Istiqlál, 02 Sharaf (Honor), 178 B.E.


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Death is always an occasion for grief, but should not be for gloom. Behind the clouds lies a dazzling beauty and celestial splendor beyond all description. One reason God conceals the glories of paradise is to help us enjoy the glories of this planet. Awareness of the immortal beauty of the hereafter would prevent us from pursuing our purpose here. Would it be possible to see the majestic splendor of the sun but live by the light of a candle? … 1

All sacred scriptures have testified to another life beyond this one, and little by little they have lifted the veil of mystery. Yet because of people’s lack of receptivity and readiness, God’s Messengers have kept many mysteries undisclosed. … 2

Bahá’ís believe that the prophecies pointing to the disclosure of new knowledge and truth have been fulfilled by the Báb, Bahá’u’lláh, and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá—the central figures of the Bahá’í Faith. … 3

The quotations offered here present convincing evidence of the fulfillment of the prophecies, of the outpouring of heavenly knowledge by God’s latest revelation to humankind. Many of the mysteries that had been kept secret for thousands of years are disclosed in Bahá’í scriptures with astonishing clarity.

This compilation also includes quotations from the scriptures of three other religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Since Bahá’ís acknowledge the divine origin of all great faiths they treat all sacred scriptures with the same reverence as their own. This compilation, perhaps the first of its kind, is the fruit of such a belief. The quotations clearly show the oneness of all faiths and their single source.

The order of the selections is from the most recent religion to the most ancient. This arrangement is helpful because as we go back in time the degree of clarity in sacred scriptures diminishes. By studying the Bahá’í references first, we are in a better position to understand the previous scriptures.

This book is not only about life after death but also life before death. The prime purpose of looking into the hereafter is to find and fulfill our purpose here. Bahá’u’lláh brings good news not only about our infinitely sublime and everlasting destiny in God’s “many mansions,” but also about our splendid future on this plane. 4

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. Motlagh, Hushidar Hugh, editor. The Glorious Journey to God: Selections from Sacred Scriptures on the Afterlife. 1st Edition, Global Perspective, 1994, 21. [return]
  2. Ibid, 22. [return]
  3. Ibid. [return]
  4. Ibid, 22-23. [return]