THE HOLY WRITINGS OF THE FAITH actually openly teach or strongly imply the following doctrines (teachings):
1) Consecutive Incarnation: the belief that human souls who are not "born again" on Earth and become angelic souls will "go far away" from this planet at death, meaning they will incarnate upon another material planet and experience another ("second") physical death, and this process of one-mortal-life-per-material-planet (consecutive incarnation) continues until a human soul is "born again" or "transformed" from a human soul into an angelic soul by the baptism of the love of God.
2) Eternal Union: the doctrine that Baha'i couples who become "one" both spiritually and physically are married in all the Worlds of God (i.e. the Spiritual Realms are the "Worlds of God").
3) Sadrat al-Munaha: It means "The Uttermost Lote-Tree" and refers to the final supreme station of a soul in the Realm of Law-hoot (Realm of Divinities).
In Some Answered Questions, the Master comments on the Druze and Nusayri belief regarding reincarnation (many mortal lives on this planet):
"Those who believe in reincarnation think that the spiritual worlds are restricted to the worlds of human imagination. Moreover, some of them, like the Druzes and the Nusayris, think that existence is restricted to this physical world. What an ignorant supposition! For in this universe of God, which appears in the most complete perfection, beauty and grandeur, the luminous stars of the material universe are innumerable! Then we must reflect how limitless and infinite are the spiritual worlds, which are the essential foundation." (SAQ pp.288-89)'Abdu'l-Bahá chides the Druze and Nusayris for thinking that "existence is restricted to this physical world" and counts as evidence the innumerable stars of the material universe (this does not make sense unless He is referring to the planets around these stars), and to the spiritual worlds as well.
'Abdu'l-Bahá was not calling the Druze and Nusayris "ignorant" because they believed in multiple mortal existences, but because they believed that those multiple mortal existences were restricted to this one planet.
Lady Bloomfield once asked the Master if she could return to this planet (reincarnate) in order to continue to help mankind (she was a founder of Feed the Children). The Master purportedly replied:
"Why should you wish to return here? In my Father's house are many mansions, many worlds! Why should you desire to return to this planet?" (The Chosen Highway 3:1)The reply of the Master does not make sense unless He was speaking of other existences (lives) on other planets.
The Seer, Shaykh Ahmad al-Ahsa'i, wrote many books. He taught the existence of the Five Divine Presences:
Heyhoot (Realm of the Essence of God)
Lawhoot (Realm of Names and Attributes)
Jawbawroot (Realm of the Immortals)
Mawllawkoot (Realm of the Angels)
Nawshoot (Realm of the Humans)
No soul can reach Hayhoot, the Realm of the Essence. That is eternally blocked. But the final destination of a soul is to reach the Realm of Lawhoot. In other words, there is one Physical Realm (Nawsoot), and three Spiritual Realms (Mawllawkoot, Jawbawroot, and Lawhoot). The Mormons also believe in "Three Heavens". This is not a mere coincidence.
Souls that, in this life, on this planet, walk the Path of Holiness and become "born again" enter into one of the Spiritual Realms: which is "Heaven". But Souls who cannot detach themselves from the Physical Realm, "return" to it; not on this material planet, but on another.
The Physical Realm is Hell, and Hell-fire is literally the "fire" of the Sun that burns and wears-out (ages) our skin. It is the place where souls experience pain, injustice, disappointment, and death. This is why the Qur'an says of Hell:
"And when their skins have been worn out by hell-fire We shall give them new skins in order that they may continue to feel the punishment." (4:56)
...We shall give them new skins in order that they may continue to feel the punishment." (4:56)
There is no "returning" of the human soul to this material planet. Like the womb of our mother, we exist in this matrix for one time only.
Many will say, "Ah, I have a good life, I do not mind coming another life on a material world!" They had a good life on this planet, but that is no guarantee one will have a "good life" on another planet; unless of course their good deeds have outweighted their bad deeds. If we do not "merit" the inheritance the Kingdom of Heaven (Spiritual Realms), then we shall remain in Nawsoot (the Physical Realm); not on this planet, but on another. As the Master said, the luminous stars of God are innumerable, and all or most of them have planets that, at one time or another, can bear life.
In other words, Hitler and Stalin will not be singing "Koom Bay Yah" with Mother Teresa and Mahatma Gandhi in the Next World! They are not going to the same place!
The Master was asked if evil souls can influence people living. He said:
"There are no earth-bound souls. When the souls that are not good die they go entirely away from this earth and so cannot influence anyone. They are spiritually dead. Their thoughts can have influence only while they are alive on the earth... But the good souls are given eternal life and sometimes God permits their thoughts to reach the earth to help the people."The Master said that "souls that are not good" will not remain on this planet, but go "nowhere near this planet". This is , in my opinion, a reference to "evil souls" going to other material planets, for a life there.
"There is no power exercised over people by evil souls that have passed away. Good is stronger than evil and even when alive they had very little power. How much less have they after they are dead, and besides they are nowhere near this planet."(Questions answered by 'Abdu'l-Baha in Akka: Daily Lessons, Received at Akka, 1979 ed., pp. 35-36)
By "souls that are not good" the Master is not merely refering to Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and child-raptists. In His view, no soul was "good" until it had been "born again"; that it had transformed from an animal soul into a human soul. That means most human souls!
Indeed, 'Abdu'l-Baha taught that one must transform one's soul from an animal soul into a human soul, and from a human soul into an angelic soul. Only angelic souls escape for the Realm of Nawsoot (material/physical) and enter the Spiritual Realms.
The Master taught that human beings can have an "animal soul" (like the savages of Central Africa, or the Arabs before Muhammad, or the Europeans before Christ), or a rational human soul, but if they are "born again" (baptism of the fire of the love of God) then they receive an "Angelic Soul"; which, in the afterlife, allows them to enter "Heaven" (the Spiritual Realms).
The Five Presences are:
HEYHOOT--the Realm of the Essence
LAWHOOT--the Realm of the Divinities (Names and Attributes)
JAWBAWRROOT--the Realm of the Powers (Immortals)
MAWLAWKOOT--the Realm of the Angels
NAWSOOT--the Realm of the Human Souls (includes the Human Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Plant Kingdom, and Minteral Kingdom).
Heyhoot is occupied eternally only by the Essence (ALLAH): He Who begets not nor is begotten, and HE Who has no son and no consort. This Realm is eternally closed to all save the Essence.
Lawhoot is occupied by the Names and Attributes and is called the Eternal Paradise, or the Abha Paradise. This is the "Furthestmost Tree"--the ultimate station of the Soul.
Jawbawrroot is occupied by the Immortals, those who are higher than the angels, and this is called Paradise or the Empyrean Heaven; souls in this Realm (dimension) enjoy all the joys of an earthly existence, but none of its sorrows. This is the Realm of the Archtypes (i.e. the intelligent proto-types of all earthly species that guide the evolution of their particular species); according to Shaykhi doctrine.
Mawllawkoot is occupied by the Angels, or those with angelic souls, the holy ones or "saints" or "sants". They neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are eunuchs for the sake of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Nawsoot is occupied by human souls (the human kingdom), and the lower kingdoms of animals, plants, and minerals.
This the Shaykhi meaning of Nawsoot (the Material Realm); the place where the Sun burns the skin, and we experience Divine Punishments such as pain, sorrow, loss, injustice, racism, sexism, opression; recommonpence (rewards and punishments) for deeds done on another material planet.
On another material planet, the soul would have another "opportunity" to walk the Path of Holiness. Another life where the Sun burns and wears out the skin; a place of disease, injustice, pain (physical and emotional), and attachment. One mortal life per planet in the Realm of Naw-soot. This is called consecutive incarnation. It applies to all souls that are not "good" (the only "good" souls being those who inherit the Kingdom of Heaven i.e. one of the three Spiritual Realms: Law-hoot, Jaw-baw-root, Maw-lawkoot).
