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away and the world he blessed by unity and agreement. Christians and Mubammadans believe and admit that Moses was the
Interlocutor of God. Why do you not say that Christ was the Word of God? Why do you not speak these few words that will do away
with all this difficulty? Then there will be no hatred and fanaticism, no more warfare and bloodshed in the Land of Promise. Then
there will be peace among you forever.
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,—wherein science is penetrating the mysteries of the universe, the oneness of the world of
humanity is being established and service to mankind is the paramount motive of all existence. Shall we remain steeped in our
fanaticisms and cling to our prejudices? Is it fitting that we should still be bound and restricted by ancient fables and superstitions of
the past; be handicapped by superannuated beliefs and the ignorances of dark ages, waging religious wars, fighting and shedding
blood, shunning and anathematizing each other? Is this becoming? Is it not better for us to be loving and considerate toward each
other? Is it not preferable to enjoy fellowship and unity; join in anthems of praise to the most high God and extol all His prophets in
the spirit of acceptance and true vision: Then indeed this world will become a paradise and the promised Day of God will dawn.
The age has dawned when human fellowship will be come a reality.
The century has come when all religions shall be unified.
The dispensation is at hand when all nations shall enjoy the blessings of International peace.
The cycle has arrived when racial prejudice will be abandoned by tribes and peoples of the world.
12. THE IMAGE OF GOD
According to the words of the Old Testament, God has said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” This indicates that
man is of the image and likeness of God; that is to say, the perfections of God,
the divine virtues are reflected or revealed in the human reality. Just as the light and effulgence of the sun when cast upon a polished
mirror are reflected fully, gloriously, so likewise the qualities and attributes of divinity are radiated from the depths of a pure human
heart. This is an evidence that man is the most noble of God’s creatures.
Each kingdom of creation is endowed with its necessary complement of attributes and powers. The mineral possesses inherent virtues
of its own kingdom in the scale of existence. The vegetable possesses the quahties of the mineral plus a virtue augmentative or power
of growth. The animal is endowed with the virtues of both the mineral and vegetable plane plus the power of the senses. The human
kingdom is replete with the perfections of all the kingdoms below it, with the addition of powers pecuhar to man alone. Man is
therefore superior to all the creatures below him, the loftiest and most glorious being of creation. Man is the microcosm, and the
infinite universe the macrocosm. The mysteries of the greater world or macrocosm are expressed or revealed in the lesser world, the
microcosm. The tree, so to speak, is the greater world, and the seed in its relation to the tree is the lesser world. But the whole of the
great tree is potentially latent and hidden in the little seed. When this seed is planted and cultivated, the tree is revealed. Likewise the
greater world, the macrocosm, is latent and miniatured in the lesser world or microcosm of man. This constitutes the universality or
perfection of virtues potential in mankind. Therefore it is said that man has been created in the image and likeness of God.
Let us now discover more specifically how he is the image and likeness of God and what is the standard or criterion by which he can
be measured and estimated. This standard can be no other than the divine virtues which are revealed in him. Therefore every man
imbued with divine qualities, who reflects heavenly morahties and perfections, who is the expression of ideal and praiseworthy
attributes, is verily in the image and hkeness of God. If a man possesses wealth can we call him an image and hkeness of God? Or is
human honor and notoriety the criterion of divine nearness?
THE BAHA’I WORLD
Can we apply the test of racial color and say that man of a certain hue—white, black, brown, yellow, red—is the true image of his
creator? We must conclude that color is not the standard and estimate of judgment and that it is of no importance, for color is
accidental in nature. The spirit and intelligence of man is the essential; and that is the manifestation of divine virtues, the merciful
bestowals of God, the life eternal and baptism through the Holy Spirit. Therefore be it known that color or race is of no importance.
He who is the image and hkeness of God, who is the manifestation of the bestowals of God, is acceptable at the threshold of God
whether his color be white, black or brown, it matters not. Man is not
man simply because of bodily attributes. The standard of divine measure and judgment is his intelligence and spirit.
