Dec 4, 2012

THE WORDS by Sheikh Bediuzzaman Said Nursi - Part 04

The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.572

• FIRST POINT

The First Point discusses two Matters.

FIRST MATTER: In every facet of the motion of all particles the light of Divine unity shines like the sun. For as is proved briefly in the First Indication of the Tenth Word and in detail in the Twenty-Second Word, if every particle is not an official of God acting with His permission and under His authority, and if it is not undergoing change within His knowledge and power, then every particle must have infinite knowledge and limitless power; it must have eyes that see everything, a face that looks to all things, and authority over all things. For every particle of the elements acts, or can act, in an orderly fashion in all animate beings. But the order within things and laws according to which they are formed differ from one thing to the next. If their order was not known to the particles, the particles could not act, or even if they could act, they could not act without error. In which case, the particles which are performing their duties in beings are either acting with the permission and at the command, and within the knowledge and at the will, of the owner of an all-encompassing knowledge, or they themselves must have such an all-encompassing knowledge and power.

Yes, all particles of air can enter the bodies of all animate beings, the fruits of all flowers, and the structures of all leaves. They can act within them, although the way the beings are formed is all different and their order and systems quite distinct. As though the factory of a fig was a loom for weaving cloth and the factory of a pomegranate, a machine for producing sugar, and so on; the programmes of their structures and bodies all differ from each


The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.573

other. A particle of air, then, enters or can enter all of them. It takes up its position and acts in a wise and masterly fashion without error. And on completion of its duty it departs. A mobile particle of mobile air, therefore, either must know the forms, shapes, measures, and formations with which plants and animals, and even fruits and flowers, are clothed, or else it must be an official acting under the command and will of one who does know.

Similarly with a stationary particle of stationary earth: since it has the ability to be the means and place of cultivation for all the seeds of all flowering plants and fruit-bearing trees, either there must be in the particle itself or in the handful of soil that is its little house immaterial machinery and factories in good working order to the number of the varieties of the trees and plants, and flowers and fruits -in fact, it is in every single particle that there must be a factory peculiar to it and all the equipment and machinery necessary for the running of the factory- or else it must have a miraculous knowledge that knows all things about all things and a miracle-working power that creates everything from nothing; or, those duties are performed at the command and with the permission of One Who is Knowing of All Things, and through the power and might of One Who is Absolutely Powerful over All Things.

If an untrained and inexperienced, common, ordinary, and blind man was to go to Europe and in all the factories there to work at all the trades and crafts in perfect and masterly fashion, and if he was to display a wise and artistic skill to such a degree that it left everyone speechless with amazement, anyone with a grain of consciousness would know that the man was not acting on his own initiative, but that a master of all trades was teaching him and causing him to work.

And if there was a blind and impotent man who lived in a simple little house and was unable even to rise from his place, and if small fragments of stone, and bits and pieces of material like bone and cotton were to enter his little house and then sacks of sugar, bales of cloth, crates of jewelry, finely-made clothes encrusted with jewels, and delicious foods were to emerge, would anyone with a grain of intelligence not say: “That man is a wretched doorkeeper or merely a latch on the door of the factory of a wondrous miracle-working being, which is the source of his miracles”?

In exactly the same way, the motion and duties of particles of air in plants and trees, and blossom and fruit, all of which are missives of the Eternally Besought One, antique dominical works of art, miracles of power, and wonders of wisdom, indicate that the particles are acting under the command and at the will of an All-Wise and Glorious Maker, an All-Generous and Beauteous Creator.

Particles of earth, also, since they are the source and means for the shoots


The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.574

and plants produced by seeds, each of which is a different factory and workbench, a different printing-press, treasury, and antique, a different manifesto proclaiming the Glorious Maker’s Names and ode hymning His perfections, it is as definite as two plus two equalling four that the particles of earth are acting at the command, with the permission, and through the will and power of an All-Glorious Maker Who is Lord of the command of “Be!” and it is,22 and to Whose command everything is subjugated. In this we believe.

SECOND MATTER: The Second Matter indicates briefly the duties and instances of wisdom in the motion of particles.

The Materialists, whose use of their reasons is limited to what is immediately apparent to them, have, in their nonsensical philosophies which are based on foundations of futility, taken the transformations of particles, which they regard as the results of coincidence, as the fundamental basis of all their principles and shown that the Divine works and creatures result from those transformations. Anyone with a grain of intelligence would know how contrary to reason is their attributing creatures adorned with infinite instances of wisdom to something based on purposeless, meaningless coincidence, which is quite without order.

Whereas, from the point of view of the wisdom of the All-Wise Qur’an, the transformations of particles have many purposes and duties, and demonstrate many instances of wisdom. The Qur’an points to these duties and instances of wisdom with many of its verses, such as:

And there is nothing but extols His limitless glory and praise.23

We shall mention several of these by way of examples.

The First: Renewing and refreshing the manifestations of His act of creation, the Necessarily Existent One takes all spirits as models and in order to every year clothe them in fresh bodies through miracles of His power, and through His wisdom to transcribe thousands and thousands of different books from every book, and to demonstrate single truths in constantly differing forms, and also to prepare the ground and make way for the beings, worlds and universes, which follow on one after the other, group by group, the Glorious Creator causes particles to move and employs them through His power.

The Second: The Glorious Lord of All Dominion created this world, and especially the field of the face of the earth, in the form of a cultivated property. That is to say, He prepared it in such a way that it would flourish and produce ever-fresh crops and He might sow and reap the numberless miracles of His power. Thus, by causing the motion of particles with wisdom and

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22. Qur’an, 36:82, etc.
23. Qur’an, 17:44.



The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.575

employing them in an orderly fashion in His field of the earth, He displays every age, every season, every month, indeed every day, and every hour, endless beings through miracles of His power, each of which is a cosmos, and causes His field to produce constantly differing crops. He demonstrates through the motion of particles, gifts from the infinite treasury of His mercy and samples of His endless power.

The Third: The Pre-Eternal Inscriber caused the motion of particles with perfect wisdom and employed them with perfect order so that, through displaying the embroideries of the endless manifestations of the Divine Names, He might exhibit the endless embroideries in a limited field, and set forth the manifestations of the Names, and He might write the infinite signs, which will point to infinite meanings, on a small page.

Yes, in essence this year’s crops are like those of last year, but their meanings are different. Since the relative determinations are changed, their meanings change and increase. And although the relative determinations and transient embodiments are replaced and are apparently ephemeral, their beautiful meanings are preserved and are constant and permanent.

Since the leaves, flowers, and fruits of last spring’s tree do not have spirits, in reality they are the same as those of this spring. But the relative embodiments differ. And, the relative embodiments of this spring replace those of last spring with different embodiments in order to set forth the meanings of the functions of the Divine Names, whose manifestations are being constantly renewed.

The Fourth: The All-Wise and Glorious One causes the motion of particles in the narrow tillage of this world, in the workshop and field of the face of the earth, thus making the cosmos as flowing and beings as travelling, in order to grow things like crops or items for decoration or provision suitable for the most broad World of the Inner Dimensions of Things, and endless other worlds of the hereafter, like the infinite World of Similitudes. He thus grows in this small world vast quantities of crops appropriate for those vast worlds. He causes an endless flood to flow through the world from the infinite treasury of His power and to pour into the World of the Unseen, and some of it into the worlds of the hereafter.

The Fifth: By causing the motion of particles with perfect wisdom through His power and employing them with perfect order in order to display infinite Divine perfections, endless manifestations of beauty and glory, and countless dominical glorifications in this narrow and limited field and finite and short time, He causes endless glorification in finite time and in a limited field. He displays infinite manifestations of His beauty and glory and perfection. He creates many truths concerning the Unseen, many fruits for the hereafter, and a great many embroideries and meaningful weavings from



The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.576

the enduring selfhood and forms of ephemeral creatures appropriate for the World of Similitudes and the Tablet. Therefore, the One Who causes the motion of particles is the One Who displays these grand purposes and mighty instances of wisdom. If it was otherwise, there would have to be a brain as huge as the sun in every particle.

Those brainless philosophers suppose to be purposeless the transformations of particles, which occur with wisdom not limited to the five above examples, but with infinite wisdom. They fancy the particles, which revolve like Mevlevi dervishes glorifying God and reciting His Names in two ecstatic movements, one turning on their own axes, the other describing circles, to be reeling around as though stunned and aimless. It may be understood from this, then, that their knowledge is not knowledge, it is ignorance, and their philosophy, futility.

(A sixth and lengthy example will be discussed in the Third Point.)

• SECOND POINT

In every particle there are two truthful evidences to the existence and unity of the Necessarily Existent One. Indeed, by carrying out its important duties consciously and by raising mighty loads despite being powerless and lifeless, a particle bear decisive witness to the existence of the Necessarily Existent One. And by conforming to the universal order peculiar to each place it enters, and by settling anywhere as though it was its homeland, it testifies to the unity of the Necessarily Existent One and to the oneness of that Being Who is the Owner of all things, with their apparent faces and their inner aspects which look to Him. That is to say, whoever owns the particles must also own all the places it enters.

Thus, since its loads are extremely heavy and its duties endless, the particle demonstrates that it is mobile and acting at the command of One Possessing Absolute Power, and in His name. And, the fact that it conforms as though knowingly to the universal order of the cosmos and enters each place without obstacle shows that it acts through the power and wisdom of a single Being Possessing Absolute Knowledge.

A private soldier has relations with his squad, his company, his battalion, his regiment, and his division, and so on, and has duties in connection with each. Since he knows all those relations and duties, he will act in conformity with them. For, having received training and instruction under military discipline, he complies with the rules and regulations of a single supreme commander who commands all those sections.

In the same way, all particles are suitably placed within compounds, and with every facet of the compounds have different beneficial relations and different well-regulated duties that yield wise results that are all different. It



The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.577

is therefore surely only One in the grasp of whose power is the whole universe who can place the particles in such a way as to preserve all their relations with and duties in all the facets of the compounds, and not spoil the wise results.

For example, a particle located in Tevfik’s24 eye is suitably placed with regard to the blood-vessels like the arteries and veins, and the motor and sensory nerves, and has a wise and purposeful relationship with the face, and then with the head, the trunk, and with the entire human body, and has beneficial duties in relation to each. This demonstrates that only one who creates all the members of the body will be able to place the particle in that position.

Particles entering the body as sustenance in the caravan of food in particular make their journey with astonishing order and wisdom. On their way, they pass through modes and stages in an orderly manner, and progressing consciously without confusion carry on till they are strained through the four filters in the bodies of animate beings. They are then loaded onto the red blood-corpuscles in order to come to the assistance of the members and cells which are in need of sustenance, rendering this assistance according to a law of generosity. It may be clearly understood from this that the One Who drives these particles and causes them to pass through thousands of different states must of necessity be a Generous Sustainer, a Compassionate Creator, in relation to Whose power particles and stars are equal.

Moreover, all particles act within embroideries of the greatest art and have relations with all the other particles therein. Since each is in a position of both dominance and subjection to all the rest, both to each individually and to all of them generally, it either knows and creates that wonderfully skilful embroidery and wisdom-displaying ornamented art, which is a thousand times impossible, or each of them is a point assigned to that motion, which proceeds from the law of Divine Determining and pen of power of the All-Wise Maker.

For example, if the stones of the dome of Aya Sophia are not dependent on the command and skill of its architect, all the stones must have skill in the art of building like that of the architect Sinan, and must be either subject to, or dominant over, the rest of the stones. That is, they must have the power to say: “Come, we shall stand shoulder to shoulder in order not to fall and collapse.”

In the same way, if the particles in creatures, which are thousands of times more skilfully fashioned, wonderful, and full of wisdom than the dome of Aya Sophia, are not dependent on the command of the master builder of the

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24. The first scribe of the Risale-i Nur.





The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.578

universe, to each of them must the ascribed as many attributes of perfection as those of the universe’s Maker.

Glory be to God! Since the unbelievers do not accept a Necessarily Existent One, they are compelled according to their beliefs to accept as many false gods as there are particles. Thus, no matter how illustrious a philosopher or scholar an unbeliever may be, he is in profound ignorance to the utmost degree.

• THIRD POINT,

This Point is an indication to the sixth example of the mighty instances of wisdom in the motion of particles, which was promised at the end of the First Point.

As was stated in the footnote of the answer to the Second Question in the Twenty-Eighth Word, a further instance of wisdom of the thousands contained in the transformations of particles and their motion in the bodies of animate beings, is to illuminate the particles and to make them alive and meaningful in order to be fitting for the construction of the world of the hereafter. It is as if the bodies of animals and humans, and even plants, are like guest-houses, barracks, and schools for those who enter in order to take lessons and be trained; inanimate particles enter them and are illuminated. Simply, the particles receive training and instruction and acquire a fineness. By fulfilling different duties, they become worthy to be particles in the world of permanence and the realm of the hereafter, which is alive with all of its elements.

QUESTION:

How is it known that there is this wisdom in the motion of particles?

ANSWER:

Firstly: It is known through the wisdom of the Maker, which is proved by all the wise benefits and purposes and the order in all creatures. For a wisdom that attaches universal wisdom to the most particular thing would not leave without wisdom and purpose the motion of particles, which demonstrate the greatest activity in the flood of the universe and are the means for embroideries full of wisdom. Also, a wisdom and sovereignty which does not leave the smallest creature without a wage, recompense, and perfection in its duties, would not leave its most numerous officials and principal servants without light, without a wage.

Secondly: By causing the motion of the elements and employing them, the All-Wise Maker raises them to the degree of minerals as though it was a wage of perfection, and instructs them in the glorification peculiar to minerals. And through causing the motion of minerals and employing them, He



The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.579

confers on them the rank of the degree of vegetable life. And by presenting vegetable life in the form of sustenance, He grants it, through its motion and employment, the degree of fineness of animal life. And through employing the particles in animals, He raises them by way of being sustenance to the degree of human life. And by purifying the particles in a human body through repeated filtering, and by favouring them, He promotes them to the most delicate and subtle places, which are the brain and the heart. From all this it may be understood that the motion of particles is not without wisdom, but that the particles are made to hasten to a sort of perfection worthy of themselves.

Thirdly: Among the particles in animate beings, some, like those in pips and seeds, receive such a light, fineness, and quality that they are like a spirit or a king to the rest of the particles, to a huge tree, for example. Thus, since among all the particles of a huge tree some rise to this rank through fulfilling their delicate duties and passing through the many stages in the life of the tree, it demonstrates that through the command of the All-Wise Maker these particles receive a fineness, light, rank, and instruction on account of and in honour of the Divine Names manifested on them in accordance with the sorts of motion that are the functions of their natures, and in honour of them.

TO CONCLUDE: Since25 the All-Wise Maker has specified for everything a suitable point of perfection and an appropriate level of the effulgence of existence, by giving everything a disposition that will strive to reach that point of perfection, He drives them towards it. This ‘Law of Dominicality’ is in force in all plants and animals, as it is in inanimate beings, in which it promotes plain earth to the rank of diamonds and to the level of priceless jewels. Within this truth, the tip of a mighty ‘Law of Dominicality’ is apparent.

And since the All-Generous Creator bestows as payment to the animals He employs in the mighty law of generation a particular pleasure as a sort of wage. And He gives a wage of perfection to the animals employed in other dominical functions, like bees and nightingales, for example. He confers on them a level whereat they feel eagerness and receive pleasure. And within this the tip of a mighty ‘Law of Generosity’ is apparent.

And since the reality of everything looks to the manifestation of one of God Almighty’s Names, and is bound to it, and is a mirror to it; whatever beauty is apparent in each, it is due to the Name; the Name requires it to be thus. Whether or not the thing is aware of it, in the view of reality the beauty is demanded. And from this truth, the tip of a most mighty ‘Law of Beauty and Making Beautiful’ is apparent.

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25. The sentence answering this ‘since’ and that at the beginning of the following six paragraphs is on page 581.



The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.580

And since, as is necessitated by His law of generosity, when the life of a thing ends, the Generous Creator does not take back the rank and perfection He has bestowed on it, but makes permanent the fruits, results, and real meaning and identity of that bearer of perfection, and, if it has a spirit, its spirit. For example, He makes permanent the meanings and fruits of the perfections He has made manifest on man in this world. He will even return to a thankful believer the embodiment of the thanks and praise for the transient fruits that he has eaten in the form of a fruit of Paradise. And in this truth, the tip of a mighty ‘Law of Mercy’ is apparent.

And since the Peerless Creator wastes nothing, He does nothing in vain. He even utilizes in the creatures of springtime the material débris of those of the previous autumn, who, having accomplished their duties, have died, including them in their construction. For sure, according to the meaning of,

On the Day the earth will be changed into another earth,26

and the indication of,

But, indeed, the life of the hereafter, that is the true life,27

it is indeed a requirement of wisdom that the particles of the earth, which are inanimate and unconscious yet perform important duties in this world, should be utilized and included in some of the constructions of the hereafter, the stones, the trees, and all things of which will most certainly be animate and conscious. For to leave in the world the particles of the world when it has been destroyed or to cast them into non-existence would be wasteful. And from this truth, the tip of truly mighty ‘Law of Wisdom’ is apparent.

And since the many results, meanings, and fruits of this world, and the woven pages of the acts and deeds, and the spirits and bodies, of those like jinn and human beings who are charged with the Trust are sent to the market of the hereafter. Certainly, it is a requirement of justice and wisdom that after receiving their particular perfection in accordance with the performance of their duties, the particles of the earth, which accompany and serve those fruits and meanings, will be included in the construction of the hereafter. That is, they will be included in it together with the débris of this world, which will be destroyed, after many times serving and receiving the light of life, and after being the means for the glorifications of animate creatures. And from this truth, the tip of a truly mighty ‘Law of Justice’ is apparent.

And since, just as the spirit is dominant over the body, so the commands that bring things into existence, which are written by Divine Determining, are dominant over inanimate matter. Inanimate matter is able to assume a position and an order due to the immaterial writing of Divine Determining.

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26. Qur’an, 14:48.
27. Qur’an, 29:64.



The Words / Thirtieth Word - Second Aim - p.581

For example, in all kinds of eggs and sperm, and varieties of seeds and grains, matter acquires different ranks and lights according to the commands that bring things into existence, which are all written differently by Divine Determining. The inanimate matter of seeds, which is all the same in regard to its substance,28 becomes the source of innumerable different beings. It obtains ranks and lights which are all different. Most certainly, then, it is the requirement of an all-encompassing knowledge that if a particle has been repeatedly in the service of life and of the dominical glorifications that are in life, the wisdom of those meanings will be recorded on the immaterial forehead of the particle by the pen of Divine Determining, which neglects nothing at all. And in this, the tip of a truly mighty ‘Law of All-Encompassing Knowledge’ is apparent.

Since this is the case, particles are not without purpose.29

IN SHORT: Beyond the visible tips of each of the seven above-mentioned laws, that is, the ‘Law of Dominicality’, the ‘Law of Generosity’, the ‘Law of Beauty’, the ‘Law of Mercy’, the ‘Law of Wisdom’, the ‘Law of Justice’, and the ‘Law of All-Encompassing Knowledge’, and of a great many other vast laws, a Greatest Name and the greatest manifestation of that Greatest Name is pointed to. It may be understood from that manifestation that, like the rest of the creatures, the transformations of particles in this world are occurring with a sensitive balance measured with knowledge, according to the commands given by Divine power that bring things into existence, on the limits drawn by Divine Determining, for most exalted instances of wisdom. Simply, they are being prepared to go to another higher world.30 In which case, the bodies of animate beings are each like schools, barracks, and guest-houses for the instruction of those travelling particles. It may be stated with certainty that it is so.

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28. Indeed, the seeds are all compounds of the four elements; they are formed of matter like hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon. Materially they may be considered to be the same; the difference between them lies only in the immaterial writing of Divine Determining.
29. This sentence is the answer to the word ‘since’ at the beginning of the preceding seven paragraphs.
30. For, as may be observed, the light of life is kindled and scattered most freely in this turbid and lowly world with an activity that is extremely extensive, and a fresh light of life is illuminated widely, even in insignificant material and rotten substances, and that dense and insignificant matter is refined and polished with the light of life. This indicates clearly that this turbid and lifeless world is being dissolved, polished and made beautiful through the motion of particles and the light of life for the sake of another most subtle, exalted, pure and living world. It is as if it is being adorned in order to go to some subtle world. If those people, therefore, whose minds are so straitened that they cannot squeeze into them the idea of bodily resurrection look with the light of the Qur’an, they will see a ‘Law of the Self-Subsistent One through which the universe subsists’ that is so comprehensive as to resurrect all particles as though they were an army. It may be clearly seen to be in force and prevailing over creation.

The Words / Thirtieth Word - Conclusion - p.582

· CONCLUSION

As is stated and proved in the First Word, all things say: “In the Name of God.” Thus, like all beings, all particles and all groups and particular assemblages of particles say: “In the Name of God” with the tongue of disposition, and they are in motion.

According to the meaning of the previous three Points, at the beginning of their motion all particles recite: “In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate” through the tongue of disposition. That is, “I am moving in the name of God, for His sake, with His permission, and through His power.” Then, like all creatures, at the end of their motion, all particles and all groups of particles declare through the tongue of disposition: “All praise be God, Sustainer of All the Worlds.” Each particle thus shows itself to be like the tip of a tiny pen of power tracing the embroideries of the skilfully-worked creatures, which are like odes of praise. Indeed, each of them is like the point of a needle turning on creatures, which in turn are like the records of a mighty, immaterial, dominical gramophone with innumerable arms; they cause those creatures to recite odes glorifying their Sustainer and to hymn praises to God.

They will cry out therein, “All Glory be unto You, O God!” And “Peace” will be their greeting therein. And their call will close with, “All praise is due to God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds!”31

All glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us, indeed You are All-Knowing, All-Wise!32

O our Sustainer! Let not our hearts swerve from the truth after You have guided us, and bestow upon us the gift of Your grace; for, indeed, You are the Giver of Gifts.33

O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad that will be pleasing to You and fulfilment to his truth, and to his Family, his Companions, and his brothers, and grant them peace. And protect us and protect our religion. Amen. O Sustainer of All the Worlds!

ba

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31. Qur’an, 10:10.
32. Qur’an, 2:32.
33. Qur’an, 3:8.



The Words / Thirty-First Word - p.583

The Thirty-First Word

On the Ascension of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him)

[NOTE: The Ascension is a question that results from the essentials and pillars of belief, and follows on after them, a light that draws strength from the lights of the pillars of belief. For sure, the Ascension cannot be proved independently to irreligious atheists who do not accept the pillars of belief, because it cannot be discussed with those who neither know God, nor recognize the Prophet, nor accept the angels, and who deny the existence of the heavens. Firstly those pillars must be proved. Since this is the case, we shall address the discussion to a believer who, since he considers it unlikely, has misgivings about the Ascension and we shall explain it to him. However, from time to time we shall take into account the atheist who is the position of listener and shall set forth the matter to him. Some flashes of the truth of the Ascension have been mentioned in others of the other Words. At the insistence of my brothers we seek the grace from Almighty God to unite all those different flashes with the essence of the truth, and with all of them to form a mirror to the beauty of the perfections of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him).]

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

Limitless in His glory is He Who transported His servant by night from the Inviolable House of Worship to the Remote House of Worship, the environs of which We had blessed, so that We might show him some of Our signs: for, indeed, He is All-Hearing, All-Seeing.1

It is no less than inspiration sent down to him; * He was taught by one mighty in power, * Endued with wisdom: for he appeared in [stately form] * While he was in the horizon’s loftiest part. * Then he

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1. Qur’an, 17:1.



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approached and came closer, * And was at a distance of but two bow-lengths or [even] nearer; * And thus did [God] reveal unto His servant whatever He revealed. * The [servant’s] heart in no way falsified what it saw. * Will you, then, dispute with him as to what he saw? * For, indeed, he saw him at a second descent, * Near the Lote-tree of the farthest limit, * Near it is to the Garden of Abode. * Behold, the Lote-tree was shrouded in mystery unspeakable. * [His] eye did not waver, nor yet did it stray. * Truly did he see some of the most profound of his Sustainer’s signs.æont>2

Since it is related to our question here, I shall expound two allusions -based on principles of the science of rhetoric- contained in the pronominal phrase for indeed He, which is part of the vast treasury of the first sublime verse mentioned above. It was also explained in the treatise about the Qur’an’s miraculousness.

After mentioning the journey of God’s Most Noble Beloved (Upon whom be the best of blessings and most perfect peace) from the mosque at Mecca to the mosque in Jerusalem, which was the beginning of his Ascension, the All-Wise Qur’an says: He is All-Hearing, All-Seeing. This phrase, together with the pronoun in the phrase, for indeed He, which alludes to the furthest point of the Ascension indicated to by the verses from Sura an-Najm, refers either to Almighty God or to the Prophet (PBUH).

If it refers to the Prophet (PBUH), the rule of rhetoric and the relationship in the sequence of the words states the following: there is, within this particular journey a general one and a universal ascent during which the Prophet (PBUH) heard and saw the dominical signs and wonders of Divine art which his eyes and ears happened upon within the universal degrees of the Divine Names as far as the Lote-tree of the farthest limit and the distance of two bow-lengths. It indicates that his insignificant and particular journey was like the key to a journey that is both universal and an exhibition of marvels.

If the pronoun refers to Almighty God, it is thus: in order to invite one of His servants on a journey to His presence and to entrust him with a duty, after sending him from the Mosque in Mecca to that in Jerusalem, which is where the prophets gather, and causing him to meet with them and demonstrating that he was the sole heir of the principles of the religions of all the prophets, He took him on a journey through both the external face of the world of existence and the face that looks to its Creator as far as the Lote-tree of the farthest limit and the distance of two bow-lengths.

Certainly, he was a servant and the journey was a particular Ascension

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2. Qur’an, 53:4-18.



The Words / Thirty-First Word - First Principle - p.585

but he had been accorded a Trust that was connected to the whole universe and had been given a light that would change the colour of the universe. Moreover, since he had with him the key to open the door leading to eternal happiness, God Almighty bestowed on him the attribute of “seeing and hearing all things” so that he might demonstrate the world-embracing comprehensive wisdom of the Trust, light, and key - wisdom and purposes which encompassed the whole universe and embraced all creatures.

This profound truth contains four Principles.

The First: Why was the Ascension necessary?

The Second: What was the reality of the Ascension?

The Third: What was the wisdom and purpose of the Ascension?

The Fourth: What are the fruits and benefits of the Ascension?

First Principle

The reason for the Ascension’s necessity

It is said, for example, that Almighty God is closer to him than his jugular vein.3 He is closer to everything than anything else. He is free of and beyond corporeality and space. However, all the saints are able to converse with Him in their hearts, so why was the Saint, Muhammad (PBUH), successful in holding an inward conversation with God that any saint may do in his heart, only after and as a result of a long journey like the Ascension?

The Answer: We shall make this profound mystery easier to understand by means of two comparisons. Consider these two comparisons from the Twelfth Word, which are about the mystery of the Qur’an’s miraculousness and the mystery of the Ascension.

First Comparison: A king has two sorts of interviewing, conversation, and discussion at his disposal, and two modes of address and favour. The first is to converse with a common subject about a particular matter and special need by means of a private telephone. The second, under the title of august sovereignty, in the name of supreme kingship, with the dignity of universal rule, and with the aim of publishing and promulgating his commands, is to converse and speak through an envoy connected to those matters or by means of a high official related to those commands. It is also to speak through an illustrious edict that proclaims his majesty.

Thus, And God’s is the highest similitude,4 like this comparison, the

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3. Qur’an, 50:16.
4. Qur’an, 16:60.



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Creator of the universe, the Lord of all things with their apparent and inner faces, the Sovereign of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, has two modes of conversing, speaking, and favouring. The first is particular and private, the other universal and general. The Ascension, therefore, was a manifestation of the sainthood of Muhammad (PBUH) in the form of a universality and exaltedness superior to all other sainthood. It was being honoured by God Almighty’s conversation and address through His Name of Sustainer of All the Universe and title of Creator of All Beings.

Second Comparison: A man holds up the mirror he is holding to the sun. According to its capacity, the mirror receives light, which contains the seven colours, from the sun, and a reflection. The man becomes connected with the sun and converses with it in relation to these. If he directs the luminous mirror towards his dark house or his tiny, private garden, which is covered by a roof, he cannot benefit in relation to the sun’s value, but only in accordance with the capacity of the mirror.

A second man, however, puts down the mirror, faces the sun directly, and sees its majesty and understands its grandeur. Then he climbs a very high mountain, sees the brilliance of the sun’s broad dominion and converses with it in person and without veil. Then he returns and makes large windows in his house and in the roof over his garden, and opens up ways to the sun in the sky, and speaks and converses with the constant light of the actual sun. And he is able to speak to it gratefully as follows:

“O amiable sun, who is the beauty of the world and pet of the skies, who gilds the face of the earth with its light and makes it and the faces of all flowers smile! You have heated and illuminated my little house and garden in the same way that you have illuminated the whole world and warmed the face of the earth.” The first man with the mirror, however, cannot say that, for the sun’s reflection and traces are limited and restricted by the mirror, and are in accordance with the restriction.

Thus, the manifestation of the Single and Eternally Besought One, the Pre-Eternal Sun and Post-Eternal Sovereign, appears in the human essence in two forms, which comprise innumerable degrees.

The First is a manifestation through a dominical relationship which is extended to the mirror of the heart. Through it, everyone may receive the particular and universal manifestation of the Pre-Eternal Sun’s light, discourse, and conversation in relation to his capacity, and in the relation to the manifestation of the Divine Names and attributes in his traversing the degrees in his spiritual journeying. The degrees of sainthood, which proceed under the shadow of most of the Names and attributes, arise from this sort.

The Second: Since man possesses comprehensiveness and is the most enlightened fruit of the tree of the universe, and since he is able to display at



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once in the mirror of his spirit all the Divine Names manifested in the universe, Almighty God displayed, through the manifestation of His Essence and at the greatest level of the Most Beautiful Names, in the member of the human race who reflected them most comprehensively the greatest manifestation of those Names. This display and manifestation is the inner meaning of the Ascension of Muhammad (PBUH), by which his sainthood became the source of his messengership.

Sainthood proceeds through shadow and resembles the first man in the Second Comparison. While in messengership there is no shadow, it looks directly to the oneness of the All-Glorious One and resembles the second man in the Second Comparison. As for the Ascension, since it was the greatest wonder of Muhammad’s sainthood and also its highest degree, it was transformed into the degree of messengership. The inner face of the Ascension was sainthood, it went from creation to Creator. While its apparent face was messengership, it came from Creator to creation. Sainthood is spiritual journeying in the levels close to God; it needs a certain amount of time and many degrees must be traversed. While messengership, whose light is greatest, looks to the mystery of uncovering Divine immediacy, for which the passing instant is sufficient. It was for this reason that it is said in the Hadith: “He went and returned in an instant.”5

Now we say to the atheist who is in the position of listener: “Since the universe resembles a most orderly country, magnificent city, and adorned palace, it surely must have a ruler, owner, and builder. And since there is such a magnificent, All-Glorious Owner, All-Perfect Ruler, and All-Beauteous Maker; and since there was a human being whose view was universal and who demonstrated a relationship with the entire world, country, city, and palace and was connected to all of them through his senses and faculties of perception; certainly, the Magnificent Maker would have an elevated relationship to the fullest degree with that human being, whose view was universal and consciousness comprehensive, and would favour him with an exalted and sacred address.

Among those who manifested this relationship from the time of Adam (Peace be upon him) up to now, Muhammad the Arabian (Peace and blessings be upon him) demonstrated it at the very fullest degree according to the testimony of his achievements, that is, his having taken half the globe and a fifth of mankind under this direction and control and having transformed and illuminated the spiritual shape of the universe. This being so, the Ascension, which comprised the very fullest degree of that relationship, is most worthy and suitable for him.

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5. Suyuti, al-Khasa’is al-Kubra, i, 439, 444; Qadi Iyad, al-Shifa’, 190, 192.



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Second Principle

What was the reality of the Ascension?

The Answer: It consisted of the journeying of the person of Muhammad (PBUH) through the degrees of perfection. That is, through the various Names and titles He makes manifest in the disposition of creatures, and by showing that special servant of His all the works of His dominicality which He displays in the spheres, creation, and regulation within the sovereignty of His dominicality, and in the levels of the heavens within those spheres -each of which is the means to a seat of dominicality and centre for the disposal of power- God Almighty made that servant both embrace all human perfections, and display all the Divine manifestations, and view all the levels of the universe, and the herald of the sovereignty of dominicality and the proclaimer of those things pleasing to God, and the solver of the talisman of the universe. And so that he could do this, He mounted him on Buraq, caused him to flash through the heavens like lightning traversing all its levels, observe Divine dominicality from mansion to mansion like the moon, and from sphere to sphere, and showing him each of the prophets, his brothers, whose abodes are in the heavens of those spheres, He raised him to the station of a distance of two bow-lengths and displayed to him His oneness and His Word and the vision of Himself.

This exalted truth may be examined through the telescope of two comparisons.

First Comparison: As is explained in the Twenty-Fourth Word, a king has different titles in the different spheres and offices of his government, different qualities and attributes in the classes of his subjects, and different names and marks in the degrees of his sovereignty. For example, he is Wise Judge in the judiciary, Sovereign in the civil service, Commander-in-Chief in the army, Caliph in the learned establishment, and so on; it is the same with the rest of his names and titles. In each sphere he has a seat or chair which has the meaning of a throne. The single king may be able to have a thousand names and titles in those spheres of sovereignty and levels of government; he may have a thousand thrones of sovereignty one within the other. It is as if the ruler is present and knowing in every sphere through his corporate personality and through his telephone; and sees and is seen in every class through his law, regulation, and representatives; and administers and observes from behind the veil in every level through his command, knowledge, and power; and has a different centre and headquarters in every sphere. His decrees are all different from one another, and his levels are all different from one another.



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Thus, a king such as this may allow a person of his choosing to visit all his different spheres and offices and may show him the imperial dominion and sovereign commands special to each. He may cause him to travel from sphere to sphere and from level to level until he brings him to his presence. There he will entrust him with certain universal and general commands concerning all those spheres and will send him back.

Similarly to this comparison, the Sustainer of All the Worlds, Who is the Sovereign of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, has functions and attributes in the levels of His dominicality which are all different but that look to one another; and Names and signatures in the spheres of His Divinity which are all different but which appear one within the other; and manifestations and revelations in the performance of His splendid deeds which are all different but which resemble each other; and titles in the disposal of His power which are all different, but which hint of one another; and sacred appearances in the manifestation of His attributes which are all different but which all point to each other; and acts of disposal in the manifestation of His actions which are all different but complete one another; and He has a majestic dominicality in His multicoloured art and creatures whose aspects are all different but which gaze on one another.

As a consequence of this vast mystery, He ordered the universe and arranged it in an amazing and wonderful fashion with different formations one over the other from particles, which are the tiniest level of creatures, to the heavens, and from the first level of the heavens to the Sublime Throne. Each heaven is like the roof of a different world, a throne for dominicality, a centre for Divine disposal.

For sure, with regard to Divine oneness, all the Divine Names may be found in those spheres and levels; they are manifested together with the titles. But just as in the Ministry of Justice the title of Wise Judge was fundamental and dominant and there the rest of the king’s titles looked to its command and were dependent on it, so in each level of creatures, in each heaven, one Name, one Divine title, is dominant, and the other titles look to it.

For example, in whichever sphere of the heavens the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) met with Jesus (Peace be upon him), who manifested the Name of All-Powerful, in that sphere God Almighty Himself was manifested with title of All-Powerful. And, for example, the most predominant in the sphere of the heavens which is Moses’ (Peace be upon him) seat is the title of Speaker, which he manifested. And so on.

Thus, since the person of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) manifested the Greatest Name, and all the Divine Names, and since his prophethood was universal, he was surely connected with all the spheres of



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dominicality. And to meet with the prophets whose seats are in those spheres and to pass through all those levels, surely necessitates the fact of the Ascension.

Second Comparison: The title of Commander-in-Chief, which is one of the titles of a king, is manifested and makes an appearance in every rank of the army from that of the commander-in-chief, which is a broad and universal rank, to that of a corporal, which is special and particular. For example, a private sees in the person of his corporal a sample of the imposing title of Commander-in-Chief, he looks to it and takes his orders from it. On becoming a corporal, the manifestation of the title in the sergeant’s rank will command his attention and it will be to that that he will look. Then, if he is promoted to the rank of sergeant, he will see a sample of the title of Commander-in-Chief and a manifestation of it in the lieutenant’s rank. It will be present together with a seat peculiar to it at that rank. And so on. He will see the title in each of its ranks of captain, major, general, and field marshal in relation to its smallness or largeness.

Now, if the Commander-in-Chief wishes to entrust the private with a duty which concerns all the ranks of the army, if he wishes to promote him to a rank where he can observe each sphere like an inspector and himself be observed; he will cause him to make a tour of inspection of the ranks, from that of the corporal to the highest, and will also allow him to be seen. Then he will receive him into his presence and honouring him with conversation and conferring on him a decoration and a decree, will send him back whence he came in an instant.

The following point must be noted in this comparison: if the king is not in any way powerless and if he has spiritual power in the same way that he has material power, he will not appoint persons like the general, field marshal and lieutenant as his representatives but will himself be present everywhere in person. He will give his orders directly, merely from behind certain veils and individuals, themselves of rank. In fact, there are narrations relating that certain kings who were saints of the highest level executed their affairs in many spheres in the form of different individuals.

As far as the truth we looked at in this comparison is concerned, since the Commander-in-Chief was in no way impotent, the order and command came directly from him in every sphere. Affairs were executed through his command, will, and power.

Like this comparison, the commands and authoritative functions of the Sovereign of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, Who is the Ruler of the heavens and the earth, Owner of the command of “Be!” and it is,6 and the Absolute Commander, are in force in all the levels of creatures and are conformed to

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6. See, Qur’an, 36:82, etc.



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with perfect obedience and order. Each appears as a sphere of dominicality, a level of rulership in the levels of creatures and classes of beings, which stretch from particles to the planets and from flies to the heavens, and which, great and small, particular and universal, are all different but are such that they look one to the other.

Now, the way to understand the exalted aims and mighty results of the entire universe and to see all the different duties of worship of all its levels; and, through observing the sovereignty of dominicality of the One of Grandeur and the splendour of His rule, to understand what is pleasing to Him; and to be the herald of His sovereignty, is to make a journey through all those levels and spheres until the Sublime Throne, which is the title of the greatest sphere, is reached; until The distance of two bow-lengths. It is to meet there with the All-Glorious and Beauteous One. And this journey is the reality of the Ascension.

Like ordinary human beings travel in the mind with the speed of imagination, and saints journey in the heart with the speed of lightning, like angels, which are luminous bodies, circulate with the speed of spirit from the Throne to the earth and from the earth to the Throne; and like the people of Paradise will rise to Paradise from the resurrection with the speed of Buraq through a distance greater than five hundred years;7 of a certainty the body of Muhammad (PBUH) went together with his elevated spirit as far as the Divine Throne. For the body of Muhammad (PBUH) was the treasury of the faculties of the spirit of Muhammad (PBUH), and the means for the performance of its duties, which is light and has the characteristics of light, is subtler than the hearts of the saints, more insubstantial than the spirits of the dead and the bodies of the angels, and more ethereal than the astral bodies and subtle bodies.

Now we consider the atheist who is listening. It comes to mind that he would think of saying: “I do not recognize God and I do not know the Prophet (PBUH), how should I believe in the Ascension?” To which we would reply as follows.

Since the universe and beings exist, and within them are acts and creation; and since an orderly act cannot occur without an author, a meaningful book cannot be without a scribe, and a skilful embroidery be without an embroiderer; the purposeful acts which fill the universe surely have an author, and the meaningful letters and amazing embroideries which cover the face of the earth and are renewed from season to season have a scribe and an embroiderer.

And since two governors directing the same matter spoils the order in that matter being spoilt; and since from a fly’s wing to the lamps in the heavens

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7. Bukhari, viii, 147; Ibn Mubarak, al-Zuhd, ii, 122.



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there is perfect order, there must be only one governor, one ruler. For the art and wisdom in everything is so wonderful it necessitates that the Maker of one thing is powerful over all things, to the extent that He knows every matter. Since this is so, if He was not One, there would have to be gods to the number of beings. These would be both opposed to and similar to one another, and it would therefore be a hundred thousand times impossible for this wonderful order not to be broken.

Furthermore, since as is self-evidently apparent, at a command the classes of beings are in motion in a fashion a thousand times more well-ordered than an army -each group, from the stars, sun and moon and their motions to the flowers of the almond, displaying the decorations and uniforms the Pre-Eternal All-Powerful One has conferred on it, and the motion He has determined, a thousand times more regularly and perfectly than an army- since this is so, the universe has an Absolute Ruler behind the veil of the Unseen to Whose command its beings look and conform.

And since according to the testimony of all the wise matters He carries out and splendid works He displays, the Ruler is an All-Glorious Sovereign; and since according to the bounties He demonstrates He is a most Compassionate Sustainer, and according to the beautiful examples of His art which He exhibits, He is a Maker Who loves His art; and since He is an All-Wise Creator Who wishes to attract to His works of art the admiring gazes of conscious beings through the adornments and skills He demonstrates; and since it may be understood that He wishes to make known to conscious beings the meaning of the adornments, which astound the mind, that He displays in the creation of the world and to inform them through the wisdom of His dominicality about where creatures come from and where they are going; most certainly, this All-Wise Ruler and All-Knowing Maker wishes to demonstrate His dominicality.

And since he wishes to make Himself known and loved by conscious creatures through the great many works of benevolence and mercy and wonders of art He displays, He will surely make known to them by means of a herald what He desires of them and what those things are that please Him, and concern them.

Since this is so, He will appoint one of the conscious beings and will proclaim His dominicality through him. He will honour a herald with the proximity of His presence and make him the means of exhibiting the art which He loves. He will appoint one of them as a teacher in order to inform other conscious beings of those exalted aims and to display His perfections. He will certainly appoint a guide so that the talisman contained in the universe and the riddle of dominicality He has concealed within beings will not remain meaningless. And He will appoint a guide who will teach the purposes contained in the beauties of art He displays and publishes as



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a spectacle for all to gaze on so that they do not remain useless and vain. Moreover, in order to announce the things that please Him to conscious beings, He will raise one of them to a rank above the others, and will inform him of those things and send him to them.

Since reality and wisdom require it to be thus and the one most worthy to perform this duty was the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), for he actually performed those duties most perfectly, to which fact the world of Islam which he founded and the light of Islam which he showed are truthful and just witnesses; this necessitates that he should have risen above all the rest of the universe, surpassed all beings, and attained to a rank at which he held a universal, elevated, and all-embracing conversation with the Creator of all beings. Thus, the Ascension expresses this truth as well.

In Short: Since He has formed, arranged, and adorned the vast universe in this way for mighty purposes and sublime aims such as those mentioned above; and since among beings mankind exists to see this universal dominicality together with all its subtleties and this supreme Divine sovereignty together with all its truths; most certainly that Absolute Ruler will speak with man, He will inform him of His purposes.

Since everyone cannot free themselves from particular, insignificant, and lowly matters and rise to the highest and universal position, and therefore cannot themselves receive the Ruler’s universal address, certain special individuals from among human beings will be appointed to that duty so that it may be related to in two respects. First, in order to teach human beings, they must be human beings themselves. And in order to be able to receive the address directly, they must be extremely exalted spiritually.

Thus, since among those human beings the one who made known the purposes of the universe’s Maker most perfectly, disclosed the talisman of the universe and solved the riddle of creation, and who heralded the sublimity of the sovereignty of dominicality in the best way was Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), certainly, of all human beings he would make a spiritual journey in the form of an Ascension touring the corporeal world; he would traverse all the levels to beyond the intermediate world of the Divine Names, the manifestation of the Divine attributes and acts, and the levels of beings, all of which are known as the seventy thousand veils. And the Ascension was this.

Again the following comes to mind: O listener! You are thinking of asking: “How should I believe it? What does it mean to traverse a distance of thousands of years to a Sustainer Who is closer than anything else and to meet with Him after passing through seventy thousand veils?” To which we reply as follows:



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God Almighty is closer to everything than anything else, but everything is infinitely distant from Him. For example, if the sun possessed consciousness and the power of speech, it would be able to converse with you by means of a mirror held in your hand. It would have power of disposal over you as it wished. Indeed, although it would be closer to you than the pupil of your eye, which is like a mirror, you would be approximately four thousand years’ distance from it and could in no way draw closer to it. If you progressed and rose to the position of the moon and came to the point of being face to face with it, you would still only be able to be a sort of mirror to it.

Similarly, although the All-Glorious One, Who is the Sun of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, is closer to everything than anything else, everything is infinitely distant from Him. Only one who traverses all beings, rises above particularity and gradually passes through the thousands of veils in the degrees of universality till he approaches a Divine Name which encompasses all beings, and then traverses the many degrees beyond it, may be honoured by a sort of Divine proximity.

For example, a private is far inferior in rank to the commander-in-chief. He looks to his commander through the small sample of his commander’s rank he sees in his corporal, at a great distance and beyond many veils, as it were. To gain true proximity to his rank through his corporate personality, the private has to pass through many universal degrees or ranks, like that of lieutenant, captain, and major. Whereas the commander-in-chief can be present with the private and seeing, in person as well as in meaning, through his commands, regulations, view, decree, and knowledge. Since this truth has been proved decisively in the Sixteenth Word, we deem that sufficient and cut short the discussion here.

Again it comes to mind that you are thinking of asking: “I deny the existence of the heavens and I do not believe in the angels, so how can I believe in someone travelling in the heavens and meeting with the angels?”

Yes, of course, it is difficult to demonstrate something and convince someone like you over whose eyes a veil has been drawn and who sees only what is immediately apparent to them. But the truth is so brilliant that even the blind can see it, so we also say what is unanimously agreed, that the depths of space are full of matter called ‘ether’. Subtle energies like light, electricity, and heat point to the existence of some subtle matter which fills space. For just as fruits clearly demonstrate the existence of the tree that bore them, flowers their flower-bed, shoots their seed-bed, and fishes the sea, the stars also thrust before the mind’s eye the necessary existence of their source, seed-bed, sea, and flower-bed.

Since there are different formations in the world above us and different rules are seen to be in force under different conditions, the heavens, which



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are the source of those rules, also differ. And since just as in man there are immaterial faculties apart from his body, like the mind, heart, spirit, imagination, and memory, certainly in the world, which is the macroanthropos, and in the universe, which is the tree of which man is the fruit, there are other worlds apart from the corporeal world. Moreover, there are heavens to each world, from the world of the earth to the world of Paradise.

As far as the angels are concerned, we say this: on the globe of the earth, which is medium-sized among the planets and insignificant and dense among the stars, animate and conscious beings, the most valuable and luminous among beings, are found in countless numbers. So surely the stars, which are like embellished castles and fine palaces compared to the earth, which is like a dark house, and the skies, which are like the seas of the stars, will be the dwelling-places of angels and spirit beings, which are conscious, animate, extremely numerous, and of various sorts.

In my commentary on the Holy Qur’an called Isharat al-I‘jaz (Signs of Miraculousness), both the existence and plurality of the heavens have been proved conclusively in the section on the verse,

Then He applied His design to the heavens and fashioned them into seven heavens,8

and in the Twenty-Ninth Word we have proved the existence of angels with the finality of two plus two equals four, so considering those to be sufficient we cut short the discussion here.

In Short: It is required by wisdom and by reason that the heavens are formed of ether, that they are the source of subtle energies like electricity, light, heat, and gravity, and that, in accordance with the Hadith, The heavens are waves held back,9 they are favourable for the motion of stars and planets. It is further required that from majarrat al-sama’10 (the Milky Way) to the closest planet they should consist of seven levels in different states and formations, and that each level, each world, from the world of the earth to the Intermediate Realm and World of Similitudes, to the World of the Hereafter, should be a heaven, like a roof.

And the following comes to mind: O atheist! You say: “Man is only able to ascend to a height of one or two kilometres with a thousand difficulties by means of the aeroplane.11 How then could someone come and go bodily within a few minutes covering a distance that would normally take thousands of years?”

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8. Qur’an, 2:29.
9. Tirmidhi, Tafsir Sura al-Hadid, 1; Musnad, ii, 370.
10. Tabarani, al-Mu’jam al-Kabir, xx, 123; Ibn Hajar, Majma’ al-Zawa’id, viii, 135.
11. This treatise was written in 1928 or ’29. [Tr.]



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To which we reply: According to your science, in its annual rotation a heavy body like the earth cuts a distance of approximately one hundred and eighty-eight hours in one minute. In one year it covers a distance of approximately twenty-five thousand years. Should an All-Powerful and Glorious One, then, Who causes its regular motion and revolves it like a stone in a sling be unable to convey a human being to His Throne? Should a wisdom that causes the body of the earth, which is extremely heavy, to travel around the sun through a dominical law known the sun’s gravity like a Mevlevi dervish be unable to raise a human body to the Throne of the All-Merciful One like lightning through the gravity of that All-Merciful One’s mercy and the attraction of the Pre-Eternal Sun’s love?

Again it comes to mind that you would say: “All right, so he could ascend there, but why did he and why should he? Would it not have been enough if he had gone just in heart and spirit like the saints?”

To which we would reply: Since the All-Glorious Maker wished to display His wondrous signs which lie in both the outer aspects of things and in their aspects that look directly to Himself, and to make the workshops and sources of the universe spectacles to be gazed upon, and to point out the results of man’s actions in the hereafter, it was necessary to take together with his heart and spirit as far as His Throne Muhammad’s (PBUH) eyes, which were like the key to the world of visible objects, and his ears, which perceived the signs in the world of sound. Furthermore, it is required by wisdom and reason that the All-Glorious Maker should have taken as far as His Throne his blessed body, which was like the machine of his spirit comprising different members and components, by means of which be performed his duties.

Just as in Paradise Divine wisdom makes the body accompany the spirit, because it is the body that is the means by which the duties of worship are performed and the means of innumerable pleasures and pains, so did his blessed body accompany his spirit. Since the body goes to Paradise together with the spirit, it is pure wisdom that He should have made the blessed body of Muhammad (PBUH) accompany his self, which ascended to the Lote-tree of the farthest limit, which is the trunk of the home of Paradise.

Again it comes to mind that you would say: “According to rational criteria is it not impossible to traverse a distance of thousands of years in several minutes?”

