Archive for January, 2018

Baha’i Month: Sultan/Sovereignty 1, 174 B.E. (1/19/2018)

Friday, January 19th, 2018

Consider history. What has brought unity to nations, morality to peoples and benefits to mankind? If we reflect upon it, we will find that establishing the divine religions has been the greatest means toward accomplishing the oneness of humanity. The foundation of divine reality in religion has done this, not imitations of ancestral religious forms. Imitations are opposed to each other and have ever been the cause of strife, enmity, jealousy and war. The divine religions are collective centers in which diverse standpoints may meet, agree and unify. They accomplish oneness of native lands, races and policies. For instance, Christ united various nations, brought peace to warring peoples and established the oneness of humankind. The conquering Greeks and Romans, the prejudiced Egyptians and Assyrians were all in a condition of strife, enmity and war, but Christ gathered these varied peoples together and removed the foundations of discord—not through racial, patriotic or political power, but through divine power, the power of the Holy Spirit. This was not otherwise possible. All other efforts of men and nations remain as mere mention in history, without accomplishment.

As this great result is contingent upon divine power and bestowals, where shall the world obtain that power? God is eternal and ancient—not a new God. His sovereignty is of old, not recent—not merely existent these five or six thousand years. This infinite universe is from everlasting. The sovereignty, power, names and attributes of God are eternal, ancient. His names presuppose creation and predicate His existence and will. We say God is Creator. This name Creator appears when we connote creation. We say God is the Provider. This name presupposes and proves the existence of the provided. God is Love. This name proves the existence of the beloved. In the same way God is Mercy, God is Justice, God is Life, etc. Therefore, as God is Creator, eternal and ancient, there were always creatures and subjects existing and provided for. There is no doubt that divine sovereignty is eternal. Sovereignty necessitates subjects, ministers, trustees and others subordinate to sovereignty. Could there be a king without country, subjects and armies? If we conceive of a time when there were no creatures, no servants, no subjects of divine lordship, we dethrone God and predicate a time when God was not. It would be as if He had been recently appointed and man had given these names to Him. The divine sovereignty is ancient, eternal. God from everlasting was Love, Justice, Power, Creator, Provider, the Omniscient, the Bountiful.

As the divine entity is eternal, the divine attributes are coexistent, coeternal. The divine bestowals are, therefore, without beginning, without end. God is infinite; the works of God are infinite; the bestowals of God are infinite. As His divinity is eternal, His lordship and perfections are without end. As the bounty of the Holy Spirit is eternal, we can never say that His bestowals terminate, else He terminates. If we think of the sun and then try to conceive of the cessation of the solar flame and heat, we have predicated the nonexistence of the sun. For separation of the sun from its rays and heat is inconceivable. Therefore, if we limit the bestowals of God, we limit the attributes of God and limit God.

Let us then trust in the bounty and bestowal of God. Let us be exhilarated with the divine breath, illumined and exalted by the heavenly glad tidings. God has ever dealt with man in mercy and kindness. He Who conferred the divine spirit in former times is abundantly able and capable at all times and periods to grant the same bestowals. Therefore, let us be hopeful. The God Who gave to the world formerly will do so now and in the future. God Who breathed the breath of the Holy Spirit upon His servants will breathe it upon them now and hereafter. There is no cessation to His bounty. The Divine Spirit is penetrating from eternity to eternity, for it is the bounty of God, and the bounty of God is eternal.

Abdu’l-Baha’, exc. fr. The Promulgation Of Universal Peace

30 May 1912 TALK AT THEOSOPHICAL LODGE
BROADWAY AND SEVENTY-NINTH STREET, NEW YORK

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The 12 Fruits Of God’s Covenant – God’s 12-Point Moral Compass For Humanity – Directing All To The Axis Of LOVE

Baha’i Sabbath: Sharaf 13, 174 B.E. (1/12/2018)

Saturday, January 13th, 2018

In the fourth Ishráq (splendor) of the Ishráqát (Tablet of Splendors) We have mentioned: “Every cause needeth a helper. In this Revelation the hosts which can render it victorious are the hosts of praiseworthy deeds and upright character. The leader and commander of these hosts hath ever been the fear of God, a fear that encompasseth all things, and reigneth over all things.”

In the third Tajallí (effulgence) of the Book of Tajallíyát (Book of Effulgences) We have mentioned: “Arts, crafts and sciences uplift the world of being, and are conducive to its exaltation. Knowledge is as wings to man’s life, and a ladder for his ascent. Its acquisition is incumbent upon everyone. The knowledge of such sciences, however, should be acquired as can profit the peoples of the earth, and not those which begin with words and end with words.

Great indeed is the claim of scientists and craftsmen on the peoples of the world. Unto this beareth witness the Mother Book in this conspicuous station.”

