The purpose underlying the revelation of every heavenly Book

“The purpose underlying the revelation of every heavenly Book, nay, of every divinely-revealed verse, is to endue all men with righteousness and understanding, so that peace and tranquility may be firmly established amongst them.  Whatsoever instilleth assurance into the hearts of men, whatsoever exalteth their station or promoteth their contentment, is acceptable in the sight of God.  How lofty is the station which man, if he but choose to fulfill his high destiny, can attain!  To what depths of degradation he can sink, depths which the meanest of creatures have never reached!  Seize, O friends, the chance which this Day offereth you, and deprive not yourselves of the liberal effusions of His grace.  I beseech God that He may graciously enable every one of you to adorn himself, in this blessed Day, with the ornament of pure and holy deeds.  He, verily, doeth whatsoever He willeth.”

Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, ch. 101

A fitting first quote, it seems to me.  This is why we read the scriptures–to help us gain “righteousness and understanding.” But I especially love that Bahá’u’lláh goes on and reminds us that we’re not merely to seek to personal improvement. The scriptures aren’t just self-help books. Personal improvement is a means to the end of creating unity among humankind–“peace and tranquility among [us].” And that will take work by us, not just study.  Scripture calls us to fulfill our “high destiny” and achieve our lofty station, but in the end we also need to undertake “pure and holy deeds.” He also reminds us that we don’t have a lot of time to “adorn” ourselves with the ornament of such noble deeds.

Published in: on August 31, 2008 at 6:27 pm  Leave a Comment  
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