that has power over hearing and sight? And who is it that brings out the living from the dead and the dead from the living? And who is it that rules and regulate all affairs? They will say, “God.” Say: Will you not then show piety [to Him]? * This is God, your Sustainer, The Truth..121

Thus, at the start it asks: “Who is it that readies the skies and the earth as though they were two storehouses for your sustenance, and causes one to produce rain and the other, seeds? Is there anyone other than God Who could make them two subservient storekeepers? In which case, thanks should be offered to Him alone.”

In the second phrase, it asks: “Who is the owner of your eyes and ears, the most precious of your members? From which workbench or shop did you obtain them? It is only your Sustainer that could give you them. It is He Who creates and raises you, and gave you them. In which case, there is no Sustainer but He, and the only one fit to be worshipped is He.”

In the third phrase, it says: “Who is it that resurrects the dead earth and raises to life hundreds of thousands of sorts of dead beings? Who could bring this about apart from the True God and Creator of all the universe? It is surely He Who brings it about, He raises them to life. Since He is Truth, He will not violate rights; He will send you to a Supreme Tribunal. He will raise you to life just as He raises to life the earth.”

In the fourth phrase, it asks: “Who other than God can administer and regulate this vast universe with perfect order as though it was a palace or a city? Since it can be none other than God, the power which administers with extreme ease the vast universe and all its heavenly bodies is so faultless and

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121. Qur’an, 10:31-2.



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infinite it can have no need of partner or associate, assistance or help. The One Who directs the vast universe will not leave small creatures to other hands. That means you will be obliged to say: ‘God.’”

Thus, the first and fourth phrases say “God,” the second, “Sustainer,” and the third, “Truth.” So understand how miraculously apt are the words: This is God, your Sustainer, The Truth.. It mentions Almighty God’s vast disposals, the meaningful weavings of His power. Then through mentioning the Names of “God,” “Sustainer,” and “Truth,” it shows the source of those vast disposals of Divine power.

An example of the second:

Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alternation of the night and the day; in the sailing of the ships through the oceans for the profit of mankind; in the rain which God sends down from the skies, and the life He gives therewith to an earth that is dead; in the beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the earth; in the disposal of the winds and the clouds subjugated between the sky and the earth, indeed are signs for people who think.122

First this enumerates the manifestations of Divine sovereignty in the creation of the heavens and the earth, which demonstrates Almighty God’s perfect power and the vastness of His dominicality, and testifies to His unity; and the manifestation of dominicality in the alternation of night and day, and the manifestation of Divine mercy in the subjugation of the ships in the sea, the most important means of transport in human social life; and the manifestation of the immensity of Divine power, which sends the water of life to the dead earth from the skies and raises to life hundreds of thousands of species and makes it like a exhibition of wonders; and the manifestation of mercy and power in the creation of infinite numbers of different animals on the earth from simple soil; and the manifestation of wisdom and mercy in the employment of the winds in important duties like assisting in the pollination and respiration of plants and animals and in the impelling and regulating of them so as to make them suitable to perform those duties; and the manifestation of dominicality in the subjugation and gathering together of the clouds, the means of mercy, suspended between the skies and the earth in great strange masses, and dispersing them, as though dispersing an army for rest and then summoning them back to their duties. Then, in order to urge the mind to ponder over their details and essential truths, it says: Indeed are signs for people who think. In order to rouse people’s minds with it, it refers it to their faculties of reason.

• Third Quality of Eloquence: Sometimes the Qur’an explains Almighty God’s acts in detail, then sums them up with a summary. It convinces with

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122. Qur’an, 2:164.



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the details and commits it to the memory and fixes it there by summarizing it. For example:

Thus will your Sustainer choose you and teach you the interpretation of events and perfect His favour to you and to the posterity of Jacob - even as He perfected it to your fathers Abraham and Isaac aforetime; indeed, your Sustainer is All-Knowing, All-Wise.123

With this verse, it points out the bounties bestowed on the Prophet Joseph and his forefathers. It says: “Out of all mankind Divine favour has ennobled you with the rank of prophethood; tied all the lines of prophethood to your line and made it the chief of all lineages among mankind; it has made your family a cell of instruction and guidance in the Divine sciences and dominical wisdom, and united in you through that knowledge and wisdom, prosperous worldly dominion and the eternal happiness of the hereafter; and it has made you both a mighty ruler of Egypt, and a high prophet, and a wise guide, and has distinguished you and your forefathers with knowledge and wisdom.” It enumerates these Divine bounties, then it says: Indeed, your Sustainer is All-Knowing, All-Wise. “His dominicality and wisdom require that He made manifest in you and your fathers and forefathers the Divine Names of All-Knowing and All-Wise.” Thus, it sums up those detailed bounties with this summary.

And, for example:

O God! Lord of All Dominion, You give power to whom You will.124

This verse shows Almighty God’s disposals in mankind’s social life in such a way that it ties glory and abasement, poverty and riches directly to Almighty God’s will and wish. It means, “Even the disposals most dispersed through the levels of multiplicity are through Divine will and determining. Chance and coincidence cannot interfere.” After making this statement, it mentions the most important matter in man’s life, his sustenance. This verse proves with one or two introductory phrases that man’s sustenance is sent directly from the True Provider’s treasury of mercy. It is like this: “Your sustenance is tied to the earth’s life, and the earth’s being raised to life looks to the spring, and the spring is in the hands of the One Who subjugates the sun and the moon, and alternates the night and the day. In which case, only the One Who fills the face of the earth with all the fruits can give an apple to someone as true sustenance. Only He can be his true Provider.” Then it says:

And You give sustenance to whom You please without measure.125

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123. Qur’an, 12:6.
124. Qur’an, 3:26.
125. Qur’an, 3:27.



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It summarizes and proves those detailed acts in this sentence. That is, “The One Who gives you unlimited sustenance is He Who performs these acts.”

• Fourth Point of Eloquence: It sometimes happens that the Qur’an mentions the Divine creatures with a particular arrangement of the sentence, then through showing that the creatures are within an order and balance and that they are its fruits, affords a sort of transparency and brilliance. This transparency and brilliance then show the Divine Names, the manifestation of which is through that mirror-like arrangement. It is as though the above-mentioned creatures are words, and the Names are their meanings, or the seeds of the fruits, or their essences. For example:

Man We did create from quintessence of clay * Then We placed him as [a drop of] sperm in a place of rest, firmly fixed; * Then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a [foetus] lump; then We made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh; then We developed out of it another creature. So blessed be God, the Best of Creators!126

Thus, the Qur’an mentions in order those wonderful, strange, amazing, well-ordered and balanced stages of man’s creation in such a mirror-like fashion that

So blessed be God, the Best of Creators!

appears of itself from within them, and makes itself exclaimed. A scribe who was writing out this verse uttered the words before coming to them, and wondered to himself: “Has revelation come to me as well?” Whereas it was the perfection of the order and transparency of the preceding words and their coherence which had showed up the final words before coming to them.

And for example:

Your Sustainer is God, Who created the heavens and the earth is six days, and is firmly established on the Throne [of authority]; He draws the night as a veil over the day, each seeking the other in rapid succession; He created the sun, the moon, and the stars, [all] subject to His command. Is it not His to create and to command? Blessed by God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds!127

In this verse, the Qur’an points out the sublimity of Divine power and the sovereignty of dominicality. It shows an All-Powerful One of Glory established on the throne of His dominicality, Who, with the sun, moon and stars like soldiers under orders awaiting his command, rotates the night and day one after the other like two lines or two ribbons, one white and one black

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126. Qur’an, 23:12-14.
127. Qur’an, 7:54.



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and writes the signs of His dominicality on the pages of the universe. This he does in such a way that when a spirit hears the verse, it feels the desire to exclaim: “Blessed be God! What wonders God has willed! So Blessed be God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds!” That is to say, Blessed be God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds is like the summary, the seed, the fruit, and water of life, of what has preceded it.

• Fifth Quality of Eloquence: The Qur’an sometimes mentions material, particular matters which are subject to change and are the means of various circumstances, then in order to transform them into the form of constant truths, summarizes them with constant, luminous, universal Divine Names, and ties them up. Or it concludes with a summary which encourages thought and the taking of lessons. An example of the first meaning:

And He taught Adam the Names, all of them, then placed them before the angels, and said: “Tell me the Names of these if you are right.” * They said: “Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed You are All-Knowing , All-Wise!”128

First of all this verse mentions a particular matter, which is, “In the question of Adam’s succession, it was knowledge that gave him superiority over the angels.” Then within this event it mentions that of the angels’ defeat before Adam in respect of knowledge. Then it summarizes these two events with two universal Names: Indeed You are All-Knowing, All-Wise. That is: since You are All-Knowing and Wise, You instructed Adam and he prevailed over us. And since You are All-Wise, You treated us according to our abilities and gave him preference in accordance with his abilities.

An example of the second meaning:

And verily in cattle you will find an instructive sign. From what is within their bodies, between excretions and blood, We produce for your drink, milk, pure and agreeable for those who drink it...

until,

Wherein is healing for men; indeed in this is a sign for a people who thinks.129

These verses point out that Almighty God makes creatures of His like sheep, goats, cattle, and camels into springs of pure, delicious milk for man, and artefacts like grapes and dates into cauldrons and trays laden with deliciously sweet bounties for him, and tiny miracles of His power like the honey-bee into makers of a sweet, health-giving sherbet, and then conclude with the words, Indeed in these are signs for a people who thinks,

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128. Qur’an, 2:31-2.
129. Qur’an, 16:66-9.



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thus urging man to think and take lessons and compare these with other things.

• Sixth Quality of Eloquence: It sometimes happens that a verse spreads out dominical decrees over a great multiplicity of things, then it unifies them with a tie of unity resembling an aspect of unity, or it situates them within a universal rule. For example:

His Throne does extend over the heavens and the earth, and He feels no fatigue in preserving them, for He is the Most High, the Supreme.130

Thus, together with proving with ten phrases in Ayat al-Kursi ten levels of Divine unity in varying hues, with the phrase,

Who is there that can intercede in His presence except as He permits?,

it rejects utterly and vehemently the associating of partners with God and interference of others, and casts them away. Also, since this verse manifests the Greatest Name, its meanings related to the Divine truths are at a maximum degree, so that it demonstrates the dominical acts of disposal at a maximum level. Furthermore, after mentioning the Divine regulation of all the heavens and the earth and a preservation encompassing all things at the maximum degree, a tie of unity and aspect of unity summarize the sources of those maximum manifestations with the phrase,

For He is the Most High, the Supreme.

And, for example:

It is God Who has created the heavens and the earth and sends down rain from the skies, and with it brings out fruits therewith to feed you; made subject to you the ships, that they may sail through the sea by His command; and the rivers [too] He has made subject to you; * and He has made subject to you the sun and the moon, both diligently pursuing their courses; and the night and the day has He [also] made subject to you; * And He gives you of all that you ask for. But if you count the favours of God, never will you will able to number them.131

These verses describe how Almighty God created the huge universe as a palace for man, and sending the water of life from the skies to the earth, made the skies and the earth two servants producing food for him. Similarly, He made ships subject to men so that they might benefit from the fruits of the earth found in every part of it, and also exchange the fruits of their labours and secure their livelihoods in every respect. That is, He made the winds as whips, ships as horses, and the seas as a desert beneath their hooves. And besides connecting man with every region of the earth by means of ships, He

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130. Qur’an, 2:255.
131. Qur’an, 14:32-4.



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subjugated the rivers, great and small, to him by making them means of transport. And causing the sun and moon to travel, the True Bestower of Bounties alternates the seasons and makes them two obedient servants whereby He offers man His multicoloured bounties which change with the seasons; He created them also as two steersmen turning that mighty wheel. And He made the night and day subject to man; that is, He made the night as a veil for his sleep and repose, and the day a place of trade for winning his livelihood.

After enumerating these Divine bounties, with the summary:

And He gives you of all that you ask for. But if you count the favours of God, never will you will be able to number them,

it points out the vast extent of the bounties bestowed on man, and their abounding profusion and abundance. That is, whatever man asks for through the tongue of his capacity and innate needs, they have all been given him. An end can never be reached in counting the Divine bounties bestowed on man nor can they be exhausted. Certainly, since the heavens and the earth are a table of bounties for man, and things like the sun and the moon and night and day some of the bounties on the table, the bounties directed towards man are most surely beyond count and calculation.

• Seventh Mystery of Eloquence: It sometimes happens that in order to disallow apparent causes the ability to create and to demonstrate how far they are from this, a verse points out the aims and fruits of the effects so that it may be understood that causes are only an apparent veil. For to will that most wise and purposeful aims are followed, and important results are obtained, is of necessity the work of one who is most Knowing and Wise. Whereas causes are lifeless and without intelligence. So by mentioning the aims and results, such verses show that although causes are superficially and as beings joined to and adjacent to their effects, in reality there is a great distance between them. The distance from the cause to the creation of the effect is so great that the hand of the greatest causes cannot reach the creation of the most insignificant effects. Thus, it is within this long distance between cause and effect that the Divine Names each rise like stars. The place of their rising is this distance. To the superficial glance mountains on the horizon appear to be joined to and contiguous with the skirts of the sky, although from the mountains to the sky is a vast distance in which the stars rise and other things are situated; so too the distance between causes and effects is such that it may be seen only with the light of the Qur’an through the telescope of belief. For example:

Then let man consider his sustenance. * For that We pour forth water in abundance. * And We split the earth into fragments. * And We produce therein corn, * And grapes and nutritious plants, * And olives



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and dates, * And enclosed gardens, dense with lofty trees, * And fruits and fodder, * For use and convenience to you and your cattle.132

By mentioning miracles of Divine power in a purposeful sequence, this verse ties causes to effects and with the words, For use and convenience to you points to an aim at its conclusion. This aim proves that within the sequence of all the causes and effects is a hidden disposer who sees and follows the aim, to whom the causes are a veil. Indeed, with the phrase, For use and convenience to you and your cattle, it disallows all the causes the ability to create. It is in effect saying: “Rain comes from the sky in order to produce food for you and your animals. Since water does not possess the ability to pity you and produce food, it means that the rain does not come, it is sent. And the earth produces plants and your food comes from there. But lacking feelings and intelligence, it is far beyond the ability of the earth to think of your sustenance and feel compassion for you, so it does not produce it itself. Furthermore, since it is remote from plants and trees to consider your food and compassionately produce fruits and grains for you, the verse demonstrates that they are strings and ropes which One All-Wise and Compassionate extends from behind the veil, to which He attaches His bounties and holds out to animate creatures.” Thus, from this explanation numerous Divine Names rise, like All-Compassionate, Provider, Bestower, and All-Generous.

And another example:

Do you not see that God makes the clouds move gently, then joins them together, then makes them into a heap? - then will you see rain issue forth from their midst. And He sends down from the sky mountain [masses of clouds] wherein is hail; He strikes therewith whom He pleases and He turns it away from whom He pleases. The vivid flash of His lightning well-nigh blinds the sight. * It is God Who alternates the night and the day; indeed in these things is an instructive example for those who have vision. * And God has created every animal from water; of them are some that creep on their bellies; some that walk on two legs; and some that walk on four. God creates what He wills; for verily God has power over all things.133

This verse explains the wondrous disposals in the formation of clouds and causing of rainfall, which is one of the most important miracles of dominicality and strangest veil of the treasury of mercy. Like soldiers who have dispersed to rest gather together at the call of a bugle, clouds gather and form at the Divine command when their parts have been dispersed and hidden in the atmosphere. Then, like an army is formed of small groups, the

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132. Qur’an, 80:24-32.
133. Qur’an, 24:43-5.



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pieces of cloud come together and form masses -which are vast and towering, moist and white, and contain snow and hail like the moving mountains at the resurrection- from which the water of life is sent to living beings. But in its being sent a will and purpose are apparent; it comes in accordance with need. This means it is sent. While the skies are clear and empty, the mountainous pieces of cloud do not gather together of their own accord into a great gathering of wonders, they are sent by One Who knows the living creatures. In this distance, then, Divine Names rise, like All-Powerful, All-Knowing, Disposer, Designer, Nurturer, Succourer, and Giver of Life.

• Eighth Quality of Eloquence: It sometimes happens that in order to impel the heart to accept Almighty God’s wondrous works in the hereafter and make the mind affirm them, the Qur’an mentions His amazing works in this world by way of preparation, or it mentions the wondrous Divine works of the future and hereafter in such a way that we acquire firm conviction about them through similar things which we observe here. For example:

Does man not see that We created him from sperm, and behold, he stands forth an open adversary?134... to the end of the Sura.

In this discussion of the resurrection of the dead, the Qur’an proves the resurrection in seven or eight different ways. Firstly it draws attention to the first creation, saying: “You see your creation from sperm to a blood-clot, from a blood-clot to a foetus lump, and from that to the human creation, so how is it that you deny the second creation, which is like it or even easier?”

And with the words:

Who produces for you fire out of the green tree,132

Almighty God indicates the mighty favours He bestows on man, saying: “The One Who bestows such bounties on you will not leave you at liberty to enter the grave and sleep never to rise again.” And by allusion it says: “You see the dead trees come to life and grow green, but you draw no conclusions from their bones springing to life when like dry fire-wood, and so deem man’s rising again unlikely. Also, could the One Who creates the heavens and the earth remain impotent before the life and death of man, the fruit of the heavens and the earth? Would the One Who administers the mighty tree attach no importance to its fruit and allow others to claim it? Do you suppose that He would abandon the result of all the tree, thus making purposeless and vain the tree of creation, which together with all its parts is kneaded with wisdom?” It says: “The One Who will raise you to

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134. Qur’an, 36:77.
135. Qur’an, 36:80.



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life at the resurrection is such that the whole universe is like a soldier under His orders.” It is utterly submissive before His command of “Be!,” and it is. It is as easy for Him to create the spring as to create a flower. He is One for Whose power it is as easy to create all animals as to create a fly. Such a One may not be challenged with the words:

Who can give life to [dry] bones?,136

and His power belittled. Then, with the phrase:

So glory be unto Him in Whose hand is the dominion of all things,137

it says: “He is an All-Powerful One of Glory in Whose hands are the reins of all things, with Him are the keys to all things; He alternates winter and summer as easily as turning the pages of a book, and opens and closes this world and the hereafter as though they were two houses.” Since it is thus, the conclusion of all these evidences is:

And to Him will you all be brought back.138

That is, “He will raise you to life from the grave and bring you to the resurrection;there you will be called to account in the presence of the Almighty.”

Thus, all these verses have prepared the mind to accept the resurrection, and so have they prepared the heart, for they have pointed out similar deeds in this world.

It sometimes happens also that the Qur’an mentions Almighty God’s deeds of the hereafter in such a way that man may understand similar things in this world. Then no possibility remains to deny them or deem them unlikely. An example are the Suras which begin:

When the Sun is folded up;139 * When the sky is cleft asunder;140 * When the sky is rent asunder.141

In these Suras it mentions the mighty revolutions and dominical acts of disposal in the resurrection and Great Gathering in such a way that, since man sees things similar to them in this world, for example, in the autumn and spring, he accepts those revolutions easily, which cause dread to the heart and cannot be comprehended by the mind. To provide even a summary of the meaning of these three Suras would be very lengthy, so for now we shall point out a single phrase by way of example.

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136. Qur’an, 36:78.
137. Qur’an, 36:83.
138. Qur’an, 36:83.
139. Sura 81, al-Takwir.
140. Sura 82, al-Infitar.
141. Sura 84, al-Inshiqaq.



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For example, the phrase:

When the pages are laid open142

expresses the following: at the resurrection all the deeds of everyone will be published written on pages. Being very strange on its own, the mind cannot grasp this matter. But as the Sura indicates, the same way as in the resurrection of the spring are things similar to other points, the things similar to this laying open of the pages are quite clear. For all fruit-bearing trees or flowering plants perform deeds, acts, and duties, and in whatever way they display the Divine Names and glorify God, they perform worship. All these deeds are written in their seeds together with their life histories, and emerge in another spring in another place. Just as they mention most eloquently the deeds of their mothers and stock through the tongues of the shapes and forms they display, so they publish the pages of their deeds through their branches, leaves, flowers, and fruits. Thus, the One Who carries out this Wise, Preserving, Planned, Nurturing, Benevolent work, is He Who says:

When the pages are laid open.

You can make analogies with other points from this and deduce them if you can. To help you, I shall say the following: the phrase:

When the sun is folded up

is a brilliant metaphor meaning ‘rolling up’ and ‘gathering up’; so too it alludes to things similar to it.

The First: Almighty God drew back the veils of non-existence, the ether, and the skies, and taking from the treasury of His mercy a lamp like a sparkling brilliant to illuminate the world, displayed it to the world. When the world is closed, He shall rewrap that brilliant in its veils and remove it.

The Second: The sun is an official charged with spreading out the wares of its light and wrapping the head of the earth alternately in light and darkness. Every evening it gathers up its wares and conceals them, and sometimes it does scant business due to the veil of a cloud, and sometimes the moon draws a veil over its face and somewhat hinders its transactions, then it adjusts the account books of its wares and transactions. Similarly, a time will come when this official will resign from its post. Even if there is no cause for its dismissal, due to the enlargement of the two black spots on its face, as has begun, with Divine permission the sun will take back the light that it spreads at a dominical command and wrap it around its own head. It will be told: “No work remains for you on earth. Go to Hell and burn those who worshipped you and insulted an obedient official like yourself by inferring you were disloyal!” It will read out the decree of When the Sun is folded up through its black-spotted face.

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142. Qur’an, 81:10.



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• Ninth Point of Eloquence: It sometimes happens that the All-Wise Qur’an mentions certain particular aims, then in order to impel the mind by means of them, confirms, establishes, verifies, and proves the aims through the Divine Names, which are like universal rules. For example:

God has indeed heard the statement of the woman who pleads with you concerning her husband and carries her complaint to God; and God [always] hears the arguments between both sides among you; for God is All-Hearing, All-Seeing.143

Here the Qur’an is saying: “Almighty God is absolutely All-Hearing; He hears everything, even, through the Divine Name of Truth, a wife arguing with you and complaining about her husband, a truly insignificant matter. And since women manifest the subtlest manifestations of mercy and are mines of self-sacrificing compassion, He hears through the Name of Most Compassionate the rightful claim of a woman and her complaint to Him, and through the Name of Truth takes it seriously, affording it the greatest importance.” Thus, in order to make this particular aim universal, One outside the sphere of contingency of the universe Who hears and sees a minor incident among creatures, must of necessity hear and see all things, and One Who is Sustainer of the universe of necessity sees the suffering of insignificant creatures within the universe who are wronged, and hears their cries. One who does not see their suffering and does not hear their cries for help cannot be the Sustainer. In which case, it establishes two mighty truths with the phrase,

For God is All-Hearing, All-Seeing.

And, for example:

Glory be to [God] who did take His servant by night from the Sacred Mosque to the Farthest Mosque, whose precincts We did bless, in order that We might show him some of Our signs, for He is indeed All-Hearing, All-Seeing.144

Here, after mentioning the Noble Messenger’s (Peace and blessings be upon him) journey from the Sacred Mosque in Mecca to the Farthest Mosque in Jerusalem, which was the start of his Ascension, the Qur’an says: for He is indeed All-Hearing, All-Seeing. The pronoun He refers to either Almighty God or to the Prophet. If it refers to the Prophet, it is like this: “There was within this particular journey a general journey and universal ascension, during which, as far as the Farthest Lote-tree and distance of two bow-strings, he heard and saw the dominical signs and wonders of Divine art which were apparent to his eyes and ears in the universal degrees of the Divine Names.”

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143. Qur’an, 58:1.
144. Qur’an, 17:1.



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It shows that that particular and insignificant journey was like a key to a journey which was universal and an assembly of wonders.

If the pronoun refers to Almighty God, it is like this: “He invited one of His servants to journey to His presence; and in order to entrust him with a duty, sent him from the Sacred Mosque to the Farthest Mosque, where He caused him to meet with the prophets who were gathered there. Then after showing that he was the absolute heir to the principles of all their religions, conveyed him through His realms in their inner and outer aspects as far as ‘the distance of two bow-lengths.’”

He was certainly a servant and he journeyed on an ascension that was particular, but he held a trust that was related to the whole universe, and a light which would change the universe’s colour. Since he had with him a key to open the doors of eternal happiness, Almighty God described this Being with the attributes of hearing and seeing all things. For in this way he could demonstrate the world-embracing purposes and instances of wisdom of the trust, the light, and the key.

And, for example:

Praise be to God, Creator of the heavens and the earth, Who made the angels messengers with wings, two, three, or four [pairs]: He adds to creation as He pleases, for God is Powerful over all things.145

In this Sura, the Qur’an says: “By adorning the heavens and the earth in this way and displaying the works of His perfection, their All-Glorious Creator causes innumerable spectators to extol and praise Him. He decks them out with uncountable bounties so that the heavens and the earth praise and extol unendingly the Most Merciful Creator through the tongues of all the bounties and those who receive them.” After this it points out that since the Creator has given men and the animals and birds members and wings with which to travel through the towns and lands of the earth, and since that All-Glorious One has also given wings to the angels, the inhabitants of the realm of the heavens, in order to fly through the celestial palaces of the stars and lofty lands of the constellations, He is certainly powerful over all things. The One Who gives wings to a fly, to fly from fruit to fruit, and wings to a sparrow to fly from tree to tree, is the One Who gives wings to the angels to fly from Venus to Jupiter. Furthermore, the angels are not restricted to particularity like the dwellers of the earth; they are not confined by a specific place. With the words: two, three, or four [pairs], it suggests that at one time they may be present on four or more stars; it gives details. Thus, through describing “the arraying of the angels with wings,” which is a particular event, it points to a universal, general workshop of Divine power and its immensity, and

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145. Qur’an, 35:1.



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verifies and establishes it with the summary: For God is Powerful over all things.

• Tenth Point of Eloquence: It sometimes happens that a verse mentions man’s rebellious acts, then restrains him with severe threats. Then, so that the severity of the threats should not cast him into despair and hopelessness, it concludes with some Divine Names which point to His mercy and console him. For example:

Say: if there had been [other] gods with Him -as they say- behold they would certainly have sought out a way to the Lord of the Throne! * Glory be to Him! He is high above all that they say! - Exalted and Great [beyond measure] * The sevens heavens and the earth, and all beings therein declare His glory; there is not a thing but celebrates His praise; and yet you understand not how they declare His glory! Indeed, He is Oft-Forbearing, Most Forgiving!146

This verse says: “Say: if, like you say, God had had partners in his sovereignty, there would surely have been some signs of disorder, caused by the hand that stretched up to the throne of His dominicality and interfered. However, through the tongues of the manifestations and inscriptions of the Divine Names which they manifest, all creatures, universal or particular, great or small, from the seven levels of the heavens to microscopic organisms, glorify the All-Glorious One signified by those Names, declaring Him to be free of partners or like.

Yes, just as the heavens declare Him to be All-Holy through the light-scattering words of the suns and stars, and through the wisdom they display and their order, and testify to His unity, so the atmosphere glorifies and sanctifies Him through the voice of the clouds and words of the thunder, lightning, and rain, and testifies to His unity. The earth too glorifies and declares to be One the All-Glorious Creator through its living words known as animals, plants, and other beings; and so does it glorify Him and testify to His unity through the words of its trees and their leaves, blossoms, and fruits. Similarly, despite their tiny size and insignificance, the smallest creatures and most particular beings glorify the All-Glorious One signified by the numerous universal Names they display, and testify to His unity through the inscriptions they bear.

Thus, since man is the summary and result of the universe, and God’s vicegerent on earth, and its delicate fruit, this verse points out how ugly and deserving of punishment is his unbelief and associating partners with God. For it is counter and contrary to the whole universe, which altogether glorifies unanimously, with one tongue, its All-Glorious Creator and testifies in

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146. Qur’an, 17:42-4.



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its own way to His unity, and performs the duty of worship with which it is charged, carrying it out in perfect submission. But in order not to cast man into despair, and to show the wisdom in the All-Glorious Subduer’s permitting such an infinitely ugly rebellion and not destroying the universe around mankind, it says:

Indeed, He is Oft-Forbearing, Most Forgiving!

It shows with this summary the wisdom in His postponing it, and leaves a door open for hope.

Thus, you may understand from these ten indications of miraculousness that in the summaries at the conclusions of verses are numerous sprinklings of guidance and flashes of miraculousness. The greatest geniuses among the scholars of rhetoric have bitten their fingers in absolute wonder and admiration at these unique styles, and declared: “THIS IS NOT THE WORD OF MAN,” and have believed with absolute certainty that

·THE THIRD BEAM of The Second Light

The Qur’an cannot be compared with other words and speech. This is because speech is of different categories, and in regard to superiority, power, beauty and fineness, has four sources: one is the speaker, another is the person addressed, another is the purpose, and another is the form. Its source is not only the form as literary people have wrongly shown. So in speech one should consider, “Who said it? To whom did they say it? Why did they say it? In what form did they say it?” One should not consider the words only and stop there. Since speech draws its strength and beauty from these four sources, if the Qur’an’s sources are studied carefully, the degree of its eloquence, superiority, and beauty will be understood. Indeed, since speech looks to the speaker, if it is command or prohibition, it comprises also the speaker’s will and power in accordance with his position. Then it eliminates resistance; it has an effect like physical electricity and increases in proportion to the speech’s superiority and power. Take, for example, the verse:

O earth! swallow up your water. And O sky! withhold [your rain].148

That is, “O earth! Your duty is completed, swallow your water. O skies! No need now remains, cease giving rain.” And for example:

It is no less than revelation inspired.147

This means that together with the above-mentioned indications, numerous further facets not included in our discussion are contained in other verses in the arrangement of which such an impress of miraculousness is apparent that even the blind may see it...

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147. Qur’an, 53:4.
148. Qur’an, 11:44.



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And He said to it and to the earth: Come together willingly or unwillingly. They said: We do come [together] in willing obedience.149

That is, “O earth! O skies! Come whether you want to or not, you are anyway submissive to my wisdom and power. Emerge from non-being and come to the exhibition-place of my art in existence.” And they replied: “We come in perfect obedience. Through Your power, we perform every duty that You have shown us.” Consider the power and elevatedness of these true, effective commands, which comprise power and will, then look at human words like the following nonsensical conversation with inanimate beings:

“Be stationary, O earth! Be cleft, O skies! O resurrection, break forth!”

Can the two commands be compared? Yes, is there are any comparison between wishes arising from desires and officious commands issuing from those wishes, and the command of a commander of real authority? Can there be any comparison between such words and the effective command, “Forward march!” of a supreme commander of a vast army? For if a command such as that is heard from a common soldier, while the two commands are the same in form, in meaning they differ as greatly as a common soldier and the commander of an army.

And for example the verses:

Indeed, His command when He wills a thing is “Be!,” and it is,150

and,

And on Our saying to the angels: Prostrate before Adam.151

Look at the power and elevatedness of these two verses, then look at man’s speech in the form of commands. Is the latter not like a fire-fly in relation to the sun? In order to describe his act to both eye and ear, a true owner describes his act while performing it, and a true artist explains his art as he works it, and a true bestower explains his bounties as he bestows them, that is, in order to combine both word and act, each says: “Look! I have done this and I am doing this in this way. I did that for this reason, and this will be thus, and I am doing this so it will be like that.”

And for example:

Do they not look at the sky above them? How We have made it and adorned it, and there are no flaws in it? * And the earth, We have spread it out, and set thereon mountains standing firm, and produced therein every kind of beautiful growth [in pairs], * As an insight and reminder for all [God’s] servants who turn unto Him. * And We send down from the sky rain charged with blessing, and We produce there

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149. Qur’an, 41:11.
150. Qur’an, 36:82.
151. Qur’an, 2:34.



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with gardens and grain for harvests; * And tall [and stately] palm-trees, with shoots of fruit-stalks, piled one over another; * As sustenance for [God’s] servants; And We give [new] life therewith to land that is dead: thus will the coming-forth [from the grave].152

Can there be any comparison between these descriptions, these acts, which shine like the starry fruits of Paradise in the constellation of this Sura in the skies of the Qur’an, and this mentioning many levels of proofs within them by means of the order of rhetoric, and this proving the resurrection of the dead, its conclusion, with the phrase thus will be the coming-forth, thus silencing those at the start of the Sura who deny resurrection - can there be any comparison between this and the discussions of men about meddlesome acts which have little connection with them? It is not even the comparison of pictures of flowers by way of copying, and real living flowers. To fully explain the meaning from Do they not look to Thus will be the coming-forth would be very lengthy, so we shall just pass over it with a brief indication, like this:

Since, at the start of the Sura, the unbelievers deny resurrection, the Qur’an gives a long introductory passage in order to compel them to accept it. It says: “Do you not look at the skies above you, which we have constructed in such magnificent, orderly fashion? Do you not see how We have adorned it with stars and the sun and the moon, and how We have allowed no fault or defect? Do you not see how We have spread out the earth for you and with what wisdom We have furnished it? We have fixed mountains on it and protected it from the encroachment of the sea. Do you not see how We have created every variety of plant and growing thing on the earth, beautiful and of every colour, and how We have made beautiful every part of it with them. And do you not see how we send down bounteous rain from the skies, and with it create gardens and orchards, and grains, and tall, fruit-bearing trees like the delicious date, and how I cause them to grow and send My servants sustenance with them? And do you not see that I raise to life the dead country with the rain? I create thousands of worldly resurrections. Just as I raise up with My power these plants out of this dead country, that is how your coming-forth will be at the resurrection. At the resurrection, the earth will die and you will come forth alive.” Can there be any comparison between the eloquent explanations these verses set forth in proving resurrection, only one thousandth of which we have been able to allude to, and the words man puts forward to support a claim?

From the beginning of this treatise up to here, in endeavouring to make an obstinate enemy accept the Qur’an’s miraculousness by way of impartial reasoning, known as ascertaining the truth, we have left secret many of the

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152. Qur’an, 50:6-11.



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Qur’an’s rights. We have brought that Sun in among candles and drawn comparisons. We have carried out the duty of ascertaining the truth, and have proved its miraculousness in brilliant fashion. Now, in one or two words, not in the name of ‘ascertaining the truth,’ but in that of ‘reality,’ we shall point to the Qur’an’s true station, which is beyond comparison.

Indeed, the comparison of other speech to the Qur’an is that of minuscule reflections of stars in pieces of glass. How can the Qur’an’s words, each of which depict and show a constant truth, be compared with the meanings man depicts through his words in the minute mirrors of his thoughts and feelings? How can the angelic, living words of the Qur’an, which inspire the lights of guidance and are the speech of the All-Glorious Creator of the sun and the moon, be compared with man’s biting words with their bewitching substance and sham subtleties for arousing base desires? Yes, the comparison of poisonous vermin and insects, and blessed angels and luminous spirit beings, is that of man’s words and those of the Qur’an. The Twenty-Fifth Word together with the previous twenty-four Words have proved these truths. This claim of ours is not unsubstantiated; its proof is the above-mentioned conclusion. Indeed, how can the words of the Qur’an, which are all the shells of jewels of guidance, and sources of the truths of belief and springs of the fundamentals of Islam, and have come directly from the Throne of All-Merciful One, and above and beyond the universe look to man and descend to him, and comprise Divine knowledge, power, and will, and are the pre-eternal address - how can its words be compared with man’s vain, fanciful, futile, desire-nurturing words?

Yes, how can the Qur’an, which is like a tree of Tuba, and spreads in the form of leaves the world of Islam with all its qualities, marks, and perfections, all its ordinances and principles, and displays as fresh and beautiful through its water of life its purified scholars and saints, each like a flower, and produces all perfections and cosmic and Divine truths as fruits, and again like a fruit-bearing tree produces numerous seeds within its fruits each like a principle and programme for actions and displays truths in continuous succession - how can this be compared with man’s speech, which we know about? Where is the ground and where are the Pleiades?

Although for one thousand three hundred and fifty years, the All-Wise Qur’an has set forth and displayed all its truths in the market of the universe, and everyone, all nations, all countries have taken some of its jewels and its truths, and they do take them, neither the familiarity, nor the abundance, nor the passage of time, nor the great changes have damaged its valuable truths and fine styles, or caused it to age, or desiccated it, or made it lose its value, or extinguished its beauty. This on its own is an aspect of miraculousness.



