Archive for December 29, 2016

30 December ― 19 Masá’il   Leave a comment

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MORNING:

The whole duty of man in this Day is to attain that share of the flood of grace which God poureth forth for him. Let none, therefore, consider the largeness or smallness of the receptacle. The portion of some might lie in the palm of a man’s hand, the portion of others might fill a cup, and of others even a gallon-measure.

Every eye, in this Day, should seek what will best promote the Cause of God. He, Who is the Eternal Truth, beareth Me witness! Nothing whatsoever can, in this Day, inflict a greater harm upon this Cause than dissension and strife, contention, estrangement and apathy, among the loved ones of God. Flee them, through the power of God and His sovereign aid, and strive ye to knit together the hearts of men, in His Name, the Unifier, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.

Beseech ye the one true God to grant that ye may taste the savor of such deeds as are performed in His path, and partake of the sweetness of such humility and submissiveness as are shown for His sake. Forget your own selves, and turn your eyes towards your neighbor. Bend your energies to whatever may foster the education of men. Nothing is, or can ever be, hidden from God. If ye follow in His way, His incalculable and imperishable blessings will be showered upon you. This is the luminous Tablet, whose verses have streamed from the moving Pen of Him Who is the Lord of all worlds. Ponder it in your hearts, and be ye of them that observe its precepts.

His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh: 8-9

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EVENING:

Thou art surely aware of their idle contention, that all Revelation is ended, that the portals of Divine mercy are closed, that from the day springs of eternal holiness no Sun shall rise again, that the Ocean of everlasting bounty is forever stilled, and that out of the Tabernacle of ancient glory the Messengers of God have ceased to be made manifest. Such is the measure of the understanding of these small-minded, contemptible people. These people have imagined that the flow of God’s all-encompassing grace and plenteous mercies, the cessation of which no mind can contemplate, has been halted. From every side they have risen and girded up the loins of tyranny, and exerted the utmost endeavor to quench with the bitter waters of their vain fancy the flame of God’s Burning Bush, oblivious that the globe of power shall, within its own mighty stronghold, protect the Lamp of God….

His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 23

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT

‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

One of the proofs and demonstrations of the existence of God is the fact that man did not create himself: nay, his creator and designer is another than himself.

It is certain and indisputable that the creator of man is not like man because a powerless creature cannot create another being. The maker, the creator, has to possess all perfections in order that he may create.

Can the creation be perfect and the creator imperfect? Can a picture be a masterpiece and the painter imperfect in his art? For it is his art and his creation. Moreover, the picture cannot be like the painter; otherwise, the painting would have created itself. However perfect the picture may be, in comparison with the painter it is in the utmost degree of imperfection.

The contingent world is the source of imperfections: God is the origin of perfections. The imperfections of the contingent world are in themselves a proof of the perfections of God.

For example, when you look at man, you see that he is weak. This very weakness of the creature is a proof of the power of the Eternal Almighty One, because, if there were no power, weakness could not be imagined. Then the weakness of the creature is a proof of the power of God; for if there were no power, there could be no weakness; so from this weakness it becomes evident that there is power in the world. Again, in the contingent world there is poverty; then necessarily wealth exists, since poverty is apparent in the world. In the contingent world there is ignorance; necessarily knowledge exists, because ignorance is found; for if there were no knowledge, neither would there be ignorance. Ignorance is the nonexistence of knowledge, and if there were no existence, nonexistence could not be realized.

Some Answered Questions, pp: 5-6

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29 December ― 18 Masá’il   Leave a comment

Praise be to God, thou art severed from all else save the Heavenly Father. Thou hast been of the earth — thou art now of the Kingdom. Thou hast been of the world — thou art now of the Realm of Might. Thou art spreading the divine Teachings. Thank thou God, thou art bearing trials in the path of the Kingdom and art enduring persecutions and sufferings. These afflictions are conducive to the spiritual development and the descent of the Holy Spirit.

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His Holiness ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá v1, p. 223

 

 

MORNING:

How vast the number of the loved and chosen ones of God who have lamented and moaned by day and by night that haply a sweet and fragrant breeze might blow from the court of His good-pleasure and dispel altogether the loathsome and foul-smelling odours from the world. However, this ultimate goal could not be attained, and men were deprived thereof by virtue of their evil deeds, which brought upon them the retribution of God, in accordance with the basic principles of His divine rule. Ours is the duty to remain patient in these circumstances until relief be forthcoming from God, the Forgiving, the Bountiful.

