February 22, 2021
February 16, 2021
Stages of the journey that a soul should actively pursue while upon the earth – described by Baha’u’llah
…O friend, the Herald of eternity announceth unto thee, by the robe of faithfulness, His joyful tidings and bestoweth upon thee this emerald-green Tablet. Set out, then, from thine abode, take thou seven steps upon the earth, and with each step complete a stage of the journey.
- With the first, enter the ocean of search and seek God, thy Lord, with thine inmost heart and soul.
- With the second, enter the ocean of love and make mention of God, thy Lord, in the transports of thy longing and the ecstasies of thy rapture.
- With the third, tread the paths of detachment; that is, sever thyself from thine idle fancies and walk in the ways of thy Lord.
- With the fourth, enter the fathomless depths of oneness and the billowing seas of eternity. Cover thy face in the dust before the Lord of Lords, and sanctify thy self and thy spirit from all departure and return, that thine inmost heart may be freed from all things in the kingdoms of creation.
- With the fifth, ascend unto the heaven of wonderment, that thou mayest taste the goodly fruits of this blessed realm, lose thyself in bewilderment before the power of thy Beloved and the dominion of thy Creator, and proclaim that which the King of existence and the Goal of all desire hath proclaimed: “Increase my wonder and amazement at Thee, O God!”
- With the sixth, soar upon the wings of submission and contentment unto the cities of the Unseen, that thou mayest enter the expanses of utter nothingness wherein thou shalt die to thy self and live in Him Who hath fashioned thee.
- With the seventh, drown thyself in the depths of eternity, that death may not overtake thee, and that thou mayest abide forever in the shadow of the everlasting Face of God. Thereupon shall the fragrance of the All-Glorious be diffused from the realm of the All-Merciful, and thy heart shall grieve no more over the vicissitudes of a fleeting life and the turns of a transient fortune.
When once thou hast privily completed these journeys, place this robe upon thy sightless eyes, that the eye of thine inmost heart may be opened. By God, O My friend! Wert thou to attain unto this station, thou wouldst find wondrous worlds; discover heavenly bowers, celestial gardens, and transcendent realms; and unravel the secrets of the progress of the souls of men through the atmosphere of eternal holiness and the heavens of imperishable glory. Thou wouldst so rejoice within thy soul as to cause the signs of joy and gladness to appear throughout the whole earth. Thereafter, sorrow would never again hold sway over thee, nor would grief ever seize thee in its grasp, for thou wouldst abide in the heaven of holiness amidst the concourse of the blissful.
- Baha’u’llah (‘The Call of the Divine Beloved, Selected Mystical Works of Bahá’u’lláh’)
 From a Ḥadíth
February 10, 2021
Though the worlds of God be infinite, yet some refer to them as four: the world of time, which hath both a beginning and an end; the world of duration, which hath a beginning but whose end is not apparent; the world of primordial reality, whose beginning is not to be seen but which is known to have an end; and the world of eternity, of which neither the beginning nor the end is visible. Although there are many differing statements as to these points, to recount them in detail would result in weariness.
- Baha’u’llah (‘The Seven Valleys’, 2019 revised translation by the Baha’i World Centre; ‘The Call of the Divine Beloved’)
February 3, 2021
What a believer can do to find a solution to a problem: - Guidance from the Universal House of Justice
You mention that the answers to your prayers never seem to have come through clearly. Mrs. Ruth Moffett has published her recollection of five steps of prayer for guidance that she was told by the beloved Guardian. When asked about these notes, Shoghi Effendi replied, in letters written by his secretary on his behalf, that the notes should be regarded as “personal suggestions,” that he considered them to be “quite sound,” but that the friends need not adopt them “strictly and universally.” The House of Justice feels that they may be helpful to you and, indeed, you may already be familiar with them. They are as follows:
… use these five steps if we have a problem of any kind for which we desire a solution, or wish help.