Therefore let this be the only criterion and estimate; for this is the image and likeness of God. A man’s heart may be
pure and white though his outer skin be black; or his heart be dark and sinful though his racial color is white. The
character and purity of the heart is of all importance. The heart illumined by the light of God is nearest and dearest to
God; and in as much as God has endowed man with such favor that he is called the image of God, this is truly a
supreme perfection of attainment, a divine station which is not to be sacrificed by the mere accident of color.
TRANSFER OF THE REMAINS OF THE BROTHER
AND MOTHER OF ‘ABDU’L-BAHA TO MT.
THE SPIRITUAL POTENCIES
OF THAT CONSECRATED SPOT
LESSED remains (of) Purest Branch and Master’s Mother safely transferred (to) hallowed precincts (of the)
Shrines (on) Mount Carmel. Long inflicted humiliation wiped away. Machinations (of the) Covenant-breakers (to)
frustrate plan defeated. Cherished wish (of) Greatest Holy Leaf fulfilled. Sister, Brother, Mother (and) Wife (of)
‘Abdu’l-Bahá reunited (at the) one spot designed (to) constitute focal center (of) Bahá’i Administrative Institutions at
Faith’s World Center. Share joyful news (with) entire body (of) American believers.
Christmas eve, (the) beloved remains (of) Purest Branch and Master’s Mother laid in state (in) Báb’s Holy Tomb.
Christmas day, entrusted (to) Carmel’s sacred soil. (The) ceremony (in) presence (of) representatives (of) Near Eastern
behevers profoundly moving. Impelled associate America’s momentous Seven Year enterprise (with) imperishable
memory (of) these two holy souls who, next (to) Twin Founders (of) Faith and (its) Perfect Exemplar, tower, together
with Greatest Holy Leaf, above (the) entire concourse (of the) faithful. Rejoice privilege (to) pledge thousand pounds
my contribution (to) Bahiyyih Khánum Fund designed (for) inauguration
(of) final drive (to) insure placing contract next April (for) last remaining stage (in) construction (of) Mashriqu’l-Adhkár. Time (is)
pressing, opportunity priceless, potent aid providentially promised unfailing.
Cablegram received December 26, 1939.
To the beloved of
and the handmaids of the Merciful throughout the West.
Dearly beloved friends:
The transfer of the secred remains of the brother and mother of our Lord and Master ‘Abdul’-Bahá to Mount Carmel and their final
interment within the hallowed precincts of the Shrine of the Báb, and in the immediate neighborhood of the resting place of the
Greatest Holy Leaf, constitute, apart from their historic associations and the tender sentiments they arouse, events of such capital
institutional significance as only future happenings, steadily and mysteriously unfolding at the world center of our Faith, can
The circumstances attending the consummation of this long, this profoundly cherished hope were no less significant. The
These two cablegrams received by the National Spiritual Assembly on the dates mentioned preceded the following epistle which
proclaims in detail the c:Spirtual Potencies of that Consecrated Spot” on Mt. Carmel, the Mountain of God.
CD CD CD
TRANSFER OF SACRED REMAINS
swiftness and suddenness with which so delicate and weighty an undertaking was conducted; the surmounting of
various obstacles which the outbreak of war and its inevitable repercussions necessarily engendered; the success of the
long-drawn-out negotiations which the solution of certain preliminary problems imposed; the execution of the plan in
the face of the continued instability and persistent dangers following the fierce riots that so long and so violently rocked
the Holy Land, and despite the smoldering fire of animosity kindled in the breasts of ecclesiastics and Covenant-
breakers alike—all combined to demonstrate, afresh and with compelling power, the invincible might of the Cause of
The Purest Branch, the snartyred son, the companion, and amanuensis of Bahá’u’llah, that pious and holy youth, who
in the darkest days of Bahá’u’lláh’s incarceration in the barracks of ‘Akká entreated, on his deathbed, his Father to
accept him as a ransom for those of His loved ones who yearned for, but were unable to attain, His presence, and the
saintly mother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, surnamed Navváb by Bahá’u’lláh, and the first recipient of the honored and familiar
title of “the Most Exalted Leaf,” separated in death above half a century, and forced to suffer the humiliation of an alien
burial- ground, are now at long last reunited with the Greatest Holy Leaf with whom they had so abundantly shared the
tribulations of one of the most distressing episodes of the Heroic Age of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh. Avenged, eternally
safeguarded, befittingly glorified, they repose embosomed in the heart of Car- mel, hidden beneath its sacred soil,
interred in one single spot, lying beneath the shadow of the twin holy Tombs, and facing across the bay, on an
eminence of unequalled loveliness and beauty, the silver-city of ‘Akká, the Point of Adoration of the entire Baha’i
world, and the Door of Hope for all mankind. “Haste thee, 0 Carmel!” thus proclaims the pen of Bahá’u’lláh, “for to,
The machinations of Badi’ulláh—_the brother and lieutenant of the Focal Center of sedition and Archbreaker of the
