Reality, Soul and
the Worlds of God
I. Introduction to Reality
A. Reality Unveiled
[from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh:]
And in the fourth Gospel, according to John, it is recorded: …. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”1
…. And: “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come.”2
(Bahá’u’lláh: Gems of Divine Mysteries, paragraph 11, pp. 9-10)
….the fingers of divine power have unlocked the portals of the knowledge of God, and the light of divine knowledge and heavenly grace hath illumined and inspired the essence of all created things, in such wise that in each and every thing a door of knowledge hath been opened, and within every atom traces of the sun hath been made manifest.
(Bahá’u’lláh: The Kitáb-i-Íqán, paragraph 28, pp. 27-28)
….God….hath in every age and cycle, in conformity with His transcendent wisdom, sent forth a divine Messenger to revive the dispirited and despondent souls with the living waters of His utterance, One Who is indeed the Expounder, the true Interpreter, inasmuch as man is unable to comprehend that which hath streamed forth from the Pen of Glory and is recorded in His heavenly Books. Men at all times and under all conditions stand in need of one to exhort them, guide them and to instruct and teach them. Therefore He hath sent forth His Messengers, His Prophets and chosen ones that they might acquaint the people with the divine purpose underlying the revelation of Books and the raising up of Messengers, and that everyone may become aware of the trust of God which is latent in the reality of every soul.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, “Lawḥ-i-Maqsúd” or “Tablet of Maqsúd”, p. 161)
By the righteousness of God! The Mother Book is made manifest, summoning mankind unto God, the Lord of the worlds, while the seas proclaim: The Most Great Ocean hath appeared, from whose waves one can hear the thundering cry: “Verily, no God is there but Me, the Peerless, the All-Knowing.” And the trees raising their clamour exclaim: O people of the world! The voice of the Divine Lote-Tree is clearly sounding and the shrill cry of the Pen of Glory is ringing loud: Give ye ear and be not of the heedless. The sun is calling out: O concourse of the divines! The heaven of religions is split and the moon cleft asunder and the peoples of the earth are brought together in a new resurrection. Fear ye God and follow not the promptings of your passions, rather follow Him unto Whom have testified the Scriptures of God, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.
The episode of Sinai hath been re-enacted in this Revelation and He Who conversed upon the Mount is calling aloud: Verily, the Desired One is come, seated upon the throne of certitude, could ye but perceive it. He hath admonished all men to observe that which is conducive to the exaltation of the Cause of God and will guide mankind unto His Straight Path.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, “Excerpts from other Tablets” (excerpt #10), pp. 247-248)
Seized with transports of joy, and raising high her voice, she [the mountain of Carmel, Israel] thus exclaimed: “….And when the hour at which Thy resistless Faith was to be made manifest did strike, Thou didst breathe a breath of Thy spirit into Thy Pen, and lo, the entire creation shook to its very foundations, unveiling to mankind such mysteries as lay hidden within the treasuries of Him Who is the Possessor of all created things.”….
No sooner had her voice reached that most exalted Spot than We made reply: ….
“Call out to Zion, O Carmel, and announce the joyful tidings: He that was hidden from mortal eyes is come! His all-conquering sovereignty is manifest; His all-encompassing splendour is revealed. Beware lest thou hesitate or halt. Hasten forth and circumambulate the City of God that hath descended from heaven, the celestial Kaaba round which have circled in adoration the favoured of God, the pure in heart, and the company of the most exalted angels. Oh, how I long to announce unto every spot on the surface of the earth, and to carry to each one of its cities, the glad-tidings of this Revelation—a Revelation to which the heart of Sinai hath been attracted, and in whose name the Burning Bush is calling: ‘Unto God, the Lord of Lords, belong the kingdoms of earth and heaven.’ Verily this is the Day in which both land and sea rejoice at this announcement, the Day for which have been laid up those things which God, through a bounty beyond the ken of mortal mind or heart, hath destined for revelation….”
(Bahá’u’lláh: Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, “Lawḥ-i-Karmil” or “Tablet of Carmel”, pp. 3-5)
This is the Day in which the Ocean of knowledge hath lifted up its Voice and hath brought forth its pearls. Would that ye knew it! The heaven of the Bayán hath been raised up in truth at the behest of God, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting. I swear by God! The Essence of knowledge exclaimeth and saith: Lo! He Who is the Object of all knowledge is come and through His advent the sacred Books of God, the Gracious, the Loving, have been embellished. Every revelation of grace, every evidence of goodly gifts emanateth from Him and unto Him doth it return.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, “Excerpts from Other Tablets” (Excerpt #9), p. 245)
The Eternal Truth is now come. He hath lifted up the Ensign of Power, and is now shedding upon the world the unclouded splendor of His Revelation.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, Selection XXV, p. 60)
The Divine Springtime is come….
