Baha'u'llah claimed to be the Return of Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Mohammad and all the Prophets. The claim puts the fate of billions of Souls, and indeed the planet, at stake. True or false, it is a claim that demands urgent, independent investigation and deep prayer. See some of those amazing prayers here...
Baha'u'llah's specific Revelation about God's wondrous, astonishing, dumbfoundingly close care for each soul, with every moment of our life planned before our birth, is unprecedented in the history of scripture. The paradoxical closeness of God to each moment of our lives-- Baha'u'llah tells us that God is closer to us than our own jugular vein, sends us infinite love with every breath and thought, sees through our eyes, and participates in astonishing detail in every moment of our lives -- is described in new details that are amazing and stunning.
This, notwithstanding the fact that we're talking about a Being of such incredibly vast greatness, Fashioning galaxies and DNA, folding infinite quantum event horizons in endless universes, radiating infinite love that was Ancient before our stars were born, Engineering Realities with such Wit, Wisdom, Skill and Intelligence, that words cannot begin to capture how Mighty a Being is that lovingly close to the intimate seconds of our lives, safeguarding our personal destiny for eons!
At the beginning of a chess game, the possible moves exceed all the atoms in the universe. By the endgame, a terrestrial computer can catalog all possible combinations. We celebrate a "grandmaster" who can play 6 or 7 simultaneous games; the greatest composers could visualize possibly 9. Given all the moments of our lives, and all the motions of 100 billion galaxies containing 100 billion stars each, the number of "simultaneous" moves God creates through just one of His Names ("The Fashioner") is the equivalent of infinite simultaneous chess games AT EACH MOMENT OF ONLY ONE LIFE! Would we trivialize our sparkingly brief time here if we knew thousands of angels engineered EACH of our moments with such Divine precision that we are each cared for with a detail that is unimaginable?
Now, recall that His Names also are infinite, and the Mighty Fashioner is only one, and the Names Themselves are not even a glimmer of the Will that drives the Pen that reveals them: and you can get a stunned insight into the paradox of an Unknowable Greatness that nevertheless is intimately in love with every moment of our individual lives! Indeed, those who have caught the slightest glimmer of His Light, the tiniest peek, live in a state of such bliss and dumbfounded joy that they can no longer attend to the activities of daily living.
No, even more: those to whom Baha'u'llah gave the smallest glimmer uniformly died immediately, unable to contain the burden of their joy, bursting forth from their earthly cages, leading Him to refuse to lift the veil more than just the slightest-- even though it is far clearer than in eternities of past histories, as He emphatically states that "Neither sun or moon have seen a Day such as this..." -- and the Sun is over 5 Billion years old!
Despite a Glory and Unapproachable Brilliance and Loftiness beyond comprehension, He nevertheless is so intimately concerned, compassionate, urgently caring about every moment of our lives from predestined eons of detailed planning of individual destiny, that hell turns out to be our despondent shame at rejecting and ignoring the most faithful, true, sincere, loving, caring, personal, humble Friend we can ever imagine!
All this, while we learn that God gets nothing out of our creation for Himself, that all the power, greatness, immortal bliss and light, joy, happiness, knowledge and love He has destined for us is 100% for our own sakes! Baha'u'llah tells us that God's love holds the atoms of our bodies together, and His loving consciousness of each moment of our lives is so immanent that if He forgot us for even a split second, we would cease to exist! In shocking, beautiful language, He tells us how every atom has been created for our joy and education, and that the entire vast creation has been Fashioned for our eternal spiritual evolution and bliss.
This, when we think of Him, what, once a week, month, year? 'Abdu'l-Baha writes that the "highest form of the worship of God is to make another human being happy," and "it is easier to please God than to please another human being." Baha'u'llah wonders in stunned amazement that, despite the Terrible Loving Ancient Greatness of God, He only asks the tiniest little effort to achieve eternal reunion, yet people choose paths that are much more difficult than the swift and simple path to his Radiant Love and Kindness.
Does God hear and answer our prayers?
The Baha'i Writings go much farther than that, telling us that every INSTANT of our lives is an answer to a prayer we might have even forgotten to say! We're now astonishingly told that God answers our prayers "potentially," and surrounds us with such love, care, protection, compassion and detailed guidance that our entire lives are really a continual stream of answered prayers.
The tiny percent we don't see as answered also are completely for our own good, even when we don't see it. The Greatness of God has never, ever been unveiled to this extent before. If we die and behold a Being of such vastness, power, beauty, ancient splendor and infinite glory that we we are blindingly breathless and can't even look up, we will be astonished to learn that we've only seen another human being in her angelic form.
Try to imagine how much more wondrous is the God that created such a soul! Today's descriptions of God are based on childish notions of material life, and even miss the mark of the angelic greatness of human angels, let alone the Unknowable Power that conceived them.