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If someone was to come forward now and put some of the truths the Qur’an brought into a childish order according to his own fancies, and if he was to compare these with some of the Qur’an’s verses in order to contest them, and say “I have uttered words close to the Qur’an’s,” it would be utterly foolish, like in the following example: there is a common man, a builder of ordinary houses, incapable of understanding the elevated inscriptions of a master who has built a splendid palace the stones of which are various jewels, and has decorated it with harmonious adornments which look to the elevated inscriptions of all the palace and their relation to the stones. If the common man, who had no share in any of the jewels and adornment of the palace, was to enter the palace, destroy the elevated inscriptions in the valuable stones and give it a form, an order, similar to that of an ordinary house in accordance with his childish desires and tack on a few beads pleasing to his juvenile view, and then say, “Look! I have greater skill and wealth and more precious adornments than the builder of the palace,” in comparison, it would be the art of a crazy, raving forger.

THIRD LIGHT

The Third Light consists of three Gleams.

·FIRST GLEAM: An important aspect of the Qur’an of Miraculous Expositions’s miraculousness was explained in the Thirteenth Word. It has been included here so that it might take its place among the other aspects of miraculousness, its brothers. It is as follows: if you want to see and appreciate how, like shining stars, all the Qur’an’s verses scatter the darkness of unbelief by spreading the light of miraculousness and guidance, imagine yourself in the age of ignorance and desert of savagery where everything was enveloped in lifeless veils of nature, under the darkness of ignorance and heedlessness. Then suddenly from the elevated tongue of the Qur’an, you hear verses like:

Whatever is in the heavens extols and glorifies God, for He is the Mighty, the Wise.153 * Whatever is in the heavens and earth extols and glorifies God, the Sovereign, the Most Holy One, the Mighty, the Wise.154

See how those dead or sleeping creatures of the world spring to life at the sound of extols and glorifies in the minds of those listening, how they awake, spring up, and mention God’s Names! And at the sound of,

The seven heavens and the earth and all within them extol and glorify Him,155

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153. Qur’an, 57:1; 59:1; 61:1.
154. Qur’an, 62:1.
155. Qur’an, 17:44.



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the stars in those black skies, each a lifeless piece of fire, and the wretched creatures on the face of the earth present the following view to those listening: the sky appears as a mouth and the stars as wisdom-displaying words and truth-uttering lights. The earth appears as a head, the land and sea as tongues, and all animals and plants as words of glorification. Otherwise you will not appreciate the subtleties of the pleasure at looking from this time to that. For if you look at each verse as having scattered its light since that time, and having become like universally accepted knowledge with the passage of time, and as shining with the other lights of Islam, and taking its colour from the sun of the Qur’an, or if you look at it through a superficial and simple veil of familiarity, you will not truly see what sort of darkness each verse scatters or how sweet is the recital of its miraculousness, and you will not appreciate this sort of its miraculousness among its many sorts. If you want to see one of the highest degrees of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition’s miraculousness, listen to the following comparison:

Let us imagine an extremely strange and vast and spreading tree which is concealed beneath a veil of the unseen and hidden in a level of concealment. It is clear that there has to be a relationship, harmony, and balance between a tree and all its members like its branches, fruits, leaves, and blossom, the same as between man’s members. Each of its parts takes on a form and is given a shape in accordance with the nature of the tree. So if someone appears and traces a picture on top of the veil corresponding to the members of the tree, which has never been seen, then delimits each member, and from the branches to the fruit, and the fruit to the leaves draws a form proportionately, and fills the space between its source and extremities, which are an infinite distance from one another, with drawings showing exactly the shape and form of its members, certainly no doubt will remain that the artist sees the concealed tree with an eye that penetrates and encompasses the unseen, then he depicts it.

In just the same way, the discriminating statements of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition concerning the reality of contingent beings (that is, concerning the reality of the tree of creation which stretches from the beginning of the world to the farthest limits of the hereafter, and spreads from the earth to the Divine Throne and from minute particles to the sun) have preserved the proportion between the members to such a degree and have given each member and fruit a form so suitable that at the depictions of the Qur’an, all exacting scholars have declared at the conclusion of their investigations: “What wonders God has willed! How great are God’s blessings!” They have said: “It is only you who solves and unravels the talisman of the universe and riddle of creation, Oh All-Wise Qur’an!”



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And God’s is the highest similitude156 -and there is no error in the comparison- let us represent the Divine Names and attributes, and dominical acts and deeds as a Tuba-tree of light, the sphere of whose grandeur stretches from pre-eternity to post-eternity, and the limits of whose vastness spread through infinite, endless space and encompass it, and the limits of whose deeds stretch from,

It is God Who splits the seed-grain and date-stone,157 and, Comes between man and his heart,158
to,
Who created the heavens and the earth in six days,159 and, And the heavens rolled up in His right hand.160

The All-Wise Qur’an has described that luminous reality, the truths of those Names and attributes, and acts and deeds, together with all their branches and twigs and aims and fruits, in a way so harmonious, so fitting for one another, so appropriate for one another, without marring one another or spoiling the decree of one another, or their being remote from one another, that all the people of illumination and those who have penetrated to the realities, and all the wise and the sage who have journeyed in the realm of the inner dimension of things, have declared: “Glory be to God!” in the face of that Discriminating Exposition, and have affirmed it, saying: “How right, how conformable with reality, how fine, how worthy!”

Take, for example, the six pillars of belief, which are like a single branch of those two mighty trees which look to the entire sphere of contingency and sphere of necessity: it depicts all the branches and boughs of those pillars -as far as the furthest fruits and flowers- observing such a harmony and proportion between them, and describes them in a manner so balanced, and illustrates them a way so symmetrical that the human mind is powerless to perceive it and stands astonished at its beauty. And the proof that a beauty of proportion and perfect relation and complete balance have been preserved between the five pillars of Islam, which are like one twig of the branch of belief, down to the finest details, smallest point of conduct, furthest aims, most profound wisdom, and most insignificant fruits, is the perfect order and balance and beauty of proportion and soundness of the Greater Shari‘a of Islam, which has emerged from the decisive statements, senses, indications, and allusions of the comprehensive Qur’an; they form an irrefutable and decisive proof and just witness that cannot be doubted. This means that

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156. Qur’an, 16:60.
157. Qur’an, 6:95.
158. Qur’an, 8:24.
159. Qur’an, 7:54.
160. Qur’an, 39:67.



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the expositions of the Qur’an cannot be attributed to man’s partial knowledge, and particularly to the knowledge of someone unlettered. They rest rather on a comprehensive knowledge and are the word of One Who is able to see all things together and observe in one moment all truths between pre-eternity and post-eternity. In this we believe...

·SECOND GLEAM: Since just how far the human philosophy which challenges Qur’anic wisdom has fallen in the face of that wisdom has been explained and illustrated with comparisons in the Twelfth Word and proved in the other Words, we refer readers to those treatises and for now offer a further comparison from another point of view. It is as follows:

Human science and philosophy look at the world as fixed and constant. And they discuss the nature of beings and their characteristics in detail; if they do speak of their duties before their Maker, they speak of them briefly. Quite simply, they speak only of the decoration and letters of the book of the universe, and attach no importance to its meaning. Whereas the Qur’an looks at the world as transient, passing, deceptive, travelling, unstable, and undergoing revolution. It speaks briefly of the nature of beings and their superficial and material characteristics, but mentions in detail the worshipful duties with which they are charged by the Maker, and how and in what respects they point to His Names, and their obedience before the Divine creational commands. We shall therefore look at the differences between human philosophy and Qur’anic wisdom in regard to this matter of looking at things either briefly or in detail, and shall see which is pure truth and reality.

A watch in our hand appears to be constant, but its inside is in perpetual upheaval through the motion of the workings and the constant anguish of the cogwheels and parts. In just the same way, together with its apparent stability, this world, which is a huge clock of Divine power, is perpetually revolving within upheaval and change, transience and evanescence. Indeed, since time has entered the world, night and day are like a two-headed hand counting the seconds of that huge clock. The years are like a hand counting its minutes, while the centuries count its hours. Thus, time casts the world onto the waves of death and decline. It assigns all the past and the future to non-existence, leaving in existence only the present.

Together with this form which time gives the world, with regard to space also it is like an unstable clock undergoing revolution. For since the space of the atmosphere changes swiftly and quickly passes from one state to another through being filled and emptied with clouds sometimes several times a day, it causes change like a hand counting the seconds. And the space of the earth, which is like the floor of the house of the world, since with life and death and



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the animals and plants its face changes very rapidly, like a minute-hand it shows that this aspect of the world also is transient. And just as the earth is like this in regard to its face, so through the revolutions and upheavals within it, and the mountains emerging as a result and disappearing, this aspect of the world is slowly passing also, like an hour-hand. And through change like the movements of the celestial bodies, the appearance of comets, the occurrence of solar and lunar eclipses, and falling stars, the space of the heavens too, which is like the ceiling of the house of the world, shows that the heavens also are not stable and constant, but are progressing towards old age and destruction. Their change is slow and tardy like the hand counting the days in a weekly clock, but in every respect it demonstrates that it is transient and passing and heading for destruction.

Thus, the world, in regard to the world, has been constructed on these seven pillars. These pillars perpetually shake it. But when the world which is thus in motion and being shaken looks to its Maker, the motion and change is the working of the pen of power writing the missives of the Eternally Besought One. And those changing states are the mirrors of the Divine Names, which, being constantly renewed, display with ever-differing depictions the manifestation of the Names’ qualities.

And so, in respect of the world, the world is both transient and hastens towards death, and is undergoing revolution. Although in reality it is departing like flowing water, to the heedless eye it appears to be frozen; due to the idea of nature, it has become dense and turbid, and become a veil concealing the hereafter. Thus, through philosophical investigation and natural science, and the seductive amusements of dissolute civilization and its intoxicated passions, sick philosophy has both increased the world’s frozen state and inaction, and made denser heedlessness, and increased its opaqueness and turbidity, and caused the Maker and the hereafter to be forgotten. Whereas, with its verses,

By the Mount [of Revelation]. * By a Book inscribed.161 * When the Event Inevitable comes to pass.162 * The [Day of] Noise and Clamour, * What is [the Day of] Noise and Clamour?,163

the Qur’an cards the world in regard to the world like cotton, and casts it away. Through its expositions like,

Do they see nothing in the government of the heavens and the earth?164 * Do they not look at the sky above them? - How We have made it.165

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161. Qur’an, 52:1-2.
162. Qur’an, 56:1.
163. Qur’an, 101:1.
164. Qur’an, 7:185.
165. Qur’an, 50:6.



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* Do the unbelievers not see that the heavens and the earth were joined together, before We clove them asunder?,166

it gives the world a transparency and removes its turbidity. Through its light-scattering illuminations like,

God is the Light of the heavens and the earth.167 * What is the life of this world but play and amusement?,168

it melts the frozen, inactive world. Through its death-tainted expressions like,

When the sun is folded up.169 * When the sky is cleft asunder.170 * When the sky is rent asunder.171 * And the trumpet will be sounded, and all that are in the heavens and all that are on earth will fall down senseless, except such that it pleases God [to exempt],172

it smashes the delusion that the world is eternal. Through its thunderous blasts, like,

He knows what enters within the earth and what comes forth out of it, what comes down from the skies and what mounts up to them. And He is with you wheresoever you may be. And God sees all that you do.173 * And say: Praise be to God, Who will show you His signs, so that you shall know them. And your Sustainer is not unmindful of all that you do,174
it scatters the heedlessness born of the notion of ‘nature’.

Thus, from beginning to end the Qur’an’s verses which are turned towards the universe proceed according to this principle. They reveal and display the reality of the world as it is. Through showing just how ugly the ugly world is, it turns man’s face from it, and points out the beautiful world’s beautiful face, which looks to the Maker. It fastens man’s eye on that. It instructs in true wisdom and knowledge, teaching the meanings of the book of the universe, and looking infrequently at the letters and decorations. It does not cause the meaning to be forgotten like drunken philosophy, nor make man enamoured of the ugly and waste his time on meaningless things due to the decoration of the letters.

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166. Qur’an, 21:30.
167. Qur’an, 24:35.
168. Qur’an, 6:32.
169. Qur’an, 81:1.
170. Qur’an, 82:1.
171. Qur’an, 84:1.
172. Qur’an, 39:68.
173. Qur’an, 57:4.
174. Qur’an, 27:93.



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·THIRD GLEAM: In the Second Gleam we pointed to the fall of human philosophy before Qur’anic wisdom and to the miraculousness of Qur’anic wisdom. Now, in this Gleam, we shall show the degree of the wisdom and science -before Qur’anic wisdom- of the purified scholars, the saints, and the enlightened among philosophers, the Ishraqiyyun, who are all students of the Qur’an, and shall make a brief indication to the Qur’an’s miraculousness in this respect.

A most true indication of the All-Wise Qur’an’s sublimity, and a most clear proof of its truth and justice, and a most powerful sign of its miraculousness is this: preserving all the degrees of all the areas of Divine unity together with all their necessities, and expounding them, it has preserved their balance and not spoilt it; and it has preserved the balance of all the exalted Divine truths; and it has brought together all the ordinances dictated by the Divine Names and preserved their mutual proportion; and it has brought together the dominical and Divine acts with perfect balance. Thus, this preserving and balance and bringing together is a characteristic which is certainly not present in man’s works nor in the products of the thought of the eminent among mankind. It is to be found nowhere in the works of the saints who have penetrated to the inner face of beings, which looks to their Creator, nor in the books of the Ishraqiyyun, who have passed to the inward, hidden meaning of things, nor in the knowledge of the spiritual who have penetrated the World of the Unseen. As though they have practised a division of labour, it is as if each group adheres to only one or two branches of the mighty tree of reality; each busies itself with only its fruit or its leaves. They either know nothing of the others, or else do not concern themselves with them.

Absolute reality cannot be comprehended by restricted views. A universal view like the Qur’an is necessary in order to comprehend it. For sure they are instructed by the Qur’an, but with a particular mind they can only see completely one or two sides of universal reality, are preoccupied with them, and imprisoned in them. They spoil the balance of reality through either excess or negligence and mar its proportion and harmony. This truth was explained with an unusual comparison in the Second Branch of the Twenty-Fourth Word, and now we shall point to the matter with another comparison.

For example, let us suppose there is some treasure under the sea, full of innumerable jewels of various kinds. Divers are plunging the depths to search for the jewels of the treasure. Since their eyes are closed, they understand what is there through the dexterous use of their hands. A longish diamond comes into the hand of one of them. The diver assumes that the whole treasure consists of a long, pillar-like diamond. When he hears of other jewels from his companions, he imagines that they are subsidiary to the diamond he



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has found, and are facets and embellishments of it. Into the hand of another passes a round ruby, while another finds a square piece of amber, and so on, each of them believes that the jewel he sees with his hand is the essential, major part of the treasure, and supposes that the things about which he hears are additional parts and details of it. So then the balance of the truths is spoilt, and the mutual proportion too is marred. The colour of many truths changes, and in order to see the true colour of reality they are obliged to resort to forced interpretation and elaborate explanations. Sometimes even they go as far as denial and rejection. Anyone who studies the books of the Ishraqiyyun philosophers and the works of sufis who rely on illuminations and visions without weighing them on the scales of the Sunna will doubtless confirm this statement of ours. That is to say, although their works concern truths similar to those of the Qur’an and are taken from the Qur’an’s teachings, because they are not the Qur’an, they are defective in that way. The Qur’an’s verses also, which are oceans of truths, are divers for that treasure under the sea. But their eyes are open and encompass the treasure. They see what there is in the treasure and what there is not. They describe and expound it with such harmony, order, and proportion that they show the true beauty and fineness. For example, just as they see the vastness of dominicality expressed by the verses,

And the whole of the earth will be but His handful, and the heavens will be rolled up in His hand.175 * The Day that We roll up the heavens like a scroll rolled up for books [completed],176

so too they see the all-encompassing mercy expressed by these:

God, there is nothing hidden from Him on the earth or in the heavens * He it is Who shapes you in the wombs as He pleases.177 * There is not a moving creature, but He has grasp of its forelock.178 * How many are the creatures that carry not their own sustenance? It is God who feeds [both] them and you.179

And just as they see and point out the vast extent of the creativity expressed by,

Who created the heavens and the earth and made the darkness and the light,180

so too they see and show the comprehensive disposal and encompassing dominicality expressed by,

But God has created you and what you do.181

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175. Qur’an, 39:67.
176. Qur’an, 21:104.
177. Qur’an, 3:5-6.
178. Qur’an, 11:56.
179. Qur’an, 29:60.
180. Qur’an, 6:1.
181. Qur’an, 37:96.



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They see and point out the mighty truth expressed by,

He gives life to the earth after its death,182

and the magnanimous truth expressed by,

And your Sustainer inspired the bee,183

and the sovereign and commanding vast truth expressed by,

The sun and the moon and the stars subjugated to His command.184

They see and show the compassionate, regulating truth expressed by,

o they not observe the birds above them, spreading their wings and folding them in? None can uphold them except the Most Merciful; indeed He sees all things,185

and the vast truth expressed by,

His Throne extends over the heavens and the earth, and He feels no fatigue in preserving them,186

and the guarding truth expressed by,

And He is with you wherever you may be,187

and the all-encompassing truth expressed by,

He is the First and the Last and the Outward and the Inward, and He is Knowing of All Things,188

and the proximity expressed by,

It was We Who created man, and We know what dark suggestions his soul makes to him; for We are nearer to him that his jugular vein,189

and the elevated truth indicated by,

The angels ascend to Him in a day the measure of which is fifty thousand years,190

and the all-embracing truth expressed by,

God commands justice, the doing of good, and liberality to kith and kin, and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and rebellion.191

The Qur’an’s verses see and show in detail each of the six pillars of belief in

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182. Qur’an, 30:50.
183. Qur’an, 16:68.
184. Qur’an, 7:54.
185. Qur’an, 67:19.
186. Qur’an, 2:255.
187. Qur’an, 57:4.
188. Qur’an, 57:3.
189. Qur’an, 50:16.
190. Qur’an, 70:4.
191. Qur’an, 16:90.



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respect of this world and the hereafter, action and knowledge. They see and show intentionally and seriously each of the five pillars of Islam, and all the principles which ensure happiness in this world and the next. They preserve their balance, perpetuate their proportion, and a form of the Qur’an’s miraculousness comes into being from the source of the beauty which is born of the mutual proportion of the entirety of those truths.

It is due to this great mystery that although the scholars of theology (kalâm) are students of the Qur’an and one section of them has written thousands of works of ten volumes each on the pillars of belief, because like the Mu‘tazilites they preferred the reason to revelation, they have not been able to express with clarity so many as ten of the Qur’an’s verses, or prove them decisively, or convince persuasively concerning them. It is quite simply as though they have dug tunnels under distant mountains, taken pipes with the chains of causes to the ends of the world, there cut the chains, and then demonstrated knowledge of God and the existence of the Necessarily Existent One, which are like the water of life. The Qur’an’s verses, however, can all extract water from every place like the Staff of Moses, open up a window from everything, and make known the All-Glorious Maker. We have actually proved and demonstrated this fact in the Arabic treatise Katre, and in the other Words, which flow forth from the ocean of the Qur’an.

It is also due to this mystery that since all the leaders of the heretical groups who have passed to the inward nature of things (batin), who, not following the Sunna of the Prophet (PBUH) but relying on their visions, have returned having gone half way, and becoming leaders of a community have founded sects, have been unable to preserve the proportion and balance of the Qur’anic truths, they have fallen into innovation and misguidance and driven a community of people down the wrong road. Thus, the complete impotence of all these demonstrates the miraculousness of the Qur’an’s verses.



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Conclusion

Two flashes of the Qur’an’s miraculousness mentioned in the Fourteenth Drop of the Nineteenth Word are its repetitions, which are imagined to be a fault, and its brevity concerning the physical sciences, both of which are sources for flashes of miraculousness. Also, a flash of the Qur’an’s miraculousness which shines on the miracles of the prophets in the Qur’an is demonstrated clearly in the Second Station of the Twentieth Word. Similarly to these, numerous flashes of miraculousness have been mentioned in the other Words and in my Arabic treatises. Therefore, deeming those to be sufficient, here we shall only say this, that a further miracle of the Qur’an is that just as all the miracles of the prophets display an impress of the Qur’an’s miraculousness, so with all its miracles, the Qur’an is itself a miracle of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). And all the miracles of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) are a miracle of the Qur’an which demonstrate its relation with Almighty God. And with the appearance of that relation all of its words become miracles. For then a single of its words may contain the meaning of a tree of truths, like a seed; and may be connected with all the members of a mighty truth, like the centre of the heart; and since its relies on an all-encompassing knowledge and infinite will, it may look to innumerable things together with their letters, totalities, situations, and positions. It is because of this that the scholars of the science of letters claim that they have found a pageful of secrets in a single of the Qur’an’s letters, and they prove what they claim to adepts of that science.

Now, gather together in your mind’s eye all the Lights, Rays, Flashes, Beams, and Gleams from the start of this treatise up to here and consider them all together! As a decisive conclusion, they recite and proclaim in resounding tones the claim made at the beginning, that is,

Say: If all mankind and the Jinn were to gather together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support.192

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192. Qur’an, 17:88.



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Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.193

O our Sustainer! Do not call us to task if we forget or do wrong.194 * O my Sustainer! Expand for me my breast, * And make easy for me my task, * And remove the impediment from my speech, * So that they may understand what I say.195

O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad that will be pleasing to You and will be fulfilment to his truth, and to his Family, his Companions, and his brothers, and grant them peace.

O our Sustainer! Let not our hearts deviate after you have guided us, and grant us mercy from Your Presence, for You are the Granter of bounties without measure.196 * And the close of their prayer will be, All praise be to God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds.197 Amen. Amen. Amen.

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193. Qur’an, 2:32.
194. Qur’an, 2:286.
195. Qur’an, 20:25-28.
196. Qur’an, 3:8.
197. Qur’an, 10:10.




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First Addendum

[Of the Addenda added to the Twenty-Fifth Word, this First Addendum consists of the Seventeenth Degree of the First Station of the Seventh Ray, The Supreme Sign, on account of its Station.]

Knowing the aim of life in this world, and the life of life, to be belief, the tireless and insatiable traveller through the world who was questioning the universe concerning his Sustainer then said to himself: “Let us refer to the book called the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, which is known as the word and speech of the One we are seeking, and is the most famous, brilliant, dominant book in the world, challenging everyone in every century who does not submit to it. But first we must prove that it is the book of our Creator.” And he started to search.

Since the traveller lived at this time, he looked first at the Risale-i Nur, which consists of flashes of the Qur’an’s miraculousness, and saw that its one hundred and thirty parts are fine points and lights of the verses of that Distinguisher between Truth and Falsehood, and authentic explanations of them. Although through striving and endeavour the Risale-i Nur has spread the Qur’anic truths everywhere in an age as obstinate and atheistic as this, the fact that no one has opposed it successfully proves that the Qur’an, which is its master, source, authority, and sun, is heavenly and revealed, and not man’s word. Only one proof of the Qur’an out of the hundreds of the Risale-i Nur, the Twenty-Fifth Word together with the last part of the Nineteenth Letter, has proved so decisively that the Qur’an is miraculous in forty aspects that everyone who has seen them, rather than criticizing or objecting to them, has been full of wonder at their proofs, appreciating and praising them. So referring it to the Risale-i Nur to prove the Qur’an’s miraculous aspects and its being the Word of God, the traveller only noted with brief indications several points demonstrating its greatness.

• First Point: Just as with all its miracles and all its truths, which are an indication of its veracity, the Qur’an is a miracle of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), so too with all his miracles and the evidences of his prophethood and perfections of his knowledge, Muhammad (PBUH) is a miracle of the Qur’an, and a decisive proof that it is the Word of God.



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• Second Point: The Qur’an caused a transformation in social life in this world in so luminous, happy, and truthful a fashion, and brought about such a revolution in both men’s souls, and hearts, and spirits, and minds, and in their personal lives, social lives, and political lives, and continued and directed that revolution, that every minute for fourteen centuries its six thousand six hundred and sixty-six verses have been recited with deep reverence by the tongues of at least one hundred million men, and it has trained men, purified their souls and cleansed their hearts, and has caused spirits to unfold and progress, given direction and light to minds, and vitality and happiness to life. For sure, such a book has no like; it is a wonder, a marvel, a miracle.

• Third Point: The eloquence the Qur’an has demonstrated from that age till now is illustrated by the following: it caused Labid’s daughter to remove from the walls of the Ka‘ba the famous verses written in gold of the most celebrated poets called the Seven Hanging Poems, and to declare while doing so: “Beside the verses of the Qur’an these no longer have any value!”

Also, when a bedouin poet heard the verse,

Therefore expound openly what you are commanded1

being recited, he bowed down in prostration. When asked if he had become a Muslim, he replied: “No, I was prostrating before the eloquence of this verse.”

Also, thousands of brilliant scholars and learned literary figures like the geniuses of the science of rhetoric, ‘Abd al-Qahir Jurjani, Sakkaki, and Zamakhshari, all reached the conclusion that, “The Qur’an’s eloquence is beyond man’s power, he could not achieve it.”

Also, although from that time it has continuously issued a challenge provoking conceited and egotistical orators and poets, proclaiming in a way which will sting their pride: “Produce the like of one single Sura or be resigned to ignominy and ruin in this world and the next!”, the obdurate orators of that time gave up disputing it verbally, the short way of producing the like of one Sura, and chose the way of the war, which was lengthy and threw their lives and property into peril, thus proving that it was not possible to take the short way.

Also, millions of Arabic books are in circulation, written since that time by the Qur’an’s friends through the desire to resemble and imitate it, and by its enemies, driven to combat and criticize it, and such works are being written and have improved through the meeting of minds and ideas, but if even the most common man should listen to them, he would declare that none of them have reached it, saying: “The Qur’an does not resemble these and is not of their level. It is either lower than all of them or higher. No one in the world, no unbeliever, nor an idiot even, can say that it is lower, which means

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1. Qur’an, 15:94.



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that the degree of its eloquence is above all of them.”

One time, a man recited the verse,

All that is in the heavens and the earth extols and glorifies God,2

and said: “I can’t see the eloquence in this, although it is considered wonderful.” So it was said to him, “You return to that time like the traveller, and then listen to it.” So imagining himself to be there before the Qur’an was revealed, he saw the beings of the world to be lifeless, without consciousness and duties, wretched and obscure in an unstable, transitory world in the middle of limitless, empty space. Suddenly, listening to this verse from the tongue of the Qur’an, he saw that it drew back a veil from the universe and face of the world, illuminating it. He saw that this pre-eternal address and eternal decree instructs the conscious beings lined up in the centuries, revealing the universe to be like a huge mosque, and foremost the heavens and the earth, and all beings, to be employed in the glorification and remembrance of God, enthusiastically performing their duties with joy and eagerness. He appreciated the degree of eloquence of this verse, and comparing the others to it, understood one of the thousands of instances of wisdom in the recitation of the Qur’an’s eloquence overspreading half the earth and a fifth of mankind, and, being held in utter veneration, perpetuating its sublime sovereignty for fourteen centuries without break.

• Fourth Point: The Qur’an displays an agreeableness so true that for those who recite it, its many repetitions, which are the cause of even the sweetest things being wearied of, do not cause weariness, rather for those whose hearts are not corrupted and taste spoilt, the repetitions increase its agreeableness. Since early times this has been accepted by everyone and become proverbial. Furthermore, it demonstrates such a freshness, youth, and originality that although it has lived for fourteen centuries and has been freely available to everyone, it has preserved its freshness as though newly revealed. Each century has seen it to be young as though it was addressing that century in particular. And although in order to benefit from it all the time, all the branches of scholars have always had copies of it present with them in large numbers and have followed and emulated its style and manner of expression, it has preserved the originality in its style and manner of exposition exactly.

• Fifth Point: One wing of the Qur’an is in the past, and one is in the future, and just as its root and one wing are the agreed truths of the former prophets, and it confirms and corroborates them, and they too confirm it with the tongue of unanimity, so too all the true sufi paths and ways of sainthood whose fruits, the saints and purified scholars, who receive life from the

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2. Qur’an, 57:1, etc.



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Qur’an, show through their vital spiritual progress that their blessed tree is living, effulgent, and the means to truth. They grow and live under the protection of its second wing, and testify that the Qur’an is pure truth and the assembly of truths and in its comprehensiveness, is a matchless wonder.

• Sixth Point: The Qur’an’s truthfulness and veracity show that its six aspects are luminous. Indeed, the pillars of argument and proof beneath it; the flashes of the stamp of miraculousness above it; the gifts of happiness in this world and the next before it, its goal; the truths of heavenly revelation, its point of support behind it; the assent and evidence of innumerable upright minds to its right; and the true tranquillity, sincere attraction, and submission of sound hearts and clean consciences on its left all prove that the Qur’an is a wondrous, firm, unassailable citadel of both the heavens and the earth.

Similarly, the universe’s Disposer, Who has made it His practice to foremost always exhibit beauty in the universe, protect good and right, and eliminate imposters and liars, has set His seal on its being sheer truth and right on six levels, and not being man’s word, and its containing no error; and by giving it the most acceptable, highest, and most dominant place of respect and degree of success in the world, has confirmed and endorsed the Qur’an.

So too, the one who is the source of Islam and interpreter of the Qur’an - his believing in it and holding it in greater respect than everyone else, and being in a sleep-like state when it was revealed, and other words and speeches not resembling or coming near it, and that Interpreter’s describing without hesitation and with complete confidence through the Qur’an true cosmic events of generally the past and the future from behind the veil of the Unseen, and no trickery or fault being observed in him while being under the gazes of the sharpest eyes, and his believing and affirming every pronouncement of the Qur’an with all his strength and nothing shaking him, is a stamp confirming that the Qur’an is revealed and true and the blessed Word of his own Compassionate Creator.

Also, a fifth of mankind, indeed the greater part of it, being drawn to the Qur’an and bound to it in religion and giving ear to it eagerly desirous of the truth, and according to the testimony of many indications and events and illuminations, the jinn, angels, and spirit beings also gathering around it in truth-worshipping fashion like moths whenever it is recited is a stamp confirming the Qur’an’s acceptance by all beings and that it occupies an elevated position.

Also, all the classes of mankind from the most stupid and lowly to the cleverest and most learned taking their full share of the Qur’an’s instruction and their understanding its profoundest truths, and all branches of scholars



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like the great interpreters of the Greater Shari‘a in particular, and hundreds of Islamic sciences and branches of knowledge, and the brilliant and exacting scholars of theology and the principles of religion extracting from the Qur’an all the needs and answers for their own sciences, - this is a stamp confirming that the Qur’an is a source of truth and mine of reality.

Also, although the Arab literary figures, who were the most advanced in regard to literature, -those of them who were not Muslims- had the greatest need to dispute the Qur’an, their avoiding producing the like of only a single Sura and its eloquence, eloquence being only one aspect of the seven major aspects of the Qur’an’s miraculousness, as well as the famous orators and brilliant scholars up to the present who have wanted to gain fame through disputing it being unable to oppose a single aspect of its miraculousness and their remaining silent in impotence, - this is a stamp confirming that the Qur’an is a miracle and beyond the powers of man.

Yes, the value, superiority, and eloquence of a speech or word is apparent through knowing, “from whom it has come and to whom, and for what purpose;” the Qur’an then can have no like, and none can reach it. For the Qur’an is the speech and address of the Sustainer of all the worlds and Creator of the whole universe and a dialogue in no way hinting of imitation and artificiality. It is addressed to the one sent in the name of all men, indeed of all beings, the most famous and renowned of mankind, the strength and breadth of whose belief gave rise to mighty Islam and raised its owner to the level of ‘the distance of two bow-strings’ and returned him as the addressee of the Eternally Besought One. It describes and explains the matters concerning happiness in this world and the next, the results of the creation of the universe, and the dominical purposes within it. It expounds also the belief of the one it addresses, which was the highest and most extensive, and bore all the truths of Islam. It turns and shows every side of the huge universe like a map, a clock, or a house, and teaches and describes it in the manner of the Craftsman Who made them - to produce the like of this Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition is not possible; the degree of its miraculousness cannot be attained to.

Also, thousands of precise and learned scholars of high intelligence have all written commentaries expounding the Qur’an, some of which are of thirty, forty, or even seventy volumes, showing and proving through evidence and argument the innumerable qualities, fine points, characteristics, mysteries, elevated meanings, and numerous indications concerning every sort of hidden and unseen matter in the Qur’an. And the one hundred and thirty parts of the Risale-i Nur in particular, each of which proves with decisive arguments one quality, one fine point of the Qur’an, - all its parts, such as the Miraculousness of the Qur’an, and the Second Station of the Twentieth Word, which deduces many things from the Qur’an concerning the wonders of civilization



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like the railway and the aeroplane, and the First Ray, called Signs of the Qur’an, which divulges allusions of verses to the Risale-i Nur and electricity, and the eight short treatises called The Eight Signs, which show how well-ordered, full of meaning, and mysterious are the words of the Qur’an, and the small treatise proving in five aspects the miraculousness of the verses at the end of Sura al-Fath in regard to their giving news of the Unseen - each part of the Risale-i Nur shows one truth, one light of the Qur’an. All this forms a stamp confirming that the Qur’an has no like, is a miracle and a marvel, and that it is the tongue of the World of the Unseen in the Manifest World and the Word of One All-Knowing of the Unseen.

Thus, due to these qualities and characteristics of the Qur’an indicated above in six points, six aspects, and six levels, its sublime, luminous sovereignty and sacred, mighty rule have continued in perfect splendour illuminating the centuries and the face of the earth for one thousand three hundred years. Also, on account of these qualities of the Qur’an, each of its letters has gained the sacred distinction of yielding at least ten rewards, ten merits, and ten eternal fruits, and the letters of certain verses and Suras yielding a hundred or a thousand fruits, or even more, and at blessed times the light, reward, and value of each letter rising from ten to hundreds. The traveller through the world understood this and said to his heart: “The Qur’an, which is thus miraculous in every respect, through the consensus of its Suras, the agreement of its verses, the accord of its lights and mysteries, and the concurrence of its fruits and works, so testifies with its evidences in the form of proofs to the existence, unity, attributes, and Names of a Single Necessarily Existent One that it is from its testimony that the endless testimony of all the believers has issued forth.”

Thus, in brief indication to the instruction in belief and Divine unity that the traveller received from the Qur’an, it was said in the Seventeenth Degree of the First Station:

There is no god but God, the One and Unique Necessary Existent, to Whose Necessary Existence in Unity points the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, the book accepted and desired by all species of angel, men and jinn, whose verses are read each minute of the year, with the utmost reverence, by hundreds of millions of men, whose sacred sovereignty over the regions of the earth and the universe and the face of time is permanent, whose spiritual and luminous authority has run over half the earth and a fifth of humanity, for more than fourteen centuries, with the utmost splendour. Testimony and proof is also given by the unanimity of its sacred and heavenly Suras, the agreement of its luminous, divine verses, the congruence of its mysteries and lights, the correspondence of its fruits and effects, by witnessing and clear vision.

ba



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THE TENTH MATTER OF THE FRUITS OF BELIEF, THE ELEVENTH RAY

A Flower of Emirdag

[An extremely powerful reply to objections raised against repetition in the Qur’an.]

My Dear and Loyal Brothers!

Due to my wretched situation, this Matter is confused and graceless. But I knew definitely that beneath the confused wording was a most valuable sort of miraculousness, though unfortunately I was incapable of expressing it. But however dull the wording, since it concerns the Qur’an, it is both worship in the form of reflection, and the shell of a sacred, elevated, shining jewel. The diamond in the hand should be looked at, not its torn clothes. Also, I wrote it in one or two days during Ramadan while extremely ill, wretched, and without food, of necessity very concisely and briefly, and including many truths and numerous proofs in a single sentence. Its deficiencies, then, should be overlooked!1

My True and Loyal Brothers! While reading the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition in Ramadan, whichever of the thirty-three verses I came to that in the First Ray describe the allusions to the Risale-i Nur, I saw that the page and story of the verse also look to the Risale-i Nur and its Students to a degree -in so far as they have a share of the story. Particularly the Light Verses in Sura al-Nur, just as they point to the Risale-i Nur with ten fingers, so the Darkness Verses following it point directly at those opposing it; these afford a further share. Quite simply, I understood that this ‘station’ rises from particularity to universality and that one part of that universality is the Risale-i Nur and its Students.

