Jamál, 18 ‘Izzat (Might), 179 B.E
First branches of turned leaves this fall on the maple trees in the yard:
Participated in the 26th Annual Conference of International Environment Forum as a Zoom call. Lots of experience and will within the group. And the annual report underlined a substantive list of accomplishments by way of publications and presentations made by a handful of members. There were so many words said throughout the 90 minutes, but all too few spoken about maintaining continuity in our thoughts, establishing a flow to propel us forward, connecting us to a collaborative process that would enable us to experiment with possibilities. It reminded me the quote by Claude Debussy, “Music is the space between the notes.” Several authors have written articles wherein they apply this quote to various life situations. As an example, here’s one by the minimalist, Francine Jay, ”The Space Between the Notes” Obviously, it’s about the need to recreate ourselves by getting rid of things that don’t really serve us or support us in our pursuits and establishing spaces for new possibilities to emerge. My sense is that the design and execution of the session may have worked in the past, but doesn’t really serve us anymore. Maybe it’s time to get rid of it and try something else. So that’s what I’m going to work on — something different that hopefully serves us better.
One of the forms of prejudice which afflict the world of mankind is religious bigotry and fanaticism. When this hatred burns in human hearts, it becomes the cause of revolution, destruction, abasement of humankind and deprivation of the mercy of God. For the holy Manifestations and divine Founders of religion Themselves were completely unified in love and agreement, whereas Their followers are characterized by bitter antagonism and attitudes of hostility toward each other. God has desired for mankind the effulgence of love, but through blindness and misapprehension man has enveloped himself in veils of discord, strife and hatred. The supreme need of humanity is cooperation and reciprocity. The stronger the ties of fellowship and solidarity amongst men, the greater will be the power of constructiveness and accomplishment in all the planes of human activity. Without cooperation and reciprocal attitude the individual member of human society remains self-centered, uninspired by altruistic purposes, limited and solitary in development like the animal and plant organisms of the lower kingdoms. The lower creatures are not in need of cooperation and reciprocity. A tree can live solitary and alone, but this is impossible for man without retrogression. Therefore, every cooperative attitude and activity of human life is praiseworthy and foreintended by the will of God. The first expression of cooperation is family relationship, which is unreliable and uncertain in its potency, for it is subject to separation and does not permanently cement together the individual members of humanity. There is also a cooperation and oneness in nativity or race which is likewise not efficient, for although its members may agree in general, they differ radically in personal and particular points of view. Racial association, therefore, will not ensure the requirements of divine relationship. There are other means in the human world by which physical association is established, but these fail to weld together the hearts and spirits of men and are correspondingly inefficient. Therefore, it is evident that God has destined and intended religion to be the cause and means of cooperative effort and accomplishment among mankind. To this end He has sent the Prophets of God, the holy Manifestations of the Word, in order that the fundamental reality and religion of God may prove to be the bond of human unity, for the divine religions revealed by these holy Messengers have one and the same foundation. All will admit, therefore, that the divine religions are intended to be the means of true human cooperation, that they are united in the purpose of making humanity one family, for they rest upon the universal foundation of love, and love is the first effulgence of Divinity. 1
- ʻAbduʼl-Bahá. The Promulgation of Universal Peace: Talks Delivered by ʻAbduʼl-Bahá during His Visit to the United States and Canada in 1912. Edited by Howard MacNutt. 2nd ed. Wilmette, Ill: Baháʼí Publishing Trust, 1982, 337-338. https://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/promulgation-universal-peace/26#322101001 [return]