Good souls, however, will remain on this planet; but not in the Realm of Nawsoot. Surrounds us is the Unseen World; which contains the Spiritual Realms: one higher than the other.
In the Holy Writings, Hey-hoot is called "The Divine Ipseity". Law-hoot is called "the Eternal Paradise". Jaw-baw-root is called "The Empyrean Heaven". Maw-law-koot is called "The Heavenly Kingdom". These Spiritual Realms exist around us unseen.
Molla Ali-Akbar in Paradise (Jaw-baw-root)
In Memorials of the Faithful, the Master tells of a dream He has of a Believer who had died named Molla Ali-Akbar; who was a Shi'ite, then Shaykhi, then a Bábí, then finally a Bahá'í before he was martyred. He was a Seeker of Truth. The Master sees Him in vision, and sees that Molla Ali-Akbar was fatter in "Paradise" than while he was alive. The Master asks him why he is fatter in "Paradise" than he was in this world, and Molla Ali-Akbar responds that the food and drink was much better in Paradise than in the physical world (Memorials of the Faithful, pages 9-12).
This was a true vision of the Master; not some "parabolic story" invented by Him to make a point!
Food and drink are available in Jaw-bawr-root (Paradise), and also the other "joys" of earthly existence!
The Shaykhis (sheyg-kees) taught that Paradise was Jaw-bawr-root; only the most spiritual souls went to Jaw-bawr-root. They taught that Jawbawrroot was very similar to our world, but there was no "death" no aging, no pain; but all the joys of Nawsoot without the negative things about Nawsoot (i.e. pain, disease, deformity, injustice, cruelty, opression, labor, etc.).
Those who went to Mawl-law-koot (the Kingdom) would become like the Angels; who marry not nor are given in marriage. But, those souls who merited Jaw-bawr-root (Paradise), would be married there, as the Qur'an promises the Faithful:
"As for those that have faith and do good works, We shall admit them to Gardens watered by running streams where, wedded to chaste spouses, they shall abide khaliduun ("immortals"). To a cool shade We shall admit them. (4:57 Dawood Translation)Many of the Friends "interpret" these Verses to mean merely "husbands and wives will recognize each other in the Afterlife". If their interpretation is true, then Adlot Hitler and Eva Braun would be in Paradise together! This will not happen. This applies only to those who "merit" (earn) Paradise! "Lo! those who MERIT Paradise this day [while on Earth] are happily employed [in good works]. They and their wives, in pleasant shade [the Sun does not burn and age their skin], on thrones [ethereal bodies], reclinding [not engaging in harsh labor]." (36:55).
"Say: Shall I tell you of better things than these, with which the righteous shall be rewarded by their Lord? Theirs shall be Gardens watchered by running streams, where they shall dwell khaliduun ["immortals"]: spouses of perfect chastity, and grace from God. (3:15) And We shall wed them unto fair ones with wide lovely eyes (45:54) "Such as persevere in seeking their Lord's countenance and are regular in prayer and spend (on the poor) of that which We bestow upon them secretly and openly, and overcome evil with good, theirs will be the sequel to the (heavenly) Home, Gardens of Eden wich they enter, along with all who do right of their fathers and their helpmeets (wives) and their seed (children). (13:22-23)
Lo! those who merit Paradise this day are happily employed. They and their wives, in pleasant shade, on thrones reclining.... (36:55)
The Master saw Molla Ali-Akbar in Paradise, fatter than he was in life; confirming the Shaykhi belief that Paradise has all the joys of earth life, but none of its sorrows.
What Jesus meant by "there is no marriage in the Resurrection" is this: He was referring to the World of Resurrection; a lower spiritual world than Paradise. The Sadduccees (who denied the Afterlife and the resurrection of the dead) would be "as the angels in heaven who marry not nor are given in marriage" because they would inherit the World of Resurrection, but not Paradise; which was a higher realm.
The final destination of human souls is to become Divine Souls; dwellers of the Abhá Paradise, the Most High Paradise, the Eternal Paradise; which is Lawhoot. This Realm is even higher than Jawbawroot, and is restricted to the Prophets and "Chosen Ones". The Hebrew word for "Chosen One" is Qodesh; which in Latin is Santos and in English is Saint. In Lawhoot is where the Soul shall "Manifest the Names and Attributes of God" according to Bahá'u'lláh:
"It will manifest the signs of God and His attributes, and will reveal His loving-kindness and bounty. The movement of My Pen is stilled when it attempteth to befittingly describe the loftiness and glory of so exalted a station." (Gleanings, p.155)In other words, when a soul reaches the Realm of Lawhoot, it becames a Divine Soul: a Name/Attribute of God.
But, not all souls from this planet go to the Spiritual Realms. "Evil souls" go away from this planet! Where? To other planets; to experience "Hell-fire" again. Another opportunity to repent and obey the Will of God. If they "merit" the Spiritual Realms surrounding that planet, they will inherit them. But, if not, they will, yet again, get "new skins" so that they may "continue to feel the punishment":
"And when their skins have been worn out by hell-fire We shall give them new skins in order that they may continue to feel the punishment." (4:56)Some people are born deformed either in body or mind. Others are born with innate diseases. Why are some people born with deformities of genitals? Bahá'u'lláh wrote of the Next World punishment for those who commit zina (adultery):
"God hath imposed a fine on every adulterer and adulteress, to be paid to the House of Justice: nine mithquals of gold, to be doubled if they should repeat the offence. Such is the penalty which He Who is the Lord of Names hath assigned them in this world; and in the world to come He hath ordained for them a humiliating torment. Should anyone be afflicted by a sin, it behoveth him to repent thereof and return unto his Lord. He, verily, granteth forgiveness unto whomsoever He willeth, and none may question that which it pleaseth Him to ordain. He is, in truth, the Ever-Forgiving, the Almighty, the All-Praised." (Baha'u'llah, Kitab-i-Aqdas, par. 49)The phrase "in the World to Come" means the next world. In the next world adulterers will have "a humiliating torment".
What does this "humiliating torment" mean?
We do not know. Most of the Friends would interpret the "humiliating torment" to mean to be "embarassment" when others discover they are were fined for adultery by a House of Justice.
I disagree. I think the "humiliating torment" refers to those who, in the next life, if they commit adultery, shall have their sexual desire changed to one that is "humiliating" or causes torment to that soul. Certainly, for every homosexual, their orientation has caused "humiliation" at least during their youth if not later. In other words, if one cannot remain faithful to a woman, then God changes one's desire for women into men, and vice versa, in the next incarnation on the next material planet one incarnates upon in Nawsoot (the Physical Realm). That is my opinion, anyway, of what He meant by "a humiliating torment" in the World-to-Come.
Only those Souls that "merit" Paradise shall inherit it. And in Paradise, wives and husbands are together as husbands and wives (if they merit it). The Master taught eternal marriage for those who reach an "exalted state" of spirituality in this life. He wrote:
3 In a true Baha'i marriage the two parties must become fully united both spiritually and physically, so that they may attain eternal union throughout all the worlds of God, and improve the spiritual life of each other. This is Baha'i matrimony.This is NOT merely "recognizing each other" in the Afterlife! The souls must become "real Believers"; meaning what the Qur'an calls the "Faithful" (momen) and the "Companions of the Right Hand".
4 Among the majority of the people marriage consists of physical relationship and this union and relationship is temporary for at the end physical separation is destined and ordained. But the marriage of the people of Baha'i must consist of both physical and spiritual relationship for both of them are intoxicated with the wine of one cup, are attracted by one Peerless Countenance, are quickened with one Life and are illumined with one Light. This is the spiritual relationship and everlasting union. Likewise in the physical world they are bound together with strong and unbreakable ties.