Indeed, in regard to the breadth, exaltedness, and comprehensiveness that the Qur’an’s address receives from firstly the extensive station of the universal dominicality of the Pre-Eternal Speaker, and from the extensive station

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1. As the Tenth Matter of the fruit of Denizli Prison, it is a small shining flower of Emirdag and of this month of Ramadan. By explaining one instance of wisdom in the repetitions of the Qur’an, it dispels the poisonous, putrid illusions of the people of misguidance.



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of the one addressed in the name of mankind, indeed of all beings, and the most extensive station of all mankind’s guidance in all the centuries, and from the station of the most elevated comprehensive expositions of the Divine laws concerning the regulation of this world and the hereafter, the heavens and the earth, pre-eternity and post-eternity, and the dominicality of the Creator of the universe, and of all beings, this Address displays such an elevated miraculousness and comprehensiveness that both its apparent and simple level, which flatters the simple minds of ordinary people, the most numerous group the Qur’an addresses, and its highest level, partake of it.

It is as though, addressing every age and every class of people, not as one share of the story or one lesson from an historical story, but as parts of a universal principle, it is newly revealed. Particularly its often repeated threats of the wrongdoers, the wrongdoers, and its severe expositions of calamities visited on the heavens and the earth, in punishment for their wrongdoing -through these and the retribution visited on the ‘Ad and Thamud peoples and on Pharaoh- it draws attention to the unequalled wrongs of this century, and through the salvation of prophets like Abraham (PUH) and Moses (PUH) gives consolation to the oppressed believers.

Indeed, all past time and the departed ages and centuries, which in the view of heedlessness and misguidance form a fearsome place of non-existence and a grievous, ruined graveyard, the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition shows to every century and class of people in the form of living instructive pages, strange worlds, living and endowed with spirits, and existent realms of the Sustainer which are connected with us; with an elevated miraculousness, it sometimes conveys us to those times, and sometimes brings those times to us. Infusing with life the universe, which in the view of misguidance is lifeless, wretched, dead, and a limitless wasteland revolving amid separation and decline, with the same miraculousness this same Qur’an of Mighty Stature raises to life those dead beings, makes them converse with one another as officials charged with duties and hasten to the assistance of one another; it instructs mankind, the jinn, and the angels in true, luminous, and pleasurable wisdom.

For sure, then, it gains sacred distinctions, like there being ten merits in each of its letters, and sometimes a hundred, a thousand, or thousands of merits; and if all men and jinn were to gather together, their being unable to produce the like of it; and its speaking completely appropriately with all mankind and all beings; and its all the time being inscribed with eagerness in the hearts of millions of hafizes; and its not causing weariness through its frequent and numerous repetitions; and despite its many obscure passages and sentences, its being settled perfectly in the delicate and simple heads of children; and its being agreeable like Zamzam water in the ears of the sick,



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the dying, and those distressed by a few words; and its gaining for its students happiness in this world and the next.

Its smoothness of style, which, observing exactly its interpreter’s being unlettered, allows for no bombast, artificiality, or affectedness, and its descending directly from the heavens, demonstrate a fine miraculousness. So too it shows a fine miraculousness in the grace and guidance of flattering the simple minds of ordinary people, the most numerous of the classes of men, through the condescension in its expression, and mostly opening the clearest and most evident pages like the heavens and earth, and teaching the wondrous miracles of power and meaningful lines of wisdom beneath those commonplace things.

By making known that it is also a book of prayer and summons, of invocation and Divine unity, which require repetition, it demonstrates a sort of miraculousness through making understood in a single sentence and a single story through its agreeable repetitions numerous different meanings to numerous different classes of people. Similarly, by making known that the most minor and unimportant things in ordinary, commonplace events are within its compassionate view and the sphere of its will and regulation, it demonstrates a sort of miraculousness in attaching importance to even the minor events of the Companions of the Prophet in the establishment of Islam and codification of the Shari‘a, and both in those minor events being universal principles, and, in the establishment of Islam and the Shari‘a, which are general, their producing most important fruits, as though they had been seeds./

With regard to repetition being necessary due to the repetition of need, the repetition of certain verses which, as answers to numerous repeated questions over a period of twenty years, instruct numerous different levels of people is not a fault, indeed, to repeat certain sentences so powerful they produce thousands of results and a number of verses resulting from countless evidences, which describe an infinite, awesome, all-embracing revolution that, by destroying utterly the vast universe and changing its shape at Doomsday, will remove the world and found the mighty hereafter in its place, and will prove that all particulars and universals from atoms to the stars are in the hand and under the disposal of a single Being, and will show the Divine wrath and dominical anger -on account of the result of the universe’s creation- at mankind's wrongdoing, which brings to anger the earth and the heavens and the elements, to repeat such verses is not a fault, but most powerful miraculousness, and most elevated eloquence; an eloquence and lucid style corresponding exactly to the requirements of the subject.

For example, as is explained in the Fourteenth Flash of the Risale-i Nur, the sentence,

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate,



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which forms a single verse and is repeated one hundred and fourteen times in the Qur’an, is a truth which binds the Divine Throne and the earth, and illuminates the cosmos, and for which everyone is in need all the time; if it was repeated millions of times, there would still be need for it. There is need and longing for it, not only every day like bread, but every moment like air and light.

And, for example, the verse,

And verily your Sustainer is Exalted in Might, Most Compassionate,

which is repeated eight times in Sura Ta. Sin. Mim.2 Repeating on account of the result of the universe’s creation and in the name of universal dominicality, the salvation of the prophets whose stories are told in the Sura, and the punishments of their peoples, in order to teach that dominical dignity requires the torments of those wrongdoing peoples while Divine compassion requires the prophets’ salvation, is a concise, miraculous, and elevated miraculousness, for which, if repeated thousands of times, there would still be need and longing.

And, for example, the verse,

Then which of the favours of your Sustainer will you deny?3

which is repeated in Sura al-Rahman, and the verse,

Woe that Day to the rejecters of truth!,

in Sura al-Mursalat4 shout out threateningly to mankind and the jinn across the centuries and the heavens and the earth, the unbelief, ingratitude, and wrongdoing of those who bring the universe and the heavens and earth to anger, spoil the results of the world’s creation, and deny and respond slightingly to the majesty of Divine rule, and aggress against the rights of all creatures. If a general lesson thus concerned with thousands of truths and of the strength of thousands of matters is repeated thousands of times, there would still be need for it and its awe-inspiring conciseness and beautiful, miraculous eloquence.

And, for example, the repetition of the phrase,

Glory be unto You! There is no god but You: Mercy! Mercy! Save us, deliver us, preserve us, from Hell-fire!

in the supplication of the Prophet (PBUH) called Jawshan al-Kabir, which is a true and authentic supplication of the Qur’an and a sort of summary proceeding from it. Since it contains the greatest truth and the most important of the three supreme duties of creatures in the face of dominicality, the glorifi

____________________

2. Sura 26, al-Shu’ara’.
3. Qur’an, 55:13, etc.
4. Sura 77.



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cation and praise of God and declaring Him to be All-Holy, and the most awesome question facing mankind, man being saved from eternal misery, and worship, the most necessary result of human impotence, if it is repeated thousands of times, it is still few.

Thus, repetition in the Qur’an looks to principles like these. Sometimes on one page, even, with regard to the requirements of the position and the need for explanation and the demands of eloquence, it expresses the truth of Divine unity perhaps twenty times explicitly and by implication. It does not cause boredom, but gives a power to it and inspires an eagerness. It has been explained in the Risale-i Nur with proofs how appropriate, fitting, and acceptable from the point of view of rhetoric are the repetitions in the Qur’an. The wisdom and meaning of the Meccan and Medinan Suras in the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition being different in regard to eloquence, miraculousness, and detail and brevity is as follows:

In Mecca, the first line of those it was addressing and those opposed to it were the Qurayshi idolators and untaught tribesmen, so a powerful and elevated style in regard to rhetoric was necessary, and a miraculous, convincing, persuasive conciseness, and in order to establish it, repetition was required. Thus, in most of the Meccan Suras, repeating and expressing the pillars of belief and degrees in the affirmation of Divine unity with a most powerful, elevated, and miraculous conciseness, it proved so powerfully the first creation and the Resurrection, God and the hereafter, not only in a single page, verse, sentence or word, but sometimes in a letter, through grammatical devices like inverting the words or sentences, making a word indefinite, and omissions and inclusions, that the geniuses and leaders of the science of rhetoric met it with wonder. The Risale-i Nur, and the Twenty-Fifth Word and its Addenda in particular, which prove in summary forty aspects of the Qur’an’s miraculousness, and the Qur’anic commentary, Isharat al-I’jaz, from the Arabic Risale-i Nur, which in wondrous fashion proves the aspect of the Qur’an’s miraculousness in its word-order, have demonstrated in fact that in the Meccan Suras and verses are the highest styles of eloquence and the most elevated, concise miraculousness.

As for the Medinan Suras and verses, since the first line of those they were addressing, who opposed them, were the People of the Book, such as the Jews and Christians who affirmed God’s existence, what was required by eloquence and guidance and for the discussion to correspond to the situation, was not explanation of the high principles of religion and pillars of belief in a simple, clear, and detailed style, but the explanation of particular matters of the Shari‘a and its injunctions, which were the cause of dispute, and the origins and causes of secondary matters and general laws. Thus, in the Medinan Suras and verses, through explanations in a detailed, clear, simple style, in the matchless manner of exposition peculiar to the Qur’an, it mostly



The Words / A Flower of Emirdag - p.470

mentions within those particular secondary matters, a powerful and elevated summary; a conclusion and proof, a sentence relating to Divine unity, belief, or the hereafter which makes the particular matter of the Shari‘a universal and ensures that it conforms to belief in God. It illuminates the passage, and elevates it. The Risale-i Nur has proved the qualities and fine points and elevated eloquence in the summaries and conclusions, which express Divine unity and the hereafter, and come mostly at the end of verses, like:

Indeed, God is Powerful over all things. * Verily God has knowledge of all things. * And He is the Mighty, the Wise. * And He is Exalted in Might, Most Compassionate.

In explaining in the Second Beam of the Second Light of the Twenty-Fifth Word, ten out of the many fine points of those summaries and conclusions, it has proved to the obstinate that they contain a supreme miracle.

Yes, in expounding those secondary matters of the Shari‘a and laws of social life, the Qur’an at once raises the views of those it addresses to elevated and universal points, and transforming a simple style into an elevated one and instruction in the Shari‘a to instruction in Divine unity, it shows it is both a book of law and commands and wisdom, and a book of the tenets of faith and belief, and of invocation and reflection and summons. And through teaching many of the aims of Qur’anic guidance in every passage, it displays a brilliant and miraculous eloquence different to that of the Meccan Suras.

Sometimes in two words, for example, in Sustainer of All the Worlds and Your Sustainer, through the phrase, Your Sustainer, it expresses Divine oneness, and through, Sustainer of All the Worlds, Divine unity. It expresses the Divine oneness within Divine unity. In a single sentence even it sees and situates a particle in the pupil of an eye, and with the same verse, the same hammer, it situates the sun in the sky, making it an eye to the sky. For example, after the verse,

Who created the heavens and the earth,

following the verse,

He merges the night into the day, and He merges the day into the night,5

it says:

And He has full knowledge of all that is in [men’s] hearts.6

It says: “Within the vast majesty of the creation of the earth and the skies, He knows and regulates also the thoughts of the heart.” And through an exposition of this sort, transforms that simple and unlettered level and particular discussion which takes into account the minds of ordinary people, into

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5. Qur’an, 35:13.
6. Qur’an, 35:38.



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an elevated, attractive, and general conversation for the purpose of guidance.

A Question: “Sometimes an important truth is not apparent to a superficial view, and in some positions the connection is not known when an elevated summary concerning Divine unity or a universal principle is drawn from a minor and ordinary matter, and it is imagined to be a fault. For example, to mention the extremely elevated principle: And over all endued with knowledge, One Knowing7 when Joseph (Peace be upon him) seized his brother through subterfuge, does not appear to be in keeping with eloquence. What is its meaning and purpose?”

The Answer: In most of the long and middle-length Suras, which are each small Qur’ans, and in many pages and passages, not only two or three aims are followed, for by its nature the Qur’an comprises many books and teachings, such as being a book of invocation, belief, and reflection, and a book of law, wisdom, and guidance. Thus, since it describes the majestic manifestations of Divine dominicality and its encompassing all things, as a sort of recitation of the mighty book of the universe, it follows many aims in every discussion and sometimes on a single page; while instructing in knowledge of God, the degrees in Divine unity, and the truths of belief, with an apparently weak connection it opens another subject of instruction in the following passage, joining powerful connections to the weak one. It corresponds perfectly to the discussion and raises the level of eloquence.

A Second Question: “What is the purpose of the Qur’an proving and drawing attention to the hereafter, Divine unity, and man’s reward and punishment thousands of times, explicitly, implicitly, and allusively, and teaching them in every Sura, on every page, and in every discussion?”

The Answer: To instruct in the most important, most significant, and most awesome matters in the sphere of contingency and in the revolutions in the universe’s history concerning man’s duty, the means to his eternal misery or happiness -man who undertook the Divine vicegerency of the earth- and to remove his countless doubts and to smash his violent denials and obduracy, indeed, to make man confirm those awesome revolutions and submit to those most necessary essential matters which are as great as the revolutions, if the Qur’an draws his attention to them thousands, or even millions of times, it is not excessive, for those discussions in the Qur’an are read millions of times, and they do not cause boredom, nor does the need cease.

For example, since the verse,

For those who believe and do righteous deeds are gardens beneath which rivers flow,8 * They will dwell there for ever.9
____________________

7. Qur’an, 12:76.
8. Qur’an, 85:11.
9. Qur’an, 5:85, etc.





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shows the truth of the good news of eternal happiness, which “saves from the eternal execution of the reality of death, which every moment shows itself to wretched man, both himself, and his world, and all those he loves, and gains for them an everlasting sovereignty,” if it is repeated thousands of millions of times and given the importance of the universe, it still is not excessive and does not lose its value. Thus, in teaching the innumerable, invaluable matters of this sort, and endeavouring to persuade, convince, and prove the occurrence of the awesome revolutions which will destroy the present form of the universe and transform it as though it was a house, the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition certainly draws attention to these matters thousands of times times explicitly, implicitly, and allusively, and this is not excessive, but renews the bounty which is like an essential need, the same as the essential needs of bread, medicine, air, and light are renewed.

And, for example, as is proved decisively in the Risale-i Nur, the wisdom in the Qur’an repeating severely, angrily, and forcefully, threatening verses like,

For wrong-doers there is a grievous penalty.10 * But for those who reject [God] - for them will be the Fire of Hell.11

is that man’s unbelief is such a transgression against the rights of the universe and most creatures that it makes the heavens and earth angry and brings the elements to anger so that they deal blows on those wrong-doers with tempest and storm. According to the clear statement of the verses,



And when they are cast therein, they will hear the [terrible] drawing-in of its breath as it blazes forth * Almost bursting with fury,12

Hell so rages at those iniquitous deniers that it almost disintegrates with fury. Thus, through the wisdom of showing, not from the point of view of man’s smallness and insignificance before such a general crime and boundless aggression, but the importance of the rights of the Monarch of Universe’s subjects before the greatness of the wrongful crime and the awesomeness of the unjust aggression, and the boundless ugliness in the unbelief and iniquity of those deniers -in accordance with the wisdom of showing this, if repeating in His decree most wrathfully and severely the crime and its punishment, thousands, millions, or even thousands of millions of times, it still would not be excessive and a fault, because for a thousand years thousands of millions of people have read such verses every day, not with boredom, but with complete eagerness and need.

Indeed, every day, all the time, for everyone, one world disappears and the door of a new world is opened to them. Through repeating There is no

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10. Qur’an, 14:22.
11. Qur’an, 35:36.
12. Qur’an, 67:7-8.





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god but God a thousand times out of need and with longing in order to illuminate each of those transitory worlds, it makes There is no god but God a lamp for each of those changing veils. In the same way, in accordance with the wisdom of appreciating through reading the Qur’an the penalties of those crimes and the severe threats of the Pre-Eternal Monarch, which smash their obduracy, and of working to be saved from the rebellion of the soul, so as not to obscure in darkness those multiple, fleeting veils and renewed travelling universes, and not to make ugly their images which are reflected in the mirrors of their lives, and not to turn against them those guest views which may testify in favour of them, the Qur’an repeats them in most meaningful fashion. Even Satan would shudder at imagining to be out of place these so powerful, severe, and repeated threats of the Qur’an. It shows that the torments of Hell are pure justice for the deniers who do not heed them.

And, for example, in repeating many times the stories of Moses (Peace be upon him), which contain many instances of wisdom and benefits, like that of the Staff of Moses, and of the other prophets (Peace be upon them), it demonstrates that the prophethoods of all the other prophets are a proof of the veracity of the prophethood of Muhammad (PBUH), and that one who does not deny all of them cannot in truth deny his messengership. For this purpose, and since everyone does not always have the time or capability to read the whole Qur’an, it repeats those stories in the same way as the important pillars of belief, in order to make all the long and middle-length Suras each like a small Qur’an. To repeat them then is not excessive, it is required by eloquence, and teaches that the question of Muhammad (PBUH) is the greatest question of mankind and the most important matter of the universe.

It has been demonstrated decisively in the Risale-i Nur with many proofs and indications that through giving the highest position to the person of Muhammad in the Qur’an and including him in four pillars of belief and holding Muhammad is the Messenger of God equal to the pillar of There is no god but God, that the Messengership of Muhammad (PBUH) is the greatest truth in the universe, and that the Person of Muhammad is the most noble of creatures, and his universal collective personality and sacred rank, known as the Muhammadan Truth, is the most radiant Sun of the two worlds. His worthiness for this extraordinary position has also been proved. One of these proofs is this:

According to the principle of ‘the cause is like the doer,’ with the equivalent of all the good works performed by all his community at all times entering his book of good works; and the light which he brought illuminating all the truths of the cosmos; and his gratifying not only the jinn, mankind, and animate beings, but also the universe and the heavens and earth; and the supplications of plants, offered through the tongue of disposition, and the supplications of animals offered through the tongue of their innate need, and the



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righteous of his (PBUH) community every day bequeating to him their benedictions and supplications for mercy and spiritual gains, whose millions -and together with spirit beings, even, millions of millions- of unrejectable supplications are accepted, as we actually witness with our eyes; and since each of the three hundred thousand letters of the Qur’an yield from a hundred to a thousand merits, with infinite numbers of lights entering the book of his deeds, only with regard to the recitation of the Qur’an by all his community, the One All-Knowing of the Unseen saw and knew that the Muhammadan (PBUH) Reality, which is his collective personality, would in the future be like a Tuba-tree of Paradise. It was in accordance with that position that He gave him such supreme importance in the Qur’an, and in His Decree showed the following of him and receiving of his intercession through adhering to his Illustrious Sunna to be one of the most important matters concerning man. And from time to time He took into consideration his human personality and human state in his early life, which was a seed of the majestic Tuba-tree.

Thus, since the truths repeated in the Qur’an are of this value, all sound natures will testify that in its repetitions is a powerful and extensive miracle. Unless, that is to say, a person is afflicted with some sickness of the heart and malady of the conscience due to the plague of materialism, and is included under the rule,

Man denied the light of the sun due to disease of the eye,

His mouth denied the taste of water due to sickness.



TWO ADDITIONS, WHICH FORM A CONCLUSION TO THE TENTH MATTER.

THE FIRST: Twelve years ago I heard that a most fearsome and obdurate atheist had instigated a conspiracy against the Qur’an, which was to have it translated. He said: “The Qur’an should be translated so that everyone can know just what it is.” That is, he hatched a dire plan with the idea of everyone seeing its unnecessary repetitions and its translation being read in its place. However, the irrefutable proofs of the Risale-i Nur proved decisively that “A true translation of the Qur’an is not possible, and other languages cannot preserve the Qur’an’s qualities and fine points in place of the grammatical language of Arabic. Man’s trite and partial translations cannot be substituted for the miraculous and comprehensive words of the Qur’an,



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every letter of which yields from ten to a thousand merits; they may not be read in its place in mosques.” Through spreading everywhere, the Risale-i Nur made the fearsome plan come to nothing. I surmise that it was due to the idiotic and lunatic attempts of dissemblers to extinguish the Sun of the Qur’an on account of Satan by puffing at it like silly children having taken lessons from that atheist, that I was inspired to write this Tenth Matter while under great constraint and in a most distressing situation. But I do not know the reality of the situation since I have been unable to meet with others.

SECOND ADDITION: After our release from Denizli Prison, I was staying on the top floor of the famous Shehir Hotel. The subtle and graceful dancing of the leaves, branches, and trunks of the many poplar trees in the fine gardens opposite me at the touching of the breeze, each with a rapturous and ecstatic motion like a circle of dervishes, pained my heart, sorrowful and melancholy at being parted from my brothers and remaining alone. Suddenly the seasons of autumn and winter came to mind and a heedlessness overcame me. I so pitied those graceful poplars and living creatures swaying with perfect joyousness that my eyes filled with tears. With this reminder of the separations and non-being beneath the ornamented veil of the universe, the grief at a world-full of deaths and separations pressed down on me. Then suddenly, the Light the Muhammadan (PBUH) Truth had brought came to my assistance and transformed my grief and sorrow into joy. Indeed, I am eternally grateful to the Muhammadan Being (PBUH) for the assistance and consolation which alleviated my situation at that time, only a single instance of the boundless effulgence of that Light for me, like for all believers and everyone. It was like this:

By showing those blessed and delicate creatures to be without function or purpose, and their motion to be not out of joy, but as though trembling on the brink of non-existence and separation and tumbling into nothingness, that heedless view so touched the feelings in me of desire for permanence, love of good things, and compassion for fellow-creatures and life that it transformed the world into a sort of hell and my mind into an instrument of torture. Then, just at that point, the Light Muhammad (Peace and blessings by upon him) had brought as a gift for mankind raised the veil; it showed in place of extinction, non-being, nothingness, purposeless, futility, and separations, meanings and instances of wisdom to the number of the leaves of the poplars, and as is proved in the Risale-i Nur, results and duties which may be divided into three sorts:

The First Sort looks to the All-Glorious Maker’s Names. For example, if a master craftsman makes a wondrous machine, everyone applauds him, saying: “What wonders God has willed! Blessed be God!” Similarly, the machine congratulates the craftsman through the tongue of its disposition, through displaying perfectly the results intended from it. All living beings



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and all things are machines such as that; they applaud their Craftsman through their glorifications.

The Second Sort of the Instances of Wisdom looks to the views of living creatures and conscious beings. Beings each become an agreeable object of study, a book of knowledge. They leave their meanings in the sphere of existence in the minds of conscious beings and their forms in their memories, and on the tablets in the World of Similitudes, and in the notebooks of the World of the Unseen, then they depart from the Manifest World and withdraw to the World of the Unseen. That is, they leave behind an apparent existence, but gain many existences pertaining to meaning, the Unseen, and knowledge. Yes, since God exists and His knowledge encompasses everything, in the view of reality, in the world of believers there is surely no non-being, extinction, nothingness, annihilation, and transitoriness, while the world of unbelievers is full of non-existence, separation, nothingness, and transience. This is taught by the saying, which is on everyone’s lips, “For those for whom God exists, everything exists; and for those for whom He does not exist, nothing exists; for them there is nothing.”

IN SHORT: Just as belief saves man from eternal annihilation at the time of death, so it saves everyone’s private world from the darknesses of annihilation and nothingness. Whereas unbelief, and especially if it is absolute unbelief, both sends man and his private world to non-existence with death, and casts him into infernal darknesses. It transforms the pleasures of life into bitter poisons. Let the ears ring of those who prefer the life of this world to that of the hereafter! Let them come and find a solution for this, or else let them embrace belief and be saved from these dreadful losses!

Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.13

From your brother who is in much need

of your prayers and misses you greatly,

SAID NURSI

ba

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13. Qur’an, 2:32.



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The Twenty-Sixth Word

THE TREATISE ON DIVINE DETERMINING

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
And there is not a thing but its [sources and] treasures [inexhaustible] are with Us, but We only send down thereof in due and ascertainable measures.1 * And of all things have We taken account in a Clear Book.2

[Divine Determining3 and the power of choice4 are two important matters. We shall attempt to disclose a few of their mysteries in four ‘Topics’.]

FIRST TOPIC

Divine Determining and the power of choice are aspects of a belief pertaining to state and conscience which show the final limits of Islam and belief; they are not theoretical and do not pertain to knowledge. That is to say, a believer attributes everything to Almighty God, even his actions and self, till finally the power of choice confronts him, so he cannot evade his obligation and responsibility. It tells him: “You are responsible and under obligation.” Then, so that he does not become proud at his good deeds and his achievements, Divine Determining confronts him, saying: “Know your limits; the one who does them is not you.” Yes, Divine Determining and the power of choice are at the final degrees of belief and Islam; the former has been included among the matters of belief to save the soul from pride, and the latter, to make it admit to its responsibility. Obdurate evil-commanding souls clinging to Divine Determining in order to clear themselves of the responsibility of the evils they have committed, and their becoming proud and conceited on account of the virtues bestowed on them and their relying on the power of choice, are actions totally opposed to the mystery of Divine Determining and wisdom of the power of choice; they are not matters pertaining to knowledge which might give rise to such actions.

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1. Qur’an, 15:21.
2. Qur’an, 36:12.
3. Divine Determining (Qadar) is also known as fate or destiny. [Tr.]
4. The power of choice or faculty of will (juz’i irada, juz’-i ikhtiyari), also known as free will. [Tr.]



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For ordinary people who have not progressed spiritually there may be occasions when Divine Determining is used, and these are calamities and disasters when it is the remedy for despair and grief. But it should not be used to justify rebellion and in matters of the future so that it becomes a cause of dissipation and idleness. That is to say, Divine Determining has not been included among the matters of belief to relieve people from their obligations and responsibility, but to save them from pride and conceit. While the power of choice has been included in order to be the source of evils, not to be the source of virtues, so that people become like the Pharaoh.

Yes, as the Qur’an states, man is totally responsible for his evils, for it is he who wants the evils. Since evils are destructive, man may perpetrate much destruction with a single evil act, like burning down a house with one match, and he becomes deserving of an awesome punishment. However, he does not have the right to take pride in good deeds; his part in them is extremely small. For what wants and requires the good deeds is Divine mercy, and what creates them is dominical power. Both request and reply, reason and cause, are from God. Man only comes to have them through supplication, belief, consciousness, and consent. As for evils, it is man’s soul that wants them, either through capacity or through choice, -like in the white and beautiful light of the sun some substances become black and putrefy, and the blackness is related to their capacity- however, it is Almighty God Who creates the evils through a Divine law which comprises numerous benefits. That is to say, the cause and the request are from the soul, so that it is the soul which is responsible, while it is Almighty God Who creates the evils and brings them into existence, and since they have other results and fruits which are good, they are good.

It is for the above reason that the ‘acquisition’ (kasb) of evil, that is, the desire for evil, is evil, but the creation of evil is not evil. A lazy man who receives damage from rain, which comprises many instances of good, may not say that the rain is not mercy. Yes, together with a minor evil in its creation are numerous instances of good. To abandon that good for a minor evil becomes a greater evil. Therefore, a minor evil becomes like good. There is no evil or ugliness in Divine creation. They rather pertain to His servant’s wish and to his capacity.

Furthermore, Divine Determining is both exempt from evil and ugliness with regard to results and fruits, and free from tyranny and ugliness with respect to reason and cause. Because Divine Determining looks to the true causes and acts justly. Men construct their judgements on causes which they see superficially and fall into error within the pure justice of Divine Determining. For example, a judge finds you guilty of theft and sends you to prison. You are not a thief, but you have committed a murder which no one knows about. Thus, Divine Determining also sentenced you to imprisonment,



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but it sentenced you for the secret murder and acted justly. Since the judge sentenced you for a theft of which you were innocent, he acted unjustly. Thus, in a single thing the justice of Divine Determining and Divine creation and man’s wrongful choice or acquisition were apparent in two respects; you can make analogies with this for other things. That is to say, with regard to origin and end, source and branch, cause and results, Divine Determining and creation are exempt from evil, ugliness, and tyranny.

I f i t i s s a i d : “Man has no ability to create with his power of choice and has nothing apart from ‘acquisition,’ which is as though theoretical, so how is it that in the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition he is shown to be rebellious and hostile towards the Creator of the heavens and the earth, Who complains greatly about him; the Creator mobilizes Himself and all His angels to assist His believing servants against the rebellious, affording them the greatest importance?”

T h e A n s w e r : Because disbelief, rebellion, and evil are destruction and non-existence. However, vast destruction and innumerable instances of non-existence may result from a single theoretical matter and one instance of non-existence. Through the helmsman of a large ship abandoning his duty, the ship may sink and the labour of all those employed on it go for nothing; all those instances of destruction will result from a single instance of non-existence. Similarly, since disbelief and rebellion are non-existence and destruction, the power of choice may provoke them through a theoretical matter and cause awesome consequences. For although disbelief is only one evil, it insults the whole universe, accusing it of being worthless and futile, and denies all beings, which display proofs of Divine unity, and is contemptuous towards all the manifestations of the Divine Names. It is therefore pure wisdom that Almighty God utters severe complaints about the unbelievers, threatening them awesomely in the name of the universe and all beings and the Divine Names; it is pure justice that they should suffer eternal punishment. Since through unbelief and rebellion man takes the way of destruction, with a small act of service, he may perform a great many works. In the face of unbelief therefore, the believers are in need of Almighty God’s boundless grace. For due to one troublesome child who is trying to burn down a house, ten strong men who have undertaken to protect and repair it may be obliged to beseech the child’s parents, or even have recourse to the king. In the same way the believers are in need of many Divine favours in order to withstand the unmannerly people of rebellion.

I n S h o r t : If the one speaking of Divine Determining and the power of choice has perfect belief and is aware of the Divine presence, he attributes the universe and himself to Almighty God, knowing them to be under His disposal. He has the right to speak of them. For since he knows himself and everything to be from Almighty God, he assumes the responsibility,



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basing it on his power of choice. He accepts that it is the source of evils and proclaims his Sustainer free of fault. He remains within the sphere of worship and undertakes the obligations with which he is charged by Almighty God. Moreover, he does not become proud at his good deeds and achievements; he rather looks to Divine Determining and offers thanks. He sees Divine Determining in the calamities that befall him, and endures them in patience.

However, if the one speaking of Divine Determining and the power of choice is one of the heedless and neglectful, then he has no right to speak of them. For, impelled by his misguidance, his evil-commanding soul attributes the universe to causes and divides up God’s property among them. And he attributes the ownership of himself to himself. He ascribes his acts to himself and to causes. His responsibility and faults, he refers to Divine Determining. He will finally ascribe the power of choice to Almighty God, and he will consider Divine Determining last of all; thus discussion of them becomes meaningless. To discuss them is only a trick of the soul which is entirely contrary to the wisdom in them, in order to save such a person from responsibility.

SECOND TOPIC

This is a minute and scholarly investigation addressing scholars in particular.5

I f y o u s a y : “How is Divine Determining compatible with the power of choice?”

T h e A n s w e r : In seven ways...

• The First: The All-Just and Wise One, to Whose wisdom and justice the universe testifies with the tongue of order and balance, gave to man a power of choice of unknown nature which would be the means of reward and punishment for him. We do not know many of the numerous aspects of the All-Just and Wise One’s wisdom; our not knowing how the power of choice is compatible with Divine Determining does not prove that it is not so.

• The Second: Of necessity everyone perceives in himself a will and choice; he knows it through his conscience. To know the nature of beings is one thing; to know they exist is something different. There are many things which although their existence is self-evident, we do not know their true nature... The power of choice may be included among these. Everything is not restricted to what we know; our not knowing them does not prove the things we do not know do not exist.

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5. This Second Topic is the most profound and difficult of the questions of the mystery of Divine Determining. It is held by the all learned scholars to be one of the most important and controversial questions of theology and belief, yet the Risale-i Nur has solved it completely.



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• The Third: The power of choice is not opposed to Divine Determining, indeed, Divine Determining corroborates the power of choice. Because Divine Determining is a sort of Divine knowledge. Divine knowledge is connected with our will and choice, in which case it corroborates it, it does not nullify it.

• The Fourth: Divine Determining is a sort of knowledge. Knowledge is dependent on the thing known. That is, it knows it as it is. The thing known is not dependent on knowledge. That is, the principles of knowledge are not fundamental so that the knowledge directs the thing known with regard to its external existence. Because the essence of the thing known and its external existence look to will and are based on power. Also, pre-eternity is not the tip of a chain reaching into the past which should be considered the end point in the existence of things and a source of compulsion. Rather, pre-eternity holds the past, the present, and the future all at once, looking at them from above like a mirror. In which case, it is not right to imagine an end to past time which stretches back within the sphere of contingency and call it pre-eternity, and to suppose that things enter that knowledge of pre-eternity in sequence, and that oneself is outside it; to reason thus is not right. Consider the following example in order to explain this mystery:

Suppose there is a mirror in your hand and the area to your right is the past and the area to your left, the future; the mirror only holds what is opposite it. Then with a movement it holds both sides, but it cannot hold all of it. However low the mirror is held, less will appear in it, and the higher it rises, the area it encompasses expands, until it can hold both sides in their entirety simultaneously. Whatever occurs in the areas reflected in the mirror in this position cannot be said to precede or follow one another, or to conform to or oppose one another. Divine Determining is part of pre-eternal knowledge, and in the words of the Hadith, pre-eternal knowledge is “at an elevated station which from its lofty view-point encompasses everything that has been and will be from pre-eternity to post-eternity.” We and our reasoning cannot be outside of it so we can be like a mirror to the area of the past.

• The Fifth: Divine Determining has a connection with cause and effect. That is, this effect will occur through this cause. In which case, it may not be said that “Since so-and-so’s death is determined at such-and-such a time, what fault has the man who fired the rifle through his own choice, for if he had not fired it, the other still would have died?”

Question: Why may it not be said?

The Answer: Because Divine Determining specified that so-and-so’s death would occur through the man’s rifle. If you suppose that he did not fire



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the rifle, then you are supposing that Divine Determining had no connection with it, so with what would you decree his death? If you imagine cause and effect to be separate like the Jabariyya, or you deny Divine Determining like the Mu‘tazila, you leave the Sunni School and join the heretics. We people of truth say: “If he had not fired the rifle, we do not know if he would have died.” The Jabariyya say: “If he had not fired it, he still would have died.” While the Mu‘tazila say: “If he had not fired it, he would not have died.”

• The Sixth:6 According to Maturidi, inclination, the essence of the power of choice, is a theoretical or relative matter and may be attributed to God’s servants. But Ash‘ari considered it to have existence, so did not attribute it to them. However, according to Ash‘ari, the power of disposal within inclination is a theoretical matter, which makes the inclination and the disposal together a relative matter lacking a definite external existence. Theoretical or relative matters do not require causes through which, for their existence, necessity would intervene and nullify the will and power of choice. Rather, if the cause of the theoretical matters acquires the weight of preference, the theoretical matter may become actual and existent. In which case, at that juncture, it may be abandoned. The Qur’an may say to a person at that point: “This is evil; do not do it.” Indeed, if God’s servants had been the creators of their actions and had had the power to create, then their wills would have been removed. For an established rule in the sciences of religion and philosophy is: “If a thing is not necessary, it may not come into existence [of itself].” That is, there has to be a cause for a thing to come into existence. The cause necessarily requires the effect. Then no power of choice would remain.

If you say: Preference without a cause or attribute to cause the preference is impossible. Whereas the theoretical or relative matter we call human acquisition sometimes does a thing and sometimes does not; if there is nothing to cause the preference, preference without something to cause it would necessarily occur, and ôhis demolishes one of the most important bases of theology?

