Segment 18: Bahiyyih Khanum: Actions Undertaken Upon the Death of ‘Abdu’l-Baha (Her Appointment as Headship of the Cause by Shoghi Effendi) – by Alfredo Ancheta​

Bahiyyih Khanum: Actions Undertaken Upon the Death of ‘Abdu’l-Baha.pdf

Segment 2 of ‘The Greatest Holy Leaf’

On November 29, 1921 at 9:30 am, the following cable reached Major Tudor Pole ‘s office address: “His Holiness ‘Abdu’l-Baha ascended Abha Kingdom. Inform friends.”
Greatest Holy Leaf
(See The Priceless Pearl, p. 39)

The Greatest Holy Leaf (probably with few members of the Master’s family) cabled on 21 December 1921: “Memorial meeting world over January seven. Procure prayers for unity and steadfastness. Master left full instructions in His Will and Testament. Translation will be sent. Inform friends.” (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 39)

The Greatest Holy Leaf announced to the Baha’i world the provisions of the Master’s Will and Testament on 7 January, sending two cables to Persia: “Memorial meetings all over the world have been held. The Lord of all the worlds in His Will and Testament has revealed His instructions. Copy will be sent. Inform believers.” and “Will and Testament forwarded to Shoghi Effendi Center Cause.”
(See The Priceless Pearl, p. 47)

On January 16, the Greatest Holy Leaf sent a cable to the Baha’i world announcing the provisions of ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s Will and Testament: “In Will Shoghi Effendi appointed Guardian and Head of the House of Justice. Inform American friends.” (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 49)
Although there was opposition to the appointment among a small minority of Covenant breakers, most Baha’is received the announcement with great enthusiasm and interest and pledged their support to the Guardian: “We long to assist the Guardian in every way and our hearts are responsive to the burdens upon his young shoulders…” (The Priceless Pearl, p 50)

The preceding events prompted Shoghi Effendi to select eight passages from the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha and circulate them among the Baha’is. Only one of these briefly referred to himself: “O ye the faithful loved ones of ‘Abdu’l-Baha! It is incumbent upon you to take the greatest care of Shoghi Effendi. . . For he is, after `Abdu’l-Baha, the Guardian of the Cause of God, the Afnan, the Hands (pillars) of the Cause and the beloved of the Lord, must obey him and turn unto him.” (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 48) “Of all the thundering and tremendous passages in the Will referring to himself, Shoghi Effendi chose the least astounding and provocative to first circulate among the Baha’is. Guided and guiding he was from the very beginning.” (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 48)

Before Shoghi Effendi reached Haifa, the Greatest Holy Leaf had been obliged to cable America on 14 December: “Now is the period of great tests. The friends should be firm and united in defending the Cause. Nakeseens [Covenant – Breakers] starting activities through press other channels all over the world. Select committee of wise cool heads to handle press propaganda in America.” (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 49)

__________

In a letter Shoghi Effendi “appointed a body of nine people to act tentatively as an Assembly” (See Priceless Pearl, pp.56-57) under the supervision of the Holy Family and headship of the Greatest Holy Leaf.

He is God!

“This servant, after that grievous event and calamity— the ascension of His Holiness ‘Abdu’l-Baha to the Abha Kingdom—has been stricken with grief and pain and so entangled in
the troubles (created) by the enemies of the Cause of God, that I consider my
presence here, at such a time and in such an atmosphere, is not in accordance with the fulfillment of my important and sacred duties. For this reason, unable to do otherwise, I have left for a time the affairs of the Cause, both at home and abroad, under the supervision of the Holy Family and headship of the Greatest Holy Leaf—may my soul be a sacrifice to her—until, by the Grace of God, having gained health, strength, self-confidence and spiritual energy, and having taken into my hands, in accordance with my aim and desire, entirely and regularly the work of service, I shall attain to my utmost spiritual hope and aspiration.
The servant of His Threshold,
Shoghi
(See The Priceless Pearl, p. 57)

__________

On April 7, the Greatest Holy Leaf wrote a general letter to the friends. She first acknowledges the letters of allegiance they have sent and says Shoghi Effendi is counting upon their co-operation in spreading the message; the Baha’i world must from now on be linked through the Spiritual Assemblies and local questions must be referred to them. She then goes on say: “Since the ascension of our beloved ‘Abdu’l-Baha Shoghi Effendi has been moved so deeply. . . that he has sought the necessary quiet in which to meditate upon the vast task ahead of him, and it is to accomplish this that he has temporarily left these regions. During his absence he has appointed me as his representative, and while he is occupied in this great endeavour, the family of ‘Abdu’l-Baha is assured that you will all strive to advance triumphantly the Cause of Baha’u’llah. . .” The typewritten letter in English is signed in Persian “Bahiyyih” and sealed with her seal. (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 58)

In her work during the transition period, the Greatest Holy Leaf’s last act was to send members of the Guardian’s family to find him and ask him to return: “In the autumn of 1922 the Greatest Holy Leaf, deeply distressed by Shoghi Effendi’s long absence, sent members of his family to find him and plead with him to come back to the Holy Land. In the street of a small village in the mountains, as he returned in the evening from one of his all-day walks, Shoghi Effendi, to his great surprise, found his mother looking for him; she had come all the way from Palestine for this purpose, accompanied by another member of the Master’s family; with tears she informed him of the distress of Bahiyyih Khanum, the family and friends and persuaded him to return and assume his rightful place.” (See The Priceless Pearl, p. 63)

