Skip to content Skip to navigation
See our Campus Ready site for the most up to date information about instruction.Campus ReadyCOVID Help

The Commentaries of the Bab on the Islamic basmala.

 

The Commentaries of the Bab on the Islamic basmala.

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيم

The Tafsīr [ḥuruf al-] Basmala (= Bismillāh al-Raḥman al-Raḥīm) of Sayyid `Ali Muhammad the Bab (d. 1850 CE).

Stephen Lambden UCMerced.

In progress 2016

The Tafsīr ḥurūf al-basmala of the Bāb

The Tafsīr ḥurūf al-basmala of the Bab begins with a new basmala formula. It reads,

      بسم الله البديع الذيلا اله الا هو

In the Name of God,

the Wondrous  (al-badi`) Who, no God is there except Him.

The occurrence of the divine Name  البديع  al-badi` here is important in that this Divine Attribute is expressive of God's  power as Fashioner, Creator and Wonderful Originator of  God-engerdered revolution. It is fitting that a messianic claimant refashion the Islamic basmala in this way. It is reminiscent of Qayyum al-asma' ...

The text of the Tafsīr ḥurūf al-basmala proper commences as follows:

صبحاته قدجعل لظهوره لخلقه اربع مقامات المشاراليها

Loosely translated this reads,

All Glorification (subhān) be unto Him for He hath fashioned His creation [through His very creation] for His theophanic Manifestation (li-zuhurihi) alotting four stations [levels](maqamat) that are especially pertinent thereto (maqamāt al-mashar ilayhi).

 

All Glorification (subuhāt) be unto Him for He hath fashioned for His theophanic Manifestation (li-zuhurihi) relative to His  Creation,  four stations [levels] for the aforementioned [realm of creation] (maqamāt al-mashar ilayhi)...

 

بديع  al-badi` here is important in that this word is expressive of God's  power as fashioner, creator and wonderful originator of revolution. It is fitting that a messianic claimant refashion the Islamic basmala in this way. It is reminiscent of Qayyum al-asma' ADD.

The text proper commences as follows:

صبحاته قد جعل لظهوره لخلقه اربع مقامات المشاراليها

Loosely translated (ms. texts vary) this reads,

All Glorification (subhān) be unto Him for He hath fashioned His creation [through His act of creation] for His theophanic Manifestation (li-zuhurihi) alotting four stations [levels](maqamat) that are especially pertinent thereto (maqamāt al-mashar ilayhi).

 

All Glorification (subuhāt) be unto Him for He hath fashioned for His theophanic Manifestation (li-zuhurihi) relative to His  Creation,  four stations [levels] for the aforementioned [realm of creation] (maqamāt al-mashar ilayhi)...