The Answer: Preference without a cause or attribute to cause the preference is impossible. That is, a being deemed preferable or superior without a cause or attribute to make it so is impossible. But preference without something to cause it is permissible and occurs. Will is an attribute, and its mark is to perform a work such as that.

If you ask: “Since the one who creates the murder is Almighty God, why do you call me a murderer?”

The Answer: Because according to the rules of grammar, the active participle is derived from the infinitive, which is a relative matter. It cannot be

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6. This is a truth addressing exact scholars in particular.



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derived from the verbal noun, which is an actual or existent matter. The infinitive is our acquisition; so we are called the murderer. The verbal noun is Almighty God’s creature. Something which gives an inkling of responsibility cannot be derived from the verbal noun.

• The Seventh: For sure, man’s faculty of will and power of choice are weak and a theoretical matter, but Almighty God, the Absolutely Wise One, made that weak and partial will a condition for the connection of His universal will. He in effect says: “My servant! Whichever way you wish to take with your will, I will take you there. In which case the responsibility is yours!” If the comparison is not mistaken, you take a powerless child onto your shoulders and leaving the choice to him, tell him you will take him wherever he wishes. The child wants to go to a high mountain so you take him there, but he either catches cold or falls. So of course you reprimand him, saying, “You wanted to go there,” and you give him a slap. Thus, Almighty God, the Firmest of Judges, makes His servant’s will, which is utterly weak, a condition, and His universal will follows it.

I n S h o r t : O man! You have a will known as the power of choice which is extremely weak, but whose hand in evil acts and destruction is extremely long and in good deeds is extremely short. Give one of the hands of that will of yours to supplication, so that it may reach Paradise, a fruit of the chain of good deeds, and stretch to eternal happiness. And give its other hand to the seeking of forgiveness, so that it may be short for evil deeds and will not reach the Zakkum-tree of Hell, which is one fruit of that accursed tree. That is, just as supplication and reliance on God greatly strengthen the inclination to do good, so repentance and the seeking of forgiveness cut the inclination to do evil, putting an end to its transgressions.

THIRD TOPIC

Belief in Divine Determining is one of the pillars of belief. That is, the belief that “everything is determined by Almighty God.” The certain proofs for Divine Determining are so numerous they cannot be calculated. We shall show in an Introduction, simply and clearly, how strong and broad is this pillar of belief.

I n t r o d u c t i o n :

Numerous verses of the Qur’an, like,

Nor anything fresh or dry [green or withered] but is [inscribed] in a Clear Book,7

state clearly that before it comes into existence and after it passes from existence, everything is written. Through its creational signs like the order,

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7. Qur’an, 6:59.



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balance, regularity, adornment, differentiation, and the giving of form, the verses, the signs, of the mighty Qur’an inscribed by Divine power and called the universe confirm these statements of the Qur’an. Indeed, the well-ordered missives and finely balanced verses of the book of the universe testify that everything is written. The indication that everything is determined and written before it comes into existence are all beginnings, seeds, measured proportions, and forms; each of these testifies to this. For seeds and grains are subtle containers appearing from the workbench of “Be!,” and it is in each of which is deposited a tiny index traced by Divine Determining. Divine power employs minute particles according to that plan of Divine Determining, and constructs the mighty miracles of power on the seeds. That is to say, everything that will happen to the tree is as though inscribed in its seed. For in regard to their substance seeds are simple and similar to one another; materially they are nothing.

Furthermore, the well-measured proportions of everything clearly show Divine Determining. Yes, whatever living creature is considered, it is as though its form and measure emerged from a wisely and skilfully wrought mould. For it to receive such a measure, form, and shape, either there has to be a truly wondrous and infinitely intricate physical mould, or else pre-eternal power cuts out the form and shape according to a well-proportioned immaterial mould that exists in knowledge and comes from Divine Determining, and clothes it in it. For example, look carefully at this tree or that animal, you will see that the particles, which are lifeless, deaf, blind, unconscious, and similar to one another, are in motion in its growth and development. In some of the being’s intricate extremities the particles halt, as though seeing, knowing and recognizing the place of fruits and benefits. Then in another place they change their direction as though following some important aim. That means they are in motion in accordance with the immaterial measured proportions of the tree or animal, which come from Divine Determining, and are governed by those proportions.

Since there are the manifestations of Divine Determining to this extent in physical and visible things, certainly the forms with which things are clothed with the passing of time and the states acquired through the motions they perform will also be dependent on the ordering of Divine Determining. In a seed are two manifestations of Divine Determining; one is ‘evident’ and points to the Clear Book, which is a title of will and the creational commands; the other is ‘theoretical’ and points to the Clear Record, which is a title of Divine knowledge and the Divine command. ‘Evident’ Divine Determining specifies the physical nature, states, and parts of the tree which the seed comprises. While ‘theoretical’ Divine Determining specifies the stages, states, forms, motions, and glorifications which the tree will undergo and perform over the period of its life, and which are in the seed and will be



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created from it; these stages, states, forms, and acts, which constantly change and are called its life-history, each have a regulated measure in accordance with Divine Determining, the same as the tree’s branches and leaves.

Since there is such a manifestation of Divine Determining in the most common and simple of things, it surely demonstrates that all things are written before they come into existence; this may be understood with little attention. Now, evidence for the fact that the story of everything’s life is written after its existence are all fruits, which in this world tell of the Clear Book and the Clear Record, and the faculty of memory in man, which points to the Preserved Tablet; these all hint and testify to this fact. Indeed, the appointed events of a tree’s life are written in its seeds, which are like the hearts of its fruits. And man’s life-history together with some of the past events of the world are written in his memory in such a way that, as though copying out with the hand of power and pen of Divine Determining in a faculty as tiny as a mustard seed a small note from the page of his actions, the memory gives the note to man’s hand and puts it in the pocket of his mind, so that with it he will call his actions to mind at the time of reckoning. So too, due to it he may be confident that within the upheavals of transience and death there are numerous lasting mirrors in which the All-Powerful and Wise One depicts and makes permanent the identities of transient beings; and truly numerous tablets which shall endure for all eternity on which that All-Knowing Preserver inscribes the meanings of transitory beings.

I n S h o r t : Since plant life, the simplest and lowest level of life, is dependent on the ordering of Divine Determining to this extent, certainly human life, the highest level of life, has been drawn in all in its details according to the scale and measuring of Divine Determining and is inscribed by its pen. Yes, just as raindrops tell of clouds, and drops of water point to the existence of a water-source, and notes and portfolios to the existence of a large ledger, so too, the ‘evident’ Divine Determining which we observe and which is the physical order in living beings indicates the notebook of Divine will and creational commands known as the Clear Book. Similarly, their fruits, seeds, grains, forms, and shapes, which are like the droplets, notes, and portfolios of ‘theoretical’ Divine Determining, which is the non-physical order and pertains to life, indicates the Preserved Tablet, one office of Divine knowledge, which is called the Clear Record.

T o C o n c l u d e : We see clearly that at the time of their growth and development the particles of living beings travel to their intricate extremities and halt, then they change their path. At each of the extremities they produce the fruits of benefits, uses, and instances of wisdom. Clearly, the forms of those things and their measures are drawn with a pen of Determining. Thus, observable, evident Determining shows that in the non-physical states of



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living beings also are well-ordered, fruitful extremities and limits drawn with the pen of Determining. Divine power is the source, Divine Determining is the pattern. Power writes the meaningful book on that pattern. Since we understand clearly that the fruitful limits and purposeful extremities have been drawn with the pen of Divine Determining, physical and non-physical, certainly the states and stages which all living beings undergo in the course of their lives are also drawn with that pen. For their life-stories follow a course with order and balance; they change forms and receive shapes. Since the pen of Divine Determining thus rules in all living beings, surely the life-history of man, the world’s most perfect fruit and Divine vicegerent on earth and bearer of the Supreme Trust, is more than anything dependent on the law of Divine Determining.

I f y o u s a y : “Divine Determining has bound us like this. It has negated our freedom. Isn’t belief in it a burden and irksome for the heart and spirit, which yearn for expansion and to roam freely?”

T h e A n s w e r : Absolutely not! It is not burdensome; it rather affords a luminosity and joy producing a lightness, ease, and spirit, and ensuring confidence and security. Because if man does not believe in Divine Determining, he is compelled to bear a burden as heavy as the world on the shoulders of his spirit within a constricted space, which allows him only an insignificant independence and temporary freedom. For man is connected with the whole universe. He has infinite aims and desires. But since his power, will, and freedom are insufficient to meet a millionth of these, it may be understood how awesome is the burden of the distress he bears. Thus, belief in Divine Determining throws that burden in its entirety onto the ship of Divine Determining, allowing him to roam free within its perfections with perfect ease and perfect freedom of spirit and heart. It only negates the petty freedom of the evil-commanding soul and smashes its Pharaoh-like tyranny and lordship, and its acting as it wishes. Belief in Divine Determining produces such pleasure and happiness it is beyond description. We shall only allude to it with the following comparison.

Two men travelled to the seat of government of a king, and there entered his private palace, a place of rare wonders. One of them did not recognize the king and laying hands on everything and stealing them, wanted to settle there. However, he experienced certain difficulties, for he had to manage the palace and its park, oversee its revenues, work its machines, and feed its strange animals; he suffered constant distress. The paradise-like park became hell for him. He pitied everything. He could not govern them. He passed his time regretfully. Then this thieving, unmannerly man was cast into prison as a punishment. The second man recognized the king and knew himself to be his guest. He believed that all the matters in the park and



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palace occurred through the regulation of the law, and that everything functioned with perfect ease in accordance with a programme. Leaving the difficulties to the king’s law, he benefited with complete enjoyment from all the pleasures of that Paradise-like garden, and relying on the king’s mercy and the efficacy of the administrative laws, he saw everything as agreeable and passed his life in perfect pleasure and happiness. He understood the meaning of the saying: “He who believes in Divine Determining is saved from grief.”

FOURTH TOPIC

I f y o u s a y : “In the First Topic you proved that everything about Divine Determining is good and beautiful. Even the evil that comes from it is good, and the ugliness, beautiful. But the disasters and tribulations in this world refute that statement.”

T h e A n s w e r : O my soul and my friend who feel severe pain out of intense compassion! The facts that all virtues and perfections return to existence and that the basis of all rebellion, calamities, and defects is non-existence are a proof that existence is pure good and non-existence, pure evil. Since non-existence is pure evil, circumstances that either result in non-existence or give an inkling of it, also comprise evil. Therefore, life, the most brilliant light of existence, proceeding through different circumstances, finds strength; it encounters varying situations and is purified; it takes on numerous qualities and produces the desired results, and enters many stages and displays comprehensively the impresses of the Bestower of Life’s Names. It is due to this fact that certain things happen to living creatures in the form of griefs, calamities, difficulties, and tribulations whereby the lights of existence are renewed in their lives, and the darkness of non-existence draws distant and their lives are purified. For arrest, repose, silence, idleness, rest, and monotony are all, both in quality and as conditions, non-existence. Even the greatest pleasure is reduced to nothing by monotony.

I n S h o r t : Since life displays the impresses of the Most Beautiful Names, everything that happens to it is good. For example, an extremely rich and infinitely skilful person who is proficient in many crafts, for an hour and in return for a wage, clothes a miserable wretch in a bejewelled, artistically fashioned garment. This garment he made in order to make the miserable man act as a model and to display the works of his art and his extensive wealth. He works the garment on the man, gives it various forms, and alters it. In order to display every variety of his art, he cuts it, changes it, and lengthens and shortens it. Can the poor man receiving the wage be justified if he says to the person: “You are giving me trouble. You are making me bow down and stand up. By cutting and shortening this garment which makes me more beautiful, you are spoiling my beauty”? Does he have the



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right to tell him: “You are acting unkindly and unfairly”? Thus, like him, in order to display the impresses of His Most Beautiful Names, the All-Glorious Maker, the Peerless Creator, alters within numerous circumstances the garment of existence He clothes on living creatures, bejewelled with senses and subtle faculties like eyes, ears, the reason, and the heart. He changes it within very many situations. Among these are circumstances in the form of suffering and calamity which show the meanings of some of His Names, and the rays of mercy within flashes of wisdom, and the subtle instances of beauty within those rays of mercy.

Conclusion

[Five Paragraphs which silenced the Old Said’s rebellious, proud, vain, conceited, and hypocritical soul, and compelled it to submit.]

FIRST PARAGRAPH: Since things exist and they are full of art, they surely have a maker. As is decisively proved in the Twenty-Second Word, if everything is not one person’s, then each thing becomes as difficult and problematical as all things. Since someone made the earth and the heavens and created them, for sure that most wise and skilful Being would not leave to others living beings, which are the fruits, results, and aims of the heavens and the earth, and spoil his work. Making it futile and without purpose, He would not hand over to others all His wise works; He would not give their thanks and worship to others.

SECOND PARAGRAPH: O my conceited soul! You resemble a grape-vine. Do not become proud! The vine itself did not attach the bunches of grapes; someone else attached them.

THIRD PARAGRAPH: O my hypocritical soul! Do not become vain, saying: “I have served religion.” According to the meaning of the saying, “God strengthens this religion by means of sinful men,”8 it was because you were not purified. Indeed, you should know yourself to be such a sinful man, and that your duty and worship is thanks for past bounties. For these are the function of your nature, incumbent on you due to your creation, and the result of art; know this and be saved from vanity and hypocrisy!

FOURTH PARAGRAPH: If you want knowledge of reality and true wisdom, gain knowledge of Almighty God. For the realities of beings are

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8. Bukhari, Jihad, 182; Maghazi, 38; Qadr, 5; Muslim, Iman, 178; Ibn Maja, Fitan, 35.

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rays of the Divine Name of Truth and the manifestations of His Names and attributes. The reality of all things, whether physical, non-physical, essential, non-essential, and the reality of all human beings, is based on a Name and relies on Its reality. Things are not merely insignificant forms without reality. There is a brief discussion of this mystery at the end of the Twentieth Word. O my soul! If you long for the life of this world and flee death, know certainly that the conditions you suppose to be life are only the minute in which you are. All the time previous to the present minute and the things of the world within that time are dead in the present minute. And all the time subsequent to the present minute and all it contains are non-existent in it, and nothing. That means the physical life on which you rely is only one minute. Some of the learned, even, said it was a tenth of a minute, rather, the passing instant. It is due to this mystery that certain saints stated that with regard to this world, this world is non-existent. Since it is thus, give up the physical life of the soul; rise to the level of life of the heart, spirit, and inner faculties; see what a broad sphere of life they have. For them, the past and the future, which for you are dead, are living; they are existent and full of life. O my soul! Like my heart, you too weep and cry out and say:

I am ephemeral; I do not want another who is thus.

I am impotent; I do not want another who is thus.

I have surrendered my spirit to the Most Merciful; I do not want another.

I want another, but let him be an eternal friend.

I am a mere atom, but I desire an Everlasting Sun.

I am nothing, yet I wish for these beings, all of them.

FIFTH PARAGRAPH: This Paragraph occurred to me in Arabic, and so it was written thus. Also, it recalls one of the thirty-three degrees of reflection in the recitation, God is Most Great.

God is Most Great! The Eternal, All-Knowing, All-Wise, Most Generous, Most Compassionate, All-Beauteous, the Inscriber, the Pre-Eternal! What is the reality of the universe in its entirety and in its parts, and its pages and levels, and what is the reality of beings altogether and singly, in their existence and continuation, but the lines of the pen of His Determining and Decree, and His setting in order and determining, with knowledge and wisdom; what are they but the skilful inscriptions of His knowledge and wisdom and regulating and forming, with art and favour; the adornments of the shining hand of His art and favour and embellishing and illuminating, with grace and munificence; the flowers of the subtleties of His favour and munificence and making known and loved, with mercy and bounty; the fruits of the effusions of His mercy and bounty and pity and compassion, with



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beauty and perfection; the flashes and manifestations of His beauty and perfection through the testimony of the transience of the mirrors and the ephemerality of the places of manifestation and the permanence of that transcendent, eternal beauty, and its constant manifestation and appearance throughout the passage of the seasons, centuries, and ages, and the perpetual bestowal of bounties throughout the passage of the creatures and days and people?

Indeed, a perfect work points to one possessing intellect who performs a perfect act, and the perfect act points to one with understanding who possesses perfect names, and the perfect names point to perfect attributes, and perfect attributes point to perfect qualities, and the perfect qualities point to the perfection of the essence from which they proceed, and this is absolutely certain.

Indeed, the ephemerality of the mirrors and death of creatures together with the perpetual manifestation and constant effulgence is the clearest of proofs that their apparent beauty does not belong to the places of manifestation; it is the most eloquent statement and clearest argument for a transcendent beauty, and renewed bestowal, to the Necessary Existent, to the Enduring One, the Loving One...

O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad from pre-eternity to post-eternity to the number of things encompassed by Divine Knowledge, and to his Family and Companions, and grant them peace.

ba



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Addendum

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

[This short Addendum has great importance; it is beneficial for everyone.]

The ways leading to Almighty God are truly numerous. While all true ways are taken from the Qur’an, some are shorter, safer, and more general than others. Of these ways taken from the Qur’an is that of impotence, poverty, compassion, and reflection, from which, with my defective understanding, I have benefited.

Indeed, like ecstatic love, impotence is a path which, by way of worship, leads to winning God’s love; but it is safer. Poverty too leads to the Divine Name of All-Merciful. And, like ecstatic love, compassion leads to the Name of All-Compassionate, but is a swifter and broader path. Also like ecstatic love, reflection leads to the Name of All-Wise, but it is a richer, broader, and more brilliant path. This path consists not of ten steps like the ‘ten subtle faculties’ of some of the Sufi orders (tariqat) employing silent recollection, nor of seven stages like the ‘seven souls’ of those practising public recitation, but of four ‘Steps’. It is reality [haqiqat], rather than a tariqat. It is Shari‘a.

However, let it not be misunderstood. It means to see one’s impotence, poverty and faults before Almighty God, not to fabricate them or display them to people. The method of this short path is to follow the Practices of the Prophet (PBUH), perform the religious obligations and give up serious sins. And it is especially to perform the prescribed prayers correctly and with attention, and following them to say the tesbihat.

The verse, Therefore, do not justify yourselves,9 points to the First Step.

The verse, And be not like those who forget God, and He therefore makes them forget their own selves,10 points to the Second Step.

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9. Qur’an, 53:32.
10. Qur’an, 59:19.



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The verse, Whatever good happens to you is from God, but whatever evil befalls you is from yourself,11 points to the Third Step.

The verse, Everything will perish save His countenance,12 points to the Fourth Step.

A brief explanation of these Four Steps is as follows:

THE FIRST STEP: As the verse, Therefore, do not justify yourselves suggests, it is to not purify the soul. For on account of his nature and innate disposition, man loves himself. Indeed, he loves himself before anything else, and only himself. He sacrifices everything other than himself to his own soul. He praises himself in a manner befitting some object of worship. He absolves and exonerates himself from faults in the same way. As far as he possibly can, he does not see faults as being appropriate for him, and does not accept them. He defends himself passionately as though worshipping himself. Even, using on himself the members and faculties given him as part of his nature in order to praise and glorify the True Object of Worship, he displays the meaning of the verse, Who takes as his god his own desires.13 He considers himself, he relies on himself, he fancies himself. Thus, his purification and cleansing at this stage, in this step, is to not purify himself; it is not to absolve himself.

SECOND STEP: As the verse, And be not like those who forget God, and He therefore makes them forget their own selves teaches, man is oblivious of himself, and is not aware of himself. If he thinks of death, it is in relation to others. If he sees transience and decline, he does not attribute them to himself. His evil-commanding soul demands that when it comes to inconvenience and service of others, he forgets himself, but when it comes to receiving his recompense, and to benefits and enjoyment, he thinks of himself, and takes his own part fervently. His purification, cleansing, and training at this stage is the reverse of this state. That is to say, when oblivious of himself, it is not to be oblivious. That is, to forget himself when it comes to pleasure, and ambition and greed, and to think of himself when it comes to death and service of others.

THIRD STEP: As the verse, Whatever good happens to you is from God, but whatever evil befalls you is from yourself teaches, the nature of the evil-commanding soul demands that it always considers goodness to be from itself and becomes vain and conceited. Thus, in this Step, a person sees only faults, defects, impotence, and poverty in himself, and understands that all his good qualities and perfections are bounties bestowed on him by the All-

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11. Qur’an, 4:79.
12. Qur’an, 28:88.
13. Qur’an, 25:43; 45:23.



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Glorious Creator. He gives thanks instead of being conceited, and offers praise instead of boasting. According to the meaning of the verse, Truly he succeeds who purifies it,14 his purification at this stage is to know his perfection to lie in imperfection, his power in impotence, and his wealth in poverty.

FOURTH STEP: As the verse, Everything will perish save His countenance teaches, the evil-commanding soul considers itself to be free and independent and to exist of itself. Because of this, man claims to possess a sort of dominicality. He harbours a hostile rebelliousness towards his True Object of Worship. Thus, through understanding the following fact, he is saved from this. The fact is this:

According to the apparent meaning of things, which looks to each thing itself, everything is transitory, lacking, accidental, non-existent. But according to the meaning that signifies something other than itself and in respect of each thing being a mirror to the All-Glorious Maker’s Names and charged with various duties, each is a witness, it is witnessed, and it is existent. The purification and cleansing of a person at this stage is as follows:

In his existence he is non-existent, and in his non-existence he has existence. That is to say, if he values himself and attributes existence to himself, he is in a darkness of non-existence as great as the universe. That is, if he relies on his individual existence and is unmindful of the True Giver of Existence, he has an individual light of existence like that of a fire-fly and is submerged in an endless darkness of non-existence and separation. But if he gives up egotism and sees that he is a mirror of the manifestations of the True Giver of Existence, he gains all beings and an infinite existence. For he who finds the Necessary Existent One, the manifestation of Whose Names all beings manifest, finds everything.

Conclusion

The Four Steps in this way of impotence, poverty, compassion, and reflection have been explained in the twenty-six Words so far written, which are concerned with knowledge of reality, the reality of the Shari‘a, and the wisdom of the Qur’an. So here we shall allude briefly to only one or two points, as follows:

Indeed, this path is shorter, because it consists of four steps. When impotence removes the hand from the soul, it gives it directly to the All-Powerful One of Glory. Whereas, when the way of ecstatic love, the swiftest way,

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14. Qur’an, 91:9.



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takes the hand away from the soul, it attaches it to the metaphorical beloved. Only after the beloved is found to be impermanent does it go to the True Beloved.

Also, this path is much safer, because the ravings and high-flown claims of the soul are not present on it. For, apart from impotence, poverty, and defect, the soul possesses nothing so that it oversteps its mark.

Also, this path is much broader and more universal. For, in order to attain to a constant awareness of God’s presence, a person is not compelled to imagine the universe to be condemned to non-existence and to declare: “There is no existent but He,” like those who believe in ‘the unity of existence,’ nor to suppose the universe to be condemned to imprisonment in absolute oblivion and to say, “There is nothing witnessed but He,” like those who believe in ‘the unity of witnessing.’ Rather, since the Qur’an has most explicitly pardoned the universe and released it from execution and imprisonment, one on this path disregards the above, and dismissing beings from working on their own account and employing them on account of the All-Glorious Creator, and in the duty of manifesting the Most Beautiful Names and being mirrors to them, he considers them from the point of view of signifying something other than themselves; and being saved from absolute heedlessness, he enters the Divine presence permanently; he finds a way leading to the Almighty God in everything.

In Short: Dismissing beings from working on account of other beings, this way is to not look at them as signifying themselves.

ba



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The Twenty-Seventh Word

TREATISE ON INDEPENDENT JUDGEMENTS OF THE LAW (Ijtihad)

[Five or six years ago in an Arabic treatise, I wrote concerning a matter to do with independent judgements on points of the Shari‘a. Now, at the request of two of my brothers, this Word was written about that matter in order to put in his place someone who had overstepped the mark in his attacks on it.]

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

If they had only referred it to the Prophet, or to those charged with authority among them, the proper investigators would have tested it from them [direct].1

The door of independent judgements on the law is open, but at the present time there are six ‘Obstacles’ to entering it.

THE FIRST: In winter when the storms are fierce even small holes are blocked up, and it is in no way reasonable to open up new doors. Under the onslaught of a mighty flood, to make openings in the wall in order to repair it leads to being drowned. In just the same way, at this time of denial and the assault of the customs of Europe and the legion of innovations and the destruction of misguidance, to open up new doors in the citadel of Islam in the name of ijtihad, and make openings that will be the means of those bent on destruction scaling the walls and entering it, is a crime against Islam.

THE SECOND: Independent judgements may not be made about the essential teachings of religion, for they are specified and definite. Moreover, they are like basic food and sustenance. Although at this time all effort and endeavour should be expended on their being upheld and raised to life, they are being abandoned and degraded. So to give them up, despite their being among the theoretical matters of Islam and due to being the pure and sincere

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1. Qur’an, 4:83.



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interpretations of the first generations of Islam are not inadequate for the needs of all times, and to make new interpretations of the law in arbitrary fashion, is an innovation and betrayal of Islam.

THE THIRD: Just as varying goods in the market are sought after according to the season; they are in demand one after the other, so in the exhibition of the world and market of human society and civilization, every century different goods are sought after and are in demand; they are displayed in the market, demand attracts them, gazes are turned on them, minds are drawn by them. Like at the present time the goods of politics and securing the life of this world and the demand of philosophy are sought after, for example. And at the time of the first generations of Islam and in the market of that age, deducing from the Word of the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth His wishes and what He wants of us were the most sought-after goods, and obtaining the means to gain through the light of prophethood and the Qur’an eternal happiness in the world of the hereafter, which had been revealed to such a degree it could not be concealed.

At that time, since people’s minds, hearts and spirits were directed with all their strength towards understanding the wishes of the Sustainer of the Heavens and the Earth, the discussions, conversations, events, and circumstances of social life all looked to that. Since they occurred in accordance with those wishes, whoever had high ability, his heart and nature unconsciously received instruction in knowledge of God from everything. He received knowledge from the circumstances, events, and discussions which took place at that time. As though everything became a teacher for such a person, and inculcated in his nature and disposition the preparatory knowledge for independent judgements. That natural instruction illuminated him to such a degree that he was almost capable of interpreting the law without acquiring the knowledge, to be illuminated without fire... Thus, when someone capable who received such natural instruction in this way began to work at interpreting the law, his capacity which had become like a match manifested the mystery of Light upon Light; he became qualified to interpret it (mujtahid) swiftly and in a brief time.

At this time, however, due to the domination of European civilization and the supremacy of natural philosophy and the preponderance of the conditions of worldly life, minds and hearts have become scattered, and endeavour and favour divided. Minds have become strangers to non-material matters. Thus, it is because of this that if someone now was to memorize the Qur’an at the age of four and have the intelligence of a mujtahid like Sufyan ibn Uyayna, who held discussions with religious scholars at an early age, he would need ten times longer than Sufyan to become qualified to interpret the law. If Sufyan acquired the learning in ten years, this man would need one



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hundred years. Because the period of Sufyan’s natural study began at the age of reason. His disposition and abilities were slowly prepared and illuminated; they took lessons from everything and became like a match. But his counterpart at the present time, since his thought is submerged in philosophy, his mind plunged in politics, and his heart is giddy at the life of this world, his disposition and abilities have grown distant from interpretation of the law. For sure, they have become distant from interpretation of the Shari‘a to the degree they have been preoccupied with the modern sciences, and have remained backward in regard to it to the extent he has become learned in the physical sciences. Therefore, he may not say: “I am as intelligent as him. Why can’t I on a level with him?” He does not have the right to say this, and he cannot be on a level with him.

THE FOURTH: Just as within a body is the inclination to expand, for its growth and development. And, since it is from within, the inclination to expand is a being perfected for the body. Whereas if it is an inclination for expansion from outside it, it is to rip the body’s skin; to destroy it; it is not expansion. In the same way, when the inclination to expand and will to interpret the law were present in those within the sphere of Islam through the door of perfect taqwa and the way of conforming to the essential teachings of Islam, like the righteous early generations, that was a perfection and a being perfected. But if such an inclination and desire come from those who give up the essentials, prefer the life of this world to that of the hereafter, and are tainted with materialist philosophy, it is the means of destroying the body of Islam and casting off the chain of the Shari‘a from the neck.

THE FIFTH: Three points of view make interpretation of the law earthly at this time, and prevent it being heavenly. Whereas the Shari‘a is heavenly, revealed, and since interpretations of it make known its hidden ordinances, they also are heavenly.

THE FIRST: The wisdom of an ordinance is one thing, while the reason for it is something different. Wisdom and benefit are the cause of its choice, not the means of its being necessitated and created. And the reason is the means for its existence. For example, the obligatory prayers are shortened while travelling; two rak’ats are performed. The reason for this permission of the Shari‘a is the journey, while its wisdom is the hardship. If there is the journey but no hardship, the prayers are still shortened. For there is the reason. But if there is no journey yet hardship, it may not be the reason for shortening the prayers. Thus, contrary to this fact, the view at this time is to set up the benefit and wisdom in place of the reason, and to make its judgement in accordance with that. Such an interpretation is certainly earthly, not heavenly.

THE SECOND: The view at the present time looks primarily to worldly



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happiness, whereas the view of the Shari‘a looks primarily to happiness in the hereafter, and to happiness in this world in second place and indirectly as the means to the hereafter. That is to say, the view of this time is a stranger to the spirit of the Shari‘a; in which case, it may not make interpretations in its name.

THE THIRD: There is a rule: Necessity makes permissible what is forbidden. This rule is not universal. So long as it is not by way of what is forbidden, necessity makes licit what is forbidden. But if something has become a necessity due to abuse and for illicit reasons, this necessity may not be the basis of ordinances permitting it, nor form an excuse. For example, if, through ill choice someone makes himself drunk in an unlawful way, according to scholars of the Shari‘a, his actions act against him and he may not be counted as excused. If he divorces his wife, the divorce is in force. And if he commits a crime, he receives the punishment. But if it is not through ill choice, the divorce is not in force, neither does he receive punishment. And, for example, even if an alcoholic is addicted to alcohol to the degree of necessity, he may not say: “It is a necessity, and lawful for me.”

Thus, at this time there are many matters which have reached the degree of necessity and have taken on the form of a general calamity afflicting people, and which, since they have arisen from ill choice, illicit desires, and forbidden acts, may not be the basis of ordinances permitting them and making what is unlawful lawful. However, since those who make interpretations at the present time make those necessities the basis of ordinances of the Shari‘a, their interpretations are earthly, the products of their own fancies, tainted by philosophy, and cannot be heavenly or revealed, or in accordance with the Shari‘a. However, if exercise of authority concerning the Divine ordinances of the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth and interference in the worship of His servants is without the Creator’s permission, that exercise of authority and interference are rejected. For example, a number of the heedless and neglectful approve the changing of some of the marks of Islam like the Friday Sermon, and substituting the language of each country for Arabic, for two reasons:

The First: “So that in that way the mass of Muslims will understand current politics.” But current politics has become so intermixed with lies and trickery and evil that it has become like the very whisperings of Satan. However, the pulpit is the seat of delivering Divine revelation, so political rumours do not have the right to rise to that high position.

The Second: “The Friday Sermon is for understanding the admonitions of certain Suras of the Qur’an.” Yes, if the majority of the Islamic nation conformed to the essential teachings and incontestable matters of Islam and the ordinances which are well-known and carried them out, then the reading



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of the Sermon in the known language and the translation of the Qur’an,2 if it was possible, might have been desirable, in order to understand the theoretical matters of the Shari‘a and its subtle matters and abstruse teachings. But the well-known, incontrovertible ordinances of Islam like the five daily prayers, fasting in Ramadan, and zakat, and the unlawfulness of murder, fornication, and wine are neglected. The ordinary people are not in need of learning their necessity or unlawfulness, but through encouragement and warning, to be reminded of those sacred decrees, and, through their sense of belief and feelings for Islam being stirred, to be prompted, encouraged, and reminded to conform to them. However lowly and ignorant they may be, they understand the following brief meaning from the Qur’an and Arabic Sermon: “The preacher and the reciter of the Qur’an are recalling the pillars of belief and Islam, which are known by me and everyone, and teaching us, and reciting them.” A longing for them is born in their hearts. What words are there in the universe which can be compared with the miraculous, instructive reminders, warnings, and encouragement of the All-Wise Qur’an, which comes from the Sublime Throne?

THE SIXTH: Since the great interpreters of the law among the righteous early generations of Islam lived close to the time of the Companions of the Prophet, the age of light and age of truth, they were able to receive a pure light and make pure interpretations. But the interpreters of the law at this time look at the book of reality from behind so many veils and from such a long distance that they can see even its clearest letters only with difficulty.

If you say: The Companions also were human beings and not free of error and differences, while the means of interpretation of the law and the ordinances of the Shari‘a is the justice and truthfulness of the Companions, on which the Islamic community have agreed, saying: “All the Companions were just and all spoke the truth.”

The Answer: Yes, the absolute majority of the Companions of the Prophet were lovers of the truth, truthfulness, and justice. For in that age, the ugliness of lies and falsehood was shown in all its ugliness and the beauty of right and truthfulness was shown in all its beauty in such a way that the distance between them stretched from the ground to the Divine Throne. There was a clear separation between them, from the depths of Musaylima the Liar at the lowest of the low to the degree of truthfulness of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) at the highest of the high. Indeed, just as it was lying that brought Musaylima to the lowest of the low, so it

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2. The Twenty-Fifth Word, about miraculousness, has shown that a true translation of the Qur’an is not possible.



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was truthfulness and right which raised Muhammad the Trustworthy to the highest of the high.

Thus, the Companions, who held elevated sentiments and worshipped good morals and were illuminated with the light of the conversation of the Sun of Prophethood, did not stretch out their hands to the buffoonery and filth of the lying in Musaylima’s shop, which was so ugly and the cause of descent, and they shrank from unbelief. So too they shrank from lying, the companion of unbelief, and sought as far as they were able -especially in relating the ordinances of the Shari‘a and propagating them- truth, truthfulness, and right, which are so fine and the cause of pride and glory, ascent and progress, and were the thing most in demand from the elevated treasury of the Glory of Messengership, and which illuminate man’s social life with their beauteous splendour; the Companions acted in conformity with them and were desirous of them; this is certain, definite, and necessary. Whereas at this time, the distance between truth and lying has become so narrow that they are now quite simply shoulder to shoulder. It is extremely easy to pass from truthfulness to lying. Lying is even preferred to truthfulness due to the propaganda of politics and diplomacy. And so, if the most ugly and the finest things are sold in the same shop for the same price, certainly the jewel of truthfulness and right, which is most elevated and penetrates to the essence of reality, will not be obtained blindly, relying on the word and skill of the shopkeeper.

Conclusion

Sacred laws change according to the ages. Indeed, in one age different prophets may come, and they have come. Since subsequent to the Seal of the Prophets, his Greater Shari‘a is sufficient for all peoples in every age, no need has remained for different laws. However, in secondary matters, the need for different schools has persisted to a degree. Just as clothes change with the change of the seasons and medicines change according to dispositions, so sacred laws change according to the ages, and their ordinances change according to the capacities of peoples. Because the secondary matters of the ordinances of the Shari‘a look to human circumstances; they come according to them, and are like medicine.

At the time of the early prophets, since social classes were far apart and men’s characters were both somewhat coarse and violent, and their minds, primitive and close to nomadism, the laws at that time came all in different forms, appropriate to their conditions. There were even different prophets



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and laws in the same continent in the same century. Then, since with the coming of the Prophet of the end of time, man as though advanced from the primary to the secondary stage, and through numerous revolutions and upheavals reached a position at which all the human peoples could receive a single lesson and listen to a single teacher and act in accordance with a single law, no need remained for different laws, neither was there necessity for different teachers. But because they were not all at completely the same level and did not proceed in the same sort of social life, the schools of law became numerous. If, like students of a school of higher education, the vast majority of mankind were clothed in the same sort of social life and attained the same level, then all the schools could be united. But just as the state of the world does not permit that, so the schools of law cannot be the same.

