Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Baha’i Sabbath: Masa’il 3, 175 B.E. (12/14/2018)

Saturday, December 15th, 2018

Jakelin Amel Rosemery Caal Maquin

Martyred On 12/8/2018 Because Of Prejudice

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What crime could have been committed by a group of women, children, and suckling mothers that they should be thus afflicted with the scourge of thine anger and wrath? No faith or religion hath ever held children responsible. The Pen of divine Command hath exempted them, yet the fire of thy tyranny and oppression encompasseth all. If thou bearest allegiance to any faith or religion, then thou shouldst know that, according to all the heavenly Books and all the divinely inspired and weighty Scriptures, children are not to be held accountable. Aside from this, not even those who disbelieve in God have perpetrated such unseemly acts. Since from every thing an effect becometh manifest, a fact that none can deny save those who are bereft of reason and understanding, it is certain that the sighs of these children and the cries of these wronged ones will have their due consequence.

Baha’u’llah, Lawh-i-Ra’is

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‘Abdu’l-Bahá holding a little child close to him said, the true Bahá’í loves the children, because Jesus says they are of the Kingdom of heaven. A simple pure heart is near to God; a child has no worldly ambitions.

Abdu’l-Baha’, Abdu’l-Baha’ In London

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Ye observe how the world is divided against itself… Children have been orphaned, women left to wander, vagrants without a home. From every aspect, humankind hath sunken low. Loud are the piercing cries of fatherless children; loud the mothers’ anguished voices, reaching to the skies.

And the breeding ground of all these tragedies is prejudice: prejudice of race and nation, of religion, of political opinion; and the root cause of prejudice is blind imitation of the past—imitation in religion, in racial attitudes, in national bias, in politics. So long as this aping of the past persisteth, just so long will the foundations of the social order be blown to the four winds, just so long will humanity be continually exposed to direst peril.

Abdu’l-Baha’, Selections #202 (exc.)

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It is

racial,

patriotic,

religious

and

class

prejudice,

that has been the cause

of the destruction of Humanity.

Abdu’l-Baha’ in London, 9/30/1911

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Month: Masa’il/Questions 1, 175 B.E. (12/12/2018)

Thursday, December 13th, 2018

Grieve thou not at men’s failure to apprehend the Truth. Ere long thou shalt find them turning towards God, the Lord of all mankind. We have indeed, through the potency of the Most Sublime Word, encompassed the whole world, and the time is approaching when God will have subdued the hearts of all that dwell on earth. He is in truth the Omnipotent, the All-Powerful.

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O ‘Alí! The immature wish to put out the light of God with their mouths and to extinguish by their acts the flame in the Burning Bush. Say, wretched indeed is your plight, O ye embodiments of delusion. Fear ye God and reject not the heavenly grace which hath shed radiance upon all regions. Say, He Who is the Exponent of the hidden Name hath appeared, did ye but know it. He Whose advent hath been foretold in the heavenly Scriptures is come, could ye but understand it. The world’s horizon is illumined by the splendors of this Most Great Revelation. Haste ye with radiant hearts and be not of them that are bereft of understanding. The appointed Hour hath struck and mankind is laid low. Unto this bear witness the honored servants of God.

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Take heed lest the deeds wrought by the embodiments of idle fancy sadden you or the acts committed by every wayward oppressor grieve you. Seize ye the chalice of constancy through the power of His Name, quaff then therefrom by virtue of the sovereignty of God, the Powerful, the Omnipotent. Thus hath the Daystar of My tender compassion and loving-kindness shone forth above the horizon of this Tablet that ye may render thanks unto your Lord, the Almighty, the All-Bountiful.

The glory that hath dawned resplendent from the heaven of Mine utterance rest upon thee and upon them that have directed themselves towards thee and inclined their ears to the words which thy mouth hath uttered concerning this glorious, this august Revelation.

Baha’u’llah, Tablets (excerpts)

Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Sabbath: Qawl 15, 175 B.E. (12/7/2018)

Friday, December 7th, 2018

THE BEGINNING OF ALL UTTERANCE IS THE PRAISE OF GOD

O SERVANTS! The springs of divine bestowal are streaming forth. Quaff ye therefrom, that by the aid of the incomparable Friend ye may be sanctified from this darksome world of dust and enter His abode. Renounce the world and direct your steps toward the city of the Beloved.

O servants! The fire that consumeth all veils hath been kindled by My hand; quench it not with the waters of ignorance. The heavens are the token of My greatness; look upon them with a pure eye. The stars bear witness to My truth; bear ye likewise witness thereto.

