We will return on March 27-31, 2023 for our 5th Virtual Reflection Gathering. You can enjoy the materials on the "season of restraint" by clicking on the button in the meantime.
Monday, February 6, 2023- REFLECT ON LIGHT WITH MARY OKONKWODownload PDF
Join Dr. Toya Mary Okonkwo on Monday, January 30, 2022 for a special presentation on 'Black Girls as Quasers'
Dr. Toya Mary Okonkwo is a well-wisher of humanity who strives to utilize the creative impulses of imagination as resistance to enact an ethos of arts as education and arts as central to advancing vibrant
individual and collective changes that contribute to an ever-advancing
civilization. Having recently earned her Ph.D. of English Literature (the first Black woman to graduate in the history of that program),
Dr. Toya Mary Okonkwo has been involved in higher education teaching at Purdue, TCU, Paul Quinn College, and UNT. In her dissertation, “OUR
REAL LIFE PECOLAS AND OGUU CHASES THE SUN - FROM COLLAPSING STARS TO
QUASARS: A COSMIC PLAY IN THREE ACTS & TWO INTERLUDES ON THE
IMPORTANCE OF IGBO STORYTELLING IN EXPANDING BLACK GIRLHOOD
IMAGINATIONS AS RESISTANCE TO SOCIAL ERASURE IN STOP SIX, TX.”, she
blends the creative power of performance and visual storytelling to explore the subjects of #blackgirlmagic as it relates to astrophysics and the neurobiology of escaping the confines of trauma. In her most
ardent dreams this project, along with her Master’s thesis and other writings, will be realized, as intended, for audiences to experience and thereby take up the reins of their own journeys towards becoming
well-wishers of humanity and lovers of the beauty of our essential oneness. Dr. Toya Mary Okonkwo is also an active volunteer with various Baha’i community service projects and with Opal’s Farm. Her
web presence includes: https://www.toyamaryokonkwo.com/
On December 26, 2022 and January 1, 2022, we will discuss Kwanzaa.
We have a special program for people of African descent from December 26, 2022 through January 1, 2023. Please share the link with anyone you know of who is of African descent. This is a safe space for healing. Registrations are manually approved to make sure only the intended audience registers. This Kwanzaa program is created especially to nurture and encourage POTE to love ourselves, take care of ourselves, and to rebuild the broken bonds between us!
Click here to view latest program
Click here to register for the program.
Radiance will share the back story on the 'Life with Lisa Ling" CNN finale. Two couples will be joining us featured in the episode.
A designer and student of quantum physics, metaphysics and licensed BioGeometry Practitioner, and Feng Shui.
For discussion on January 23. 2023
We will be discussing the Feast letter, shown below. Click here for the full letter to the DRC to discuss later.
The Made it Home Group that grew out of this Foundation Hall University space is a supportive community that provides comfort and support to those who have lost children. They will share their insights.
The Benefits of Minerals and Affordable Nutrition. The Affordable Nutrition program
was developed to empower the
homeless, seniors and families on
fixed incomes, food deserts, and
anyone who wants to be healthy
but who lack resources.
The Benefits of Minerals and Affordable Nutrition. The Affordable Nutrition program
was developed to empower the
homeless, seniors and families on
fixed incomes, food deserts, and
anyone who wants to be healthy
but who lack resources.
Charmaine will share the latest research and discoveries in the field of nutrition in disease treatment and prevention.
Healing from Trauma: Individual, Collective & Ancestral- We have to embrace our stories before we can heal from them. Kim will share how she was able to heal from trauma and from her the pain of ancestors who were enslavers.
Chief Phil Lane, Nanabah, Kim Douglas, Laina Greene and others will join us to share his reflections of his beloved spiritual brother. Please share yours too! Moderated by Barbara Talley
Tablet of the Physicians
Moderator: Barbara Talley
Monday Welcoming Team
8/29- Reflections on the Justice for Women Conference held 8/26-28, 2022)
Moderator: Barbara Talley
Learn about Dell's service to the Faith through Community Gardens and WLGI
Spiritual Qualities and Restorative Justice
Solidarity Economy or Collaboration over Conflict and/or Radical Inclusion -- not Othering Anyone.
