A Supplication Or Praise Master Of Universe
In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
“Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alternation of night and the day; in the sailing of the ships through the oceans for the profit of mankind; in the rain which God sends down from the skies, and the life He gives therewith to an earth that is dead; in the beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the earth; in the disposal of the winds and the clouds subjugated between the sky and the earth, indeed are signs for people who think (2:164).”
God’s Most Noble Messenger, the supreme Holy Book’s commentator and interpreter, expounded one level —about Divine unity— of the numerous luminous levels of this sublime verse in one of the ninety-nine sections of his peerless supplication, The Big Shield. Alluding in the supplication through a thousand and one Divine Names to a thousand and one proofs of Divine unity, he described his Sustainer. One of those sections is this: O You Who is the First of all things, and the Last;
O God of all things, and their Maker;
O Provider of all things, and their Creator;
O Maker of all things, and their Owner;
O Giver of want to all things, and Giver of plenty;
O Originator of all things, and their Renewer;
O Causer of all things, Who determines them with due measure;
O Nurturer of all things, and their Administrator;
O You Who ‘rolls up’ all things, and causes their constant change;
O Giver of life to all things, and Dealer of death.
Glory be unto You! There is no god but You! Mercy! Mercy! Deliver us from Hell-fire!This sample shows that the Noble Messenger’s knowledge of God, and his proofs of Divine unity were at such a level that no one is equal to him, and that in this field he is the supreme leader. By following him, everyone may enter that treasury. It is clear that knowledge, sciences, and arts are perfected through the conjunction of ideas and blending of minds; through ideas being combined and different works complementing each other, the works are perfected. This is why the craftsman who invented the shishhane rifle was more skillful than the one who invented the machine gun now. Whereas one who listens attentively with the ear of the heart to the supplication of The Big Shield , imagining himself to be in the presence of the Unlettered Prophet and hearing it from him, will understand and see that those thousand and one sacred truths, which comprise a thousand and one proofs and descriptions, and each of which is the conclusion of a chain of thought and a window opening onto Divine unity, were composed by one unlettered among an illiterate people in an illiterate environment, and a nation lacking a holy scripture in totally original, inventive fashion imitating no one, solving on his own through illumination the riddle of creation and talisman of the universe. This was not in imitative fashion like today with the help and supplications of thousands of other luminaries, but out of his boundless compassion and infinite clemency —due to which he invites to listen both the inhabitants of the heavens under the celestial dome and the vast congregation in the huge mosque of the universe— he seeks help, succor, mercy, and salvation for men, and he says:
O You Who in the heavens is His grandeur;
O You Who in the earth are His signs;
O You Who in all things are His evidences;
O You Who in the ocean are His strange wonders;
O You Who originates creation then renews it;
O You Who in the mountains are His treasures;
O You Who creates everything in the best way;
O You to Whom return all matters;
O You Whose grace is apparent in all things;
O You Who displays His power through all creatures.
Glory be unto You! There is no god but You! Mercy! Mercy! Deliver us from Hell-fire!Here, the Supreme Holy Book’s Commentator is expounding one aspect of the above verse. A short translation and meaning of it is this. He says:
“O One of Glory Whose magnificence is to be seen in the skies and heavenly bodies! O One of Perfection, the signs and evidences of Whose unity are to be observed in the earth and in all its beings! O Necessary Existent, proofs to Whose necessary existence are present in all things and all creatures! O All-Glorious One of Perfection, Who creates all the strange beings in the vast oceans! O Munificent Creator, Who creates the treasures stored up in the mountains to meet the needs of living beings! O Beauteous Bestower of Bounties, Who creates everything in the best way, administers them in the best way, and provides all the necessaries for each in the best way! O Omnipotent One, Sustainer of All Things, to Whom all things have recourse in all matters, for all needs, and on Whom all beings rely in all circumstances, and to Whom pertain all rights and dues, judge judgments rule! O Gracious and Knowing One, the clear traces of Whose favors, and the manifestations of Whose grace, and the subtle inscriptions of Whose arts, and the fine gifts of Whose mercy, are observed in all things! O All-Powerful and Wise One, Who made the universe an exhibition of marvels in order to display His power to his conscious creatures, and made all His artifacts heralds and proclamations announcing His perfections, such as His power, wisdom, and mercy! You are free of all impotence and fault; Other than You there is no god who might succor our plight! Mercy! Mercy! Save us from Hell-fire!”
