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The Haykal al-Dīn (Book of the Temple of Religion)

 

(The Book of the Temple of Religion)

The (Lawḥ‑i ) Haykal al‑dīn  (1266 / early‑mid 1850)

Stephen Lambden

UC Merced

In progress 06-08-2021.

 The (Lawḥ‑i ) Haykal al‑dīn  (1266/early‑mid 1850) is an Arabic compendium of Bābī law in 8 wāḥids ("unities"), each except the last having 19 babs. It has been published by the Azali Babis in the mid. 1960s.  Baha'i sources seem to neither cite nor recognize this important text representative of the latest thought of the Bāb.  Within the Haykal al-Din are many examples of the labyrinthine and novel legalistic enactments of the Bāb, many of which are eschatologically charged or designed to `prepare the way' for the advent of man yuẓhiru-hu Allāh. In order to give some idea of the teachings and laws formulated by the Bāb during the latest period of his life the following lines summarize a few sections of the Haykal al‑dīn. 

  •  The age of maturity and from which marriage is permissible is eleven (I:5, 8:15).
  •  That when the year 662 of the new Bābī calendar is reached contemporary men of learning will be viewed as being like 11 year olds (1:16)
  • The year will consist of of 19 months each with 19 days (= 361 days, 2:3 );
  •  To write the Bāb's verses in talismanic pentacles (hayākil) and circles (dawā'ir) (2:10);
  •   To write a testament (kitāb wisāya) for man yuẓhiru-hu Allāh  since one may, on the (next) "day of resurrection" come to believe in God and in his signs or verses (2:13);
  •   To read nothing other than the Bāb's verses (3:15);
  •   That the future Bābī king, as a manifestation of the wrath of God (maẓhar qahr Allāh),  should put all non‑Bābīs to death (4:9);
  •  That children under the age of 5 should not be beaten; those over 5 may only be beaten lightly 5 times since the child may be man yuẓhiru-hu Allāh (the messianic `Him whom God shall make manifest') (6:11);
  •  To cease work when man yuẓhiruhu Allāh appears, not working save at  that which he permits (7:5);
  •  To present 19 precious stones to the first believers ("first wāḥid") in man yuẓhiruhu Allāh  (8:5b).

 

 

 

 

 

Haykal al-Din (The Temple of Religion)

of

Sayyid `Ali Muhammad Shirazi, the Bab (1819-1850).

Translaton

Stephen Lambden UCMerced,

1980s + 2018. In Progress and Under Revision.

Last updated 06-08-2021.

 

 HAYKAL AL-DIN

(THE TEMPLE OF RELIGION)

al-Wāḥid al-Awwal (The first Unity).

Yā Huwa

O He - He is!

 Bismillāh al-amna` al-aqdas.

In the name of God the Inaccessible the Most Holy

I verily, I am indeed God!  No God is there except I, Myself. Whatsoever is other than Me is My creation. Say: O my creation! Thou shouldst serve me. I created thee, provided for thee and gave thee security. I bestowed life upon thee, raised thee up and made thee to be a manifestation of mine own Logos-Self (nafs). This such that thou might, in My sight, divulge my verses (āyātī). So do thou supplicate me, all of My creation, for such is My religion, the Straight Path, Mighty and Transcendent. I created all things (kull shay’) for thee and I made thee to be a Sovereign (sulṭān) over all the worlds.  I gave authorization to whomsoever desires to enter into my religion on account of My Oneness (tawḥīd) and recites it on account of Thy Dhikr (Remembrance). So make mention, with my permission of that which We made to be the `Letters of the the True One’ (ḥurūf al-ḥaqq) and that which was sent down in the Bayān constituting My religion. By so doing one thereby enters the Riḍwān of My sincere servants [of God].

The Sun (al-shams) is a sign (āya) from before Me to the end that in every manifestation [theophany] (ẓuhūr) with the likeness of its dawning-forth, He may be witnessed by all My believing servants. I verily, created Thee through Thyself  and all other things through Thy Speech [Utterance, Word] (qawl), a Command (amr) on Our part for We are such as ordain. We made Thee to be the Alpha and the Omega (Beginning and the End) as well as the Seen and the Hidden. We are indeed even as such as do ordain. There was nothing that was raised up for the sake of religion save Thee! Nothing was revealed of the Book save it was for Thee. There was nothing that was raised up for the sake of religion save Thee. Nothing was revealed of the Book save it was for Thee. Such was something determined through the instrumentality of the one who is the Help in Peril, the One Beloved.

The Bayān is Our Proof (ḥujjat) unto All-things (kull shay’) containing His verses which are inimitable for all the worlds.  This applies to all of Our verses be they of the past or of those to come for they are the likeness of that which Thou, this moment, is evocative of all of Our Proof (hujjat). We cause to enter whomsoever We willeth into Our Sacred, Mighty Paradises (jannat quds `azim). Such is that whioch We originate in every dispensation (zuhur) through the Logos-Command (min al-amr), a Logos-Command (amr an) which cometh from Us for We, We are indeed of the Wise Ones (al-hakimin). We did not originate any religion (din) except it was created subsequent to a promise which cometh from Us! We were indeed above everything one expressive of compelling Power (al-qahirin).

