Thursday, November 9, 2017

Bible : Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing..

(15) Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.

(16) By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?

(17) Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.

(18) A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.

(19) Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

(20) Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

(Matthew 7:15-20 NIV)

Shun any man in whom you perceive enmity for this Servant

Shun any man in whom you perceive enmity for this Servant, though he may appear in the garb of piety of the former and later people, or may arise to the worship of the two worlds.

(Abdu’l-Baha, Baha’i World Faith—Selected Writings of Baha’u’llah and Abdu’l-Baha (Abdu’l-Baha’s Section Only), p. 431)

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Hossein Amanat is the brother of former Baha'i Abbas Amanat

Appointment of the Architect of the Seat of the Universal House of Justice 17 SEPTEMBER 1973

To all National Spiritual Assemblies

136.1 DELIGHTED ANNOUNCE APPOINTMENT HUSAYN AMANAT BRILLIANT YOUNG BAHA'I ARCHITECT CRADLE FAITH AS ARCHITECT OF BUILDING FOR UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE. THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

Hossein Amanat is the brother of Abbas Amanat, Professor of History & International Studies at Yale University who is a former Bahá'í. The Seat of the Universal House of Justice was completed in 1982 during the second stage of building of the Arc, and occupied in 1983.

We encourage interested Baha'is to learn Esperanto

We feel that, within the framework of their efforts for the promotion of peace, the Bahá'ís of Europe would do well to increase their collaboration with the Esperanto Movement, and we encourage Bahá'ís who feel the urge to assist in this area, to learn Esperanto and take an active part in the activities of the Movement. As you know, although both 'Abdu'l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi have made it clear that it is by no means certain that Esperanto will be chosen as the international auxiliary language of the world, 'Abdu'l-Bahá encouraged the friends in the east and the west to learn it as a practical step in the promotion of the concept of the adoption of an international auxiliary language to break down the barriers to understanding between peoples.

- Universal House of Justice 17 September 1986 letter to NSAs in Europe

http://bahai-library.com/books/lango/lang10.html

The Most Great Name or Ringstone Symbol Not Appropriate on Gravestones

"Normally the building of structures or headstones on graves should be left to the family of the deceased, and all expenses should be covered by them.

"The use of the Most Great Name or the ringstone symbol on gravestones is not appropriate. In a letter dated September 17, 1971 to an individual believer we wrote the following:

'Concerning the questions you ask in your postscript, there is no specific ruling regarding the type of headstone that may be used at a grave site. However, regarding the inscription on a headstone, the beloved Guardian asked the believers not to use any form of the Greatest Name but a nine-pointed star may be used. Or, you may wish to have an appropriate text from the Sacred Writings inscribed on the headstone. The position of the body in the grave should be with the feet pointing toward the Qiblih, which is Bahji in Akka'."

(From a letter of the Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of Uganda, May 4, 1972)

http://bahai-library.com/hornby_lights_guidance.html&chapter=2#n656

Books written by enemies of the faith should be ignored entirely.

"In reply to your letter of September 20, 1975, the Universal House of Justice instructs us to say that the friends should be advised to ignore these books and any similar ones which might be written by enemies of the Faith. There should certainly be no attempt made to destroy or remove such books from libraries. On the other hand there is no need at all for the friends to acquire them and, indeed, the best plan is to ignore them entirely."

(Referring to books by Hermann Zimmer and William Miller. Letter written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of Panama, October 2, 1975)

http://bahai-library.com/hornby_lights_guidance&chapter=2#n627

If people refuse to accept Baha'u'llah, they will bring upon themselves crisis and great affliction.

If men refuse absolutely to take the easier road of faith, of seeking out God's Manifestation for this age and accepting Him, then they will bring upon themselves a fresh crisis in human affairs and very great affliction.

- Shoghi Effendi

https://bahai-library.com/shoghieffendi_unfolding_destiny#451

Summary of rules of Baha'i translations

Arabic works cannot be translated into Persian.

Persian works cannot be translated into Arabic.

Persian and Arabic works can be translated "into Oriental languages such as Turkish and Urdu."

Persian and Arabic works can be translated into English.

Persian and Arabic works cannot be translated into non-English "European languages."

English works can be translated into non-English "European languages."

For further reading, please see "Persian, Arabic, and Provisional Translations", "Translation and provisional translations", "Unveiling the Hidden Words, by Diana Malouf: Commentary on "Translating the Hidden Words,' review by Franklin Lewis", a letter dated June 27, 1933 from Shoghi Effendi to Adelbert Mühlschlegel about Bahá'í orthography, a letter dated June 30, 1999 from the Universal House of Justice outlining its procedures for approving provisional as opposed to authorized translations, and a letter dated February 15, 1957 from Shoghi Effendi to French Bahá'ís.

