Sunday, October 4, 2009

October 4th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in San Francisco

After morning prayers, two Japanese Bahá'ís came to see `Abdu'l-Bahá. The Master expressed His happiness on seeing their faith and sincerity in the Cause, saying:

This is an historic event. It is out of the ordinary that an Iranian should meet Japanese people in San Francisco with such love and harmony. This is through the power of Bahá'u'lláh and calls for our thankfulness and happiness. If it be said that Bahá'u'lláh brought a man from heaven and another from earth and caused them to meet midway between the earth and heaven, do not be surprised. The power of Bahá'u'lláh makes all difficulties simple. I like the Japanese greatly because they are audacious and intelligent. Whatever they turn their attention to, it becomes a success.

In the afternoon a representative from the [San Francisco] Post came to interview the Master, who said to him:

In this enlightened age everything has been renewed -- sciences have been renewed, new arts have come into being, new skills have appeared, new thoughts have been expressed, new inventions have come to light and new discoveries have been made. In reality, the world of being has become a new world. Thus, the principles of religion also must be renewed.

To a journalist from the [San Francisco] Bulletin He said:

God created man after His own image and likeness . . . but now, behaving contrarily, man has become more merciless and fearless than rapacious beasts. A beast kills only one animal each day for his food, while merciless man tears apart a hundred thousand people in a day merely for fame and dominion. Should a wolf tear a sheep apart, they would kill it; but if a man massacres a hundred thousand men in blood and dust, he is given an ovation and is pronounced a marshall or a general. If a man kills another or sets fire to a house, he is condemned as a murderer; but if he annihilates an army and overturns a country, he is called a conqueror and is admired. If a man steals a dollar he is thrown into prison but if he plunders the homes of people and lays waste a city he is called a commander and is praised. (Mahmud’s Diary)

1912 - Solution to Economic Problem should Begin with the Farmer

"The question of economics must commence with the farmer and then be extended to the other classes inasmuch as the number of farmers is greater than all other classes, many many times greater. Therefore, it is fitting that the economic problem be first solved with the farmer, for the farmer is the first active agent in the body politic. In brief, from among the wise men in every village a board should be organized and the affairs of that village should be under the control of that board."
('Abdu'l-Bahá: Extract from a Tablet to an individual believer, October 4, 1912, translation corrected in the World Centre, December 1985) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 547)

- Evil Exists

"We must never take one sentence in the Teachings and isolate it from the rest: it does not mean we must not love, but we must reach a spiritual plane where God comes first and great human passions are unable to turn us away from Him. All the time we see people who either through the force of hate or the passionate attachment they have to another person, sacrifice principle or bar themselves from the path of God.
"We know absence of light is darkness, but no one would assert darkness was not a fact. It exists even though it is only the absence of something else. So evil exists too, and we cannot close our eyes to it, even though it is a negative existence. We must seek to supplant it by good, and if we see an evil person is not influenceable by us, then we should shun his company for it is unhealthy."
(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, October 4, 1950: Spiritualism, Psychic Phenomena and Related Subjects p. 4, a compilation from the Universal House of Justice, February 14, 1973 to National Spiritual Assemblies) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 512)

1998 - Plea against execution – India Express Newspapers

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