8/29- Reflections on the Justice for Women Conference held 8/26-28, 2022)
Check back to view the video if you missed the presentation. Once ready, it will be posted here.
October 10th is Indigenous People's Day which replaces Columbus Day. Please educate yourself by watching this video about 'Columbus in America' https://youtu.be/JkFFy5yUdkE
For donations to the Patricia Locke Foundation in memory of Kevin
For Kevin's book "Arising"
Foundation Hall University was pleased to welcome several friends who shared their stories about heaven's newly welcomed guest, Kevin Locke.
Join by phone at 220-770-1988 or by computer for for future programs at: https://meetings.dialpad.com/room/praying . Organized by Barbara Talley.
Dear Bahá'í Friend,
Your email of 14 December 1999, inquiring about a translation of Bahá'u'lláh's Tablet to a Physician subsequent to the one found in Bahá'u'lláh and the New Era, was received by the Universal House of Justice and referred to our Department for reply.
Excerpts from Bahá'u'lláh's Tablet to a Physician appeared in Star of the West, volume 13, page 252, as well as in many and various Bahá'í newsletters and compilations, as an early translation of a portion of the Tablet entitled "Lawh-i-Tibb", revealed by Bahá'u'lláh in honour of Mirza Muhammad Rida Yazdi, a physician.
However, until such time as conditions are propitious for the Tablet to be translated, only portions of it have an authorized translation. For your convenience, we are enclosing the text of the early, partial translation of the Tablet to a Physician which was published in Star of the West, as cited above, along with a related exhortation from Bahá'u'lláh taken from Star of the West, volume 21, number 5, page 160. Furthermore, it may interest you to know that the prayer starting with the words, "Thy Name is my healing ..." is also found in this Tablet.
With regard to the Tablet, on 18 December 1945 a letter was written on behalf of the beloved Guardian to an individual believer stating:
The Tablet to a Physician was addressed to a man who was a student of the old type of healing prevalent in the East and familiar with the terminology used in those days, and He has addressed him in terms used by the medical men of those days. These terms are quite different from those used by modern medicine, and one would have to have a deep knowledge of this former school of medicine to understand the questions Bahá'u'lláh was elucidating.
It is hoped that this information will be of assistance to you, and you may be assured of the loving prayers of the House of Justice in the Holy Shrines that the tender mercies of Bahá'u'lláh may surround you.
With loving Bahá'í greetings,
Department of the Secretariat
Some rules for health, from a Tablet revealed by Bahá'u'lláh.
1. O God! The Supreme Knower! The Ancient Tongue speaks that which will satisfy the wise in the absence of doctors.
2. O People, do not eat except when you are hungry. Do not drink after you have retired to sleep.
3. Exercise is good when the stomach is empty; it strengthens the muscles. When the stomach is full it is very harmful.
4. Do not neglect medical treatment, when it is necessary, but leave it off when the body is in good condition.
5. Do not take nourishment except when (the process of) digestion is completed. Do not swallow until you have thoroughly masticated your food.
6. Treat disease first of all through diet, and refrain from medicine. If you can find what you need for healing in a single herb do not use a compound medicine. Leave off medicine when the health is good, and use it in case of necessity.
7. If two diametrically opposite foods are put on the table do not mix them. Be content with one of them. Take first the liquid food before partaking of solid food. The taking of food before that which you have already eaten is digested is dangerous....
8. When you have eaten walk a little that the food may settle.
9. That which is difficult to masticate is forbidden by the wise. Thus the Supreme Pen commands you.
10. A light meal in the morning is as a light to the body.
11. Avoid all harmful habits: they cause unhappiness in the world.
12. Search for the causes of disease. This saying is the conclusion of this utterance.
(Star of the West, vol. 13, no. 9, December 1922, p. 252)
In God must be our trust. There is no God but Him, the Healer, the Knower, the Helper.... Nothing in earth or heaven is outside the grasp of God.