Source : https://www.reddit.com/r/OnThisDateInBahai/comments/71avaj/september_20_on_this_date_in_1973_the_uhj_wrote/

"untimely and unwise" - "unpleasant and unworthy"

September 20. On this date in 1982, the UHJ wrote Kalimát Press about the publication of Ustad Salmani's My Memories of Bahá'u'lláh noting it "untimely and unwise" due to passages where believers refer to him as "You being God, Uncle" and other "unpleasant and unworthy" stories.

https://bahai-library.com/uhj_salmani_letters

Baha'is are the Leaven of God, the Chosen People of God

"...The Bahá'ís are the leaven of God, which must leaven the lump of their nation. In direct ratio to their success will be the protection vouchsafed, not only to them but to their country. These are the immutable laws of God, from which there is no escape: 'For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required.'

"They cannot be the chosen people of God,--the ones who have received the bounty of accepting Him in His Day, the recipients of the Master's Divine Plan--and do nothing about it. The obligation to teach is the obligation of every Bahá'í, and particularly, the obligations of the American Bahá'ís towards humanity are great and inescapable. To the degree to which they discharge them will they be blessed and protected, happy and satisfied."

(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States, September 21, 1957: Bahá'í News, November 1957)

http://bahai-library.com/hornby_lights_guidance&chapter=2#n454

He feels that a course on Covenant-breaking should be included in the Summer School curriculum

"...and your Assembly cannot be too careful or vigilant in watching over the Community seeking out the sources of corruption and protecting the friends. He feels that a course on Covenant-breaking should be included in the Summer School curriculum, so that the friends may understand the nature of this evil, and how it has affected our Faith for one hundred years, and other Faiths in the past. The American Bahá'ís, aside from the older ones, do not seem to have any concept whatsoever of what a Covenant-breaker is, and the place to educate them in these matters is in the Summer Schools and on other occasions when they meet in large numbers."

(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States, September 21, 1957)

http://bahai-library.com/hornby_lights_guidance&chapter=2#n625

Committee of Vigilance to watch over the Faith and protect it from its internal enemies!

"He feels that your Assembly should redouble its vigilance, in fact he feels that the National Assembly should consider itself, aside from its other duties, as a Committee of Vigilance to watch over the Faith and protect it from its internal enemies, and from the constantly carried on and insidious activities...."

(From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States, September 21, 1957)

http://bahai-library.com/hornby_lights_guidance&chapter=2#n619

Expropriating the property owned and controlled by the Covenant Breakers

...and the setting in motion, through the instrumentality of various departments of the Israeli government, of a long-drawn-out process, culminating in the expropriation by the state of the entire property, owned and controlled by the remnants of the breakers of Bahá’u’lláh’s Covenant, immediately surrounding His resting-place and the Mansion of Bahjí, the evacuation of this property by this ignoble band, and the final and definite purification, after the lapse of no less than six decades, of the Outer Sanctuary of the Most Holy Shrine of the Bahá’í world, of the defilement, which had caused so much sorrow and anxiety to the heart of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

http://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/shoghi-effendi/citadel-faith/#f=f7-611

'Abdu’l-Bahá visited the home of William Jennings who was not home at the time, as he was busy campaigning for Woodrow Wilson in whose administration he would serve as Secretary of State.

September 22. On this date in 1912, during his tour of North America, 'Abdu’l-Bahá visited the home of William Jennings Bryan in Lincoln, Nebraska. William Jennings Bryan was not home at the time, however, as he was busy campaigning for Woodrow Wilson in whose administration he would serve as Secretary of State. 'Abdu’l-Bahá met his wife and daughter instead. Reports of a Wilson-Bahá'í connection began to circulate among American Bahá'ís during Wilson's term as President from 1913 to 1921.
On May 5, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson sent a telegram to the US National Bahá'í Convention expressing his "gratitude to all concerned." Wilsonian principles were lauded by 'Abdu'l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi. An avowed foreign interventionist, imperialist, and Social Darwinist who spread racial segregation in the federal government, Wilson's legacy is still defended by the Bahá'í Administrative Order.
The White House, Washington, May 5, 1916. My dear Mr Hall, the telegram you sent me on behalf of Bahá'ís of America, assembled in annual convention, has given me the deepest gratification and I hope you will have an opportunity to express my gratitude to all concerned. Cordially and sincerely yours, /s/ Woodrow Wilson.
'Abdu’l-Bahá would later praise President Woodrow Wilson...
The President of the Republic, Dr. Wilson, is indeed serving the Kingdom of God for he is restless and strives day and night that the rights of all men may be preserved safe and secure, that even small nations, like greater ones, may dwell in peace and comfort, under the protection of Righteousness and Justice. This purpose is indeed a lofty one. I trust that the incomparable Providence will assist and confirm such souls under all conditions.
On December 25, 1938 Shoghi Effendi wrote a letter, later published as The Advent of Divine Justice addressed "to the beloved of God and the handmaids of the Merciful throughout the United States and Canada," describing the role of America in establishing the Most Great Peace. The work is divided into five parts. The fifth section provides some concluding remarks. Shoghi Effendi states that American Bahá’í's faithfulness to the Bahá’í Faith has potentiated the United States to establish the Most Great Peace. Shoghi Effendi comments on contemporary events, lamenting America's move away from Wilsonianism, "The ideals that fired the imagination of America’s tragically unappreciated President, whose high endeavors, however much nullified by a visionless generation, 'Abdu’l-Bahá, through His own pen, acclaimed as signalizing the dawn of the Most Great Peace, though now lying in the dust, bitterly reproach a heedless generation for having so cruelly abandoned them."
Wilson's legacy is still defended by the Bahá'í Administrative Order.

