Archive for May 15, 2015

15 May ― 18 Jamál   Leave a comment

One can well envision how over 40 intensive programmes of growth, each yielding dozens of new enrolments in a year, would transform the Canadian Bahá’í community.  Such a bold objective cannot be achieved merely by adopting the outer form of the activities of the Five Year Plan.  Rather, a true change in culture is required.  An eager embrace of the approaches explored in the institute courses, a diligent cultivation of community life through the multiplication of core activities, and an audacious outreach and effective teaching among receptive populations are some of the many elements of the Plan described in the 27 December 2005 message that must be integrated into a single, coherent pattern of action through the determined efforts of the friends.

At this moment in the fortunes of the Faith, no believer can regard passive acceptance of the activities of the Plan as an adequate response to the needs of the hour.  All can find some part to play in the multifaceted requirements of their clusters.  Perhaps most critical is the need for those who, having acquired the capacity to serve as tutors, will arise to accompany participants in the institute courses “in their initial attempts to perform acts of service until they, too, are ready to start their own study circles and help others do the same”, thereby serving “to multiply the number of active supporters of the Faith in a self-perpetuating manner”

 

THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

 

Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of  Canada, 1 May 2006

Five Year Plan (2006 to 2011) : 2006 May 1 UHJ Letter NSA Canada

 

MORNING:

In this Day whosoever is guided . . . to gain . . . the station of recognizing the Source of divine commandments and the Dayspring of His Revelation, hath everlastingly attained unto all good. Having reached this lofty station a twofold obligation resteth upon every soul. One is to be steadfast in the Cause with such

steadfastness that were all the peoples of the world to attempt to prevent him from turning to the Source of Revelation, they would be powerless to do so. The other is observance of the divine ordinances which have streamed forth from the wellspring of His heavenly-propelled Pen.

 —His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh revealed after the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, p. 268

 

EVENING:

As to the words — “Immediately after the oppression of those days” — they refer to the time when men shall become oppressed and afflicted, the time when the lingering traces of the Sun of Truth and the fruit of the Tree of knowledge and wisdom will have vanished from the midst of men, when the reins of mankind will have fallen into the grasp of the foolish and ignorant, when the portals of divine unity and understanding — the essential and highest purpose in creation — will have been closed, when certain knowledge will have given way to idle fancy, and corruption will have usurped the station of righteousness. Such a condition as this is witnessed in this day when the reins of every community have fallen into the grasp of foolish leaders, who lead after their own whims and desire. On their tongue the mention of God hath become an empty name; in their midst His holy Word a dead letter. Such is the sway of their desires, that the lamp of conscience and reason hath been quenched in their hearts,…

…They have placed the sordid machinations above the divine decree, have renounced resignation unto the will of God, busied themselves with selfish calculation, and walked in the way of the hypocrite. With all their power and strength they strive to secure themselves in their petty pursuits, fearful lest the least discredit undermine their authority or blemish the display of their magnificence. Were the eye to be anointed and illumined with the collyrium of the knowledge of God, it would surely discover that a number of voracious beasts have gathered and preyed upon the carrion of the souls of men.

What “oppression” is greater than that which hath been recounted? What “oppression” is more grievous than that a soul seeking the truth, and wishing to attain unto the knowledge of God, should know not where to go for it and from whom to seek it? For opinions have sorely differed, and the ways unto the attainment of God have multiplied. This “oppression” is the essential feature of every Revelation. Unless it cometh to pass, the Sun of Truth will not be made manifest. For the break of the morn of divine guidance must needs follow the darkness of the night of error. For this reason, in all chronicles and traditions reference hath been made unto these things, namely that iniquity shall cover the surface of the earth and darkness shall envelop mankind. As the traditions referred to are well known, and as the purpose of this servant is to be brief, He will refrain from quoting the text of these traditions.

Were this “oppression” (which literally meaneth pressure) to be interpreted that the earth is to become contracted, or were men’s idle fancy to conceive similar calamities to befall mankind, it is clear and manifest that no such happenings can ever come to pass. They will assuredly protest that this pre-requisite of divine revelation hath not been made manifest. Such hath been and still is their contention. Whereas, by “oppression” is meant the want of capacity to acquire spiritual knowledge and apprehend the Word of God. By it is meant that when the Day-star of Truth hath set, and the mirrors that reflect His light have departed, mankind will become afflicted with “oppression” and hardship, knowing not whither to turn for guidance.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

The Kitáb-i-Íqán, pp: 28-33

 

 

FROMTHE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT  ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ

And among the teachings of His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh is justice and right. Until these are realized on the plane of existence, all things shall be in disorder and remain imperfect. The world of mankind is a world of oppression and cruelty, and a realm of aggression and error.

Tablet to the Hague, pp: 8-9

FROM THE BELOVED GUARDIAN  SHOGHI EFFENDI:

How often we seem to forget the clear and repeated warnings of our beloved Master, Who, in particular during the concluding years of His mission on earth, laid stress on the “severe mental tests” that would inevitably sweep over His loved ones of the West — tests that would purge, purify and prepare them for their noble mission in life.

Bahá’í Administration, p. 50

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