When those who attack and ridicule God and Religion breathe their last breath, they sink into eternal, irretrievable despondency, not due to some divine "punishment," but because of their own Greatness-- their own Souls seeing clearly the Gentle, Kind, Compassionate Nature of the Loving, Faithful Friend they have ridiculed and abandoned, after He pre-designed each detailed moment of their lives for eternal spiritual bliss. The "fear of God" is not some paternal childish fear, it is a Godlike soul irretrievably despondent at abandoning it's own glory for materialism. Without this choice, we'd be robots: God has woven MUCH higher destinies for each of us! Think He is incapable of turning humans into far more than we've presently imagined?
The contrast in their own souls between the moment to moment loving summons, guidance and personal care of a Being beyond galaxies, creates a torment that none can mitigate and a thirst that none can quench, and of these, even God's mercy despairs, as they eternally punish THEMSELVES for their blindness, selfishness and pride.
When they learn what Baha'u'llah suffered to free them, and the Unspeakable Selflessness of God, their own proud egos turn into an eternal fire that even the Name of God, the All Merciful cannot extinguish. When Satan was asked how he could exist throughout eons of the torment of remoteness, he answered, "The Sound of His Voice, when He said: "Be Gone.." In other words, the sad, loving tonality and timbre of a Voice that could vaporize Universes, but instead calls with Loving Kindness, and hopes that each free will endowed soul will choose correctly.
With a Majesty so Sanctified and Remote that we can't conceive of ever approaching His light, nevertheless we're told that God is in the center of our Hearts, echoing Jesus' statement that Heaven and Earth cannot contain God, and what alone can contain Him is the heart of His human lovers! Baha'u'llah, in astonishing detail, describes what has never been unveiled to our eyes before about our Stations relative to the Living God, and this new, Mighty Revelation: Divine things are too deep to be expressed by common words. The heavenly teachings are expressed in parable in order to be understood and preserved for ages to come. When the spiritually minded dive deeply into the ocean of their meaning they bring to the surface the pearls of their inner significance. There is no greater pleasure than to study God's Word with a spiritual mind.
The object of God's teaching to man is that man may know himself in order to comprehend the Greatness of God, for the sake of human agreement and concord.
The full measure of your success," He informs them, "is as yet unrevealed, its significance still unapprehended. Erelong, ye will, with your own eyes, witness how brilliantly every one of you, even as a shining star, will radiate, in the firmament of your country, the light of Divine Guidance, and will bestow upon its people the glory of an everlasting life.... The range of your future achievements still remains undisclosed. I fervently hope that in the near future the whole earth may be stirred and shaken by the results of your achievements.
O friends! Be not careless of the virtues with which ye have been endowed, neither be neglectful of your high destiny.... Ye are the stars of the heaven of understanding, the breeze that stirreth at the break of day, the soft-flowing waters upon which must depend the very life of all men, the letters inscribed upon His sacred scroll."
"O people of Bahá! Ye are the breezes of spring that are wafted over the world. Through you We have adorned the world of being with the ornament of the knowledge of the Most Merciful. Through you the countenance of the world hath been wreathed in smiles, and the brightness of His light shone forth.
Cling ye to the Cord of steadfastness, in such wise that all vain imaginings may utterly vanish. Speed ye forth from the horizon of power, in the name of your Lord, the Unconstrained, and announce unto His servants, with wisdom and eloquence, the tidings of this Cause, whose splendor hath been shed upon the world of being. Beware lest anything withhold you from observing the things prescribed unto you by the Pen of Glory, as it moved over His Tablet with sovereign majesty and might.
Great is the blessedness of him that hath hearkened to its shrill voice, as it was raised, through the power of truth, before all who are in heaven and all who are on earth.... O people of Bahá! The river that is Life indeed hath flowed for your sakes. Quaff ye in My name, despite them that have disbelieved in God, the Lord of Revelation. We have made you to be the hands of Our Cause. Render ye victorious this Wronged One, Who hath been sore-tried in the hands of the workers of iniquity. He, verily, will aid everyone that aideth Him, and will remember everyone that remembereth Him.
To this beareth witness this Tablet that hath shed the splendor of the loving-kindness of your Lord, the All-Glorious, the All-Compelling." "Blessed are the people of Bahá! God beareth Me witness! They are the solace of the eye of creation. Through them the universes have been adorned, and the Preserved Tablet embellished. They are the ones who have sailed on the ark of complete independence, with their faces set towards the Dayspring of Beauty.
