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The Bab دعای الف Du`ā Alf `The Supplication of the "Thousand".

 

دعای الف

The Bab  دعای الف  Du`ā Alf , `The Supplication of the "Thousand [Months]"'.

Stephen Lambden, UC Merced.

In Progress - 19-01-2021

Introductory Note.

The Arabic text in the Princeton Babi ms. 211 is referred to as `Sharh-i Hamd / Tafsir al-Hamd (= Q.1) and other Tablets (alwah) from the Bab'.  Here the Du`a Alf  (?) - though described in the ms. in a Persian opening prefaced note as a `Du`ā in the presence of  the friends (dustan), [for] Aqa Sayyid Husayn [Yahya] `Arrah [?]',  extends for eight substantial pages (136r-139v) yet it does not appear to contain all of the verses allegedly cited from an unidentified ms. in the printed version of this text cited by Māzandarāni (in AA1, see below).

In his invaluable 1992 `Sources for Early Babi Doctrine aand History', Denis MacEoin has the following paragraph pertaining to the Du`ā  work considered here:

Du`ā-yi alf
"Another work of approximately the same period [May 1844-Sept. 1846] and of related interest is the short but highly significant Du`ā-yi alf, in which the Bāb speaks in much more specific terms about his denial of any station for himself. According to Māzandarāni, who reproduces (with omissions) the text of this prayer, 97 [= Asrār al-āthār, vol. 1, pp. 179-82]. it was written in the second year of the Bāb's career (1261-62/1845-46), during his period of dissimulation. Māzandarāni does not indicate the provenance or wbereabouts of the original used by him" (Sources, 66-7).

PDf. Du`a Alf - Princeton ms 211.pdf

The Arabic text of the بدعای الف  Du`ā Alf of the Bab, might perhaps be translated `The Supplication of the "Thousand"'. This if there is reference or allusion to the "months" mentioned in the following third verse of the brief Qur'anic (5 verse) Meccan Surat al-Qadr (the Surah of the Decree, Destiny, Power... Q. 97):

"The Laylat al-Qadr ("Night of Power") is better than a thousand (alf) months (shahr)" (Q.97:2).

Reference to this Qur'anic verse is made in the Princeton ms. of the Du`a Alf though this does not appear to be the same ms. very selectively cited by Mazandarani (in AA1: 179f).

Translation from the Princeton ms. 136v - 139r  Ms. 211.

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

Praised be to God who created the heavens and the earth through His Logos-Command (amr) then such as believed in God and His verses. So shall Thy chosen ones be gathered up unto God [on the Day of Resurrection].

O God! How can I befittingly supplicate Thee when Thou do never draw nigh? This while Thou can never be known through aught save Thyself! Eternally art Thou Existent (kā'in) on account of an Image (mithl) that is not really of Thyself! Nothing is directly through Thee nor besides Thee expressing anything!

So Glorified be Thou! For Thou art indeed God! The Isolated (al-fard) the One (al-ahad), the All-Perpetual (al-samad)!  For nothing establishes Thine own Unity other than Thine Own Self. Thou art indeed One Expressing Justice (`adil). For All-Eternity there was nothing before Thee for Thou wert ever Thou, Thine Own Self. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The text in Mirza Asad-Allah Fadil-i Māzandarāni (d.1957).

The text  cited (many omissions) by Mirza Asad-Allah Fadil-i Māzandarāni (d.1957) in the first volume of his (5 volume) Asrār al-āthār, is as follows (vol.1 page179f).

ديگر ابلاغيّه معروف بدعای الف كه راجع به عقايد طبق عقايد اماميّه در مقابل اعتراض و اقترای معاندين نشردادند قوله 

