[Per. TAFSĪR-I HU]
COMMENTARY ON THE "HE IS" (HUWA)
Stephen N. Lambden
Last written 2006 - being updated
Baha'-Allah's wholly Arabic scriptural Tablet sometimes referred to in Persian as the Tafsīr-i hu is (more correctly Arab.) Tafsīr huwa, the "Commentary on the He is" ( هو = huwa = "He is"). It is a scriptural Tablet of around twenty pages dating from the mid.-late Iraq (Baghdad) period (c. 1859?). It has the following Arabic prescript
هذا ما نزل من جبروت العظمة بلسان العزة وا لرفعة في حق مراته القدسية وا لنور الازليه
"This is that which was revealed from the Empyrean of Grandeur (jabarūt al-`uẓmat) through the Tongue of Power (bi-lisān al-`izzat) and raised up regarding the Truth of His sanctified Mirror (mirātihi al-qudsiyya) and All-Eternal Light (al-nūr al-azaliyya)."
In basic grammatical terms هو = huwa is the Arabic third person masculine pronoun. In the Qur'ān and in numerous other Arabic Islamic religious texts, traditions and literatures it is often indicative of the existent reality of the Godhead whose personal Name is Allah is presupposed. Thus هو in the Qur'an and elsewhere as well as in thousands of Babi-Baha'i religious texts, indicates the reality, transcendence and absolute existence of the Godhead. Thus also the common theological phrase هوالله which also has deep theological and alphabetic or numerological significances in Islamic mysticism as well as in a considerable number of the writings of the Bab and other primary and secondary Babi and Baha'i sacred literatures. Additionally, the Bab wrote several commentaries on the first letter of the هو huwa or several works entitled Tafsir al-hā' (Commentary upon the letter "H"). Baha'-Allah's Tafsir-i hu or Tafsir Huwa was writtern in a Babi universe of discourse before he had announced his own messianic or theophanological claims in 1863 (near Baghdad) and subsequently in 1866-7. (from Edirne) CE.
The text of the Tafsir-i hu / Tafsir huwa has never been officially published or translated. The text I refer to, translate and to some extent reproduce here is based on a typed text communicated to me by the Baha'i World Centre (Haifa, Israel) in 1982