- Pray and meditate about it. Use the prayers of the Manifestations, as they have the greatest power. Learn to remain in the silence of contemplation for a few moments. During this deepest communion take the next step.
- Arrive at a decision and hold to this. This decision is usually born in a flash at the close or during the contemplation. It may seem almost impossible of accomplishment, but if it seems to be an answer to prayer or a way of solving the problem, then immediately take the next 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.
- Have faith and confidence, that the Power of the Holy Spirit will flow through you, the right way will appear, the door will open, the right message, the right principle or the right book will be given to you. Have confidence, and the right thing will come to meet your need. Then as you rise from prayer take immediately the fifth step.
- 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.
Also the Guardian’s secretary wrote to an individual believer on his behalf: “The Master said guidance was when the doors opened after we tried. We can pray, ask to do God’s will only, try hard, and then if we find our plan is not working out, assume it is not the right one, at least for the moment.”
- The Universal House of Justice (From a letter dated 11 October 1978, written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to an individual believer; ‘Messages from the Universal House of Justice 1963-1986’)
January 27, 2021
This magnificent edifice stands facing Bahá’u’lláh’s Most Great Prison, extolled by the Pen of Glory as the ‘Heaven of heavens’, and looks toward the Qiblih of the people of Bahá, that Spot within the vale of security and peace, the plain of ‘Akká, round which circle in adoration the Concourse on high. To her right are the hills of Galilee in which nestles the childhood home of the beautiful Christ, and the locality by the banks of the Jordan River where He Who is the Spirit (Jesus Christ) was called to prophethood; and on her left, on the crest of Carmel, are to be found the Cave of Elijah and the exalted Spot which was blessed by the footsteps of the Most Holy Abhá Beauty and was ennobled through the revelation of the Tablet of Carmel from the treasury of the Pen of Glory. Behind her stand the twin Mounts of Zion and Olives and the holy and ancient city of Jerusalem, within whose walls lie the site of the martyrdom and the burial place of Jesus Christ, the seat of the Throne of David, the glorious Temple of Solomon and the Aqsa Mosque which ranks third among the shrines of the Islamic world. Beyond these there rises Mount Sinai, the cradle of the Jewish Faith, that Sacred Mount, the Paran of light, that holy land where He Who conversed with God (Moses) heard the Voice from the Blessed Tree. And further beyond lies the Arabian Peninsula, the land of Hijaz, the cradle of the Muhammadan Dispensation, with the two cities of Batha and Yathrib, the noble Mecca and the bright Medina, one enshrining the Qiblih of Islam and the other the Resting-place of Him Who is the Lord of mankind (Muhammad) – upon Him be countless salutations and praise.
High, immeasurably high, is this Shrine, the lofty, the most great, the most wondrous. Exalted, immeasurably exalted, is this Resting-place, the fragrant, the pure, the luminous, the transcendent. Glorified, immeasurably glorified, is this Spot, the most august, the most holy, the most blessed, the most sublime.
January 23, 2021
January 16, 2021
1954: The Guardian’s reference about the Canadian Baha’i community and some of its distinguished members
A Community, [Canada] whose founder  has conferred upon it such splendid benefits and whose dust now lies on the far-off shores of the South American continent; which has been exalted by reason of the eminent services which two other members  Amatu’l-Bahá Rúhíyyih Khánum Rabbani (Mary Maxwell)—daughter of May and Sutherland Maxwell, became the wife of Shoghi Effendi in 1937, appointed a Hand of the Cause of God in 1952, of her family have rendered, in the Holy Land, to the world Bahá’í community; which can, moreover boast of the enduring and historic achievements of yet another Hand of the Cause —the third nominated from the ranks of its members; and which, in the course of the past year, has set a further example of steadfastness and devotion through the action of outstanding members   of its National Assembly who have forsaken their homes to settle in the African continent—such a community can well assert its capacity and determination to consummate, within the allotted time, the laborious and mighty task it has risen to shoulder.