Covenant of Bahá’u’lláh, the deceased Muhammad-’Ali
—who with uncommon temerity and exceptional vigor addressed his written protest to the civil authorities, claiming
the right to oppose the projected transfer of the remains of the mother and brother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, have been utterly
frustrated. So foolish a claim, advanced by one who in the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Baha has been denounced as
an “4ert and active worker of mischief,” and whose life has been marked by so many instances of extravagance, of
betrayal and folly, has been summarily rejected by the fairness and justice of the civil authorities, in whose custody the
notorious Sádhij, the daughter of that same Badi’ulláh, is still retained, as a direct result of her ceaseless instigations to
rebellion and terrorism, and whose acts constitute a clear and double violation of the civil law of the land and of the
spiritual ordinances of Bahá’u’lláh, in Whose Faith she professes to believe.
Unabashed by his appalling mistakes and blunders; undeterred by the galling failure of his persistent efforts, in
conjunction with his brother, to establish, in the days following the passing of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, their alleged right to the
custody of the Most Holy Tomb; unrestrained by the memory of the abortive attempt of Muhammad-’Ali to retain the
Mansion of Bahã’u’lláh as a private residence for himself and his family; unchastened by the spiritual and material
misery into which he and his kindred have sunk; and impotent to perceive the contrast between that misery and the
consolidating strength and ever-enhancing prestige of the institutions heralding the birth of the World Order of
Bahá’u’llah at its international center, he has, with characteristic insolence, dared to raise once again his voice against
the resistless march of events that are steadily accelerating the expansion and establishment of the Faith in the Holy
must be clearly understood, nor can
be sufficiently emphasized, that the conjunction of the resting-place of the
Ltha SL J’LjA
Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch for/h the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords,
and strengthen thy stakes; For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the
Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited. Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed:
neither be thou con founded; for thou shalt not be put to shame.
. . .
For thy Maker is thine husband; the Lord of Hosts is
His name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall He be called.
. . .
For a small
moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I ga/her thee.
. . .
For the mountains shall depart, and the hills
be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the
Lord that ha/h mercy on thee. 0 thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay thy stones with
fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires. And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of
carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones. And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be
the peace of thy children
whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake.”
Persian script with translation.
TRANSFER OF SACRED REMAINS
Holy Leaf with those of her brother and mother incalculably reenforces the spiritual potencies of that consecrated Spot
which, under the wings of the Báb’s overshadowing Sepulchre, and in the vicinity of the future Mashriqu’l-Adhkár,
which will be reared on its flank, is destined to evolve into the focal center of those world-shaking, world- embracing,
world-directing administrative institutions, ordained by Bahá’u’lláh and anticipated by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, and which are to
function in consonance with the principles that govern the twin institutions of the Guardianship and the Universal
House of Justice. Then, and then only, will this momentous prophecy which illuminates the concluding passages of the
Tablet of Carmel be fulfilled: “Ere long will God sail His Ark upon thee (Carmel), and will manifest the people of Babe
who have been mentioned in the Book of Names.”
To attempt to visualize, even in its barest outline, the glory that must envelop these institutions, to essay even a
tentative and partial description of their character or the manner of their operation, or to trace however inadequately the
course of events leading to their rise and eventual establishment is far beyond my own capacity and power. Suffice it to
say that at this troubled stage in world history the association of these three incomparably precious souls who, next to
the three Central Figures of our Faith, tower in rank above the vast multitude of the heroes, letters, martyrs, hands,
teachers and administrators of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh, in such a potentially powerful spiritual and administrative
Center is in itself an event which will release forces that are bound to hasten the emergence in a land which,
geographically, spiritually and administratively, constitutes the heart of the entire planet, of some of the brightest gems
of that World Order now shaping in the womb of this travailing age.
