Selections From the Writings of `Abdu'l-Bahá
185: O ye friends and maidservants of the Merciful! ...
O ye friends and maidservants of the Merciful! From the Spiritual Assembly of Los Angeles a letter hath
been received. It was indicative of the fact that the blessed
souls in California, like unto an immovable mountain, are
withstanding the gale of violation, have, like unto blessed
trees, been planted in the soil of the Covenant and are
most firm and steadfast. The hope is entertained, therefore,
that through the blessings of the Sun of Truth they
may daily increase in their firmness and steadfastness. The
tests of every dispensation are in direct proportion to the
greatness of the Cause, and as heretofore such a manifest
Covenant, written by the Supreme Pen, hath not been
entered upon, the tests are proportionately more severe.
These trials cause the feeble souls to waver while those who
are firm are not affected. These agitations of the violators
are no more than the foam of the ocean, which is one of
its inseparable features; but the ocean of the Covenant shall
surge and shall cast ashore the bodies of the dead, for it
cannot retain them. Thus it is seen that the ocean of the
Covenant hath surged and surged until it hath thrown out
the dead bodies--souls that are deprived of the Spirit of
God and are lost in passion and self and are seeking leadership.
This foam of the ocean shall not endure and shall
soon disperse and vanish, while the ocean of the Covenant
shall eternally surge and roar....
From the early days of creation down to the present
time, throughout all the divine dispensations, such a firm
and explicit Covenant hath not been entered upon. In view
of this fact is it possible for this foam to remain on the
surface of the ocean of the Covenant? No, by God! The
violators are trampling upon their own dignity, are
uprooting their own foundations and are proud at being
upheld by flatterers who exert a great effort to shake the
faith of feeble souls. But this action of theirs is of no consequence;
it is a mirage and not water, foam and not the
sea, mist and not a cloud, illusion and not reality. All this
ye shall soon see.
Praise be to God, ye are firm and steadfast; be ye thankful
that like unto blessed trees ye are firmly planted in the
soil of the Covenant. It is sure that every firm one will
grow, will yield new fruits and will increase daily in freshness
and grace. Reflect upon all the writings of Bahá'u'lláh,
whether epistles or prayers, and ye shall surely come across
a thousand passages wherein Bahá'u'lláh prays: `O God!
Bring to naught the violators of the Covenant and defeat
the oppressors of the Testament.' `He who denieth the
Covenant and the Testament is rejected by God, and he
who remaineth firm and steadfast therein is favoured at the
Threshold of Oneness.' Such sayings and prayers abound,
refer to them and ye shall know.
Never be depressed. The more ye are stirred by violation,
the more deepen ye in firmness and steadfastness, and be
assured that the divine hosts shall conquer, for they are
assured of the victory of the Abhá Kingdom. Throughout
all regions the standard of firmness and steadfastness is
upraised and the flag of violation is debased, for only a few
weak souls have been led away by the flattery and the
specious arguments of the violators who are outwardly
with the greatest care exhibiting firmness but inwardly are
engaged in agitating souls. Only a few who are the leaders
of those who stir and agitate are outwardly known as
violators while the rest, through subtle means, deceive the
souls, for outwardly they assert their firmness and steadfastness
in the Covenant but when they come across
responsive ears they secretly sow the seeds of suspicion.
The case of all of them resembleth the violation of the
Covenant by Judas Iscariot and his followers. Consider:
hath any result or trace remained after them? Not even a
name hath been left by his followers and although a
number of Jews sided with him it was as if he had no
followers at all. This Judas Iscariot who was the leader of
the apostles betrayed Christ for thirty pieces of silver. Take
heed, O ye people of perception!
At this time these insignificant violators will surely
betray the Centre of the Covenant for the large sum which
by every subtle means they have begged. It is now thirty
years since Bahá'u'lláh ascended, and in that time these
violators have striven with might and main. What have
they achieved? Under all conditions those who have
remained firm in the Covenant have conquered, while the
violators have met defeat, disappointment and dejection.
After the ascension of `Abdu'l-Bahá, no trace of them shall
remain. These souls are ignorant of what will happen and
are proud of their own fancies.
In short, O ye friends of God and maidservants of the
Merciful! The hand of divine bounty hath placed upon
your heads a jewelled crown, the precious gems of which
shall shine eternally over all regions. Appreciate this
bounty, loose your tongues in praise and thanksgiving, and
engage in the promulgation of the divine teachings, for
this is the spirit of life and the means of salvation.