To which we would reply: The motion in the different works of the All-Glorious Maker’s art varies to the utmost degree. For example, it is well-known how different are the speeds of light, electricity, spirit, and imagination, and that of sound. And, as has been established by science, the speeds of the motion of different planets are so different that it astounds the mind.



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How then should the motion at the speed of spirit of his subtle body, which followed his exalted spirit during the Ascension, seem contrary to reason?

Furthermore, it sometimes happens that on sleeping for ten minutes you are subject to a year’s-worth of different states. And even, if the words spoken and heard during a dream lasting one minute were collected together, for them to be spoken and heard in the waking world, a day or even longer, would be necessary. That means a single period of time is relative; it may seem like one day to one person and like a year to another.

Consider the meaning of this by means of a comparison. Let us imagine a clock which measures the speed of the movement displayed by man, cannon-balls, sound, light, electricity, spirit, and imagination. The clock has ten hands. One shows the hours while another counts the minutes in a sphere sixty times greater. Another hand counts the seconds in a sphere sixty times greater than the previous one, and yet others each count regularly decreasing fractions to a tenth of a second in vast spheres that regularly increase sixty times.

Let us suppose the circles described by the hand counting hours was the size of our clock, so that of the hand counting tenths of a second would have to be the size of the annual orbit of the earth, or even larger. Now, let us suppose there are two people. One of them is as though mounted on the hour-hand and observes according to its motion while the other is on the hand counting tenths of a second. There will be an enormous difference, as great as the relation between our clock and the annual orbit of the earth, as regards the things observed by these two individuals in the same period of time.

Thus, since time is like a hue, shade, or ribbon of motion, a rule that is in force in motion is also in force in time. And so, although the things we observe in the period of one hour would be equalled in amount by the conscious individual mounted on the hour-hand of the clock, like the one mounted on the hand counting tenths of a second, God’s Noble Messenger(Peace and blessings be upon him) mounted Buraq of Divine Assistance and in the same space of time, in that specified hour, like lightning traversed the entire sphere of contingency, saw the wonders of the outer aspects of things and the aspects which look to their Creator, ascended to the point of the sphere of necessity, was honoured with Divine conversation and favoured with the vision of Divine beauty, received his decree, and returned to his duty. It was possible for this to happen, and it did happen.

And again it comes to mind that you would say: “Yes, so it could happen, it is possible. But everything possible does not occur, does it? Is there anything else similar to this so that it can be accepted? How can the occurrence of something to which there are no similar cases be posited through only probability?”



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To which we would reply: There are so many similar cases to it that they cannot be enumerated. For example, anyone who possesses sight can ascend with his eyes from the ground to the planet Neptune in a second. Anyone who has knowledge can mount the laws of astronomy with his intellect and travel beyond the stars in a minute. Anyone who has belief can, by mounting his thought on the action and pillars of the obligatory prayers, through a sort of Ascension, leave the universe behind and go as far as the Divine presence. Anyone who sees with his heart and any saint of perfection can, through his spiritual journeying, traverse in forty days the Divine Throne and the sphere of the Divine Names and attributes. And certain persons, even, like Shaykh Geylani and Imam-i Rabbani, truthfully recorded their spiritual ascensions as far as the Throne, which lasted a minute.

Furthermore, there is the coming and going of the angels, which are luminous bodies, from the Divine Throne to the earth and from the earth to the Throne in a short period of time. And the people of Paradise ascend to the gardens of Paradise from the plain of resurrection in a short space of time. Of course, this many examples demonstrate that it is pure wisdom, completely rational, and an occurrence about which there can be no doubt that the person of Muhammad (PBUH), who is the Lord of all the saints, the leader of all the believers, the head of the people of Paradise, and is accepted by all the angels, should have had an ascension which was the means of spiritual journeying, and that it should have been in a form appropriate to his rank.

Third Principle

What was the wisdom and purpose of the Ascension?

The Answer: The wisdom of the Ascension is so exalted that human thought cannot comprehend it. It is so profound that human thought cannot reach it, and so subtle and fine that the intellect cannot see it by itself. But even if the reality of the instances of wisdom in the Ascension cannot be comprehended, their existence may be made known through certain indications. For example, as follows:

In order to demonstrate the light of His unity and the manifestation of His oneness in these levels of multiplicity, the Creator of the universe chose an eminent individual to represent all creatures, and took him by means of an Ascension that was like a link from the furthest levels of multiplicity to the source of unity. There, addressing him as representing all conscious beings, He explained to him the Divine purposes and made them known through him, and observed through his gaze the beauty of His art and perfection of His dominicality in the mirrors of His creatures, and caused him to observe them.



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Moreover, according to the testimony of His works, the Maker of the world possesses infinite beauty and perfection. The two of them, both beauty and perfection, are loved for themselves. Since this is so, the Possessor of that beauty and perfection has an infinite love for them, and His infinite love is manifested in many different ways in His works of art. He loves His works of art because He sees His beauty and perfection within them.

The most lovable and elevated among the works of art are animate beings. The most lovable and elevated among animate beings are conscious beings. And by reason of their comprehensiveness, the most lovable among conscious beings are to be found among human beings. The most lovable individual among human beings is the one who has most fully developed his potentiality and displayed the samples within it of the perfections manifested in all creatures and spread among them.

Thus, in order to see at one point and in one mirror all the varieties of His love spread through all creatures and to display, through the mystery of His oneness, all the varieties of His beauty, the Maker of beings will take a person who is at the degree of being a luminous fruit of the tree of creation and whose heart is like a seed containing the essential truths of that tree, and will demonstrate the belovedness of that individual, who represents the universe, through an Ascension that is like a thread linking the seed, which is the origin, with the fruit, which is the end. He will draw him to His presence and honour him with the beauty of the vision of Himself. And, in order to cause him to spread that sacred state to others, He will favour him with His Word and entrust him with His Decree.

In order to look at this exalted wisdom, we shall observe it through the telescope of two comparisons.

First Comparison: As is explained in detail in the story-comparison in the Eleventh Word, there was an illustrious king who had vast treasuries and in those treasuries many varieties of jewels were to be found. He had much skill in strange crafts, comprehensive knowledge of innumerable curious arts, and erudition and learning in numberless wondrous sciences. In accordance with the mystery that every possessor of beauty and perfection wants both to see and display his beauty and perfection, of course that skilful king wished to open an exhibition and to set up displays within it in order to reveal to the people the splendour of his sovereignty so they might gaze on it, and to manifest both the glitter of his wealth and the wonders of his art and the marvels of his knowledge. In this way he might observe his own transcendent beauty and perfection in two respects. The first was so that he himself might see with his own eyes, which were cognizant of reality, while the other was so that he might look through the gaze of others.

As a consequence of this wisdom, he began to build a huge and splendid



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palace. It was magnificently divided into apartments and mansions. He adorned it with every sort of bejewelled treasure from his coffers, and decorated it with the finest and most gorgeous arts of his own handiwork. He ordered it with the greatest refinements of his knowledge and science, and decked it out and completed it with the miraculous works of his learning. Next, he spread tables with varieties of bounties and the most delicious of foods worthy for each group and prepared a general banquet. Then, in order to display his perfections to his subjects, he invited them to the banquet and to behold the perfections.

Then he appointed one of them as the highest ranking general, invited him up from the lower levels and mansions to tour sphere after sphere in the levels rising one after the other. Showing him the successive machinery and workshops of his wonderful art and the storehouses for the produce coming from below, he brought him to his own particular sphere and private apartment. There, he honoured him through showing him the blessed person who was the source of all those perfections and taking him into his presence. He informed him of the true nature of the palace and of his own perfections. He appointed him as guide to the other spectators and sent him back. He was to describe to the people the palace’s maker by means of its contents, inscriptions, and wonders, and inform those who entered the palace of the allusive meanings of the inscriptions within it, what the works of art signified, and what the harmonious and well-proportioned inscriptions and works of art in its interior were, and how they pointed to the perfections and skills of the palace’s owner. He was also to teach them the correct behaviour and formalities in viewing the exhibition and describe the protocol and ceremonies which were in accordance with the pleasure and desires of the learned and skilful king, who did not appear.

In exactly the same way, And God’s is the highest similitude, the All-Glorious Maker, Who is the Monarch of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, desired to behold and display His infinite perfections and boundless beauty. So He made this world in such a fashion that every being utters His perfections with numerous tongues and points to His beauty with many signs. The universe shows through all its beings the many hidden immaterial treasures in all of His Most Beautiful Names and the many veiled subtleties in all of His sacred titles. And it shows this in such a way that, although since the time of Adam, all sciences together with all of their laws have studied this book of the universe, only a tiny proportion of the book’s meanings and signs, which state and point to the Divine Names and perfections, have been read.

Thus, the wisdom of the All-Glorious One of Beauty, the All-Beauteous One of Glory, the Maker possessing Perfection, Who opens the palace of the world as though it was an exhibition in order to see and display His own transcendent beauty and perfections, requires that He should inform



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someone of the meaning of the palace’s signs so that they do not remain vain and without benefit for conscious beings on the earth. His wisdom requires that He should cause one of them to travel in the higher worlds, which are the sources of the wonders in the palace and are the treasuries of their results; that He should elevate him above all others, honour him with His close presence and cause him to tour the worlds of the hereafter, and entrust him with numerous duties, such as teacher to all His servants, herald of the sovereignty of His dominicality, announcer of those things pleasing to Himself, and expounder of the signs of creation in the palace of the world; that He should mark out his pre-eminence by conferring on him the decorations of miracles, and should make known through a decree like the Qur’an that that person is the truthful personal interpreter of the All-Glorious One.

Thus, by way of example, we have demonstrated through the telescope of this comparison one or two of the many instances of wisdom in the Ascension. Others may be thought of in the same way.

Second Comparison: If a knowledgeable and skilful person was to compose and write a miraculous book, and on all the book’s pages were as many truths as would fill a hundred books, and in all its lines as many subtle meanings as would fill a hundred pages, and in all its words as many truths as would fill a hundred lines, and in all its letters as many meanings as would fill a hundred words, and if all the meanings and truths of the book were to look to and point to the transcendent perfections of its miracle-displaying writer, he most certainly would not leave such an inexhaustible treasury closed and thus worthless. He would surely teach it to others so that such a valuable book would not remain meaningless and vain, and his own hidden perfections would become apparent and find their perfection, and his transcendent beauty be seen; and so that he too should be pleased, and that he should make himself loved. Moreover, he would cause someone to go through that wonderful book from the first page to the last and teach him all its meanings and truths so that the person would then teach them to others.

In exactly the same way, in order to display His perfections, His beauty, and the truths of His Names, the Pre-Eternal Inscriber has written the universe in such a way that all beings set forth and state His infinite perfections, Names, and attributes together with their innumerable facets and aspects. Of course, if a book’s meaning remains unknown, its value is reduced to nothing. However, a book like the universe, every word of which contains thousands of meanings, cannot lose its value or be made to do so.

Since this is so, the book’s Writer will certainly make it known and explain a part of it to each group according to their capacity. He will instruct in all the contents of the book the individual who has the most extensive and



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comprehensive view, the most universal consciousness, and the greatest ability. Wisdom requires that He should take the individual on a lofty journey in order to teach him all the contents of such a book and its universal truths. That is, He should cause him to travel from the furthest extreme of the levels of multiplicity, which is the first page, to the sphere of Divine oneness, which is the final page. Thus, through this comparison, you can look to an extent at the exalted instances of wisdom in the Ascension.

Now, we shall consider the atheist who is listening, and, listening to his heart, we shall learn what state it is in. And so it comes to mind that his heart would say: “I have begun to believe in it now, but I still do not have a clear understanding of it. I have three more important difficulties.

“The First: Why was this mighty Ascension special to Muhammad the Arabian (Peace and blessings be upon him)?

“The Second: How is he the seed of the universe? And you say that the universe was created from his Light, and also that he was its farthest and most illumined fruit. What does that mean?

“The Third: In your explanations above you say that he made his Ascension in order to rise to the celestial realm and to see the machinery and workshops of the works of art found in the realm of the earth, and the treasuries of their results. What does this mean?”

The Answer

Your First Difficulty: It has been analysed in detail in the first thirty Words, so here we shall set out a concise list briefly indicating the perfections of Muhammad (PBUH), the signs of his prophethood, and the fact that he was the most worthy to make the Ascension. It is as follows.

Firstly: Despite numerous corruptions in the texts of Holy Scriptures like the Torah, Gospels, and Psalms, in recent times even, an exacting scholar like Husayn Jisri extracted one hundred and fourteen good tidings of Muhammad’s prophethood (PBUH), which he set forth in his Risale-i Hamidiye.12

Secondly: It has been proved historically that there were many predictions accurately forecasting the prophethood of Muhammad (PBUH), like those of the two soothsayers Shiqq and Satih, which, a while previously to his prophethood, gave news of it and the fact that he was to be the final prophet.13

Thirdly: There were hundreds of extraordinary happenings, famous in history, called irhasat, that is, signs forewarning men of a coming prophet, like, for example, on the night of Muhammad’s (PBUH) birth, the idols in the

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12. Husayn al-Jisri, al-Risalat al-Hamidiya [Turk. trans. Manastirli Ismail Hakki], Istanbul 1308, 4 vols.; Suyuti, al-Khasa’is al-Kubra, i, 26, 73.
13. Ibn Sayyid al-Nas, ‘Uyun al-A|thar, i, 29; Qadi Iyad, al-Shifa’, i, 364-6.



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Ka’ba fell from their places and the famous palace of Khosroes the Persian was rent asunder.14

Fourthly: History and the Prophet’s biographies show that he satisfied the thirst of an army with water flowing from his fingers, that in the presence of a large congregation in the mosque, the dry wooden support against which Muhammad (PBUH) was leaning moaned like a camel and wept on being separated from him when he ascended the pulpit, and that he was distinguished by close on a thousand miracles attested to by the verses of the Qur’an, such as,

And the moon split,15

referring to the splitting of the moon, and verified by those who investigated them.

Fifthly: Anyone who considers the facts and is fair and just cannot hesitate to agree that, as is unanimously agreed by friend and foe alike, good moral qualities were to be found at the highest degree in his personality, and that, in accordance with the testimony of all his dealings and actions, attributes and character of the greatest excellence were apparent in the way he performed his duties and proclaimed Islam, and, in accordance with the fine qualities and conduct enjoined by the religion of Islam, laudable virtues of the highest order were to be found in the law he brought.

Sixthly: As is alluded to in the Second Indication of the Tenth Word, it is a requirement of wisdom that Divinity be manifested. And this desire of Divinity to be manifested is met at the highest level and most brilliantly by the comprehensive worship performed by Muhammad (PBUH) in the practice of his religion. Also, wisdom and truth require that the Creator of the world displays His beauty in its utter perfection through some means. And the one who met that wish, and displayed and described His beauty most perfectly was self-evidently the person of Muhammad (PBUH).

It was also clearly Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to the desire of the world’s Maker to exhibit and attract attentive gazes towards His perfect art within infinite beauty, heralded that art with the loudest voice.

Again it was necessarily Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to the desire of the Sustainer of All the Worlds to proclaim His unity in the levels of multiplicity, announced all the degrees of unity, each at the greatest level of unity.

And, as is indicated by the utter beauty in beings and as is required by truth and wisdom, the world’s Owner desires to see and display in mirrors, His infinite essential beauty and the subtleties and qualities of His exquisite

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14. Qadi Iyad, al-Shifa’, i, 366-8; Bayhaqi, Dala’il al-Nubuwwa, i, 126.
15. Qur&an, 54:1.



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ess. And again it was self-evidently Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to that desire, acted as a mirror and displayed His beauty in the most radiant fashion, and loved it and made others love it.

Also, in response to the desire of the Maker of the palace of this world to exhibit His hidden treasuries, which are filled with the most wonderful miracles and priceless jewels, and through them to describe and make known His perfections, it was again self-evidently Muhammad (PBUH) who exhibited, described, and displayed them in the most comprehensive fashion.

Also, since the Maker of the universe has made it in such a way that He adorns it with different varieties of wonders and embellishments and has included conscious creatures in it so that they might make tours and excursions and ponder over it and take lessons, wisdom requires that He should desire to make known the meanings and value of the works of art to those who observe and ponder over them. And it was again self-evidently Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to this desire of the universe’s Maker, by means of the All-Wise Qur’an, acted as guide in the most comprehensive fashion to jinn and man, indeed, to spirit beings and angels.

Also, the All-Wise Ruler of the universe wishes, by means of an envoy, to cause all conscious beings to unravel the obscure talisman containing the aims and purposes of the change and transformations in the universe and to solve the riddle of the three perplexing questions: “Where do beings come form?”, “What is their destination?”, and, “What are they?” And again it was self-evidently Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to this wish of the All-Wise Ruler, by means of the truths of the Qur’an, unravelled the talisman and solved the riddle in the clearest and most comprehensive fashion.

Also, the All-Glorious Maker of the universe desires to make Himself known to conscious beings by means of all His fine artefacts and to make them love Him through all His precious bounties, and, most certainly, to make known to them by means of an envoy His wishes and what will please Him in return for those bounties. And again it was self-evidently Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to this desire of the All-Glorious Maker, by means of the Qur’an, expounded those wishes and things that please Him in the most exalted and perfect fashion.

Also, since the Sustainer of All the Worlds has given to man, who is the fruit of the universe, a comprehensive disposition which encompasses the universe and has prepared him for universal worship, and since, because of his faculties and senses, multiplicity and the world afflict man, the Sustainer desires to turn man’s face from multiplicity to unity, from transience to permanence. And again it was self-evidently Muhammad (PBUH) who, in response to this desire, by means of the Qur’an, acted as guide in the most comprehensive and complete fashion, and in the best way, and carried out the duty of prophethood in the most perfect manner.



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Among beings the most superior are animate beings, and among animate beings the most superior are conscious beings, and among conscious beings the most superior are true human beings. So the one among true human beings who carried out the above-mentioned duties at the most comprehensive level and in the most perfect manner would rise through an all-embracing Ascension to the distance of two bow-lengths, knock at the door of eternal happiness, open the treasury of Mercy, and see the hidden truths of belief. Again it would be him.

Seventhly: As is plain to see, beings are made beautiful with the utmost degree of fine embellishment and adornment. Such an embellishment and adornment clearly demonstrate that their Maker possesses an extremely strong will to make beautiful and intention to adorn. The will to make beautiful and adorn demonstrates that the Maker necessarily possesses a strong desire for and holy love towards His art. And among beings the one who displayed altogether in himself the most comprehensive and subtle wonders of art, and knew them and made them known and himself loved, and who appreciated the beauties to be found in other beings, declaring: “What wonders God has willed!”, and was most beloved in the sight of his Maker, Who nurtures and loves His art, would most certainly be him.

Thus, the one who, declaring: “Glory be to God! What wonders God has willed! God is most Great!” in the face of the exquisiteness that gilds beings and the subtle perfections that illuminate them, causes the heavens to ring out, and who, through the strains of the Qur’an, causes the universe to reverberate, and through his admiration and appreciation, his contemplation and display, and his mentioning of the Divine Names and affirmation of Divine unity, brings land and sea to ecstasy, is again self-evidently that one (PBUH).

And so, according to the meaning of ‘the cause is like the doer,’ it is pure truth and sheer wisdom that the one in whose scales shall be found the equivalent of all the good deeds performed by his community, and whose spiritual perfections draw strength from the benedictions of all his community, and who, as a result of the duties he discharged in his messengership, received immaterial recompense and boundless emanations of Divine mercy and love, should advance by the stairway of the Ascension as far as Paradise, the Lote-tree of the farthest limit, the Divine Throne, and the distance of two bow-lengths.

Your Second Difficulty: O you who is listening! This second truth that you make difficult is so profound and exalted that the mind can neither rise to it nor draw close to it. It may be seen only with the light of belief. However, the fact that this truth exists may be brought close to the understanding by means of allegory and comparison. In which case, we shall attempt to do that to some small degree.

Thus, when the universe is considered from the point of view of wisdom,



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it is seen to bear the meaning of a mighty tree. For just as a tree has branches, leaves, blossom and fruit, so in this lower world, which is one part of the tree of creation, there are elements, which are like its branches; plants and trees, which are like its leaves; animals, which are like its flowers; and man, which is like the fruit.

Furthermore, the Divine Name of All-Wise requires that a law of that All-Glorious Maker which is in force in trees generally will also be in force in the mighty tree of creation. Since this is so, wisdom requires that the tree of creation also be formed from a seed, and such a seed that contains the essentials and principles of other worlds besides the corporeal world. For the fundamental and original seed of the universe, which comprises thousands of different worlds, cannot be a scrap of desiccated matter.

Since before the tree of the universe there was no tree of the same kind, it is also a requirement of the Name of All-Wise that meaning and light, which are like a source and seed to it, should be clothed with the garment of a fruit on the tree of the universe. For a seed cannot remain permanently unclothed. And since at the beginning of creation it was not clothed in the garment of a fruit, it would surely be clothed in it at the end. And since that fruit is mankind; and since, as was proved above, the most famous fruit and sublime result from among mankind, who attracted the attention of all and confined to himself the gaze of a fifth of mankind, and with his moral and spiritual qualities caused the world to consider him with either feelings of love or of wonder, is the Person of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), most certainly, light, which was the seed from which the universe was formed, would become clothed in corporeality in his person and would appear in the form of an ultimate fruit.

O listener! Do not consider it improbable that this strange and mighty universe is created from the particular essence of a human being! Why should the All-Powerful One of Glory, Who creates a huge pine-tree -a sort of world- from a seed the size of a grain of wheat, not create the universe from ‘the Light of Muhammad’ (Peace and blessings be upon him)?16 Why should He not be able to do so?

Since, like the Tree of Tuba, the tree of the universe has its roots and trunk above and branches below, there is a luminous connecting line from the level of the fruit below to that of the original seed. Thus, the Ascension is the sheath and form of that connecting line, the way of which Muhammad (Peace and blessings by upon him) opened up. He went through his sainthood, returned through his messengership, and left the door open. The saints of his community following after him, travel that luminous highway with the heart and spirit in the shadow of the Prophet’s Ascension, and according to their abilities, rise to elevated ranks.

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16. Suyuti, al-Hawi li’l-Fatawa, ii, 545; Qastalani, al-Mawahib al-Ladunniyya, i, 25-83.

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Also, as was proved above, the universe’s Maker made it and decked it out in the form of a palace for the aims demonstrated in the answer to the First Difficulty. Since Muhammad (PBUH) was the means of all those aims being realized, he must have been regarded with favour by the universe’s Maker before the universe was created, he must have been the first recipient of His manifestation. For the result and fruit of a thing is considered first. That is to say, material existence comes last and meaning comes first. However, since Muhammad (PBUH) was both the most perfect fruit, and the means of all other fruits acquiring value, and the means of all the aims becoming manifest, his Light must have received the first manifestation of creativity.

Your Third Difficulty: This is so extensive that those like us with straitened minds cannot contain and comprehend it. However, we can look at it from afar.

Yes, the immaterial workshops and universal laws of the lower world are in the higher worlds. And the fruits of the actions of jinn and men and the results of the actions of all the innumerable creatures on the earth, which is an exhibition of works of art, are also represented in the higher worlds. Moreover, a great many signs and the testimony of many narrations show that good deeds will take on the form of the fruits of Paradise and bad deeds the form of the bitter food of Hell. The wisdom in creation and the Divine Name of All-Wise necessitate this and the All-Wise Qur’an indicates it.

For sure, the multiplicity on the face of the earth is so widespread and the creation so ramified that far above all the beings dispersed throughout the universe are the species of creatures and classes of beings. These are to be found on the globe of the earth, ever changing, ever filling the earth and being emptied from it. Thus, the sources and mines of this multiplicity and these particulars are universal laws and universal manifestations of the Divine Names.

Those universal laws and universal, all-encompassing manifestations of the Names are to some extent sheer and undifferentiated and each forms a heaven which is like the Throne and ceiling of a world and its centre of direction. One of those worlds is Paradise, the Garden of the Abode at the Lote-tree of the farthest limit. It is established by accounts given by the Bringer of Sure News (PBUH) that the praise and glorification on the earth takes on the form of the fruits of that Paradise.17 Thus, these three points demonstrate that the treasuries of the results and fruits produced on the earth are there, in the heavens, and that the crops and produce of those results and fruits also return there.

Do not say: “How can it be that my words ‘All praise be to God!’, which are formed only of air, should become a corporeal fruit of Paradise?”,

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17. Kanz al-‘Ummal, i, 459-60; Manzari, al-Targhib wa’l-Tarhib, ii, 422-3.



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because, sometimes while dreaming you eat in the form of a delicious apple a good word you uttered during the day while awake. And sometimes you eat at night in the form of something bitter, an ugly word you uttered during the day. If you slander and backbite, you are made to eat it in the form of putrid flesh. In which case, the good words and ugly words you say in the sleep of this world, you will eat in the form of fruits in the world of the hereafter, which is the world of consciousness. You should not consider it unlikely that you will eat them.

Fourth Principle

What are the fruits and benefits of the Ascension?

The Answer: We shall mention only five, by way of example, of the more than five hundred fruits of the Ascension, which has the meaning of the Tree of Tuba.

FIRST FRUIT

This fruit has brought to the universe and mankind a treasury, a gift of pre-eternal and post-eternal Light, which is to see with the eyes the truths of the pillars of belief and to behold the angels, Paradise, the hereafter, and even the All-Glorious One. It raises the universe from an imaginary state of wretchedness, transitoriness, and disorder and, through that Light and fruit, shows its reality, which is its consisting of sacred missives of the Eternally Besought One and being a beautiful mirror to the beauty of Divine oneness. It has made happy and pleased the universe and all conscious beings.

Furthermore, through this Light and sacred fruit, it shows that man is not merely bewildered, wretched, impotent, impoverished, with endless needs and innumerable enemies, ephemeral and impermanent, which is like the state of misguidance; it shows man in his true form of being a miracle of the Eternally Besought One’s power on ‘the most excellent of patterns,’ a comprehensive copy of the Eternally Besought One’s missives, an addressee of the Pre-Eternal and Post-Eternal Monarch, the special bondsman, the admirer and friend of His perfections, the lover bewildered at His beauty, and a beloved guest appointed to eternal Paradise. It has filled all human beings who are true human beings with infinite joy and infinite longing.

SECOND FRUIT

This fruit has brought to jinn and man as a gift the fundamentals of Islam, and first and foremost the prescribed prayers,18 which constitute those things pleasing to the Sustainer, the Ruler of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, Who is

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18. Bayhaqi, Dala’il al-Nubuwwa, iii, 406; al-Sunan al-Kubra, iv, 362.



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the Maker of beings, Owner of the universe, and Sustainer of all the worlds. To discover the things that please Him brings such happiness it cannot be described. For how eager is everyone to find out, from a distance, the desires of a powerful benefactor or generous king, and if they find out, how delighted they are. They say longingly: “If only there was some means by which I could communicate with that personage directly. If only I could learn what he wants of me. If only I knew what would please him that I could do.”

Man, then, should understand just how necessary it is to be desirous and eager to discover the wishes and pleasure of the Ruler of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity. For all beings are in the grasp of His power, and the beauty and perfections to be found in all beings are but pale shadows in relation to His beauty and perfection, and being needy for Him in innumerable ways, man constantly receives countless numbers of His bounties.

Thus, as a direct fruit of the Ascension, Muhammad (PBUH) heard with utter certainty what it is that pleases the Monarch of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, behind seventy thousand veils, and returning, brought it as a gift to mankind.

Indeed, how curious is man to learn the conditions on the moon. If someone was to go there and return bringing news of it, both what self-sacrifice he would display, and, if he was to understand the conditions there, how he would be overcome by wonder and curiosity. But the moon is merely touring in the domain of a Lord of such dominion that it encircles the globe of the earth like a fly, and the globe flies round the sun like a moth, while the sun is one lamp among thousands and is just a candle in a guest-house of that Glorious Lord of All Dominion.

Thus, Muhammad (PBUH) saw the works and wonders of art and treasuries of mercy in the everlasting realm of this All-Glorious One, and he returned and informed mankind. And so, if mankind does not listen to him with complete wonder, curiosity, and love, you can understand how contrary to reason and wisdom is their attitude.

THIRD FRUIT

Muhammad (PBUH) saw the treasury of eternal happiness, obtained the key, and brought it as a gift to jinn and men. Yes, through the Ascension, he saw Paradise with his own eyes and witnessed the eternal manifestations of the All-Glorious and Merciful One’s mercy; he understood eternal happiness with absolute and utter certainty and brought as a gift to jinn and men the good news of its existence.

If wretched jinn and men imagine themselves and all beings to be in the soul-searing situation of an unstable world amid the upheavals of decease and separation, being poured with the flood of time and motion of particles



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into the oceans of non-existence and eternal separation, it cannot be described how precious and enheartening such good news is in the ears of ephemeral jinn and men, who thus supposed themselves to be condemned to eternal annihilation. If, at the moment he is to be executed and sent to non-existence, a man is pardoned and given a palace in proximity to the king, what great joy this would cause him. So, gather up all such joy and happiness to the number of jinn and men and then evaluate this good news.

FOURTH FRUIT

Just as he himself sampled the fruit of the vision of Divine beauty, so did he bring to jinn and men the gift of this fruit being attainable by all believers. You may understand from the following how delightful, pleasing, and exquisite a fruit this is.

Everyone of fine perception loves one who possesses beauty and perfection and is benevolent, and his love increases proportionately to their degrees; it reaches the degree of worship and a pitch whereat he would sacrifice his very life. On seeing that person only once, his love becomes such he would sacrifice the world. However, in relation to the beauty, perfection, and benevolence of God Almighty, the beauty, perfection and benevolence of all beings are not the equivalent of even a few tiny sparks in relation to the sun. That is to say, if you are a true human being, you may understand how delightful and fine a fruit it is and what happiness and joy it brings to receive in eternal happiness the vision of the All-Glorious One of Perfection, Who is worthy of boundless love, infinite longing, and being gazed upon eternally.

FIFTH FRUIT

Man’s being the precious fruit of the universe and the petted beloved of the Maker of the universe was understood through the Ascension, and he brought this fruit to jinn and men. This fruit raises man, an insignificant creature, a weak animal, an impotent conscious being, to an elevated rank of pride above all the beings in the universe. It gives man indescribable pleasure and joyful happiness. For if it is said to an ordinary private: “You have been promoted to the rank of field marshal,” how delighted he will be. But wretched man is an ephemeral, impotent ‘rational animal’ who constantly suffers the blows of decease and separation. If then he is told that not only will he make excursions and tours with the speed of imagination and breadth of the spirit in an eternal never-ending Paradise within the mercy of an All-Compassionate and Generous Merciful One, and journey in the mind in accordance with all the desires of his heart in both the outer dimensions of things and those dimensions that look directly to their Creator, but that he will also behold the vision of Divine beauty in eternal happiness, you can imagine what a profound joy and true happiness a human being who has not fallen from the level of humanity would feel in his heart.



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Now we say to our listener: Tear off the shirt of atheism and throw it away! Listen with believing ears! Look with Muslim eyes! We shall show you through two short comparisons the great value in one or two further fruits.

For example, you and I are together in a certain country. We see that everything is hostile to us and to each other, and is strange to us. Everywhere is full of ghastly corpses. The sounds to be heard are the weeping of orphans and the lamentations of the oppressed. So if someone appears when we are in that situation bringing good news from the king of the country by which those of his subjects who were strange to us assume the form of friends and the enemies turn into brothers, and the ghastly corpses are seen to be worshipping and praising and glorifying in deep humility and submission; and if the piteous weeping becomes praise and exaltation and cries of “Long live the king!”, and the deaths and plunder and pillage are transformed into demobilizations and release from duty; and if we join the general joy to our own joy, you will certainly understand how joyful and happy that news is.

Thus, when the beings in the universe are considered with the eye of misguidance, as they were before the light of belief, which is one fruit of the Ascension of Muhammad (PBUH), they are seen to be strange, menacing, troublesome, dreadful, terrifying corpses the size of mountains, while the appointed hour is severing people’s heads and casting them into the pit of eternal, never-ending nothingness. Although misguidance interprets all the voices as being lamentations occasioned by separation and decease, the truths of the pillars of belief, which are fruits of the Ascension, show you that just as beings are brothers and friends to you and praisers and glorifiers of the All-Glorious One, so are death and decease a demobilization and discharge from duties; in reality those voices are all glorifications of God. If you wish to study this truth in its entirety, you may refer to the Second and Eighth Words.

The Second Comparison: You and I are in a place resembling a vast desert. There is a sand-storm in the sea of sand and the night is so black we cannot see even our hands. If suddenly, without without friend or protector, hungry and thirsty, we were despairing and giving up hope, a person was to pass through the curtain of blackness and approach us bringing a car as a gift; and if he was to seat us in it, and then instantly install us in a place like Paradise where our future was secure, food and drink ready prepared, and where we had a most kindly and sympathetic protector, you can understand how pleased we would be.

Thus, that great desert is the face of this world. The sea of sand consists of beings and wretched man, who are tossed around by the force of the flood



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of time and the motion of particles within events. All human beings see the future with the eye of misguidance, enveloped in terrifying darkness, and their hearts are harrowed with anxiety. They know no one they can make hear their cries for help. They are infinitely hungry, infinitely thirsty.

However, when this world is seen in terms of things pleasing to God, which is a fruit of the Ascension; that is, it is seen to be the guest-house of Someone exceedingly generous, and human beings are seen to His guests and officials, and the future to be as delightful as Paradise, as sweet as mercy, as shining as eternal happiness, you will understand what a delightful, exquisitely sweet fruit it is.

At this point, the one who is listening says: “Never-ending praise and thanks be to Almighty God, for I have been saved from atheism and now affirm Divine unity. I have attained a complete belief, I have gained perfect belief.”

And we say: “Brother! We congratulate you. May Almighty God allow us the intercession of His Most Noble Messenger (Peace and blessings be upon him). AMEN.”

O God! Grant blessings to him at whose sign the moon split, and from whose fingers water flowed forth like the spring of Kawthar, the one who made the Ascension and whose eye did not waver, our master Muhammad, and to all his Family and Companions, from the beginning of the world to the end of the Great Gathering.

All glory be unto to You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise!19

O our Sustainer! Accept this from us; for, indeed, You are All-Hearing, All-Knowing!20 * O our Sustainer! Do not take us to task if we forget or unwittingly do wrong!21 * O our Sustainer! Let not our hearts swerve from the truth after You have guided us!22 * O our Sustainer! Perfect our light for us and grant us forgiveness; for, indeed, You are Powerful over all things!23 * And their call will close with, ‘All praise is due to God, the Sustainer of all the worlds.’24

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19. Qur’an, 2:32.
20. Qur’an, 2:127.
21. Qur’an, 2:286.
22. Qur’an, 3:8.
23. Qur’an, 66:8.
24. Qur’an, 10:10.



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Addendum to the Nineteenth Letter and Thirty-First Word

About the Miracle of the Splitting of the Moon

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
The Hour is nigh, and the moon is split. * But if they see a sign, they turn away, and say: “This is evident magic.”1

Philosophers and their unreasoning imitators, who want to eclipse with their vicious delusions the Splitting of the Moon, which is a miracle of Muhammad (PBUH) that shines like the moon, say: “If the Splitting of the Moon had occurred, it would have been known to the whole world and would have been related throughout the subsequent history of man.”

The Answer: Since the Splitting of the Moon was demonstrated as an evidence of prophethood, and happened instantaneously, at night when people were asleep, and before a gathering who, although they witnessed such an evidence, denied it; and since there were obstacles hindering the sighting of it such as mist, clouds, and time-differences between different parts of the world; and since at that time science and civilization were not widespread, and observation of the skies was very limited, and the event itself was exceptional, there was, therefore, nothing to necessitate that it should have been seen all over the world and passed into the general histories. For now, listen to Five Points out of many that will scatter those clouds of delusion concerning the Splitting of the Moon.

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1. Qur’an, 54:1-2.



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FIRST POINT

The extreme stubbornness of the unbelievers there at that time is well-known and is recorded in history. And yet, when the All-Wise Qur’an announced this event to the whole world through saying:

And the moon is split,

not one of those unbelievers, who denied the Qur’an, spoke up to give the lie to this verse; that is, not one of them denied the event it was announcing. If the event had not been considered as a definite fact by the unbelievers at that time, they would have taken the verse as a pretext, denied it in a most fearsome manner, and tried to attack and overthrow Muhammad’s (PBUH) claim to prophethood. However, the biographies of the Prophet and histories mentioning the event relate nothing to suggest that the unbelievers denied it. The only thing that history relates is, as the verse:

And [they] say, “This is evident magic,”

points out, the unbelievers who saw the event declared it to be magic, and said that if the caravans in other places had seen it, it was true, otherwise he had bewitched them. The caravans arriving the following morning from the Yemen and other places announced that they had seen such a happening. So the unbelievers then said of the Pride of All the Worlds (PBUH) that, God forbid, the magic of Abu Talib’s orphan had affected the heavens.2

SECOND POINT

The majority of the most illustrious scholars, like Sa‘d al-Din Taftazani, declared that like the Prophet had satisfied the thirst of a whole army with water flowing from his fingers, and the whole congregation had heard a dry wooden post against which Muhammad (PBUH) had leant while delivering the sermon weep on being separated from him, the Splitting of the Moon, too, was mutawatir,3 that is, had been transmitted by numerous authorities. That is to say, these events had been passed down from group to group forming such a vast congregation that a conspiracy to lie would have been impossible. Like the appearance of the famous Haley’s Comet a thousand years ago had been unanimously reported, and the existence of the island of Ceylon was certain due to unanimous reports, although we had not seen it.

And so, it is unreasonable to foster baseless doubts in such certain,

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2. Ibn Hajar, Fath al-Bari, vii, 145; Bayhaqi, Dala’il al-Nubuwwa, ii, 266, 268.
3. Bukhari, ii, 251; v, 62; vi, 178; al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak;, ii, 472; Suyuti, Nazm al-Mutanathir fi’l-Hadith al-Mutawatir, 135; Bayhaqi, Dala’il, i, 279-81.



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witnessed matters. It is enough that they are not impossible. And as for the Splitting of the Moon, it is quite as possible as a mountain’s splitting with a volcanic eruption.

THIRD POINT

Miracles are for proving claims to prophethood and for convincing those who deny those claims, they are not for compelling people to believe. Therefore, miracles have to be manifested to those who hear claims to prophethood at a degree that will persuade them. Just as it would be contrary to the All-Wise and Glorious One’s wisdom to display them all over the world or in so self-evident a manner that all would be compelled to believe, so would it also be contrary to the mystery of man’s accountability. For this accountability requires “opening the door to the reason and not removing the power of choice.” If the All-Wise Creator had left the moon split for one or two hours in order to show it to the whole world as the philosophers wished, and it had been recorded in all the general histories of man, then it would have been like all other occurrences in the heavens and would not have been an evidence to Muhammad’s (PBUH) claim to prophethood nor been special to his messengership. Or else it would have been such a self-evident miracle that it would have negated the power of choice, a part of man’s reason, compelling it to accept it; willy-nilly, it would have had to assent to his prophethood. Someone with a coal-like spirit like Abu Jahl would have remained at the same level as someone with a diamond-like spirit like Abu Bakr the Veracious; the mystery of man’s accountability would have been lost. It was due to this mystery that, being both instantaneous, and at nighttime, and at a time of sleep, and time differences, mist, and cloud and other obstacles concealing it, it was not shown to the whole world and did not pass into the histories.

FOURTH POINT

Since this event occurred instantaneously at night while everyone was sleeping, of course it was not seen all over the world. Even if some people had seen it, they would not have believed their eyes. And even if it had made them believe, such a significant event would not have become a permanent source for future histories through isolated individual reports.

In some books it is written that after the moon split into two halves, it fell to earth, but veracious scholars have rejected such additions, saying that they were perhaps added by dissemblers with the intention of reducing to nothing the value of this evident miracle.



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And, for example, just as the same time in England and Spain, which were then enveloped in mists of ignorance, would have been just after sunset, in America daytime, and in China and Japan morning, so too in other places there would have been other obstacles preventing it being seen. Now consider these unreasoning objectors who say that the histories of peoples like the English, Chinese, Japanese, and Americans do not mention it, and that therefore it did not occur. A thousand curses be on the heads of those who toady to Europe and repeat such things.

FIFTH POINT

The Splitting of the Moon happened neither of its own accord in consequence of certain causes, nor as a result of chance, nor was it a natural event that occurred through the ordinary laws of nature. Rather, the All-Wise Creator of the Sun and the Moon caused it to happen as something out of the ordinary in order to confirm His Messenger’s messengership and to illuminate his claim.

As the mystery of guidance, the mystery of human accountability, and the wisdom of messengership required, it was demonstrated as a convincing proof to certain people specified by dominical wisdom. The mystery of wisdom required that it was not shown to people in every region of the world, who had not yet heard of Muhammad’s (PBUH) claim to prophethood. Numerous obstacles prevented them, therefore, such as mist, cloud, and time-differences, and the fact that in some countries the moon had not risen, and in others the sun had risen, while in others it was morning, and in yet others the sun had just set.

If it had been shown to all and sundry, it would have been shown as a result of the Sign of Muhammad (PBUH), and a miracle of prophethood, in which case his messengership would have been so manifest that everyone would have been compelled to affirm it. No choice would have remained for the reason. And belief is attained through man’s power of choice and his reason. The mystery of human accountability would have gone for nothing. And if it had been shown merely as an occurrence in the heavens, its connection with Muhammad’s (PBUH) messengership would have been severed, and it would have retained no peculiarity to him.

To Conclude: There is no longer any doubt concerning the possibility that the Splitting of the Moon occurred; it has been proved decisively. And now we shall mention six4 of the many evidences pointing to its occurrence.

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4. That is to say, there are six proofs concerning the event in the form of a sixfold consensus. Unfortunately, the explanation of them is brief, although they deserve more.



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The concurrence of the Companions of the Prophet, who were all men of justice, on its occurrence.

Their agreement in expounding the verse, And the moon is split of all exacting commentators on the Qur’an.

The fact that, relying on numerous different chains of authorities and lines of transmission, all the scholars of the Prophetic Hadiths and transmitters of the sound narrations narrated the event.

The testimony of all the saints and the veracious, those who receive inspiration, and uncover the mysteries of the creation.

The confirmation of learned scholars and theologians, whose ways differ greatly from one another.

The fact that the Community of Muhammad (PBUH) accepted its occurrence, which, on an established principle, never agrees upon error.5

These six evidences prove the Splitting of the Moon as clearly as the sun.

CONCLUSION

Up to here this Addendum has been in the name of establishing the truth, and for the sake of silencing those enemies who deny it. Its concluding sentences will now be in the name of the truth and for the sake of belief. Indeed, establishing the truth spoke as above, now the truth speaks.

The Seal of the Office of Prophethood, who was the luminous moon of its heaven, proved his sainthood through his Ascension. This was the greatest wonder and supreme miracle of sainthood, achieved through his worship, which was so elevated as to make him God’s beloved. That is to say, by travelling with his earthly body through the heavens, his superiority and his being God’s beloved were demonstrated to the dwellers of the heavens and inhabitants of the lofty worlds. So too, through the moon, which is bound to the earth and suspended in the heavens, being split into two halves at the sign of an inhabitant of the earth, a miracle indicating to that earth-dweller’s messengership was displayed to the other inhabitants of the earth. Thus, the person of Muhammad (PBUH) flew to the very summit of perfections on the two luminous wings of messengership and sainthood - like the two luminous unfolded wings of the moon; he ascended to the distance of two bow-lengths; he became the cause of pride of both the inhabitants of the heavens and the inhabitants of the earth....

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5. Musnad,i,377, 413, 447, 456; iii, 207, 220, 275, 278; iv, 81; Tafsir Ibn Kathir, vi, 469.

6. Suyuti, Nazm al-Mutanathir fi’l-Hadith al-Mutawatir, 180; Tabarani, al-Mu’jam al-Kabir, xii, 13623-4; xvii, 666-7; Ibn ‘Adi, al-Kamil fi’l-Du’afa, iii, 1307.



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Upon him and upon his Family be blessings and peace such as will fill the earth and the heavens.

Glory be unto You! we have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.6

O God! For the sake of the one at whose sign the moon split make my heart and the hearts of all true students of the Risale-i Nur like the moon in the face of the Sun of the Qur’an. AMEN. AMEN.

ba

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7. Qur’an, 2:32.





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The Thirty-Second Word

[This Word consists of three Stopping-Places. It is an addendum explaining the Eighth Flash of the Twenty-Second Word, and is also a commentary on the first of the fifty-five tongues with which all the beings in the universe testify to Divine unity. These tongues have been alluded to in my treatise called Katre (A Droplet). It is one truth, which has been clothed in the garment of comparison, of many truths pertaining to the verse: Had there been in heaven or on earth any deities other than God, there surely would have been confusion in both.1]

First Stopping-Place

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

Had there been in heaven or on earth any deities other than God, there surely would have been confusion in both.

There is no god but God, He is One, He has no partner; His is the dominion and His is the praise; He grants life and deals death, and is living and dies not; all good is in His hand; He is powerful over all things; and with Him all things have their end.

One night in Ramadan, I said that the above sentence affirming Divine unity consists of eleven phrases, and that in each of them is a degree expressing that unity and some good news. But of those degrees I only discussed the meaning and significance of He has no partner, and that was in the manner of an allegorical conversation and imaginary debate that would be accessible to ordinary people. I am now writing down that conversation at the request and desire of my much-valued brothers who assist me and my friends from the mosque. It is as follows.

Let us suppose one person represents all those things set up as partners to God that all the different varieties of idolators imagine to exist. These

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1. Qur’an, 21:22.



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idolators are the people of unbelief and misguidance, who worship nature and causes, for example, and assign partners to God. The fictitious person wants to have mastery over one of the beings in the universe, and so claims to be its true owner.

Firstly, that maker of false claims encountered a particle, which is the smallest of those beings, and he spoke to it in the language of Naturalism and philosophy saying that he was to be its master and true owner. But the particle replied to him with the tongue of truth and dominical wisdom, saying:

“I perform innumerable duties. Entering many creatures which are all different I do my work in them. And there are, from among countless particles like me, those that move from place to place2 and work with me. If you have the knowledge and power to employ me in all those duties, and the authority and ability to employ and have at your command all those others as well, and if you are able to be the true owner of and to have total control over the beings of which I become a part in complete order, for example, over red blood-corpuscles, then you can claim to be master over me and ascribe me to something other than God Almighty. But if you cannot do all these things, be silent!

“And in the same way that you cannot have mastery over me, you cannot interfere in any way. For there is such complete orderliness in our duties and motion that one who does not have infinite wisdom and all-encompassing knowledge cannot meddle with us. If he did, it would cause chaos. However, a person like you who is thick, impotent, and unseeing, and is in the clutches of blind chance and nature, could not even begin to stretch out a finger to interfere.”

So, just like the Materialists, the one making these claims said: “In that case, own yourself. Why do you say you are working on someone else’s account?” To which the particle replied:

“If I had a brain like the sun, and all-embracing knowledge like its light, and all-encompassing power like its heat, and comprehensive senses like the seven colours in its light, and if I had a face that looked to all the places in which I travel and all the beings in which I work, and an eye that looked to them and words that carried authority with them, then perhaps I would

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1.Indeed, every object which is in motion, from minute particles to the planets, displays on itlelf the stamp of Eternal Besoughtedness and Unity. Also, by reason of its movement, each of them takes possession of all the places in which it travels in the name of Unity, thus including them in the property of its own owner. As for those creatures that are not in motion, they are each of them, from plants to the fixed stars, like a seal of Unity showing the place in which it is situated to be the missive of its own Maker. That is to say, each flower and fruit is a stamp and seal of Unity which demonstrates, in the name of Unity, that its habitat and native place is the missive of its Maker. In short, each thing takes possession of all things through its motion in the name of Unity. That is, one who does not have all the stars within his grasp cannot have mastery over a single particle.



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indulge in foolishness like you and claim to own myself. Get out! Go away! You won’t get anything out of me!”

So, when the representative of those things held to be God’s partners despaired of the particle, he hoped to pursue the matter with a red blood - corpuscle. And coming across one he said to it on behalf of causes and in the language of nature and philosophy: “I am your master and owner.” And the red corpuscle replied to him through the tongue of truth and Divine wisdom:

“I am not alone. If you are able to own all my fellows in the army of blood whose stamp, nature as officials, and order is the same, and if you have subtle wisdom and mighty power enough to own all the cells of the body in which we travel and are employed with perfect wisdom, and if you can demonstrate this to be the case, then perhaps some meaning might be found in your claim.

“But someone stupified like yourself cannot be owner with your only support being deaf nature and blind force; indeed, you are unable to interfere in so much as an atom. For the order with which we function is so perfect that only one who sees, hears, knows, and does everything can have authority over us.” And saying: “So, be silent! My duty is so important and the order so perfect that I have no time to answer garbled rubbish such as yours,” it repelled him.

Then, since he was unable to mislead it, the representative left and next came across the little house known as a cell of the body. He said to it in the language of philosophy and nature: “I could not persuade the particle and red corpuscle but perhaps you will be reasonable. Since you have been made of several substances just like a minute house, I am able to make you. You will be my artefact and true property.” The cell responded to him through the tongue of wisdom and truth, saying:

“I am only a minute little thing but I have very important duties and very sensitive relations; I am connected to the body as a whole as well as to all its cells. For example, I perform complex and faultless duties in the veins, and in regard to the arteries, the sensory and motor nerves, the powers of attraction and repulsion and procreation, and the imaginative faculty. If you have the knowledge and power to form, arrange, and employ the whole body and all its blood-vessels, nerves and faculties, and if you have comprehensive wisdom and penetrating power with which to control all the body’s cells, which are like me, as regards qualities and artistry we are brothers, demonstrate it. Only then can you claim to be able to make me. If you cannot, then off with you!

“The red corpuscles bring my food, while the white ones combat illnesses which attack me. I have work to do, do not distract me! Anyway, an impotent, lifeless, deaf and blind thing like you cannot in any way interfere with



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us. For we have such an exact, subtle and faultless order3 that if the one who has authority over us was not Absolutely Wise, Absolutely Powerful and Absolutely Knowing, our order would be broken and our regularity spoilt.”

