Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Paragraph 90

Great God! Notwithstanding their acceptance of the truth of this tradition, these divines who are still doubtful of, and dispute about, the theological obscurities of their faith, yet claim to be the exponents of the subtleties of the law of God, and the expounders of the essential mysteries of His holy Word. They confidently assert that such traditions as indicate the advent of the expected Qá’im have not yet been fulfilled, whilst they themselves have failed to inhale the fragrance of the meaning of these traditions, and are still oblivious of the fact that all the signs foretold have come to pass, that the way of God’s holy Cause hath been revealed, and the concourse of the faithful, swift as lightning, are, even now, passing upon that way, whilst these foolish divines wait expecting to witness the signs foretold. Say, O ye foolish ones! Wait ye even as those before you are waiting!

Here we are: the fifth paragraph, of thirteen, concerning the words, "And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet."

So, just as a reminder, "this tradition" refers to that one from the previous paragraph that says the Cause is sorely trying. Also, we realize that we haven't really talked about it, but we begin every session with a prayer, usually one for either detachment or for teaching. And, another thing that is interesting for us is that we have been studying this for a while. In fact, on this very paragraph, Samuel has written a note in his copy of the book that we first studied it together back in July of 2001.


All of a sudden, the few years we've spent writing this blog don't seem all that long now.

Anyways, this paragraph seems to focus on humility. The divines that Baha'u'llah is speaking of don't seem to show it, but it really is one of the most important qualities we can have when searching out the truth, or trying to share what we have discovered.

We remember a story of a dear friend of ours who was living in the west side of Chicago back in the 60s. This was a part of town that was was mostly African American, or as they used to say back in the day, Black. And a group of Baha'is showed up in the area, who were mostly White, with just a few of the "token Black folk", as our friend put it. Now this woman was a fairly militant, angry Black woman who had seen all the hypocrisy and junk that the White folk had done, and she was having none of it. So when these two Baha'is knocked on her door to talk about wonderful their faith was, she asked them some really difficult questions.

And we mean really difficult.

Now, as is the usual case, there were two Baha'is there, as we said. One was the newbie who was to do all the talking, and the other was the old hand who would reflect back and help the newbie grow. It's sort of like how we "accompany" others today, only they didn't have that word in their lingo at the time. Actually, it's exactly like how we accompany others.

Before this newbie could say a word, though, the other Baha'i turned to them and said, "These are very important questions. They are the questions that every person in this neighbourhood has in their heart. And if we can't answer them, then we have no business being here."

This respect, honesty, and humility completely defused any anger that was in her heart, and showed her that this really was something different.

Now we compare that to these divines that Baha'u'llah is describing. No humility, and even anger if they're asked questions.

But here, Baha'u'llah is, as we know, helping prepare the Uncle of the Bab to recognize Him. He shows the obvious hypocrisy of the divines of His day, and points out how they are making the same mistakes that the divines made at the time of Muhammad, not to mention the time of Jesus.

"Wait ye even as those before you are waiting!" The parallels are obvious, and Baha'u'llah is giving him the choice of taking a different stance, or, well, being foolish.

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