O doctor! In treating the sick, first mention the name of God, the Possessor of the Day of Judgment, and then use what God hath destined for the healing of His creatures. By My Life! The doctor who has drunk from the Wine of My Love, his visit is healing, and his breath is mercy and hope. Cling to him for the welfare of the constitution. He is confirmed by God in his treatment.
(Star of the West, vol. 21, no. 5, August 1930, p. 160)
Tribute to Shoghi Effendi by Ruhiyyih Khanum
Tribute to Shoghi Effendi by Ruhiyyih Khanum Kampala Conference, 26 Jan 1958 Overview These are the notes on Ruhiyyih Khanum's heart-felt talk just after the passing of Shoghi Effendi on his personality and life, given at the Intercontinental Conference in Kampala, January 1958.
The world of humanity consists of two parts: male and female. Each is the complement of the other. Therefore, if one is defective, the other will necessarily be incomplete, and perfection cannot be attained. There is a right hand and a left hand in the human body, functionally equal in service and administration. If either proves defective, the defect will naturally extend to the other by involving the completeness of the whole; for accomplishment is not normal unless both are perfect. If we say one hand is deficient, we prove the inability and incapacity of the other; for single-handed there is no full accomplishment. Just as physical accomplishment is complete with two hands, so man and woman, the two parts of the social body, must be perfect. It is not natural that either should remain undeveloped; and until both are perfected, the happiness of the human world will not be realized.
(The Promulgation of Universal Peace: Talks Delivered by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá during His Visit to the United States and Canada in 1912, p.
No one would contend that you are alone in the ordeals you are enduring. The victims of injustice today number in countless millions. Each year, the agendas of the human rights organizations are overwhelmed by appeals from spokespersons for oppressed minorities of every type—religious, ethnic, social and national. In the words of Bahá’u’lláh, “Justice is in this day bewailing its plight, and Equity groaneth beneath the yoke of oppression.” What has more alarmed perceptive observers of such situations than even the physical and material anguish caused is the spiritual damage done to the victims. Deliberate oppression aims at dehumanizing those whom it subjugates and at de-legitimizing them as members of society, entitled to neither rights nor consideration. Where such conditions persist over any length of time, many of those affected lose confidence in their own perception of themselves. Inexorably, they become drained of that spirit of initiative that is integral to human nature and are reduced to the level of objects to be dealt with as their rulers decide. Indeed, some who are exposed to sustained oppression can become so conditioned to a culture of brutalization that they, in their turn, are ready to commit violence against others, should the opportunity offer itself.
What is it then, the world is beginning to ask, that has preserved you from spiritual corrosion of this nature? Where have you found the resources to free your hearts from resentment and to act with magnanimity toward those who have taken part in your mistreatment? How is it that, after a century and more of unremitting persecution—and the calculated attempt at genocide of these past 25 years—you still retain both a confident mastery of your moral purpose and an abiding love for the land in which you have suffered so greatly? The incomparable words of Bahá’u’lláh supply the answer:
Every fire is seen to be extinguishable except for the fire of the Love of God that is manifest and ablaze in the hearts. Every mighty tree will be uprooted by tempestuous winds except for the trees of the Divine orchard, and every lamp is quenched except for the lamp of the Cause of God, which shineth in the heart of the world. Winds will add to its brightness, and it will never be extinguished.”
Universal House of Justice —Cradle of the Faith-Nov 2003
The Woman according to Abdu'l-Baha
“Abdu'l-Bahá smiled and said, "What will you say if I prove that the woman is the strongest wing?" "The reply came in the same brilliant line: "You will have my eternal gratitude!" "and at this point everyone had a good time.
'Abdu'l-Bahá went on more seriously: 'The woman is really of the greatest importance to the race. She has the biggest load and the biggest work . See the world of flora and animal The palm that bears the fruit is the most valued tree by the palm grower. The Arab knows that during a long journey, the mare has the longest wind. Due to its greatest strength and ferocity, the lioness is more feared by the hunter than the lion.