5 When relationship, union and concord exist between the two from a physical and spiritual standpoint, that is the real union, therefore everlasting. But if the union is merely from the physical point of view, unquestionably it is temporal and at the end separation is inevitable.
6 Consequently when the people of Baha desire to enter the sacred union of marriage, eternal connection and ideal relationship, spiritual and physical association of thoughts and conceptions of life must exist between them, so that in all the grades of existence and all the worlds of God this union may continue forever and ever for this real union is a splendor of the light of the love of God.
7 Likewise if the souls become real believers they will find themselves ushered into this exalted state of relationship, becoming the manifestors of the love of the Merciful and exhilarated with the cup of the love of God. Undoubtedly that union and relationship is eternal. (Selections from the Writings of 'Abdu'l-Bahá, p.86)
In Jesus' day, the Jews were divided into three groups:
*The Persians (Pharisees): those Jews who followed the religion of the Persian prophet Zoroaster.
*The Righteous Ones (Sadducees): those Jews who rejected the religion of Zoroaster, denied the existence of life after death, and were concerned only with this life and living the Law of Moses.
*The Doers (Essenes): those Jews who believed as the Pharisees but were more strict and disciplined. The Essenes were divided into unmarried and a married order called the Nazarenes ("Observers").
Jesus belonged to the married order of Essenes: the Nazarenes ("Observers" of the Law of Moses).
The Pharisees spoke of three types of people:
*The Perfectly Righteous who would inherit Paradise (Pardes).
*The In-between who would inherit the World of Resurrection (Olam Hat-chiah).
*The Perfectly Wicked who would inherit Gehenna (Hell-fire).
The Essenes (including the Nazarenes) spoke of three types of people:
*The Children of Light
*The Children of this World
*The Children of the Devil.
The Children of Light would inherit Paradise.
The Children of this World would inherit the World of Resurrection (and be like the angels who marry not nor are given in marriage)
The Children of the Devil would inherit Gehenna (hell-fire).
The Qu'ran speaks of three types of people:
*The Companions of the Right Hand (inheritors of Paradise|the Faithful)
*The Companions of the Left Hand (inheritors of the Resurrection|the Believers)
*The Companions of the Fire (inheritors of hell-fire|the Unbelievers)
So too, Shaykh Ahmad spoke of the following:
*The Faithful who shall inherit Jawbawroot (kingdom of the immortals).
*The Believers who shall inherit Mawlawkoot (kingdom of the angels).
*The Unbelievers who shall inerit Nawsoot (hell-fire).
The Unbelievers include the Hypocrites who say "We are Bahá'ís" but who are really not, who "pick and choose" what Holy Laws to keep and which to ignore because they do not fancy them.
Law-hoot (the Abhá Paradise) is reserved for the Prophets and certain "Chosen Ones" (Moos-taw-feen). These are the "Concourse on High". But not even the Prophets ever get to Hey-hoot! That Realm is for the Essence of God, and nothing else eternally.
Souls that are not "good" (like Hitler and Eve Braun) will not "recognize each other" in the Afterlife, because their souls are going far away from this planet! They will not know each other again, because their souls were "not good" and they will have other existences in "Hell-fire" until their souls are finally purified. Only those souls who inherit the Spiritual Realms will be with each other again after death; which should be a good motivational factor in itself for people to strive to be "born again". That comes only when we "peacefully surrender" (islaam) to the Will of God. Our "will" (ego) is satan. God's Will is Divine. In fact, the Will of God is the Primal Will, His "Word". Jesus Christ was a combination of the Spirit of God and the "WORD" which comes from the World of Command. The Word is the "Be!" in "God said Be! and the world was created."
Those who inherit "Heaven" (any one of the Three Spiritual Realms) shall be "immortals" (no longer subject to death---not mortal), and thus will not have to suffer again where the Sun burns and ages the skin in a place of suffering and injustice.
No Marriage in Heaven?
Jesus did not say that "there is no marriage in Heaven". He denied there was marriage for those who inherited the World of Resurrection (Olam Hat'chiah); which was meant for the Children of This World. The Children of Light would inherit Paradise; a higher Spiritual Realm! Jesus referred to Paradise by the Zoroastrian term: "Pardes". He said to the "thief on the Cross" (probably an Essene--they refused to pay tribute to Rome and were killed as "thieves"--but they were very spiritual men!):
"Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in pardes (paradise)." (Luke 23:43)Pardes (paradise) refers to the Alam-i-Jawbawroot (World of Powers), which is higher than Alam-i-Mawlawkoot (World of Angels), but lower than Alam-i-Lawhoot (World of Divinities).
The Holy Qur'an says that "those who merit Paradise" will be married to their wives, and those among their fathers, mothers, relatives, and children who merit Paradise will be with them in "Gardens":
Lo! those who merit Paradise this day are happily employed. They and their wives, in pleasant shade, on thrones reclining..." (36:55)Those whose souls "are not good" shall go far away from this planet, according to the Master. They will not be with their wives or husbands. They will not be in pleasant shade, on thrones, reclining!
This is consecutive incarnation: one-mortal-life-per-material-world. It is not a "good" thing, but a punishment, as the Qu'ran says:
"And when their skins have been worn out by hell-fire We shall give them new skins in order that they may continue to feel the punishment." (4:56)This refers to consecutive incarnation; meaning those who are unsaved (all souls not born again) shall have to return to this material cosmos (Naw-soot) to again experience a mortal life on a material world; not this material world again, but another "far away" form this one.
'Abdu'l-Baha taught there is marriage in all the Worlds of God (Spiritual Realms). But, there is no sex in Mawl-law-koot, but there is in Jaw-bawr-root! In Jaw-bawr-root are all the joys of this world, but none of its sorrows. This is why the Qur'an says of the Garden (Jaw-bawr-root):
"Such as perservere in seeking their Lord's countenance and are regular in prayer and spend (on the poor) of that which We bestow upon them secretly and openly, and overcome evil with good, theirs will be the sequel to the (heavenly) Home, Gardens of Eden which they enter, along with all who do rights of their fathers, and their wives, and their seed." (13:22-23)In other words, in order to create an Eternal Family in Paradise, to be with your wife and children (if they are also Faithful), one must "overcome evil with good". The Seer Joseph Smith spoke of marriage in the "Celestial Kingdom"; marriage was only for the "Elect" who were "exalted". The Seer Emmanuel Swedenborg spoke of "Spiritual Angels" and "Celestial Angels". The Spiritual Angels would be married but not have conjugial love. The Celestial Angels would be married and have conjugial love (i.e. "sex").
Shayh Ahmad taught that those who are spiritually blind in life (i.e. knew the Truth but ignored it for selfish reasons); the meaning is that he will, in the next material world, be physically blind, as the Qur'an says:
"But whosoever turns away from My Message, verily, for him is a life narrowed down, and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Judgment. He will say, O My Lord! Why hast thou raised me up blind, while I had sight? (God will say) Thou didst then, when all Signs came unto thee, disregard them; so wilt thou this Day, be disregarded." (Qur'an 20:124-126)The "Day of Judgment" refers to the next mortal life on another planet where a person is born "judged" (punished) in some form: blind, deaf, dumb, diseased, perverted, retarded, deformed, etc. How many people are born on "this" material planet with a genetic defect of one sort or another? Are these accidental, or according to the Will of God--a punishment for actions and intentions done on another planet previous to this one?
Consecutive incarnation means "one mortal life per planet". It is not a reward but a punishment for those who dwell in Naw-soot (the material/physical Realm) which is "Hell".
HELL=Naw-soot=material/one physical dimension of the cosmos
HEAVEN=Law-hoot/Jaw-bar-root/Maw-law-koot/three spiritual dimensions of the cosmos
ALLAH=Hey-hoot=one Divine dimension of the cosmos.