Circumstances around Abdu'l Baha's knighthood (KBE)

On September 23, 1918, during World War I, General Allenby's British forces captured Haifa from the Ottomans, an event which Shoghi Effendi in 1936 would refer to as "the liberation of Palestine." In 1920 'Abdu’l-Bahá would be ceremonially knighted in "a most wonderful celebration."


September 23. On this date in 1918, during World War I, General Allenby's British forces captured Haifa from the Ottomans, an event which Shoghi Effendi in 1936 would refer to as "the liberation of Palestine." Two years after General Allenby's conquest, 'Abdu’l-Bahá "was created by King George V a K.B.E. for valuable services rendered to the British Government in the early days of the Occupation" was ceremonially knighted, an event which the "Star of the West" reported as "a most wonderful celebration."
According to Harry Charles Luke, an official in the British Colonial Office who served as assistant Governor of Jerusalem,
Sir 'Abbas Effendi 'Abdu'l Baha had travelled extensively in Europe and America to expound his doctrines, and on the 4th December, 1919, was created by King George V a K.B.E. for valuable services rendered to the British Government in the early days of the Occupation.
On April 27, 1920, 'Abdu’l-Bahá was ceremonially knighted, an event which was prominently reported in the Bahá'í periodical Star of the West.
THE following beautiful description of this event was written by Dr. Zia M. Bagdadi who was at that time in Haifa: "Among the kings and governments of the world who have become convinced that Abdul Bahá was the well-wisher and the lover of mankind are King George and his government. The King sent a medal to Abdul Bahá with the title, "Sir", thus making him a member of his household. On the 27th of April, 1920, the Governor and high officials of Haifa, Palestine presented in a beautiful garden a most wonderful celebration for the knighting of Abdul Baha. Bahai pilgrims from Persia, America and all parts of the world were present. Mohammedan, Christian, Jewish leaders, clergymen, notables and local officials from Haifa, Acca and other towns attended. A tent was pitched in the center of the garden. English troops stood on both sides, from the gate of the garden to the center where Abdul Bahá was seated. The military music added wonderful melody to the rustling leaves of the beautiful trees. The breezes of the spring on that sunny afternoon imparted a remarkable vigor to the physical body just as the presence of Abdul Baha strengthened the souls. The Governor stood behind Abdul Bahá and, after a short speech, interpreted by Mr. Wadie Bistani, presented the medal. Then Abdul Baha, rising from his seat, gave a brief talk and a prayer for the British government.
There have been many people who, for various reasons, have refused British honours. Included among them are scientists like Francis Crick and Michael Faraday, musicians like David Bowie, and even devout British imperialists like T.E. Lawrence and Rudyard Kipling.
Benjamin Zephaniah refused his honour, stating "I get angry when I hear the word 'empire'; it reminds me of slavery, it reminds me of thousands of years of brutality, it reminds me of how my foremothers were raped and my forefathers brutalised."
Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, was offered a knighthood in 1925, but replied, "I prefer to be plain Mr. Jinnah."
Kenneth Williams bluntly put it in these terms: "When offered something which obviously isn't worth the price ... we still have the right to say 'No thanks.'"
Nitin Sawhney refused for ethical reasons, saying "I wouldn't like anything with the word 'empire' after my name."
'Abdu'l-Bahá held none of these objections and accepted his knighthood with great pomp and ceremony, in "a most wonderful celebration"
The Chosen Highway chronicles in some detail how 'Abdu'l-Bahá aided the British against the Ottomans during World War I. For example...
We learned that when the British marched into Haifa there was some difficulty about the commissariat. The officer in command went to consult the Master.
"I have corn," was the reply.
"But for the army?" said the astonished soldier.
"I have corn for the British Army," said 'Abdu'l-Bahá.
He truly walked the Mystic way with practical feet. [footnote: Lady Blomfield often recounted how the corn pits proved a safe hiding-place for the corn, during the occupation of the Turkish army. -Ed.]
and [later...}