"The mere size of the brain has proven not to be a measure of superiority. The woman has greater moral courage than the man; she also possesses special gifts that enable her to govern in times of danger and crisis. If need be, she can become a Warrior. "
(Abdu'l-Baha, Abdu'l- Baha in London page 102)
Great is the multitude who will rise up to
yet shall your heavenly Father confer upon you such spiritual illumination that ye shall become even as the rays of the sun which, as they chase away the sombre clouds, break forth to flood the surface of the earth with light.
It is incumbent upon you, whensoever these tests may overtake you,
Instead of repaying like with like, ye should requite opposition with
but rather regard them as the wanton acts of children.
For ultimately the radiance of the Kingdom
The small shall be made great, and the powerless shall be given strength; they that are of tender age shall become the children of the Kingdom, and those that have gone astray shall be guided to their heavenly home."
(`Abdu'l-Bahá, from a Tablet- translated from the Persian)
‘Abdu’l-Bahá made it clear that those who steadfastly strive to promote the oneness of humanity will endure hardship and injustice, and He taught that to be wronged and oppressed in the path of God is a divine gift, for it is a characteristic of the Manifestations of God. “And since the Ancient Beauty was exposed by day and night on the field of martyrdom,” He counseled, “let us in our turn labor hard, and hear and ponder the counsels of God; let us fling away our lives, and renounce our brief and numbered days. Let us turn our eyes away from empty fantasies of this world’s divergent forms, and serve instead this preeminent purpose, this grand design.”
27 March 2014 Letter from The Universal House of Justice
For let every earnest upholder of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh realize that the storms which this struggling Faith of God must needs encounter, as the process of the disintegration of society advances, shall be fiercer than any which it has already experienced. Let him be aware that so soon as the full measure of the stupendous claim of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh comes to be recognized by those time-honored and powerful strongholds of orthodoxy, whose deliberate aim is to maintain their stranglehold over the thoughts and consciences of men, this infant Faith will have to contend with enemies more powerful and more insidious than the cruellest torture-mongers and the most fanatical clerics who have afflicted it in the past. What foes may not in the course of the convulsions that shall seize a dying civilization be brought into existence, who will reinforce the indignities which have already been heaped upon it!
Shoghi Effendi, The World Order of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 17
---“Ever since the birth of our nation, white America has had a schizophrenic personality on the question of race. She has been torn between selves—a self in which she proudly professed the great principles of democracy and a self in which she sadly practiced the antithesis of democracy. This tragic duality has produced a strange indecisiveness and ambivalence toward the Negro, causing America to take a step backward simultaneously with every step forward on the question of racial justice, to be at once attracted to the Negro and repelled by him, to love and to hate him. There has never been a solid, unified and determined thrust to make justice a reality for Afro-Americans…. What is the source of this perennial indecision and vacillation? It lies in the ‘congenital deformity’ of racism that has crippled the nation from its inception.”
Martin Luther King, Jr. Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community? 1967; Reprinted, Boston: Beacon Press, 2010
I desire to make manifest among the friends in America a new light that they may become a new people, that a new foundation may be established and complete harmony be realized; for the foundation of Bahá'u'lláh is love. When you go to Green Acre, you must have infinite love for each other, each preferring the other before himself. The people must be so attracted to you that they will exclaim, "What happiness exists among you!" and will see in your faces the lights of the Kingdom; then in wonderment they will turn to you and seek the cause of your happiness. You must give the message through action and deed, not alone by word. Word must be conjoined with deed.
You must love your friend better than yourself; yes, be willing to sacrifice yourself. The Cause of Bahá'u'lláh has not yet appeared in this country. I desire that you be ready to sacrifice everything for each other, even life itself; then I will know that the Cause of Bahá'u'lláh has been established. I will pray for you that you may become the cause of upraising the lights of God. May everyone point to you and ask, "Why are these people so happy?" I want you to be happy in Green Acre, to laugh, smile and rejoice in order that others may be made happy by you. I will pray for you.