If you say: The truth is one; how can the different ordinances of the four and twelve schools be true?

The Answer: The same water governs in five different ways in five ill people of different disposition, thus: for one, the water is a cure for his illness, and according to medicine, necessary. For another, it is like poison for his sickness and harmful, and medically prohibited. For another, it causes a small amount of harm, and is reprehensible medically. For another the water is beneficial and without harm; according to medicine that is sunna for him. And for yet another it is neither harmful nor beneficial; he can drink it with good health, and for him it is medically permissible. Thus, here the truth has become numerous; all five are true. Are you able to say: “The water is only a cure, only necessary, and it governs in no other way?”

Similarly, impelled by Divine wisdom, the Divine ordinances change according to the schools of law and those who follow them, and they change as truth, and all are true and right. For example, since, in accordance with Divine wisdom and determining, the majority of those who follow Imam Shafi‘i are closer to village life and nomadism than the Hanafis, and are lacking in social life, which makes the community like a single body, each person recites the Fatiha behind the prayer-leader so as to himself express his pains at the Court of the Dispenser of Needs and utter his private wishes. And this is absolutely right and pure wisdom. However, since most Islamic governments favoured the school of Imam-i A’zam, the great majority of those who follow that school are closer to civilization and town life and more fitted for social life. Thus, the community becomes like a single individual and one man speaks in the name of all; all affirm him with their hearts and bind their hearts to his and his word becomes the word of all; according to the Hanafi school, the Fatiha is not recited behind the prayer-leader. And its not being recited is absolutely right and pure wisdom.

And, for example, since through forming a barrier against the assaults of



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nature, the Shari‘a modifies it and trains the evil-commanding soul, according to the Shafi‘i school, most of whose followers are villagers, semi-nomadic, and occupied in manual labour: “Ablutions are spoilt by touching a woman; the slightest uncleanliness is harmful.” While according to the Hanafi School, since the great majority of it followers have entered social life and become ‘semi-civilized:’ “Touching women does not spoil the ablutions; there is licence for a small amount of uncleanliness.”

Now we shall consider a manual worker and a gentleman. Due to his craft and the manner of his livelihood, a worker is afflicted with mixing with and being in contact with women who are canonically strangers to him. Since he sits at the same hearth as them and is involved with unclean things, nature and his evil-commanding soul find the field empty and may attack him. Therefore, in order to form a barrier against such attacks, the Shari‘a states concerning them: “Your ablutions will be spoilt; do not touch the women. Your prayers will be invalid; do not be tainted.” A heavenly voice rings in his spiritual ears. Whereas, in accordance with social custom and in the name of common morality, the gentleman -on condition he is honourable- is not afflicted with being in contact with women who are canonically strangers to him, and in the name of cleanliness of civilization, he is not tainted to any degree with unclean things. Therefore, in the Hanafi school, the Shari‘a has not shown him harshness and censure; it has shown its permissive side, and lightened it. “If your hand has been touched, your ablutions are not spoilt. If you are ashamed and do not perform the istinja in public, there is no harm in it. A small amount of uncleanliness is permitted.” It saves him from scruples. Thus, two drops from the ocean as examples for you. Make analogies with them, and if you can, balance them on the scales of the Shari‘a in this way, with the balance of Sha‘rani’s Mizan.3

Glory be unto You, we have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.4

O God! Grant blessings and peace to the one in whom were embodied the lights of Your love through the beauty of Your attributes; the comprehensive mirror to the manifestations of Your Most Beautiful Names; in whom was focussed the rays of Your love for the art which is in Your creatures; the most perfect and wonderful of Your artefacts, who was a sample of the perfections of Your art and an index of the beauties of Your inscriptions; and who reflected the subtleties of Your love and Your desire that Your art be appreciated; the most elevated herald of Your fine art, who proclaimed in resounding voice admiration

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3. See, Sha’rani, al-Mizan al-Kubra.
4. Qur’an, 2:32.



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for the beauty of Your inscriptions, the most wonderful praiser of the perfections of Your art; who reflected together in his being the varieties of Your love and Your appreciation for the good morals of your creatures and the subtleties of Your artefacts’ qualities, comprehending all fine conduct and good morality through Your favour and the subtleties of commendable attributes through Your grace; who was the most excellent criterion and measure of everything You mention in Your Criterion of Truth and Falsehood, the Qur’an, those whom You love from among the righteous, the patient, the believers, those who fear You, who turn to You, and who repent, and all the classes of those whom You infuse with life and honour through Your love in Your Criterion of Truth and Falsehood, until they become as the leader of those whom You love; the master of those beloved by You and chief of Your beloveds; and grant blessings and peace to all his Family and Companions and brothers. Amen. Through Your mercy, O Most Merciful of the Merciful!

ba



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Addendum to the Twenty-Seventh Word

On the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH)

Like Mawlana Jami, I say,

O Messenger of God! If only like the dog of the Companions of the Cave,

I could be in Paradise among your Companions.

Is it right that their dog is in Paradise while I am in Hell?

He was the dog of those Companions; I am the dog of yours!



In His Name, be He glorified!

And there is nothing but it glorifies Him with praise.



In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

Muhammad is the Messenger of God, and those who are with him are strong against the unbelievers, [but] compassionate amongst each other...5

You Ask: There are some narrations which say: “At a time when innovations are rife, some of the righteous from among the believers and those who fear God will be on a level with the Companions, or of even greater virtue.” Are these narrations sound? And if so, what is their true meaning?

The Answer: The consensus of the Sunnis, the Ahl al-Sunna wa’l-Jama’at, that after the prophets the most virtuous of mankind are the Companions, is a certain proof that those that are sound out of those narrations refer to minor virtues. For in minor virtues and particular perfections a quality may be deemed preferable to that which is superior and in fact preferable. But from the point of view of general virtue the Companions cannot be reached, who are the subject of Divine praise at the end of Sura al-Fath, and are praised and applauded in the Torah, Gospels, and Qur’an. For now, we shall explain three points of wisdom concerning this truth, which comprise three reasons, out of very many reasons and instances of wisdom.

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5. Qur’an, 48:29.



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First Instance of Wisdom: The conversation of the Prophet was such an elixir that someone who experienced it for one minute received lights of reality equivalent to years of spiritual journeying. For in conversation there is reflection and a being coloured. It is well-known that through reflection and following and imitating, and through the sublime light of prophethood, a truly exalted level may be reached; -like through allegiance to his sovereign and following him, a sultan’s servant may rise to a position so high a king cannot rise to it. It is due to this mystery that the greatest saints cannot reach the level of the Companions. Even saints like Jalaluddin Suyuti, who conversed many times with God’s Noble Messenger (PBUH) while awake, even if they do this and are honoured in this world with his company, they still cannot reach the Companions. For through the light of Muhammad’s (PBUH) prophethood, the Companions’ conversation was with him as Prophet. While the saints saw him (PBUH) after his death and conversed with him (PBUH) through the light of his sainthood. That is to say, the personification and appearance of God’s Noble Messenger (PBUH) is in respect of his sainthood, not in regard to his prophethood. Since that is so, however much higher the level of prophethood is to that of sainthood, one should differentiate between the two conversations to that degree.

Just how luminous an elixir was the Prophet’s company may be understood through the following: a primitive man so hard-hearted and savage he buried his daughter alive would come and be honoured with the conversation of the Prophet for an hour, and would acquire such kindness and compassion that he would not step on an ant. And an ignorant savage would converse with the Prophet for a day, then go to lands like China and India and instruct civilized peoples in the realities and guide them in perfections.

Second Reason: As is explained and proved in the discussion of interpretation of the law in the Twenty-Seventh Word, the vast majority of the Companions were at the highest level of human perfections. For at that time in the mighty revolution of Islam, good and truth appeared in all their beauty, and evil and falsehood, in all their ugliness, and they were felt physically. Such a difference was apparent between good and evil and such a distance opened up between truth and falsehood that they drew as distant from one another as belief is from unbelief, and even Hell is from Paradise. The Companions, who by nature possessed elevated emotions, were captivated by the highest morality, and inclined towards dignity and virtue, would not voluntarily stretch out their hands to evil and falsehood, and so fall to the level of Musaylima the Liar and his ridiculous utterances. For he was the herald of falsehood, evil, and lies, and their embodiment. Their characters demanded that they looked to the rank of the perfections, those of God’s Beloved (PBUH) at the highest of the high, who was the herald and embodiment of truthfulness, good, and right, and that they hastened in that way with all their strength and endeavour.



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For example, it sometimes happens that in the market of human civilization and shop of social life, everyone flees in disgust from the fearsome results and ugly consequences of certain things, like from a deadly poison, let alone buying them, while the beautiful results and valuable consequences of certain other things and of immaterial goods attract the general view and demand to themselves like a universal panacea and a sparkling brilliant; everyone tries their utmost to buy them. In just the same way, in the Era of Bliss in the market of human social life, since goods like lying, evil, and unbelief gave rise to results like everlasting misery and base buffoons like Musaylima the Liar, it is certain and clear that the Companions, who were captivated by elevated characteristics and love of exalted things, would flee from them with loathing as from fatal poison. And of a necessity, the Companions, with their pure natures and praiseworthy characteristics, would, with all their strength, emotions, and faculties, be desirous of and customers for truth, truthfulness and belief, which yielded results like eternal happiness and luminous fruits like God’s Noble Messenger (PBUH), as though for the most effective panacea and precious diamond. However, after that time, the distance between truthfulness and lying has gradually and by degrees diminished, until they have become shoulder to shoulder. Having begun to be sold together in the same shop, social morality has become corrupted. The propaganda of politics has caused greater demand for lying. At a time when the awesome ugliness of lying has begun to be concealed and the shining beauty of truthfulness has begun not to be apparent, who can attain to the strength, constancy, and taqwa of the Companions in the matters of justice, truthfulness, exaltedness, and right, or surpass their level? I shall explain something which occurred to me which will illuminate this to a degree. It was like this:

One time, it occurred to me, why could wondrous individuals like Muhyiddin al-‘Arabi not attain to the levels of the Companions? Then, while saying, “Glory be to my Sustainer, the Most High” during the prayers, the meaning of the phrase was unfolded to me. Not in its complete meaning, but its reality in part became apparent to me. I said in my heart: “If only I could perform one of the five daily prayers in the same way as this phrase, it would be better than a year’s worship.” After the prayers I understood that that thought and state was guidance indicating that the Companions’ degree in worship could not be reached. In that mighty social revolution brought about by the lights of the Qur’an, while opposites were separated from one another, and evils together with all their darkness, details and all who followed them, and good and perfections together with all their lights and results came face to face - at such an exciting time, all glorifications of God and recitations of His Names expressed all the levels of their meanings freshly and newly and in a young and unfaded fashion. So too, under the crashing of that mighty revolution all the senses and subtle inner faculties of people were awakened,



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even senses like those of fancy and imagination, in an awakened and aware state, received the numerous meanings of those recitations and glorifications in accordance with their own perceptions, and absorbed them.

Thus, due to this wisdom, when the Companions, whose senses were awakened and subtle faculties, alert, uttered those blessed words comprising the lights of belief and glorification, they did so in all their meaning and they partook of them with all their senses. However, after that revolution and upheaval, the subtle faculties have gradually sunk into sleep and the senses fallen from that point of realities into heedlessness; like fruits, under the veil of familiarity, those blessed words have gradually lost their delicacy and freshness. Simply, as though drying up through the air of superficiality, only a little freshness remains, and this may be restored to its former state only through drastic surgery of a reflective and reasoning kind. Thus, it is because of this that another can reach the virtue and level the Companions attained to in forty minutes, only in forty years.

Third Reason: As is proved in the Twelfth, Twenty-Fourth, and Twenty-Fifth Words, the comparison of prophethood and sainthood is that of the sun itself and the sun’s image as it appears in mirrors. Thus, however much higher the sphere of prophethood is than that of sainthood, the servants of the sphere of prophethood and the Companions, the stars of that Sun, have to be superior to the righteous in the sphere of sainthood to the same degree. The legacy of prophethood and veracity, which is the supreme sainthood, is the sainthood of the Companions; even if a saint attains to this, he still cannot reach the level of the Companions, the first rank. We shall explain three out of the numerous aspects of this Third Reason.

First Aspect: The Companions cannot be reached in interpretation of the law, that is, in deducing its ordinances, that is, in understanding what pleases Almighty God from His Word. Because that mighty Divine revolution revolved on understanding the dominical wishes and Divine ordinances. All minds were turned towards deducing the Divine ordinances. All hearts were eager to know “What does our Sustainer want from us?” All that happened at that time did so in a way that made this known and understood. The discussions of the time concerned them. Thus, since everything and all situations and discussions and conversations and stories occurred in such a way as to give some sort of instruction in these meanings, and since this perfected the Companions’ capacities and illuminated their minds, and since their ability to interpret the law and deduce its ordinances was ready to be lit up like a match, someone at this time with the intelligence and capacity of the Companions could not reach in ten years or perhaps in a hundred, the level of deduction and interpretation they reached in a day or a month. Because now, worldly happiness is the focus of attention in place of eternal happiness. Mankind’s attention and view is directed towards different goals.



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Since the struggle for livelihood together with lack of reliance on God has bewildered man’s spirit, and Naturalist and Materialist philosophies have blinded his intellect, just as the social environment does not strengthen a person’s mind and capacity in the matter of interpreting the Divine law, so it confuses and scatters them. We proved in the discussion on interpretation of the law in the Twenty-Seventh Word in the comparison between Sufyan ibn Uyayna and someone of his intelligence today that the other person could not acquire in a hundred years what Sufyan acquired in ten.

Second Aspect: The level of the Companions in closeness to God cannot be attained with the feet of sainthood. For Almighty God is infinitely close to us; closer to us than everything, but we are infinitely distant from Him. Divine proximity may be gained in two ways:

The First is through the unfolding of Divine immediacy, to which the Divine proximity in prophethood looks, and which the Companions manifested through the legacy of prophethood and conversation of the Prophet.

The Second Way is to traverse the degrees of our distance from God and be honoured with Divine proximity to an extent. Most of the spiritual voyaging of sainthood is according to this, and illumination through the self and through the outside world proceeds in this way.

Thus, the first way is purely given, it is not acquired; it is attraction, the drawing of the Most Merciful One, and it is being loved by Him. The path is short, but very severe, very elevated, very pure, and without shadow. The other is acquired, long, and in shadow. Even if its strange wonders are many, it cannot reach the first in regard to quality and Divine proximity. For example, there are two ways of reaching yesterday. The first is not to be subject to the course of time. Through a sacred power, it is to rise above time, and see yesterday as present like today. The second is to traverse the distance of a year, to travel and turn, and come to yesterday. But still yesterday cannot be held; it leaves the person and departs. In just the same way, there are two ways of passing from the apparent to reality. The first is to be carried away directly on the attraction of reality, and, without entering the intermediate realm of the sufi way, to find reality within the apparent itself. The second is to pass through many levels through spiritual journeying. For sure, the saints are successful in annihilating the soul and kill the evil-commanding soul, but they still cannot reach the Companions. Because, since the Companions’ souls had been purified and cleansed, through the many faculties within the soul, they manifested to a greater degree the varieties of worship, and thanks, and praise. After the soul has been annihilated, the worship of the saints acquires a simpleness and plainness.

Third Aspect: The Companions cannot be reached in regard to virtuous actions and good deeds pertaining to the hereafter. Because, just as in certain



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conditions in a frightening and important post, a soldier may gain in one hour’s watch the virtue of a year’s worship, and by being hit by a bullet may rise in one minute to a station similar to a degree of sainthood which can only by gained in at least forty years; so too, the Companions’ service in the establishment of Islam and propagating the decrees of the Qur’an and their declaring war on the whole world for Islam was so elevated that others cannot reach one minute of it in a year. It may even be said that in that sacred service all their minutes were like that one minute of the martyred soldier. All their hours were like the one hour’s watch of a faithful soldier in some terrifying post in which the acts are few, but the recompense great and value high.

Indeed, since the Companions formed the first rank in the establishment of Islam and spreading of the lights of the Qur’an, in accordance with the rule ‘the cause is like the doer,’ a share of all the good works of all the Islamic community passes to them. The Islamic community saying “O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad and to his Family and Companions” shows that the Companions receive a share of the good works of their whole community.

Furthermore, just as an insignificant characteristic in the root of a tree takes on a large form in the tree’s branches, and is larger than the largest branch; and just as a small protuberance at the beginning gradually forms a mass; and just as an excess the size of a needle point at a central point may become more than a metre at the circumference of the circle, just like these four examples, since the Companions were from the roots and foundations of the luminous tree of Islam, and were at the beginning of luminous lines of the structure of Islam, and were from among the leaders of the Islamic community and were the first of their number, and since they were close to the centre of the Sun of Prophethood and Lamp of Reality, a few of their actions were many and their small acts of service, great. To reach their level necessitates being a true Companion.

O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad, who said: “My Companions are like the stars, whichever of them you follow, you will be rightly guided,”6 and, “The best of centuries is my century,”7 and to his Family and Companions, and grant them peace.

Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.8

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6. al-‘Ajlu\ni, Kashf al-Khafa’, i, 132, No: 381.
7. Bukhari, Shahada, 9; Fada’il Ashab al-Nabi, 1; Ayman, 10, 27; Tirmidhi, Fitan, 45.
8. Qur’an, 2:32.



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QUESTION: It is said, the Companions saw God’s Noble Messenger(Peace and blessings be upon him), then they believed. However we have believed without seeing him, in which case our belief is stronger. Also, there are narrations mentioning the strength of our belief, are there not?

THE ANSWER: At that time, when all ideas were opposed and hostile to the truths of Islam, the Companions believed so strongly -sometimes on only seeing the person of God’s Messenger (PBUH) and without miracles- that all the generally held ideas in the world did not shake them. Let alone doubts, they did not even cause some of them the slightest anxiety or scruple. You are comparing your belief with that of the Companions, but how can there be any comparison? For despite your seeing with the mind’s eye, not the Messenger’s (PBUH) humanity and bodily form, which was the seed of the Tuba-tree of his prophethood, but through all the lights of Islam and truths of the Qur’an, his luminous, magnificent collective personality, encompassed by a thousand miracles, you waver and fall into doubt at the word of a European philosopher. Yet due to their belief, the Companions did not waver in the face of the attacks of the entire world of unbelief and of the Christians, Jews, and philosophers? And how can you compare the intense fear of God of the Companions and their complete righteousness, which demonstrated the strength of their belief and proceeded from it, and your dull belief, which due to your extreme weakness does not impel you to perform even the obligatory practices completely, O you who make such a claim!? However, the Hadith the meaning of which is: “Those at the end of time who do not see me and believe, are more acceptable,”9 refers to particular virtues. It concerns certain special individuals. Our discussion, however, is in regard to general virtue and the majority.

SECOND QUESTION: They say that the saints and possessors of perfection abandoned the world. It even says in a Hadith: “Love of this world is the source of all error.”10 Whereas the Companions were very involved in the world. It was not abandoning the world, some of them were ahead of the civilized of that time, even. How is it that you say that even the least of such Companions was of greater worth than the greatest saint?

THE ANSWER: It has been proved decisively in the Second and Third Stopping-Places of the Thirty-Second Word that to love the face of the world which looks to the hereafter and that which looks to the Divine Names is not the cause of loss, but the means to perfection and attainment, and however far one goes in those two faces, the further one goes in worship and knowledge of God. The world of the Companions was in those two faces. They saw this world as the arable field of the hereafter, and sowed

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9. Musnad, v, 248, 257, 264; al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak, iii, 41; iv, 89.
10. al-Munawi, Fayd al-Qadir, iii, 368, No: 3662.



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and reaped it. They saw beings as the mirrors of the Divine Names, and gazed on them yearningly. As for the transience of the world, that is its transitory face, which looks to man’s base desires.

THIRD QUESTION: The sufi paths are the ways of reality. Some of the heroes and leaders of the Naqshbandi Order, which is claimed to be the most famous, the most elevated, and the highway among the sufi ways, defined its basis as follows. They said: On the Naqshbandi way four ‘abandonings’ are necessary: abandoning the world, abandoning the hereafter, abandoning existence, and abandoning abandoning. That is to say, on the Naqshi way one has to give up four things: both give up this world; and, on account of the soul, not make even the hereafter one’s true aim; forget one’s existence; and in order not to become vain and proud, not think about these acts of renunciation. That means true knowledge of God and human perfections are attained through giving up what is other than God?

THE ANSWER: If man consisted of only a heart, it would be necessary to give up everything other than God, and to leave behind even the Divine Names and attributes and bind one’s heart to the Divine Essence alone. But man possesses many senses and subtle faculties charged with duties, like the mind, spirit, soul, and others. The perfect man is he who, driving all those subtle senses towards reality on the different ways of worship particular to them, marches heroically like the Companions in a broad arena and rich fashion towards the goal, with the heart as commander and the subtle faculties as soldiers. For the heart to abandon its soldiers in order to save only itself and to proceed on its own is the cause not of pride, but of distress.

FOURTH QUESTION: Where does the claim of the Companions’ superiority spring from? And who put it forward? Why should this matter be made the subject of discussion at this time? Also, why is there this claim of equality with the great interpreters of the law?

THE ANSWER: There are two groups who say these things. Some are the sincere religious scholars and men of religion who, seeing certain Hadiths, open up such discussions in order to encourage and hearten the pious and the upright at this time. We do not have anything to say to them. They are anyway few and are quickly made aware. The other group, however, consists of most fearsome, conceited people who want to spread their denial of the schools of law by claiming equality with the great interpreters of the law, and to further their irreligion by claiming equality with the Companions. Because firstly, those people of misguidance have become depraved, and have become addicted to depravity, and cannot carry out the obligations of the Shari‘a, since they form an obstacle to their depravity. In order to find a pretext for themselves, they say: “These questions may be interpreted. The schools of law are opposed to each other in these matters.



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And the interpreters of the law were human beings like us, and may have made mistakes. In which case, like them we shall interpret the Divine law and perform our worship as we wish. Why should we be compelled to follow them?” Thus, due to these Satanic wiles, these wretches put themselves outside the fold of the schools of law. It is demonstrated clearly in the Twenty-Seventh Word just how baseless and rotten these claims are, so we refer you to that.

Secondly; that group of the people of misguidance saw that the matter does not end with the interpreters of the law, for what lay on their shoulders were only the theoretical matters of religion. Whereas this group wants to give up and change the essential teachings of religion. If they say: “We are better than them,” the matter does not finish there. For interpreters of the law may interfere in theoretical matters and in secondary matters which are not categorical, but these people of misguidance who follow no school of law want to mix their ideas in the essentials of religion as well, and to change matters which are not capable of being changed, and to oppose the incontrovertible pillars of Islam. And so they are bound to attack the Companions, who are the bearers and supports of the essentials of religion. Alas! It has been proved decisively in the Twenty-Seventh Word that not animals in human form like them, but true human beings and the greatest of the saints even, who are the most perfect of true human beings, cannot win the case claiming equality with the least of the Companions.

O God! Grant blessings and peace to Your Messenger, who said: “Do not insult my Companions! By the One in Whose hand is my self, if one of you were to spend gold equivalent to Mt. Uhud, he could not attain to the equivalent of two handfuls that one of them spent, or even half that.”11

ba

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11. Bukhari, Fada’il Ashab al-Nabi, 5; Muslim, Fada’il al-Sahaba, 221, 222



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The Twenty-Eighth Word

[This Word is about Paradise and consists of two Stations. The First indicates some of the subtle wonders of Paradise. However, it does not prove the existence of Paradise, since this has been proved in brilliant fashion by the twelve decisive Truths of the Tenth Word and by the firm and clear consecutive arguments in Arabic which form the basis and summary of the Tenth Word and the Second Station of this Word. This Station discusses in question and answer form a number of the aspects of Paradise which have been the cause of criticism. If Divine assistance is forthcoming, a great Word will later be written about that mighty truth. God willing.]

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
And give glad tidings to those who believe and act righteously that theirs shall be gardens beneath which flow rivers. Everytime they are fed with fruits therefrom, they will say: “Why, this is what we were fed with before.” For they will be given things in similitude. And they shall have therein spouses pure, and shall abide there for ever.1

The brief answers to a number of questions about eternal Paradise.

The descriptions of the Qur’an’s verses about Paradise, which are more beautiful than Paradise, more lovely than the houris, and sweeter than the water of Salsabil, leave nothing to be said about it so that anyone should say it. However, in order to bring closer to the understanding those shining, pre-eternal, post-eternal, elevated and exquisite verses, we shall mention a number of steps, and, as samples of that Qur’anic Paradise, a number of fine points which are like samples of its flowers. We shall point to these through five allusive questions and answers. Indeed, Paradise is the means both to all spiritual and non-physical pleasures, and to all physical pleasures.

QUESTION: What connection with eternity and Paradise has faulty, deficient, changing, unstable, and suffering corporeality? Since the spirit has

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1. Qur’an, 2:25.



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elevated pleasures, that is sufficient. Why is bodily resurrection necessary for bodily pleasures?

THE ANSWER: Because, just as in relation to water, air, and light, earth is dense and dark, but since it is the source and means of all the varieties of Divine artefacts, in meaning it rises above the other elements; and just as in regard to the mystery of its comprehensiveness and on condition it is purified, the human soul, which is also dense, rises above all the other human subtle faculties; so too corporeality is the richest and most comprehensive and all-embracing mirror to the manifestation of the Divine Names. All the tools and instruments for measuring the contents of the treasuries of mercy and reckoning their balances lie in corporeality. For example, if the sense of taste in the tongue was not the source of scales to the number of the sorts of foods and their pleasures, it could not experience them all and recognize them, and taste and weigh them up. Also, the instruments for experiencing and knowing the manifestations of most of the Divine Names, and tasting and recognizing them, again lie in corporeality. And the faculties for experiencing all the infinitely various pleasures are also in corporeality.

As is proved in the Eleventh Word, it is understood clearly from the disposition of the universe and man’s comprehensiveness that the universe’s Maker wants to make known all the treasuries of His mercy, and all the manifestations of His Names, and to make experienced all the varieties of His bounties. The abode of bliss, therefore, which is a vast pool formed from the flood of the universe and a great exhibition of the textiles woven on the loom of the universe and an everlasting store of the crops produced in the arable field of this world, will resemble the universe to a degree. And it will preserve all its fundamental matters, both corporeal and spiritual. Its All-Wise Maker, the Most Compassionate One, will also give as recompense for the duties of the physical tools and instruments, pleasures worthy of them; and to His servants, as a wage and reward for the particular worship of each. Otherwise a situation would occur that was contrary to His wisdom, justice, and mercy, which is in no way fitting for the beauty of His mercy and perfection of His justice, and in no way compatible with them.

QUESTION: If a body is living, its parts are constantly being formed and dissolved; it is doomed to extinction and cannot be eternal. Eating and drinking are for the perpetuation of the individual, and sexual relations are for the perpetuation of the species. These are fundamental to this world, but there is no need for them in the world of eternity and hereafter. So why are they among the greatest pleasures of Paradise?

THE ANSWER: Firstly, the bodies of living creatures are doomed to annihilation and death in this world because of an imbalance between what is taken in and what is expended. From childhood until maturity much is



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taken in, and after that what is expended increases; the balance is spoilt, and the body dies. In the world of eternity, however, the particles of the body remain constant and are not subject to composition and dissolution, or else the balance remains constant.2 Like a closed circle or perpetual motion, the body of the living creature becomes eternal together with the functioning of the machine of bodily life for pleasure. Although in this world eating and drinking and sexual relations arise from need and perform a function, various delights and pleasures have been placed within them as an immediate wage for the duty performed, and these are superior to other pleasures. Since in this abode of sorrows eating and sexual relations are the means to so many wonderful and various pleasures, certainly in Paradise, which is the abode of pleasure and bliss, those pleasures will take on a sublime form. The recompense of the duties pertaining to the hereafter performed here will also be added to them as pleasure, and they will be augmented by worldly needs which have taken the form of agreeable, otherworldly appetites, so will become an all-embracing, living source of pleasure worthy of Paradise and suitable to eternity. Indeed, according to the meaning of the verse,

And what is the life of this world but amusement and play? But indeed the Abode of the Hereafter, that is life indeed,3

substances, matters, which are inanimate and without consciousness and life in the abode of this world, there will be living and conscious. Like human beings and animals here, the trees and stones there will understand commands and carry them out. If you tell a tree to bring you such-and-such a fruit, it will bring it. And if you tell such-and-such a stone to come, it will come. Since stones and trees will take on this elevated form, it surely necessitates that, together with preserving their bodily realities, eating, drinking, and sexual relations also will take on a form higher than their worldly form, higher to the degree that Paradise is higher than this world.

QUESTION: According to the meaning of:

Everyone will be together with those he loves,4

in Paradise, friend will be together with friend. Therefore, love for God’s sake kindled in a simple nomad during one minute’s conversation with the Prophet (PBUH), means he has to be with the Prophet (Peace and blessings be

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2. In this world, the bodies of humans and animals are like guest-houses, barracks, and schools for particles. The lifeless particles enter them and acquire worthiness to be particles for the everlasting realm, which is living, then they leave them. In the hereafter, however, according to the verse, The Abode of the Hereafter, that is life indeed, the light of life is general. There is no necessity for that travelling, drill, and instruction in order to be illuminated. Particles will remain constant as permanent fixtures.
3. Qur’an, 29:64.
4. Bukhari, Adab, 96; Muslim, Birr, 165; Tirmidhi, Zuhd, 50; Da’wat, 98.



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upon him) in Paradise. But since God’s Noble Messenger (PBUH) receives limitless effulgence, how can it be united with that of a simple nomad?

THE ANSWER: We shall allude to this elevated truth with a comparison. For example, a magnificent personage set up a vast banquet and finely-adorned spectacle in a splendid garden. He prepared it in such a way that it included all the delicious foods that the sense of taste can experience, and all the fine things that please the sense of sight, and all the wonders that amuse the faculty of imagination, and so on; he included in it everything that would gratify and give pleasure to the external and inner senses. Now, there were two friends and they went together to the banquet and sat down at a table in a pavilion. But the sense of taste of one of them was very limited, so he received only minor pleasure. His eyes could see only a little, he had no sense of smell, and he could not understand the wondrous arts nor comprehend the marvels. He could only benefit from and take pleasure in a thousandth or even a millionth of that beautiful place, to the extent of his capacity. The other man however had developed his outer and inner senses, his mind, heart, emotions, and subtle faculties so perfectly and to such a degree that although he was next to his friend, he could perceive and experience all the subtleties and beauties and marvels and fine things in the exhibition, and receive their different pleasures.

Since this confused, sorrowful, and narrow world is thus, and although the greatest and the least are together, the difference between them is as great as from the ground to the Pleiades, surely in Paradise, the realm of bliss and eternity, while friend is together with friend, each will receive his share from the table of the Most Merciful and Compassionate One in accordance with his capacity and to the extent of his abilities. Even if the Paradises in which they are found are different, it will not be an obstacle to their being together. For although the eight levels of Paradise are one above the other, the roof of all of them is the Sublime Throne.5 If there are walled circles round a conical mountain, one within the other and one above the other from its foot to the summit, the circles are one over the other and look to one another, but do not prevent each other seeing the sun. There are also various narrations of Hadiths indicating that the Paradises are in a manner close to this.

QUESTION: It is said in Hadiths: “Although the houris are clothed in seventy garments, the marrow of their leg-bones may be seen.”6 What does this mean? What sort of meaning can it have? What sort of beauty is this?

THE ANSWER: Its meaning is truly beautiful and its beauty is most lovely. It is like this: in this world, which is ugly, inanimate, lifeless, and for

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5. Bukhari, Tawhid, 22; Jihad, 4; Tirmidhi, Janna, 4; Musnad, i, 207; ii, 197, 335, 339, 370.
6. Muslim, Janna, 14, 17; Tirmidhi, Qiyama, 60; Janna, 5; Musnad, ii, 345; iii, 16.



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the most part just a husk, beauty and loveliness only appear beautiful to the eye, and so long as familiarity is not an obstacle, that is sufficient. Whereas in Paradise, which is beautiful, living, brilliant, and entirely the essence without the husk and the kernel without the shell, like the eye, all man’s senses and subtle faculties will want to receive their different pleasures and various delights from the houris, the gentle sex, and from the women of this world, who will be like houris and even more beautiful. That is to say, the Hadith indicates that from the beauty of their top garments to the marrow of their bones, each layer will be the means of pleasure to a sense and a subtle faculty. Yes, by saying, “The houris wear seventy garments and the marrow of their leg-bones can be seen,” the Hadith points out that however many senses, feeling, powers, and faculties man has which are enamoured of beauty, worship pleasure, are captivated by ornament, and yearn for loveliness, the houris comprise all of them - every sort of adornment and exquisite loveliness, physical and spiritual and immaterial, which will please and satisfy all of them, and gratify them and make them all happy.

That is to say, just as the houris are clothed in seventy of the varieties of the adornment of Paradise, and not one sort, none of which conceal the others; so they display beauty and loveliness perhaps seventy times greater than their own bodies and beings, all of different sorts and varieties. They demonstrate the truth indicated by the verse:

There will be there all that the souls could desire and all that the eyes could delight in.7

There is also a Hadith which states that since in Paradise there are no unnecessary, extraneous, waste-matters, the people of Paradise will not excrete waste after eating and drinking.8 Since in this lowly world, trees, the most ordinary of living beings, do not excrete despite taking in much nourishment, why should the people of Paradise, who are the highest class of life?

QUESTION: It says in Hadiths: “Some of the people of Paradise are given lands as extensive as the world, and thousands of palaces and hundreds of thousands of houris are bestowed on them.”9 What need has a single person of all these things, why should it be necessary? How can this be and what does it mean?

THE ANSWER: If man was only a lifeless being, or was only a vegetable creature consisting of a stomach, or consisted only of a limited, heavy, temporary, simple corporeality or animal body, he could not own

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7. Qur’an, 43:71.
8. Bukhari, Bad’u’l-Khalq, 8; Muslim, Janna, 17-19; Tirmidhi, Janna, 7; Darimi, Riqaq, 104.
9. Bukhari, Janna, 17; Tafsir Sura al-Qiyama, 2.



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many palaces and houris, or be fit for them. But man is such a comprehensive miracle of power that even in this transitory world and brief life, if he is given the rule of all the world with its wealth and pleasures, his ambition is not satisfied - in respect of the need of some of his subtle faculties, which do not develop here. It is therefore reasonable, right, and true that a person possessing an infinite capacity who knocks on the door of an infinite mercy with the hand of infinite desires and the tongue of infinite needs will receive in an eternal abode of bliss the Divine bounties described in Hadiths. We shall observe this elevated truth through the telescope of a comparison. It is as follows:

Although, like this valley garden,10 all these gardens and vineyards of Barla have different owners, all the birds and sparrows and honey-bees in Barla, who have only a handful of grain for food, may say: “All the gardens and orchards of Barla are my pleasant resorts where I fly around and enjoy myself.” Each may take possession of Barla and include it in its property. Others sharing it does not invalidate his ownership. Similarly, a man who is a true human being may say: “My Creator made this world a house for me. The sun is my lamp and the stars my electric lights. The face of the earth is my resting-place spread with flowered carpets.” And he offers thanks to God. The other creatures sharing it does not negate his statement. On the contrary, the creatures adorn his house like decorations. And so, if in this narrow fleeting world, by virtue of his humanity, man -and even a bird- claims a sort of power of disposal over such a vast sphere and receives such a vast bounty, how can it be deemed unlikely that he is given ownership of a property stretching over a five hundred year distance in a broad and eternal abode of bliss?

Moreover, just as in this dense and dark narrow world the sun is present in the same way at the same time in numerous mirrors, so too, as is proved in the Sixteenth Word, a luminous being may be present in many places in the same way at the same time. For example, Gabriel (Peace be upon him) being on a thousand stars simultaneously, and at the Divine Throne, and in the presence of the Prophet (PBUH), and in the Divine Presence; and the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) meeting with most of the righteous of his community at the resurrection of the dead at the same time and appearing in this world in innumerable places simultaneously; and a strange group of the saints known as abdal, appearing at the same time in many places; and ordinary people sometimes carrying out as much as a year’s work in one minute in a dream and observing this; and everyone being in contact with and concerned with numerous places at the same time in their hearts, spirits, and imaginations - all these are well-known and may

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10. That is, the garden of Süleyman, who served this poor one with perfect loyalty for eight years, where this Word was written in one or two hours.