In truth, knowledge is a veritable treasure for man, and a source of glory, of bounty, of joy, of exaltation, of cheer and gladness unto him. Happy the man that cleaveth unto it, and woe betide the heedless.

It is incumbent upon thee to summon the people, under all conditions, to whatever will cause them to show forth spiritual characteristics and goodly deeds, so that all may become aware of that which is the cause of human upliftment, and may, with the utmost endeavor, direct themselves towards the most sublime Station and the Pinnacle of Glory. The fear of God hath ever been the prime factor in the education of His creatures. Well is it with them that have attained thereunto!

The first word which the Abhá Pen hath revealed and inscribed on the first leaf of Paradise is this: “Verily I say: The fear of God hath ever been a sure defence and a safe stronghold for all the peoples of the world. It is the chief cause of the protection of mankind, and the supreme instrument for its preservation. Indeed, there existeth in man a faculty which deterreth him from, and guardeth him against, whatever is unworthy and unseemly, and which is known as his sense of shame. This, however, is confined to but a few; all have not possessed, and do not possess, it. It is incumbent upon the kings and the spiritual leaders of the world to lay fast hold on religion, inasmuch as through it the fear of God is instilled in all else but Him.”

The second word We have recorded on the second leaf of Paradise is the following: “The Pen of the Divine Expounder exhorteth, at this moment, the manifestations of authority and the sources of power, namely the kings and rulers of the earth–may God assist them–and enjoineth them to uphold the cause of religion, and to cleave unto it. Religion is, verily, the chief instrument for the establishment of order in the world, and of tranquillity amongst its peoples. The weakening of the pillars of religion hath strengthened the foolish, and emboldened them, and made them more arrogant. Verily I say: The greater the decline of religion, the more grievous the waywardness of the ungodly. This cannot but lead in the end to chaos and confusion. Hear Me, O men of insight, and be warned, ye who are endued with discernment!”

It is Our hope that thou wilt hear with attentive ears the things We have mentioned unto thee, that perchance thou mayest turn men away from the things they possess to the things that God possesseth. We entreat God to deliver the light of equity and the sun of justice from the thick clouds of waywardness, and cause them to shine forth upon men. No light can compare with the light of justice. The establishment of order in the world and the tranquillity of the nations depend upon it.

In the Book of Utterance these exalted words have been written down and recorded: “Say, O friends! Strive that haply the tribulations suffered by this Wronged One and by you, in the path of God, may not prove to have been in vain. Cling ye to the hem of virtue, and hold fast to the cord of trustworthiness and piety. Concern yourselves with the things that benefit mankind, and not with your corrupt and selfish desires. O ye followers of this Wronged One! Ye are the shepherds of mankind; liberate ye your flocks from the wolves of evil passions and desires, and adorn them with the ornament of the fear of God. This is the firm commandment which hath, at this moment, flowed out from the Pen of Him Who is the Ancient of Days. By the righteousness of God! The sword of a virtuous character and upright conduct is sharper than blades of steel. The voice of the true Faith calleth aloud, at this moment, and saith: O people! Verily, the Day is come, and My Lord hath made Me to shine forth with a light whose splendor hath eclipsed the suns of utterance. Fear ye the Merciful, and be not of them that have gone astray.”

Baha’u’llah, Epistle To The Son Of The Wolf (exc)

The 12 Fruits Of God’s Covenant – God’s 12-Point Moral Compass For Humanity – Directing All To The Axis Of LOVE

Holy Day: The Establishment Of The IBC/UHJ 1/9/1991-Sharaf 10, 174 B.E. (1/9/2018)

Tuesday, January 9th, 2018

On this Holy Day commemorating the formation of the IBC/UHJ by Baha’u’llah’s Establisher Dr. Leland Jensen

On this Holy Day commemorating the formation of the IBC/UHJ by Baha’u’llah’s Establisher Dr. Leland Jensen

