The Tenth Letter explains the issues like qadar and lawh al-mahfuz (the preserved tablet) by defining the 'Clear Book' and the 'Clear Record; it also gives information about where the Great Gathering will take place.
The Tenth Letter
In His Name, be He glorified!
And there is nothing but it glorifies Him with praise.
[This consists of the answers to two questions.]
T h e F i r s t concerns the footnote to the long sentence describing the transformations of minute particles in the Second Aim of the Thirtieth Word.1
‘The Clear Book’ and ‘The Clear Record’ are mentioned in many places in the All-Wise Qur’an. Some Qur’anic commentators said they are the same, while others said they are different. Their explanations as to what are in reality differ, but in short, they said they are titles for Divine knowledge. However, through the effulgence of the Qur’an I have formed this opinion: the Clear Record is a title for a variety of Divine knowledge and command which looks to the World of the Unseen rather than the Manifest World. That is, it looks to the past and the future more than the present. That is, it looks to the origin, progeny, roots and seeds of things more than their external existence. It is a notebook of Divine Determining. The existence of this notebook has been proved both in the Twenty-Sixth Word and in a footnote in the Tenth Word.
Yes, the Clear Record is a title for an aspect of Divine knowledge and the Divine command. For since the origins, roots, and sources of things result in their existences with perfect order and extreme art, they show that they are ordered in accordance with a notebook of the principles of Divine knowledge. And since the results, progeny, and seeds of things comprise the programmes and indexes of beings that will come in the future, they surely infer that they are miniature collections of Divine commands. For example, it may be said that a seed resembles the programmes and indexes which will set in order all the parts of the tree, and is like a miniature embodiment of those creative commands, which specify the index and programme.
In Short: The Clear Record is like a programme or index of the tree of creation, the branches of which have spread throughout the past and the future and the World of the Unseen. The Clear Record with this meaning is a notebook of Divine Determining and a collection of its principles. Minute particles are despatched to their duties and motions in the bodies of things through the dictation and decree of those principles.
As for the Clear Book, it looks to the Manifest World rather than the World of the Unseen. That is, it looks to the present more than the past and the future. It is a title, a notebook, a ledger, of Divine power and will more than of knowledge and command. If the Clear Record is the notebook of Divine Determining, the Clear Book is the notebook of Divine power.
That is to say, the perfect art and order in the beings, essences, attributes, and qualities of all things show that they are being clothed in existence through the principles of a perfect power and the laws of a penetrating will. Their forms are determined and specified, each is given definite proportions and a particular shape. This means the power and will have a universal, general collection of laws, a great ledger, according to which the particular existences and forms of things are cut out, sewn, and clothed. The existence of this notebook, like the Clear Record, has been proved in the matters concerning Divine Determining and man’s will. See the foolishness of the people of misguidance, heedlessness, and philosophy, for they perceived the Preserved Tablet of Creative Power and the manifestation, reflection, and similitude in things of that perspicacious book of dominical Wisdom and Will, but, God forbid, calling it “Nature,” they made it blind. Thus, through the dictation of the Clear Record, that is, through the decree of Divine Determining and according to its principles, Divine power writes and creates the chains of beings, each of which is a sign in the creation of beings, on the page of time known as ‘the Tablet of Appearance and Dissolution,’ and causes the motion of particles...
This means that the motion of particles is a vibration, a movement, arising from that writing and copying, in the passage of beings from the World of the Unseen to the Manifest World, from Knowledge to Power. As for the Tablet of Appearance and Dissolution, it is an ever-changing notebook, a slate for writing and erasing, in the sphere of contingency of the Supreme Preserved Tablet -which is fixed and constant- that is, in beings, which constantly manifest life and death, existence and annihilation; it is the reality of time. Yes, like everything has a reality, so does time; the reality of what we call ‘time’, a mighty river which flows through the universe, is like the page and ink of the writing of Power in the Tablet of Appearance and Dissolution.
None knows the Unseen save Allah.
S e c o n d Q u e s t i o n : Where will the Great Gathering and Last Judgement take place?
The Answer : The knowledge is with Allah alone. The elevated instances of wisdom the All-Wise Creator displays in all things, and His even attaching vast instances of wisdom to a single insignificant thing, suggests to the point of being plain that the globe of the earth does not revolve in a circle aimlessly and pointlessly, but revolves around something important; it depicts the circumference of a vast arena. It travels around a huge place of exhibition and hands over its immaterial produce to it; because in the future the produce will be displayed there before the gazes of men. That is to say, it will fill the circle, the circumference of which is a distance of approximately twenty-five thousand years; Syria will be like a seed, according to one narration;2 the arena of the Great Gathering will be expanded out of that region. All the immaterial produce of the earth is for now sent to the notebooks and tablets of the arena which is beneath the veil of the Unseen, and in the future when the arena is opened up, the earth will also pour its inhabitants into it. Its immaterial produce will also be transposed to the Manifest Realm from that of the Unseen. Yes, like an arable field, a spring, or a measure, the earth has produced crops enough to fill that vast arena, and the creatures that will occupy it have flowed on from the earth, and those that will fill it have departed from it. That is to say, the globe of the earth is a seed, and the arena of the Great Gathering, together with those within it, a tree, a shoot, and a store. Indeed, just as a point of light becomes a luminous line or circle on moving at speed, the earth too, through its rapid, purposeful motion is the means of depicting a circle of existence, and together with that circle of existence and its produce, to the formation of the arena of the Great Gathering.
Say, the knowledge of it is with Allah alone.3
The Enduring One, He is the Enduring One!
S a i d N u r s i
1. See, The Words (Sözler Neşriyat 1992), pages 517-2, fn. 21.(Tr)
2. al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak ii, 440; Musnad iv, 447; v, 3, 5.
3. Qur’an, 67:26.
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