O servants! Eyes are needed if one is to see, and ears, if one is to hear. Whoso in this blessed Day hath not heard the divine call hath indeed no ear. By this is not meant that bodily ear that is perceived by the eye. Open your inner eye, that ye may behold the celestial Fire, and listen with the ear of inner understanding, that ye may hear the delightsome words of the Beloved.

O servants! If your heart acheth for the Beloved, lo, the remedy is come! If ye have eyes to see, behold, the shining countenance of the Friend hath appeared! Kindle ye the fire of knowledge and flee from the ignorant. Such are the words of the Lord of the world.

O servants! Lifeless is the body that is bereft of a soul, and withered the heart that is devoid of the remembrance of its Lord. Commune with the remembrance of the Friend and shun the enemy. Your enemy is such things as ye have acquired of your own inclination, to which ye have firmly clung, and whereby ye have sullied your souls. The soul hath been created for the remembrance of the Friend; safeguard its purity. The tongue hath been created to bear witness to God; pollute it not with the mention of the wayward.

O servants! Verily I say, he is to be accounted as truthful who hath beheld the straight Path. That Path is one, and God hath chosen and prepared it. It shineth as resplendent amongst all paths as the sun amongst the stars. Whosoever hath not attained it hath failed to apprehend the truth and hath gone astray. Such are the counsels of the incomparable, the peerless Lord.

O servants! This nether world is the abode of demons: Guard yourselves from approaching them. By demons is meant those wayward souls who, with the burden of their evil deeds, slumber in the chambers of oblivion. Their sleep is preferable to their wakefulness, and their death is better than their life.

O servants! Not every mortal frame hath a spirit or is imbued with life. In this day he is endowed with spirit who with all his heart seeketh the abode of the Beloved. The end of all beginnings is to be found in this Day: Turn ye not a blind eye unto it. The matchless Friend is nigh: Stray not far from Him.

O servants! Ye are even as saplings in a garden, which are near to perishing for want of water. Wherefore, revive your souls with the heavenly water that is raining down from the clouds of divine bounty. Words must be followed by deeds. Whoso accepteth the words of the Friend is in truth a man of deeds; otherwise a dead carcass is verily of greater worth.

O servants! Pleasant is the utterance of the Friend: Where is the soul who will taste its sweetness, and where is the ear that will hearken unto it? Well is it with him who, in this day, communeth with the Friend and in His path renounceth and forsaketh all save Him, that he may behold a new world and gain admittance to the everlasting paradise.

The Lord of the world saith: O servants! Forsake your own desires and seek that which I have desired for you. Walk ye not without one to guide you on the way, and accept ye not the words of every guide. How numerous the guides who have gone astray and failed to discover the straight Path! He alone is a guide who is free from the bondage of this world and whom nothing whatsoever can deter from speaking the truth.

O servants! Follow the path of truthfulness and turn not away from the needy. Make mention of Me before the great ones of the earth and fear not.

O servants! Be pure in your deeds, and conduct yourselves in accordance with the words of God. Such are the counsels of the incomparable Lord.

Baha’u’llah

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Sabbath: Qawl 8, 175 B.E. (11/30/2018)

Friday, November 30th, 2018

Praise be to God, for he is God! We must never confuse position and station. Position is like fishes meeting in the sea of revelation that commune through the waters of sacred texts; a revelation that infuses the real bonds of affection that are the plane of spiritual transaction of souls in all the worlds of God. Station is the perfection of ourselves in the image of God, that reflects the light in the mirat of al-mustaghath (see Gleanings for more), and gives us shelter on the Ark, that traverses the seas, that the Holy Mariner has described. ‘Abdu’l-Baha cites Baha’u’llah here:

In the Suriy-i-Haykal, the Blessed Beauty states, ‘I have created dawning-places for Godhood and day-springs for Lordship.’ And he states in the Epistle to the Son of the Wolf: 

“Gracious God! Such references as have been made to Divinity and Godhead by the holy ones and chosen ones of God have been made a cause for denial and repudiation. The Imam Sadiq hath said: ‘Servitude is a substance, the essence of which is Divinity.’ The Commander of the Faithful (Imam ‘Alı) answered an Arab, who had questioned him concerning the soul, as follows: ‘The third is the soul which is divine and celestial. It is a divine energy, a substance, simple, and self-subsistent.’ And further He (peace be upon him) said: ‘Therefore it is the Most Sublime Essence of God, the Tree of Blessedness, the Lote-Tree beyond which there is no passing, the Garden of Repose.’” 

In that same Epistle revealed by the tongue of the True God it is stated: 

“The Commander of the Faithful (Imam ‘Alı) hath said: ‘I am He Who can neither be named, nor described.’ And likewise He hath said: ‘Outwardly I am an Imam; inwardly I am the Unseen, the Unknowable.’” 

