Monday, November 30, 2009

November 30th in Baha'i History

1912-Abdul-Baha was in New York
Some of the believers agreed among themselves to go to `Abdu'l-Bahá and cling to His robe until He accepted their gifts. They came and begged He accept their offerings. The Master called them, saying:
I am most grateful for your services; in truth you have served me. You have extended hospitality. Night and day you have been ready to serve and to diffuse the divine fragrances. I shall never forget your services, for you have no purpose but the will of God and you desire no station but entry into the Kingdom of God. Now you have brought presents for the members of my family. They are most acceptable and excellent but better than all these are the gifts of the love of God which remain preserved in the treasuries of the heart. These gifts are evanescent but those are eternal; these jewels must be kept in boxes and vaults and they will eventually perish but those jewels remain in the treasuries of the heart and will remain throughout the world of God for eternity. Thus I will take to them your love, which is the greatest of all gifts. In our house they do not wear diamond rings nor do they keep rubies. That house is sanctified above such adornments.
I, however, have accepted your gifts; but I entrust them to you for you sell and send the proceeds to the fund for the Mashriqu'l-Adhkár in Chicago.
When the friends continued to plead with Him, He said: `I want to take from you a present which will endure in the eternal world and a jewel which belongs to the treasuries of the heart. This is better.'
No matter how much the friends supplicated and pleaded, He would not accept their gifts and instead asked them all to contribute towards the Mashriqu'l-Adhkár fund. He did this everywhere He traveled.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1975 - Release of a Compilation on Bahá'í meetings and the Nineteen Day Feast (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 321)

1988 - The BIC is elected Secretary of the Board of the Conference of Non-Governmental Agencies of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations

1990-First National Teaching Conference of Romania is held near Poiana Brasov in the Carpathian Mountains

Sunday, November 29, 2009

November 29th in Baha'i History

1900 - Hájí Hasan-i-Khurásání and Mírzá Asadu’lláh-i-Isfahání arrive in the United States to assist the Bahá’ís to deepen their knowledge of their Faith.

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Edward B. Kinney New York

1912 –Abdul-Baha was in New York

One of His discourses today was this:
One of the bounties of religion and faith is the attainment of peace of the heart and soul and the joy of spirit and conscience. This station can only be gained through faith and understanding. Peace of mind is the soul's delight, as it is the means of acquiring that extraordinary state in which man finds happiness in times of affliction and tranquillity in trouble. In spite of poverty he acquires a sense of affluence and in a state of riches and power he offers help and protection to the weak because the well-assured soul is like a tree which has strong roots and is not shaken by any event. This cannot be attained except through complete faith and understanding. How many are the people who have all means of comfort, luxury, security and wealth and every means of enjoyment and good living, yet they have no peace of mind and are ever anxious and uneasy! If outwardly they are happy one day, they become depressed and anxious the next. If they find physical rest at one moment, they face suffering and misfortune the next, until the time comes to leave this world, then they will do so with utmost regret and distress.
But those who have faith in God act according to the divine teachings; even though they need a little food to survive, they will pass their lives in the utmost happiness and joy. This is one of the bounties of religion; this is eternal happiness, life everlasting and real affluence. Without this all riches lead to woe and all power and strength are the cause of hardship and affliction. Therefore, offer praise unto God that you are endowed with this imperishable wealth and have attained this supreme blessing
. (Mahmud’s Diary)

1921 – The Funeral of Abdul-Baha

The next morning (Tuesday, November 29) the funeral took place:
... a funeral the like of which Haifa, nay Palestine itself, had surely never seen ... so deep was the feeling that brought so many thousands of mourners together, representative of so many religions, races and tongues. The High Commissioner, Sir Herbert Samuel, the Governor or Jerusalem, the Governor of Phoenicia, the Chief Officials of the Government, the Consuls of the various countries, resident in Haifa, the heads of the various religious communities, the notables of Palestine, Jews, Christians, Moslems, Druses, Egyptians, Greeks, Turks, Kurds, and a host of his American, European and native friends, men, women and children, both of high and low degree ... all, about ten thousand in number, mourning the loss of their Beloved One. ... "O God, my God!" the people wailed with one accord, "Our father has left us, our father has left us!" ... they slowly wended their way up Mount Carmel, the Vineyard of God. ... After two hours' walking, they reached the garden of the Tomb of the Báb. ... As the vast concourse pressed round ... representatives of the various denominations, Moslems, Christians and Jews, all hearts being ablaze with fervent love of 'Abdu'l-Bahá, some on the impulse of the moment, other prepared, raised their voices in eulogy and regret, paying their last homage of farewell to their loved one. So united were they in their acclamation of him, as the wise educator and reconciler of the human race in this perplexed and sorrowful age, that there seemed to be nothing left for the Bahá'ís to say. -- (The Passing of 'Abdu'l-Bahá, by Lady Blomfield and Shoghi Effendi, pp. 11, 12.) (Dr. J.E. Esslemont, Baha'u'llah and the New Era, p. 65)

1976 - Abortion
Abortion and surgical operations for the purpose of preventing the birth of unwanted children are forbidden in the Cause unless there are circumstances which justify such actions on medical grounds, in which case the decision, at present, is left to the consciences of those concerned who must carefully weigh the medical advice in the light of the general guidance given in the Teachings.
Letter written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice, dated November 29, 1976, to a Local Spiritual Assembly (Compilations, NSA USA - Developing Distinctive Baha'i Communities)

1981- Inauguration of Radio Bahá'í Peru
[ Mr Stokes assisted the National Spiritual Assembly of Peru as a project planner for the administration of the station.]
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (Messages 1963 to 1986, p.510)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

November 28th in Baha'i History

The above photo was located on Flickr here:

1902 - Commencement of the construction of the of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár of 'Ishqábád
1912 –28 November, Thanksgiving Day, was to be a day of rest for our Beloved Lord. It had been given out that no one would be received at the house that day. (Misc Baha'i, The Diary of Juliet Thompson)

Another significant thing: Nine years after that date, on 28 November 1921, our Beloved Lord ascended. Could this have been the reason, with His pre-vision, that He spent that day in 1912 in solitude?) (Misc Baha'i, The Diary of Juliet Thompson)

1921 - ‘Abdu’l-Bahá passes away in Haifa and appoints Shoghi Effendi as the Guardian in his Will and Testament

about 1:30 A.M. on Monday, November 28, He passed away so peacefully that, to the two daughters watching by His bedside, it seemed as if He had gone quietly to sleep. The sad news soon spread throughout the town and was flashed over the wires to all parts of the world. (Dr. J.E. Esslemont, Baha'u'llah and the New Era, p. 65)

With the passing of 'Abdu'l-Bahá on 28 November 1921, the most glorious period in the history of the Faith, described by Shoghi Effendi as the 'heroic' or 'Apostolic' age, came to an end. (Adib Taherzadeh, The Covenant of Baha'u'llah, p. 275)

1922 - Munirih Khanum’s Letter of Lament

O my Lord, O my Lord. Forsake me not, for troubles have encompassed me on all sides. Lord! leave me not to myself, for misfortunes have seized me and assailed me.
O Peerless One! O Beloved One! O 'Abdu'l-Bahá! O tender and faithful Master! It is today one full year since You disappeared from our sight and winged Your flight to the Abha Kingdom.[1] In that most glorious paradise, that supreme dwelling, You have chosen to make Your asylum and refuge, in perfect peace and comfort. O kind and loving Master: for fifty years You fed us from the breast of mercy. At every morn You would call all to gather, and You would even instruct us to "wake the small children and, after breakfast, read the prayers and Tablets." Cast Your glance of favor upon this poor, sorrow-stricken family from that other world, from the Sadratu'l-Muntaha.[2] Look down upon these leaves scattered in many lands and regions. Each one is in a different place and subjected to severe afflictions.
[1 'Abdu'l-Bahá passed away at about 1:00 A.M., on November 28, 1921.] [2 The tree beyond which there is no passing. Here a reference to paradise.] (Misc Baha'i, Munirih - Memoirs and Letters, p. 52)

Friday, November 27, 2009

November 27th in Baha'i History

1912- Abdul-Baha was in New York

In the morning the Master gave several talks to the Bahá'ís, one of which was the following:

The purpose of the divine Manifestations has been the education of holy souls. Some have imagined that their purpose was to found temples and churches or to establish a new nation or to gain personal fame and that for these considerations they accepted severe degradation and became targets for the arrow of fate. These are idle fancies because those holy Beings knew well that the dominion of God existed when there was no trace of them and that it shall continue to exist when no trace of them remains. Thus fame or oblivion, honor or degradation are one and the same to those Gems of existence. Indeed, their ultimate desire is selfless devotion to the one true God and absolute nothingness in His court. Their only motive has been the education of blessed souls and sanctified beings who are the foundation of divine education and promoters of the most great guidance and the supreme favor.
The people of Bahá must endeavor day and night to promulgate this lofty purpose. They must endeavor and strive strenuously to educate themselves and other sanctified souls. They must awaken the peoples and nations of the world and free them from dogmas and imitations. They must pass beyond the world of names and fix their gaze on realities and inner meanings.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

11/27 to 11/30/1976 International Teaching Conference held in Hong Kong – attended by 276 people.

