Archive for April 2017

30 April ― 3 Jamál ― THE DAYS OF RIḌVÁN   Leave a comment

30 April ― 3 Jamál THE DAYS OF RIḌVÁN

 


How glad we are to see that this endeavour is being vigorously advanced
across the far-flung regions of the globe, and in a diversity of circumstances
and settings, in clusters already numbering some three thousand. Many clusters
are at a point where momentum is being generated through the implementation
of a few simple lines of action. In others, after successive cycles of activity,
the number of individuals taking initiative within the framework of the Plan
has increased and the pitch of activity intensified; as the quality of the
process of spiritual education is enhanced through experience, souls are more
readily attracted to participate in it. From time to time, there may be a lull
in activity or an obstacle to the way forward; searching consultation on the
reasons for the impasse, combined with patience, courage, and perseverance,
enables momentum to be regained. In more and more clusters, the programme
of growth is increasing in scope and complexity, commensurate with the rising
capacity of the Plan’s three protagonists–the individual, the community, and
the institutions of the Faith–to create a mutually supportive environment.
And we are delighted that, as anticipated, there are a growing number of
clusters where a hundred or more individuals are now facilitating the
engagement of a thousand or more in weaving a pattern of life, spiritual,
dynamic, transformative. Underlying the process even from the start is, of
course, a collective movement towards the vision of material and spiritual
prosperity set forth by Him Who is the Lifegiver of the World. But when such
large numbers are involved, the movement of an entire population becomes
discernible.

THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

RIḌVÁN MESSAGE 2014

MORNING:

O people of the earth! By the righteousness of the One true God, I am the Maid of Heaven begotten by the Spirit of Bahá, abiding within the Mansion hewn out of a mass of ruby, tender and vibrant; and in this mighty Paradise naught have I ever witnessed save that which proclaimeth the Remembrance of God by extolling the virtues of this Arabian Youth. Verily there is none other God but your Lord, the All-Merciful. Magnify ye, then, His station, for behold, He is poised in the midmost heart of the All-Highest Paradise as the embodiment of the praise of God in the Tabernacle wherein His glorification is intoned.

At one time I hear His Voice as He acclaimeth Him Who is the Ever-Living, the Ancient of Days, and at another time as He speaketh of the mystery of His most august Name. And when He intoneth the anthems of the greatness of God all Paradise waileth in its longing to gaze on His Beauty, and when He chanteth words of praise and glorification of God all Paradise becomes motionless like unto ice locked in the heart of a frost-bound mountain. Methinks I visioned Him moving along a straight middle path wherein every paradise was His Own paradise, every heaven His Own heaven, while the whole earth and all that is therein appeared but as a ring upon the finger of His servants. Glorified be God, His Creator, the Lord of everlasting sovereignty. Verily He is none other but the servant of God, the Gate of the Remnant of God your Lord, the Sovereign Truth.

 

— His Holiness The Báb

Qayyúmu’l-Asmá, Chapter XXIX

Selections from the Writings of the Báb, pp. 54-55

 

EVENING:

Have ye denied the One in Whose path He Who came with the truth, bearing the announcement of your Lord, the Exalted, the Great, suffered martyrdom? Say: This is an Announcement whereat the hearts of the Prophets and Messengers have rejoiced. This is the One Whom the heart of the world remembereth and is promised in the Books of God, the Mighty, the All-Wise. The hands of the Messengers were, in their desire to meet Me, upraised towards God, the Mighty, the Glorified…. Some lamented in their separation from Me, others endured hardships in My path, and still others laid down their lives for the sake of My Beauty, could ye but know it. Say: I, verily, have not sought to extol Mine Own Self, but rather God Himself were ye to judge fairly. Naught can be seen in Me except God and His Cause, could ye but perceive it. I am the One Whom the tongue of Isaiah hath extolled, the One with Whose name both the Torah and the Evangel were adorned…. Blessed be the king whose sovereignty hath withheld him not from his Sovereign, and who hath turned unto God with his heart. He, verily, is accounted of those that have attained unto that which God, the Mighty, the All-Wise hath willed. Ere long will such a one find himself numbered with the monarchs of the realms of the Kingdom. Thy Lord is, in truth, potent over all things. He giveth what He willeth to whomsoever He willeth, and withholdeth what He pleaseth from whomsoever He willeth. He, verily, is the All-Powerful, the Almighty.

