Texts 39 - 57 |
The peoples of the world are fast asleep. Were they
to wake from their slumber, they would hasten with
eagerness unto God, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.
They would cast away everything they possess, be it all
the treasures of the earth, that their Lord may
remember them to the extent of addressing to them but
one word. Such is the instruction given you by Him
Who holdeth the knowledge of things hidden, in a
Tablet which the eye of creation hath not seen, and
which is revealed to none except His own Self, the
omnipotent Protector of all worlds. So bewildered are
they in the drunkenness of their evil desires, that they
are powerless to recognize the Lord of all being, Whose
voice calleth aloud from every direction: "There is none
other God but Me, the Mighty, the All-Wise."
Say: Rejoice not in the things ye possess; tonight
they are yours, tomorrow others will possess them.
Thus warneth you He Who is the All-Knowing, the
All-Informed. Say: Can ye claim that what ye own is
lasting or secure? Nay! By Myself, the All-Merciful, ye
cannot, if ye be of them who judge fairly. The days of
your life flee away as a breath of wind, and all your
pomp and glory shall be folded up as were the pomp
and glory of those gone before you. Reflect, O people!
What hath become of your bygone days, your lost
centuries? Happy the days that have been consecrated
to the remembrance of God, and blessed the hours
which have been spent in praise of Him Who is the All-Wise.
By My life! Neither the pomp of the mighty, nor
the wealth of the rich, nor even the ascendancy of the
ungodly will endure. All will perish, at a word from
Him. He, verily, is the All-Powerful, the All-Compelling,
the Almighty. What advantage is there in
the earthly things which men possess? That which shall
profit them, they have utterly neglected. Erelong, they
will awake from their slumber, and find themselves
unable to obtain that which hath escaped them in the
days of their Lord, the Almighty, the All-Praised. Did
they but know it, they would renounce their all, that
their names may be mentioned before His throne.
They, verily, are accounted among the dead.
Amongst the people is he whose learning hath
made him proud, and who hath been debarred thereby
from recognizing My Name, the Self-Subsisting; who,
when he heareth the tread of sandals following behind
him, waxeth greater in his own esteem than Nimrod.
Say: O rejected one! Where now is his abode? By God,
it is the nethermost fire. Say: O concourse of divines!
Hear ye not the shrill voice of My Most Exalted Pen?
See ye not this Sun that shineth in refulgent splendour
above the All-Glorious Horizon? For how long will ye
worship the idols of your evil passions? Forsake your
vain imaginings, and turn yourselves unto God, your
Endowments dedicated to charity revert to God,
the Revealer of Signs. None hath the right to dispose of
them without leave from Him Who is the Dawning-place
of Revelation. After Him, this authority shall
pass to the &Aghsan, and after them to the House of
Justice--should it be established in the world by
then--that they may use these endowments for the
benefit of the Places which have been exalted in this
Cause, and for whatsoever hath been enjoined upon
them by Him Who is the God of might and power.
Otherwise, the endowments shall revert to the people
of &Baha who speak not except by His leave and judge
not save in accordance with what God hath decreed in
this Tablet--lo, they are the champions of victory
betwixt heaven and earth--that they may use them in
the manner that hath been laid down in the Book by
God, the Mighty, the Bountiful.
Lament not in your hours of trial, neither rejoice
therein; seek ye the Middle Way which is the
remembrance of Me in your afflictions and reflection
over that which may befall you in future. Thus
informeth you He Who is the Omniscient, He Who is
Shave not your heads; God hath adorned them
with hair, and in this there are signs from the Lord of
creation to those who reflect upon the requirements of
nature. He, verily, is the God of strength and wisdom.
Notwithstanding, it is not seemly to let the hair pass
beyond the limit of the ears. Thus hath it been decreed
by Him Who is the Lord of all worlds.
Exile and imprisonment are decreed for the thief,
and, on the third offence, place ye a mark upon his
brow so that, thus identified, he may not be accepted in
the cities of God and His countries. Beware lest,
through compassion, ye neglect to carry out the
statutes of the religion of God; do that which hath been
bidden you by Him Who is compassionate and
merciful. We school you with the rod of wisdom and
laws, like unto the father who educateth his son, and
this for naught but the protection of your own selves
and the elevation of your stations. By My life, were ye
to discover what We have desired for you in revealing
Our holy laws, ye would offer up your very souls for
this sacred, this mighty, and most exalted Faith.
Whoso wisheth to make use of vessels of silver and
gold is at liberty to do so. Take heed lest, when
partaking of food, ye plunge your hands into the
contents of bowls and platters. Adopt ye such usages as
are most in keeping with refinement. He, verily,
desireth to see in you the manners of the inmates of
Paradise in His mighty and most sublime Kingdom.
Hold ye fast unto refinement under all conditions, that
your eyes may be preserved from beholding what is
repugnant both to your own selves and to the dwellers
of Paradise. Should anyone depart therefrom, his deed
shall at that moment be rendered vain; yet should he
have good reason, God will excuse him. He, in truth,
is the Gracious, the Most Bountiful.
