Bediüzzaman Said NursîThe Rays

The affirmation of Divine Unity it is extremely valuable, powerful, and important- Part 1

Allah

From the he Second Ray Book

The Final Fruit of Eskisehir Prison

 

The Second Ray of the Thirty-First Flash

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

This Ray was written sixteen years ago at a time I remained alone in Eskisehir Prison after my friends had been released. It was written at great speed, with my own very deficient pen at a distressing, disagreeable time and is therefore somewhat lacking in order. Still, I saw when correcting it recently that in respect of belief and the affirmation of Divine Unity it is extremely valuable, powerful, and important.

S a i d N u r s i

[This forms a seventh ‘Point’ about the six Greatest Names and is about the Greatest Name of ‘God, The One.’]

NOTE

In my view, this treatise holds great importance, for the significant and subtle mysteries of belief that it contains unfold and develop. One who reads and understands this treatise will save his belief, God willing. Unfortunately I have been unable to meet with anyone here and have been unable to write out a fair copy myself. If you want to understand the treatise’s value, read first of all the Second and Third Fruits of the First Station carefully and the Conclusion at the end and the matter in the two pages preceding that, then study the whole of it slowly!

THE SEVENTH OF THE SIX POINTS ABOUT THE SIXGREATEST NAMES, ABOUT ‘GOD, THE ONE’

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

And from Him do we seek help.

Inspired by one splendid meaning of the verse,

And know that there is no god but Allah,1

and by a famous oath of the Prophet (PBUH), this treatise consists of a subtle point I perceived about three beautifully sweet and subtle fruits of the affirmation of Divine unity, and three matters necessitating it, and three proofs of it.

The oath God’s Most Noble Messenger most frequently used was the oath: “By Him in whose hand is Muhammad’s being,”2 which shows that even the furthermost tips of the tree of the universe, and its broadest extent, and its minor particulars, exist through the power and will of the Single One of Unity. For if the most choice and exceptional of creatures, Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him), does not own himself, and if he is not free to act as he wishes and is tied in his actions to another will, certainly, nothing, no function, state or circumstance, whether particular or universal, can be outside the power of that all-encompassing will.

Yes, what this meaningful oath of Muhammad (PBUH) indicates is the mighty, all-encompassing unity of dominicality. Since a hundred, perhaps a thousand, clear proofs of this Divine unity have been set forth and explained in the Risale-i Nur, which is the Siracü’n-Nur (The Illuminating Lamp),3 we refer to that the details and proofs of this elevated truth. In this Second Ray, in the first of three brief ‘Stations’ contained in this most important truth of belief, three subtle, sweet, precious, and luminous universal fruits out of innumerable fruits will be explained in summary fashion, thereby alluding to the insights and experiences which impelled my heart to those fruits.

In the Second Station, three universal matters and motives necessitating this sacred truth will be explained, which have the power of three thousand such matters.

In the Third Station, three signs pointing to this truth of Divine unity will be mentioned, which have the power of three hundred signs, indications, and proofs.

The First Fruit of the First Station

In Divine unity and the affirmation of it, Divine beauty and dominical perfection become apparent. If there was no unity that pre-eternal treasury would remain hidden. Yes, it is only in the mirror of unity and in the manifestation of the Divine Names concentrated by means of unity in the faces of particulars at the extremities of the tree of creation that infinite Divine beauty and perfection, unending dominical excellence and loveliness, the incalculable bounties and gifts of that Merciful One, and the utterly perfect beauty of that Eternally Besought One, are all to be seen.

For example, when the particular act of sending to the assistance of a powerless infant lacking will, pure white milk from an unexpected place, that is, from between blood and excrement, is considered from the point of view of the affirmation of Divine unity, suddenly, through the wondrous, tender sustaining of all infants and young and their subjugating their mothers to themselves, the undying beauty of the mercy of the Most Merciful is seen in all its splendour. If not looked at through the eyes of Divine unity, that beauty is hidden, and that particular providing of sustenance is ascribed to causes, chance, and Nature, thus losing all its value and even transforming its very nature.

