Reality, Soul and
the Worlds of God
II. Three Conditions of Existence in Reality
E. The Lesser World, Servitude, Creation: The Kingdom of the Emanation of God
8. The Spiritual World, Progressively Unveiled: The “Kingdom Revealed”
[from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh:]
The river Jordan is joined to the Most Great Ocean, and the Son, in the holy vale, crieth out: “Here am I, here am I O Lord, my God!”, whilst Sinai circleth round the House, and the Burning Bush calleth aloud: ‘He Who is the Desired One is come in His transcendent majesty.’ Say, Lo! The Father is come, and that which ye were promised in the Kingdom is fulfilled! This is the Word which the Son concealed, when to those around Him He said: “Ye cannot bear it now.” And when the appointed time was fulfilled and the Hour had struck, the Word shone forth above the horizon of the Will of God. Beware, O followers of the Son, that ye cast it not behind your backs. Take ye fast hold of it. Better is this for you than all that ye possess. Verily He is nigh unto them that do good. The Hour which We had concealed from the knowledge of the peoples of the earth and of the favoured angels hath come to pass. Say, verily, He hath testified of Me, and I do testify of Him. Indeed, He hath purposed no one other than Me. Unto this beareth witness every fair-minded and understanding soul.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, “Lawḥ-i-Aqdas” or “The Most Holy Tablet”, p. 11)
When the channel of the human soul is cleansed of all worldly and impeding attachments, it will unfailingly perceive the breath of the Beloved across immeasurable distances, and will, led by its perfume, attain and enter the City of Certitude. Therein he will discern the wonders of His ancient wisdom, and will perceive all the hidden teachings from the rustling leaves of the Tree—which flourisheth in that City. With both his inner and his outer ear he will hear from its dust the hymns of glory and praise ascending unto the Lord of Lords, and with his inner eye will he discover the mysteries of “return” and “revival.” How unspeakably glorious are the signs, the tokens, the revelations, and splendours which He Who is the King of names and attributes hath destined for that City! The attainment of this City quencheth thirst without water, and kindleth the love of God without fire. Within every blade of grass are enshrined the mysteries of an inscrutable wisdom, and upon every rose-bush a myriad nightingales pour out, in blissful rapture, their melody. Its wondrous tulips unfold the mystery of the undying Fire in the Burning Bush, and its sweet savours of holiness breathe the perfume of the Messianic Spirit. It bestoweth wealth without gold, and conferreth immortality without death. In every leaf ineffable delights are treasured, and within every chamber unnumbered mysteries lie hidden.
(Bahá’u’lláh: The Kitáb-i-Íqán, paragraph 217, pp. 182-183)
The essence of wisdom is the fear of God, the dread of His scourge and punishment, and the apprehension of His justice and decree.
(Bahá’u’lláh: Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, “Asl-i-Kullu’l-Khayr” or “Words of Wisdom”, p. 155)
[from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:]
“From the days of Adam until today, the religions of God have been made manifest, one following the other, and each one of them fulfilled its due function, revived mankind, and provided education and enlightenment. They freed the people from the darkness of the world of nature and ushered them into the brightness of the Kingdom. As each succeeding Faith and Law became revealed it remained for some centuries a richly fruitful tree and to it was committed the happiness of humankind.”
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selection #23, p. 51)
[from the talks of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá (no authority):]
This is the glorious time of which the Lord Jesus Christ spoke when He told us to pray “Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done on earth as it is in Heaven”. I hope that this is also your expectation and great desire.
We are united in the one aim and hope that all shall be as one and every heart illumined by the Love of our Divine Father, God!
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Paris Talks, “Discourse at ‘L’Alliance Spiritualiste, Salle de l’Athenee, St. Germain, Paris, November 9th”, p. 88)
The Prophets of God have come to show man the way of righteousness in order that he may not follow his own natural impulse but govern his action by the light of Their precept and example. According to Their teachings he should do that which is found to be praiseworthy by the standard of reason and judgment of intellect, even though it be opposed to his natural human inclination; and he should not do that which is found to be unworthy by that same standard, even though it be in the direction of his natural impulse and desire. Therefore, man must follow and manifest the attributes of the Merciful.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “21 April 1912, Talk at Universalist Church, Thirteenth and L Streets, Washington, D.C., Notes by Joseph H. Hannen”, pp. 40-41)
….in the spiritual realm of intelligence and idealism there must be a center of illumination, and that center is the everlasting, ever-shining Sun, the Word of God. Its lights are the lights of reality which have shone upon humanity, illumining the realm of thought and morals, conferring the bounties of the divine world upon man. These lights are the cause of the education of souls and the source of the enlightenment of hearts, sending forth in effulgent radiance the message of the glad tidings of the Kingdom of God. In brief, the moral and ethical world and the world of spiritual regeneration are dependent for their progressive being upon that heavenly Center of illumination. It gives forth the light of religion and bestows the life of the spirit, imbues humanity with archetypal virtues and confers eternal splendors. This Sun of Reality, this Center of effulgences, is the Prophet or Manifestation of God. Just as the phenomenal sun shines upon the material world producing life and growth, likewise, the spiritual or prophetic Sun confers illumination upon the human world of thought and intelligence, and unless it rose upon the horizon of human existence, the kingdom of man would become dark and extinguished.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “5 May 1912, Talk at Plymouth Congregational Church, 935 East Fiftieth Street, Chicago, Illinois, Notes by Marzieh Moss”, p. 94)
If the moral precepts and foundations of divine civilization become united with the material advancement of man, there is no doubt that the happiness of the human world will be attained and that from every direction the glad tidings of peace upon earth will be announced. Then humankind will achieve extraordinary progress, the sphere of human intelligence will be immeasurably enlarged, wonderful inventions will appear, and the spirit of God will reveal itself; all men will consort in joy and fragrance, and eternal life will be conferred upon the children of the Kingdom. Then will the power of the divine make itself effective and the breath of the Holy Spirit penetrate the essence of all things. Therefore, the material and the divine, or merciful, civilizations must progress together until the highest aspirations and desires of humanity shall become realized.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “7 May 1912, Talk at Hotel Schenley, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Notes by Suzanne Beatty”, pp. 109-110)
The divine Manifestations since the day of Adam have striven to unite humanity so that all may be accounted as one soul. The function and purpose of a shepherd is to gather and not disperse his flock. The Prophets of God have been divine Shepherds of humanity. They have established a bond of love and unity among mankind, made scattered peoples one nation and wandering tribes a mighty kingdom. They have laid the foundation of the oneness of God and summoned all to universal peace. All these holy, divine Manifestations are one. They have served one God, promulgated the same truth, founded the same institutions and reflected the same light. Their appearances have been successive and correlated; each One has announced and extolled the One Who was to follow, and all laid the foundation of reality. They summoned and invited the people to love and made the human world a mirror of the Word of God.
(‘Abdu’l-Bahá: The Promulgation of Universal Peace, “28 May 1912, Talk at Reception at Metropolitan Temple, Seventh Avenue and Fourteenth Street, New York, Notes by Esther Foster”, p. 151)