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be witnessed. Most certainly, in Paradise, therefore, which is luminous, unrestricted, broad, and eternal, the people of Paradise, whose bodies have the strength and lightness of the spirit and the swiftness of imagination, being in hundreds of thousands of places at the same time, and conversing with hundreds of thousands of houris, and receiving pleasure in hundreds of thousands of ways, is fitting for that eternal Paradise, that infinite mercy, and as told by the Bringer of Sure News (PBUH), is reality and the truth. Nevertheless, these vast truths cannot be weighed on the scales of our tiny minds.

This tiny mind cannot perceive the true meanings,

For this scale cannot bear such a weight.

Glory be unto to You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.11

O our Sustainer! Do not call us to task if we forget or fall into error.12

O God! Grant blessings to Your Beloved, who by being Your Beloved and through his prayers, flung open the doors of Paradise, and because of the benedictions for him of its members, You confirmed its opening for his community, and bless him and grant him peace.

O God! Appoint us to Paradise among the righteous, through the intercession of Your Beloved, the Chosen One. Amen.

ba

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11. Qur’an, 2:32.
12. Qur’an, 2:286.



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A Short Addendum to the Word on Paradise

[On Hell]

As is proved in the Second and Eighth Words, belief bears the seed of a sort of Paradise, while unbelief conceals the seed of a sort of Hell. And just as unbelief is a seed of Hell, so Hell is one of its fruits. And just as unbelief is the reason for being sent to Hell, so it is the cause of Hell’s existence and creation. For if an insignificant ruler of small dignity, small pride, and small majesty is told impudently by some unmannerly person: “You may not punish me and you cannot,” if there is no prison in that place, the ruler will certainly have one built for him and will throw him into it. However, by denying Hell, the unbeliever is giving the lie to One of infinite dignity, pride, and glory, Who is sublimely and infinitely powerful, and is accusing Him of impotence, lying, and powerlessness; he is insulting His dignity and offending His pride terribly. He is rebelliously causing affront to His glory. If, to suppose the impossible, there was no reason for Hell’s existence, it would certainly be created for unbelief, which comprises denial and ascribing impotence to this degree, and such an unbeliever would certainly be cast into it.

Our Sustainer! You did not create that in vain. Glory be unto You! Save us from the penalty of the Fire!13

ba

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13. Qur’an, 3:191.



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The Twenty-Ninth Word

This, the Twenty-Ninth Word, is about the Immortality

of Man’s Spirit, the Angels, and the Resurrection.

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

Therein came down the angels and the Spirit by the permission of their Sustainer.1 * Say: The Spirit [comes] by command of my Sustainer.2

[This treatise consists of an Introduction and two main Aims]

Introduction

It may be said that the existence of the angels and spirit beings is as definite as that of human beings and animals. Indeed, as is explained in the First Step of the Fifteenth Word, reality undoubtedly requires and wisdom certainly demands that like the earth the heavens have inhabitants, and that its inhabitants are intelligent, and suitable for the heavens. In the tongue of the Shari‘a, those inhabitants, of which there are numerous kinds, are called angels and spirit beings.

Reality requires it to be thus. For despite the earth’s smallness and insignificance in relation to the heavens, its being filled with intelligent beings and from time to time being emptied and then refilled with new ones suggests -indeed, states clearly- that the heavens too, with their majestic constellations like adorned palaces, are filled with animate creatures, the light of the light of existence, and conscious and intelligent creatures, the light of animate creatures. Like man and the jinn, those creatures are spectators of the palace of the world, and ponderers over the book of the universe, and heralds of this realm of dominicality. With their universal and

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1. Qur’an, 97:4.
2. Qur’an, 17:85.



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comprehensive worship, they represent the glorification of the large and universal beings in the universe.

The nature of the universe surely points to their existence. For since it is embellished and decked out with uncountable numbers of finely adorned works of art and meaningful decorations and wise embroideries, it self-evidently requires the gazes of thoughtful admirers and wondering, appreciative lovers; it demands their existence. Yes, just as beauty requires a lover, so is food is given to the hungry. Thus, the sustenance of spirits and nourishment of hearts in this boundless beauty of art looks to the angels and spirit beings; it points to them. For while this infinite adornment requires an infinite duty of contemplation and worship, man and the jinn can perform only a millionth of that infinite duty, that wise supervision, that extensive worship. This means that boundless varieties of angels and spirit beings are necessary to perform those duties, and to fill and inhabit the mighty mosque of the world with their ranks.

Indeed, a species of the spirit beings and angels is present in every aspect, in every sphere, of the universe, each charged with a duty of worship. It may be said according to both the narrations of Hadiths and the wisdom in the order of the world that from lifeless planets and stars to raindrops, all are ships or vehicles for a kind of angel. The angels mount these vehicles with Divine permission and travel observing the Manifest World; they represent their praise and glorification.

It also may be said that certain sorts of living bodies act as aeroplanes for different kinds of spirits. From the birds of Paradise, called the Green Birds in a Hadith which says: “The spirits of the people of Paradise enter into Green Birds in the Intermediate Realm and travel around Paradise in them,”3 to flies, each is a vehicle for a sort of spirit. The spirits enter into them at a Divine command, and through the faculties and senses of those living bodies like the eyes and ears, observe the miracles of creation in the corporeal world. They perform the particular glorification of each.

Just as reality necessitates it to be thus, so does wisdom. For, with an intense activity, the All-Wise Maker continuously creates subtle life and luminous intelligent beings from dense earth, which has little connection with spirit, and from turbid water, which has small relation with the light of life. He surely then creates certain sorts of intelligent beings from the seas of light and even from the oceans of darkness, from the air, electricity, and other subtle matter suitable for spirit and appropriate for life. And surely these creatures are exceedingly numerous.

ba

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3. Muslim, Imara, 121; Tirmidhi, Tafsir Sura Al-i ‘Imran, 19; Fada’il al-Jihad, 13; Ibn Maja, Jana’iz, 4; Darimi, Jihad, 18; Musnad, i, 266; vi, 386.



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First Aim

To believe in the angels and affirm that belief is a pillar of faith. There are four Fundamental Points in this Aim.

FIRST FUNDAMENTAL POINT

The perfection of existence is through life. Rather, the true existence of existence is through life. Life is the light of existence, and consciousness is the light of life. Life is the summit and foundation of everything. Life appropriates everything for living beings; it is as though it makes one thing the owner of everything. Through life, a living thing may say: “All these things belong to me. The world is my house. The universe is my property, given to me by my owner.”

Just as light is the cause of things being seen, and, according to some, of the existence of colours, so is life the revealer of beings; it is the cause of their qualities being realized. Furthermore, it makes an insignificant particular general and universal, and is the cause of universal things being concentrated in a particular. It is also the cause of all the perfections of existence, by, for example, making innumerable things co-operate and unite, and making them the means of unity and being endowed with spirit. Life is even a sort of manifestation of Divine unity in the levels of multiplicity, and a mirror reflecting Divine oneness.

Consider the following: a lifeless object, even if it is a great mountain, is an orphan, a stranger, alone. Its only relations are with the place in which it is situated, and with the things which encounter it. Whatever else there is in the cosmos, it does not exist for the mountain. For the mountain has neither life through which it might be related to life, nor consciousness by which it might be concerned.

Now consider a tiny object like a bee, for example. The instant life enters it, it establishes such a connection with the universe that it is as though it concludes a trading agreement with it, especially with the flowers and plants of the earth. It can say: “The earth is my garden; it is my trading house.” Thus, through the unconscious instinctive senses which impel and stimulate it in addition to the well-known five external senses and inner senses of animate beings, the bee has a feeling for, and a familiarity and reciprocal relationship with, most of the species in the world, and they are at its disposal.



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If life then displays its effect thus in the tiniest of animate beings, certainly when it rises to the highest level, that of man, it will be revealed and extended and illumined to such a degree that just as a human being is able to move through the rooms of his house with his consciousness and mind, which are the light of life, so he may travel through the higher, and the spiritual and corporeal worlds with them. That is to say, just as that conscious and animate being may go in spirit as though as a guest to those worlds, those worlds too come as guests to his mirror-like spirit by being reflected and depicted there.

Life is a most brilliant proof of the All-Glorious One’s unity, and one of the greatest sources of His bounty; it is a most subtle manifestation of His compassionateness, and a most hidden, unknowable, and incomparable embroidery of His art.

Life is hidden and subtle, because the life of plants even, which is the lowest of the levels of life, and the awakening of the life-force in seeds, that is, their stirring, opening, and growth, which are the first steps in plant life, has remained unfathomed by human science since the time of Adam, despite being so evident and familiar, so ubiquitous and common. Man’s reason has been unable to discover its true reality.

Moreover, life is so pure and unblemished that in both its aspects, that is in both its inner and outer faces, it is pure, translucent, transparent. Not veiling it with causes, the hand of power touches it directly. Whereas It made apparent causes a veil, to be the source of the insignificant aspects of things and their base external qualities, which are inappropriate to the dignity of power.

IN SHORT: It may be said that if there was no life, existence would not be existence; it would be no different from non-existence. Life is the light of the spirit, and consciousness is the light of life. Since life and consciousness are important to this great extent; and since there is self-evidently an absolutely perfect order in the universe, and a masterly precision and most wise harmony; and since our lowly, wretched globe, our wandering earth has been filled with uncountable numbers of animate beings, intelligent beings, and beings with spirits; it may be concluded with decisive certainty that those heavenly palaces, those lofty constellations also have animate and conscious inhabitants appropriate to them. As fish swim in water, so are those luminous inhabitants present in the fire of the sun. Fire does not consume light; indeed, Fire aids light.

Moreover, since, as is plain to see, pre-eternal power creates innumerable animate beings and beings with spirits from the most common substances and densest matter, and giving it great importance, transmutes dense matter by means of life into a subtle substance; and since it strews the light of life



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everywhere in great abundance, and gilds most things with the light of consciousness; with such flawless power and faultless wisdom, the All-Wise and All-Powerful One would certainly not neglect the other floods of subtle matter like light and ether, which are close to and fitting for the spirit; He would not leave them without life, without consciousness, inanimate. Indeed, He creates animate and conscious beings in great numbers from light, which is also matter, and even from meanings, air, and even words. Just as He creates numerous different species of animals, so from these torrents of subtle matter He creates numerous different spirit creatures. One kind of them are the angels, others are the varieties of spirit beings and jinn. If you wish to see just how true, self-evident, and rational it is to accept the existence of great numbers of angels and spirit beings, and as the Qur’an shows, just how contrary to truth and wisdom, and what a superstition, aberration, delirium and foolishness it is not to accept them, consider the following comparison.

There were two men, one rustic and uncouth, the other civilized and intelligent, who made friends and went to a splendid city like Istanbul. In a distant corner of that civilized and magnificent city they came across a dirty, wretched little building, a factory. They looked and saw that the strange factory was full of miserable, impoverished men working. All around the building were beings with spirits and animate beings, but their means of livelihood and conditions of life were such that some were herbivorous, they lived only on plants, while others were piscivorous, they ate nothing but fish.

The two men watched the scene. Then they saw in the distance thousands of adorned palaces and lofty castles. Among the palaces were spacious workshops and broad squares. Because of either the distance, or the defectiveness of the men’s eyesight, or because they had hidden themselves, the inhabitants of the palaces were not visible to the two men. Moreover, the wretched conditions in the factory were not to be seen in the palaces. In consequence of this, the uncouth country-bumpkin, who had never before seen a city, declared: “Those palaces have no inhabitants, they are empty, there are no beings with spirits in them,” uttering the most ignorant garbled nonsense. To which the second man replied:

“O you miserable man! This insignificant little building you see here has been filled with beings endowed with spirits, with workers, and there is someone who continually employs and replaces them. Look, there is not an empty space all around this factory, it has been filled with animate beings and beings with spirits. Do you think it is at all possible that there would be no high-ranking and suitable inhabitants in that orderly city, in those wisely adorned palaces so full of art which we can see in the distance? Of course



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they are occupied, and the different conditions of life there are appropriate for those who live there. In place of grass, they eat pastries, and in place of fish, cakes. Their not being visible to you because of the distance, or your weak eyesight, or their hiding themselves, can at no time point to their not being there.” The fact that a thing is not seen does not indicate its non-existence.

As the above comparison indicates, the fact that the globe of the earth is the home of these infinite numbers of beings endowed with consciousness and spirit, despite its insignificance and density among the lofty heavenly bodies and planets, and even its grossest and most rotten particulars becoming masses of micro-organisms when they cease as sources of life, necessarily, demonstrably, decisively indicates, testifies to and proclaims that infinite space and the majestic heavens with their constellations and stars are full of animate beings, conscious beings, and beings with spirits. The Illustrious Shari‘a of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) and the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition call these beings, who are created from fire, light, and even from electricity, and from other subtle flowing matter, “The angels, the jinn, and spirit beings.” There are different kinds of angels, just as there are different kinds of corporeal beings. Indeed, the angel who is appointed to a raindrop will not be of the same sort as the angel appointed to the sun. There are also a very great many different sorts of jinn and spirit beings.

THE CONCLUSION OF THIS FUNDAMENTAL POINT:

As may be established empirically, matter is not essential so that existence may be made subject to it, and be dependent on it. Rather, matter subsists through a meaning, and that meaning is life, it is spirit.

Also, as may be established through observation, matter is not the thing served so that everything may be ascribed to it. It is rather the servant; it renders service to the process of the perfection of a truth. And that truth is life. And the fundament of that truth is spirit.

Also, as is self-evident, matter is not dominant so that recourse may be made to it or perfections sought from it. Rather, it is dominated; it looks to the decree of some fundament, it is in motion in the way that that decree dictates. And that fundament is life, it is spirit, it is consciousness.

Also, as is necessary, matter is not the kernel, it is not the fundament, it is not a settled abode so that events and perfections may be affixed to it or constructed on it. Rather, it is a shell prepared to be split, rent, dissolved; it is a husk, it is froth, it is a form.

Consider the following: a creature so minute it can only be seen with a



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microscope has such acute senses it can hear its friend’s voice, and see its sustenance; it has extremely sensitive and sharp senses. This demonstrates that the effects of life increase and the light of the spirit intensifies in proportion to the reducing and refining of matter. It is as though the more matter is refined and the more we become distanced from our material existences, the closer we draw to the world of the spirit, the world of life, and the world of consciousness; and the more intensely the heat of the spirit and the light of life are manifested.

Is it therefore at all possible that there should be this many distillations of life, consciousness, and spirit within this veil of materiality, and that the inner world which is beyond this veil should not be full of conscious beings and beings with spirits? Is it at all possible that the sources of these numberless distillations, flashes, and fruits of meaning, spirit, life and the truth apparent in this material existence in the Manifest World should be ascribed only to matter and the motion of matter, and be explained by it? God forbid! Absolutely not! These innumerable distillations and flashes demonstrate that this material and manifest world is but a lace veil strewn over the inner and spirit worlds.

SECOND FUNDAMENTAL POINT

It may be said that all the scholars of the speculative and the scriptural sciences have, knowingly or unknowingly, united to effect a consensus in affirming, despite difference of expression, the existence and reality of the angels and spirit beings. One group of Peripatetic philosophers of the Illuminist School even, who made much progress in the study of matter, without denying the meaning of the angels, stated that each realm in creation has a spiritual, incorporeal essence. They described the angels thus. Also, a group of the early philosophers who were Illuminists, being compelled to accept the meaning of the angels, were only wrong in naming them ‘the Ten Intellects and Masters of the Realms of Creation.’ Through the inspiration and guidance of revelation, scholars of all the revealed religions have accepted that each realm of creation has an angel appointed to it, and have named them the Mountain Angel, the Sea Angel, and the Rain Angel, for example. Even the Materialists and Naturalists, whose reasoning is restricted to what is immediately apparent to them and who have in effect fallen from the level of humanity to that of inanimate matter, rather than being able to deny the meaning of the angels,4 have been compelled to accept them in one respect, though naming them the Flowing Forces.

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4. They have been unable to find a way to deny the reality and meaning of the angels and spirit beings. In fact, they have been compelled to affirm them in one respect by claiming them to be one of the natural laws, although they described them wrongly, naming them Kuwa-yi Sariya or Flowing Forces. (Hey you who consider yourselves to be so clever!...)

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O you wretched man who is reluctant to accept the angels and spirit beings, on what do you base this view? What facts do you rely on that you oppose the conscious or otherwise unanimity of all the scholars concerning the existence and reality of the meaning of the angels and the real existence of spirit beings? And since, as was proved in the First Fundamental Point, life is the revealer of beings, indeed, is their consequence, their quintessence; and since all the scholars are in effect unanimous in their acceptance of the meaning of the angels; and this world of ours has been filled to such a degree with animate creatures and beings with spirits; is it all possible that the vastness of space and the rarefied heavens would remain empty of dwellers, have no inhabitants? You should never think that the laws in force in this creation are sufficient for the universe to be alive, because those governing laws are insubstantial commands; they are imaginary principles; they may be considered as non-existent. If there were no absolutely obedient creatures called angels to represent them, make them apparent, and take their reins into their own hands, those laws could not be defined as existent, nor be represented as having a particular identity, nor be an external reality. Whereas, Life is an external reality, and an imaginary command cannot sustain an external reality.

IN SHORT: Since the scholars of religion and philosophy, and of the speculative and scriptural sciences, have in effect agreed that beings are not restricted to this Manifest World; and since, despite being inanimate and inappropriate for the formation of spirits, the visible Manifest World has been adorned to such an extent with beings with spirits; existence is surely not limited to it. There are numerous other levels of existence in relation to which the Manifest World is an embroidered veil.

Furthermore, since, just as the sea is appropriate for fish, and the World of the Unseen and the World of Meaning appropriate for spirits, and this necessitates their being filled with them; and since all commands testify to the existence of the meaning of the angels; certainly and without any shadow of a doubt, the most beautiful form of the angels’ existence and spirit beings’ reality, and the most rational view of their nature which sound intellects will accept and acclaim, is that which the Qur’an has expounded and elucidated. The Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition states that: “The angels are honoured slaves. Never contesting a command, they do whatever they are commanded. The angels are subtle, luminous beings, and are divided into different kinds.”

Just as mankind is a nation and human beings are the bearers, representatives, and embodiments of the Shari‘a or code of divine laws which proceeds from the attribute of Divine speech, so are the angels a mighty nation, and those of them who are workers are the bearers, representatives,



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and embodiments of the ‘code of laws pertaining to creation, which proceeds from the attribute of Divine will.’ They are a class of God’s slaves who are dependent on the commands of the creative power and pre-eternal will, which are the true effective agent, and for whom all the heavenly bodies are like places of worship, like mosques.

THIRD FUNDAMENTAL POINT

The question of the angels and spirit beings is one of those questions in which the reality of a universal may be inferred from the existence of a single particular. If a single individual is seen, the existence of the species may be concluded. Whoever denies it, denies it as a member of the species to which it belongs. While whoever accepts the single individual is compelled to accept its whole species. Since it is thus, consider the following:

Have you not seen and heard that all the scholars of the revealed religions throughout the ages from the time of Adam until now have agreed on the existence of the angels and the reality of spirit beings? The different groups of mankind have concurred in having seen and conversed with angels and in their narrations concerning them, as though they were discussing and narrating events about one another. Do you think that if a single angel had not been seen, and the existence of one or numerous individuals not been established through observation, and their existence not been perceived clearly, self-evidently, that it would have been at all possible for such accord and such a consensus to continue, and to continue persistently and unanimously in such an affirmative and positive manner, based on observation?

Also, is it at all possible that the source of this general belief should not be some necessary principles and self-evident matters? And is it all possible that a baseless delusion should persist and become permanent in all the beliefs of mankind throughout all the revolutions it has undergone? And is it all possible that the basis of the assertion of these scholars of the religions, of this mighty consensus, should not be a certain intuition and empirical certainty? And is it at all possible that that certain intuition and empirical certainty which result from innumerable signs, and those signs which have been observed on numerous occasions, and those numerous observations should not all, without doubt or hesitation, be founded on necessary principles? In which case, the cause and the basis of the assertion of the universal belief held by these scholars are the necessary and categorical principles resulting from the great number of times the angels and spirit beings have been observed and seen, which demonstrates the strength of the consensus.

Furthermore, is it all possible, rational or feasible that the unanimous testimony of the prophets and saints, who are like the suns, moons, and stars in



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human society, concerning the existence of the angels and spirit beings and their actually seeing them, should be prey to doubts or be the object of suspicion? Especially since they are qualified to speak in this matter. It is obvious that two people who are qualified to speak on a matter are preferable to thousands who are not. Moreover, in this question they are affirming a matter, and people who affirm a matter are preferable to thousands who deny or reject it.

Is it at all possible for there to be any doubt concerning the statements of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, the Sun of Suns in the world of truths, which never at any time sets, shining continuously in the skies of the universe? And can there be doubt concerning the testimony and witnessings of the Muhammadan Being (PBUH), the Sun of Prophethood?

Since, if on a single occasion the existence of a single spirit being is verified, this demonstrates the real existence of the whole species; and since it proves the existence of the whole species to be true, for sure, the best and most rational and acceptable form of their real existence will be similar to that expounded by the Shari‘a, described by the Qur’an, and seen by the One who ascended to a “distance of two bow-lengths.”

FOURTH FUNDAMENTAL POINT

If the creatures of the universe are observed with care, it may be seen that like particulars, universals have collective identities, each of which appears as a universal function; it is apparent that each performs a universal duty. For example, just as a flower as itself displays an embroidery full of art, and with the tongue of its being recites the Creator’s Names, so the garden of the globe resembles a flower, and performs an extremely orderly, universal duty of glorification. And just as a fruit issues a proclamation expressing its glorification of God within an order and regularity, so does a mighty tree in its entirety have a most well-ordered natural duty and worship. And just as a tree glorifies God through the words of its fruits, flowers and leaves, so do the vast oceans of the heavens glorify the All-Glorious Creator and praise the Sublime Maker through their suns, moons, and stars, which are like words; and so on. Although external beings are outwardly inanimate and unconscious, they all perform extremely vital, living, and conscious duties and glorification. Of a certainty, therefore, just as angels are their representatives expressing their glorification in the World of the Inner Dimensions of Things, so are they the counterparts, dwellings, and mosques of those angels in the external and manifest world.

As is explained in the Fourth Branch of the Twenty-Fourth Word, the first of the four categories of workers employed by the All-Glorious Maker of the palace of this world is that of the angels and spirit beings. Since, without



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knowing it, plants and inanimate beings perform extremely important though wageless duties at the command of One Who does know; also without knowing it, animals serve extensive universal aims in return for an insignificant wage; and since, observedly, in return for two wages, one immediate and the other postponed, human beings, knowing the All-Glorious Maker’s aims, are employed through their conforming to them, their taking a share of everything for themselves, and their supervising the other servants; it will certainly be the first category, as well as the fourth, which will constitute the servants and workers. They both resemble human beings in that knowing the universal aims of the All-Glorious Maker, they conform to them through worship, and they are contrary to them. For being beyond sensual pleasure and some partial wage, they consider sufficient the pleasure, perfection, delight and bliss they experience through the All-Glorious Maker’s attention, command, favour, consideration, and name, through their perception of Him, connection with Him, and proximity to Him. They labour with the purest sincerity, their duties of worship varying according to their different kinds, and according to the varieties of the creatures in the universe.

Like in a government there are various officials in the various offices, so the duties of worship and glorification vary in the spheres of the realm of dominicality. For example, through the power, strength, reckoning and command of God Almighty, the Archangel Michael is like a general overseer of God’s creatures sown in the field of the face of the earth. If one may say so, he is the head of all the angels that resemble farmers. And, through the permission, command, power, and wisdom of the All-Glorious Creator, the incorporeal shepherds of all the animals have a head, a supreme angel appointed to the task.

Thus, since it is necessary for there to be an angel appointed over each of these external creatures in order to represent in the World of the Inner Dimensions of Things the duties of worship and service of glorification which it performs, and to present them knowingly to the Divine Court, the way the angels are described in the narrations of the Bringer of Sure News (PBUH) is certainly most appropriate and rational. For example, he declared: “There are some angels which have either forty, or forty thousand, heads. In all the heads are forty thousand mouths, and with the forty thousand tongues in each of those mouths they glorify God in forty thousand ways.” This Hadith has a reality and both contains a meaning, and has a form, or manner of description. Its meaning is as follows:

The angels’ worship is both extremely orderly and perfect, and most universal and comprehensive. As for the form of the truth, it is this:

There are certain mighty corporeal beings that perform their duties of



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worship with forty thousand heads in forty thousand ways. For example, the heavens glorify God with the suns and the stars. While the earth, which is a single being, performs its duty of worship, its dominical glorification with a hundred thousand heads and with the hundreds of thousands of tongues in each mouth. Thus, the angel appointed to the globe of the earth has to be seen in this way in order to display this meaning in the World of the Inner Dimensions of Things.

I myself, even, saw a medium-sized almond tree which had close on forty large branches like heads. When I looked at one branch, I saw it had nearly forty smaller branches like tongues. Then I looked at one tongue of one of those small branches; forty flowers had opened on it. I studied the flowers considering the wisdom in them, and saw in each close on forty exquisite and well-ordered stamens, colours, and arts, each of which proclaimed one of the All-Glorious Maker’s Names and their constantly varying manifestations. Is it at all possible that the All-Wise and Beauteous One, Who is the All-Glorious Maker of the almond tree, would impose this many duties on an inanimate tree, and not mount on it an appointed angel appropriate to it, to be like its spirit, to understand and express its meaning, proclaim it to the universe, and present it to the Divine Court?

O friend! So far, our explanation has been an introduction to bring the heart to acceptance, the reason to submission, and to compel the soul to surrender. If you have understood it to some degree, and wish to meet with the angels, prepare yourself. Moreover, purify yourself of wrongful prejudice. Now look, the doors of the world of the Qur’an are open! Look, the paradise of the Qur’an is with “wide-open gates”!5 Enter and Look! See the angels in beautiful form in the paradise of the Qur’an! Each of its revealed verses is a place to alight, so look from them:

By the [winds] sent forth one after another [to man’s profit], * Which then blow violently in tempestuous gusts * And scatter [things] far and wide; * Then separate, one from another * Then spread abroad a message.6

By the [angels] who tear out [the souls of the wicked] with violence, * By those who gently draw out [the souls of the blessed] ,* And by those who gently glide along [on errands of mercy],* Then press forward as if in a race, * Then arrange to do [the commands of their Lord].7

Therein come down the angels and the Spirit by God’s permission in every errand.8

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5. Qur’an, 38:50.
6. Qur’an, 77:1-5.
7. Qur’an, 79:1-5.
8. Qur’an, 97:4.



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...over which are [appointed] angels stern [and] severe, who flinch not [from executing] the commands they receive from God, but do [precisely] what they are commanded.9

Also listen to:

...Glory be to Him! They are but servants raised to honour. They speak not before He speaks and they act [in all things] by His command,10

listen to its praises. And if you wish to meet with the jinn, enter this resounding Sura:

Say, it has been revealed to me that a company of jinn listened [to the Qur’an].11

See them and listen to what they say. Take a lesson from them. Look, they are saying:

“We have really heard a wonderful recital * It gives guidance to the right, and we have believed therein: We shall not join [in worship] any [gods] with our Lord.”12

Second Aim

The Second Aim is about the resurrection of the dead, the end of the world, and the life of the hereafter. It consists of four Fundamental Points, and an Introduction which is in the form of a comparison.

INTRODUCTION

If someone was to claim about a palace or a city: “This palace or city will be destroyed, and will then be repaired and reconstructed so that it is intact,” six questions would surely arise in the face of his claim.

The First: Why should they be destroyed? Is there a reason or some-thing to necessitate it? If the answer is “Yes,” he would have to prove it.

The Second: A question such as the following would arise: “Does the builder who would destroy and then reconstruct them possess the power to

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9. Qur’an, 66:6.
10. Qur’an, 21:26-7.
11. Qur’an, 72:1.
12. Qur’an, 72:1-2.



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do so? Would he be capable of it?” If the answer is “Yes,” he would have to prove it.

The Third: The following such question would arise: “Are their destruction possible? And, are they going to be destroyed in the future?” If the answer is “Yes,” and if he proves both the possibility of the destruction and its occurrence, the following two further questions would arise: “Is it possible for this strange palace or city to be reconstructed from scratch, I wonder? If it is possible, will they be reconstructed?” If the answer is “Yes” and he proves these as well, then in no aspect or corner of this matter can a gap or chink remain through which any doubt, misgiving or suspicion might enter.

Thus, like in the comparison, there are facts necessitating the destruction and reconstruction of the palace of the earth and city of the universe. Its author and builder is powerful enough; its destruction is possible, and will occur. Its reconstruction is possible, and will occur. These matters will be proved after the First Fundamental Point.

FIRST FUNDAMENTAL POINT

Man’s spirit is definitely immortal. Almost all the indications in the First Aim which point to the existence of the angels and spirit beings also point to the immortality of man’s spirit, which is our topic here. In my opinion, the matter is so certain that further explanation would be profitless. Indeed, the distance between us and the caravans of innumerable immortal spirits who are waiting to go to the hereafter in the Intermediate and Spirit Worlds is so fine and slight that there is no need to demonstrate it with proofs. Numberless saints and people of illumination getting in touch with them, and those who discern the secrets of the grave seeing them, and even a number of ordinary people communicating with them, and the mass of people forming relations with them in true dreams, have formed a mass of unanimous reports, and quite simply become part of the commonly accepted knowledge of mankind. However, because materialist thought has stupified everyone in this age, it has been able to implant doubts in their minds concerning even the most evident matters. In order to remove these doubts, therefore, we shall set forth an Introduction and four Sources from the numerous sources springing from the heart’s intuition and the intellect’s insight.

INTRODUCTION

As is proved in the Fourth Truth of the Tenth Word, an eternal, ever-lasting, and peerless beauty requires the eternity and permanence of mirror-bearing enraptured admirers. And a faultless, eternal, and perfect art seeks the perpetuation of thoughtful heralds. And a boundless mercy and beneficence require the continued ease and happiness of needy ones to thank it.



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And the foremost of those mirror-bearing enraptured admirers, those heralding thoughtful ones, those needy thankful ones is the human spirit, in which case, it will accompany that beauty, that perfection, that mercy on the endless road to eternity; it will be immortal.

As is also proved in the Tenth Word, in the Sixth Truth, not only the human spirit, but also the simplest levels of existence have not been created for extinction; they manifest a form of immortality. Even an insignificant flower, which has no spirit, when it ceases from external existence, manifests a sort of immortality in a thousand ways. For its form is made permanent in countless memories. And finding perpetuation in all its hundreds of seeds, the law according to which it was formed continues. Since the flower’s law of formation, the model of its form, which resembles a tiny fragment of spirit, is made permanent by an All-Wise Preserver; and since it is preserved throughout turbulent transformations with perfect order in its tiny seeds and made permanent; if you do not understand the degree to which the human spirit, which is of an extremely comprehensive and elevated nature, and has been clothed with external existence, and is a conscious, living, and luminous commanding law, most certainly manifests immortality, and is tied and bound to eternity, if you do not understand this, how can you claim to be a conscious human being? Can it be said of an All-Wise One of Glory, an Imperishable Preserver, Who includes and preserves in the tiny dot-like seed of a mighty tree the programme and law of its formation, which to some degree resembles a spirit, “How can He preserve the spirits of the dead?”

• FIRST SOURCE: This is subjective. That is to say, if anyone studies his own life and self, he perceives an immortal spirit. Indeed, in the course of occupying its body for a number of years the spirit causes the body to change considerably, yet the spirit self-evidently remains constant. In which case, although the body is ephemeral, it does not affect the spirit’s permanence, nor spoil its nature, even though the spirit is completely naked at death. However, in the course of life, the spirit gradually changes its body-clothes, and at the time of death, it is suddenly undressed. It has been established through certain conjecture, indeed, through observation, that the body subsists though the spirit; in which case, the spirit does not subsist through the body. Rather, since the spirit subsists and is dominant of itself, the body may be dispersed and gathered together again as it wishes; it will not infringe the spirit’s independence.

In fact, the body is the spirit’s house, it is its home; it is not its clothes. What clothes the spirit is a subtle, fine sheath, something which may be likened to a body, which is to some extent constant, and is ethereal and appropriate for the spirit. At the time of death, then, the spirit is not completely naked, it leaves its home dressed in its body-like sheath.



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• SECOND SOURCE: This is objective. That is to say, it is a sort of empirical judgement which has been formed through repeated observations and numerous occurrences of events. Indeed, when it is understood that a single spirit continues after death, this necessitates the continuation of all spirits as a category of being. For according to the science of logic it is certain that if an intrinsic quality is observed in a single individual, the existence of that quality may be assumed in all individuals. Because it is intrinsic. If it is intrinsic, it will be present in each individual. Whereas the indications based on not one but on innumerable observations beyond calculation and count, and the signs pointing to the immortality of spirits are so definite, that like for us there is a place called the New World, that is, America, and that human beings are found there, we can in no way doubt the existence of those people. In the same way, it is unacceptable to doubt that the spirits of those who have died are now present in great numbers in the World of the Inner Dimension of Things and in the Spirit World, and that they have relations with us. Our immaterial gifts go to them, and their luminous emanations come to us.

Moreover, with certain intuition, one may perceive with one’s conscience that a fundamental aspect of man continues after his death. And that fundamental aspect is spirit. As for spirit, it is not subject to destruction and dissolution. This is because it is simple and uncompounded, it has unity. As for destruction, dissolution, and decomposition, they are the function of complex and compound substances. As we explained above, life ensures a form of unity within multiplicity; it causes a sort of permanence. That is to say, unity and permanence are fundamental to spirit, from which they spread to multiplicity.

The mortality of man’s spirit would be either through destruction and dissolution, whereas unity provides no opportunity for these, and its simple nature disallows decomposition; or it would be through annihilation. But the limitless compassion of the Absolutely Generous One would not permit annihilation, and His boundless munificence would not allow that He should take back from the human spirit the bounty of existence which He has bestowed on it, which it ardently desires, and of which it is worthy.

• THIRD SOURCE: Man’s spirit, which has been clothed in a living, conscious, luminous external existence, is a comprehensive and veracious commanding law disposed to acquiring universality. And even the weakest commanding laws manifest stability and permanence. For if it is considered carefully, it will be seen that present in all species which are subject to change, is a constant truth that, revolving within the changes, transformations, and stages of life, causes the outer forms of things to change, and living and not dying, is permanent.



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Thus, while the human being is an individual, because of the comprehensiveness of his nature, his universal consciousness, and all-embracing imagination, he is like a species. A law that governs and is in force in the species is also in force in the human individual. Since the All-Glorious Creator has created man as a comprehensive mirror, for universal worship, and with an exalted nature, even if the spirit-truth which is present in each individual causes the individual’s outer form to change hundreds of thousands of times, with the Sustainer’s permission, it will not die but will continue, departing as it came. In which case, at God’s command and with His permission and through His making it permanent, the human individual’s spirit, which is the conscious element and living part of him, is immortal.

• FOURTH SOURCE: Consider the laws that govern in species, which to a degree resemble the spirit, and since they both issue from the World of the Divine Command and Will, with regard to their source, are to a degree appropriate for the spirit, and only lack a perceptible existence. Study them and it will be seen that if those commanding laws were clothed in external existence, each of them would become the spirit of the species. And the laws are always permanent; they are always perpetual and constant. No change or transformation affects the laws’ unity, or spoils them.

