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QA. IX [9] Sūrat al-sirr (The Surah of the Mystery) on Qur'ān 12:8.


Part  IX


سورة السر   

 Sūrat al-sirr

(The Surah of the Mystery) 

on Qur'ān 12:8

Translation Stephen Lambden 1982-2016.


بسم اللّه الرّحمن الرّحيم

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



( A-L-M-N).

[4] God, verily, sent down the Book in which there is an explanation of all things (tibyān kull shay’); a mercy and an expression of glad-tidings (bushrā) unto such of Our servants as are, according to the knowledge of the Book, in very truth insightful about the Exalted Remembrance of God (dhikr Allāh). [5] [There was a time] when the letters of `There is no God but God' (= lā ilāha illā Allāh ) said, `Joseph is more beloved (aḥabb) of our father [Jacob] than we are since he excelled [outstripped us] in the knowledge of God. [6] This as regards [knowledge of] a letter concealed in the mystery which is enshrouded in the mystery veiled in the [alphabetical] row (al-saṭr) hidden in the concealed mystery raised up beyond that which is in Our grasp [hands] and the grasp [hands] of all the worlds. [7] And We [“brothers” = letters], in truth, are a group (`uṣba) though by the specific rank of Joseph God intended the Arabian Prophet Muhammad  who is inscribed in the vicinity of the [celestial, alphabetical ] row (line, al-saṭr). [8] God, verily, gave Our father [Jacob] special bounty through the bounty (bi-faḍl nafsihi) of His own Self. [9] And God decreed that the concealed mystery [of the messianic identity?] be [hidden in] the mystery of His command [Cause]. This in view of that which is in the possession [grasp] of (lit. the hands of ) all [the inhabitants of] the worlds  so as to effect the exposure of the evident delusion of the people of the fire [of hell] (ahl al-nar) regarding the [concealed] mystery of the letter "B"  (sirr al- bā' ).  [10] The All-Merciful hath settled down upon the [heavenly Throne. And He, God, is powerful over all things. God, verily, hath created existing things through, in very truth, the creative power of His Might.  [11]  He is the One Who originated the heavens and the earth and what is between them through, as befits the Truth,  His Command which is the formative reality in the vicinity of the [Sinaitic] Fire.  [12]  This to the end that the people might know that the Command of God (amr Allāh) existeth, in very truth, in the Mother Book  in the vicinity of the [Sinaitic] Fire.  And He, God, by virtue of His Might overseeth all things. He, God, is One Who[se knowledge] encompasseth all things.  [13]  God assuredly intended that the concealment of the mystery beyond the secret of the [alphabetical] line (al-saṭr),   is the interior sense (ta`wīl an) of the [reality surrounding the person of the] Point of the Gate [Bāb] (nuqṭat al-bāb).  [14]  He [God] in very truth, established the associates of the Bāb (?? al-ajnabā' min al-bāb) [ the occulted Imams] to be ones, in very truth,  as manifest as the [celestial] Heights (al-a`rāf; cf. Q. 7:46,48).


O servants of the All-Merciful!

Shake ye, by the leave of God, your Lord, the True One, the trunk of this Palm-Tree which God hath, in very truth, established in the Mother Book as one Exalted (`alīyy / `Alī).  [16]  He [God] is the One Who, on His part, maketh, in very truth, fresh ripe dates to fall unto yourselves (Q.19:25).  [17]  We, verily, pointed [signaled] to His Remembrance (dhikr) on behalf of the All-Merciful on a Day reckoned ancient in the Mother Book (cf. Q.19:29). [18]  And thou (pl.) on that Day shall not be a thing forgotten in the Book and not one completely forgotten in the precincts of the [Sinaitic] Fire (cf. Q.19:23).  [19]  [SWB->]  "And you shall not say, `How can he [the Bāb] speak on behalf of God when his age, in very truth, is no more than twenty five?' Hearken ye [unto me]!


By the Lord of the heaven and of the earth!