God’s Most Noble Messenger, the Supreme Holy Book’s commentator, expounded the verse with this supplication. Then the Messenger’s important, precise, intelligent, and exacting student, Imam Ali, composed a supplication-like commentary on his Master’s supplicatory commentary, and discovering another aspect of the supplication, uncovered a further face of the verse. Keeping in mind his Noble Master’s supplication, he described that aspect of the verse as follows. As we gave a short meaning and translation of the supplication above, so do we for this one:
“O God! In the heavens are no rotations or motions but through their order and wisdom they testify to your existence, making You known. On the earth are no changes and transformations, and no states or circumstances, but through their order and regularity they make You known together with Your unity and dominicality. In the seas is no creature, nor even a drop of water, but through its wisdom it points to Your existence and testifies to Your dominicality. In the mountains are no minerals, chemicals, or rocks, stored up for living beings, but through their uses and benefits they testify to Your dominicality and existence. In the heart is no thought inspired from the Unseen but it points to Your existence and testifies to Your unity. On the trees are no leaves but through their order and wisdom they recognize You, that is, they proclaim that they are the works of Your art. In bodies there are no movements but they testify to Your dominicality. O my Creator! For the sake of Your power, which subjugates the heavens and the earth, subjugate to me those things that I wish!”
Now, an impotent student of Imam Ali and wretched servant of the Holy Book, expounding this supplication of his also with a supplication, wanted to disclose in the light of the Greatest Name one aspect of the sublime verse by expounding that aspect of the above supplication, which is only one of the hundred sections of the supplication of the Supreme Interpreter, that is, The Big Shield. The student of Imam Ali says:
O My God and Sustainer!
I see through the eyes of belief, the instruction and light of the Holy Book, the teachings of God’s Noble Messenger, and the indications of the Name of All-Wise, that in the heavens there are no rotations and motions but through their order and regularity they point to Your existence. There is no heavenly body but through its silently performing its duty and remaining in place without prop it testifies to Your dominicality and unity. There is no star but through its balanced creation, regular position, luminous smile, and the stamp of its similarity to the other stars, it indicates the majesty of Your Godhead and Your unity. There is not one of the twelve planets but through its wise motion, docile subjection, orderly duties, and significant satellites, it testifies to Your necessary existence and indicates the sovereignty of Your Godhead.
Yes, —O Creator of the Heavens and Earth, who directs and administers all particles together with all the orderly components they make up, and spins the planets and their regular satellites, subjugating them to His command!— just as each of the inhabitants of the heavens testifies on its own, so in their totality they testify to Your necessary existence and unity in a way so clear and powerful that shining proofs to the number of stars in the heavens affirm that testimony.
Also, appearing as a regular army or imperial fleet decked out with electric lights, the limpid, beautiful, spotless heavens with their extraordinarily huge and speedy bodies, point clearly to the splendor of your dominicality and tremendousness of Your power, which creates all things; and to the boundless extent of Your sovereignty, which overspreads the heavens, and to Your mercy, which embraces all living things; and testifies indubitably to the comprehensiveness of Your knowledge, which is concerned with all the states and circumstances of all the creatures of the heavens, and embraces them and orders them, and to Your wisdom, which encompasses all things. This testimony is so evident it is as though the stars are the words and luminous embodiments of the skies’ testimony.
Also, like disciplined soldiers, orderly ships, wondrous airplanes, or marvelous lamps, the stars in the arena of the heavens, and in their seas and vast spaces, show the glittering splendor of the sovereignty of Your Godhead. As is suggested by the duties of the sun —one star among the members of that army— which are related to its planets and our earth, some of its companions, the other stars, look to the worlds of the hereafter and are not without duties; they are the suns of eternal worlds.
O Necessarily Existent! O Single One of Unity!
These wondrous stars, these strange suns and moons, are subjugated, set in order, and employed in Your dominions, in Your heavens, through Your command, power, and strength, and Your administration and direction. All those heavenly bodies glorify and exalt their single Creator, Who creates, spins, and administers them; through the tongue of disposition, they declare: “Glory be to God! God is Most Great!” Through all their glorifications, I too declare You holy.
O Omnipotent One of Glory, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed in the magnificence of His grandeur! O One of Absolute Power!
I have understood through the teaching of the All-Wise Holy Book and instruction of Your Most Noble Messenger that just as the heavens and stars testify to your existence and unity, so with its clouds, lightning, thunder, winds, and rain, does the atmosphere testify to Your necessary existence and unity.
