QA. XI [11] Sūrat al-saṭr (The Surah of the Alphabetical Line) on Qur'ān 12:10



Part  XI

 سورة السطر

  Sūrat al-saṭr

(The Surah of the Alphabetical Line) 


Qur'ān 12:10

Translation Stephen N. Lambden



بسم اللّه الرّحمن الرّحيم

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate


"One of them said, 'No, kill not Joseph, but cast him into the bottom of the pit and some traveller will pick him out, if you do aught.'  (Q.12:10, tr. Arberry).




[Abjad = 9+5+70 = 86]


حمد اللّه الّذی قد  خلق السّموات والارض علی الحقّ بالحق طباقاً


    ليعلم النّاس انّ ربّهم الرّحمن لحقّ و هو اللّه قد كان علی كلّ شیء قديراً


    و الّذی قد خلقكم من التّراب ثمّ قد جعلكمنطفة ثمّ علّقة ثمّ  مضغة  ثمّ انشأكم خلقاً فتبارك اللّه احسن المنشئين حكيماً



 و هو الّذی يحفظكم فی ظلمات ثلاثو يخرجكم من بطون الامّهات و انتم لاتعلمون من علم الكتاب


Praised be to God who hath indeed, in very truth,  created the heavens and the earth in tiers [one upon the other] (ṭibāq an), (see Q. 67:3 and 71:15 [14]) [5] to the end that He might inform the people that their Lord  the All-Merciful is of a certainly the True One. He is indeed God, Who hath ever been Powerful over all things. [6] He is the One Who created thee from dust (al-turāb), then made thee a sperm-drop (nuṭfah), then a blood clot  (`alaqa), then a clot of tissue (muḍghah) [see Q.  18:37 [37]; 22:5; 23:14; 40:67 [9]; 76:2 etc] then He fashioned thee as another creation (khalq an akhar). So Blessed be God the very best of originators (aḥsan al-munshi`īn) [cf. Q. 37: 125], One Wise (ḥakīm an) [7] And He is the One Who safeguard three in [from?] triple-massing shadows [darknesses] (ẓulumāt thalāthah)  [of the smoke of hellfire?] (cf. Q. 77: 30). And He enabled thee to emerge from the wombs of [your] mothers (buṭūn al-ummahāt) (Q. 39:6b [8b]; 53:32 [33]) though thou know nothing but a little of the knowledge of the Book.


So turn ye repentently unto thy Creator and lay down thy lives in the Path of God (sabil Allah), the True One, being fearful before God, the Transcendent. And He is God, Who hath ever been One Mighty, Worthy of Praise. [9] He is indeed the One Who hath, in very truth, sent down these verses on His part as  news (tabshir) for all the believers. [10] He is indeed God, the One Worshipped (al-ma`bud). In very truth there is no God except God. And He is God, One Aware [Knowing] of all things. [11] He is indeed the One Who, in very truth, gave thee the good-tidings of the Name of His servant. He was indeed one in the Mother [Archetypal] Book which is before God, One Elevated (`Aliyy) [named `Ali] and, as befits the Truth, One All-Wise (hakim an). [12] He is indeed the one for whom God, in truth, in very truth, did not keep the naming of his Name a secret. [13] He is God! He indeed made peace to be upon him on the day of his birth and on the day of his rising up [call to prophethood] as well as the day of his ingathering [everyone] upon the land of the inmost heart (ard al-fu'ad), which is, in very truth, one peerless (farid an) about the precincts of the [Sinaitic] Fire (al-nar). [14] Such is indeed the mystery of mysteries (sirr al asrar) on the part of One Wondrous (badi`) Who, no God is there except Him, [for He is] One Transcendent (`Aliyy / named `Ali]).  And God hath ever been Powerful over all things.


God hath indeed so [perfectly] organized the [eschatological] Cause (al-amr) through the Gate (al-bab), by virtue of His Power, according to the decree (hukm) which was ordained in the Mother [Archetypal]  Book about the [Sinaitic] Fire. [16] And We made thee, in very truth, with the permission of God, to be a token [sign] of [the Divine] Magnificences (al-kubara') for God hath ever been Witness unto all things. [17] Thou did indeed give announcement to a matter, in very truth, of Sublime Importance (al-uzma') for Thou were, in very truth, witnessed in the vicinity of the [Sinaitic] Fire! [18] And We did indeed interdict thee [forbid, hold thee back], with, in very truth, the permission of God, thy Lord, from the [explicit] mention [dhikr (Remembrance) of the Bab (Gate), from other than the [its] Reality, through other than [its] the Reality, as one sighing [sobbing] (shahiq an) [in hell] cf. Q. 67:7; 11:106). [19] On that [eschatological] Day We will roll up the heaven (al-sama') with Our own hands [as a scroll is rolled up] [Q. 21:104] for the matter was, in very truth, decreed and [at that time] when the oven [the source of water] (al-tanur), with the permission of God, the True One, boils [flooding] over (Q. 23:27; 11:40; cf. 67:7). God hath,  ever been Powerful  over all things. [20] How is it that thou knowest of Our Cause (amr) yet remain, aside from the truth, one remote [therefrom] (ba`id an). This on a day whereon He will, with the permssion of God, render the believers joyous, exalted among those brought near (qarib an) [cf. Q. 30:4]. [21]  For He shall indeed give the believers among the people of the Gate (min ahl-al-bab) reason to rejoice at the glad-tidings! God will indeed bring them something of a spirit (ruh), the very Spirit (al-ruh) which is [reckoned] a beatitude [plenty] (rayhan an) [cf. Q. 56:89]  in the Mother [Archetypal] Book (umm al-kitab). [22] This [eschatological] Day did God make for thee in the land of the Straight Path (ard al-sirat) an ability to rise transcendent at the appointed time (miqat an) of the [crossing of the] expanse [punishment] of hellfire (`ala jasar al-nar).