The rapidity of its expansion, its sound development, the steadiness, the single-mindedness, the tenacity, the enthusiasm, the unity and staunchness of its members, augur well for the remarkable material and spiritual progress which the nation to which it belongs must achieve in the years to come, in accordance with the explicit promise enshrined in the Tablets of the Divine Plan by the Centre of Bahá’u’lláh’s Covenant.
- Shoghi Effendi (From a letter dated 15 June 1954 to the National Spiritual Assembly of Canada; ‘Messages to Canada’)
January 10, 2021
January 1, 2021
December 27, 2020
A site for a future Mashriqu'l-Adhkar can be as small as 8,000 square metres in area if a larger property would be too expensive. It should, if possible, be situated within the city designated or, if this is not feasible, within 25 kilometres from the city.
- The Universal House of Justice (From a message dated Naw-Ruz 1974 to all National Spiritual Assemblies; ‘Messages from the Universal House of Justice 1963-1986’)
December 21, 2020
…he [‘Abdu’l-Baha] has returned to Egypt and hopes that during the next spring no obstacle may arise, so that with infinite joy and fragrance he may hasten to America
- to meet the friends,
- to unfurl the banner of rejoicing,
- to spread the Glad Tidings of the Kingdom of Abha,
- to illumine the meetings and gatherings with the Rays of the Sun of Truth,
- to perfume the nostrils with the Fragrances of Holiness,
- to impart gladness and delight to the hearts,
- to attract the souls to the Realms of Might,
- to grant the outpouring of the Holy Spirit so that in this nether world the congregation of the Righteous Ones may be firmly established.
Glad Tidings! Glad Tidings! The bounties of the Most Great Name are descending.
Glad Tidings! Glad Tidings! The Lights of the Kingdom of Abha are shining.
Glad Tidings! Glad Tidings! The Doors of Heaven are opened and the call of the Kingdom is raised.
- ‘Abdu’l-Baha (From a Tablet; Star of the West, vol. 2, no. 16, December 31, 1911)
December 16, 2020
She saw 'Abdu'l-Baha several times in Chicago and Washington during 1912. She is the first Persian Baha'i woman to travel to the West in 1911 for the purpose of obtaining an education. She studied at the Lewis Institute in Chicago. In 1918 she graduated from Columbia University with a degree in Education. She returned to Persia in 1919 and became involved in women's movements and in education. Her brother, Ashraf Ashraf, studied in Paris during 1911-1915, and met 'Abdu'l-Baha on several occasions at 4, avenue de Camoens in 1911 and 1913. In Iran he apparently held several government positions and emigrated to Switzerland in 1953.
(Adapted from “Abdu’l-Baha in the West, A biographical guide of the people associated with His travels”, by Jan Teofil Jasion)
December 10, 2020
There are two kinds of cooperation: material and spiritual. Cooperation in the material world will insure happiness and fellowship, and will facilitate the progress of humankind; but the ideal, the most real and virtuous cooperation is spiritual. That is realized when people gather together to investigate and discuss principles impartially, to talk over the divine and philosophic principles of the age and to assist each other in pursuit of divine knowledge and wisdom. This real cooperation and mutual assistance is the foundation on which the super-structure of material reciprocity is based. Through this spiritual inter-assistance the prosperity of the world of man is unveiled.
- ‘Abdu’l-Baha (Words of ‘Abdu’l-Baha at a Nineteen-Day Feast in London, December 29, 1912; Baha’i News no. 33, July 1929)
December 1, 2020
…love of God and spiritual attraction do cleanse and purify the human heart and dress and adorn it with the spotless garment of holiness; and once the heart is entirely attached to the Lord, and bound over to the Blessed Perfection, then will the grace of God be revealed.