Yes, the lifeless, unconscious clouds sending the water of life, rain, to the assistance of needy living beings is only through Your mercy and wisdom; confused chance could in no way interfere. The most powerful of electricity, lightning, which alluding to its potentiality for lighting, encourages man to benefit from it and spectacularly lights up Your power in space. The thunder announces the coming of rain, causing boundless space to speak, and makes the heavens ring out with the reverberations of its glorifying; it hallows You verbally, testifying to Your dominicality. The winds, which are charged with numerous duties like providing the sustenance most vital for animate creatures, and the easiest to benefit from, and ensuring and facilitating respiration, for some purpose turn the atmosphere into a ‘tablet for writing and erasing,’ thus pointing to the activity of Your power and testifying to Your existence. Similarly, the mercy milked through Your compassion from the clouds and sent to living beings, testifies through the words of its balanced, orderly droplets, to the breadth of Your mercy and compassion.
O Potent and Active Disposer! O Sublime and Bountiful Bestower!
The clouds, lightning, thunder, wind, and rain each testify on their own to Your necessary existence, so too as a whole, being one within the other and assisting each other in their duties, although they are by nature dissimilar and opposed to each other, they indicate most powerfully Your unity. They point too to the magnificence of Your dominicality, which makes the vast atmosphere into an exhibition of wonders, on some days filling and emptying it several times; and to the immensity and all-pervasiveness of Your power, which makes it resemble a slate which is written on then rubbed clean, and wrings it out like a sponge and waters the garden of the earth; and to your unbounded mercy and limitless rule, which under the veil of the atmosphere administer all the earth and all creatures. Moreover, the air is employed in duties so wise and the clouds and rain utilized in benefits so percipient that if it was not for a knowledge and wisdom that encompass all things, they could not be thus employed.
O You Who acts as He wishes!
Through Your activity in the atmosphere, Your power, which continuously displays examples of the resurrection of the dead and Great Gathering and transforms the summer into winter and winter into summer and similar acts, gives the sign that it will transform this world into the hereafter and there display its everlasting acts.
O All-Powerful One of Glory!
The air, clouds, rain, and thunder and lightning in the atmosphere are subjugated and employed in Your dominions, through Your command and power and strength. These creatures, which by nature are so different to each other, sanctify their ruler and commander, who makes them submit instantaneously to his swift commands; they praise and extol His mercy.
O Glorious Creator of the Heavens and Earth!
Through the instruction of the All-Wise Holy Book and teaching of God’s Noble Messenger, I believe and know that just as the heavens testify to Your necessary existence and unity through its stars and the atmosphere testifies through all it contains, so the earth testifies to Your existence and unity through all its creatures and states.
Indeed, there is no change on the earth, such as that of the trees and animals changing their garb every year, but through its orderliness it indicates Your existence and unity. There is no animal but through its sustenance being compassionately provided in relation to its need and weakness, and its being given all the members and faculties necessary to pursue its life, it testifies to Your existence and unity. There is not a plant or animal created before our eyes in the spring that through its wondrous art, its subtle adornment, its being distinguished from all other creatures, and through its order and balance, it makes you known. The marvels of Your power which fill the earth and are known as plants and animals, and their creation from seeds and grains and droplets of fluid, perfectly, without error, in adorned fashion, each with its distinguishing features, form a testimony more brilliant and powerful than the sun to the existence, unity, wisdom, and endless power of their All-Wise Maker.
Also, there is no element, such as air, water, light, fire, and earth, but through its performing functions consciously and perfectly despite its lack of consciousness, and being the means for the arrival of various well-ordered fruits from the treasury of the Unseen despite being simple, without order, and overrunning and spreading everywhere, it testifies to Your existence and unity.
O Omnipotent Creator! O Omniscient Opener Up Of Forms! O Active Creator!
Just as together with all its inhabitants the earth testifies to the necessary existence of its Creator, so too, O Single One of Unity! O Clement and Kind One! O Most Bounteous Provider!, through the stamp on its face and the stamps on the faces of all its inhabitants and their unity and being one within the other and assisting each other, and through all the Names and acts of dominicality that look to them being the same, it testifies with the utmost clarity to Your unity and oneness; indeed it offers testimony to the number of its creatures.
Similarly, through its being an army encampment, an exhibition, a place of instruction, and through all the four hundred thousand different nations present in the divisions of its plants and animals regularly being given all their necessary equipment, the earth points to the magnificence of Your dominicality and to the fact that Your power penetrates all things.
Also, all the different sustenance of innumerable living beings, and its being given to them compassionately, generously, at exactly the right time from simple, dry earth, and the complete subjugation and obedience to the dominical commands of those innumerable individuals, demonstrates that Your mercy embraces all things and that your sovereignty encompasses them.
Also, the despatch of the caravans of creatures, which are in a state of constant change on the earth, and the alternations of life and death, and the administration and management of the plants and animals, and this being possible only through a knowledge that is concerned with all things and an infinite wisdom governing in all things, points to Your comprehensive knowledge and wisdom.
