Selections From the Writings of `Abdu'l-Bahá
8: O ye beloved of `Abdu'l-Bahá and ye handmaids of ...
O ye beloved of `Abdu'l-Bahá and ye handmaids of the Merciful! It is early morning, and the reviving winds of
the Abhá Paradise are blowing over all creation, but they
can stir only the pure of heart, and only the pure sense can
detect their fragrance. Only the perceiving eye beholdeth
the rays of the sun; only the listening ear can hear the singing
of the Concourse on high. Although the plentiful rains
of spring, the bestowals of Heaven, pour down upon all
things, they can only fructify good soil; they love not brackish
ground, where no results of all the bounty can be shown.
Today the soft and holy breathings of the Abhá Realm
are passing over every land, but only the pure in heart draw
nigh and derive a benefit therefrom. It is the hope of this
wronged soul that from the grace of the Self-Subsistent
One and by the manifest power of the Word of God, the
heads of the unmindful may be cleared, that they may
perceive these sweet savours which blow from secret rosebeds
of the spirit.
O ye friends of God! True friends are even as skilled
physicians, and the Teachings of God are as healing balm, a
medicine for the conscience of man. They clear the head, so
that a man can breathe them in and delight in their sweet
fragrance. They waken those who sleep. They bring awareness
to the unheeding, and a portion to the outcast, and to
the hopeless, hope.
If in this day a soul shall act according to the precepts and
the counsels of God, he will serve as a divine physician to
mankind, and like the trump of Isráfíl,
he will call the dead
of this contingent world to life; for the confirmations of the
Abhá Realm are never interrupted, and such a virtuous soul
hath, to befriend him, the unfailing help of the Company
on high. Thus shall a sorry gnat become an eagle in the
fulness of his strength, and a feeble sparrow change to a
royal falcon in the heights of ancient glory.
Wherefore, look not on the degree of your capacity, ask
not if you are worthy of the task: rest ye your hopes on the
help and loving-kindness, the favours and bestowals of
Bahá'u'lláh--may my soul be offered up for His friends!
Urge on the steed of high endeavour over the field of
sacrifice, and carry away from this wide arena the prize of
O ye handmaids of the merciful Lord! How many queens
of this world laid down their heads on a pillow of dust and
disappeared. No fruit was left of them, no trace, no sign,
not even their names. For them, no more granting of
bestowals; for them, no more living at all. Not so the handmaids
who ministered at the Threshold of God; these have
shone forth like glittering stars in the skies of ancient glory,
shedding their splendours across all the reaches of time.
These have fulfilled their dearest hopes in the Abhá
Paradise; they have tasted the honey of reunion in the congregation
of the Lord. Such souls as these profited from
their existence here on earth: they plucked the fruit of life.
As for the rest, `There surely came upon them a time when
they were a thing not spoken of.'
O ye lovers of this wronged one! Cleanse ye your eyes,
so that ye behold no man as different from yourselves. See
ye no strangers; rather see all men as friends, for love and
unity come hard when ye fix your gaze on otherness. And
in this new and wondrous age, the Holy Writings say that
we must be at one with every people; that we must see
neither harshness nor injustice, neither malevolence, nor
hostility, nor hate, but rather turn our eyes toward the
heaven of ancient glory. For each of the creatures is a sign of
God, and it was by the grace of the Lord and His power
that each did step into the world; therefore they are not
strangers, but in the family; not aliens, but friends, and to
be treated as such.
Wherefore must the loved ones of God associate in affectionate
fellowship with stranger and friend alike, showing
forth to all the utmost loving-kindness, disregarding the
degree of their capacity, never asking whether they deserve
to be loved. In every instance let the friends be considerate
and infinitely kind. Let them never be defeated by the malice
of the people, by their aggression and their hate, no matter
how intense. If others hurl their darts against you, offer
them milk and honey in return; if they poison your lives,
sweeten their souls; if they injure you, teach them how to
be comforted; if they inflict a wound upon you, be a balm
to their sores; if they sting you, hold to their lips a refreshing
O God, my God! These are Thy feeble servants; they are
Thy loyal bondsmen and Thy handmaidens, who have
bowed themselves down before Thine exalted Utterance
and humbled themselves at Thy Threshold of light, and
borne witness to Thy oneness through which the Sun hath
been made to shine in midday splendour. They have listened
to the summons Thou didst raise from out Thy hidden
Realm, and with hearts quivering with love and rapture,
they have responded to Thy call.
O Lord, shower upon them all the outpourings of Thy
mercy, rain down upon them all the waters of Thy grace.
Make them to grow as beauteous plants in the garden of
heaven, and from the full and brimming clouds of Thy
bestowals and out of the deep pools of Thine abounding
grace make Thou this garden to flower and keep it ever
green and lustrous, ever fresh and shimmering and fair.
Thou art verily the Mighty, the Exalted, the Powerful,
He Who alone, in the heavens and on the earth, abideth
unchanged. There is none other God save Thee, the Lord of
manifest tokens and signs.
1. [Believed to be the angel appointed to sound the trumpet on the Day of Resurrection to raise the dead at the bidding of the Lord.]