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Tablets of Abdul-Baha Abbas

  • Author:
  • ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

  • Source:
  • Bahá’í Publishing Committee, 1909 edition
  • Pages:
  • 730
Go to printed page GO
Pages 366-375

“Verily I approach Thee, O my God, in the darkest hour…”

Verily I approach Thee, O my God, in the darkest hour of this dark night, and pray Thee with my inmost heart, while I am moving by Thy fragrances, which are being diffused from Thy Kingdom of Abha, and say 1 :
O my Lord, I have not words enough to praise Thee, nor can the birds of meditation ever ascend to the Kingdom of Thy sanctity. Thou art, in Thine entity, sanctified from every praise and commendation, and art purified, in Thyself, from the thanksgiving of the people of emanation. Thou hast been eternally in the sanctity of Thyself exalted beyond the comprehension of the knowing among the Supreme Concourse, and Thou shalt be permanently in the purity of Thine essence, incomprehensible beyond the knowledge of the praisers among the dwellers in the exalted Realm of Might!
O my God, O my God, because of Thine incomprehensibility, how can I ever mention Thee by any praise, or glorify Thee by any commendation! Thou art, O my God, exalted and sanctified from all praises and glorification, O Thou, my beloved!
O my God, O my God, have pity on my impotence, my abasement, my indigence, my shame, and my humility. Give me the cup of Thy forgiveness and Thy gift, move me by the breath of Thy love, dilate my breast by the light of Thy knowledge, purify my person by the mysteries of Thy singleness, and quicken me through the breezes of the garden of Thy mercy so that I may sever myself from all beside Thee, lay hold of the hem of the mantle of Thy majesty, forget aught else 367 save Thee, be associated with the fragrance of Thy days, be enabled to continue faithful in the threshold of Thy sanctity and stand up in the service of Thy Cause, be submissive and lowly before Thy beloved ones and to account myself as nothing in the presence of Thy chosen ones. Verily, Thou art the Helper, the Assister, the Exalted, the Generous!
O my God, O my God, I beg of Thee, by the effulgence of the light of Thy countenance, whereby all the regions of the world are illumined; by the glances of the eye of Thy mercy, which comprehends all things; by the billows of the sea of Thy favor, wherewith all parts are overflowing; by the rains from the clouds of Thy gift, which are falling upon the essence of the created beings; by the radiance of Thy mercy, which overpowers existence—to strengthen Thy chosen ones to faithfulness, to enable Thy beloved ones to serve Thine exalted Threshold, to encircle them through the hosts of Thy power, which have encompassed all things, and to assist them through Thy numerous armies from the Supreme Concourse.
O my God, these are lowly souls in Thy doorway and poor ones before Thy court, humbly seeking Thy grace and in need of Thy confirmation, turning toward the Kingdom of Thy Singleness, and yearning for the bounties of Thy gift. O my Lord, refine their consciences through the lights of Thy sanctity, and purify their hearts through the gift of Thy confirmation, dilate their breasts through the fragrances of joy and happiness, which are being diffused from Thy Supreme Concourse, and illumine their sight by witnessing Thy chief signs. Make them signs of sanctity and standards of 368 purity waving on the apex of the contingent world, unto all creatures; so that their words may take effect in the hearts though they are even as flint. May they stand up to serve Thee, to devote themselves unto the Kingdom of Thy divinity, to turn unto the realm of the might of Thy self-subsistence, to spread Thy signs, to become illumined through Thy lights, to unfold Thy mysteries, to direct Thy servants unto the running water, and the fountain of Tassnime 2 which is gushing and springing out in the midst of the paradise of Thy singleness; to unfold the sail of devotion on board the Ark of Deliverance and sail on the sea of Thy knowledge, to spread the wings of unity and soar up towards the kingdom of Thy Singleness, to become servants whom the Supreme Concourse may commend, and whom the people of Thy Kingdom of Abha may praise, to hear the invisible heralds who announce the chief glad-tidings; to pray Thee at the dawn with most wonderful invocations, while yearning after Thy visit—O my mighty Lord!—to weep every morn and eve, longing for the entrance into the shadow of Thy great mercy!
O my Lord, assist them in all cases, and help them under all circumstances, through the angels of Thy sanctity, who are Thine invisible hosts, and overwhelm all the armies of the inferior concourse. Verily, Thou art the Powerful, the Omnipotent, the Comprehending, and Thou art the Almighty!