I, verily, am a servant of God (`abd Allāh). He [God] hath given me clear, signs from the presence of the expected Remnant of God (baqiyyat Allāh). [21]  This is my Book which, in very truth, was inscribed in the Mother Book in the presence of God. [22]  And He, verily, hath made me blessed wheresoever I may be, and hath enjoined on me [the observance of the obligatory] prayer (ṣalwa) and fortitude [patience] so long as I shall live on earth amongst you.' (Q.19:29-31)" (SWB:47).  [23]  Those there are who, outside of the Truth, call upon God [to communicate to them] some small portion of the narratives (al-aḥadīth)  in the style of the Gate (fī sha'n al-bāb) above [beyond] the Gate (`alā al-bāb).  [24]  Do they reckon that they will be able to produce the like of this Book which manifestly, in verv truth, cometh from God? (cf. Q.17:88). [25]  By, in very truth, the True One! Such as say `No God is there save God alone. One without partner. None is there like unto Him' [cf.Q.112] have not [produced] the like [of these revealed verses]. He God, is One Who is, in very truth, is Ancient.  [26]  If men and spirits (al-jinn) were to gather together in order to produce the like of this Book they, in very truth, would be unable to do so.  [27]  And if the people of the earth and their like should, in very truth, back them up with support, they, by thy Lord, the True One,  would prove unable to imitate even a few of its letters and be incapable of interpreting even a part of its mystery  even to the extant of the skin of a date stone (cf. Q.17:88).  [28]  God verily, sent it [this Book] down through the power which cometh from Him.  The people are not capable of producing something resembling even a letter of it; either the like of it or according to a contrary likeness. [29] That [Book] forms a part cf the tales of the Unseen with which We inspired thee [the Bāb] for thou wast with God, the One Praised, in the vicinity of the [Sinaitic] Fire.  [30]  On the Day of Resurrection thy Lord will assuredly grant thee [the Bāb] the judgment of the Truth as one, in very truth, raised aloft above all who are before Him.  [31] [Then shalt thou] Cause such as thou will to enter [into] the Mercy of God and turn aside such of the unjust as surround Gehenna and, as befits the Truth, leave them kneeling in the fire [of hell] (Q.19:68,72). Do they believe in but a part of the Book and disbelieve in this part? (cf. Q. 2:85) [32]  Did God give you leave [to adopt this attitiude] or have you devised a lie against God in view of the fact that you, acting contrary to the Truth,  were, in very truth, seduced by the knowledge of Satan? [33]  We, verily, sent down the Remembrance (al-dhikr).  And God and His angels, in very truth, preserve thee [the Bāb].


Be ye fearful [of God, O] servants of God

and, as befits the Truth, sincere in the religion of God. [35]  Those who are fearful of their Lord with respect to the Unseen (bi'l-ghayb) are, in very Truth, reckoned pure in the estimation of the All Merciful and His chosen ones in the viclnity of the Gate (al- bāb),  [36]  So shall God teach them about their religious duties which they publicly disputed amongst themselves in accordance with the Truth which is near at hand. [37]  God, verily, hath revealed unto me that you should love God. Then follow me [the Bāb], in very truth,  in this pure (ḥānīf an [Abrahamic]) religion (al-millat) which accords with the Truth from the True One unto the creation (cf. Q.2:135; 3:95; 4:124, etc.).  [38]  The Lord Who is God, in very Truth saith, `I, verily am, as befits the Truth, compassionate towards My servants the believers among the people of the Gate (ahl al-bāb).'  [39] So exalted be God, Elevated and Mighty above that which the unjust say about the verses of the Gate (al-bāb). [40]  Say: `The Cause of God (amr Allāh) hath come but you do not seek to hasten its realization.' [41]  Yet is the [triumph of the] Cause of God (amr Allāh) near at hand. The promise of God hath, in very truth, been realized.



 QA IX:15-17 is translated in SWB:47.


This authorized translation reads: “[15] DO not say, `How can He speak of God while in truth His age is no more than twenty five?' Give ye ear unto Me. [16] I swear by the Lord of the heavens and of the earth: I am verily a servant of God. I have been made the Bearer of irrefutable proofs from the presence of Him Who is the long expected Remnant of God. [17] Here is My Book before your eyes, as indeed inscribed in the presence of God in the Mother Book. God hath indeed made Me blessed, wheresoever I may be, and hath enjoined upon Me to observe prayer and fortitude so long as I shall live on earth amongst you.”