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QA. XX [20] Sūrat al-Nur (The Surah of Light) on Q. 12:19


Part  XX [20]

      سورة النور  

  Sūrat al-Nur

(The Surah of Light) 


Qur'ān 12: 19

Translation Stephen N. Lambden  UC Merced,

1982-2020 - IN PROGRESS - Last uploaded 12-04-2020.


بسم اللّه الرّحمن الرّحيم

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate


"Then came travellers, and they sent one of them, a water-drawer, who let down his bucket. 'Good news!' he said. 'Here is a young man.' So they hid him as merchandise; but God knew what they were doing." (Q. 12:19 Trans. Arberry). 




[Abjad = 1+30+40+ [200]+10 = [2]81]

[4]  Hearken ye unto that which He hath inspired (w-h-y) thee from thy Lord! Thou art in the Sacred Vale (b'l-wad al-muqaddas) upon the Point of Theophanic Fire (nuqtat al-nar) within the  stricture of Ice (kabad al-thalj) nigh the True One (al-haqq) and God made to be furthermost (aqsa Allah) whatsoever extended furthest (amsa) for such hath evidently (mashhud an) ever been the locus of Origin-Genesis (al-bada') in the Point of the Seal (nuqtat al-khatm). And God, no God is there except Him. He hath ever been All-Encompassing (al-muhit an) of every thing (kull shay')

[5] We, we, with the permission of God, the True One, bestowed dominion (al-mulk) [al-malik = kingship] upon whomsoever We willeth among Our servants. This without obvious reason (sabab) for God doth not ordain, in Truth, in very Truth,  any change (tabdil an) through His Word (kalimat), [6] And God, We indeed fashioned on His behalf through the Inaccessible Name (bi'l-ism al-mani`), a Powerful Status (makin an) and when Our True Cause (amri-na al-haqq) cometh all of a sudden (baghtat), then shall He rapidly (fawwar) shed illumination. in Truth, in very Truth,  upon the hearts (al-qulub) through this luminous, mighty Bab (al-bab nur an `azim an)! [7] On this [eschatological] Day He will extend happiness (farah) unto the believers, in Truth, in very Truth, through the Encounter with Us (liqa'i-na), a [token of] His Victory (nasr) and a great rejoicing (surur an).

[8] The hands of the Jews and the Christians have indeed been chained up [cf. Q. 5:64] as a consequence  of what they are saying about Us,  falsely denying, deceiving (ghurur an)! [9] Yet God hath indeed made Our hands to be fully outstretched (mabsutat) for We are crying out whatsoever He willeth through Our servant (`abd), in Truth, in very Truth, a great deal (kathir an) through this Bab. [10]  And We withold from whomsoever We will amongst Our praiseworthy servants, in Truth, in very Truth, a just measure. [11]  It is not fitting for anyone that they should utter words against Us, voicing something contrary to the Truth, mere flowery discourse or something deceitful (zakhraf an wa ghurur an).


 اعلموا عباد اللّه

The servants of God were aware

that the Luminous (munir an) Light (al-nur) hath come unto thee from God, the Exalted, the True One, the Powerful! [13] This to the end that thou might desire and seek out a measure of His Bounty in accordance with what God hath decreed, in Truth, in very Truth, hath destined for His [new] era [dispensation, country] (dawlat). [14] Do not hold back on thy jouneyings unto this Bab, in Truth, in very Truth, near-at-hand! [15] God is All-Knowing but thou art not at all knowing through the knowledge of the Book  about this Bab! [16]  And We, we indeed know, in Truth, in very Truth, such as shall attain (al-waridin) unto this Bab; among whomsoever We will amonst Our servants and whomsover is one exquisite [excellent, pure] (naqiyy) [celebrated] within the Mother Archetypal Book (umm al-kitab). [17]  And We, we instituted judgment upon the tyrannical (al-zalimin) through the hellfire of  al-Jahim [blazing Hellfire] (nar al-jahim), as decreed through the Wondrous Cause of God, the Exalted!


يا عباد الرّحمن

O servants of the All-Merciful!