How great is their blessedness that they have attained unto what their Lord, the Omniscient, the All-Wise, hath willed. Through their light the heavens have been adorned, and the faces of those that have drawn nigh unto Him made to shine." "By the sorrows which afflict the beauty of the All-Glorious! Such is the station ordained for the true believer that if to an extent smaller than a needle's eye the glory of that station were to be unveiled to mankind, every beholder would be consumed away in his longing to attain it.
For this reason it hath been decreed that in this earthly life the full measure of the glory of his own station should remain concealed from the eyes of such a believer." "If the veil be lifted, and the full glory of the station of those who have turned wholly towards God, and in their love for Him renounced the world, be made manifest, the entire creation would be dumbfounded."
Verily I say! No one hath apprehended the root of this Cause. It is incumbent upon everyone, in this day, to perceive with the eye of God, and to hearken with His ear. Whoso beholdeth Me with an eye besides Mine own will never be able to know Me.
None among the Manifestations of old, except to a prescribed degree, hath ever completely apprehended the nature of this Revelation." "I testify before God to the greatness, the inconceivable greatness of this Revelation. Again and again have We, in most of Our Tablets, borne witness to this truth, that mankind may be roused from its heedlessness." "How great is the Cause, how staggering the weight of its Message!"
"In this most mighty Revelation all the Dispensations of the past have attained their highest, their final consummation." "That which hath been made manifest in this preeminent, this most exalted Revelation, stands unparalleled in the annals of the past, nor will future ages witness its like." "The purpose underlying all creation is the revelation of this most sublime, this most holy Day, the Day known as the Day of God, in His Books and Scriptures--the Day which all the Prophets, and the Chosen Ones, and the holy ones, have wished to witness."
"The highest essence and most perfect expression of whatsoever the peoples of old have either said or written hath, through this most potent Revelation, been sent down from the heaven of the Will of the All-Possessing, the Ever-Abiding God." "This is the Day in which God's most excellent favors have been poured out upon men, the Day in which His most mighty grace hath been infused into all created things."
"This is the Day whereon the Ocean of God's mercy hath been manifested unto men, the Day in which the Daystar of His loving-kindness hath shed its radiance upon them, the Day in which the clouds of His bountiful favor have overshadowed the whole of mankind." "By the righteousness of Mine own Self! Great, immeasurably great is this Cause! Mighty, inconceivably mighty is this Day!"
"Every Prophet hath announced the coming of this Day, and every Messenger hath groaned in His yearning for this Revelation--a revelation which, no sooner had it been revealed than all created things cried out saying, `The earth is God's, the Most Exalted, the Most Great!'" "The Day of the Promise is come, and He Who is the Promised One loudly proclaimeth before all who are in heaven and all who are on earth, `Verily there is none other God but He, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting!'
I swear by God! That which had been enshrined from eternity in the knowledge of God, the Knower of the seen and unseen, is revealed. Happy is the eye that seeth, and the face that turneth towards, the Countenance of God, the Lord of all being." "Great indeed is this Day! The allusions made to it in all the sacred Scriptures as the Day of God attest its greatness.
The soul of every Prophet of God, of every Divine Messenger, hath thirsted for this wondrous Day. All the divers kindreds of the earth have, likewise, yearned to attain it." "This Day a door is open wider than both heaven and earth. The eye of the mercy of Him Who is the Desire of the worlds is turned towards all men. An act, however infinitesimal, is, when viewed in the mirror of the knowledge of God, mightier than a mountain. Every drop proffered in His path is as the sea in that mirror.
For this is the Day which the one true God, glorified be He, hath announced in all His Books, unto His Prophets and His Messengers." "This is a Revelation, under which, if a man shed for its sake one drop of blood, myriads of oceans will be his recompense." "A fleeting moment, in this Day, excelleth centuries of a bygone age.... Neither sun nor moon hath witnessed a day such as this Day."
"This is the Day whereon the unseen world crieth out, `Great is thy blessedness, O earth, for thou hast been made the footstool of thy God, and been chosen as the seat of His mighty throne.'" "The world of being shineth, in this Day, with the resplendency of this Divine Revelation. All created things extol its saving grace, and sing its praises. The universe is wrapt in an ecstasy of joy and gladness.
The Scriptures of past Dispensations celebrate the great Jubilee that must needs greet this most great Day of God. Well is it with him that hath lived to see this Day, and hath recognized its station." "This Day a different Sun hath arisen, and a different Heaven hath been adorned with its stars and its planets. The world is another world, and the Cause another Cause." "This is the Day which past ages and centuries can never rival. Know this, and be not of the ignorant."
"This is the Day whereon human ears have been privileged to hear what He Who conversed with God [Moses] heard upon Sinai, what He Who is the Friend of God [Muhammad] heard when lifted up towards Him, what He Who is the Spirit of God [Jesus] heard as He ascended unto Him, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting." "This Day is God's Day, and this Cause His Cause. Happy is he who hath renounced this world, and clung to Him Who is the Dayspring of God's Revelation."