(Abdu'l-Baha, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 218)
Whosoever and whatsoever meeting becometh a hindrance to the diffusion of the Light of Faith, let the loved ones give them counsel and say: "Of all the gifts of God the greatest is the gift of Teaching. It draweth unto us the Grace of God and is our first obligation. Of such a gift how can we deprive ourselves? Nay, our lives, our goods, our comforts, our rest, we offer them all as a sacrifice for the Abha Beauty and teach the Cause of God." Caution and prudence, however, must be observed even as recorded in the Book. The veil must in no wise be suddenly rent asunder. The Glory of Glories rest upon you.
(Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith - Abdu'l-Baha Section, p. 448)
REMEMBER TO CLICK HERE TO KEEP US UP TO DATE ON YOUR ACTIONS!
On Monday's, we share our Ah-ha moments and the actions we are inspired to do or have already started doing.
The beloved of God must, like the roses of the rose-garden, send fragrant messages from one to another, receive strength from one another, and cooperate together, by the strength of the Kingdom. There is no greater means than communion and communication. Communication is half a meeting.
‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá v2, p. 417
QUOTES FOR REFLECTION ON MONDAY
1. It is well to know that riches are good, but that knowledge will not make a man rich; he must work, he must put his knowledge into practice. We hope the people realize and know that unity is good, and we also hope that they will not be content to stand still in that knowledge. Do not only say that Unity, Love and Brotherhood are good; you must work for their realization. (Abdu'l-Baha, Abdu'l-Baha in London, p. 60)
2. A representative from a well known society made reference to its meetings for the purpose of a search into the reality of truth, and 'Abdu'l-Bahá said "I know of your work. I think a great deal of it. I know your desire is to serve mankind, and to draw together Humanity under the banner of Oneness; but its members must beware less it become only a discussion. Look about you. How many committees have been formed, and living for a little while, have died! Committees and Societies can not create or give life.
3. If we are true Bahá'ís speech is not needed. Our actions will help on the world, will spread civilization, will help the progress of science, and cause the arts to develop. Without action nothing in the material world can be accomplished, neither can words unaided advance a man in the spiritual Kingdom. It is not through lip-service only that the elect of God have attained to holiness, but by patient lives of active service they have brought light into the world.
4. Therefore strive that your actions day by day may be beautiful prayers. Turn towards God, and seek always to do that which is right and noble. Enrich the poor, raise the fallen, comfort the sorrowful, bring healing to the sick, reassure the fearful, rescue the oppressed, bring hope to the hopeless, shelter the destitute! (Abdu'l-Baha, Paris Talks, p. 80)
5. "People get together and talk, but it is God's Word alone that is powerful in its results. Consider for a moment: you would not trade together if you had no income from it and derived no benefit! Look at the followers of Christ. Their power was due to their ardour and their deeds. Every effort must have its result, else it is not a true effort. You must become the means of lighting the world of humanity. This is the infallible proof and sign. Every progress depends on two things, knowledge and practice. First acquire knowledge, and, when conviction is reached, put it into practice. (Abdu'l-Baha, Abdu'l-Baha in London, p. 107)
6. May our actions so characterize us that it may be said of each one of us, "There is a friend of God." (Abdu'l-Baha, Divine Philosophy, p. 55)
7. It is incumbent upon every man of insight and understanding to strive to translate that which hath been written into reality and action.... That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race. The Great Being saith: Blessed and happy is he that ariseth to promote the best interests of the peoples and kindreds of the earth. In another passage He hath proclaimed: It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens. (Baha'u'llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha'u'llah, p. 249)
8. The essence of faith is fewness of words and abundance of deeds; he whose words exceed his deeds, know verily his death is better than his life.(Baha'u'llah, Tablets of Baha'u'llah, p. 156)'
9. I have been asked a question: "How can we know when our actions meet with the approval of God?" Sometimes passion incites us to action; the laws of nature attract us, we obey our senses; the other incentive is the comprehension of the direction of God. We must find out if our actions are divinely inspired and if they do not conform, then it is our sensations which speak. Let us ever weigh our deeds in the scales of the divine teaching.