Then the one making the claims despaired of it, too. He encountered the body of a human being and said to it, once again as the Naturalists say, in the language of blind nature and aimless philosophy: “You are mine, it is I who made you; or anyway I have a share in you.” The human body answered with the tongue of reality and wisdom and through the eloquence of its order:

“If you possess the power and knowledge to have actual control over the bodies of all human beings, who are the same as me and on whose faces are the stamp of power and seal of creation which are the same, and if you have the wealth and jurisdiction to own, from water and air to plants and animals, the treasuries of my sustenance, and if you have infinite power and boundless wisdom with which to employ me with perfect wisdom and cause me to perform my worship, and the power and wisdom to lodge in a narrow, lowly

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3. The All-Wise Maker has created the human body as though it was a well-arranged city. A number of the blood-vessels perform the duties of telephones and telegraphs, while others of them are like pipes from a fountain through which blood, which is the water of life, flows. As for blood, created within it are two sorts of corpuscles. One of them, known as red corpuscles, distributes nutrients to the cells of the body; it conveys sustenance to the cells according to a Divine law. (Like merchants and food officials.) The other sort are white corpuscles, which are fewer in number than the former. Their duty, like soldiers, is defence against enemies, such as illness. Whenever they undertake that defence, with their two revolutions like Mevlevi dervishes, they take on a swift and wonderful state. As for blood as a whole, it has two general duties; the first is to repair damage done to the body. There are two sorts of blood-vessels, veins and arteries. One of these carry purified blood, they are the channels through which elean blood is conveyed. The others are the channels for the turbid blood which collects the waste-matter; these convey the blood to where breathing occurs; that is, the lungs.

The All-Wise Maker created in the air two elements, nitrogen and exygen. As for exygen, when it comes int o contact with the blood in breathing, it drawn to itself, like amber, the impure element, carbon, which is polluting the blood. The two combine and are transformed into matter called carbonic acid gas. Oxygen also maintains the body temperature, and purifies the blood. This is because, in the science of chemistry, the All-Wise Maker bestowed on oxygen and carbon an intense relationship, which might be described as 'chemical passion', whereby, according to this Divine law, when those two elements come close to each other, they combine. It has been established by science that heat is produced by combining, because it is a sort of combustion.

The wisdom in this is as follows: the motion of the particles of those two elements is different. On combining, the particles of one element unite with those of the other, each two particles thereafter moving like a single particle. The other motion is transformed into heat according to a low of the All-Wise Maker. As a matter of a fact, 'motion produces heat' is an established principle.

Thus, as a consequence of this fact, by this chemical combination, as carbon is removed from the blood the body temperature of human beings is maintained and at the same time the blood is purified. On inhaling, oxygen both cleanses the body's water of life and kindles the fire of life. On exhaling, it yields, in the mouth, the fruit of words, which are miracles of Divine Power.

GLORY BE UNTO HIM AT WHOSE ART THE MIND IS BEWILDERED.



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vessel like me immaterial and subtle faculties like the spirit, heart, and intellect, which are extremely vast and exalted and for which I am merely the sheath, then demonstrate all these and afterwards say that you made me. Otherwise, be silent!

“Moreover, according to the testimony of the perfect order in my body and the indication of the stamp of unity on my face, my Maker is One Who is powerful over all things, knows all things, and sees and hears all things. Someone aimless and impotent like you cannot meddle in His art. You cannot interfere in so much as an atom.”

The representative of the things imagined to be God’s partners could find no way in which to interfere in the body so he went off. Next, he encountered the human race and said to himself “This is a disorganized and unruly group. Perhaps, like Satan interferes in their individual and social actions which they perform through the exercise of their wills, I’ll be able to find some way to interfere in the functioning of their bodies and natures. And then, finding some way, I’ll be able to exercise control over the body and the body’s cell which sent me packing.”

So, he said to the human race, once again in the language of deaf nature and aimless philosophy: “You seem to be to be in great confusion. I am your master and owner, or at least I partly own you.” To which the human race answered through the tongue of truth and reality, wisdom and order:

“If you possess the power and wisdom to make the shirt that clothes the whole globe of the earth and is woven and sewn with perfect wisdom from the multicoloured threads of all the hundreds of thousands of animal and plant species, of which we are one, and to make the carpet which is spread over the face of the earth and is woven from the hundreds of thousands of species of animate beings and is created in an extremely fine and ornamented fashion, and to continuously renew and refurbish it, and if you possess comprehensive power and all-embracing wisdom with which to have free disposal over the globe of the earth of which we are the fruit, and over the universe of which we are the seed, and to send us our vital necessities from all the regions of the cosmos with the balance of wisdom, and if you have the ability to create all those like us who have gone before us and those who will come after us, on whose faces the stamp of power is the same, then, perhaps, you can claim to have mastery over me.

“But if you cannot, be silent! Do not say that, seeing confusion in my species, you will be able to interfere in some way, because the order is faultless. The conditions you imagine to be confused and disorderly are transcribed with perfect order according to the book of power and Divine Determining. For the perfect order in animals and plants, which are far inferior to us and are under our supervision, demonstrates that this seeming disorder in us is but a sort of writing.



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“Is it at all possible that the one who artistically positions one thread running through a whole carpet should be other than the master designer of the carpet; or that the one who creates a fruit should be other than the creator of the tree that bore it; or that the one who creates the seed should be other than the fashioner of the being that produced the seed?

“Also your eyes are blind: you do not see the miracles of power on my face, the wonders of creation in my being. If you did see them, you would understand that my Maker is such that nothing at all can withstand Him or be difficult for Him. The stars are as easy for Him as particles. He creates the spring with as much ease as a flower. He is One Who includes the index of the vast universe in my being with perfect order. Could a lifeless, impotent, blind and deaf thing like you interfere in any way in the art of such a Being? So, be silent!” And saying: “Off with you! Go away!”, he drove him away.

Next the one making these claims went and addressed the broad carpet covering the face of the earth and the lavishly decorated and embroidered shirt clothing it on behalf of causes and in the language of nature and philosophy, claiming: “I can have control over you and be your owner, or at least have a share in you.” So the shirt, the carpet,4 said to him on behalf of truth and reality and through the tongue of wisdom:

“If you have the power and art to weave and create all the well-ordered and purposeful shirts and carpets, whose embroideries are all different, which have clothed the earth to the number of years and centuries, then have been removed in an orderly fashion and strung on the line of past time, and will clothe the earth again, carpets and shirts whose programmes and forms have been drawn and specified in the sphere of Divine Determining, and which will be attached to the ribbon of future time, and if you have two wise and powerful hands with which to reach from the creation of the world to its destruction, indeed, from pre-eternity to post-eternity, and if you have the wisdom and ability to create every one of all my threads and to repair and renew them with perfect order and wisdom, and if you are able to hold in your hand and create the globe, which is our model and is wearing us, making us its veil and outer garment, then you can claim to have mastery over me. If you cannot, then away with you! There is no place for you here!

“Moreover, there is on us such a stamp of unity and seal of oneness that one who does not have the whole universe within the grasp of his power, and who cannot see at one time all things with all their functions, and cannot do innumerable things at the same time, who is not all-present and all-seeing everywhere, who is not unconfined by space, and who does not possess infinite wisdom, knowledge, and power, such a one cannot own us, neither could he interfere.”

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4. In fact, the carpet is both living and vibrates in a regular fashion. Its embroideries are being continuously replaced with perfect wisdom and order in order to display the ever-differing manifestations of the Weaver's Names.



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So the representative went off, saying: “Perhaps I will be able to persuade the globe of the earth and find something going for me there.” So he went and said to the globe,5 once again on behalf of causes and in the language of nature: “Since you travel in such an aimless manner, you demonstrate that you have no owner. In which case, you can be mine.” To which the earth replied in a thunderous voice, in the name of truth and with the tongue of reality:

“Do not talk such utter nonsense! How could I be just aimless and without an owner? Have you found my garments or even the tiniest point or thread in them to be in disarray, without order, and have you seen them to be without wisdom, purpose and art that you tell me I am ownerless and aimless?

“If you can really own my vast orbit round which I travel in one year, a distance that should take approximately twenty-five thousand years,6 where I perform my duty of service with perfect balance and wisdom, and own the ten planets, which are my brothers and are charged with duties like myself, together with the space through which they travel, and if you have infinite wisdom and power with which to create and position the sun, which is our leader and to which we are bound and attached by a compassionate attraction, and to fasten me and the other planets to it like stones in a sling, and to employ us and cause us to revolve with perfect order and wisdom, then you can claim to have mastery over me. But if you cannot, get out! Go to Hell! I’ve got work to do, my duty to perform.

“Moreover, our magnificent order, awesome movement, and purposeful subjugation demonstrate that our Master is such that all beings from minute particles to the stars and galaxies are obedient and subjugated to him like soldiers under orders. He is an All-Wise Possessor of Glory, a Possessor of Absolute Sovereignty Who arrays the sun with planets as easily as He arrays and ornaments a tree with its fruit.”

Since the claimer could find nothing for himself on the earth, he went off and said to himself about the sun: “This a huge great thing. Perhaps I’ll be able to find a hole in it and open up a way in; then maybe I’ll be able to subjugate it as well as the earth.” So he said to the sun, as the fire-worshippers

____________________

5. In short, the particle referred the claimer to the red corpuschle. The red corpuscle referred him to the cell and the cell referred him to the human body; the human body to human race and the human race to the earth's shirt, which is woven from all the species of animate creatures. The earth's shirt referred him to the glode of the earth, which in turn referred him to the sun. And the sun referred him to all the stars. Each one of them said; "Go, if you are able to take possession of the next one up from me, do so, then come and try to be my master. If you are unable to defeat it, then you are unable to get possesion of me." That is to say, one whose authority does not extend to all the stars cannot make a single particle heed his claim to mastery.
6. If half the diameter of a circle is approximately one hundred and eighty million kilometres, the circle covers approximately a twenty-five thousand year distance.



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speak, in the name of idolatry and in the language of the philosophy that is the mouthpiece of the Devil: “You are a ruler, you own yourself; you dispose of matters freely, as you wish.” But the sun replied to him in the name of truth and through the tongue of reality and Divine wisdom, saying:

“God forbid! A hundred thousand times, God forbid! I am a subservient official. I am a candelabrum in my Lord’s guest-house. I am not the true owner of a fly, or even of a fly’s wing. For in the fly’s being there are immaterial jewels and antique works of art, like eyes and ears, such as are not in my shop. They are outside the sphere of my power,” thus reprimanding him.

So the one making the claims changed his approach and said with the tongue of devilish philosophy: “Since you do not own yourself, you are a servant; I claim you on behalf of causes.” To which the sun replied, speaking for truth and reality and with the tongue of worship:

“I can only belong to one who is able to create all the lofty stars, which are my fellows, to place them in the heavens with faultless wisdom, make them revolve with utter magnificence and to adorn them with exquisite finery.”

Next the claimer said to himself: “The stars are a great multitude, and they seem to be all scattered and in disorder. Perhaps I will be able to gain something out of them on behalf of my clients.” So he went in among them and said to them on behalf of causes and those things ascribed to God as partners, in the language of rebellious philosophy and as the Sabean star-worshippers said: “Since you are so scattered, you are all under the jurisdiction of different rulers.” To which one star replied, speaking for all the others:

“Just how stunned, brainless, stupid and blind you are not to see and understand the stamp of unity and seal of oneness on us, and not to recognize our lofty order and regularity and the laws of our worship. You imagine us to be without order. But we are the works of art and servants of a Single and Unique One Who holds in the grasp of His power the heavens, which are our seas, the cosmos, which is our tree, and infinite space, which is where we make our excursions.

“We are like electric illuminations and resplendent witnesses displaying the perfection of His dominicality. We are radiant proofs proclaiming the sovereignty of His dominicality. With all our different sorts, we are luminous servants in the domain of His sovereignty which give light and display the majesty of that sovereignty in the lofty dwellings and in the lowly ones, in the dwellings of this world, the Intermediate World and the hereafter.

“Indeed, each of us is a miracle of the Single and Unique One’s power, a well-ordered fruit of the tree of creation, an illuminated proof of unity; each of us is a dwelling place, aeroplane and mosque for the angels, and a lamp and sun for the lofty worlds, and a witness to the sovereignty of dominicality; and each of us is an ornament, palace, and flower of space, and a shining



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fish in the heavenly seas, and a beautiful eye in the face of the sky.7

“Furthermore, throughout us as a whole there is a silence within tranquillity, a motion within wisdom, an adornment within majesty, a beauty of creation within order, and a perfection of art within symmetry.

“And although we are thus and proclaim our Glorious Maker and His unity, oneness, eternal besoughtedness, and His attributes of beauty, glory and perfection to the whole universe with innumerable tongues, you still accuse us utterly pure, clean, obedient and subservient servants of being confused, disorderly, and without duties, and even of being without an owner. You therefore deserve a truly punishing slap.”

And one star, like the stone hurled at Satan, delivered such a mighty slap at the claimer’s face that it flung him from the stars to the very pit of Hell. And it cast nature,8 which was together with him, into the valleys of delusion, and chance into the chasm of non-existence, and those things ascribed to God as partners into the darkness of impossibility, and the philosophy that is hostile to religion down to the lowest of the low. All the stars recited this sacred decree together with that star:

Had there been in heaven or earth any deities other than God, there surely would have been confusion in both.9

And they proclaimed: “There is nothing, from a fly’s wing to the lamps in the heavens, nothing, even the size of a fly’s wing, in which those things ascribed to God as partners could interfere.”

Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise!10

O God! Grant blessings and peace to our master Muhammad, the Lamp of Your Unity in the multiplicity of Your creatures, and the Herald of Your Oneness in the exhibition of Your creation, and to all his Family and Companions.

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7. This means, we are indications observing and contemplating the wonders of God Almighty's creation and causing others to contemplate them. That is, just as the heavens are seen to be observing the wonders of Divine art on the earth with countless eyes, so too, like the angels in the skies, the stars watch the earth, which is an exhibition of wonders and marvels, and they cause conscious creatures to observe it with attention.
8. But after its fall, Nature repented. It understood that its true duty was not to act and to have an effect, but to accept and be passive. And it recognized that it was a sort of notebook of Divine Determining, but a notebook capable of change and transformation; that it was a sort of programme of Dominical Power, was similar to the body of the rules of creation laid down by the All-Powerful One of Glory, and was a sort of collection of His laws. It assumed its duty of worship with perfect submission acknowledging its utter impotence, and thus acquired the title of Divine creation and Dominical art.
9. Qur'an, 21:22.
10. Qur'an, 2:32.



The Words / Thirty-Second Word - First Stopping-Place - p.628

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

Look, then, to the signs of God’s mercy, how He

restores to life the earth after its death.11

The following section12 alludes to one flower from the pre-eternal garden of the above verse.

It is as if all the blossoming trees are beautifully composed odes speaking poetically through the tongue of disposition reciting the manifest praises of the Glorious Creator.

Or, it is as if all the blossoming trees have opened thousands of gazing eyes and have caused thousands of others to open in order to behold, not with one or two eyes but with thousands, the Glorious Fashioner’s wonders of art which are being broadcast and exhibited, and so that attentive people will gaze on them, too.

Or, it is as if all the blossoming trees have beautified their verdant limbs with the finest adornment for the moment of their parade and for their own particular festivals in the general festival of spring, so that their Glorious Monarch will contemplate the gifts, subtle wonders, and resplendent works of art He has bestowed upon them; and so that He will present to creation’s gaze the bejewelled instances of His mercy, in springtime, and on the face of the earth, which is the exhibition of Divine art; and so that He will proclaim to mankind the wisdom in the creation of the tree.

He demonstrates the perfection of Divine power through showing what important treasure hangs on their delicate branches and what significant wealth there is in the fruits of His merciful bounties.

The imagination sees heavenly angels embodied from these trees

With thousands of flutes.

From these flutes the consciousness hears

The praises of the Ever-Living One.

Their leaves have tongues, each reciting the word: It is He! It is He!

Meaning,

O Ever-Living One! O Ever-Living One!

Since all things chant in unison: There is no god but He,

And they are seeking Truth,

From beginning to end they recite: O Ever-Living One!

They are chanting in unison: O God!

And We send down from the skies water rich in blessings.13

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11. Qur'an, 30:50.
12. In the original text this section is in Arabic, together with the author's Turkish rendering, which is the source of the translation here. The lines at the end are in Persian (Tr.).
13. Qur'an, 50:9.



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A Short Addendum to the First Stopping-Place

Listen to the verse:

Do they not look at the sky above them? How We have made it and adorned it, and there are no flaws in it?14

Then look at the face of the heavens, you see how it is silent in its tranquillity; how it is in motion with wisdom, how it is radiant with majesty, how it smiles with its adornment. An unending and infinite sovereignty is proclaimed to those who think by the order in its creation, by the symmetry in its art, by its shining lamps, its brilliant lanterns, its glittering stars.

Do they not look at the sky above them? How We have made it and adorned it, and there are no flaws in it?

The following explains the above passage, Then look at the face of the heavens, etc., which in turn is an explanation of the verse quoted.

Firstly, the phrase: How it is silent in its tranquillity.

The verse directs an attentive gaze to the beautifully adorned face of the heavens so that the one beholding it may become aware of the silence there which is within a vast tranquillity, and so that he may understand that it is thus through the command and subjugation of One Possessing Absolute Power.

For if they had been independent and unrestrained, those huge globes, all in close proximity to each other, those infinite, awesome heavenly bodies, would have caused such an uproar with their enormously swift revolutions that they would have deafened the cosmos. And there would have been such confusion in that tumultuous commotion that it would have scattered the universe. It is well-known what a commotion and uproar it causes if twenty water-buffalo work on top of each other. Whereas, we know that there are among the stars some which are thousands of times larger than the earth and which revolve at a speed seventy times faster than that of a cannon-ball. So the degree of power and subjugation of the Glorious Maker and All-Powerful One of Perfection may be understood from this, together with the degree of obedience and submission to Him of the stars.

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14. Qur'an, 50:6.



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Secondly, the phrase: How it is in motion with wisdom.

The verse commands us to look at the motion on the face of the heavens, which is with wisdom and purpose. Indeed, that mighty, wondrous motion occurs within a precise and comprehensive wisdom.

For example, a craftsman who operates a factory’s machinery with wisdom and purpose demonstrates the degree of his skill and craftsmanship in proportion to the order and grandeur of the factory. Similarly, when we look at it in this way, the degree of power and wisdom of the All-Powerful One of Glory become apparent to us through His making the mighty sun as a factory, and its planets, those awesome, immense globes, like the factory’s machinery, and His spinning and revolving them like stones in a sling.

Thirdly, How it is radiant with majesty, how it smiles with its adornment.

It has this meaning: the radiant majesty and smiling adornment on the face of the heavens are such that they demonstrate the sublimity of the Glorious Maker’s sovereignty and exquisiteness of His artistry. As the myriad electric lamps hung about on festival days demonstrate the degree of the king’s majesty and achievement in material progress, the vast heavens, too, with their majestic and adorned stars demonstrate to attentive gazes the sublime sovereignty and exquisite artistry of the Glorious Maker.

Fourthly, By the order in its creation, by the symmetry in its art.

This phrase says the following: look at the order of the creatures on the face of the heavens and see their symmetry and precise balance, then understand just how powerful and wise is their Maker.

Indeed, the vast heavens demonstrate the degree of power and wisdom of the One Who transforms various and tiny creatures or animals, thus preparing them for their duties, and Who impels each of them on a determined way by means of its particular balance, and the degree of their obedience and subjugation to Him. Similarly, the vast heavens demonstrate to attentive gazes through their awesome vastness and innumerable stars, and the stars, through their imposing hugeness and speedy revolutions and the fact that they do not exceed their bounds by an iota, even for a second, or neglect their duties for a tenth of a second, the exceedingly fine and particular balance with which the Glorious Maker carries out His dominicality.

Fifthly, An unending and infinite sovereignty is proclaimed to those who think by its shining lamps, its brilliant lanterns, its glittering stars.

This phrase states clearly what is alluded to in the above verse, and in many similar to it, which mention the subjugation of the sun, moon, and stars. That is to say, to attach the heat and light-giving lamp of the sun to the embellished ceiling of the skies, and to make it the ink-pot for writing the missives of the Eternally Besought One in lines of day and night on the



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pages of summer and winter; and to make the moon, like the hour-hands which shines on the large clocks on minarets and towers, an hour-hand of time’s mighty clock on the dome of the heavens, and to make it move through its mansions with precise balance and perfect measure in the form of many varying crescents so that it leaves one crescent one night and then later returns to collect it; and to adorn the beautiful face of the sky with stars that twinkle and smile in the dome of the heavens, all these are signs of the unlimited sovereignty of a sustaining dominicality. They are indications of a majestic Divinity which makes Itself known to conscious creatures. They invite those who think to believe and to affirm Divine unity.

Look upon the coloured page of the book of the universe;

See what forms the golden pen of power has traced.

No dark point remains for the gaze of the heart’s eye;

It is as if God as inscribed His signs with light.

Look! What a miracle of wisdom is the amazing universe!

Look! What a wondrous spectacle is the vastness of space!

Then listen to the stars, listen to their harmonious address!

See what wisdom has emblazed on the decree of its light.

Altogether they start to speak with the tongue of truth,

They address the majesty of the All-Powerful, All-Glorious One’s sovereignty:

We are each of us light-scattering proofs of the existence of our Maker,

We are witnesses both to His unity and His power,

We are subtle miracles

gilding the face of the skies for the angels to gaze upon.

We are the innumerable attentive eyes of the heavens

which watch the earth, which study Paradise.

We are the innumerable exquisite fruits

which the hand of wisdom of the All-Glorious and Beauteous One

has fastened

To the celestial portion of the tree of creation,

to all the branches of the Milky Way.

For the inhabitants of the heavens,

we are each of us a travelling mosque, a spinning house, a lofty home,

Each is an illumining lamp, a mighty ship, an aeroplane.

We are each of us a miracle of power, a wonder of creative art

Created by the Powerful One of Perfection, the All-Wise One of Glory;

A rarity of His wisdom, a marvel of His creation, a world of light.

We demonstrated to mankind innumerable proofs,



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We made them hear with these innumerable tongues of ours;

But their accursed unseeing, unbelieving eyes did not see our faces,

They did not hear our words.

And we are signs that speak the truth:

Our stamp is one, our seal is one,

We are mastered by our Sustainer;

We glorify Him through our subjugation;

We recite His Names;

We are each of us in ecstasy,

A member of the mighty circle of the Milky Way.



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Second Stopping-Place

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
Say: He is God, the One and Only. God, the Eternally Besought One.15

This Stopping-Place consists of three Aims.

THE FIRST AIM

The representative of the people of misguidance and those who assign partners to God fell to earth at the slap he received from a star, as was described at the end of the First Stopping-Place. So, because he could find nothing going for him anywhere from the particles to the stars, he gave up laying claim to them in that way and instead tried by means of three important questions to induce doubts in believers’ minds about Divine unity and oneness.

The First Question: He said in the manner of the atheists: “O you who believe in One God! Looking on behalf of my clients, I could find nothing, nor get anything at all out of the beings in the universe; I could not substantiate my claims. But then, how do you prove the existence of One Who is Single and Unique and possesses infinite power? Why do you not think it possible for others to interfere and to share in His power?”

The Answer: It is decisively proved in the Twenty-Second Word that every creature, every particle, every star, is an illuminating argument for the Necessarily Existent and Absolutely Powerful One. Every link in the chains of beings in the universe is a clear evidence for His unity. The All-Wise Qur’an proves this with its innumerable proofs, and mentions most frequently those proofs that are clearest in the view of people generally. For example:

If you ask them, who is it that created the heavens and the earth, they will certainly say, “God.”16

And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the variations in your languages and colours.17

With these and many verses like them, the All-Wise Qur’an presents the

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15. Qur'an, 112:1-2
16. Qur'an, 31:25; 39;38.
17. Qur'an, 30:22.



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creation of the heavens and earth as self-evident proofs of Divine unity. And so, whether they like it or not, because of the way the heavens and earth have been created, anyone who is conscious and intelligent will be compelled to affirm the Glorious Creator. As the Qur’an says: They will certainly say, “God.”

In the First Stopping-Place we started with a particle and demonstrated the stamp of unity on beings as far as the stars and the heavens. With verses like these the Qur’an repels the ascribing of partners to God from the stars and heavens down to particles. It indicates this in the following way.

The Possessor of Absolute Power Who creates the heavens and earth with such order and balance, of course creates the solar system, which is a region of it. The solar system is self-evidently within His controlling and directing grasp.

Since that Absolutely Powerful One holds the sun and its planets within His grasp, and orders, subjugates, and directs them, certainly the earth, which is a member of the solar system and is tied to the sun, is also within His regulating and controlling grasp. Since this is so, the beings which are created and inscribed on the face of the earth and are like its aims and fruits are also within His sustaining and perfecting grasp.

And since all the creatures spread and scattered over the earth, which gild and adorn its face, are continuously renewed, coming and going, filling the earth and being emptied from it, they are all of them within the grasp of His knowledge and power; and since they are measured and ordered on the scales of justice and wisdom; and since all the species of animate beings are within the grasp of His power; certainly, all the well-ordered and faultless members of those species, which are like miniature specimens of the cosmos, balance-sheets of its species, and tiny indexes of the book of the universe, must also be within His creating, sustaining, directing, and perfecting grasp.

And since this is so, the cells, blood-corpuscles, limbs and muscles which comprise those animate creatures’ bodies are also self-evidently within the grasp of His knowledge and power.

And since every cell and corpuscle is under His command and within His grasp, and since they are in motion according to His laws, surely the particles out of which they are formed and which are like shuttles weaving the embroideries of art which clothe them, are also necessarily within the grasp of His power and the sphere of His knowledge. For they are in motion in orderly fashion faultlessly performing duties at His command, with His permission, and through His power.

And since this is so, the identifying features and distinguishing marks to be found on everyone, all the differences in faces, voices and languages, of necessity also occur through His knowledge and wisdom.



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So now look again at the verse which mentions and points out the beginning and end of this chain:

And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the variations in your languages and your colours: indeed, in that are signs for those who know.

We therefore now say: O representative of the unbelievers! You can see, these arguments as strong as the chains of the universe prove the path of affirming Divine unity, and they demonstrate a Possessor of Absolute Power. Since the creation of the heavens and the earth demonstrates an All-Powerful Maker, and the infinite power of that All-Powerful Maker, and that His infinite power is at the point of infinite perfection, there is an absolute lack of need for any partners. That is to say, He in no way needs any associates.

Since He has no need, why do you take that dark path? Why is it you feel constrained to take it? Moreover, since both He, and beings, are in absolutely no need of partners, just as it is impossible for there to be any partners in His Divinity, so it is impossible for there to be any in His creation and sustaining of beings. Their existence is impossible. The reason for this is as follows:

We proved that the power of the Maker of the heavens and the earth is both infinite and at the point of infinite perfection. If there was any partner, it would mean that, although His power is infinite, another finite power would threaten and overcome His infinite and perfect power and would take possession of a certain areas of it. It would then be necessary, without there being any compulsion, for something finite to make something infinite finite and limited, and for itself to become infinite for a time. This is a manifold and most irrational impossibility.

Also, since there is no need for partners, and, since their existence is impossible, to claim otherwise is purely arbitrary. That is, since there is no cause that could induce such a claim, rationally or logically, it would be meaningless. According to the science of jurisprudence, such a claim is designated ‘arbitrary’. That is, it is a meaningless ‘abstract claim’.

A principle of the sciences of theology and jurisprudence is this, that a probability not originating from any indication or sign has no importance; it cannot induce doubt in a matter that is definite. It cannot shake the certainty that is based on sound judgement.

For example, it is possible that Barla or Egridir Lake consists of grape-molasses or that it has been transformed into oil. But since that possibility does not originate from any indication, it does not affect our certain knowledge, or induce doubt in the fact, that it consists of water.



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Therefore, we questioned every sort of creature from every corner of the cosmos and whatever was questioned, from the particles to the stars in the First Stopping-Place, and from the creation of the heavens and the earth to the individual features in faces in the Second Stopping-Place, everything demonstrated through the tongue of its being the seal of unity; everything testified that God is One.

You saw this for yourself. There is, then, nothing in any of the creatures in the universe on which the possibility of God having any partners could be constructed. That is to say, since to claim that God does have partners is purely arbitrary and meaningless and is an ‘abstract claim’, it is pure ignorance and unqualified stupidity.

Thus, nothing remained for the representative of the people of misguidance to say in the face of this. The only thing he could say was: “What indicates that God has partners is the configuration of causes in the cosmos. It is that everything is tied to a cause. So that means that causes have an actual effect, and if they have an effect, are not they able to be God’s partners?”

The Answer: Effects have been tied to causes because Divine will and wisdom require them to be so, and so that great numbers of the Divine Names may be manifested. Everything has been tied to a cause, but we have decisively proved in numerous places, including many of the Words, that “causes have no actual power with which to create their effects.” So, for now we shall just say this:

Among causes human beings are self-evidently the most superior, and have the greatest power of choice and the most extensive ability to control and direct other causes. And among the most obvious of man’s actions over which he exercises choice are eating and the powers of speech and thought. Furthermore, all these faculties are extremely well-ordered, wonderful, and purposeful chains. But of the hundred links in these chains only one is subject to man’s power of choice.

For example, in the chain of actions concerning food, which stretches from the nourishment of the body’s cells to the forming of fruit, only moving the jaw and chewing the food is subject to man’s choice. And in the chain of speech, only exhaling air and blowing it into the mould of articulated letters. And while a word in the mouth is a seed, it becomes like a tree; in the air it yields the fruits of millions of the same word and enters the ears of listeners along with millions of others. Man’s imagination can barely reach this metaphorical shoot, so how should the short arm of choice reach it?

Since among causes man is the most superior and has the greatest power of choice and yet his hands are thus tied from real creation, how should other causes, such as inanimate creatures, animals, the elements, and nature have any real power of disposal over other causes? Each of those causes is



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only a container; a cover for the dominical works; a tray-bearer for the gifts of the Compassionate One.

Of course, the receptacle for a king’s gift, or the handkerchief in which it is wrapped, or the individual who brings the gift, which is placed in his hand, can in no way be partners in the king’s sovereignty. Anyone who supposes that they are partners is imagining nonsensical absurdities. In the same way, apparent causes and intermediaries can have absolutely no share in God’s sustaining of His creatures. Their lot is only to perform a service of worship.

THE SECOND AIM

The representative of those who ascribe partners to God could in no respect prove that way, and so, although despairing, since he wanted to destroy the way of those who affirm Divine unity, he tried to sow doubts in their minds by asking the following question:

The Second Question: “O you who affirm Divine unity! You say, ‘Say: He is God, the One and Only. God, the Eternally Besought One;’18 that the Creator of the universe is one, He is single, He is eternally besought by all creatures; and that the Creator of everything is He. That He is one in essence and at the same time the reins of everything are directly in His hand, the key to everything is in His grasp; one thing cannot be an obstacle to another. And you say that at the same instant He has total disposal over all things and all their states. How can such a far-fetched fact be believed? How can a single individual be in innumerable places and do innumerable things at the same time with no difficulty?”

The Answer: This question may be answered through explaining an extremely profound, subtle, elevated, and comprehensive mystery concerning Divine oneness and eternal besoughtedness. Man’s mind can only look at this mystery through the telescope and observatory of comparison and allegory. While there is nothing similar or analogous to God Almighty’s Essence and attributes, the functions of His attributes may be looked at to an extent by means of comparison and allegory. So we shall point to that mystery through comparisons of a material nature.

First Comparison: As is proved in the Sixteenth Word, a single individual may attain universality or comprehensiveness through the means of different mirrors. While actually being a particular or part of something greater than itself, it is as though it becomes a universal with numerous qualities and functions.

Indeed, matter like glass and water may be a mirror to physical objects,

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18. Qur'an, 112:1-2.



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and one such object may attain universality in such a mirror. In the same way, air, ether, and some creatures from the World of Similitudes are like mirrors to lucent objects and spirit beings. Those mirror-like creatures pass with the speed of lightning or imagination to being means of travel and spectating, so that the lucent and spirit beings travel with the speed of imagination in those spotless mirrors, those subtle dwellings. In the space of a single instant the spirit beings can enter thousands of places. And because they are lucent and because their reflections are the same as them and possess their qualities, they are as though present in person in every mirror, everywhere, as is contrary to the case with physical beings.

The reflections and likenesses of dense corporeal beings are not identical to the corporeality of those beings; they do not possess their qualities and may be thought of as dead. For example, although the sun is a particular and a single individual, it becomes like a universal by means of shining objects. It reflects its image, a sun like itself, in all shining objects, drops of water, and fragments of glass on the face of the earth, according to their capacity. The sun’s heat, light, and the seven colours in its light, a sort of likeness of the essential sun, is found in all shining physical objects.

Let us suppose the sun had knowledge and consciousness, then every mirror would be like a sort of dwelling-place or seat or chair for it, it would be in contact with everything in person. It would be able to communicate with all conscious creatures by means of mirrors, with the pupil of every eye, even, each of which would be like a telephone. One thing would not be an obstacle to another. Communicating with one thing would not be a barrier to communicating with another. While being present everywhere, it would be present nowhere.

If the sun, which is like a material, partial, and inanimate mirror to only the Divine Name of LIGHT out of innumerable Names, can therefore display universal activity in an unlimited number of places while being a single individual, should the All-Glorious One, with the oneness of His Essence, be unable to perform innumerable actions at the same time?

Second Comparison: Since the cosmos is like a tree, all trees may be likened to the truths of the universe. So we shall take the mighty and majestic plane-tree facing this room as a miniature example of the universe and demonstrate with it the manifestation of Divine oneness in the universe.

This tree has at least ten thousand fruits and each fruit has at least a hundred winged seeds. At one instant of time the ten thousand fruits and million seeds display altogether one art and creativity. While the centre of the laws of the tree’s formation is present in its roots and trunk, through a manifestation of Divine will and a condensing of the dominical command, which may be described as particular, individuated, and a ‘knot’ of life, it is also



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present at the ends of all its branches, within every fruit and every seed. No part of any member of the tree is lacking the laws, they are not obstacles to one another; the tree is formed through them.

And that single manifestation of will and law issuing from a command are not transmitted and radiated like light, heat, and air. For they leave no trace nor may any hint of them be perceived in the long distances and various beings between the places they go. If their being present in all the fruits and seeds had occurred through being transmitted and radiated, some trace or hint of them would be perceived. Rather, they are present in all those places without being fragmented or radiated.

The universal and general actions are not incompatible with His oneness and individuality. It may even be said that while the manifestation of will, and the law and life-source are present in all the places, they are present in none of them.

It is as if the law has as many eyes and ears as there are fruits and seeds of the majestic tree. Yes, each part of the tree is like a centre of the senses of the law, so that their long intermediaries are not a veil and do not form a barrier, but like telephone wires, are a means of facilitating and bringing things closer. The farthest is like the nearest.

Since, as is clear from observation, through a single partial manifestation of an attribute of the Single and Eternally Besought One like will, millions of events occur in millions of places without intermediary, one has to be certain, completely certain, that the All-Glorious One can have total disposal over the tree of the universe, together with all its parts and particles, through the manifestation of His power and will.

As is proved and explained in the Sixteenth Word, while being in one place and being particulars identifiable as single, through the mystery of luminosity, impotent and subjugated creatures like the sun, and semi-luminous creatures like spirit-beings, which are restricted by matter, and the laws issuing from a command and the manifestations of will which are the life-source and centre of direction of this plane-tree, which in turn are like its light and spirit, are clearly present in numerous places and in numerous events. While being particulars restricted by matter, it is as though they acquire an absolute universality, and through the exercise of will, in the space of one second may demonstrably perform a great number of works. You see for yourself and you will not be able to deny it.

The Single and Most Pure and Holy Essence, Whose attributes are all-comprehending and functions, universal, is far beyond and exalted above matter, and is utterly remote and free from any restriction and the darkness of density. All these lights and luminous beings are but obscure shadows of His Sacred Names; and all existence and life and the World of Spirits, the



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Intermediate Realm, and the World of Similitudes, semi-transparent mirrors reflecting His beauty.

What being can be hidden in the face of His oneness, which is within the manifestation of His attributes and actions, which in turn are evident through His universal will, absolute power, and all-embracing knowledge? What matter can be difficult for Him? What place can be concealed from Him? What object can remain distant from Him? What individual can draw close to Him without acquiring universality? Can anything at all be hidden from Him? Can any matter at all be an obstacle to another? Can any place at all be empty of His presence?

Ibn al-‘Abbas (May God be pleased with him) said: “In all beings are an immaterial eye that sees and ear that hears.” Is this not so? Are the chains of beings not each like a wire or vein for the swift conveyance of His commands and laws? Are obstacles and difficulties not means and intermediaries in His disposal of beings? Are causes and intermediaries not merely an apparent veil?

While He is present nowhere, is He not present everywhere? Does He have any need to be located in a place or situation? Can the veils of distance, smallness, and the degrees of existence be obstacles to His proximity, power of disposal, and witnessing?

Moreover, could the qualities pertaining to material, contingent, dense, numerous, restricted, and limited beings, and the states of change, transformation, division, and occupying space, which are their particular and confined necessary consequences, in any way touch the Most Pure and Holy Essence, Who is far beyond matter, is Necessarily Existent, the Light of Lights, and is Single, One, and free from any restriction or limitation and exalted above and pure of any fault or deficiency? Could impotence in any way be fitting for Him? Could any defect approach the skirt of His splendour and glory?

CONCLUSION OF THE SECOND AIM

Once, when I was reflecting on Divine oneness, I looked at the fruits on the plane-tree outside my room. A chain of thought came to me as inspiration, and I write it here in Arabic exactly as it came to me.19

All these fruits and the seeds within them are miracles of dominical wisdom, wonders of Divine art, gifts of Divine mercy, material proofs of Divine unity, bearers of the good news that Divine favours will be granted in the hereafter. Just as they are all truthful witnesses to His all-embracing power and knowledge, each of them is a mirror confirming His unity in all the

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19. In the original text the author follows the section in Arabic with a Turkish rendering of which is the basis of the translation here.



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corners of the world of multiplicity and in all the parts of the world of this tree, a world that has become multiple.

They turn the gaze from multiplicity to unity. Each of them says through the tongue of its being: “Do not let your glance wander over all this mighty spreading tree lest you become distracted, for the whole tree is within us. Its multiplicity is contained within our unity.”

Even, just as every seed, which is like the heart of the fruit, is a physical mirror confirming Divine unity, so it mentions and recites in the silent prayer of its heart the Divine Names the mighty tree recites in its audible prayer.

Furthermore, just as the fruits and seeds are mirrors professing Divine unity, so they are the visible signs of Divine Determining and embodied tokens of Divine power. Through these words, Divine Determining and power intimate the following:

“The many branches and twigs of this tree appeared from a single seed and demonstrate the unity of the tree’s Artist in creating it and giving it form. Then, after growing and spreading its branches, it gathered together all its truths in a single fruit. It encapsulated its entire meaning in a single seed, thereby demonstrating the wisdom in the Glorious Creator’s creation and planning.”

Similarly, the tree of the universe takes its existence from a source of unity and is sustained by it. And man, the fruit of the universe, demonstrates unity within this multiplicity of beings, while with the eye of faith his heart sees the mystery of unity within multiplicity.

Moreover, the fruits and seeds are allusions of dominical wisdom. Wisdom says the following with them to those who are aware: “The comprehensive regard towards this tree and its planning look with their comprehensiveness and universality to a single fruit. For the fruit is a miniature specimen of the tree. It is what is aimed at by the tree. Also, the comprehensive regard and planning look to every seed within the fruit, for the seed bears the meaning or index of the whole tree. That is to say, since the fruit is the aim the tree’s existence and the purpose of its creation, the One Who plans the tree regards each fruit with all His Names connected to the planning. Moreover, the mighty tree is sometimes pruned and trimmed for the sake of the tiny fruit; some parts of it are destroyed so that it may make new growth. It is grafted in order to produce even better, permanent fruit.”

In the same way, man, who is the fruit of the tree of the universe, is the purpose of its creation and existence and the aim of the creation of beings. While his heart, which is the seed of the fruit, is a most brilliant and comprehensive mirror to the universe’s Maker. It follows on from this wisdom,



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therefore, that tiny man will be the cause of the destruction and transformation of the universe. He will be the point of momentous revolutions like the Day of Resurrection. It will be for his judgement that the door of this world will be closed and that of the hereafter opened.

Since we have arrived at a discussion of resurrection, it is appropriate to explain one point concerning its reality which demonstrates the clarity and strength with which the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition illuminates and proves resurrection.

The result yielded by this sequence of thought shows that if it is necessary for man’s judgement and his gaining eternal happiness, the whole universe will be destroyed and that a power capable of destroying and transforming the universe shows itself and exists. But resurrection has many degrees. It is obligatory to believe in some of them; they must be acknowledged. Whereas others become apparent according to levels in spiritual and intellectual development, and for these knowledge pertaining to both are necessary.

In order to present cogent and strong proofs for the simplest and easiest level, the All-Wise Qur’an points out a power capable of opening up a truly vast realm of resurrection. The degree of resurrection in which it is necessary for all to believe is this:

After human beings die, their spirits depart for another realm. And their bodies rot except for a minute cell from the base of the spine which will act as a seed. It remains intact, and on the Day of Resurrection God Almighty will create the human body out of it and return its spirit to it.20 This degree is so simple, then, it may be seen every spring through millions of examples.

Sometimes in order to prove this degree, the verses of the Qur’an point out the unlimited activity of a power capable of raising to life all particles, and sometimes the traces of a power and wisdom capable of sending all creatures to extinction and then recalling them. Then they point to the activity and traces of a power and wisdom able to scatter the stars and shatter the heavens, and sometimes to the activity and manifestations of a power and wisdom capable of causing all animate creatures to die and then raising them to life again all at once at a single trumpet-blast.

Sometimes the verses demonstrate the manifestations of a power and wisdom that will raise to life the face of the earth and animate creatures all separately. And sometimes they demonstrate the traces of a power and wisdom that, lopping off its mountains, will cause the globe of the earth to disintegrate completely, and then restoring it will transform it into an even more excellent form.

That is to say, apart from the Day of Resurrection, in which it is obligatory for everyone to believe and to acknowledge, with that power and wisdom,

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20. See. page 544, footnote 22.



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God Almighty can create numerous other degrees and resurrections. And what is more, dominical wisdom requires that besides certainly bringing about mankind’s resurrection, He shall bring about all those other degrees or create certain other important matters.

A Question: You say: “You make much use of analogies in the form of comparisons or parables in the Words. Whereas according to the science of logic, this form of analogy does not afford certainty. A logical proof is required for matters of certain knowledge. Analogy in the form of comparison and parable is utilized by scholars of canon law in matters in which the prevailing opinion is sufficient. Also, you present comparisons in the form of certain stories; the stories are imaginary and cannot be true. Is this not contrary to reality?”

The Answer: It has often been stated in the science of logic that analogies in the form of comparisons and parables do not afford certain knowledge. However, there is a certain type of this form of analogy that forms a proof more powerful than those proofs consisting of certain knowledge used in logic. Also, it is more certain than that sort of deduction. This type of analogy is as follows.

It demonstrates the tip of a universal truth by means of a partial comparison and constructs its judgement on that truth. It demonstrates the truth’s law in a particular matter, so that the vast truth may be known and particular matters may be ascribed to it.

For example, although the sun is a single being, by means of luminosity it is present in every shining object. A law of a truth is demonstrated by means of this comparison which states that light and luminosity cannot be restricted: for them, distance and proximity are the same, many and few are equal, and space cannot conquer them.

This is another example: a tree’s fruits and leaves are all shaped and formed at the same time, in the same fashion, easily and perfectly, in a single centre and through a law issuing from a command. This is a comparison or parable demonstrating the tip of a mighty truth and universal law. It proves the truth and the truth’s law in a truly decisive form, so that, like the tree, the mighty universe displays and is the field of operation of that law of truth and mystery of Divine oneness.

Thus, the analogies, comparisons, and parables employed in all the Words are in this form and are more powerful and afford more certainty than the categorical proofs of logic.

Answer to the second part of the question: It is a well-known fact that in the art of composition, when the true meaning of a word or phrase is used solely as the means to perceive another meaning, it is called an ‘allusive



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expression.’ The essential meaning of a phrase defined as ‘allusive’ is not the means of either truth or falsehood; it is its allusive meaning that is such. If the allusive meaning is correct then the phrase is true. Even if its essential meaning is false, it does not damage its veracity. If the allusive meaning is not correct while its essential meaning is, then the phrase is false.

For example, “So-and-so’s salvation is of great length.” That is, “His sword-belt is very long.” This phrase alludes to the man’s tall stature. If he was tall but did not have a sword and belt, the phrase would still be correct and true. If he was not tall but had a long sword and belt, then the phrase would be false, since it is not its essential meaning that is intended.

So, the stories or parables in the Words, like for example, those in the Tenth and Twenty-Second Words, are sorts of allusions. The truths at the end of the stories are extremely correct, extremely true and conformable to reality; they are the allusive meanings of the stories. Their essential meanings are comparisons that bring distant objects close like a telescope and however they may be it does not damage their veracity and truthfulness. Moreover, all those stories are comparisons or parables. Purely to enable people in general to understand, what is properly communicated without words is put into words, and immaterial and abstract matters are represented in material form.

THIRD AIM

After receiving this decisive and convincing answer to his second question,21 the representative of all the people of misguidance was reduced to silence, but then asked the following third question.

“Phrases in the Qur’an like The Best of Creators,22 and The Most Compassionate of the Compassionate,23 suggest that there are other creators and compassionate ones. And you also say, ‘the Creator of all the worlds possesses endless perfections. United in Him are the utmost levels of every kind of perfection.’ Whereas, the perfections of beings are known through their opposites: if there was no pain, pleasure would not be a sort of perfection; if there was no darkness, light could not be proved to exist; if there was no separation, there would be no pleasure in union, and so on, would there?”

The Answer: We shall answer the first part of the question in five Indications.

FIRST INDICATION: From beginning to end, the Qur’an demonstrates Divine unity; this is a clear indication that those sort of phrases in the Qur’an

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21.That is, the question at the beginning of the Second Aim, not the small questions at the end of the Conclusion.
22. Qur'an, 23:14, etc.
23. Qur'an, 7:151, etc.



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are not as you understand them. Rather, The Best of Creators is to say, “He is at the highest and best rank of creativity,” which in no way indicates that there is another creator. Like the other attributes, creativity has many degrees or ranks. The Best of Creators means, “He is a Glorious Creator at the furthest and most excellent degree of creativity.”

SECOND INDICATION: Terms like, The Best of Creators do not look to a plurality of creators, but to the varieties of the state of being creature. That is, “He is a Creator Who creates everything in an appropriate form, at the most faultless degree.” Verses like, Who makes most excellent everything He creates,24 express this meaning.

THIRD INDICATION: The comparison suggested by terms like, The Best of Creators, God is Most Great, The Best Judge between truth and falsehood,25 and The Most Bountiful are not comparative and superlative adjectives comparing God Almighty’s attributes and actions, which are actual, with others who possess samples of those attributes and actions. For all the perfections in the universe, and in jinn, men, and angels, are but pale shadows in relation to His perfection. How should any comparison be possible? It is rather human beings, and particularly the people of neglect, who see perfection in terms of comparison.

For example, a private shows complete obedience and respect to his corporal. It seems to him that all benefits come from him and he thinks little of the king. Even if he does think of him, it is still to the corporal that he shows his gratitude. So it is said to the private: “See here! The king is much greater than your corporal, it is only him that you should thank.” Now this sentence does not compare the king’s imperial commandership, which is actual, with that of the corporal, which is partial and only apparent; because to do so would be meaningless. It is a result of what the private considers to be important, of how he sees his relations with the corporal, that he prefers him and loves and thanks only him.

Similarly, when apparent causes are imagined to be the creator and bestower of bounties in the view of the people of neglect, they become a veil to the True Bestower of Bounties. These neglectful people cling onto causes and think that bounties and favours are from them; they praise and acclaim them. The Qur’an says: “God Almighty is a greater, more excellent Creator, a far better Bestower of Bounties. So look to Him, and thank Him.”

FOURTH INDICATION: Just as there may be comparison between actual beings and preference for some over others, so there may be comparisons between possible or even hypothetical things and preference. Numerous

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24. Qur'an, 32:7.
25. Qur'an, 6:57.



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degrees or levels are present in the true natures of most things. So too, in the view of the intellect, innumerable degrees may be present in the true natures of the Divine Names and sacred attributes. Whereas God Almighty is at the most perfect and excellent of all the possible and imagined degrees of those attributes and Names. The whole universe witnesses to this truth through all its perfections. His are the Most Beautiful Names,26 “describing all His Names as the most excellent,” expresses this meaning.

FIFTH INDICATION: This use of the comparative and superlative is not to be understood in terms of creatures, but in terms of the fact that God Almighty has two sorts of manifestations and attributes.

The First Sort: Through the mystery of His unity, this consists of His disposal over creatures under the veil of causes and intermediaries and in the form of a universal law.

The Second Sort: Through the mystery of His oneness, it is His disposal over creatures directly, without veil, regarding each in a particular way. This means that through the mystery of oneness, His bestowal, creation, and grandeur which are direct are greater and more elevated and excellent than the works of His bestowal, creation, and grandeur which are apparent through the manifestations of causes and intermediaries.

For example, let us suppose there is a king, but he is a saint-king. He has great numbers of officials and commanders but they are only veils, for the authority and execution of all matters are directly in his hand. The king’s power of disposal and execution of affairs are of two kinds:

The First Kind: The execution of affairs he demonstrates and the commands he gives through a universal law in the form of visible officials and commanders in accordance with their abilities and ranks.

The Second Kind: This is not through a universal law. He does not make visible officials a veil; his execution of affairs and royal favours are direct and may be described as more elevated and excellent.

In the same way, the Creator of the universe, the Monarch of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, has made numerous causes and intermediaries a veil to His execution of affairs and has demonstrated the majesty of His dominicality. But He left private telephones in His servants’ hearts so that they might leave causes behind and turn directly to Him, and might say: You alone do we worship and You alone do we ask for help!27

Thus, the meanings of The Best of Creators, Most Compassionate of the Compassionate, and, God is Most Great look to this meaning, too.

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26. Qur'an, 17:110,etc.
27. Qur'an, 1:5.



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We shall answer the second part of the representative’s question with five Signs.

The First Sign: In his question, he said: “If something has no opposite, how can it be perfection?”