2005 - Death of prolific author and founding member of the Association for Bahá’í Studies, William S. Hatcher

Thursday, November 26, 2009

November 26th in Baha'i History

1849 - The Bab sends Mulla Adi-Guzal to the graves of Quddus and Mulla Husayn as a pilgrimage on His behalf.

1888 – Revealed by Baha’u’llah
HE Who leadeth to true victory is come. By the righteousness of God! He is fully capable of revolutionizing the world through the power of a single Word. Having enjoined upon all men to observe wisdom, He Himself hath adhered to the cord of patience and resignation.
The clay clods of the world have set forth to visit the embellished, the luminous, the crimson City of God, and certain emissaries from Persia are secretly stirring up mischief, though to outward seeming they pretend to be gentle and meek. Gracious God! When will this world-afflicting craftiness be transformed into sincerity? The exhortations of God, the True One, have compassed the world, but until now their influence hath not been disclosed. Men's unseemly deeds have kept them back from attaining unto Him. We entreat God -- exalted and glorified is He -- to pour down, out of the clouds of divine grace, the overflowing rain of His bounty upon all His servants. Verily potent is He over all things.
(Baha'u'llah, Tablets of Baha'u'llah, p. 259)

1901- First Celebration of the Day of the Covenant, The Master’s Day in the United Sates.

1903 - First national Bahai Conference is held in America (Chicago)

1911. - Message to the London Baha'is for the Day of Abdu'l-Baha.
Specially given to Mrs. Enthoven.

GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The doors of the Kingdom of God are open!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! Armies of Angels are descending from Heaven!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The Sun of Truth is rising!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! Heavenly food is being sent from above!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The Trumpet is sounding!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The Banner of the Great Peace is floating far and wide!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The Light of the Lamp of the Oneness of Humanity is shining bright!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The fire of the Love of God is blazing!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! The Holy Spirit is being outpoured!
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! For Everlasting Life is here!

O Ye that sleep, Awake!
O ye heedless ones, Learn wisdom!
O Blind, receive your sight!
O Deaf, Hear!
O Dumb, Speak!
O Dead, Arise!

Be Happy!
Be Happy!
Be full of Joy!

1912- Abdul-Baha was in New York

In the morning, after revealing Tablets and granting interviews, the Master joined the gathering of the friends with these words:
I always derive great pleasure from being with you. I shall always remember these gatherings. I shall never forget them. If I cannot see each one of you individually every day that should not undermine our real love. See how much work I have to do! It is more than a week since I received this letter from my sister, the Greatest Holy Leaf [Bahíyyih Khánum], and other members of the household, but I have not had the opportunity to open it yet. I was looking for another letter when I came upon this unopened letter. Then I heard that you were waiting here and I came downstairs to see you because I have no time to see you individually. In spite of this, if anyone has an urgent matter I will see them privately, even if only for a few minutes. Had I time I would always be with you. My happiness lies in seeing you, for in your faces are apparent the glad tidings of the Abhá Kingdom and in your hearts heavenly love and attraction. If outwardly we fail to meet, it does not weaken our real love. God willing, you shall all be assisted and immersed in the sea of bounty and the favor of Bahá'u'lláh.

In the afternoon at a meeting of the friends, the Master turned towards Mrs Krug and said:
A believer in Bahá'u'lláh is he who is firm in the Covenant. He who is firm in the divine Covenant is a believer, a servant of the believers, a seeker of Bahá'í harmony and unity and a promoter of fellowship and amity among the friends of God. Is it possible that one can accept a book and refuse to accept him who teaches it? Is it possible to accept the sun and to reject its rays? He who rejects the rays is a rejector of the sun, too.
Furthermore, many say, `We have no need of divine Manifestations; we ourselves have direct communication with God.' They do not know that the divine Manifestations are the bright rays of the Sun of Truth and a means of educating the realities of man. Therefore, he who rejects the bounty of the Sun of Truth and thinks himself not in need of it is like the one who says he is not in need of God and rejects both God and reality, in spite of the fact that all creation is receiving incessant bounty from God and is dependent on Him, as the body is dependent upon the soul.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1969–Hand of the Cause Faizi talk Explanations from the Writings of the Báb (Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, November 26, 1969)

1969–Hand of the Cause Faizi talk On Standards and Values (Talk given in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, November 26, 1969)

1972: Adoption of the Constitution of the Universal House of Justice
11/26 – 12/4/1988 2000 people become Bahais in Bolivia during a Teaching Project.

1993 - The National Spiritual Assembly of the Marshall Islands signs a Memorandum of Understanding with the Majuro local government in which the operation of administration of five elementary schools is legally handed over to the National Spiritual Assembly.
1999 The Universal House of Justice announces the advent of the upcoming "One-Year" and "Five-Year" plans.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

November 25th in Baha'i History

Todays Photo is from
uploaded by spablab July 15th 2007 - Thanks

1909- Dr. Susan Moody arrives in Tihran. She and 4 Persian Bahai Doctors start Sehat Hospital.

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York

Some of the friends came to `Abdu'l-Bahá's residence early this morning, asking that they be admitted into His presence during His prayers so they could be blessed and their souls cleansed. As soon as they reached Him they fell into transports of joy, awe-struck at the august spirit of that moment.
In the afternoon, the Master was invited to two meetings. The first was at the Women's Club of New York where He spoke on the education of women, their acquisition of good morals and the equality of their rights. The audience was interested and excited and everyone came to shake His hand, begging confirmation that they might better serve and acquire human perfections.
The Master then went to Mrs Cochran's home where most of the visitors were newcomers who had not previously been in `Abdu'l-Bahá's presence. He appealed to them to abandon harmful prejudices and to acquire heavenly virtues and eternal perfections through spiritual power. The address appeared to breathe a new spirit into all those present. (Mahmud's Diary)

1921 - Abdul-Baha's Last days

On Friday, November 25, 1921, He attended the noonday prayer at the Mosque in Haifa, and afterwards distributed alms to the poor with His own hands, as was His wont. After lunch He dictated some letters. When He had rested He walked in the garden and had a talk with the gardener. In the evening He gave His blessing and counsel to a loved and faithful servant of the household who had been married that day, and afterwards He attended the usual meeting of the friends in His own salon. (Dr. J.E. Esslemont, Baha'u'llah and the New Era, p. 65)

1933 - The First LSA of Addis Ababa is formed

1985 - Presentation of Peace Statement to the Secretary-General of the United Nations

[The presentation of The Promise of World Peace took place on 25 November, the eve of the Day of the Covenant.]

2000- Art on Fijian bark cloth reflects unity in diversity – BWNS

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

November 24th in Baha'i History

This photo is from the public area in Flickr: posted by thobeka L poswa Thanks!
1853 - The prisoners from Nayriz and the heads of the martyrs arrive in Shiraz. More Babi’s are executed and their heads sent to Tihran. Later the heads were buried in Abadih.

