AWLIYÂ – أولياء
Literally: They who are very near (physically or figuratively). The saints.
Exalted exceptional people, the beloveds of Allah, who achieved the highest ranks through the high degree of their ‘ibâdah, taqwâ, obedience, riyâzah, and through striving to gain the pleasure, approval and acceptance of Allah in place of the desire of their nafs. The plural of walî - ولي .
Thus, mankind has gained the hundreds of thousands of prophets and millions of awliyâ and thousands of millions of asfiyâ who are like the suns, moons and stars of ‘âlam of mankind, through the sending of prophets and the mystery of man's accountability through the obligations placed on him by Allah, and through jihâd and striving with shaytans, in return mankind has lost the kâfirs and munâfiqs, who are from the species of harmful beasts which are numerous in regard to quantity and insignificant in regard to quality.
The Twelfth Letter-Your Second Question.
Yes, look to the ma’nawî collective personality of that proof: The face of the earth is a masjîd, Mecca a mihrab1 and Medina a minbar2 . Our Prophet ‘Alayhissalâtu Wassalâm, who is the evident proof, is Imam to all the people of îmân, preacher to all mankind, chief of all the prophets, sayyid of all the awliyâ, the leader of the dhâkirs of a circle of the dhikr compounded from all the prophets and awliyâ. He is such a luminous tree, which all the prophets are its living roots and all the awliyâ are its fresh fruits that all the prophets, who rely on their miracles, and all the awliyâ, who rely on their karâmât, confirm and sign each of his claims. For he says and claimsلاَ اِلهَ اِلاَّ اللّٰهُ . All the left and right, that is to say, those luminous dhâkirs lined up in the past and the future, repeating the same word, through the consensus (ijmâ’), in a ma’nawî manner say: "صدقتَ و بالحق نطقت "3 Which wahm would dare to meddle in a claim corroborated by the countless signatures such as these?
The Nineteenth Word-1st Droplet
2 (The platform in the mosque from which an Imam addresses the congregation and delivers sermons (khutbah), and is located to the right of the mihrab.)