East and West.
Glory be unto Thee, O God! for Thou hast opened the Doors of the Kingdom of Grandeur and Majesty before the faces of Thy beloved ones; overshadowed them with the wide spreading Tree of Thy Mercifulness; stirred them into cheerfulness by the Breezes of Acceptance from the Garden of Thy Singleness and caused the downpour of pure Waters from the heaven of Thy Generosity, through which Thou didst cleanse the hearts of Thy friends.
Thou didst resuscitate the spirit of those who have arisen in Thy service with the Breaths of the Holy Spirit and reinforced them with the angels of Thy Sanctification and the unseen Cohorts from the Supreme Concourse. Verily, this was no other but a reinforcement from Thee and a fresh Confirmation on Thy part; in order that they might arise in the proclamation of Thy Word, the diffusion of Thy Fragrances, the perusal of Thy Verses, the promulgation of Thy Religion, the propagation of Thy Teachings, the universalization of Thy Grace and the strengthening of Thy Covenant. Verily, they have pitched on the apex of the world, the Tabernacle of Thy Oneness, whose cords are unbreakable, under whose shade nations and peoples shall dwell and which is glorified with the Bestowal of Thy Effulgence.
O Lord! We are weak, fortify us with Thy Power; we are prisoners, shine upon us the Light of Thy Freedom!
O God! This captive has no other protector save Thee; this afflicted one has no other guardian except Thee, and this weak soul has no other support beside Thee!
O Lord! O Lord! Grant endurance and fortitude to these broken wings and brace and steel the nerves of these suppliant birds so that they may soar towards the apex of prosperity, wing their way through the immensity of success to the highest station of worthiness, stretch forth their pinions to reach the loftiest point in Thy Abha Kingdom and the apogee of grandeur in Thy Supreme Concourse: thus their eyes may be brightened by beholding the lights and their ears be charmed by listening to the singing of the mysteries!
O Lord! Assist them in the promotion of Thy Glad tidings between the East of the world and the West thereof; inspire them to speak of Thy glorification in the congregations of fellowship and enliven them to impart the gospel of the appearance of Thy Kingdom in the zenith of the universe. Thus, through mutual attraction, hot tears might flow from their eyes, their hearts be drawn towards the refulgent Light of God, supplicating Thee, beseeching in Thy Presence, their breasts expanded by the signs of Thy Singleness and their visions clarified by perceiving the Standards of Thy Victory amongst Thy creatures.
O God! Suffer their joy to be in the glad-tiding of Thy Manifestation; their happiness in the shining forth of Thy Light; their serenity in the obtainment of Thy Favor, their health in the healing wonders of Thy Name; their life in the Breaths of the Spirit of Thy Holiness; the consolation of their hearts in the winning of Thy Bounty; their hope in the propagation of Thy Cause and their aspirations in the promotion of Thy Word.
Verily, Thou art the Confirmer, the Omnipotent, the Self Subsistent, the Giver, the Mighty and the Most Beautiful, and verily Thou art powerful aver all things.
O ye friends of ‘Abdu'l-Baha! It has been sometime since correspondence and letter writing has been postponed, because this servant of the Threshold of the Almighty ‘Abdu’l-Baha has been travelling continually throughout the East and the West for the last four years, reminding the people of the appearance of the Manifestation of the Lord of Hosts so that the Occident might become illumined and the Orient perfumed. Therefore, in all the meetings and temples the cry of, "Ya Baha’u’l-Abha!" reached to the zenith of the Supreme Concourse and the voice of, "0 my Lord the Supreme!" soared unremittingly towards the Court of His Highness the Almighty.
In the temples of many a nation the Cause of the Possessor of Existence was taught and in the houses of the worship of many a religion meetings were held for announcing the Signs of the Clement Lord. In the Christian Churches the Spirit was breathed and in the Synagogues of the Jews the Gospel of the Appearance of the Lord of Hosts was proclaimed.
In the Universities of Europe and America, such as the University of Oxford, England, and the Leland Stanford University in San Francisco, California, which are considered in the vanguard of educational institutions of the world, eloquent addresses were delivered. In the last mentioned university there were present one hundred and seventy five professors and one thousand eight hundred students. Many speeches were given before the various Theosophical, Spiritualistic and Esperanto Societies, and a speech was delivered before the Open Forum in San Francisco, explaining the aim of Eastern and Western systems of philosophies. In all these churches, temples, synagogues, meetings and clubs, through the Favor and Bounty of the Blessed Perfection, there was not found one soul who could utter a word of opposition and criticism. Every one listened most attentively to the explanation of teachings and proofs, and all expressed thanks and gratitude at the end of the meetings. This was only made possible through the grace and bestowal of Baha’u’llah. For under all circumstances the Sea of the Confirmation of the Kingdom of Abha was waving high and the cry of ‘Abdu'l-Baha ascended to the highest apex.