Also, for example; if being healed of a dreadful disease is considered from the point of view of the affirmation of Divine unity, on the face of the bestowal of healing on all the sick in the huge hospital called the earth, through the remedies and medicines from the vast pharmacy called the world, the beautiful compassion of the Absolutely Compassionate One and the acts of His mercy become apparent in universal and splendid fashion. If it is not considered from the point of view of the affirmation of Divine unity, that particular but knowledgeable, perceptive, and conscious bestowal of healing will be attributed to the properties of lifeless medicines and to blind force and unconscious Nature; its nature will be completely changed and it will lose its wisdom and value.

I am explaining here because of its relevance a point which occurs to me about a benediction for the Prophet (PBUH). It concerns the well-known benediction which is recited regularly by the Shafi‘i’s at the end of tesbihat following the five daily prayers: O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad and to the family of Muhammad, to the number of ills and their remedies, and bless him and them and grant them unending peace. It is important because due to the wisdom in man’s creation and the mystery of his comprehensiveness, every moment he entreats his Creator and seeks refuge with Him, and offers Him thanks and praise. Just as illnesses are the most effective whip driving him to the Divine Court, so the chief of the sweet bounties prompting him to give thanks earnestly and to truly offer praise gratefully are remedies, healing, and good health. It is for this reason that this benediction is most meaningful and widely accepted. Sometimes when reciting “to the number of all ills and their remedies,” I see the earth in the form of a hospital and sense the clearly obvious existence of the True Healer, Who supplies the remedies for all ills, physical and spiritual, and answers all needs, and His universal clemency and sacred all-embracing compassion.

Also for example; if the bestowal of guidance and belief on someone who experiences the ghastly pains of misguidance is considered from the point of view of the affirmation of Divine unity, the pre-eternal beauty of One Munificent and Generous becomes apparent on the face of that supreme gift, which transforms the insignificant, transitory, and impotent man into the slave-addressee of the One True Object of Worship, the Creator and Sovereign of all the universe, and through his belief bestows on him —and on all believers according to their degree— eternal happiness and a broad and splendid everlasting world and property. One flash of that unfading beauty is such that it makes all believers love it, and the elite enamoured of it and captivated by it. If such an event is not considered from the point of view of Divine unity, the man’s particular belief will be attributed either to the person himself, as with the self-centred and self-opinionated Mu‘tazilites, or to causes. Then that sparkling gem of the Most Merciful, the true price and value of which is Paradise, will be reduced to being a piece of glass and it will no longer reflect the flashes of that sacred beauty.

Thus, it may be seen from these three examples that being concentrated in them through the affirmation of Divine unity, the innumerable sorts and varieties of Divine beauty and dominical perfection are apparent in the particular beings at the extremities of the sphere of multiplicity, and in all their states and conditions, and the certain existence of Divine beauty and perfection is understood and established.

It is because Divine beauty and perfection are to be seen with the heart in the affirmation of Divine unity and perceived by the spirit that all the saints and purified ones have found their sweetest illuminations and most delectable spiritual sustenance in repeated recitation of “There is no god but God,” the profession of Divine unity. And it is because Divine grandeur and magnificence, Divine glory, and the absolute sovereignty of the dominicality of the Eternally Besoughted One are realized in the profession of Divine unity that God’s Noble Messenger (Peace and blessings be upon him) declared: “The best thing I and the prophets before me have said is ‘There is no god but God.’4

Yes, although a small bounty, gift and sustenance like a flower, a fruit, or a light, is a tiny mirror, through the mystery of Divine unity each suddenly stands shoulder to shoulder and joins with all its fellows. Being transformed into a large mirror, its species displays the sort of Divine beauty which is manifested on it. With transient, fleeting beauty it points to an everlasting, undying beauty. As Mawlana Jalal al-Din5 said:The imagination which is the snare of the saints

Is the reflection of the moon-faced beauties of the garden of God;

it becomes a mirror to Divine beauty. If not for the mystery of the affirmation of Divine unity, each particular fruit would remain on its own, and would show neither that sacred beauty nor its elevated perfection. Even the particular flash of beauty within it would be extinguished and vanish. It would quite simply become its opposite; from being a diamond, it would turn into glass.