Attract the hearts of men, through the call of Him, the one alone Beloved. Say: This is the Voice of God, if ye do but hearken. This is the Day Spring of the Revelation of God, did ye but know it. This is the Dawning-Place of the Cause of God, were ye to recognize it. This is the Source of the commandment of God, did ye but judge it fairly. This is the manifest and hidden Secret; would that ye might perceive it. O peoples of the world! Cast away, in My name that transcendeth all other names, the things ye possess, and immerse yourselves in this Ocean in whose depths lay hidden the pearls of wisdom and of utterance, an ocean that surgeth in My name, the All-Merciful. Thus instructeth you He with Whom is the Mother Book.
The Best-Beloved is come. In His right hand is the sealed Wine of His name. Happy is the man that turneth unto Him, and drinketh his fill, and exclaimeth: “Praise be to Thee, O Revealer of the signs of God!” By the righteousness of the Almighty! Every hidden thing hath been manifested through the power of truth. All the favors of God have been sent down, as a token of His grace. The waters of everlasting life have, in their fullness, been proffered unto men. Every single cup hath been borne round by the hand of the Well-Beloved. Draw near, and tarry not, though it be for one short moment.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, Selection XIV, pp. 27, 33-34)
Through the might of God and His power, and out of the treasury of His knowledge and wisdom, I have brought forth and revealed unto you the pearls that lay concealed in the depths of His everlasting ocean. I have summoned the Maids of Heaven to emerge from behind the veil of concealment, and have clothed them with these words of Mine—words of consummate power and wisdom. I have, moreover, with the hand of divine power, unsealed the choice wine of My Revelation, and have wafted its holy, its hidden, and musk-laden fragrance upon all created things. Who else but yourselves is to be blamed if ye choose to remain unendowed with so great an outpouring of God’s transcendent and all-encompassing grace, with so bright a revelation of His resplendent mercy?
(Bahá’u’lláh: Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, Selection CLIII, pp. 327-328)
And when Thou didst purpose to make Thyself known unto men, Thou didst successively reveal the Manifestations of Thy Cause, and ordained each to be a sign of Thy Revelation among Thy people, and the Day-Spring of Thine invisible Self amidst Thy creatures, until the time when, as decreed by Thee, all Thy previous Revelations culminated in Him Whom Thou hast appointed as the Lord of all who are in the heaven of revelation and the kingdom of creation, Him Whom Thou hast established as the Sovereign Lord of all who are in the heavens and all who are on the earth. He it was Whom Thou hast determined to be the Herald of Thy Most Great Revelation and the Announcer of Thy Most Ancient Splendor.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Prayers and Meditations, Selection LXXVIII, pp. 128-129)
[from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:]
O peoples of the world! The Sun of Truth hath risen to illumine the whole earth, and to spiritualize the community of man. Laudable are the results and the fruits thereof, abundant the holy evidences deriving from this grace. This is mercy unalloyed and purest bounty; it is light for the world and all its peoples; it is harmony and fellowship, and love and solidarity; indeed it is compassion and unity, and the end of foreignness; it is the being at one, in complete dignity and freedom, with all on earth.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selection #1, p. 1)
[from the talks of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá (no authority):]
The Sun of Truth appears again on the horizon of the world shining into the eyes of those who sleep, awaking them to behold the glory of a new dawn.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Paris Talks, “The Sun of Truth, October 22nd”, p. 32)
This is clearly the century of a new life, the century of the revelation of reality and, therefore, the greatest of all centuries.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “24 May 1912, Talk at Free Religious Association, or Unitarian Conference Boston, Massachusetts, from stenographic notes”, p. 140)
Praise be to God! The medieval ages of darkness have passed away and this century of radiance has dawned, this century wherein the reality of things is becoming evident.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “12 October 1912, Talk at Temple Emmanu-El, 450 Sutter Street, San Francisco, California, Notes by Bijou Straun”, p. 369)
….the Lord of mankind has bestowed infinite bounties upon the world in this century of maturity and consummation. The ocean of divine mercy is surging, the vernal showers are descending, the Sun of Reality is shining gloriously. Heavenly teachings applicable to the advancement in human conditions have been revealed in this merciful age. This reformation and renewal of the fundamental reality of religion constitute the true and outworking spirit of modernism, the unmistakable light of the world, the manifest effulgence of the Word of God, the divine remedy for all human ailment and the bounty of eternal life to all mankind.
Bahá’u’lláh, the Sun of Truth, has dawned from the horizon of the Orient, flooding all regions with the light and life which will never pass away. His teachings…embody the divine spirit of the age and are applicable to this period of maturity in the life of the human world….
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “17 November 1912, Talk at Genealogical Hall, 252 West Fifty-eighth Street, New York, Notes by Edna McKinney”, pp. 439-440)