‘The whole of the Quran is contained in the Fatiha*, the whole of the Fatiha is in the basmalla** بسم الله and the whole of the basmalla بسم الله in the bā̛ ب and the whole of the bā̛ ب in the diacritical point under the ب ’
(Quote attributed to Ali Ibni Talib from The Study Quran)
What an amazing visualization!
Doesn’t it make you want to paint the biggest ب possible on a blank canvas and just throw it up on your wall as beautiful art?
When I first read it, I thought to share this visualization with my children and turn it into an ‘activity’….it would be exciting to tell them this ‘story’ about the letter bā̛ ب and then we could paint the beautiful boat like letter.
While we were talking about this ‘stacking’ visualization …( because what more is it than that?) My older one ‘got it’. ‘Like the milky way galaxy and then the solar system and earth and friends and then me!’ he observed.
One of the most popular and basic children’s toy is the ‘stacking’ toy. This concept that what is ‘big’ has stages of ‘little’, that there are stages and order in all things is a beautiful motif which can be applied to almost any observation. It is wonderful to see that understanding in your child of his or her position in the world in relation to others. A simple block of wood can be held, observed, felt. Conversations could lead to thinking about what the wood was before it came into our hands, for example he tree it might have grown from, the plant that the tree once was, and the seed that was the beginning of it all.
The Beginning of it all. B is for beginning. And what is more a sign for those who ponder over such beauties of the universe than a newborn baby, so precious in it’s shining wet newness, so supremely full of potential and all that life could be. B is for Baby.
Six months ago when my own third baby was a newborn bundle in my arms, I would read the fine print of his face every morning. I knew by the third child to savor those first few golden days, breathe in his other-worldly scent that would fade away too soon like a stunning dream that escapes you the more you try to remember it. I committed to memory the hues of his honey colored hair, the way it petered out into minuscule forehead hairs – mapped so perfectly and meeting in the aspect of his brows like a swirly painted starry night.
Over the next few days and weeks his features seemed to emerge like a black and white photo graph developing in front of my eyes. Light, almost invisible eyelashes turned darker, thicker. Translucent nails on fingertips turned opaque. A smile surfacing, at first watery and soon bubbling and gushing into plump cheeked laughter.
Everything my baby could one day be as a boy, a teenager, a man, in him already, like the tiny acorn seed holding the majestic oak. It’s like when you notice an expression on the face of your three year old, a certain angle, perhaps catching you by surprise as you briefly get a glimpse of the young woman inside.
It made me think back on that Basmillah quote by Imam Ali. All babies are a ‘Basmallah’. A beginning holding within itself the purest form of potential that God breathed into every soul. Holding a newborn baby is to hold infinity in the palm of your hand... touching for a moment that tenuous link somewhere between life and death. The way I imagine we may one day pass into the hereafter from this – our Earthly ‘Womb’ is not dissimilar to the way a newborn is birthed into this Earth, from its own Universe of the womb.
But I am losing myself here in these thoughts and all this talk of newborns can only mean one thing! Yes! This past week we welcomed another Blessed Babe into the Mini-nushka tribe. Remember when Aiysha was ruminating on whether she should find out the gender? Well, she kept it a surprise right till the end, and I get to be the lucky one to announce ‘It’s a BOY!’ And oh what a sweet blessed boy he is!
Mama and Baby are doing well . Welcome to the world sweet new soul, and may you and your presence on this Earth bring forth peace, love and joy to all whom you come across. May you be of the strongest of hearts and of the kindest of hearts, the bravest of hearts and of the most steadfast of hearts. May all our children be of those who bring hearts together in goodness. Ameen.
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour
(From Songs of Innocence by William Blake)
*Fatihah is the opening chapter of the Quran
** Basmallah or ‘Bismillah’ is the phrase every chapter of the Quran begins with, meaning ; ‘In The Name Of God’
Image Credit Blue Bismillah Painting (Unknown) If this image belongs to you, please let us know so we may credit accordingly.