The Thirty-Third Word

This Word consists of

Thirty-Three Windows

[While being the Thirty-Third Letter,

this is also the Thirty-Third Word.]

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

We shall show them Our signs in the furthest horizons and in themselves, so that it will become clear to them that this Qur’an is indeed the Truth. Is it not enough that your Sustainer witnesses all things?1

Question: We would like a concise explanation of the ways man and the universe, that is, the microcosm and the macrocosm, point to the necessary existence and unity of God and His dominical attributes and functions, which the two parts of the above verse denote. For the unbelievers have gone too far, they are saying: “For how long shall we say: ‘And He is powerful over all things,’ and have to raise our hands?”

Answer: The thirty-three Words that have been written form thirty-three drops from the ocean of this verse and from the seas of truth which flow from it. If you look at them, you will find your answer. What we say now is only a sort of hint to the sprinkling of a single drop from the ocean.

For example, if a wonder-worker wants to build a splendid palace, he first of all sets the foundations in a wise and regular fashion, and plans them in a way suitable to their future purpose and results. Then he skilfully divides them into sections and apartments. Next, he orders and arranges the apartments, and decorates them with tapestries, then illuminates them with electric lights. Then, in order to renew his ingenious works and favours in that magnificent and adorned palace, he makes fresh creations and new changes and transformations in every level of it. And then he installs a telephone in every apartment connected to his own abode, and opens up a window from each, so that his may be seen.

In just the same way, And God’s is the highest similitude,1 the Peerless Creator, Who is named with a thousand and one sacred Names such as All-Glorious Maker, All-Wise Sovereign, All-Just Arbiter, willed the creation of the palace of the universe and tree of the cosmos, which forms the macrocosm. He set the foundations of the palace, the tree, in six days through the principles of wisdom and laws of His pre-eternal knowledge. Then He divided and formed it into the higher and lower levels and branches through the principles of Divine Determining and Decree. Next, He adorned everything, each world, in an appropriate manner, like the heavens with the stars and the earth with flowers. Then He manifested and made luminous His Names within the arena of those universal laws and general principles. And then in a special way sent to the assistance of individuals crying out at the constraint of those universal laws His Names of Most Merciful and All-Compassionate. That is to say, within those universal and general principles He has special favours, special succour, special manifestations, so that everything may seek help from Him and look to Him at all times for every need. Then from every apartment, every level, every world, every realm of being, every individual, from everything, He opened up windows which would show Himself, that is, make known His existence and unity. He left a telephone in every heart.

For now we shall not attempt to discuss those innumerable windows, which is anyway beyond our power. Referring them to the all-encompassing knowledge of God, we shall only point out in a concise and brief manner thirty-three Windows – since it corresponds to the blessed number of the tesbihat following the prescribed prayers, and for a more detailed explanation of this, which forms the Thirty-Third Letter and Thirty-Third Word and consists of gleams from verses of the Qur’an, we refer readers to the rest of the Words.