بسم اللّه الّرحمن الّرحيم

الحمد للّه الّذی خلق السّموات و الارض بامره ... اللّهّم انّی اشهدك الاّن .. و بانّك لتعلم انّك قد خلقت الكل بمشيّتك وهی اوّل كلمة آمنت بك ... الّلهّم ثبّت فؤادی فی حبّك فانیّ ما ادعيت فی شأن الاّ طاعتك ولا ارجو احداً سواك ... ولا اعتقد فی شأن الاّ بما نزلت فی القرآن علی حبينك محمّد رسول اللّه و خاتم النّبيّين من ولاية ائمّة العدل ---  ۱۸۰ --- و اتّباعهم و الاقتداءِ باثارهم و البراءِة من اعدائهم والّذين يسكنون فی فضلهم و انّك لتعلم يا الهی بان لاوليائك فی كّل شأن كانوا حفّاظاً لدينهم و اوعية لحكمهم عبادك الچذين فرضت طاعتهم و محبّتهم .. وانّك قد تفضّلت علی ... من حقايق العلوم ما كان شأنك عند العطاءِ والا جابة للمؤمنين بشأن الايات والّدعوات ... بل انّ كّل حّق ينزل من عندك انّك تطلق عليه كلمة الوحی بما نزلّت فی القرآن حيث قلت و قولك الحّق . و اوحينا موسی و من معه اجمعين و مثل ما اوحيت الی امّ موسی ثّم الی النحل .. و ما انا ادعيت كلمة وحی ... و قالوا انّه ادعی الولاية و اختيها قتلهم اللّه بما افتروا ... ما ادعيت ولا نطقت الاّ العبودية ...الّذين يعتقدون فی الائمّة دون العبودية وينسبون الی شيعتهم دون ذلك فجزائهم كان نار جهنم ... انّ بعض النّاس قد افتروا عّلی كلمة البابيّه المنصوصة و ادّعوالروية لنفسی لعنهم اللّه بما افتروا ما كان لبقّية اللّه صاحب الّزمان بعد الابواب الاربعه باب منصوص ولا نائب مخصوص و من ادّعی الرءوية بدون بيّنة فرض علی الكّل بان يكّذبوه و يقتلوه الّلّهم انّی --- ۱۸۱ --- اشهدك بانّی ما ادعيت رؤية حجّتك الحّق ولا بابيّة نفسه بنصّ من قبل ... و انّی لو نسبت الی نفسی كلمة البابيّه ما قصدت الاّ ذكر كلمة الخير حيث قد قرأت فی حديث ائمّة العدل بانّ المؤمن لا يوصف ... و اشهد انّه قد اتبّع و حيك و بلّع رسالاتك و عرج بجسمه الی السّماءِ و جاهد فی سبيل محبّتك حتّی فاز بوجهك و اشهد ان حلاله حلال الی يوم القيامة ولم ينسخ شريعته ولم يبدل منهاجه و من زاد حرفاً او نقص شيئاً من شريعته فيخرج فی الحين من طاعتك و انّ الوحی بمثل ما نزل عليه قد انقطع من بعده من عندك و انّ كتابه مهيمن علی كل الكتب .. و محجّتك الّحی الّذی وجوده يبقی كّل الخلق و يذكره كّل الموجودات ان تحفظ غيبته و تقّرب ايّامه ... قالوا بانّه ادّعی الّربوبيّة و اعتقد بانّ عليّا عبدك و وصّی نبيّك كان خالق الاشياءِ و رازقهم و انكر معراح الجسمانی و حشر الجسد انی

فسبحانك سبحانك انّی برئی من الّذين يعتقدون بتلك الاحكام الباطلة ... و انّ ذكر كلمة اخُری اراد ما ذكر الصّادق حجّتك فی دعائه حيث قال وقوله الحق و عرج روحه الی السّماءِ ... و اشهد انّ اليوم كان ---۱۸۲ --- حجّتك محمّد بن الحسن صلواتك عليه و علی من اتّبعه ... و اشهد انّ بعد الابواب الا ربعه ليس له باب قد ورد فی الحديث .. و انّ له فی ايّام غيبته علماءِ مستحفظين ... و اشهد انّ طاعتهم فرض و مودّتهم عدل و من انكر احداً منهم فقد كفرو كان من الخاسرين و در اين ابلاغيّه كه در سال دوّم اظهار امر و بحبوحهء تفّيه و ايّام اكتفاءِ باظهار مقام علم محض فرونشاندن مقاومت و معاندت ملّاها صادر فرمودند تمامت امور موارد نظر مخالفين خود حتی وجود محمّدبن الحسن و حقيقت نواّب خاصّه و علماءِ حقيقّيه امّت را كه هنوز انطواءِ كّل را در شخصيت خود اظهار نداشتند تصديق نمودند و تا حّدی نيران فتته را خاموش  كرده بنشر اصول معرفت الهيه پرداختند .

Du`a-yi Alf  'The Supplication of the Thousand' - Translation of the Māzandarāni Text (AA1),

Lambden Trans. 2021.

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

Praised be to God who created the heavens and the earth through His Logos-Command (amr) ...

O My God! I testify at this moment ... And Thou verily knowest that Thou did indeed create everything (al-kull) through the Primal Will (al-mashiyyat) for this is the First Word (awwal kalimat al-awwal) that believed in Thee... O my God! Thou established within mine inmost Heart (fu'adi) the Love (hubb) of Thee such that I desired nothing on any level (fi sha`n) save obedience unto Thyself. I had not hoped for anyone save Thee ... I did not set forth an opinion respecting any issue (fi sha`n) save it was in accordance with that which was sent down in the Qur'an unto Thy beloved one, Muhammad, the messenger of God (rasul Allah) and seal of the prophets (khātam al-nabiyyin) [Q.33:40b], [or] from the wilāya (providential guidance) of the [twelver] imams of justice (a'imma al-`adl) for I followed their example (iqtida') and went along with their guidance as accords with their legacy (athar) as well as realizing the disavowal of their enemies and [also] of such as dwelt within [the shadow of] their bounty (fadl).

Thou art indeed O my God,  He who is informed  that for Thy chosen ones (awliya') hath ever been on every level (fi sha`n), Guardians [preservers] (huffaz an) of their religion (din) and repositories (aw`iyat) for their ordinances (hukm)   ...

 

 

 

 

Select Notes

If the title is not read as Du`a Alf  'The Supplication of the Thousand' and based on the above cited Qur'anic verse (Q,97:3), then it could be read as ilf meaning "intimacy" then its title would be `The Supplication of Intimacy'