The Answer: The questioner does not know what true perfection is. What he has in mind is only relative perfection. For merits, virtues, and qualities that look to something and are acquired relatively to something else are not real, they are relative and weak. If what they look to disappears, then they too will disappear.

For example, the relative pleasure and merits of heat occur through the effect of cold, and the relative pleasure of food, through the effect of the pain of hunger. If the cold and hunger disappear, then the pleasure diminishes. Whereas true pleasure, love, perfection, and virtue are such that they are not constructed on imagining something else. They are present of themselves. They are essential, inherent truths.

Qualities such as the following are like this: the pleasures of existence, life, love, knowledge, mercy, and compassion; and the beauty of light, sight, speech, noble-heartedness, fine character, and form; the perfection of essence and of attribute and perfection in actions. Whether or not there is something else, these qualities will not change. Thus, all the perfections of the Glorious Fashioner, the Beauteous Maker, the Perfect Creator are true perfections; they are essential and what is other than Him cannot affect Him. They can only be recipients.

The Second Sign: Sayyid Sharif al-Jurjani wrote in Sharh al-Mawaqif: “The cause of love is either pleasure, benefit, resemblance (that is, inclination towards creatures of same kind), or perfection. For perfection is loved for itself.” That is to say, if you love something, you love it either because of the pleasure it affords, or the benefits it brings, or because it is similar in kind, like the inclination towards children, or because it possesses some perfection. If it is for perfection, no other cause or purpose is necessary; it is loved purely for itself. For example, in the olden days everybody loved people who possessed perfection; even if they had no connection with them they would still love them admiringly.

Thus, since all God Almighty’s perfections and qualities and all the degrees in His Beautiful Names are true perfections, they are loved for themselves. The Glorious One, Who is the true beloved, loves His perfections, which are true perfections, and the beauties of His attributes and Names in a manner appropriate to Himself. And He loves the good qualities of His art and creatures, which are mirrors reflecting those perfections.

He loves His prophets and saints, especially the Most Noble Beloved,



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who is the Lord of the Prophets and Prince of the Saints. That is, with His love for His own beauty, He loves His Beloved One, who is the mirror to that beauty. With His love for His own Names, He loves His Beloved One and his brothers who are comprehensive and aware loci of those Names’ manifestations.

With His love for His art, He loves His Beloved One and those like him who are heralds and exhibitors of that art. With His love for His artefacts, He loves His Beloved One and those who follow him who appreciate and admire those artefacts and respond to them saying: “What wonders God has willed! How beautifully they have been made.” And with His love for the good qualities of His creatures, He loves His Most Noble Beloved One and his followers and brothers in whom are united the finest of moral qualities.

The Third Sign: All the perfections in all the universe are signs and indications of a Glorious Being’s perfection and beauty. Indeed, all the goodness, perfection, and beauty in the universe is but a pale shadow in relation to His true perfection. We shall indicate briefly five proofs of this truth.

First Proof: A perfect and splendidly adorned and decorated palace plainly points to perfect skill and craftsmanship. And that craftsmanship and art, which is a perfect act, plainly points to a perfect author, master, and craftsman together with his titles and names like Fashioner and Adorner. And those perfect names doubtlessly point to the master’s perfect and skilful attributes. And that perfect skill and those attributes self-evidently point to his perfect ability and faculty. And that perfect ability and faculty necessarily point to the perfection of his essence and the exaltedness of his nature.

In exactly the same way, this palace of the universe, this perfect and adorned work of art, self-evidently points to actions of the utmost perfection. For perfections in works of art result from perfection of action and they demonstrate it. And perfection of actions point to a Perfect Author and the perfect Names of that Author. That is, in relation to the works of art, they point to the perfection of Names like, Planner, Fashioner, All-Wise, All-Compassionate, and Adorner.

Moreover, the perfection of the Names and titles, without any doubt, point to the Author’s perfect attributes. For if the attributes were not perfect, the Names and titles which originate from the attributes would not be perfect. And the perfection of the attributes self-evidently points to the perfection of His functioning essence, because it is from the functioning essence that the attributes proceed. And the perfection of essential functions point at the degree of ‘knowledge of certainty’ to the perfection of the functioning essence. They point to a perfection so worthy that although the light of the perfection passes through the veils of functions, attributes, Names, actions,



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and works of art, it still demonstrates the goodness, beauty, and perfection to be seen to this great extent in the universe,

Thus, after the existence of this degree of true, essential perfection has been established with cogent proofs what importance remains for relative perfections, which look to other things and which exist only in so far as they gain superiority over their likes and opposites? You may understand, then, just how paltry they become.

Second Proof: When the universe is studied as something from which lessons are to be taken, the conscience and heart may conjecture and perceive the following: the one who has so beautified and adorned the universe with all manner of fine things, himself possesses an infinite degree of beauty and perfection so that he might make it thus.

Third Proof: It is a well-known fact that works of art which are well-proportioned, symmetrical, perfect, and beautiful are based on an exceedingly well-drawn-up plan. And a perfectly drawn plan points to a perfectly sound knowledge, fine intellect, and refined faculty of spirit. That is to say, it is the spirit’s immaterial beauty which is manifested in art by means of knowledge. Thus, the universe, with its innumerable material fine qualities, is formed of the distillations of immaterial fine qualities pertaining to knowledge. And those immaterial qualities pertaining to knowledge and those perfections are certainly the manifestations of an infinite, eternal loveliness, beauty, and perfection.

Fourth Proof: It is obvious that that which gives light must possess light, and that which illuminates must be luminous, that bounty comes from riches, and kindness proceeds from one who is kind. Since this so, since all this loveliness and beauty is given to the universe and perfection is bestowed on beings, they point to an eternal beauty as light points to the sun.

Beings pass over the face of the earth like a vast river sparkling with flashes of perfection. In the same way that a river sparkles with manifestations of the sun, the flood of beings momentarily sparkles with flashes of loveliness, beauty, and perfection, and then is gone. And the beings following after them display the same flashes and sparkling. It may be understood from this that just as the manifestations and instances of beauty on the flowing bubbles of water are not from themselves, but are manifestations and instances of beauty from the light of a sun, so the qualities and perfections which glisten briefly on the flood of the universe are the flashes of the beauty of an Eternal Sun’s Names.

Yes, the annihilation of the mirrors and the vanishing of beings is together with perpetual manifestation and constant effulgence. It is clear from the manifestations appearing that their apparent beauty is not theirs; they are rather eloquent manifestos and clear proofs of a Transcendent



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Beauty and Renewed Munificence; of the Necessarily Existent, the Loving One, the Undying One.

Fifth Proof: If four people who have arrived via four different routes all speak of the same event, it suggests with a certainty born of unanimity that the event definitely occurred. Thus, although their ways, dispositions, abilities, and times were all different, all the scholars of religion with their different ranks, the saints and purified ones with their different paths and ways, and the true philosophers with their different creeds are in agreement. They are the people of illumination and experiential knowledge, who have unveiled the secrets of the cosmos and have observed and borne witness to the truth -through their unveilings, illuminations, and witnessings, they have unanimously agreed that the qualities and perfections to be seen in the mirrors and displays of the universe and its beings, are the manifestations of a Single Necessarily Existent One’s perfection and the manifestations of the beauty of His Names.

Their consensus and accord, then, constitutes an unshakeable proof.

Let us suppose that in order not to hear this Sign, the representative of the people of misguidance was compelled to stop up his ears and flee. For certainly, like bats, heads so plunged into darkness cannot endure these lights. In which case, from here on we shall consider them little, if at all.

The Fourth Sign: Rather than looking to its likes and opposites, the pleasure, loveliness, and beauty of a thing look to where those qualities are manifested. For example, generosity is a fine and pleasing attribute. The pleasure a generous person obtains from the joy and pleasure of those he has favoured is thousands of times more gratifying than the relative pleasure obtained from feeling superior to other generous people.

Also, a kind and compassionate person receives true pleasure proportionately to those towards whom he has been compassionate find ease and comfort. For example, the pleasure a mother receives from the happiness and comfort of her children, because of her compassion, is so strong she would sacrifice her very soul for their comfort. The pleasure of such compassion will even make a hen attack a lion in order to protect her chicks.

Thus, the true pleasure, goodness, happiness and perfection in elevated attributes do not look to peers and opposites, but to their dependants and the places they are manifested. The beauty, therefore, of the Glorious and Perfect One’s mercy, Who is Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent, Clement and Benevolent, Compassionate and Merciful, looks to those who receive His mercy.

There are endless degrees in the happiness, ease and joy of those who receive the manifestation of His mercy and compassion, and especially those who receive its endless varieties in everlasting Paradise. We may



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understand that, according to the degrees of their happiness and joy, the Merciful and Compassionate One experiences exalted, pure, holy, and beautiful meanings, like fondness and love, in a manner appropriate to Him, that may be described through qualities which are proper to Him. He possesses utterly pure and holy qualities which we may not mention because the Shari‘a does not permit it, but which may be described as ‘sacred pleasure,’ ‘holy love,’ ‘pure joy’ and ‘sacred happiness.’ We have proved in many places that they are infinitely more exalted, elevated, holy, and pure than the love, joy, and happiness that we see in the universe and may perceive among creatures. If you wish to take a look at a flash of those meanings, then look through the telescope of the following comparisons.

For example, a noble-hearted and magnanimous personage laid out a fine banquet on his magnificent voyaging ship in order to feed the poor, the needy, and hungry. Then he himself watched from on deck. You can understand how pleased and happy the thankful pleasure and appreciative gratitude of the poor, hungry and needy made that generous personage; how much it gratified him.

Man is not the true owner of even the humblest repast and is merely like a distributor. Therefore, if his joy is thus, you can draw an analogy with the sacred meanings of love and results of mercy that pertain to the Merciful and Compassionate One and which we are powerless to express. For He causes men, jinn, and animals to journey in the seas of space, and to board the mighty earth, which is a dominical ship. Then, loading the table of the face of the earth with innumerable varieties of foods, He invites all living creatures to the feast, which is a sort of light snack or appetizer. For besides this, He will make each of every sort of perfect delight a table laden with bounties in a permanent and everlasting realm. He will inaugurate an unending and comprehensive banquet of innumerable pleasures and subtle wonders, which will be true food for His countless and endlessly needy and yearning slaves.

And, for example, a skilful and practised craftsman who likes to display his ingenuity, after inventing an object like a gramophone which plays without records, will set it up, try it out and then show it off. If it gives the desired and expected results perfectly, how proud will its inventor feel, how pleased and gratified will he be. He will say to himself: “May God bless this!”

And so, if an insignificant man is so pleased with the smooth working of a gramophone and with his craftsmanship which is only superficial, for in reality he creates nothing, then how should the All-Glorious Maker be? For He created the mighty universe as an orchestra and gramophone, and He made the earth, and all the animate creatures on it, and among animate creatures especially man. And man’s head He created in such a fashion that it is a



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dominical gramophone and Divine orchestra so that science and philosophy are struck with wonderment at the art and craftsmanship displayed in it.

Thus, all these beings show all the results desired of them to the utmost degree and in the best possible way. They are completely obedient to the commands that give them existence, which are described by the creatures’ particular worship and glorification and their appointed salutations to God. The pride, pleasure and joy together with the sacred meanings and pure qualities, which we are unable to describe, that are obtained from these and from the attainment of the dominical aims sought from the beings, are so exalted and holy that if all the minds of mankind were to unite and become one mind, it would still be unable to reach or comprehend their substance.

And another example. What pleasure and enjoyment a just ruler who loves to enforce justice and right receives from giving the oppressed their rights and receiving their thanks and from punishing the wrongdoers and taking revenge for the oppressed. You can draw an analogy with the sacred meanings pertaining to the Absolutely Wise One, the Truly Just One, the All-Compelling and Glorious One, which arise from establishing justice, and not only for men and jinn, but for all creatures.

That is to say, the sacred meanings arising from bestowing the right of existence and the right of life on everything, from protecting existence and life from aggressors, and from arresting and restraining those ghastly creatures from their aggression; and that arise especially from the judgement of men and jinn at the Great Gathering in the realm of the hereafter. And besides this, the sacred meanings arising from the greatest manifestation of justice and wisdom that is apparent in animate creatures.

Thus, as may be seen from these three examples, just as a great many degrees of loveliness, beauty, grace, and perfection are present in all the thousand and one Divine Names, so there are a great many degrees of love, pride, glory, and grandeur.

It is because of this that the elevated and authoritative saints who manifested the Name of Loving One said: “Love is the very leaven of the universe. It is through love that all beings are in motion. It is from love that the laws of attraction, affinity, and ecstasy present in all beings spring.” One of them wrote the following:

The firmament is intoxicated, the angels and the stars are intoxicated,

The heavens are intoxicated, the moon and the earth are intoxicated,

The elements are intoxicated, the plants, the trees and mankind are intoxicated,

Animate creatures are all intoxicated,

All the particles of all beings are altogether intoxicated, and yet more intoxicated.

That is to say, everything receives the manifestation of Divine love and is



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intoxicated in accordance with its disposition. It is well-known that every heart has affection for someone who bestows kindnesses on it, and that it loves true perfection and is enamoured of noble beauty. And the heart loves even more one who bestows kindnesses, not only on itself, but also on those it loves and feels compassion for.

And so, as we explained before, may it not be understood from the following just how deserving of love and passion is the All-Beauteous and Glorious One, the All-Perfect Beloved One, and how intoxicated and giddy is the whole universe with love of Him? For He is named with a thousand Names each of which is the source of thousands of perfections and the means for thousands of degrees of beauty. And through His bounties, in all the Names are thousands of treasuries containing bounties, and He makes all those beings we love happy.

It is because of this mystery that the saints who manifested the Name of Loving One declared: “We do not want Paradise. One flash of the Divine love will suffice us for ever.”

It is also because of this that as is recorded in the Hadith: “A minute’s vision of the Divine beauteousness in Paradise will far surpass all its other delights.”28

Thus, these endless perfections of love only occur through the All-Glorious One’s Names and His creatures within the sphere of His unity and oneness. That is to say, those perfections that are imagined to exist outside that sphere are not perfections at all.

The Fifth Sign: The Fifth Sign consists of five Points.

First Point: The representative of the people of misguidance said next: “The world is execrated in your Hadiths and called ‘carrion.’29 Also, all the saints and people of truth have contempt for the world, they say that it is pernicious and unclean. Whereas, you show it to be the means and proof of all Divine perfections and speak of it rapturously.”

The Answer: The world has three faces.

Its First Face looks to God Almighty’s Names; it displays their impress. It is a mirror to them, reflecting their meanings. This face of the world consists of innumerable letters or missives describing the Eternally Besought One. This face is utterly beautiful, and is worthy of love, not loathing.

Its Second Face looks to the hereafter. It is the seed-bed of the hereafter and arable field for Paradise. It is the flower-bed of mercy. This face is also beautiful like the first one and is deserving of love not contempt.

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28. Tirmidhi, Zuhd, 14; Ibn Maja, Zuhd, 3; Darimi,Muqaddima, 32, Suyuti, al-Durr al-Manthur, iii, 305-6.
29. Ibn Maja, No:4112; al-Manawi, Fayd al-Qadir, No:4281



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Its Third Face looks to man’s base appetites. It is a veil of neglect and a plaything for satisfying the desires of the worldly. This face is ugly because it is transient and mortal; it is full of pain and it deceives. The contempt described in the Hadith and the loathing of the people of truth, then, is for this face.

The importance and approbation which the All-Wise Qur’an demonstrates towards the universe and all beings is towards the first two faces. It is the first two faces of the world that the Companions of the Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him) and other people of God seek.

There are four classes of people who have contempt for the world.

The First: Those who seek knowledge of God. They have contempt for it because it is a barrier to knowledge, love, and worship of God.

The Second: Those who look to the hereafter. They see the world as ugly either because unavoidable worldly matters prevent them from doing works pertaining to the hereafter. Or, due to their elevated degree of belief, they see it as ugly in relation to the perfections and beauties of Paradise.

Indeed, in the same way that a handsome man will appear ugly when compared to the Prophet Joseph (Peace be upon him), however valuable the qualities of this world, when compared to those of Paradise, they become as nothing.

The Third: These have contempt for this world because they cannot obtain it. This contempt arises not from loathing but from love.

The Fourth: These have contempt for the world because although they obtain it, it does not stay, it leaves them. And this vexes them. They insult it in order to console themselves and say it is foul. But this arises from love of the world, whereas acceptable contempt arises from love of the hereafter and the love that springs from knowledge of God.

That is to say, acceptable contempt is of the first two kinds. May God Almighty make us like those people. Amen.

IN VENERATION OF THE LORD OF THE PROPHETS



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Third Stopping-Place

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
And there is nothing but it glorifies Him with praise.30

FIRST TOPIC

According to the meaning of And there is nothing but it glorifies Him with praise, everything has numerous aspects that give onto God Almighty like windows.

The reality of the universe and of all beings is based on the Divine Names. The reality of every being is based on one Name or on many. All sciences and arts are also based on and rely upon a Name. The true science of philosophy is based on the Name of All-Wise, true medicine on the Name of Healer, and geometry on the Name of Determiner, and so on. And in the same way that all the sciences are based on and come to an end in a Name, the realities of all arts and sciences, and of all human attainments, are based on the Divine Names. Indeed, one group of the most learned of the saints stated that the Divine Names constitute the true reality of things, while the essences of things are only shadows of that reality. They said too that even only apparently as many as twenty manifestations of the impresses of the Divine Names may be seen on a single living creature. We shall try to make this subtle yet vast truth easier to understand by means of a comparison, and shall analyze it by passing it through a sieve two or three times as it were. However long our discussion, it would still be short, but one should not become bored.

When a very skilful portraitist or sculptor wishes to paint a picture of a beautiful flower or to sculpt a great beauty belonging to mankind’s fair sex, firstly he determines the general shapes of those two objects with a few lines. He determines these by ordering and adjusting them, by estimating and measuring them. And this he does according to rules and limits defined by geometry.

It is clear that this ordering and measuring is carried out with knowledge and wisdom or purpose. That is to say, the acts of ordering and limiting turn on the compasses of knowledge and wisdom. In which case, the meanings of knowledge and wisdom govern behind the ordering and limiting. The compasses of knowledge and wisdom, then, point to themselves and they demon

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30. Qur'an, 17:44



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strate that, within those limits, they have begun the portrayal of small particulars like the eyes, ears, nose, leaves, and stamens.

Now we see that the members determined by the motion of those inner compasses are taking shape artistically and carefully. Since this is so, the one who turns these knowledge and wisdom compasses possesses meanings of craftsmanship and care; it is they who command and then display themselves.

Thus, it may be understood from this that they point to inherent qualities of beauty and adornment. Since this is so, what makes the craftsmanship and care function is the will to beautify and the intention to decorate. In which case, it is at their command that the artist begins to adorn and illuminate. He gives a smiling and living form to the statue and flower. And what makes this meaning of beautifying and illuminating function is surely the meaning of favouring and munificence.

Yes, these two meanings govern him to such a degree that, quite simply, the flower is an embodied favour, and the statue, embodied munificence. So now it is the meanings of making loved and known that impel the meanings of favouring and munificence and make them work. That is, behind the latter two meanings, the meanings of making himself known through his art and making people love him govern.

This making loved and known, without a doubt arise from an inclination toward being merciful and the will to bestow bounties. So, since mercy and the will to bestow bounties are governing behind them, he will adorn the statue with all sorts of bounties and also bestow the form of the flower as a present. Thus, he fills the statue’s hands and pockets with precious bounties and bestows the form of the flower as jewels. That is to say, what makes his mercy and will to bestow function is a feeling of gentleness and pity. That is, the meaning of pity and gentleness impels the mercy and bounty.

Furthermore, what impels and makes manifest the meaning of pity and gentleness within that person, who is self-sufficient and needs no one, are the meanings of beauty and perfection. These desire to be manifested. And as for love and mercy, which are the sweetest and most delightful parts of that beauty, they desire to be seen in the mirror of art and to see themselves through the eyes of yearning admirers.

That is to say, since beauty and perfection are loved for themselves, they love themselves above everything. They are also both loveliness and love. The union of beauty and love stems from this point. Since beauty loves itself, it desires to see itself in mirrors. Thus all the lovable bounties and beautiful fruits which were set on the statue and on the picture bear the flashes, each according to its capacity, of that meaning of beauty. They display those flashes both to the owner of the beauty and to others.



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In exactly the same way, the All-Wise Maker delimits, orders and gives determined proportions and shapes to all things, particular and universal, through the manifestation of His Names; to Paradise and this world, the heavens and the earth, plants and animals, men and jinn, angels and spirit beings. By doing this, He causes them to recite His Names of Determiner, Orderer, and Giver of Form.

He determines the limits of their general shapes in such a manner that He displays His Names of All-Knowing and All-Wise. Then, through the definition of knowledge and wisdom, He begins to form them within those limits. He does this in such a way that He displays the meanings of craftsmanship and care and His Names of Maker and Munificent.

Next, with the miraculous hand of art and the brush of munificence He gives the colours of beauty and adornment to the members of that form, whether a single human being or a single flower, like the eyes, ears, leaves, and stamens. If it is the earth, He gives the colours of beauty and adornment to its minerals, plants and animals. If it is Paradise, He gives the colours of beauty and adornment to its gardens, palaces, and houris. And so on. You can make analogies for the rest, too.

Furthermore, He adorns and illuminates in such a fashion that the meanings of favouring and munificence are predominant in those objects. They govern to a degree where those adorned beings, those illuminated artefacts, become like embodied favours and incarnate munificence. They mention the Names of Gracious and Munificent.

Next, what impels the favouring and munificence to manifest are clearly the actions of making loved and known. That is, the qualities of making Himself loved by animate creatures and known by conscious ones. They cause animate and conscious beings to recite the Names of Loving and Known One behind the Names of Gracious and Munificent, and for this recitation, which is performed by the very mode of their beings, to be heard.

Then, embellishing those adorned and beautiful creatures with delicious fruits and lovable results, He turns from adorning to bestowing bounties, from graciousness to compassionateness. He causes them to recite the Names of Bestower and Compassionate and displays the manifestation of those two Names behind the outer veils.

Next, what impels that One, Who is absolutely without need, to manifest these Names of Compassionate and Munificent are the qualities of mercy and gentleness, which display the Names of Gentle and Merciful and cause them to be recited.

And what impels the meanings of mercifulness and gentleness to manifest are doubtless, an essential beauty and perfection which desire to become evident; they cause the Name of Beautiful, and the Names of Loving and



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Compassionate, which are within the Name of Beautiful, to be recited. For beauty is loved for itself. Beauty and one possessing beauty love themselves. Moreover, it is both loveliness and love.

Perfection, also, is loved for itself; no other cause is necessary. It is both lover and beloved. Since a beauty that is at the utmost degree of perfection and a perfection that is at the utmost degree of beauty are loved and are worthy of love to the utmost degree, most certainly will they desire to see and to exhibit themselves through displaying their flashes and manifestations in mirrors, in accordance with the capacity of the mirrors.

That is to say, the beauty and perfection essential to the All-Glorious Maker, the All-Wise One of Beauty, the All-Powerful One of Perfection, require the qualities of mercy and gentleness, and impel the Names of Merciful and Gentle to be manifested.

As for mercy and gentleness, through displaying compassion and bounty, they impel the manifestation of the Names of Compassionate and Bestower.

And compassionateness and bestowal require the qualities of making known and loved and impel the Names of Loving and Known One to be manifested.

Making known and loved impel the meanings of favouring and munificence and display them on some of the facets of those artefacts; they cause the Names of Gracious and Munificent to be recited amongst them.

As for the qualities of graciousness and munificence, they impel the acts of adorning and illuminating. They cause the Names of Adorner and Illuminer to be recited by the tongues of the artefacts’ beauty and luminosity.

And the qualities of adorning and beautifying require the meanings of craftsmanship and care. They cause the Names of Maker and Bountiful to be recited by the beautiful features of the artefacts.

As for craftsmanship and care, they require knowledge and wisdom, and they cause the Names of All-Wise and All-Knowing to be recited by their well-ordered, wise, and purposeful members.

And knowledge and wisdom require the acts of ordering, forming, and shaping. They display the Names of Determiner and Giver of Form, causing them to be recited by the artefact in its entirety, through its form.

Thus, the All-Glorious Maker has made all His creatures or artefacts in such a way that He causes most of them, and especially animate beings, to recite numerous Divine Names. It is as if He has dressed each creature in twenty different shirts, one on top of another or has enfolded them in twenty veils, and on each shirt or veil He has inscribed different Names.

For example, as was demonstrated in the comparison, there are many



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pages in what is only apparent in the creation of a beautiful member of mankind’s fair sex or of a beautiful flower. From these two small and particular examples you can draw analogies with other large and universal creatures.

The First Page: It is the state which demonstrates the general shape and proportion. It mentions the Names of O Giver of Form! O Determiner! O Orderer!

The Second Page: This is the plain and unadorned state of the human being and flower in the comparison, which occurs with the disclosure of the forms of all the different members of those two creatures. Many Names, like All-Knowing and All-Wise, for example, are written on this page.

The Third Page: Through bestowing a different beauty and adornment on all the different members of those two creatures, many Names like Maker and Designer, for example, are written on this page.

The Fourth Page: Such a beauty and adornment are given to those two artefacts it is as though they have become embodied favours and munificence. This page mentions and recites numerous Names, like for example, O Gracious One! O Munificent One!

The Fifth Page: Through attaching delicious fruits to the flower and lovable children and a fine character to the beautiful woman, this page recites Names like O Loving One! O Compassionate One! O Bestower of Bounties!

The Sixth Page: On this page of bestowal and bounties, Names like O Merciful One! O Gentle One! are recited.

The Seventh Page: Flashes of such beauty are apparent in these bounties and results that they are worthy of a sincere gratitude and pure love which have been kneaded with true desire and compassion. On this page, the Names of O Beauteous One of Perfection! O Perfect One of Beauty! are inscribed and recited.

Thus, if the beautiful flower and human being display this number of Names, and that only in material and apparent form, you can conclude what exalted and universal Names all flowers and animate creatures, as well as vast, universal beings, cause to be recited.

You can also conclude how many luminous, sacred Names, like Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent One, and Giver of Life, man recites and causes to be recited by reason of his spirit, heart, mind, and through the pages of life and other subtle qualities.

Thus, Paradise is a flower. The company of houris is also a flower. The face of the earth is a flower. The spring is a flower. The heavens are a flower, while the stars are their gilded embroideries. And the sun is a flower, while the seven colours in its light are the flower’s embroidered colours.



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The universe is a beautiful and huge human being, in the same way that each human being is a miniature universe. The company of houris, the assembly of spirit beings, the realm of angels, the congregation of jinn, and human kind, have all been formed, ordered, and created as if they were beautiful individuals. Just as they all display the Beauteous Maker’s Names through their universality, as does each individual singly, so are they all different mirrors to His beauty and perfection, mercy and love. All are truthful witnesses to His infinite beauty and perfection, mercy and love. All are signs and tokens of that beauty and perfection, mercy and love.

Thus, this infinite number of different sorts of perfections occurs within the sphere of Divine unity and oneness. That is to say, what are imagined to be perfections outside that sphere are not perfections at all.

Understand therefore that the reality of beings is based on and relies on the Divine Names; rather, that their true realities are the manifestations of those Names; and that everything mentions and glorifies its Maker with numerous tongues in numerous ways.

And understand one meaning of the verse:

And there is not a single thing but extols His glory and praise.31

Say, “Glory be to Him Who is hidden in the intensity of His manifestation.” And understand one reason why phrases like the following are repeatedly mentioned at the end of the Qur’an’s verses:

And He is the Mighty, the Wise.32 * And He is the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.33 * And He is All-Knowing, All-Powerful.34

If you are unable to read the Names in a flower and cannot see them clearly, look at Paradise, study the spring, watch the face of the earth. You will be able to read clearly the Names written there, for they are the huge flowers of mercy. You will be able to see and understand their impresses and manifestations.

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31. Qur'an, 17:44
32. Qur'an, 3:62, etc.
33. Qur'an, 42:5, etc.
34. Qur'an, 30:54, etc.



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The Second Point of the Second Topic

When the representative of the people of misguidance could find no support or basis on which to build his misguidance and was thus defeated in argument, he said the following:

“I consider happiness in this world and life’s pleasures, and the progress of civilization and perfection of arts as all lying in refusal to think of the hereafter and to know God, in love of this world, in absolute freedom and licence and in relying exclusively on myself. And in so doing I have drawn most men onto this path, through the assistance of Satan, and continue to do so.”

The Answer: We say, in the name of the Qur’an: O wretched man! Come to your senses! Do not listen to the representative of the people of misguidance. If you do listen to him, your loss will be so great that your intelligence, spirit, and heart will shudder even to imagine it. There are two paths in front of you.

The First: The path of wretchedness laid out in front of you by the representative of the people of misguidance.

The Second: The path of happiness defined for you by the All-Wise Qur’an.

You will have noted and understood numerous comparisons between these two paths in the Words, particularly the Short Words. So, note and understand now one of those thousands of comparisons which is suitable to this discussion.

The path of assigning partners to God, misguidance, dissipation and vice causes man to fall to the lowest degree. Afflicted with infinite pains, he is forced to bear an infinitely heavy load on his weak and powerless shoulders. For if man does not recognize God and place his trust in Him, he becomes extremely weak and impotent, needy and impoverished, a suffering, grieving and ephemeral animal, exposed to endless misfortunes. Suffering continuously the pain of separation from all the objects of love and attachment, he will ultimately abandon all of his loved ones and go alone to the darkness of the grave.

Throughout his life, he struggles vainly, with an extremely limited will,



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slight power, a short lifespan and dull mind, against infinite pains and hopes. To no avail, he strives to attain innumerable desires and goals.

Even though he is unable to bear the burden of his own being, he takes the load of the vast world onto his wretched shoulders and mind. He suffers the torment of Hell before even arriving there.

Indeed, in order to avoid feeling this grievous pain, this awesome spiritual torment, the people of misguidance have recourse to a drunkenness that is like a form of stupor and thus are temporarily able to avoid feeling their pain. But when they do feel it, they suddenly feel the proximity of the grave. For whoever is not a true bondsman of God Almighty will imagine that he owns himself. But with his partial and limited will and his petty power and strength, he is unable to administer and control his being in this tempestuous world. He sees thousands of different sorts of enemy attacking his life, from harmful microbes to earthquakes. In an awesome state of painful fear he looks towards the door of the grave, that at all times appears dreadful to him.

While in this state, man will also be troubled by the state of the world and of mankind, for as a human being he is attached to both. But, he does not imagine them to be in the control of One All-Wise, All-Knowing, All-Powerful, Merciful and Generous, and has attributed them instead to chance and to nature. And so, together with his own pains, he suffers also the pains of the world and of mankind. Earthquakes, plagues, storms, famine and scarcity, separation and decease; all of this torments him in the most painful and sombre fashion.

But such a man is not worthy of pity and sympathy, for he himself is responsible for it.

In the Eighth Word is a comparison between two brothers who entered a well. One was not content with a refreshing, sweet, reputable, pleasant and licit drink at a splendid feast with pleasant friends in a beautiful garden and so drank some ugly and unclean wine in order to obtain illicit and impure pleasure. He became drunk and then imagined himself to be in some foul place in the middle of winter surrounded by wild beasts, and trembling cried out.

But such a man is not worthy of pity, for he imagined his honourable and blessed companions to be monsters, and thus insulted them. He also imagined the delicious foods and clean dishes at the feast to be impure and filthy stones and began smashing them. And the respected books and profound writings there to be meaningless and banal designs, and so ripped them up and trod on them.

Such a person is not merely unworthy of sympathy, rather, he deserves a good beating.



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In exactly the same way, a person who, through incorrect choice and the lunacy of misguidance, is intoxicated with unbelief, imagines this hospice of the world, which belongs to the All-Wise Maker, to be the plaything of chance and natural forces. He fancies the passage of creatures into the World of the Unseen, that is in fact renewing the manifestation of the Divine Names, to be execution and annihilation. He supposes the echoes of those creatures’ glorification of God, who are accomplishing their duties with the passing of time, to be the lamentations of death and eternal separation. He deems the pages of created beings, which are inscriptions of the Eternally Besought One, to be meaningless and confused. He imagines the door of the grave, which opens onto the world of mercy, to be the entrance to the darkness of non-existence. And he deems the appointed hour, which is in reality an invitation to join his true friends, to be the onset of separation from all of them.

Such a person both brings upon himself grievous and ghastly torments, and denies, denigrates and insults all beings and God’s Names and His inscriptions. He is, therefore, not only unworthy of compassion and sympathy but also deserving of severe punishment. He is not in any way worthy of pity.

And so, O wretched people of misguidance and dissipation! What accomplishment of yours, what art, what perfection, what civilization, what progress, can confront this awesome silence of the grave, this crushing despair? Where can you find that true consolation that is the most urgent need of the human spirit?

What nature, what causality, what partner ascribed by you to God, what discovery, what nationality, what false object of worship, in each of which you place so much trust and to which you attribute God’s works and His sustaining bounties, which of them can deliver you from the darkness of death that you imagine to be eternal annihilation? Which of them can enable you to cross the frontiers of the grave, the boundaries of the intermediate realm, the marches of the plain of resurrection, the Bridge of Sirat? Or can bring about your eternal happiness?

But know that most definitely you will travel on this path for you cannot close the door of the grave. And a traveller on such a path ought to rely on one whose control and command embraces all this vast sphere and its extensive boundaries.

O wretched people of misguidance and neglect! In accordance with the principles that ‘the consequence of an illicit love is suffering a merciless torment,’ you are suffering a fully justified punishment, for you are unlawfully employing your innate capacity for love, knowledge, thanks and worship that relate properly to the essence, attributes and Names of God Almighty, on your own soul and the life of this world.



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You have lavished the love that belongs to God Almighty on yourself. Your own soul has become your beloved and will cause you endless suffering: you are not giving true peace to that beloved. You are suffering constantly because you do not hand it over to the Possessor of Absolute Power Who is the only true beloved and you do not trust wholly in Him.

You suffer further misfortunes because you give to the world the love that belongs to God Almighty’s Names and attributes and divide up the works of His art among causes in the world. One group of those innumerable beloveds of yours will turn their backs on you and leave you without even saying good-bye. Another group will not even recognize you, or if they do, they will not love you. Or if they love you, their love will be of no use. You will constantly suffer from innumerable separations and farewells without hope of return.

This, then, is the essence and true nature of what the people of misguidance call life’s happiness, human perfection, the advantages of civilization and the pleasure of freedom. And dissipation and intoxication are but a veil; they temporarily block all feeling. So, say, “I spit on the intelligence of those who follow such a path.”

But as for the luminous highway of the Qur’an, it cures with the truths of faith all the wounds of the people of misguidance. It disperses all the gloom and darkness of that first path. It closes the door on all misguidance and perdition.

It cures man’s weakness, powerlessness, poverty and need with trust in One All-Powerful and Compassionate. For, handing over the burden of his life and being to His power and mercy instead of loading it on himself, man finds ease and comfort as if he were riding on his own life and soul. The Qur’an states that he is not a ‘rational animal’, but rather a true man and a well-accepted guest of the All-Merciful One.

It gently cures man of the wounds inflicted on him by the transience of the world, the ephemeral nature of things and the love of them, and delivers him from the darkness of delusion and fancy. It does this by showing the world to be a guest-house of the All-Merciful One, and the beings in it to be mirrors to the Divine Names and ever-fresh inscriptions of the Eternally Besought One.

It shows death and the appointed hour to be the bridge to the intermediate realm and the prelude to joining and meeting beloved ones already in the world of eternity. It thus cures the wounds inflicted by the notion of death as eternal separation, as held by the people of misguidance. It demonstrates that separation is in fact the truest form of meeting.

Further, by establishing that the grave is a door opening onto the world of



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mercy, an abode of happiness, a garden of Paradise, the luminous realm of the All-Merciful One, it dispels man’s most terrifying fear and shows that the apparently painful, troublesome and unpleasant journey to the intermediate realm is in fact the most pleasurable, enjoyable and joyous of journeys. With the grave, it shows that the grave is not a dragon’s mouth but is, rather, a door opening onto the garden of mercy.

The Qur’an also says to the believer, “Since you have only partial and restricted choice, hand over your affairs to your Owner’s universal will. Since your power is slight, rely on that of the Possessor of Absolute Power. Since your life is brief, think of eternal life. Do not fret! There is an unending life. If your mind is dull, let the sun of the Qur’an shine on you. Look with the light of belief, and instead of the fire-fly of your own mind, each verse of the Qur’an will illumine you like a star.

“Since you have innumerable hopes and pains, know that infinite reward and limitless mercy await you. Since you have innumerable desires and aims, do not think of them and become disturbed. This world cannot contain them; the proper place for them is another realm, and the one who will grant them is one other than yourself.”

The Qur’an also says, “O man! You do not own yourself. Rather, you are totally owned by One Whose power is infinite, an All-Compassionate One of Glory Whose mercy is infinite. Therefore, do not trouble yourself by shouldering the burden of your life, for it is He Who grants you life and administers it.

“Also, the world is not without an owner. So do not be anxious thinking of the state of it and load that burden onto your mind, for the world’s Owner is All-Wise and All-Knowing. You are a guest so do not be officious and meddlesome.

“Furthermore, creatures such as men and animals have not been left to their own devices, rather, they are all officials with specific duties. They are watched over by an All-Wise and Compassionate One. Do not distress your spirit thinking of their pains and afflictions. Do not try to be more sympathetic and kind-hearted than their All-Compassionate Creator.

“Also, the reins of all those things that are hostile to you, from microbes to plagues, storms, famine and earthquakes, are in the hands of that All-Compassionate All-Wise One. Being All-Wise, He does nothing in vain. Being All-Compassionate, His mercy is superabundant. There is a form of grace and favour contained in everything He does.”

The Qur’an also says, “This world is indeed ephemeral, nevertheless, it produces the necessities for an everlasting world. It is transient and fleeting, but it yields eternal fruits, and displays the manifestations of an Eternal



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Being’s eternal Names. Its pleasures are indeed few and its pains many, but the favours of the All-Merciful and Compassionate One are everlasting and true pleasures. And as for the pains of this world, they too yield a sort of pleasure by reason of the reward to be had for enduring them.

“Since the sphere of the licit is sufficient for all the pleasures, delights and joys of the spirit, heart and soul, do not approach the sphere of the illicit. For one pleasure within that sphere sometimes leads to a thousand pains. It will also cause the loss of the All-Merciful One’s favours, which are true and lasting pleasures.

“Furthermore, as described above, illicit pleasure on the path of misguidance causes man to fall to the lowest of the low. Then no civilization, no philosophy can provide a remedy for him, and no human progress and scientific advances can deliver him from that deep, dark pit. Whereas, the All-Wise Qur’an elevates man, through belief and good deeds, from the lowest of the low to the highest of the high, and demonstrates that it does this with clear proofs. And it fills in that deep pit with rungs of inner development and spiritual progress.

“Moreover, it facilitates man’s long, stormy and troublesome journey towards eternity. It shows him the means for traversing a distance of a thousand years, or rather of fifty thousand years, in a single day.

“Also, through making known the All-Glorious One, Who is the Monarch of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity, it confers on man the position of a bondsman, guest and official entrusted with specific duties. And it ensures that he travels with the greatest ease both in the guest-house of this world and in the stages and stopping-places of the intermediate realm and the hereafter.

“A loyal official will travel in his monarch’s kingdom and pass through the frontiers of each province with ease, journeying by the fastest means, such as by aeroplane, ship or train. So too one who forms a relation with the Pre-Eternal Monarch through belief and obeys Him through good works will pass with the speed of lightning or of Buraq through the stages of this guest-house of the world, the spheres of the intermediate realm and the world of resurrection and the extensive frontiers of all the realms that are beyond the grave, until he attains eternal happiness.” The Qur’an proves this truth decisively and points it out to those who are purified and to the saints.

The truth of the Qur’an also says, “O believer! Do not give your infinite capacity for love to your ugly, defective, evil, and for you, harmful instinctual soul. Do not take it as your object of love and its whims as your object of worship. Take rather the One Who has bestowed on you that infinite capacity for love. He will also make you infinitely happy in the future, and, through His bounties, all those to whom you are attached and whose happiness makes you happy.



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“Take for your object of love and worship One Who possesses infinite perfection and a beauty that is infinitely sacred, exalted, transcendent, faultless, flawless and unfading. The beauty of His mercy and the mercy of His beauty are demonstrated by all the beauties and bounties of Paradise. All of His Names are infinitely beautiful and in each of them are abundant lights of fairness and beauty. His beauty and perfection are indicated and pointed to by all the fairness, beauty, virtue and perfection of all lovable and loved objects in the cosmos.”

The Qur’an also says, “O man! Do not squander your infinite capacity to love, which properly belongs to His Names and attributes, on other transient creatures. For the works and creatures of God are ephemeral, but the Beautiful Names, whose impress and manifestation may be seen on them, are eternal and permanent. And in each of His Names and attributes there are thousands of degrees of bounty and beauty, perfection and love. Look only at the Name of All-Merciful: Paradise is a manifestation of it, eternal happiness, a flash of it, and all the sustenance and bounty in the world, a mere drop of it.”

Consider carefully, then, this verse which indicates the true nature of the people of misguidance and that of the people of belief, with regard to their lives and duties:

Verily We have created man in the fairest of forms, then sent him down to the lowest of the low, except for those who believe and do good deeds.35

And this verse that indicates their final result and outcome:

The heavens and the earth wept not over them.36

How sublimely and miraculously they express the comparison we have made. Since the truth expressed miraculously and concisely in the first verse is explained in detail in the Eleventh Word, we refer our readers to that part of the Risale-i Nur for a discussion of it.

As for the second verse, we shall show, through a brief indication, how sublime a truth it expresses. It is as follows.

The explicit meaning of the verse is that the heavens and the earth do not weep when the people of misguidance die. The implied meaning is that the heavens and the earth do weep when the people of belief depart this world. For the people of misguidance, through their denial of the duties and functions of the heavens and earth, their ignorance of their meaning, their rejection of their value, their refusal to recognize their Maker, are in fact acting insultingly and with hostility toward them. So, of course, the heavens

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35. Qur'an, 95:4-6.
36. Qur'an, 44:29.



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and earth will not weep over them, but in fact curse them and rejoice at their death.

As for the implied meaning, that the heavens and earth weep over the death of the people of belief, this is because they know the duties and functions of the heavens and earth, assent to their true realities, and understand, through belief, the meanings they express. They say, “How beautifully they have been made, how finely they are carrying out their duties.” They respect them and assign them their true worth. They love them and the Names they mirror for the sake of God Almighty. And so it is for this reason that the heavens and earth grieve over the death of the people of belief as if weeping.

An Important Question

You say, “Love is not voluntary. And, as a consequence of innate need, I love delicious foods and fruits. I love my father, mother and children, my wife, and my friends and companions. I love the prophets and the saints. And I love my life and my youth, the spring, beautiful things and the world. How may I not love these things? So how should I rather give all this love to God Almighty’s essence, attributes and Names? What does this mean?

The Answer: Listen to four ‘Points’.

FIRST POINT

Indeed, love is not voluntary, but by means of the will love’s face may turn from one object of love to another. For example, when a beloved displays some ugliness or shows that he is a veil or mirror to another beloved, who is truly worthy of love, then love’s face may be turned from the metaphorical to the true beloved.

SECOND POINT

We do not tell you not to love the things you enumerated, but rather to love them for God Almighty’s sake and in the name of His love. For example, to love delicious foods and luscious fruits as being the bounty of God Almighty, the All-Merciful and Compassionate One, is to love His Names of All-Merciful and Bestower of Bounties, and, moreover, takes on the meaning of thanks. This love is to seek gain contentedly within the sphere of the licit, which shows that it is not only for the sake of the instinctual soul but is in the name of the All-Merciful One. It is to eat thoughtfully and with gratitude.

Furthermore, love and respect for parents, when for the sake of the wisdom and mercy that compassionately fitted you out and caused them to bring you up with tender care, pertain to God Almighty’s love. The sign that this love, respect and compassion are for God’s sake is that when they are old



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and are of no more use to you and bring you only trouble and difficulty, you are even more loving, kind and compassionate towards them. The verse,

Should one of them, or both, attain to old age in your care, never say to them a word of contempt,37

summons children to respect and be kind to their parents in five degrees, and demonstrates how important are the rights of parents in the eyes of the Qur’an, and how ugly ingratitude towards them.

A father desires only his son, and no one else, to be much better than himself, however, the son cannot claim any rights over his father in return for this. That is to say, there is no inherent cause for dispute between parents and child. This is because dispute arises from envy and jealousy and there is nothing of this in the father towards his son. Or it arises from abuse of rights and the son has no rights that he can claim against his father. If he considers his father to be unjust, he may not rebel against him. That is to say, one who does rebel against his father and cause him pain is a monster, a corrupted human being.

And, to love and protect children with perfect compassion and tenderness because they are gifts of the All-Compassionate and Generous One once again pertains to God. The sign indicating that that love is for Almighty God’s sake is patience and thankfulness should they die, rather than crying out in despair. It is to say, “He was a lovable little being created and owned by my Creator, Who entrusted him to my supervision. Now that His wisdom requires it to be thus, He has taken him from me, taken him to a better place. If I had one apparent share in that little creature, a thousand true shares belonged to his Creator.” It is to submit saying, “All authority is with God.”

As for friends and acquaintances, if they are friends of God Almighty by reason of their belief and good works, according to the meaning of ‘love for God’s sake,’ that love, too, pertains to God.

Furthermore, love and cherish your wife as a companionable and gracious gift of divine mercy. But do not fasten your love to her physical beauty, which swiftly fades. Rather, woman’s most attractive and agreeable beauty is the fineness of character that accompanies the delicacy and refinement peculiar to her. As for her most precious and sweet beauty, it is her earnest, sincere, sublime and luminous compassion. This beautiful tenderness and fineness of character continues and increases until the end of her days. Moreover, that weak and delicate creature’s rights of respect will be protected by that love. Otherwise, when her superficial beauty fades the poor woman will lose her rights, even when she most needs them.

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37. Qur'an, 17:23.



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And to love the prophets and saints as God Almighty’s most esteemed bondsmen is to do so for the sake and in the name of God Almighty, and from that point of view it pertains to Him.

And to love and preserve life as most precious wealth and capital that will gain eternal life, and a comprehensive treasury yielding eternal perfections which Almighty God has given to you and to all humanity, and to employ it in His service, is, once again, in one respect, love that pertains to the True Object of Worship.

Also, to admire, love and put to proper use the grace and beauty of youth as being a fine, sweet and beautiful bounty of Almighty God is a sort of licit and thankful love.

And to love the spring thoughtfully as being the page of the subtlest and most beautiful inscriptions of Almighty God’s luminous Names and the most finely adorned and glittering exhibition of the All-Wise Maker’s antique art is to love His Names.

And to love this world as being the tillage for the hereafter, as a mirror of the Divine Names and a missive of God Almighty, and as a temporary guest-house, on condition that the evil-commanding soul does not interfere, is to do so for God Almighty’s sake.

In short: Love this world and the creatures in it as pointing to a meaning beyond themselves, like a word. Do not love them just for themselves. Say, “How beautifully they have been made.” Do not say, “How beautiful they are.” Do not give any opportunity to other loves to enter into your inner heart because the inner heart is the mirror of the Eternally Besought One and pertains only to Him. Say, “O God, grant us love for You, and love for that which will draw us closer to You.”38

Thus, if in this form, all the loves that you have enumerated will give a pain-free pleasure, and, in one respect, an unending union. Moreover, they will increase love of God. They are licit loves. And are, furthermore a sort of gratitude which is pure pleasure, and thought, which is pure love.

For example, if a mighty king40 were to bestow an apple on you, there would be two loves for that apple and two pleasures in it. The first of these is that the apple would be loved because it is an apple, and there would be a pleasure peculiar to and to the extent of the apple. This love does not concern the king. On the contrary, the man who puts the apple to his mouth and eats it in the king’s presence loves the apple itself and his own soul rather than the king. It sometimes happens that the king is not pleased with that

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38. Kanz'al-Ummal, i, 195, Waliuddin Tabrizi, Mishkat al-Masabih, i, 762.
39. -
40. Once two tribal chiefs entered the presence of a king. They were in exactly the same situation as is described here.



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love which nourishes the instinctual soul; in fact, he detests it. Moreover, the pleasure that the apple gives is very limited and passes quickly. After the apple is eaten it is gone, only regret remains.

As for the second love, it is for the royal favour that is demonstrated by means of the apple. One who holds the apple precious as if it were the sample and embodiment of a royal favour shows that he loves his king. Moreover, the pleasure in that fruit, which is a sort of container for the favour, is such that it is far greater than the pleasure obtained from a thousand apples. This pleasure, then, is the essence of thankfulness. This love is a respectful love for the king.

In exactly the same way, if all bounties and fruits are loved for themselves, if they are thoughtlessly delighted in only for the material pleasures that they yield, that love is merely love of self. Also, those pleasures are transient and bring pain. But, if they are loved as favours proceeding from Almighty God’s mercy and as fruits of His munificence, and if pleasure is obtained from them with good appetite by appreciating the degree of kindness in that munificence and favour, then it has both the meaning of gratitude and is a pain-free pleasure.

THIRD POINT

There are levels in the love for God Almighty’s Names. As we explained above, sometimes the Names are loved with a love for finely made objects. Sometimes they are loved as being titles of the Divine perfections. Sometimes, man is needy and desirous of the Names by reason of the comprehensiveness of his true nature together with his having endless needs. It is through those needs that he loves.

For example, if someone was to come forward and do a kindness to all your relations, and the poor, the weak and the needy, for all of whom you feel sympathy although you are powerless to meet their need for help, how that person’s favour-granting title and generous name would please you, how you would love that person through that title.

So too, think only of God Almighty’s Names of All-Merciful and Compassionate. They make happy all the believing fathers and forefathers, relations and friends whom you love and feel sympathy for, in this world by means of all kinds of bounties, and in Paradise by means of all kinds of delights. They cause happiness by showing you in eternal bliss to them, and them in eternal bliss to you. So how deserving of being loved is the Name of All-Merciful and the title of All-Compassionate. And you can see for yourself just how needy for those two Names is the human spirit. And you can understand just how appropriate is the phrase, ‘Praise be to God for His mercifulness and His compassionateness.’