1881 – Revealed by Baha’u’llah

Say: This is the Day of meritorious deeds, did ye but know it. This is the Day of the glorification of God and of the exposition of His Word, could ye but perceive it. Abandon the things current amongst men and hold fast unto that which God, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting, hath enjoined upon you. The day is fast approaching when all the treasures of the earth shall be of no profit to you. Unto this beareth witness the Lord of Names, He Who proclaimeth: Verily, no God is there besides Him, the Sovereign Truth, the Knower of things unseen. (Baha'u'llah, Tablets of Baha'u'llah, p. 232)

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York

In the afternoon the children who had earlier seen the Master on the way from school, had been so attracted and had asked to see Him, came to visit Him. He spoke to them with deep affection and kindness, asking about their health and welfare. To each He gave candies and flowers and then sprinkled them with attar of rose. He then gave them kindly counsels and encouraged them to acquire knowledge, science, good morals and sincerity, saying:

I hope that you will be educated as you ought to be and that each of you will become the pride of your family. May God assist you to acquire divine knowledge in the school of the world of humanity. I shall pray for you and beg assistance for you. Truly, the hearts of the children are very pure. This was why Christ said, `Be ye like children. Praise be to God who created you illumined children. Praise be to the Lord who hath created His creatures perfectly. God has created you as human beings so that you may daily acquire better morals and human virtues. You must obey your parents so that they may be pleased with you, and so that God will be pleased with you, and that you may become the children of the Kingdom and mirror forth the words of Christ. (Mahmud's Diary)

Although these young visitors were children, they took their leave in an attitude of sincerity, reverence and attraction that astonished all.

1912 - Abdul-Baha and the white Baha’i’s in attendance serve the Black Baha’is at dinner at the Kinney’s

1924 - "....having attained sufficiently the individual regeneration -- the essential requisite of teaching -- let us arise to teach His Cause with righteousness, conviction, understanding, and vigor. Let this be the paramount and most urgent duty of every Bahá'í."
(From a letter written by the Guardian to the American believers, dated November 24, 1924, quoted in Bahá'í Administration, p. 69) (The Universal House of Justice, Wellspring of Guidance, Messages 1963-1968, p. 127)

Nothing but the abundance of our actions, nothing but the purity of our lives and the integrity of our character, can in the last resort establish our claim that the Bahá'í spirit is in this day the sole agency that can translate a long-cherished ideal into an enduring achievement.
(24 November 1924 to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States and Canada, published in "Bahá'í Administration: Selected Messages 1922-1932" [rev. ed.], (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1980), p. 68) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 347)


Monday, November 23, 2009

November 23rd in Baha'i History

Feast of Qawl

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Banquet, Great Northern Hotel

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York

The friends arranged a banquet in commemoration of the Day of the Covenant and the journey of the beloved of all hearts. Today many came to the Master with bouquets of flowers in their hands. The banquet was held in the ballroom of New York's Grand Northern Hotel. The hall was decorated similarly to that in Washington with festoons, banners, ornaments and exquisite screens, with the Greatest Name suspended above all on the stage in its customary calligraphy.
In the center of the ballroom were two rectangular tables, between which was another large table exquisitely set. Around these tables on both sides were placed small circular tables bedecked with colorful flowers, a variety of sweets and crystal glassware. The electric lighting reflected the glassware and caused the whole room to shine brilliantly. More than three hundred guests, formally attired, attended. Several friends and specifically Miss Lany Lead served at the banquet.
When the Master appeared, all rose from their seats and with smiling faces cried out, `Alláh-u-Abhá!' Many of the hotel guests saw the banquet and were astonished to see the grandeur of the Master and the sincerity and enthusiasm of the friends. After the Master took His seat, Mr Hoar, on behalf of the Bahá'ís, read an address of welcome expressing obedience and firmness in the Covenant. The Master rose and responded with an address about the divine teachings and the oneness of humanity. He then walked around the tables and perfumed the heads and faces of the friends with attar of rose. When He returned to His chair, the friends, accompanied by the piano, sang songs of praise to Him.
Later the Master spoke about the wars and massacres of the nations and the need for the teachings of the Greatest Name. He encouraged all towards peace, harmony and sincere love for all the people of the world.

1932 - George Adam Benke dies in Sofia, Bulgaria, Shoghi Effendi calls him the first European Martyr

1981 - Release of a Compilation on Excellence in All Things 23 November 1981
(The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 509)

1992 - The Second Bahá’í World Congress begins in New York City.
the World Congress scheduled to be held on 23-26 November 1992 in New York City, where the beloved Master revealed the implications of His station as the appointed Centre of the Covenant of Bahá'u'lláh and which He designated as the City of the Covenant. Throughout the world, Bahá'í communities will hold appropriate auxiliary events to magnify the Congress's purpose, which is to celebrate the centenary of the inauguration of the Covenant of Bahá'u'lláh and to proclaim its alms and unifying power. A corollary to these activities will be the wide distribution of a statement on Bahá'u'lláh, prepared at our request by the Office of Public Information, which will serve both as a source of study and inspiration for the Bahá'ís themselves and as an informative publication for presentation to the public. In these and other ways the community of the Greatest Name will endeavour to blazon the Name of Bahá'u'lláh across the globe, to make it a known eminence in the consciousness of peoples everywhere."
(The Universal House of Justice, Selected Six Year Plan Messages, p. 81)

1992 - The Special Representative's report to the United Nations General Assembly was released and, in relation to the Bahá'ís, was the strongest one to date.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

November 22nd in Baha'i History

1872 -Muhammad-Baqir-i-Mahallati dies in prison in Cyprus leaving only Mishkin- Qalam as the only remaining exile imprisoned in Cyprus.

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
A feature of the afternoon was the visit from a Christian minister. He was a just and fair-minded man who visited with the Master before the meeting in a separate room. His first question to the Master was, `What are the new teachings in this Cause?' The Master replied, `The fundamental principles of all religions are one. They are unchangeable and do not differ. This is what Christ meant when He said, "I am not come to destroy the law of the Torah but to promote it."
The minister: `Yes, I understand. Do you mean that at the beginning the followers of all the religions were pure and undefiled but grew polluted and negligent?'
The Master: `If there is no change or alteration, then there is no renewal. Not until night falls will a new day dawn. If the religion of Moses had not changed, Christ would not have appeared.'
The minister: `Thank you, I understand this well. Now tell me, will there be another cycle after this Bahá'í cycle.'
The Master: `The sovereignty of God has no beginning and no end and the outpouring of His bounties is endless.'
The minister said, with relief, `Now my doubts are wholly removed with nothing left but certainty.'
He was so sincere and humble that the Master was pleased with him and said, `I wanted to give detailed answers to each of your questions but you quickly realized the outcome of each answer right from the beginning. Thus must a person have aptitude and a pure motive.'
Appearing at the meeting, the Master held the minister's hand and praised him very highly as an example of justice. To the friends He said: `Beware, beware lest you follow your prejudices and selfish interests. You must always be just in all matters and investigate the truth.'
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1925 - Death of Hand of the Cause and Disciple of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá John Esslemont

1946 - Amelia Collins. He cabled her on November 22, 1946: "Your magnificent international services exemplary devotion and now this signal service impel me to inform you your elevation rank Hand Cause Bahá'u'lláh. You are first be told this honour in lifetime. (Ruhiyyih Khanum, The Guardian of the Baha'i Faith, p. 115)

- The Faith is mentioned in the media in Mozambique for the first time with 3 write ups in Notices – the only paper in Maputo and announcements on Radio Maputo and Radio Mozambique

2000 - Amjad Ali Khan, master of classical Indian music, performs at the Baha'i Lotus Temple – BWNS

Saturday, November 21, 2009

November 21st in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
The Master was occupied revealing Tablets to the friends until about noon when the crowd downstairs became too large. He appeared in this gathering of eager souls, greeting and extending His kindness to all, saying: `I have been busy since early morning and am tired. I do not feel like speaking at all and wish to go out for a walk.' After a short talk in which He encouraged the friends to establish love and harmony among themselves and to make every effort in the Cause of God, He walked to Broadway and then to Central Park. He was not pleased with the dense population and the height of the buildings, saying: `These are injurious to the public's health. This population should be in two cities, the buildings should be lower and the streets should be tree-lined as they are in Washington. How can these two places compare?' (Mahmud's Diary)