The Qu'ran says that those who call the Message of God a "lie" will be dragged through scalding water, and will have iron collars on their necks connected to chains. The Qur'an says of those who inherit the Fire:
"Those who treat the Book, and the Message WE have sent through OUR Messengers, as a lie, will know the truth hereafter, with chains around their necks and collars around their necks, they shall be dragged through scalding water and burned in the fire of Hell." (Qur'an surah 40 verse 71)How should this Verse be interepreted?
*Muslims would interpreted it literally: literal demons will place literal iron collars around literal necks tied to literal chains and literally drag Kafirs (unbelievers) through literal boiling water into literal burning Fire for all eternity.
**Baháís would interpret it metaphorically: that if you reject the Faith one day, perhaps in the Afterlife, you will have a "burning conscience"--meaning you'll "feel bad" about not becoming a Bahá'í and working for race unity and world peace and the establishment of Esperanto universally when you had the opportunity to do so in life, and this burning conscience will be like a iron collar around one's neck that drags one down into depression.
***The Shaykhis interpreted it differently: the "boiling water" refers to the amniotic fluid (99.7 degrees) that the newborn must pass through in order to get to "The Fire" (i.e. out of the protective womb and into a world where a Sun burns and wares-out the skin) which means another mortal existence on a material planet. The "iron collar" and "chains" refer to those who are Moojreemoon (Apostates) who have have become Covenant-Breakers in this life will become literal slaves of others in the next.
Which interpretation do you agree with?
Personally, I think the Shaykhi interpretation is most logical. I do not see anything in the Holy Texts that would justify the popular "Baha'i" interpretation.
What is the meaning of the iron collars and chains?
Again, Baha'is simply don't know! They don't even venture a guess. But, according to the Shayhi interpretation (if Shaykh Ahmad-i-Ahsai'i knew), the Moojreemoon (Covenant-Breakers) shall, on the next material planet (since they will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven---the Spiritual Realms) will literally become "slaves" of others.
"The Moojreemoon [Apostates] shall be known by their marks (some translations insert here-"black faces") and they will be seized by their heads and their feet. (55:41)Muslim interpretation: On the Day of Judgment those who were Believers but have become Unbelievers (apostates) shall literally have black faces, and literally be grabbed by large demons and tossed around by their heads and feet. Those with white faces will be in Paradise and so will NOT be dragged around by the demons for all eternity.
"On the Day when some faces will be white and some faces will be black: To those whose faces will be black, will be said: "Did ye reject Faith after accepting it? Taste then the penalty for rejecting Faith!" But those whose faces will be white, they will be in ALLAH's mercy; therein to dwell." (3:106-107)
Bahá'í interpretation: The Day of Judgment is the Day of Resurrection, that is the appearance of a new Manifestation. We are living in the Day of Judgment now. Those who are Believers but then become Covenant-Breakers will have "down-cast" (metaphor="black") faces because they are sad they no longer working to establish The Principles, and they shall be seized with doubt (metaphor="heads") and and indecision ("feet seized"--not knowing where to run to work for world peace and race unity). Those who retained belief and did not become Covenant-Breakers shall have happy (metaphor="white") faces because they never doubted but are happy to continue to work for the establishment of The Principles daily.
Shaykhi interpretation: The Day of Judgment refers to the "mortal life" wherein one shall be "judged" for the evil deeds done in their previous mortal life in Nawsoot. Those who were once Believers but have forsaken Belief shall, in the next mortal existence (the next life in Nawsoot--another material planet), have black faces because they will be where the Fire is most intense (where the Ultra-violet rays of the Sun are strongest), and on that world they will become the slaves of others (seized by their heads and feet).
Which interpretation do you agree with? I like the Shaykhi interpretation.
The Arabs in the days of Muhammad wanted to know why some races were white and others were black. The Prophet purported said:
"Abu Darda reported that the HOLY PROPHET SAID: 'Allah created Adam when he created him. Then He struck his right shoulder and took out a white race as if they were [white] seeds, and He stroke his left shoulder and took out a black race as if they were [black] coals. Then He said to those who were in his right side: Towards paradise and I don't care. He said to those who were on his left: Towards Hell and I don't care.'" (Mishkat ul-Masabih, translated by Karim, v. iii, p. 117)Under the Shaykhi view, those who are Moojreemoon (sinners, rebels, those who hear the Message but openly rebel against it), shall be punished in the Resurrection; meaning that they go to another material planet, and live in the "hottest" part of Hell (i.e. where the Ultra-Violet rays of the Sun are strongest). Black races are black because their skin contains melanin; a substance which darkens the skin. A dark skin is necessary in locations near the equator where the UV rays of the Sun are strongest.
According to the Qur'an, the Moojreemoon will be known in the Resurrection by their "marks" and they will be "seized" by their heads and their feet. Black races on this planet have been "enslaved" by white races for thousands of years: in India and in Africa and Australia.
The Qur'an says:
"On the Day when some faces will be white, and some faces will be black: To those whose faces will be black, (will be said): "Did ye reject Faith after accepting it? Taste then the penalty for rejecting Faith." (3:106)Naturally, the Friends will explain-this-away as a "metaphor"; meaning on the Day of Resurrection some faces will be "white" (i.e. happy, cheerful) and some "black" (unhappy, sad) because some will accept the Faith and be happy and others will reject the Faith and be sad because they can't work for world peace, race unity, and Esperanto-for-all. Why one must be "Baha'i" in order to "work for" these principles, the Friends have never been able to explain to me!
I prefer the Shaykhi interpretation, that the Day of Judgment refers to the Day (life) in which we shall receive our "recompense" for actions committed in the previous life. In other words, billions of years ago, when the Sun was smaller and weaker, Venus was like the Earth, and the Earth was like Mars is today. Life flourished on Venus. I believe that planet had "humans" or human-like creatures, and that it had its Prophets and Messengers. Some accepted the Message, and others rebelled against it. Those who were "born again" on that planet entered into the Spiritual Realms at death. Those who were not "saved" had to come to this Earth, to experience "the second death" (Rev. 21:8). Those who rejected Faith after having received it received the "penalty" thereof as described in the Holy Quran (3:106).
Some of the Friends who read this will cry, "Oh, this is RACIST...this is RACIST!"
That is true! "Racism" and "slavery" and "caste" were punishments upon the Moojreemoon. Naw-soot (material/physical dimension) is a place of punishment! And "racism" is one of the punishments upon the Moojreemoon; those who rebelled against God on a planet before this planet. This is why the Mormon Church banned blacks from their temples and priesthood until 1978; because they believed that in the Pre-Existence some spirits were more rebellious than others. And, as punishment, they were born into black bodies on this planet. Racism, slavery, and the caste-system (which Krishna says He created) were Divine Punishment for rebellious actions of souls upon a material planet before this one.
There is only three ways one can look at racism/slavery/caste-system:
a) There is no God and therefore God has nothing to do with these things.
b) There is a God, and these things were against His Will.
c) There is a God, and these things were Divine Punishments upon souls that rebelled in a previous material existence.
Choose one. These are the only possible choices. I choose to believe in "c". But... I also believe that Baha'u'llah came to "redeem" Mankind from those Divine punishments, and He atoned for them in the Siyah Chal. He was chained so that Mankind may be freed from chains! He suffered for the Moojreemoon; atoned for their past-planet sins so that they may no longer suffer the Justice of God upon them on this material planet.
In the Book of Revelations, John has a vision, and in this vision He sees a Slain Lamb on the Alter of God, a Lamb with Seven Horns and Seven Eyes. This "Lamb of God" was sacrificed to "atone" for the sins of the world. Of course, Christians recognize this Seven-Eyed Lamb as Jesus Christ! But why the seven horns and seven eyes? Christians have no idea, and don't even venture a guess. I will venture one!