—His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

The Proclamation of Baha’u’llah, p. 29-30

FROM THE BELOVED GUARDIAN SHOGHI EFFENDI:

 

Of the exact circumstances attending that epoch-making Declaration we, alas, are but scantily informed. The words Bahá’u’lláh actually uttered on that occasion, the manner of His Declaration, the reaction it produced, its impact on Mirza Yahya, the identity of those who were privileged to hear Him, are shrouded in an obscurity which future historians will find it difficult to penetrate. The fragmentary description left to posterity by His chronicler Nabil is one of the very few authentic records we possess of the memorable days He spent in that garden. “Every day,” Nabil has related, “ere the hour of dawn, the gardeners would pick the roses which lined the four avenues of the garden, and would pile them in the center of the floor of His blessed tent. So great would be the heap that when His companions gathered to drink their morning tea in His presence, they would be unable to see each other across it. All these roses Bahá’u’lláh would, with His own hands, entrust to those whom He dismissed from His presence every morning to be delivered, on His behalf, to His Arab and Persian friends in the city.” “One night,” he continues, “the ninth night of the waxing moon, I happened to be one of those who watched beside His blessed tent. As the hour of midnight approached, I saw Him issue from His tent, pass by the places where some of His companions were sleeping, and begin to pace up and down the moonlit, flower-bordered avenues of the garden. So loud was the singing of the nightingales on every side that only those who were near Him could hear distinctly His voice. He continued to walk until, pausing in the midst of one of these avenues, He observed: ‘Consider these nightingales. So great is their love for these roses, that sleepless from dusk till dawn, they warble their melodies and commune with burning passion with the object of their adoration. How then can those who claim to be afire with the rose-like beauty of the Beloved choose to sleep?’ For three successive nights I watched and circled round His blessed tent. Every time I passed by the couch whereon He lay, I would find Him wakeful, and every day, from morn till eventide, I would see Him ceaselessly engaged in conversing with the stream of visitors who kept flowing in from Baghdad. Not once could I discover in the words He spoke any trace of dissimulation.”

God Passes By, p. 152

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21 April ― 13 Jalál   Leave a comment

MORNING:

O Aḥmad! Forget not My bounties while I am absent. Remember My days during thy days, and My distress and banishment in this remote prison. And be thou so steadfast in My love that thy heart shall not waver, even if the swords of the enemies rain blows upon thee and all the heavens and the earth arise against thee.

Be thou as a flame of fire to My enemies and a river of life eternal to My loved ones, and be not of those who doubt.

And if thou art overtaken by affliction in My path, or degradation for My sake, be not thou troubled thereby.

Rely upon God, thy God and the Lord of thy fathers. For the people are wandering in the paths of delusion, bereft of discernment to see God with their own eyes, or hear His Melody with their own ears. Thus have We found them, as thou also dost witness.

Thus have their superstitions become veils between them and their own hearts and kept them from the path of God, the Exalted, the Great.

Be thou assured in thyself that verily, he who turns away from this Beauty hath also turned away from the Messengers of the past and showeth pride towards God from all eternity to all eternity.

Learn well this Tablet, O Aḥmad. Chant it during thy days and withhold not thyself therefrom. For verily, God hath ordained for the one who chants it, the reward of a hundred martyrs and a service in both worlds. These favors have We bestowed upon thee as a bounty on Our part and a mercy from Our presence, that thou mayest be of those who are grateful.

By God! Should one who is in affliction or grief read this Tablet with absolute sincerity, God will dispel his sadness, solve his difficulties and remove his afflictions.