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You are connected to the world and as a result are afflicted by its wretchedness, so if you consider carefully, you may understand just how needy and desirous is your spirit for the Name of All-Wise and for the title of Nurturer. For the Owner of those Names orders, regulates and sustains with perfect wisdom the world, which is like a sort of house for you, and the creatures within it, which are its familiar furniture and lovable decorations.

And you are altogether connected to other human beings and grieve when they die. So, if you consider carefully, you may understand just how needy is your spirit for the Names of Inheritor and Resurrector, and for the titles Eternal, All-Generous, Giver of Life, and Munificent. For the Owner of these Names saves human beings at the time of their death from the darkness of non-existence and establishes them in a far finer place than this world.

Thus, since man’s nature is exalted and his disposition comprehensive, he is, by his very nature, needy with thousands of different sorts of needs for the innumerable Divine Names, each of which has many degrees. Intensified need is longing. Intensified longing is love. And intensified love is passion. As the spirit is perfected, the degrees of love unfold according to the degrees of the Names. Furthermore, since the Names are the titles and manifestations of the One of Glory, love of them will be transformed into love of the Divine Essence.

Now, just as an example, we shall explain one of the innumerable degrees of the Names of All-Just, All-Wise, Truth, and All-Merciful. If you wish to see the Names of All-Merciful and Compassionate, and Truth within wisdom and justice to the utmost extent, consider the following comparison.

Let us suppose there is an army in which there are four hundred different sections. And the uniforms that each section prefers are different, the provisions that please them, the weapons they will carry with ease and the medicines to cure their particular ills are all different. Furthermore, rather than being separated into squads and companies, they are all intermingled.

If the peerless and single king, then, out of perfect compassion and solicitude, wonderful power, miraculous all-embracing knowledge and extraordinary justice and wisdom, without confusing or forgetting any of them were himself, in person, without helper, to give all of them their completely different though appropriate uniforms, provisions, medicines and weapons, would you not see what a powerful, solicitous, just and generous personage that king was. Because, if there were individuals from ten nations in one battalion, it would be extremely difficult to clothe and equip them all differently. Whatever people they were from they would of necessity have to be fitted out in the same way.



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Similarly, if you wish to see the manifestation of the Names of Truth and All-Merciful and Compassionate within the justice and wisdom of God Almighty, look at the plant and animal armies comprising four hundred thousand magnificent nations with their tents pitched on the face of the earth in springtime. For those groups and sections are all one within the other. And the uniform of each one is different, and the provisions, weapons, way of life, drill and demobilization are all different. Furthermore, they do not have the power to provide for those needs and the tongues to ask for those wishes. So, watch and see the titles of Truth, All-Merciful, Provider, Compassionate and Generous together with order and equilibrium within the sphere of wisdom and justice. See how, without confusing, obscuring or forgetting any of them, He sustains, regulates and administers them all.

Could another hand, therefore, interfere in a matter performed with such amazing and all-encompassing order and balance? What, apart from the One Who is Single and Unique, Absolutely Wise, and Powerful over all things, could even stretch out its hand towards this art, this organizing, this sustaining, this administering? What cause could interfere?

FOURTH POINT

You ask: “So long as they are in the form that the Qur’an commands, what are the results and benefits of all my different and various loves? That is, my love for food, myself, my wife, parents and children, my friends, the saints, the prophets, beautiful things, the spring and this world?”

The Answer: It would be necessary to write a thick book in order to explain all the results. For now only one or two results will be briefly alluded to. Firstly, the immediate results in this world will be explained, then those that will become apparent in the hereafter will be mentioned.

As was explained above, loves such as those of the people of neglect and those attached to this world, that are for the sake of the evil-commanding soul, bring many tribulations, and much pain and suffering in this world. While the ease, pleasures and enjoyment they bring are little and few.

For example, compassion becomes a painful calamity on account of impotence. Love becomes a calamitous misfortune on account of separation. Pleasure becomes a poisoned cup on account of its transience. And in the hereafter, because they were not for God Almighty’s sake, they will either be without benefit or will be torment. (If they were illicit.)

Question: How might love for the prophets and saints be without benefit?

The Answer: In the same way that the love of the Christians for Jesus (Peace be upon him), and the heretics for ‘Ali (May God be pleased with him) remain without benefit. If that love is in the form that the Qur’an



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directs, for God Almighty’s sake and in the name of the All-Merciful One’s love, then it has favourable results both in this world and in the hereafter.

Now, to return to our subject, the results in this world of your love for delicious foods and luscious fruits will be that they are a pain-free bounty and a pleasure that is the essence of gratitude.

Your love of your instinctual soul. The result will be pity it, to train it, and to prevent harmful desires. Then the soul will not ride you, it will not make you a prisoner of its desires, rather, you will ride it. You will drive your soul, not to whims and fancies, but to right-guidance.

Your love for your wife. Since it will be built on her being a mine of tenderness, a gift of compassion and on her fineness of character, if you have sincere love and affection for her, she too will have earnest love and respect for you. As the two of you approach old age these sentiments will increase, you will pass your life happily. But if it is otherwise, if it is love of a pretty face and for the sake of the instinctual soul, then that love will be quickly destroyed and so too will be good relations.

Your love for your father and mother. Since it will be for God Almighty’s sake, it will be both worship and the older they grow the more your love and respect for them will increase. If you earnestly desire and pray, with the noblest of sentiments and most manly zeal, that they will live far into old age, and even kiss their hands with sincere respect and say, “Let me gain even more reward on their account”, it will obtain for you a most elevated pleasure of the spirit. But if it is otherwise, and for the sake of the soul and this world, when they grow old and approach the time of becoming a burden for you, if you show them, with the most base and despicable sentiment, that they are a nuisance and then wish for the deaths of those respected people, who were the cause of your life, it will be savage and grievous pain for the spirit.

Your love for your children. As for love for those lovable, friendly creatures whom God Almighty entrusts to your supervision and upbringing, it will be a most happy love, a most happy bounty. Neither shall you suffer too much pain at their misfortunes, nor shall you cry out with despair at their deaths. As was stated above you will say, “Since their Creator is both All-Wise and Compassionate, as far as they are concerned, that death is happiness.” Moreover, concerning yourself, you will think of the mercifulness of the One Who gave them to you and you will be saved from the pain of separation.

Your love for your friends. Since it is for God’s sake, because separation from those friends, and even their deaths, will not be an obstacle to your conversing and your brotherhood, you will benefit from that immaterial love and relation of the spirit. And the pleasure of meeting will be permanent. If it is not for the sake of God, the pleasure of one day’s meeting will result in



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the pain of a hundred days’ separation.41

Your love for the prophets and saints. Since the intermediate realm, which seems to the people of neglect to be a dark, lonely and desolate place, appears to you as a stopping-place illuminated by the presence of those luminous beings, the fact that you will go there will not induce terror and fright, but, on the contrary, an inclination towards it and a feeling of longing; it will not drive away the pleasure of worldly life.

But if it is otherwise, if love for the prophets and saints is of the same sort as the love of the subscribers to modern culture for their idols and heroes, on thinking of the death and disappearance of those perfect human beings and of their rotting in that mighty grave known as the past, it will add one more sorrow to lives that are already painful. That is to say, each will say to himself, “I too will end up in the grave, which rots even such perfect men.”

Whereas, when they are seen from the first point of view, they are thought of with complete ease of mind, for they have discarded the clothes of their bodies in the past and now their dwelling-place is the intermediate realm, which is the waiting-room for the future. And the graveyard will be seen as having a familiarity and friendliness.

Your love for beautiful things. Since it is for the sake of the One Who fashioned them, it will be in the manner of, “How beautifully they have been made.” This love is pleasurable thought and it causes the gaze of beauty-worshipping delight to see the more elevated and holy and thousand times more beautiful treasures of the degrees of God’s beauty. This love opens up a way to these treasures because it transfers the eye from those beautiful works to the beauty of the Divine actions. And it opens a way from them to the beauty of the Names, and from them to the beauty of the attributes, and from them to the One of Glory’s peerless beauty; it opens a way to the heart. Thus, if this love is in this form, it is both pleasurable, and it is worship, and it is thought.

Your love of youth. Since you have loved it as a beautiful bounty of God Almighty, you have, of course, done so in worship, you have not drowned it in dissipation and destroyed it. Since this is the case, the worship you have gained during your youth is the undying fruit of that transient state. As you grow older, because you will have obtained the enduring fruits that are the positive aspect of youth, you will have been saved from its harm and excesses.

Also, in old age you will see that you have achieved success in performing more worship, and so will be more worthy to receive Divine mercy. Unlike the people of neglect, you will not feel sadness for the pleasures of

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41. Once second's meeting for God's sake is a year. Whereas, if it is for the sake of this world, a year is second.



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youth that lasted five or ten years, then wail for fifty years, “Alas, my youth has fled!” Neither will you be like one of them who said, “If only my youth would return one day, I would tell it of the woes old age has brought me.”

Your love for finely adorned exhibitions like the spring. Since it is in the form of contemplating Divine artistry, when the spring ends the pleasure of the spectacle does not fade. For the meanings that the spring delivers, like a gilded missive, may be contemplated all the time. Both your imagination and time are like films in the cinema, they both cause the pleasure of that contemplation to continue for you, and they renew the spring’s meanings and beauties. Your love, therefore, cannot be temporary and full of regret and pain. Rather, it will be full of pleasure and enjoyment.

Your love of this world. Since it is in the name of God Almighty, the formidable creatures of this world will be like familiar friends for you. Since you love it as the tillage for the hereafter, you will be able to find in everything capital or a fruit that will produce benefits in the hereafter. Neither will its disasters frighten you, nor will its transience and ephemerality trouble you. You will pass your sojourn in this guest-house with the greatest of ease. But should you love it as the people of neglect do, then as we have told you a hundred times, you will drown and perish in a fruitless love, condemned to a depressing, crushing and suffocating transitoriness.

Thus we have shown only one subtle point out of hundreds from each of the loves you enumerated, when they are in the form that the Qur’an directs. We indicated too one hundredth of the harm they cause if they are not in this way. Now, if you want to hear and understand the results of these loves in the eternal realm, in the world of the hereafter, the results to which the All-Wise Qur’an points with its clear and distinct verses, then we shall show briefly by means of an Introduction and nine Indications the results and one hundredth of the benefits of those various licit loves in the hereafter.

AN INTRODUCTION

God Almighty, with His glorious Divinity, His beautiful mercy, His mighty dominicality, His generous benevolence, His immense power, and His subtle wisdom, has equipped and adorned tiny man with many senses and feelings, limbs and systems, members and faculties, and subtle and immaterial aspects so that through them He might cause man to perceive, know, taste and recognize the limitless varieties and levels of His bounty, munificence and mercy; and so that, through these tools, He might cause man to ponder over, know and love the endless kinds of manifestations of His thousand and one Names. Just as each of man’s great many members and faculties performs a completely different service and worship, so too does each of them have completely different pleasures, pains, duties and rewards.

For example, the eye beholds the beauty of forms and the varieties of the



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beautiful miracles of power in the world of things seen. Its duty, taking its lesson from these, is gratitude to its Maker. The pleasures and pains peculiar to sight are known, there is no need to enlarge upon them.

And, for example, the ear perceives the various sorts of sounds and their melodious songs, and the subtle instances of God Almighty’s mercy in the world of things heard. Its worship, pleasures and rewards are all different.

And, for example, the sense of smell perceives the subtle instances of mercy within the realm of scents. It has a duty of gratitude and pleasure peculiar to itself. And, of course, it has a reward, too.

And, for example, the sense of taste, in the tongue; through appreciating all the tastes of foods, it performs its duty with a truly diverse thankfulness; and so on. All man’s faculties, including his important subtle aspects such as the heart, intellect and spirit, have quite distinct duties, pleasures and pains.

Thus, God Almighty, the Possessor of Absolute Wisdom, will certainly give suitable recompense to each one of those faculties, which He employs in human beings. Everyone may perceive with his conscience the immediate results in this world of those numerous varieties of love, as was explained above, and they may be confirmed through experience.

As for the results in the hereafter, their existence and reality have been conclusively, through briefly, proved by the decisively clear Twelve Truths of the Tenth Word, and by the six self-evident Fundamental Points of the Twenty-Ninth Word. They are also clearly demonstrated in detail by the distinct verses and the explanations, allusions, symbols and indications of the All-Wise Qur’an, which is, ‘The most truthful of all words, most eloquent in its order, the Word of God - The Lord, The Mighty, The All-Knowing.’ There is no need to present more extensive proofs. In any case, there are further proofs in other Words: in the Second Station of the Twenty-Eighth Word, which is about Paradise and is in Arabic, and in the Twenty-Ninth Word.

FIRST INDICATION

According to the Qur’an, the result in the hereafter of licit and thankful love for delicious foods and fruits is again delicious food and fruit, but in a form appropriate for Paradise. This licit love desires those foods and fruits of the hereafter. So much so that when you utter the phrase ‘Praise be to God’ over the fruit you eat in this world, it will be embodied as a fruit of Paradise and presented to you there. Here you eat fruit, while there you will eat ‘Praise be to God’.

Since you see Divine munificence and the All-Merciful One’s favours in bounty and food, as is established by Hadith, the indications of the Qur’an, and the requirements of wisdom and mercy that that pleasurable



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gratitude will be given to you in Paradise in the form of a truly delicious food.42

SECOND INDICATION

Licit love for your instinctual soul in this world is not a love built on its good qualities, but rather one that sees its short-comings and trains it with a compassion that seeks to perfect it, and that impels it towards good. This love results in giving to the soul objects of love worthy of it in Paradise.

As is explicitly stated and proved by a great number of verses in the Qur’an, when the soul utilises its desires and wishes correctly and employs its faculties and senses in the best way in this world, that is, in the way of God Almighty, as a result of this licit and worshipful love the Absolutely Generous One will bestow on it houris in Paradise, the everlasting realm. He will clothe these houris in seventy varieties of the finery of Paradise. He will adorn their beings with seventy kinds of beauty that will caress and gratify all the senses of the soul. Each houri will be like a miniature animated Paradise.

Furthermore, your love of youth in this world, that is, the result of expending the power of youth in worship, will be eternal youth in the realm of bliss.

THIRD INDICATION

Licit love for your wife in this world is sincere love in consequence of her delicate tenderness, fine virtues and good character, together with your protecting her from disobeying God obstinately and sinning. The Absolutely Merciful One has promised that as a result of this licit love your wife shall be given to you as an eternal wife in the hereafter, the realm of bliss. She will be in a form more beautifully adorned and attractive than the Houris. You will relate to one another in delight your former adventures in the world, bringing to mind old memories. She will be an intimate, gracious and eternal friend, who loves and is beloved. And, most certainly, that which He promises shall definitely be given.

FOURTH INDICATION

The result of licit love for parents and children is this. According to the Qur’an, the Most Merciful of the Merciful will bestow on that happy family, even though their stations may be quite different, the pure pleasure of each other’s company in the everlasting realm.

He will return children who die before reaching the age of fifteen years, that is, the age of puberty, once more to the embrace of their fathers and mothers, in a manner appropriate to Paradise. They will be most beautifully adorned and lovable, in the form of the children of Paradise, who are known

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42. Baghawi, Masabih al-Sunna, iii, 197; Musnad,iii, 439; Ibn Maja, ii, 1093, no:3285



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as immortal youths.43 He will gratify their child-cherishing sentiments and will give them that pleasure and delight eternally. Since those children had not reached the age of responsibility, they will remain eternally as lovable and sweet children.

Every pleasurable thing in this world will be found in its highest form in Paradise. Some people surmise that since Paradise is not appropriate for reproduction, there will be none of this cherishing of children, which is so sweet, that is, the pleasure of loving and caressing them. But it will be there too and in the most delightful and sweet form. This then is good news for those whose children die before puberty.

FIFTH INDICATION

The result of love for righteous friends in this world, according to the decree of, ‘Love for God’s sake’ is, as the Qur’an states, Facing one another on thrones of happiness.44 God Almighty will seat them on the chairs of Heaven facing one another. He will cause them to meet with their friends, pleasantly, agreeably and sweetly. They will enjoy themselves recounting their old memories and adventures in this world, with a pure love and companionship that will not be subject to separation.

SIXTH INDICATION

The result of love for the prophets and saints is as the Qur’an explains. That is, it will be both to benefit in the intermediate world and at the resurrection from the intercession of the prophets and saints, and also to profit abundantly, through that love, from the station and blessings that befit them.

Indeed, according to the meaning of ‘a person will be together with whom he loves,’45 an ordinary man may approach the highest station by following an exalted person whom he loves.

SEVENTH INDICATION

The result of licit love for beautiful things and the spring. That is, to see with the eye of, ‘how beautifully they have been made,’ and to love the beauty and order of the acts, which lie behind those works of art. To love the manifestations of the Beautiful Names, which lie behind the order and harmony of the actions, and to love the manifestations of the attributes behind those Beautiful Names. And so on.

The result will be to see in Paradise, the everlasting realm, the manifestation of the Names, and the beauty and attributes within the Names, in a form a thousand times more beautiful than the beautiful creatures to be seen here.

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43. Qur'an, 76:19, 56:17.
44. Qur'an, 15:47, 37:44
45. See, page 515, footnote 4.



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More than this even, Imam-i Rabbani (May God be pleased with him) said, “The subtle exquisiteness of Paradise will be the similitude of the manifestation of God’s Names.”46 Just think of it!

EIGHTH INDICATION

The result in the hereafter of thoughtful love in this world for the two beautiful faces of the world, which are the tillage for the hereafter and the mirror of the Divine Names. An everlasting Paradise will be given that is as large as the world but is not ephemeral and transient like this world. And the Names, only pale shadows of which are shown in this world, will be displayed in the mirror of Paradise in a most brilliant form.

Moreover, the result of loving the world as being the tillage of the hereafter is as follows. When the world is seen thus, that is, as a seed-bed or small place of cultivation that produces only shoots, it results in a Paradise where those shoots burgeon and blossom. For in this world man’s senses and faculties are tiny shoots and in Paradise they will unfold in the most perfect form. And his abilities, which are here like tiny seeds, will be given to him there in a form that will blossom with all sorts of delights and perfections. This is proved by the indications of the Qur’an and by Hadith, and is necessitated by mercy and wisdom.

For it is not blameworthy love of the world, which is the source of every fault, but love of its two faces that look to God’s Names and to the hereafter, and is for the sake of the Names and the hereafter. It is to cultivate those faces with thoughtful worship, as if taking the whole world as the means for worship. It is, therefore, most definitely necessitated by mercy and wisdom that a reward should be given that is as large as the world. And, one who through love of the hereafter, has loved its seed-bed, and through love of Almighty God, has loved the mirror of His Names, will most certainly desire a beloved like the world, and that too will be a Paradise as great as the world.

Question: What is the use of such a vast and empty Paradise?

Answer: If it was possible for you to travel with speed of imagination round all the regions of the earth and most of the stars, you would be able to say, “The whole universe is mine.” The fact that the angels, other human beings and the animals share the world with you would not quash your claim. In the same way, if Paradise is thus full, you would be able to say, “Paradise is mine.” The meaning of the Hadith, “A five hundred year Paradise will be given to some of those in Paradise,” has been explained in the Twenty-Eighth Word and the Twentieth Flash, the Treatise on Sincerity.

NINTH INDICATION

The result of faith and love of God. It is proved by the consensus of the

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46. Suyuti, al Fath al-Kabir, iii, 62; al-Manawi,Fayd al-Qadir, v, 373.



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people of unveiling and verification, by certain Hadith,47 and by the Qur’an that a thousand years of happy life in this world is not worth one hour of life in Paradise, and that a thousand years of heavenly life is not worth one hour’s vision and contemplation of the All-Glorious One, Who possesses incomparable beauty and perfection.

Everyone may perceive in his conscience a great longing for the vision of a personage famous for his magnificence and perfection, like the Prophet Solomon (Peace be upon him), and a great yearning to behold a personage distinguished by his beauty, like the Prophet Joseph (Peace be upon him). And so, if you can, compare how longed-for, sought after, and desire-arousing is the vision of One, one manifestation of Whose beauty and perfection are all the virtues and perfections of Paradise, which are thousands of times more elevated than all the virtues and perfections of this world.

O God, bestow upon us in this world love for You and love for that which will draw us closer to You, and the right-guidedness that You have commanded, and, in the next world Your mercy and the vision of You.

Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; You are indeed All-Knowing, All-Wise.48

O God, grant blessings and peace to the one whom You sent as a mercy to all the worlds, and to all his Family and Companions. Amen.

WARNING

Do not consider over-lengthy the detailed explanations in the last section of this Word; they are short in relation to their importance and require further explanation.

It is not I who speaks in any of the Words; it is reality in the name of ‘INDICATIONS FROM THE QUR’AN.’ As for reality, it speaks the truth. Should you see anything incorrect, then you can be certain that without my being aware of it my own ideas interfered and caused the error.

ba

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47.Included in the Hadith is the following: "That vision far surpasses all the other delights of Paradise, so much sot that it causes them to be forgotten. ;And after the vision the loveliness and beauty of those who experience it will have increased to such a degree that when they return, it will be only with difficulty and scrutiny that their families in their mansions will recognize them."*
*al-Munzuri, al-Targhib wa'l-Tarhib, iv, 541, 556.
48. Qur'an, 2:32.



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Supplication

O God! When a man knocks on the door of a grand palace and it is not opened to him, he knocks on it and calls out in the voice of someone who is familiar to the palace, so that it may be opened. And so this wretched one knocks on the door of the Court of Your Mercy crying out in the voice of Your well-loved servant Uveysu'l-Qarani and with his supplication. Open that Court of Yours to me, as you opened it to him! I cry out as he did:

O God! You are our Sustainer, for we are mere slaves; we are powerless to sustain and raise ourselves. That is to say, the One Who sustains us is You! And it is You Who is the Creator, for we are creatures, we are being made! And it is You Who is the Provider, for we are in need of provision, we have no power! That is to say, the One One Who creates us and bestows on us our provisions is You! And it is You Who is the Owner, because we are totally owned property; someone other than us has power of disposal over us. That is to say, it is You Who is our Owner! And You, You are Mighty! You possess grandeur and sublimity! As for us we look to our baseness and see that there are manifestations of a mightiness on us. That is to say, we are mirrors to Your mightiness! And it is You Who is the Possessor of Absolute Riches, because we are utterly wanting, and riches are bestowed on us that our indigent hands could not obtain. That is to say, it is You Who is rich, the One Who gives is You! And You, You are the Ever-Living, Ever-Enduring One, because we, we are dying, and in our dying and in our being resurrected we see the manifestation of a perpetual giver of life! And You, You are Ever-Enduring, because we see Your continuation and perpetualness in our demise and transience! And the One Who responds to us and answers us, the Granter of Gifts is You. For all of us beings, we are ever crying out and requesting, entreating, imploring by tongue and by state. And our desires are brought about, our aims are achieved. In other words, the One Who answers us is You!...

So forgive me my sins and bear with me and heal my ills, O my God! O All-Sufficing One! O Sustainer! O Faithful One! O Most Compassionate One! O Healer! O Munificent One! O Forgiving One! Pardon all my sins, and grant me health from all sicknesses, and be pleased with me for all eternity! Through Your Mercy, O Most Merciful of the Merciful!

And the close of their prayer will be: All praise be to God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds!

ba





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The Thirty-Third Word

This Word consists of
Thirty-Three Windows

While being the Thirty-Third Letter,
this is also the Thirty-Third Word.

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
We shall show them Our signs in the furthest horizons and in themselves, so that it will become clear to them that this [Qur’an] is indeed the Truth. Is it not enough that your Sustainer witnesses all things?1

Question: We would like a concise explanation of the ways man and the universe, that is, the microcosm and the macrocosm, point to the necessary existence and unity of God and His dominical attributes and functions, which the two parts of the above verse denote. For the unbelievers have gone too far, they are saying: “For how long shall we say: ‘And He is powerful over all things,’ and have to raise our hands?”

Answer: The thirty-three Words that have been written form thirty-three drops from the ocean of this verse and from the seas of truth which flow from it. If you look at them, you will find your answer. What we say now is only a sort of hint to the sprinkling of a single drop from the ocean.

For example, if a wonder-worker wants to build a splendid palace, he first of all sets the foundations in a wise and regular fashion, and plans them in a way suitable to their future purpose and results. Then he skilfully divides them into sections and apartments. Next, he orders and arranges the apartments, and decorates them with tapestries, then illuminates them with electric lights. Then, in order to renew his ingenious works and favours in that

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1. Qur’an, 41:53.



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magnificent and adorned palace, he makes fresh creations and new changes and transformations in every level of it. And then he installs a telephone in every apartment connected to his own abode, and opens up a window from each, so that his may be seen.

In just the same way, And God’s is the highest similitude,2 the Peerless Creator, Who is named with a thousand and one sacred Names such as All-Glorious Maker, All-Wise Sovereign, All-Just Arbiter, willed the creation of the palace of the universe and tree of the cosmos, which forms the macrocosm. He set the foundations of the palace, the tree, in six days through the principles of wisdom and laws of His pre-eternal knowledge. Then He divided and formed it into the higher and lower levels and branches through the principles of Divine Determining and Decree. Next, He adorned everything, each world, in an appropriate manner, like the heavens with the stars and the earth with flowers. Then He manifested and made luminous His Names within the arena of those universal laws and general principles. And then in a special way sent to the assistance of individuals crying out at the constraint of those universal laws His Names of Most Merciful and All-Compassionate. That is to say, within those universal and general principles He has special favours, special succour, special manifestations, so that everything may seek help from Him and look to Him at all times for every need. Then from every apartment, every level, every world, every realm of being, every individual, from everything, He opened up windows which would show Himself, that is, make known His existence and unity. He left a telephone in every heart.

For now we shall not attempt to discuss those innumerable windows, which is anyway beyond our power. Referring them to the all-encompassing knowledge of God, we shall only point out in a concise and brief manner Thirty-Three Windows - since it corresponds to the blessed number of the tesbihat following the prescribed prayers, and for a more detailed explanation of this, which forms the Thirty-Third Letter and Thirty-Third Word and consists of gleams from verses of the Qur’an, we refer readers to the rest of the Words.

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2. Qur’an, 16:60.



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First Window

If we look, we see that all things and especially living creatures have numerous different needs and numerous different wants. And those wants and needs are provided for them at the appropriate time, in unexpected ways, from places they do not know and their hands cannot reach; succour comes to them. But the power of these needy beings is insufficient for even the smallest of those endless things they wish for; they cannot meet their needs. Consider yourself: of how many things are you in need that your hands cannot reach, like your external and inner senses and their needs? Compare all other living creatures with yourself. See, just as singly they testify to the Necessary Existence and point to His unity, so in their totality they show to the reason a Necessarily Existent One behind the veil of the Unseen, a Single One of Unity, among titles of Most Generous, All-Compassionate, Nurturer, and Disposer.

O ignorant unbeliever and dissolute heedless one! With what can you explain this wise, percipient, compassionate activity? Deaf nature? Blind force? Senseless chance? Can you explain it through impotent, lifeless causes?

Second Window

While in their existence and individuality, things are in a hesitant, bewildered, and shapeless form among innumerable possible ways, they are suddenly given a most well-ordered and wise aspect of individuality. For example, every human being has on his face characteristics which differentiate him from all his fellow humans, and it is equipped with utter wisdom with external and inner senses. This proves that the face is a most brilliant stamp of Divine oneness. And just as each face testifies to the existence of an All-Wise Maker and points to His existence, so too the stamp which all faces display in their totality shows to the mind’s eye that all things are a seal peculiar to their Creator.

O denier! To what workshop can you refer these stamps which can in no way be imitated, and the stamp of Eternal Besoughtedness which is on the totality?



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Third Window

The army of all the various species of animals and plants on the face of the earth consists of four hundred thousand different groups.3 Their being managed and raised with perfect balance and order through their sustenance, papers, weapons, uniforms, instructions, and demobilizations, which are all different with nothing being forgotten and none of them being confused, is a stamp of the Single One of Unity as brilliant as the sun which can in no way be doubted. Who other than One possessing boundless power, all-encompassing knowledge, and infinite wisdom could have any part in this administration, which is wondrous to the utmost degree. For if one who cannot administer and raise all together these species and nations, which are one within the other, interferes with one of them, he will throw the lot into disorder. Whereas according to the meaning of,

So turn your vision again, do you see any flaw?4

there is no sign of confusion. That means not so much as a finger can interfere.

Fourth Window

This is the acceptability of the supplications offered through the tongue of latent ability by all seeds, and through the tongue of innate need by all animals, and through the tongue of exigency by the desperate.

Yes, just as all these innumerable supplications are observedly accepted and responded to, so in a large measure do they in their entirety self-evidently indicate and point to an All-Compassionate and Generous Creator, the Answerer of Prayer.

Fifth Window

We see that things and particularly living beings come into existence of a sudden, instantaneously. But, while things which appear suddenly out of a simple substance should be simple, formless, and without art, they are created with an art and beauty requiring much skill, they are decorated with

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3. The members of some of those groups, even, are more numerous than all the members of the human race from the time of Adam up to the Last Day.
4. Qur’an, 67:3.



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painstaking embroideries requiring much time, and adorned with wonderful arts requiring many tools. Thus, just as each of these instantaneous, wondrous arts and beautiful combinations indicates the necessary existence of an All-Wise Creator and the unity of His dominicality, so in their totality do they show in most brilliant fashion an infinitely Powerful, infinitely Wise Necessarily Existent One.

So now, O stupefied denier! How can you explain this? With ‘nature’, which is unconscious, impotent, and ignorant like you? Or do you want to make an infinite mistake and call that All-Holy Maker ‘nature’, and on the pretext of naming Him that, attribute the miracles of His power to it and perpetrate an impossibility compounded a thousand times over?

Sixth Window

In the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of night and day and the boats which travel through the seas for the benefit of men, and in what God sends down from the sky as rain and with it raises to life the earth after its death and raises in it every sort of living being, and in the circulating of the winds and the clouds subjugated between the heavens and the earth, are signs for a people who thinks.5

This verse both points out the Divine existence and unity, and forms a truly large window displaying a Greatest Name.

The gist of the verse is this: all the worlds in the higher and lower levels of the universe show with all-different tongues a single result, that is, the dominicality of a single All-Wise Maker. It is as follows: just as in the heavens -and astronomy even admits to it- extremely well-ordered movements for extremely extensive results show the existence, unity, and perfect dominicality of an All-Powerful One of Glory, so too on the earth -and geography even testifies to it and acknowledges it- most orderly changes, like in the seasons, for most extensive benefits show the existence and unity and perfect dominicality of the same All-Powerful One of Glory.

Also, just as, being given their sustenance with perfect mercy, and being clothed in different forms with perfect wisdom, and being decked out with all sorts of senses through perfect dominicality, each of all the animals on the land and in the sea again testifies to the existence of the All-Powerful One of Glory and indicates to His unity, so in their totality do they show on a vast scale the tremendousness of His Godhead and the perfection of His

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5. Qur’an, 2:164.







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dominicality. So too, just as each of the well-ordered plants in gardens, and the finely adorned flowers which the plants display, and the well-proportioned fruits which the flowers display, and the embellished embroideries which the fruits display, testifies to the existence of the All-Wise Maker and points to His unity, so too in their totality do they show most brilliantly the beauty of His mercy and the perfection of His dominicality.

Also, just as the drops of rain sent from the clouds in the sky charged with duties for important instances of wisdom and aims and necessary benefits and results again demonstrate to the number of their drops the the necessary existence and unity and perfect dominicality of the All-Wise Maker, so too do all the mountains on the earth and the storing-up in them of minerals with all their different properties for numerous different benefits show with the strength and firmness of a mountain the existence and unity of the All-Wise Maker and the perfection of His dominicality.

Also, just as, being adorned with numerous varieties of well-ordered flowers, the small hills in the plains and among the mountains each testifies to the necessary existence of an All-Wise Maker and points to His unity, and all together show the majesty of His sovereignty and the perfection of His dominicality, so the great variety of the orderly shapes of all the leaves of the grasses and trees, and all their different stages and states and well-balanced and ecstatic movements again show the necessary existence and unity and perfect dominicality of the All-Wise Maker.

Also, just as the regular development at the time of their growth of all living bodies, and each being equipped with all sorts of organs and their being directed consciously towards numerous different fruits again testify to the necessary existence of the All-Wise Maker and indicate His unity, and in their totality show on a truly vast scale His all-encompassing power, and all-embracing wisdom, and the beauty of His art, and the perfection of His dominicality, so too souls and spirits being situated in all animal bodies, and their being armed in most orderly fashion with numerous sorts of systems and faculties, and their being sent on numerous different errands with perfect wisdom testify to the number of animals, indeed to the number, of their faculties, to the necessary existence of the All-Wise Maker and point to His unity. And in their totality they show most brilliantly the beauty of His mercy and the perfection of His dominicality.

Also, just as the inspirations from the Unseen imparted to all hearts, which make known to man every sort of science and knowledge and truth and teach the animals how to procure their needs, make known the existence of an All-Compassionate Sustainer and point to His dominicality, so their external and inner senses, which like rays gathering immaterial flowers from the garden of the universe, are all keys to different worlds, demonstrate as clearly as the sun the necessary existence, unity, oneness, and perfect domin



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icality of the All-Wise Maker, the All-Knowing Creator, the Most Compassionate Creator, the All-Generous Provider.
Thus, from the twelve windows, the twelve aspects, mentioned here a vast window opens which displays with a twelve-coloured light of truth the oneness, unity, and perfect dominicality of God Almighty .
O unhappy denier! With what can you block up this window which is as broad as the globe of the earth, indeed, as its yearly orbit? And with what can you extinguish this source of light which shines like the sun? Behind which veil of heedlessness can you hide it?

Seventh Window

The perfect order of the works of art scattered over the face of the universe, and their perfect proportion and balance, and the perfection of their adornment, and the ease in their creation, and their resembling one another, and their exhibiting a single nature demonstrate on a vast scale the necessary existence and perfect power and unity of an All-Wise Maker.

Moreover, just as the creation of innumerable, different, well-ordered complex beings from inanimate and simple elements again testifies, to the number of those composite beings, to the All-Wise Maker’s necessary existence and points to His unity, so in their totality do those beings demonstrate in truly brilliant fashion His unity and the perfection of His power.

Then the utmost distinguishing and differentiating of beings as they are renewed while being assembled and dissolved -that is, during what is called the composition of beings- amid the utmost degree of intermingling and confusion, for example the distinguishing of the shoots and growth of seeds and roots without confusing them in any way although they are all mixed up, and the mixed-up substances entering trees being divided between the leaves, flowers, and fruits, and the nutrients which enter the body in mixed-up form being differentiated and separated out with perfect wisdom and perfect balance for the cells of the body, - again demonstrate the necessary existence and perfect power and unity of the Absolutely Wise One, the Absolutely Knowing One, the Absolutely Powerful One.

Then too the making of the world of minute particles into a boundless, broad arable field and every instant sowing and harvesting it and obtaining the fresh crops of different universes from it, and those inanimate, impotent, ignorant particles being made to perform innumerable orderly duties most consciously, wisely, and capably - this also shows the necessary existence of the All-Powerful One of Glory and Maker of Perfection, and His perfect



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Power and the grandeur of His sovereignty and His unity and the perfection of His dominicality.

Thus through these four ways a large window is opened onto knowledge of God; addressing the reason, it displays the All-Wise Maker on a large scale.

Now, you unhappy heedless one! If you do not want to see Him and learn of Him in this way, divest yourself of your reason; become an animal, and thus be saved!

Eighth Window

The testimony of all the prophets (Peace be upon them), who among mankind possessed luminous spirits, relying on their manifest and evident miracles; and the testimony of all the saints, who with their luminous hearts are the spiritual poles of mankind, relying on their illuminations and wonder-working; and testimony of all the purified scholars, who possess luminous minds, relying on their researches and verifications; -the testimony of all these to the necessary existence, unity, and perfect dominicality of the Single One of Unity, the Necessary Existent, the Creator of All Things, forms a truly vast and light-filled window.

O you unfortunate denier! In whom do you place your trust so that you do not heed these? Or by closing your eyes in the daytime do you imagine the world to be plunged into night?

Ninth Window

The universal worship in the cosmos self-evidently demonstrates an Absolute Object of Worship. Yes, the perfect obedience and worship of all angels and spirit beings, -which is established by the testimony of those who have penetrated to the spirit world and the inner dimension of things and have met with the angels and spirit beings- and of all living beings self-evidently performing their duties in perfect order and in a worshipful manner, and of all inanimate things self-evidently carrying out their duties with perfect submission and in a worshipful manner, all demonstrate the necessary existence and unity of a True Object of Worship.

So too the true knowledge of the knowing, which has the strength of consensus, and the fruitful thanks of all those who offer thanks, and the radiant glorification of all those who recite God’s Names, and the bounty-increasing praises of all those recite God’s praises, and all the demonstrative proofs and



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.691

descriptions of Divine unity of all those who acknowledge it, and the true love and passion of all lovers of God, and the true will and desire of those who seek Him, and the earnest searching and penitence of all those who turn to Him, -all these demonstrate the necessary existence and perfect dominicality and unity of that Pre-Eternal All-Worshipped One, the One Who is Known, Mentioned, Thanked, Praised, One, Beloved, Desired, and Sought.

So too all the acceptable worship of perfected human beings and the spiritual radiance and supplications, visions and illuminations resulting from their acceptable worship again demonstrate the necessary existence and unity and perfect dominicality of that Eternal Being, the Enduring Object of Worship. Thus, these three aspects open up a broad, light-giving window onto Divine unity.

Tenth Window

And He sends down water from the sky and brings forth with it fruits for your sustenance; and He has made subject to you the ships, that they sail through the sea by His command; and He has made the rivers subject to you; * And He has made subject to you the sun and the moon, both diligently pursuing their courses; and He has made subject to you the night and the day. * And He gives you of all that you ask Him. But if you count God’s bounties, you will never be able to number them.6

The mutual assistance and co-operation of beings in the universe and the fact that they respond to one another show that all creatures are raised by a single Nurturer, are organized by a single Director, are under the jurisdiction of a single Disposer, are the servants of a single Lord. For through an all-embracing law of mutual assistance, the sun cooks the necessities for the lives of living beings on the earth through a dominical command, and the moon acts as a calendar, and light, air, water, and sustenance hasten to the assistance of living beings, and plants hasten to the assistance of animals, and animals hasten to the assistance of human beings, and the members of the body hasten to assist one another, and particles of food even hasten to the assistance of the cells of the body. This most wise and generous mutual assistance of these beings, and their responding to one another’s needs and their supporting and strengthening one another in accordance with a law of generosity, a law of compassion, a law of mercy, show clearly and self-evidently that they are the servants, officials, and creatures of a sole, unique

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6. Qur’an, 14:32-34.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.692

Single One of Unity, a Peerless Eternally Besought One, an Absolutely Powerful, Absolutely Knowing, Absolutely Compassionate, Absolutely Generous Necessarily Existent One.

O wretched bankrupt philosophy! What have you say in the face of this mighty window? Can your chance interfere in this?

Eleventh Window

For indeed in the remembrance of God do hearts find rest.7

Through knowing a single Creator, all spirits and hearts are delivered from the distress and confusion arising from misguidance, and from the spiritual pains arising from distress. They are saved by attributing all beings to a single Maker. They find assurance through the remembrance of a single God. For, as is proved decisively in the Twenty-Second Word, if all beings are not attributed to a single being, it becomes necessary to ascribe a single thing to innumerable causes, and then the existence of a single thing becomes as difficult as all beings. For if attributed to God, innumerable things are ascribed to a single being, and if they are not attributed to Him, it becomes necessary to attribute everything to innumerable causes. Then a single fruit becomes as difficult as the universe, indeed, more difficult. For just as if the management of one soldier is given to a hundred different people, a hundred difficulties arise, and if a hundred soldiers are given to the direction of one officer, they are as easy to manage as a single soldier, so too the coinciding of numerous different causes in the creation of a single thing is difficult to the hundredth degree. And if the creation of numerous things is given to a single being, it becomes easy to the hundredth degree.

Thus, it is only by recognizing the Creator’s unity and knowledge of God that man may be delivered from the boundless distress arising from the desire to search for the truth inherent in his nature. Since there are endless difficulties and pains in unbelief and associating partners with God, that way is certainly impossible and devoid of truth. While since suitably to the ease, abundance, and fine art in the creation of beings, there is a boundless ease in affirming Divine unity, that way is surely necessary and the truth.

O you miserable people of misguidance! See how dark and full of pain is the way of misguidance! What is it that makes you tak? it? And see how easy and pleasant is the way of belief and affirming Divine unity! Take that way and be delivered!

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7. Qur’an, 13:28.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.693

Twelfth Window

Glorify the Name of your Sustainer, the All-Highest, * Who has created, and given order and proportion, * And Who has determined [the nature of all things] and guided [them towards their fulfilment].8

According to the meaning of this verse, all things, and especially living creatures, have been given a form and regular proportions in accordance with wisdom as though they have emerged from a purposeful mould. Contained in those measured proportions are intricate extremities for various benefits and uses. And the form of their clothes and their proportions, which they change throughout the periods of their lives, are each immaterial and well-ordered and measured, and are composed of the appointed events of their lives again in a fashion suitable to wisdom and benefits. This shows clearly that those innumerable creatures, whose forms and proportions have been planned in the sphere of determining of an All-Powerful One of Glory, an All-Wise One of Perfection, and who have been given forms fashioned in the workshop of Divine power, point to that Being’s necessary existence and testify to His unity and perfect power with endless tongues. Look at your own body and its members and the fruits of its intricate and complex places! See the perfect power within the perfect wisdom!

Thirteenth Window

According to the meaning of:

And there is nothing but extols His limitless glory and praise,9

everything recalls its Creator through its own particular tongue and declares to His holiness. Yes, the glorifications all beings utter audibly and through the tongues of their beings demonstrate the existence of a single Most Holy Being. The testimony of innate disposition may not be rejected. Especially if the evidence comes from all sides, it cannot be doubted. Look! The well-ordered forms of beings, which through their manner of creation comprise endless testimony, and offer evidence in innumerable ways through the tongue of disposition and look to a single centre like concentric circles - all these are tongues. Similarly, their well-proportioned and balanced assemblages are all testifying tongues. And their perfect lives are all glorifying tongues. Thus, as is proved in the Twenty-Fourth Word, their glorifying,

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8. Qur’an, 87:1-3.
9. Qur’an, 17:44.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.694

extolling, and testifying to a single Most Holy Being through all these tongues demonstrate a Necessarily Existent One as light shows the sun, and point to the perfection of His Godhead.

Fourteenth Window

Say: who is it in whose hands is the governance of all things?10 * And there is nothing but its treasuries are with Us.11 * There is not a moving creature but He has grasp of its forelock.12 * Indeed my Sustainer watches over and records all things.13

According to the meaning of these verses, all things are in need of a single All-Glorious Creator in everything, in all matters and circumstances. Indeed, we look at the beings in the universe and we see that there is the manifestation of an absolute force within an absolute weakness, and the traces of an absolute power are apparent within an absolute impotence; like, for example, the wonderful states and stages plants display when the life-force awakens in their seeds and roots. There is the manifestation too of an absolute wealth within an absolute poverty and dryness; like the poverty of trees and the soil in winter and their glittering wealth and riches in the spring. The sprinklings of an absolute life are also apparent within an absolute lifelessness; like the transformation of the elements into living matter. There is, moreover, the manifestation of an all-encompassing consciousness within an absolute ignorance; like everything, from minute particles to the stars, acting consciously and conforming to the order of the universe and to the demands of wisdom and requirements of life.

Thus, this power within impotence, and strength within weakness, and wealth and riches within poverty, and life and consciousness within lifelessness and ignorance necessarily and self-evidently open up windows on every side onto the necessary existence and unity of a Possessor of Absolute Power and Absolute Strength, a Possessor of Absolute Riches, an Absolutely Knowing, All-Living and Self-Sufficient One. In their totality they point to a luminous highway on a vast scale.

And so, O you heedless one who has fallen into the swamp of nature! If you do not quit nature and recognize Divine power, you have to accept that in everything, in every minute particle even, reside an infinite force and power, a boundless wisdom and skill, and the ability to see, know, and administer most other beings.

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10. Qur’an, 23:88.
11. Qur’an, 15:21.
12. Qur’an, 11:56.
13. Qur’an, 11:57.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.695

Fifteenth Window

According to the meaning of the verse:

Who has created everything in the best way,14

everything is cut out according to its innate abilities with perfect measure and order, and put together with the finest art, in the shortest way, the best form, the lightest manner, and most practicable shape. Look at the clothes of birds, for example, and the easy way they ruffle up their feathers and continuously use them. Also, things are given bodies and dressed in forms in a wise manner with no waste and nothing in vain; they testify to their number to the necessary existence of an All-Wise Maker and point to that Possessor of Absolute Power and Knowledge.

Sixteenth Window

The order and ordering in the creation and disposal of creatures, which are renewed season by season on the earth, show clearly a universal wisdom. Since an attribute cannot be without the one it qualifies, this universal wisdom necessarily shows an All-Wise One. The wonderful adornment within the veil of wisdom, self-evidently shows a perfect beneficence, and that perfect beneficence necessarily points to a gracious, All-Generous Creator. The all-encompassing benevolence and bestowal within the veil of beneficence show self-evidently an all-embracing mercy, and that all-embracing mercy shows necessarily an All-Merciful and All-Compassionate One. The sustenance and foods of all living creatures above the veil of mercy, all perfectly appropriate for their needs, show clearly a sustaining Providence and a compassionate dominicality, and that sustaining and administering necessarily point to an All-Generous Provider.

Yes, all the creatures on the face of the earth, thus raised with perfect wisdom, adorned with perfect beneficence, bestowed upon with perfect mercy, and nurtured with perfect compassion, testify to the necessary existence of an All-Wise, Munificent, Compassionate, Providing Maker, and points to His unity.

Look at and consider also the universal wisdom which is apparent on the face of the earth as a whole and is to be seen in its totality and shows clearly purpose and will; and the perfect beneficence embracing all creatures, which

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14. Qur’an, 32:7.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.696

comprises the wisdom; and the all-encompassing mercy, which comprises the beneficence and wisdom and includes all the beings of the earth; and the most generous sustaining and nurturing, which comprises the mercy and wisdom and beneficence and embraces all living creatures. Just as the seven colours form light, and the light, which illuminates the face of the earth, undoubtedly shows the sun, so too that beneficence within wisdom, and mercy within beneficence, and sustaining and nurturing within mercy show brilliantly on a large scale and at a high degree the unity and perfect dominicality of an utterly Wise, Generous, Compassionate, Providing Necessarily Existent One.

O you stupefied and heedless denier! With what can you explain this wise, generous, compassionate, providential sustaining, this strange, wonderful, miraculous state of affairs which is before your eyes? With chance and coincidence, which are aimless like you? With force, which is blind like your heart? With nature, which is deaf like your head? With causes which are impotent, lifeless, and ignorant like you? Or do you want to give the name of ‘nature,’ which is utterly impotent, ignorant, deaf, blind, contingent¬ and wretched, to the All-Glorious One, Who is utterly holy, pure, exalted, and free of all defect and absolutely Powerful, Knowing, Hearing, and Seeing, and thus perpetrate an infinite error? So with what force can you extinguish this truth brilliant as the sun? Under which veil of heedlessness can you conceal it?

Seventeenth Window

Indeed in the heavens and earth are signs for those who believe.15

If we observe the face of the earth in the summer, we see that an absolute munificence and liberality, which necessitate confusion and disarrangement, is to be seen within a total harmony and order. Look at all the plants which adorn the face of the earth!

And the utter speed in the creation of things, which necessitates imbalance and disorder, is apparent within a perfect equilibrium. Look at all the fruits which decorate the face of the earth!

And an absolute multiplicity, which necessitates unimportance, indeed, ugliness, is apparent within a perfect beauty of art. Look at all the flowers which gild the face of the earth!

And the absolute ease in the creation of things, which necessitates lack of

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15. Qur’an, 45:3.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.697

art and simplicity, is to be seen within an infinite art and skill and attention. Look carefully at all seeds, which are like the tiny containers and programmes of the members of plants and trees and the small cases containing their life-histories!

And the great distances, which necessitate difference and diversity, appear within an correspondence and conformity. Look at all the varieties of cereal grains sown in every part of the earth!

And the total intermingling, which necessitates confusion and muddle, is on the contrary to be seen within a perfect differentiation and separation. Consider the perfect differentiation of seeds when they sprout, despite being cast into the earth all mixed-up together and all resembling one another with regard to their substance, and the various substances which enter trees being separated out perfectly for the leaves, flowers, and fruits, and the foods which enter the stomach all mixed-up together being separated out perfectly according to the various members and cells. See the perfect power within the perfect wisdom!

And the great abundance and infinite profusion, which necessitate unimportance and worthlessness, are to be seen as most valuable and expensive in regard to the creatures and art on the face of the earth. Within these innumerable wonders of art, consider only the varieties of mulberry, those confections of Divine power, on the table of the All-Merciful One on the face of the earth! See them within the perfect mercy, the perfect art!

Thus, just as the day shows the light, and the light the sun, the great value together with the utter profusion; and the boundless intermingling and intermixing together with the utmost differentiation and separation within the utter profusion; and the great distance together with the utmost conformity and resemblance within the limitless differentiation and separation; and the infinite ease and facility together with the infinite care in the making within the utmost resemblance; and the absolute speed and rapidity together with the total equilibrium and balance and lack of waste within the most beautiful making; and the infinite abundance and multiplicity together with the highest degree of beauty of art within utter lack of waste; and the utmost munificence together with absolute order within the highest degree of beauty of art, all testify to the necessary existence, perfect power, beautiful dominicality, and unity and oneness of an All-Powerful One of Glory, an All-Wise One of Perfection, an All-Compassionate and Beauteous One. They demonstrate the meaning of the verse:

His are the Most Beautiful Names.16

So now, O you ignorant, heedless, obstinate wretch! With what can you

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16. Qur’an, 20:8; 59:24.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.698

interpret this mighty truth? With what can you explain this infinitely miraculous and wonderful state of affairs? To what can you attribute these truly extraordinary arts? What veil of heedlessness can you draw across this window as broad as the earth and so close it? Where is your chance and coincidence, your unconscious companion on which you rely and call ‘nature,’ your friend and support in misguidance? It is totally impossible for chance and coincidence to interfere in these matters, isn’t it? And to attribute to ‘nature’ one thousandth of them is impossible a thousand times over, isn’t it?