1949 - "We have no indication of exactly what nature the apocalyptic upheaval will be: it might be another war ... but as students of our Bahá'í writings it is clear that the longer the 'Divine Physician' (i.e. Bahá'u'lláh) is withheld from healing the ills of the world, the more severe will be the crises, and the more terrible the sufferings of the patient."
(From a letter dated 21 November 1949, written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer) (International Teaching Centre, 1984 Jul 01, Concerns about Retributive Calamity)

1969 – Hand of the Cause Faizi - Mr. Faizí's Opening Remarks (Melbourne, Australia, Friday, November 21, 1969)

1982 - HEARTS SORELY GRIEVED EXECUTION DOCTOR DIYA'U'LLAH AHRARI BY FIRING SQUAD SHIRAZ 21 NOVEMBER. (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 567)

2000- Race Unity, Equality Topics Of Conference – Tenessee

Friday, November 20, 2009

November 20th in Baha'i History

1851 - Susan I. Moody was born in Amsterdam, New York, United States of America, on November 20, 1851. Early Chicago Baha'i and pioneer in the development of education and healthcare for women in Iran.
He was invited to have lunch at the home of Mrs Russell. Among the guests were some of Dr [Susan] Moody's relatives. Addressing them `Abdu'l-Bahá said:
Behold how the power of Bahá'u'lláh has connected the hearts and has joined the East and the West. When Dr Moody first went to Tihrán she did not know the Persians and they, too, did not know her at all. But the moment they heard of her intended journey from America to Persia, hundreds prepared to receive her with utmost love. With great esteem they welcomed her in Tihrán. All the friends are now like brothers and sisters to her -- even more than that and kinder. She is well-known as a Bahá'í in Tihrán and is respected and loved within and without the community. (Mahmud’s Diary entry for 11/2/1912)

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
The Master again called some of the friends and asked them to show kindness and love to Mr MacNutt and to be patient with him. Some of His words were these:
You must all arise in unison to serve the Cause of God. You must work hand in hand to teach the Cause and know that the confirmations of Bahá'u'lláh will descend upon you. My hope is that New York will excel all other cities because at the beginning it had precedence over them. God willing, it shall be so again. The favors of the Kingdom of God are great, the attention and bounties of the Blessed Beauty are fixed upon you and His hidden hosts are assisting you. Arise in this arena and you shall see what will transpire.
I am but one of His servants. After the ascension of the Blessed Beauty, the Ottoman people and government arose against me as did enemies of the area from different nations and religions. In such a state everyone was attacking me from outside and even my brothers from inside opposed me. But in a short time the enemies were frustrated and brought low so that some of them cried, `Would to God that Bahá'u'lláh had not ascended because this Cause has become even greater, its fame has spread to more places, and its support has become stronger.' Therefore, we must arise in servitude so that His confirmations may surround us from all sides. Undoubtedly whenever you arise to serve and proclaim the Cause you shall be assisted and shall attain success. Rest assured.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1960 - The Mother Temple of Europe is the Bahá'í House of Worship in Langenhain, near Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Its cornerstone was laid on 20 November 1960; construction was completed in the spring of 1963. It was dedicated in July 1964 (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 10)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

November 19th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
The Master spent the day at the home of Mrs Krug in the utmost happiness. A number of the believers and His companions were also very happy to witness the Master's joy, the influence of the Cause of God and the power of the Covenant of God.
In the afternoon, at a public meeting attended chiefly by women, `Abdu'l-Bahá spoke on the equality of the rights of women and their education and progress through the Manifestation of this supreme age. He encouraged them to acquire the perfections and virtues of the world of humanity. (Mahmud's Diary)

1921 – Abdul-Baha’s last public talk
John (Bosch) was present on November 19 at the Master's last public talk; 'Abdu'l-Bahá pointed to John on this occasion and addressed the talk to him: He spoke of divine love, and how different it is from human love, which fails in the testing and in which there is no element of self-sacrifice. He told John that the Persian believers loved him, although they could not speak their love, and that if John went to Persia they would if necessary give up their own lives to protect his. He said: 'When lovers meet it may be that they cannot exchange a single word, yet with their hearts they speak to one another. Thus do the clouds speak to the earth and the rain comes down; the breeze whispers to the trees; the sun speaks to the eyes of men. Although this is not actual speech yet this is the way in which the hearts of the friends communicate... For instance, you were in America and I was in the Holy Land. Although our lips were still yet with our hearts we were conversing together.'[4]
[4. 'Abdu'l-Bahá, "The Universal Language of the Spirit", Star of the West, October 1922, p. 163] (Marzieh Gail, Dawn Over Mount Hira, p. 210)

1932 - On 19 November the monument for the grave of the Greatest Holy Leaf was delivered in the port of Haifa. (Ruhiyyih Khanum, The Priceless Pearl, p. 278)

1945 - Through meditation the doors of deeper knowledge and inspiration may be opened. Naturally, if one meditates as a Bahá'í he is connected with the Source; if a man believing in God meditates he is tuning in to the power and mercy of God; but we cannot say that any inspiration which a person, not knowing Bahá'u'lláh, or not believing in God, receives is merely from his own ego. Meditation is very important, and the Guardian sees no reason why the friends should not be taught to meditate, but they should guard against superstitious or foolish ideas creeping into it.
(19 November 1945 to an individual believer) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 241)

1979 - Demolition of the House of the Báb and Adjacent Bahá'í Properties
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (Messages 1963 to 1986, p.431)

1980 - Death of Hand of the Cause, Abu'l-Qásim Faizi


1999 - UN panel rebukes Iran on human rights violations

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

November 18th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Frank K. Moxey

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York

Whenever the Master became tired, He would go alone to the nearby gardens along the bank of the river to rest. He said, `When I am alone, I do not talk, my mind is not busy and I can rest a little. But when I am not alone I must speak; I perspire and feel exhausted.'
In the afternoon, while talking to a group of the friends, `Abdu'l-Bahá suddenly said: `We wish to build a House of Worship on that side of the water.' Later He said: `This city shall become good when the call of "Yá Bahá'u'l-Abhá" shall reach the highest heaven from it. If the believers arise as they should erelong the word of God will envelop all these regions.' He also added, `As the United States of America is far and free from the arena of the prevailing political turmoil, this government and country can prevent war between the nations and bring about peace and harmony among them.'
The Master began His address with these words:
I praise God that I am with you. Such an assembly would be utterly impossible to hold through worldly power and outward means because you are Westerners and we are Easterners. There was nothing to connect us. We had neither patriotic, racial, commercial nor political connections with you. But Bahá'u'lláh removed all these estrangements and prejudices and invited all to divine love. He joined all under the shade of the blessed Word. Hence, we are united and assembled here in such love. This love is the greatest of all means, as all other means and ties are limited; but harmony that comes about through the love of God is infinite and everlasting.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

November 17th in Baha'i History

1912 - Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Genealogical Hall

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York

Early in the morning `Abdu'l-Bahá voiced His thankfulness to the Abhá Kingdom, saying:
Praise be to God! His divine help and assistance have enveloped us and the confirmations of the Abhá Kingdom have surrounded us. The Cause of God has reached every ear and the divine fragrances have spread throughout all regions. The East and the West are illumined with the light of the most great guidance. The foundation of the Cause of God is firmly and securely established. The friends of the Blessed Beauty have risen in faithfulness and occupied themselves in proclaiming the Word of God. The foundation of the Mashriqu'l-Adhkár is laid. I have no further desire. I wish to reach Haifa and to settle again in the Holy Land. It is now your turn to serve, to render your servitude to the holy threshold. Occupy yourselves day and night in the diffusion of the divine fragrances. All confirmations encircle those who are engaged in rendering services to the court of oneness. Nothing avails except servitude to the Blessed Beauty. If, after the ascension of the Blessed Beauty, I had not risen in servitude to Him, these confirmations would not have descended.