O pure God, O loving God! We are wandering around Thy abode and longing for the gift of Thy meeting, and are loving Thy characteristics. We are 369 helpless, humble, lowly, and weak; confer Thy mercy upon us, favor us with Thy gifts, overlook our shortcomings, and conceal our endless faults. We are Thine, whatever we might be (good or bad), and whatever we may say or hear is but Thy commendation. We seek but Thy face, and we search but Thy path. Thou art the loving God, while we are but sinners and love Thee passionately. O Thou Cloud of Mercy (shower upon us) a few drops! O Flower-garden of Favor (send to us) some fragrances! O Sea of Gifts (flow over us) Thy waves! O Sun of Grace (pour on us) some radiances! Have pity on us, and show us favor. We swear by Thy Beauty that we are full of errors, and we have no deeds, but hopes. Except Thy concealing veil should cover us, and Thy preservation and protection should favor us, these weak souls have not enough power to employ themselves in Thy service, and the indigent ones have not enough wealth to show a rich appearance. Thou art the Powerful, the Mighty!
I beg of Thee to assist them! Do refresh these faded souls with the drops of the cloud of Thy gifts, and do illumine these lowly beings through the effulgences of the sun of Thy Singleness! I pray Thee to cast these thirsty fishes into the sea of Thy mercy; guide their lost caravan unto the asylum of Thy unity; direct these bewildered souls unto the fountain of Thy guidance, and cause these wanderers to abide in the shelter of Thy might. Suffer the thirsty ones to drink from the Salsabil 3 of Thy gifts, and quicken the dead by eternal life. Endow the blind with sight, the deaf with hearing, the dumb with speech, the lukewarm with energy, 370 the heedless with mindfulness, the sleepers with wakefulness, and the proud with humility. Verily, Thou art the Powerful, Thou art the Forgiver! Thou art the Loving! Verily, Thou art the Generous, the Most High!
O friends of God, and assistants of this humble servant! When the Sun of Truth shone forth with His infinite bounties from the dawning-place of hopes, and the horizon of existence was illuminated through the radiance of sanctity—then He cast forth such splendor whereby the gloomy darkness disappeared! Therefore, the earth became the envy of the celestial world, and the realm of dust was made a scene of the exalted kingdom. Then the fragrances of holiness exhaled, and the sweet odors were diffused. The breeze of the divine spring blew, and the fruitful winds of infinite generosity passed by from the point of favor. The brilliant morning dawned and the glad-tidings of the greatest gift were announced. The divine spring appeared throughout the contingent world. The earth of existence moved and the material world was put in motion. The barren and dried up soil turned into an eternal garden, and the inanimate earth was endowed with eternal life. The flowers and myrtles of knowledge grew, and the fresh herbage of the knowledge of God flourished. The material world showed forth the bounties of the Merciful, and the visible world displayed the scene of the invisible world. The call of God was raised, the divine banquet celebrated, the cup of the Testament was circulated and the universal acclamation was uttered! 371
Among the people, a multitude became intoxicated with this divine wine—and a multitude were deprived of this great favor. Many a soul enlightened his sight and insight by the radiance of grace, and many were cheered and rejoiced at the melodies of unity. Some birds sang melodies and harmonies, and some nightingales began to warble on the branches of the rose-tree of mercifulness. The Kingdom and the phenomenal world were adorned, and became the envy of the delectable paradise—but, alas—and a thousand times alas!—that the heedless souls are still in the sleep of negligence, and the ignorant are keeping clear of this holy gift. The blind are veiled, the deaf are bereft and the dead despair of attaining to it; just as it is said (in the Koran) “They despair of the life to come, as the infidels despair (of the resurrection of) those who dwell in the graves.”
As to you—O friends of the Merciful!—move your tongues to thank the Loving Lord, and employ yourselves in praising and glorifying the Beauty of the Adored One, for ye were granted the privilege to be exhilarated from this most pure cup, and became full of cheer and attraction from this goblet of wine. Ye have perfumed your nostrils with the fragrances of sanctity, and delighted your senses with the scent of the garment of the Joseph of faithfulness. Ye tasted the honey of devotion from the hand of the Unique Beloved and partook of the eternal table at the feast of the blessing of the Presence of the Unity. This favor is one of the special gifts of the Presence of the Merciful, and this grace and generosity is one of the incomparable gifts of our Loving Lord. This is in accordance with what Christ said: “Many are called, but few 372 chosen.” That is to say, there are many who are invited, but those souls who are signalized with the grace and favor of guidance are but very rare. “This is the bounty of God; He will give the same unto whom He pleaseth; and God is endowed with great bounty.”