God fashioned within thee something from Our selves, a [pre-eternal] remembrance (dhikr an) and [an expression of good-tidings (bushur)/ a `human being' (bashar an)like unto thee if that is thou art among the [genuine] lovers of God. [19] So follow ye Him such that God, the True One, will love thee, for the promise of God (wa`d Allah) hath ever been fulfilled [registered] within the Mother Archetypal Book (umm al-kitab). [20] We indeed sent down, revealed this Book on behalf of God, a thing Blessed (mubaraka an) for Our servant (`abd) [ the Bab]. So be ye assured about him and render him victorious on the [eschatological] Day when He will cry out on behalf of God amongst thee, one praiseworthy (mahmud an) nigh the land of the inmost heart (ard al-fu'ad), [21] So by God! the True One. If thou should disbelieve in Our Dhikr (Remembrance) after the Dhikr (Remembrance) hath come unto thee with established evidence (al-burhan), One Powerful from thy Lord, then shall We indeed cause thee on the Day of Resurrection (yawm al-qiyama), to taste the greatest torment of God in the blazing abyss of the hellfire of Hajim.


 اعلموا عباد اللّه

So Know ye well, O servants of God!

God, We indeed have bestowed bounty upon thee by means of the Bounty of Our own Logos-Self (bi-fadl nafsi-hi). [And We indeed have bestowed bounty upon thee by means of the Bounty of Our own Logos-Self (bi-fadl nafsi-hi)]. And We indeed shed the Bounty  of Our servant (`abd) [the Bab] upon thee as wth the Bounty which cometh from Us unto thee, for thou, in Truth, in very Truth,  with respect to [the appearence of] His verses, remained patient (sabur an). [23] And We indeed have bestowed the bounty upon Our servant (`abd) [the Bab] upon thee by means of thy earlier Book, in Truth, in very Truth, by means of  the numerous excellences of the Mightiest Name of God (fara'id ism Allah al-akbar). [24]  So be ye generous in [alms giving in] the Path of God with respect to that which God and His Apostle (rasul) loveth, both secretely and openly. This such that thou, on the Day of Resurrection (yawm al-qiyama), might be gathered together (mahshur an) [having fulfilled] the written requests [needs] of the believers (astur al-mu'minin). [25] And whomsoever turneth aside from Our Dhikr (Remembrance), God shall never accept for him any aspect of his deeds. Satan hath ever been, in very Truth, after his manner, a sharing partner thereat (sharik an). [26] In the estimation of God, relative to this Bab, such hath ever been one who in opposition [who repels,  is rebutted] (mardud an). [27] And We, verily, We, in very Truth,  made him [the Dhikr (Remembrance)/ the Bab] to be Infallible (al-`ismat) within the hearts (qulub) of those who believe in Our verses (ayat) and who prostrate before God, their Creator, at dawn and at eventide, on account of this Bab, the Exalted (al-`aliyy). And He is God who hath ever been One Mighty, Praiseworthy.  [28] Now be ye pious [Godfearing]! O servants of the All-Merciful! And Perform ye the much good (al-khayr) before God, the True One.


  يا عباد الرّحمن 

 O servants of the All-Merciful!

Take ye firm hold of thine adornment [zaynat. `be clothed'] at every time of worship [cf. Q.7:31a; on entering every mosque]. Such is the decree of God amongst thee, which is, in Truth, in very Truth [also] of this Bab (dhalik al-bab) since this is that which was indeed ordained in the Mother [Archetypal] Book (umm al-kitab).


و انّا نحن قد ارسلنا سيّارة الحبّ باذن اللّه الی هذ الجبّ فاد لی بنظر الفؤاد دلوه قال يا بشری هذا لهو الحقّ هذا غلام ما رأت العيون بمثله و يا اهل العماء اسروه بضاعة معدلة عن التّوحيد لتكونوا باللّه العلیّ حول النّار مذكوراً ه

[30] And We, we indeed sent, with the permission of God, the Caravan [Travelers] of Love (siyarat al-hubb) unto this pit [well] (al-jubb) [those that is] who "let down his bucket" (fa'adla dalwahu). "He said, "Good news!" (bushra). [Q.12:19] This is indeed the Truth (al-haqq)! This Youth (ghulam) for eyes have never visioned his like (bi-mithlihi)!