Again of Abı ‘Abdi’llah [Sadiq], He [Baha’u’llah] quotes him thus: 

“We are the Ka‘aba of God, and We are the Qiblih of God, and We are the Face of God.” 

Again he states: 

“Jabir hath said that Abu-Ja‘far (peace be upon him) spoke to him as follows: ‘O Jabir! Give heed unto the Bayan (Exposition) and the Ma‘anı (Significances).’” 

He (peace be upon him) added: 

“‘As to the Bayan, it consisteth in thy recognition of God–glorified be He–as the One Who hath no equal, and in thy adoration of Him, and in thy refusal to join partners with Him. As to the Ma‘anı, We are its meaning, and its side, and its hand, and its tongue, and its cause, and its command, and its knowledge, and its right. If We wish for something, it is God Who wisheth it, and He desireth that which We desire.’” 

From these utterances it is clear that the human soul–in being adorned with the Divine Character of the Wronged One (see Baha’i Sabbath: Qudrat 6, 175 B.E. (11/9/2018): “Sweet Scented Knoll”)–must be attracted to God, converted (transfigured) by God, and then consecrated in God. May the superabundance of meaning and real experience of these utterances, allow God to open the heart, minds and souls of everyone, that these grievous attachments and material disturbances shall be resolved and alleviated; and the spirit of humanity be ameliorated in its pristine consecrated inner reality.

 

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Holy Day: The Ascension Of Abdu’l-Baha’. Qawl 6, 175 B.E. (11/28/2018)

Wednesday, November 28th, 2018

Whoso reciteth this prayer with lowliness and fervour will bring gladness and joy to the heart of this Servant; it will be even as meeting Him face to face.

He is the All-Glorious!

O God, my God! Lowly and tearful, I raise my suppliant hands to Thee and cover my face in the dust of that Threshold of Thine, exalted above the knowledge of the learned, and the praise of all that glorify Thee. Graciously look upon Thy servant, humble and lowly at Thy door, with the glances of the eye of Thy mercy, and immerse him in the Ocean of Thine eternal grace.

Lord! He is a poor and lowly servant of Thine, enthralled and imploring Thee, captive in Thy hand, praying fervently to Thee, trusting in Thee, in tears before Thy face, calling to Thee and beseeching Thee, saying:

O Lord, my God! Give me Thy grace to serve Thy loved ones, strengthen me in my servitude to Thee, illumine my brow with the light of adoration in Thy court of holiness, and of prayer to Thy Kingdom of grandeur. Help me to be selfless at the heavenly entrance of Thy gate, and aid me to be detached from all things within Thy holy precincts. Lord! Give me to drink from the chalice of selflessness; with its robe clothe me, and in its ocean immerse me. Make me as dust in the pathway of Thy loved ones, and grant that I may offer up my soul for the earth ennobled by the footsteps of Thy chosen ones in Thy path, O Lord of Glory in the Highest.

With this prayer doth Thy servant call Thee, at dawntide and in the night-season. Fulfil his heart’s desire, O Lord! Illumine his heart, gladden his bosom, kindle his light, that he may serve Thy Cause and Thy servants.

Thou art the Bestower, the Pitiful, the Most Bountiful, the Gracious, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

Abdu’l-Baha’, Selections #237

Prayer Of The Covenant

My God! My God! I ask Thee to forgive everything save my servitude to Thy Supreme Threshold, and I declare myself innocent of any proclamation or praise, save my adoration for Thy Merciful Presence. I deprive myself of every adornment, save that of humiliation and contrition and evanescence before Thy Oneness. I flee from every station save that of arrival in the court of Thy Divine Eternity. By Thy Power, verily, the sweetness of servitude is the food of my spirit; with the fragrance of servitude my breast will be dilated, my being refreshed, my heart delighted, my eyes brightened, my nostrils perfumed, and in it is the healing of my disease, the allaying of my burning thirst, the soothing of my pain.

Immerse me, O my God, in this most bounteous, rolling Ocean; give me to drink of this sweet, abundant Water; cause me to enter this Gateway of Righteousness; ordain me for this praiseworthy Station; cause me to obtain this Cup which is overflowing with the living water; light in the crystal of my heart this Lamp which is giving forth its illuminating, brilliant radiance; and strengthen me for the service of Thy Cause, O my Lord, the Forgiver! Accept my servitude in the court of Thy Holy Oneness, O Thou, the Manifestor of Mount Sinai. Assist me to abide in its conditions, O Thou, the Authority of Manifestation. Aid me to assist Thy Cause in the eastern and western parts of the earth, O Thou the Possessor of the Day of Resurrection. I ask Thee, by Thy written Book, dispersed writings — by Thy Hidden Mystery, and Thy firm proclamations — to cause me to be steadfast in servitude to Thee, O my Lord, the Forgiver! Verily, Thou art the powerful over that which Thou wishest; and verily, Thou art the Merciful, the Compassionate.