Undoubtedly you have read the contents of the American and European newspapers which are mirrors reflecting the public opinion of other nations. Verily, truth is that which is concurrently testified to by all wise men! The contents of these magazines and newspapers are the traces of the pen of the followers of Christ, the people of Moses, philosophers, professors and thinkers of the West. For example, amongst them might be mentioned, the Palo Allan, published in the town wherein the Leland Stanford University is founded, the newspapers of Oxford, Christian Commonwealth, Century, Herald, Standard, likewise of Reviews, the Arabic newspapers of New York, etc. etc. The philosophers, professors and literary men have expressed their opinions concerning this Cause in these periodicals. This was again through the mercy and providence of the Blessed Perfection whose Absolute Will had ordained the promotion of the Cause of God in all parts of the world and who confirmed this servant of the Threshold in this service.
In short, although ‘Abdu'l-Baha considers himself as a drop yet this drop is connected with the Most Great Sea. Although he looks upon himself as an atom, yet this atom is related to the world-illuminating Sun. As it is said: "The Originator of all these voices is the King himself;" or in other words: "It is through His assistance."
Unquestionably this physical body and human energy would have been unable to stand this constant wear and tear, and were it not for the support of the angel of Providence even the bones of this servant would have mouldered away. But the aid and help of His Highness the Desired One was the Guardian and Protector of the weak and humble ‘Abdu'l-Baha. Through the many annoyances and inconveniences of the journey, physical exhaustion was produced in the nerves and the various indispositions caused poor health, but the Spirit was so energized that this great weakness and excessive feebleness disappeared in a short period of time, and ere long ‘Abdul-Baha will be occupied again with reading and writing.
However, back of this apparent silence and interruption of all correspondence for the time being, there was hidden another wisdom. It was this: That the believers of God might walk in the footsteps of ‘Abdu’l-Baha and raise such a melody and show forth such a firmness and steadfastness that the diffusion of the Fragrance of God might continue whether he does exist or not, nay, rather that all of them might roar like unto the sea and break forth into joyous songs of thanksgiving. Thus these souls who are anticipating the death or departure of this servant at the Divine Threshold might be afflicted with regret and remorse and realize that the exaltation of the Blessed Cause and the increasing majesty of the Word of God does not depend upon the existence of ‘Abdu’l-Baha.
Praise be to God! How inscrutable are His ways! When His Holiness the Báb - may my life be a ransom to Him! - was martyred, the enemies vociferously cried out that this Cause was totally annihilated! Afterwards, they witnessed the result contrary to their expectations; for with the martyrdom of His Holiness the Báb, the Word of God was promulgated more widely. Then, changing their front, they expected the departure of the Blessed Perfection, dreaming vainly that after His ascension the Blessed Tree would be uprooted. Praise be to God, that through the Bounty and Bestowal of the Blessed Perfection they were stricken with self- condemnation and grief. In a similar manner, the pretenders and Covenant-breakers are waiting the decease and the passing away of ‘Abdu'l-Baha in various and divers manners; i.e. either that he may be cast to the bottom of the sea or be suspended high on a cross, either be banished to the remotest country, be imprisoned in the dark dungeon of a fortress, or through manifold sickness and illness he may quit singing the Songs of Life and the Anthems of Light -- that thus after him they might obtain a field for the display of their nefarious activities and the promotion of their poisonous ideas.
Alas! Alas! Vain is their imaginings. Whether ‘Abdu'l-Baha does exist or not the Cause of God shall be protected and preserved from all these supposed dangers through the Power of the Kingdom of Abha. Were the wheels of the Cause of God stopped in their onward progressive march through the setting of those two brilliant suns (The Báb and Baha’u’llah)? Or is it possible that through the death of this servant of the Threshold, the Cause of God will lose its influence? Alas! Alas! Ere long you shall see them (the nakazeen [Covenant-breakers]) in manifest loss!
Soon after the ascension of Baha’u’llah, while they were weltering in the midst of rebellion and violation, I predicted that in a short space of time you would see the nakazeen in evident deprivation! The present condition is an unmistakable assurance that that prediction has literally been fulfilled.