He Who is the Dawning-place of God's Cause
hath no partner in the Most Great Infallibility. He it is
Who, in the kingdom of creation, is the Manifestation
of "He doeth whatsoever He willeth". God hath
reserved this distinction unto His own Self, and
ordained for none a share in so sublime and transcendent
a station. This is the Decree of God, concealed ere
now within the veil of impenetrable mystery. We have
disclosed it in this Revelation, and have thereby rent
asunder the veils of such as have failed to recognize that
which the Book of God set forth and who were
numbered with the heedless.
Unto every father hath been enjoined the instruction
of his son and daughter in the art of reading and
writing and in all that hath been laid down in the Holy
Tablet. He that putteth away that which is commanded
unto him, the Trustees are then to take from
him that which is required for their instruction if he be
wealthy and, if not, the matter devolveth upon the
House of Justice. Verily have We made it a shelter for
the poor and needy. He that bringeth up his son or the
son of another, it is as though he hath brought up a son
of Mine; upon him rest My glory, My loving-kindness,
My mercy, that have compassed the world.
God hath imposed a fine on every adulterer and
adulteress, to be paid to the House of Justice: nine
&mithqals of gold, to be doubled if they should repeat
the offence. Such is the penalty which He Who is the
Lord of Names hath assigned them in this world; and in
the world to come He hath ordained for them a
humiliating torment. Should anyone be afflicted by a
sin, it behoveth him to repent thereof and return unto
his Lord. He, verily, granteth forgiveness unto
whomsoever He willeth, and none may question that
which it pleaseth Him to ordain. He is, in truth, the
Ever-Forgiving, the Almighty, the All-Praised.
Beware lest ye be hindered by the veils of glory
from partaking of the crystal waters of this living
Fountain. Seize ye the chalice of salvation at this
dawntide in the name of Him Who causeth the day to
break, and drink your fill in praise of Him Who is the
All-Glorious, the Incomparable.
We have made it lawful for you to listen to music
and singing. Take heed, however, lest listening thereto
should cause you to overstep the bounds of propriety
and dignity. Let your joy be the joy born of My Most
Great Name, a Name that bringeth rapture to the
heart, and filleth with ecstasy the minds of all who have
drawn nigh unto God. We, verily, have made music
as a ladder for your souls, a means whereby they may
be lifted up unto the realm on high; make it not,
therefore, as wings to self and passion. Truly, We are
loath to see you numbered with the foolish.
We have decreed that a third part of all fines shall
go to the Seat of Justice, and We admonish its men to
observe pure justice, that they may expend what is thus
accumulated for such purposes as have been enjoined
upon them by Him Who is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.
O ye Men of Justice! Be ye, in the realm of God,
shepherds unto His sheep and guard them from the
ravening wolves that have appeared in disguise, even as
ye would guard your own sons. Thus exhorteth you the
Counsellor, the Faithful.
Should differences arise amongst you over any
matter, refer it to God while the Sun still shineth above
the horizon of this Heaven and, when it hath set, refer
ye to whatsoever hath been sent down by Him. This,
verily, is sufficient unto the peoples of the world. Say:
Let not your hearts be perturbed, O people, when the
glory of My Presence is withdrawn, and the ocean of
My utterance is stilled. In My presence amongst you
there is a wisdom, and in My absence there is yet
another, inscrutable to all but God, the Incomparable,
the All-Knowing. Verily, We behold you from Our
realm of glory, and shall aid whosoever will arise for the
triumph of Our Cause with the hosts of the Concourse
on high and a company of Our favoured angels.
O peoples of the earth! God, the Eternal Truth, is
My witness that streams of fresh and soft-flowing
waters have gushed from the rocks through the
sweetness of the words uttered by your Lord, the
Unconstrained; and still ye slumber. Cast away that
which ye possess, and, on the wings of detachment,
soar beyond all created things. Thus biddeth you the
Lord of creation, the movement of Whose Pen hath
revolutionized the soul of mankind.
Know ye from what heights your Lord, the All-Glorious,
is calling? Think ye that ye have recognized
the Pen wherewith your Lord, the Lord of all names,
commandeth you? Nay, by My life! Did ye but know
it, ye would renounce the world, and would hasten
with your whole hearts to the presence of the Well-Beloved.
Your spirits would be so transported by His
Word as to throw into commotion the Greater
World--how much more this small and petty one!
Thus have the showers of My bounty been poured down
from the heaven of My loving-kindness, as a token of
My grace, that ye may be of the thankful.
The penalties for wounding or striking a person
depend upon the severity of the injury; for each degree
the Lord of Judgement hath prescribed a certain
indemnity. He is, in truth, the Ordainer, the Mighty,
the Most Exalted. We shall, if it be Our Will, set forth
these payments in their just degrees--this is a promise
on Our part, and He, verily, is the Keeper of His
pledge, the Knower of all things.
Verily, it is enjoined upon you to offer a feast,
once in every month, though only water be served; for
God hath purposed to bind hearts together, albeit
through both earthly and heavenly means.
Texts 39 - 57