Abdu’l-Baha’, The Crimson Book: The Book Of The Covenant

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Holy Day-Day Of The Covenant: Qawl 4, 175 B.E. (11/26/2018)

Monday, November 26th, 2018

 

Thou hast said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one, I have sworn to David my servant: ‘I will establish your descendants for ever, and build your throne for all generations.’” Selah

Psalm 89

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THE Most Great Law is come, and the Ancient Beauty [Baha’u’llah] ruleth upon the throne of David. Thus hath My Pen spoken that which the histories of bygone ages have related. At this time, however, David crieth aloud and saith: ‘O my loving Lord! Do Thou number me with such as have stood steadfast in Thy Cause, O Thou through Whom the faces have been illumined, and the footsteps have slipped!’

Baha’u’llah, Proclamation, pg. 89

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The time foreordained unto the peoples and kindreds of the earth is now come. The promises of God, as recorded in the holy Scriptures, have all been fulfilled. Out of Zion hath gone forth the Law of God, and Jerusalem, and the hills and land thereof, are filled with the glory of His Revelation. Happy is the man that pondereth in his heart that which hath been revealed in the Books of God, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting. Meditate upon this, O ye beloved of God, and let your ears be attentive unto His Word, so that ye may, by His grace and mercy, drink your fill from the crystal waters of constancy, and become as steadfast and immovable as the mountain in His Cause.

Baha’u’llah, Gleanings X

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O ye whom God hath chosen from among those who are called!—know that “many are called but few are chosen”!—upon whom He caused the evident Light to descend; whom He guided into the right Path, and to whom He gave the Glad-tidings of the Great Success!

Ye must be sincere and faithful, ye must follow the ordinances which refer to the Covenant of God, who is the solid edifice.

O ye beloved of God, know that steadfastness and firmness in this new and wonderful Covenant is indeed the spirit that quickeneth the hearts which are overflowing with the love of the Glorious Lord; verily, it is the power which penetrates into the hearts of the people of the world! Your Lord hath assuredly promised His servants who are firm and steadfast to render them victorious at all times, to exalt their word, propagate their power, diffuse their lights, strengthen their hearts, elevate their banners, assist their hosts, brighten their stars, increase the abundance of the showers of mercy upon them, and enable the brave lions (teachers) to conquer.

Hasten, hasten, O ye firm believers! Hasten, hasten, O ye steadfast! Abandon the heedless, set aside every ignorant, take hold of the strong rope, be firm in this Great Cause, draw light from this Evident Light, be patient and be steadfast in this wise Religion! Ye shall see the hosts of inspiration descending successively from the Supreme World, the procession of attraction falling incessantly from the heights of heaven, the abundance of the Kingdom of El-Abha outpouring continually and the teachings of God penetrating with the utmost power, while the heedless are indeed in evident loss.

Abdu’l-Baha’, Tablets of, pp. 442-443

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Rest ye assured that if a soul arises in the utmost perseverance and raises the Call of the Kingdom and resolutely promulgates the Covenant—be he an insignificant ant—he shall be enabled to drive away the formidable elephant from the arena, and if he be a feeble moth he shall cut to pieces the plumage of the rapacious vulture.

Endeavor, therefore, that ye may scatter and disperse the army of doubt and of error with the power of the Holy Utterances. This is my will and this is my counsel. Do not quarrel with anybody, and shun every form of dispute. Utter the Word of God. If he accepts it the desired purpose is attained, and if he turns away leave him to himself and trust to God.

Such is the attribute of those who are firm in the Covenant.

Abdu’l-Baha’, Star Of The West, Vol. X pg. 265

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Through the power of the divine springtime, the downpour of the celestial clouds and the heat of the Sun of Reality, the tree of life is just beginning to grow. Before long, it will produce buds, bring forth leaves and fruits, and cast its shade over the East and the West. This Tree of Life is the Book of the Covenant.

Abdu’l-Baha’, Last Tablet To America

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Today, the Lord of Hosts is the defender of the Covenant, the forces of the Kingdom protect it, heavenly souls tender their services, and heavenly angels promulgate and spread it broadcast. If it is considered with insight, it will be seen that all the forces of the universe, in the last analysis serve the Covenant.