Or does lifeless, impotent nature have immaterial machines and printing presses within each single thing, made from each, and to the number of each?

Eighteenth Window

Do they not consider the government of the heavens and the earth?17

Consider this comparison which is explained in the Twenty-Second Word: a fine, well-ordered, well-crafted work like a palace self-evidently points to a well-ordered act. That is to say, a building indicates the act of building. And a fine, well-ordered act necessarily points to a proficient agent, a skilful master, a builder. And the titles of proficient master and builder point self-evidently to a perfect attribute, that is, to a faculty for the craft. And that perfect attribute and that perfect faculty for the craft self-evidently indicate the existence of a perfect innate ability. And a perfect innate ability indicate the existence of an exalted spirit and elevated essence.

In just the same way, the constantly renewed works filling the face of the earth, indeed the universe, show clearly acts of the utmost perfection. And these acts, which are encompassed by total order and wisdom, point clearly to an agent whose titles and Names are perfect. For it is clearly obvious that well-ordered, wise acts cannot be without the one who performs them. And titles of the utmost perfection point to the utterly perfect attributes of that agent. For according to the rules of grammar, the active particle is formed from the infinitive [that is, what is called ‘the root’ in Arabic grammar]; so too the source and roots of nouns, names and titles are attributes. And attributes at the utmost degree of perfection point indubitably to utterly perfect essential qualities. And those perfect essential qualities -which we are unable to describe- point most certainly to an essence which is at the utmost peak of perfection.

Thus, since in every part of the world all the works of art and creatures

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17. Qur’an, 7:185.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.699

are perfect works, each of them testifies to an act, and the act testifies to a Name, and the Name to an attribute, and the attribute to a quality, and the quality to the Essence. Thus, just as singly they testify to the necessary existence of the All-Glorious Maker to the number of creatures and indicate His oneness, so altogether they form an ascension in Divine knowledge as strong as the chains of beings. They form a proof of reality in continuous sequence which no doubt can pierce or penetrate.

So now, O wretched, heedless denier! With what can you smash this proof which is as powerful as the chain of the universe? With what can you close this latticed window with its innumerable spaces through which shine rays of truth to the number of these creatures? Which veil of heedlessness can you draw over it?

Nineteenth Window

According to the meaning of the verse:

The seven heavens and the earth and all within them extol His limitless glory, and there is nothing but it extols His limitless glory and praise,18

the All-Glorious Maker has attached innumerable meanings and instances of wisdom to the heavenly bodies so that it is as if, in order to express His glory and beauty, He has adorned the heavens with the words of the suns, moons and stars. To the beings in the atmosphere also He has attached instances of wisdom and meanings and aims, as if to make it speak through the words of the thunder, lightning, and drops of rain, and give instruction in the perfection of His wisdom and beauty of His mercy.

He causes the head of the earth to speak too with its meaningful words known as animals and plants and displays the perfections of His art to the universe. Then He makes the plants and trees speak, all words of that head, through the words of their leaves, flowers, and fruits and again proclaims the perfection of His art and beauty of His mercy. Their flowers and fruits, too, He makes speak, through the words of their seeds, and gives instruction to the aware and conscious in the subtleties of His art and the perfection of His dominicality. And so, out of these innumerable words of glorification, we shall lend our ears and listen to a single shoot and a single flower and their manner of expression, and learn the way in which they testify.

Yes, all plants and all trees describe their Maker with numerous tongues in such a way that they leave those who study them in amazement,

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18. Qur’an, 17:44.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.700

causing them to exclaim: “Glory be to God! How wonderfully they bear witness to Him!”

Yes, the glorification of plants at the time their flowers open, and the moment they produce new shoots, and when they offer their smiling words is as beautiful and clear as themselves. For through the beautiful mouth of each flower and the tongues of its orderly shoots and the words of its well-measured seeds, the order demonstrates wisdom and is observedly within a balance which demonstrates knowledge. And the balance is within an embroidery of art which demonstrates skill and craft. And the embroidery of art is within an adornment which demonstrates favour and munificence. And the adornment is within subtle scents which demonstrate mercy and bestowal. And these meaningful qualities one within the other form such a tongue of testimony that it both describes the All-Beauteous Maker through His Names, and portrays Him through His attributes, and expounds the manifestation of His Names, and expresses His making Himself loved and known.

If you hear such testimony from a single flower, will your doubts and suspicions and heedlessness persist when you listen to all the flowers in the dominical gardens on the face of the earth and hear with what elevated strength they proclaim the necessary existence and unity of the All-Glorious Maker? If they do persist, can it be said of you that you are a conscious human being?

Come, now look carefully at a tree! See its delicate mouth within the orderly emergence of the leaves in spring, and the blossoms opening in a measured manner, and the fruits swelling with wisdom and mercy and dancing at the blowing of the breeze in the hands of the branches like innocent children. See the just balance within the wise order expressed through the tongue of the leaves becoming green at a generous hand, through that of the flowers smiling with the joy of a favour received, and through the words of the fruits laughing through a manifestation of mercy. See the careful arts and embroideries within the balance demonstrating justice; and the mercy within the skilful embroideries and adornment; and the various sweet tastes and delightful scents, which indicate mercy and bestowal; and the seeds, each of which is a miracle of power within the agreeable tastes: all these point in most clear fashion to the necessary existence and unity of an All-Wise, Generous, Compassionate, Beneficent, Bountiful Maker, a Bestower of Beauty and Favours, to the beauty of His mercy and perfection of His dominicality. Thus, if you can listen at the same time to the tongues of disposition of all the trees on the earth, you will see and understand what exquisite jewels are to be found in the treasury of the verse:

All that is in the heavens and on the earth extols God’s limitless glory.19

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19. Qur’an, 62:1; 64:1.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.701

O you unhappy heedless one who supposes himself to be free through his ingratitude! If the All-Generous One of Beauty, Who makes Himself known to you and loved by you through these innumerable tongues had not wanted you to know Him, He would have silenced them. Since they have not been silenced, they should be heeded. You cannot be saved by closing your ears in heedlessness. For the universe does not fall silent at you stopping up your ears, the beings within it will not be silent, the witnesses to Divine unity will not hold their tongues. And for sure, they will condemn you...

Twentieth Window20

So glory be to Him in Whose hands is the dominion of all things.21 * And there is nothing but its treasuries are with Us; but We only send it down in a measure defined. * And We send forth the winds to fertilize [the plants], and We send down rain from the skies providing you with water therewith, and you are not the keepers of its stores.22

Just as perfect wisdom and beauty of art are apparent in particulars and results and in details, so do the universal elements and large creatures take up their positions in accordance with wisdom and art, despite their apparently being mixed up together by chance without order. Thus, as its other wise duties show, light shines in order to proclaim and make known the

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20. The true meaning of this Twentieth Window occurred to my heart at one time in Arabic in this way:
The sparkling of the light is through Your illuminating and making it known;
The rolling on of the ages is through Your despatching and employing them;
Glory be unto You, how mighty is Your rule!
The flowing forth of the rivers is through Your storing them up and subjugating them;
The decorations of stones is through Your designing and fashioning them;
Glory be unto You, how sublime is Your wisdom!
The smiling of the flowers is through Your adorning and beautifying them;
The embellishing of fruits is through Your bestowal and munificence;
Glory be unto You, how beautiful is Your art!
The carolling of the birds is through Your making them speak and Your avail;
The singing of the rain is through Your causing it to fall, Your bestowal;
Glory be unto You, how vast is Your Mercy!
The motion of the moons is through Your determining, Your planning,
Your rotating them, Your illuminating them;
Glory be unto You, how brilliant Your proofs, how dazzling Your sovereignty!
21. Qur’an, 36:83.
22. Qur’an, 15:21-2.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.702

Divine creatures on the face of the earth, with the permission of its Sustainer. This means that light is employed by a Wise Maker; by means of it, He makes manifest His antique works of art in the exhibitions of the market of this world.

Now consider the winds! According to the testimony of their other wise, generous benefits and duties, they are hastening to extremely numerous and important tasks. It means that their movement in waves is a being employed, a being despatched, a being utilized by an All-Wise Maker; it is a working expeditiously to speedily carry out the commands of their Sustainer.

Now consider the springs, the streams, and the rivers! Their welling-up out of the ground and out of mountains is not by chance. For it is demonstrated by the testimony of their benefits and fruits, the works of Divine mercy, and by the statement of their being stored up in mountains with the balance of wisdom in proportion to need, that they are subjugated and stored up by an All-Wise Sustainer, and that their flowing forth is their conforming exuberantly to His command.

Now consider all the varieties of stones and jewels and minerals in the earth! Their decorations and beneficial properties, the wise benefits connected to them, and their being prepared in a manner appropriate to human and animal needs and vital necessities all show that they are made in that way through the decoration, arrangement, planning, and forming of an All-Wise Maker.

Now consider the flowers and fruits! Their smiles, tastes, beauties, embroideries, and scents are all like invitations to and menus for the table of a Most Munificent Maker, an All-Compassionate Bestower of Bounties; they are given as various menus and invitations to each species of beings through their different colours, scents, and tastes.

Now consider the birds! A certain indication that their twittering and chirruping is an All-Wise Maker’s causing them to speak is the astonishing way in which they express their feelings to one another with those sounds, and state their intentions.

Now consider the clouds! A definite indication that the pattering of the rain is not a meaningless sound and that the crashing of thunder and lightning is not a futile din is that those strange beings are created in empty space. Also drops of rain like the water of life are milked from the clouds, suckling the living creatures on the earth so needy and longing for them. These facts show that the pattering and crashing are most meaningful and full of wisdom. For at the command of a Most Generous Sustainer, the rain calls out to those longing for it: “Good news! We are coming!” They express this meaning.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.703

Now look at the sky and consider carefully only the moon out of all the innumerable bodies within it! That its motion is at the command of an All-Powerful and Wise One is demonstrated by the important instances of wisdom connected to it and concerning the earth. Since we have explained these in other places in the Risale-i Nur, we cut this short here.

Thus, the universal elements we have enumerated from light to the moon open in large measure a truly extensive window. They proclaim and show the unity of a Necessarily Existent One, and the perfection of His power, and grandeur of His sovereignty.

And so O heedless one! If you are able to silence this voice, crashing like thunder and extinguish this light brilliant as the sun, forget God! Otherwise come to your senses! Say, All Glory be unto You! And,

The seven heavens and the earth and all within them extol His limitless glory!23

Twenty-First Window

And the sun runs its course to a place appointed, that is the determining of the Almighty, the All-Knowing.24

The universe’s lamp, the sun, forms a window onto the existence and unity of the universe’s Maker that is as brilliant and luminous as the sun itself. Indeed, despite their great differences with regard to size, position, and speed, the twelve planets including our globe known as the solar system are in motion and revolve with perfect order and wisdom and perfect balance without a second’s confusion, and are bound to the sun through a Divine law known as gravity, that is, they follow their leader as though in prayer. This demonstrates on a vast scale the tremendousness of Divine power and the unity of their Sustainer. Those lifeless bodies, those vast unconscious masses, are rotated and employed within the utmost order and wise balance, in various forms and over varying distances and in varying motions, proving the degree of the power and the wisdom; you compare for yourself. If chance was to interfere the tiniest amount in this vast and complex matter, it would cause an explosion so great it would scatter the universe. If it was to arrest the motion of one of them for a minute, it would cause it to leave its orbit and would open the possibility of its colliding with another planet. You

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23. Qur’an, 17:44.
24. Qur’an, 36:38.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.704

can understand how awesome would be the collision of bodies thousands of times larger than the earth.

Now we shall refer to the all-encompassing knowledge of God the wonders of the solar system, that is, the twelve planets which are the sun’s followers and fruits, and consider only our own planet, the earth, which is here before our eyes. We see that our planet is made to travel on a long journey around the sun by a dominical command as its most important duty -as is described in the Third Letter- in a way that demonstrates the grandeur of dominical majesty and the loftiness of the sovereignty of the Godhead and the perfection of His mercy and wisdom. It has been made a dominical ship filled with the wonders of Divine art, and a travelling dwelling like an exhibition, for God’s conscious servants to gaze on. And the moon has been attached to it with precise reckoning for mighty instances of wisdom, like being an hour-hand for telling the time. The moon too has been given various mansions through which to journey. Thus, these aspects of this blessed planet of ours prove the necessary existence and unity of a Possessor of Absolute Power with a testimony as powerful as the globe of the earth itself. You can make an analogy with the rest of the solar system from this.

Furthermore, the sun is made to turn on its own axis like a spinning-wheel, in order to wind into a ball the immaterial threads called gravity and tie the planets with them and set them in order. So too is it impelled together with its planets at a speed that cuts five hours’ distance a second towards, according to one estimate, the Constellation of Hercules, or towards the ‘Sun of Suns’. This most certainly occurs through the power and at the command of the All-Glorious One, the Monarch of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity. It is as though He makes the solar system perform these manoeuvres like a platoon of soldiers under orders, and so demonstrates the majesty of His dominicality.

O you astronomers! What chance can interfere in these matters? The hands of what causes can reach them? What force can draw close to this? Come on, you say! Would an All-Glorious Monarch such as this display impotence and permit others to have a role in his sovereignty? Would He give to other hands living creatures in particular, which are the fruit, result, aim, and essence of the universe? Would He permit another to interfere? Especially man, would He leave him to his own devices, the most comprehensive of those fruits, the most perfect of the results, His vicegerent on earth, and mirror-like guest? Would He refer him to nature and chance and reduce the majesty of His sovereignty to nothing; reduce to nothing His perfect wisdom?



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.705

Twenty-Second Window

Have We not made the earth a cradle, * And the mountains as pegs, * And created you as pairs?25 * So behold the signs of God’s Mercy, how He raises to life the earth after its death.26

The globe of the earth is a head with a hundred thousand mouths. In each mouth are a hundred thousand tongues. On each tongue are a hundred thousand proofs, each one of which testifies in numerous ways to the necessary existence, unity, sacred attributes, and Most Beautiful Names of an All-Glorious One.

Yes, we consider the first creation of the earth and we see that rock was created from matter in a fluid state, and that soil was created from rock. If that substance had remained fluid, it would not have been habitable, and if after becoming rock, the fluid had become hard as iron, it would not have suitable for use. So what gave it its state was surely the wisdom of an All-Wise Maker Who saw the needs of the earth’s inhabitants. Then the layer of soil was thrown over the pegs of mountains so that the earthquakes arising from internal upheavals could breathe through the mountains and they would not cause the earth to be shaken out of its motion and duties, and so that the mountains would preserve the earth from the encroachment of the sea, and all would be storehouses for the vital necessities of living beings, and would purify the air from noxious gases so allowing living beings to breathe, and so that they would accumulate and hold water reserves, and would be a source and mine for the minerals necessary for living creatures.

Thus, this situation testifies most clearly and powerfully to the necessary existence and unity of a Possessor of Absolute Power, an All-Wise and Compassionate One.

O geographers! With what can you explain this? What chance could make this dominical ship full of these wonderful creatures into an exhibition of marvels, and spin it at a speed whereby it covers a distance of twenty-four thousand years a year while not allowing a single of the objects arranged on its face to fall off?

Consider also the strange arts on the face of the earth. How wisely the elements are employed in their functions! How well they attend to the guests of the Most Merciful One on the earth through the command of that All-Wise and Powerful One, and hasten to serve them!

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25. Qur’an, 78:6-8.
26. Qur’an, 30:50.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.706

Also look at these embroidered lines within strange and wondrous arts on face of the earth, multicolored and full of strange wisdom! See how the brooks and streams, seas and rivers, mountains and hills have all been made dwellings and means of transport suitable for His various creatures and servants. See how with perfect wisdom and order He has then filled them with hundreds of thousands of varieties of plants and animals, and given them life and made them rejoice, and how regularly minute by minute He discharges the creatures and empties those dwellings with death, and then once again in orderly fashion refills them in the form of ‘resurrection after death.’ This testifies with hundreds of thousands of tongues to the necessary existence and unity of an All-Powerful One of Glory, an All-Wise One of Perfection.

In Short: The earth, the face of which is an exhibition of marvels of art, a display of wonders of creation, a place of passage for the caravans of beings, and a mosque and dwelling for the ranks of worshippers, is like the heart of all the universe; it thus displays the light of Divine unity to the same degree as the universe.

O geographer! If the head of the earth has a hundred thousand mouths and with the hundred thousand tongues in each it makes known God, and still you do not recognize Him and plunge your head in the swamp of nature, then ponder over the greatness of your fault! Know what a grievous punishment it makes you deserve! Come to your senses and extract your head from the swamp! Say, I believe in God in Whose hand is the sovereignty of all things.

Twenty-Third Window

Who creates death and life.27

Life is the most luminous, the most beautiful of the miracles of dominical power. It is the most powerful and most brilliant of the proofs of Divine unity. It is the most comprehensive and most shining of the mirrors displaying the manifestations of the Eternally Besought One. Yes, on its own, life makes known a Living and Self-Subsistent One together with all his Names and acts. For life is a light, a medicament, like a potion blended from numerous attributes. Just as the seven colours are combined in light, and various drugs are blended together in a medicament, so life is a reality made of

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27. Qur’an, 67:2.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.707

numerous attributes. Some of the attributes in its reality expand by means of the senses; they unfold and are differentiated. However the greater part make themselves perceived in the form of the emotions; they make themselves known by welling up out of life.

Furthermore, life comprises sustenance, mercy, grace, and wisdom, which are dominant in the planning and administration of the universe. It is as if life fastens them on behind it and draws them into the place it enters. For example, when life enters a body, the Name of All-Wise is also manifested; it makes its home well and orders it with wisdom. In the same way, the Name of All-Generous is manifested, and it organizes and decorates its dwelling according to its needs. At the same time, the manifestation of the Name of All-Compassionate is apparent; it bestows all sorts of bounties for the continuance and perfection of life. Again at the same time, the manifestation of the Name of Provider appears; it produces the sustenance, material and immaterial, necessary for the perpetuation and unfolding of the life, and in part stores them up within its body. That is to say, life is like a point of focus; various attributes enter one another, indeed, they become one and the same. It is as if in its entirety life is both knowledge, and at the same time power, and at the same time wisdom and mercy, and so on... Thus, with regard to this comprehensive essence, life is a mirror of the Eternally Besought One reflecting the essential dominical attributes. It is due to this mystery that the Necessarily Existent One, Who is the Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent One, creates life in great abundance and plenitude, and scatters it far and wide and broadcasts it, and gathers everything around life and makes it serve it. For life’s duty is great. Yes, it is not easy to be the mirror of the Eternally Besought One, it is not some petty duty.

Thus, the instantaneous and continuous coming into existence from nothing of these countless, numberless lives which we all the time see before our eyes, -and of spirits, which are the origins and essences of lives- their being sent, demonstrate the necessary existence, sacred attributes, and Most Beautiful Names of a Necessarily Existent and Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent One as clearly as sunbeams show the existence of the sun. Just as someone who does not recognize and accept the existence of the sun is compelled to deny the light which fills the day, so one who does not recognize the Sun of Divine Oneness, Who is Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent and the Giver of Life and Death, has to deny the existence of the living creatures which fill the earth and even the past and the future; he has to fall a hundred times lower than an animal, to fall from the level of life to become something utterly ignorant and lifeless.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.708

Twenty-Fourth Window

There is no God but He, everything will perish save His countenance, His is the command and to Him shall you return.28

Death is a proof of dominicality as much as life is a proof of it; it is a most powerful proof of Divine unity. As the verse,

Who creates death and life29

indicates, death is not non-existence, annihilation, non-being, an authorless extinction; rather, as is shown in the First Letter, it is a being discharged from service by an All-Wise Author, a change of residence, an exchange of bodies, a rest from duty, a being freed from the prison of the body; it is a wise and orderly work of wisdom. Indeed, just as the living face of the earth and the well-fashioned and living creatures upon it testify to the necessary existence and unity of an All-Wise Maker, so too with their deaths do those living beings bear witness to the eternity and unity of an Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent One. Since it is proved and elucidated in the Twenty-Second Word that death is an extremely powerful proof of Divine unity and eternity, we refer the discussion to that Word and here only explain one important point. It is as follows:

Both with their existences do living beings point to the existence of a Necessarily Existent One, and with their deaths do those living beings testify to the eternity and unity of an Ever-Living Eternal One. For example, the face of the earth, which is a single living creature, points to its Maker with its order and circumstances; so too it points to Him when it dies. That is, when winter conceals the earth’s face with its white shroud, it turns the gazes of men away from itself -their gaze moves to the past behind the corpse of that departing spring- and it shows them a far wider scene. That is to say, all the past springs of the earth, which were all miracles of power, inform them that new living springtime creatures of the earth will come, and since they all testify to the existence of those future wonders of Divine power, each a living earth, they testify brilliantly and powerfully and on a vast scale to the necessary existence, unity, everlastingness, and eternity of an All-Glorious Maker, an All-Powerful One of Perfection, an Ever-Living Eternal One; they demonstrate such brilliant proofs that whether one wants to or not they make one declare: “I believe in God, the One, the Unique!”

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28. Qur’an, 28:88.
29. Qur’an, 67:2.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.709

In Short: According to the meaning of the verse,

And gives life to the earth after its death,30

just as this living earth testifies to the Maker with the spring, so with its death it turns man’s gaze to the miracles of Divine power lined up on the two wings of time, the past and the future; it alludes to thousands of miracles of power in place of one miracle. And each of those springs testifies more certainly than this present spring, for those which have departed towards the past have gone together with their apparent causes, and after them others like them have come in their places. This means that apparent causes are nothing: only that an All-Powerful One of Glory creates the springs, and tying them to causes shows that He has sent them. As for the faces of the earth lined up in future time, they testify still more brilliantly. For they will be made anew from nothing, from non-being, and sent; they will be put on the earth, made to do their duty, and then sent away.

And so, O heedless one deviated into nature and drowning in its swamp! How can something which does not possess hands wise and powerful enough to reach all the past and all the future interfere in the life of the earth? Can your total nonentity of nature interfere in it? If you want to be saved, say: “At the very most, nature is a notebook of Divine power. And as for chance, it is a veil to hidden Divine wisdom which conceals our ignorance.” Approach the truth!

Twenty-Fifth Window

Like one struck points to the striker, and a finely fashioned work of art necessitates the artist, and an offspring requires a parent, and an under surface demands a top surface, and so on... like all these qualities known as relative matters which are not absolute and cannot exist without each other, contingency, which is apparent in particulars in the universe as well as in it as a whole, points to necessity. And the state of being acted upon which is to be seen in all of them points to an act, and the createdness apparent in all of them points to creativity, and the multiplicity and composition to be seen in all demand unity. And necessity, an act, creativity, and unity clearly and necessarily require one who is not contingent, acted upon, numerous, compounded, and created, but bears the attributes of being necessary, an agent, one, and a creator. In which case, all contingency, states of being acted upon, createdness, multiplicity and composition testify to the Necessarily Existent One, the One Who acts as He wills, the Creator of All Things, the Single One of Unity.

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30. Qur’an, 30:19.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.710

In Short: Just as necessity is apparent from contingency, the act from the state of being acted upon, and unity from multiplicity, and the existence of the former indicate the latter with certainty, in the same way, qualities like createdness and having all their needs provided for, which are to be seen in beings, clearly point to the existence of attributes like Making and Providing. In turn the existence of these attributes point necessarily and self-evidently to the existence of an All-Compassionate Maker Who is a Creator and a Provider. That is to say, with the tongues of the hundreds of attributes of this sort which they bear, every being testifies to hundreds of the Necessarily Existent One’s Most Beautiful Names. If this testimony is not admitted, it becomes necessary to deny all the attributes of this sort pertaining to beings...

Twenty-Sixth Window31

The ever-renewed instances of beauty and fairness passing over the faces of the beings in the universe show that they are shadows of the manifestations of an Eternal Beauteous One. Yes, bubbles sparkling on the surface of a river and then disappearing, and other bubbles coming after them and sparkling like those that preceded them shows that they are mirrors to the rays of a perpetual sun. In the same way, the flashes of beauty which sparkle on the travelling beings in the river of flowing time point to an Eternal Beauteous One and are signs of Him.

Also, the ardent love in the heart of the universe points to an Undying Beloved. As is indicated by the fact that something which is not found in the tree itself will not be present in authentic form in its fruit, the ardent love of God present in human kind, the responsive fruit of the tree of the universe, shows that a true love and passion is to be found in all the universe, but in other forms. In which case, this true love and passion in the heart of the universe points to a Pre-Eternal Beloved. Moreover, all the attractions and magnetic forces which appear in numerous different forms in the heart of the universe, show to aware hearts that they are thus through the attraction of a drawing truth.

Also, according to the consensus of the saints and those who uncover the mysteries of creation, who are the most sensitive and luminous of creatures, relying on their illuminations and witnessing, they have received the manifestation of a Beauteous One of Glory and through their illuminations have perceived that All-Glorious One of Beauty making Himself known to them

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31. This window addresses those lovers of God who approach Him with the heart in particular, rather than people generally.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.711

and loved by them. Their unanimously telling of this again testifies with certainty to a Necessarily Existent One, to the existence of a Beauteous One of Glory, and to His making Himself known to man.

Also, the pen of beautifying and adorning which works on beings and on the face of the universe points clearly to the beauty of the Names of the pen’s Owner. Thus, the beauty on the face of the universe, and the love in its heart, and the attraction in its breast, and the uncovering and witnessing in its eye, and the beauty and adornment on it as a whole, open up a truly subtle and luminous window. It displays to aware minds and hearts a Beauteous One of Glory, an Undying Beloved, an Eternal Worshipped One all of Whose Names are beautiful.

O heedless one who flounders amid suffocating doubts in the darkness of matter and obscurity of delusion! Come to your senses! Rise to a state worthy of humanity! Look through these four openings, see the beauty of unity, attain perfect belief, and become a true man!...

Twenty-Seventh Window

God is the Creator of all things, and of all things He is the Guardian and Disposer.32

We look at things which appear to be causes and effects in the universe and we see that the most elevated cause possesses insufficient power for the most ordinary effect. This means that causes are a veil, and something else makes the effects. To take only a small example out of innumerable creatures let us consider the faculty of memory, which is situated in man’s head in a space as tiny as a mustard seed: we see that it is like a book so comprehensive -indeed, like a library- that within it is written without confusion the entire story of a person’s life.

What cause can be shown for this miracle of power? The grey matter of the brain? The simple unconscious particles of its cells? The winds of chance and coincidence? But that miracle of art can only be the work of an All-Wise Maker Who, in order to inform man that all the actions he has performed have been recorded and will be recalled at the time of accounting, writes out a small ledger from the great book of man’s deeds to be published at the resurrection, and gives it to the hand of his mind. Thus, since they are comparable to man’s faculty of memory, make an analogy with all eggs, seeds, and grains, and then compare other effects to these small and

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32. Qur’an, 39:62.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.712

comprehensive miracles. Because whichever effect and work of art you look at, it contains such wonderful art that not only its common, simple cause, but if all causes were to gather, they would declare their impotence before it.

For example, suppose the sun, which is imagined to be a large cause, to possess will and consciousness; if it is said to it: “Are you able to make a fly?”, of course it would reply: “Through my Creator’s bounty, there is plenty of light, heat, and colours in my shop, but such things in the fly’s being as eyes, ears, and life are neither in my shop, nor are they within my power.”

Furthermore, the wonderful art and adornment in effects dismiss causes, and indicating the Necessarily Existent One, the Causer of Causes, in accordance with the verse,

And to Him goes back every affair,33

hand over matters to Him. In the same way, the results, purposes, and benefits attached to effects demonstrate self-evidently that they are the works of an All-Generous Sustainer, an All-Wise and Compassionate One, beyond the veil of causes. For unconscious causes certainly cannot think of some aim and work for it. And yet we see that each creature which comes into existence does so following not one, but many aims, benefits, and instances of wisdom. That means an All-Wise and Generous Sustainer makes those things and sends them. He makes those benefits the aim of their existence.

For example, it is going to rain. It is obvious how distant the causes that apparently result in rain are from thinking of animals and having pity and compassion on them. That means it is sent to their assistance through the wisdom of a Compassionate Creator Who creates the animals and guarantees their sustenance. Rain is even called ’mercy’. Because, since it comprises numerous works of mercy and benefits, it is as if mercy has become embodied as rain, has been formed into drops, and arrives in that way.

Furthermore, all the finely adorned plants which smile at creatures and the embellishments and displays in animals self-evidently point to the necessary existence and unity of an All-Glorious One behind the veil of the Unseen; One Who wants to make Himself known and loved through these beautifully adorned fine arts. That is to say, this adornment in things and these displays and embellishment indicate of a certainty the attributes of making known and making loved. While the attributes of making known and making loved self-evidently testify to the necessary existence and unity of an All-Powerful Maker Who is Loving and Known.

In Short: Since causes are extremely commonplace and impotent and the effects attributed to them are most valuable and full of art, this dismisses causes. The aims and benefits of effects also discharge ignorant and lifeless

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33. Qur’an, 11:123.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.713

causes, and hand them over to an All-Wise Maker. Also, the adornment and skill on the face of effects indicates a Wise Maker Who wants to make His power known to conscious beings and desires to make Himself loved.

O wretched worshipper of causes! With what can you explain these important truths? How can you deceive yourself? If you have sense, rend the veil of causes and declare: “He is One, He has no partners!” Be saved from innumerable delusions!

Twenty-Eighth Window

And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth and the variations in your tongues and in your colours; verily in that are signs for those who know.34

We look at the universe, and we see that a wisdom and ordering embrace everything from the cells of the body to the totality of the world.

We look at the cells of the body, and we see that through the command and according to the law of one who considers what is beneficial for the body and administers it, there is a significant management in those miniscule cells. One the one hand a sort of sustenance is stored up in the stomach in the form of fat and expended at the time of need, and on the other in those tiny cells there is a regulation and storing up.

We look at plants, and a most wise planning and nurturing are apparent.

We look at animals, and we see a rearing and nurturing which are generous to the utmost degree.

We look at the mighty elements of the universe, and we see a majestic government and illumination following momentous aims.

We look at the universe as a whole, and we see a perfect ordering for exalted instances of wisdom and elevated aims, as though it was a country, a city, or a palace.

As is described and proved in the First Stopping-Place of the Thirty-Second Word, from minute particles to the stars, not the tiniest place is left for associating partners with God. All beings are in effect so interrelated that one who cannot subjugate all the stars and hold them in his hand, cannot make a particle heed his claims to be its lord and sustainer. It is necessary to own all the stars in order to be the true sustainer of a single particle.

Furthermore, as is described and proved in the Second Stopping-Place of the Thirty-Second Word, one not capable of creating and arranging the

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34. Qur’an, 30:22.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.714

heavens cannot make the individual features on the human face. That is to say, one who is not Sustainer of all the heavens cannot make the distinguishing features on a single human face.

Thus, this is a window as large as the universe, which, if looked through, the following verses will also appear to the mind’s eye, written on the pages of the universe in large letters:

God is the Creator of all things, and of all things He is the Guardian and Disposer * His are the keys of the heavens and the earth.35

One who does not see these has either no mind or no heart. Or he is an animal in human form!


Twenty-Ninth Window

And there is not a thing but extols His limitless glory and praise.36

One spring I was setting out on a journey, a stranger, and deep in contemplation. While skirting a hill, a brilliant yellow buttercup struck my eye. It immediately brought to mind the same species of buttercup I had seen long before in my native land and in other countries. This meaning was imparted to my heart: whoever this flower is the seal of, the stamp of, the signature of, the impress of, all the flowers of that species throughout the earth are surely His seals, His stamps. After this notion of the seal, the following thought occurred to me: just as a seal stamped on a letter denotes the letter’s author, in the same way, this flower is a seal signifying the Most Merciful One. And this hillock which is inscribed with the impresses of these species and written with the lines of these plants so full of meaning, is the missive of the flower’s Maker. This hill too is a seal. This plateau and plain have taken on the form of a missive of the Most Merciful One.

After this thought, the following fact came to mind: like a seal, everything ascribes all things to its own Creator; it proves each is the letter of its own Scribe. Thus, all things are windows onto Divine unity in such a way that each ascribes all things to a Single One of Unity. That is to say, there is an impress so wonderful, an art so miraculous in each thing, and especially in each living being, that the one who makes it and inscribes it so meaningfully can make all things, and the one who makes all things is certainly Him. That is to say, one who cannot make all things cannot create a single thing.

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35. Qur’an, 39:62-3.
36. Qur’an, 17:44.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.715

O heedless one! Look at the face of the universe! See the pages of beings one within the other like letters of the Eternally Besought One, each letter stamped with innumerable seals of Divine unity! Who can deny the testimony of all these seals? What power can silence them? Whichever of them you listen to with the ear of the heart, you will hear it declaring: “I testify that there is no god but God!”

Thirtieth Window

If there were in the heavens and the earth other gods besides God, there surely would have been confusion in both.37 * Everything will perish save His countenance; His is the command, and to Him shall you return.38

This is the Window of the scholars of theology (kalâm), based on contingency and createdness, and their highway for proving the Necessarily Existent One. For all the details, we refer you to the scholars’ great books like Sharh al-Mawaqif and Sharh al-Maqasid, and here only demonstrate one or two rays which spill on the spirit from the effulgence of the Qur’an and this Window. It is as follows:

It is the requirement of dominion and rulership not to accept rivals; they reject partnership; they repudiate interference. It is because of this that if there are two headmen in a village, they will destroy its tranquillity and order. Or if there are two chief officials in a district, or two governors in a province, they will cause chaos. Or if there are two kings in a country, they will cause complete and stormy confusion. Since a pale shadow and petty example of dominion and rulership in impotent human beings needy for assistance does not accept the interference of rivals, opponents, or peers, then you may compare how fully a rulership which is in the form of absolute sovereignty and a dominion at the degree of dominicality will enforce that law of the rejection of interference in One Possessing Absolute Power. That is to say, the most definite and constant necessity of Godhead and dominicality are unity and singleness. The clear proof and certain testimony to this are the perfect order and beautiful harmony in the universe. There is such an order from the wing of a fly to the lamps in the heavens that the intellect prostrates before it in wonder and appreciation, declaring: “Glory be to God! What wonders God has willed! How great are God’s blessings!” Had there been an iota of space for partners to God, and had there been interference, as the verse,

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37. Qur’an, 21:22.
38. Qur’an, 28:88.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.716

If there were in the heavens and the earth other gods besides God, there would have been confusion in both39

indicates, the order would have been destroyed, the form changed, and signs of disorder would have appeared. But as the verses,

So turn your vision again: do you see any flaw? * Then turn your vision a second time; your vision will come back to you in a state dazzled and truly defeated40

state and point out, however much the human gaze tries to find faults, it can find none anywhere, and returns worn out to its dwelling, the eye, and says to the fault-finding mind who sent it: “I am worn out for nothing; there are no faults.” This shows that the order and regularity are most perfect. That is to say, the order in the universe is a definitive witness to Divine unity.

Come now, let us consider ‘createdness’. The scholars of theology stated:

“The world is subject to change. And everything which is subject to change is created. Every created thing has a creator, a maker. In which case, the universe has a pre-eternal creator.”

And we say, yes, the universe is created. For we see that every century, indeed, every year and every season one universe, one world, goes and another comes. This means that there is an All-Powerful One of Glory Who, creating the universe anew, creates a universe every year, indeed, every season, and every day, and shows it to the aware and conscious. Then He takes it back and puts another in its place. He attaches one universe after the other like the links of a chain, and hangs them on the string of time. For sure, the universes which appear from nothing and disappear before our eyes every spring, each a new universe the same as this world, are miracles of the power of the Omnipotent One Who creates them. The One Who continuously creates and changes the worlds within the world most definitely created the world too. And He made the world and the face of the earth a guest-house for those great visitors.

Now let us come to the discussion of ‘contingency’. The scholars of theology said:

“Contingency is equal in regard to both existence and non-existence.” That is, if existence and non-existence are both equally possible, one who will specify, prefer, and create is necessary. For contingent beings cannot create one another in uninterrupted and never-ending chains of cause and effect. Neither can one create another, and that the next, in the form of causation. In which case there is a Necessarily Existent One Who creates them. They rendered null and void the never-ending causal sequences with the

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39. Qur’an, 21:22.
40. Qur’an, 67:3-4.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.717

famous twelve categorical proofs called ‘the ladder argument,’ and demonstrated causality to be impossible. They cut the chains of causes and proved the existence of the Necessarily Existent One.

And we say this: it is more certain and easier to demonstrate a stamp peculiar to the Creator of All Things on everything than causes being cut at the extremities of the world with the proofs refuting causality. Through the effulgence of the Qur’an, all the Windows and all the Words are based on this principle. Nevertheless, the point of contingency possesses an infinite breadth. It demonstrates the existence of the Necessarily Existent One in innumerable respects. It is not restricted to the way of the scholars of theology - cutting the chains of causes, which in truth is a mighty and broad highway; it opens a path to knowledge of the Necessarily Existent One by ways beyond count. It is as follows:

We see that in its existence, its attributes, and its lifetime, while hesitant among innumerable possibilities, that is, among truly numerous ways and aspects, each thing follows a well-ordered way in regard to its being in innumerable respects. Its attributes also are given it in a particular way. All the attributes and states which it changes throughout its life are specified in the same fashion. This means it is impelled on a wise way amid innumerable ways through the will of one who specifies, the choice of one who chooses, and the creation of a wise creator. He clothes it with well-ordered attributes and states. Then it is taken out of isolation and made part of a compound body, and the possibilities increase, for they may be found in that body in thousands of ways. Whereas among those fruitless possibilities, it is given a particular, fruitful state, whereby important results and benefits are obtained from that body, and it is made to carry out important functions. Then the body is made a component of another body. Again the possibilities increase, for it could exist in thousands of ways. Thus, it is given one state among those thousands of ways. And through that state it is made to perform important functions; and so on. It progressively demonstrates more certainly the necessary existence of an All-Wise Planner. It makes known that it is being impelled by the command of an All-Knowing Commander. Body within body, each has a function, a well-ordered duty, in all the compounds that one within the other themselves become components of larger compounds, and has relationships particular to each, in the same way that a soldier has a function and well-ordered duty in his squad, his company, his battalion, his regiment, his division, and his army, and a relationship particular to each of these sections, one within the other. A cell from the pupil of your eye has a duty in your eye and a relationship with it, and has wise functions and duties in your head as a whole and a relationship with it. If it confuses these the tiniest jot, the health and organization of the body will be spoilt. It has particular functions with regard to each of the veins, the sensory and motor



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.718

nerves, and even the body as a whole, and wise relations with them. That specified state has been given it within thousands of possibilities through the wisdom of an All-Wise Maker.

In just the same way, each of the creatures in the universe testifies to the Necessarily Existent One through the particular being, the wise form, the beneficial attributes given it among numerous possibilities. So too when they enter compounds, those creatures proclaim their Maker with a different tongue in each compound. Step by step till the greatest compound, through their relations, functions, and duties, they testify to the necessary existence, choice, and will of their All-Wise Maker. Because the one who situates a thing in all the compounds while preserving its wise relations, must be the Creator of all the compounds. That is to say, it is as though one single thing testifies to Him with thousands of tongues. Thus, from the point of view of contingency, the testimony to the existence of the Necessarily Existent One is as numerous, not as the number of beings in the universe, but as the attributes of beings and the compounds they form.

O heedless one! One who does not hear this testimony, these voices which fill the universe, must be dead and unreasoning, is that not so? Come on, you say...



Thirty-First Window

We have created man in the best of forms.41 * And in the earth there are signs for those who are certain * And in your own selves; will you not then not see?42

This Window is the Window of man, and it is concerned with man’s self. For more elaborate discussions of it in this respect, we refer you to the detailed books of the thousands of learned and scholarly saints, and here only point out a few principles we have received from the effulgence of the Qur’an. It is like this:

As is explained in the Eleventh Word, “Man is a missive so comprehensive that through his self, Almighty God makes perceived to him all His Names.” For the details we refer you to the other Words, and here only explain three Points.

____________________

41. Qur’an, 95:4.
42. Qur’an, 51:20-1.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.719

FIRST POINT

Man is a mirror to the Divine Names in three aspects.

The First Aspect: Like the darkness of the night shows up light, so through his weakness and impotence, his poverty and need, his defects and faults, man makes known the power, strength, riches, and mercy of an All-Powerful One of Glory, and so on... he acts as a mirror to numerous Divine attributes in this way. Even, through searching for a point of support in his infinite impotence and boundless weakness in the face of his innumerable enemies, his conscience perpetually looks to the Necessarily Existent One. And since he is compelled in his utter poverty and endless need to seek for a point of assistance in the face of his innumerable aims, his conscience in that respect all the time leans on the Court of an All-Compassionate One of Riches and opens its hands in supplication to Him. That is to say, in regard to this point of support and point of assistance in the conscience, two small windows are opened onto the Court of Mercy of the All-Powerful and All-Compassionate One, which may all the time be looked through.

The Second Aspect of being mirror-like is this: through particulars like his partial knowledge, power, senses of sight and hearing, ownership and sovereignty, which are sorts of samples given to him, man acts as a mirror to the knowledge, power, sight, hearing, and sovereignty of dominicality of the Master of the Universe; he understands them and makes them known. For example, he says: “Just as I make this house and know how to make it, and I see it and own it and administer it, so the mighty palace of the universe has a Maker. Its Maker knows it, sees it, makes it, administers it.” And so on..

The Third Aspect of being mirror-like: man acts as a mirror to the Divine Names, the imprint of which are upon him. There are more than seventy Names the impresses of which are apparent in man’s comprehensive nature. These have been described to a degree at the start of the Third Stopping- Place of the Thirty-Second Word. For example, through his creation, man shows the Names of Maker and Creator; through his being ‘Most Excellent of Patterns,’ the Names of Most Merciful and All-Compassionate, and through the fine way he is nurtured and raised, the Names of All-Generous and Granter of Favours, and so on; he shows the differing impresses of different Names through all his members and faculties, all his organs and limbs, all his subtle senses and faculties, all his feelings and emotions. That is to say, just as among the Names there is a Greatest Name, so among the impresses of those Names there is a greatest impress, and that is man.

O you who considers himself to be a true man! Read yourself! Otherwise it is possible you will a man who is either animal-like or inanimate!



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.720

SECOND POINT

This points to an important mystery of Divine oneness. It is like this:

The relationship between man’s spirit and his body is such that it causes all his members and parts to assist one another. That is, man’s spirit is a commanding law from among the laws pertaining to creation -the manifestation of Divine will- which has been clothed in external existence, and is a subtle dominical faculty. Thus, in administering the parts of the body, and hearing their immaterial voices, and seeing their needs, they do not form obstacles to one another, nor do they confuse the spirit. Near and far are the same in relation to the spirit. They do not veil one another. If the spirit wishes, it can bring the majority to the assistance of one. If it wishes, it can know, perceive, and administer through each part of the body. Even, if it acquires great luminosity, it may see and hear through all the parts.

In the same way, And God’s is highest similitude,43 since the spirit, a commanding law of Almighty God, displays this ability in the body and members of man, who is the microcosm, surely, the boundless acts, the innumerable voices, the endless supplications, the uncountable matters in the universe, which is the macrocosm, will present no difficulty to the all-embracing will and absolute power of the Necessarily Existent One. They will not form obstacles to one another. They will not occupy that All-Glorious Creator, nor confuse Him. He sees them all simultaneously, and hears all the voices simultaneously. Close and distant are the same for Him. If He wishes, He sends all to the assistance of one. He can see everything and hear their voices through everything. He knows everything through everything, and so on...

THIRD POINT

Life has a most important nature and significant function, but since it has been discussed in detail in the Window on Life [the Twenty-Third Window] and in the Eighth Phrase of the Twentieth Letter, we refer you to those, and here only make the following reminder.

The impresses in life, which, intermingled, boil up in the form of emotions, point to numerous Names and essential Divine qualities. They act as mirrors reflecting the essential qualities of the Ever-Living and Self-Subsistent One in most brilliant fashion. But this is not the time to explain this mystery to those who do not recognize God or do not yet fully affirm Him, and so we here close this door...

____________________

43. Qur’an, 16:60.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.721

Thirty-Second Window

It is He Who has sent His Messenger with Guidance and the Religion of Truth to make it prevail over all religion, and God is sufficient as witness.44 * Say: O men! I am sent unto you all as the Messenger of God, to Whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth, there is no God but He; it is He Who gives life and death.45

This is the Window of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), the Sun of the skies of messengership, indeed, the Sun of Suns. Since it has been proved in the Thirty-First Word, the Treatise on the Ascension, in the Nineteenth Word, the Treatise on the prophethood of Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), and in Nineteen Signs of the Nineteenth Letter, how luminous and evident is this most brilliant, large, and light-giving window, we shall think of those two Words, and that Letter and its Nineteenth Sign, and refer the word to them. For now we just say this:

Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), the living, articulate proof of Divine unity, demonstrated and proclaimed Divine unity throughout his life with the two wings of messengership and sainthood, that is, with a strength that comprised the consensus of all the prophets who had preceded him and the unanimity of the saints and purified scholars who came after him. He opened up a window onto knowledge of God as broad and brilliant and luminous as the World of Islam. Millions of purified and veracious scholars like Imam Ghazzali, Imam-i Rabbani, Muhyiddin al-‘Arabi, and ‘Abd al-Qadir Geylani look through that Window, and show it also to others. Is there any veil that can obscure a Window such as this? Can the person who accusingly does not look through this Window be said to possess reason? Come on, you say!

____________________

44. Qur’an, 48:28.
45. Qur’an, 7:158.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.722

Thirty-Third Window

Praise be to God, Who has revealed to His servant the Book, and has allowed no crookedness therein.46 * Alif. Lam. Ra. A Book which We have revealed to you, in order that you might lead mankind out of darkness into light.47

Think of all the Windows we have mentioned as being a few drops from the ocean of the Qur’an, then you will be able to compare how many lights of Divine unity like the water of life the Qur’an contains. But even if the Qur’an, the source and origin and fountain of all those Windows, is considered in an extremely brief and simple manner, it still forms a most brilliant, luminous, comprehensive Window. To see how certain and shining and luminous this Window is, we refer you to the Treatise on the Miraculousness of the Qur’an, the Twenty-Fifth Word, and to the Eighteenth Sign of the Nineteenth Letter. And beseeching the Merciful Throne of the All-Glorious One, Who sent us the Qur’an, we say:

Oh our Sustainer! Do not take us to task if we forget or unwittingly do wrong!48 * Oh our Sustainer! Let not our hearts deviate now after You have guided us!49 * Oh our Sustainer! Accept this from us; indeed You are the All-Hearing, the All-Seeing!50 * And turn unto us; for You are the Oft-Returning, Most Compassionate.51

ba

____________________

46. Qur’an, 18:1.
47. Qur’an, 14:1.
48. Qur’an, 2:285.
49. Qur’an, 3:8.
50. Qur’an, 2:127.
51. Qur’an, 2:128.



The Words / Thirty-Third Word - p.723

Note

God willing, this Thirty-Third Letter of Thirty-Three Windows will bring to belief those without belief, strengthen the belief of those whose belief is weak, make certain the belief of those whose belief is strong but imitative, give greater breadth to the belief of those whose belief is certain, lead to progress in knowledge of God -the basis and means of all true perfection- for those whose belief has breadth, and open up more brilliant vistas for them. You cannot say, therefore, that “One window is enough for me,” because if your reason is satisfied, your heart wants its share as well, and so will your spirit want its share. Your imagination will also want its share of the light. The other Windows are also necessary, therefore, for each contains different benefits.

In the Treatise on the Ascension of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), it was primarily the believer who was addressed, while the atheist was in the position of listener. But in this treatise, it is the denier who is addressed, while it is the believer who is in the position of listener. This should be taken into consideration when looking at it.

Unfortunately, due to an important reason, this letter was written with extreme speed. It has also remained in the state of the first draft. There will certainly therefore be some irregularities and defects in the way it is expressed, which are due to me. I request of my brothers then that they look at it with tolerance, and correct it if they are able, and pray for my forgiveness.

Peace be on those who follow Guidance, and may those who follow their own desires be censured.

Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.52

O God, grant blessings and peace to the one whom You sent as a Mercy to All the Worlds, and to his Family and Companions, and grant them peace. Amen.

ba

____________________

52. Qur’an, 2:32.



The Words / p.724



Gleams

From between the Crescents of Ramadan and the Festival

Flowers from the Seeds of Reality

A short ‘Mathnawi’ and collection on the subject of belief
for the Risale-i Nur students




Bediuzzaman

S A I D N U R S I



The Words / Gleams - p.725

N O T E

The reason this work entitled Lemeât (Gleams) is not about only one or two subjects like other collections (diwan), is that it was written in order to expound to a degree Bediuzzaman Said Nursi’s previous work, Hakikat ?ekirdekleri (Seeds of Reality), and in prose form; and it does not indulge in fancies and imaginings like other collections of poetry or in unbalanced emotion. It was written as scholarly instruction for some of his students, including his nephew who was assisting him, about the truths of the Qur’an and belief entirely in accordance with logic; it was a lesson about the Qur’an and belief. As Ustad himself said, and we understood the same thing, he had no propensity for verse and poetry, and did not occupy himself with them, portraying the meaning of And We did not teach him poetry.1

Working every day for two or two and a half hours, this work was written in versified form in twenty days during Ramadan while Bediuzzaman was a member of the Darü’l-Hikmet and had numerous preoccupations. Although to write one page of verse is as difficult as writing ten of prose, and it was written in this short period of time, it was dictated ‘extempore’, without study, and was published without being changed or corrected. In our opinion it is a marvel on account of the Risale-i Nur. There has been no other versified collection of poetry that can be read in straighforward manner, as though it was prose, like this one.2 God willing, this work will at some time be a sort of Mathnawi for the Risale-i Nur students. It is also a sort of index of the Risale-i Nur, which appeared ten years subsequently and was completed in twenty-three years; a sort of forerunner of the Risale-i Nur, giving the good tidings of its major parts.

The Risale-i Nur students,

Sungur, Mehmed Feyzi, Hüsrev

____________________

1. Qur’an, 36:69.
2. NOTE ON THE TRANSLATION: While attempting to convey the meaning as faithfully as possible, the present translation has not attempted to reflect the versified aspects of the original. It is hoped that since, as was stated above, the work was written primarily to convey the author’s ideas, the readers will benefit, despite the loss of many of the subtleties. [Tr.]