— His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

The Tablet of Aḥmad

 

EVENING:

13. O SON OF SPIRIT!

I created thee rich, why dost thou bring thyself down to poverty? Noble I made thee, wherewith dost thou abase thyself? Out of the essence of knowledge I gave thee being, why seekest thou enlightenment from anyone beside Me? Out of the clay of love I molded thee, how dost thou busy thyself with another? Turn thy sight unto thyself, that thou mayest find Me standing within thee, mighty, powerful and self-subsisting.

14. O SON OF MAN!

Thou art My dominion and My dominion perisheth not; wherefore fearest thou thy perishing? Thou art My light and My light shall never be extinguished; why dost thou dread extinction? Thou art My glory and My glory fadeth not; thou art My robe and My robe shall never be outworn. Abide then in thy love for Me, that thou mayest find Me in the realm of glory.

15. O SON OF UTTERANCE!

Turn thy face unto Mine and renounce all save Me; for My sovereignty endureth and My dominion perisheth not. If thou seekest another than Me, yea, if thou searchest the universe for evermore, thy quest will be in vain.

16. O SON OF LIGHT!

Forget all save Me and commune with My spirit. This is of the essence of My command, therefore turn unto it.

— His Holiness Bahá’u’lláh

 

The Arabic Hidden Words

FROM THE EXEMPLAR OF THE CAUSE  ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ:

Question: How shall we determine the truth or error of certain biblical interpretation, as, for instance, the higher criticism and other present-day Christian teachings?

‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Your question is an abstruse and important one. Complete answer to it would require a long time. I will reply to it briefly. The only true Explainer of the Book of God is the Holy Spirit, for no two minds are alike, no two can comprehend alike, no two can speak alike. That is to say, from the mere human standpoint of interpretation there could be neither truth nor agreement.

Question: Do you approve of the new thought in which the control of mind over matter is the central principle?

‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Philosophy develops the mind. Christ and the Word of God are revealed through the Spirit. Plato says, “The mental conclusions are so and so.” Christ says, “Be led of the Spirit.”

The Promulgation of Universal Peace, pp: 212-213

 

FROM THE BELOVED GUARDIAN OF THE BAHÁ’Í FAITH,

SHOGHI EFFENDI:

Dynamics of Prayer.

While in Haifa, the beloved Guardian of the Cause gave to the writer (Mrs Ruth Moffat), the most concise, complete, and effective formula she has ever seen, for the Dynamics of Prayer. After saying to stress the need of more prayers and meditation among the friends, he said to use these five steps if we had a problem of any kind for which we desired a solution or wished help.

First Step. – Pray and meditate about it. Use the prayers of the

Manifestations as they have the greatest power. Then remain in the silence of

contemplation for a few minutes.

Second Step. – Arrive at a decision and hold this. This decision

is usually born during the contemplation. It may seem almost

impossible of accomplishment but if it seems to be as answer to a prayer or

a way of solving the problem, then immediately take the next step.

Third Step. – Have determination to carry the decision through.

Many fail here. The decision, budding into determination, is blighted

and instead becomes a wish or a vague longing. When determination is

born, immediately take the next step. 

Fourth Step. – Have faith and confidence that the power will

flow through you, the right way will appear, the door will open, the

right thought, the right message, the right principle or the right

book will be given you. Have confidence, and the right thing will

come to your need. Then, as you rise from prayer, take at once the

fifth step.

Fifth Step. – Then, he said, lastly, ACT; Act as though it had

all been answered. Then act with tireless, ceaseless energy. And as

you act, you, yourself, will become a magnet, which will attract

more power to your being, until you become an unobstructed channel

for the Divine power to flow through you. Many pray but do not

remain for the last half of the first step. Some who meditate arrive at

a decision, but fail to hold it. Few have the determination to

carry the decision through, still fewer have the confidence that the

right thing will come to their need. But how many remember to act as

though it had all been answered? How true are those words – “Greater

than the prayer is the spirit in which it is uttered” and greater

than the way it is uttered is the spirit in which it is carried out.

 

The above statement belongs properly to the class of statement known as “pilgrim’s notes” and as such as no authority but, since it seems to be particularly helpful and clear, it was felt that believers should not be deprived of it.

Principles of Bahá’í Administration, pp: 90-91