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1864 (or early in the sojourn in Edirne) ‘Abdu'l-Bahá wrote the Sharh-i Kuntu Kanzan Makhfiyan, the commentary on the well-known Islamic tradition ‘I was a Hidden Treasure …' for ‘Alí Shawkat Páshá.
  • See Commentary on the Islamic Tradition "I Was a Hidden Treasure..." by Abdu'l-Bahá translated by Moojan Momen. In the article, he refers to another provisional translation done by Baharieh Ma'ani in collaboration with Hooper Dunbar.
  • See 'Abdu'l-Bahá's Response to the Doctrine of the Unity of Existence by Keven Brown Fourth Section.
  • See as well BNE52. Here, 'Abdu'l-Bahá is described as "about fifteen or sixteen years of age".
  • Mention of this Tablet is made in Messages to Canada, p34-35, where, in a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, it is stated that the Tablet is about 50 pages in length and had been published in 'Abdu'l-Bahá's second volume of His Tablets published in Egypt.
  • A Tablet of Baháʼuʼlláh, recently discovered by Necati Alkan and available in provisional translation by Adib Masumian, indicates that it was written during the sojourn in Edirne. The original text has been published in Safíniy-i-ʻIrfán, vol. 6, p. 10 (2003). In the Tablet Bahá'u'lláh says that Ali (Şevket/Shawkat) Pasha requested 'Abdu'l-Bahá to write His commentary "during the days of stopover/residence in the Land of Mystery" (dar ayyám-i tavaqquf dar Ard-i Sirr).

    And now concerning the extensive commentary on the Islamic tradition which begins, “I was a hidden treasure…” During the days of Our sojourn in the Land of Mystery, ʻAlí Páshá had asked the Most Mighty Branch of God—may My life be a sacrifice for the ground which His most pure footsteps have trodden—to provide a commentary on this hadith. This He did in accordance with the exigencies of the time, and His purpose was that all may benefit from it…

    As per a 1995 article prepared for The Bahá'í Encyclopedia, it was previously believed that 'Abdu'l-Bahá was 17 years old at the time of writing, if so, this would have dated the Tablet at about 1861. Given that this new evidence proves that it was written in Edirne, He would have been 19 years old but more probably in his early twenties. [Thanks to Necati Alkan for providing this correction and to Adib Masumian for doing the translation at his request.] iiiii

  • Edirne (Adrianople); Turkey Abdul-Baha, Writings and talks of; Abdul-Baha, Life of; Sharh-i Kuntu Kanzan Makhfiyan (Commentary on the tradition of the Hidden Treasure); Commentaries; Hadith; Islam; Hidden Treasure (Hadith); Philosophy; Ali Shawkat Pasha; Bahaullah, Life of; Abdul-Baha, Basic timeline; - Basic timeline, Expanded; Necati Alkan; Adib Masumian

    from the main catalogue

    1. 'Abdu'l-Baha's commentary on the Islamic tradition 'God doth give victory to this religion by means of a wicked man': Provisional translation and notes, by Necati Alkan, in Bahá'í Studies Review, 11 (2003). Background and translation of a Turkish tablet by Abdu'l-Bahá commenting on a hadith. [about]
    2. "By the Fig and the Olive": `Abdu'l-Bahá's Commentary in Ottoman Turkish on the Qur'ánic Sura 95, by Necati Alkan, in Bahá'í Studies Review, 10 (2001). A translation and discussion of an Ottoman-Turkish Tablet by `Abdu'l-Bahá: his commentary on the Quaranic Sura of the Fig (#95).  [about]
    3. Commentary on the Surah of the Sun, by Bahá'u'lláh (1994). Bahá'u'lláh's explanation of a passage from the Qur'an. [about]
    4. He who knoweth his self hath known his Lord (Man ‘arafa nafsahú faqad ‘arafa Rabbahú): Commentary, by Bahá'u'lláh (1996). Translation by Shoghi Effendi, completed by Cole. Themes include Islamic mysticism and the meaning of detachment, the meaning of the hadith about knowing one's self, the meaning of Return, and the hadith "The believer is alive in both worlds." [about]
    5. Qur'an Commentary as Sacred Performance: The Bab's tafsirs of Qur'an 103 and 108, the Declining Day and the Abundance, by Todd Lawson, in Der Iran um 19 Jahrhundert und die Enstehung der Bahá'í Religion (1998). Quranic commentary played a major role in the formation of the Bábí movement. Early Babis were impressed by the Bab's innovative interpretation of scripture. As the Bab's claims became more widely known, his language became less esoteric. [about]
    6. Qur'an Commentary of Sayyid 'Alí Muhammad, the Báb, The: Doctoral dissertation, by Todd Lawson (1987-07). A study of the Báb's two earliest works, partial commentaries on the Qur'an entitled "Tafsír súrat al-baqara" and "Tafsír súrat Yúsuf" (aka The Qayyum al-Asma), in an attempt to appreciate the Bab's attitude towards the Qur'an. [about]
    7. Surih of the Sun (Súriy-i-Vash-Shams): Introduction and Commentary, by Juan Cole (1994). Overview of a tablet of Bahá'u'lláh touching on matters of interpretation and theology. [about]
    8. Textual Resurrection: Book, Imám, and Cosmos in the Qur'án Commentaries of the Báb, by Vahid Brown, in Lights of Irfan, Volume 5 (2004). on the notions of textuality underlying the Báb's Qur'ánic commentaries; the history of Qur'ánic commentary in Islam as context; the Báb's readings of the Qur'án as 'messianic performances'. [about]
     
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