The Slain Lamb with Seven Horns and Seven Eyes refers to seven Souls Who shall "atone" for the sins of the world. Not one soul (Jesus) only, but seven:
*Jesus (Messenger/the cross)
*The Imaam Ali (Chosen One/beheaded)
*Imaam Husayn (Chosen One/beheaded)
*The Báb (Messenger/shot)
*The 7th Angel (Messenger? or Chosen One?/atonement via ???)
There is another Messenger or Chosen One who must come Who is called "the 7th Angel" (SAQ pp.56-7) by 'Abdu'l-Baha, Who must also offer an atonement of some sort.
Baha'u'llah was chained in the Siyah Chal for four months. His "atonement" was to suffer in chains for those who were kept in chains. In other words, for those who were Covenant-Breakers on a material planet before this planet, whose punishment was slavery on Earth, Baha'u'llah offered an "atonement" in the Siyah Chal for 120 days. If one takes 120 days for 120 years, take 1852 (the year of His emprisonment in the Siyah Chal) and add 120 lunar (not solar) years, and it comes to 1965. What happened this year? This was the year that African-Americans finally were granted equal rights. This was the year that black slavery ended in the Arab countries (it ended officially in 1925, but not 'really' until 1965). This was the year that the caste-system in India was not longer enforced by law. This was the year that the last of the European colonies in Africa became free. Baha'u'llah suffered in the Siyah Chal for 120 days so that 120 lunar years later, the curse upon the Moojreemoon (i.e. those who were covenant-breakers on another material planet before this and cused to become slaves and subjected races in this world) would be cancelled! And....it was!
In other words, let us say that two Swedish twins on this planet became Believers, but neither was "born again" (i.e. they did not reach a spiritual station in which the Holy Spirit transformed their human souls into angelic souls). Not being "born again" means they don't automatically go to the Spiritual Realms at death. And, since they cannot return to this material world, they must go far away to another material planet, to again experience a mortal life. Twin A was a Believer, but not "born again". He is born into a higher caste than Twin B, who was a Believer then a Disbeliever. According to the Qur'an, Twin A will be "white" in the resurrection and in Allah's mercy, and Twin B will be "black" and "seised by" his head and feet. Has not exactly THIS happened in human history? Have not the white races subjected the black races...at least until 1965? Have not Europeans subjected black Africans, and have not white Aryans subjected the black-skinned Dravidians of India?
Yes, this is "racist". But, again, "racism" and "slavery" and "caste" was a punishment upon the Moojreemoon (those who became apostates on another world as as divine punishment were born into this world as slaves or outcastes). The caste-system was not against the Will of God, but a just punishment upon the Moojreemoon! This is why Krishna defends the caste-system in the Bhagavad-Gita! Krishna was not a Dravidian, but an Aryan of the Yadavas clan. He skin was blue probably because He suffered from a skin disease called argyria which causes skin of white people to turn blue. He defends the caste-system in the Bhagavad-Gita; a book in which Baha'is sometimes quote from. Krishna says:
"Four orders [castes] of society were created by Me according to their gunkarma vibhagsah ("innate-qualities-resulting-from-karma")" (Gita 4:13)According to the Gita, one prior actions (karma) before birth into this material world determines what caste one is born into. White-skinned Aryans are born into the three highest castes called the "twice born" castes, and people of mixed Aryan/Dravidian lineage were born into the lowest caste (Sundras--unskilled workers), and black-skinned Dravidians belonged to no caste but were "out-castes". In the Gita, Krishna says He Himself created this white-oppressing-black caste-system!
“Brahmanas, ksatriyas, vaisyas and sudras are distinguished by the qualities born of their own natures in accordance with the material modes." (Gita chapter 18)
Many Baha'is will say (naturally), "Oh! Well, this CANNOT BE! This simply CANNOT BE! Krishna would have opposed the caste-system, not supported it! He would have authored a Book of Laws agains it! The Gita must be unrealiable! No Manifestation of God could possibly have defended the caste system!"
But, dear Friends, you are "wishful thinking" again! Please understand what the Gita says, and what the Qu'ran says, that the Moojreemon (those who rejected faith after first receiving it) will be known by their "marks". According to the Qur'an, they will have "black faces" in the Resurrection, and will be "seized" by their heads and their feet! Did not this very thing happen, for thousands of years, on planet Earth?
Was this against the Will of God? Or....was this God's punishment upon the Moojreemoon? Those who were covenant-breakers on a material world before this one?
And the Gita teaches the concept of other lives on other worlds: either spiritual worlds or other material worlds. But nowhere does the Gita say that human souls will return to "this" material planet. The Gita teaches consecutive incarnation.
Under the Hindu caste system, the white-skinned Aryans were members of the "twice-born" castes (priests, rulers, and skilled-workers), and mixed race belonged to the unskilled worker class, and blacks did not belong to any caste but were "out-castes" (untouchables). Instead of condemning the caste system in the Gita, Krishna defends it and says "HE" created it! The Buddha never condemned the caste system, nor did He write a book of laws against it. Rather, He taught that caste was irrelevant to attaining enlightenment (i.e. the black-skinned Dravidian Outcaste was as capable of attaining enlightenment as the high-caste Aryan Brahmin).
But, God is Merciful! Baha'u'llah allowed Himself to be chained in the Siyah Chal for four months (120 days) so that 120 lunar years later (1965), the Moojreemoon could be "freed" from their chains! Baha'u'llah wrote:
"The Ancient Beauty hath consented to be bound with chains that mankind may be released from its bondage, and hath accepted to be made a prisoner within this most mighty Stronghold that the whole world may attain unto true liberty. He hath drained to its dregs the cup of sorrow, that all the peoples of the earth may attain unto abiding joy, and be filled with gladness. This is of the mercy of your Lord, the Compassionate, the Most Merciful. We have accepted to be abased, O believers in the Unity of God, that ye may be exalted, and have suffered manifold afflictions, that ye might prosper and flourish." (Gleanings, pp.99-100)Most Baha'is intepret these Verses to mean that Baha'u'llah teachings via His Tablets is what "liberates" mankind from the bondage of racism, sexism, and materialism. But, that is NOT what He wrote! He said that He consented (allowed) Himself to be "bound with chains" (no tablets or epistles were written during His sojourn in the Siyah Chal!), so that mankind may attain "true liberty". He was bound for 120 days. And 120 lunar years later, the Moojreemoon were "liberated" from their punishment (caste/slavery/second-tier-citzenship).
Once again, all human souls do not automatically enter the Spiritual Realms ("Heaven") at death! The Holy Spirit must transform our human soul into an angelic soul by being "born again" via the Fire of the Love of God! Nothing else will "save" us from the Material Realm ("Hell"). If we "automatically" entered into the Spiritual Realms at death, then Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Hussein, along with raptists, child-killers, mass-murderers, would be among the Prophets and most enlightened beings! Nay! Only those souls who become "born again" by the Fire of the Love of God are transformed by the Holy Spirit into "angelic souls" that enter the Kingdom of God (Spiritual Realms) at death. All other souls go far away from this material planet. Where do they go? To another material planet, where the Sun burns and wares-out the skin, and where we experience pain, sorrow, injustice, disease, deformity, separation of loved ones, and death.
The Material Realm (Naw-soot) is "HELL"! This is why Baha'u'llah wrote:
"O servants! This nether world is the abode of demons: Guard yourselves from approaching them. By demons is meant those wayward souls who, with the burden of their evil deeds, slumber in the chambers of oblivion. Their sleep is preferable to their wakefulness, and their death is better than their life." (The Tabernacle of Unity 4:7)Did not 'Abdu'l-Baha Condemn Reincarnation?