The Words / Gleams - p.726

W A R N I N G

In accordance with the rule ‘A man is hostile to what he does not know,’ I have attached no importance to the rules of versification and rhyme, since I do not know them. I at no time wanted to transform reality to comply with the demands of versification, as though sacrificing lucidity to rhyme. I have clothed the most exalted truths in a rumpled dress in this unversified, unrhymed piece. Firstly, I did not know any better and was only thinking of the meaning. Secondly, I wanted to demonstrate my criticism of those poets who chip away and file the body to suit the clothes. Thirdly, a childish style such as this was preferred in order to busy the instinctual soul as well as the heart during Ramadan. But, my reader, I confess I made a mistake. Beware, do not do likewise! Don’t be distracted by the torn style and so be disrespectful towards its exalted truths!



S T A T E M E N T O F I N T E N T I O N

O Reader! I confess in advance that I have many complaints about my abilities in the art of writing and versification. Even now I cannot write my name properly. Nor have I made versification and metre a chapter of my life. But suddenly my mind was beset by a persistent desire for verse. There is an epic about the expeditions of the Companions called Qawl-i Nawala Sisaban. Its natural verse, like a hymn, was pleasing to my spirit. So I chose its form of verse, but in a way particular to myself. I wrote some poetry which resembled verse, but I took absolutely no pains with the metre. Anyone who wishes may read it easily as prose without thinking of the versification. Also it should be thought of as prose so that the meaning may be understood. In every section there is a pointer to the meaning. It should not depend on rhyme. A hat may be without a tassel, and metre may be without rhyme, and verse without rules. I think that if the words and versification attract the attention to themselves through their art, they busy the mind with themselves. It is better to be at odds and ends in order not to distract attention from the meaning.

My master in this work was the Qur’an; my book was life; the one I addressed, myself. And you, my reader, are my listener. The listener has no



The Words / Gleams - p.727

right to criticize; he takes what pleases him, and ignores what he does not like. This work of mine proceeded from the effulgence of blessed Ramadan,3 so it is my hope that it will have an effect on the hearts of my brothers in religion, and their tongues will utter a prayer of forgiveness for me, or recite a Fatiha, God willing.



The Supplicant

My demolished grave in which are piled up4

Seventy-nine dead Said’s5 with his sins and sorrows.

The eightieth is a gravestone to a grave;

Altogether they weep at Islam’s decline.6

Together with my gravestone and moaning grave of dead Said’s

I go forward to the field of tomorrow’s future.

I am certain that the skies of the future and Asia

Will together surrender to Islam’s clean, shining hand.

For it promises the prosperity of belief;

It affords peace and security to mankind.

____________________

3. In fact, the date it was written is signified by the line, Najm adabin wulida li-hilalay Ramadan; that is, A literary star born of the two crescents of Ramadan. It makes 1337. [1337 according to the Rumi calendar. According to the Hijri calendar, it was 1339. 1st Ramadan, 1339 fell on 8th May, 1921. -Tr.]
4. This line is his signature.
5. Since the body is renewed twice every year, it means that [each year] two Said’s have died. Also, this year Said is in his seventy-ninth year. It means one Said has died every year, so that he will live to this date. [Bediuzzaman died in 1379 according to the Hijri calendar, and his grave was demolished and moved in 1380. -Tr.]
6. With a premonition of the future, he perceived its present state, twenty years later.



The Words / Gleams - p.728

In the Name of God, the Merciful,

the Compassionate.

All praise be to God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds,

and peace and blessings be upon Muhammad,

the Chief of His Messengers, and on all his Family and Companions



Two Sublime Proofs of the Affirmation of Divine Unity

In its entirety the universe is a supreme proof; it declares God’s glory and unity with both its manifest and its unseen tongues. Yes, it recites the unity of the Most Merciful in resounding voice, saying:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

All its particles and cells, all its parts and members, are tongues mentioning God. Together they declare in that resounding voice:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

The tongues are various, the voices of differing pitch, but they are united on one point: the mentioning of Him, saying:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

It is the macroanthropos; it mentions God in high-sounding voice, while all its parts and particles join their tiny voices to its mighty voice. In unison they declare:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

The world recites the Qur’an’s verses within its circle for God’s remembrance, the Qur’anic dawn spills forth its light. All beings with spirits express this idea:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

The Glorious Criterion of Truth and Falsehood, articulate proof of Divine unity, all of whose verses are truthful tongues, all its rays are flashes of belief. All together they declare:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!



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If you lay your ear on the breast of that Criterion, in its profoundest depths you will hear clearly a heavenly voice which recites:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

Its voice is utterly exalted, utterly serious, truly sincere, most familiar; it is utterly convincing, decked out with proofs. Repeatedly it declares:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

All six aspects are transparent in this enlightened proof: upon it is the shining stamp of miraculousness; in this shines the light of guidance, which says:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

Yes, beneath it is interwoven logic and elegant proof; on its right is its questioning the intelligence; the mind affirms it on its every side, saying:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

On its left is its calling on the conscience to testify; before it is pure good; its aim is happiness and prosperity. Its key is every instant:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

Its support beyond it is heavenly: unadulterated Divine revelation. All these six aspects are luminous, manifested in its constellations,

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!

Can any thieving suspicion, any stealthy doubt, any renegade delusion steal in on that resplendent castle with its walls of lofty Suras, every word of which is an angel uttering:

THERE IS NO GOD BUT HE!?

The Qur’an of Mighty Stature is an ocean affirming Divine unity. To take a single drop as an example, a single Sura: Sura al-Ikhlas.7 Only a single, slight allusion out of innumerable allusions: its six phrases, three negative, three positive, refute all kinds of ascription of partners to God, and prove seven aspects of the affirmation of Divine unity:

The First Phrase: Say, He is is unassociated. That is, it is defined as absolute. But within that definition is a specification:

THERE IS NO ‘HE’ BUT HE

This is an allusion to the experiential (shuhu\d) affirmation of Divine unity. If the reality-perceiving gaze becomes immersed in the affirmation of Divine unity, it says:

THERE IS NOTHING OBSERVED SAVE HE!

The Second Phrase: God, The One is an explicit affirmation of the unity of the Godhead. Reality declares in the tongue of truth:

____________________

7. Sura 112.



The Words / Gleams - p.730

THERE IS NOTHING FIT TO BE WORSHIPPED SAVE HE!

The Third Phrase: God, the Eternally Besought One. This is the shell of two pearls of the affirmation of Divine unity. The first is the affirmation of the unity of Divine dominicality. Yes, it declares with the tongue of the order of the universe:

THERE IS NO CREATOR SAVE HE!

The second pearl is the affirmation of the unity of Divine Self-Subsistence. Yes, the universe in its entirety declares through the tongue of need for an effectual power, both for its coming into being and its continued existence:

THERE IS NO SELF-SUBSISTENT SAVE HE!

The Fourth Phrase: He begets not. This conceals the affirmation of the unity of Divine Glory, rejecting every sort of ascription of partners to God. It decisively refutes disbelief. That is, one who is subject to change or division, or who reproduces, can be neither God, nor Creator, nor Self-Subsistent.

The negation, lam (not), refutes the idea of offspring, or the blasphemy of paternity, and rejects them.

The greater part of man’s misguidance has arisen from this association of partners with God at various times, in the form of ‘the ten intellects,’ or the angels, or Jesus (PUH) or Uzayr being Divine offspring.

The Fifth Phrase: And neither is He begotten indicates the affirmation of Divine pre-eternity and unity. Thus: one whose existence is not necessary or pre-eternal cannot be God. That is, one created in time, or born of physical matter, or descended from a progenitor, cannot be the universe’s protector.

Causality, the worship of stars, idolatry, and Naturalism: these are all varieties of the association of partners with God, all stages of misguidance.

The Sixth: And there is none like unto Him. This is a comprehensive affirmation of Divine unity. That is, the negating lam infers that He has no like, partner, or peer either in His essence, or in His attributes, or in His actions.

In meaning, each of these six phrases is the result of the others, and the proof of the others; proofs in sequence, set in order in the fortress of this Sura.

That is to say, included in Sura al-Ikhlas appropriately to its stature are thirty suras in sequence and order, a source of their effulgent dawn.

None knows the Unseen save God



The Words / Gleams - p.731

Causes Are Purely Apparent

Divine grandeur and dignity require that natural causes are but a screen to the Hand of Power in the mind’s eye,

While Divine unity and glory require that natural causes draw back their hands and have no true effect in the works of power.8

* * *

Existence Is Not Restricted to the Physical World

The innumerable sorts of existence could not be restricted to this manifest world; it could not contain them;

The physical world but is a lace veil strewn over the irradiating worlds of the Unseen.

* * *

The Universality of the Pen of Power Proclaims Divine Unity

The skilful works of art found in every corner of creation clearly refute the creativity of causes;

The inscriptions of the Pen of Power in every point of creation necessarily reject the existence of intermediaries.

* * *

Nothing Can Exist Without Everything Else

Throughout the universe the mystery of co-operation is both concealed and pervasive; intimated in every part of it are mutual assistance and the reciprocal answering of needs.

Only an all-encompassing power could do this, and create the particle, situating it suitably to all its relations.

Every line and word of the book of the world is living; need drives each, acquaints one with the other.

Wherever they come from, they respond to the call for help; in the name of Divine unity, they meet with their surroundings.

Every living word has a face and eye that looks to all the sentences.

____________________

8. This means they should refrain from having any true effect, and not interfere in creation.



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The Sun’s Motion Is For Gravity,

And Gravity Makes Stable the Solar System

The sun is a fruit-bearing tree; it shakes itself so that the planets fall not, its fruits.

If it rested in silence, the attraction would cease; and they would weep through space, its ecstatics.

* * *

Small Things Are Tied To Big Things

Certainly, the one who created the mosquito created both the sun and the Milky Way;

And the one who ordered the flea’s stomach clearly set in order the solar system;

While the one who gave sight to the eye and need to the stomach, definitely painted the sky’s eye with light and spread a table of foods over the face of the earth.

* * *

There Is a Miraculousness in the Order of the Universe

See, there is a miraculousness in the writing of the universe; if to suppose the impossible all natural causes were effective agents possessing will,

In utter impotence they would prostrate before its miraculousness, conforming to it and declaring:

“Glory be to You! We have no power! It is You Who is the All-Glorious Pre-Eternal Possessor of Power, O our Sustainer!”

* * *

Everything is Equal Before Divine Power

Your creation and your resurrection are but as a single soul.9

Divine power is essential, inherent; impotence cannot impinge on it.

There can be no degrees in it, obstacles cannot intervene in it. For power, there is no difference between universal and particular;

For everything is tied to everything else; one who cannot make everything can make nothing.

____________________

9. Qur’an, 31:28.



The Words / Gleams - p.733

Without Holding the Universe in One’s Hand,

One Cannot Create a Particle

To raise up the earth together with innumerable suns and stars and string them in order like prayer-beads,

And to place them on the head and chest of endless space - no one’s hand has the strength for this.

There is nothing in the world that can claim to create anything.

* * *

Raising a Species to Life Is The Same as Raising to Life an Individual

Just as raising to life a fly drowsy with death-tainted sleep presents no difficulty to Divine power,

So will neither the death of the earth nor its resurrection present any difficulty.

Nor will raising to life all beings with spirits present much problem.

* * *

Nature Is Divine Art

Nature is not the printer, it is the press;

It is not the inscriber, but the inscription; it is not the doer, it is the recipient; It is not the source, but the pattern. It is not the orderer, it is the order;

It is not the power, but the law; it is a code of laws proceeding from the attribute of will; it has no external reality.

* * *

The Conscience Recognizes God Through Attraction

In the conscience is an attraction, a being drawn; it is permanently drawn through the attraction of an attractive force.

If the All-Beauteous One was to appear, if He was to be manifested permanently in refulgent fashion without veil, conscious beings would be overcome by ecstasy.

Man’s conscious nature testifies decisively to a Necessarily Existent, One of Glory and Beauty;

It testifies through the ecstasy, and the attraction.



The Words / Gleams - p.734

Innate Disposition Speaks the Truth

The innate disposition of things does not lie, whatever it says is the truth. The inclination to grow, the tongue of the seed, says: “I shall sprout and produce fruit..”, and what it says is proved true.

The desire for life murmurs in the depths of the egg: “With Divine permission I shall be a chick.” What it says is true.

If a handful of water intends to freeze inside an iron cannon-ball, when the temperature falls

The desire to expand within it says: “Expand! I need more space.” This command cannot be gainsaid.

Strong iron strives, but cannot prove it wrong; the water’s truthfulness and honesty split the iron.

All these inclinations are creational commands, Divine decrees. They are all natural laws, all manifestations of will.

Divine will directs all beings, in this way: all inclinations are a conforming to the dominical commands.

The manifestation in the conscience is the same; attraction and ecstasy are two polished souls,

Two burnished mirrors, within which are reflected Sempiternal Beauty, and the light of belief.

* * *

Prophethood Is Essential For Mankind

Divine power does not leave the ant without leader, or bees without a queen;

It surely would not leave mankind without prophet or code of laws. In any case, the order of the world demands this.

* * *

The Ascension Was for the Angels

What the Splitting of the Moon Was for Mankind

In truth, as a wonder, the angels saw an Ascension, a supreme sainthood within incontestable prophethood.

That shining Being mounted Buraq, became as lightning, and like the mansions of the moon observed the World of Light.

Just as for mankind scattered through this Manifest World, And the Moon split10 was an important miracle in the corporeal realm;

So for the dwellers in the Spirit World, the Ascension, that is, Glory be to Him Who conveyed,11 was the greatest miracle.

____________________

10. Qur’an, 54:1.
11. Qur’an, 17:1.



The Words / Gleams - p.735

The Proof of the Confession of Faith Is Within It

The confession of faith contains two phrases, each of which testifies to the other and is its proof and evidence.

The former is an argument from cause to effect, and the latter an argument from effect to cause.

* * *

Life Is a Manifestation of Unity

Life is a light of unity; it manifests unity in this realm of multiplicity. Yes, it manifests unity, unifying multiplicity and making it one.

Life appropriates all things to everything. While for a lifeless thing all things are non-existent.

* * *

Spirit Is a Law Clothed in External Existence

Spirit is a luminous law clothed in external existence, endowed with consciousness.

Existent spirit is the brother, the companion, of intelligent law.

Like fixed and constant natural laws, spirit comes from the world of the Divine command and attribute of will.

Power clothes it in a being decked out with senses, attaches consciousness to its head, makes a subtle inner faculty the shell for that pearl.

If the Creator’s power was to clothe the laws of species in external existence, each would become a spirit;

If it was to remove the spirit from the being and take the intelligence from its head, it would again become an undying law.

* * *

Existence Without Life Resembles Non-Existence

Both light and life disclose beings. See, if there is no light of life,

Existence is stained with non-existence; indeed, it is non-existence. Yes, a stranger, an orphan; if it is the moon, it is without life...



The Words / Gleams - p.736

Thanks to Life, the Ant Is Greater than the Earth

If you were to weigh the ant on the scales of existence, the universe emerging from it could not be contained in our globe.

In my view, the globe is living. But if according to what others suppose, you were to take the dead globe and place it in the opposite pan to the ant,

It would not weigh even half its conscious head.

* * *

Christianity Will Submit To Islam

Christianity will either erupt or be extinguished. It will surrender and submit to Islam.

It was split repeatedly until finally Protestantism appeared, but in that it did not find what would rectify it.

The veil was again rent, it fell into absolute misguidance. However, a part of it approached the affirmation of Divine unity; in that it will find salvation.

It is preparing to be split again.12 If it is not extinguished, it will be purified and will join Islam.

In this lies a mighty mystery to which the Glory of the Messengers alluded when he said: “Jesus will come and follow my Shari‘a; he will be of my community.”13

* * *

The Impossible May Appear Possible When Seen Indirectly

It is well-known, a large group of people looked for the crescent moon of the ‘Id, but no one could see anything.

Then an old man swore he had seen it. But what he had seen was a curved white eyelash.

The eyelash had been his moon. But can one compare a curved eyelash and the crescent moon? If you have understood our parable:

The motion of particles has become the eyelash over the reason; each particle, a dark eyelash blinding the materialist eye.

It cannot see the One Who fashioned all these beings, so has been engulfed in misguidance.

But can there be any comparison between that motion and the universe’s Orderer? It is a compounded impossibility that the former be the latter!

____________________

12. This alludes to the situation which resulted from the Great War. Indeed, it is an accurate prediction foretelling the Second World War.
13. Bukhari, iv, 205; Muslim, i, 136; Bijuri, Jawharat al-Tawhid, 29, 232.



The Words / Gleams - p.737

The Qur’an Requires Mirrors, Not Someone to Act on Its Behalf

Rather than proofs it is the sacredness of the source that drives the mass of the Umma and the ordinary people to conform to it and encourages them to obey it.

Ninety per cent of the Shari‘a consists of the incontestable matters and essentials of religion, each of which is a diamond pillar.

Only ten per cent are matters open to interpretation, controversial, and secondary. Ninety diamond pillars may not be put in the purse of someone with ten gold pieces, nor be made to follow him.

The source of the diamond pillars is the Qur’an and Hadith. They are their property and should always be sought from them.

Books and interpretations of the Shari‘a should be mirrors of the Qur’an, or telescopes. That Sun of Miraculous Exposition is not in need of shadows or anyone to act on its behalf!

* * *

The Falsifier of the Truth Looks On the False as True

Since by nature man is noble, he intentionally seeks the truth.

Sometimes he encounters falsehood, and supposing it to be the truth, stores it away in his heart...

Then when digging out the truth he involuntarily falls into misguidance; supposing it to be the truth, he commits it to his head.

* * *

The Mirrors of Divine Power Are Numerous

The power of the All-Glorious One has numerous mirrors. They open up windows each more transparent and subtle than the other, onto the World of Similitudes.

Various mirrors from water to air, air to ether, ether to similitudes, similitudes to spirits, spirits to time, time to imagination, and from imagination to thought, all represent the manifesting attributes. Turn you ear to the mirror of the air: a single word becomes millions!

The Pen of Power writes it out in extraordinary fashion, this mystery of reproduction...



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Representation Is of Various Sorts

The image in a mirror may be of four sorts: either the identity alone; or the identity together with its particularities; or both the identity and the rays of the thing’s nature; or both its true nature and its identity.

The images in the mirrors of luminous spirits are living and connected; expansive lights which even if not the same as the spirits, are not other than them.

If the sun had been living and its heat light, and its colours consciousness, it would have possessed the above qualities of the image in the mirror.

The key to this mystery is this: Gabriel is both at “the Lote-tree,” and in the form of Dihya, and in the Prophet’s company, and who knows in how many other places!

While God knows how many places Azra’il is present simultaneously, seizing the spirits of the dying.

At the same time, the Prophet appears to his community both in the visions of the saints, and in true dreams,

And at the resurrection of the dead he will meet with all through his intercession.

The ‘substitutes’ (abdal) of saints appear and are seen in numerous places at the same time.

* * *

All Those Qualified May Interpret the Law,

But They May Not Be Lawgivers

Everyone capable who is qualified to practise ijtihad, may interpret matters for himself which are not incontestable; and they are binding on himself, but not on others.

He cannot make laws and call on the Umma to conform to them. His ideas are from the Shari‘a, but they are not the Shari‘a. He may be a mujtahid, but he cannot be the Lawmaker.

The Shari‘a is ratified through the consensus of the majority of scholars. The first condition for calling on others to accept an idea is the surmised acceptance of the majority.14

Such a call is otherwise innovation; it gets stuck in the gullet, never again to emerge!

____________________

14. Zann-i kabûl-u cumhur: “The surmised acceptance of the majority of mujtahids and learned authorities of the correctness of a judgement, that is, the strong possibility of their accepting it.” [See, Abdullah Yegin, Yeni Lûgat, Istanbul 1975, 782]. [Tr.]



The Words / Gleams - p.739

The Light of Reason Comes From the Heart

Unenlightened illuminati should know that ideas cannot be enlightened without the light of the heart.

So long as the light of the mind and of the heart are not combined, there is darkness, producing oppression and ignorance. Darkness garbed in sham light.

If the white of the eye, which resembles daytime, is not combined with the black pupil, which resembles night, it is not an eye, it will see nothing. Unseeing sight is also worth nothing.

So, if the black depths of the heart are not present in the white of thought, the miscellaneous information in the mind will produce no knowledge or insight. There can be no reason without the heart.

* * *

Undigested Knowledge Should Not Be Imparted To Others

The truly learned guide is a sheep, not a bird; he gives his knowledge altruistically.

For the sheep gives its lamb digested, pure milk;

Whereas the bird gives its chick regurgitated vomit.

* * *

Destruction Is Easy; The Weak Person Is Destructive

The condition of the existence of the whole is the existence of all the parts; while its non-existence may be through the non-existence of one of its parts; so destruction is easy.

It is because of this that the impotent man never approaches anything positively and constructively; he always acts negatively, and is always destructive.

* * *

Force Should Always Serve Right

If the principles of wisdom, codes of government, laws of right, and rules of force do not aid and support one another,

They will be neither fruitful nor effective among the mass of the people. The marks of the Shari‘a will be neglected and remain in abeyance.

The people will not rely on them in their affairs, nor have confidence in them.



The Words / Gleams - p.740

Sometimes Opposites Comprise Their Opposites

Sometimes opposites conceal their opposites. In the language of politics, the word becomes the opposite of its meaning.

Tyranny has donned the cap of justice.15 Treachery has found a cheap dress in patriotism. Jihad and war in God’s way have been called revolt. Enslavement to the animal passions, the despotism of Satan, have been called freedom.

Things have become their opposites, forms have been transposed, names have been swapped, places have been exchanged.

* * *

Politics Based On Self-Interest Is Savagery

The politics of the present, which is founded on self-interest, is a rapacious beast.

If you show affection for a ravenous beast, you will not attract its compassion but will whet its appetite.

Then it will turn on you, and both its claws and fangs will want their rent from you.

* * *

No Limit Has Been Placed On Man’s Powers, So His Crimes Are Great

Unlike the animals, there is no natural limit on man’s powers; the good and evil that proceed from them are infinite.

If the selfishness of this power and the egotism of that one are combined with pride and obstinacy, man commits such sins16 that up to the present mankind

Has found no name for them. Just as they indicate Hell’s necessity, so their penalty can only be Hell.

And, for example, in order to justify just one of his lies, a man sincerely desires the downfall of Islam.

The present has shown that neither is Hell unnecessary, nor is Paradise won easily.

____________________

15. This speaks of the present as though seeing it.
16. This is a prediction about the future.



The Words / Gleams - p.741

Sometimes Good Leads To Evil

While in reality the qualities of the upper classes should be the cause of humility and self-effacement, regretably they have led to arrogance and oppression.

And while the helplessness of the poor and poverty of the common people should have led to the upper classes being gracious and compassionate, unfortunately it has resulted in the common people’s abasement and servitude.

If honour and good result from something, it is offered to the leaders and upper classes. But any evils and bad results are divided among the common people and ordinary soldiers.

The honour won by a victorious tribe is expressed as adulation for “Hasan Agha,” but any evils are poured on his soldiers as vituperation. A sorry evil among mankind!

* * *

The Absence of an Objective Strengthens Egotism

If people have no aim in mind, or they are overcome by forgetfulness or they feign forgetfulness, their minds turn in on themselves and revolve around them.

The ego strengthens, sometimes growing angry; it is not deflated, that it might become “we.” Those who love themselves, love no one else.

* * *

The Life of Revolution Sprang From the Death of Zakat

and the Life of Usury

The origin of all revolutions, all anarchy and corruption; the inciter and source of evils, depravity and abomination, are two phrases, or one or two words:

The first is this: “I’m full, so what is it to me if others die of hunger?” And the second: “You suffer so I can be comfortable. You work so that I can eat. The food’s for me, labouring’s for you.”

There is one single cure for the fatal poison of the first phrase, that will cut it at the root and heal it:

That is the zakat of the Shari‘a, a pillar of Islam. In the second phrase is a tree of Zaqqum; what will extirpate it is the prohibition on usury and interest.

If mankind wants what’s best and it loves life, it must impose Zakat and abolish usury and interest.



The Words / Gleams - p.742

If Mankind Wants Life, It Must Put to Death Usury of Every Sort

Relations between the upper and lower classes have been severed. From below arise cries of revolution, shouts of revenge, screams of hatred and envy.

From above descend fires of tyranny and scorn, the burden of arrogance, the inciter of oppression.

What should arise from below are love, obedience, respect, and conformity. And from above should descend compassion and bounty, kindness and education.

If mankind wants these, it should embrace zakat and drive out usury and interest.

Qur’anic justice stands at the door of the world telling usury and interest: “No entry! You have no right to enter! Return whence you came!”

Mankind did not heed this command, and received a blow;17 it should heed it now before receiving one more severe.

* * *

Mankind Smashed Slavery, So Will It Smash Wage-Earning

In a dream I said: the skirmishing between nations and states is making way for fierce battle between the social classes.

For in the era of slavery, man did not want slavery and smashed it, spilling his blood. Now he has become a wage-earner; he bears that burden and will smash it too.

Mankind has grown old, having passed through five stages: primitive nomadism, slavery, captivity;18 now the wage-earning age has begun and is passing.

* * *

An Unlawful Way Leads to the Opposite of What Was Intended

The murderer may not inherit19 is an important principle: “Someone who pursues his goal by unlawful paths, generally pays the penalty of achieving the opposite of what he intended.”

____________________

17. This is a powerful prediction. Mankind did not listen, and received an awesome blow with this Second World War.
18. See, Nursi, Mektûbat (Ottoman ed.) Istanbul n.p., n.d., 455. Here, Bediuzzaman, ascribing it to “the materialist view of history,” lists five main stages that mankind has passed through: i) primitive nomadism; ii) slavery; iii) captivity; iv) wage-earning; v) ownership and free enterprise. Concerning the third stage, he writes: “... (men) were saved from slavery, but in accordance with the tyrannical principle ‘Might is right,’ the powerful treated the weak as captives. Then as a result of numerous revolutions such as the French Revolution, that stage was transformed into the wage-earning stage...” [Tr.]
19. Tirmidhi, Fara’id, 18, No: 2109; Ibn Maja, Fara’id, 8, No: 2645; Musnad, i, 49; Darimi, Fara’id, 41.



The Words / Gleams - p.743

Love of Europe was illicit, as well as blind imitation and familiarity. Its consequences and recompense were the tyrannical animosity of the beloved, and crimes.

The loser and sinner will find neither pleasure nor salvation.

* * *

A Grain of Truth Is To Be Found in the Jabariyya and Mu‘tazila

O seeker after truth! The Shari‘a differentiates between the past and disasters, and the future and sins.

Divine Determining20 is looked to in connection with the past and calamities, and the word is the Jabariyya’s.

Man’s accountability is considered concerning the future and sins; then the word is the Mu‘tazila’s. The Mu‘tazila and Jabariyya are reconciled here.

Both these false schools contain a grain of truth; it has a particular place; it is false when made general.

* * *

Impotence and Anxiety Are For the Inadequate

If you want life, don’t cling onto impotence in things for which there are solutions;

If you want ease of mind, don’t become needlessly anxious about things for which there is no solution.

* * *

Sometimes Little Things Do Big Works

Under some conditions a small point21 raises its owner to the highest of the high...

Then there are circumstances when a slight movement sends down the doer to the lowest of the low...

* * *

For Some People A Moment Is A Year

Some people’s innate capacities blossom in a instant, while others are gradual, unfolding little by little. Human nature contains both of these.

They look to conditions, and change accordingly. Sometimes they develop slowly. Sometimes they are dark like gunpowder, then suddenly explode into luminous fire.

____________________

20. Divine Determining (Kader), sometimes known as ‘fate’, ‘destiny’, or ‘predestination’. For a detailed exposition, see, the Twenty-Sixth Word in the present volume. [Tr.]
21. That is, a diacritical point (hareke) in the Arabic or Ottoman script. [Tr.]



The Words / Gleams - p.744

Sometimes one look transforms coal into diamonds. Sometimes a touch transmutes stone into elixir.

A single glance of God’s Messenger in an instant transformed an ignorant nomad into an enlightened man of knowledge.

If you want an example, ‘Umar before Islam, and ‘Umar after Islam.

Compare the two: a seed, a tree. It instantaneously produced fruit, that look of Muhammad, the Prophetic effulgence.

Of a sudden he changed the coal-like natures of the Arabian people into diamonds, with their morals as black as gunpowder, they all became luminous lights.

* * *

Falsehoods Are Blasphemies

One grain of truth wipes out a million lies. O grain of reality razes a castle of dreams. Honesty is a grand principle, a lustrous jewel.

If for the truth to be uttered it is damaging, it resigns its place to silence; lies have no place, even if they have some use.

Everything you say should be true, all your pronouncements right, but you have no right to say all that is true.

One should be well aware of this, and take as one’s principle: ‘Take what is clear and untroubled, leave what is turbid and distressing.’

See the good side of things; you will have good thoughts. Know things to be good and think of them as good; you will find the pleasure in life.

In life, hope and thinking favourably of things are life itself. While to think the worst is despair, the destroyer of happiness and slayer of life.

* * *

A Dream Assembly

Comparisons between the Shari‘a and modern civilization,

and the genius of modern science and guidance of the Shari‘a

In a true dream on a Friday night at the beginning of the Armistice Period following the First War, I was asked by a vast assembly in a World of Similitudes:

“What will the Islamic world’s situation be following its defeat?” I replied as the deputy for the present age, and they listened to me:

This State, which through undertaking from early times the religious obligation of jihad to maintain Islam’s independence and uphold the Word of God, considered itself bound to sacrifice itself for the undivided unity of the Islamic world and saw itself as the standard-bearer of the Caliphate -



The Words / Gleams - p.745

this State’s, this Muslim nation’s, past calamity will certainly bring about Islam’s prosperity and freedom.

The disaster of the past will be made up for in the future. One who loses three and gains three hundred makes no loss. The zealous will transform its past into the future.

For wondrously this calamity has made unfold compassion, Islamic solidarity and brotherhood, the leaven of our lives, and has expedited the shaking, the destruction, of civilization.

Present-day low civilization will change form, its system will fall apart, then Islamic civilization will emerge.

Muslims will certainly be the first to enter it voluntarily. If you want a comparison, look closely at the principles of the civilization of the Shari‘a and those of present-day civilization, and consider their results:

The principles of present-day civilization are negative. Its foundations and values are five negative principles. Its machinery is based on these.

Its point of support is force instead of right, and the mark of force is aggression and hostility, and their result is treachery.

Its goal is mean self-interest instead of virtue, and the mark of self-interest is rivalry and dispute, and their result, crime.

Its law of life is conflict instead of co-operation, and the mark of conflict is this: contention and mutual repulsion, and their result, poverty.

Its principle for relations between peoples is racialism, which flourishes through harming others and is nourished through devouring others.

The mark of negative nationalism and racialism is ghastly clashes, disastrous collisions, and their result, annihilation.

The fifth is this: its alluring service is to excite lust and the appetites of the soul and facilitate the gratification of whims, and their result is vice.

The mark of lust and passion is always this: they transform man into a beast, changing his character; they deform him, perverting his humanity.

If most of these civilized people were turned inside out, you would see their characters in the form of apes and foxes, snakes, bears, and swine.

They appear to the imagination in their pelts and skins! Examples of its products are these. The Shari‘a, however, is the balance and equilibrium of the earth.

The mercy in the Shari‘a comes from the skies of the Qur’an. The principles of Qur’anic civilization are positive. Its wheel of happiness turns on five positive principles:

Its point of support is truth instead of force, and the constant mark of truth is justice and balance. Security and well-being result from these, and villainy disappears.

Its aim is virtue instead of self-interest, and the mark of virtue is love and mutual attraction. Happiness results from these, and enmity disappears.



The Words / Gleams - p.746

Its principle in life is co-operation instead of conflict and killing, and its mark is unity and solidarity, and the community is strengthened.

Its service takes the form of guidance and direction instead of lust and passion. And the mark of guidance is progress and prosperity in way befitting humanity;

The spirit is illumined and perfected in the way it requires. The way it unifies the masses repulses racialism and negative nationalism;

It establishes in place of them the bonds of religion, patriotic relations, ties of class, and the brotherhood of belief.

The mark of these bonds are sincere brotherhood, general well-being; defence in the case of external aggression. You have understood now the reason Islam was affronted, and did not embrace civilization.

Up to the present, Muslims have not entered this present civilization voluntarily, it has not suited them, moreover it has clamped on them fetters of bondage.

While it should be the cure for mankind, it has become poison. It has cast eighty per cent into penury and misery, and produced a false happiness for ten per cent.

The remaining ten per cent it has left uneasily between the two. Commercial profits have been the tyrannical minority’s. But true happiness is happiness for all;

Or at least salvation for the majority. The Qur’an, revealed as a mercy for mankind, only accepts civilization of this kind,

Happiness for all, or at least for the majority. In its present form the passions are unrestricted, caprice too is free; it is an animal freedom.

The passions dominate, caprice too is despotic; they have made unessential needs essential, and banished comfort and ease.

In primitive life, a man was in need of four things, civilization has put him in need of a hundred, and impoverished him.

Lawful labours are insufficient to meet the cost. This has driven mankind to trickery and the unlawful. It is on this point that it corrupted morality.

It bestowed wealth and glitter on society and mankind, but made the individual immoral and indigent. There are numerous witnesses to this.

This malignant civilization vomited all at once the combined savagery and crimes, all the cruelty and treachery, of former centuries, and its stomach is still queasy.22

The Islamic world’s holding back from it is both meaningful and noteworthy. It has been loath to accept it, and has acted coldly.

Yes, the distinguishing quality of the Divine light of the Illustrious Shari‘a is independence and self-sufficiency.

____________________

22. This means it will vomit in even more violent fashion. Yes, it vomited so terribly in the two World Wars that it filthied the faces of the land, sea, and air, staining them with its blood.



The Words / Gleams - p.747

It will not give up that quality, that light of guidance, so that the genius of Rome, the spirit of civilization, should dominate it.

The guidance of the former cannot combine with the philosophy of the latter, nor be grafted onto it, nor follow it.

The Shari‘a has nourished the compassion and dignity of belief in the spirit of Islam. The Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition has taken the truths of the Shari‘a in its shining hand;

Each is a Staff of Moses in that shining hand. In the future that sorcerer civilization will prostrate in wonderment before it.

Now, note this: Ancient Rome and Greece were two geniuses; twins from a single stock. One fanciful, the other materialist.

Like oil and water, they never combined. It needed time, civilization worked at it too, and so did Christianity, but none was successful at combining them.

Both preserved their independence. And now it is as though those two spirits have changed their bodies; one has become German, the other, French.

They experienced a sort of metempsychosis. O my dream-brother! This is what time has shown. Like two genius oxen those twins rejected any moves to combine them;

They still are not reconciled. Since they are twins, they are brothers and friends, companions in progress; but they fought and never made peace.

How could it be that with its different source, origin, and place of appearance, the light of the Qur’an and guidance of the Shari‘a should be reconciled with the genius of Rome, the spirit of modern civilization, and should join and combine with it?

Their origins are different: guidance descended from the heavens, genius emerged from the earth. Guidance works in the heart, and works the mind.

Genius works in the mind and confuses the heart. Guidance illumines the spirit, making it seeds sprout and flourish; dark Nature is illumined by it.

Its potentiality for perfection suddenly advances; it makes the carnal soul a docile servant; it gives aspiring man an angelic countenance.

As for genius, it looks primarily to the soul and physical being, it plunges into Nature, making the soul an arable field; the animal potentialities develop and flourish;

It subjugates the spirit, dessicating its seeds; it shows up satanic features in mankind. But guidance gives happiness to life, it spreads light in this life and the next; it exalts mankind.

Antichrist-like23 genius, blind in one eye, sees only the domain of this life; it is materialist and worships this world. It turns men into beasts.

Yes, deaf genius worships Nature, it empowers blind force. But guidance

____________________

23. There is a subtle indication in this.



The Words / Gleams - p.748

recognizes conscious art and looks to purposeful power. Genius draws a curtain of ingratitude over the earth; guidance scatters the light of thanks.

It is because of this that genius is deaf and blind, while guidance is hearing and seeing. In the view of genius, the bounties of the earth are ownerless booty;

It provokes the desire to seize and steal them thanklessly, to savagely snap them off from Nature.

In the view of guidance, the bounties scattered over the breast of the earth and face of the universe are the fruits of mercy; it sees a gracious hand beneath every bounty, and has it kissed in gratitude.

I cannot deny that there are numerous virtues in civilization, but they are neither the property of Christianity, nor the invention of Europe.

Nor are they the product of this century; they are common property, produced by the conjunction of minds and ideas, from the laws of the revealed religions, out of innate need,

And particularly from the Islamic revolution brought about by the Shari‘a of Muhammad. No one can claim ownership of them.

The leader of the Dream Assembly asked another question:

“Man of the present century! Calamities are always the result of treachery and the cause of reward. Divine Determining dealt a blow and issued its decree.

“With which of your actions did you issue the fatwa to both Divine Decree and Determining so that they decreed this calamity and gave you a beating?”

I replied: The error of the majority is always the cause of general disasters. Mankind’s misguided ideas, Nimrod-like obduracy, Pharaoh-like pride,

Swelled and swelled on the earth till it reached the skies. It upset too the sensitive mystery of creation.

It caused to descend from the heavens the plague and storm of the last war’s quakes; it caused a heavenly blow to be visited on the infidel. That is, the calamity was the calamity of all mankind.

The joint cause, inclusive of all mankind, were the misguided ideas arising from Materialism. Bestial freedom, the despotism of the appetites.

The reason for our share was our neglect and giving up of the pillars of Islam. For the Exalted Creator wanted one hour out of the twenty-four.

He demanded of us, and for us, only one hour for the five daily prayers, and commanded this. But out of laziness we gave them up, neglected them due to heedlessness.

So we received the following punishment: He made us perform prayers of a sort these last five years by constant twenty-four hour drill and hardship, being driven on and made to strive.

He also wanted of us one month’s fasting a year, but we pitied ourselves, so in atonement He compelled us to fast for five years.





The Words / Gleams - p.749

As Zakat, He wanted either a fortieth or a tenth of the property He had given us, but out of stinginess we did wrong: we mixed the illicit with our property, and did not give it voluntarily.

So He had our accumulated zakat taken from us, and saved us from what was unlawful. The deed fitted the punishment. The punishment fitted the deed.

Righteous acts are of two sorts: one positive and voluntary, the other negative and enforced. All pains and calamities are good works; but negative and enforced. The Hadith offered consolation.24

This sinful nation took its ablutions with its blood; it repented actively. As an immediate reward, four million, a fifth of this nation, were raised to the degree of sainthood. It gave them the ranks of martyrdom and ghazis; it obliterated the sin.

The lofty dream assembly appreciated these words.

I awoke suddenly; rather, with awakening I went to sleep. I think the waking state is a dream and the dream state a sort of wakefulness.

There was this age’s deputy, and here is Said-i Nursi!

* * *

The Ignorant Suppose Metaphors To Be Fact

If figures of speech fall from the hand of knowledge to that of ignorance, they are transformed into fact, opening the door to superstition.

When small I saw an eclipse of the moon. I asked my mother, and she said: “A snake has swallowed it.” I asked her: “Why is it visible, then?” She said: “The snakes there are semi-transparent.” She thought a metaphor was reality. At a Divine command, on the earth interposing between “the head” and “the tail”, which are the points of intersection of the moon and circuit of the sun, the moon is eclipsed. The two hypothetical arcs were called “Tinnin”, it was named with a fanciful simile. Tinnin means the Serpent.25

* * *

Exaggeration Is Implied Disparagement

Whatever you describe, describe it as it is. In my opinion, exaggerated praise is implied disparagement.

Favour greater than Divine favour is not favour...

____________________

24. See, Bayhaqi, Dala’il al-Nubuwwa, vi, 383; Suyuti, al-Khasa’is al-Kubra, ii, 477-8; Musnad, iv, 195-6. See also, Bukhari, i, 167.
25. For a fuller explanation, see, Nursi, The Flashes Collection, Istanbul, Sozler Publications 1995, 128.



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Fame Is Tyrannical

Fame is a despot; it ascribes to its owner the property of others.

As in the famous Nasreddin Hoja joke, his zakat, that is, one tenth, is his true property...

The imaginary renown of Rustam-i Sistani plundered an age of the glories of Iran.

That famous fancy swelled with plunder and pillage, it was mixed with superstition, and threw down mankind.

* * *

Those Who Suppose Religion and Life Can Be Separated

Are the Cause of Disaster

The mistake of the Young Turks: they did not know our religion is the basis of life; they thought nation and Islam were different.

They imagined civilization would endure and always be dominant, and saw happiness and prosperity to lie within it.

Now time has shown civilization’s system to be corrupt and harmful;26 incontrovertible experience has taught us this.

Religion is the very life of life, its light and its basis. This nation will be revived only through the revival of religion. Islam understood this.

Contrary to other religions, our nation has progressed to the extent we adhered to our religion. And it has declined to the degree we neglected it.

This is an historical fact which occurred due to our feigned forgetfulness.

* * *

Death Is Not Terrifying As Is Imagined

Misguidance is misleading, it makes death terrifying. Death is a change of clothes, or a change of abode. It removes man from dungeon to garden.

Whoever wants life should want martyrdom. The Qur’an describes the martyr’s life. Martyrs, who do not experience the pangs of death, all know themselves to be alive and see themselves thus.

But they find their new lives to be purer. They do not suppose they have died. Note carefully what their relation to the dead is, it is like this:

In a dream two men are walking in a beautiful garden holding every sort of delight. One knows it is only a dream and receives no pleasure.

It does not delight him; its fills him with regret. The other one thinks it is the waking world, and receives true pleasure; it is real to him.

____________________

26. This is an accurate prediction; it looks to irreligious, tyrannical civilization, in the throes of death.



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The dream is the shadow of the similitude, and the similitude is the shadow of the Intermediate Realm. It is due to this that their principles resemble each other.

* * *

Politics Are a Satan in the World of Ideas;

One Should Seek Refuge With God From Them

The politics of civilization sacrifice the minority for the comfort of the majority. Indeed, the despotic minority sacrifices the majority of people for themselves.

Qur’anic justice would not take the life of a single innocent, spill their blood, or sacrifice him even for all mankind, let alone the majority.

The verse, If anyone slew a person -unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land- it would be as if he slew the whole people27 lays two mighty mysteries before the eyes.

One is pure justice. This sublime principle deems equal the individual and the community, the person and mankind; Divine justice sees no difference between them; this is a constant Sunna.

An individual may sacrifice his rights himself, but they cannot be sacrificed otherwise, even for all mankind.

The cancelling of his rights, or the spilling of his blood, or the smearing of his name is equal to the cancelling of the rights of all humanity, or the besmirching of it, and is its equivalent.

The second mystery is this: if a selfish man murders an innocent out of greed or passion, he will lay waste the whole world if he can, should it be an obstacle to his desires, and wipe out all humanity.

* * *

Weakness Emboldens the Enemy;

God May Try His Servants, but They May Not Try Him

O fearful, weak one! Your fear and weakness are in vain and cause you harm; they embolden outside influences and attract them.

O you who suffers from doubts and delusions! Definite benefits may not be sacrificed for imaginary harms. What you need is action; the result is with God.

One may not interfere in God’s concerns. He draws His servant to the arena of trial and says: “If you do that, I’ll do this.”

____________________

27. Qur’an, 5:32.



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But the servant can never try God. If he says: “God should help, so I’ll do this,” he is overstepping his mark.

Satan said to Jesus: “Since it is He Who does everything; His determining does not change. Throw yourself down off the mountain and let’s see what happens to you.”

Jesus replied: “Confound you! God’s servants cannot put Him to the test!”

* * *

Don’t Overdo It In Things You Like

The cure for one ailment merely exacerbates another; the antidote becomes poison. If the cure is taken to excess, it is the cause of ill, and is fatal.

* * *

The Eye of Obstinacy Supposes an Angel To Be Satan

Obstinacy is this: if Satan helps someone, he calls him “an angel” and calls down blessings on him.

But if he sees an angel on the opposing side, he supposes it to be Satan in a different guise, and calls down curses on the angel.

* * *

After Finding What’s Right,

Don’t Cause Dispute for the Sake of Something Better

O seeker after truth! If there is consensus concerning what is right and dispute concerning what is better, sometimes what is right is better than what is better. And sometimes what is good is better than what is better.

* * *

Islam Is Peace and Reconciliation,

It Wants No Dispute or Hostility Within

O World of Islam! Your life lies in unity, and if you want unity, your guiding principle should be this:

It should be “This is true,” rather than “This alone is true.” And “This is the best,” rather than “This is the only good way.”

All Muslims should say about his own school and way: “This is true, I don’t interfere with others. If others are good, mine is the best.”

They should not say: “This is the only true way, the others are all false. Only



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mine is good, the others are all wrong and unpleasant.”

The exclusivist mentality arises from love of self. It later becomes a sickness and leads to dispute.

The multiplication of ills and cures is right, and right too multiplies. The increase in the varieties of needs and foods is right, and right becomes various.

The increase in capacities and education is right, and right too multiplies. A single substance is both poison and the antidote.

The truth is not fixed in secondary matters; it is relative and compound in accordance with different temperaments.28

The temperaments of the authoritative scholars imparted a share to it, and it was realized and compounded accordingly; the founders of the schools made judgements in absolute, unspecific terms.

They left it to the various temperaments and their leanings to specify the limits of their schools; but bigoted attachment to them was the cause of generalization.

The partisanship arising from this led to dispute. The profound rifts between the social classes before Islam,

And their extraordinary distance from each other, demanded a great many prophets at any one time, and a variety of sacred laws, and numerous schools.

Islam caused a revolution among mankind, and men drew closer to each other. It reduced to one the sacred law, and there was one Prophet.

But the levels of men were not the same, so the schools of law multiplied. When a single training and instruction is a sufficient, the schools will unite.

* * *

There is Great Wisdom in the Creation and Combining of Opposites:

The Sun and a Minute Particle Are Equal in the Hand of Power

O Brother with an alert heart! Power is manifested in the combining of opposites. Do you know why there is pain in pleasure, evil within good, ugliness within beauty, harm within benefit, revenge within beneficence, fire within light?

It is so that the relative truths may be established; that there may be many things within one thing, and that they may find existence and become apparent.

Swift motion makes a point into a line. Its being spun at speed makes a flash of light, a luminous circle.

____________________

28. For further explanation, see, the Conclusion of the Twenty-Seventh Word, pp. 500-2 of the present work. [Tr.]



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The function of relative truths is that seeds should sprout in this world. They form the mud of the universe, the links in its order, the connections betweens its inscriptions.

In the hereafter these relative matters will be truths. The degrees of heat are caused by the intervention of cold.

The degrees of beauty come about through the intervention of ugliness. The cause becomes the reason.

Light is indebted to darkness, pleasure is indebted to pain; there is no health without illness.

If there was no Paradise, perhaps Hell would not be torment. It cannot be without extreme cold. If there was no extreme cold, it would not burn.

The Undying Creator demonstrated His wisdom in the creation of opposites. His majesty became apparent.

That Eternal All-Powerful One displayed His power in the combining of opposites. His tremendousness was manifested.

Since Divine power is a necessary inherent quality, and necessarily essential to that Pre-Eternal One, it can comprise no opposites, impotence cannot intervene in it, there can be no degrees in it, nothing can be difficult for it.

The sun became a niche for the light of His power. The surface of the sea became a mirror to the light of the niche, the dewdrops’ eyes all became mirrors.

The sun the broad surface of the sea reflects is reflected also by the droplets in the creases of its frowns; the tiny eye of the dewdrop also shines like a star.

They hold the same identity: in the view of the sun, the dewdrop and the sea are the same, its power makes them equal; the pupil of the dewdrop’s eye is a tiny sun.

The magnificent sun also is a tiny dewdrop; the pupil of its eye is a light received from the Sun of Power; it is the moon to that power.

The heavens are an ocean; at the breath of the Most Merciful, droplets undulate in the creases of its frowns, which are the stars and suns.

Power was manifested, it scattered coruscating gleams on those droplets. Every sun a droplet, every star a dewdrop, each the likeness of a flash.

The drop-like sun is a tiny reflection of that manifestation’s effulgence. It makes its burnished soul pearl-like to that glass gleam. The dewdrop stars shine

In its delicate eye, it gives a place to the flash, the flash becomes a lamp, its eye becomes glass, its lamp is lit up.



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If You Have Any Qualities, They Should Remain in the

Dust of Concealment, So They May Flourish

O man of famous quality! Don’t be oppressive by displaying your qualities; if they remain in concealment, you’ll be a source of bounty and blessing for your brothers.

If you appear beneath all your brothers, and there is the possibility of its being you, it will attract respect to each of them.

But if you emerge from concealment and display yourself, although when beneath them you were revered, above, you become a tyrant. There you were a sun, here you cast shadows.

You belittle your brothers, and lose them their respect. That means, to display one’s qualities and one’s individuality is doubly tyrannical. If it is thus, that is how you will appear.

So what place remains for lying artificiality and hypocrisy, the ‘personality,’ and fame? This is a profound mystery, springing from Divine wisdom and perfect order.

An exceptional individual draws the veil of concealment over himself within his species or group, thus affording it value in the view of others, and making it appreciated.

Examples for you: saints among mankind, the appointed hour within a lifetime are unknown, indefinite. Concealed within Friday is the hour prayers are accepted. Hidden in Ramadan is the Night of Power. Concealed in the Most Beautiful Names is the elixir of the Greatest Name.

It is their indefiniteness that makes these examples awesome, this mystery, beautiful; they are proved through concealment.

For example, there is a balance in the appointed hour being vague; it holds true, whatever your circumstances.

The two pans of fear and hope, working for the next world or for this; imagined permanent existence imparts a pleasure to life.

Twenty years of uncertain life are preferable to a thousand-year lifetime the end of which is specified. For after half of it had passed, every passing hour you would be taking another step towards the gallows.

Your suffering would increase proportionately; it would afford you no solace; you would find no peace.

* * *

It Is Mistaken To Feel Mercy and Anger Greater Than God’s

Greater mercy than God’s may not be bestowed. Greater wrath than God’s may not be visited on something.

So leave matters to the All-Just and Compassionate One, for to be more compassionate causes you pain, and to be more wrathful is wrongful.



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Wastefulness Leads To Squandering, Squandering Leads To Poverty

My wasteful brother! Two morsels which are the same as regards nutrition, one costing one kurush, the other, costing ten,

Are equal both before they enter the mouth, and after they have passed down the gullet. Only for a few seconds in the mouth do they give pleasure to the heedless.