O friends of God! the candle of the Testament is surrounded by the hypocritical winds of the people of the world and the nightingale of faithfulness is surprised by the crows of ill-nature—the violators. The mindless birds of night are plotting against the dove of commemoration and the ferocious beasts are prowling after the gazelle of the plain of the love of God. So, He is in great danger and painful affliction.
The beloved of God must be as firm as a mountain, and must not quiver under the most violent shock, nor grieve at the greatest calamities; but must be as a solid foundation. They must cling to the hem of Glory and trust in the Beauty of the Most High. They must lean on the help and assistance of the Ancient Kingdom and confide in the care and protection of the Generous Lord. They must at every instant nourish and refresh themselves with the dew of favor, and in every breath revive and cheer themselves through the waves of the Holy Spirit, raise themselves to serve the Cause of the Supreme, and endeavor their utmost to diffuse the breath of God. They must be as a strongly fortified fortress for the defense of the blessed Cause, and as a well-made fortification for the protection of the hosts of the Pre-existent Beauty. They must in all conditions faithfully guard the edifice of the Cause of God, and be scintillating stars on the horizon of the visible; because the gloomy darkness of all nations prevailed from all 373 directions, and all the creeds of the world are plotting to quench their evident light. Notwithstanding the strenuous opposition of all tribes, how can ye continue heedless thereof? So, ye must be conscious and aware thereof, and be ready to guard and preserve the Cause of the Creator. For this day the most necessary duty is to purify your morals, to correct your manners, and to improve your deeds. The beloved of the Merciful must appear with such morals and habits among the creatures that the fragrant odor of the garden of sanctity may perfume all the horizons and may quicken all the dead souls, because the Manifestation of Divinity and the dawning of the infinite lights of the Invisible is intended for the education of souls and the refinement of the morals of all in existence, so that some blessed souls may be delivered from the gloomy world of brutality and be characterized with attributes which tend to adorn the being of man; that the earthly people may become godlike, the dark ones may become illuminated, the uninstructed ones may become familiar with the mystery of the Kingdom, and the mortal souls may be associated with the Immortal Splendor; the deprived ones may partake of the endless sea, and the ignorant may drink from the living water of knowledge; the savage may give up their ferocity, and the cruel may become forbearing; that the warlike may search after true conciliation and the pitiless savages may be favored with ideal peace; that the degraded may learn about the condition of purity and the soiled ones may attain to the stream of sanctity. If these divine bounties do not appear in the being of men, the bounty of the 374 Divine Manifestation will prove fruitless and the splendor of the Sun of Truth will become without effect.
So, O beloved of God, endeavor with your hearts and souls, that ye may be qualified with the morals and attributes of the Blessed Perfection, and partake of the bounties of His sanctity; that ye may become signs of unity and standards of oneness, discover the essence of singleness and sing harmonies and lays in in this divine garden, in merciful melodies; that ye may become as thankful birds, and sing a song in the rose-garden of existence which may astonish minds and senses; that ye may hoist a standard on the apex of the universe which may flutter in the winds of favor, and plant a tree in the field of the visible world which may bring forth fruits of the utmost delicacy and freshness.
I swear by the Ideal Educator that, if ye act in compliance with the divine exhortations, as revealed in brilliant Tablets, this gloomy earth will become a mirror of the Exalted Kingdom, and the inferior page will display the Kingdom of Abha!
O friends of God! Praise be unto God that the invisible bounties of the Sun of Truth are encompassing you from all directions, and the doors of mercy are opened from all parts. Now is the time to be benefited and filled therewith. Seize the opportunity, and lose not the chance. Keep yourselves entirely clear of the world’s conditions of gloom, and show forth the characters and qualities of divine souls, that ye may consider to what an extent the radiance of the Divine Sun is shining and brilliant, and how the signs of favor are showing forth from the invisible World of Unity.
O friends of God! Praise be unto God that His 375 Imperial Majesty, the Shah, acts with the utmost kindness, and His Highness, the Prime Minister, is practising the greatest fairness and equity towards the people. So, the friends of God must night and day pray for the permanence of the glorious empire, and raise themselves to return thanks to His Majesty for his justice, equity and kindness, because this is one of the indisputable commandments of God, as revealed in all celestial books.
1. Revealed for the believers in Persia in 1901.   [ Back To Reference]
2. One of the fountains of Paradise mentioned in the Koran.   [ Back To Reference]
3. Salsahil, i.e., Sweet Water of Life.   [ Back To Reference]