"This is the King of Days, the Day that hath seen the coming of the Best Beloved, He Who through all eternity hath been acclaimed the Desire of the World." "This is the Chief of all days and the King thereof. Great is the blessedness of him who hath attained, through the sweet savor of these days, unto everlasting life, and who, with the most great steadfastness, hath arisen to aid the Cause of Him Who is the King of Names. Such a man is as the eye to the body of mankind."
"Peerless is this Day, for it is as the eye to past ages and centuries, and as a light unto the darkness of the times." "This Day is different from other days, and this Cause different from other causes. Entreat ye the one true God that He may deprive not the eyes of men from beholding His signs, nor their ears from hearkening unto the shrill voice of the Pen of Glory."
"These days are God's days, a moment of which ages and centuries can never rival. An atom, in these days, is as the sun, a drop as the ocean. One single breath exhaled in the love of God and for His service is written down by the Pen of Glory as a princely deed. Were the virtues of this Day to be recounted, all would be thunderstruck, except those whom thy Lord hath exempted."
"By the righteousness of God! These are the days in which God hath proved the hearts of the entire company of His Messengers and Prophets, and beyond them those that stand guard over His sacred and inviolable Sanctuary, the inmates of the celestial Pavilion and dwellers of the Tabernacle of Glory."
"Should the greatness of this Day be revealed in its fulness, every man would forsake a myriad lives in his longing to partake, though it be for one moment, of its great glory--how much more this world and its corruptible treasures!" "God the true One is My Witness! This is the Day whereon it is incumbent upon everyone that seeth to behold, and every ear that hearkeneth to hear, and every heart that understandeth to perceive, and every tongue that speaketh to proclaim unto all who are in heaven and on earth, this holy, this exalted, and all-highest Name."
"Say, O men! This is a matchless Day. Matchless must, likewise, be the tongue that celebrateth the praise of the Desire of all nations, and matchless the deed that aspireth to be acceptable in His sight. The whole human race hath longed for this Day, that perchance it may fulfill that which well beseemeth its station and is worthy of its destiny."
Through the movement of Our Pen of Glory We have, at the bidding of the Omnipotent Ordainer, breathed a new life into every human frame, and instilled into every word a fresh potency. All created things proclaim the evidences of this worldwide regeneration."
"O people! I swear by the one true God! This is the Ocean out of which all Seas have proceeded, and with which every one of them will ultimately be united. From Him all the Suns have been generated, and unto Him they will all return. Through His potency the Trees of Divine Revelation have yielded their fruits, every one of which hath been sent down in the form of a Prophet, bearing a Message to God's creatures in each of the worlds whose number God, alone, in His all-encompassing knowledge, can reckon.
This He hath accomplished through the agency of but one Letter of His Word, revealed by His Pen--a Pen moved by His directing Finger --His Finger itself sustained by the power of God's Truth." "By the righteousness of the one true God! If one speck of a jewel be lost and buried beneath a mountain of stones, and lie hidden beyond the seven seas, the Hand of Omnipotence would assuredly reveal it in this Day, pure and cleansed from dross."
"Every single letter proceeding from Our mouth is endowed with such regenerative power as to enable it to bring into existence a new creation--a creation the magnitude of which is inscrutable to all save God. He verily hath knowledge of all things."
"It is in Our power, should We wish it, to enable a speck of floating dust to generate, in less than the twinkling of an eye, suns of infinite, of unimaginable splendor, to cause a dewdrop to develop into vast and numberless oceans, to infuse into every letter such a force as to empower it to unfold all the knowledge of past and future ages." "We are possessed of such power which, if brought to light, will transmute the most deadly of poisons into a panacea of unfailing efficacy."
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"The Ancient Beauty hath consented to be bound with chainsthat mankind may be released from its bondage, and hath accepted to be made a prisoner within this most mighty Stronghold that the whole world may attain to true liberty. He hath drained to its dregs the cup of sorrow, that all the peoples of the earth may attain unto abiding joy, and be filled with gladness. This is of the mercy of your Lord, the Compassionate, the Most Merciful. We have accepted to be abased, O believers in the Unity of God, that ye may be exalted, and have suffered manifold afflictions, that ye might prosper and flourish. He Who hath come to build anew the whole world, behold, how they... have forced Him to dwell within the most desolate of cities!"
"Wert Thou to bestow on one of Thy creatures what would equal the kingdoms of earth and heaven, it would still not diminish by even as much as an atom the immensity of Thy dominion. Far greater art Thou than the Great One men are wont to call Thee, for such a title is but one of Thy names all of which were created by a mere indication of Thy will.
There is no God but Thee, the God of power, the God of glory, the God of knowledge and wisdom."