They have different tastes, which always deceives it, that sense of taste; it is a doorkeeper and inspector for the body and stomach.

The taste’s effect is negative, not positive; its function, only to tip the doorkeeper and gratify it; to give pleasure to that senseless one!

To confuse it in its true duty, to give it eleven kurush rather than one, is a satanic habit.

The most prodigal of wastefulness, the worst form of extravagance, is one sort, one way: so don’t seek it.

The Sense of Taste Is a Telegraphist; Don’t Seduce It By Gratifying It29

Divine dominicality, wisdom, and grace, made two centres with the mouth and nose, placing within them a frontier post, and correspondents.

In the microcosm, God made the blood-vessels telephones, and the nerves, telegraphs.

That True Provider made the sense of smell a telephone, and posted the sense of taste to the telegraph. Out of His mercy, he put an instruction sheet on the food: flavour, and colour, and smell.

Thus, these three attributes are proclamations, invitations, permits, and heralds on the part of the food; with them it invites the needy and its customers.

He gave taste, sight, and smell to the feeding animals as tools. He adorned the foods with various decorations, then soothed their flighty breasts, and attracted the indifferent by exciting them.

When the food enters the mouth, the sense of taste immediately sends telegraphs to every part of the body. The sense of smell telephones, giving information about the types of foods.

These senses act according to all the different needs of the different animals receiving food; the necessary preparations are made, or it receives a refusal.

Then they throw it out, and spit it in your face! Since they have been charged with this by wisdom, don’t seduce them with pleasure. Don’t deceive them by gratifying them.

____________________

29. This piece forms the seed of Iktisad Risalesi [The Nineteenth Flash]. Indeed, he expressed in ten lines the ten-page Treatise On Frugality before it came into existence.



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For then they will forget what true appetite is; false appetite will be born; it will strike your head, bringing illness and disease as penalties.

True pleasure springs from true appetite, true appetite from true need; this pleasure is ample for king and beggar alike.

Moreover, a dinar and a dirhem are equal; the pleasure jumbles them together, soothing the pain.

* * *

Like Intention, Point of View May Transform

Habitual Actions Into Worship

Note this point! Just as through intention, permissible habitual actions may become worship, so according to the point of view, the physical sciences may become knowledge of God.

If you study and reflect, that is, if you look at things as signifying one other than themselves,30 and in respect to art: “How beautifully the Maker made these, how well He did it!” instead of: “How beautiful it is;”

If you look from this point of view at the universe, the inscriptions of the Pre-Eternal Inscriber, His order and wisdom, and flashes of purpose and art will illuminate your doubts;

The sciences of the universe will become knowledge of God. But if you look at things as signifying themselves from the point of view of Nature, saying: “The thing looks to itself alone,”

If you look thus at the universe, whatever the extent of your scientific knowledge, it will be ignorance. Wretched truths become worthless in worthless hands. The witnesses to this are many.

* * *

At This Time the Shari‘a Does Not Permit Us Affluence

When tasty foods call one, one should say: “It’s as though I ate it.” For someone who made this his rule, did not eat a mosque!31

Formerly, most Muslims did not go hungry; they enjoyed comfortable living to an extent.

Now, however, most have declined into penury, and the Shari‘a no longer permits the taking of pleasure.

____________________

30. ‘Mânâ-yi Harfî:’ the Qur’anic view that things bear the meaning of one other than themselves, that is, point to their Maker, and His Names and attributes, like a letter or word signifies its writer, as opposed to ‘Mânâ-yi Ismî,’ the view that things signify themselves alone. [Tr.]
31. There is a mosque in Istanbul called ‘Sanki Yedim’ (It is as though I ate it). The man who said “It is as though I ate it” saved himself from his appetites and built the mosque with the proceeds.



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The subsistence of the mass of Muslims, and most innocents, is simple. It is a thousand times preferable to follow them in their simple sustenance

Than to resemble the extravagant minority, or the few profligates, in their luxurious living.

* * *

Sometimes the Absence of Bounty Is Bounty

Memory is a bounty, but for an immoral person at times of misfortune, forgetfulness is preferable.

Forgetfulness is also a bounty; it allows one to suffer the pains of only one day; it makes one forget the accumulated sorrows.

* * *

All Misfortunes Have Sides Which Are Bounty

O you smitten by misfortune! Within the misfortune is a bounty. Look closely and you will see it!

Just as in everything is a degree of heat, so in every calamity a degree of bounty is to be found. Think of a worse calamity, then see the extent of the bounty in the lesser one,

And offer abundant thanks to God. For if you’re scared by exaggerating it, and whine and complain, it will grow.

And as it grows it will worsen. If you are anxious, it will double. Its image in your heart will turn into fact.

It will learn from reality, then turn on you and start striking your heart...

* * *

Don’t Appear Important, Or You’ll Be Put Down

O you with an inflated ego and conceited head! You should understand this rule: in the social building of the human community, everyone has a window, called a rank, in which to see and be seen.

If the window is larger than a person’s stature and worth, he will stretch and lengthen through pride. But if the window is smaller than his stature and aspiration, he will bend and bow down out of modesty.

In the mature and perfected, the measure of greatness is smallness. While in the faulty, the measure of littleness is bigness.



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If Qualities Change Places, Their Natures Change

One quality... different places, one face. It is sometimes a demon, sometimes an angel, sometimes upright, sometimes wicked; some examples are these:

If an attribute which for the weak in the face of the strong is considered to be dignity, is found in the strong, it is pride and arrogance.

If an attribute which for the strong before the weak is considered to be humility, is found in the weak, it is abasement and hypocrisy.

In his office, a person of authority’s gravity is dignity, and his humility abasement. But in his house, his humility is modesty, and his gravity, arrogance.

Tolerance in someone speaking on his own account is patriotism, and self-sacrifice, a quality, a good deed.

But if the person is speaking on account of others, his tolerance is treachery, and self-sacrifice, an attribute, a wicked act.

In setting up the preliminaries reliance on God is laziness. But handing over to Him in the reaping the consequences is the reliance taught by the Shari‘a.

Contentment with one’s lot in respect of the fruits of one’s labour is praiseworthy contentment, and strengthens the desire to work.

But sufficing with existent goods is not desirable contentment, but lack of aspiration. There are numerous other examples.

The Qur’an mentions absolute good works and taqwa. By its indefiniteness, it hints at the existence of degrees; its conciseness is a detailed explanation; its silence, an expansive word.

* * *

Both ‘Truth Will Prevail,’ and Its Consequences, Are Intended

Friend! One time, a questioner asked: “Since ‘truth will prevail’ is the truth, why have the infidel prevailed over the Muslim, and force over right?”

I replied: Consider these four points and your difficulty will be resolved. The first point is this. It is not necessary that every means of every truth is true.

Similarly, not every means of every falsehood has to be false. This result emerges: a means which is false prevails over a true means. In which case, a truth is overcome by a falsehood. It occurs temporarily and indirectly; not essentially or permanently.

However, finally, it is always still the truth’s. Force possesses a truth, there is an underlying meaning in its creation. The second point is this:

While it is obligatory that all attributes of all Muslims are Muslim, outwardly it is not always thus.



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Similarly, not all the attributes of all infidels have to be infidel and to arise from their unbelief.

So too, all the attributes of all sinners do not always have to sinful and have arisen from their sinfulness.

This means an infidel’s Muslim attribute prevails over a Muslim’s unlawful attribute. Indirectly, the infidel prevails over him.

Furthermore, in this world the right of life is general and all-embracing. It is a universal mercy that has a meaningful manifestation, a wise inner purpose, which unbelief does not impede.

The third point is this: two of the All-Glorious One’s attributes of perfection, two ‘legislative’ manifestations: the determining through His choice, which proceeds from the attribute of Will, and that is the Shari‘a of Creation;

And the well-known Shari‘a, which proceeds from the attribute of Speech.

Just as there is compliance and rebellion in the face of the commands of the latter, so there is compliance and rebellion before the creational commands.

The reward and punishment for the former is received mostly in the hereafter, while the penalties and rewards of the latter are suffered mostly in the realm of this world.

For example, the reward of patience is victory. The penalty for laziness is poverty; and the reward of toil is wealth.

The reward of constancy is victory. The penalty of poison is illness, the reward of its antidote is health.

Sometimes the injunctions of both Shari‘as are included in a single thing; it has faces looking to both.

That means obedience to the creational command is a truth. Obedience prevails; rebellion in the face of the injunction is a false stand.

If a truth has been the means to a falsehood, when it prevails, it will have been the means to a falsehood. Indirectly, a truth is defeated by a falsehood, but not essentially.

This means that “the truth prevails” means “essentially.” Also, the end is intended, and the restriction of viewpoint is meant.

The fourth point is this: a truth remained unexpressed, or powerless, or adulterated, or convoluted. It needed to be expressed and opened up, or given fresh strength.

In order to improve and gild it, falsehood had to be temporarily imposed on it, in order to to assay that ingot of truth.

Then it could emerge pure and unadulterated from its origins. Even if falsehood prevails in this world, it cannot win the war. “The future belongs to the God-conscious”32 will strike them a blow!

So falsehood is defeated. The mystery of “truth prevails” inflicts punishment on it; see, truth prevails!

____________________

32. Qur’an, 7:128.



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A Few Social Principles

If you want some principles for society: unequal justice is not justice.

Resemblance is an important reason for contrariety. Mutual proportion is the basis of solidarity.

Small-mindedness is the source of pride. Pusillanimity is the mine of arrogance. Impotence is the source of opposition.

Curiosity is the teacher of knowledge. Need is the master of progress. Distress is the teacher of dissipation.

Thus, the source of dissipation is distress. As for distress, its mine is despair and pessimism.

Misguidance springs from ideas, darkness stems from the heart, wastefulness pertains to the body.

* * *

Women Left Their Homes and Led Mankind Astray

When men become amiable through following their fancies, women become masculine by being impudent.33

Low civilization took womankind out of their homes, and turning them into common goods, destroyed the respect in which they were held.

The Shari‘a of Islam mercifully invites them back to their homes. It is there they are respected, in their homes they are comfortable, in family life.

Cleanliness is their adornment; their good character is their splendour; their gracious beauty is their chastity; their compassion, their perfection; their children, their relaxation.

With so many tools of corruption, one has to be as strong and unyielding as steel to withstand them.

A beautiful woman entering a gathering of brothers, arouses veins of hypocrisy, rivalry, envy, and selfishness. Slumbering desires suddenly awaken.

Increased freedom for women led to a sudden unfolding of bad morality in mankind. The represented forms of little smiling corpses have played a large role in making the evil-polluted perverse spirit of modern man what it is.34

The prohibited statue is either petrified tyranny, or embodied lust, or personified hypocrisy. Or it is a talisman, attracting those evil spirits.

____________________

33. This is the basis of Tesettür Risalesi [The Twenty-Fourth Flash, Treatise On Islamic Dress for Women]. Twenty years later, a court of law forever shamed itself and its judges by making it the pretext for the author’s conviction.
34. Just as to look lustfully at a dead woman shows an awesomely degenerate soul, so to look at a beautiful picture of an unfortunate female corpse needy for compassion, extinguishes the elevated sentiments of the spirit.



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The Scope of Divine Power Rejects Intermediaries and Helpers

From the point of view of the comprehensive effectiveness of the disposals of the All-Glorious and Powerful One’s power, our sun is like a particle.

There are vast disposals of power in a single realm of beings. Take the gravity between two particles,

Then go and put it beside the gravity between the Sun of Suns and the Milky Way.

Bring an angel whose load is a snowflake to the radiant angel who holds the sun; put a needle-fish beside a whale;

Conceive at once of the vast manifestation of the Pre-Eternal All-Powerful One of Glory, His perfect art in things from the smallest to the greatest;

Customary matters like gravity and laws, fluid intermediaries, are only names for the manifestation of His power and the disposal of His wisdom;

They signify Him alone; they can have no other meaning; think of them together, you will necessarily understand the true cause.

In the view of that power, apparent intermediaries, helpers, and partners are all false, all imaginary and impossible.

Life is the perfection of existence, its rank is high and important. Consequently, I say: why should the globe, our world, not be obedient and subjugated to it, like an animal?

Living birds of the Pre-Eternal Sovereign of this sort are numerous, spread through the arena of space, majestic, beautiful.

Dispersed through the garden of creation, they spin; their refrains, their motion, are words of glorification, modes of worship, of the Pre-Eternal Undying One, the Eternal All-Wise One.

The globe resembles a living being, it displays signs of life. If to suppose the impossible it was reduced to the size of an egg,

There is a strong possibility it would become a tiny animal. If a micro-organism was expanded to the size of the earth, most probably it would be just like it.

If the world was reduced to the size of a man, and the stars transformed into particles, it is possible it would become a conscious animal, as well as intelligent.

This means the world with all its parts is a glorifying servant of the Undying Creator, the Eternal All-Powerful One, obedient, subjugated.

To be large quantitatively does not always infer being great qualitatively, for a clock the size of a mustard-seed is more eloquent than a clock the size of Aya Sophia.

A fly’s creation is more wondrous than that of an elephant, that undiscriminating creature.

If a Qur’an was to be written by the Pen of Power in atoms of ether on the



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minutest particle, the art being in inverse proportion to the size of the page,

Its eloquence would be equal to a Qur’an written in stars on the face of the heavens. The Pre-Eternal Inscriber’s art is everywhere of the utmost beauty and perfection.

Everywhere it is thus. The pen proclaims Divine unity since it always works with utter perfection. Study carefully this most meaningful piece!

* * *

The Angels Are a Community, Charged With the Shari‘a of Creation

There are two Divine Shari‘as: proceeding from two attributes, man is addressed by both, and bound to comply with both.

The Shari‘a of Creation, which proceeds from the attribute of Will, orders the circumstances and motions of the world, the macrocosm, which are not voluntary. It is dominical will, and is also wrongly termed ‘Nature.’

The Shari‘a proceeding from the attribute of Speech is the code of laws which orders the actions of man, the microcosm, which are voluntary.

The two Shari‘as sometimes come together in the same place. The Divine angels are a vast community, a Divine army.

They are obedient bearers of the first Shari‘a, workers and representatives. Some of them are worshipping slaves of God, others throng the Divine Throne in ecstasy.

* * *

As Matter Is Refined, Life Is Intensified

Life is fundamental, basic; matter is dependent on it, and subsists through it. If you compare a microscopic organism with its five senses, and man’s senses, you will see that however much larger man is than the organism, his senses are inferior to the same degree.

The organism hears its brother’s voice. It sees its food. If it was enlarged to the size of a man, its senses would be wondrous, its life dazzling, and the sight of it like a lightning flash lighting up the skies.

Man is not a living being composed of dead beings, but a living human cell composed of thousands of millions of living cells.

Man is like the Sura Ya. Sin., in which is inscribed Sura Ya. Sin. Blessed be God, the Best of Creators!35

____________________

35. Qur’an, 23:14.



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Materialism Is an Immaterial Plague

Materialism is an immaterial plague; mankind caught this fearsome fever.36 Its inculcation and imitation caused mankind to be visited suddenly by Divine wrath.

This plague spreads to the extent the ability to criticize spreads. It was inculcated by science, and learnt blind imitation from modern civilization.

Freedom led to criticism; misguidance sprang from its pride.

* * *

There Is Nothing Idle In Existence;

The Unemployed Man Works On Account of Non-Existence

The most miserable, wretched, and distressed person, is the unemployed. For idleness is non-existence within existence, death within life. Whereas exertion is the life of existence, and the waking state of life!

* * *

Usury and Interest Cause Absolute Harm to Islam

Usury is the cause of idleness, it extinguishes enthusiasm for work.

The profit of the doors of usury and their containers, the banks, is always for the worst group of mankind, the infidels.

The infidels’ profits go to the worst of them, that is, the oppressors.

The profit of the oppressors always goes to the worst of them; that is, the dissolute; it causes the World of Islam absolute harm.

In the view of the Shari‘a all mankind cannot always be prosperous. For a belligerent infidel is disrespectful, unchaste, and his blood is spilt for nothing, always.

* * *

The Qur’an Will Defend Itself and Perpetuate Its Sovereignty37

I saw someone who was stricken by despair, he was sick with pessimism. He said: “The ‘ulama have decreased in number, quantity has replaced quality.

“I’m frightened our religion will die out one day.” I replied: So long as the universe is not extinguished, Islamic belief will not die.

Also, so long as the marks of Islam, the minarets of religion, the places of

____________________

36. This alludes to the First World War.
37. This piece, which was written thirty-five years ago, is in a style that could have been written this year. That is, it was a sort of prediction inspired by the effulgence of Ramadan.



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Divine worship, the works of the Shari‘a, all like nails struck in the face of the earth, -so long as they are not extinguished, Islam will ever shine.

All the mosques are instructors, teaching their frequenters; and all the instructors have become masters; through the tongue of disposition, without error or forgetfulness, they instil in them the religion.

All the marks are learned teachers, constantly teaching the spirit of Islam to those who look on them. With the centuries, they have become the cause of continuity.

The lights of Islam are as though embodied in its marks; and the pure water of Islam has solidified in its places of worship, embodying them - each a pillar of belief.

The injunctions of Islam are as though embodied within its works; the pillars of Islam have become petrified in its worlds - each a diamond pillar; through them the earth and sky are bound together .

Especially the orator of the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, a constantly repeated pre-eternal discourse; no village, no place at all has remained within the Islamic lands

That does not listen to its address, does not hear its teaching. According to the inner meaning of Indeed We preserve it,38 to be a hafiz is a very high station. To recite it is worship for men and jinn.

It is for this reason it should be taught, and its incontestable matters mentioned. With constant repetition, theoretical matters become incontestable, and turn into self-evident facts, not requiring further expounding.

The essentials of religion ceased being theoretical matters and became essentials. To mention them is sufficient. To remind is enough. The Qur’an is always a healer.39

The Islamic revival and social awakening provides evidence for everyone and a balance, for reminders and mentioning.

Since social life began in Islam, the belief of an individual is not restricted to proofs particular to himself; it is based on the conscience. Indeed, it is based on innumerable matters in the common heart.

It is worthy of note, it is difficult to abolish even a weak school of thought as time passes. So what about Islam, which is based on the two firm foundations of revelation and innate disposition, and has ruled so effectively for so many centuries!

With its firmly rooted principles, its profound works, it has cohered to half the globe, becoming a natural spirit. If it is now eclipsed, it will immediately emerge!

But regretably certain giddy infidels with their false arguments attack the firm foundations of this lofty palace whenever they find the chance.

____________________

38. Qur’an, 15:9.
39. For further explanation, see, The Twenty-Seventh Word, pp. 498-9 in the present work. [Tr.]



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They try to shake them. But those principles cannot be interfered with, or tampered with; fall silent now, irreligion! That scoundrel is bankrupt. Enough now, the experiment of disbelief and lies!

The Islamic world’s advance-post against the world of unbelief was the Darülfunun.40 But due to indifference and heedlessness, the reptilian foe of Nature

Opened up a breach behind the front; irreligion assaulted, the nation was well shaken. The advance-post should be a paradise illuminated with the spirit of Islam.

It should be the firmest, and truly awakened, or it should not be that institution. It must not deceive Islam. The heart is the seat of belief; the mind is where the light of belief is reflected.41

Sometimes it is a mujahid, sometimes it is a sweep; if the doubts of the mind do not enter the heart, the likelihood is belief and the conscience will not be shaken.

For if as some people suppose belief is in the mind, numerous possibilities, all pitiless enemies, oppose ‘absolute certainty,’ which is the spirit of belief.

The heart and conscience are the seat of belief. Intuition and inspiration are the evidence for belief. A sixth sense, the way of belief. Thought and intellect, the watchmen of belief.

* * *

Reminding About Incontestable Matters Is Needed,

Rather Than Instruction In Theoretical Ones

The essentials of religion, the incontestable matters of the Shari‘a, are present in people’s hearts; they are made conscious of them by being reminded.

The desired result is obtained. Arabic42 performs this reminder in more lofty fashion.

The Arabic Khutba in the Friday prayers is sufficient for recalling the essentials and incontestable matters.

There, instruction in theoretical matters is not required. Moreover, those Arabic words stamp an imprint of unity on the face of Islam’s conscience; to multiply [their language] is unacceptable.

____________________

40. Darü’l-Fünûn: the university opened finally in 1869 after 24 years of preparations and unsuccessful attempts. Based on the Western model, it was designed to teach the modern sciences. [Tr.]
41. See the piece, The Light of Reason Come From the Heart, above p. 739. [Tr.]
42. The author perceived an event that was to occur ten years later, and attempted to reply to it.



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Hadiths Say To The Qur’an’s Verses: It’s Impossible To Reach You!

If you compare verses and Hadiths, you will see clearly that the most eloquent of men was the conveyer of revelation, yet not even his eloquence was equal to the eloquence of the Qur’an’s verses.

Not even he could emulate it. That means that all the words issuing from Muhammad’s tongue were not his.

* * *

Expound The Qur’an’s Miraculousness Concisely

One time I had a dream: I was at the foot of Mount Ararat. The mountain suddenly exploded, scattering rocks the size of mountains all over the world, shaking it.

Then a man appeared at my side. He told me: “Expound the aspects of the Qur’an’s miraculousness you know, concisely and succinctly!”

I thought of the dream’s meaning while still dreaming, telling myself: the explosion here symbolizes a revolution in mankind.

As a result of it the guidance of the Criterion of Truth and Falsehood will be exalted everywhere, and will rule. And the time will come to expound its miraculousness!

I said to the questioner in reply: The Qur’an’s miraculousness is manifested from seven sources, it is also composed of seven elements:

F i r s t S o u r c e : This is the fluency of its wording, arising from the purity of its language; and its brilliant manner of exposition, born of the beauty of the word-order; the eloquence of the meanings, the originality of the concepts, the excellence of the inferences, and the singularity of its styles.

Combined with these, in its miraculousness are a wondrous embroidery and exposition, and an original art and language, so its repetition never wearies or bores.

S e c o n d E l e m e n t : A treasury of occult sciences containing the hidden principles of cosmic events, the obscure mysteries of the Divine truths, the unseen matters of revelation, events concealed in the past, and matters hidden in the future.

The tongue of the worlds of the Unseen speaks with the Manifest World; it discloses its matters symbolically; its aim is mankind, a luminous flash of miraculousness.

T h i r d S o u r c e : It has a wondrous comprehensiveness in five aspects. In its words, meanings, injunctions, and its knowledge, and the balance of its aims.

Its words contain truly vast possibilities and numerous aspects, yet each is



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the one preferred by eloquence, the most correct in its Arabic and apt in the view of the Shari‘a.

Its meaning: The miraculousness of its exposition at once comprehends and comprises the ways of all the saints, the illuminations of those versed in knowledge of God, the schools of those on the sufi way, the ways of the scholars of kalâm, and the paths of the philosophers. The breadth of its evidence, the expanse of its meanings. If you look through this window, what a broad arena you will see!

The scope of its injunctions: The wondrous Shari‘a has deduced from it all the principles for the happiness of this world and the next, all the means of salvation.

Its pronouncements at once embrace all the relations of social life, all methods of education, the realities of all conditions.

The profundity of its knowledge: It has brought together in its paradise, in the fortresses of its Suras, both the physical sciences and the Divine sciences, and all signs, allusions, and indications to them.

Its aims and purposes: It has applied perfect balance and regular sequence; conformed with the principles of the innate nature of things and unity, and has preserved the balance.

So see the marvellous encompassment in the comprehensiveness of its words, the breadth of its meanings, the scope of its injunctions, the profundity of its knowledge, and the balance of its aims.

F o u r t h E l e m e n t : It bestows a luminous effulgence on every age in accordance with its understanding and degree of literacy, and on all the classes of men in accordance with their capacities and abilities.

Its door is open to every era and every class within each. It is as though this Speech of the Most Merciful is freshly revealed every instant, everywhere.

The Qur’an grows younger as it grows older; its signs become apparent; it rends the veil of Nature and causes, that Divine address.

It sheds the light of Divine unity continuously from every verse. It raises the veil of the Manifest World, cast over the Unseen.

The loftiness of its address invites man’s attentive gaze, for it is the tongue of the Unseen; it speaks with the Manifest World. Its wondrous freshness proceeds from this element, an all-encompassing ocean!

Divine condescension to the mind’s of men, to make it familiar. The variety of the styles of its revelation makes it familiar to men and jinn.

F i f t h S o u r c e : It relates in an original style laden with meaning, as though itself had witnessed them, of its stories and narrations, and truthful accounts, making their essential points ;

With them it warns mankind. What it relates is these: it tells of former events, and future events, the secrets of Hell and of Heaven;



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Truths of the Unseen, and mysteries of the Manifest World, Divine mysteries, stories about cosmic relations;

Clear stories that neither fact has refuted, nor logic. Even if logic does not accept them, it cannot refute them - the revealed books, which are revered by all the world.

It relates faithfully the points on which they agree, and mentions in correct form the subjects on which they differ. These matters issuing from one “unlettered” was a wonder of the time!

S i x t h E l e m e n t : It was the founder of the religion of Islam, and comprises it. If you investigate time and place, neither the past was capable of producing the like of Islam, nor is the future.

This heavenly thread holds the globe in its annual and daily rotations, and spins it. It weighed down heavily on the earth and mounted it, but the earth still does not give up its rebellion.

S e v e n t h S o u r c e : The six lights pouring forth from these six sources blend together; from this a beauty becomes apparent, and from this an intuition, a luminous means of understanding.

This produces a pleasure: the pleasure of miraculousness may be known, but our language is inadequate to describe it. The mind too is defective; that celestial star may be seen, but not held.

For thirteen centuries the Qur’an’s enemies have desired to challenge it, while it has aroused in its friends a desire to imitate it. This too is a proof of its miraculousness.

Millions of Arabic books have been written in consequence of these two intense desires, coming into the library of existence.

If they are compared with revelation, if they are weighed up, relying on the evidence of their eyes and ears not only the learned scholar, even the common man, will declare: “This is heavenly, those are human!”

They will also say: “It doesn’t resemble them, it is not of the same class. It is therefore lower than all of them, and this is self-evidently not true.

“In which case, it is superior to all of them.” Its meanings in all that time. The door is open, dedicated to mankind; it has summoned to itself spirits and minds!

Man had power over it, and laid claim to it, but his meanings still could not oppose the Qur’an; he never could; now the time of testing has passed.

It does not resemble other books, it cannot be compared to them. For it was dominical wisdom its being revealed bit by bit over twenty years in relation to need, in miscellaneous parts.

The immediate causes of revelation were various and distinct. The questions about any one matter were repeated and various. The events related to injunctions were numerous and changed. The times of revelation were distinct and different.



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The conditions it was considering were various and different; the groups of those it was addressing were numerous and remote from each other; the aims of its guidance were graded and various.

Its structure, and expositions, and replies, and addresses were based on these foundations. Yet despite this, its smoothness of style and lack of defect, its mutual proportion and harmony, demonstrated its perfection.

Witness to this is that according to the science of rhetoric, the Qur’an has a characteristic not present in other speech: if you listen to other speech, you will see the speaker (or writer) behind it, or you will find him within it. Style is the mirror of man.

O dream-questioner! You asked for conciseness, so I have made an indication. If you want a detailed exposition, that is beyond my capabilities! A fly cannot behold the sky. For of the forty sorts of miraculousness, only one is the eloquence of the word-order; and an exposition of it did not fit in Isharat al-I‘jaz.

My hundred-page commentary was insufficient for it. Rather, I want a detailed exposition from spirit-inspirations like yourself!

* * *

The Fanciful, Lust-Exciting Genius-Style Hand of Western Literature

Cannot Reach Up To the Healing, Light-Scattering, Guidance-Laden,

Eternal Literature of the Qur’an

A state of mind pleasing to the mature and perfected with their appreciation of meaning, does not gratify the childish, whimsical, and dissolute,

It does not entertain them. In consequence, those raised amid base, dissolute, carnal and lusty pleasures will not experience spiritual pleasure.

Looking with the ‘novel-based’ view of modern literature, which issued from Europe, they will neither see nor experience the elevated subtleties, the majestic virtues, of the Qur’an.

Their touchstone cannot assay those virtues. There are three areas in which literature promenades; it roams within their bounds:

Either love and sorrow, or heroism and valour, or depiction of reality. In foreign literature, it does not seek the truth in heroism; it rather instils a desire for power by applauding mankind’s cruelties.

As regards sorrow and love, it does not know true love; it injects into the soul a lust-exciting thrill.

In the question of depicting reality, it does not look on the universe as Divine art; it does not see it with its hue of the Most Merciful.

It rather approaches it from the point of view of ‘Nature,’ and depicts it thus; and it cannot be freed from this.

For this reason, what it inculcates is love of ‘Nature.’ It instils in the heart a



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feeling of materialism, from which it cannot easily be saved.

Again, that unmannerly literature, both sedative and narcotic, can provide no beneficial salve for the distress of the spirit which arises from the misguidance resulting from the above.

It has found a single remedy, and that is its novels and fiction. Books with their dead living, the cinema with its animated corpses. The dead cannot bestow life!

And the theatre with its reincarnations and ghosts from the vast grave known as the past. - It is completely unashamed at these three sorts of its fiction.

It has put a mendacious tongue in mankind’s mouth, attached a lustful eye to its face, dressed the world in a scarlet petticoat, and does not recognize sheer beauty.

If it points to the sun, it puts in the reader’s mind a beautiful blonde actress. It apparently says: “Vice is bad, it is not fitting for man.”

It points out its harmful consequences. But its depictions so incite vice that they make the mouth water and the reason cannot remain in control.

They whet the appetite, excite desire, so the emotions no longer heed anything. The literature of the Qur’an, however, does not stir up desire;

It imparts a sense of love of the truth, a passion for sheer loveliness, an appreciation and taste for beauty, a desire for reality. And it does not deceive.

It does not look at the universe from the point of view of Nature; it speaks of it from the point of view of Divine art, with the colouring of the Most Merciful. It does not confuse the mind.

It instils the light of knowledge of the Maker. It points out His signs in all things. Both produce a touching sorrow, but they do not resemble each other.

The literature born of Europe excites a pathetic sorrow arising from the lack of friends, from being ownerless; not an elevated sorrow.

For it is a woebegone sadness inspired by deaf Nature and blind force. It shows the world as desolate, not in any other way.

It depicts it in this way, holds the sorrowing man there, places him ownerless among strangers, leaving him without hope.

Due to this feeling of consternation it has given him, he gradually sinks into misguidance; it opens up the way to atheism, from whence it is difficult to return. Perhaps he never will return.

Qur’anic literature produces a sorrow, but it is the sorrow of love, not of orphans. It arises from separation from friends, not from the lack of them.

Its view of the universe, in place of blind Nature, is as conscious, merciful Divine art; it does not speak of Nature.

Instead of blind force, it describes wise and purposeful Divine power. The universe, therefore, does not take on the form of a desolate wasteland.





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Indeed, in the view of the grieving one it addresses, it becomes a gathering of friends. On every side mutual love and response, which cause no distress.

The friendliness at every corner draws the melancholy person into society, giving him a yearning sorrow, an elevated feeling; not a dejected mournfulness.

Both give rise to eagerness. But through the eagerness provoked by the foreign literature, the soul becomes excited, the desires are stimulated; its gives no joy to the spirit.

The Qur’an’s eagerness, however, fires the spirit, gives rise to a lofty eagerness. It is for this reason that the Shari‘a of Muhammad (PBUH) wants no amusements or diversion.

It has forbidden some musical instruments, for amusement, and permitted others. That is to say, instruments producing Qur’anic sorrow or revelational eagerness are not harmful.

But if it produces the woebegone grief of the orphan or carnal thrills, the instrument is prohibited. It changes from person to person, not everyone is the same.

* * *

Branches Offer Fruits In the Name of Mercy

On every side the branches of the tree of creation apparently extend the fruits of bounties to the hands of beings with spirits.

But in reality it is a hand of mercy, a hand of power, which holds out to us those branches and fruits.

You should kiss that hand of mercy in gratitude; you should proclaim the holiness of that hand of power thankfully.

* * *

An Explanation of the Three Ways Indicated at the End of Sura al-Fatiha

O brother full of hope! Take your imagination and come with me. See, we are in a land, we look around. There is no one to see us.

A layer of black cloud has settled on the high mountains, like tent-posts. The cloud has covered too the whole face of the earth.

It forms a solid ceiling, but its six sides are open, so the sun is visible. We are under the cloud, the darkness oppresses us.

The distress is suffocating, the airlessness is killing us. Now three ways are open to us. One is a luminous world, I beheld it once, that metaphorical land.



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Yes, I came here once before, I have passed down these three ways. The first way is this: most people take it; it is the way of the world, it invites us to travel it.

See, we are on our way, we are going on foot. See how the sea-sands of the desert scorch us with their anger, threatening us!

See the mountainous waves; they are threatening us too. Now thanks be to God we have emerged on the other side, we can see the face of the sun.

But only we know the difficulties we have suffered. Oh! we have returned to the wasteland, the ceiling of cloud with its lowering darkness. What we need is the eye of the heart to illumine things.

A wondrous light-filled world; if you have the courage, we shall enter it together, this way so fraught with dangers. Our second way:

We shall plunge through Nature-earth, and pass to the other side. Or trembling, we shall pass through a natural tunnel.

I travelled this way one time, fearlessly and full of prayer. But on that occasion I had with me a substance to smelt and rend the Nature-earth.

The third way: The Qur’an had given me that miraculous evidence. Brother, stick close behind me, and have no fear!

See, here await us tunnel-like caves and underground torrents. They will let us pass. Don’t let these awesome lifeless beings of Nature scare you in the slightest!

For behind its sour face is the smiling countenance of its compassionate Owner. I perceived that radium-like substance of the Qur’an through its light.

There, you see! We have come out in the light-filled world, see this delicate earth, this soft and gentle air. Raise your head! See, it has drawn its head to the skies, rent the clouds, leaving them far below. This Tuba-tree invites us -

It is the Qur’an. It has spread its branches everywhere. We must hang onto this branch which is trailing down, so that it can raise us up.

That heavenly tree - on earth, one of its personifications is the Illustrious Shari‘a. That is to say, we ascended to this world of light in that way without difficulty; we were shaken by no distress.

Since we went wrong, we’ll return to our former place and find the right way. See, our third way! Over the mountains hovers a Royal Falcon;

He is reciting the ezan to the whole world. See, the supreme muezzin, Muhammad al-Hashimi (PBUH), is summoning mankind to the luminous world of light. He enjoins supplication and obligatory prayers.

Look at the mountains! See, the guidance has rent the clouds! The mountain of the Shari‘a has raised its head to the skies. How it has adorned the face and eye of the earth!

Now we must depart from here in the aircraft of endeavour. The light and



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breeze are there; the light of beauty is there. Ah, now here is the Uhud of Divine unity, that mighty mountain.

Here is the Judi of Islam, that wholesome mountain. Here is the Mountain of the Moon, the Qur’an of al-Azhar, the pure water of the Nile flows from that sublime source. Take a drink of its sweet water!

So blessed be God, the Best of Creators.43 * And their call shall close with “All praise be to God, Sustainer of All the Worlds!”44

Friend! Now cast away your imagination and don your reason! The first two ways are those of “those who have received Your anger” and “those who have gone astray.”45

Their perils are numerous. On them is perpetual winter, their autumn and summer. Only one out of a hundred is saved, like Plato and Socrates.

The third way is easy, and direct and straight. Weak and strong are equal. Everyone may take it. The most comfortable is this: to be either martyr or ‘ghazi’.

Now we come to the conclusion: Yes, the first two ways are the path and school of the genius of science. As for the guidance of the Qur’an, the third way is its straight path; it will take us there.

O God! Guide us to the straight path. * The path of those whom You have blessed, not those who have received Your anger,

nor those who have gone astray.

* * *

All True Pain Is In Misguidance, and All True Pleasure In Belief;

A Mighty Truth Robed In Imagination

Prudent fellow-traveller! My friend! If you want to see clearly the differences beween the luminous way of the “straight path” and the gloomy path of “those who have received Your anger” and “those who have gone astray,”

Come, take your fancy and mount your imagination, together we shall go to the darkness of non-existence. We shall visit that vast grave, that city of the dead.

A Pre-Eternal All-Powerful One took us out of that place of darkness with His hand of power, mounted us on existence, and sent us to this world, this city without pleasures.

Now we have come to the world of existence, this fearful desert. Our eyes have opened, we’ve looked in the six directions.

____________________

43. Qur’an, 23:14.
44. Qur’an, 10:10.
45. Qur’an, 1:7.



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Firstly we look before us seeking favours, but tribulations and pains assault us like enemies. We take fright at that and draw back.

We look to left and right to the natural elements, seeking assistance. But we see their hearts are hard and merciless. They grind their teeth, glowering at us angrily. They heed neither plea nor plaint.

Like creatures beleaguered, we despairingly lift our gazes upwards. Seeking help, we look to the heavenly bodies, but they threaten us awesomely.

As though each was a bomb; having shot out of their cases they are speeding through space. But somehow or other they do not obstruct each other.

If by chance one confused its way, this Manifest World would be blown to pieces, God forbid! It is tied to coincidence; no good can come of that.

In despair we turn back our gaze from that direction, overcome by grievous bewilderment. We bow our heads and look to ourselves; we consider and study ourselves.

Now we hear the shouts of myriad needs coming from our wretched selves. The cries of thousands of wants issue forth. While expecting solace, we take fright.

No good comes from that either. Seeking refuge, we consult our consciences, we look within seeking a solution. Alas, again we can find none; we have to help the conscience.

For in it are thousands of hopes, turbulent emotions, wild desires, spread throughout the universe. We tremble with all of them, and cannot offer help.

Compressed in the world of existence, those hopes stretch out to pre-eternity on one side and post-eternity on the other. They have such breadth, if they swallowed the world, the conscience still would not be satisfied.

Wherever we have recourse on this grievous road, we encounter misfortune. For the ways of “those who have received Your anger” and “those who have gone astray” are thus. Chance and misguidance beset that road.

We follow it and fall into our present state. Even now we temporarily forget its beginning and end, the Maker and resurrection of the dead.

It is worse than Hell, it scorches more terribly, it crushes our spirits. For we had recourse to those six directions, but this state resulted.

It fills us with awesome terror, making us shudder with impotence, disquiet and apprehension, orphanhood and despair, so that it racks our conscience.

Now we shall form a front opposite each of the directions and try to repulse them. Firstly we have recourse to our own strength, but alas! we are powerless, weak.

Secondly, we address ourselves to silencing the needs of the soul. But alas! we see that they cry out unceasingly.

Thirdly, we cry out for help seeking a saviour, but no one hears or responds.


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We suppose everything to be hostile, everything strange. Nothing consoles our hearts, nothing gives a sense of security, or true pleasure.

Fourthly, the more we looked at the celestial bodies, the more they filled us with fright and awe. Vexing the conscience, alienating it; tormenting the mind, filling it with delusions.

Brother! That is the way of misguidance! On it we experienced all the darkness of unbelief. Come, now, my brother, we’ll turn again to that non-being.

Again we shall come. This time our way is the Straight Path, and the way of belief. Our guide and leader are wisdom and the Qur’an, the Falcon that overflies the centuries.

At one time, the Pre-Eternal Sovereign’s mercy and grace willed our existence, His power brought us forth, graciously mounting us on the law of His will, completing us stage after stage.

Then it compassionately clothed us in the garment of existence, bestowed on us the Trust and its rank; the mark of this is supplication and the obligatory prayers.

All the stages are stopping-places on our long road. To make our road easy, Divine Determining issued a decree and pasted it on the page of our foreheads;

Wherever we go, with whichever group we are guests, we are welcomed in truly brotherly fashion. We give of our belongings, and we receive from theirs.

Love born of commerce, they nourish us, adorn us with gifts, then they see us on our way. Now at last we have come to the door of the world. We hear a noise.

See, we have arrived at the earth. We have stepped foot in the Manifest World. The festival of the Most Merciful, the clamorous habitation of man.

We know nothing at all, our guide and leader is the will of the Merciful One. Our guide’s deputy, our delicate eyes. We open our eyes and look around. Do we recall the first time we came?

We were strangers, orphans. Our enemies were many. We did not know our protector. Now, with the light of belief, we have a strong pillar, a point of support, a protector, who repulses those enemies.

And that is belief in God, which is the light of our spirits, and light of our lives, and spirit of our spirits. Now our hearts are easy, we disregard the enemies, not even recognizing them.

When on our first journey we consulted our consciences, we heard innumerable cries and laments, and complaints.

It was due to them that we were overcome by misfortune. For our hopes and desires, capacity and senses always desire eternity. But we did not know how to obtain it, hence their lamentations and cries.


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However, all praise be to God, this time we have found a point of succour which always gives life to our innate disposition and hopes; it makes them take flight for eternity.

Our innate disposition shows them the way from that point, and seeks help; drinks down the water of life, and races to its perfection through that point of succour, that encouraging, elusive symbol.

The second pole of belief is affirmation of the resurrection of the dead. Everlasting happiness is that shell’s pearl. The proof of belief, the Qur’an; the conscience, a human mystery.

Now raise your head, and take a look at the universe. Speak a word with it. It appeared formidable on our former way. Now it is smiling, laughing on every side, coyly winking and blinking.

Do you not see, our eyes have become bees? They fly everywhere in the garden of the universe, around the profusion of flowers; each flower profers them a delectable draft.

Each also offers solace, love, and a feeling of familiarity. They too give and take, and offer testimony, they make honey flow forth from honey, that mysterious falcon.

As our gaze alights on the motions of the heavenly bodies, or the stars, or suns, they show up the Creator’s wisdom, and the manner of His instruction, and the manifestation of His mercy, making them take flight.

It is as though the sun is speaking with us, saying: “My brothers! Don’t feel frightened or dismayed. You are welcome, how good you have come! This dwelling-place is yours, I am but a candle-holder.

“I am like you, but a pure, obedient, unrebellious servant. Out of His utter mercy, the Single and Eternally Besought One subjected me so that I would serve you with my light. Light and heat are from me, supplication and prayer from you!”

Now look at the moon! And the stars and the seas; each says in its own tongue: “Welcome! It’s good you’ve come! Don’t you recognize us?”

Look through the mystery of co-operation, through the signs of the order. Each says: “We are all servants, mirrors of the All-Glorious One’s mercy; don’t worry, don’t be dismayed!

“Don’t feel frightened or sceptical at the crashing of the thunder and cries of events, for within them are the rolling of recitations, the clamour of glorifications, the tumult of supplication and entreaty.

“The All-Glorious One Who sent us to you holds their reins in His hands. The eye of faith reads on their faces the signs of mercy; each proclaims them.”

O believer with a wakeful heart! Let our eyes rest a little; we shall hand over our sensitive ears to the blessed hand of belief in their place. We shall send them to the world to listen to its delightful refrains.


The Words / Gleams - p.778

The universal mourning and lamentations of death imagined on our first way are now all supplications and orisons, cries of glorification.

Listen to the murmuring of the air, the twittering of chicks, the pattering of the rain, the plashing of the seas, the crashing of thunder, the crackling of stones; all are meaningful refrains.

The humming of the air, the intoning of the thunder, the strains of the waves are all recitations of Grandeur. The chanting of the rains, the warbling of birds are all glorifications of Mercy, allusions to reality.

The sounds of things are all sounds of existence: “I too exist,” they say. The silent universe suddenly finds voice: “Don’t suppose us to be lifeless, O chattering man!”

A tasty morsel or droplet of rain; the birds break into song.

With their different voices, their tiny songs, they applaud mercy, alight on bounties, proclaiming their thanks.

Implicitly they say: “Beings of the universe, my brothers! How fine are our circumstances;

We are tenderly nourished, we are happy at our lot.” With beaks upstretched they scatter their songs on the air.

In its entirety the universe is a lofty orchestra; through the light of belief its recitations, its glorifications, are heard.

For its wisdom rejects the existence of chance, its order repulses it; in unison they banish doubt.

Fellow-traveller! We are leaving now this world of similitudes, stepping down from imagination and fancy. We shall alight in the arena of reason, take stock, and close down those ways.

Our first way, full of pain, that of “those who have received Your anger” and “those who have gone astray,” inflicts suffering on the innermost conscience, and severe pain. Consciousness showed this; we became the reverse of conscious.

We have to be saved from it, we need to be, so the pain can be pacified, or numbed, we can’t endure it otherwise; no one heeds the cries for help.

Guidance is healing, but fancies block out the feelings. This requires solace, it requires feigned unmindfulness, it requires occupation, it requires entertainment. Enchanting desires.

Then it can deceive the conscience and put the spirit to sleep so they feel no pain. Otherwise that grievous suffering scorches the conscience; the pain is unedurable, the despair cannot be borne.

This means, however far one deviates from the Straight Path, to that extent one is affected in that way, causing the conscience to cry out. Within every pleasure is a pain, a taint.

That means glittering civilization, which is a mixture of fancy, lust, amusement, and licentiousness, is a deceptive panacea for the ghastly distress arising from misguidance, a poisonous narcotic.


The Words / Gleams - p.779

My dear friend! On our second way, that light-filled road, we perceived a state of mind in which life became a source of pleasure, pains became joys.

We understood that it imparts a state to the spirit varying in degree according the strength of belief. The body receives pleasure through the spirit, the spirit receives pleasure through the conscience.

An immediate pleasure is felt in the conscience; a spiritual paradise is present in the heart. To think of it is to open it up; while consciousness is marked by its secrets.

Now, however much the heart is aroused, the conscience stimulated, the spirit stirred, it increases the pleasure, transforming fire into light, and winter into spring.

The doors of paradises open up in the conscience, the world becomes a paradise. Within it our spirits take flight, soaring like kites, entreating, praying.

Worthy fellow-traveller! Farewell for now. Let us offer a prayer together, then we shall part, to meet again!

O God! Lead us to the Straight Path. Amen.


The Words / p.780

Reply to the Anglican Church

One time, as a artifice, a pitiless enemy of Islam, a cunning politician, a suspicious parson who wanted to swagger and show off, asked us four things, -in the form of denial, at a terrible time he had his claws at our throat, in his glee at our misfortune; he wanted six hundred words. A reply was needed like a slap in the face of his glee, and his wiles, and his denial, like spitting in his face, to silence him. I won’t address him. I have the following answer for a lover of truth.

He asked first: “What is the religion of Muhammad (PBUH)?”

I replied: It is the Qur’an. The basic aims of the Qur’an are the six pillars of belief and the five pillars of Islam.

In the second he asked: “What has it given to life and thought?”

I replied: To thought, the affirmation of Divine unity; to life, moderation and the middle way. My witnesses for this are

Say: He is God, the One.46 * Therefore stand firm [in the Straight Way] as you are commanded.47

In the third, he said: “What remedies has it for the present atrocities?”

I replied: The prohibition of usury and interest and the payment of Zakat. My witnesses for this are these:

God will deprive usury of all blessing.48 * God has permitted trade and forbidden usury.49 * And be steadfast in prayer, and practise regular charity [zakat].50

In the fourth, he asked: “How does it look on man’s revolutions?”

I replied: Labour, striving, are fundamental. Wealth should not be accumulated in the hands of tyrants, and held on to. My witnesses for this:

Man has nothing save that which he strives.51 * Those who store up gold and silver and do not spend it in God’s way, announce to them a most grievous penalty.52


46. Qur’an, 112:1.
47. Qur’an, 11:112.
48. Qur’an, 2:276.
49. Qur’an, 2:275.
50. Qur’an, 2:43, etc.
51. Qur’an, 53:39.
52. Qur’an, 9:34.

The Words / p.781

O God! O Most Merciful! O Most Compassionate! O Single One! O Ever-Living One! O Self-Subsistent One! O Arbiter! O All-Just One! O Most Holy! For the sake of Your Greatest Name, and in veneration of the Qur'an of Miraculous Exposition, and in honour of Your Most Noble Messenger, Upon whom be blessings and peace, bestow everlasting happiness in Paradise on the producers of this book and on all those who assist them. Amen! And grant them unending success in the service of belief and the Qur'an. Amen! And for each word of The Words write a thousand merits in the books of their good deeds. Amen! And bestow on them perseverance, constancy, and sincerity in publishing the Risale-i Nur. Amen!

O Most Merciful of the Merciful! Grant happiness in this world and the next to all the Students of the Risale-i Nur. Amen! Preserve them from the evil of satans among jinn and men. Amen! And forgive the faults of this impotent and wretched Said. Amen!

In the name of all the Students of the Risale-i Nur,

S a i d N u r s i


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A Luminary of His times 
Bediuzzaman Said Nursi life
documentary, biograpy 

============================

About 
Sheikh Bediuzzaman Said Nursi 

Bediuzzaman Said Nursi was born in 1876 in Eastern Turkey (the Village of Nurs) and died in 1960 in Urfa in Turkey. Readers may refer to his biography for details of his long and exemplary life, which spanned the last decades of the Ottoman Empire, its collapse after the First World War and the setting up of the Republic, then the twenty-five years of Republican Peoples' Party rule, well-known for the measures taken against Islam, followed by the ten years of Democrat rule, when conditions eased a little for Bediuzzaman.

Here we shall mention just a few points which are relevant to the Risale-i Nur and will assist in understanding The Words. With this same aim some general points about the Risale-i Nur are included, and the method, which is particular to Bediuzzaman, that it employs for teaching the Qur'anic truths.
 The Ilustration of 
Sheikh Bediuzzaman Said Nursi
The details @ bediuzzamansaidnursi.org

What is the Risale-i Nur ?

The Risale-i Nur collection is a six-thousand-page commentary on the Quran written by Bediuzzaman Said Nursi in accordance with the mentality of the age. Since in our age faith and Islam have been the objects of the attacks launched in the name of so called science and logic, Bediuzaman Said Nursi therefore concentrated in the Risale-i Nur on proving the truths of faith in conformity with modern science through rational proofs and evidence, and by decribing the miraculous aspects of the Quran that relate primarily to our century. This collection now has millions of readers both in and outside of Turkey. Thanks to the Risale-i Nur, the Turks managed to maintain their religion despite the most despotic regimes of the past decades. Although its author faced unbearable persecution, imprisonment, and exile, while no effort was spared to put an end to his service to faith, he was able to complete his writings compromising the Risale-i Nur and raise a vast group of believers who courageously opposed the oppression and preserved the dominance of Islam in the country.
The Details @ bediuzzamansaidnursi.org

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Thanks for coming
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