Therefore, rest ye assured that their present baseless surmises will be as barren and as fruitless as their past imaginings. Some have also asserted that ‘Abdu’l-Baha is on the eve bidding his last farewell to this world, that his physical energies are being depleted and drained and that ere long these complications shall put an end to his life. This is far from truth. Although in the outward estimation of the violators and defective-minded the body is weak on account of the great ordeals in the Path, yet, praise be to God, through the Providence of the Blessed Perfection the spiritual forces are in the utmost rejuvenation and strength. Thanksgiving behooveth the Lord, that now, through the blessing and benediction of Baha’u’llah even the physical energies are fully restored, divine joy obtained, the supreme glad tidings are resplendent and ideal happiness overflowing. I hope that, in the future, letter writing and correspondence may continue uninterruptedly.
O ye loyal friends of the Blessed Perfection! It is hoped that, through the wonderful bestowals of that Peerless Adored One, a new dynamic acclamation and stirring activity be realized amongst the divine believers so that they may obtain boundless rejoicing and exultation through the Melody of the Kingdom of Abha, which has moved the invisible world, and arise in the delivery of the Word of God so that the Holy Fragrance of God may transform the East and the West into the Paradise of Abha, the Clouds of Grace change the surface of the earth into a delectable Rose garden and the Breeze of Compassion give fragrance and perfume to the plain and the meadow. This state is only made possible through teaching the Cause of God, explaining the Proofs of God, demonstrating the Religion of God with divine evidences and irrefutable arguments and guiding the inhabitants of the earth to the Fountain of Reality!
Consider, that the Apostles of Christ were few in number, but because they were filled to overflowing with His Graces, and the essence of His Advice and Commandments was circulating, like unto the spirit, through their veins and arteries, to such an extent that one could find nothing else throughout their beings save His Love, and they girded up the loins of endeavor to convey the Message. Now it has become manifest what a tremendous effect and result their services produced! We must also act accordingly and follow in their footsteps.
O ye divine believers! Today any soul who is a teacher of the Cause is confirmed. The teachers are in the front rank, are favored at the Threshold of the Almighty and helped from the Kingdom of Abha! The believers of God must exercise the utmost love, respect and consideration towards the teachers so that in whatever place they may enter, joy and happiness be obtained. But regarding the qualifications of the teachers, they are revealed in the Divine Tablets. They must adorn themselves with those attributes. I declare by God, beside whom there is no God, that if today a weak mosquito is characterized with the qualifications of the teachers and summons the people to the Divine Kingdom, it will become a soaring falcon of heaven, and the ephemeral moth will be changed into an eagle of the apex of the Merciful; the drop will be transformed into a surging ocean, and the atom will emit the brilliancy of the sun. From every part the cry of, "Where are the teachers?" is being raised, and from the Kingdom of Abha, the voice of, "Where are the attracted ones? Where are the severed ones? Where are the righteous ones? Where are the sanctified ones?" reaches to the ear of intelligence. The inhabitants of the world have attained to a most astonishing capacity and are ready to hearken to this Call.
O ye friends of God! Show ye an effort, put ye forth an extraordinary exertion -- so that this Candle may become the witness of every congregation, and this lay or strain be the Cause of happiness to every human soul.
Next spring whosoever has competency, or in other words, can provide sufficient and adequate travelling expenses for his coming and return, so that he can journey with the utmost joy and fragrance, if he asks for permission to visit the Holy Threshold, it will be granted. Now, the present conditions show the wisdom of withholding permission in the past, for during these days of general revolutions and disturbances, the pilgrims would have been obliged to suffer innumerable difficulties. Be ye admonished! O ye possessors of intelligence! Hence, it is plain that all which is written is based on a consummate wisdom.
Upon ye be Baha’u’l-Abha!
Glory be unto Thee, O Thou whose Seas of Bestowals are waving and whose Breezes of Providence are wafting over all those who have arisen to promote Thy Word amongst mankind and are hastening towards the city of self-sacrifice with a heart overflowing with love and fidelity and a tongue eloquent with the praise of Thy Abha Beauty!
O Lord! Confirm whoever opens his mouth in the explanation of Thy Cause; arises in the diffusion of Thy Fragrances, from whose lips flows the irresistible torrents of evidence in the elucidation of Thy Religion; waves like unto the surging of the mighty ocean; sings like unto the singing of the golden tongued nightingale in the Garden of Thy Knowledge, and roars like unto the roaring of the lion in the Forest of Thy Favor.
O Lord! Cause them to quaff from the goblet which is filled with the Wine of Thy Guidance, exhilarate them with the intoxication of Thy Elixir, suffer them to speak of Thy most incontrovertible proofs, inspire them with irrefragable evidences and demonstrations and teach them the essences of wisdom and understanding.
Verily, thou art the Clement, Thou art the Confirmer, the Powerful, the Mighty and the Omnipotent, and verily there is no God beside the Lord of Grace and Mercy!
(Signed) ‘Abdu’l-Baha Abbas
(Star of the West, vol. 5, no. 14, November 23, 1914)