Second pillar: Apostleship
Abraham, friend of God, loved not the things
That set; and lo, his footprint was a guide
To all successive prophets. He, the sign
And witness to the everlasting Lord,
Yearned in his heart for a Community,
And from his sleepless eyes the flood of tears
Unceasing flowed until the message came,
Cleanse thou My House. Then for our sake he made
A desert populous, and founded there
A temple whither pilgrims might process.
And when the stem of turn thou unto us
Burst into bud, the tillage of our Spring
Took visible shape; God fashioned forth our form
And through Apostleship breathed in our flesh
The soul of life. We were a word unvoiced
Within this world, that by Apostleship
Became a measured verse; and that same grace
Both shaped our being, gave us Faith and Law,
Converted our vast myriads into one,
And joined our fractions in a mighty whole
He, who is pleased to guide whomso he will,
Made of Apostleship a magic ring
To draw around us; the community
A circle is, whose great circumference
Centers on Makkah’s valley; and by force
And virtue of that same relationship
Stands our community unshakable,
Tidings of mercy to the world entire.
Out of that sea we surge, nor break apart
Like scattering waves; its people, closely fenced
Within the ramparts of that holy soil,
Roar loud as jungle lions. If thou look
To prove the truth that lies within my words,
Gazing with Abu Bakr’s veracious eyes,
The Prophet, power and strength of soul and heart,
Becometh more beloved than God Himself.
His book is reinforcement to the hearts
Of all believers; through his wisdom flows
The lifeblood of the whole community;
To yield his garment’s hem is death – the rose
So withers at the blast of Autumn’s wind.
His was the breath that gave the people life;
His sun shone glory on their risen dawn.
In God the individual, in him
Lives the community, in his sun’s rays
Resplendent ever; his Apostleship
Brought concord to our purpose and our goal.
A common aim shared by the multitude
Is unity which when it is mature,
Forms the community; the many live
Only by virtue of the single bond.
The Muslim’s unity from natural faith
Derives, and this the Prophet taught to us,
So that we lit a lantern on Truth’s way.
This pearl was fished from his unfathomed sea,
And of his bounty we are one in soul.
Let not this unity go from our hands,
And we endure to all eternity.
God set the seal of holy Law on us,
As in our Prophet all Apostleship
Is sealed. The concourse of unending days
Is radiant in our lustre; he was Seal
To all Apotles, to all People we.
The service of Truth’s winebearer is left
With us; he gave to us his final glass.
No Prophet after me is of God’s grace,
And veil the modest beauty of the Faith
Muhammad brought to men. The people’s strength
All rest in this, that still the secret guards
Of how the Faith’s Community is one.
Almighty God has shattered every shape
Carved by imposture, and for evermore
Stitched up the sacred volume of Islam.
The Muslim keeps his heart from all but God
And shouts abroad, No people after me.