After a short pause, He continued:
Had there not been this servitude, constancy and confirmation the affairs would have fallen into the hands of the ambitious and the standard of the Cause would have fallen forever. Unseemly matters would have ensued. The story of Yahyá would have been repeated. Had it not been for the firmness and power of the Ancient Beauty, the mainstay of the Cause would have fallen apart. Nothing would have been witnessed but the propagation of selfish desires and, apart from these, nothing would have remained but some words and phrases.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1933 - Bahá'u'lláh's Promise
'Bahá'u'lláh has given the promise that in every Assembly where unity and harmony prevail, there His glorious spirit will not only be present, but will animate, sustain and guide all the friends in all their deliberations."
(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to the Evanston and Wilmette Spiritual Assemblies, November 17, 1933)(Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 45)

2000 – Passing of Billie Marie (Tuttle) Brackett

Monday, November 16, 2009

November 16th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at 309 West Seventy-eighth Street

1912 –Abdul-Baha was in New York
, at a gathering of the friends, He spoke these words:
The holy Manifestations endured great afflictions and persecutions and at every moment accepted torment and oppression. Christ suffered violent persecutions, accepting the suffering of the Cross and the most glorious martyrdom. The results of these persecutions were eleven disciples who were truly blessed souls. They became luminous and heavenly; they became the cause of the enlightenment of the people of the world.
I hope that you, too, may reach such a station, that it will be said that you are the fruit of the revelation of Bahá'u'lláh; that it will be said, `It is these people who are the aim of this new revelation; they are the jewels of existence; they are illumined, divine, spiritual and heavenly.' If someone asks what Bahá'u'lláh has done, they will be told, `He has educated these people.

`Abdu'l-Bahá then spoke about the divine laws and religions:
Divine religions consist of two parts. One aspect is that of spiritual laws which constitute the foundation of all divine religions. They are immutable and unalterable. The second aspect consists of social laws and relates to material affairs, and changes according to the exigencies of the time.

To a new group He said:
Gracious God! Although people see with their own eyes that in the dispensation of Christ the eleven disciples were ordinary men who, because of their faith in Him, found eternal life and shone from the horizon of perpetual honor; and that the Jews, with all their worldly honor, became contemptible; and that Caiaphas, the greatest enemy of Christ, was, together with his whole family, obliterated from the face of the earth while a simple fisherman, because of his belief in Christ, became the great Peter, yet, despite all this, still they take no heed. (Mahmud’s Diary)

1939 - The task of bringing up a Bahá'í child, as emphasized time and again in Bahá'í Writings, is the chief responsibility of the mother, whose unique privilege is indeed to create in her home such conditions as would be most conducive to both his material and spiritual welfare and advancement. The training which the child first receives through his mother constitutes the strongest foundation for his future development...November 16, 1939
(Shoghi Effendi, Dawn of a New Day, p. 202)
1969 - Fireside in Home is Example of Individual Goal

"... It is now imperative for every Bahá'í to set for himself individual teaching goals. The admonition of 'Abdu'l-Bahá to lead at least one new soul to the Faith each year and the exhortation of Shoghi Effendi to hold a Bahá'í Fireside in one's home every Bahá'í month are examples of individual goals. Many have capacities to do even more, but this alone will assure final and complete victory for the Plan."
(From a letter of the Universal House of Justice to the Bahá'ís of the World, November 16, 1969: Messages from the Universal House of Justice, 1968-1973, p. 35) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 248)

1969 - How Can True Believer Remain Silent
"Every Bahá'í, however humble or inarticulate, must become intent on fulfilling his role as bearer of the Divine Message. Indeed, how can true believer remain silent while around us men cry out in anguish for truth, love and unity to descend upon this world?"
(From the Universal House of Justice to the Bahá'ís of the World, November 16, 1969) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 597)


Sunday, November 15, 2009

November 15th in Baha'i History

1903 – Passing of Aqa Mirza Aqa
In 1903, 'Abdu'l-Bahá issued instructions for the restoration of the House of the Báb exactly as it was in the time of the Báb. Aqa Mirza Aqa (who was the only living person who remembered the details of the house as it had been) came to Shiraz and, with the assistance of the believers there, undertook the task even though these were difficult times for the Bahá'ís and persecutions had erupted in many parts of the land. The restoration was almost complete when Aqa Mirza Aqa took ill and passed away on 15 November 1903. (Eminent Baha’i’s in the time of Baha’u’llah p.236)

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Home of Miss Juliet Thompson
Driving down to us with Mrs Champney, our Lord had said: "The time has come for Me to throw bombs!" And He threw them in His talk that night.
"I have spoken," He said, "in the various Christian churches and in the synagogues, and in no assembly has there been a dissenting voice. All have listened and all have conceded that the Teachings of Bahá'u'lláh are superlative in character, acknowledging that they constitute the very essence or spirit of this age and that there is no better pathway to the attainment of its ideals. Not a single voice has been raised in objection. At most there have been some who have refused to acknowledge the Mission of Bahá'u'lláh, although even these have admitted that He was a great teacher, a most powerful soul, a very great man. Some who could find no other pretext have said: 'These Teachings are not new; they are old and familiar; we have heard them before.' Therefore, I will speak to you upon the distinctive characteristics of the Manifestation of Bahá'u'lláh and prove that from every standpoint His Cause is distinguished from all others."
And in this address, which was one of His most powerful, the Master certainly proved it. The address was taken down and will be printed. (Diary of Juliet Thompson p.54)

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
Mr Wilhelm and other friends heard these words from `Abdu'l-Bahá:
Education and training are the most important issues in the world of existence. Without an educator, little progress can be made in material affairs, still less in spiritual affairs and divine morals. How can humanity find composure and eternal happiness without an educator? Apart from the human world observe the rest of creation, how each and every created things is in need of training by an educator. Without education they will not attain perfection. For instance, this flower cannot by itself reach this perfection and attain this charm, color and loveliness. Thus, there are two great blessings in the world of existence: one is innate capacity which is bestowed by the Creator; and the other, acquired perfections which depend upon training by a teacher and educator.
The Master went downstairs to join the assembled friends. Among His words were these: `The whole world is like a physical body and the power of Bahá'u'lláh may be regarded as the main artery in the body of existence.'
The Master's guidance on removing the superstitions and vain imaginings of these people is as follows:
Man explains things in two ways. One explanation originates from his personal feelings, thoughts and understanding. This cannot stand as proof or criterion for all and does not satisfy the hearts. The other is a statement supported by proofs. It produces significant results and promulgates momentous matters which are necessary to the world of man. It is like the explanations and proofs of the Bahá'ís, who invite all to the oneness of humanity and to universal peace. This explanation has proofs and is effective.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1931 - See how through national hatreds, economic shortsightedness and racial prejudice the world is reaching the verge of ruin. Should we stay our hand and fail to apply the Divine remedy Bahá'u'lláh has prescribed in His Writings, all the people of the civilized world will perish."
- From a letter written by the Guardian, through his secretary, to Mr. C. G. Nordquist, Seattle, dated Haifa, Palestine, November 15, 1931. (Shoghi Effendi, Extracts from the USBN)

1955 - Ali Muhammad Varqa was appointed to succeed his father on 15 November 1955 and also became the Trustee of the Huquq in his place. (Ruhiyyih Khanum, The Priceless Pearl, p. 254)
Hand of Cause Appointment
Inform Hands and National Assemblies that Varqa's son, Ali Muhammad has been appointed to succeed his father now gathered into the concourse on high in the Abha Kingdom, as Trustee of Huquq and elevated to rank of Hand of the Cause.
-- Shoghi [Cablegram, November 15, 1955] (Shoghi Effendi, Messages to the Baha'i World - 1950-1957, p. 90)