Also, through the mystery of the affirmation of Divine unity, in living beings, which are the fruits of the tree of creation, is a Divine personality, a dominical oneness, an immaterial face of the Most Merciful defined by the seven attributes, a concentration of the Names, and the manifestation of the determination and personification of the One Who is addressed by the words You alone do we worship and from You alone do we seek help.6 Otherwise that personality, that oneness, that face, the manifestation of that determination would expand to the extent of the universe, disperse and be hidden. It would be seen only by eyes of the heart that were truly vast and comprehensive. For the magnificence of Divine grandeur would veil it; not everyone could see it with the eye of the heart.

Also, it is clearly understood from those particular living beings that their Maker sees them, knows them, hears them, and does as He wishes. Quite simply, behind the createdness of each living being, the immaterial personification and determination of one who has power and will, hears, sees and knows, is apparent to one who believes.

Especially behind the createdness of man from among living creatures, through belief and through the mystery of Divine unity, that immaterial personification and determination are to be observed in extremely clear fashion. For samples of meanings such as knowledge, power, life, hearing, and sight, which are the bases of that personification of oneness, are present in man, and he indicates them through those samples. For example, the one who bestows the eyes, both sees the eye, and, a subtle meaning, sees what the eye sees, then he bestows them. For sure, the oculist who makes some spectacles for your eyes, sees that they are suitable for your eyes, then he makes them. And the one who bestows the ears, surely hears what the ears hear, then he makes them and bestows them. Examples for the other attributes may be made in the same way.

Also, man bears the impresses and manifestations of the Names; through them, he testifies to those sacred meanings.

Also, through his weakness, impotence, poverty, and ignorance, man acts as a mirror in another way; he testifies to the power, knowledge, will, and other attributes of the one who has pity on his weakness and poverty, and comes to his aid.

Thus, since through the mystery of Divine unity, a thousand and one Divine Names are concentrated in the furthest points and most scattered particulars of the sphere of multiplicity, in the tiny missives known as living beings, and are to be read most clearly, the All-Wise Maker multiplies the copies of them extensively. He makes exceedingly numerous and various the copies of the species of small living beings in particular, and publishes them everywhere.

What impelled me to the truth of this First Fruit was a certain feeling and experience. It was like this:

At one time, due to my excessive feelings of pity, sympathy and kindness, I was exceedingly touched and sorry for living beings, and of them, intelligent beings and man, and particularly the oppressed and disaster-stricken. I exclaimed from my very heart: “Neither these monotonous laws which prevail over the world hear the woes of these powerless and weak unfortunates, nor do the overwhelming, deaf elements and events hear them. Is there no one who will take pity on their wretched state and intervene in their particular plights?” My spirit was crying out from its very depths. My heart called out with all its strength: “Do these fine creatures, these valuable goods, these yearning and grateful friends, have no owner, no master, no true friend who will look to their business,accompany them and protect them?”

The satisfying, soothing, and sufficient answer to the cries of my spirit and tumult of my heart was this: through the mystery of the Qur’an and light of belief, and the mystery of Divine unity, I perceived the particular favours and special assistance of the All-Glorious One, Who is All-Merciful and Compassionate, above the law, to those lovable creatures who weep and lament under the pressure of universal laws and the assaults of events; and His particular dominicality towards everything directly; and the facts that He Himself directs everything personally and listens to the plaints of all things; and that He is the true owner, protector, and master of everything. I felt an infinite joy in place of that endless despair. Being totally owned by such a Glorious Owner, and being connected to Him, in my view all living beings gained in importance and value a thousand times over.

For since everyone takes pride in his master’s honour and fame, and at the rank of the person to whom he is attached, and acquires a dignity, through the unfolding of this relation through the light of belief and the state of being owned, and due to its strength, an ant vanquished the Pharaoh and could feel the pride of a thousand Pharaohs, who were heedless, imagined themselves to be independent and to own themselves, and had overweening pride —which was extinguished at the door of the grave— at their forefathers and the land of Egypt. And in the face of Nimrod’s pride, which changed into torment and shame when he tasted the pangs of death, the fly pointed to the pride of its own relationship, reducing Nimrod’s to nothing.

The verse,

To assign partners to God is verily a great transgression7

states that to associate partners with God is an infinite wrong. Assigning partners to God is a vast crime, since it transgresses the rights, honour, and dignity of all creatures. Only Hell can cleanse it.

to be continued

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