Lua Getsinger, Herald of the Covenant

“Lua in Persian means ‘Flag’, and you must be my flag and wave it in the East and in the West!” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá said to Lua Getsinger when she visited Him as a prisoner of ‘Akká, a member of the very first pilgrimage from America in 1898.Stepping up to the lovely young woman standing beside Dr. Edward Getsinger, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, seeing with His spiritual vision her capacity to become one of the great teachers of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh, put something into her mouth, saying,”I have given you the power to speak and loosened your tongue!” Dr. Getsinger tells us of the scene.”Then, the glorious Servant of God gave an exhortation into which He put such spiritual force and emphasis that it seemed as though the very walls trembled, and we were hardly able to stand on our feet. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá was declaring that the millennium had come and the Kingdom of God was to be established on earth, and that he wanted Lua to proclaim it everywhere in a loud voice.”And from the beginning, she was able to speak fluently and brilliantly and without fear in any gathering, because of the precious gift bestowed upon her by the Master. In May Maxwell’s words,”As Qurratu’l-‘Ayn was the Trumpet of the Dawn in the Orient in the Day of Bahá’u’lláh, so Lua Aurora shall wave forever and ever the Banner of the Dawn in the Day of the Covenant.” 
~By Amine DeMille, “Lua Getsinger – Herald of the Covenant.pdf

Segment 17: Bahiyyih Khanum: “The Immortal Heroine” – by Alfredo B. Ancheta

Bahiyyih Khanum: “The Immortal Heroine”.pdf

Part 1 of The Greatest Holy Leaf

“We have elevated thee to the rank of one of the most distinguished among thy sex, and granted thee, in My court, a station such as none other woman hath surpassed.”

(Compilations, Bahiyyih Khanum, p. 3)

“He is the Eternal! This is My testimony for her who hath heard My voice and drawn nigh unto Me. Verily, she is a leaf that hath sprung from this preexistent Root. She hath revealed herself in My name and tasted of the sweet savours of My holy, My wondrous pleasure. At one time We gave her to drink from My honeyed Mouth, at another caused her to partake of My mighty, My luminous Kawthar. Upon her rest the glory of My name and the fragrance of My shining robe.”

(Compilations, Bahiyyih Khanum, p. 2)

“Let these exalted words be thy love-song on the tree of Baha, O thou most holy and resplendent Leaf: ‘God, besides Whom is none other God, the Lord of this world and the next!’ Verily, We have elevated thee to the rank of one of the most distinguished among thy sex, and granted thee, in My court, a station such as none other woman hath surpassed. Thus have We preferred thee and raised thee above the rest, as a sign of grace from Him Who is the Lord of the throne on high and earth below. We have created thine eyes to behold the light of My countenance, thine ears to hearken unto the melody of My words, thy body to pay homage before My throne. Do thou render thanks unto God, thy Lord, the Lord of all the world.”

(Compilations, Bahiyyih Khanum, p. 2)

“How high is the testimony of the Sadratu’l-Muntaha for its leaf; how exalted the witness of the Tree of Life unto its fruit! Through My remembrance of her a fragrance laden with the perfume of musk hath been diffused; well is it with him that hath inhaled it and exclaimed: ‘All praise be to Thee, O God, my 4 Lord the most glorious!’ How sweet thy presence before Me; how sweet to gaze upon thy face, to bestow upon thee My loving-kindness, to favour thee with My tender care, to make mention of thee in this, My Tablet — a Tablet which I have ordained as a token of My hidden and manifest grace unto thee.”

(Compilations, Bahiyyih Khanum, p. 3)

Dearly beloved friends:

Moved by an unalterable devotion to the memory of the Greatest Holy Leaf, I feel prompted to share with you, and through you with the concourse of her steadfast lovers throughout the West, these significant passages [1] which I have gleaned from various Tablets revealed in her honour by Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.
[1 Included in Sections I and II.]

Impregnated with that love after which the soul of a humanity in travail now hungers, these passages disclose, to the extent that our finite minds can comprehend, the nature of that mystic bond which, on one hand, united her with the Spirit of her almighty Father and, on the other, linked her so closely with her glorious Brother, the perfect Exemplar of that Spirit.

The memory of her who was a pattern of goodness, of a pure and holy life, who was the embodiment of such heavenly virtues as only the privileged inmates of the uppermost chambers in the Abha Paradise can fully appreciate, will long live enshrined in these immortal words — a memory the ennobling influence of which will remain an inspiration and a solace amid the wreckage of a sadly shaken world.

Conscious of the predominating share assumed, in recent years, by the American believers in alleviating the burden which that most exalted Leaf bore so heroically in the evening of her life, I can do no better than entrust into their hands these prized testimonies of the Founder of our Faith and of the Centre of His Covenant. I feel confident that their elected representatives will take whatever measures are required for their prompt and wide circulation among their brethren throughout the West. They will, thereby, be contributing still further to the repayment of the great debt they owe her in the prosecution of a mighty and divinely-appointed task.

(Compilations, Bahiyyih Khanum, p. 57)

Your True Brother,

Shoghi
Haifa, Palestine
JANUARY 14, 1933
(Shared by Marcelina Duldulao, a Baha’i friend who works for Mr. & Mrs. Ali & Violet Nakjavani)

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