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Original title: Lawh-i Ru'ya
Written by Baha'u'llah in the Akka period
Translated by Juan Cole
Introduction by Alison Marshall

Much of Tablet of the Vision is devoted to Baha'u'llah's poetic description of a vision he had of the woman who symbolises the spirit of the Baha'i revelation. The tablet was written to commemorate the birth of The Bab.

Listen to Tablet of the Vision:


In His Name, Who warbleth upon the twigs.

[1] O My Name! Listen to My call from the precincts of My throne, that it might transport thee to a shoreless sea, the depths of which no diver ever plumbed. Verily, thy Lord is knowing and generous. We desired to favor thee with the mention of what We saw, that thou mightest perceive the world of light that lieth within this realm of gloom, mightest be convinced that We have worlds within this world, and mightest thank thy Lord, the All-Perceiving. If He desired to make the rays of the sun burst forth from an atom, or to make the waves of the sea billow from a droplet, He would be able to do so, just as He generated from the Point the knowledge of all that was and yet shall be.

[2] Verily, We were seated upon the throne. A most luminous woman entered, wearing exalted white raiments, shining like the moon when it riseth above the horizon.

          Exalted be God, Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[3] When her veil came undone, the heavens and the earth were illumined, as though the essence of pre-existence had shed the lights of effulgence upon it.

          Exalted be God, Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[4] She smileth and swayeth like the branch of an Egyptian willow before the panorama of the All-Merciful.

          Praise be to God, Who hath made Her manifest; no eye hath ever seen her like.

[5] She roved and wandered aimlessly, bereft of Her own will, as though the needle of love were attracted by the magnet of the Beauty that was refulgent before her countenance.

          Exalted be Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[6] She walketh, and splendor waiteth upon her, as the kingdom of beauty behind her voiceth its acclaim at the wonders of Her loveliness, Her coquetry, and the symmetry of Her limbs.

          Exalted be Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen her like.

[7] Then We perceived black tresses all along her milky neck, as though night and day had embraced in this most glorious station and this ultimate goal.

          Exalted be Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[8] When We gazed at Her face We discovered the Point that had been concealed beneath the veil of oneness dawning forth from the horizon of Her brow, as though it was by means of Her that the tablets of divine love were revealed in the contingent world and the ledgers of the lovers were recorded in the remotest regions.

          Exalted be Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[9] That Point was spoken of by another Point, above her right breast.

          Exalted be the Lord of the hidden and the manifest, Who created her; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[10] Then the Temple of God arose and She strode behind Him, listening, in motion, attracted by the verses of Her Lord.

          Blessed be the One Who fashioned Her; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[11] Then She grew more glad, joyful and full of yearning, till Her aspect changed and She swooned. When She regained consciousness, She drew near and said, "May My soul be a sacrifice for Thine imprisonment, O Mystery of the Unseen in the kingdom of creation."

          Exalted be Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[12] She was gazing at the Orient of the Throne like one drunk and bewildered, till she put her hand around the neck of Her Lord and pressed Him to Her. When She drew near, We drew near. We found in Her that which was revealed in the hidden crimson scroll by My most high Pen.

          Exalted be Her Creator; no eye hath ever seen Her like.

[13] Then She inclined Her head and rested Her face upon two fingers, as though the crescent moon were joined to a full moon.

          Exalted be Her Creator; no one hath ever seen Her like.

[14] At that point She cried out, saying, "May all existence be a sacrifice to Thy tribulations, O sovereign of the earth and the heavens. To what end hast Thou entrusted Thyself to those in the city of `Akka? Set out for Thine other dominions, those stations upon which the eyes of the people of names have never fallen." At that We smiled.

[15] Acquaint yourselves with this most sweet pronouncement, and with that which We intended by the hidden mystery that is both manifest and supremely concealed, O ye endued with understanding among the passengers on My crimson ark.

[16] This mention hath coincided with the birth date of my Forerunner, Who made mention of Me and of My sovereignty, giving the people glad tidings of the heaven of My will, the ocean of My volition, and the sun of My manifestation. We have honored Him with another Day, whereon was revealed the concealed Absence, the hidden secret and the well-guarded enigma that struck confusion into the hearts of those who dwell in the kingdom of names and left all who are on the earth and in the heavens thunderstruck, save for any whom We saved by Our authority and power. I am Powerful over whatsoever I will. No God is there but Me, the Knowing, the Wise.

[17] Blessed is the one who perceiveth the fragrance of God in this Day that was the dawn of epiphany and of My Name, the Forgiving. Thereon, perfume hath been diffused, gales have blown, the ecstasy of disclosure hath overtaken those in their graves, and Mount Sinai hath cried out, "Dominion is God's the Almighty, the Exalted, the Omniscient, the All-Perceiving." On this Day, all who set out toward the goal have attained it, all mystics have reached what they would know, all wayfarers have trodden their straight path.

[18] Praise be to thee, O My God. Bless Thy friends, then send down upon them from the heaven of Thy magnanimity what will render them detached from all save Thee and cause them to set their faces toward the horizon from which hath risen the sun of Thy grace. Ordain, O My God, that which will profit them in this world and the next. Verily, thou art the Powerful, the Most High, the Bestower, the Giving, the Self-Sufficient, the Munificent.

Notes

Another translation of this tablet, by Stephen Lambden, can be found at his website, Hurqalya.

Last Updated ( Friday, 04 July 2008 )
 
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