Also, the supreme importance given to man, who in a brief span performs infinite duties, has been equipped with abilities and faculties which suggest he is to live for all eternity, and has disposal over all the beings of the earth; and the infinite outlay made for him in this training-ground of the world, this temporary military encampment of the earth, this transient exhibition; and the boundless manifestations of dominicality, innumerable Divine addresses, and incalculable Divine gifts, which look to him, surely cannot be contained in this fleeting, sorry, confused life, this transitory world so full of tribulation. Since they could be only for another, eternal, life and an everlasting abode of bliss, they point to, even testify to, the bestowals of the hereafter in the everlasting realm.
O Creator of All Things!
All the creatures of the earth are administered and subjugated in Your dominions, in Your earth, through Your strength and power and will, and Your knowledge and wisdom. The dominicality whose activity is observed on the face of the earth is so comprehensive and all-embracing, and its administration and management are so perfect and precise, and it is carried out with such sameness that it shows it is a dominicality, a disposal, which is a whole that cannot be broken into parts and a universal that cannot be divided up. Together with all its inhabitants, the earth sanctifies and glorifies its Maker with innumerable tongues far clearer than the spoken word; they praise and extol their Glorious Provider for His infinite bounties with the tongues of their beings.
O Most Pure and Holy One, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed in the magnificence of His grandeur!
Through all the sanctifications and glorifications of the earth I sanctify you and declare You to be free of all fault, impotence, and partners; and through all its praise and extolling, I offer You praise and thanks.
O Sustainer of the Land and the Seas!
I have understood from the teaching of the Holy Book and instruction of Your Most Noble Messenger that just as the skies, the atmosphere and the earth testify to Your unity and necessary existence, so do the seas, rivers, streams, and springs testify to them most clearly. Yes, there is no being in the seas, which are like the strange boilers of our world producing steam —there is not a drop of them even— but through its well-ordered being, its benefits and state, it makes known its Creator. And of the strange creatures whose splendid sustenance is given them out of simple sand and water, and the living creatures of the seas with their well-ordered beings, especially of the fishes who populate the seas with one fish producing a million eggs, there is not one but through its creation and its duties, its being sustained and administered, nurtured and superintended, it indicates its Creator and testifies to its Provider.
Also, of the precious, decorated jewels in the seas, there is not one but through its attractive creation and beneficial qualities it recognizes You and makes You known. Yes, just as they testify to You singly, so too in so far as they are all mixed up together, bear the same stamp in their natures, are created with great ease, and are found in great numbers, they altogether testify to Your unity.
Also, through the seas, which surround the globe with its land masses, being held suspended without spilling over or dispersing or overrunning the land as the earth voyages around the sun; and creating the multifarious ornamented living creatures and jewels out of simple sand and water, and all their sustenance and other needs being supplied in general and complete fashion; and through their administration, and through none of the inevitable innumerable corpses of their dead fellows being found on the surface of the seas; they testify indirectly to their number to Your existence and its necessity.
Also, just as they point clearly to the splendid sovereignty of Your dominicality and to the magnificence of Your power, which encompasses all things; so do they indicate the limitless breadth of Your mercy and rule, which govern all things from the huge yet orderly stars beyond the skies to the tiny fishes at the bottom of the sea, which are nurtured in regular fashion. They point too to Your knowledge and wisdom, which as demonstrated by the order, benefits, instances of wisdom, and the balance and equilibrium of all things, encompass and comprehend them. There being such reservoirs of mercy for the travelers in this guest-house of the world and their being utilized for man’s journeying, and for his ship, and his benefit shows that the One Who bestows such a profusion of gifts out of the seas on his guests of one night in a wayside inn, must surely have eternal seas of mercy at the seat of His everlasting rule, and those here are merely their small and transitory samples.
Thus, the truly wondrous situation of the seas around the earth and the exceedingly orderly administration and nurturing of their creatures demonstrate self-evidently that it is only through Your power, will, and administration that they are subjugated to Your command in Your dominions; and through the tongues of their beings they sanctify their Creator, declaring: “God is Most Great!”
O All-Powerful One of Glory, Who makes the mountains masts and holds of treasure for the ship of the earth!
Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the teaching of the Wise Holy Book, I have understood that just as the seas with their strange creatures recognize You and make You known, so do the mountains through the wise services they perform. For they ensure that the earth is released from the effects of earthquakes and internal upheavals; save it from being overrun by the seas; purify the air of poisonous gases; are tanks for the saving and storage of water; and treasuries for the minerals and metals necessary for living beings.