و يا اهل العماء

And, O people of the theophanic Cloud (ahl al-`ama')!

اسروه بضاعة معدلة عن التّوحيد لتكونوا باللّه العلیّ حول النّار مذكوراً ه

"They hid him [Joseph = Husayn = the Bab] as merchandise" (wasarruhu bi-da`at) [Q.12:19] administering justice though circumventing the Divine Unity (ma`dalat `an al-tawhid). This to the end that they might be in God (bi-llahi), the Exalted, persons recalling being (madhkur an) nigh the Theophanic Fire (hawl al-nar).

[31] And We, we intended by this "Youth" (al-ghukam), the Greatest Word (al-kalimat al-akbar), this self-annihilated `Arabian [or Arabian Youth]  (al-fani [fata] al-`arabi an) one purified upon the land of the Inmost-Heart (`ala ard al-fu'ad zakiyy an). [32] God did indeed fashion him in the depths of the pit [hiddenness of the well] (ghiyabat al-jubb), in Truth, in very Truth,  nigh the Theophanic Fire (al-nar), one preserved (hafiz an) upon a Mountain of Ice (jabal al-bard)


يا ايّها المؤمنون

O Thou Believers!

  اتّقوا اللّه ان تشتروه بثمن معدودة من غير لجّة الاحديّة البحتة و كان اللّه بما تعلمون بصيراً   

Fear ye God! They sold him [Joseph = Husayn = the Bab] for a [paltry] price determined (bi-thaman ma`dudatin) [cf. Q.12:20] regardless of (min ghayr) [his position within] the abyss of the Divine Oneness (lujjat al-ahadiyya). And God hath ever been, as thou art aware, Insightful (basir an).


اعلموا عباد اللّه

علی الحقّ بالحقّ ان تنظروه بغير عين افئدتكم فقد اشتر يتموه بثمن بخس دراهم معدودة و ما يحكم اللّه لكم فی الكتاب بعلم الذّكر و ما كنتم علی سرّ الفؤاد موروداً ه

The servants of God were well-aware, in Truth, in very Truth,  that they [cf. the Midianites] observed him [Joseph = Husayn = the Bab] with other than the eye of their imost hearts (`ayn af'idatikum) for they indeed bartered [sold] him [Joseph = Husayn = the Bab] away for "a paltry price" (bi-thaman bakhs) [Q.12:20a] but "a few dirhams determined" (darahim ma`dudat) [Q.12:20b]. And God did not stipulate for thee in the Book, any  knowledge of the Dhikr (Remembrance) [the Bab] for thou did not attain to the secret mystery of the Inmost Heart (sirr al-fu'ad).


  فح انتم تأتوننا علی آية قميصه بدم كذب و انّا نقول بل سوّلت لكم انفسكم فصبر جميل و اللّه المستعان علی ما انتم تصفون فی عبدنا علی غير الحقّ كذباً و غروراً ه

A monstrous noise! For thou shall indeed present Us with a sign-token (ayat) upon his (Joseph's) garment (qamis), besmirched with "false blood" (bi-damm kadhb) [Q.12:18a] And We, we say. `Nay! It is otherwise for thou thyselves did this! "So fortitude [patience] is best [beautiful) (fa-sabr jamil) and God is Sufficient Help (al-musta`an) despite what thou (`ala ma antum) describe [impute] [Q.12:18b] about Our servant (`abdina) which is other then the Truth, a deceitful, lying falsehood (kadhb an wa gharur an). 


 وان كنتم تعرفوه بعين اللّه فيكم فقد اهتديتم بمثل ما اهتدوا الّذين من قبلكم و لقد تؤتوننی علی قميصه بدم كذب شبه علی لون الحمراء رفيقاً

And thou, if thou should comprehend him with the eye of God (bi-`ayn Allah) within thyselves, then thou would indeed be directed aright after the manner of that to which such were appropriately guided who came before thee. And thou indeed did present me with his garment (qamis) besmirched with "false blood" (bi-damm kadhb) [Q.12:18a] which seemed to be delicate [refined] (raqiq an), though [dyed] of a crimson color (lawn al-hamra').