This whereupon one of them said, speaking on behalf of the brothers of Joseph, he is indeed Hasan son of `Ali in the Mother [Archetypal] Book (umm al-kitab), one about the [Sinaitic] Fire, through the  [Sinaitic] Fire (see Q. 12: 10a),  Pre-Existent and Mighty ( al-qadim kabir an).  [24] "Do not kill Joseph but cast him into the depths of the pit [well]" (Q. 12: 10a) of Oneness [Singularity] (jubb al-ahadiyya) concealed (mastur an) about the [Sinaitic] Fire (al-nar).  God intended by "the pit [well]" (al-jubb) [Q. 12: 10a] the deeply secreted Cloud of Divinity (`ama' al-mustasirr) in the atmosphere of the concealed mystery (fi hawa'  al-sirr al-mustasirr), [ which is ] a deeply secreted matter within the Mother [Archetypal] Book ( `ala al-sirr umm al-kitab) inscribed about the [alphabetical] line (hawl al-satr mastur an). [25] The people do not know what the brothers of Joseph have done before God, pertaining to the Truth [Reality] of ] the statud of] Joseph, the One Mighty (al-`aliyy [`Ali]), for such [is a position], in very truth, witnessed (shahid an).  [26] God did indeed decree for Joseph a travellor [journeying] from the Bab [Gate] unto the Bab [Gate] (sayyara min al-bab ila al-bab) [cf. Q. ]. This according to the decree of the Book (hukm al-kitab) concealed about the [Sinaitic] Fire (al-nar).  [27] God [furthermore] did indeed make the visitor (zawwar) to [the shrine of] Husayn, with the permission of God, the Mighty (al-`aliyy [`Ali]),  to be the travellor [journeying] unto the Secure Sanctuary [in secure pilgrim sanctity] (al-hurum al-amin). And He is God Who hath ever been Mighty, All-Wise. [28]  Such [are these] as jourvey from the Gate unto God ( min al-bab ila Allah) in the fathomless Abyss [Depth] of the Divine Oneness lujjat al-ahadiyya), in Truth, as befits the Truth, ones alone [solitary, unique] (wahid an) in the vicinity of the Gate ( fi hawl al-bab).  [29]   These are indeed such as have encountered [found] al-Husayn manifestly (mashhud an) though  to some degree [according to a letter] (`ala al-harf) secreted in the very depths of the Pit [Well] (fi ghayabat al-jubb).  [30] These are [also reckomed] such persons [as are] journeying in the Book of God (kitab Allah) unto the Dhikr (Remembrance); such as are, in very Truth, set forth [registered] (mastur an)  as [approaching One] secretly concealed about the [Sinaitic] Fire.


God created Joseph and his brothers in sanctified worlds (`awalim al-quds) through a sprinkling upon a Name (rashh `ala ism min qutrat al-ibda') from the very droplet of Origination from that Watery Expanse (al-ma') which is known to exist (mawjud an).  [32] And when We discovered  from Joseph a [token] of love (hubb an) for the Greatest Remembrance (al-dhikr al-akbar) then did We, with the permisson of God, clothe him in the Garment of Prophethood (qamis al-nubuwwa) through [as] 0ne Who walked proudly (khitala) in the Mother [Archetypal] Book (umm al-kitab) something decreed in the vicinity of the [Sinaitic] Fire. [33] And We were, in very Truth, of elevated rank (makan an),  remote (ba`id an) from all the worlds (al-`alamin).    [34] We disclosed unto the servants (al-`ubud) something of the Cause (al-amr) though the people remained, in very Truth, destitute (makhdul an) thereof. [35] God did indeed intend by thy [eschatological] Day this Greatest Word (al-kalimat al-akbar), the One Who, in Truth, in very Truth, Crieth out about God in a Wondrous fashion (badi` an).  [36] And despite the fact that the people, in very Truth, failed to believe in God and in His verses, We preserved him within the depths of the pit [well] (ghayabat al-jubb) secreted (mastur an) about the [Sinaitic] Fire (al-nar). [37] God indeed decreed that there should chance upon him a certain travellor (al-siyyarat), one from Thee, from such as were, in Truth, in very Truth, [referred to] in the Mother Archetypal] Book (umm al-kitab); responding to the Gate (al-ijaba `ala al-bab) which is, foremost (sabiq an) and praiseworthy (mahmnud an) about the Watery Expanse (al-ma'). [38]  Such, in Truth, in very truth, is the decree from God (hukm). And this decree (al-hukm) was, ordained in the Mother [Archetypal] Book (umm al-kitab). [39] And God made thee to be Muslims in His religion, if that is, ye  be patient (sabur an) in God and in His verses pertinent to that Bab (Gate). 


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