12 Sharaf (Honour)

Morning

“It is clear from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, as well as from those of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and the interpretations of the Guardian, that the proper functioning of human society requires the preservation of ranks and classes within its membership.The friends should recognize this without envy or jealousy, and those who occupy ranks should never exploit their position or regard themselves as being superior to others. About this Bahá’u’lláh has written:

‘And amongst the realms of unity is the unity of rank and station. It redoundeth to the exaltation of the Cause, glorifying it among all peoples. Ever since the seeking of preference and distinction came into play, the world hath been laid waste. It hath become desolate. Those who have quaffed from the ocean of divine utterance and fixed their gaze upon the Realm of Glory should regard themselves as being on the same level as the others and in the same station. Where this matter to be definitely established and conclusively demonstrated through the power and might of God, the world would become as the Abhá Paradise.

‘Indeed, man is noble inasmuch as each one is a repository of the sign of God. Nevertheless, to regard oneself as superior in knowledge, learning, or virtue, or to exalt oneself or seek preference, is a grievous transgression. Great is the blessedness of those who are adorned with the ornament of this unity and have been graciously confirmed by God.'”

~”Ranks and Functions in the Bahá’í Cause” by / on behalf of Universal House of Justice 1978-03-27


Evening

“Pay thou no heed to the humiliation to which the loved ones of God have in this Day been subjected. This humiliation is the pride and glory of all temporal honor and worldly elevation. What greater honor can be imagined than the honor conferred by the Tongue of the Ancient of Days when He calleth to remembrance His loved ones in His Most Great Prison? The day is approaching when the intervening clouds will have been completely dissipated, when the light of the words, “All honor belongeth unto God and unto them that love Him,” will have appeared, as manifest as the sun, above the horizon of the Will of the Almighty.”

~  Gleanings From the Writings of Baha’u’llah, Pages 305-306: 306

9 Sharaf (Honour)

Morning:
“By God besides Whom is none other God!

Should any one arise for the triumph of our Cause, him will God render victorious though tens of thousands of enemies be leagued against him. And if his love for Me wax stronger, God will establish his ascendancy over all the powers of earth and heaven. Thus have We breathed the spirit of power into all regions.”
(Quoted in The World Order of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 106)


Evening:
“O PEOPLE of the Bayán! If ye believe in Him Whom God shall make manifest, to your own behoof do ye believe. He hath been and ever will remain independent of all men. For instance, were ye to place unnumbered mirrors before the sun, they would all reflect the sun and produce impressions thereof, whereas the sun is in itself wholly independent of the existence of the mirrors and of the suns which they reproduce. Such are the bounds of the contingent beings in their relation to the manifestation of the Eternal Being…

“In this day no less than seventy thousand people make pilgrimage every year to the holy House of God in compliance with the bidding of the Apostle of God (Muhammad); while He Himself Who ordained this ordinance took refuge for seven years in the mountains of Mecca. And this notwithstanding that the One Who enjoined this commandment is far greater than the commandment itself. Hence all this people who at this time go on pilgrimage do not do so with true understanding, otherwise in this Day of His Return which is mightier than His former Dispensation, they would have followed His commandment. But now behold what hath happened. People who profess belief in His former religion, who in the daytime and in the night season bow down in worship in His Name, have assigned Him to a dwelling place in a mountain, while each one of them would regard attaining recognition of Him as an honour.” VII, 15.
(Selections From the Writings of the Bab, Page 93: gr2)

8 Sharaf (Honour)

Siyah Chal, Black Pit

Morning:
XXXI: Contemplate with thine inward eye the chain of successive Revelations that hath linked the Manifestation of Adam with that of the Báb.

I testify before God that each one of these Manifestations hath been sent down through the operation of the Divine Will and Purpose, that each hath been the bearer of a specific Message, that each hath been entrusted with a divinely-revealed Book and been commissioned to unravel the mysteries of a mighty Tablet. The measure of the Revelation with which every one of them hath been identified had been definitely fore-ordained. This, verily, is a token of Our favor unto them, if ye be of those that comprehend this truth…. And when this process of progressive Revelation culminated in the stage at which His peerless, His most sacred, and exalted Countenance was to be unveiled to men’s eyes, He chose to hide His own Self behind a thousand veils, lest profane and mortal eyes discover His glory. This He did at a time when the signs and tokens of a divinely-appointed Revelation were being showered upon Him—signs and tokens which none can reckon except the Lord, your God, the Lord of all worlds. And when the set time of concealment was fulfilled, We sent forth, whilst still wrapt within a myriad veils, an infinitesimal glimmer of the effulgent Glory enveloping the Face of the Youth, and lo, the entire company of the dwellers of the Realms above were seized with violent commotion and the favored of God fell down in adoration before Him. He hath, verily, manifested a glory such as none in the whole creation hath witnessed, inasmuch as He hath arisen to proclaim in person His Cause unto all who are in the heavens and all who are on the earth. 
(Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, pp 74-75)


Evening:
“How numerous the verses Thou didst send down unto Me, and the prayers Thou didst hear Me offer unto Thee. How diverse the revelations which Thou didst call into being through Me and the experiences Thou didst witness in Me.