1963 - Report on Moroccan Bahá'í prisoners
The case of the Bahá'í prisoners in Morocco has passed through three stages:
a) The arrest, detention and trial which began in April, 1962 and ended on 15 December 1962 when they appeared in court and received their respective sentences.
b) The second stage began when the verdict was known and widely publicized, attracting the attention of many influential people both within and without Morocco resulting in widespread sympathy on behalf of the prisoners and many petitions to the Moroccan government.
c) The third stage has been characterized by relative quiet and lack of publicity while all are waiting for the appeal to be heard. We are now in this stage, the most difficult of all.
The Universal House of Justice wishes to share with you a summary of the present situation as it appears from reports received from many sources, and to outline the policies which it believes should govern our immediate actions.
The prisoners, except for one who will be referred to later, are still in prison awaiting their unknown fate with great firmness and patience. For more than a year and a half they have withstood all manner of harassment and difficulty. We are informed that the three sentenced to death have been kept in solitary confinement for twenty-three hours of every day. Because of recent political developments it has become more and more difficult for Bahá'í friends to meet these dear souls in prison, but when it has been possible the Bahá'ís and non-believers alike are astonished that the prisoners are able to demonstrate such exemplary steadfastness and patience.
It is still not known when the appeal will be heard. At first it was promised that it would be among the first cases taken up after the courts reconvened in October. Again, some felt that it would be delayed until the opening of parliament in November. Now it is thought that the appeal will be heard very soon because it has been presented to the Court in such a way that they cannot delay it longer than one month. A favourable result is also anticipated.
(The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 20)

2000 - UN agency's partnership helps Baha'i in quest to bridge the digital divide – BWNS

Saturday, November 14, 2009

November 14th in Baha'i History

1866 – Great Meteor shower seen in Europe
The spectacular shower of meteors in the early hours of the morning of 14 November 1866 was observed all over Europe. It was an extraordinary event exciting comment from professional astronomers and laymen alike. (Adib Taherzadeh, The Revelation of Baha'u'llah v 2, p. 422)

1874: Birth of Hand of the Cause William Sutherland Maxwell

1912 Abdul-Baha was in New York
After granting private interviews to some of the friends, the Master came downstairs to the gathering. Among His statements were these words:
The most blessed moments of my life are those which I spend in the company of the friends of God. These are the best times. Therefore, I am extremely happy to be with you now. Praise be to God that your faces are illumined, your hearts and souls are rejoicing and all are turned toward the Abhá Kingdom. This is the utmost happiness for me.
I pray to the threshold of Bahá'u'lláh that He may grant all of you eternal happiness, honor you in His Kingdom and bestow upon you everlasting life. Thus, the friends of New York may be freed from all limitations and become the cause of the enlightenment of the world of man. This is my greatest wish and Bahá'u'lláh will assuredly assist you.
Later in the evening He spoke at length to a Christian Science lady who was quite fanatical in her beliefs. The Master explained to her the meaning of the assertion that there is no evil in existence. He said:
By saying there is no evil in existence is meant that what has come from the Origin of existence and being is good and useful. It is good in its time and place and not evil. For example, I can say that there is no darkness in the sun because darkness is the absence of light and has no existence in itself. Oppression is the absence of justice and ignorance is the lack of knowledge. Hence, the imperfections and defects of the world of creation, the contingent world, are merely the absence of virtues and the lack of perfections. These defects have not come from the Source; rather, the essential properties of the world of matter which are change and transformation cause the training of all things and the manifestation of perfections of realities and spirits. (Mahmud’s Diary)

On Wednesday, 14 November, I went very early to my Lord's house. He was on the point of going out, but He called me to Him. "My Lord," I said, as He paced up and down His room, "I want to thank You for Your great mercy last night. I was asleep and You woke me."
"I pray you may ever be awake. There are a few souls in America," He continued, "whom I have chosen to be teachers in this Cause. You are of those, Juliet. I wish you to have all the qualities of a teacher. That is all."
Then He asked me to wait till His return. I waited all day. At five o'clock He came and called me to His room on the upper floor. With that exquisite courtesy of His, the sweetness of which almost breaks the heart, He -- I can hardly write it -- asked me to excuse Him for keeping me waiting.
"To wait for You, my Lord, is joy. Oh these blessed days when we can wait for You!"
He went on to tell me why He had been detained ... (Diary of Juliet Thompson p. 57)

1913 - Today, the most important affair is firmness in the Covenant, because firmness in the Covenant wards off differences.
. . .Bahá'u'lláh covenanted, not that I ('Abdu'l-Bahá) am the Promised One, but that 'Abdu'l-Bahá is the Expounder of the Book and the Centre of His Covenant, and that the Promised One of Bahá'u'lláh will appear after one thousand or thousands of years. This is the Covenant which Bahá'u'lláh made. If a person shall deviate, he is not acceptable at the Threshold of Bahá'u'lláh. In case of differences, 'Abdu'l-Bahá must be consulted. They must revolve around his good pleasure. After 'Abdu'l-Bahá, whenever the Universal House of Justice is organized it will ward off differences.
('Abdu'l-Bahá, cited in "Star of the West", vol. 4, no. 14 (November 1913), p. 237-38) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol. I, p. 116)

1923-Let us pray to God that in these days of world-encircling gloom, when the dark forces of nature, of hate, rebellion, anarchy and reaction are threatening the very stability of human society, when the most precious fruits of civilization are undergoing severe and unparalleled tests, we may all realize, more profoundly than ever, that though but a mere handful amidst the seething masses of the world, we are in this day the chosen instruments of God's grace, that our mission is most urgent and vital to the fate of humanity, and, fortified by these sentiments, arise to achieve God's holy purpose for mankind.
Your brother in His Service,
SHOGHI. (Shoghi Effendi, Baha'i Administration, p. 51)

1923 - "And yet, how often we seem to forget the clear and repeated warnings of Our beloved Master, Who, in particular during the concluding years of His mission on earth, laid stress on the "severe mental tests" that would inevitably sweep over His loved ones of the West -- tests that would purge, purify and prepare them for their noble mission in life." (14 November 1923) (The Universal House of Justice, 1995 Mar 12, Mental Tests)
1935 - What the Cause now requires is not so much a group of highly cultured and intellectual people who can adequately present its Teachings, but a number of devoted, sincere and loyal supporters who, in utter disregard of their own weaknesses and limitations, and with hearts afire with the love of God, forsake their all for the sake of spreading and establishing His Faith. ...
(From a letter dated 14 November 1935 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to the National Teaching Committee of the United States and Canada, published in Bahá'í News, No. 102 [August 1936], p. 2) (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 121)
1947 - God Can be Known only Through His Prophets - Heaven and Hell Are Conditions Within our own Beings
"We will have experience of God's spirit through His Prophets in the next world, but God is too great for us to know without this Intermediary. The Prophets know God, but how is more than our human minds can grasp. We believe we may attain in the next world to seeing the Prophets. There is certainly a future life. Heaven and hell are conditions within our own beings."
(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, November 14, 1947) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 209)

1948 - He urges you not to lose heart, and never to stop serving the Faith. No matter what the attitude of others may be, it cannot exonerate you from showing the right attitude; your duty is to God, and you should rest assured in the end He will solve all these problems. (14 November 1948 to an individual) [6]
(The Universal House of Justice, 1993 Feb 7, Issues concerning community functioning)

2000 - President of Iceland visits Baha'i Temple in New Delhi – BWNS

Friday, November 13, 2009

November 13th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
The Master described for the friends His journey to California and His talks at the university and at gatherings in San Francisco. He said:
As they were delivered in scientific terms and with rational arguments, none could deny them and not a single voice was raised in opposition. In fact, in the gatherings like that at the university where one hundred and eighty professors and teachers and eighteen hundred students were present together with other notable people, if one had spoken using religious terminology and expressing religious opinions and imitations which are wholly contrary to science and reason, none would have paid any attention; rather, they would have scorned and mocked us.
One reason that people despair of the world of religion is this very matter of superstitions and imitations practiced by religious leaders. When intelligent and learned people see these imitations and customs as being contrary to reason and knowledge they forsake the divine religion and are not aware that these are idle fancies of the leaders and have nothing to do with divine principles. The foundations of divine religion do not negate sound reason and true science. The principles of divine religion do not contradict knowledge and insight, except for some principles and minutiae of the law which were given according to the exigencies of the time and age. Of course, the second or social laws suited to the Mosaic dispensation and useful for the Jewish people at that time are now purposeless and ineffective and seem futile, but they were pertinent and useful at the time.
Now, praise be to God, Bahá'u'lláh has solved these difficulties. All His teachings and laws are in keeping with the spirit of this age and the needs of the people. And greatest of all is the abandonment of religious superstitions and dogmas and the conformity of spiritual matters with scientific and rational arguments.
`Abdu'l-Bahá spent the afternoon at the home of Mr Kinney. As was His daily custom, the Master went for a walk in the morning and afternoon in the gardens along the bank of the river on Riverside Drive. (Mahmud's Diary)

