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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 40-48

“O ye Cohorts of God!…”

O ye 1 Cohorts of God!
A letter which was signed by you in general was received. Its content was of the utmost beauty, sweetness, eloquence and perfection. While reading it the utmost happiness was produced. It spoke of fasting during the month of the Fast. Happy is your condition for you have executed the divine command; and have arisen to fast in these blessed days. For this physical fasting is a symbol of the spiritual fasting, that is, abstaining from all carnal desires, becoming characterized with the attributes of the spiritual ones, attracted to the heavenly fragrances and enkindled with the fire of the love of God.
Likewise your letter was an evidence of the union and affinity of the hearts. I hope that through the bounty and favors of the Most Glorious Lord, in this new age, the regions of the West become the East of the Sun of Truth, the believers of God become the dawning-places of lights, the manifestors of the signs, be protected and guarded from the doubts of the heedless ones, remain firm and steadfast in the Covenant and Testament, and strive day and night in order to awaken those who are asleep, to make mindful those who are heedless, to make confident of the mysteries of the Kingdom those who are deprived, to confer a 41 share from the never-ending outpouring upon those who are helpless, to become the heralds of the Kingdom and to call the inhabitants of this terrestrial world to the Celestial Realm.
O ye Cohorts of God! Today in the present world each community is wandering in a wilderness, moving in accord with some passion and desire, and running to and fro in pursuance of his own imagination. Among the communities of the world, this community of the “Most Great Name” is free from every thought, keeping aloof from every project and scheme, arising with the purest designs and intentions, and striving and endeavoring with the utmost hope to live in accordance with the divine teachings in order that the surface of the earth become the delectable paradise, the nether world become the mirror of the Kingdom, the universe become another universe, and the human race attain to higher morals, conduct and manners.
O ye Cohorts of God! Through the protection and help of the Blessed Perfection—may my life be a sacrifice to His beloved ones! —you must conduct and deport yourselves in such a manner that you may stand out among other souls distinguished by a brilliancy like unto the sun. If any one of you enters a city he must become the center of attraction because of the sincerity, faithfulness, love, honesty, fidelity, truthfulness and loving-kindness of his disposition and nature toward all the inhabitants of the world, that the people of the city may all cry out: “This person is unquestionably a Bahai; for his manners, his behaviour, his conduct, his morals, his nature and his disposition are of the attributes of the Bahais.” Until you do attain to this 42 station, you have not fulfilled the Covenant and the Testament of God. For according to the irrefutable texts, He has taken from us a firm covenant that we may live and act in accord with the divine exhortations, commands and lordly teachings.
O ye Cohorts of God! Now is the time when the signs and the perfections of the “Most Great Name” become manifest and clear in this golden cycle in order that it may become demonstrated and established beyond doubt that this period is the period of the Blessed Perfection, and this cycle is distinguished from all other cycles and epochs.
O ye Cohorts of God! If you observe that a soul has turned his face completely toward the Cause of God, his intention is centralized upon the penetration of the Word of God, he is serving the Cause day and night with the utmost fidelity, no scent of selfishness is inhaled from his manners and deeds, and no trace of egotism or prejudice is seen in his personality—nay rather is he a wanderer in the wilderness of the love of God, and one intoxicated with the wine of the knowledge of God, occupied wholly with the diffusion of the fragrances of God, and attracted to the signs of the Kingdom of God; know ye of a certainty that he is confirmed with the powers of the Kingdom, assisted by the heaven of Might; and he will shine, gleam and sparkle like unto the morning star with the utmost brilliancy and splendor from the horizon of the everlasting gift. If he is alloyed with the slightest trace of passion, desire, ostentation or self-interest, it is certain that the results of all efforts will prove fruitless, and he will become deprived and hopeless. 43
O ye Cohorts of God! Praise be to God! —that the Blessed Perfection hath freed the necks from the bonds and fetters and released all from racial attachments by proclaiming, “Ye are all the fruits of one tree and the leaves of one branch.” Be ye kind to the human world, and be ye compassionate to the race of man, deal with the strangers as you deal with the friends, be ye gentle toward the outsiders as you are toward the beloved ones, know the enemy as the friend, look upon the satan as upon the angel, receive the unjust with the utmost love like unto a faithful one, and diffuse far and wide the fragrances of the musk of the gazelles of Kheta and Khotan 2 to the nostrils of the ravenous wolves.
Become ye a shelter and asylum to the fearful ones, be ye a cause of tranquility and cease to the souls and hearts of the agitated ones, impart ye strength to the helpless ones, be ye a remedy and antidote to the afflicted ones, and a physician and nurse to the sick ones. Serve ye for the promotion of peace and concord and establish in this transitory world the foundation of friendship, fidelity, reconciliation and truthfulness.
O ye Cohorts of God! Strive ye that this human world may be changed into a luminous realm and this mound of earth become the Paradise of ABHA. Darkness hath environed the world upon all sides. Savage tempers and inclination predominate. The human world has become the battlefield of the rapacious savages 44 and the arena of the heedless and ignorant ones. The souls are either bloodthirsty wolves or beasts with degenerate reason. They are either deadly poison, or worthless plants. There are a few souls who in reality have some humanitarian intentions and are thinking of the well-being and prosperity of human kind. You must in this instance (that is, service to humanity) sacrifice your lives, and in sacrificing your lives celebrate happiness and beatitude.
