Bahaullah’s Writings

When the World Changed: Gallipoli and the Chief Vizier

Gallipoli suriy-i-rais

The future is hardly ever what we expect it to be. It almost always surprises us. This is proof enough that in any point of time, although we often write history as if it was inevitable, many possible futures stretch out before us. Sometimes there are pivot points in history when things change profoundly from…

Bahá’u’lláh’s letter to Pope Pius IX

letter to pope pius ix - breach of walls of rome

In 1869, while in Akka, Bahá’u’lláh wrote to the then Pope of the Roman Catholic Church: Pope Pius IX. History does not record any reply. As with other such messages, no reply was expected. The letter is short. It announces Baha’u’llah’s mission in words again unmistakable, although Bahá’u’lláh was a prisoner of the Caliph and Ottoman…

The Valley of Knowledge

valley of knowledge - layla and majnun

The Seven Valleys is Bahá’u’lláh’s presentation of an ancient literary metaphor for the journey of the soul. He wrote the Seven Valleys around 1860 after he had returned from two years of withdrawal from the world in the mountains of Kurdistan. The Seven Valleys are (in sequence): the Valley of Search, the Valley of Love, the…

To the Rulers of Society: the Summons of the Lord of Hosts

kings and rulers napoleon III and bismark

A number of articles have already noted that Bahá’u’lláh wrote to the rulers of society.  For example, the Suriy-i-Haykal – the Tablet of the Temple; articles such as the article on justice; Against Persecution of Minorities, and the Sultan’s Puppet Show.  Many of these letters are collected in a book entitled The Summons of the…

Trees of Meaning

trees

Trees are a recurring metaphor in Bahá’u’lláh’s writings and the Baha’i writings more generally. Here are a few examples. Trees are a metaphor for transformation of the human heart. Incline your hearts, O people of God, unto the counsels of your true, your incomparable Friend. The Word of God may be likened unto a sapling,…

The Fire Tablet

fire tablet

The Fire Tablet, written by Bahá’u’lláh, begins as a lament. Its name is echoed in its opening verses: … the hearts of the sincere are consumed in the fire of separation: Where is the gleaming of the light of Thy Countenance, O Beloved of the worlds? The Fire Tablet was written towards the end of…

Suriy-i-Haykal: Restoring the Temple

restoring the temple

As we have seen Bahá’u’lláh does not throw away the past; rather Bahá’u’lláh re-weaves the past in new forms in his teachings. The Temple of course refers to the ancient temple of Judaism in Jerusalem. The Temple Mount: the place where the Temple once stood, before it was destroyed by the Romans, remains the most sacred…