His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 176

IMG_2867EVENING:

It behoveth thee, however, to exert thine utmost to attain the very essence of fidelity. This implieth to be well assured in thy heart and to testify with thy tongue to that whereunto God hath testified for His Own exalted Self, proclaiming: ‘Verily, self-subsisting am I within the Realm of Glory.’ Whoso is enabled in these days to solemnly affirm this truth, hath attained unto all good, and the heavenly Spirit shall descend upon him in the daytime and in the night season, shall graciously assist him to glorify the Name of his Lord and suffer him to unloose his tongue and uphold with his words the Cause of his Lord, the Merciful, the Compassionate. And none can ever achieve this except he who hath purged his heart from whatsoever is created between heaven and earth, and hath entirely detached himself from all but God, the sovereign Lord, the Almighty, the Gracious.

His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, pp: 181-182

FROM THE CENTRE OF THE COVENANT

‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

“The main purpose is that all should be wholly attached to the Cause of God. They should not suppose that the greatness of number is necessary to accomplish the Mission of the Cause. Nay, I swear by God, than whom there is no other God, that if five persons arise and act wholly and literally in accord with the laws and commandments of the Blessed Perfection, they would equal five million souls in efficiency, Thus, the believers must adorn themselves with good deeds and pure actions, and obey the Law.” Then pointing to the lamp in the room, He said: “This lamp is efficient through its light, so the light of men is their deeds. To be brief: Whatever may happen in ‘Akká, the believers throughout the world must not become lax in their duties; nay, they must serve the Cause which is of the utmost importance. When His Holiness the Spirit (Christ) was martyred, the only one who was not disturbed at all was Mary Magdalene. For the rest of the disciples were confused and discouraged. When Mary became a believer, and fell upon the feet of Christ, although she was a villager of no good repute, Christ did not withhold His feet from her. This caused many of His followers, as well as many among the Jews, to turn away from Him. But Christ heeded them not, and said to Mary: ‘Arise, thy sins are forgiven.’ Then Mary arose and repented; and from that time on devoted herself to the service the Cause. Mary had a friend among the Roman officers (who at that time were Masters of the Holy Lands). He was the one who protected her from enemies after the death of Christ. When she had brought the disciples together and confirmed them in the service and inspired them with courage after the Crucifixion, she herself went to Rome into the presence of the Emperor. How marvellous indeed were the words she spoke to him! She said to the Emperor: ‘I have come in behalf of the Christians to bring to your notice the fact that Herod and Pilate martyred the Christ at the instigation of the Jews. But now they have both repented of their deed. For they were Roman Governors and to them Jews and Christians made no difference. For, indeed it was not the Romans, but the Jews who were the chief antagonists of Christ. Now that they have realized the wrong they have done and have repented, they are engaged in punishing and suppressing the Jews for instigating them to commit this act. But I have come to appeal to the Emperor to prevent Herod and Pilate from punishing the Jews. For neither Christ nor we Christians are pleased that the Romans punish the Jews because of their condemnation of Christ!’ The Emperor was greatly impressed by these words, and he praised Mary highly. This was why in those days the Christians did not suffer persecutions in those lands, and engaged in spreading the Gospel.

“Later the Roman officer who protected Mary asked her to marry him. She answered that, as a follower of Christ, she would not marry him unless he believed in Christ also. Thus he was converted and then joined to Mary according to the ceremonies of a Christian marriage. By relating this, it was meant to illustrate the steadfastness and firmness which was manifested by Mary after Christ’s Crucifixion. Now the beloved of God must live up to their own duties and serve the Cause, and they must continue firm and steadfast no matter what may happen in ‘Akká. They must gaze toward the horizon of the Cause and obey the Laws or Bahá’u’lláh.”

1906 Pilgrim Notes of ‘Alí Kuli Khan

by ‘Alí Kuli Khan

edited by David Merrick.
first written or published 1907

Alí Kuli Khan 1906 Pilgrim Notes, pp: 55-57