From the Seventeenth Discourse—page 349-350

in Irshad: Wisdom of a Sufi Master, by Sheikh Muzaffer Ozak Al-Jerrahi, trans. Muhtar Holland. An Ashki Book of Amity House, Warwick: 1988.




Origin Of The Name “Noah”


The book Stories Of The Prophets gives this account of the conversation that took place in the ark between Satan and Noah, on him be peace: Satan asked the venerable Noah: “Why has this trial befallen mankind?” and the venerable Noah replied: “Because they did not believe in Allāh and in me, His Messenger.”  The devil said: “That is true, Noah.”  Then he added: “But the root of the matter is not only that.  If I had not envied Adam, I would not have been driven out of the Almighty presence, away from the sublime mercy; I would not be leading these sons of Adam astray.  The real cause is envy and arrogance.”

Noah is not the proper name of the venerable Prophet, but a nickname.  The literal meaning of “Noah” is “wailing,” meaning someone who loudly laments.  Noah once noticed a sore and mangy dog.  When he turned his face away from it in disgust, the dog said (or somehow conveyed the meaning): “Why have you turned from me in disgust?  Is it the craftsman or his handicraft you dislike?”  From that day on, he was always weeping and wailing and hardly ever smiled.  For the “craftsman” meant Allāh, while “his handicraft” meant His work.  To dislike the handicraft was to dislike what Allāh had created, while disliking the craftsman meant disliking Allāh.