most part ordinary people can be taught truths only in imaginary form – they can comprehend abstract ideas only by means of comparisons, and this necessitates the use of such allegorical expressions (mutashābihāt) as “Then He established Himself on the Throne.”(7:54) In this way, taking their understanding into consideration, such ideas are made familiar to them.
Over the course of time I have deduced from the essentials of eloquence (rhetoric) twelve matters preliminary to expounding the Qur’an’s miraculousness. Each is the thread of (khayṭ̣) [means to] many truths.1 Having set out above the verses containing comparisons and parables, it is now appropriate to summarize those [twelve] matters. So saying, “Success is from Allah alone,” we begin:
The First Matter
The source of the embroideries of eloquence is none other than the arrangement of the meanings; it is not the ordering of the words, which was the domain of the grandiloquent literalists. Their passion for words developed into a chronic illness so that finally ‘Abd al-Qāhir al-Jurjānī refuted them in his Dalā’il al-I‘jāz and Asrār al-Balāgha, devoting more than a hundred pages to disputing them.
The arrangement of the meanings consists of the grammatical meanings being placed systematically among the words; that is, the literal (ḥarfī) meanings being dissolved among the words to obtain the novel embroideries. If you look into it closely, you will see that the natural channel for ideas and emotions is the ordering of the meanings.
The arrangement of the meanings is constructed through the rules of logic, for it is only by means of logic that thought progresses towards truths. And thought reaches truths when it penetrates the subtleties of the natures of things and their relations. And the relations between the essences of things are the bonds of [the universe’s] perfect order. And the perfect order is the shell of sheer beauty, which is the source of all beauty. And sheer beauty is the garden of the elegant and refined sayings that are the flowers of eloquence. This flower-filled garden is where the nightingales wander who are known as the men of eloquence and lovers of creation. And the sweet, soft songs of those nightingales arise from the harmonious spiritual echoes wafting from the pipes of the meanings’ arrangement.
In Short: The universe is of the utmost eloquence; its Maker composed it flawlessly, eloquently. All the forms and species it contains, because of the
This refers to the twelve ‘Topics’ comprising the second part (İkinci Makale) of Nursi’s work, Muhâkemat, 77-102.