Remember My days during thy days, and My distress and banishment in this remote prison. (Bahá’u’lláh, Bahá’í Prayers, p. 210)
When I was in the deepest despair, remembering traumatic events of my childhood, I came across this quote, which helped to lift me out of my “self”. I was feeling a lot of “poor me” and “why did this have to happen to me”, and then I had to stop and remember Bahá’u’lláh’s days.
Bahá’u’lláh was born into a wealthy family and was expected to follow his father into an important position in the government of Persia (Iran). He didn’t want the position or the power. As a result, His life included a series of imprisonments, and banishments. At one point He was imprisoned for four months in an underground reservoir for a public bath, with its only outlet a single passage down three steep flights of stone steps. When He was freed from prison, He and His family were banished four times, sometimes on foot over the mountains in the middle of winter without enough food or proper clothing. He was discredited by His uncle, poisoned by his jealous half-brother and witnessed the death of His son. He was betrayed by people He trusted, stoned, and isolated from the Believers. He was the victim of ignorance, injustice, cruelty and fanaticism. To protect the Faith from the efforts of His half-brother, He even lived as a hermit for 2 years. But every crisis was followed by victory, and this, I believe, is what is important to remember.
Although my repressed memories included all the positive and neutral memories too, once they came back, I was able to see that, like Bahá’u’lláh, there were times in my life that were peaceful, and activities that weren’t abusive. From anger I learned to find my voice and take action. From poverty I was protected from materialism and learned to rely on God. From estrangement I gained knowledge of myself, and through it, knowledge of God. From being silenced, I was protected from backbiting and gossip.
Knowing I can focus on the victories instead of the negative things that happened to me, I am grateful!
What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation? I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!
If you liked this meditation, you might also like my book Strengthening Your Relationship with God