'Abdu'l-Baha did indeed say that reincarnation was "impossible" for human souls. But, He also said that those who are born again (baptized by the Fire of the Love of God) no longer have "human" souls, but they now have angelic souls:
"Angels are also those holy souls who have severed attachment to the earthly world, who are free from the fetters of self and passion and who have attached their hearts to the divine realm and the merciful kingdom." (The Spiritual Kingdom, p.409)A human soul doesn't "become" an angel at death. Rather, a human soul that purifies itself becomes an "angelic soul" (change of the condition of soul) while they are still alive. In the next world they can "return" to this realm (naw-soot); not as a human being, but as an ethereal being (ghost/apparition) like the appearances of Mary to three children at Fatimah, Portugal, in 1917.
Some He Transformed Into Apes and Swine
In Shaykhi doctrine, there are mineral souls, plant souls, animal souls, human souls, angelic souls, Lordly Souls, and Divine Souls. What "condition" your soul is "in" (minteral/animal/human/angelic/lordly/Divine) determines what Realm you go to after death. Men with animal souls and human souls go away from this planet, to another material planet. Those men and women with animal souls (i.e. whose are so depraved that they changed the condition of their own soul from human soul into animal soul) are promised:
"Say: O people of the Book! Do ye disapprove of us for no other reason than that we believe in Allah, and the revelation that hath come to us and that which came before (us), and (perhaps) that most of you are rebellious and disobedient?Most Baha'is will of course "poo=poo" this Verse, meaning it is some sort of "metaphor"; NOT that Allah would "literal" change human beings into apes and swine! Absurd! Right?
Say: Shall I point out to you something much worse than this, (as judged) by the treatment it received from Allah? those who incurred the curse of Allah and His wrath, those of whom some He transformed into apes and swine, those who worshipped evil -- these are (many times) worse in rank, and far more astray from the even path!" (Quran 5:59-60)
But the Shaykhis interpret it to mean what it says: Allah changed them into "apes and swine"; not on this world, but on another. In other words, those who were "cursed" by Allah on another materal world because they "worshipped evil" would come to this material world not as humans (since they forfeited their human condition by changing their human souls into animal souls), so that they would be born on this planet as "apes" and "swine".
Indeed, on this planet "apes" are 98% human, and "swine" are so genetically close to humans that their skin and organs are often transplanted into humans. These souls were once "human" but had "worshipped evil" and were now, on our planet, under the "curse" of ALLAH.
'Abdu'l-Baha preached against the belief that humans could "return" as animals; He meant they could not "return" as animals to "this material world". And by "apes" not only are "apes" meant but also the various species of ape-men that roamed this planet for millions of years.
Those men and women with human souls (unpurified souls), will again become humans (or humanoids), not on this planet, but on another material planet; to face "the second death" (to literally "die" again physically), and to face the "fire" of a new Sun which burns and wears-out the skin, where there is disease, injustice (like racism or chaste), pain, sorrow, disease, defect, perversion, and death. Naw-soot is a punishment on unpurified souls!
Those with angelic souls will go to the Kingdom (Mawl-law-koot), those with lordly souls will go to the Empyrean Heaven (Jaw-bawr-root), and those with Divine Souls will go to the Eternal Paradise (Law-hoot). These Three Spiritual Kingdoms are not away from this planet, but in fact share the same space as this planet, but in other (higher) dimensions.
Angelic souls can "return" to our Realm (Naw-soot), but only as "angels" (non-physical beings who come to inform or help us).
Lordly souls can "return" to our Realm (Naw-soot) as "Chosen Ones" (Moos-staw-feen).
Divine Souls can "return" to our Realm (Naw-soot) as "Prophets".
So, Consecutive Incarnation is the punishment for all souls that are not "purified" by the Fire of the Love of God (i.e. not "born again") in this world. They are "attached" to the Physical/Material Realm, so, they return to it; not on this planet, but on another.
Those who become "detached" from the Physical/Material Realm (Naw-soot) do not return to it unless they want to: as Angels, or Chosen Ones, or Prophets.
This is what Shaykh Ahmad al-Ahsa'i taught. This is the meaning of "return"; that the Prophets and Chosen Ones "return" in every Dispensation. The Báb was the "return" of the Spirit (Perfections/Qualities) of the Imaam Mehdi. Quddús was the "return" of the Soul (individuality) of the Imaam Mehdi. Mollah Husayn (the First Letter of the Living) was the "return" of the Soul (individuality) of the Prophet Muhammad. Even Tahirih was the "return" of Fatimah.
The Supreme Station (Sadrat'l-Muntaha)
The term "Sadrat'l-Muntaha" means "farthest lote-tree"; meaning the last tree one comes to while leaving an oasis back into the desert. In mystical Islaam (Sufism and Ishraqism), Sadrat'l-Muntaha refers to the "supreme station" that a soul may attain. It means to enter into the Realm of Divinities (Law-hoot) and "become God".
The Spiritual Realms are the Kingdom of Heaven. They include:
In other words, no "soul" can ever enter into the Realm of the Essence (Hey-hoot), which is called the Divine Ipseity, or Al-LAW ("THE DIVINITY"). A human soul is a soul that exists in the Realm of Naw-soot. If the Holy Spirit transforms that soul, then it is "born again" into the Realm of Maw-law-koot (Angelic). A man can still be living in a physical body, and has his soul "changed" from human to angelic. Having been "born again" his soul is already in "Heaven". At death, he "sees" Maw-law-koot; an Unseen World which surrounds our own. We do not notice it anymore than a planet notices our human kingdom.
But the man or woman who is not "born again" by the Fire of the Love of God, does not enter into the Spiritual Realms at death, but "goes far away" from this material planet, to another. They remain in Naw-soot (the Material Realm); which is "Hell".
A human soul can become an angelic soul, but the progress does not end there! An angelic soul can become a powerful soul, and a powerful soul can become a "Divine Soul" (Law-hoot). The Realm of Divinities is also the Kingdom of Names. In other words, in this Kingdom a soul "manifests" the Names and Attributes of God. A Divine Soul is "God" but also still a servant. These are the "Gods" mentioned by The Báb in His Kitab-i-Panj Sha'n ("Book of Five Modes") wherein He writes:
"Say, God is Very God above all that is made god--When a soul enters into Law-hoot, the Realm of Divinities, it becomes "God"! It becomes one of "Us" and "Our" when the LORD God said, "Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness." (Genesis 1:26). It becomes one of the "We" in the Qur'an when ALLAH says, “WE created not the heavens, the earth, and all between them, but for just ends. And the Hour is surely coming” (al-Hijr 15:85). The Arabic word for "we/us/our" is Nahnoo, and the Nahnoo refer to the Divine Souls that exist in Law-hoot. The Hebrew words translated "LORD God" is YAHWEH ELOHIYM, and "ELOHIYM" is a masculine plural ending (iym) of a feminine singular (Eloh) and means literally "Male and Female Gods". YAHWEH means "I am/have been/will be". YAHWEH ELOHIYM means literally "I am/have been/will be the male and females Gods".
Nothing in the heavens, nothing in the earth,
nothing in the void between
can hinder Him, Divine in the Divinity of His Godhead.
He is High God, God, Divine.
You are exalted, O God
--God of the heavens, God of the earth, God of the void between--
You bestow divinity on whom You choose
and withdraw it from whom You choose,
Exalt whom You choose, bring low whom You choose.
You aid whom You choose, forsake whom You choose,
Glorify whom You choose, abase whom You choose,
Enrich whom You choose, ruin whom You choose.
In Your grasp is the kingdom of all things.
You create what You choose by Your command.
You are powerful over all things.
You are exalted, O God.
You are the God of Divinities.
You entrust the Command to whom You choose,
and withdraw it from whom You choose,
Exalt whom You choose, bring low whom You choose.
You aid whom You choose, forsake whom You choose,
Enrich whom You choose, ruin whom You choose.
Glorify whom You choose, abase whom You choose.