Yes, there is not one of the stones to be found in mountains, or the various substances used as remedies for illness, or the varieties of metals and minerals, which are essential for living beings and especially man, or the species of plants that adorn the mountains and plains with their flowers and fruits, but through the wisdom, order, and fine creation it displays, which is impossible to ascribe to chance, it testifies to the necessary existence of an infinitely Powerful, Wise, Compassionate, and Munificent Maker. This is especially true of substances found in the mountains like salt, potassium oxalate, quinine sulphate, and alum, which superficially resemble each other, but whose tastes are totally dissimilar; and particularly of all the varieties of plants, and the great diversity of their flowers and fruits. Moreover, through their being administered and managed as a totality, and their origins, situations, creation, and art all being similar, and the ease, speed, and cheapness in their making, they testify to the unity and oneness of their Maker.
Also, the creatures on the surface of the mountains and inside them being made everywhere on the earth at the same time in the same fashion, perfectly and without error, with none impeding others, and their being created without confusion despite being intermingled with all the other sorts of other creatures, all point to the splendor of Your dominicality and the immensity of Your power, for which nothing is difficult.
Also, the mountains —both their surfaces and their interiors— being filled in orderly fashion with trees, plants, and minerals to meet the innumerable needs of all the living creatures on the earth, and even to supply the remedies for their many different illnesses, and gratify their various appetites and tastes, and these being displayed for those who need them, indicates the infinite breadth of Your mercy and infinite extent of Your sovereignty. While their being prepared percipiently, knowingly, without confusion, in orderly fashion according to need, despite being all mixed up and concealed in the darkness of the soil layer, indicates Your all-embracing knowledge, which encompasses all things, and the comprehensiveness of Your wisdom, which sets all things in order. Then the storing up of medicinal substances, minerals, and metals points clearly to the compassionate, generous, planned processes of Your dominicality and the subtle precautions of Your grace.
Also, the lofty mountains holding stored up in orderly fashion the reserves to meet the future needs of the travelers in the guest-house of this world, and their being stores stocked up with all the treasures necessary for life, indicates, indeed, testifies, that the Maker Who is thus Munificent and hospitable, All-Wise and Compassionate, Powerful and nurturing, surely possesses eternal treasuries for His never-ending bestowal in an everlasting realm, for His guests Whom He clearly loves. There the stars will perform the function the mountains perform here.
O One Powerful Over All Things!
The mountains and the creatures within them are subjugated and stored up in Your dominions through Your power and strength, Your knowledge and wisdom! They sanctify and glorify their Creator, Who subjugates and employs them in this way.
O Merciful Creator, Compassionate Sustainer!
Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the teaching of the Wise Holy Book I have understood that just as the heavens, atmosphere, earth, seas, and mountains, together with their creatures and all they contain, recognize You and make You known; so too do all the trees and plants, together with all their leaves and flowers and fruits. All their leaves, with their ecstatic movements and recitations; all their flowers, which describe through their decoration the Names of their Maker; and all their fruits, which smile with their agreeableness and the manifestation of Your compassion, testify —through the order within their wondrous art, which is utterly impossible to ascribe to chance, and the balance within the order, and the adornment within the balance, and the embroideries within the adornment, and the fine and various scents within the embroideries, and the varying tastes of the fruits within the scents— so clearly as to be self-evident to the necessary existence of an infinitely Compassionate and Munificent Maker. At the same time, their similarity and mutual resemblance throughout the earth, and their bearing the same stamps on their creation, and their being related in their administration and organization, and the coincidence of the creative acts and dominical Names connected with them, and the innumerable members of their one hundred thousand species being raised one within the other without confusion, forms a testimony through them as a whole to the unity and oneness of their Necessarily Existent Maker.
Also, just as they testify to Your necessary existence and unity, so too the nurturing and administration in hundreds of ways of the innumerable members of the army of living creatures on the face of the earth, which is formed of four hundred thousand different nations, perfectly, with no confusion or difficulty, point to the majesty of Your dominicality within Your unity and to the immensity of Your power, which creates a flower as easily as the spring, and its comprehending all things. They point also to the unlimited breadth of Your mercy, which prepares innumerable varieties of foods for animals and men all over the earth; and through all those works and bestowals, administering and nurturing, being carried out with perfect regularity, and everything, even minute particles, being obedient and subjugated to those commands, they indicate certainly the infinite extent of Your rule; and through every part of those trees and plants, like their leaves, blossoms, fruits, roots, branches, and twigs, being made with every aspect of them being known and seen, in accordance with useful purposes, instances of wisdom, and benefits, they point clearly with innumerable fingers to Your knowledge, which embraces all things, and to the comprehensiveness of Your wisdom. With innumerable tongues, they praise and extol the utterly perfect beauty of Your art and the sheer beauty of Your perfect bestowal.