For example, should a fig-tree die and be dispersed, the law of its formation, which is like its spirit, will continue in its tiny seeds; it will not die. And so, since even the most commonplace and weak commanding laws are thus connected to permanence and continuance, the human spirit must be connected not only with permanence and immortality, but with all eternity. For according to the Qur’an’s glorious decree of:

Say: The Spirit (comes) by command of my Sustainer,13

spirit too is a conscious and living law which has come from the World of the Divine Command, and which Pre-Eternal power has clothed with external existence. That is to say, just as the unconscious laws which proceed from the Divine attribute of will and the World of the Divine Command are always, or mostly, enduring, so is it even more definite that the spirit, which is a sort of brother to them, and like them is a manifestation of the attribute of will and comes from the World of the Command, manifests immortality. It is also more worthy of it, because it is existent, it has an external reality. And it is more potent, more elevated, because it possesses consciousness. It is also more enduring than them, and more valuable, because it is living.

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13. Qur’an, 17:85.



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SECOND FUNDAMENTAL POINT

There are matters necessitating eternal happiness, and the All-Glorious Agent is capable of bestowing that happiness. Also, the destruction of the universe and death of the world are possible, and they will occur. And the resurrection of the world and the Last Judgement are possible, and they will occur. We shall explain all these six matters briefly and in a way that will satisfy the reason. In fact, in the Tenth Word, arguments are set forth which raise the heart to the level of perfect belief, while here, we shall discuss them in the manner of the Old Said’s explanations in his treatise called Nokta (The Point), which convince and silence the reason only.

There are matters which necessitate eternal happiness. A decisive argument pointing to those matters consists of a supposition filtered through Ten Sources and Central Points.

• FIRST POINT: If observed carefully, it will be seen that a perfect and intentional order embraces the whole universe. Traces of choice and flashes of purpose are to be seen in every aspect of it. What strikes the eyes through the testimony of their fruits is that in every thing is a light of intention; in every function, a flash of will; in every motion, a gleam of choice; in every composite whole, a blaze of wisdom. Thus, if there was no eternal happiness, this authentic order would merely consist of a weak and futile form. It would be a false order, not a true order. Connections and relations and immaterial things, which are the spirit of order, would be lost and come to nothing. That is to say, what gives order to order is eternal happiness. In which case, the order of the universe points to eternal happiness.

• SECOND POINT: Total wisdom is apparent in the universe. Indeed, Divine wisdom, which is the representation of pre-eternal favour, proclaims eternal happiness through the tongue of the observance of benefits and following of purposes demonstrated by the universe in its entirety. Because, if there was no eternal happiness, it would be necessary, through pride, to deny the wisdom and benefits which are self-evidently constant in the universe. Since the Tenth Truth of the Tenth Word demonstrates this truth like the sun, we shall content ourselves with that and cut short the discussion here.

• THIRD POINT: Through the testimony of reason, wisdom, deduction, and experience, the absence of futility and absence of waste in the creation of beings, which is constant, indicate eternal happiness. The sign of there being no waste and nothing vain in creation is the All-Glorious Maker’s choosing and preferring the shortest way, the closest point, the lightest form, and the best manner in the creation of everything, and His sometimes imposing a hundred duties on one thing, and His attaching a thousand fruits and aims to



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a slight being. Since there is no waste and nothing in vain, there will surely be eternal happiness. For non-existence and no return would make every-thing futile; everything would be a waste. The absence of waste in all creation, and in man for instance, which is established by science, demonstrates that man’s limitless disposition, and infinite hopes, ideas, and desires will not be wasted either. In which case, man’s deep-rooted desire to be perfected points to the existence of a perfection, and his desire for happiness proclaims that he is definitely destined for eternal happiness. If it was not so, contrary to all other beings, which are made wisely and with purpose, those authentic immaterial faculties, those elevated hopes, would be waste and futile; they would wither up and be for nothing. Since this truth is proved in the Eleventh Truth of the Tenth Word, we cut the discussion short here.

• FOURTH POINT: In each of many different things, in night and day, and winter and spring, in the skies, and even in man’s personalities and in the bodies which he changes throughout his lifetime, and in sleep, which resembles death, is a different sort of resurrection resembling the resurrection of the dead; they all tell of and allude to the reality of the Day of Resurrection. For example, the day, year, lifetime of man, and revolution of God’s great clock known as the earth resemble the dials of a weekly clock of ours that tell the seconds, minutes, hours and days; each the forerunner of the following, they give news of one another; they turn and function. Like they show morning after night, and spring after winter, they intimate that after death the morning of the resurrection will appear from that instrument, that vast clock.

There are many varieties of resurrection that a person experiences during his lifetime. Just as he sees the signs of the resurrection through a sort of dying every night and rebirth every morning, so it is agreed that he undergoes what resembles a resurrection every five or six years by changing all the particles in his body, and even undergoes a gradual resurrection twice a year. Also, every spring, he witnesses more than three hundred thousand sorts of resurrection and rising to life in the animal and plant kingdoms.

Thus, so many signs and indications and marks of resurrection most certainly point to the great resurrection of the dead as though they were droplets of it. An All-Wise Maker causing a sort of resurrection in that way in the animal and plant worlds, that is, raising to life exactly the same all plant roots and certain animals in the spring, and restoring other parts of them, such as leaves, flowers and fruits, not exactly the same but similar, may be an indication of a personal resurrection in the human individual within the general resurrection. For the human individual is like a species in



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comparison with the other animate species, and the light of the mind has given such a breadth to human actions and thought that they encompass the past and the future. If he consumes the world even, he is not satisfied. In the other species the nature of the individual is particular; its value is personal; its view, restricted; its qualities, limited; its pleasure and pain, instantaneous. Whereas man’s nature is exalted; his value, most high; his view, universal; his qualities, limitless; his immaterial pleasure and pain in part permanent. In which case, the various resurrections which are repeated in the other animate species self-evidently tell of and point to all human individuals being resurrected and restored to life exactly the same in the great resurrection of the dead. Since it is proved with the certainty of twice two equalling four in the Ninth Truth of the Tenth Word, we cut short the discussion here.

• FIFTH POINT: Those who have looked closely into the realities of creation consider that the unlimited potentialities included in the essence of man’s spirit, and the unlimited abilities contained in those potentialities, and the endless desires arising from those abilities, and the infinite hopes resulting from those endless desires, and the limitless thoughts and ideas born of those infinite hopes are hands stretched out towards eternal happiness, which is beyond this Manifest World, are eyes gazing at it, that they are turned towards it. Thus, man’s nature, which cannot lie, and the definite, intense, unwavering desire for eternal happiness in his nature inspire the conscience with certainty concerning the realization of eternal happiness. This fact is demonstrated as clearly as daylight in the Eleventh Truth of the Tenth Word, and so we cut this short here.

• SIXTH POINT: The mercy of the All-Beauteous Maker of these beings, Who is the All-Merciful, All-Compassionate One, points to eternal happiness. Yes, it is of the nature of that mercy, which makes bounty bounty and saves it from revenge, not to withhold from man eternal happiness, which delivers beings from the anguish of eternal separation. For if eternal happiness, the head, chief, aim, and result of all bounties, is not given, and if after dying, the world is not resurrected in the form of the hereafter, all bounties would be transformed into desire for revenge. And such a transformation would necessitate denying the existence of Divine mercy, which is self-evident and necessary, and, through the testimony of all the universe, unquestionable and manifest. It is a constant truth more brilliant than the sun. Look and take note of the bounties of love, compassion, and reason, some of the manifestations and subtle traces of mercy. Suppose that eternal separation and unending parting are going to drag out human life; you will see that tender love becomes a great calamity; sweet compassion, a great misfortune; that luminous reason, a great tribulation. That is to say, mercy



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(because it is mercy) cannot confront true love with eternal separation. Since the Second Truth of the Tenth Word has demonstrated this fact most beautifully, we cut this short here.

• SEVENTH POINT: All the exquisiteness, all the virtues, all the perfections, all the attraction, all the yearning, all the compassion known and seen in the universe are meanings, significations, immaterial words. They necessarily and self-evidently show to the heart and thrust in the mind’s eye the manifestations of the All-Glorious Maker’s favour and kindness, benevolence and munificence. Since there is a truth, a reality, in this world, most certainly there is true mercy. And since there is true mercy, there will be eternal happiness. The Fourth Truth of the Tenth Word, and also the Second Truth, have illuminated this fact as clearly as daylight.

• EIGHTH POINT: Man’s conscience, which is his conscious nature, looks to and points to eternal happiness. Yes, if anyone listens to his own awakened conscience, he will hear a voice crying: “Eternity! Eternity!” Should the whole universe be given to such a conscience, it could not satisfy its need for eternity. That is to say, the conscience being attracted and drawn in this way is possible only because it is attracted by a true aim and captivating truth. The conclusion of the Eleventh Truth of the Tenth Word demonstrates this fact.

• NINTH POINT: This is the message of Muhammad the Arabian (Peace and blessings be upon him), who was truthful, veracious, and trustworthy. Indeed, his words opened the doors of eternal happiness; all that he said are windows opening onto everlasting bliss. In fact, he held in his hand the consensus of all the prophets (Peace be upon them) and the unanimous agreement of all the saints, for after Divine unity, all their calls and efforts were concentrated on the resurrection of the dead and eternal happiness. Is there anything that could shake such a strength? The Twelfth Truth of the Tenth Word demonstrates this truth in the most obvious manner.

• TENTH POINT: This is the certain news of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, which has preserved its miraculousness in seven respects for thirteen centuries, and as is proved in the Twenty-Fifth Word, is a miracle through its forty sorts of miraculousness. Yes, this news of the Qur’an is the revealer of bodily resurrection, and the discloser of the enigmatic talisman of the world and the key to the wisdom in the universe. Also, the certain rational proofs contained in the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, which it lays before the eyes, commanding that they be pondered over are thousands in number. In short, the Qur’an presents for man to study a great many verses and great many telescopes revealing eternal bliss, like,



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Say, “He will give them life Who created them in the first instance…,”14
and,
Seeing that He has created you in successive stages,15
which comprise a comparison or analogy, and,
Nor is your Sustainer ever unjust to His servants,16
which points to evidence of justice. We explained in our treatise entitled Nokta (The Point) the substance of the figurative
analogy in,
Seeing that He has created you in successive stages,17
and,
Say, ‘He will give them life Who created them in the first instance…’,18
which the Qur’an makes clear through other verses. It was as follows:

On passing from stage to stage, the human body undergoes wondrous and orderly transformations. From sperm to a blood-clot; from a blood-clot to flesh and bone; from flesh and bone to a new creation, that is, the transformation into human form; it follows extremely precise rules. Each of these stages has such particular laws, such determined order, such regular development that it displays the manifestations of a purpose, will, choice, and wisdom as though through glass.

Thus, the All-Wise Maker, Who creates the body in this way, changes it every year as if it were clothes. For the body to be changed and for its continuance, a compound is necessary so that new particles appear that will work and fill the place of the parts that are dissolved. Since the body’s cells are destroyed through an orderly Divine law, it requires a subtle matter, known as sustenance, which will repair it, again through an orderly dominical law. The True Provider allots and distributes this sustenance through a particular law in relation to the different needs of the body’s members.

Now, consider the behaviour of the subtle matter which the All-Wise Provider sends: you will see that while the matter’s particles are dispersed through the air, soil, and water like a caravan, they suddenly gather together in a way that suggests a deliberate action, as though they had suddenly received the order to move. They collect together in the most orderly fashion as if each particle of them was entrusted with a duty and ordered to proceed to a specified place. Also, it is apparent from their conduct that they are being propelled through a particular law of one who acts and has choice, and

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14. Qur’an, 36:79.
15. Qur’an, 71:14.
16. Qur’an, 41:46.
17. Qur’an, 71:14.
18. Qur’an, 36:79.



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from the realm of the inanimate are entering the animal kingdom. Then they enter a body as sustenance through a particular rule, and with a determined order and in a regular process, and after being cooked in the four kitchens of the body, undergoing four amazing transformations, and being strained through four filters, they are apportioned through regular laws and the beneficence of the True Provider according to the all-different needs of the members, and are circulated to every part of the body.

Thus, whichever of these particles you consider with the eye of wisdom, you will see that blind chance, lawless coincidence, deaf nature, and unconscious causes can in no way interfere with it; it is impelled in a discerning, orderly, hearing, and knowing fashion. For whichever stage each of them enters from the surrounding element to the body’s cell, it acts as though voluntarily through the specified laws of that stage. It enters it in an orderly fashion. To whichever level it journeys, it steps with such order that it appears self-evidently to be proceeding at the command of an All-Wise Mover. In this way, it gradually advances from stage to stage, and level to level until, at the command of its Sustainer, without deviating from its aim and object, it reaches its appropriate position, for example the pupil of Tevfik’s eye, where it establishes itself and works.

This situation, that is, the manifestation of dominicality in sustenance, demonstrates that first the particles were determined; they were appointed to the task, they were designated to those positions. It is as if the existence of an arrangement and order, like “This will be the sustenance of so-and-so’s cells” being written on the forehead of each of them, points to each person’s sustenance being written on his forehead by the pen of Divine Determining, and his name being written on his sustenance. Is it at all possible that the All-Glorious Maker, Who nurtures and sustains with boundless power and all-encompassing wisdom, Who has absolute disposal over all beings from minute particles to the planets, and spins them with order and balance, should not bring about ‘the last creation,’ or that he should be unable to do so?

Thus, many verses of the Qur’an present to man’s view this wise last creation, which will take place at the resurrection of the dead and Great Gathering. It removes doubt and uncertainty. It says:

Say, He will give them life Who created them in the first instance…19

That is, the One Who created you from nothing in so wise a form is He Who will bring you to life again in the hereafter. And it says:

And it is He Who begins [the process of] creation, then repeats it; and for Him it is most easy.20

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19. Qur’an, 36:79.
20. Qur’an, 30:27.



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That is, “Your return and being raised to life at the resurrection is easier and more trouble-free than your creation in this world.”

Just as it is easier and more trouble-free for the soldiers of a regiment who have dispersed to rest to regather under the regimental flag at the sound of a bugle than forming a new regiment from scratch, so according to reason, it is easier and more possible than the first creation for the fundamental particles of a body, which are intermingled and familiar and connected with one another, to regather at the trumpet-blast of the angel Israfil (Peace be upon him), and reply to the All-Glorious Creator’s command with, “Here we are, O Lord!” Anyway, perhaps it is not necessary for all the particles to regather. The fundamental parts and essential particles, which are like nuclei and seeds, and are called “the root of the tail” (the coccyx) in a Hadith,21 may be sufficient as a basis of the second creation. The All-Wise Creator may construct the human body on them.

The following is a summary of the judicial comparison indicated by verses like the third one above:

Nor is your Sustainer ever unjust to His servants.

We often see in this world that tyrannical, sinful and cruel men pass their lives in great ease and comfort, while the oppressed, upright and religious live under great difficulties and in degradation. Then death comes and makes the two equal. If this equality had no end and was not finite, an injustice would be apparent. However, since Divine wisdom and justice are free of all inequity as is established by the testimony of the universe, they self-evidently require a final assembly where the former will be punished and the latter receive their reward. Then disorderly, wretched men may receive punishment and reward in conformity with their potentialities, be the means of absolute justice, manifest dominical wisdom, and be the elder brother of all the beings in the world.

For sure, the realm of this world does not allow for the blossoming of man’s limitless potentialities contained within his spirit. This means he will be sent to another world. Man’s essence is indeed mighty, so he is designated for eternity. His nature is exalted, so his crimes are great. He does not resemble other beings. His order is important, too. He cannot live without order. He cannot live without meaning. He cannot be made in vain. He cannot be condemned to absolute extinction. He cannot escape to pure non-existence. Hell has opened its mouth, and awaits him. And Paradise has opened its graceful embrace, and watches him. Since the Third Truth of the Tenth Word has demonstrated these two examples most beautifully, we shall cut the discussion short here.

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21. Bukhari, Tafsir Sura al-Zumar, 3; Tafsir Sura al-Nabi, 1; Muslim, Fitan, 141-3.



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By way of example, you may make analogies and study other verses from the Qur’an similar to the two above, which contain many subtle and rational proofs.

Thus, these Ten Sources and Central Points form a decisive proof and certain supposition, and just as this sound hypothesis and powerful proof are decisive evidence for the cause and necessity of the resurrection and Day of Judgement, so -as is clearly proved in the Tenth Word- do most of the +Most Beautiful Names, like All-Wise, All-Compassionate, Preserver, and All-Just, require the coming of the Last Day and resurrection, and the existence of everlasting bliss; they point clearly to the realization of eternal happiness. That is to say, the matters necessitating the resurrection of the dead and the Day of Judgement are so powerful that they leave no room at all for any doubt or uncertainty.

THIRD FUNDAMENTAL POINT

The Agent possesses the power. Without doubt, the matters necessitating the resurrection of the dead exist. Also, the One Who will bring it about is powerful to the utmost degree. There is no deficiency in His power. The greatest things and the smallest are the same in relation to His power. It is as easy for Him to create the spring as to create a flower. Yes, One so powerful that this world together with all its suns, stars, worlds, particles, and substance bear witness to His sublimity and power with endless tongues. Does any doubt or misgiving have the right to consider bodily resurrection remote from such a power?

It is plain to see that every age within this world an All-Powerful One of Glory creates a new, travelling, orderly universe. Indeed, He makes a new, well-ordered world each day. He perpetually creates and changes with perfect wisdom transient worlds and universes one after the other on the face of the heavens and the earth. He hangs on the string of time regular worlds to the number of the centuries, years, indeed, days, and through them demonstrates the tremendousness of His power. He attaches to the head of the globe the huge flower of spring which he adorns with a hundred thousand embroideries of resurrection as though it was a single flower, and through it displays the perfection of His wisdom and the beauty of His art. Can it be said of such a One, “How can He bring about the resurrection of the dead, and how can He transform this world into the hereafter?” The verse,

Your creation and your resurrection is but like a single soul22

proclaims the All-Powerful One’s perfect power, that nothing at all is difficult for Him, that like the smallest thing, the greatest presents no

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22. Qur’an, 31:28.



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difficulties for His power, and that it is as easy for His power to create innumerable individuals as to create as a single one. We have explained the verse’s essential meaning briefly in the Conclusion to the Tenth Word, and in detail in the treatise entitled Nokta (The Point), and in the Twentieth Letter. In connection with the discussion here, we shall elucidate a part of it in the form of three ‘Matters’, as follows:

Divine Power is essential, in which case, impotence cannot intervene in it. Also, it is connected to the inner dimensions of things, so obstacles cannot become interpenetrated with it. Also, its relation is according to laws, so particulars are equal to universals, minor things are like comprehensive ones. We shall prove these three matters.

FIRST MATTER: Pre-Eternal Power is the necessary inherent quality of the Most Pure and Holy Divine Essence. That is to say, it is of necessity intrinsic to the Essence, it can in no way be separated from It. Since this is so, the Essence which necessitates that power clearly cannot be affected by impotence, the opposite to power. For if that were the case, it would entail the combining of opposites. Since the Essence cannot be affected by impotence, self-evidently it cannot intervene in the power which is the inherent quality of that Essence. Since impotence cannot intervene in that essential power, clearly there can be no degrees in it. For the degrees of existence of a thing are though the intervention of its opposites.

For example, the degrees of heat are through the intervention of cold, and the degrees of beauty through the intervention of ugliness; further examples can be made in the same way. Since in contingent beings these qualities are not true, natural, and inherent, necessary qualities, their oppos-ites may enter them. With the existence of degrees, diversity, variance, and change arose in the world. Since there can be no degrees in Pre-Eternal power, of necessity, those things decreed by it will be the same in relation to it. The greatest will be equal to the smallest, and particles the same as the stars. The resurrection of all mankind will be as easy for that power as the raising to life of a single individual; the creation of spring as easy as the giving of form to a single flower. Whereas if attributed to causes, the creation of a single flower would be as difficult as the spring.

It has been proved in the footnote to the last section of the Fourth Degree of ‘God is Most Great’ in the Second Station of this Word, and in the Twenty-Second Word, and in the Twentieth Letter and in its Addendum, that when the creation of beings is attributed to the Single One of Unity, all things become as easy as one thing. If they are attributed to causes, the creation of a single thing becomes as difficult and problematical as that of all things.



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SECOND MATTER: Divine power is related to the inner face of things. Yes, the universe has two faces like a mirror. One is its external face, which resembles the coloured face of the mirror, the other is its face which looks to its Creator. This resembles the mirror’s shining face. Its external face is the arena of opposites. It is where matters like beautiful and ugly, good and evil, big and small, difficult and easy appear. It is because of this that the All-Glorious Maker has made apparent causes a veil to the disposal of His power, so that the hand of power should not appear to the mind to be directly concerned with matters that on the face of it are insignificant or unworthy. For majesty and dignity require it to be thus. But He did not give a true effect to causes and intermediaries, because the unity of oneness requires that they have none.

As for the face of beings which looks to its Creator, in everything it is shining, it is clean. The colours and distortions of individuality do not inter-vene in it. This aspect faces its Creator without intermediary. There are no chains and disposition of causes in it. Cause and effect cannot intrude on it. It contains nothing contorted or askew. Obstacles cannot interfere in it. A particle becomes brother to the sun.

In Short: Divine power is both simple, and infinite, and essential. The place connected to Divine power has neither intermediary, nor stain, nor is it the scene of rebellion. Therefore, within the sphere of Divine power great does not take pride of place over small. The community does not take preference over the individual. Universals cannot expect more from Divine power than particulars.

THIRD MATTER: Divine power’s relation is according to laws. That is to say, it regards many and few, great and small as the same. We shall make this abstruse matter easier to understand with a number of comparisons.

In the universe, Transparency, Reciprocity, Balance, Order, Disengagedness, and Obedience are all matters which render many equal to few, and great equal to small.

First Comparison: This explains the Mystery of Transparency.

For example, the sun’s image and reflection, which are its radiance and manifestation, display the same identity on the sea’s surface and in every drop of the sea. If the globe of the earth was composed of varying fragments of glass and exposed to the sun without veil, the sun’s reflection would be the same in every fragment and on the whole face of the earth, without obstruction or being divided into pieces or being diminished. If, let us suppose, the sun acted with will and through its will conferred the radiance of its light and image of its reflection, it would not be more difficult for it to



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confer its radiance on the whole surface of the earth than to confer it on a single particle.

Second Comparison: This concerns the Mystery of Reciprocity.

For example, let us suppose there is a vast ring composed of living beings, that is, of human beings, each holding a mirror. At its centre is an individual holding a candle. The radiance and manifestation reflected in all the mirrors surrounding the central point will be the same, and its relation will be without obstacle, fragmentation or being diminished.

Third Comparison: This concerns the Mystery of Balance.

For example, there are an enormous set of scales which are extremely accurate and sensitive. Whichever of two suns or two stars or two mountains or two eggs or two particles are placed in its two pans, it will require the same force to raise one pan of those huge sensitive scales to the sky and lower the other to the ground.

Fourth Comparison: This concerns the Mystery of Order.

For example, a huge ship can be turned as easily as a tiny toy boat.

Fifth Comparison: This concerns the Mystery of Disengagedness.

For example, a nature disengaged from individuality regards all particulars from the smallest to the greatest as the same and enters them without being diminished or fragmented. The qualities present in the aspect of external individuality do not interfere and cause confusion; they do not alter the view of a disengaged nature such as that. For example, a fish like a needle possesses such a disengaged nature the same as a whale. Or a microbe bears an animal nature the same as a rhinoceros.

Sixth Comparison: This demonstrates the Mystery of Obedience.

For example, a commander causes a single private to advance with the command “Forward march!” the same as he causes an army to advance. The truth of the mystery of this comparison about obedience is as follows:

As is proved by experience, everything in the universe has a point of perfection, and everything has an inclination towards that point. Increased inclination becomes need. Increased need becomes desire. Increased desire becomes attraction, and attraction, desire, need, and inclination are each seeds and kernels which together with the essences of things conform to the creative commands of Almighty God. The absolute perfection of the true nature of contingent beings is absolute existence. Their particular perfections are an existence peculiar to each which makes each being’s abilities emerge from the potential to the actual. Thus, the obedience of the whole universe to the Divine command “Be!” is the same as that of a particle, which is like a



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single soldier. Contained all together in the obedience and conformity of contingent beings to the pre-eternal command of “Be!” proceeding from the Pre-Eternal will are inclination, need, desire, and attraction, which are also manifestations of Divine will. The fact that when subtle water receives the command to freeze, with a refined inclination it may split a piece of iron demonstrates the strength of the mystery of obedience.

If these six comparisons are observed in the potentialities and actions of contingent beings, which are both defective, and finite, and weak, and have no actual effect, without doubt it will be seen that everything is equal in relation to Pre-Eternal power, which is both pre-eternal, and post-eternal, and creates the whole universe out of pure non-existence, and being manifested through the works of its tremendousness leaves all minds in wonderment. Nothing at all can be difficult for it. Such a power cannot be weighed on the small scales of these mysteries, neither are they proportionate. They have been mentioned to bring the subject closer to the understanding and to dispel any doubts.

RESULT AND SUMMARY OF THE THIRD FUNDAMENTAL POINT:

Since pre-eternal power is infinite, and it is the inherent, necessary quality of the Most Pure and Holy Essence; and since the stainless, veilless inner aspect of everything is turned to it and faces it, and is in balance with respect to contingency, which consists of the equal possibility of being and non-being; and since this inner face is obedient to the order of creation and the Divine laws of the universe which form the Greater Shari‘a, the Shari‘a of Creation, and it is disengaged from and free of obstacles and different characteristics; certainly, like the smallest thing, the greatest cannot resist that power, nor expect more from it than the smallest. In which case, the raising to life of all beings with spirits at the resurrection is not more difficult for Divine power than raising a fly to life in the spring. Thus, the decree of:

Your creation and your resurrection is but like a single soul,.23

is no exaggeration; it is true and correct. And our claim that “the Agent possesses the power” has been proved true in decisive fashion; there is nothing to hinder it in this respect.

FOURTH FUNDAMENTAL POINT

Just as there are things necessitating the resurrection of the dead

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23. Qur’an, 31:28.



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and Great Gathering, and the One Who will bring it about possesses the power to do so, so the world possesses the potential for the resurrection of the dead and Great Gathering. There are four ‘Matters’ in this assertion of mine that ‘this place is possible.’

The First is the possibility of this world’s death.

The Second is its actual death.

The Third is the possibility of the destroyed, dead world being reconstructed and resurrected in the form of the hereafter.

The Fourth is its actual reconstruction and resurrection, which are possible.

FIRST MATTER: The universe’s death is possible. For if something is included in the law of the process of perfection, there is bound to be growth and development in it. And if there is growth and development, that thing is bound to have a natural life-span. And if it has a natural life-span, there is bound to be a time for its natural death. It is established by inductive reasoning and extensive investigation that it cannot save itself from the claws of death. Indeed, just as man is the microcosm, and he cannot be saved from destruction, the world too is the macroanthropos; it neither can be saved from the clutches of death. It too will die and will then be resurrected, or it will lie in repose and then open its eyes in the morning of the resurrection.

Also, just as a living tree, which is a miniature copy of the universe, cannot save its life from destruction and dissolution, so the chain-like universe, which has branched out from the tree of creation, cannot save itself from destruction and dispersal in order to be repaired and renewed. If, with the permission of the pre-eternal will, some external disease or destructive event do not befall the world before the time of its natural death, and its All-Wise Maker also does not demolish it before that time, for sure, according to scientific reckoning, a day will come when the meanings and mysteries of the verse:

When the sun is rolled up; * When the stars tumble; * When the mountains are swept away; * When the she-camels, ten months with young, are left untended; * When the wild beasts are herded together; * When the oceans boil over;24

will become manifest with the permission of the Pre-Eternal All-Powerful One, and the death agonies of the macroanthropos which is the world will begin; it will fill space and make it reverberate with an appalling death-rattle and devastating sound; roaring, it will die. Then, at the Divine command, it will return to life once more.

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24. Qur’an, 81:1-6.



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A Subtle, Allusive Matter

Just as water freezes to its own detriment, and ice melts to its own detriment, and a kernel gains strength to the detriment of the shell, and a word becomes coarse to the detriment of the meaning, and the spirit weakens on account of the body, and the body becomes finer on account of the spirit, so too this world, the dense world, becomes transparent and refined with the functioning of the machine of life on account of the hereafter, which is the subtle world. Creative power sprinkling the light of life on dense, lifeless, extinguished, dead objects with an astonishing activity is a sign that it dissolves, burns, and illuminates this dense world with the light of life on account of the subtle world.

No matter how weak reality is, it does not die; it is not annihilated like a form. Rather, it travels in individuals and forms. Reality grows, develops, and gradually expands, while the shell and the form wear out, become finer, and break up. They are renewed in a better form so as to become suitable to the stature of the stable and expanded reality. In regard to increase and decrease, reality and form are in inverse proportion. That is to say, the more substantial form grows, the weaker reality becomes. The less substantial form becomes, to that degree the reality grows stronger.

Thus, this law encompasses all things included in the law of the process of perfection. This means that a time is certain to come when the Manifest World, which is the shell and form of the mighty reality of the universe, will break up, with the permission of the All-Glorious Creator. Then it will be renewed in a better form. The meaning of the verse:

That day the Earth will changed into a different Earth25

will be realized.

In Short: The death of the world is possible. Moreover, there can be no doubt that it is possible.

SECOND MATTER: This is the actual death of the world. The proof of this matter is the consensus of all the revealed religions; the testimony of all sound natures; the indication of all the changes, transformations, and alterations in the universe; the testimony to the number of centuries and years through their deaths in this guest-house of the world, of all living worlds and mobile worlds to the death of the world itself.

If you want to imagine the death agonies of the world as the Qur’an points them out, think of how the parts of the universe are bound to one another with an exact, exalted order. They are held with such a hidden, delicate, subtle bond and are so bound within an order that on a single one

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25. Qur’an, 14:48.



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of the lofty heavenly bodies receiving the command: “Be!” or, “Leave your orbit!”, the world will go into its death agonies. The stars will collide, the heavenly bodies reel, a great din will strike up in infinite space like the devastating sound of millions of cannon-balls and great guns the size of globes. Clashing and colliding with one another, sending out showers of sparks, the mountains taking flight, the seas burning, the face of the earth will be flattened.

Thus, through this death and those agonies the Pre-Eternal One of Power will shake up the universe. He will purify the universe, and Hell and the matters of Hell will draw to one side, and Paradise and the matters appropriate for Paradise draw to the other, and the world of the hereafter will become manifest.

THIRD MATTER: The return to life of the world, which will die, is possible. For, as is proved in the Second Fundamental Point, there is no deficiency in Divine power, and the things necessitating it are extremely powerful. The matter is within the realm of the possible. And if a possible matter has something extremely powerful necessitating it, and there is no deficiency in the power of the agent, it may be regarded not as possible, but as actual.

An Allusive Point

If the universe is studied carefully, it will be seen that within it are two elements that have spread everywhere and become rooted; with their traces and fruits like good and evil, beauty and ugliness, benefit and harm, perfection and defect, light and darkness, guidance and misguidance, light and fire, belief and unbelief, obedience and rebellion, and fear and love, opposites clash with one another in the universe. They are constantly manifested through change and transformation. Their wheels turn like the workshop of the crops of some other world.

Of a certainty, the branches and results, which are opposites, of those two elements will continue into eternity; they will become concentrated and separate from one another. Then they will be manifested in the form of Paradise and Hell. Since it is out of this transient world that the permanent world will be made, its fundamental elements will certainly go to eternity and permanence.

Indeed, Paradise and Hell are the two fruits of the branch of the tree of creation, which stretches, inclines, and goes towards eternity; they are the two results of the chain of the universe; the two storehouses of this flood of Divine activity; the two pools of beings, which flow in waves towards eternity; and the place of manifestation, the one of Divine favour, the other of Divine wrath. When the hand of power shakes up the universe with a violent motion, those two pools will fill up with the appropriate matters.



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The secret of this Allusive Point is as follows:

As eternal benevolence and pre-eternal wisdom necessitated, the Pre-Eternally All-Wise One created this world to be a place of trial, an arena of examination, a mirror to His Most Beautiful Names, and a page for the pen of Divine Determining and power. Now, trial and examination are the cause of growth and development. And growth causes the disposition to unfold. And this unfolding causes the abilities to become apparent. And this emergence of the abilities causes the relative truths to become evident. And the relative truths’ becoming evident causes the embroideries of the manifestations of the All-Glorious Maker’s Most Beautiful Names to be displayed, and the universe to be transformed into a missive of the Eternally Besought One. It is through this mystery of examination and the mystery of man’s accountability that the diamond-like essences of elevated spirits are purified of the coal-like matter of base spirits, and the two separated out from one another.

Thus, since it was for mysteries such as these, and for other most subtle and elevated instances of wisdom which we do not yet know of that the Pre-Eternally All-Wise One willed the world in this form, He also willed the change and transformation of this world for those instances of wisdom. He mixed together opposites for its change and transformation, and brought them face to face. Combining harm with benefit, including evil with good, and mingling ugliness with beauty, He kneaded them together like dough, and made the universe subject to the law of change and mutation, and the principle of transformation and perfection.

A day will come when this assembly of examination is closed, and the period of trial is finished, and the Divine Names have carried out their decree, and the pen of Divine Determining has completed writing its missives, and Divine power completed the embroideries of its art, and beings have fulfilled their duties, and creatures accomplished their acts of service, and everything has stated its meaning, and this world produced the seedlings of the hereafter, and the earth has displayed and exhibited all the miracles of power of the All-Powerful Maker, and all the wonders of His art, and this transient world has attached to the string of time the tableaux forming the panoramas of eternity.

For the eternal wisdom and pre-eternal beneficence of the All-Glorious Maker necessitate truths like the results of the examination and trial, the truths of those Divine Names’ manifestations, the truths of the missives of the pen of Divine Determining, the originals of those sample-like embroideries of art, the aims and benefits of the duties of beings, the wages of the acts of service of creatures, the truths of the meanings the book of the universe stated, the sprouting of the seeds of innate disposition, the opening



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of a Supreme Court of Judgement, the displaying of the sample-like panoramas taken from this world, the rending of the veil of apparent causes, and the surrendering of everything directly to the All-Glorious Creator. Since the All-Glorious Maker’s pre-eternal wisdom and beneficence necessitate these truths, they require the purification of those opposites in order to deliver the world from change and transience, transformation and extinction, and to separate out the causes of change and the matters of conflict. And most certainly they will bring about the resurrection and purify those opposites in order to obtain these results.

Thus, as a result of this purification Hell will take on its eternal and dreadful form, and its inmates will manifest the threat:

And get you apart this day, O you sinners!26

While Paradise will assume its everlasting and majestic form, and its people and companions will manifest the address of:

Peace be upon you! Well have you done! Enter here to dwell for ever.27

As is proved in the Second Question of the First Station of the Twenty-Eighth Word, through His perfect power, the Pre-Eternally All-Wise One will give the inhabitants of these two houses eternal and permanent bodies which will not be subject to dissolution, change, old age, or decline. For there will be no causes of change, which are the cause of decline.

FOURTH MATTER: This is possible, it will occur. Indeed, after dying, the world will be resurrected as the hereafter. After being destroyed, the One Who made the world will repair and reconstruct it in an even better form, and will convert it into one of the mansions of the hereafter. Just as the proof of this is, foremost, the agreement of the Holy Qur’an together with all its verses comprising thousands of rational proofs and all the revealed scriptures, so do the attributes of the All-Glorious One pertaining to His might and those pertaining to His beauty, and all His Beautiful Names, clearly indicate its occurrence. So too did He promise He would create the resurrection and Great Gathering through all His heavenly decrees which He sent to His prophets. And since He has promised, most certainly shall He bring it about. You may refer to the Eighth Truth of the Tenth Word concerning this matter.

Also, just as foremost Muhammad the Arabian (Peace and blessings be upon him), with the strength of his thousand miracles, and all the prophets and messengers, saints and the righteous agreed on its occurrence and gave

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26. Qur’an, 36:59.
27. Qur’an, 39:73.



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news of it, so does the universe together with all its creational signs tell of its occurrence.

In Short: The Tenth Word with all its truths, and the Twenty-Eighth Word with all its proofs in the ‘Especially’s’ in its Second Station, have demonstrated with the certainty of the sun’s rising in the morning after setting the previous evening that after the setting of the life of this world, the sun of truth will appear once more in the form of the life of the hereafter.

