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Original title: Lawh Mallah al-Quds

Translated by Juan Cole

Audio:

 

He is the Precious, the Beloved.

[1] Holy mariner, bring the ship of immortality to the celestial concourse.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[2] Moor it on the sea of pre-existence by means of a new name.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[3] Then board upon it the temples of the spirit in the name of God, the exalted, the most high.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[4] Weigh anchor so that it can ply the ocean of grandeur and deliver its passengers to the precincts of nearness in the sanctuary of eternity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[5] Behold, you have brought them to the sacred shore, the beach of the crimson sea.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[6] Then disembark them from the ship in this ethereal and most hidden station.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[7] This is a station, wherein God showed forth the fire of beauty in the everlasting bush.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[8] Therein the temples of the Cause put off the sandals of carnal desire.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[9] Therein the Moses of grandeur circles with the hosts of eternity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[10] This is a station, wherein the hand of God was drawn forth from the cloak of grandeur.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[11] This is a station, wherein the ship of the Cause shall never move, even though all the divine names be recited to it.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[12] Then, holy mariner, teach the passengers on the ship what we taught you behind the cloud of unknowability -
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[13] lest they become idled in the valley of the white dune.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[14] And so that they might fly with the wings of spirit to the station that God has sanctified above mention in the kingdoms of creation -
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[15] and might move through the sky like birds of nearness in the realm of the divine presence -
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[16] and learn the mysteries concealed within the waves of light.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[17] They traversed the way-stations of worldly limitations, until they arrived at the station of divine unity in the center of guidance.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[18] They desired to ascend to a station that God ordained to be above their ranks, when the luminous comet expelled them from among the inhabitants of the kingdom of his presence.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[19] They heard the melodies of greatness from behind the pavilions of the Unseen in the sublime sanctuary.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[20] Guardian angels, return them to their places in the realm of humanity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[21] For they desired to fly into that heaven to which the wings of the dove never attained.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[22] Nor will the ships of mere conjecture or the hearts of those endued with intellect ever stir therein.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[23] Behold, the houri of the spirit looked out from the most exalted chamber.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[24] She arched her eyebrow toward the concourse of holiness.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[25] The lights of her forehead shone from the earth to the sky.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[26] The radiance of her beauty fell upon the people of the earth and clay. Then, suddenly, the bodies of being shuddered forth from the graves of annihilation.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[27] Then she called out with a melody that the ear of hearing had never experienced from pre-existent eternity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[28] She said, "By God, those who do not have in their hearts the breezes of love that waft from the radiant `Iraqi youth -"
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[29] "shall never be able to ascend to the heights of the unknowable essence in this remotest realm."
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[30] Behold, she commanded one of her most beautiful slave girls -
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[31] saying, "Descend from the palaces of immortality in the form of a sun in this void -"
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[32] "then turn your attention to them, insofar as they have imprisoned him within their hidden, inmost souls-"
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[33] "and if you smell the fragrance of the coat of the youth who was concealed within pavilions of light by the wicked-"
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[34] "then cry out within yourself so that all the embodiments of wealth who inhabit the chambers of paradise may be informed thereof."
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[35] "Thus might all of them descend from the chambers of immortality -"
          praised be my Lord, the most glorious -

[36] "and kiss their hands and feet insofar as these had soared into the heavens of faithfulness."
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[37] "Perhaps you will discover the scent of the beloved on their shirts."
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[38] Then the houri of nearness dawned from the horizon of the chambers, just as the visage of the youth rises above his robe.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[39] She descended with an ornament that illumined the heavens and all that is in them.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[40] Then she moved in the air so that she perfumed all things in the lands of holiness and sublimity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[41] When she arrived at that station, she arose like the meridian along the pole of creation.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[42] She inhaled their scent at that time when there was neither beginning nor end.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[43] She did not discover in them what she desired, and this is an amazing tale!
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[44] Then she shrieked, and wailed, and returned to her place in her crimson palace.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[45] Then she spoke a secret word beneath her spiritual breath.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[46] She called out among the celestial concourse and the houris of eternity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[47] By God, she did not perceive from those idle claimants the breezes of fidelity.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[48] By God, the youth remained in the land of exile, single and alone in the hands of the godless.
          Praised be my Lord in the divine realm of sorrow.

[49] Thereafter she wailed within herself in a lamentation that shook the concourse on high and set them to shrieking.
          Praised be my Lord, who clad himself in vestments of black.

[50] She fell upon the earth and died, as though she had been called, and had answered the one who called her in the divine realm beyond all knowing. Praised be the one who created her from the essence of chaste modesty.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[51] Then suddenly those houris came outside, who had never been glimpsed by anyone from among the people of the sublime garden.
          Praised be my Lord, the most glorious.

[52] They gathered around her, discovering her body outstretched upon the dust.
          Praised be our Lord, the most high.

[53] When they witnessed her condition and learned a single letter of the tales of the youth, they bared their heads, rent their veils, slapped their own faces, put away all frivolity, wept with their eyes, and struck their cheeks with their hands. These are among the secret and most hidden calamities.
          Praised be our Lord, the exalted, the most high.

Notes

For another translation of the arabic section of the Tablet of the Holy Mariner, see the Baha'i Reference Library.

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