Hidden Words: Deepening Day 1, Arabic 2 – Justice

Hidden Words, Arabic 2 – Justice (Day 1): Join us on FaceBook Baha’i Book Club – All Things Baha’i
We will begin our study of the Hidden Words with those Hidden Words that pertain to Justice!

One of the most important and expounded upon principles in the Bahá’í Faith is that of Justice. Bahá’u’lláh shows the primacy of this principle very clearly in The Hidden Words. Bahá’u’lláh wastes no time in bringing out the principle of Justice. Indeed, He first mentions this all-important principle in the Hidden Words with the second one revealed in the Arabic language, stressing its importance and the advantages to anyone who adheres to it. He says:
“O SON OF SPIRIT! The best beloved of all things in My sight is Justice; turn not away therefrom if thou desirest Me, and neglect it not that I may confide in thee. By its aid thou shalt see with thine own eyes and not through the eyes of others, and shalt know of thine own knowledge and not through the knowledge of thy neighbor. Ponder this in thy heart; how it behooveth thee to be. Verily justice is My gift to thee and the sign of My loving-kindness. Set it then before thine eyes.”
Question; What’s the Arabic word for “Justice” used in the Second Hidden Word from the Arabic (“The best beloved of all things in My sight is Justice…”)


The Arabic word is “insáf.” Steingass, Arabic-English Dictionary, translates “insáf” as: “equity, justice” (p. 85) Wehr, Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic translates “insáf.” as: “justice, equity, fairness; just treatment” (p. 1139) The word comes from the root nasafa, translated by Wehr as: “to… become noon,… to divide in the middle… to share…. to be just; to treat with justice… to serve” (p. 1139). Steingass, Persian-English Dictionary translates “insáf” as: “Dividing, taking half; acting justly; justice, equity; impartiality, fairness, equitable adjustment…” (p. 111). The Italian Campisi, A Dictionary of Islamic Theology translates nas.afa as “to reach the middle point” and its derivative “munsif” as “just, equitable, impartial” and the verb “ansáfa” as to be just with someone, to se

I like very much the idea that the Arabic nasafa conveys also the connotation of service. As if we could not be just with our fellow-beings, if we do not serve them.

      Julio Savi

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