In Your grasp is the kingdom of all things.
You create what You choose by Your command.
You, You are High God, God, Divine.
Say, You, O God, You are Very God of Very Gods".
Law-hoot is called "the Supreme Station" or "the Furthestmost Tree" or "the Uttermost Tree"; it refers to the furthest/uttermost "station" of a soul. There is no progressing "beyond" this, because only the Essence is beyond it, and no soul can enter/become the Essence. In this Realm, the servant becomes the Ruler at the same time, and is given the "Command" (i.e. the "Be!" by which Allah creates).
The ancient Christians taught this doctrine of Sadrat'l-Muntaha under the names "deification" (Latin: "to become God") and theosis (Greek: "transforming into God").
Irenaeus (c. 150 A.D., bishop of Lyons, disciple of Polycard who was a disciple of John the Beloved Apostle): "If the Word became a man, it was so men may become gods." (Ante-Nicene Fathers 1:526)
Clement of Alexandria (c. 180 A.D., dean of the Christian School of Alexandria, founded by John Mark--author of the Gospel of Mark--Clement was the first Christian writer to use the term "ChristianITY" to describe the religion of Jesus): "Yea, I say, the Word of God became a man so that you [Christians] might learn from a man [Jesus] how to become a god." (Exhortation to the Greeks 1)
"If one knows himself, he will know God, and knowing God will become like God. His is beauty, true beauty, for it is God, and that man becomes a god, since God wills it." (The Instructor, 3.1)
St. Athanasius (c.325 A.D., author of the Athanasian Creed upon which the Nicene Creed was written, bishop of Alexandria, opposer of the Arians): "For the Son of God became man so that we might become God." (De Incar. 54,3)
"The Word was made flesh in order that we might be enabled to become gods."(Against the Arians, 1.39)
St. Jerome (c. 400 A.D.): "He made man for that purpose, that from men they may become gods." (Homilies of St. Jerome 1:48)
St. Augustine (c. 410 A.D.): "But He Himself that justifies also deifies, for by justifying He makes sons of God. 'For He has given them power to become the sons of God.' [John 1:12]. If then we have been made sons of God, we have also been made gods." (On the Pslams, 50.2)
St. Thomas Aquinas (c. 130 A.D.): "The Only-Begotten Son of God, wanting to make us sharers in his divinity, assumed our nature, so that he, made man, might make men gods." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, n.460)
I have not quoted from heretics, but from the "pillars" of Christianity! Indeed, Clement of Alexandria, the Dean of the Christian School of St. Mark (founded by Mark) in Alexandria, Egypt, was the man who "invented" the term "Christianity"! Jesus never used that term to describe His religion. Paul never used it. Peter never did. It term "Christianity" by Clement of Alexandria; dean of the Christian School of St. Mark, about 200 A.D.
C.S. Lewis (1898-1963) was a British author of fantasy books, and also a Christian author. He is the most popular Christian author in the English language--whose books are bestsellers in Evangelical Christian bookstores. He has sold more books than any other Christian writer since the Apostles. He also taught that men and women may become gods and goddesses. He wrote:
"It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship." (The Weight of Glory, p.14)
"Sometimes, Lord, one is tempted to say that if you wanted us to behave like the lilies of the field you might have given us an organization more like theirs. But that, I suppose, is just your...grand enterprise. To make an organism which is also spirit; to make that terrible oxymoron, a 'spiritual animal.' To take a poor primate, a beast with nerve-endings all over it, a creature with a stomach that wants to be filled, a breeding animal that wants to mate, and say, 'Now get on with it, become a god.' (A Grief Observed, p.84-5)
"The command Be ye perfect is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were 'gods' and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him--for we can prevent Him, if we choose--He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said." (Mere Christianity, p.174)
"For now the critical moment has arrived. Century by century God has guided nature up to the point of producing creatures which can (if they will) be taken right out of nature, turned into gods." (ibid. p.187)
"[In his Screwtape Letters C.S. Lewis has a high-ranking demon addressing a demon of lesser rank saying to him the following:] But the obedience which the Enemy [God] demands of men is quite a different thing [from our own Satanic goals]. One must face the fact that all the talk about His love for men, and his service being perfect freedom, is not )as one would gladly believe) mere propaganda, but an appalling truth. He [God] really does want to fill the universe with a lot of loathsome little replicas of Himself--creatures whose life, on a minature scale, will be qualitatively like His own, not because He has absorbed them but because their wills freely conform to His. We want cattle who can finally become food: He [God] wants servants who can finally become sons." (The Screwtape Letters, p.45)
"Morality is indispensable: but the Divine Life, which gives itself to us and which calls us to be gods, intends for us something in which morality would be swallowed up. We are to be remade...we shall find underneath it all a thing we have never yet imagined: a real man, an ageless god, a son of God, strong, radiant, wise, beautiful, and drenched in joy." (The Grand Miracle, p.85) Joseph Smith, the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ("Mormon Church"), taught a version of "consecutive incarnation" (called "Multiple Mortal Probations") and "eternal union" (called by Mormons "eternal marriage"), and also a version of Sadrat al-Muntaha that Mormons call "Exaltation". It's all the same! A rose is a rose by any other name. This is not a mere coincidence. According to Shoghi Effendi, Joseph Smith was a "Seer" (Memoirs of 'Abdu'l-Baha, p.117).
Escaping the Lake of Fire (Naw-soot)
What does "Salvation" mean? It means "to be saved"! Saved from what? "Salvation" means "escape". If we escape a fire, we are "saved" from burning. If we escape a sinking ship, we are "saved" from drowning. If we escape from the Material Realm (Naw-soot) it means we go to the Spiritual Realms (Kingdom of Heaven). "Salvation" means to escape Hell and go to Heaven. Hell is not down, and Heaven is not up. We are in "Hell" now. The Material Realm (dimension) is Hell. The Spiritual Realms (dimensions) is Heaven, and Heaven surrounds us, and shares the same space as us, but we can't "see" it like plants can't "see" us. Heaven is the Unseen World.
The Material Realm is referred to in the Bible as "Hell" or "Hell-fire" or "the Lake of Fire". It is the place of fire. It is the place where the Ultra-violent rays of the Sun causes our skins to ware-out. The UV rays causes ageing, and disease, and deformity. Its not a nice place. We must "escape" it.
Rebellious souls are destined to dwell in the "lake of fire" (the material realm/naw-soot/hell) until that rebellious soul submits to the Will of God, and God's Will is revealed by His Manifestations. Jesus said that we had to become "MOOSHLAAM" (Hebrew: "perfect"). Jesus said:
"The disciple is not above his Teacher, but every one that is PERFECT shall be as his Teacher." (Luke 6:40)To become an Adam she'Mooshlaam ("Person that is Perfect"), one must do more than merely "believe" in the 12 Principles! Must one do more than merely sign a letter of declaration and attend meetings and feasts and vote in Baha'i elections.They must do more than pay to the Baha'i Funds and go travel-teaching. In order to escape from the Lake of Fire (the Material Realm) one must be "born again" by the Fire of the Love of God. How? According to Baha'u'llah, one must walk the Path of Holiness. The Path of Holiness includes:
"Ein talmeed na'leh 'al rabbo shekken kal adam she'MOOSHLAAM yihyeh k'rabbo."