1921 – John Bosch arrives in Haifa
John Bosch was one of those whom 'Abdu'l-Bahá chose as a companion for the time when He should leave the world. Afterward, the friends saw that the Master knew the moment of His passing and had prepared for it. Some who had asked permission to visit Him at that time, He had gently turned away. But to John He had written, 'I am longing to see you,' and when John and Louise, responding, asked to come, His cable replied: 'Permitted.' They reached Haifa about November 13, 1921. (Marzieh Gail, Dawn Over Mount Hira, p. 210)

1931 - I am delighted with your letter enclosing the splendid report on International relations. I am particularly gratified to learn of the active part played by the Bahá'í youth and of their harmonious co-operation with the older and more experienced believers. I would warn them to be on their guard lest the impression be given to the outside world that the Bahá'ís are political in their aims and pursuits or interfere in matters that pertain to the political activities of their respective governments. The Cause, still in its state of infancy, should be adequately protected from this particular danger....
(13 November 1931 to an individual believer) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 420)

1935 - There are innumerable ways of teaching the Cause. You can choose the one that suits best your nature and capacity.
(From a letter dated 13 November 1935 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)
(Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 308)

1986 - Death of Dhikru'lláh Khádem, Hand of the Cause of God

Thursday, November 12, 2009

November 12th in Baha'i History

1817: Birth of Bahá'u'lláh: founder of the Bahá’í Faith

Bahá'u'lláh was born on 12 November 1817 in Tihran. His mother, Kadijih Khanum, the second wife of Mirza Buzurg, had a son and two daughters from a previous marriage. As a result, Bahá'u'lláh had ten brothers and seven sisters. Some of them became steadfast believers, some followed Mirza Yahya and others remained indifferent or died before Bahá'u'lláh's declaration in the Garden of Ridvan.
(Adib Taherzadeh, The Child of the Covenant, p. 18)

A supplication by Nabil:

O Thou the King of creation and the Ruler of this world and the world to come! Both in Thy presence and in Thy absence Thou hast been the cause of the tranquillity of the hearts of men and the advancement of the nations. From the moment Thou didst mount Thy throne at the hour of dawn on the 2nd on Muharram 1233 (12 November 1817) until Thy ascension to the Realms of Eternity, eight hours after sunset on the 2nd of Dhi'l-Qa'dih 1309 (29 May 1892) a period of seventy-seven years less two months according to the lunar calendar . . . Thou wert at all times, at day and at night, each month and each year, the cause of the exaltation of mankind. No needy suppliant who had set his heart toward Thee was turned back from the door of Thy generosity without vouchsafing unto him supreme felicity and goodly gifts, and no sorrowful destitute was sent out of Thy All-glorious presence except that Thou didst bestow upon him blissful joy and ample hope. And now far be it from Thee not to relieve me from my dreadful woes and lead me to the abode of a never-ending felicity. Thou art God and there is no God save Thee.
(Adib Taherzadeh, The Revelation of Baha'u'llah v 4, p. 418)

1912 Abdul-Baha was in New York
Abdu'l-Bahá had been repeatedly asked by some of the New York Bahá'ís to see some of the wealthy people who wanted Him to visit them in their homes, but each time He said:
I deal with the poor and visit them, not the rich. I love all, especially the poor. All sorts of people come here and I meet them all with sincere love, with heart and soul. Yet I have no intention of visiting the homes of the rich.
On another occasion, a famous man, Mr Andrew Carnegie, humbly requested an interview with the Master. Although he was one of the millionaires of America, his request was granted and is recorded in one of His writings.
In the afternoon was the usual weekly meeting of the Bahá'í women at the home of Mrs Krug. When the Master arrived, Mrs Krug was reciting a prayer. When she finished, `Abdu'l-Bahá spoke:
He is God!
This is the assemblage of my daughters in the home of my daughter, Mrs Krug. Therefore I am very happy with this gathering. It is a good gathering, very illumined. It is a spiritual assembly, a heavenly assemblage, the glances of favor surround this meeting and the Supreme Concourse looks down upon it. They heard the prayer that you read and it made them joyous. They thank Bahá'u'lláh saying, `We thank Thee, O Bahá'u'lláh, that these maidservants are attracted to Thee and are turned to Thy Kingdom. They have no purpose but Thy Will; they wish for no station but that of service to Thy Cause.'
O Bahá'u'lláh! Assist these noble maidservants; make these worldly daughters heavenly; inspire their hearts and gladden their souls.
O Bahá'u'lláh! Make these bodies as light-giving candles, these beings the envy of flower gardens and fill their souls with a melody which will enrapture the Supreme Concourse and make them dance for joy. Make each of them a brilliant star so that the world of existence may be illumined with their light.
O Bahá'u'lláh! Give them heavenly power, bestow on them the inspiration of the Kingdom and vouchsafe to them divine assistance so that they may be enabled to render service unto Thee.
Thou are the Compassionate, the Merciful and the Lord of Bounty and Favor.
(Mahmud’s Diary)

The twelfth of November, the Birthday of Bahá'u'lláh, was the day of Mrs Krug's meeting and never, never shall I forget it.
There, at Mrs Krug's, the Master invoked Bahá'u'lláh. And as His cry, "Ya Bahá'u'lláh!" rang out, I hid my eyes, for it was as though He were calling Someone the same plane with Him, Someone Whom He saw, and Who would certainly come.
He came -- the Blessed Beauty, the Lord of Hosts. A Power flashed into our midst, a great Sacred Power ... I can find no words. Burning tears poured down my cheeks. My heart shook.
(The Diary of Juliet Thompson, p.86)

1933 - According to the Gospel Jesus Gave only Two Material Ordinances
" regard to the material ordinances and ceremonies instituted by Jesus, the Guardian would suggest that you should point out that, only so far as it is recorded in the Gospel, Jesus gave two material ordinances only. Our knowledge of Jesus' life and teachings is rather fragmentary and so it would be more correct if you specify that these ordinances are only those recorded in the Gospel, and they may not be the only ones. There may be other teachings and ordinances too, of which no record is left."
(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, November 12, 1933)
(Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 491)

1933 - Muhammadanism is a Fuller Revelation than any one Preceding it

"... Muhammadanism is not only the last of the world religions, but are fuller Revelation than any one preceding it. The Qur'án is not only more authoritative than any previous religious gospel, but it contains also much more ordinances, teachings and precepts, which taken together constitute a fuller Revelation of God's purpose and law to mankind than Christianity, Judaism or any other previous Dispensation. This view is in complete accord with the Bahá'í philosophy of progressive revelation, and should be thoroughly accepted and taught by every loyal Christian Bahá'í."
(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, November 12, 1933)
(Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 497)

1936: Birth of Universal House of Justice member Peter Khan

1955: Death of Hand of the Cause and trustee of Ḥuqúqu'lláh, Valíyu'lláh Varqá

1967 - Celebration of the centenary of the revelation of the Suriy-i- Muluk
12 November 1967 (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. xliii)

1975 – validation of Master’ statement about the validity of biochemical homeopathy
One of the friends of Persia wrote to Shoghi Effendi and asked this question: "Is it true that 'Abdu'l-Bahá has said that biochemical homeopathy, which is a form of food medicine, is in conformity with the Bahá'í medical concept?" The beloved Guardian's reply to this question in a letter dated 25th November, 1944 was as follows: "This statement is true, and the truth thereof will be revealed in the future."
(The question and answer are translated from the Persian.)
The Universal House of Justice has also asked us to inform you that it does not wish the above statement to be circulated in isolation from the many and varied other texts in the Writings on medicine. However, you may share it with any of your friends who are interested.
(12 November 1975) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol. I, p. 485)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