Thus, seeking assistance from the Divine Name of All-Wise and benefiting from the effulgence of the Qur’an, from the beginning up to here our explanations have taken the form of four ‘Fundamental Points’ in order to prepare the heart for acceptance, the soul for surrender, and to convince the reason. But who are we that we should speak of this matter? What does this world’s true Owner, the universe’s Creator, these beings’s Master, say? We should listen to Him. Can others dare to interfere officiously while the Owner of this domain speaks?

We must listen to the Pre-Eternal Discourse of the All-Wise Maker which He delivers addressing all the ranks of those of each successive century in the mosque of the world and place of instruction which is the earth, with thousands of decrees like,

When the Earth is rocked with a great convulsion,

And the Earth casts out its burdens,

And man cries out: “What is happening to it?”

On that Day it will relate what all those upon it have done.

For so your Sustainer will have commanded it.

On that Day men will go forth in groups to the Judgement, to receive requital for their former deeds.

Then anyone who has done an atom’s weight of good, shall see it.

And anyone who has done an atom’s weight of evil, shall see it,28

which causes the earth to tremble, and,

But give glad tidings to those who believe and do good works that theirs shall be Paradises beneath which flow rivers. Whenever they are given fruits therefrom as sustenance, they will say: “This is what we ate before as sustenance,” for they shall be offered it in a form resembling that of this world. And they shall have there women pure and good, and they shall dwell there for ever,29

which fills all creatures with joy and eagerness. We must give heed to these decrees of the Possessor of All Dominion, the Owner of This World and the

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28. Qur’an, 99:1-8.
29. Qur’an, 2:25.



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Next, and we must say, “We believe in it and we affirm it.”

All glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.30

O our Sustainer, do not punish us if we forget or do wrong.31 O God, grant blessings to our master Muhammad, and to the Family of our master Muhammad, as You granted blessings to our master Abraham and to the Family of our master Abraham; indeed, all praise is Yours, all splendour.

ba

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30. Qur’an, 2:32.
31. Qur’an, 2:286.



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The Thirtieth Word

[This Word explains the talisman of creation by solving an important talisman of the All-Wise Qur’an. It is an explanation of ‘Ene’1 and ‘Zerre’2 to the extent of an ‘Alif’3 and a ‘Point’4 It consists of two Aims. The first of these concerns the nature and result of the human ‘I’, and the second, the motion and duties of minute particles.]

First Aim

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

We did indeed offer the Trust to the heavens, and the earth, and the mountains; but they refused to undertake it being afraid thereof. But man assumed it; indeed, he is most unjust, most foaolish.5

We shall indicate a single jewel from the great treasure of this verse, as follows.

The ‘I’ is one component, one aspect, of the numerous aspects of the ‘Trust’, from the bearing of which the sky, earth, and mountains shrank, and of which they were frightened. Indeed, from the time of Adam until now, the ‘I’ has been the seed of a terrible tree of Zaqqum6 and at the same time, of a luminous tree of Tuba,7 which shoot out branches around the world of mankind. Before attempting to elucidate this vast truth, we shall give an explanation by way of an introduction which will facilitate the understanding of it.

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1. The Turkish for ‘I’ or ‘ego’. To avoid confusion with other interpretations, ‘ene’ has been translated throughout as the ‘I’, and ‘enaniyet’ as ‘I-ness’. [Tr.]
2. The Turkish for a mote, atom, or particle. [Tr.]
3. The first letter of the Arabic alphabet consisting of a vertical stroke, (I). [Tr.]
4. The equivalent of the dot in English, also indicating a small quantity. [Tr.]
5. Qur’an, 33:72.
6. See, Qur’an, 37:62; 44:43; 56:52.
7. See, Qur’an, 13:29



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Just as the ‘I’ is the key to the Divine Names, which are hidden treasures, so is it the key to the locked talisman of creation; it is a problem-solving riddle, a wondrous talisman. When its nature is known, both the ‘I’ itself, that strange riddle, that amazing talisman, is disclosed, and it discloses the talisman of the universe and the treasures of the Necessary World. We have discussed this problem as follows in my Arabic treatise, Semme (Intimations).

The key to the world is in the hand of man and is attached to his self. For while being apparently open, the doors of the universe are in fact closed. God Almighty has given to man by way of a Trust, such a key, called the ‘I’, that it opens all the doors of the world; He has given him an enigmatic ‘I’ with which he may discover the hidden treasures of the Creator of the universe. But the ‘I’ is also an extremely complicated riddle and a talisman that is difficult to solve. When its true nature and the purpose of its creation are known, as it is itself solved, so will be the universe.

The All-Wise Maker gave to man as a Trust an ‘I’ which comprises indications and samples that show and cause to recognize the truths of the attributes and functions of His dominicality, so that the ‘I’ might be a unit of measurement and the attributes of dominicality and functions of Divinity might be known. However, it is not necessary for a unit of measurement to have actual existence; like hypothetical lines in geometry, a unit of measurement may be formed by hypothesis and supposition. It is not necessary for its actual existence to be established by concrete knowledge and proofs.

Question: Why is knowledge of the attributes and Names of God Almighty connected to the ‘I’?

The Answer: Since an absolute and all-encompassing thing has no limits or end, neither may a shape be given to it, nor may a form be conferred on it, nor may it be determined; what its quiddity is may not be comprehended. For example, an endless light without darkness may not be known or perceived. But if a line of real or imaginary darkness is drawn, then it becomes known. Thus, since God Almighty’s attributes like knowledge and power, and Names like All-Wise and All-Compassionate are all-encompassing, limitless, and without like, they may not be determined, and what they are may not be known or perceived. Therefore, since they do not have limits or an actual end, it is necessary to draw a hypothetical and imaginary limit. The ‘I’ does this. It imagines in itself a fictitious dominicality, ownership, power, and knowledge: it draws a line. By doing this it places an imaginary limit on the all-encompassing attributes, saying, “Up to here, mine, after that, His;” it makes a division. With the tiny units of measurement in itself, it slowly understands the true nature of the attributes.

For example, with its imagined dominicality over what it owns, the ‘I’ may understand the dominicality of its Creator over contingent creation.



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And with its apparent ownership, it may understand the true ownership of its Creator, saying: “Like I am the owner of this house, so too is the Creator the owner of the universe.” And with its partial knowledge, it may understand His knowledge, and with its small amount of acquired art, it may understand the originative art of the Glorious Maker. For example, the ‘I’ says: “As I made this house and arranged it, so someone must have made the universe and arranged it,” and so on. Thousands of mysterious states, attributes, and perceptions which make known and show to a degree all the Divine attributes and functions are contained with the ‘I’. That is to say, the ‘I’ is mirror-like, and, like a unit of measurement and tool for discovery, it has an indicative meaning; having no meaning in itself, it shows the meaning of others. It is a conscious strand from the thick rope of the human being, a fine thread from the raiment of the essence of humanity, it is an Alif from the book of the character of mankind, and it has two faces.

The first of these faces looks towards good and existence. With this face it is only capable of receiving favour; it accepts what is given, itself it cannot create. This face is not active, it does not have the ability to create. Its other face looks towards evil and goes to non-existence. That face is active, it has the power to act. Furthermore, the real nature of the ‘I’ is indicative; it shows the meaning of things other than itself. Its dominicality is imaginary. Its existence is so weak and insubstantial that in itself it cannot bear or support anything at all. Rather, it is a sort of scale or measure, like a thermometer or barometer, that indicates the degrees and amounts of things; it is a measure that makes known the absolute, all-encompassing and limitless attributes of the Necessary Being.

Thus, he who knows his own self in this way, and realizes and acts according to it, is included in the good news of,

Truly he succeeds who purifies it.8

He truly carries out the Trust, and through the telescope of his ‘I’, he sees what the universe is and what duties it is performing. When he obtains information about the universe, he sees that his ‘I’ confirms it. This knowledge will remain as light and wisdom for him, and will not be transformed into darkness and futility. When the ‘I’ fulfils its duty in this way, it abandons its imaginary dominicality and supposed ownership, which are the units of measurement, and it says: “His is the sovereignty and to Him is due all praise; His is the judgement and to Him will you all be brought back.” It achieves true worship. It attains the rank of ‘the Most Excellent of Patterns.’9

But if, forgetting the wisdom of its creation and abandoning the duty of its nature, the ‘I’ views itself solely in the light of its nominal and apparent

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8. Qur’an, 91:9.
9. Qur’an, 95:4.



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meaning, if it believes that it owns itself, then it betrays the Trust, and it comes under the category of,

And he fails who corrupts its.10

It was of this aspect of the Trust, therefore, which gives rise to all ascribing of partners to God, evil, and misguidance, that the heavens, earth, and mountains were terrified; they were frightened of associating hypothetical partners with God.

Indeed, if the ‘I’ is not known for what it is, an insubstantial Alif, a thread, a hypothetical line, it may burgeon in concealment under the ground, gradually swelling. It will permeate all parts of a human being. Like a gigantic dragon it will swallow up the human being; that entire person with all his faculties will, quite simply, become pure ‘I’. Then too, the ‘I-ness’ of the human race gives strength to the individual ‘I-ness’ by means of human racialism and national racialism, and the ‘I’, gaining support from the ‘I-ness’ of the human race, contests the commands of the Glorious Maker, like Satan. Then, using itself as a yardstick, it compares everyone, everything even, with itself; it divides God Almighty’s sovereignty between them and other causes. It falls into ascribing partners to God on a vast scale, indicating the meaning of:

To assign partners to God is verily a great transgression.11

It is just like a man who steals a brass coin from the public treasury; he can only justify his action by agreeing to take a silver coin for each of his friends who is present. So the man who says: “I own myself,” must believe and say: “Everything owns itself.”

Thus, while in this treacherous position, the ‘I’ is in absolute ignorance. Even if it knows thousands of branches of science, with compounded ignorance it is most ignorant. For when its senses and thoughts yield the lights of knowledge of the universe, those lights are extinguished because such an ‘I’ does not find any material within itself with which to confirm, illuminate, and perpetuate them. Whatever it encounters is dyed with the colours that are within it. Even if it encounters pure wisdom, the wisdom takes the form, within that ‘I’ , of absolute futility. For the colour of an ‘I’ that is in this condition is atheism and ascribing partners to God, it is denial of God Almighty. If the whole universe is full of shining signs, a dark point in the ‘I’ hides them from view, as though extinguished.

The nature of man and the ‘I’ within his nature have been explained clearly and in detail in the Eleventh Word, as indicating something other than themselves. They are shown to be a most sensitive scale and accurate

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10. Qur’an, 91:10.
11. Qur’an, 31:13.



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measure, an encompassing index and perfect map, a comprehensive mirror, and a fitting calendar and diary for the universe. Since we consider the explanation in that Word to be sufficient and it may be referred to, we curtail and conclude the introduction here. If you have understood the introduction, come, let us enter upon the truth.

ba

Consider this: in the world of humanity, from the time of Adam up to now, two great currents, two lines of thought, have always been and will so continue. Like two mighty trees, they have spread out their branches in all directions and in every class of humanity. One of them is the line of prophethood and religion, the other the line of philosophy in its various forms. Whenever those two lines have been in agreement and united, that is to say, if the line of philosophy, having joined the line of religion, has been obedient and of service to it, the world of humanity has experienced a brilliant happiness and social life. Whereas, when they have become separated, goodness and light have been drawn to the side of the line of prophethood and religion, and evil and misguidance to the side of the line of philosophy. Now let us find the origin and foundations of those two lines.

The line of philosophy that does not obey the line of religion, taking the form of a tree of Zaqqum, scatters the darkness of ascribing partners to God and misguidance on all sides. In the branch of the power of intellect, even, it produces the fruit of atheism, Materialism, and Naturalism for the consumption of the human intellect. And in the realm of the power of passion, it pours the tyrannies of Nimrod, Pharaoh, and Shaddad on mankind.12 And in the realm of the power of animal appetites, it nurtures and bears the fruit of goddesses, idols, and those who claim divinity.

The origin of the tree of Zaqqum together with that of the line of prophethood, which is like the Tuba-tree of worship, are in the two faces of the ‘I’. The blessed branches of the line of prophethood in the garden of the globe of the earth are the following: in the branch of the power of intellect, it has nurtured the fruits of the prophets, the messengers, and the saints. In the branch of the power of repulsion, it has resulted in angelic kings and just rulers. And in the branch of the power of attraction, it has resulted in people of good character and modest and beautiful manner, both generous and gracious. So the line of prophethood has shown how mankind is the most perfect fruit of

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12. It was the swamp of Naturalist philosophy that gave birth to idols and established goddesses in the heads of the ancient Greeks, that nourished and nurtured Nimrods and Pharaohs. It was again that same Naturalist philosophy that produced the philosophies of ancient Egypt and Babylon, which either reached the degree of magic or, since they were represented by the elite, were considered to be magic by the people generally. Most certainly, if man does not perceive the light of God Almighty because of the veil of Nature, he will attribute divinity to everything and will thus cause himself nothing but trouble.



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the universe. We shall explain the two faces of the ‘I’ as the root and pivot and as a principal seed of those two trees. That is to say, prophethood takes hold of one face of the ‘I’, and philosophy takes hold of the other, causing them to diverge.

The First Face, which is the face of prophethood: It is the origin of sheer worship. That is to say, the ‘I’ knows itself to be a bondsman. It realizes that it serves one other than itself. Its essence has only an indicative meaning. That is, it understands that it carries the meaning of another. Its existence is dependent; that is, it believes that its existence is due only to the existence of another, and that the continuance of its existence is due solely to the creativity of that other. Its ownership is illusory; that is, it knows that with the permission of its owner it has an apparent and temporary ownership. Its reality is shadow-like; that is, a contingent and insignificant shadow that displays the manifestation of a true and necessary reality. As to its function, being a measure and balance for the attributes and functions of its Creator, it is conscious service.

It is in this way that the prophets, and the pure ones and saints who were from the line of the prophets, regarded the ‘I’, they saw it in this regard, and understood the truth. They handed over the sovereignty to the Lord of All Sovereignty and concluded that that Lord of All Glory has no partner or like, neither in His sovereignty, nor in His dominicality, nor in His Divinity. He has no need of assistant or deputy. The key to all things is in His hand. He has absolute power over all things. They also concluded that causes are but an apparent veil; nature is the set of rules of His creation, a collection of His laws, and the way in which He demonstrates His power.

Thus, this shining, luminous, beautiful face is like a living and meaningful seed out of which the Glorious Creator has created a Tuba-tree of worship, the blessed branches of which have adorned with luminous fruits all parts of the world of humanity. By scattering the darkness of all the past, it shows that that long past time is not a place of non-existence and a vast graveyard as philosophy would have it, but is a radiant garden and a place of light for the luminous souls who have departed this world, who have cast off their heavy loads and remain free. It is a luminous, many-runged ascent and an orbit of lights for passing souls in order that they may jump to the future and eternal felicity.

As for the second face, it is represented by philosophy. And as for philosophy, it regards the ‘I’ as carrying no meaning other than its own. That is to say, it declares that the ‘I’ points only to itself, that its meaning is in itself. It considers that the ‘I’ works purely on its own account. It regards its existence as necessary and essential, that is, it says that it exists in itself and of itself. It falsely assumes that the ‘I’ owns its own life and is the real mas



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ter in its sphere of disposal. It supposes it to be a constant reality. And it considers the ‘I’s’ duty to be perfection of self, which originates from love of self, and likewise, philosophies have constructed their modes of thought on many such corrupt foundations. We have given definite proof in our other treatises, especially in the Words, and more particularly in the Twelfth and Twenty-Fifth Words, of how baseless and rotten these foundations are.

Even men like Plato and Aristotle, Ibn-i Sina and Farabi, who were the most illustrious representatives and authorities of the line of philosophy, said that the ultimate aim of humanity is to liken themselves to the Necessary Being, that is to say, to actually resemble Him. They thus delivered judgement in the manner of Pharaoh, and, by whipping up ‘I-ness’ and allowing polytheism to run free in the valleys, opened the way to numerous different ways of associating partners with God, like worship of causes, idols, nature, and the stars. They closed the doors of impotence and weakness, poverty and need, deficiency and imperfection, which are intrinsic to human beings, thus obstructing the road to worship. Being immersed in Naturalism and being completely incapable of emerging from associating partners with God, they were unable to find the broad gate of thanks.

On the other hand, the line of prophethood considered, in the manner of a worshipper, that the aim of humanity and duty of human beings is to be moulded by God-given ethics and good character, and, by knowing their impotence to seek refuge with Divine power, by seeing their weakness to rely on Divine strength, by realizing their poverty to trust in Divine mercy, by perceiving their need to seek help from Divine riches, by seeing their faults to ask for pardon through Divine forgiveness, and by realizing their deficiency to be glorifiers of Divine perfection.

So, it is because the philosophy which does not obey the line of religion thus lost its way, that the ‘I’ took the reins into its own hands and ran into all sorts of misguidance. And out of the ‘I’ that was in this position, a tree of Zaqqum sprang forth and engulfed more than half of mankind.

Thus, in the branch of power of animal appetites of that tree, the fruits it has presented to mankind are idols and goddesses. Because, according to the principles of philosophy, power is approved. “Might is right” is the norm, even. It says, “All power to the strongest.” “The winner takes all,” and, “In power there is right.”13 It has given moral support to tyranny, encouraged despots, and urged oppressors to claim divinity.

Also, by appropriating the beauty in works of art and the fineness in the decoration and attributing them to the works of art themselves and their decoration, and by not relating them to the manifestation of the sacred and sheer

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13. The principle of prophethood says: “Power is in right; right is not in power.” It thus halts tyranny and ensures justice.



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beauty of the Maker and Fashioner, it says: “How beautiful it is,” instead of, “How beautifully made it is,” thus regarding each as an idol worthy of worship. Moreover, because it admires a fraudulent, boasting, ostentatious, hypocritical beauty that may be sold to anyone, it has acclaimed the hypocrites, and has made idol-like people monuments for its own worshippers.14 In the branch of power of passion of that tree, it has nurtured the fruits of greater and lesser Nimrods, Pharaohs, and Shaddads ruling over unfortunate mankind. In the branch of power of intellect, it has produced fruits like atheism, Materialism, and Naturalism in the mind of humanity, and has thrown it into confusion.

Now, in order to illuminate this truth, we shall compare the results which are born of the sound foundations of the line of prophethood with those originating from the rotten foundations of the way of philosophy, and shall mention three or four examples.

First Example: According to the rule of: Be moulded by God-given ethics, which is one of the principles of the line of prophethood concerning individual life, there is the instruction: “Be distinguished by God-given morals and turn towards God Almighty with humility recognizing your impotence, poverty, and defectiveness, and so be a slave in His presence.” Whereas, the self-seeking rule of philosophy, “Try to imitate the Necessarily Existent One” is mankind’s aim for perfection. No, indeed, the essence of humanity has been kneaded with infinite impotence, weakness, poverty, and need, while the essence of the Necessarily Existent One is infinitely omnipotent, powerful, self-sufficient, and without need.

Second Example: Among the principles of the line of prophethood concerning social life are those of mutual assistance, magnanimity, and generosity. These have been harnessed for the help and assistance of all things from the sun and moon down to even plants. For the assistance of animals, for example, and the help of animals for human beings, and even that of particles of food for the cells of the body. Whereas, among the principles of the line of philosophy concerning social life is that of conflict, which springs from the misuse of their inborn dispositions by a number of tyrants, brutish men, and savage beasts. Indeed, they have accepted this principle at so fundamental a level and at such a general one that they have idiotically declared: “Life is a conflict.”

Third Example: One of the valuable results and exalted principles of the line of prophethood concerning Divine unity is: “If a thing has unity, it must proceed from only one.” That is, “Since each thing in itself and all things collectively have unity, they therefore must be the creation of one single being.”

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14. That is to say, in order to appear desirable to their worshippers and to gain their attention, those idol-like people display, through hypocritical ostentation, a sort of worshipful attitude.



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Whereas, one of the beliefs of ancient philosophy is: “From one, one proceeds.” That is, “From one person, only one single thing can proceed. Everything else proceeds from him by means of intermediaries.”

This misleading principle of philosophy, which is stained by associating partners with God, presents the Absolutely Self-Sufficient and Omnipotent One as being in need of impotent intermediaries, and gives all causes and intermediaries a sort of partnership in His dominicality. It attributes to the Glorious Creator the title of ‘Prime Mover’, which in fact indicates the status of creature. Moreover, it allots the rest of His sovereignty to causes and intermediaries, thus opening the way to associating partners with Him in a most comprehensive manner. If the Illuminists (Ishraqiyyun), who were pre-eminent philosophers, uttered nonsense like this, you can imagine how much more absurd will be what inferior philosophers, like the Materialists and Naturalists, say.

Fourth Example: According to the meaning of,

There is nothing but extols His limitless glory and praise,15

which is one of the wise principles of prophethood, “If the purpose and wisdom of everything, in particular every living being, has one aspect which looks to the being itself, then the purposes which concern its Maker and the instances of wisdom which look to its Creator must be myriad. Each thing, a single fruit, for example, has as much wisdom and as many purposes as all the fruits of a tree.” This principle, which is pure truth, results from the joining of one of the forms of philosophy with the line of prophethood.

Whereas, the nonsensical principles of a deceiving philosophy that has not joined this line says: “The purpose of every living being looks to itself or is connected with benefits for mankind,” thus considering in it an extremely senseless futility and attaching a purpose, a tiny fruit, to a tree as huge as a mountain. Because this truth has been explained to some extent in the Tenth Truth of the Tenth Word and some parts have been mentioned in the treatise called Lemeât (Gleams), we have cut it short here. However, you can extend these four examples to thousands.

It is because of these rotten foundations and disastrous results of philosophy that geniuses from among the Muslim philosophers like Ibn-i Sina and Farabi were charmed by its apparent glitter and were deceived into taking this way, and thus attained only the rank of an ordinary believer. Hujjat al-Islam al-Ghazzali did not accord them that rank, even.

Also, the foremost of the Mu‘tazilites, who were among the most learned scholars of Islamic theology, being fascinated by the apparent glamour of the way of philosophy and being closely involved with it, assumed intellect to be

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15. Qur’an, 17:44.



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self-sufficient. Because of this they could attain only the rank of deviating, novice believers. Moreover, because those famous literary figures of Islam, like Abu al-‘Ala al-Ma‘arri, who was renowned for his pessimism, and ‘Umar Khayyam, who was characterized by his pitiful weeping, took pleasure at the line of philosophy’s caressing their evil-commanding souls, they received contemptuous and condemnatory rebuffs and restraining and chastening slaps from the people of truth and perfection, who said: “You are being insolent, you are approaching heresy, and you are disseminating heresy.”

A further result of the rotten foundations of the line of philosophy is that although the ‘I’ has, in itself, an essence as insubstantial as air, because the inauspicious attitude of philosophy regards it as relating only to itself, it is as if that vapour-like ‘I’ becomes liquid; and then, because of its familiarity and preoccupation with materialism, it hardens. Next, through neglect and denial, that ‘I-ness’ freezes. Then, through rebelliousness it becomes opaque, losing its transparency. Then, it gradually becomes denser and envelops its owner. It becomes distended with the thoughts of mankind. Next, supposing the rest of humanity, and even causes, to be like itself, although they do not accept this and disclaim it, it gives to each of them the status of a Pharaoh. Then at this point it takes up its position contesting the commands of the Glorious Creator, it says:

Who could give life to bones that have crumbled to dust?16

and, as a challenge, accuses the Absolutely Omnipotent One of impotence. It even debases the attributes of the Glorious Creator. It either rejects or denies or distorts what does not suit its interests and does not please its Pharaoh-like evil-commanding soul.

One group of philosophers, by calling Almighty God ‘Self-Necessitating’, denied Him choice. They rejected the endless testimony of all creation, which proves that He has choice. Glory be to God! Although all the beings in the universe from the smallest particles to the sun show that the Creator has choice, each with its own appointed individuality, order, wisdom, and measure, this blind philosophy refused to see it. Moreover, another group of philosophers said: “Divine knowledge is not concerned with insignificant matters,” and denied its awesome comprehensiveness, and thus rejected the veracious witnessing of all beings.

Furthermore, by attributing effects to causes, philosophy has given nature the power to create. As has been definitely proved in the Twenty-Second Word, since philosophy does not see the evident stamp on everything as signifying the Creator of All Things, and assumes nature to be the originator, which is impotent, inanimate, unconscious, and blind, and whose apparent power is in the hands of chance and force which are also blind, it attributes to

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16. Qur’an, 36:78.



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nature certain beings, each of which expresses thousands of instances of exalted wisdom and is like a missive from the Eternally Besought One.

In addition, the philosophers did not find the door to resurrection and the hereafter, which, as is proved in the Tenth Word, God Almighty with all of His Names, and the universe with all of its truths, and the line of prophethood with all of its verifications, and the revealed books with all of their verses demonstrate. They therefore denied the resurrection and ascribed pre-eternity to souls. You can deduce from these superstitions what their views on other matters would be. Indeed, the powers of evil have raised up the minds of atheistic philosophers as though with the beaks and talons of their ‘I’s and have dropped them in the valleys of misguidance. Thus, IN THE MICROCOSM, THE ‘I’ IS THE IDOL, LIKE THOSE IN THE MACROCOSM SUCH AS NATURE.

Hence, he who rejects idols and believes in God has indeed taken hold of a support most unfailing, which shall never give way: for God is All-Hearing, All-Knowing.17

It is appropriate to mention here the meaning of a fictitious event that I described in semi-verse in Lemeât as an imaginary journey, which will illuminate the aforementioned truth.

Eight years before writing this treatise, in Istanbul during the month of Ramadan, when the Old Said, who was concerned with the study of philosophy, was about to be transformed into the New Said, while pondering over the three ways that are indicated at the end of Sura al-Fatiha,

The way of those upon whom You have bestowed Your grace, not those who have received Your wrath, nor those who go astray,18

I saw something resembling a dream or vision, an imaginary event, which was as follows.

I saw myself in a vast desert. A layer of murky, dispiriting, and suffocating cloud had covered the whole face of the earth. There was neither breeze, nor light, nor water, none of these was to be found. I imagined that everywhere was full of monsters, dangerous and dreadful creatures. It occurred to me that through on the other side of this land there should be light, breeze, and water. It was necessary to get there. I realized that I was being driven on involuntarily. Under the earth I wormed my way into a tunnel-like cave and gradually travelled through the earth. I saw that many people had passed along this subterranean way before me, on all sides they were submerged. I saw their footprints, and once I heard some of their voices, then later they ceased.

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17. Qur’an, 2:256.
18. Qur’an, 1:7.



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O my friend who is accompanying me on my imaginary journey! That land is nature and the philosophy of Naturalism. And the tunnel is the way that the philosophers have opened up with their thought in order to reach the truth. The footprints I saw were those of famous philosophers like Plato and Aristotle,19 and the voices I heard those of geniuses like Ibn Sina and Farabi. Indeed, I saw in various books some of the things Ibn Sina had said and some of his principles, but he had become stuck, he could go no further, he was submerged before reaching the truth. Anyhow, in order to save you from anxiety, I showed you a small part of truth. Now I return to my journey.

Gradually I realized that I had been given two things to use. One was a torch; it would scatter the darkness of that subterranean nature. The other was a device, which, by smashing mighty boulders and huge rocks, would open up a way for me. I was told: “This torch and device have been given to you from the treasury of the Qur’an.” So I carried on for a long time in this way. Then suddenly I realized that I had come out on the other side. I saw a world where everywhere there was rejoicing, bright sunshine in a most beautiful springtime and an invigorating breeze and delicious life-giving water. I said: “All praise be to God!”

Then I realized that I did not own myself, someone was testing me. As in the first part of the journey, I found myself in that vast desert under the suffocating cloud. And, though now on another way, still someone was driving me on. This time it was not under the earth; I was making this long journey on the face of the earth in order to reach the other side. I saw things in this part of my journey so strange and curious they cannot be described: the sea was raging, storms threatened me, everything caused difficulties for me. But once again, with the means of travel that had been given to me from the Qur’an, I overcame them and passed on. On the way I saw that there were corpses of travellers everywhere. Those who had completed the journey were one in a thousand. At any rate, having been saved from the cloud I had reached the other side of the earth and had come out in full view of the dazzling sun. Breathing in the invigorating breeze, I declared: “All praise be to God!”

I started looking round that heaven-like world. Then I saw that there was someone who would not let me stay there. In an instant he took me to that

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19. If you say: “Who do think you are to challenge these famous philosophers? You are like a mere fly and yet you meddle in the flight of eagles,” I would reply: “While having a pre-eternal teacher like the Qur’an, in matters concerning truth and the knowledge of God, I do not have to attach as much value as that of a fly’s wing to those eagles, who are the students of misguided philosophy and deluded intellect. However inferior I am to them, their teacher is a thousand times more inferior than mine. With the help of my teacher, whatever caused them to become submerged did not so much as dampen my toes. An insignificant private who acts in accordance with the laws and commands of a great king is able to achieve more than a great field marshal of an insignificant king...”



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vast desert as though to show me another way. There I saw different sorts of things, some like aeroplanes, some like cars, some like hoists, which had descended exactly like lifts. Whoever, according to his power and capacity, jumped onto them, was taken up. I, too, jumped onto one of them, and in a trice it took me up above the cloud. I came out among the most beautiful green and spectacular mountain-tops. The layer of cloud came no more than half-way up the mountains. Everywhere was the gentlest of breezes, the most delicious water, and the softest of lights. I saw that on all sides were these lift-like allegorical vehicles. Even though I had seen them in the first two parts of my journey and on the other face of the earth, I had not understood what they were. Now I realized that they were manifestations of verses of the All-Wise Qur’an.

Thus, the first way, which is indicated by, Nor those who go astray, is that of those who are submerged in nature and those who are followers of the philosophy of Naturalism. You have seen in this first way how many difficulties there are in passing to the truth and the light. The second way, which is indicated by, Nor those who have received Your wrath, is that of those who worship causes and those who give the power to create and the effect to intermediaries, like the Peripatetic philosophers. These tried to open the way to the ultimate truth and knowledge of the Necessarily Existent One by means of the intellect and reason alone. As for the third way, which is indicated by, Those upon whom You have bestowed Your grace, it is the luminous highway of the people of the Qur’an, who are the people of the straight path. This luminous highway is a brilliant way revealed and bestowed by the Most Merciful One. It is the shortest, the easiest, the safest way, and it is open to everyone.



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Second Aim

[The Second Aim points out a single gem from the treasure of the following verse, and concerns the transformation of minute particles.]

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

And yet, the unbelievers assert, “Never will the Hour come upon us!” Say, “Nay! But most surely, by my Sustainer, it will come upon you - by Him Who knows the Unseen, - from Whom is not hidden the least little atom in the heavens or on the earth, nor is there anything less than that, or greater, but it is in the Clear Book.20

[This Second Aim points out a mere atom’s weight from the great treasure of this verse; that is, some jewels from the caskets that are particles, and it discusses to some small degree their motion and duty. It consists of an Introduction and three Points.]

Introduction

The transformation of particles are the vibrations and wanderings that occur while the signs of creation are being written in the book of the universe by the pen of power of the Pre-Eternal Inscriber. They are not games of chance and jumbled meaningless motion like the Materialists and Naturalists fancy. For like all beings, every particle says “In the Name of God” at the start of its motion, and it raises loads infinitely exceeding its strength. For example, a seed the size of a grain of wheat shoulders a load the size of a huge pine-tree. And on completion of its duty, it says “All praise be to God.” For by exhibiting an art that is beautiful and full of purpose and a decoration that is fine and full of benefits which astound all minds, it displays a work of art like an ode in praise of the Glorious Maker. Look carefully at pomegranates and ears of corn, for example.

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20. Qur’an, 34:3.



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Indeed, the transformations of particles are the motion and meaningful vibrations that proceed according to the dictation and principles of the ‘Clear Record,’ which is a title of Divine knowledge and command and is the arrangement of the past origin and future progeny of everything in the World of the Unseen. They proceed by means of transcription from the ‘Clear Book,’ which is a title for Divine power and will and is formed of present time and the Manifest World and consists of the free disposal of that power and will in the creation of things. Thus, this motion and meaningful vibration proceed from the writing and drawing of the words of power in the ‘Tablet of Effacement and Reaffirmation,’ which is a metaphorical page, and the reality of the stream of time.21

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21. This footnote is an explanation of the long sentence [here, a paragraph] defining the transformations of minute particles, which is the subject of the Second Aim.

The Clear Record and the Clear Book are repeated in several places in the All-Wise Qur’an. One group of commentators on the Qur’an maintained that they are the same, while others stated that they are different from one another. Their explanations as to their true meanings were diverse, but in short they agreed that they are both titles to describe Divine knowledge. However, through the effulgence of the Qur’an, I came to the conclusion that the Clear Record, which looks more to the World of the Unseen than to the Manifest World, was a title for one aspect of God’s knowledge and His command. That is to say, it looks more to the past and future than to present time. It looks more to the origin and progeny and to the roots and seeds of everything, rather than to them in their visible existence. It is a notebook for Divine Determining. The existence of this notebook has been proved in the Twenty-Sixth Word and also in the footnote of the Tenth Word.

Yes, this Clear Record is a sort of title for the knowledge and commands of God. That is to say, the origins, sources and roots from which things are brought into existence with perfect order and art show that they must be arranged in accordance with a notebook of the principles of Divine knowledge. And because the results, progeny, and seeds of things contain the indexes and programmes of beings which will come into existence subsequently, they indicate that they must be a small register of Divine commands.

For example, a seed may be seen as the programme and index that will give form to the structure of the whole tree, and, furthermore, as the tiny embodiment of the commands that cause the tree to come into existence and determine its programmes and indexes. In short, the Clear Record is like an index and programme of the tree of creation, which spreads its branches through every part of the past and the future, and of the World of the Unseen. In this sense, the Clear Record is a notebook and register of the principles of Divine Determining. Through the dictation and requirement of those principles, particles are employed in their duties and motion in things, as those things come into existence.

As for the Clear Book, it looks more to the Manifest World than to the World of the Unseen. That is to say, it looks more to present time than to the past and the future. It is a title, a notebook, a book of the will and power of God, rather than of His knowledge and commands. If the Clear Record is the notebook for Divine Determining, the Clear Book is the notebook for Divine power. That is to say, the fact that everything in its existence, essence, attributes and functions displays perfect art and order proves that it has been given existence through the laws of an effective will and the principles of a flawless power. And, as well as its specified and individual form, everything has been given an appointed measure and particular shape. Therefore, the power and will have a universal and comprehensive register of laws, a great ledger, according to which the particular form and substance of everything is cut out, sewn and clothed. The existence of this ledger, like the Clear Record, has been proved among the questions of Divine Determining and man’s will in the Twenty-Sixth Word.

Just look at the stupidity of the people of neglect, misguidance and philosophy, they have perceived that ‘Preserved Tablet’ of creative power, and the manifestation, reflection, and demonstration in things of that perspicaciously written book of dominical wisdom and will, and yet, God forbid, by naming it ‘nature,’ they have made it completely meaningless. Whereas, by means of the dictation of the Clear Record, that is, through the decree and instruction of Divine Determining, Divine Power is creating the chain of beings, each link of which is a sign in the creation of things. It is causing the motion of particles, it is writing on the metaphorical page of time, which is called the Tablet of Effacement and Reaffirmation.

Thus, the motion of particles is the vibration and motion from that writing and transcription, which occurs while beings pass from the World of the Unseen to the Manifest World, as they pass from knowledge to power. And as for the Tablet of Effacement of Reaffirmation, it is a slate for writing and erasing, an ever-changing notebook of the Supreme Preserved Tablet, which is fixed and constant. It is its notebook in the sphere of contingency, where all things are unceasing manifestations of life and death, existence and ephemerality. And this is the reality of time. Indeed, what we call time, which is a mighty river flowing in creation, has a reality like everything else. Its reality is like the ink and the page of the writing of Power in the Tablet of Effacement and Reaffirmation.

None knows the Unseen, save God.

continue to Part 04

Thanks for coming

Thanks for coming
Terima kasih sudi hadir

Tajuk - Title