Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh
This book is a selection from some of the chief writings of Bahá’u’lláh, the Founder of the Bahá’í Faith. Quite literally these are gleanings intended to convey the spirit of Bahá’u’lláh’s life and teachings, and not bring together a cross-section of all His writings.
Key sentences may give us a first hint of the spirit of the book. “Let your vision be world-embracing, rather than confined to your own self.” “All men have been created to carry forward an ever-advancing civilization.” “That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race.”
The religion with the universal aims suggested by these sentences had its origin in Persia in the last century. Bahá’u’lláh was born in 1817 and died in 1892. He was the son of a Persian nobleman and born to wealth and luxury. Yet the major part of His life was spent in imprisonment and exile. He knew intimately torture and the dungeon, scorn and hunger, poverty and betrayal. The story of His life and of the Faith which bears His name (for Bahá’í means “a follower of Bahá”) is intensely dramatic and, until recent years, was little known in the west.
About the first half of the nineteenth century, many Christians were stirred by the hope of the return of Christ. This expectancy, latent in the teachings of the New Testament, found its most vivid expression in the Millerites but it by no means was limited to humble Christians nor was it limited to America. Europe too