  و لكنّ اللّه قد قبّل عنكم هذا الذّكر علی الفضل لانّكم لا تستطيعون بغيره ابدا علی الحقّ بالحقّ تبديلاً

Yet God accepted from thee this Dhikr (Remembrance) as a result of the Divine Grace (`ala al-fadl) though thou did not for evermore (abad an) prove capable of change (tabdil an), in Truth, in very Truth,  aside from him.


فاحفظوا سرّ اللّه فيكم فانّ اللّه قد جعل لكم مقاماً علی الصّراط موقوفاً ه

Wherefore did they safeguard the secret Mystery of God (sirr Allah) amongst thee for God did indeed provide for thee an upstanding (mawquf an) station (maqam an) upon the Path (al-sirat).


 و لاتؤتوا الحكمة الی السّفهاء لانّهم قد آمنوا باللّه العلیّ و سرّه علی لجّة الضّعف ضعيفاً ه

And they did not bestow Wisdom (al-hikmat) upon the foolish (al-sufaha') for they had indeed believed in God, the Exalted (al-`aliyy) and his secret mystery [hiddenness] (sirr), pertaining to the abyss of the weakness of the double punishment [??] (lujjat al-da`if da`if an).


يا عباد الرّحمن

O ye servants of the All-Merciful!

  فاتّقوا اللّه فی ودائعنا فيكم واحفظوه كما تحفظون انفسكم حفظا علی الحقّ بالحقّ جميلاً ه

Fear ye God! with repect to Our Summoner amongst thee and preserve ye him after the fashion in which ye safely preserved thyselves, in Truth, in very Truth, befittingly (jamil an). 


 فان لم تستطيعوا فردّوه الی اللّه الحقّ و القوّه وراء قلزم الحمراء فی عالم العماء و اكتموه فی قطب البهاء علی الطّور السّيناء بالحقّ

Thou did not prove patient but returned him unto God, the True One and One Powerful beyond the Crimson Sea [Qulzum, Clysma or `Red Sea'] (qulzum al-hamra') in the universe of the Theophanic Cloud (`alam al-`ama') whereupon they prudently concealed (k-t-m) him, in Truth, within the Qutb (Pivot) of Baha' (Glory-Beauty) upon Mount Sinai (`ala al-tur al-sina'). 


فسوف تجدون كلّ اعمالكم عند اللّه فی هذا الباب فی كتاب ممهور علی مهر الذّكر مستورا محفوظاً اللّه الحقّ قد فطركم بامره فهل تجدون اليوم من دون اللّه العلیّ ظهيراً

So will they discover  all of their deeds [to be acceptable] before God as they pertain to this Bab inscribed in a sealed [signed] ledger [Book] (kitab mamhur) relating to the dowry of  the Dhikr (Remembrance) (`ala mahr al-dhikr), preserved by God, the True One. He indeed diffused innate religiosity (f-t-r) within thee through His Cause [at His Command] (bi-amrihi) for how, otherwise, would thou become aware of the [advent of the eschatological] Day without [the assistance of] God, the Exalted, the Manifest?



Select Notes and Comments


Stephen Lambden

On QA XX:4  ... Thou art in the Sacred Vale (b'l-wad al-muqaddas) upon the Point of Theophanic Fire (nuqtat al-nar) within the stricture of Ice (kabad al-thalj) nigh the True One (al-haqq) and God made to be Furthermost (aqsa Allah)  cf. here  Q.17:1 the  masjid al-aqsa, the Furthermost Mosque in Jerusalem, one of the stages of the isra' or night journey ,,,

At QA XX: 22 commencing  اعلموا عباد اللّه the following words are (erronously) repeated twice - ان اللّه قد فضّلنا  عليكم بفضل نفسه

 و انّا قد فضّلنا عليكم بفضل نفسه  The original scribe had largely crossed out this repeated line ,,