1. Belief in the Revelations of God (all of them)
2. Bowing to the Will of God daily
3. Fasting during the daylight hours of 19-day month of Loftiness
4. Meditating (reading and pondering) on the Holy Verses daily
5. Chanting the Zikr (Remembrance of God) daily
6. Ceasing work (if possible) on the Nine Holy Days
7. Good thoughts/good words/good deeds daily
8. Praying the Daily Obligatory Prayer
9. Living the Life (not being a hypocrite and "picking and choosing" which doctrins to accept and which ordinances to keep but accepting all the doctrines and keeping all the ordinances to the best of your ability)
There are many Paths of Holiness, and any of them can help us become "born again". The above is simply the Baha'i Path of Holiness. If we walk in the Path of Holiness, then we shall increase our own spirituality until the Holy Spirit "begets" us--transforms our fallen human soul into an angelic soul which is born into the Kingdom of Heaven. Baha'u'llah wrote:
8. O SON OF GLORY!
Be swift in the path of holiness, and enter the heaven of communion with Me. Cleanse thy heart with the burnish of the spirit, and hasten to the court of the Most High. (Hidden Words, Persian)
In The Book of Mormon is says:
"And the Lord said unto me: Marvel not that all mankind, yea, men and women, all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, must be born again; yea, born of God, changed from their carnal and fallen state, to a state of righteousness, being redeemed of God, becoming his sons and daughters." (Mosiah 27:25)
'Abdu'l-Baha purportedly said:
"Material development may be likened to the glass of a lamp, whereas divine virtues and spiritual susceptibilities are the light within the glass. The lamp chimney is worthless without the light; likewise, man in his material condition requires the radiance and vivification of the divine graces and merciful attributes. Without the presence of the Holy Spirit he is lifeless. Although physically and mentally alive, he is spiritually dead. Christ announced, “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit,” meaning that man must be born again. As the babe is born into the light of this physical world, so must the physical and intellectual man be born into the light of the world of Divinity. In the matrix of the mother the unborn child was deprived and unconscious of the world of material existence, but after its birth it beheld the wonders and beauties of a new realm of life and being. In the world of the matrix it was utterly ignorant and unable to conceive of these new conditions, but after its transformation it discovers the radiant sun, trees, flowers and an infinite range of blessings and bounties awaiting it. In the human plane and kingdom man is a captive of nature and ignorant of the divine world until born of the breaths of the Holy Spirit out of physical conditions of limitation and deprivation. Then he beholds the reality of the spiritual realm and Kingdom, realizes the narrow restrictions of the mere human world of existence and becomes conscious of the unlimited and infinite glories of the world of God. Therefore, no matter how man may advance upon the physical and intellectual plane, he is ever in need of the boundless virtues of Divinity, the protection of the Holy Spirit and the face of God." (Promulgation of Universal Peace, pp.288-89)Those souls who progress reach the ultimate station, which is Godhood. Baha'u'llah wrote:
"Men have failed to perceive Our purpose in the references We have made to Divinity and Godhood. Were they to apprehend it, they would arise from their places, and cry out: “We, verily, ask pardon of God!” The Seal of the Prophets – may the souls of all else but Him be offered up for His sake – saith: “Manifold are Our relationships with God. At one time, We are He Himself, and He is We Ourself. At another He is that He is, and We are that We are.” (Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, p. 43)This is what Christ means when He said to His disciples that they needed to become "perfect" (mooshlaam) even as their Father in Heaven is Perfect. It means, when a Servant acts according according to the Will/Command of God, they become "HE" and "HE" becomes them. They become members of the Concourse on High, the Heavenly Chorus, the Heavenly Court, the "Us" and "Our" when God said, "Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness." (Gen. 1:26). They become the NAHNOO (Arabic: "We/Us/Our") of the Qur'an.
"It signifieth the Paradise of the Divine Unicity, the Golden Land, the Depths of realm of the Divine Omnipotence (Jabarut). It is the realm of “Thou art He [God] and He [God] is Thou” allotted unto those servants who do not cried out except with the permission of God; who act according to His command and ever restrain themselves in accordance with His wisdom — just as God hath described them [in the Qur'an] for they are the honoured servants of whom it is written: “They speak not till He hath spoken; and they do His bidding” (Qur’an 21:27). (Tablet of All Food, 3:25-27)
Jalal-u-Din Rumi (1207-1273 A.D.) was not a Prophet but a Chosen One. Baha'u'llah quotes him many times. Rumi wrote of the journey of the soul:
"I died as a mineral and became a plant,From the station of plant to animal to man to angel to.....GOD! Not many mortal lives on one world, but many lives on many worlds--one life per world.
I died as plant and rose to animal,
I died as animal and I was Man.
Why should I fear? When was I less by dying?
Yet once more I shall die as Man, to soar
With angels blest; but even from angelhood
I must pass on: all except God doth perish.
When I have sacrificed my angel-soul,
I shall become what no mind ever conceived.
Oh, let me not exist! for Non-existence
Proclaims in organ tones, To Him we shall return." (The Sufi Path of Love, p.162)
Summary and Conclusion
1) Consecutive Incarnation (one mortal life per material planet for those who are not born again) is heavily implied in the Writings. Otherwise, if all automatically went to the Spiritual Realms at death, then good actions and righteousness would serve no purpose, and all souls (evil and good) would be rewarded equally in the Afterlife. All not "saved" in this life must go on to another material world. Those who receive faith then reject it (Moojreemoon) will be punished in their next incarnation on their next material planet, and suffer the Wrath of God until a Manifestestation of God or a Chosen One atones for them, as Baha'u'llah did in the Siyah Chal for the Moojreemoon on this planet.
2) Eternal Union was taught by 'Abdu'l-Baha, and is the belief that Baha'i couples who become "one" both physically and spiritually are married in all the Worlds of God (meaning the Spiritual Realms). This does not mean merely "recognizing each other" in the Afterlife, but refers to a real union that includes conjugial relations in the Realm of Jaw-bawr-root ('Abdu'l-Baha had a vision of Molla Ali-Akbar in "Paradise"--the Realm of Jaw-bawr-root). Emmanuel Swedenborg referred to this as "celestial marriage" (as do the Mormons). This does NOT refer to couples "recognizing each other" in the Afterlife! Only those who become "one" physically and spiritually, and are "born again", will achieve Eternal Union in all the Worlds of God.
3) Sadratu'l-Muntaha ("The Uttermost Lote-Tree") is taught in the Holy Texts, and refers to those souls who reach "so exalted a station" that they receive the "Command" (the "Be!" or power of creation by word) of God, and become both "God" as well as Servant of God, and they will manifest God's names and attributes, and become the "Very Gods" of which ALLÁH is "The Very God of Very Gods" (Panj Sha'n).
4) According to Krishna, in the Bhagavad-Gita, it is HE (God) Who created the caste-system in which white-skinned Aryans dominated Sudras (half-breeds) and Outcastes (blacks).
5) The Moojreemoon are those who, according to the Qur'an, rebelled against God and came under a Divine Chastisement. According to the Qu'ran, they would be known by their marks (black faces), and be dragged about by their heads and feet in iron collars and chains. The Qur'an says the Moojreemoon ARE under Divine Chastisement, but are NOT "inferior".
6) Baha'u'llah, as one of "Seven Eyes" of the Lamb of God, atoned for the Moojreemoon in the Siyah Chal. He allowed Himself to be chained for 120 days, so that the Moojreemoon would be freed of their chains 120 lunar years later.
7) Baha'is will continue to "explain-away" un-liked Verses in the Qur'an as "metaphors". For example, the Moojreemoon don't really have black faces, but "downcast" faces, and the iron chains and collars are not real, but refer to Moojreemoon being depressed (iron collars) and "chained" from working for race unity and world peace because they are not Baha'is.
8) To "Pick-and-Choose" which Verses we believe and which doctrines we accept because we fancy some and don't fancy others, is hypocrisy and makes one not a Baha'i, not a Believer, but a Moon-naw-feek (Hypocrite). Truth remains Truth even if we don't "fancy" it.
9) The Baha'i Faith is not merely a set of "12 Principles" but, rather, it is the Religion of God, and contains all the truths in all the Revelations of God revealed to Prophets and Chosen Ones and Seers since the world began.
Please give this article to other Believers. Thank you.
Aenon E. Moss