Abdu’-Baha’, Selections #192

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THE BAHA’l SACRED WRITINGS flow out from the Two Central Documents of the Baha’i Revelation, the Book of the Covenant of Baha’u’llah (entitled the Kitab-i-Ahd) and the sacred Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha’, which is “THE CHARTER” of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven (see World Order of Baha’u’llah, p. 144). All the other writings and teachings receive their life, their relevance, and their real inner spiritual force, meaning, and sustenance from out the wellspring of these two Most Mighty Documents, forming one single “scroll written (within) on the inside (the Kitab-i-Ahd) and (on the back) on the outside (the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha’), sealed with seven seals” (Rev. 5:1 ISV).
No person can, really in good faith, even consider themselves to be a Baha’i in truth unless they can be said to have first at least read and attempted to understand, let alone believed in and been obedient and faithful to the contents and provisions of these two Documents combined together as One single Scroll. This is something similar to what Jesus said, when he said that “to eat” is to come unto him (understanding the “bread” of the teachings) and that “to drink” (the wine of the Covenant that gives life to the teachings) is to believe! (see John 6:35 KJV).
Abdu’l-Baha’ wrote the Will and Testament in three different parts at three different times. He sealed each of these parts, making three seals. On the back of the envelope where it was stuck down Abdu’l-Baha’ placed three more seals, and then on the front, where it was addressed to “the chosen branch,” he placed the seventh seal. The seven seals are thus on the outside part of this scroll, the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha’, which was found after his passing with the Kitab-i-Ahd, the Book of the Covenant of Baha’u’llah, rolled up within.
The Kitab-i-Ahd and the Will and Testament together comprise the prophesied continuation of the everlasting Covenant given in the Bible because in His Covenant, Baha’u’llah establishes the throne of King David as the Executive Branch of His Universal House of Justice. This everlasting Covenant was begun with Adam, passed down through Abraham and David, and promised by Jesus Christ to be established in the world today, 2000 years since his birth and first appearance. Baha’u’llah is a direct descendent of the exilarchs (the exiled monarchs of King David) who were taken into captivity into Babylon and Persia (‘Iraq and Iran) the land of the birth-place of Baha’u’llah. Through His son Abdu’l-Baha’, the throne-line of David continues down to this present Day.

The Crimson Book: The Book Of The Covenant

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Month: Qawl/Speech 1, 175 B.E. (11/23/2018)

Thursday, November 22nd, 2018

His Unfailing Light

Dearly beloved friends! Though the task be long and arduous, yet the prize which the All-Bountiful Bestower has chosen to confer upon you is of such preciousness that neither tongue nor pen can befittingly appraise it. Though the goal towards which you are now so strenuously striving be distant, and as yet undisclosed to men’s eyes, yet its promise lies firmly embedded in the authoritative and unalterable utterances of Bahá’u’lláh. Though the course He has traced for you seems, at times, lost in the threatening shadows with which a stricken humanity is now enveloped, yet the unfailing light He has caused to shine continually upon you is of such brightness that no earthly dusk can ever eclipse its splendor. Though small in numbers, and circumscribed as yet in your experiences, powers, and resources, yet the Force which energizes your mission is limitless in its range and incalculable in its potency. Though the enemies which every acceleration in the progress of your mission must raise up be fierce, numerous, and unrelenting, yet the invisible Hosts which, if you persevere, must, as promised, rush forth to your aid, will, in the end, enable you to vanquish their hopes and annihilate their forces. Though the ultimate blessings that must crown the consummation of your mission be undoubted, and the Divine promises given you firm and irrevocable, yet the measure of the goodly reward which every one of you is to reap must depend on the extent to which your daily exertions will have contributed to the expansion of that mission and the hastening of its triumph.

Shoghi Effendi, The Advent Of Divine Justice

Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Sabbath: Qudrat 13, 175 B.E. (11/16/2018)

Saturday, November 17th, 2018

IN THE NAME OF THE ONE TRUE GOD

PRAISE be to the all-perceiving, the ever-abiding Lord Who, from a dewdrop out of the ocean of His grace, hath reared the firmament of existence, adorned it with the stars of knowledge, and admitted man into the lofty court of insight and understanding. This dewdrop, which is the Primal Word of God, is at times called the Water of Life, inasmuch as it quickeneth with the waters of knowledge them that have perished in the wilderness of ignorance. Again it is called the Primal Light, a light born of the Sun of divine knowledge, through whose effulgence the first stirrings of existence were made plain and manifest. Such manifestations are the expressions of the grace of Him Who is the Peerless, the All-Wise. He it is who knoweth and bestoweth all. He it is who transcendeth all that hath been said or heard. His knowledge will remain forever above the grasp of human vision and understanding and beyond the reach of human words and deeds. To the truth of this utterance existence itself and all that hath appeared therefrom bear eloquent testimony.

