Archive for the ‘Wisdom’ Category

The Valley of Love
October 23, 2006

“…and be dissolved in the fire of love. In this city the heaven of ecstasy is upraised and the world-illuming sun of yearning shineth, and the fire of love is ablaze; and when the fire of love is ablaze, it burneth to ashes the harvest of reason. 

Now is the traveler unaware of himself, and of aught besides himself. He seeth neither ignorance nor knowledge, neither doubt nor certitude; he knoweth not the morn of guidance from the night of error. He fleeth both from unbelief and faith, and deadly poison is a balm to him. Wherefore Attár 1 saith: 

For the infidel, error—for the faithful, faith;
For Attár’s heart, an atom of Thy pain. 

The steed of this Valley is pain; and if there be no pain this journey will never end. In this station the lover hath no thought save the Beloved, and seeketh no refuge save the Friend. 9 At every moment he offereth a hundred lives in the path of the Loved One, at every step he throweth a thousand heads at the feet of the Beloved. 

O My Brother! Until thou enter the Egypt of love, thou shalt never come to the Joseph of the Beauty of the Friend; and until, like Jacob, thou forsake thine outward eyes, thou shalt never open the eye of thine inward being; and until thou burn with the fire of love, thou shalt never commune with the Lover of Longing. 

A lover feareth nothing and no harm can come nigh him: Thou seest him chill in the fire and dry in the sea. 

A lover is he who is chill in hell fire;
A knower is he who is dry in the sea. 2 

Love accepteth no existence and wisheth no life: He seeth life in death, and in shame seeketh glory. To merit the madness of love, man must abound in sanity; to merit the bonds of the Friend, he must be full of spirit. Blessed the neck that is caught in His noose, happy the head that falleth on the dust in the pathway of His love. Wherefore, O friend, give up thy self that thou mayest find the Peerless One, pass by this mortal earth that thou mayest seek 10 a home in the nest of heaven. Be as naught, if thou wouldst kindle the fire of being and be fit for the pathway of love. 

Love seizeth not upon a living soul,
The falcon preyeth not on a dead mouse. 3 

Love setteth a world aflame at every turn, and he wasteth every land where he carrieth his banner. Being hath no existence in his kingdom; the wise wield no command within his realm. The leviathan of love swalloweth the master of reason and destroyeth the lord of knowledge. He drinketh the seven seas, but his heart’s thirst is still unquenched, and he saith, “Is there yet any more?” 4 He shunneth himself and draweth away from all on earth. 

Love’s a stranger to earth and heaven too;
In him are lunacies seventy-and-two. 5 

He hath bound a myriad victims in his fetters, wounded a myriad wise men with his arrow. Know that every redness in the world is from 11 his anger, and every paleness in men’s cheeks is from his poison. He yieldeth no remedy but death, he walketh not save in the valley of the shadow; yet sweeter than honey is his venom on the lover’s lips, and fairer his destruction in the seeker’s eyes than a hundred thousand lives. 
Wherefore must the veils of the satanic self be burned away at the fire of love, that the spirit may be purified and cleansed and thus may know the station of the Lord of the Worlds. 

Kindle the fire of love and burn away all things,
Then set thy foot into the land of the lovers. 6 

And if, confirmed by the Creator, the lover escapes from the claws of the eagle of love, he will enter…”

1. Farídu’d-Dín Attár (ca. 1150–1230 A.D.), the great Persian Súfí poet.
2. Persian mystic poem.
3. Persian mystic poem. Cf. The Hidden Words, No. 7, Arabic.
4. Qur’án 50:29.  
5. Jalálu’d-Dín Rúmí (1207–1273 A.D.); The Mathnaví. Jalálu’d-Dín, called Mawláná (“our Master”), is the greatest of all Persian Súfí poets, and founder of the Mawlaví “whirling” dervish order.
6. From an ode by Bahá’u’lláh.

Author: Bahá’u’lláh, Prophet Founder of the Baha’i Faith.
Source: http://reference.bahai.org/en/t/b/SVFV/svfv-2.html

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Tarazát (Ornaments)
August 4, 2006

The first Taráz (Ornament)

“[It] is that man should know his own self and recognize that which leadeth unto loftiness or lowliness, glory or abasement, wealth or poverty. Having attained the stage of fulfilment and reached his maturity, man standeth in need of wealth, and such wealth as he acquireth through crafts or professions is commendable and praiseworthy in the estimation of men of wisdom, and especially in the eyes of servants who dedicate themselves to the education of the world and to the edification of its peoples. They are, in truth, cup-bearers of the life-giving water of knowledge and guides unto the ideal way. They direct the peoples of the world to the straight path and acquaint them with that which is conducive to human upliftment and exaltation. The straight path is the one which guideth man to the dayspring of perception and to the dawning-place of true understanding and leadeth him to that which will redound to glory, honour and greatness.” *

The second Taráz (Ornament)

“The second Taráz is to consort with the followers of all religions in a spirit of friendliness and fellowship, to proclaim that which the Speaker on Sinai hath set forth and to observe fairness in all matters. They that are endued with sincerity and faithfulness should associate with all the peoples and kindreds of the earth with joy and radiance, inasmuch as consorting with people hath promoted and will continue to promote unity and concord, which in turn are conducive to the maintenance of order in the world and to the regeneration of nations. Blessed are such as hold fast to the cord of kindliness and tender mercy and are free from animosity and hatred. This Wronged One exhorteth the peoples of the world to observe tolerance and righteousness, which are two lights amidst the darkness of the world and two educators for the edification of mankind. Happy are they who have attained thereto and woe betide the heedless.” *

The third Taráz (Ornament)

“[It] concerneth good character. A good character is, verily, the best mantle for men from God. With it He adorneth the temples of His loved ones. By My life! The light of a good character surpasseth the light of the sun and the radiance thereof. Whoso attaineth unto it is accounted as a jewel among men. The glory and the upliftment of the world must needs depend upon it. A goodly character is a means whereby men are guided to the Straight Path and are led to the Great Announcement. Well is it with him who is adorned with the saintly attributes and character of the Concourse on High.” *

The fourth Taráz (Ornament)

“[It] concerneth trustworthiness. Verily it is the door of security for all that dwell on earth and a token of glory on the part of the All-Merciful. He who partaketh thereof hath indeed partaken of the treasures of wealth and prosperity. Trustworthiness is the greatest portal leading unto the tranquillity and security of the people. In truth the stability of every affair hath depended and doth depend upon it. All the domains of power, of grandeur and of wealth are illumined by its light.” *

The fifth Taráz (Ornament)

“The fifth Taráz concerneth the protection and preservation of the stations of God’s servants. One should not ignore the truth of any matter, rather should one give expression to that which is right and true. The people of Bahá should not deny any soul the reward due to him, should treat craftsmen with deference, and, unlike the people aforetime, should not defile their tongues with abuse.” *

The sixth Taráz (Ornament)

“Knowledge is one of the wondrous gifts of God. It is incumbent upon everyone to acquire it. Such arts and material means as are now manifest have been achieved by virtue of His knowledge and wisdom which have been revealed in Epistles and Tablets through His Most Exalted Pen—a Pen out of whose treasury pearls of wisdom and utterance and the arts and crafts of the world are brought to light.” *

* Extract from the holy tablet of TARAZÁT (Ornaments) by Bahá’u’lláh — prophet founder of the Bahá’í Faith. To read the whole tablet go to http://reference.bahai.org/en/t/b/TB/tb-5.html.