November 11th in Baha'i History

1882 – Passing of the wife of the Bab
..circumstances prevented the wife of the Báb from attaining the presence of Bahá'u'lláh. This was a grievous blow to her and she could not be consoled. It is reported that she wept so much that her health was seriously impaired. Grief-stricken, she passed away a few months afterwards, on the evening of the 29th day of Dhi'l-Qa'dih 1299 A.H (11 November 1882). Strangely on the same evening her maid (Fiddih) who had served her since the days of the Báb also passed away.
The news of the passing of the wife of the Báb brought sadness to Bahá'u'lláh. He revealed a special Tablet of Visitation for her and later He composed a verse to be inscribed on her tombstone. During her lifetime too, Bahá'u'lláh had revealed many Tablets in her honour. (Adib Taherzadeh, The Revelation of Baha'u'llah v 2, p. 387)

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in Washington DC & Baltimore
In one of His talks to the friends He said:
Praise be to God! I have spent time with you in utmost happiness. I am very pleased with you and will not forget you. I pray that you may daily become more illumined and more spiritual. When I reach the Holy Land, I shall lay my head on the threshold of the Blessed Shrine and, weeping, I shall supplicate on your behalf for assistance and heavenly favors, eternal honor and everlasting joy. (Mahmud's Diary)

1936 – Clarification of the station of Quddus
Regarding the station of Quddus, he should by no means be considered having had the station of a Prophet. His station was no doubt a very exalted one, and far above that of any of the Letters of the Living, including the first Letter, Mulla Husayn. Quddus reflected more than any of the disciples of the Bab the light of His teaching. (11 November 1936, written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)

1951 - Many times the young Bahá'ís these days seem to be living the lives of soldiers, and in a way the pioneers are the soldiers of Bahá'u'lláh, going out to plant the banner of His dominion in far corners of the earth! (Shoghi Effendi, The Unfolding Destiny of the British Baha'i Community, p. 460)

1965 - Purification of the Most Holy Shrine of Bahá'u'lláh, the Qiblih of the Bahá'í World
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (Messages 1963 to 1986, p.66)

2000- Milwaukee Baha’i Community Celebrates it’s 100th anniversary

2007 - Egypt: Allow Citizens to List Actual Religion on ID Cards

Monday, November 9, 2009

November 9th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Arthur J. Parsons #1
1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Arthur J. Parsons #2
1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Bahá’í Banquet , Rauscher’s Hall

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in Washington, D.C.

The Master called on the Jewish rabbi, showered him with kindness and countless blessings, and spoke to him regarding peace and harmony among the Jews, Christians and Muslims as well as the need for respect for the leaders of each other's religions. The Master said:
Whenever these people mention each other's leaders with due reverence then all sufferings and contentions shall cease and instead of hatred there will be love and instead of enmity and disunity there will be harmony and affection. This is my purpose.
In the evening the band of lovers observed the Feast of the Covenant with a magnificent banquet in one of the city's largest halls. ….Before eating `Abdu'l-Bahá rose and recited the following prayer:
He is God! O Lord! We are assembled here in the utmost love and are turned toward Thy Kingdom. We seek none other but Thee and desire not but Thy good pleasure.
O Lord! Make this food heavenly and make those assembled here of the hosts of Thy Supreme Concourse so that they may become life-giving and the cause of the enlightenment of the world of man, that they may arise to guide all the peoples of the world.
Thou art the All-Powerful, the Almighty, the Forgiving and the Kind.
The Master then went into another room where a number of people were granted private interviews. Among them was a gentleman who had lost both legs in a railway collision and wore artificial limbs. To him the Master said:
Mutilation of the body brings no harm to the soul. This is one of the proofs of the immortality of the soul, for death consists of the change and dispersion of the members and elements of the body. As a bodily change does not bring about change in the soul, it is evident that the soul is unchanging and imperishable. (Mahmud's Diary)

1957 – Funeral for Shoghi Effendi
he funeral was set for 10.30 A.M. on Saturday, 9 November. London became the lodestone of the entire Bahá'í world. Messages, telephone calls and believers began to pour into the National Haziratu'l-Quds, each bringing a fresh wave of grief and love to add to the surging sea of feeling that focused itself on that peaceful figure, still, and at last removed from all responsibility.

(Ruhiyyih Khanum, The Priceless Pearl, p. 447)

1980 - Martyrdom of Rida Firuzi in Tabriz; Uncertainty of Whereabouts of National Assembly Members
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (Messages 1963 to 1986 p.467)

1993 – Compilation on "Promoting Entry by Troops" released;
(The Universal House of Justice, 1993 Nov 09, Promoting Entry by Troops)

2000 - United States NSA co-sponsors Invisible Soldiers, Unheard Voices on PBS TV

Sunday, November 8, 2009

November 8th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a talk at Eighth Street Temple, Synagogue in Washington D.C.

`Abdu'l-Bahá spoke in the morning to a gathering of the friends:

I am very happy to have met you. I hope that through the favors of the Blessed Beauty you shall become the instruments for the glorification of the divine Cause and the spread of the Word of God so that this city may take precedence over all the other cities of America. As this city is the capital of America, so shall it, God willing, become the center of divine signs. When you arise to teach the Cause of God it will soon be firmly established and will spread because this city has capacity, as there is resistance and some ministers are opposing the Cause. It has been established by experience that when the cry of opposition is raised by leaders of religion the Cause of God gains strength. I always beg assistance for you and my heart is ever with you. You must trust in the favors of the Blessed Beauty which can change a gnat into a phoenix, a drop into an ocean, a stone into a diamond and an atom into a world-illuminating sun. You must not look to your own capacities but to the bounties of the Abhá Kingdom.

In the afternoon `Abdu'l-Bahá took a stroll along the boulevard and remarked that `The city of Washington is better planned and laid out than the other cities of America.' In His view the plan of this city was very pleasing because in other cities the buildings were too high and the population too congested.

The Master's address at the Jewish synagogue in Washington created a commotion among the listeners and the force of His argument caused the hearts of many to throb. On His arrival He said:
I shall repeat the same subjects I spoke on in the Jewish synagogue of San Francisco, and I shall illustrate more clearly the evidences to prove the reality of Christ and the strength and truth of Islam. It is therefore not necessary to repeat them here.
Such was the force of His explanations that both friends and seekers felt that some might take exception and object. `If the Jews will not speak,' they said, `the Christians, at least, will not remain silent.' Some of the Jews sitting near the pulpit actually made signs to the interpreter that the time was over. But the Master ignored this and went on to give detailed, decisive proofs and plain arguments to prove the truth of Christianity and Islam.
After the address, the chairman of the meeting, a person of much integrity and one of the fair-minded rabbis, came to the pulpit to thank the Master for His admonitions and exhortations. He then asked the audience not to become agitated or excited. `We must not', he said, `be perplexed at what goes against our own convictions and beliefs. Rather, we must, with perfect composure and sincerity, investigate the truth so that we may discover the reality of everything.'
In brief, the firmness and courage of `Abdu'l-Bahá and the force of His argument were noted by everyone both inside and outside the synagogue. (Mahmud’s Diary)

1937 - An effort should be made to raise the standard of studies, so as to provide the Bahá'í student with a thorough knowledge of the Cause that would enable him to expound it befittingly to the educated public.
(8 November 1937) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol. I, p. 222)

1956 - The Master assured us that when we forget ourselves, and strive with all our powers to serve and teach the Faith, we receive divine assistance. It is not we who do the work, but we are the instruments used at that time for the purpose of teaching His Cause.
(From a letter dated 8 November 1956 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)(Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 323)

1984 - Execution of Member of Disbanded Iranian National Spiritual Assembly and of Bahá'ís from Karaj and Mashhad

UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (Messages 1963 to 1986 p.647)