O ye Cohorts of God! His Highness, the Supreme 3 —may my life be a sacrifice to Him! —hath given up His life, and at every moment the Blessed Perfection 4 in His own life sacrificed hundreds of lives, endured dire calamities and oppressions. Laden with fetters He was thrown into the dark dungeon, He was exiled and banished to distant lands and finally passed His days in the Most Great Prison 5 . Likewise a multitude of friends drank the sweet chalice of martyrdom and sacrificed soul, possession, family and relatives for the Cause. How many houses were overthrown! How many residences were pillaged and rapined! How many magnificent palaces were turned into a desolate tomb! All these phenomena transpired only that the world of humanity may become a luminous realm; ignorance be changed into wisdom, human souls become merciful, warfare and bloodshed be destroyed to their very foundation, and the Kingdom of Peace become paramount over all men. Now strive ye, that perchance this Beloved of Hopes appear in the assemblage of the world and this Providence become a realized fact. 45
O ye Cohorts of God! Beware lest ye offend the feelings of anyone, or sadden the heart of any person, or move the tongue in reproach of and finding fault with anybody, whether he is friend or stranger, believer or enemy. Pray in behalf of all and entreat God for forgiveness and bounty for all. Beware, beware that any soul take revenge or retaliate over another even if he be a bloodthirsty enemy. Beware, beware that any one rebuke or reproach a soul, though he may be an ill-wisher and an ill-doer. Do ye not look upon the creature, advance ye toward the Creator. Behold ye not the rebellious people, turn your faces toward the Lord of Hosts. Look ye not upon the ground, raise your eyes to the world-illuminating Sun, which hath transformed every atom of the gloomy soil into bright and luminous substance.
O ye Cohorts of God! In the moment of catastrophe, find ye patience, resignation and submission.
The more the calamities are intensified the less become ye disturbed. Withstand ye, with perfect assurance, the flood of trials and calamities, through the power of His Highness, the Almighty.
Last year some of the known and unknown, friends and strangers, slandered, calumniated and presented false accusations against these exiled ones, before the throne of His Imperial Majesty, the Padeshah of the Ottomans; while these oppressed ones were entirely free from those calumnies. The government, conformable with prudent measures, arose to investigate these calumnies and dispatched some commissioners (or examiners) to this city. Therefore it is evident that the field which was found by the ill-wishers and the flood 46 which was brought about by them, can neither be written nor explained. However, relying upon God, we conducted ourselves with the utmost patience and submission, resignation and calmness; so much so that if one did not know anything about these matters, he would have thought that we were in perfect ease of soul, enjoying the tranquility of heart and mind, and were engaged in happiness and felicity. The matters reached to such an issue that the plaintiffs and calumniators entered into alliance and intrigue with the officials, in regard to the carrying out of the work of investigation. Consequently, the plaintiff, the magistrate and the witness became as one single soul. Therefore it is clear what things transpired! But here one witnesses the fairness and impartiality of His Imperial Majesty, the Padeshah of the Ottomans, who so far has not given any consideration to these slanders, statements, stories and calumnies, but has dealt with the utmost justice and equity. Truly, I say, if there had been any other person except this Padeshah, no trace of these exiled ones would remain. This is the truth! We must not overlook justice. In reality today in the Asiatic world, the Padeshah of the Ottoman Empire and the Shah of Persia, Mozeffer-Eddin, are peerless and have no equals. If you could realize the degree of the malignity of the enemies, and the wickedness and mischief done by the ill-wishers, especially by the unkind brother, both here and in Persia, and that notwithstanding these seditions and villainies, these two kings have treated us with tranquility and mildness, ye would undoubtedly feel sure that both are just. If they were like kings of bygone ages, unquestionably 47 every day thousands of souls would have been deprived of life in Persia. Therefore pray ye earnestly in behalf of these two kings, beseech for them protection and confirmation in the threshold of the Almighty, and ask for them, from God, victory and triumph; especially for the Padeshah of the Ottoman Empire, who has dealt at all times in justice with these exiled ones.
O Thou Omnipotent God! Perfume the nostrils of the friends in the Occident with the breaths of the Holy Spirit; and illumine the horizon of the West with the light of guidance. Make the remote ones the near ones, change the strangers into compassionate friends, awaken those who are asleep, and make heedful those who are heedless.
O Thou Glorious Lord! Confirm and assist these noble friends with Thy good pleasure, suffer them to become the well-wishers of the known and unknown, enter them in the world of the everlasting Kingdom, confer upon them a share from the outpouring of the Realm of Might, make them real Bahais and sincere godly ones, deliver them from superficiality and establish them in Truth, make them the signs of the Kingdom and brilliant stars in the horizon of the world, make them the cause of the prosperity and composure of the world of humanity and the servants of the universal peace, intoxicate all of them with the wine of Thy commands and exhortations and grant to all good morals and conduct in the path of Thy teachings.
O my God! The desire of this Servant of the Threshold is to see that the friends of the West have embraced the beloved of the East, and the individuals 48 of the world of humanity are with the utmost kindness the members of one assemblage, the drops of one ocean, the birds of one rose-garden, the pearls of one sea, the leaves of one tree and the rays of one sun.
1. Revealed in response to a supplication signed by 489 believers in America during the period of the 19-day fast in 1906.   [ Back To Reference]
2. Kheta and Khotan are two cities in China celebrated for having large numbers of musk-producing animals. The reference here symbolizes the severed and detached believers who are diffusing the fragrance of the Word of God.   [ Back To Reference]
3. The BAB.   [ Back To Reference]
4. BAHA’O’LLAH.   [ Back To Reference]
5. Acca.   [ Back To Reference]