For such as might undertake, in the days to come, the meritorious and highly enviable pilgrimage to these blessed
shrines, as well as for the benefit of the less privileged who, aware of the greatness of their virtue and the pre-eminence
of their lineage, desire to commune with their spirits, and to strive to acquire an added insight into the
glory of their position, and to follow in their footsteps, let these testimonies written by Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
be their inspiration and guidance in their noble quest:
“At this very moment,”
“My son is being washed before My face, after Our having sacrificed him in the Most
Great Prison. Thereat have the dwellers of the Abbé Tabernacle wept with a great weeping, such as have suffered imprisonment with
this Youth in the path of God, the Lord of the promised Day, lamented. Under such conditions My Pen hath not been prevented from
remembering its Lord, the Lord of all nations. It summoneth the people unto God, the Almighty, the All-Bountiful. This is the day
whereon he that was created of the light of Babe has suffered martyrdom, at a time when he lay imprisoned at the hands of his
He solemnly and most touchingly, in the same Tablet, bestows upon him His benediction,
“be the remembrance of God and His praise, and the praise of all that dwell in the Realm of Immortality, and of all the denizens of the
Kingdom of Names. Happy art thou in that thou has been faithful to the Covenant of God and His Testament, until Thou didst sacrifice
thyself before the face of thy Lord, the Almighty, the Unconst rained. Thou, in trnth, hast been wronged, and to this testifieth the
Beauty of Him, the Self- Subsisting. Thou didst, in the first days of thy life, bear that which bath caused all things to groan, and made
every pillar to tremble. Happy is the one that remembereth thee, and draweth nigh, through thee, unto God, the Creator of the Morn.”
“Glorified art Thou,
He, in a prayer, astoundingly proclaims,
which Thou has given Me, that Thy servants may be quickened and all that dwell on earth be united.”
“Blessed art thou,”
He, in another Tablet affirms,
“and blessed he that turneth unto thee, and visiteth thy grave, and draweth
nigh, through thee, unto God, the Lord of all that was and shall be.
. . .
I testify that
A glimpse, between the trees of the garden, of the shrines of the Mother and Brother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá on Mt. Carmel,
TRANSFER OF SACRED REMAINS
. . .
Thou art, verily, the trust of God and His treasure in this land. Erelong will God reveal through thee that which He
hath desired. He, verily, is the Truth, the Knower of things unseen. When thou wast laid to rest in the earth, the earth itself trembled in
its longing to meet thee. Thus hath it been decreed, and yet the people perceive not.
ascension, they that are asleep would waken, and all beings would be set ablaze with the fire of the remembrance of My Name, the
Mighty, the Loving.”
Concerning the Most Exalted Leaf, the mother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahã, Bahâ’u’lláh has written:
“The first Spirit through which
all spirits were revealed, and the first Light by which all lights shone forth, rest upon thee,
mentioned in the Crimson Book! Thou art the one whom God created to arise and serve His own Self, and the Manifestation of His
Cause, and the Dayspring of His Revelation, and the Dawning-Place of His signs, and the Source of His commandments; and Who so
aided thee that thou didst turn with thy whole being unto Him, at a time when His servants and handmaidens had turned away from
. . .
Happy art thou,
My Scrolls and Tablets.
Rejoice thou, at this moment, in the most exalted Station and the All-highest Paradise, and the Abhd
Horizon, inasmuch as He Who is the Lord of Names hath rein em bereth thee. We bear witness that thou didst attain unto all good,
and that God hath so exalted thee, that all honor and glory circled around thee.”
He thus, in another Tablet, addresses her, “0
Leaf that bath sprung from My Tree, and been My corn panion! My
glory be upon thee, and My loving-kindness, and My mercy that hath surpassed all beings. We announce unto thee that which will
gladden thine eye, and assure thy soul, and rejoice thine heart. Verily, thy Lord is the Corn passionate, the All-Bountiful. God
thee the companion of His Person in the day-time and in the night-season.”