Also, these precious gifts and bounties and this extraordinary outlay and bestowal, in this temporary hostel and transitory guest-house, for this brief time and fleeting life, indicate through the hands of the trees and plants, indeed, testify, that in order not to make all creatures say, contrary to the necessary result of all His expense and bestowal which is to make Himself loved and known: “You gave us a taste, but then executed us without permitting us to eat;” and not to nullify the sovereignty of His Godhead, and not deny His infinite mercy and make it denied, and in order not to turn all his yearning friends into enemies through depriving them thus, the munificent All-Compassionate One has of a certainty prepared for His servants whom He will send to an everlasting realm, an eternal world, fruit-bearing trees, and flowering plants appropriate to Paradise out of the treasuries of His mercy, in His eternal Paradises. Those here are merely samples to show the customers.
Also, just as through the words of their leaves, flowers and fruits, the trees and plants praise, sanctify, and glorify You, so each one of those words singly declare You to be holy. The glorifications of fruits in particular through the tongue of disposition —with the great variety of their original flesh, their wondrous art, and extraordinary seeds, and those trays of food being given to hands of the trees and placed on them, and sent to Your living guests— their glorifications are so evident they are almost verbal. All these are subjugated and submissive to Your command in Your dominions through Your power and strength, and Your wisdom and bestowal!
O Wise Maker and Compassionate Creator, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed within the magnificence of His grandeur!
Through the tongues of all trees and plants, and their leaves, flowers, and fruits, and to their number, I praise and extol You and declare You free of all defect, impotence, and partners!
O All-Powerful Creator! All-Wise Planner! Compassionate Nurturer!
Through the instruction of Your Most Noble Messenger and the teaching of the Wise Holy Book, I have understood and believed that just as plants and trees recognize You and make known Your sacred attributes and Beautiful Names; so too among men and the animals, which are those living creatures which have spirits, there is not one that through its internal and external members, which work as regularly as clockwork, and the extremely fine order and balance of their bodies, and the significant benefits and purposes of their senses and faculties, and the great art in their making, and their being decked out with much wisdom, and the precise equilibrium of their physical systems, but it testifies to Your necessary existence and the reality of Your attributes. For blind force, unconscious nature, and aimless chance could in no way interfere in such percipient, delicate art, and conscious subtle wisdom, and perfect providential balance; they could not be their work; it is impossible. It is also utterly impossible that living creatures made themselves, for then each of their particles would have to possess comprehensive knowledge and wisdom like a god, to be able to know, see, and make all the parts of their bodies and form it, indeed, it would have to be able to know, see, and make everything in the world connected with it, then the body’s formation could be referred to it, and it could be said that “it makes itself.”
Also, their being subject to the same administration, and the same planning, and their all being the same kind, and their bearing the same stamp, such as the resemblance in features like the eye, ear, and mouth, and the unity in the stamp of wisdom observed on the faces of members of the same species, and the resemblance in livelihood and creation, and their all being one within the other; there is not one of these circumstances but it testifies categorically to Your unity, and, by the manifestations of all Your Names which look to the universe being on each individual, to Your oneness within unity.
Also, through being equipped, trained, and subservient like a regular army and from the smallest to the largest, their conforming in orderly fashion to the commands of dominicality, man and the hundred thousand animal species on the face of the earth point to the degree of splendor of that dominicality; and through their great value despite their great multitude, and their perfection despite the speed of their making, and their great art despite the ease of their making, to the degree of grandeur of Your power. Also, they point decisively to the boundless expanse of Your mercy, which sends their sustenance to all of them, from the microbe to the rhinoceros, and the tiniest fly to the largest bird, dispersed from east to west and north to south; and through all of them performing their natural functions like soldiers under command, and every spring the face of the earth being the encampment of an army newly taken under arms in place of those discharged the previous autumn, to the infinite extent of Your sovereignty.
Also, through a profound knowledge and precise wisdom all living creatures being miniature copies of the universe, and their being made faultlessly, with none of their parts being confused or any of their different forms mixed up, they point to their number to Your knowledge, which embraces all things, and Your wisdom, which comprehends all things; while by their all being made so beautiful and fine as to be miracles of art and wonders of wisdom, they indicate in innumerable ways the utterly perfect beauty of Your dominical art, which You greatly love and want to exhibit; and through all of them, and particularly their young, being nourished in the finest way, with their wishes and desires being satisfied, to the sweet beauty of Your grace.O Most Merciful and Compassionate! O One Most True to His Promise! Owner of the Day of Judgment!
Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the guidance of the All-Wise Holy Book I have understood that since the choicest result of the universe is life, and the choicest essence of life is spirit, and the choicest of beings with spirits are intelligent beings, and of intelligent beings the one with the most comprehensive nature is man; and since all the universe is subjugated to life and works for life, and living beings are subjugated to beings with spirits and they are sent to this world for them, and beings with spirits are subjugated to man and they assist him; and since by nature men earnestly love their Creator and their Creator both loves them, and by every means makes them love Him; and since man’s innate capacity and spiritual faculties look to another, permanent world and everlasting life, and his heart and intelligence desire eternity with all their strength, and his tongue beseeches his Creator for eternity with endless prayers; He surely would not offend men, who love Him greatly and are loved, by causing them to die then not raising them again to life, and while He created them for an eternal love, to make them feel eternal hostility; to do that would not be possible. Men were sent to work in this world in order to live happily in another, eternal world, and to win that life. The Names manifested on man in this brief and fleeting life indicate that men, who will be their mirrors in the eternal realm, will receive their eternal manifestations.
Yes, the true friend of the Eternal One should be eternal, and the conscious mirror of the Enduring One should be enduring.
It is understood from sound narrations that the spirits of animals will live eternally, and that certain individual animals, like the Hudhud of Solomon and his ants, Salih’s she-camel, and the dog of the Companions of the Cave, will go to the eternal realm with both their spirits and their bodies, and that each species will have a single body that may be utilized from time to time. This is also demanded by wisdom and reality, and mercy and dominicality.O All-Powerful Self-Subsistent One!
All living creatures, beings with spirits, and conscious beings are subjugated to the commands of Your dominicality and employed in their innate duties only through Your power and strength, Your will and planning, and Your mercy and wisdom. Some have been subjugated to man, not because of man’s power and dominance, but by Divine mercy because of his innate weakness and impotence. Through the tongues of both disposition and speech they absolve their Maker and True Object of Worship of all defect and partner, and offering thanks and praise for His bounties, perform the worship particular to them.O Most Pure and Holy One, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed within the magnificence of His grandeur!
Forming the intention, I sanctify You with the glorifications of all beings with spirits, and declare:
Glory be to You Who has made from water all living things!
O Sustainer of All the Worlds! O God of the First-comers and the Last-comers! O Sustainer of the Heavens and the Earth! Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the teaching of the All-Wise Holy Book I have understood and believe that just as the heavens, atmosphere, earth, land and sea, trees, plants, and animals, together with all their members, parts, and particles, know and recognize You and point to and testify to Your existence and unity; so too living beings, the essence of the universe, and man, the essence of living creatures, and the prophets, saints, and purified scholars, the essence of men, and, through their visions, unfoldings, inspirations, and the discoveries of their hearts and intellects, which form the essence of the prophets, saints, and purified scholars, testify with the certainty of a hundredfold consensus to Your necessary existence, unity and oneness, and give news of them; and through their miracles, wonder-working, and certain proofs, prove what they tell of.
Yes, there is nothing that occurs to the heart, which looks to one who inspires it from behind the veil of the Unseen; and there is no inspiration, which makes one look to the giver of inspiration; and there is no certain belief, which discloses in the form of ‘absolute certainty’ Your sacred attributes and Most Beautiful Names; and there is no luminous heart of the prophets and saints, which observes with ‘the vision of certainty’ the lights of the Necessary Existent; and there is no enlightened intellect of the purified scholars and veracious ones, which confirms and proves with ‘the knowledge of certainty’ the signs of the existence of the Creator of All Things and the proofs of His unity; —there is not one of these that does not testify to Your necessary existence, and sacred attributes, and Your unity, oneness, and Most Beautiful Names, and point to them and indicate them.
Also, just as relying on their miracles, wonder-working and proofs, all those hundreds of thousands of truthful bringers of good news testify to Your existence and unity; so they unanimously give news of, proclaim, and prove the degree of majesty of Your dominicality, which governs from the administration of the totality of matters of the Sublime Throne, which encompasses all things, to knowing and hearing and administering the secret, private thoughts of the heart, and its desires and supplications. They tell of and prove too the immensity of Your power, which creates innumerable different things at once, and makes the greatest thing as easily as the smallest with no act impeding another and no matter obstructing another.
Also, they give news of and prove through their miracles and proofs the immense breadth of Your mercy, which makes the universe a magnificent palace for beings with spirits, and especially man; has prepared Paradise and everlasting happiness for jinn and man; does not forget even the tiniest living being; and tries to satisfy and please the most impotent heart.