It is clear and evident, therefore, that the first bestowal of God is the Word, and its discoverer and recipient is the power of understanding. This Word is the foremost instructor in the school of existence and the revealer of Him Who is the Almighty. All that is seen is visible only through the light of its wisdom. All that is manifest is but a token of its knowledge. All names are but its name, and the beginning and end of all matters must needs depend upon it.

Baha’u’llah, Tablet to Mánikchí Ṣáḥib (Preamble)

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Holy Day: Anniversary Of The Birth Of Baha’u’llah: Qudrat 9, 175 B.E. (11/12/2018)

Monday, November 12th, 2018

O ye who are the chosen ones of the Abhá Kingdom! Praise ye the Lord of Hosts for He, riding upon the clouds, hath come down to this world out of the heaven of the invisible realm, so that East and West were lit by the glory of the Sun of Truth, and the call of the Kingdom was raised, and the heralds of the realm above, with melodies of the Concourse on high, sang out the glad tidings of the Coming. Then the whole world of being did quiver for joy, and still the people, even as the Messiah saith, slept on: for the day of the Manifestation, when the Lord of Hosts descended, found them wrapped in the slumber of unknowing. As He saith in the Gospel, My coming is even as when the thief is in the house, and the goodman of the house watcheth not.

From amongst all mankind hath He chosen you, and your eyes have been opened to the light of guidance and your ears attuned to the music of the Company above; and blessed by abounding grace, your hearts and souls have been born into new life. Thank ye and praise ye God that the hand of infinite bestowals hath set upon your heads this gem-studded crown, this crown whose lustrous jewels will forever flash and sparkle down all the reaches of time.

To thank Him for this, make ye a mighty effort, and choose for yourselves a noble goal. Through the power of faith, obey ye the teachings of God, and let all your actions conform to His laws. Read ye The Hidden Words, ponder the inner meanings thereof, act in accord therewith. Read, with close attention, the Tablets of Tarazát (Ornaments), Kalímát (Words of Paradise), Tajallíyyát (Effulgences), Ishráqát (Splendours), and Bishárát (Glad Tidings), and rise up as ye are bidden in the heavenly teachings. Thus may each one of you be even as a candle casting its light, the centre of attraction wherever people come together; and from you, as from a bed of flowers, may sweet scents be shed.

Raise ye a clamour like unto a roaring sea; like a prodigal cloud, rain down the grace of heaven. Lift up your voices and sing out the songs of the Abhá Realm. Quench ye the fires of war, lift high the banners of peace, work for the oneness of humankind and remember that religion is the channel of love unto all peoples. Be ye aware that the children of men are sheep of God and He their loving Shepherd, that He careth tenderly for all His sheep and maketh them to feed in His own green pastures of grace and giveth them to drink from the wellspring of life. Such is the way of the Lord. Such are His bestowals. Such, from among His teachings, is His precept of the oneness of mankind.

The portals of His blessings are opened wide and His signs are published abroad and the glory of truth is blazing forth; inexhaustible are the blessings. Know ye the value of this time. Strive ye with all your hearts, raise up your voices and shout, until this dark world be filled with light, and this narrow place of shadows be widened out, and this dust heap of a fleeting moment be changed into a mirror for the eternal gardens of heaven, and this globe of earth receive its portion of celestial grace.

Then will aggression crumble away, and all that maketh for disunity be destroyed, and the structure of oneness be raised—that the Blessed Tree may cast its shade over east and west, and the Tabernacle of the singleness of man be set up on the high summits, and flags that betoken love and fellowship flutter from their staffs around the world until the sea of truth lift high its waves, and earth bring forth the roses and sweet herbs of blessings without end, and become from pole to pole the Abhá Paradise.

These are the counsels of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. It is my hope that out of the bestowals of the Lord of Hosts ye will become the spiritual essence and the very radiance of humankind, binding the hearts of all with bonds of love; that through the power of the Word of God ye will bring to life the dead now buried in the graves of their sensual desires; that ye will, with the rays of the Sun of Truth, restore the sight of those whose inner eye is blind; that ye will bring spiritual healing to the spiritually sick. These things do I hope for, out of the bounties and the bestowals of the Beloved.

At all times do I speak of you and call you to mind. I pray unto the Lord, and with tears I implore Him to rain down all these blessings upon you, and gladden your hearts, and make blissful your souls, and grant you exceeding joy and heavenly delights….

