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QA LXXI [71] Sūrat al-Qalam (The Surah of the Pen) on Qur'an 12:70.


 Part LXXI


  سورة القلم

Sūrat al-Qalam (The Surah of the Pen)


Qur'an 12:70.  


Translation Stephen N. Lambden


QA ms. Afnan Lib.  copy of ms.  dated 1261/1845 p. 289f.


بسم اللّه الرّحمن الرّحيم

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate


"Then, when he had equipped them with their equipment, he put his drinking-cup into the saddlebag of his brother. Then a herald proclaimed, 'Ho, cameleers, you are robbers!'" (Q. 12:70, trans. Arberry). 





[Abjad 1+30+40+90= 161]

[4] The Dhikr Allah (Remembrance of God) exists in the mode of the Dhikr (Remembrance) (fi sha`n al-dhikr)! No God is there save God! So serve ye Him for then shall He cause thy countenances to be elevated towards the Ka`bah of the Sanctified House (bayt al-haram). Thou shalt not, to the least degree, disbelieve in servitude before the All-Merciful (`ibadat al-rahman).


O people of the earth!

This Dhikr (Remembrance) is [Midianite prophet] Shu`ayb [perhaps the biblical Jethro]  in the Book of God! So fear ye God with respect to His modality (sha`n) and do not turn aside from His Cause [Command] (amr). This since God has indeed written down Mercy (al-rahmat) for His Logos-Self (nafs). He shall not be moved to forgive anyone save such as He wills. The knowledge of our Lord hath encompassed everything. And He is God who hath ever been One Knowing, All-Wise.

[6]  Our Lord is most disclosive (aftah) betwixt the Dhikr (Remembrance)  and his people and, in very truth,  most judgemental (ahkam) towards his tyrannical oppressor (zalim).




[7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [16] [17] [19] [19] [20] [21] [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27] [28] [29] [30] [31] [32] [33] [34] [35] [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] [41] [42]

The title of this Surah. Surat al-Qalam

The Bab and Baha'-Allah both wrote or revealed texts entitled Surat al-Qalam (The Surah of the Pen). This title is modelled on that of one of the Surahs of the Qur'an, Surah  68 the Surat al-Qalam (Surah of the Pen). The Pen is an instrument for writing, for capturing divine revelations (wahy) especially within Islamic and Babi-Baha'i texts. By means of  the Pen documents are set forth or scribed through the expression, the delineation of letters of the alphabet : for Baha'is primarily in  Arabic and Persian. the twin languages of revelation. The Pen is thus  for the writing of scribing of documents considered  the revelations of God.

The Pen also symbolizes the Revealer of verses. It has been humanized and divinized. Adjectives such as "Supreme" (al-a`la) are atached to it, in order to highlight its importance as the personified locus of divine revelation.

Abrahamic religious tradition has it that from or in primordial times a "Supreme Pen"  inscribed the religious destinies or humanity and of the universe. It is believed in Islamic sources that these `secrets' of destiny, fate and realization were set forth in power - generating verses of the Qur'an on the umm al-kitab, an Archetypal Tablet or Mother Book. It is a Pen which writes on alwah (sing. lawh), on scriptural Tablets sometimes symbolically said to be composed on precious gems like emeralds or ruby.. In Qayyum al-asma' 71  the Divine Pen scribes upon  the Supreme Tablet (al-lawh al-akbar) the Truth of the messianic Remembrance, the Bab or his occulated, heavenly archetype and reality. The Pen afirms his Truth. It scribes to the effect that the Dhikr (Bab) is indeed the the Truth al-ḥaqq, The consequences of the early or  premature disclosure of the Name of the Dhikr-Bab were apocalyptic or "catastrophic". When the Pen (al-qalam) of revelation and destiny was about to disclose or set forth the Name of the Bab (Sayyid `Ali Muhammad Shirazi)  it was shattered or cleft in twain. It precipitated an apocalypticevent of  splitting up or cleaving in twain (inshaqqat) [Q 54:2], This through an awesome fear (min al-hayba) which precipitated a prostration or falling down nigh  the celestial. Divine Throne (al-`arsh). The disclosure if the identity of the Bab by the Divine Pen was an event of cosmic magnitude.

The Pen (qalam) motif in Qayyūm al-asmā’ LXXI (71), the Surat al-Qalam (The Sura of the Pen).


ه يا اهل العرش انّی انا اللّه الّذی لا اله الّا هو قد اجريت القلم علی اللوح الاكبر بانّ الذّكرفاتّقوا من الرّدّ فانّ كلمة اللّه العلیّ قد كان فی لحقّ كما انّی انا الحقّ وامّ الكتاب كبيراً ه و انّا نحن لمّا قد امرنا القلم باسمه انشقّت من الهيبة قد خرّت علی العرش ساجداً للّه القديم و هو اللّه كان بكلّ شیء عليما اسمعوا ندائی من هذه الشّجرة المباركة

ًO people of the  Divine Throne! (al-`arsh)!

Hearken ye unto My Call (nidā’) from this blessed Tree (al-shajarat al-mubaraka), `I verily am God who, no God is there except Him'. The Pen (al-qalam) hath indeed scribed forth upon the Supreme Tablet (al-lawh al-akbar) to the effect that the Dhikr is the very Truth al-ḥaqq, like unto the "I am the True One [God]" ( inanai ana al-ḥaqq) ! So fear ye the refutation thereof (al-radd) for the Elevated Word of God (kalimat Allāh) was [ever] Mighty within the Mother Book (umm al-kitāb). When We commanded the Pen (al-qalam) to express his Name (bi-ismihi) it was انشقّت من الهيبة  cleft in twain (inshaqqat) [Q 54:2] through  awesome fear (min al-hayba) and it  fell down nigh [upon] the Throne (al-`arsh) prostrating before God, the Ancient. And He is God who hath ever been knowledgeable of everything.

The mid. 1844 neo-qur’anic Qayyūm al-asmā’ of the Bab, does not cite Qur’ān 54:2 but occasionally, in at least two sūras, provides interesting exegetical commentary relative to the person  or Pen of Divinity setting forth the undisclosed Name of the Bāb or of the messianic Dhikr (Remembrance).