A new version of the Bahá’í Reference Library is now available. This ‘old version’ of the Bahá’í Reference Library will be replaced at a later date.

The new version of the Bahá’i Reference Library can be accessed here »

Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era

  • Author:
  • J. E. Esslemont

  • Source:
  • US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1980 edition
  • Pages:
  • 286
Go to printed page GO
Pages 76-77


Devotion to God implies also severance from everything that is not of God, severance, that is, from all selfish and worldly, and ever other-worldly desires. The path of God may 77 lie through riches or poverty, health or sickness, through palace or dungeon, rose garden or torture chamber. Whichever it be, the Bahá’í will learn to accept his lot with “radiant acquiescence.” Severance does not mean stolid indifference to one’s surroundings or passive resignation to evil conditions; nor does it mean despising the good things which God has created. The true Bahá’í will not be callous, nor apathetic nor ascetic. He will find abundant interest, abundant work and abundant joy in the Path of God, but he will not deviate one hair’s breadth from that path in pursuit of pleasure nor hanker after anything that God has denied him. When a man becomes a Bahá’í, God’s Will becomes his will, for to be at variance with God is the one thing he cannot endure. In the path of God no errors can appall, no troubles dismay him. The light of love irradiates his darkest days, transmutes suffering into joy, and martyrdom itself into an ecstasy of bliss. Life is lifted to the heroic plane and death becomes a glad adventure. Bahá’u’lláh says:—
He that hath in his heart even less than a mustard seed of love for anything beside Me, verily he cannot enter My Kingdom.—Súratu’l-Haykal
O Son of Man!

If thou lovest Me, turn away from thyself; and if thou seekest My pleasure, regard not thine own; that thou mayest die in Me and I may eternally live in thee.
O My Servant!

Free thyself from the fetters of this world, and loose thy soul from the prison of self. Seize thy chance, for it will come to thee no more.—The Hidden Words.