O Thou loving Provider! These souls have hearkened to the summons of the Kingdom, and have gazed upon the glory of the Sun of Truth. They have risen upward to the refreshing skies of love; they are enamoured of Thy nature, and they worship Thy beauty. Unto Thee have they turned themselves, speaking together of Thee, seeking out Thy dwelling, and thirsting for the waterbrooks of Thy heavenly realm.

Thou art the Giver, the Bestower, the Ever-loving.

‘Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Baha’, #17

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles

Baha’i Sabbath: Qudrat 6, 175 B.E. (11/9/2018)

Saturday, November 10th, 2018

The Wronged One

(al-Mathlum)

Be at all times a “Wronged One,” for this is one of My attributes, though none but the sincere are aware of it. Verily, the sighs of patience uttered by one wronged (al-Mathlum) are more precious to God than any other deed, did you but know. (Baha’u’llah, Suriy-i-Damm)

Dear friends,

Allah’u’Abha! May this letter find you in good spirits and in good health!

One of the mysteries enshrined throughout the writings of Baha’u’llah is His reference to Himself as “the Wronged One of the world” or this “wronged one.” As it turns out, in the Suriy-i-Damm, Baha’u’llah explains that what is meant by this is a certain essential and important quality and attribute of God that we should all strive to obtain that is directly related to the first and foremost quality and attribute of God “patience” (See His Tablet of Job for more) and also to severance and detachment from the things of this mortal world.

The knowledge of “the wronged one” as a quality and attribute of God that we can all demonstrate in our character and spiritual personality, is an essential guideline from Baha’u’llah on how our behavior is to be transformed in our transactions with people, in order that we shall successfully walk the spiritual path with practical feet and tend to do that which will elevate our spiritual stations in certitude and experience of the nearness of God within our very own lives, hearts and souls. He explains:

Adorn yourself with My Character, in such wise that should anyone treat you unjustly you would take no heed of him, nor oppose him. Leave him to the judgment of your Lord, the Powerful, Omnipotent and Self-Subsisting. Be at all times a “Wronged One,” for this is one of My Attributes, though none but the sincere are aware of it. Verily, the sighs of patience uttered by one wronged are more precious to God than any other deed, did you but know. Therefore, be patient in the face of whatever befalls you, and set your trust in your Lord God in all your affairs. He, verily, suffices you against all the harm that any created thing can wreak toward you, and preserves you in the shelter of His Cause and the mighty fortress of His guardianship. There is no God but Him. His are the worlds of creation and command (alam-i-khalq va amr) and all seek His aid. Should anyone slander you, you must not retaliate against him in kind lest you become as he is. Turn aside from him and set your face toward the Holy Tabernacle in this exalted and sacred Canopy. Be among men as a sweet-scented knoll, that the fragrance of sanctity may be wafted among them. In such wise, you might succeed in attracting them to the court of the Holy and Beloved One. Should you find a helper among the friends of God, seek his company at eventide and dawn, throughout the months and years. In all matters, emulate God, your Succorer. Walk among men with His dignity and peace, and teach them the Cause of their Lord to the extent that they are able to hear it.” (Baha’u’llah, Suriy-i-Damm)

This concept of al-Mathlum contains within its powers and precincts a depth of right conduct and an experience of inner blissful-joy of severance and detachment, that no other religious dispensation has seen its like. Much can be said and written about this–to fill a thousand thousand books, letters and epistles!

For example consider the events manifested in the personal life and personal conduct of Baha’u’llah, Himself. In all times He remained quiescent and patient with daily troubles and personal afflictions against Himself and His character. He never arose to defend his own ego, or wrangled uselessly with worldly or mortal affairs. It was only when things escalated to necessitating protection of the Cause, or the promulgation of this soul-stirring message that He arose to teach, guard the faith, and win the hearts minds and souls over to God. In fact His behavior of patience, detachment, trusting in God, laying “all His affairs in God’s Hands” and having this peculiar characteristic of the “Wronged One” and the accompanying thoughts, words, and deeds that go along with that–also safeguarded the Cause, and His own relationship with God, as He navigated His own personal affairs of His human life, throughout His own personal journey back to God. Radiant acquiescence (rida).

This calls for pause for deep thought, reflection and consideration, as we prepare ourselves in our own personal lives for the “consecration” in the faith, that ‘Abdu’l-Baha and Shoghi Effendi have spoken about, in order to successfully pass the tests, trials, and tribulations, that are to come upon the world this very year.

I would like to close this letter with the prayer that states “I lay all my affairs in Thy Hand”and then a story from the lifetime of Baha’u’llah and ‘Abdu’l-Baha that amplifies what this more deeply means when we give something over to God for Him to resolve, trusting in Him, and patiently awaiting the outcome–without expectations or pre-conceived ideas–but with that deep sense of love and gratefulness for whatsoever shall befall us on our path of reunion with the Beloved of All the Worlds!