The British Government, with its usual gesture of appreciating a heroic act, conferred a knighthood upon 'Abdu'l-Bahá 'Abbas, Who accepted this honour as a courteous gift "from a just king."
The dignitaries of the British crown from Jerusalem were gathered in Haifa, eager to do honour to the Master, Whom every one had come to love and reverence for His life of unselfish service. An imposing motor-car had been sent to bring 'Abdu'l-Bahá to the ceremony. The Master, however, could not be found. People were sent in every direction to look for Him, when suddenly from an unexpected side He appeared, alone, walking His kingly walk, with that simplicity of greatness which always enfolded Him.
The faithful servant, Isfandiyar, whose joy it had been for many years to drive the Master on errands of mercy, stood sadly looking on at the elegant motor-car which awaited the honoured guest.
"No longer am I needed."
At a sign from Him, Who knew the sorrow, old Isfandiyar rushed off to harness the horse, and brought the carriage out at the lower gate, whence 'Abdu'l-Bahá was driven to a side entrance of the garden of the Governorate of Phoenicia.
So Isfandiyar was needed and happy.
Further collaboration is documented in Chapter V: Danger to 'Abdu'l-Bahá, His Family and Friends, and How it was Averted
On March 11, 1936, Shoghi Effendi wrote a letter later published as The Unfolding of World Civilization, a document included in the book titled World Order of Bahá'u'lláh
Within the The Unfolding of World Civilization are sections, such as one entitled Collapse of Islam, in which Shoghi Effendi summarizes late Ottoman and early Turkish Republican history in these terms...
The murder of that arrogant despot in the year 1876; the Russo-Turkish conflict that soon followed in its wake; the wars of liberation which succeeded it; the rise of the Young Turk movement; the Turkish Revolution of 1909 that precipitated the downfall of ‘Abdu’l-Ḥamíd; the Balkan wars with their calamitous consequences; the liberation of Palestine enshrining within its bosom the cities of ‘Akká and Haifa, the world center of an emancipated Faith; the further dismemberment decreed by the Treaty of Versailles; the abolition of the Sultanate and the downfall of the House of Uthmán; the extinction of the Caliphate; the disestablishment of the State Religion; the annulment of the Sharí’ah Law and the promulgation of a universal Civil Code; the suppression of various orders, beliefs, traditions and ceremonials believed to be inextricably interwoven with the fabric of the Muslim Faith—these followed with an ease and swiftness that no man had dared envisage. In these devastating blows, administered by friend and foe alike, by Christian nations and professing Muslims, every follower of the persecuted Faith of Bahá’u’lláh recognized evidences of the directing Hand of the departed Founder of his religion, Who, from the invisible Realm, was unloosing a flood of well-deserved calamities upon a rebellious religion and nation. World Order of Bahá’u’lláh, page 175
Three thoughts from this passage:
1) Shoghi Effendi considers the British seizure of Palestine a "liberation." By the time World Order of Bahá’u’lláh was published in 1938, the British had permitted the immigration of hundreds of thousands of Jewish settlers to Palestine, and in 1937 the Peel Commission proposed a partition of Palestine into Jewish and Arab sectors. The proposal was rejected by both the Arab and Jewish leadership. It is not mere conspiratorial inklings that lead detractors to consider the Bahá'í Faith to have ties to Zionism or British and Russian Imperialism.
2) Shoghi Effendi refers to "the further dismemberment decreed by the Treaty of Versailles" of the Ottoman Empire. The Treaty of Versailles was signed between Germany and some of the Allied nations, and it did not pertain to the Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman Empire would cease hostilities with Allies through the Armistice of Mudros, and Treaty of Sevres that was signed at the end of World War I was never ratified by the Ottoman Parliament in Istanbul. The nascent Republic of Turkey would later sign the Treaty of Lausanne with the Allies.
3) Shoghi Effendi describes the suffering of Ottoman subjects in World War I to have been "well-deserved calamities" unloosed by the "directing Hand" of Bahá'u'lláh. One wonders how anyone can equate Bahá'u'lláh's exile, where he was still allowed to lead his religious community and publicly declare himself Him whom God shall make manifest, with the suffering of World War I

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