- ‘Abdu’l-Baha (‘Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Baha’)
November 25, 2020
For the present hour, we urge you to recommit your energies, keeping your focus on the mission immediately before you. We are immensely gratified to see the assured composure with which the community of the Greatest Name has sought to offer the divine remedy under all conditions, especially during this period when society’s established patterns of life have been disrupted and risks of different kinds are being faced by so many. Withal, the friends must guard against being drawn into the ultimately futile conflict and strife that characterizes so much of the discussion of the affairs of society, or—heaven forbid—allowing interaction of this type to permeate, even fleetingly, the conversations of the community. Yet such vigilance on your part in avoiding discord and in not becoming entangled in society’s controversies should under no circumstances be construed as aloofness from the many pressing concerns of this time. Far from it. You are among the most active and earnest of humanity’s well-wishers. But, whether through deeds or words, the merit of your every contribution to social well-being lies, first, in your resolute commitment to discover that precious point of unity where contrasting perspectives overlap and around which contending peoples can coalesce.
- The Universal House of Justice (From a message to the Baha’is of the World dated 25 November 2020)
November 19, 2020
Love & Compassion
Connecting our hearts to Baha'u'llah
November 12, 2020
November 5, 2020
October 28, 2020
The incredibly awesome significance of this “Day” and the exceptional priviledge of those who have ecognized God’s latest Manifestation
This is the Day whereon the Most Great Spirit was embodied in the most comely of forms, and, proceeding from the Realm on high, approached the Scene of transcendent glory with such radiance as to delight the Maid of Heaven, until she paused, suspended in the air before Our presence, with such an adorning as to seize with longing the hearts of the Messengers of God. Blessed, then, be God, Who hath created this noble angel!
Thereupon the inmates of Paradise, and beyond them the inhabitants of the retreats of holiness and the realms of communion, and beyond them they that dwell within the habitations of heaven and they that abide beneath the tabernacle of concealment, stepped forth one and all from their lofty mansions, and, conversing in hushed tones, apprised one another of that which had come to pass upon the earth. It was as though the Ancient King had revealed Himself unto Himself, and then, with undisputed sovereignty, unto His servants and His creatures in the realm of creation. Blessed, then, be God, Who bringeth forth whatsoever He pleaseth through the potency of His all-compelling command!
Then the Most Great Spirit raised a call that resounded through the entire creation, saying: “Solaced be your eyes, O ye inhabitants of earth and heaven, O ye manifestations of the divine names and attributes, and O ye who are immersed beneath the oceans of grandeur that lie beyond the worlds of intimation and allusion! This is the Day whereon God Himself, the Most Exalted, the Most High, through His own sacred and glorious Self, beareth round unto every soul, high and low alike, the cup of nearness and reunion.” Blessed, then, be God, Who hath revealed Himself in all His manifold grace on this greatest of all days!
- Baha’u’llah (‘Days of remembrance’)
October 21, 2020
|Mah-Ku, circa 1935|
- Shoghi Effendi (‘God Passes By’)
October 15, 2020
He the “Qá’im” (He Who ariseth) promised to the Shí’ahs, the “Mihdí” (One Who is guided) awaited by the Sunnís, the “Return of John the Baptist” expected by the Christians, the “Ushídar-Máh” referred to in the Zoroastrian scriptures, the “Return of Elijah” anticipated by the Jews, Whose Revelation was to show forth “the signs and tokens of all the Prophets”, Who was to “manifest the perfection of Moses, the radiance of Jesus and the patience of Job” had appeared, proclaimed His Cause, been mercilessly persecuted and died gloriously. The “Second Woe,” spoken of in the Apocalypse of St. John the Divine, had, at long last, appeared, and the first of the two “Messengers,” Whose appearance had been prophesied in the Qur’án, had been sent down. The first “Trumpet-Blast”, destined to smite the earth with extermination, announced in the latter Book, had finally been sounded. “The Inevitable,” “The Catastrophe,” “The Resurrection,” “The Earthquake of the Last Hour,” foretold by that same Book, had all come to pass. The “clear tokens” had been “sent down,” and the “Spirit” had “breathed,” and the “souls” had “waked up,” and the “heaven” had been “cleft,” and the “angels” had “ranged in order,” and the “stars” had been “blotted out,” and the “earth” had “cast forth her burden,” and “Paradise” had been “brought near,” and “hell” had been “made to blaze,” and the “Book” had been “set,” and the “Bridge” had been “laid out,” and the “Balance” had been “set up,” and the “mountains scattered in dust.”