They give news too of the infinite extent of Your sovereignty, which makes comply with Your commands all the realms of creatures from particles to the planets, and subjugates and employs them.
So also they unanimously testify to Your comprehensive knowledge, which makes the universe into a vast book containing treatises to the numbers of its parts, and records the life-stories of all beings in the Clear Record and Clear Book, which are the notebooks of the Preserved Tablet, and inscribes completely and without error in their seeds the indexes and programs of all trees and the biographies of conscious beings in the memories in their heads.
They testify too to the comprehensiveness of Your sacred wisdom, which attaches numerous purposes to all beings, causing even trees to produce results to the number of their fruits, and follows benefits in all living beings to the number of their members, and even their parts and cells, and employing man’s tongue in numerous duties, equips it with the ability to weigh up tastes to the number of foods.
They also unanimously testify that the manifestations of the Names related to Your Beauty and Glory, samples of which are to be seen in this world, will continue in more brilliant fashion for all eternity, and that your bounties, samples of which are to be observed in this transitory world, will persist in the abode of bliss in even more glittering fashion, and that those who long for them in this world will accompany them and be together with them for all eternity.
Also, relying on hundreds of evident miracles and decisive signs, foremost Your Most Noble Messenger and the All-Wise Holy Book, and the prophets with their luminous spirits, and the saints, who are spiritual poles with their light-filled hearts, and the purified scholars with their enlightened intellects, relying on Your repeated threats and promises in all the sacred scriptures, and trusting in Your sacred attributes, like power, mercy, favor, wisdom, glory, and beauty, and on Your functions, and the dignity of Your glory, and the sovereignty of Your dominicality, and in consequence of their illuminations and visions and beliefs at the degree of ‘the knowledge of certainty,’ give the glad tidings to men and jinn of eternal happiness and inform them of Hell for the people of misguidance; they believe this and testify to it.O All-Powerful and Wise One! O Most Merciful and Compassionate! O Munificent One True to His Promise! O All-Compelling One of Glory, One of Dignity, Grandeur, and Wrath!
You are utterly exempt from and exalted above giving the lie to so many loyal friends, and so many promises, and attributes and functions, and denying the certain demands of the sovereignty of Your dominicality and the endless prayers and supplications of Your innumerable acceptable servants, whom You love and who attract Your love by assenting to You and obeying You; and You are exempt from confirming the denial of resurrection of the people of misguidance and unbelief, who through their disbelief and rebellion and denial of Your promises, offend the magnificence of Your grandeur and affront Your dignity and glory and the honor of Your Godhead, and sadden the compassion of Your dominicality. I declare Your justice, beauty, and mercy to be exempt from such infinite tyranny, such ugliness. With all the particles of my being, I want to recite the verse,
Glory be to Him! He is high above all that they say! —Exalted and Great [beyond measure]! (17:43).
Indeed, those truthful envoys of Yours and heralds of Your sovereignty testify with ‘absolute certainty,’ ‘knowledge of certainty,’ and ‘the vision of certainty’ to the treasuries of Your mercy in the hereafter and the stores of Your bounties in the everlasting realm, and to the wondrously beautiful manifestations of Your Beautiful Names, which will be manifested totally in the abode of bliss, and they give good news of these. Believing that the supreme ray of Your Name of Truth, which is the source, sun, and protector of all realities, is this truth of the resurrection and Great Gathering, they teach it to Your servants. O Sustainer of the Prophets and Veracious Ones!
They are all subservient to You and charged with their duties in Your dominions through Your command and power, Your will and planning, Your knowledge and wisdom. They demonstrate through sanctifying, exalting, and extolling You, and declaring You to be One, that the globe is a vast place for Your remembrance and the universe, a huge mosque. O My Sustainer and Sustainer of the Heavens and Earth! O My Creator and Creator of All Things! For the sake of Your power, will, wisdom, sovereignty, and mercy, which subjugate the heavens and their stars, the earth and all it contains, and all creatures together with all their attributes and acts, subject my soul to me and subjugate to me my wishes! Subjugate the hearts of people to the Risale-i Nur, so they may serve the Holy Book and belief! And grant me and my brothers perfect belief and a happy death! As You subjugated the sea to Moses, fire to Abraham, the mountains and iron to David, jinn and men to Solomon, and the sun and moon to Muhammad, subjugate hearts and minds to the Risale-i Nur! Preserve me and all the students of the Risale-i Nur from the evil of the soul and Satan, and the torment of the grave and Hell-fire, and grant us happiness in Paradise! Amen. Amen. Amen.
By Bediuzzaman Said Nursi