“Hear thou Me once again,” He reassures her, “God is well-pleased with thee, as a token of His grace and a sign of
His mercy. He bath made thee to be His companion in every one of His worlds, and bath nourished thee with His
meeting and presence, so long as His Name, and His Remembrance, and His Kingdom, and His Empire shall endure.
Happy is the handmaid that bath ‘mentioned thee, and sought thy good-pleasure, and humbled herself before thee, and
held fast unto the cord of thy love. Woe betide him that denieth thy exalted station, and the things ordained for thee
from God, the Lord of all names, and him that bath turned away from thee, and rejected thy station before God, the
Lord of the mighty throne.”
“0 faithful ones!” Bahã’u’lláh specifically enjoins, “Should ye ‘visit the restingplace of the Most Exalted Leaf, who
bath ascended unto the Glorious Coin panion, stand ye and say: ‘Salutation and blessing and glory upon thee, 0 Holy
Leaf that bath sprung from the Divine Lote-Tree! I bear witness that thou has believed in God and His signs, and
answered His Call, and turned unto Him, and held fast unto His cord, and clung to the hem of His grace, and fled thy
home in His path, and chosen to live as a stranger, out of love for His presence and in thy longing to serve Him. May
God have mercy upon him that draweth nigh unto thee, and remembereth thee through the things which My Pen bath
voiced in this, the most great station. We pray God that He may forgive us, and forgive them that have turned unto thee,
and grant their desires, and bestow upon them, through His wondrous grace, whatever be their wish. He, verily, is the
Bountiful, the Generous. Praise be to God, He Who is the Desire of all worlds; and the Beloved of all who recognize
And finally, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Himself in one of His remarkably significant Tablets, has borne witness not only to the
exalted station of one whose “seed shall inherit the Gentiles,” whose Husband is the Lord of
The newly made graves of the Mother and Brother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
showing the flowers still in place before work on the erection
of their monuments was begun.
Detail of one of the twin monuments marking the graves of the Mother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and of His Brother, on Mt.
TRANSFER OF SACRED REMAINS
Hosts, but also to the sufferings endured by her who was His beloved mother.
“As to thy question concerning the 54th
chapter of Isaiah,”
“This chapter refers to the Most Exalted Leaf, the mother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahci. As a proof of this it is
more are the children of the desolate, than the children of the married wife.’
Reflect upon this statement, and then
upon the following:
‘And thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited.’
And truly the
humiliation and reproach which she suffered in the path of God is a fact which no one can refute. For the calamities and afflictions
thanked God theref or and praised Him, because He had enabled her to endure afflictions for the sake of Bahd. During
all this time, the men and women (Covenant-breakers) persecuted her in an incomparable manner, while she was
patient, God-fearing, calm, humble and contented through the favor of her Lord and by the bounty of her Creator.”
Your true brother,
garden is dark. Twilight has fallen on Mount Carmel and the veils of dusk have deepened over the bay of
‘Akká. A group of men stand waiting by the gate, beneath the steps. Suddenly there is a stir, the gardener runs to
illumine the entrance and amidst the white shafts of light a procession appears. A man clothed in black rests the weight
of a coffin on his shoulder. It is the Guardian of the Cause and he bears the mortal remains of the Purest Branch,
Bahá’u’lláh’s beloved son. Slowly he and his fellow bearers mount the narrow path and in silence approach the house
adjacent to the resting place of the Greatest Holy Leaf. A devoted servant speeds ahead with rug and candelabra from
the Holy Shrines and swiftly prepares the room. The gentle, strong face of the Guardian appears as he enters the door,
that precious weight always on his shoulder, and the coffin is laid temporarily to rest in an humble room, facing Bahji,
the Qiblih of the Faith. Again those devoted servants, led by their Guardian, return to the gate and again remount the
path with another sacred burden, this time the body of the wife of Bahâ’u’lláh, the mother of the Master.1
What a wave of joy seems to come onward with those simple processions! A joy
Haifa, Palestine December 21, 1939
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