- Shoghi Effendi (‘God Passes By’)
October 9, 2020
Lay not on any soul a load which ye would not wish to be laid upon you, and desire not for anyone the things ye would not desire for yourselves. This is My best counsel unto you, did ye but observe it.
- Baha'u'llah (Suriy-i-Muluk [Tablet to the Kings], The Summons of the Lord of Hosts)
October 1, 2020
O concourse of ardent lovers! By the righteousness of God, this is a night the like of which hath never been witnessed in the world of creation. And this, verily, is from the grace of God, the All-Glorious, the Most Bountiful.
This is the night wherein the Spirit intoned such a melody as to throw into commotion the inner realities of all men, proclaiming: “Rejoice, O Concourse on high, within your retreats of Paradise!”
Whereupon did the Voice of God call out from within the Tabernacle of holiness and bounty: “This, indeed, is the night wherein He Who is the reality of the All-Merciful hath been born, the night wherein every eternal command hath been expounded by the Pen of the All-Glorious. Rejoice, then, with exceeding gladness, O concourse of the Bayán!”
This is the night wherein the Mystic Dove raised its call upon the branches and boughs of heaven, saying: “Rejoice, O denizens of Paradise!”
Say: This is the night wherein the veils of glory were parted before the eyes of the people of certitude, and the Bird of Heaven warbled its melody in the midmost heart of the celestial realm. Rejoice, then, O embodiments of sanctity in the Everlasting City!
This is the night wherein God shed abroad the splendour of all His most excellent names and established Himself upon the throne of every pure and radiant heart. Rejoice, then, O concourse of the Bayán!
This is the night wherein the oceans of forgiveness surged and the breezes of providence were wafted abroad. Rejoice, then, O companions of the All-Merciful!
- Baha’u’llah (‘Days of Remembrance’)
September 23, 2020
September 18, 2020
September 13, 2020
Man is like unto a tree. If he be adorned with fruit, he hath been and will ever be worthy of praise and commendation. Otherwise a fruitless tree is but fit for fire. The fruits of the human tree are exquisite, highly desired and dearly cherished. Among them are upright character, virtuous deeds and a goodly utterance. The springtime for earthly trees occurreth once every year, while the one for human trees appeareth in the Days of God—exalted be His glory. Were the trees of men’s lives to be adorned in this divine Springtime with the fruits that have been mentioned, the effulgence of the light of Justice would, of a certainty, illumine all the dwellers of the earth and everyone would abide in tranquillity and contentment beneath the sheltering shadow of Him Who is the Object of all mankind. The Water for these trees is the living water of the sacred Words uttered by the Beloved of the world. In one instant are such trees planted and in the next their branches shall, through the outpourings of the showers of divine mercy, have reached the skies. A dried-up tree, however, hath never been nor will be worthy of any mention.
September 8, 2020
September 1, 2020
August 26, 2020
(Canadian Baha’i News, no. 256, February-March 1972)
On July 2, 3, and 4, 1971, an Auxiliary Board Team Deepening Conference was held in Brandon, Manitoba, supported by the local Spiritual Assembly of that city and by the Baha 'is of Cornwallis. Friends from six different countries and from many areas of Canada were among the 100 plus attending.
August 20, 2020
August 14, 2020
August 8, 2020
August 3, 2020
July 27, 2020
Thou art the Powerful! Thou art the Mighty! Thou art the Giver and Thou art the Omniscient!
July 21, 2020
1924- London: Delegates and friends attending the Conference of Living Religions within the British Empire
(Star of the West [The Baha'i Magazine]. vol. 14, no. 9, December 1924)