“Magnified be Thy Name. Manifold trials have been powerless to deter Me from yielding thanks unto Thee and My shortcomings have failed to keep Me back from extolling Thy virtues. The infidels had purposed to turn My abode into one of disgrace and humiliation. But Thou hast glorified Me through My remembrance of Thee, hast exalted Me through My praise of Thee, hast graciously aided Me through the revelations of Thy oneness, and hast conferred upon Me a great honour through the effulgent splendours of Thine ancient eternity. To the fire Thou dost command, ‘Be thou a soothing balm unto My Servant’, and to the prison, ‘Be thou a seat of tender compassion to My Servant, as a token from My presence’. Yea, I swear by Thy glory; to Me the prison hath proved to be naught but the most delightful garden of Paradise and hath served as the noblest spot in the realm above.

“Praised and glorified art Thou. How often did adversities descend upon Me and Thou didst temper them and avert them through Thy gracious favour; and how many times were commotions stirred up against Me at the hand of the people, while Thou didst cause them to subside through Thy tender mercy. How numerous the occasions when the Nimrods kindled fires wherewith to burn Me, but Thou didst make them balm for Me; and how manifold the instances when the infidels decreed My humiliation and Thou didst turn them into marks of honour for Me…

“Verily Thou art the highest aspiration of every earnest seeker and the Goal of the desire of them that yearn after Thee….”
(Selections From the Writings of the Bab, Pages 183-186: gr6)

 

7 Sharaf (Honour)

Morning:
CXXIII: The generations that have gone on before you—whither are they fled? And those round whom in life circled the fairest and the loveliest of the land, where now are they? Profit by their example, O people, and be not of them that are gone astray.

Others ere long will lay hands on what ye possess, and enter into your habitations. Incline your ears to My words, and be not numbered among the foolish.

For every one of you his paramount duty is to choose for himself that on which no other may infringe and none usurp from him. Such a thing—and to this the Almighty is My witness—is the love of God, could ye but perceive it.

Build ye for yourselves such houses as the rain and floods can never destroy, which shall protect you from the changes and chances of this life. This is the instruction of Him Whom the world hath wronged and forsaken.
(Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh 216)


Evening:
“Ye have, one and all, been called into being to seek His presence and to attain that exalted and glorious station. Indeed, He will send down from the heaven of His mercy that which will benefit you, and whatever is graciously vouchsafed by Him shall enable you to dispense with all mankind. Verily on that Day the learning of the learned shall prove of no avail, neither the accomplishments of the exponents of knowledge, nor the pomp of the highly honoured, nor the power of the mighty, nor the remembrance of the devout, nor the deeds of the righteous, nor the genuflexion of the kneeling worshipper, nor his prostration or turning towards the Qiblih, nor the honour of the honoured, nor the kinship of the highly born, nor the nobility of those of noble descent, nor the discourse of the eloquent, nor the titles of the prominent—none of these shall be of any avail unto them—inasmuch as all these and  whatever else ye have known or comprehended were created by His word of command ‘Be’ and it is. Indeed if it be His Will He can assuredly bring about the resurrection of all created things through a word from Himself. He is, in truth, over and above all this, the All-Powerful, the Almighty, the Omnipotent. (The Báb, Selections from the Báb, pp. 164-166)

 

6 Sharaf (Honour)

Image: Brandon Sanderson’s The Way of Kings cover by Michael Whelan

Morning:
“By the righteousness of God,” Bahá’u’lláh wishing to reveal the full potency of His invincible power asserts, “should a man, all alone , arise in the name of Baháand put on the armor of His love, him will the Almighty cause to be victorious, though the forces of earth and heaven be arrayed against him.”
(Quoted in The World Order of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 106)


Evening:
“O Lord! Assist those who have renounced all else but Thee, and grant them a mighty victory. Send down upon them, O Lord, the concourse of the angels in heaven and earth and all that is between, to aid Thy servants, to succour and strengthen them, to enable them to achieve success, to sustain them, to invest them with glory, to confer upon them honour and exaltation, to enrich them and to make them triumphant with a wondrous triumph.

“Thou art their Lord, the Lord of the heavens and the earth, the Lord of all the worlds. Strengthen this Faith, O Lord, through the power of these servants and cause them to prevail over all the peoples of the world; for they, of a truth, are Thy servants who have detached themselves from 193 aught else but Thee, and Thou verily art the protector of true believers.”
(Selections From the Writings of the Bab, Pages 192-193: gr2)

5 Sharaf (Honour)

Morning:
“It is in Our power, should We wish it, to enable a speck of floating dust to generate, in less than the twinkling of an eye, suns of infinite, of unimaginable splendor,to cause a dewdrop to develop into vast and numberless oceans, to infuse into every letter such a force as to empower it to unfold all the knowledge of past and future ages.”
(Quoted in The Advent of Divine Justice, p. 80-81)


Evening:
“All praise be unto Thee, O Thou besides Whom there is none other God. Graciously enable me to ascend unto Thee, to be granted the honour of dwelling in Thy nearness and to have communion with Thee alone. No God is there but Thee.

“Indeed shouldst Thou desire to confer blessing upon a servant Thou wouldst blot out from the realm of his heart every mention or disposition except Thine Own mention; and shouldst Thou ordain evil for a servant by reason of that which his hands have unjustly wrought before Thy face, Thou wouldst test him with the benefits of this world and of the next that he might become preoccupied therewith and forget Thy remembrance.”
(Selections From the Writings of the Bab, Pages 191-192: gr3)