Countenance of Love
(Lawh al-Tal‘at al-Hubb)
Revealed by Baha’u‘llah
Countenance of love, we have recognized your longing for God in the pavilions of eternity, insofar as you drew near and attained, in the arenas of encounter, to the presence of God. Thus have we reckoned everything in a book that was decreed in the Tablet. Know that you have advanced to the sanctuary of beauty and visited the kaaba of holiness in the garden of paradise on the Mount Paran of love. Thus was your affair guarded from the rebellious in a tablet. Do not grieve over any matter, and be not perplexed at the adversities of this world. God shall send you forth in a station that is, in truth, exalted. For the world, its adornments and finery, shall pass away in less than the blink of an eye. Therefore, exert yourself in what will be everlasting for you in the highest kingdom, so that you will be safeguarded in the worlds of the spirit that revolve around the tree of immortality.
Listen with the ear of your heart to what the dove warbles on the pole of infinity, insofar as it has taught you the paths of truth on that route that was raised up in light. Attest to this Tablet with the tongue of spirit so that you might be radiant with the fire of love. Fear God, and pay no attention to those who opposed him. Do not follow those who have disbelieved and who shall never find for themselves a path to the truth. Be constant in love and firm in the cause so that your foot shall not stumble, even if you are opposed by all who are on earth. Therefore, cast away what is in your right hand, then follow God’s paradise so that you might find an august station at the center of the Garden near the sea of immortality.
Thus have we written in the Tablet the details of all things, and have mentioned them to you so that you might arrive at a station that is impervious to sorrow. By God, if you smell the fragrance of this shirt, you will discover the breezes of the divine essence, your eyes will overflow with tears in your yearning for God, and you will be insightful concerning the cause of your Lord.
Spirit be upon you, and upon those who were meek, having drawn nigh and been consumed by the fire of union.
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The 12 Fruits Of God’s Covenant – God’s 12-Point Moral Compass For Humanity – Directing All To The Axis Of LOVE

Baha’i Sabbath: Sharaf 6, 174 B.E. (1/5/2018)

Friday, January 5th, 2018

The utterance of God is a lamp, whose light is these words: Ye are the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch. Deal ye one with another with the utmost love and harmony, with friendliness and fellowship. He Who is the Daystar of Truth beareth Me witness! So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth. The One true God, He Who knoweth all things, Himself testifieth to the truth of these words.

Exert yourselves that ye may attain this transcendent and most sublime station, the station that can insure the protection and security of all mankind. This goal excelleth every other goal, and this aspiration is the monarch of all aspirations. So long, however, as the thick clouds of oppression, which obscure the daystar of justice, remain undispelled, it would be difficult for the glory of this station to be unveiled to men’s eyes. These thick clouds are the exponents of idle fancies and vain imaginings, who are none other but the divines of Persia. At one time We spoke in the language of the lawgiver; at another in that of the truth-seeker and the mystic, and yet Our supreme purpose and highest wish hath always been to disclose the glory and sublimity of this station. God, verily, is a sufficient witness!

Consort with all men, O people of Bahá, in a spirit of friendliness and fellowship. If ye be aware of a certain truth, if ye possess a jewel, of which others are deprived, share it with them in a language of utmost kindliness and goodwill. If it be accepted, if it fulfill its purpose, your object is attained. If anyone should refuse it, leave him unto himself, and beseech God to guide him. Beware lest ye deal unkindly with him. A kindly tongue is the lodestone of the hearts of men. It is the bread of the spirit, it clotheth the words with meaning, it is the fountain of the light of wisdom and understanding.

By “divines” in the passage cited above is meant those men who outwardly attire themselves with the raiment of knowledge, but who inwardly are deprived therefrom. In this connection, We quote from the Tablet addressed to His Majesty the Sháh, certain passages from the “Hidden Words” which were revealed by the Abhá Pen under the name of the “Book of Fátimih,” the blessings of God be upon her!

“O ye that are foolish, yet have a name to be wise! Wherefore do ye wear the guise of the shepherd, when inwardly ye have become wolves, intent upon My flock? Ye are even as the star, which riseth ere the dawn, and which, though it seem radiant and luminous, leadeth the wayfarers of My city astray into the paths of perdition.”

And likewise He saith: “O ye seeming fair yet inwardly foul! Ye are like clear but bitter water, which to outward seeming is crystal pure but of which, when tested by the Divine Assayer, not a drop is accepted. Yea, the sunbeam falls alike upon the dust and the mirror, yet differ they in reflection even as doth the star from the earth: nay, immeasurable is the difference!”

And also He saith: “O essence of desire! At many a dawn have I turned from the realms of the Placeless unto thine abode, and found thee on the bed of ease busied with others than Myself. Thereupon, even as the flash of the spirit, I returned to the realms of celestial glory, and breathed it not in My retreats above unto the hosts of holiness.”

And again He saith: “O bond slave of the world! Many a dawn hath the breeze of My loving-kindness wafted over thee and found thee upon the bed of heedlessness fast asleep. Bewailing then thy plight it returned whence it came.”

Those divines, however, who are truly adorned with the ornament of knowledge and of a goodly character are, verily, as a head to the body of the world, and as eyes to the nations. The guidance of men hath, at all times, been, and is, dependent upon such blessed souls. We beseech God to graciously aid them to do His will and pleasure. He, in truth, is the Lord of all men, the Lord of this world and of the next.

Baha’u’llah, Epistle To The Son Of The Wolf

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The 12 Fruits Of God’s Covenant – God’s 12-Point Moral Compass For Humanity – Directing All To The Axis Of LOVE