And We, verily, made the Gates of this Religion (abwab dhalik al-din) to be according to the number of all things - Kull shay' (= 361). This according to the likeness of the number of the "condition" (mithl `adad al-hawl = [31]+8+6+30 = 42) such that for every day (yawm) there exists a Gate (bab an).This such that everything might enter therein, into its Supreme Paradise (jannat al-a`la). And this to the end that there be in every computation a Wāhid (= 19 = abjad 6+1+8+4 = 19) expressive of a Dhikr (Remembrance) [mention]  of a "Letter" (harf) of the Primordial Letters (min huruf al-ulya) before God, the Lord of the heavens and Lord of the earth as well as Lord of Everything - Kull shay' - the Lord of what is seen and of what is not seen, the [very] Lord of all the worlds. And We, We do  indeed express a Divine Ordinance (al-fard).

Bāb al-awwal (The First Gate).

God hath indeed testified unto his own Logos-Self for He indeed, no God is there except Him, is the Lord of All-things (kulli shay’). Whatsoever is other than Him was created for Him. Before Him all are His servants and the Essence of the Seven Letters (dhāt ḥurūf al-sab`a) is the Gate of God (bāb Allāh) unto whomsoever is in the heavens and upon the earth as well as whatsoever lieth between them. All do indeed obtain guidance from the verses of God which originate with Him.

Now in every Bāb (Gate) is the Dhikr (Remembrance) of the Name of the True One (dhikr ism al-ḥaqq) which originates with Us. And the Dhikr (Remembrance) is one of the Letters of Living (ḥurūf al-ḥayy) since they have returned again unto the primary Life (ḥayyat al-ūlā) through Muhammad, the Messenger of God, along that is with those who bear witness on behalf of God (shahadā min `ind Allāh). Then also the gates of guidance who were created in the eschatological era (al-nishāt al-ākhira) just as God had promised in the Qur’ān. Until, that is, there shall be made manifest the number of Wāḥid (=19) in the Primary [Islamic] Wāḥid (= 19). This is a Divine Bounty from before Us for We are indeed among such as are Gracious (fāḍilīn).

This is the Primary Wāḥid (“Unity” =19) of the Wāḥid of Enumeration (= 19) which is indicated in the [first] month of Bahā’ ("Glory" = abjad 9, the first month BE). It indeed resulted in the genesis of Us (badā' anā) for such was Creation (al-khalq) through Him! We  assuredly caused "All"  to return [be restored] through Him, as promised on Our part for We are indeed supremely powerful above All (kull) [everything].  Wherefore was everything numbered (`-d-d) by means of ennumeration (al-a`dād) by virtue of that Wāhid (bi-dhalik al-wāhid), "Unity" ( = abjad 19) for subsequent to this [ennumeration] nothing needed to be computed (h-s-y) and prior to this the Leters of the Wāhid (Divine Unicity) had not attained perfection in the Primordial Verse (fi'l-ayat al-ulya). And they [the letters] were present by virtue of the proximity of their inmost hearts (qarb afi'idatihim) relative, that is to "Us" [betwixt Our hands]!  Naught was visioned therein save al-Wāhid, the "Unity" ( = abjad 19), outside [that is] of any [further] computation. Wherefore does God expound the computation of kull shay' ("Everything") in the Book (al-kitab) perchance the people might be thankful during the days of their Lord. 

[Persian Commentary 1]

Yā Huwa

O He - He is!

The Isolated [Apophatic] Essence (jawhar-i mujarrad) expresses  this Vāhid, the "Unity" ( = abjad 19). Thus was it that which God, Exalted and Glorified be He, hath forever been and will forever remain in the exaltation of His Pre-Eternity (`uluv-i azal) and the sublimity of His Own Pre-Existence (sumuv-i qidam-i khud). And Creation (khalq) hath forever been and will forever remain  locked in the frozen locale of its own realms of being (dar suqi`a`-i imkān-i khud). And yet in every era (zamān) God, exalted and glorified be He, ordained the appearance of a Book (kitab) and a [messianic] Proof (hujjat) for the creatures. And He stated [in the words of Jesus, Revelation 12:6b; cf. 11:3], "And in the year one thousand, two hundred and seventy [sixty = 1260 AH]" after the rising up [commissioning] of Muhammad, the Messenger of God (rasul Allāh) [-10 AH = c.612 CE], a Book (kitāb) - the Bayān - and a Proof (hujjat)- the "Essence of the Seven Letters" [the Bāb] (dhāt-i huruf-i sab`) [=`Ali Muhammad = 7 letters, 3+4) - shall be established". And the Gates of Religion (abwāb-i din) expressive of nineteen (`adad nuzdih), a Vāhid, the "Unity" ( = abjad 19), shall be realized. And in the Primal Vāhid, the "Unity" ( = abjad 19) is established  the Oneness of the Divine Essence (tawhid-i dhāt) and of the Divine Attributes (sifāt), the Divine Actions (af`āl) and the [mode of the divinizing theology of human] Servitude (`ibādat). And the midmost-heart of this Gate (bab) is  man yuẓhiru-hu Allāh (Him whom God shall make manifest) and His "Letters of the Living" (huruf-i hayy-i u) through whom is established a Vāhid, the "Unity" ( = abjad 19)! And prior to His appearence there was established the [era of the] Essence of the Seven Letters (dhat-i huruf-i sab`) [ = `Ali Muhammad, 3+4 letters, indicating the Bab] with the Primordial Letters [of the Living] (huruf-i ulya)...