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Ḥuqúqu’lláh—The Right of God

  • Author:
  • Various

  • Source:
  • Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice, Bahá’í World Centre, April 2007
  • Pages:
  • 37
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Pages 16-17

Extracts from Letters Written by and on Behalf of the Universal House of Justice

55. “Some of the dear friends who observe their Ḥuqúqu’lláh…”

Some of the dear friends who observe their Ḥuqúqu’lláh obligations have written asking about the relationship that exists between contribution to the Funds and the payment of Ḥuqúqu’lláh. That is, if a person who intends to meet his Ḥuqúqu’lláh obligations offers contributions to other Funds and projects instead, would he be exempted from the payment of Ḥuqúqu’lláh or not?
The Holy Texts relevant to this matter are clear but, since this question has been repeatedly asked by the friends, it was decided to elucidate it for their information.
Payment of Ḥuqúqu’lláh is a spiritual obligation binding on the people of Bahá. The injunction is laid down in the Most Holy Book, and clear and conclusive explanations are embodied in various Tablets.
Every devoted believer who is able to meet the specified conditions, must pay the Ḥuqúqu’lláh, without any exception. Indeed according to the explicit Text of the Most Holy Book, failure to comply with this injunction is regarded as a betrayal of trust, and the divine call: “Whoso dealeth dishonestly 1 with God will in justice be exposed”, is a clear reference to such people.
The Centre of the Covenant has affirmed the obligation of Ḥuqúq in these words: “The Lord as a sign of His infinite bounties hath graciously favoured His servants by providing for a fixed money offering, 2 to be dutifully presented unto Him, though He, the True One and His servants have been at all times independent of all created things.” 17
This weighty ordinance, as testified by the Pen of Glory is invested with incalculable benefit and wisdom. It purifies one’s possessions, averts loss and disaster, conduces to prosperity and honour and imparts divine increase and blessing. It is a sacrifice offered for and related to God, and an act of servitude leading to the promotion of His Cause. As affirmed by the Centre of the Covenant, Ḥuqúq offerings constitute a test for the believers and enable the friends to become firm and steadfast in faith and certitude.
In brief, payment of Ḥuqúqu’lláh is one of the binding spiritual responsibilities of the followers of Bahá’u’lláh and the proceeds thereof revert to the Authority in the Cause to whom all must turn. Moreover, the Ancient Beauty—magnified be His praise—has affirmed that after the establishment of the Universal House of Justice necessary rulings would be enacted in this connection in conformity with that which God has purposed, and that no one, except the Authority to which all must turn, has the right to dispose of this Fund. In other words, whatever portion of one’s wealth is due to the Ḥuqúqu’lláh belongs to the World Centre of the Cause of God, not to the individuals concerned.
Thus the friends should not follow their own volition and judgement in using any of the funds set aside for Ḥuqúqu’lláh for any other purpose, even for charitable contributions of the Faith.
We earnestly hope that everyone may be privileged to observe this sacred and blessed obligation which would ensure the attainment of true happiness and would serve to promote the execution of Bahá’í enterprises throughout the world.
(25 October 1970, written by the Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of Iran, translated from the Persian)
1. The word “dishonestly” has been replaced with the word “faithlessly” in the authorized English translation of the Kitáb-i-Aqdas. See extract 3 in this compilation.   [ Back To Reference]
2. Ḥuqúq.   [ Back To Reference]