10. When we speak let our speech be an outward evidence of the inner light, for we must speak the truth, otherwise we shall not act wisely. I hope that you will all become eloquent. The greatest gifts of man are reason and eloquence of expression. The perfect man is both intelligent and eloquent. He has knowledge and knows how to express it. Unless man express himself in this day he will remain like a closed casket and one cannot know whether it contain jewels or glass. I desire that all of you may speak on the material and divine sciences with clear and convincing words. (Abdu'l-Baha, Divine Philosophy, p. 102)
11. The attainment of any object is conditioned upon knowledge, volition and action. Unless these three conditions are forthcoming there is no execution or accomplishment. (Abdu'l-Baha, Foundations of World Unity, p. 100)
12. What profit is there in agreeing that universal friendship is good, and talking of the solidarity of the human race as a grand ideal? Unless these thoughts are translated into the world of action, they are useless. The wrong in the world continues to exist just because people talk only of their ideals, and do not strive to put them into practice. If actions took the place of words, the world's misery would very soon be changed into comfort.
A man who does great good, and talks not of it, is on the way to perfection. The man who has accomplished a small good and magnifies it in his speech is worth very little. If I love you, I need not continually speak of my love -- you will know without any words. On the other hand if I love you not, that also will you know -- and you would not believe me, were I to tell you in a thousand words, that I loved you. People make much profession of goodness, multiplying fine words because they wish to be thought greater and better than their fellows, seeking fame in the eyes of the world. Those who do most good use fewest words concerning their actions. (Abdu'l-Baha, Paris Talks, p. 22)
13. This is a brilliant century. Eyes are now open to the beauty of the oneness of humanity, of love and of brotherhood. The darkness of suppression will disappear and the light of unity will shine. We cannot bring love and unity to pass merely by talking of it. Knowledge is not enough. Wealth, science, education are good, we know: but we must also work and study to bring to maturity the fruit of knowledge.
Knowledge is the first step; resolve, the second step; action, its fulfillment, is the third step. To construct a building one must first of all make a plan, then one must have the power (money), then one can build. A society of Unity is formed, that is good -- but meetings and discussions are not enough. In Egypt these meetings take place but there is only talk and no result. These meetings here in London are good, the knowledge and the intention are good, but how can there be a result without action? Today the force for Unity is the Holy Spirit of Bahá'u'lláh. He manifested this spirit of Unity. Bahá'u'lláh brings East and West together. Go back, search history, you will not find a precedent for this.(Abdu'l-Baha, Abdu'l-Baha in London, p. 54)
14. "To work," mentioned in this holy verse, does not mean, in this greatest age, to perform it with swords, spears, shafts and arrows, but rather with sincere intentions, good designs, useful advices, divine moralities, beautiful actions, spiritual qualities, educating the public, guiding the souls of mankind, diffusing spiritual fragrances, explaining divine illustrations, showing convincing proofs and doing charitable deeds. When the holy souls, through the angelic power, will arise to show forth these celestial characteristics, establishing a band of harmony, each of these souls shall be regarded as one thousand persons and the waves of this greatest ocean shall be considered as the army of the hosts of the Supreme Concourse. (Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith - Abdu'l-Baha Section, p. 401)
15. Mental Tests to be Suffered by Believers in the West"And yet, how often we seem to forget the clear and repeated warning of our beloved Master, who in particular during the concluding years of His Mission on earth, laid stress on the severe mental tests that would inevitably sweep over His loved ones of the West... tests that would purge, purify and prepare them for their noble mission in life.
"Ours then is the duty and privilege to labour, by day, by night, amidst the storm and stress of these troublous days, that we may quicken the zeal of our fellow-man, rekindle their hopes, stimulate their interests, open their eyes to the true Faith of God and enlist their active support in the carrying out of our common task for the peace and regeneration of the world."(From a letter written by Shoghi Effendi to the believers in Australia and New Zealand, 1923-1957, pp. 1-2)(Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 135)
16. "... An individual must center his whole heart and mind on service to the Cause, in accordance with the high standards set by Bahá'u'lláh. When this is done, the hosts of the Supreme Concourse will come to the assistance of the individual, and every difficulty and trial will gradually be overcome."
(Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 118)
17. "...There is nothing that brings success in the Faith like service. Service is the magnet which draws the Divine Confirmations. Thus, when a person is active, they are blessed by the Holy Spirit. When they are inactive, the Holy Spirit cannot find a repository in their being, and thus they are deprived of its healing and quickening rays."
(From letter written on behalf of the Guardian to an individual believer, July 12, 1952: Living the Life, p. 18 -(Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 118)
18. "The problem of to what extent we should sacrifice our time for the interest of the Cause depends for its solution upon individual means and circumstances. It is a personal problem that we ought to settle individually. One person may give all his time to teaching and rely upon small personal income and another may find himself more fitted to business and give his share of service in the form of financial assistance."
(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, December 18, 1930) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 118)
19. "... This irresistible urge to serve which you feel and which has prompted you to offer yourself for work in the teaching field is itself a clear indication that you are being guided by the Almighty to attain your highest and noblest goal in this life. For what a greater destiny can you hope to seek except that which Bahá'u'lláh has traced for every one of His loyal believer, namely to consecrate one's all to the service and glorification of His Faith! This assurance should indeed fortify your hopes, and enable you to banish every sense of dissatisfaction, and of unworthiness which may linger in your heart, and which may deter you from participating joyously and actively in serving the Cause. You should not look at your limitations, but derive full confidence at the thought that, however limited your resources and capacities may be, your efforts will be reinforced by Divine confirmations, provided you do your share and discharge your obligations as a believer, fully and conscientiously. Your perseverance will, even as a magnet, draw upon you the favours and blessings of Bahá'u'lláh. Do feel happy and confident, therefore, and fortified by such an assurance, arise to contribute all that is in your power towards the furtherance and promulgation of our beloved Cause."
(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, January 30, 1939) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 118)
O my God! O my God! We are servants who have sincerely turned our faces unto Thy grand face, severed ourselves from all else save Thee in this great day and are assembled together in this glorious meeting, of one accord and desire, and unanimous in thought to promulgate Thy Word amid Thy creatures." (Abdu'l-Baha, Tablets of Abdu'l-Baha v1, p. 2)
On Monday's, we share our Ah-ha moments and the actions we are inspired or have already started doing.
A sample sharing includes one or more of the following:
1. Share your name.
2. Where are you from?
3. How are you doing in your community?
4. How long have you been participating in Foundational Hall University?
5. What have you learned in this space?
6. What actions have you been inspired to undertake as a result of this space?
7. Do you have any Ah-ha moments from the past week?
8. How often do you attend?
9. Is there something related to the most vital and challenging that you would like to share?
10. What does this space mean to you?
Monday February 28, 2022, we will review the Peace Statement
I hope you are all happy and well. I am not happy, but very sad. The news of the Battle of Benghazi grieves my heart. I wonder at the human savagery that still exists in the world! How is it possible for men to fight from morning until evening, killing each other, shedding the blood of their fellow-men: And for what object? To gain possession of a part of the earth! Even the animals, when they fight, have an immediate and more reasonable cause for their attacks! How terrible it is that men, who are of the higher kingdom, can descend to slaying and bringing misery to their fellow-beings, for the possession of a tract of land!
The highest of created beings fighting to obtain the lowest form of matter, earth! Land belongs not to one people, but to all people. This earth is not man’s home, but his tomb. It is for their tombs these men are fighting. There is nothing so horrible in this world as the tomb, the abode of the decaying bodies of men.
However great the conqueror, however many countries he may reduce to slavery, he is unable to retain any part of these devastated lands but one tiny portion—his tomb! If more land is required for the improvement of the condition of the people, for the spread of civilization (for the substitution of just laws for brutal customs)—surely it would be possible to 29acquire peaceably the necessary extension of territory.