Your servant

Refresh and Gladden My Spirit

O God!  Refresh and gladden my spirit.  Purify my heart.  Illumine my powers.  I lay all my affairs in Thy hand.  Thou art my Guide and my Refuge.  I will no longer be sorrowful and grieved; I will be a happy and joyful being.  O God!  I will no longer be full of anxiety, nor will I let trouble harass me.  I will not dwell on the unpleasant things of life.

O God!  Thou art more friend to me than I am to myself.  I dedicate myself to Thee, O Lord.

The Unfailing Protection of God

When ‘Abdu’r-Rahman Pasha received the note from the Sublime Porte condemning the exiles to imprisonment, it boosted his arrogance. He decided to use it as a means of extracting some money for himself… Having failed to do this, one evening he called on Shaykh ‘Aliy-i-Miri, the Mufti of ‘Akka who was an admirer of ‘Abdu’l-Baha, and shared with him his plan of arresting the Baha’is in the morning. His plan was to arrest them as they came to open their shops and send them to prison. He also planned to restrict ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s freedom of movement in the city. He solicited the support of the Mufti in this plan… That same night the Mufti went to ‘Abdu’l-Baha, told him the news and strongly urged the Master to bribe the Governor, as otherwise everyone would be arrested in the morning. Disapproving the Mufti’s solution, ‘Abdu’l-Baha assured him that God was compassionate and merciful, and that He would leave this matter in the hand of God. He advised him to go home and to rest assured of the outcome. It was late and Baha’u’llah had just retired. Nevertheless, ‘Abdu’l-Baha went to Him and gave Him the news. Baha’u’llah ordered that the believers be advised not to go to work in the morning. Everyone was informed and they all assembled in the reception room of ‘Abdu’l-Baha in the morning.

I was, at the time, confined to prison… but each morning was permitted to go to the house of Baha’u’llah where I worked as a cook and at night I returned to prison. On that morning, on my way, I noticed that the shop of Aqa Muhammad-Ibrahim, the coppersmith, was closed and so were other shops belonging to the believers. I was very surprised and wondered what had happened. I hastened to the house of Baha’u’llah where I found all the shopkeepers assembled in the reception room. I was told the news and went into the kitchen to work. It was approximately two hours after sunrise when a man pushed aside the curtain in front of the door with his walking stick. I looked up and it was Iskandar Effendi, the head of the telegraph office. He was in great haste but signs of joy could be detected in his appearance. He wanted to see the Master who was upstairs at the time. I went up and found that He was in the presence of Baha’u’llah. I told the Master that Iskandar Effendi had come to see Him and he was in a happy mood. The Blessed Beauty smiled and said [to ‘Abdu’l-Baha] ‘Go downstairs, Aqa! He has good news. No one can frustrate God in His purpose.’

‘Abdu’l-Baha went to the reception room where He was shown a telegram just received containing the order of dismissal of ‘Abdu’r-Rahman Pasha. After a few minutes He went hurriedly upstairs. Halfway up, I asked Him if he could tell me the news. He smiled and said in a loud voice, ‘God has struck a severe blow at the Pasha.’ He then went to convey the news to Baha’u’llah.

As to ‘Abdu’r-Rahman Pasha, in the morning, accompanied by a few soldiers, he went to arrest the believers at their shops and send them to prison. To his surprise he found the shops were closed. At first he thought the late opening was perhaps due to the month of Ramadan when people were going late to work. Soon after, he went to the Police Station where he waited for the shops to open up. During this time he was unaware of God’s intervention… The above telegram was addressed to Shaykh ‘Aliy-i-Miri, the Mufti of ‘Akka, who communicated its content to the Pasha… The Mufti had been truly astonished by this event. For it was late in the evening when the Governor’s scheme had come to light, and in the morning the telegram arrived. He considered this incident to have been a miracle. He said to the Master, “I am almost on the verge of losing my mind over this episode. Please tell me, what did Baha’u’llah say late that evening when you informed Him of the plot?” ‘Abdu’l-Baha responded by saying that the Blessed Beauty ordered the believers not to open their shops in the morning and advised them to leave their affairs in the hand of God Baha’u’llah also declared that when a person leaves hisaffairs to God, he ought not to take any other measures himself, otherwise he could frustrate the plan of God. (The Revelation of Baha’u’llah, Vol. III, pp. 411-412)

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Whatsoever Is Possible Of Accomplishment In Human Government Will Be Effected Through These Principles