Jamál, 16 Masá’il (Questions), 178 B.E.



Waning Gibbous Moon - 56% Illumination


Considering a 12-year investment in Evernote with nearly 16,000 notes organized into stacks, notebooks, tags, tasks, etc., I am reconciled to the inevitable that my use of it will end when I do. I have more tweaking to try so it plays nice with Ulysses, my writing app, but I want to believe it will get there.

Meanwhile Trello offers a visual timeline for my daily posts to Micro.blog and GAVNet on WordPress that makes it easy to search through the content regardless of which platform it’s on—and I don’t have to invest in premium features to do this.

Onward …


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The purpose of this commentary is to bring together notes, observations and explanation that will help foster a better understanding of the tablet’s most basic messages. The commentary also includes explanations intended to help Christians understand how Bahá’ís generally interpret Scripture, particularly some well-known Bible prophecies.

It is of course presumptuous to write a commentary on the Lawh-i-Aqdas. Much of what is said can be no more than speculation about the Author’s intentions, and each reader may understand some aspects of it in a different way. Moreover, while the commentary may bring out some aspects suggested by the text, it is of course possible to miss the real substance while drawing attention to a minor theme. Some passages are certainly open to broader interpretation than could ever be fully expounded in one simple commentary. Readers should therefore not limit themselves to the explanations given or accept them without question. 1

The views expressed in this commentary do not represent an official Bahá’í understanding of the Lawh-i-Aqdas. In fact, it is one of the admirable teachings of the Bahá’í Faith that individual believers are free to interpret the sacred texts for themselves, although it is not permissible to insist that others must accept such a personal view as authoritative. Interpretation in the Bahá’í community is encouraged in a spirit of tolerance for the views of others, and mindful that to cause dissension or disunity is the antithesis of Bahá’u’lláh’s teachings. 2 3

My sister and brother-in-law recently relocated and chose to donate several books in their library rather than move them. Many of these volumes are not well-known, but due to the topics they cover and the manner in which their authors explore them, they warrant a nod of recognition before being sent on their way. Accordingly, most quotes referenced in the “Quoted” section come from these books. Maybe they will stir (or renew) your interest, too.

  1. Sours, Michael W. A Study of Baháʾuʾlláh’s Tablet to the Christians. 1st Edition, Oneworld, 1990, 11-12. [return]
  2. Ibid. [return]
  3. “A clear distinction is made in our Faith between authoritative interpretation and the interpretation or understanding that each individual arrives at for himself from his study of its teachings. While the former is confined to the Guardian, the latter, according to the guidance given to us by the Guardian himself, should by no means be suppressed. In fact such individual interpretation is considered the fruit of man’s rational power and conducive to a better understanding of the teachings, provided that no disputes or arguments arise among the friends and the individual himself understands and makes it clear that his views are merely his own.”

    Research Department of the Universal House of Justice. “The Universal House of Justice.” Bahá’í Reference Library, Feb. 2021, https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/compilations/universal-house-of-justice-compilation/5#519655466.