But war is made for the satisfaction of men’s ambition; for the sake of worldly gain to the few, terrible misery is brought to numberless homes, breaking the hearts of hundreds of men and women!
How many widows mourn their husbands, how many stories of savage cruelty do we hear! How many little orphaned children are crying for their dead fathers, how many women are weeping for their slain sons!
There is nothing so heart-breaking and terrible as an outburst of human savagery!
I charge you all that each one of you concentrate all the thoughts of your heart on love and unity. When a thought of war comes, oppose it by a stronger thought of peace. A thought of hatred must be destroyed by a more powerful thought of love. Thoughts of war bring destruction to all harmony, well-being, restfulness and content.
Thoughts of love are constructive of brotherhood, peace, friendship, and happiness.
When soldiers of the world draw their swords to kill, soldiers of God clasp each other’s hands! So may all the savagery of man disappear by the Mercy of God, working through the pure in heart and the sincere of soul. Do not think the peace of the world an ideal impossible to attain!
Nothing is impossible to the Divine Benevolence of God.
If you desire with all your heart, friendship with every race on earth, your thought, spiritual and 30positive, will spread; it will become the desire of others, growing stronger and stronger, until it reaches the minds of all men.
Do not despair! Work steadily. Sincerity and love will conquer hate. How many seemingly impossible events are coming to pass in these days! Set your faces steadily towards the Light of the World. Show love to all; ‘Love is the breath of the Holy Spirit in the heart of Man’. Take courage! God never forsakes His children who strive and work and pray! Let your hearts be filled with the strenuous desire that tranquillity and harmony may encircle all this warring world. So will success crown your efforts, and with the universal brotherhood will come the Kingdom of God in peace and goodwill.
In this room today are members of many races, French, American, English, German, Italian, brothers and sisters meeting in friendship and harmony! Let this gathering be a foreshadowing of what will, in very truth, take place in this world, when every child of God realizes that they are leaves of one tree, flowers in one garden, drops in one ocean, and sons and daughters of one Father, whose name is love!
Once upon a time, there was a man who was sleeping at night in his cabin when suddenly his room filled with light and the Saviour appeared. The Lord told the man He had work for him to do, and showed him a large rock in front of his cabin. The Lord explained that the man was to push against the rock with all his might. This the man did, day after day. For many years he toiled from sun up to sun down, his shoulders set squarely against the cold, massive surface of the unmoving rock, pushing with all his might.
Each night the man returned to his cabin sore and worn out, feeling that his whole day had been spent in vain. Seeing that the man was showing signs of discouragement, Satan decided to enter the picture placing thoughts into the man's mind such as: "You have been pushing against that rock for a long time, and it hasn't budged. Why kill yourself over this? You are never going to move it." Thus giving the man the impression that the task was impossible and that he was a failure.
These thoughts discouraged and disheartened the man even more. "Why kill myself over this?" he thought. "I'll just put in my time, giving just the minimum of effort and that will be good enough." And that he planned to do until one day he decided to make it a matter of prayer and take his troubled thoughts to the Lord.
"Lord," he said, "I have laboured long and hard in your service, putting all my strength to do that which you have asked. Yet, after all this time, I have not even budged that rock a half a millimeter. What is wrong? Why am I failing?" To this the Lord responded compassionately, "My child, when long ago I asked you to serve me and you accepted, I told you that your task was to push against the rock with all your strength, which you have done. Never once did I mention to you that I expected you to move it. Your task was to push.
And now you come to me, your strength spent, thinking that you have failed. But, is that really so? Look at yourself. Your arms are strong and muscled, your back sinewed and brown, your hands are callused from constant pressure, and your legs have become massive and hard. Through opposition, you have grown much and your abilities now surpass that which you used to have. Yet you haven't moved the rock. But your calling was to be obedient and to push and to exercise your faith and trust in My wisdom. This you have done. I, my child, will now move the rock."
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Prayer call since 2009- (FHU) started in 2019